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As It Was: Two-Week Storm Ravishes Del Norte County, Calif. in 1927

On February 22, 1927, a winter storm slammed the coast of Del Norte County, Calif., leaving behind two weeks of destruction.

A powerful sea-born wind started the tempest, followed by a relentless deluge.

Streams swelled, flooding cellars and basements everywhere.  Some homes in the lowlands experienced up to three feet of water above the floor boards.

The Klamath river overflowed near its mouth, tearing six new cabins from their foundations.  High water at Requa and heavy slides on Highway 101 obstructed mail delivery.

In Crescent City, at a point between F & G streets on Third, trash plugged a culvert, backing up water to form a lake several blocks back.  At the Fireman’s Ball, dancers were marooned, compelling many of them to remain there dressed in masquerade costumes for two nights.

The Smith River spilled over its banks on the bottomlands, washing away two dozen cows from nearby farms.  In the canyon, waters swept away several bridges and great sections of the Redwood highway.

Finally, the storm abated, allowing residents to assess the damage, estimated at millions of dollars in today’s currency.

Sources: "Raging Elements Deal Much Destruction." Crescent City Courier, 24 Feb. 1927. "News Nuggets." Reflections of Del Norte County, vol. 9, no. 3, 24 Summer. 2014, p. 3.