Timetable of Significant Weather Events of the Century for Columbia, Missouri

1901: Driest year on record for Columbia with an annual precipitation total of 21.35” which is 17.70 inches below normal.

1904-05: Coldest winter. The winter of 1904-05 tied with the winter of 1977-78 for being the coldest on record. Average winter temperature: 24.3°

1905: February 13. Coldest temperature for the century: -25°

1911: November 11. Columbia established a record high and low on the same day. Prior to the passage of a fast moving cold front,the maximum temperature climbed to 82° before tumbling to 13° after the front swept through. The 69° temperature differential establishes a record that has never been broken.

1913: April 3. An F3 tornado killed 2, and injured 25.

1917: June 5. The worst tornado, F4, that hit Boone County traveled 42 miles, killed 20 and injured 68.

1918: September 2. Excessive rainfall. 24-hour rainfall record: 6.61”.

1924: January 5. Barometric pressure extreme. Highest recorded: 31.09”

1924: December 16-18. Ice Storm. Excerpted from the December 1924 issue of Climatological Data:

A rain that froze as it fell mixed with sleet and snow prevailed from the night of the 16th to the 19th, and caused the most severe property losses on record.An ice layer varying from one to six inches thick covered most of the state the last 15 days of the month...And for the severity and duration of the ice storm, the time it remained on the ground, and resulting widespread damage, there was no other storm of any winter comparable with it in the climatological history of Missouri. It was estimated that a flat roof of 30X50 square feet carried a load of 12 tons of ice… Many trees were stripped of limbs or entirely broken down. Literally thousands of telephone and telegraph poles went down with a tangled mess of wires. Practically all traffic and business lines were suspended for a time.It was ten days or more before utility companies got back to normal…For most of the state a solid sheet of ice prevailed to the close of the month… Some livestock were frozen in the fields… At the close of the year no one had been bold enough to estimate the damage and loss resulting from this December storm and weather.The Southwestern Bell Telephone Co., issued a statement that the company had suffered a loss of $1,000,000 to the west of St. Louis alone.

The following was excerpted from the 1924 Climatological Data Annual Summary: A rain, sleet, and snow storm prevailed from the 16 to the 19th.Three-fourths of the state was covered by a solid sheet of ice the last half of the month.For severity and duration, and resulting damage and loss there is no other storm period comparable with it in Missouri since 1883.

1928: June. Wettest Month on record: 14.86”

1931: September 21. F2 Tornado

1935-36: Most occurrences of minimum temperature 0° and below during the winter season: 19

1936: Heat Wave and Drought.
Hottest summer on record: Average Maximum Temperature: 95.3°
Average Minimum Temperature: 70.0°, Average Temperature: 82.7°
2nd driest summer on record: 2.58” of rain.
The following statements have never been equaled or surpassed in Columbia’s climate history:
Highest minimum temperature ever recorded: 85° on August 22, 1936
Number of days, maximum temperature records were set during the summer of ‘36 and still stand today: 19
Number of days, maximum temperature equaled or exceeded 100° in 1936: 44
Most consecutive days with 100° temps or greater: 16-- from July 4 to July 19, 1936 and Aug. 12 to Aug. 27, 1936

1938: March 30. An F2 tornado killed 1 person and injured 28.

1942: May 13. F3 tornado. Traveled 5 miles within Boone County.

1948: June 20. An F2 tornado injured 1.

1954: July 14. Hottest Temperature recorded: 113.4°

1954: April 30. F2 tornado

1956: December 4. F2 tornado

1958: February 27. Barometric Pressure Extreme. Lowest recorded: 28.73”

1959: September 27. F2 tornado

1960: Snowiest year of the century: 49.4". Coldest March on record and Heaviest Monthly Snowfall for any month: 24.5”. It is a cold and stormy month for Missouri. Some parts of northern Missouri had as much as 3 feet of snow on the ground.Maximum snow depth for Columbia was 16 inches on the ground on March 16th.

1977: January. The coldest month on record. Average Maximum Temperature: 22.6°, Average Minimum Temperature: 4.6°, Average Temperature: 13.6°

1977-78: Coldest Winter on record: Avg. winter temperature: 24.3°. Most snow in a season: 54.9”.The winter of 1977-78 tied with the winter of 1904-05 for being the coldest on record.. In fact, during the late 1970’s there were three consecutive bitterly cold winters that all ranked in the Top 5 coldest winters on record: 1976-77, 5th coldest; 1977-78, 1st coldest; 1978-79, 3rd coldest.

1980: July. Hottest Month on record.Avg. Max Temp: 100.9°; Avg. Min Temp: 73.0°; Avg. Temp: 87.0°
The temperature equaled or exceeded 105° on 13 days during the month.

1982-83: Least amount of snowfall in a season: 4.0”

1983: Coldest December on Record: Avg. Temp: 17.6°. Lowest maximum temp. recorded for any month: -7° on December 24, 1983.

1986: August. Driest month on record: 0.05”

1993: Wettest year on record: 62.49”

1995: January 19. Greatest 24-hour snowfall: 19.7”

1995: July 8. F0 tornado

1998: Tornado: Excerpted from the November 1998 issue of Storm Data: During the early morning hours on November 9th, a tornado touched down in the southeastern section of Columbia at the South Ridge subdivision. It traveled a total of 2 miles damaging 258 homes and businesses. Fifty-eight were destroyed or severely damaged. Miraculously, no deaths and only 16 injuries were reported. Damage is estimated at more than $6 million to the area.

1999: April 8. An F2 tornado injured 5 near Midway.

The Century's Statistics
Warmest Temperature - 113.4°. July 14, 1954
Coldest Temperature - 25°. February 13, 1905
Coldest Winter - 1904-05/1977-78. Average winter temperature: 24.3°
Warmest Summer - 1936. Average summer high: 95.3°
Driest Year - 1901. Total precipitation: 21.35"
Wettest Year - 1993. Total precipitation: 62.49"