|The Henry B. Smith was sunk on Lake Superior during the storm|
It was dubbed the 'White Hurricane' and the 'Freshwater Fury' after the storm sunk 12 ships and grounded at least another 30 more on the Great Lakes. This was a time when meteorology was more of a 'wait and react' business compared to the days ahead forecasting provided today. Ships were also build using materials that struggled to fight against the bitter cold and punishing waves.
|Location of the shipwrecks from the storm|
The system was actually a combination of two weather makers. A large trough driving through the heart of the country picked up a low pressure center moving up the east coast. The two combined to 'bomb' a low through the Great Lakes. The intense pressure gradient created winds 60-80 mph.
While winds were a big impact to the shipping industry, snow was another big effect from the storm. Cleveland reported over 17" of snow in a 24 hour period. Smashing the 24-hour record. Lake effect snow was reported from Northern Michigan to Buffalo.
|November 9th, 1913 morning weather map|
The National Weather Service has provided a ton of information on the storm. Check it out here