Shipwrecks, chilly air, and heavy rain top the list of Michigan weather events on this day in history. From the National Weather Service archives here are the Michigan weather events that happened on April 19.
Cold air controls the Great Lakes as an area of high pressure drops down from Canada in 1897. This is the first of several record setting cold days. In Michigan Grand Rapids has a low temperature of 19 degrees Lansing 14 degrees, Detroit 23 degrees, and Sault Ste. Marie dips to a bitter cold 5 degrees.
In 1913, the wood, bulk freight Uganda, while carrying corn, was bound Milwaukee for Buffalo, when struck pack ice and cut her hull four miles east of White Shoals, Western Straits of Mackinac in Lake Michigan. Despite frantic effort by the crew to save her she finally sank. The crew of 22 saved by steamer Donaldson.
The Canadian lighthouse tender Lambton, while carrying gear and passengers in 1922, was carrying relief keepers to various Canadian lighthouses when she disappeared in a spring gale somewhere between Caribou Island and Whitefish Point. Several freighters spotted the boat and later wreckage near Caribou Island in Lake Superior. A Georgian Bay paper company’s tug G. R. Gray searched for her for more than a week. The lost included two young sea cadets from Soo, Ontario. All 22 people on the boat perished.
In 1929, the wood ship E.J. Laway, Jr. foundered. She was a total loss during a gale off Sein Island, North Channel of Lake Huron.
The temperature in Flint never rose above 35 degrees in 1953. This temperature was a record temperature, in that it was the lowest maximum temperature for that day. Houghton Lake observed a record low maximum of 38 degrees. The next day, the record lowest maximum temperature for Flint was 34 degrees.
In 1957, less than a week after record low temperatures in the teens, high temperatures are pushing 80 degrees across Lower Michigan. Muskegon went from 19 degrees on April 15 to a high of 79 degrees on this date, a rise of 60 degrees in four days.
In 1985, a record 3.09 inches of heavy rainfall for the day fell at Weather Forecast Office in Marquette which was followed by record warmth two days later. In Ishpeming, 2.88 inches fell, 2.49 inches at Van Riper State Park while 1.60 inches fell in Marquette. This rain combined with snowmelt caused some flooding in Marquette County. Floodwaters made it to hundreds of residences along rivers and streams in central Upper Michigan. Marquette County had as many as 500 homes affected. Numerous roads were closed due to flooding and at least one bridge was washed out in Marquette County while Alger County had four secondary roads washed out. Flooding lasted for three days in South Republic.