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May 30, 2020

24 Amazing Color Photos Capture Chicago's Street Scenes During the Blizzard of 1979

The Chicago blizzard of 1979 was a major blizzard that affected northern Illinois and northwest Indiana on January 13–14, 1979. It was one of the largest Chicago snowstorms in history at the time, with 21 inches of snowfall in the two-day period.

The blizzard lasted for a total of 38 hours. At its peak, wind gusts reached speeds of 39 miles per hour. Five people died during the blizzard, with approximately 15 others seriously injured due to conditions created by the storm.

O’Hare Airport was closed and all flights were grounded for 96 hours, from January 13 to 15. The cold weather and snowfall throughout the rest of January and February resulted in frozen tracks throughout the Chicago ‘L’ system.

These amazing photos from masMiguel were taken by American photographer Richard Drozda that documented Chicago's street scenes during the blizzard of 1979.

Chicago. Aftermath of a snowfall that cost a mayor his job. Franklin and Randolph, 1979

Chicago. Blasting over the plowed snow on Raven Street, Norwood Park, 1979

Chicago. Franklin near Randolph, 1979

Chicago. Lake looking west from Wells, 1979

Chicago. Looking east on Randolph after the big January blizzard. The Bismarck Theater (now Cadillac Palace) marquee is in view, 1979

Chicago. Looking north on Raven towards Northwest Highway, 1979

Chicago. Looking southeast down Avondale, 1979

Chicago. Looking west on Kinzie, 1979

Chicago. Northwestern Station, 1979

Chicago. Norwood Park Station, 1979

Chicago. Norwood Park, 1979

Chicago. Norwood Park, 1979

Chicago. Norwood Park, 1979

Chicago. Norwood Park, 1979

Chicago. Norwood Park, 1979

Chicago. Outbound commuter train crossing Raven Street in Norwood Park, 1979

Chicago. Randolph Street during evening rush hour, 1979

Chicago. State Street renewal before it became a ‘mall’, 1979

Chicago. The old C&NW station, 1979

Chicago. The old C&NW, Norwood Park, 1979

Chicago. The winter of 1978-79 was the worst in Chicago history. Record snow and record cold, 1979

Chicago. United Artists Theater at Randolph and Dearborn. Now, sadly, demolished, 1979

Chicago. Wells at Washington, 1979

Chicago. Wells looking south at Washington, 1979

(Photo © Richard Drozda)

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