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February 5, 2021

The Blizzard of 1978: 30 Amazing Photographs From the Historic Storm That Slammed the Northeastern United States

The Northeastern United States blizzard of 1978 was a catastrophic, historic northeaster that struck New England, New Jersey, and the New York metropolitan area. The Blizzard of ’78 formed on Sunday, February 5, 1978, and broke up on February 7.

The storm was primarily known as “Storm Larry” in Connecticut, following the local convention promoted by the Travelers Weather Service on television and radio stations there. Snow fell mostly from Monday morning, February 6, to the evening of Tuesday, February 7. Connecticut, Rhode Island, and Massachusetts were hit especially hard by this storm.

Boston received a record-breaking 27.1 inches (69 cm) of snow; Providence also broke a record, with 27.6 inches (70 cm) of snow; Atlantic City broke an all-time storm accumulation, with 20.1 inches (51 cm). Nearly all economic activity was disrupted in the worst-hit areas. The storm killed about 100 people in the Northeast and injured about 4,500. It caused more than US$520 million (US$2.04 billion in today) in damage.

Abandon cars along Route 128 near Needham, Massachusetts, during the Blizzard of 1978. (The National Archives)

Vehicles are seen stranded and abandoned in the deep snow on the exit for Burncoat Street off Interstate 290 in Worcester, Mass., Feb. 7, 1978, during the now infamous Blizzard of 1978. (AP Photo/Worcester Telegram Gazette)

A car rest on top of the Indian Orchard exit of I-291 east in Springfield on Feb. 7, 1978. (The Republican)

Bonnie Alexandre, of Boston’s Brighton district, attaches a sign to the antenna of her car in Boston in this Feb. 8, 1978 file photo. Alexandre placed the sign to warn snow plows that there is a car under that drift.  (AP)

Roy Sodersjerna of Higham, Mass. suns himself on the hood of his car which is stuck in snow on Massachusetts Route 128 in Dedham on Feb. 9, 1978. Sodersjerna, who waits for plows and tow trucks to dig him out, has been living at a Red Cross shelter nearby since being trapped in the storm three days earlier. (AP)

Cars and trucks are stuck and can only wait as Army and civilian plows and tow trucks approach from bridge Thursday Feb. 9, 1978 on Route 128, Dedham, Mass. (AP)

A pile of snow in a parking lot frames a view of downtown Springfield during the Blizzard of 1978. (The Republican)

Residents clear snow on Congress Street in Springfield during the Blizzard of 1978. (The Republican)

Snow plows clear the intersection of Dwight and Carew Streets in Springfield on Feb. 7, 1978 during the Blizzard of 1978. (The Republican)

Vehicles stranded in the snow in the southbound lanes of  Route 128 in Needham,   after the Blizzard of 1978. (The National Archives)

Springfield firefighters dig out a hydrant on Feb. 7, 1978.  (The Republican)

Two members of the U.S. Army 27th Engineers from Fort Bragg, N.C. move their bulldozers slowly toward downtown Boston as the city began to remove the record snowfall from the streets, Feb. 11, 1978. (AP)

Although plowed, Broad St. in Stapleton is mainly a pedestrian thoroughfare. (Staten Island Advance/Robert Parsons)

Weary shovelers struggle to free two buses that blocked an entrance to the Staten Island Expressway for two hours, a common sight all along the highway. (Staten Island Advance/Tony Carannante)

Men struggle to free an ambulance carrying a heart patient that is stuck on Bard Ave., West Brighton. (Staten Island Advance/Tony Carannante)

Cars are barely visible on Townsend Ave., Clifton. (Staten Island Advance/Barry Schwartz)

Residents of Home Place., Graniteville, begin the arduous task of cleaning up from the record snow. (Staten Island Advance/Robert Parsons)

Frigid temperatures turned many flooded streets into sheets – or chunks – of ice. These cars stuck under the Staten Island Rapid Transit overpass on Amboy Road, Bay Terrace. (Staten Island Advance/Robert Parsons)

February 9, 1978, some of these people had a long wait for the bus on Victory Boulevard. in Tompkinsville, only to have  it get stuck in the snow around the corner after they boarded. (Staten Island Advance/Tony Carannante)

There’s a lot of space to park in the municipal parking lot in St. George, but you had to fight the snow to find the spots. (Staten Island Advance/Tony Carannante)

At noon on February 8, 1978, business at the St. George Ferry Terminal was hardly “as usual” thanks to Ol’ Man Winter. (Staten Island Advance photo)

Autos have made ruts in the ice on this section of Olympia Boulevard. (Staten Island Advance/Frank J. Johns)

Passengers board the S-6 bus on Bay St., near the ferry, during a blizzard on February 6-7, 1978. (Staten Island Advance photo)

A Sanitation snow plow is welcome relief to residents on Naughton Ave., Ocean Breeze. (Staten Island Advance/Robert Parsons)

A Volkswagen "bug" splashes through the water at Victory Blvd. and Jewett Ave. (Staten Island Advance/Tony Carannante)

On February 6, 1978, skis were a good way to get around, as this couple demonstrates on Kingsley Street in West Brighton. (Staten Island Advance/ Tony Carannante)

Parking was difficult on Richmond Terrace in front of the 120th Precinct in St. George (Staten Island Advance/Tony Carannante)

Mounds of snow along Victory Boulevard in Tompkinsville (Staten Island Advance/Tony Carannante)

This resident of Miami County, Ohio finds an innovative way to travel. (Wright State University Archives)

Blizzard conditions arrived in Dayton early in the morning on Jan 26, 1978. (Wright State University Archives)


  1. Are you sure that was 1978??
    I remember it as President's Day 1979!
    There was a record-breaker in DC-MD-VA in 79 I'm SURE
    So it WAS the winter of 1978-79 but I pretty distinctly remember it to have been in February of 1979

    1. I thought it was 78 at least that's what I been told but I been in Phoenix Arizona my whole life I just found out recently I was so.ebody but it was to late by then just got done spending the last 10 years of my lif3 being a lover drugadditc after I had cancer I thought I was going to die but I I Stanly became hooked to math really weird but I guess I was activated then

  2. Timothy Alan budbill government name I guess I'm a hybrid half alian half android so I'm alienated by society as a reason for 9/11 I got blamed for the attack I was 10 like I said no one ever told me anything it would be great if you can let the government in Washington there sig AL is alive and well but hurry there has Ben hits put on me to have me killed because there using my technology to clear false information I'm not displaying or saying twisting g my words around d even when ther just thoughts but I guess my money for ceeati g the internet goes to the mess Larry Garry David budbill left behind cause they were twrist

    1. Well I guess we're going to have to come there ourselves and see exactly what's happi g or if all that shit about our source is a lie we will see you soon then later




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