View Footage from the 1930s Binghamton New York Floods
Unfortunately, the Southern Tier of New York and Northeastern Pennsylvania have seen more than their share of minor, moderate, and major floods over the centuries.
Several in both categories have occurred in our lifetime...well at least my lifetime. The first major flood I witnessed was due to remnants of Hurricane Agnes in 1972. I grew up in the Corning-Painted Post New York area, and on June 23rd, my hometown, and surrounding areas were devastated by flooding from the remnants of that hurricane.
That summer, I joined a youth work program designed to assist families in cleaning out their flooded homes. It was an experience I will never forget, not in a good way. Mud was everywhere. It was hard to clean up and the smell was beyond belief.
21 people died due to the flooding in the Corning area. That flood also caused major damage in other cities, including Elmira, New York, and Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania. Check out the history and photos of that flood on the Clio.com website.
The Binghamton area has witnessed flooding most years, with many of them being categorized as moderate or minor, but we have experienced more than enough major flood events.
According to the National Weather Service historical floods of the North Branch Susquehanna River at Binghamton report, since 1846, the area has experienced 15 major flood events.
Four of those floods occurred between 1964 and 2011. We remember well, the floods of 1996 when the crest was 18.35 feet, 2006, cresting at 25 feet, and 2011, when the river crested at 25.73 feet.
But, let's go back further in time to 1936. The National Weather Service reported the river crested at 18 feet on March 13, and on March 18 at 22.9 feet, both designated as major floods.
Below, take a look at a 16mm film of the flooding during 1935 and 1936 of a video on YouTube from Reflections of America. Do you recognize any of the local areas? It's interesting to note how unafraid people were, getting so close to the riverbank and on bridges.
The video highlights boat rescues and the devastation due to flooding. I also enjoyed the shots of the vehicles from that period.
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