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This Week In History: November 30, 1950

Authors Note: After this snowy past week I thought it might be of interest to review the Big Snow of late November of 1950. This is from the November 30, 1950, issue of the Twin City News.


Serving Fairfield County Since 1887

Thursday, November 30, 1950

Editor, Publisher James S. Temple

Telephone 194


20 Inch Snowfall Paralyzes Activity

"More snow and more wind Wednesday afternoon produced bigger drifts and threatened to again isolate the communities of norther Fairfield County after they were fairly dug out of the gigantic snowstorm which struck with blizzard force Saturday night practically paralyzing all ordinary activity. Isolated for two days were the communities of Baltimore and Basil, (writer’s note: Basil is identified as a separate community even though a governmental merger with Baltimore had been finalized nearly three years prior. Many living in the west side of town were still unwilling to recognize Baltimore as the court-appointed name for the merged villages.) Thurston, Millersport, Pleasantville and Pickerington. The 20-inch snowfall, drifted by winds of gale force, was just too much for ordinary snow plows. Additional snow fell on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and on the latter day. It started drifting again. A giant bulldozer broke Baltimore’s isolation at 7:30 p.m. Monday evening when it broke through drifts as high as eight feet on State Route 158 to come roaring into town.

SCHOOLS: will remain closed until Monday.

CHURCHES: in this community failed to hold services Sunday…BUSINESS: was normal except for certain items, like tire chains, which are not available.

TRANSPORTATION: None of the county roads were open as of Wednesday afternoon.

RAILROADS: local diesels pulled loaded cars from the Fairfield Paper&Container Co. Tuesday evening.

PUBLIC UTILITIES: John L. Orr, local water superintendent, and a crew of two worked Wednesday to fix a busted water main on Company Street.

INDUSTRY: many workers were unable to get to work because of blocked roads or cars without chains…drifts were reported to be 12 feet high…a path 20 feet wide was cleaned on Main, Market and Basil Streets Monday afternoon. The village had no snow equipment so tractor outfits belonging to Harley Donahue, Dolphus Walton, Floyd Roshon and Lehman Beckett were put to work cleaning streets."

Two Boys Are Born In Snowbound Town (Thurston):

"Dr. S.C. Sneeringer, who rode to Thurston from Baltimore in a horse-pulled wagon Monday afternoon, delivered a boy for Mr. and Mrs. Sylvan Wallis at 12:01 a.m. and then walked across the street and delivered a boy for Mr. And Mrs. Charles Miller at 4:30 a.m….(Dr. Sneeringer) was himself separated by the Big Snow from his family who lived at Buckeye Lake."

Millersport Digging Out Of Snow:

"…without a physician when the blizzard struck, Dr. McPherson was brought into town from Buckeye Lake. Mrs. Joe Click, a nurse, was brought in from the country on horseback…"

Farmer Brings Milk to Town On Wagon:

"J.W. Thomas relieved the milk shortage in the village of Baltimore Monday when he brought 100 gallons of milk into the snowbound town on a wagon…"

Expectant Mother Brought To Town:

"Basil Volunteer Fireman (writer’s note: Basil is no longer a separate village entity but the fire station in Baltimore is located in the Joint Basil Fire District building.) went to the rescue of an expectant mother out of the snowbound Canal Winchester Road west of here Sunday…The rescue of Mrs. Virgil Heffner…was rushed to Lancaster by the Weaver ambulance as soon as Route 158 was opened by the giant bulldozer. The fire truck broke tracks through the snow for one of Mauger Motor Sales’ chain-equipped trucks which brought Mrs. Heffner into town. The first milk to arrive in town came over the same route from the McBee dairy farm."

Help Wanted:

"In order for the Liberty Union School to open on Monday every man and boy who can handle a snow shovel is asked to report for the work to help clear the township roads in Liberty Township…will be paid regular wages…Those wishing to help are urged to contact Ralph Kauffman, Walter Myers or Walter Boyer."

Telephone Exchange Deluged With Calls:

"The local telephone exchange is making every effort to complete calls, and the chief operator Miss Anna Cook, requested that everyone keep conversations brief. Three operators are either marooned or snowbound. They are Mrs. Larry West, who is in route from Pennsylvania, Miss Helen Spitler and Janet Graf, both snowbound."

School Superintendent Thumbs Ride On Train:

"Mr. And Mrs. William Harrington, members of the school faculties of Liberty Union School and Thurston School, respectively, hitch-hiked a ride on a railroad at an unscheduled stop…between Pickerington and Baltimore on Route 256..Mr. Harrington stuck out his thumb when they sighted the engine, snow plow and caboose coming. The engine stopped and they climbed into the caboose and rode into Baltimore."

Photo in the November 30, 1950, Twin City News. It demonstrates the promotion of Christmas marketing through hometown advertising after Thanksgiving is not a new phenomenon!

Photo: Photo in the November 30, 1950, Twin City News. It demonstrates the promotion of Christmas marketing through hometown advertising after Thanksgiving is not a new phenomenon!

About Town:

"Mrs. Dorothy Shanks walked into Baltimore from Dumontsville Sunday. She was the first of many persons marooned on Route 158 to reach the village. She walked through field and woods, avoiding eight -foot drifts on the road."

"Charles Friedly says this is the biggest snowfall since the turn of the century. He remembers one in 1902 or 1903 that was deeper."

(writer’s note: If the reader had the seven-CD set of Baltimore’s old newspapers from 1889-1969, you could find which year was in Friedly’s memory! These CDs are available at the Baltimore Community Museum for $50. Call 740-862-3900.)

Lake Shore Bus Marooned:

"…Floyd Miller, Paul Miller and Chester Langel were hosts of bus passengers and were said to be from Millersport and Thurston.”

"Andrew Wagner, who lives a half mile south of town near the big drift on Route 158, was host to 14 stranded persons over the week-end."

Local Paper Mill Goes Back to Work:

"The Fairfield Paper&Container Co. here started partial operation Tuesday after being almost completely closed down…A surprising number of workers reported Wednesday morning…"(writer’s note: Paper mill workers had a tradition of loyalty, especially when the mills were managed locally. The hometown industry has been a vital part of the local economy since 1893 when the first mills were opened by Harry Smart).

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