75th Anniversary of the 1937 Flood


   75 years ago the Ohio River reached its highest level in recorded history.

   Weeks of heavy rain, along with melting snow, caused the greatest volume of water ever known to pass along Ohio’s southern shores. It flooded every Ohio River community from Pittsburgh, Penn., to Cairo, Ill.

   More than a million people were left homeless, 385 people lost their lives and more than $500 million in damages to property and infrastructure was incurred.

   The flood event was so unprecedented and its scale so was great that civic and industrial groups lobbied national authorities to create a comprehensive plan for flood control.

   The combined flood defensive system consisting of dams, floodwalls and levees that now exist was begun by the Flood Control Act of June 1938 and similar legislation.

   You can see a photo gallery of the 1937 flood on the Herald-Dispatch’s website here. Many of the photos (like the one above) were taken by employees of the Corps of Engineers.



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