The Great Ice Storm Of 1976 Was 41 years Ago This Week [Video]
Usually when I find old footage of the past, it doesn't quite measure up to my memory of the event, but this one definitely does. And then there's that weird urban legend of the ice storm dwarf.
It was March 3, 1976, and lower Michigan was ravaged by ice five inches thick in some locations. I can remember the power at my house being out for weeks, and the District tournament game we had scheduled for that Friday was moved to Monday so they could find a gym that still had power. (We lost anyway.)
This video posted of 8mm film taken in my hometown of Saginaw shows the extent of the damage of thick ice on trees and power lines.
The National Guard was called up in Greenville, and a tornado touched down in West Bloomfield during the storm which produced torrents of rain, most of which froze instantly upon contact with the ground.
I can remember driving around with my friends that night and being unable to keep the ice from clogging my windshield wipers. It got so bad I had to abandon the car and walk home through the freezing storm, which features bursts of lightning and thunder, creating a surreal glow over the area.
The storm also spurned the strange tale of a dwarf, observed by electric company workers scurrying up a telephone pole shortly before the storm hit, that remains an urban legend to this day. The dwarf was thought to be the Nain Rouge, or the Red Dwarf of French lore, who appears before times of crisis in Detroit.