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Algonquin Disasters

Algonquin Historic
Commission

1857 Flood- The water reached highest level in recorded history. A flood was caused by melting snow and a frozen solid river according to Nunda Herald on February 14, 1907 issue.

1863 January 1st Blizzard- The temperature dropped to a minus 40 and some local farmers had their livestock freeze to death in the fields.

1871 Drought- Algonquin was hit with 42 days without rain.

1881 Gould's Butter and Cheese Factory Fire- The factory was built at a cost $ 7,000 after the fire.

1881 Great Easter Flood- Fox River washed away the railroad bridge and floods Main Street with one foot of water. Only one bridge remained open between McHenry and Clintonville on the Fox River. Read about the worst flood in history by Dr. Nason's article in Woodstock Sentinel.

1887 Pingry Hotel Fire- A chimney fire was extinguished by Col. Lynch and the help of several local townspeople.

1887 Mud Mill Dam Breaks- Main Street was flooded by the breaking of the grist (flour) mill located near the present Algonquin and Pyott Roads. Crystal Creek Bridge in Algonquin was impassable so milk trains stopped on the east side of the river for dairy farmers.

1890 Algonquin Creamery Co. Fire- Lightning caused the Algonquin Creamery to burn down a second time.

• 1893 Lutheran Parsonage Fire- A defective chimney caused severe damage to the Parsonage of St. John's Lutheran Church.

• 1895 Great Town Fire- Four buildings were burned down and two people died in Algonquin's worst fire. Fire department and water system are established as result of the fire. Read about the fire, article from Crystal lake Herald.

• 1897 Flood- The Fox River Bridge was almost washed away but saved by the efforts of local townspeople.

• 1898 Flood- Crystal Creek Bridge was washed away by the flood caused by several severe local thunderstorms. Read about the flood, article from Crystal Lake Herald.

1901 St. John's Church Fire- Church is struck by lightning and caused extensive damage.

• 1902 Tornado- Several animals were killed, homes damaged, electric wires tangled, Duensing windmill was blown down, Episcopal church was twisted and wrecked, Janak's boat house was demolished, 30 trees were blown down and the liberty pole snapped which also carried away the telephone wires leading to town. (More damage also listed in the newspapers

• 1902 Dust Storm- Sky was dark with flying sand and dirt.

• 1904 Feed Mill Fire- The mill was destroyed.

• 1904 Flood- Highest level for river since Easter Flood of 1881. Water reached beyond South Harrison Street. Algonquin Power Plant had to shut off electricity to the village for several days.

• 1904 August 8th Frost- Earliest frost recorded in the history of the Village.

• 1905 Peter Building Fire- The local landmark building is totally destroyed by the fire that lasted two hours.

• 1905 Hottest Day in History- Temperature registered 117 degrees on September 1st at 3 p.m.

• 1908 Forest Fires- Smoke from Wisconsin and Michigan forest fires caused an irritating smoky fog for two days in Algonquin.

• 1910 Blizzard- Huge snow storms hit the village with three feet of snow with snow drifts up to 15 feet high.

• 1912 Creek Flood- Crystal Creek rose seven feet in very short time. Flooding was caused by local thunderstorms.

• 1916 Heat Wave- A thirty day heat wave breaks. Couple of horses died because of the heat wave.

• 1974 Simonini Restaurant- Landmark well known in northern Illinois, burned down in December. Once known as the Morton House (hotel) which was considered one of the finest restaurants in northern Illinois.

• 1994 Floods

• 1997 Beaver Dam Fire- Firefighter was injured when the ceiling fell while fighting a fire which was caused by an arsonist at Beaver Dam which was located on northeast corner South Main Street and the bike path.

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