The idyllic White Christmas is a beloved part of holiday lore, conjuring images of snow-covered landscapes and cozy, fireside scenes.
Yet, ill-timed storms striking around Christmas have also etched their notoriety through devastation and disruption. Reviewing some of the most damaging holiday-season weather events illuminates their full impacts.
Big Apple Buried the Day After Christmas - 1947
New Yorkers are no strangers to iconic Christmas imagery, from sparkling trees in Rockefeller Center to horse-drawn carriages in Central Park. But the day after Christmas 1947, the city contended with its biggest-ever blizzard.
Over 26 inches accumulated as transportation screeched to a halt, vehicles abandoned amidst mounting snow drifts. An estimated 77 people perished, a sobering statistic contrasting postcard-perfect visions of the season.
While Manhattan hasn't seen over 7 inches of snow actually fall on December 25th since 1912, this storm remains a reminder of winter's potentially ruthless nature.
And though its nearly 50-year snowfall record was eventually surpassed, for many New Yorkers past and present, the blizzard still epitomizes holiday weather mayhem.