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Iowa History Daily: January 7 - The Super Bowl Blizzard

Iowa History Daily: On January 9, 1975, Iowans braced for the storm of the century as the infamous “Super Bowl Blizzard” prepared to shake the state. The storm unleashed 45 tornadoes while killing 12 in the southeastern United States, and claimed 58 lives as the blizzard swept across the Midwest.

Coming in off the Pacific with gale force winds, the storm quickly gathered strength while moving over the Rocky Mountains. Colliding with arctic air blowing fiercely from the north and stiff southerly winds pulling moisture from the Gulf of Mexico, barometers across the Midwest dropped to record lows as the storm approached.

In Dickinson County, winds quickly reached 60 mph while over a foot of snow fell. One Iowan, Raymond James Mayou of Spencer, died while attempting to reach motorists stranded in the storm by snowmobile. The storm also knocked out power in many parts of the state, leaving many people without heat as the winds whistled and temperatures plummeted. Farmers throughout the state reported large losses of livestock in the storm.

Although few Iowans may remember the Pittsburgh Steelers defeating the Minnesota Vikings in Super Bowl IX on that fateful weekend in 1975, many still remember the incredible storm often referred to as the worst winter storm in Iowa’s history. #IowaOTD #IowaHistoryDaily #IowaHistoryCalendar


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