Anniversary of the Hottest Week in Minnesota History

Most MPR listeners have remarked recently about the cooler than normal weather that has greeted us for much of the summer. It is appreciated especially by those who remember some of the recent summer heat waves, when the Heat Index exceeded 100 degrees F.

This week, July 7-13, back in 1936 was the hottest week in Minnesota history. Without air conditioning, community swimming pools, athletic clubs, etc citizens had to endure a seven day period when the average temperature was in the 90s F. Approximately 900 Minnesotans died from heat related health problems, while the state’s crops and livestock were merely trying to survive. The Twin Cities climate record for that period shows the following values for temperature, which in order are the daily high, low, and mean values:

7/7/36___101 F___ 80 F___ 91 F

7/8/36___101 F___ 82 F___ 92 F

7/9/36____ 96 F___ 82 F___ 89 F

7/10/36___106 F___80 F___ 93 F

7/11/36___106 F___82 F___ 94 F

7/12/36___106 F___83 F___ 95 F

7/13/36___105 F___86 F___ 96 F

Many slept on porches, outside on lawns, or along lakeshores. Electric fans and simple blocks of ice were highly valued. Some remember that it was like living in Phoenix, AZ during this summer week. No other period in Minnesota history has been so unbearably hot. So be grateful if you are sleeping comfortably this month.

  • do

    good god,,,,,,,,thats gonna sound pretty nice december 13th when its 19 below