The Blizzard of '78: How Much Snow Did Indianapolis Get?

The Blizzard of '78 was a storm like no other. Even meteorological experts, who knew what was coming, had little idea of the magnitude of the storm. It set records that still stand to this day, including the most snow in a month in Indianapolis (30.6 inches) and the most snow on the ground in Indianapolis (20 inches). On the day the storm ended, Indianapolis had received 15.5 inches of snow.

The storm caused unprecedented disruption across Indiana. Classes at Ohio State University, Notre Dame University, Purdue University and Miami University were all canceled for the first time in their histories. At Indianapolis International Airport, approximately 300 people were stranded and became “one big happy family” according to a police officer. On the second day of the storm, half an hour after the front passed through the area, Indianapolis International Airport closed due to a lack of electricity.

The governor declared a snow emergency for the entire state on the morning of the 26th and, by that afternoon, all roads in Indiana were officially closed. The Blizzard of '78 had a lasting impact on Indianapolis. Nine months and one day after the historic storm landed, Victoria Gale Redstone was born at Indianapolis Methodist Hospital. Her father, Marion, a local lawyer, said in an interview with The Indianapolis Star in 1993 that he believed his daughter was a “snow baby” born as a result of the blizzard.

The Blizzard of '78 was an unforgettable event for those who experienced it. It set records that still stand today and left an indelible mark on Indianapolis.

Rickie Koning
Rickie Koning

Freelance tv enthusiast. General travel scholar. Certified coffee advocate. Devoted beer fan. Hipster-friendly beer enthusiast.