American Experience "The Hurricane of '38" on WXXI-TV

American Experience "The Hurricane of '38" on WXXI-TV

Mon, 05/17/2010 - 9:00pm - 10:00pm

In September of 1938, people in New England found themselves in the midst of the most devastating storm ever recorded in North America.

In September of 1938, a great storm rose up on the African coast and began to cross the Atlantic. The National Weather Bureau predicted it would blow itself out at Cape Hatteras, just as such storms usually did. But there was nothing typical about this storm. Without sophisticated forecasting tools, the East Coast was taken by surprise as the storm suddenly headed north. Within 24 hours of the Weather Bureau’s benign forecast, the so-called “Florida cyclone” ripped into the New England coast with a fury that set off seismographs in Alaska. Expecting only heavy rains, people found themselves, virtually without warning, in the midst of the most devastating storm ever recorded in North America. Traveling at 60 m.p.h., with peak gust winds surging up to three times that speed, the storm killed some 600 people, destroyed 8,000 homes and wrecked 6,000 boats. This program follows the lives of fishermen, Shinnecock Indians and vacationers who were caught up in this incredible natural disaster.

American Experience "The Hurricane of '38" airs Monday, May 17 at 9 p.m. on WXXI-TV (DT 21.1/cable1011 and 11).

Television's most-watched history series, AMERICAN EXPERIENCE has been hailed as "peerless" (Wall Street Journal), "the most consistently enriching program on television" (Chicago Tribune) and "a beacon of intelligence and purpose" (Houston Chronicle). On air and online, the series brings to life the incredible characters and epic stories that have shaped America's past and present. Acclaimed by viewers and critics alike, AMERICAN EXPERIENCE documentaries have been honored with every major broadcast award, including 24 Emmy Awards, four duPont-Columbia Awards and 14 George Foster Peabody Awards.