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By March 7, 2023 Read More →

Anxious to Get Home- March 6, 1920 Storm Paralyzed the Monadnock Region

After the false spring in February, last weekend’s snowstorm reminded us that winter is not over yet! But it was nothing compared to the great storm of March 6, 1920 that paralyzed the region for days.

The winter of 1919-1920 was very cold with heavy snow. The Monadnock Region was looking forward to mild days when it rained heavily on the evening of Friday, March 5. Residents woke up on Saturday to heavy snow and a bitter wind.

Trains were able to leave early that Saturday morning but soon encountered trouble. The 7 a.m. train from Peterborough to Concord left onClipping from March 11 1920 article on March 6, 1920 storm schedule only to be stalled by the storm between Antrim and Hillsborough. The train would not move again until Monday afternoon.

Food and fuel quickly ran low. The railroad tracks had to be cleared before the situation became dire. On Monday, 200 men from Peterborough began digging out the tracks to the Jaffrey and Elmwood stations. Crews from Jaffrey and Hancock met the diggers as they clearing the way toward Peterborough. By 5 p.m., the first train in nearly three days arrived in Peterborough from Winchendon carrying some passengers that had been stranded since Saturday morning.

On Saturday March 6, Martin Eagan was anxious to get home after recuperating at the Nashua hospital from a hand injury sustained at the Peterborough basket shop weeks earlier. His train made it as far as Lyndeborough. He returned to Wilton hoping to find another way to Peterborough. On Sunday morning he and a man named Benson decided to ski home. They arrived in Greenfield at 10 p.m. After some food and a short rest, Benson headed to Bennington and Eagan continued on to Peterborough with the lines of telephone poles showing him the way. He made it to the McLaughlin house in Happy Valley with a broken ski at 3 o’clock Monday morning. Again he rested a short time and left at 6 a.m. After a three hour walk through the deep snow he made it home reporting he was “feeling fine.”

Read about the storm in the Peterborough Transcript.