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Do Now. What is a “natural disaster?” Can you list any major ones in American history?. The Top disasters. Hurricane Galveston - Sept. 8, 1900 C ategory 4 hurricane with estimated 135 mph winds made landfall in the early morning, buildings crumbled under the force of 15-foot-high waves.

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do now

Do Now

What is a “natural disaster?”

Can you list any major ones in American history?


The Top



Hurricane Galveston - Sept. 8, 1900

Category 4 hurricane with estimated 135 mph winds made landfall in the early morning, buildings crumbled under the force of 15-foot-high waves.

By late afternoon, the entire island was submerged. An estimated 8,000 people perished. Although the city was successfully rebuilt, it never regained the prosperity that earned it a reputation as the "New York of the south."

hurricane katrina 2005
Hurricane Katrina - 2005
  • The Atlantic storm that began as a category 1 hurricane as it blew across southern Florida wound up being the country's costliest tragedy. It roared into the Louisiana coast with 125 mph sustained winds, causing a storm surge that broke levees that shielded New Orleans from surrounding, higher coastal waters, and leaving 80 percent of the city under water. Katrina killed at least 1,836 people and inflicted damages estimated at around $125 billion.
great san francisco fire and earthquake april 18 1906
Great San Francisco Fire and Earthquake - April 18, 1906
  • San Francisco residents were abruptly awakened one spring morning by an earthquake that lasted no more than a minute, but set off a chain of events that caused the city to burn for four straight days. By the time the fires were doused, flames had devoured more than 500 city blocks, and 3,000 lives were lost.
heat wave of 1980 summer of 1980
Heat Wave of 1980 Summer of 1980
  • A high-pressure ridge pushed temperatures across the central and southern United States above 90 degrees Fahrenheit for most of the summer. Agricultural damage tallied an estimated $48 billion due to a massive drought, and 10,000 people died from heat and heat stress-related ailments.

"The impact is like a shovelful of fine sand flung against the face."

  • "People caught in their own yards grope for the doorstep.”
  • “Cars come to a standstill, for no light in the world can penetrate that swirling murk... We live with the dust, eat it, sleep with it, watch it strip us of possessions and the hope of possessions. It is becoming Real."

**Read paragraph**

the dust bowl one of the greatest environmental disasters in american history
The Dust Bowl – One of the greatest environmental disasters in American history
  • Farmers were suffering before the depression due to surplus crops (Republicans did not help)
  • During the depression the Plains suffered a severe drought causing top soil to blow away and creating massive dust storms
  • Farmers could not raise crops and could not pay mortgages
  • Government offered loans and worked on stabilizing process
  • Scientists created techniques to prevent future problems
  • Many people moved out of the area – Called “Okies” and “Arkies” by Californians
not your typical snow day
Not your typical “snow day”
  • Schools sent students home because of the dust storms. Some school administrators were worried about what might happen to the students' health. There had been cases of "dust pneumonia" where dust clogged up the lungs just like the disease. Other administrators and teachers, especially in the southern Plains, knew that people had gotten lost in dust storms when visibility went to zero.
  • "One day in March 1934, my beginners were busy reading. All of a sudden there was total darkness. It was as though a huge curtain had been drawn around our building... I realized a dust storm had hit because soon the room was filled with a 'fog of dust' ... We teachers walked home holding wet towels over our faces in order to breathe."

“When I knew that my crop was irrevocably gone, I experienced a deathly feeling which, I hope, can affect a man only once in a lifetime. My dreams and ambitions and my shattered ideals seemed gone forever. The very desire to make a success of my life was gone. The spirit and urge to strive were dead within me. Fate had dealt me a cruel blow above which I felt utterly unable to rise.”

how can we prevent another dust bowl
How Can We Prevent AnotherDust Bowl?

What actions can be taken and will they be successful?

take a moment to consider the life of plains people during the dust bowl
Take a moment to consider the life of Plains people during the Dust Bowl…

Write a brief journal entry describing your memories.