Throwback Thursday: RGV Hurricane History

Throwback Thursday

BROWNSVILLE, Texas – June 1 to November 30 is hurricane season. It is a serious issue and not to be taken lightly.

There have been some monumental hurricanes that have hit the Rio Grande Valley. In 1844 the hurricane that hit this area almost wiped Matamoros off the map. In 1867 a hurricane wreaked havoc on Brownsville and wiped Bagdad Beach and Clarksville off the map.

The Mother Superior at the local convent said that the walls had fallen and unfortunately there were about 13 of their residents did not survive. Another hurricane that really hit the scene and is still in recent memory was the hurricane of 1933. It was a very large storm that almost hit the RGV with wide scale damage throughout the city.

At that time the Snake King had his animal farm zoo and enterprise near where Palm Village Shopping Center was. He had lions, tigers and all kinds of beasts. The hurricane broke all of the compounds down and all of those creatures were running around the city, just pure chaos.

Prior to the 1950’s, hurricanes were not given names. At that time it was a phonetic alphabet such as alpha, trolley, etc. It wasn’t until 1987 that male and female names were integrated.

There are a handful of hurricanes that hit the RGV area full strength. One that immediately comes to mind was Hurricane Beulah in 1967. The rain alone caused huge damage throughout the Rio Grande Valley. Next was Hurricane Allen in 1980, Hurricane Dolly in 2008 and those were direct hits. The rain alone was what caused the mass damage throughout the Rio Grande Valley and the upper valley because these hurricanes had a tendency to go up the river.

The hurricane that hit Galveston in 1900 was very devastating. The figures come about 6,000 to 12,000 people killed. That really changed the thinking about hurricanes on the Gulf Coast. Unfortunately the sea wall of Galveston was built at that time.

Experts say when you see any kind of alert that the hurricane is on its way, don’t even trifle with that fact. It is going to be damaging so take whatever precautions are necessary.

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