1901 was a brutal summer over a large area of the United States, but it was the worst in the Corn Belt, Plains & Lower Ohio Valley (across the Tri-State). This event ranks as among not only the top droughts & summers of heat, but also ranks as one of the top weather events in Tri-State weather history.
This drought ranks with the great droughts & heat waves of our area like 1839, 1841, 1881, 1887, 1934, 1936, 1953, 1954……………………..1988, 2012.
Only 0.18″ of rainfall fell at Evansville in July, just a bit more than the driest July (since 1850) of 0.11″ in 1881.
However, it was on August 7, 1901 that relief arrive in the form of a bit more widespread rainfall as an upper low from the tropics passed through with scattered showers & t’storms. Nearly the entire Tri-State received rainfall, reportedly. However, Dubois & Martin counties did not. They had to wait until late August to see a decent rain.
Temperatures in this summer peaked at 113 in the Tri-State. In fact, the 113 at Fairfield was just 4 degrees shy of the 117 record at East St. Louis in July 1954.
Notice in the fourth graphic that rainfall deficits for the year were near 20″ over the area (per climate division).
It still is the driest calendar year for Illinois & Missouri to this day.