The worst hurricane since the “1893 Great October Storm” hit New Orleans at the end of September in 1915. Also, this was the worst storm for that area until the Hurricane Betsy in 1965, (the 1947 New Orleans Hurricane was very, very close & could arguably be the worst until Katrina), then Hurricane Katrina in 2005.
Exceptional for the time, well-advanced warnings from the U.S. Weather Bureau (today’s NOAA National Weather Service & also National Hurricane Center) likely saved many, many lives, but much of the city was submerged. During this time, New Orleans was not as sprawling into the lowest-lying areas as today, but fatalities in the city still mounted to upward of 300.
A major Category 4 at landfall with 1-minute sustained winds of 145 mph, the system was a tropical storm as far north as Tennessee & brought a distinct PRE to the Tri-State, followed by a break, then the rainfall directly associated with the hurricane remnants.
Of the 5.27″ of rain that fell at Mt. Vernon, Indiana, 3.86″ fell with the PRE & 1.39″ fell with the actual hurricane remnants. A total of 5.75″ of rainfall occurred at Greenville.
Like Irma recently, there was an extremely sharp cut-off to the rainfall with the actual storm in our area. Only the PRE dumped rainfall in our northwestern areas, while the direct rainfall did not reach those locations.
Examples of PREs (Predecessor Rain Events)………(images courtesy of Weather Tap & NOAA):