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Weather Prediction – Then and Now with Garnet Hendren

October 6, 2019 @ 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm

One hundred fifty years after the great Saxby Gale…

Storm Prediction: Then and Now

 By Garnet Hendren

Ottawa House Museum: 2:00 PM Sunday October 6th

The “Saxby Gale” of October 4&5th, 1869, was the worst storm the Maritimes and US Eastern seaboard has experienced in modern times. With wind, rain and tides more than six feet higher than normal, it caused massive damage, wiping away wharves, houses, barns and livestock, flooding crops, sinking ships and claiming lives.

On October 6th, 150 years since the height of the Saxby gale, The Ottawa House Museum is offering insight into the resources available to predict such a storm in today’s world—a world in which the forces of nature are again on the rampage.

Garnet Hendren of Parrsboro is the Supervisor of Technical Services for Environment and Climate Change Canada’s Atmospheric Monitoring and Data Service.  He will describe the various resources and equipment available to meteorologists and researchers, including radar, climate stations, lightning detection apparatus and others.

Predicting the weather in 1869 was very rudimentary by today’s standards, but this storm was, in fact, predicted almost a year earlier.

In a London newspaper in December of 1868, Lt. Stephen Martin Saxby, a British naval officer and amateur astronomer, warned of the potential for a catastrophic storm to occur on October 5th, the next year. His prediction was based on the timing of tides, the alignment of the planets, and similar calculations. But not much attention was paid, and even when he issued a warning again shortly before the anticipated date, the news did not reach many of those who would be impacted.

Today, we typically have predictions well in advance of any major storm.

With Hurricane Dorian, our worst storm in decades, fresh on our minds, Hendren will offer a glimpse into what makes it all work.

All are welcome, Sunday from 2-4 PM; light refreshments will be served. Donation appreciated.


October 6, 2019
2:00 pm - 4:00 pm

For further information and to check on dates and times, please call 902 254 2376