Lakeport, NH Windstorm, Jun 1947

Freak Windstorm Damages Lakeport Homes, Factories



Lakeport, June 7--This industrial and resort town dug out today from a freak wind storm late last night that damaged factories and homes, put 400 telephones out of service, smashed two seaplanes and blew down innumerable trees.

There was no estimate of the loss, but no injuries were reported.

Electric service was disrupted when tree limbs fell across wires, but repairmen were able to restore lines within a few hours.

The New England Telephone and Telegraph Company reported its telephone lines were put out of commission principally in the Lake Winnipesaukee area, but expected service to be restored by nightfall.

Rain and hail accompanied the heavy wind which the US Weather Bureau's Lakeport observer described as "like a cyclone." Rainfall of 1.14 inches was recorded during the six-hour period the storm lasted.

Greatest damage was caused in the Black Brook section. A blower pipe on a wood waste products factory toppled over onto the building with damage estimated by Manager Carl Ham at nearly 4,000. The pipe struck an adjacent building of the Laconia Milling Company, knocking in a wall.

Two seaplanes anchored at the Skyhaven seaplane base at Paugus lake were smashed, one ramming a waterfront diner, causing damage to a storeroom.

Three houses on Black Brook hill were damaged. Several trees in Bayside cemetery blew down, knocking over monuments and markers.

Mrs. Lila Gould, the weather bureau's Lakeport observer, said she had never seen a storm like it. She said she saw big trees bent over by the force of the wind.

There was no available estimate of the intensity of the wind.

Every window in a Lakeport greenhouse was reported broken.

Paul McKinnie, manager of the telephone company's Laconia area, said large trees blowing over onto cables caused the disrupted service. None of the cables were broken, he said, but the heavy trees would have to be removed before service could be restored.

He reported many of the phones out of order were in several of the 26 towns in his area.

The Public Service Company of New Hampshire said its electric service was cut out at The Weirs, Glendale and along the lake shore, but was quickly restored. Street lights were out for a time in Lakeport, but homes were not affected.

The Concord weather bureau said the storm resulted from a frontal passage--cold air from the north replacing warmer air at the surface.

Much of New Hampshire was covered with rain, but there were no reports of the heavy wind in other areas.

A series of electrical storms struck the Rochester area, where the First Congregational church was hit. Boards were ripped from the 75-foot high steeple, but there was no fire.

Nashua Telegraph, Nashua, NH 7 Jun 1947