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December 2014

Winter Festival: A Celebration of Snow As Portrayed by Covers of The New Yorker

The-new-yorker-logo.jpgBefore it turns to slush, newly-fallen snow in New York brings a blanket of serenity even to the great metropolis.  And wintertime covers of The New Yorker perfectly capture the ineffable beauty of the season.  Here are a few dozen of my favorites (captions are mine) ...


New Yorker Jan 29 1927
Snowstorm Meets Roaring Twenties (Jan. 29, 1927)


Snow Beautiful (Jan. 16, 1932)


Wintry Tableau (Feb. 27, 1937)


Little Siberia (Feb. 2, 1946)


The Excitement Builds (Jan. 21, 1950)


Eager Anticipation (Jan. 20, 1951)


Sisyphus In Winter (Jan. 7, 1956)


Hibernation, Manhattan Style (Jan. 21, 1956)


Manhattan on Ice (March 2, 1957)


Polar Express (Jan. 11, 1958)



Flight Delay (Jan 8, 1966)


Old Man Winter's Calling Card (Jan. 7, 1967)


Veil of White (March 2, 1968)


Mantle of White (Jan. 4, 1969)


A Cold Winter's Night That Was So Deep (Jan. 22, 1979)


In Winter's Grip (Jan. 7 1974)


Cozy Inside (Jan. 12, 1976)


Travel Advisory (Feb. 7, 1977)


Snow Day (Jan. 29, 1979)


Serenity (Jan. 26, 1981)


Rush in Slush (Dec. 13, 1982)


Neither Sleet nor Snow ... (Feb. 16, 1987)


Winter Gridlock (Jan. 28, 1991)


Cold Comfort (March 6, 1995)


Fashion Statement (March 1, 2010)


Cold Reality (Dec. 20, 2010)


50 Shades of Gray (Jan. 23, 2012)


Double Duty (March 10, 2014)



New yorker - december 22 2014

 New yorker - flat iron building - march 9 2015


I've written a similar post about my favorite summertime covers.  Large reproductions of these covers, as well as every New Yorker cover (nearly 5,000), are available for purchase on Conde Nast's website.  (And small versions are sold by street vendors throughout midtown Manhattan.)


So You'd Like to Be a TV Weatherman?

Amy.freezeIf you have aspirations for becoming a TV weatherman it doesn't hurt to have a catchy meteorological name, e.g., Storm Field or Amy Freeze.  Probably most of us have already used the formula for determining our "porn" name, i.e., taking your middle name and the street you grew up on.  In a similar manner, the revered Old Farmer's Almanac has developed a fun way to derive your weatherman name (unless you have already been blessed with a last name such as Tornado or Polar!).  Simply follow the instructions on the chart below.  My meteorological moniker would be "Alan Foggy" (which, unfortunately, isn't a name I think would inspire great confidence).




I might also suggest a few other weather terms as worthy candidates: Blizzard; Cumulus; Downpour; Drought; Flurry; Lightning; Puddle; Slush; Stratus; Virga.


Of course, a name can only take you so far.  To better assure a career in meteorology you may also want to take some courses in physics, chemistry, calculus and broadcasting.


Snow in November



Measurable snow has fallen in November in New York, on average, once every three years (the last time was in 2018).  And Novembers with a snowfall of an inch or more have occurred once every five years.  However, over the years the likelihood of having snow in November has decreased.  Between 1869 and 1912, an inch of snow fell in November once every three years, and in between 1913 and 1955 it fell once every four years, but since 1956 an inch or more of snow has fallen just once every ten years.  Here are some additional findings:


  • Snow in November isn't an indicator of a snowy winter.  In the 50 winters with November snowfalls, just one out of four had snowy winters (40 inches or more).  Of the 19 winters with 50" or more snowfall, ten didn't have measurable snow in November.  And fourteen winters that saw snow in November ended up with less than 20 inches of snow (the winter of 2018-19 finished just above that, with 20.5"). 
  • Three winters had their most snow in November: 1882-83 (14.0"); 1938-39 (12.8") and 1989-90 (4.7").  However, the snowiest November on record, 1898's 19.0", wasn't the snowiest month that winter, as 25.3" fell in February 1899.  
  • The highest concentration of November snowfalls occurred in the twelve-year span between 1871 and 1882, when measurable snow fell in eight of them.  This was followed closely by the ten years between 1931 and 1940 when snow fell in seven of the years.  By far the longest stretch of years without measurable snow in November was the 15-year period between 1997 and 2011 (but six of the winters had 40+ inches of snow).
  • The most consecutive years with an inch or more of snow in November is three: 1896 (5.0"), 1897 (2.3") and 1898 (19.0"). 
  • Seven Novembers had more than one snow event; all but one were in the 19th century.  The outlier was November 1938.
  • Finally, measurable snow has fallen in October in four years.  In three of those years snow also fell in November.  The only year without a November snowfall was in 2011.


  Snow (in Inches)
  November Winter Total
2018 6.4 20.5
2014 0.2 50.3
2012 4.7 26.1
1996 0.1 10.0
1995 2.9 75.6
1989 4.7 13.4
1987 1.1 19.1
1978 2.2 29.4
1977 0.2 50.7
1974 0.1 13.1