1907 Southern Ohio Floods
All rivers flowing southward into the Ohio River reached flood stage during March 14-17, 1907. More than 4 inches of rain fell across the southern third of Ohio during March 12-14, with the heaviest rain, 5 to 6 inches, in a band from Cincinnati eastward to Athens and Noble County. There were 32 deaths reported in Ohio. Dozens of homes in Athens were swept away, overturned, or lifted off their foundations by the raging Hocking River. There were 15 deaths along the Hocking River at Athens and Nelsonville. At Waverly, the Scioto River washed out every railroad leading into the city. Six hundred people were forced from their homes in Zanesville. The Miami River reached flood stage from its upper reaches at Sidney downstream through Dayton, Miamisburg, and Hamilton, causing major damage in many neighborhoods.
As the flood waters moved into the Ohio River, a flood extended downstream from Pittsburgh past Cincinnati. Six people drowned at Steubenville. At Marietta, the Ohio River rose 30 feet in two days, reaching the highest level since 1884 and leaving 5,000 homeless. Portsmouth was inundated by the flood, but with temperatures reaching 70 degrees on Sunday March 17th, “thousands took advantage of the fine weather to row about the city’s streets.”
- Schmidlin, Thomas W. and Schmidlin, Jeanne A. Thunder in the Heartland: A Chronicle of Outstanding Weather Events in Ohio. Kent, Ohio: Kent State University Press, 1996.