The power of love, friendship, family and the Sept. 21, 1938 hurricane — a once-in-a-hundred-years-storm that caught the East Coast totally unaware — serve as the backdrop of Beatriz Williams’ new novel, “A Hundred Summers.”
The Connecticut resident is one of the authors featured on the June 3 Literary New England Radio Show. We’ll also be live Tweeting with her from 8-9 pm Thursday, June 13 … So please mark your calendars and plan to join us, using the #LNEChat hashtag!
This 75-year-old video offers a look at the storm. In a short essay, Beatriz says this: By the morning of Sept. 21, only the diehards remained, and only the old salts noticed that the sky dawned as red as blood for the third morning in a row. The winds started picking up around lunchtime, but the forecast had suggested a blustery afternoon and no one was worried. Then the sky turned to ochre and the power lines began to shriek, and by ten minutes to four o’clock, a storm surge of around 20 feet hit Rhode Island in a wall of sudden water. Winds gusts of 186 miles per hour were recorded at the Blue Hill Observatory in Massachusetts. A Boston mother [who spent the morning picking peaches with her children] made it home just in time. Her daughter, then six, always remembered the way the scent of peaches hung about the house for weeks afterward, until the electricity was restored and the fruit could be safely cooked and made into preserves for the winter.