The staff in the Archives have been working very hard on a new exhibit that we are sure will blow you away. This forthcoming exhibit, covering tornadoes, will be featured both digitally on our Local History & Genealogy Digital Exhibits page and in the display case outside of the Archives’ door. While the upcoming exhibit focuses on tornadoes, the Archives houses materials on a variety of storms that have hit Champaign County. This blog post features some of those materials.


The Archives has photo envelopes for various types of weather including: storms, floods, snow and snow storms, ice storms, wind storms, and of course, tornadoes. These are all searchable on our catalog. Just search for the topic you are interested in, if we have a photo envelope for that subject, a photographs envelope entry will appear in the results. 

We also have a Flickr album online that features digitized photographs of storms and storm damage from the area.

Canoe on flooded street

Do you remember the date of a particularly nasty storm? Check our newspaper holdings on microfilm to see what local reporters had to say about it. Depending on the storm and the paper, there might also be images of the aftermath. If you don’t have a particular date in mind, not a problem. We also have title listings of articles that feature storms in our catalog.

Here is but a small sample of some articles that can be found using the catalog:

  • "Six New Sirens Set to Join Champaign Warning System" in the News-Gazette on April 5, 2004, p. B-1.
  • "20 Years Ago, Central Illinois Was Paralyzed in Inch of Ice" in the News-Gazette on January 26, 1987, p. A-3.
  • "Farms, Trees Hit by Sunday Storm" in the Courier on June 15,1970.

 -Shalini Smith

Archives Assistant