'Great Storm of 1933' Both Blessing, Curse to Ocean City - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

'Great Storm of 1933' Both Blessing, Curse to Ocean City


OCEAN CITY, Md.- It has been 80 years since a disastrous storm ravaged Ocean City, wiping out much of the resort town by burying it under water and sand. And while the "Great Storm of 1933" caused big problems, it also changed the town forever by helping to create the Ocean City Inlet. 

"I just remember watching the ocean break over the Boardwalk, and running down North Division Street," said Sally Bradford, of West Ocean CIty, who recalled the storm. "I couldn't run far because I was only 5-years-old."

Before 1933, Assateague Island and the south side of Ocean City were connected. Fishermen struggled to get daily hauls from the Atlantic Ocean over the bay to the main land.

Commercial fishermen were even hammering Congress at the time to dig a channel to the bay. But where government failed, mother nature prevailed, though at a heavy cost.

"It was a blessing but right then it was more, not so much, because it washed away my dad's business," said Bradford. "He had fishing camps, so part of his land was in the Inlet that was severally damaged."

The storm soaked everything in its path. The National Weather Service tracked winds at about 105 miles per hour. Faith Bunting, of West Ocean City, heard many stories about the "ferocious" storm.

"It was bad. It destroyed Ocean City really downtown," Bunting said.

Once the storm died down, locals, who braved the storm, discovered a "miracle." A massive wall of bay water, which was built up from four straight days of torrential rain, crashed up against the sandy barrier island and carved out a new inlet.

"You hate to see this type of storm happen, but it was a good feeling to know that something good came of it," Bunting said.

Although the storm destroyed much of Ocean City, some locals believe it created a much-needed water inlet on the south side of town. 

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