Great Flood of 1862

flood in 1861flood of 1861great flood of the Willamette River1861 flood1862 Colorado River flooda record floodDecember 1861 and January 1862devastating floodsdisastrous floodsflood in December 1861
The Great Flood of 1862 was the largest flood in the recorded history of Oregon, Nevada, and California, occurring from December 1861 to January 1862.wikipedia
224 Related Articles

California

CAState of CaliforniaCalifornia, USA
The Great Flood of 1862 was the largest flood in the recorded history of Oregon, Nevada, and California, occurring from December 1861 to January 1862.
The capital has been located in Sacramento since 1854 with only a short break in 1862 when legislative sessions were held in San Francisco due to flooding in Sacramento.

Willamette River

WillametteWillamette Fallslower Willamette
It was cold enough at the higher elevations that much snow fell in the Cascade Range, which, when later melted by the warm rains produced a great quantity of water that flooded into the Willamette River and other streams in the Cascades.
The highest recorded flow of 635000 cuft/s for the Willamette at a different gauge in Portland occurred during a flood in 1861.

Umpqua River

UmpquaUmpqua River ValleyUmpqua Valley
The flooding was also severe in other parts of Oregon; the Umpqua River had the greatest flood known even to the oldest Native Americans, and water was 10 to 15 ft higher than the 1853 flood.
These tribes witnessed much of the Great Flood of 1862, during which the Umpqua and other rivers rose to levels so high that even the oldest Indians had never seen a greater flood.

American River

AmericanNorth Fork of the American River
The city of Sacramento suffered the worst damage due to its levee, which lay in a wide and flat valley at the junction of the American and Sacramento rivers.
During the Great Flood of 1862 the American River flooded massively, putting much of Sacramento under water for three months.

Orleans, Oregon

Orleans
In addition, the flood destroyed the historic town of Champoeg, site of the first provisional government in Oregon, and Orleans, across the Willamette River from Corvallis.
It was established around 1850 and destroyed in the Great Flood of 1862.

Central Valley (California)

Central ValleyCentral Valley of CaliforniaCalifornia's Central Valley
Eventually the trough moved even further south, causing snow to fall in the Central Valley and surrounding mountain ranges.
The Great Flood of 1862 was the worst flood that the Central Valley has experienced in recorded history, flooding most of the valley and putting some places as much as 20 feet under water.

Owens Valley Indian War

Expedition from Camp LathamOwens Valley Rush
Starving, the Paiute began to kill the cattle and conflict with the cattlemen began, leading to the subsequent Owens Valley Indian War.
During the winter of 1861-1862, in the Owens Valley, the storms that produced the Great Flood of 1862 resulted in snow and flooding conditions in the surrounding mountains and as far to the east as the Mono County seat at Aurora.

Willamette Valley

WillametteMid-Willamette Valleyadjacent lands
In Oregon, the flood was one of the largest in the history of the Willamette Valley and the rest of Western Oregon.
Notable floods include the Great Flood of 1862, events in 1899, the Christmas flood of 1964, and the Willamette Valley Flood of 1996.

Champoeg, Oregon

ChampoegChampoeg State Heritage AreaChampoeg State Park
In addition, the flood destroyed the historic town of Champoeg, site of the first provisional government in Oregon, and Orleans, across the Willamette River from Corvallis.
The great flood destroyed most of the structures in the town, barring two saloons.

Washington County, Utah

Washington CountyWashingtonWashington Co
The early southwestern Utah settlements in Washington County: Fort Clara, St. George, Grafton, Duncans Retreat, Adventure, and Northrop were nearly destroyed by a flood on the Virgin and Santa Clara Rivers, that followed 44 days of rainfall in January and February 1862.
Fort Harmony, Adventure, Northrup were abandoned and Santa Clara, St. George, Washington, Harrisburg, Heberville, Grafton and Duncans Retreat, were nearly destroyed by the Great Flood of 1862 that followed forty-four days of rainfall in January and February 1862.

Knights Ferry, California

Knights FerryKnight's Ferry
In Knight's Ferry, in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada astride the Stanislaus River, about 40 mi east of Modesto, the town's homes, its mill, and most of its businesses were ruined by the flood.
It was destroyed by the Great Flood of 1862.

Los Angeles River

Los AngelesLA River[Los Angeles] River
The flooding drowned thousands of cattle and washed away fruit trees and vineyards that grew along the Los Angeles River.
Prior to the Great Flood of 1862, it was joined by the San Gabriel River in present-day Long Beach, but in that year the San Gabriel carved out a new course 6 mi to the east, and has discharged into Alamitos Bay ever since.

Stanislaus River

Stanislaus
In Knight's Ferry, in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada astride the Stanislaus River, about 40 mi east of Modesto, the town's homes, its mill, and most of its businesses were ruined by the flood.
The settlement was largely destroyed during the Great Flood of 1862, which washed away the bridge, but it and the rest of the town were soon rebuilt.

Santa Clara, Utah

Santa Claraearly Swiss SettlementFort Clara
The early southwestern Utah settlements in Washington County: Fort Clara, St. George, Grafton, Duncans Retreat, Adventure, and Northrop were nearly destroyed by a flood on the Virgin and Santa Clara Rivers, that followed 44 days of rainfall in January and February 1862.
This flood was part of the Great Flood of 1862.

Empire City (California)

Empire CityEmpire City Historic Landmark
Some smaller towns like Empire City and Mokelumne City were entirely destroyed.
The town was destroyed by flood waters during the Great Flood of 1862.

Fort Ter-Waw

Fort Ter-Waw, located in Klamath Glen, California, was destroyed by the flood in December 1861 and abandoned on June 10, 1862.
Most of the fort was destroyed during the Great Flood of 1862 in December 1861 and abandoned June 10, 1862.

Atmospheric river

atmospheric
In 2012, hydrologists and meteorologists concluded that the precipitation was likely caused by a series of atmospheric rivers that hit the Western United States along the entire West Coast, from Oregon to Southern California.
Great Flood of 1862 (massive flooding in US West)

Sacramento River

SacramentoBonaventura Riverriver
The city of Sacramento suffered the worst damage due to its levee, which lay in a wide and flat valley at the junction of the American and Sacramento rivers.
Since then, this inland sea has periodically reformed during times of intense flooding, the most recent being the Great Flood of 1862.

Linn City, Oregon

Linn Cityhistory of early development
The nearby town of Linn City was completely destroyed by flooding and was not rebuilt.
The resulting great flood destroyed Linn City.

San Buenaventura Mission Aqueduct

aqueduct that served the mission compoundaqueducts
The San Buenaventura Mission Aqueduct that was still drawing water from a tributary of the Ventura River for the town of Ventura water system, was abandoned due to the damage in the area that become the separate Ventura County in 1873.
Large sections were destroyed in a Great Flood of 1862, and settlers used stones from the old aqueduct to build homes.

Agua Mansa, California

Agua MansaAgua Mansa Pioneer Cemetery
In San Bernardino County, all the fertile riverside fields and all but the church and one house of the New Mexican colony of Agua Mansa, were swept away by the Santa Ana River, which overflowed its banks.
Completed in 1853 and dedicated to San Salvador, the church survived through the Great Flood of 1862.

Eldoradoville, California

Eldoradoville
In the San Gabriel Mountains the mining town of Eldoradoville was washed away by flood waters.
It was washed away on January 18, 1862, in the Great Flood of 1862.

Mokelumne City, California

Mokelumne CityMokolumne
Some smaller towns like Empire City and Mokelumne City were entirely destroyed.
It rose to poll 172 votes, but the Great Flood of 1862 so ravaged the place that it never recovered.

Grafton, Utah

Grafton
The early southwestern Utah settlements in Washington County: Fort Clara, St. George, Grafton, Duncans Retreat, Adventure, and Northrop were nearly destroyed by a flood on the Virgin and Santa Clara Rivers, that followed 44 days of rainfall in January and February 1862.
Wheeler didn't last long; it was largely destroyed on the night of January 8, 1862 by a weeks-long flood of the Virgin River, part of the Great Flood of 1862.

Santa Ana River

Santa Ana
In Los Angeles County, (including what is now Orange County) the flooding Santa Ana River created an inland sea lasting about three weeks with water standing 4 ft deep up to 4 mi from the river.
In the Great Flood of 1862, heavy rains dropped by a series of winter storms caused the Santa Ana to burst its banks, flooding thousands of acres of land and killing 20 to 40 people in the greatest flood it had experienced in recorded history.