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Yesterday in La Crosse

A near record spring snowstorm, and a deadly crash, 50 years ago



In April of 1973, the immediate La Crosse area received 16 inches of snow in just 36 hours. It was the third biggest snowstorm on record in the city, behind snowfalls in 1959, and 1971. In Prairie du Chien, three cars collided on snow-covered Highway 18, near the Old Rock School. Six people from the ages of 16 to 64 died in that accident, with another six injured.

The storm came as baseball season was starting, and the Milwaukee Brewers were inviting people to help clear snow from County Stadium for home ball games.

Iowa Congressman H.R. Gross was complaining about ‘ultra-liberal do-gooders’ who were in Washington during the 60’s, spending too much tax money. If you had $2000, or even $50, you could buy a used Hammond organ from Leithold Music. Americans were spending $300 million a year on sunglasses, apparently to look fashionable. For much less money, Herberger’s was selling golf shirts for $2.77, and see-thru umbrellas for a buck-and-a-half…in 1973, yesterday in La Crosse.

A native of Prairie du Chien, Brad graduated from UW - La Crosse and has worked in radio news for more than 30 years, mostly in the La Crosse area. He regularly covers local courts and city and county government. Brad produces the features "Yesterday in La Crosse" and "What's Buried on Brad's Desk." He also writes the website "Triviazoids," which finds odd connections between events that happen on a certain date, and he writes and performs with the local comedy group Heart of La Crosse. Brad been featured on several national TV programs because of his memory skills.

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