Record Breaking Heat and How People Coped in the Past

Record Breaking Heat and How People Coped in the Past
Posted at 7:44 PM, Jul 29, 2015
and last updated 2015-07-29 19:44:00-04

TALLAHASSEE, Fl. (WTXL) --This month is on track to become the second hottest July on record for Tallahassee. The hottest July was back in 1932.

You can't run away from the heat during the summer. Especially in North Florida and South Georgia, where days on end can be piping hot. These days, relief from heat, just takes a step inside. But back in the 30s, if you wanted to cool off, it was a lot harder without air conditioning units.

"We didn't have any air conditioning, what we did was open our windows and try to get a cross breeze", said Louise Eastman, who recalled her time dealing with the summer heat in the 1930s.

The storms that occasionally came by didn't do much to keep the region cool for long. "It would rain, maybe at two o'clock in the afternoon. School was out at three", said Gwen Williams. "We didn't close windows. No one took their clothes off the [clothes]line because by five o'clock they were dry again."

But one thing Eastman and Williams both mentioned was the length of the heat waves they saw back then. "Back in the 30s, it wasn't like this," said Williams. "Of course we had hot weather, just for maybe a week or so. But now it seems to last longer," Eastman added.

Tallahassee's streak of above average highs is over 20 days! A long heat spell by any means. But one thing the past and the present have in common is a way to cool off during the summer.

"Swimming in the Gulf of Mexico!" laughed Williams.