The Midwest has suffered through many brutal blizzards and monstrous snow storms. However, many parts of this region are more sparsely populated than the eastern U.S., so the effects of these storms haven't been as acute. This storm, however, hit not just Chicago but cities as disparate as Kalamazoo, Mich., and Gary, Ind. [source: NOAA].
Snow totals topped 2 feet (61 cm), and winds exceeded 50 mph (80.5 kph). Sadly, the storm left 76 dead -- 26 in Chicago alone [source: Chicago Tribune]. It set the record for a 24-hour snowfall in Chicago (23 inches or 58.4 cm). Strangely, the area saw record high temperatures in the 60s and a severe tornado outbreak in the days before the storm hit.
For more information on snowstorms and other weather-related events, take a look at the links on the next page.