From 1930 to 1937, the United States suffered its worst drought in history.
Across 50 million acres (20.25 million hectares) of land in Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, Colorado, Nebraska, and the Dakotas, dry weather and winds caused massive dust storms that carried particles as far as New York City.
In 1933 and 1934, the storms were so bad that trains were stopped by dunes. Animals suffocated. Dust piled up on all surfaces and couldn’t be kept out of homes. The air was so dense that the sky seemed black.
Crops were covered with dust and failed to grow. The drought’s persistence even caused the Great Lakes to set record-breaking low-water levels.