Vintage landscape: winter ice of ’22

Skating on the Reflecting Pool of the Lincoln Memorial, Washington, D.C., January 1922, by Harris & Ewing, via Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division.

To scroll through larger versions of the images, click on any of the thumbnails in the gallery.

The Pool and its surroundings were actually still under construction when these skaters took to the ice. From 1922 to the 1980s, people skated on the Pool during very cold periods (it’s no longer allowed).

These photos may have been taken between January 23 and 27, when an Arctic airmass was keeping Washington’s temperatures down below freezing.  On the 28th, it began to snow, eventually accumulating to 28″ (71 cm.).*  

This was the infamous Knickerbocker Storm, so named because, about 9:00 p.m. that night, the flat roof of the Knickerbocker Theater collapsed during a movie, killing 98 people and injuring 133.


*It was D.C.’s deepest snow on record until 2010.

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