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Coming tomorrow: Ruin & Rebirth
Remembering Gainesville's Tornado of '36

It came with little warning.

Residents awoke on the morning of Monday, April 6, 1936 to a dark, ominous sky, perfectly still air and a sense that something was about to happen. They had no idea of just how horrible that something would be.

At 8:37 a.m., three tornadoes descended on Gainesville, ripping apart the downtown area. When it was over, more than 200 were dead and thousands injured. People who lived through the carnage remember that day with a mix of heroism, heartache and survival.

It remains the deadliest tornado in Georgia history and the fifth deadliest in the U.S.

Coming Sunday, April 3, The Times and remember that day 75 years ago with special coverage. Reporter Tricia L. Nadolny has spent the last six weeks researching the storm and interviewing survivors.

In an eight-page special section in our print edition:

  • Read Nadolny's compelling story of that day.
  • Read how three local residents survived, even as many of their friends and family didn't.
  • See dozens of photographs from the storm's aftermath.
  • Find out why North Georgia seems susceptible to tornadoes.
  • Learn about the memorial the City of Gainesville and the Northeast Georgia History Center will dedicate on April 6.
  • Read stories of the tornado submitted by our readers.


  • Watch an all-new documentary about the tornado produced by our staff, including interviews with survivors and photos and film from that day.
  • A special gallery of front pages from newspapers that covered the storm.
  • A gallery of photographs.
  • More survivor stories, in their own words.
  • Resources on the Internet where you can find more information.

The Times is available at news racks and retail outlets across Northeast Georgia. To have our award-winning newspaper delivered to you home, call 770-532-2222 or click here.