On July 9, 2021, California’s Death Valley reached 130 degrees Fahrenheit, according to an automated measuring system there, representing one of the highest temperatures ever recorded on the planet. The world record, also recorded at Death Valley, was 134 degrees in July 1913.
More than 210 degrees Fahrenheit separates the highest and the lowest temperatures on record in the United States, the third-largest country in the world. As some states are infamous for having blistering hot summers, others become inundated by winter storms and frigid cold. The contiguous U.S. had its warmest meteorological summer (June-August) on record in 2021, according to NOAA’s National Centers for Environmental Information.
Stacker consulted 2021 data from the NOAA’s State Climate Extremes Committee (SCEC) to illustrate the hottest and coldest temperatures ever recorded in each state. Each slide also reveals the all-time highest 24-hour precipitation record and all-time highest 24-hour snowfall.
Keep reading to find out your state’s record, or see the national list here.
Tennessee by the numbers
– All-time highest temperature: 113° F (Perryville on Aug. 9, 1930)
– All-time lowest temperature: -32° F (Mountain City on Dec. 30, 1917)
– All-time highest 24-hour precipitation: 20.7 inches (McEwen on Aug. 21, 2021)
– All-time highest 24-hour snowfall: 30 inches (Mt. Leconte on March 14, 1993)
Intense rainfall during a storm on August 21, 2021, devastated the region between Waverly and McEwen, Tennessee about 60 miles west of Nashville. The resulting flash flooding killed more than 20 people.
Continue below to see the most extreme temperatures in the history of other states in your region.
Alabama by the numbers
– All-time highest temperature: 112° F (Centreville on Sept. 6, 1925)
– All-time lowest temperature: -27° F (New Market 2 on Jan. 30, 1966)
– All-time highest 24-hour precipitation: 32.52 inches (Dauphin Island #2 on July 19–20, 1997)
– All-time highest 24-hour snowfall: 20 inches (Walnut Grove on March 13, 1993)
Walnut Grove became famous as a town burned during the Civil War. Despite being another subtropical town, on March 13, 1993, it was covered in 20 inches of snow. The extreme weather was termed the “Superstorm of 1993” by the National Weather Service because of its strength (equal to a Category 3 hurricane) and size. At one point, the storm system ran from Eastern Canada to Central America.
Arkansas by the numbers
– All-time highest temperature: 120° F (Ozark on Aug.10, 1936)
– All-time lowest temperature: -29° F (Gravette on Feb.13, 1905)
– All-time highest 24-hour precipitation: 14.06 inches (Big Fork 1 SSE on Dec. 3, 1982)
– All-time highest 24-hour snowfall: 25 inches (Corning on Jan. 22, 1918)
“The Great Heat Wave of 1936” affected around 15 states during its three-week run that brought temperatures above 100 degrees. Still, Ozark topped the charts by reaching 120 degrees. Also known as the “1936 North American Heat Wave,” it exacerbated the levels of human suffering during the ongoing Great Depression. Little Rock in Arkansas had to endure its hottest summer in 2010 between June and August when the temperature went above 90 degrees for two months.