Grand Rapids, MI Flood, Feb 1838

That of the river freshet of February, 1838, is usually remarked upon by all old settlers as not only the earliest but the greatest. The ice broke suddenly and began to move at midday down the rapids, but gorged on the islands and solid ice at the foot, creating a jam, by which the waters were set back over all the lowlands of the town. On Huron street the river was from ten to twelve feet deep. The families of John Almy and Abel Page were in the houses of the fur trade station there, and were reached and taken out of the upper story windows in a boat paddled across through a rift in the floating ice from the side of Prospect Hill a little north of Lyon street. H.P. Bridge & Co. had a shanty boarding house between Canal street and the river, a little below Bridge street, which was swept away by the flood. A man in a sleigh with one or two women, drove a team to the old red warehouse, between Waterloo street and the river, near where the Grand Rapids and Indiana Railroad passes. They had scarcely entered the store when the water rose so that they were compelled to wade to the sleigh and drive off in a hurry.

History of the city of Grand Rapids, Michigan, 1891, pages 172-173 Read the book online.