Climate from 1800 to 1970 in North America and Europe

  • Stefan Brönnimann
  • Sam White
  • Victoria Slonosky


The climate history of North America and Europe from 1800 to 1970 has been relatively well studied. Climate reconstructions for the early nineteenth century largely depend on proxy data from natural archives, documentary evidence, and early instrumental series. The period marks a transition from the Little Ice Age to the current age of global warming. The climate underwent several fluctuations during these two centuries, with cold periods in the early and late nineteenth century and the cool mid-twentieth century interspersed with rapid warming, as in the early twentieth century. The establishment of American and European national weather services during the mid- to late nineteenth century marked a new era, with continuous standardized instrumental data. A global observation system gradually came into being, with particularly dense information for North America and Europe. This chapter provides an overview of the available data and main climatic trends for the period, followed by descriptions of major climate historical events.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Stefan Brönnimann
    • 1
  • Sam White
    • 2
  • Victoria Slonosky
    • 3
  1. 1.Oeschger Center for Climate Change Research, Institute of Geography, University of BernBernSwitzerland
  2. 2.Department of HistoryOhio State UniversityColumbusUSA
  3. 3.McGill UniversityMontrealCanada

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