5-6 April

The 1936 Tupelo–Gainesville tornado outbreak was an outbreak of at least 12 tornadoes that struck the Southeastern United States from April 5–6, 1936.

Approximately 454 people were killed by these tornadoes—419 by two tornadoes alone. This outbreak is the second deadliest ever recorded in US history. Although the outbreak was centred on Tupelo, Mississippi, and Gainesville, Georgia, where the fourth and fifth deadliest tornadoes in U.S. history respectively occurred, other destructive tornadoes associated with the outbreak struck Columbia, Tennessee; Anderson, South Carolina; and Acworth, Georgia.


Type Tornado outbreak
Duration April 5–6, 1936
Tornadoes confirmed ≥ 12
Max rating – by Fujita rating F5 tornado
Duration of tornado outbreak 12-16 hours
Damage $3 million in Tupelo, $12.5 million in Gainesville, Georgia
Casualties ≥ 454 fatalities, >2498 injuries

This is the only continuous tornado outbreak in U.S. history to produce more than one tornado with triple digit death tolls. Severe flash floods from the associated storms produced millions of dollars in damage across the region.

Aircraft view of a devastated Gainesville