Classes in both Evanston and Chicago starting at 6 p.m. or later Wednesday were called off due to weather. University archives said it was NU’s first official weather-related cancellation since 1979.
NU’s emergency information system made the announcement around 3 p.m. Dozens of classes were cancelled, and the main library will close at midnight tonight instead of 3 a.m. Winds of around 25 mph and “likely” continued snowfall make for “hazardous weather conditions” tonight, according to the National Weather service.
In 1979 the university closed for two days after a weekend blizzard heaped 20 inches of snow upon campus, according to a Daily Northwestern article at the time. Burger King closed. A single-story storage building collapsed from the snow.
This year’s closing was “wimpy,” said university archivist Patrick Quinn. “Back in the old days, it would have never been closed.”
Quinn experienced the 1979 blizzard. He recalled people cross-country skiing from Roger’s Park to Evanston and snow piles “over your head.”
“Evanston might as well have been on the North Pole,” he said.
NU cancelled classes in 1970 after killings at Kent State, 1945 after a World War II victory and in 1940 after the football team beat Notre Dame.