THE GREAT MIAMI HURRICANE OF 1926 in September was a large and intense tropical cyclone that devastated the Greater Miami area and caused catastrophic damage in the Bahamas and the U.S. Gulf Coast accruing a US$100 million damage toll. As a result of the devastation wrought by the hurricane in Florida, the Land Boom in Florida ended.
Pictured here is the devastation to the newly constructed South Miami Dorn Brothers bank building.
The University of Miami had been founded in 1925 and opened its doors for the first time just days after the hurricane passed. The university’s athletic teams ere nicknamed the Hurricanes in memory of this catastrophe. The school’s mascot is Sebastian, an ibis. The ibis is a small white bird that can be seen around South Florida, including on the UM campus. According to folklore, the ibis is the last bird to leave before a hurricane strikes and the first to return after the storm, hence its selection for the school mascot.