These photos were taken nine days after the landfall of Hurricane Charley at
Charlotte Harbor on August 13, 2004.
I have driven Highway 60 east from Tampa to Bartow and then taken Highway 17
south down through Ft. Meade, Wauchula and Arcadia many times. Frequently
I have taken time to travel some of the local streets to have a look at
the old homes in these small communities. This trip I took my camera and
spent a little extra time so as to record the storm damage.
Tree damage was extensive, and damage to structures considerable. I am
sure things looked much worse right after the storm, since most streets were now
lined head high on both sides with debris from the many large trees. Much of the
damage to homes was caused by falling trees. As one lady I spoke with put
it, "We always thought of the trees as our friends, but they turned against us."
However, the houses didn't appear as damaged as I had expected. House trailers,
of course, were another matter, as were some of the older commercial buildings
in Wauchula and Arcadia. Even the cemeteries were a mess with fallen trees
These photos were taken with a Nikon D100 digital camera and were
originally 3008 x 2000 pixels in dimension and around 2.5 MB in size. What
you see here has been reduced to around 692 x 460 pixels and a file size
of around 100 KB.