How many times has a Chicago April recorded a significant snow accumulation?

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Dear Tom,
How many times has a Chicago April recorded a significant snow accumulation?
— Roger Webster, Woodridge

Dear Roger,

“Significant” is a somewhat subjective term, but we chose 4 inches as our benchmark. Chicago climatologist Frank Wachowski checked the records, and in the 133 Aprils of record since 1885, the city has recorded at least 4 inches of snow in 10 Aprils, most recently 10.6 inches in 1982.

The city’s snowiest April dates back to 1938 with 13.6 inches, the bulk of it in a three-day period from April 6-8. Nine inches fell April 6, followed by a 4.5-inch snowfall April 8. The month’s biggest snowstorm was on April 1-2, 1970, when 10.7 inches of heavy, wet snow buried the city.

Recent Aprils have not produced much snow, and this April was snow-free.