As you know, this summer is being compared to 1988 and the infamous summer of 1936.
That summer, we hit our all-time of 107° here in Louisville. The drought also lead to the Dust Bowl Era. It was certainly worse than it is now.
But...I did decided to dig up the drought index map from that period. It is hard to read (I mean comon...it was 1936).
The dark shaded area (includes us) was in highest level--- EXCEPTIONAL DROUGHT
Here is the most update for the current status. EXCEPTIONAL DROUGHT for far west KY but nothing like in 1936. At least---not yet.
Right now, 61% of the United States is in a MODERATE or worse drought status.
Louisville has picked up about 24" of rain this year. Last year at this time--- 42".
Normal is 25", which doesn't seem too bad. But we have not had .50" or more of rain in Louisville since late May.