As horrific as the Joplin tornado was, the March 18, 1925, twister that went on a rampage in three states remains No. 1 for fatilities, with 695.
In addition, over 2,000 people were injured and destroyed 15,000 homes in Missouri, Indiana, and Illinois.
Here is a summary of the tornado and its attendant havoc.
In addition, Gil Compo, who is in charge of the ambitious 20th Century Reanalysis Project that is examining climate behavior, sent along this analysis.
On slide 16, you'll find a radar simulation.