Hurricane Katrina


Standing with former Presidents Bill Clinton and George H. W. Bush, President George W. Bush discusses the plans to help people affected by Hurricane Katrina in the Oval Office on September 1, 2005.

A Category 5, Hurricane Katrina was one of the deadliest hurricanes to hit the United States. Occurring between August 23 - 31, 2005, an estimated 1,833 peopled died in the hurricane and the flooding that followed. Millions of people were left homeless along the Gulf Coast and in New Orleans. Causing $125 billion in damage, it is the costliest hurricane on record tying with Hurricane Harvey in 2017.

"You know, there's a lot of sadness, of course, but there's also a spirit here in Mississippi that is uplifting." President George W. Bush, September 2, 2005.

08312005 Blair Letter

Letter dated August 31, 2005 from British Prime Minister Tony Blair to President George W. Bush expressing concerns regarding the devastation caused by Hurricane Katrina.


Archival Research Guide 


For a more complete guide of the archival records that are open for research, please download the Archival Research Guide:


Material at the George W. Bush Presidential Library Pertaining to Hurricane Katrina




A United States flag that was damaged by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in September 2005 and retired from Henry Oil Refinery in Erath, Louisiana. The flag was donated to the George W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum by a member of the Utah National Guard, activated to assist with recovery from the devastation. The donor stated, "a few of us military personnel, with the assistance of a few great refinery employees, performed a retirement ceremony of the flag while playing taps on our phone and hoisting a new flag we had purchased at one of the open stores nearby. It was a moving ceremony and one I still remember over a decade later. Natural disaster can befall anyone, but our American spirit rebuilds immediately after." (2018.30.2)  






In Focus

Hurricane Katrina: Rebuilding the Gulf Coast Region

Press Releases 

Hurricane Katrina Speeches and Press Releases Archive

Photo Essays

Hurricane Katrina: Response and Recovery 

President Bush: Comforting Those in Need

Mrs. Bush: Comforting Those in Need

Mrs. Bush: Rebuilding the Gulf Coast

National Day of Prayer: Remembering Our Fellow Americans


Blue Line Proclamation signed on September 4, 2005 to Honor the Memory of the Victims of Hurricane Katrina on September 20, 2005.



 Additional photo essays, Presidential Messages and Statements, press releases, and more from 2001 - 2008 are available through the archived White House Website

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Learn more about the Federal Response to Hurricane Katrina and Lessons Learned, February 2006.



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