The NOAA's National Climatic Data Center says the average temperature for the contiguous United States during July was 77.6F, which is 3.3F above the 20th-century average. The NOAA says this marks the warmest July and, given that July is the typically the warmest month of the year, the warmest month on record for the nation.
Forecaster John Robinson with the National Weather Service (NWS) in Little Rock says that may be the case for the nation, but it was not the hottest July on record for Arkansas.
Robinson says the sizzling summer of 1980 was the hottest, with an average temperature (highs and lows averaged together) of 88.1 degrees; 2012 was in 2nd place with 87.3 degrees.
In regards to high temperatures, 1980 was again on top with an average high of 101.65. This year was in 2nd place with 99.07 degrees.
Regarding the warmest low temperatures on record in July, 1998 was in 1st place with an average low of 76.45 degrees. Second place went to 2011 with 76.07, in 3rd place was 2010 with 76.00, and this year came in 4th with 75.61 degrees.
Robinson says the NWS won't know the averages for the entire state until the National Climatic Data Center averages everything up, and that will probably be two to three months from now.