The storm now afflicting New York and New Jersey and nearby states is either a northeaster or a nor'easter.
Northeaster is the older term, its first citation in the Oxford English Dictionary dating from 1753. Nor'easter blew in from the sea much later, first cited in a translation of Aristophanes' Knights by B.D. Walsh in 1837.
Nor'easter, from the citations in the OED, appears to have been strongly dialectical, as in A.R. Ammons's Glare: "Well, it's Easter morning right now, with a nor'easter, out-of-whack, whipper-jawed, eight-inch dump load of snow on the ground." That's apparently how they see the word at The New York Times, Patrick LaForge having tweeted earlier today: "What is it about these storms that turns everyone into a Maine lobsterman? Use whatever fake accent you like but it's spelled 'northeaster.' "