Want A Piece of the Hindenburg?

Got a spare $10,000 dollars sitting around? Love history?  And want a piece of the Hindenburg disaster for your very own?  Well, you’re actually too late!

A pitcher and a tray, which were hidden (actually buried, because guards wouldn’t allow anything to be removed from the crash site) and then dug up a few days after the catastrophe.  They were privately held until 2009, when they were sold to an auction house.

Recently, they were sold for close to $10,000 each ($10,735 for the tray, $8,435 for the pitcher) at auction.  So now someone has a bit of our shared catastrophic history.

Eastwind Flight 517 from June 9th, 1996, and how it changed aviation

Today’s podcast, which comes with a shoutout to Gabe for the awesome email and getting me back to work here, is about Eastwind Airlines flight 517.  And while this flight may not sound familiar to many people, the simple fact is that it had profound results that reverberated throughout the aviation world.

As usual, you can download the podcast at this link, find us on iTunes, or listen to the podcast in the embedded player below.

Sources for the podcast include:

The Limnic Eruption of Lake Nyos of August, 1986

Today’s podcast touches on a more obscure natural phenomenon that occurred in Cameroon back in 1986.  The limnic eruption of Lake Nyos, when submerged carbon dioxide gas was suddenly forced to the surface, is something that doesn’t happen all that often, but when it does, the results are deadly.

As usual, you can download the podcast at this link, find us on iTunes, or listen to the podcast in the embedded player below.

Sources for the podcasts are as follows:

Quick thoughts on the Hyatt Regency episode

So after I published the podcast, I sat down and watched the A&E special “Minute By Minute” programs linked in the previous blogpost, and have to say I’ve changed my mind about something.  I didn’t watch the episode beforehand, because I didn’t want it tainting the research I’d done.

At the end of my podcast, I’d said something about the Engineers that approved the design that didn’t paint them in the best light. But one of those same Engineers was in the A&E program – and he took full responsibility for the actions that had happened. As he said, “My signature was on those plans, and the buck stops with me. I’m responsible.”

That’s just not something I’m used to hearing… So while it doesn’t change the catastrophe of that fateful evening back in 1981, it sure as hell changes my opinion of the Engineers in charge.

They Hyatt Regency, Kansas City Skywalk Collapse of July, 1981

Today’s podcast goes just a few years back and focuses on the skywalk collapse that happened at the Hyatt Regency, Kansas City hotel back in July, 1981.  The collapse had one main reason for failure, and some circumstances that might have even prevented it, had the suggestions been met with proper acknowledgement instead of disapproval from those in charge.

As usual, you can download the podcast at this link, find us on iTunes, or listen to it in the embedded player below.

Sources for the podcast are as follows:

The links to each of the video segments are in five parts.

Finally, here’s how the lobby looked back in 1981 (the third floor walkway is closest to the camera, with the second floor and fourth floor below and above, in the background):

And here’s how the lobby looks after the disaster; note that the overhead walkway is only one single walkway, not three, and it is supported from the ground below:

The Dawson Mining Catastrophe of 1913

Today’s podcast goes into the history of Dawson, New Mexico, and the explosions that took the lives of many miners since the mines opened in 1901.  The explosion of Stag Canyon #2 in 1913 remains one of the largest loss of life during a mining operation in America’s history.

As usual, you can download the podcast at this link, find us on iTunes, or listen to it in the embedded player below.

Sources for the podcast are as follows:

The Eschede, Germany ICE Train Derailment

Today’s podcast is about the German ICE (Inter-City Express) train derailment and subsequent catastrophe in the sleepy German town of Eschede that took place in June, 1998.  While this isn’t Germany’s biggest rail disaster, it’s one of the most well known in modern times, resulting in 101 people being killed and almost 90 being injured.

As usual, you can download the podcast from this link, find it on iTunes, or listen to the podcast in the embedded player below.

Sources include:

New Article on and Old Crash

So while CNN and the rest of the world focuses on the fate of Malaysia Flight 370, we are coming up on the anniversary of one of the most notable, memorable crashes in modern time.  That crash was United Flight 232, the DC10 that crashed at Sioux City Airport on July 19, 1989.

Popular Mechanics has the new story, and it’s probably good to focus on something that we actually have concrete news about.  I’ve only briefly read through the story, since it’s still massively busy for me at work, but I’ll finish reading through soon.  Still, I thought it would be good to pass on.

Link:  http://www.popularmechanics.com/technology/aviation/crashes/the-final-flight-of-united-232-16755928??src=rss

Some Suggestions

Based on the last podcast, the Hartford Circus Fire, I’ve got a couple of suggestions that I can pass on – both on the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire.

The first is the podcast from Stuff You Missed In History Class, a part of StuffYouShouldKnow.com.  They did a really good podcast on the Triangle Shirtwaist fire a couple of years back, and you can find it here.

Second, PBS did a documentary on it in video form.  You can find that here.

The Hartford Circus Fire of 1944

Today’s podcast, which I published earlier in the day before I got a chance to do a blogpost about it, is about the Hartford circus fire of 1944.  This fire remains one of the largest fires in terms of casualties (between 165 and 185 killed, and about 700 injured) in the history of the United States.  It was because of this fire, and others like it, that if you go to a circus today, you rarely get to go under an actual bigtop, but instead watch the circus from a seat in an auditorium, civic center, or the like.

As usual, you can download the podcast from this link, find it on iTunes, or listen to the podcast in the embedded player below.

Sources for the podcast are as follows: