Ship Ablaze: The Tragedy of the Steamboat General Slocum

A Lecture with Edward T. O’Donnell

More than 1,000 New Yorkers perished on June 15, 1904 when their steamboat burst into flames on the East River. A panicked and untrained crew, coupled with rotten life preservers and inaccessible life boats, turned a small storage room fire into a human tragedy of immense proportions. News of the horror made headlines around the world and elicited an enormous outpouring of sympathy and donations. Later, as evidence of negligence and corruption on the part of the steamer’s owners mounted, sympathy turned to outrage and demands for justice that were never fully met. Perhaps most astonishing, it took New Yorkers only a few decades to forget the tragedy.

Join historian Edward T. O’Donnell as he discusses the burning of the steamboat General Slocum, the deadliest day in New York City history before 9-11.

Copies of Ship Ablaze will be available for purchase courtesy of Mobile Libris.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010
6:30 pm

Tompkins Square Branch Library
331 East 10th Street