The Hartford Circus Fire: Tragedy Under the Big Top

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Through firsthand accounts, interviews with survivors and a gripping collection of vintage photographs, author Michael Skidgell attempts to make sense of one of Hartford's worst tragedies. Almost 7,000 fans eagerly packed into the Ringling Brothers big top on July 6, 1944. With a single careless act, an afternoon at the "Greatest Show on Earth" quickly became one of terror and tragedy as the paraffin-coated circus tent caught fire. Panicked crowds rushed for the few exits, but in minutes, the tent collapsed on those still struggling to escape below. A total of 168 lives were lost, many of them children, with many more injured and forever scarred by the events. Hartford and the surrounding communities reeled in the aftermath as investigators searched for the source of the fire and the responsible parties.
ISBN: 9781626190696
Format: Paperback
Publisher: The History Press
State: Connecticut
Series: Disaster
Images: 70
Pages: 144
Dimensions: 6 (w) x 9 (h)
Michael Skidgell, a lifelong Connecticut resident, is a project manager and an engineering manager at Steeltech Building Products. He has served in the construction company as a draftsman, engineer, estimator, coordinator and project manager for thirty years. Skidgell started his research on the Hartford circus fire in 2001, and has been pursuing the subject ever since.
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