Fire in the Grove

The Cocoanut Grove Tragedy and Its Aftermath

Author: John C. Esposito

Publisher: Da Capo Press

ISBN: 9780306815010

Category: History

Page: 288

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On Saturday night, November 28, 1942, Boston suffered its worst disaster ever. At the city's premier nightspot, the Cocoanut Grove, the largest nightclub fire in U.S. history took the lives of 492 people--nearly one of every two people on the premises. A flash of fire that started in an imitation palm tree rolled through the overcrowded club with breathtaking speed and in a mere eight minutes anyone left in the club was dead or doomed. The Grove was a classic firetrap, the product of greed and indifference on the part of the owners and the politicians who had knowingly allowed such conditions to exist. Against the backdrop of Boston politics, cronyism, and corruption, author John C. Esposito re-creates the drama of the fire and explores the public outcry that followed. In retelling the horrific events of one of America's most cataclysmic tragedies, Esposito has fashioned both an incomparably gripping narrative and a vibrant portrait of the era. But it is the intense, detailed narrative of the fire--harrowing yet compulsively readable--and the trials that followed that will stay with the reader well after they finish this remarkable book. "[Esposito] reminds us that the cautionary tale of the Cocoanut Grove is still relevant today." (New York Law Journal)
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Fire in the Big House

America’s Deadliest Prison Disaster

Author: Mitchel P. Roth

Publisher: Ohio University Press

ISBN: 0821446827

Category: History

Page: 320

View: 5266

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On April 21, 1930—Easter Monday—some rags caught fire under the Ohio Penitentiary’s dry and aging wooden roof, shortly after inmates had returned to their locked cells after supper. In less than an hour, 320 men who came from all corners of Prohibition-era America and from as far away as Russia had succumbed to fire and smoke in what remains the deadliest prison disaster in United States history. Within 24 hours, moviegoers were watching Pathé’s newsreel of the fire, and in less than a week, the first iteration of the weepy ballad “Ohio Prison Fire” was released. The deaths brought urgent national and international focus to the horrifying conditions of America’s prisons (at the time of the fire, the Ohio Penitentiary was at almost three times its capacity). Yet, amid darkening world politics and the first years of the Great Depression, the fire receded from public concern. In Fire in the Big House, Mitchel P. Roth does justice to the lives of convicts and guards and puts the conflagration in the context of the rise of the Big House prison model, local and state political machinations, and American penal history and reform efforts. The result is the first comprehensive account of a tragedy whose circumstances—violent unrest, overcrowding, poorly trained and underpaid guards, unsanitary conditions, inadequate food—will be familiar to prison watchdogs today.
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The Evolution of the British Funeral Industry in the 20th Century

From Undertaker to Funeral Director

Author: Brian Parsons

Publisher: Emerald Group Publishing

ISBN: 1787436306

Category: Social Science

Page: 288

View: 6654

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This book examines the shifts that have taken place in the funeral industry since 1900, focusing on the figure of the undertaker and exploring how organizational change and attempts to gain recognition as a professional service provider saw the role morph into that of 'funeral director'.
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John William McCormack

A Political Biography

Author: Garrison Nelson

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing USA

ISBN: 1628925183

Category: History

Page: 928

View: 2338

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In the first biography of U.S. House Speaker John W. McCormack, author Garrison Nelson uncovers previously forgotten FBI files, birth and death records, and correspondence long thought lost or buried. For such an influential figure, McCormack tried to dismiss the past, almost erasing his legacy from the public's mind. John William McCormack: A Political Biography sheds light on the behind-the-curtain machinations of American politics and the origins of the modern-day Democratic party, facilitated through McCormack's triumphs. McCormack overcame desperate poverty and family tragedy in the Irish ghetto of South Boston to hold the second-most powerful position in the nation. By reinventing his family history to elude Irish Boston's powerful political gatekeepers, McCormack embarked on a 1928 - 1971 House career and from 1939-71, the longest house leadership career. Working with every president from Coolidge to Nixon, McCormack's social welfare agenda, which included Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid, immigration reform, and civil rights legislation helped commit the nation to the welfare of its most vulnerable citizens. By helping create the Austin-Boston Connection, McCormack reshaped the Democratic Party from a regional southern white Protestant party to one that embraced urban religiously and racially diverse ethnics. A man free of prejudice, John McCormack was the Boston Brahmin's favorite Irishman, the South's favorite northerner, and known in Boston as "Rabbi John," the Jews' favorite Catholic.
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Disasters, Accidents, and Crises in American History

A Reference Guide to the Nation's Most Catastrophic Events

Author: Ballard C. Campbell

Publisher: Infobase Publishing

ISBN: 1438130120

Category: Accidents

Page: 481

View: 6286

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Presents a chronologically-arranged reference to catastrophic events in American history, including natural disasters, economic depressions, riots, murders, and terrorist attacks.
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Holocaust!

The Shocking Story of the Boston Cocoanut Grove Fire

Author: Paul Benzaquin

Publisher: Pickle Partners Publishing

ISBN: 1787202534

Category: History

Page: 197

View: 5982

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First published in November 1959, this is the bestselling account of the fire at The Cocoanut Grove, a premier nightclub during the post-Prohibition 1930s and 1940s in Boston, Massachusetts, on the night of November 28, 1942. It was the scene of the deadliest nightclub fire in history, killing 492 people and injuring hundreds more. The scale of the tragedy shocked the nation and briefly replaced the events of World War II in newspaper headlines. It led to a reform of safety standards and codes across the U.S., and to major changes in the treatment and rehabilitation of burn victims internationally. Written by radio broadcaster and Boston Globe journalist, Paul Benzaquin, this book is widely regarded as one of the most harrowing tales in the annals of disaster: a story of panic and desperation, of chaos and utter fear, it is also a story of almost incredible courage and ingenuity in the midst of despair. What gives this story lasting value is its emphasis on the aftermath of the fire: the medical innovations wrought by hospital workers in their attempt to save lives; the change in safety regulations brought about by the official enquiry in to the causes of the fire. Paul Benzaquin has scrupulously sifted facts from fancy and with powerful dramatic force molded these and other important elements into a stunning narrative, making Holocaust! a powerful book. Unmissable reading. Contains a detailed layout plan of The Cocanut Grove illustrated with over 20 black-and-white photographs.
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American Disasters

201 Calamities that Shook the Nation

Author: Ballard C. Campbell

Publisher: N.A

ISBN: N.A

Category: History

Page: 461

View: 3733

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Chronologically lists over two hundred disasters, both manmade and natural, that occurred in America, from Columbus's voyage in 1492 to Hurricane Katrina in 2005.
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