This article is for quizzes on Monday May 9th...
The Hindenburg disaster occurred on May 6, 1937, as the German passenger airship LZ 129 Hindenburg caught fire and was destroyed during its attempt to dock with its mooring mast at Naval Air Station Lakehurst in Manchester Township, New Jersey, United States. Of the 97 people on board (36 passengers and 61 crewmen), there were 35 fatalities (13 passengers and 22 crewmen). One worker on the ground was also killed, making a total of 36 fatalities.
newsreel coverage, photographs, and Herbert Morrison's recorded radio eyewitness reports from the landing field, which were broadcast the next day. A variety of hypotheses have been put forward for both the cause of ignition and the initial fuel for the ensuing fire. The incident shattered public confidence in the giant, passenger-carrying rigid airship and marked the abrupt end of the airship era.
After opening its 1937 season by completing a single round-trip passage to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, in late March 1937, the Hindenburg departed from Frankfurt, Germany, on the evening of May 3, 1937, on the first of 10 round trips between Europe and the United States that were scheduled for its second year of commercial service. The American Airlines company had contracted with the operators of the Hindenburg to shuttle the passengers from Lakehurst to Newark for connections to airplane flights.
Except for strong headwinds that slowed its progress, the crossing of the Hindenburg was otherwise unremarkable until the airship attempted an early-evening landing at Lakehurst three days later on May 6. Although carrying only half its full capacity of passengers (36 of 70) and crewmen (61, including 21 crewman trainees) for the accident flight, the Hindenburg was fully booked for its return flight. Many of the passengers with tickets to Germany were planning to attend the coronation of King George VI and Queen Elizabeth in London the following week.