Florida Disasters: True Stories of Tragedy and Survival

Florida Disasters: True Stories of Tragedy and Survival

by E. Lynne Wright


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Facing Unimaginable Events With Courage

It's only human to be fascinated by disasters—and uplifted by reports of survival in the face of overwhelming circumstances. This book takes you back to Florida's most catastrophic events, vividly re-creating the moments that changed the state forever. The twenty-five true stories presented here are a chilling reminder to expect the unexpected.

From the Great Citrus Freeze of 1895 and tidal wave of 1935 to the Apollo fire of 1967 and Challenger disaster of 1986, Florida has been the site of some of the nation's most dramatic moments. Each account in this book reveals not only the circumstances surrounding the disaster and the magnitude of the devastation, but also the courage and ingenuity displayed by those who survived and the heroism of those who helped others, often risking their own lives in rescue efforts.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781493028740
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
Publication date: 05/01/2017
Pages: 256
Sales rank: 1,188,030
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.80(d)

About the Author

E. Lynne Wright is a writer based in Vero Beach, Florida. Her articles and stories have appeared in numerous magazines and newspapers as well as anthologies and literary journals.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments xiii

Introduction xv

Chapter 1 They Never Surrendered: No Peace Treaty with the Seminoles 1

Chapter 2 Disaster on the Treasure Coast: The Wrecks of the Plate Fleet (1715) 7

Chapter 3 Disease Spreads Like Fire: The Yellow Fever Epidemic (1888) 15

Chapter 4 Grower's Nightmare: The Great Citrus Freeze (1895) 25

Chapter 5 Crane's Open Boat: The Wreck of the Filibustering Commodore (1897) 33

Chapter 6 A City in Flames: The Jacksonville Fire (1901) 41

Chapter 7 "Lynch Law Will Prevail": The Destruction of Rosewood (1923) 49

Chapter 8 A Floating Hotel Sinks: The Capsize of the Prinz Valdemar (1926) 55

Chapter 9 There Were Bodies Everywhere: The Okeechobee Dike Collapse (1928) 63

Chapter 10 A Black Wall of Water: Veterans' Rescue Train Wiped Out (1935) 71

Chapter 11 A Surprise Attack: Gulfamerica's Maiden Voyage (1942) 79

Chapter 12 A Great Aviation Mystery: The Disappearance of Flight 19 (1945) 87

Chapter 13 A Mission Gone Wrong: Fire in Apollo (1967) 95

Chapter 14 The De Facto Capital of Latin America: Mariel to Miami (1980) 105

Chapter 15 This is Nota Drill: The Blackthorn Collision (1980) 111

Chapter 16 Commute Turns Deadly: Sunshine Skyway Bridge Is Hit (1980) 119

Chapter 17 News from Liberty City: The McDuffie Riot (1980) 129

Chapter 18 A Tragedy for the Construction Trade: Harbour Cay Condominiums Collapse (1981) 137

Chapter 19 Fire in the Sky: The Challenger Explodes (1986) 147

Chapter 20 More than a Storm: Hurricane Andrew Arrives (1992) 157

Chapter 21 A Happy Ending: The Great Seabird Rescue (1993) 167

Chapter 22 The End of an Airline: ValuJet Flight 592 Crashes in the Everglades (1996) 175

Chapter 23 Red Tide Strikes Again: Manatee Population Decimated (1996) 183

Chapter 24 Predictably Unpredictable Weather Strikes: Killer Tornadoes (1998) 191

Chapter 25 Florida Ablaze: Summer of Wildfires (1998) 199

Chapter 26 An Unforgettable Hurricane Season: Hurricanes Charley, Frances, Ivan, and Jeanne (2004) 209

Chapter 27 "In Order to Reduce Costs": The Deepwater Horizon Disaster (2010) 221

Bibliography 227

About the Author 239

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