The Hindenburg (1975)




Director:     Robert Wise.

Starring:     George C. Scott (Ritter), Anne Bancroft (The Countess), William Atherton (Boerth), Roy Thinnes (Martin Vogel), Gig Young (Edward Douglas), Burgess Meredith (Emilio Pajetta), Charles Durning (Captain Pruss), Richard Dysart (Lehman), Robert Clary (Joe Spah), Rene Auberjonois (Major Napier), Peter Donat (Reed Channing), Alan Oppenheimer (Albert Breslau), Katherine Helmond (Mrs. Mildred Breslau), Joanna Moore (Mrs. Channing), Stephen Elliott (Captain Fellows).

doomed flight of the Zeppelin



Since there is no definitive proof, someone came up with the idea of a story about a member of the resistance to Hitler set off a bomb to cause embarrassment to the Nazis.

The movie starts out with a German American woman in Milwaukee, April 17, 1937.  A woman writes a letter saying she had a dream saying a time bomb would destroy the Hindenburg over American territory. The scene then changes to Staaken Airfield, Berlin, April 30. Col Franz Ritter (a reluctant intelligence officer) Goebbels sent him to check on the plot. He was brought from action in Spain to do the job.

Among the dead were:
rigger Carl Borth
Captain Ernst Schleman
Albert Breslau
Edward Douglas
Elliott Howell III

In all 13 passengers, 22 members of the crew, One Navy linesman died. 62 survived.

Possible Causes of the Disaster:
1) structural failure
2) static electricity
3) St. Elmo's fire
4) sabotage.

Famous eyewitness broadcast by Herb Morrison of radio station WLS Chicago was heard many times. It goes approximately something like this:

Standing still now the back motors of the ship are just holding it, uh, just enough to keep it from -- It burst into flame! It burst into flame and it's falling! It's crashing! Watch it! Watch it! It's crashing, terrible. Oh, my. Get out of the way, please. It's burning, bursting into flames and it's and it's falling onto the mooring mast and all the folks agree that this is terrible. This is the -- one of the worst catastrophes in the world. Oh, it's ... Oh, four or five hundred feet into the sky and it's, it's a terrific crash ladies and gentlemen. The smoke and the flames now and the frame is crashing to the ground, not quite to the mooring mast. Oh, the humanity! All the friends are screaming around here. I told you. I cannot talk to people. Their friends are on there. Ah, it's a. . it's a's a. Oh, I, I, I can't talk ladies and gentlemen. I, I, I can't. I, listen folks I'm going to have to stop for a minute because I've lost my voice. This is the worst thing I've ever witnessed.


Patrick Louis Cooney, Ph. D.







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