ON MAY 6, 1937, the German airship Hindenburg burst into flames 200 feet over its intended landing spot at New Jersey’s Lakehurst Naval Air Station. Thirty-five people on board the flight were killed (13 passengers and 22 crewmen), along with one crewman on the ground.
The giant flying vessel measured 803.8 feet in length and weighed approximately 242 tons. Its mostly metal frame was filled with hydrogen. It came complete with numerous sleeping quarters, a library, dining room, and a magnificent lounge, but still managed a top speed of just over 80 miles per hour.
The zeppelin had just crossed the Atlantic Ocean after taking off from Frankfurt, Germany 2½ days prior on its first transatlantic voyage of the season. Thirty-six passengers and a crew of 61 were on board.
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