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Readers’ Theatre: Who Was Responsible for the Mill River Disaster?

Tuesday May 12, 2020 6:00 pm - 7:45 pm

What is left of the Mill River Reservoir Dam after the flood of 1873

What is left of the Mill River Reservoir Dam after the flood of 1873May 16 is the 146th anniversary of the devastating Mill River flood.   In 1874, the sudden breach of the Williamsburg dam unleashed a torrent that washed away the villages of Williamsburg, Skinnerville, Haydenville, and Leeds.  Within an hour, the flood killed 139 people and destroyed nearly all the homes and industry along the river. It was the first major dam disaster in the US and one of the greatest calamities of the Nineteenth Century.

Join us for a dramatic readers’ theatre presentation on the story of the flood and the search for who was responsible.    Elizabeth Sharpe, co-director of Historic Northampton and author of In the Shadow of the Dam: The Aftermath of the Mill River Flood of 1874 (Free Press), will narrate while 15 audience members will be chosen to play the roles of those involved in the contentious coroner’s inquest.  The proceedings, which took place for seven days beginning May 26, 1874 in Northampton at the Hampshire County Court House, were front page news around the country.

Part of the Wistariahurst Historical Lecture Series
People, Places, Food, & Sport

Suggested Donation of $5

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