The Great Molasses Flood

On January 15, 1919, a giant storage vat at the Purity Distilling Company spilled 2.5 million gallons of black molasses onto Boston’s business district. The wall of hot molasses, 15 feet high and 100 yards wide, oozed toward the sea, destroying everything in its path. The Atlantic Avenue elevated train line was demolished, the freight yard of the Bay State Railway was engulfed, a fire station house collapsed, and 21 people were killed. A possible 22nd victim, Anthony DiStasio, was declared dead, but when the coroner drew back the sheet covering his body, the dizzy and molasses coated DiStasio regained his senses. 

Makes me wonder how this bit of not so trivial trivia could have slipped by Hollywood. It would make a great disaster film! (Though to movie goers today, 21 dead is really not that much of a disaster.) Actually, now that I think about it, it probably didn’t slip through — could it have been the inspiration for The Blob?

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