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1930s & Earlier / Halifax Explosion
On December 6th of 1917, the worst pre atom bomb explosion in history occured in Halifax NS. Two ships, the Imo, and munitions ship the Mont Blanc collided in the Halifax harbor, and within 10 minutes, the Mont Blanc was ablaze, and the explosion took place about 25 minutes after that, at approx. 9:05 AM. The top picture was taken about 15 to 20 seconds after the blast from 21 kilometers away, The bottom picture is 2 days following the devastation, with the Imo shipwrecked in the harbor about mid picture. It is estimated about 2000 lives were lost, and without the help of train dispatcher Vince Coleman, who lost his life in the blast, more would have died as a passenger train from here in Saint John was expected to arrive in Halifax momentarily. Mr. Coleman sent a warning via Morse Code stating, "Stop trains. Munitions ship on fire. Approaching Pier 6. Goodbye",and would not stop until he recieved a message back from the train. Mr. Coleman saved about 300 lives, but lost his own due to his heroism.