Brooklyn Bridge Disaster

May 30, 2024 by Harold Emanuel
Brooklyn Bridge Tragedy 

May 30, 1883, Decoration Day (the name changed to Memorial Day in 1967), was a holiday for most working New Yorkers.  Over 20,000 people went to view and stroll on the recently opened engineering marvel, The Brooklyn Bridge. At approximately four o’clock in the afternoon, a middle-aged woman tripped and fell down the wooden stairs leading off the bridge on the Manhattan approach, inspiring another woman to scream, “The bridge is falling”.

Panicked pedestrians rushed to exit the bridge, bottlenecking at the western entrance, and knocking those at the top of the steps into a heap, some falling into the East River. 

Twelve people died. More than thirty-five were injured.