The Circus Fire


Today is the 75th anniversary of the Hartford Circus Fire, which claimed 167 lives and changed thousands more. Never forget.

6/27/2019 5:30pm: Hartford Circus Fire Reception with Stewart O’Nan @ Hartford Public Library

Hartford Circus Fire Reception with Stewart O’Nan

Meet Stewart O’Nan, the author of The Circus Fire: A True Story of an American Tragedy, at the Hartford Circus Fire Remembrance Reception to benefit the libraryLimited number of tickets available. Light refreshments will be served.

Event Details:
Remembrance Reception
Thursday, June 27, 2019
5:30-6:30 PM
Hartford History Center
(3rd Floor, Downtown Library)

Public program, 7:00-8:00 PM,
in the Center for Contemporary Culture

Join us for a conversation about the Hartford Circus Fire with author Stewart O’Nan, HPL CEO Bridget Quinn-Carey, and survivor Nancy R. Savin following the reception. This event will be held from 7-8 pm in the Center for Contemporary Culture and is free and open to the public.

The Circus Fire book will be available for sale and signing following the public event.

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[ PDF ]

Inferno Under The Big Top: Survivors Remember The Hartford Circus Fire


Author Stewart O’Nan, who wrote the 2001 book The Circus Fire: A True Story of an American Tragedy, and Mike Skidgell, whose new book, The Hartford Circus Fire, spoke to a standing room only crowd of more than 200 Sunday afternoon.

Circus Fire panel 2014

The stories of that steamy summer day are horrifying.

With the Big Top filled with people, animals and performers and the afternoon matinee underway, a fire started at one end of the massive tent and spread rapidly.