The circumstances of the Halifax Explosion are well known. Two ships collide in the harbor. A burning boat drifts towards Halifax. Spectators are drawn to watch. The explosion happens. Hundreds are killed instantly. Fires overtake what remains in the north end and the next day a massive snow storm adds to the misery.
Less well known 100 years later are the experiences of the survivors. What did they do? What did they feel? How did they react? When the fires were extinguished and the immediate needs of the living met, what was life like in Halifax?
Through the experiences of five survivors we can place ourselves in the Halifax of the time. We can hear their accounts of the disaster voiced and see what they saw, as life began again, through the images recorded by photographer W. G. MacLaughlan in January and February of 1918 as he pictured what was still standing in these neighborhoods.
View the 126 images from the W. G. MacLaughlan albums of buildings damaged by the Halifax Explosion.
1917 Halifax Explosion Additional Resources