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American Experience; Johnstown Flood, The


Disaster Night program 3 of 3

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American Experience
Johnstown Flood, The
Program Number


Series Description

Premiered October 1988 As television's longest-running, most-watched history series, American Experience brings to life the incredible characters and epic stories that helped form this nation. Now in its eighteenth season, the series has produced over 180 programs and garnered every major broadcast award. Series release date: 10/1988

Program Description

On May 31, 1889, after severe rainstorms, the earthen dam above the town of Johnstown, Pennsylvania, broke without warning. More than 2,000 people were killed. How did it happen and why? The original 20-minute version of "The Johnstown Flood" won an Oscar in 1991. This expanded hour-long version explores not just the disastrous flood and its aftermath, but what life was like in Johnstown before the flood, for those who worked in the valley, and those who summered high above the mountains. JUN95 airing - part of American Experience's "Disaster Night" - aired along with "The Hurricane of '38" and "The Great San Francisco Earthquake."



Asset Type

Broadcast program

Media Type


Chicago: “American Experience; Johnstown Flood, The,” 05/19/1995, WGBH Media Library & Archives, accessed December 12, 2019, http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_4AA017066AA3449DA9B5AA7DBD88EAEC.
MLA: “American Experience; Johnstown Flood, The.” 05/19/1995. WGBH Media Library & Archives. Web. December 12, 2019. <http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_4AA017066AA3449DA9B5AA7DBD88EAEC>.
APA: American Experience; Johnstown Flood, The. Boston, MA: WGBH Media Library & Archives. Retrieved from http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_4AA017066AA3449DA9B5AA7DBD88EAEC
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