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An Unlucky Spark

An Unlucky Spark image
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The greatest explosión of gmipov.-iV r the world li is ever known took pl;oe v.t the Dn PoiH ' v iri a m the ?th of Octobcr, 183Ü. V,'.,!: il: r usual cantious policy the Du Ponts have never stated just how greut a quai:tiry of powder explodod at tlii.s time, bul it is certaiu ihat tbiree magazines and tliree milis ín the npper yard were blowu up, ono after another, and a safe estímate will pnt the qnantity of powder exploded at 150 tons. In this explosión 13 inen aud 1 woiuan vere iiistautly killed, while 2Í mon and 9 women were injured, some fatally. The explosión occtirred a little aftor ;i o'clook in the afternoon. Itbegan in the magazine for hexagonal powder, tbö ki:ul uscd in large guus, aud the mort daugexotas, be:n;,' made not in graina, btit iu reddish, six sided cakes about au inch aud a half in diameter, andan iuch thick, with a small hole running througii the center. These cakes look like nothing so much as the Lrats on a wagon wheel. At ihe time of the explosión Oíikos (;f powder were being packed in; a winden boxes lined with tin, each box being abont 3 feet square. The tin Lnings projocted above the tops of the boses about two inched, and when a box was p;wked were folded down over a tin cover fitted closely upou the cakes of powder. It was the duty of one of the workinen, William Green, to solder these tin edges downupon the tin cover, a hot iron bcing used for this purpose. Ou the day in question what he had feared canie to pass. A fellow workman, William McGai'vey, was bringiug hiin the hot ironsiiom acharcoal brazier about 25 yards distant. Green stood at tho door of the open magazine, and all around liim were uücovered boxes fllled with the hexagonal powder ready to be sealed and stowed away. Thcre were also dozens of boxes that bad been sealed. Just what happened will never be known, for neither Green nor McGarvey was left t: teil the Ktory. But the probability is of tlio soldering irons was a little too hot, and by touching a partiële of dirt on the tin cover


Ann Arbor Argus
Old News