Radio Diaries

Last Witness: The General Slocum

June 14, 2018

On June 15, 1904, a steamship called the General Slocum left the pier on East Third Street in New York City just after 9 AM. The boat was filled with more than 1,300 residents of the Lower East Side. Many of the passengers were recent German immigrants who were headed up the east river for a church outing, a boat cruise and picnic on Long Island. But they would never make it. We interviewed the last living survivor of the General Slocum, Adella Wotherspoon, when she was 100 years old. Today we’re bringing you her story as part of our series, Last Witness. Plus, a portrait of the last civilian lighthouse keeper in the U.S.

Know someone who’d make a good Last Witness? Get in touch! You can find us on Twitter and Facebook, use the hashtag #LastWitness.


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