Community Conversation: Remembering the 1919 Explosion

When: Mon April 15, 6:00pm
Where: Cedar Rapids Public Library
Address: 450 5th Ave SE


Brucemore, in collaboration with the African American Museum of Iowa, the National Czech and Slovak Museum and Library, and the University of Iowa Labor Center, is hosting a conversation on the Douglas Starch Works explosion.

The Douglas Starch Works explosion was one of the worst industrial accidents in Iowa history. On May 22, 1919, a small fire at the Douglas Starch Works Company created an explosion. Homes, schools, and stores were damaged. Windows were shattered, and businesses slowed. Forty-four people lost their lives. In the days and months that followed, the Cedar Rapids community showed resiliency by focusing on rebuilding, including at the Douglas Starch Works plant.

Join us as we discuss the history of this tragic event, looking at themes of race, labor and immigration. This program is free and will take place in Whipple Auditorium in the Cedar Rapids Public Library (450 5th Ave SE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52401).