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Jul 31, 2022


The airship Hindenburg passed over Connecticut 21 times during its 17-month service between 1936-37. In the 1930s, air travel across the Atlantic Ocean between Europe and North America was in its infancy. The vast airships of the German Zeppelin Company, zeppelins or dirigibles, took an early lead, competing not with airplanes but luxury ocean liners. In this episode, Asst. Publisher Mary Donohue, talks to historian Alexander Rose, author of Empires of the Sky, Zeppelins, Airplanes, and Two Men’s Epic Duel to Rule the World (Random House, 2020). And you’ll hear from Bridgeport historian Carolyn Ivanoff, author of the article “The Hindenburg Flies over Bridgeport” in the Summer 2022 issue of Connecticut Explored. Find out more about why the Nazi swastika is visible in many of the photos taken over Connecticut.

Thank you to our guests  Alexander Rose and Carolyn Ivanoff. Rose has a new book coming out in December, 2022-The Lion and the Fox-and listeners can subscribe to his weekly Substack newsletter “Secret Worlds” which explores historical espionage (and occasionally aviation) at

Find out more about his other books at


The episode of Grating the Nutmeg was produced by Mary Donohue and engineered by Patrick O’Sullivan of High Wattage Media

Donohue has documented the built environment and pop culture for over 30 years. Contact her at

Photo credit: Hindenburg over The Travelers Tower, Hartford, 1936 - Jeffrey Hollis

The video, taken in October of 1936, shows the Hindenburg sailing over Hartford, Connecticut, seven months before its destruction.