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Macabre Attractions: The Willey Slide and Disaster Tourism


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4/3/18: THIS EVENT IS SOLD OUT. This is the second in our five-part Spring Lecture Series, "Natural Disasters in New Hampshire." Almost 200 years ago, the nine members of the Willey family were killed in a landslide in Crawford Notch. In a bizarre twist, their house was left standing, bearing silent witness to the family’s panicked final moments as they attempted to flee to safety. Their deaths shocked the country and fed a morbid fascination with the macabre. Within weeks, people began flocking to the Willeys’ homestead from New Hampshire and beyond, sparking the first significant wave of tourism to the White Mountains. Professor Marcia Schmidt Blaine of Plymouth State University explores the history of the Willey Slide and its ability to lure travelers to the White Mountains throughout the 19th century. This series is free for Society members, but space is limited and registration is required. Nonmembers are welcome to attend for a fee of $50, which includes a one-year membership to the Society. Visit our website at https://www.nhhistory.org/Visit/Programs-Events-Calendar for registration information.