Events that never happened.
Today all of us are overwhelmed with information. But sometimes it is just impossible to believe that this or that fact can be true. And it is quite difficult to find out whether the facts are fake. I’m sure that many of us tend to think that it happens only today with the Internet appearance when any of us can get information here and now. But it appears that fake news existed even in the 19th century. Well, there is nothing special about it. People have been lying all the time to attract one’s attention.
Strangely enough but people of the 19s century were much more trustful than we are today.
The Brooklyn Bridge supposedly is one of the symbols of New York City. It was erected in 1883 and it connects Manhattan and Brooklyn. The bridge was opened on May, 23. There were about 14000 people at the opening ceremony. People were offered to cross the bridge. The event seemed to be terrific indeed. A week later there were still lots of people wandering around. Suddenly people heard screaming woman who seemed that the bridge was about to collapse. People who were crossing the bridge started to panic trying to escape off the place as soon as possible. The Brooklyn Daily Eagle newspaper described the disaster in the following way: “Fuller particulars show that twelve persons, men, women, boys and girls, were killed, while nearly thirty were seriously injured […] The story of the accident has already been told in many ways. The generally accepted version is that in the crush at the steps which lead down from the New York end of the span to the masonry work a woman lost her footing and fell. Another woman emitted a shriek. The crowd, pressed onward from behind by the force of thousands, became panic stricken […] In a few seconds human beings were piled four deep at the foot of the steps, and the crowd was hurried over them”. People were afraid of collapse of the bridge that never happened. The rumor caused death.
In the first part of the 20s century it was pretty popular to listen to radio dramas. The War of the Words narrated by outstanding Orson Welles triggered a panic in the United States in 1938. Listeners who missed the very beginning of the drama believed that it was actual news. People started to escape their houses as they were sure that the Martians invaded the planet. Welles was talented indeed.
Trust, but check you must.