Archive for the ‘Civil Defense’ Category

brooklyn-bridge

Way back during the height of the Cold War, fallout shelters were built here and there, and basically everywhere. One of these places was inside the Brooklyn Bridge. What? Yes, really.

The Brooklyn Bridge connects the boroughs of Manhattan and Brooklyn and is one of those structures that just screams, “USA! USA! USA!” And what’s more “USA!” than a fallout shelter hidden in the bridge’s anchorage? (I had to look up what a bridge anchorage is, and apparently it’s the “massive masonry or concrete construction securing a cable at each end” of a suspension bridge.)

The Brooklyn Bridge was completed in 1863, with several tunnels and cavernous rooms built into the anchorage at each end of the bridge. Some of the caverns were rented out to store wine starting in 1876, with the rent helping to pay the construction costs of the bridge.

Fast forward to the 50s and 60s when the Cold War was afire, and some of the rooms in the anchorage were converted into fallout shelters, complete with blankets, biscuits and other shelter supplies.

The fallout shelter was long forgotten until 2006 when some city workers found the shelter while doing routine bridge inspections.

Atlas Obscura has some great photos of the shelter:

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Look at all the Cold War shelter goodies!

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Supplies!

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Fallout Shelter Finding Heroes

This is one of the coolest fallout shelters I’ve ever stumbled across, and I’d love, love, love to take a tour one day (which the guy in the video below says isn’t possible because of 9/11 security restrictions).

Take a sort of tour of the Brooklyn Bridge fallout shelter here:

Happy Atom Smashing!

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greenbrier

Fallout Shelter Fridays! is on vacation this week, so take a look at the fantastic fallout shelter (Congressional!) at The Greenbrier! You can tour it!

http://www.greenbrier.com/Activities/The-Bunker/Bunker-History.aspx

Happy Friday!

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The main branch of the New Orleans Public Library is a Mid Century wonder. This may not be obvious on the first floor or wandering the stacks, but I promise it is! That being said, the Mid Century vibe is strongest in the non-public areas, and HOLY COW is it strong. Like walking out onto the set of Mad Men strong.

I started my visit to the library in Administration, which is just off the third floor lobby through an interior sliding-glass door. Save the gum-chomping, iPhone slinging receptionist, I felt like I’d landed smack in the middle of the Sterling Cooper office without the sexy shenanigans and booze. Or maybe not; this is New Orleans after all.

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The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (yep, that one) has an FAQ page for nuclear blasts. Now. In 2014. This seems…misplaced? I mean, I can see how radiation sickness could fall under the CDC’s umbrella, but this page answers questions like, “Would an airplane crash in a nuclear power plant have the same effect as a nuclear blast?” (Spoiler Alert: No.) as well as radiation sickness (ARS for those in the know)-specific questions.

Regardless of the odd placement, the page provides a surprisingly easy-to-understand, thorough introduction to nuclear blasts and aftermath, and also answers some pretty good questions to boot.

Take a look!

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Family Fallout Shelter 1960

Well isn’t this a swell snap!

I love dioramas and this is basically a life-sized one of a fallout shelter (!), which you all know by now are one of my favorite things in the world. Let’s take a look at what’s going on here.

The shelter itself is mostly constructed, leaving a tear-away (can you do that with bricks?) corner section and the roof mostly off for easy interior viewing. The interior is, I hope, partially stocked with canned goods, a cot, possibly a table, and…David! Is David part of the display? Is David a real boy? Is David animatronic like the witches and townspeople at the Witch Dungeon “Museum” in Salem? David’s clothes are pretty weird for 1960, and he’s the only one around, and what’s up with that expression and posture? Is David a real boy?

Regardless of David’s humanness, we also have some great signs of the Civil Defense and other sort, one of them even advertising “FALLOUT SHELTER, Constructed Free!” All in all this is a great fallout shelter display. I would love, love, love to visit a display like this.

Also, I’d pinch David to see if he were real.

Happy Friday!

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Let’s check in with our puppet farmer friend!

In today’s installment, the farmer springs from his bed…fully clothed! Did you know farmers are at the ready for cow milking and combine driving and nuclear bombs at the drop of a hat?! Now you do.

From this film I learned, mo’ shielding, mo’ better. I love that the announcer suggests using fertilizer bags for shielding, which yes they’re big and heavy, and I suppose do block radiation, but…what if you’re inside the blast zone? I mean, fertilizer is super duper explosive. Not a good plan.

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The folks at 99 Percent Invisible have a great new episode up at the site.

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