"Johnstown Flood" Amusement Postcard

Beginning in the 1890s, the advent of increasingly sensational disaster-themed entertainments, first in amusement parks and then on film, attested to the enduring appeal of depictions of real-life calamities. This postcard from Atlantic City, N.J., shows crowds flocking to see a recreation of Pennsylvania's 1889 Johnstown flood, in which at least 2,209 perished, making it the most deadly American disaster to date. Staged reenactments of urban fires were also popular draws at amusement parks in Coney Island, Atlantic City, and elsewhere.

"Johnstown Flood" Amusement Postcard