The Cocoanut Grove Fire with Bob Begin

November 13, 2019 @ 7:30 pm – 8:45 pm
Wayland Library
5 Concord Rd Wayland MA

In November of 1942, Boston was feeling the effects of the War. The city was full of service men and women, the port was a major embarkation point for convoys to England, war related industries were running round the clock, and rationing was in place. The global situation was bleak and the air was full of doubt and unknown.

People wanted a break, if only for a few hours. One option would be a night on the town with friends, loved ones, or even new relationships. A few hours of dancing, laughing, celebrating, drinking; this would give us all a break from the gloom and worry. In Boston, one of the most popular night spots was the Cocoanut Grove. Dark, exotic, romantic – a perfect place to have fun and forget the woes of the war. It would be packed beyond capacity on Nov. 28, 1942 when fire broke out, spreading panic and death throughout the entire gathering.
What caused the fire? Who were the victims? And what changes did it initiate? Learn the answers and more at this historical presentation by Bob Begin.
Bob Begin grew up in Maine, graduated from Babson College, served 2 years active duty in the Army, and had a career of 35 years in the paper and film industry culminating as a Logistics Director. The love of history continues to be very rewarding as he enjoys retirement.  His major focus is on Naval History with an emphasis on the Pacific Theater on WWII.  He is also intrigued with the Concept Of Empire and how it shaped history throughout the world.

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