Lighter than Air: Library Exhibition on Zeppelins

Wolfsonian-FIU, 1001 Washington Avenue, Miami Beach, FL


At 803 feet long and 146 feet high, the Hindenburg, a Zeppelin built in Germany and completed in 1936, was the largest aircraft ever built. It included passenger cabins, a restaurant, a lounge, and even a smoking room. It traveled between Germany and Lakehurst, NJ—with a cruising speed of 78 miles per hour, the trip took four days of travel time. Sadly short-lived, the Hindenburg completed the trip only nine times before tragedy struck. On May 6, 1937, in front of a large crowd gathered in Lakehurst, it burst into flames and crashed, killing thirty-five of the ninety-seven people on board and one member of the ground crew. That disaster was a major contributing factor to the Zeppelin’s eventual demise.

Giants Lighter than Air, the new library exhibition, includes books, photographs, postcards, brochures, advertisements, and other materials that document these airships. The exhibition is curated by Nicolae Harsanyi, rare books cataloguer and associate librarian at The Wolfsonian.