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View Diary: DKos Tour Series: White Sands National Monument (92 comments)

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  •  Here's a description of the first atom bomb (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    RiveroftheWest, Don Enrique, JayBat

    explosion, as described by William L. Laurence in the New York Times in 1945:

    The Atomic Age began at exactly 5:30 Mountain War Time on the morning of July 16, 1945, on a stretch of semi-desert land about 50 airline miles from Alamogordo, N.M., just a few minutes before the dawn of a new day on that part of the earth.
        Just at that instant there rose from the bowels of the earth a light not of this world, the light of many suns in one. It was a sunrise such as the world had never seen, a great green super-sun climbing in a fraction of a second to a height of more than 8,000 feet, rising ever higher until it touched the clouds, lighting up earth and sky all around with a dazzling luminosity.
        Up it went, a great ball of fire about a mile in diameter, changing colors as it kept shooting upward, from deep purple to orange, expanding, growing bigger, rising as it was expanding, an elemental force freed from its bonds after being chained for billions of years. For a fleeting instant the color was unearthly green, such as one sees only in the corona of the sun during a total eclipse. It was as though the earth had opened and the skies had split...."  
    Link

    The spirit of liberty is the spirit which is not too sure that it is right. -- Judge Learned Hand, May 21, 1944

    by ybruti on Wed Mar 27, 2013 at 05:24:42 PM PDT

    •  your comments. . . (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      RiveroftheWest, ybruti

      and what a comment and cited source, at that. You see, ybruti, you have hit on exactly the reason I write diaries for this community: to fulfill and enrich my own repository of information shared. In this case, what a Post Scrip this man's view on things. I find it incredible your comment does not receive a hundred-fold "tips" given the merit of what you shared with all of us. You humble me. I have never heard or read of this report until then. Thank you. And thank you for sharing this comment with all of us.

      Treat the world (yourself, and others) as part of a living organism. Everyone and everything will benefit.

      by richholtzin on Wed Mar 27, 2013 at 07:20:41 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Rich, I've used this description many times (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Don Enrique, RiveroftheWest

        in English classes for different purposes, but I never knew the author until today.  I googled "from the bowels of the earth a light not of this world..." and found many references including the date of the NYT article: Sept. 26, 1945. The entire piece was in a much more recent book. As for the writer: William L. Laurence (1888-1977) was an

        American journalist who co-founded the National Association of Science Writers (1934). In Apr 1945, he was appointed official journalist of the Los Alamos laboratory in New Mexico to report on the Manhattan Project. He wrote many of the first official press releases about nuclear weapons, and was the only journalist to attend the Trinity atomic bomb test in Jul 1945. Link

        The spirit of liberty is the spirit which is not too sure that it is right. -- Judge Learned Hand, May 21, 1944

        by ybruti on Wed Mar 27, 2013 at 10:05:17 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  ah blessings. . . (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          RiveroftheWest, ybruti

          I am going to jump right on this one, ybruti, and will love reading more about what you initially brought up (given the big blast of the 40s). I don't know why I am so doggone fascinated with that era and that huge blast, but I am. I guess, too, it was like a birth of a kind, an atomic birth, that changed everything from there on, and of course introduced the cliche of the "Atomic world." One of my student's father's (when I was teaching guitar and music theory here in the Burqy region) was a scientist at LANL (Los Alamos) and had connections with someone down there and we took a drive to White Sands (an over nighter) and he got us into the Trinity site. . .without the usual millions of others crowding to the site twice a year). I remember standing in that huge blast era and I swear. . .I swear I heard everything that was spoken by the scientists that day (in my head, of course) and then heard and felt and saw the blast. It was so quiet there; so haunting, and it had a very strange and powerful effect on me. . .that austere silence and the replication going on inside my head. Anyway, thank you so much for sending this information to me. I really do appreciate your effort and comments on the matter.

          Treat the world (yourself, and others) as part of a living organism. Everyone and everything will benefit.

          by richholtzin on Thu Mar 28, 2013 at 06:04:29 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  My granny was an operator (3+ / 0-)

      for AT&T in Alamogordo when that went down.  I can only imagine the kind of calls she got.  My dad grew up there though he hated it.  He did take us to White Sands in any event and I must say, it is an incredible treasure.  Thanks for reminding me about it.

      "And once again, the forces of niceness and goodness have triumphed over the forces of evil and rottenness." --Maxwell Smart

      by emobile on Wed Mar 27, 2013 at 08:05:04 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  your treasured memories. . . (3+ / 0-)

        of your granny. I take it that was long ago and I think Alamogordo is still a sleepy time hamlet. Certainly, no industry down there except military affairs and tourism. Well, maybe cattle rustling. (Use to be case at the turn of the century and the history of that entire region makes for a great read. If I can find the book title about same, which was one of my very favorite New Mexico history books, I'll send it along to you by your profile's email. Give your connection with your granny and your experience in that neck of the sandy woods. . .I think you'll enjoy reading it. For I know, she and your dad are likely part of that narrative.) Thanks for posting your comment, emobile.

        Treat the world (yourself, and others) as part of a living organism. Everyone and everything will benefit.

        by richholtzin on Thu Mar 28, 2013 at 05:58:46 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

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