Photo courtesy of R. Blake

Photo courtesy of R. Blake

Texas City - Before the Blast

This photo was taken before the blast and used as a surveying tool to measure the significance of the destruction after the event cleanup. The pen markings on the photo show placements and scale that played a key role in scoping the magnitude of the event for the Department of Interior and their report published in February of 1948. 


The Monsanto Building & Plant, Slip 1

This photo was taken prior to April 16th 1947.  The plant was fully operational and in very close proximity to slip number 1.  When the Grandcamp (not pictured, similarly sized) exploded the slip and the building were annihilated.  Which you will see in next photo.  Surveyors labeled the photo for study as neither the plant or the slip was recognizable after the blast. 

Photo courtesy of R. Blake

Photo courtesy of R. Blake


Photo courtesy of R. Blake

Photo courtesy of R. Blake

Aerial view of Monsanto Plant and Slip 1 – after the blasts


This photo was taken at 10:05 AM on April 17, 1947 – a full day after the Grandcamp blast.  The fires were still raging and the Monsanto Plant and Slip 1 were completely destroyed and unrecognizable aside from the refinery towers (which would later collapse).  This angle is looking west/Southwest with the Atlantic tank farm (also on fire) in background. 


Texas City shoreline – after the blasts

This photo was taken on April 18, 1947 – two days after the explosions.  Hundreds of fires were still burning inland, and the blast (which was felt in Denver) destroyed the entire shoreline for a three-mile stretch.  This photo was taken over a mile from the blast -- none of the Texas City shipping infrastructure was spared. 

Photo courtesy of R. Blake

Photo courtesy of R. Blake


Photo courtesy of R. Blake

Photo courtesy of R. Blake

The Search for Life – after the Texas City disaster

In this photo, volunteers search for any people trapped in the rubble created by the massive explosions.  As pictured, buildings and homes completely collapsed – the roof of this structure was only two feet off the ground.  The majority of structures in Texas City looked like this.  Over 600 people were killed and 3000 injured in the blasts.


The Wounded & Deceased

Thousands were injured in the aftermath, and hundreds of bodies were recovered, some of them not even identifiable to families or friends.  In this photo, a traumatized survivor is attended to by volunteers as they try to save a life.  The outcome of the injuries that the person pictured prone in blankets is not known.

Photo courtesy of R. Blake

Photo courtesy of R. Blake