75 years later, deadly circus fire will be remembered

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — The city of Hartford in Connecticut is planning a ceremony to mark the 75th anniversary of what has become known as the Day the Clowns Cried when more than 150 people died in the big top fire.

The remembrance ceremony for the Hartford Circus Fire will take place July 6 at the memorial site on Barbour Street.

An estimated 7,000 people attended the Ringling Brothers and Barnum and Bailey Circus in 1944 when the big top caught fire. The blaze spread quickly and was fueled by a mixture of gasoline and paraffin wax that was used to waterproof the tent.

The death toll has been put at various times between 167 to 169 people. More than 700 were injured, many of them children. The cause of the fire has never been determined.

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