First launched in 1936, the Hindenburg airship initiated commercial travel across the Atlantic by ferrying passengers from Germany to the United States. It was the largest ship of its type ever built. On May 6, 1937, the 804-foot long airship burst into flames and crashed while landing in Lakehurst, New Jersey. Thirty-seven of the 91 passengers on board were killed.

At the time, authorities blamed the disaster on a discharge of atmospheric energy near a leaking hydrogen valve. Others speculate that it was the result of anti-Nazi sabotage.

Contrary to popular belief the crash was not broadcast live. Herbert Morrison of WLS radio of Chicago was at the landing site experimenting with recording news for delayed broadcast. He recorded his report, then later played it over the air.

Click on the headphones to hear the report.