Explosion at Orly: The Disaster that Transformed Atlanta

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9780972494304: Explosion at Orly: The Disaster that Transformed Atlanta

The 1962 Air France crash at Orly Airport was the worst airplane disaster to date. One-hundred-thirty passengers and crew perished. Many were prominent Atlantans who had just completed a tour of Europe, organized by the Atlanta Art Association. "Explosion at Orly" is more than the chronicle of a catastrophe; this narrative recreates a period of volitile change when Atlanta was the center of the Civil Rights Movement.

Ann Uhry Abrams' new book highlights Atlanta life in the early sixties, closely following the passengers of the ill-fated flight as they departed from their luxurious suburban homes through their tour of Europe. It also discusses the impact of the crash on Atlanta and the establishment of a Memorial Arts Center(now the Woodruf Arts Center)dedicated to the victims, which became one of the South's most important cultural enclaves.

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About the Author:

Ann Uhry Abrams was born in Atlanta and grew up in Druid Hills with her brother, the playwright, Alfred Uhry ("Driving Miss Daisy"). She attended Sarah Lawrence College, received a BA and an MA in history from Georgia State University, and a Ph.D in interdisciplinary studies from Emory University. Between 1975 and 1995, she taught American art history at Spelman College, Georgia State University, Agnes Scott College, and Emory University. In addition, she has lectured often at scholarly meetings, museums, and civic gatherings.

She is the author of "The Pilgrims and Pochontas: Rival Myths of American Origin" (Westview Press, 1999) and "The Valient Hero: Benjamin West and Grand Style History Painting" (Smithsonian Press, 1985). Her numerous articles on art and history include an essay on historical murals in the U.S. Capitol Rotunda in "Picturing History: American Painting, 1770-1930" (Rizzoli, 1993). She was also co-curator for several exhibitions in 1986 celebrating the centennial of the Statue of Liberty.

Review:

"'Explosion at Orly' is . . . a fine piece of writing [and is] a riveting history . . . ." -- Frederick Allen, author of "The Real Thing" and "Atlanta Rising"

"Ann Abrams' new book tells the story of . . . a cataclysmic event that became 'ground zero' for Atlanta's cultural rebirth." -- Dr. Michael Shapiro, Director of the High Museum of Art

"Ann Uhry Abrams' brilliant recounting . . . brings the reader vividly into our social and civic scene of the 1960s." -- Beauchamp Carr, Executive, vice president, Robert W. Woodruff Arts Center

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