Remembering TMI 40 Years Later

In late March 1979, south-central Pennsylvanians were startled to learn of an accident that had occurred at Three Mile Island (TMI) nuclear power plant in the Susquehanna River near Middletown, Dauphin County. In my own experience, the initial news came to me at Dallastown Elementary School in York County after a teacher shouted out to my fifth-grade class to come back inside the school building...
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Memories of a Crisis

Living and working in Hummelstown, only five miles from Middletown, the home of Three Mile Island (TMI) and it nuclear power plant, I listened anxiously as the radio announcer warned of a radiation emission or leak from the plant (see “From Chaos to Calm: Remembering the Three Mile Island Crisis, An Interview with Harold Denton” by Kenneth C. Wolensky, Spring 2000). Windows were to...
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From Chaos to Calm: Remembering the Three Mile Island Crisis, An Interview With Harold Denton

Thursday, March 28, 1979, is a day forever etched in the memory of most Pennsylvanians and, indeed, many Americans. During the pre-dawn hours, events swiftly unfolded at a nuclear power plant on an island in the middle of the Susquehanna River near Harrisburg that would lead to the worst commercial nuclear accident in the nation’s history. In the days that followed, Three Mile Island (TMI)...
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Documents from the Three Mile Island Crisis

In late March 1979, the nation ex­perienced its worst commercial nuclear accident as a result of techni­cal malfunctions and operator error at the Three Mile Island (TMI) nuclear generating station near Harrisburg. The crisis, which began on Wednes­day, March 28, lasted for several days and prompted the evacuation of thousands of residents. The accident and reaction to it are well docu­mented in...
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Bookshelf

Devastation and Renewal: An Environmental History of Pittsburgh and its Region Edited by Joel A. Tarr University of Pittsburgh Press, 2004 (281 pages, cloth, $32.00) Visitors to Pittsburgh in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries were invariably shocked by the ways in which industrial development dominated the landscape. Steel mills sprawled across hundreds of acres along the rivers. Land and...
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Karl Mason (1915-1966)

If asked to describe his life’s work, those who remember Karl Mason would most likely exclaim, “He wanted to clean up the world!” If pressed to date the beginning of environmental regulation by a single state agency, many Penn­sylvanians would probably choose 1970, the year the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Resources – predecessor to the Commonwealth’s...
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Nuclear Accident at Three Mile Island

On March 28, 1979, the worst nuclear accident in the history of the United States occurred at the Three Mile Island (TMI) Nuclear Power Station near Middletown, Dauphin County. The scope of the physical accident was relatively small, but the impact on the country’s nuclear power industry was enormous. On March 28, 1979, the worst nuclear accident in the history of the United States...
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