it's hard to believe that it's been ten years since hurricane katrina struck august 28 and in researching where katrina fell in the order of natural disasters that have hit this country i started researching the hurricane of 1900 that more than hit galveston and almost wiped off the map and it was a fascinating story to me and as i got into it a little bit more and a little bit more, i thought i don't think a lot of people know how bad this is. folks in the gulf region have a pretty good idea that the average person in america i don't think knows into the more
i research it the more deeply into it i got i decided maybe i can write a book out of this but i have limited skills as you probably see every morning so i hired a guy who's a wonderful author in his own right but is a marvelous researcher and as he delved into this and would show me information the more i saw the more i became fascinated by this i decided this was a terrific story because galveston represented a lot of this country at the turn of the country. the can-do attitude, the belief that we were masters of our domain and that we could take anything and make it better. less than a hundred years
earlier it was a sandbar that headquarters and a few decades later it was a center for shipping and for industry it was a town city of 37,000 yet it had a per capita more millionaires than any place in america. first electric lights were strung in galveston and in texas were strung in galveston. they had an opera house and a city hall. it was by many people in approximation and the preeminent largest u.s. weather bureau outside of washington, d.c. was located in galveston and was
bigger than new orleans and was the epicenter of shipping along the gulf coast and they had hurricanes before they had storms but they had always weathered and adult with them and there was a belief that a major hurricane could not hit galveston along the gulf coast they had a natural curve and that texas wasn't part of the curve so adding to that there was the belief that they were the supreme forecasting entity in north america and is not in the world, yet in fact not even the cuban government had the
foremost for testing center. however the head of the weather bureau didn't be leaving consulting with the cubans or didn't want them thinking people were superior to them so they basically shut down the cuban forecast coming out of cuba because they control the telegraph lines. so when cuba do that there was a hurricane moving through the caribbean, the new forecast was for them to intensify once it passed through and got out into the atlantic gulf coast would strengthen and would take aim at the texas coast probably somewhere within 100 miles of galveston i'm a journalist and i
understand what that means for people of faith in washington and beyond but again i'm not arguing the point of seems a bit unusual and i think unusual that i'm writing a book. it's about to me what is the larger journey of life. "after words" airs every sunday at 9 p.m. eastern. you can watch all previous programs on the website booktv.org. ..