Aftershock: The Halifax Explosion and the Persecution of Pilot Francis Mackey
by Janet Maybee
On December 6, 1917, harbour pilot Francis Mackey was guiding Mont Blanc, a French munitions ship, into Bedford Basin to join a convoy across the Atlantic when it was rammed by Belgian Relief vessel Imo. The resulting massive explosion destroyed Halifax’s north end and left at least two thousand people dead, including pilot William Hayes aboard Imo. Through interviews with Mackey’s relatives, transcripts, letters, and newly exposed government documents, author Janet Maybee explores the circumstances leading up to the Halifax Explosion, the question of fault, and the impact on the pilot and his family of the unjust, deliberate persecution that followed.
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