Based in part on events recounted in Jay Bonansinga’s The Sinking of the Eastland: America’s Forgotten Tragedy
July 25,1915: the S.S. Eastland sits on the Chicago River between Clark St. and LaSalle, overflowing with passengers. Slowly the boat leans to port — and keeps leaning, until finally it tips and comes to rest on its side. By day’s end, hundreds will perish, whole families will vanish, and unexpected heroes will emerge. Unforgettable melodies and haunting harmonies inspired by early American folk music weave a tapestry of working class stories and colorful characters, giving voice to the victims and heroes of that fateful day.