The Johnstown Tribune-Democrat and WJAC-TV (6) are collaborating on a new documentary looking back at the 1977 flash floods that crippled the city’s steel industry and killed more than 80 people.
According to the newspaper, Looking Backward: The ’77 Flood will debut July 20 on the city’s NBC affiliate. The special will feature vintage TV clips, photos from the T-D, and interviews with survivors. DVDs will be sold later, with proceeds to benefit the local historical society.
Johnstown experienced the third catastrophic flood in its modern history on July 20, 1977, after severe thunderstorms dumped more than a foot of rain on central Pennsylvania. Several dams failed and streams came up over their banks. The following day, President Carter declared Cambria, Somerset, Indiana and neighboring counties a disaster area.
The T-D is also selling a special commemorative book on the disaster called Disasters Wake: A Retrospective of the 1977 Johnstown Flood. Priced at $19.77, it can be purchased in the lobby of the newspaper’s office on Locust Street in Johnstown, or by calling (814) 532-5102.