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Postcards from 1902 Describe Ibrox Stadium Disaster

A ping-pong postcard describing horrible deaths.

An auction is being held in London to sell a bizarre group of five 1902 postcards describing the Ibrox stadium disaster. The author of the postcards, a German emigrant living in Glasgow, was at the Scotland-England match on April 5, 1902 when Ibrox’s West Tribune Stand collapsed, injuring hundreds of people and killing 25. Writing to his family on a series of postcards on which scenes of people playing ping-pong are used to illustrate Shakespeare quotations, the man describes the overcrowding (“The people at the back pushed forwards, so that the people at the front were crushed against some railings and many fainted”) and the collapse (“there was terrible confusion and the crowd surged forward onto the pitch”) before vowing, understandably, never to attend a football match again.

BBC News has a gallery of the postcards with descriptions and partial translations.

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Postcards from 1902 Describe Ibrox Stadium Disaster

by Brian Phillips · November 12, 2008

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