Americans associate fireworks with our Fourth of July holiday, but they have been popular all over the world for a long time now. The highest death toll in a fireworks accident occurred on May 30th, 1770, when a display by Italian pyrotechnicians the Ruggieri brothers was set off to celebrate the marriage of future King Louis XVI to Marie Antoinette. Some exploding rockets were diverted to the ground by the wind, and as the crowd panicked, many people were trampled underfoot. While some estimates place the death toll as high as 3,000, the official count was 113, which still makes it the deadliest fireworks accident ever. Read the story of the stampede, and what happened as a result, at Atlas Obscura.
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