March 28, 1979:
Our nation's largest nuclear accident occurred at the Three Mile Island nuclear plant in Harrisburg, PA. Over 100 thousand residents evacuated the surrounding area, leaving the nation stunned. Though the ensuing environmental and political clean-up has been long forgotten by most, the effects of the accident are still felt by the residents decades later.
To commemorate the 35th anniversary of the incident, I wanted to tell the story from a new perspective: one that wasn't based in statistics and a barrage of political jargon. I wanted to get the stories from the people affected by the accident, and I wanted to share them through my art. The project was proposed as a summer-long endeavor, and awarded a 2014 RISD-Maharam STEAM Fellowship. With this grant, as well as the guidance of non-profits EFMR Monitoring and Three Mile Island Alert, I was able to conduct interviews with 16 individuals who were affected by the accident.
The majority of the interviews were transcribed and illustrated in a web-based format which is provided on this site. The rest are available in textual form through Three Mile Island Alert.
The stories provide harrowing glimpses into what transpired that day in 1979, as well as a greater understanding of the broader costs of nuclear power.
Photography provided by Mary Osborne and Gabriela Epstein
Find out more about our project, our mission, the partners who made this project possible, and the methods we used in our research on this piece of history.