Cuban Missile Crisis: Fallout Shelters

On October 6, 1961, US President John F. Kennedy advised Americans to build fallout shelters to protect them from nuclear radiation.   The Office of Civil and Defense Mobilization published a 32-page guide to building a cozy Do-It-Yourself family shelter that was really supposed to protect people from nuclear devastation. Our coverage of the 13-day Cuban Missile Crisis begins on October 16. The Cuban Missile Crisis was one of the most dangerous confrontations of the Cold War, as Kennedy and Russian leader Nikita Khrushchev sparred over the Russians placement of missiles in Cuba.  At that time, the US had nuclear missiles positioned in Turkey within equally close range of Russia, but never mind all that. (For a funny and sane perspective of this time of nuclear madness, please see the 1990 film “Waiting for the Light”, starring Shirley MacLaine of “Downtown Abbey” fame.  Trust us on this one.)