Nellie was giving her baby a bath when she heard a muffled bang. Her ears were stuffed with cotton, a treatment for an ear condition. She leaned over to pull Charlie from the tub so she could investigate the noise when the house exploded. It was just after 9 a.m. on Dec. 6, 1917. Nellie and Charlie were at 50 Veith St., in the heart of what was called Richmond at the time. They were about 300 metres away from the Mont-Blanc — ground zero. Personal connection This is the story of three sisters: Emma, Laura and Nellie. The trio, who were in their twenties, ran a music studio teaching piano to people in Halifax's north end. All of them survived that gruesome day. Emma was my great-grandmother. I was born and raised in Toronto, but all my life I've known that Dec. 6 was an important day in my family's history. I can remember telling my friends about it at school when I was a kid. To our generation, the explosion was something mentioned in a popular Heritage Minute that told of Vince Coleman's sacrifice. It wasn't until a few weeks ago, as I pored over the Halifax newspapers from the days that followed the explosion, that I realized just how remarkable it is that every member of my family survived. Destitute, unemployed and an impostor: my family's journey after the Halifax Explosion I have never heard of this event.