I just viewed an episode of The Walton's today. The episode was the one where John Boy won a trip (from the NPS) to New Jersey to view welcoming of the Hindenberg. The Hindenberg blew up and burned before his eyes, then he was supposed to write an article on this and submit it to the NPS. Did the real John Boy (Earl Hamner, Jr.) really witness the landing of the Hindenberg?
According from Earl Hamner regarding FQA (Frequently Asked Question)
The question about the stories are real?
Not every one. Each story had its inspiration either in an actual event or in the character of one of the people involved. The story of The Hunt, for example, grew out of a real hunt that he went on with his father soon after he came home after WW II. Sometimes a story would be built around a historical event such as the burning of the Hindenburg or the recent special based on the assisnation of President John F Kennedy.
BTW: Mr. Hamner was 14 years old when Hindenburg Crash.
And some of the events could not have taken place in 1937---why would it take a bus a half day to get from Camden or Newark to Lakehurst even though there were thunderstorms all over the east coast that afternoon? There were no freeways in those days but the roads were in a better condition than that-- maybe that could have happened in 1920but not in 1937!