Columbia, AR Steamboat ROB ROY Disaster, June 1836
From the Louisville City Gazette.
DREADFUL ACCIDENT AND LOSS OF LIVES.
Below we give a letter from the clerk of the Rob Roy, detailing the consequences of the late disaster it met with on the 9th inst. a few miles above Columbia:
Steam-Boat Rob Roy,
Columbia, Ark., June 10, 1836.
Gentlemen -- I regret that duty requires from us an expose of facts most appalling to human feelings. The steamboat Rob Roy, F. FINDREN, master, left New Orleans on Sunday the 5th inst. at 11 o'clock, bound for Louisville, and preceeded on her voyage, performing well, touching at different points when business required, until Thursday evening, the 9th inst. at 9 o'clock, at a point four miles above this place, (Columbia.) One of the flues in the larboard boiler collapsed, tearing from the boiler head at both ends, the steam and water, rushing out, carried every thing before it, fore and aft. To give a description of the suffering and destruction would be impossible.
Annexed, you will find a list of names, and the condition of the wounded and dead.
The engineer on watch, MR. THOMAS BROWN, says the water was above the upper cocks in each of the side boilers, which is evident from the manner the flue collapsed, being from the side, and not from top to bottom, as is the case when caused by want of water. The engine had been stopped to oil the wrist and hip bilge pump. The time from taking off and letting on steam, was not more than two minutes. The boat was ran ashore as soon as practicable, and every possible exertion was used by the passengers, physicians of Columbia and boat's crew to relieve the sufferers. At three o'clock, the North America, Capt. Breden, came along side, and towed us to this place. The sufferers are all as comfortable as circumstances can render -- in good hourse, five doctors in attendance. The number now lost and dead is 17. How many more will die we cannot say.
LEVI JACKSON, carpenter, of Jeffersonville, dead.
JNO. SHANE, cabin boy, of Louisville, dead.
JNO. LOWGEN, deck hand, of Beaver, Pa., slightly scalded.
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