Arkansas River, AR Steamer WILMINGTON Explosion, Nov 1839
TERRIFIC EXPLOSION OF THE WILMINGTON.
The steamer Wilmington, bound from New Orleans to St. Louis, burst a boiler at daylight, on the morning of the 18th of November, 1839, when near the mouth of the Arkansas River. The boilers, engines, and upper works were entirely demolished. In fact, there never was a more terrific explosion, although the loss of life was small, owing to there being few passengers on board.
List of the Killed:
One of the pilots, MR. ANDREW HELMS, who was standing near the stern of the boat, was blown overboard and drowned.
JULIUS FISK, the first engineer.
PAUL JOHNSON, second engineer, mortally wounded.
DR. BRANT, all of New Orleans.
WILLIAM AVILIS, South Carolina.
Nine were injured.
The Wilmington had just started from a wood yard and was under full headway when the explosion took place. The boat was completely riddled with pieces of iron flying through the cabin. The dead were buried at the mouth of the Arkansas River.
Lloyd's Steamboat Directory.