Paducah, KY Steamboat KATE FLEMING Explosion, Oct 1850 - Explosion


The steamer Kate Fleming, Captain Dunham, on her way from Louisville to Cairo, at the mouth of the Ohio river, exploded near Walker's Landing, on Saturday, October 5, 1850, at 12 o'clock, M. She had been aground on Walker's bar, but had got off, and the bell had given the signal to "go ahead slowly," when after a few revolutions of the water-wheel, the boiler exploded, dislodging the furnace, and setting fire to the boat which burned to the water's edge.

LIST OF THE KILLED - E. Y. Bocock, Christian C. Odell, barkeeper ; Annette, colored chambermaid ; Jeffrey, colored steward ; John, cabin boy ; Hutchinson, a slave of Mr. Moore, of Miss. ; a fireman and a deck-hand, and a Mr. Jennings, of New Albany.

WOUNDED—Capt. Dunham ; J. Thornby, of Miss. ; the steward of the Kate Fleming ; the mate and second cook of do., and several of the deck passengers. Mr. Weld, of Louisiana, was badly bruised.

Capt. Dunham, Capt. Quarrier, and Mr. Lowry, with several others, were standing on the hurricane deck, and were all blown up several feet in the air. Captains Dunham and Quarrier fell on the bow of the boat ; the others fell into the river, and saved themselves by swimming.

The safe, containing a large amount of money, some of which belonged to the boat, and some deposited by the passengers, was blown into the river, and was supposed to be irrecoverably lost. Very few of the passengers saved their baggage and clothing, though some had sufficient presence of mind to throw their trunks overboard.

Lloyd's Steamboat Directory and Disasters on the Western Waters, Cincinnati, Ohio; James T. Lloyd & Co, 1856