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"Terrific Fire Among the Steamers in the Harbor of St. Louis, MO."

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Identifier: N42572

Title: "Terrific Fire Among the Steamers in the Harbor of St. Louis, MO."

Description: Colored wood engraving of a crowded wharf with several steamboats enveloped in flames. Image is on the bottom half of the front page of Frank Leslie's Illustrated Newspaper for Saturday, July 26, 1856. No. 33 vol. II, p. 97. Story related to the image on the back of print (p. 98) reads: "Between five and six o'clock on Wednesday morning the 2d of July, a fire broke out in the cabin of the steamboat St. Clair, lying at the extreme end of the upper landing, which immediately communicated to the Paul Anderson, lying below her, and before many moments both were enveloped in flames. The hawsers were immediately cut loose, and the burning boats were sent floating down the stream. The current drove them alongside the Grand Turk, Southerner and Saranak No. 2, lying immediately below, and the flames instantly communicated with those steamers, and in a moment those boats were also enveloped in a terrific blaze of fire. The J.M. Stockwell, lying below the Saranak, also caught fire, and in less than three quarters of an hour, and before the engines could possibly arrive, the above six steamboats were totally destroyed. The Southerner was a splendid new steamer, and only came out at the beginning of this season. She was built in Mobile, entirely of maple wood, and valued at $35,000. She was undergoing extensive repairs, and about to have a magnificent passenger cabin placed on her for the trade between this port and New Orleans. She was not insured in any of the offices here, as far as we could learn. The Paul Anderson was an old boat and was not worth as she stood more than $1,000. Her machinery had been taken out, which rendered her all but valueless excepting the wood work and the hull, which was not considered of much account. The J.M. Stockwell was a Wabash river boat, worth about $800. The St. Clair was also an old boat, and not considered worth more than $10,000. The total amount of property destroyed would probably amount to $75,000. With the exception of the Southerner, none of the other boats were worth much. There were immense crowds of persons collected on both sides of the river, witnessing the fire, which presented at one time a fearfully grand and picturesque sight. It was supposed to have originated though the work of an incendiary."

Rights: UND

Place: United States
Missouri
St Louis

Dates: 1856

Type(s): Wood Engraving
Image

Maker/Creator:

Subjects: print
Engraving
vertical
Color
outdoors
riverfront
Steamboats
Wharves
Fires
burning
Frank Leslie's
spectators
smoke
Steamer St. Clair
Steamer Southerner
Steamer Grand Turk
Steamer Saranak No. 2
Steamer J.M. Stockwell
Waterfronts
Transportation

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http://collections.mohistory.org/resource/154156

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