Port Washington, WI (Off Shore) Steamer NIAGARA Burns, Sep 1856
AWFUL DISASTER ON LAKE MICHIGAN.
BURNING OF THE STEAMER NIAGARA.
FIFTY OR SIXTY LIVES REPORTED LOST.
Milwaukee, Thursday, Sept. 25.
The steamer NIAGARA, of the Collingwood line, was burnt near Port Washington, on Lake Michigan, last evening.
One hundred lives are reported lost.
Hon. JOHN B. MACY, of Michigan, is supposed to be amongst the lost.
The Captain (MILLER) was saved.
The Daily Sentinel Extra, says: The NIAGARA took fire four miles from Port Washington. In a short time she was consumed and sunk. The light was seen from here at 7 P.M. The steamer Traveler, bound here, went to the assistance of the burning boat. Her captain and officers exerted themselves to the utmost to save the lives of those on board the burning boat.
The following is a list of those saved by the Traveler:
HARVEY AINSWORTH, of Royalton, Vt.; J. B. CURTIS, of Steuben Co., N. Y.; HENRY LOCO, of Washington, Vt.; WM. HOAG, of Buffalo; JOHN HILL, of Colllingwood; H. CHAMBERS and lady, of Hamilton; J. LOCKE, of Waterbury, Vt.; HENRY LOCKE, do.; LEWIS HART, Utica, N. Y.; J. P. KENNEDY, St. Lawrence Co., N. Y.; JULIA KENNEDY, do.; C. D. WESTBROOK, of Green Bay, Wis.; DR. S. H. ALLEN, of Concord, N. H.; JAS. ROBINSON, of Knox Co., Ill.
HUGH KENNEDY lost his wife and daughter. There are three dead bodies at Port Washington, all ladies.
One had a ring marked Z.D.G. The NIAGARA had a very large freight, and there was not a pound saved. Captain F. S. MILLER and the crew were saved. The propeller Illinois and several sail vessels picked up a large number of the passengers. Hon. JOHN B. MACY is reported to have been on board the NIAGARA. The water was so cold that few could live in it.
A LATER DISPATCH.
Chicago, Thursday, Sept. 25.
The NIAGARA left Collingwood at 2 P.M. on Monday with between 150 and 175 passengers. Twenty-five left the boat at Sheboygan, where she arrived at 2 P.M. yesterday.
When two hours out from Sheboygan the passengers discovered fire issuing from the engine-room, and in a few minutes the whole cabin was in flames. The wildest consternation followed. The boats were lowered and all filled, but capsized, except one containing twenty passengers. Numbers jumped overboard and were instantly drowned.
The steamer Traveller was ten miles distant when the fire was discovered, but saved thirty persons.
The propeller Illinois, bound down, also picked up about thirty and landed them at Sheboygan.
A life-boat at Port Washington rescued twenty persons. Their names have not been received.
GEORGE HALEY, clerk of the NIAGARA, is supposed to be lost.
Probably fifty or sixty lives are lost in all.
There is a rumor in the city this afternoon that the fire was the work of an incendiary. It is stated that, immediately after the fire was discovered, a keg of powder exploded, blowing the flames in every direction.
The first engineer was not on board.
There is no telegraph to Port Washington or Sheboygan, and we have consequently to wait for a full list of those lost by the burning of the NIAGARA. Indeed, we may not bet it at all, as the passenger list was burned on board the boat.
The New York Times New York 1856-09-26
Researched and Transcribed by Stu Beitler. Thank you, Stu!