San Diego, CA Gunboat BENNINGTON Explosion, Jul 1905
Commander Young today expressed the opinion that there was a weak spot in one of the boilers, but said there had been no visible defects, so far as he knew. The men who were injured, tell a different story. They say it has been the talk of the ship for at least six months that the boilers were defective, and many of them had feared for a long time just such an accident would happed.
The upper deck, amidship, presents a mass of wreckage. Smoke stacks have been blown out of place, and the superstructure is bent and twisted in all sorts of shapes. The plates on the sides are bulging out and leaks in a number of places are letting in water.
A Lucky Negro.
JOHN TURPIN, colored, who was on board the Maine when she was blown up in Havana, was on board the Bennington and again escaped injury. He rendered valuable aid in rescuing the dead and wounded.
Washington, July 22. -- Commander Young of the gunboat Bennington, last night sent the following telegram to the navy department:
"Arrangements are being made to bury the dead at Fort Rosecrans Sunday afternoon." Several bodies are pinned in under the boilers and covered by water. Have engaged a fire engine to pump out so as to assist in their recovery. We expect several men to die during the night. Everything possible is being done both for living and dead. Only able to identify one man on board so far -- H. H. CARR, apprentice seaman."
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