New York, NY Steamboat SEAWANHAKA Disaster, Jun 1880

Capt. Smith was almost completely hidden under the bandages the doctors had put upon him. Only one eye was visible, and this looked out at his visitors through a hole cut in the bandages. Another hole was cut for his nose, and through another he could whisper. His lips were blistered, and one had to listen closely to hear what he had to say. Although badly burned, especially on the hands, the doctors think he will pull through all right. Among his visitors yesterday was his brother, Capt. George Smith, who is engaged in the Union Ferry Company's service.

Of the 16 exhausted or injured persons cared for at the Homeopathic Asylum, all but three were removed yesterday noon. The list comprised:

D. Lopez, of Sea Cliff, Long Island. D. K. Hall, New-York. Daniel Maloney, laborer, of Morganstown, Long Island. Edgar Weeks, engineer, of Roslyn, Long Island; burned about the face and hands. Stephen Vernon, the wheelsman of the burned vessel, of New-York. Mrs. Chauncey Hawkins, of No. 75 Rodney-street, Brooklyn. Mrs. Hawkins's child, Arthur, 3 years old, whose left arm was broken and his body bruised and discolored.
Charity Jones, colored, of No.109 West Twenty-sixth-street. Ida Smith, of 637 Leonard-street, Brooklyn. Maggie Meehan, of No.157 East Thirty-seventh-street; suffering from exhaustion; still in the hospital. Annie and Margaret Sherry, of One Hundred and Nineteenth-street and Second-avenue. Mrs. Shaler, of No. 406 West Fifty-third-street, and two children, 4 and 6 years old, respectively. Katie Rosbach, of No.736 Ninth-avenue. Katie Rauscher, 3 years old, burned on right arm, face, abdomen, and legs, and ------ Rauscher, baby, 3 weeks old, whose mother, Mrs. Rauscher, of No. 436 West Fifty-third-street, was at last reports still missing. The children remain in the hospital.

The New York Times, New York, NY 30 Jun 1880




The conduct of the owners of the Seawanhaka is wondered at by those who have been engaged in the search for bodies at the scene of the wreck. All that has been done toward recovering the remains of the victims of the terrible disaster has been accomplished through the Commissioners of Charities and Correction, by divers employed by private individuals, or by boatmen who were stimulated by the offer of large rewards for securing certain bodies. Up to yesterday no one representing the interest of the steam-boat company put in a appearance at the sunken meadows. It was naturally supposed that the wealthy gentlemen who owned the Seawanhaka---some of whom were on board when the vessel caught fire---would take a lively interest in the recovery of the remains of those who lost their lives at that time. Yesterday a gentlemen who spoke of himself as Superintendent Kirk, arrived at Randall's Island in the tug-boat Gorilla. He said that if it was really discovered that there were any bodies buried under the keel of the Seawanhaka, he would order that what remains of the vessel should be blown to atoms, if need be, so that the bodies might be extricated. A tug from the Government works at Hunter's Point arrived soon after Superintendent Kirk uttered these words. The Government tug brought a professional diver and a large number of dynamite cartridges. Several of these cartridges were put in position near the wreck. All the small boats in the neighborhood were ordered away, and an explosion was brought about. The noise was terrific, and great volumes of water ascended to the height of many feet. When all was again calm, it was noticed that the surface of the water was covered with dead fish. The killing of the fish was all that was accomplished by the aid of the dynamite cartridges. The diver was by no means satisfied with the experiment, and proposed to try again. He was overruled, however. He went below, and fished up the following articles: A brown checked gingham sack, with brown agate buttons; a pillow-slip, a woman's underdress, a shawl-strap, a printed bandanna shawl. The diver was then employed by Mr. Eugene Aucaigne to search for the body of his wife. Mr. Aucaigne has devoted nearly all of his time since the burning of the vessel in attempting to find his wife's remains. He is almost constantly at the wreck on the sunken meadows. Sometimes in the night he is seen in the neighborhood of the Morgue wringing his hands saying: "My poor wife! There she is in the water, dead, and I can't find her." Mr. E. J. Myers and Mr. A. D. Israels, friends of ex-Assemblyman Joseph I. Stein, who was drowned, are also near the wreck day and night in the hope of seeing the body brought to the surface. They and others have offered liberal rewards for the recovery of the body, and the owners of row-boats are at work with grappling hooks trying to secure the body. Several documents known to have been the property of the ex-Assemblyman, were found in the water yesterday. It was thought by some that Mr. Stein's body had been recovered by thieves, who took valuable jewelry from this person, and that they then lowered his remains into the water again. The search was kept up all day. Last evening Mr. Stein's body was found in Flushing Bay, and was fully identified. He wore a blue flannel suit of clothing and a diamond ring and studs. The remains are to be buried from Mr. Stein's late residence, at No.202 East Fifty-second-street, to-morrow morning.

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