Huntington, L. I. NY (Off Shore) Steamer BAY STATE Accident, Nov 1856


From the Boston Traveler.
The steamer Bay State, Capt. JEWETT, left New York for Fall River, at the usual hour on Friday evening, with about 150 passengers. At a little after six o'clock, when the steamer was off Huntington, a terrible crash was heard. A few moments before the passengers had left the supper table. The ladies for the most part had gone into their saloon, and the gentlemen were distributed about the boat.
The crash was in consequence of the great iron walking-beam; weighing from twelve to fourteen tons, having suddenly snapped in two in the centre, crashing through the hurricane deck, the saloon deck, the saloon stairs to the gentlemen's cabin. It also broke the main after-guard beam, a very heavey piece of timber. This broke the blow and saved the hull from injury, or otherwise the great mas of iron might have gone through the bottom of the boat. Of course this startling accident created great confusion among the passengers, and it was certainly fortunate that it did not occur a few moments before, when large numbers of the passengers were ascending the stairs from the supper table.
Some of the male passenger, in their fright, crowded into the boats hanging upon the cranes, which were soon filled with people, but they were immediately ordered out again by the officers of the boat. The ladies, at first, were a good deal alarmed, but on the whole, behaved with commendable coolness.
The most serious result of the accident was in consequence of a fragment of the walking-beam as it went up tearing off the top of the cylinder, which caused the steam to escape, in large quantities into the forward saloon. In this saloon was seen sitting, just previous to the accident, a girl of nine years, named BLANCHARD, daughter of MR. BLANCHARD, shoe dealer, of Brooklyn, N. Y. She was, apparently, looking at the machinery of the engine. As the escaped steam rushed in, she, probably, in her fright, inhaled it in large quantities, causing almost instant death from internal burns. Her face and hands were also badly disfigured with the steam. Medical aid was procured as soon as possible, but she was beyond their help. Others in the saloon rushed out, and escaped without injury.
MR. J. B. FLAGG, formerly of Exeter, now of Saux[sic] City, Iowa, who was in his state-room, opened the door when the accident occurred, and was enveloped in the steam, by which he was badly scalded.
MR. A. J. BALDWIN of Yarmouth Port was also in his state-room, which was instantly filled with steam. He forced open his door, threw himself upon the floor, crawled along the saloon, and slid down the ladder to the main deck. As he went down with his hands on the ropes, the scalded flesh was torn off. He is seriously injured, but if his life is saved it will be in consequence of his presence of mind in the face of danger.
The great fear was that the boat had taken fire in consequence of the overturning of the stove in the after saloon. The dense steam, however, prevented any spread of the fire, and in a few moments passengers rushed in with buchets of water, thus doing away with all danger from that source. The prompt action of the steward of the boat, MR. TILTON, and of the clerk, MR. SIMONE, in breaking the outer windows of the state-room, so as to allow the steam to escape, probably saved other of the passengers from injury. MR. TILTON had his hands badly cut. Capt. JEWETT was also active in behalf of the passengers.
The steamer City of Hartford, which was in sight, came up and offered assistance, as did also the steamer Worcester. The passengers were placed on board the latter boat and taken to Norwich.
They arrived in this city at 11 o'clock this forenoon. The dead body of MISS BLANCHARD, and also MESSRS. FLAGG and BALDWIN, the injured men, were brought on in charge of the officers of the Fall River boat. The two latter are now at the U. S. Hotel, where they are receiving every attention.
While on board the boat, the sufferers received every attention from LAURA SHAD, the stewardess. It will be remembered that she received a silver pitcher for her kind offices to the wounded on the occasion of the accident to the steamer Empire State. Her unrelenting attention to the injured passengers last night did much towards allaying their sufferings, and is deserving of the highest commendation.

The New York Times New York 1856-11-03


Update: Carrie Blanchard

11 year old Carrie Blanchards grave is in Union Brockton Cemetary in Brockton ma. She is in the Blanchard family plot. Photos of her grave can be seen on