Canemah, OR Steamer GAZELLE Explosion, Apr 1854

Oregon Steamer Gazelle Marker.jpg




An extra from the office of the Oregon Spectator, published at Oregon City, dated April 8th, received in this city yesterday, from Thos. Pope, Esq., contains the following:

The Wallamette Fall Co.'s new steamer Gazelle left her wharf this morning at 6 ½ o'clock, and had just landed at Canemah at 15 minutes before seven, when a terrible explosion of her boilers blew her into atoms, killing twenty persons and wounding many others.

Probably a more heart-rending scene has never occurred on the Pacific coast. As soon as the smoke cleared away a little, hundreds of citizens, who were ready to assist the dying, gathered on the wreck, and the work of aid commenced.

Fragments of bodies were found scattered in every direction; some were blown into the river, others on to the shore; but the greater part of the killed found, were lying about the deck forward, among all kinds of fractured machinery and freight. A more horrible sight can hardly be imagined. MR. DAVID PAGE, Chief Supt. Of the company, had his head literally dashed to pieces, and could not have been recognized by other means than his clothes. Many others were as badly mutilated.

List of Killed.
MR. DAVID PAGE, of Linn City, to Co.'s superintendent; DAVID WOODHULL, of Michigan; REV. JAMES P. MILLER, of Takenah, O.T.; JOHN BLOOMER, (deck hand); JOSEPH HUNT, of Oregon City, (surveyor;) MR. HATCH, (deck hand;) JOHN DALY, (cabin steward;) JOHN CLEMMENS, Oregon City, (pilot;) DAVID FULLER, of Portland; CYRUS WADSWORTH, Oregon City, (a passenger;) SAMUEL F. BURCH, of Polk County, (passenger;) JAMES WHITE, of Salem; JOHN K. MILLER, Elizabeth, Wis., (deck hand;) J. M. FUDGE, of Canemah (pilot of Wallamet;) MR. W. S. MORGAN, of Rickreal, O.T.; MR. HILL, of Takenah, O.T.; DANIEL LOWE, (passenger;) ANTONIO, a Spaniard, Dalles, on his way to the mines; MR. BLANCHET, St. Pauls, O.T.; MICHAEL McGEE, fireman.

MR. CHARLES KNAUST, Portland (formerly of steamer Whitecomb;) DAVID McLANE, Portland; -- some others not known.

Wounded, Scalded, &c.
CAPT. R. HEREFORD, (of Gazelle,) slightly scalded; MR. BLANCHET, (passenger,) scalded; B. F. NEWBY, Oregon City,(passenger,) badly scalded; MRS. J. P. MILLER, (lady of REV. MILLER,) Takenah, O.T., had two ribs broken; JOHN BOYD (mate), both arms broken and severely scalded; MISS LAVINA PELL, Champoeg, slightly scalded, and a gash in the forehead; J. HERALD, Indiana, slightly scalded; JAMES PARTLOW, (pilot) slightly bruised; MICHAEL M'GEE (deckhand) scalded; H. ROYCE, Linn City, slightly scalded; DAVID J. DAVIS, Salem, slightly hurt; MR. PASCAL PLANT (second engineer) severely scalded; ROBERT PENTLAND, slightly scalded; CHARLES T. GARDINER, Oregon City, slightly scalded and arm broken; MR. CRAWFORD DOBBINS, Portland, one leg gone, amputated; PRESTON S. BLACK (assistant steward) slightly scalded; ROBERT SHORTESS, Astoria, slightly wounded; JAMES STANFIELD (steward) slightly wounded; W. L.
WHITE, Canemah, knocked down by splinters while on bank; MR. MURPHY (deputy surveyor), severely injured; MISS WHITE, Salem, daughter of James White; ROBERT F. RAINS; JOHN TROWEL, Oregon City, bruised and scalded; HENRY WILSON, slightly scalded; MR. HUBBARD, Cincinnatti, O.T., badly scalded; an Indian, broken leg; JOHN CRAUL, a boy, severely scalded; JOSEPH LATSHAW, slightly injured.

Several others scalded and wounded, whose names we have not.

MR. JOSEPH TONIE, chief engineer; Z. CROWELL, clerk; MRS. PLANT and child (wife of Second Engineer); little daughter of the REV. MR. MILLER; WILLIAM LATHAM, passenger, all escaped uninjured.

This distressing disaster has thrown a deep shade of gloom over the whole community. Stores, shops, iron-works, mills, &c., are closed for the afternoon -- and business generally is hushed. In Canemah, a feeling of intense grief is manifested by nearly every one to be seen. COL. WHITE, MR. POST, JNO. P. BROOKS and others, generously opened their places of business, and spare rooms for the benefit of the wounded, and for the dead bodies, until they are recognized and cared for by their respective friends.

The Quincy Daily Whig Illinois 1854-06-01