Vicksburg, MS Steamer W. T. SCOVEL Explosion, Dec 1906


Ten to Sixteen Persons Killed and Many Injured.


Disaster on the Mississippi River Near Vicksburg.

Crew and Passenger List Included Fifty Persons, of Whom Only One-half Have Been Accounted for - Known Dead Includes Captain of Vessel - Accident Occurs at Gold Dust Landing - Steamboat Was Near Shore at the Time.

Vicksburg, Miss., Dec. 19. - One of the most disastrous accidents in the history of the Mississippi River occurred at 10 minutes past 11 o'clock this morning, when the steamer W. T. Scovel, plying in the Vicksburg and Davis Bend trade, was destroyed by the explosion of her boiler. Owing to the large number of her boiler. Owing to the large number of negroes on board, it is impossible to ascertain the exact number of the dead and injured, but officers of the boat who arrived here to-night state that no less than ten nor more than sixteen were killed. The probabilities are that a like number were injured.

The white dead are as follows:
Capt. JOHN QUACKENBOSS, master of the boat, Vicksburg, Miss
Clerk WADE QUACKENBOSS, Vicksburg, Miss.
LAVELL YERGER, commercial salesman, Jackson, Miss.
Clerk JOSEPH SMITH, Yazoo City, Miss.

The white injured:
Tennoy Roberts, assistant pilot, Vicksburg, Miss., injured internally, very serious
John Dougherty, pilot, shoulder dislocated
Charles McKenna, passenger, painfully injured
[illegible] Butterfield, slightly injured in the head

The number of dead and injured negroes cannot be stated at this time, but of a crew and passenger list of about fifty, about half are missing.

Caring for Injured.
The negro dead were cared for at the place where the accident occurred, as were some of the injured. About five of the injured negroes were brought to Vicksburg on the steamer Senator Cordell, with the white dead and injured. The accident occurred at Gold Dust Landing about seventeen miles south of Vicksburg.

The Scovell was at the landing taking on freight, when suddenly a terific [sic] explosion occurred and the boat was blown practically to atoms.

Many of the timbers of the boat were thrown hundreds of yards and come of those aboard were blown almost as far. The pilot house and front part of the cabin were blown to splinters, and some parts of the boat were so badly damaged that she began to sink immediately. When the Scovell left here late this afternoon she was listing to heavily and her cargo of a thousand sacks of cotton seed and fifty bales of cotton will be lost.



Re: A Family Member

Good Morning Virginia,

I hope you are during well, I'm a relative of yours and never heard a story of the Quackenboss, I during a family documentarian of the family and would like to reach out to you for more information. I'm Willis Allen great great grand daughter, please reach me at the above e-mail. Thank you.

Re: John Anthony Quitman Quackenboss

During research on my family history, trying to find out how my African American Family name ties in with Mr. Quackenboss.

Thank you


Hi Thom, I noticed that you

Hi Thom,
I noticed that you said you have a copy of Ida Lee Wade Quackenboss' Last Will and Testament. I am not sure if it contains the information that I am seeking but it is work a try. Ida was married to John A.Q. Quackenboss who is believed to be the person that put up a marriage bond for my grand mother third removed, in 1860. Lucy Ford was her name at that time and she married a Willis Allen in Yazoo. If Ida's will provide any information or you have other sources as to this information, please let me know. I am searching high an low to find my family. I can be reached at the above email address any time. Such information as, where did they live and who were their slaves. Kitty was Lucy's mother who I believed came to Mississippi with F.W. Quackenboss, in the 1930, from New York. Kitty my great grand mother 4th removed, told other family members that she was 9 years of age when she traveled to MS. However, there is some speculation that Virginia or Louisiana might be where she came from. Kitty married Archy Vance and it would be nice to know if there were the slaves of F.W. Quackenboss possible given to him to start his career as a lawyer by his brother-in-law John A. Quitman when they lived at Monmouth, In 1850, Mary Parker Mellen Quackenboss owned a 30 year ofl male slave and i am seeking his name.
Virginia Hutchins

Correction on Previous Submission

Please note, my previous comment was incorrect when stated "John Anthony Quitman was my paternal grandfather's uncle", I believe it is my 'great'-grandfather's uncle. J.A.Q. Quackenboss was the son of Frederika Quitman.

Quackenboss Family


I found your post on and although it was several years ago I hope this e-mail reaches you.

I am related to Robert Hartigan Smarr who was married to John Quitman Quackenboss's daughter Lucille Quackenboss Smarr. I have alot of information on the family and also a lot of loose ends that perhaps you could help me with. I recently was down in Mississippi and visited the grave of Carrie Lee Burnet Quackenboss at Wintergreen Cemetery in Port GIbson. The Burnet family was quite prominent as well. In addition, I have a copy of Ida Wade Quackenboss last will and testament in which she leaves a large part of her estate to your father. I would be happy to send you a copy is you are interested.

I look forward to hearing form you.

Thom Jenkins

contact information

To Mr. Dieter Quitman,
I have severed employment and thus the email address you previously had should now be the same but at a gmail address.

William Tiley Scovell, the

William Tiley Scovell, the guy who had the boat named after him was from Burlington, Ohio (the southern most tip, beside South Point). He joined the Confederate Army and served as a Captain under Gen Stonewall Jackson. He was so highly thought of that Jackson denied another Generals request to have Scovell transferred to Louisiana. It was appealed to General Lee and Jefferson Davis. Jackson won the appeal, so Scovell stayed with Jackson. After Jackson died, Scovell was transferred to Louisiana

Quackenboss - Quitman connection

Hello! As a private family researcher in Germany, I am trying to find descendants of Frederica Quitman who married Peter Quackenboss in 1807. The comment you added to the Scovel-story does contain such a connection to my relative John Anthony Quitman of Natchez who was Fredericas brother. I would be very happy to learn more about it, especially since somehow a John A Quitman Quackenboss is not yet in my files (though I have some descendants). Please answer - perhaps I can furnish some information which may interest you? Regards Dieter Quitmann, Hochbaumstr. 72, D 14167 Berlin, Germany.

Scovel Explosion

Would you believe until I was about 7 or 8 years old I had not seen the newspaper article my grandmother kept of this wreck. My grandmother, nee Carrie Lee Burnet, was the wife of Wade Quackenboss, my dad's name was John Wade (born January 1907) after both his father Laurence Wade and grandfather John A. Quitman Quackenboss. To add a bit more geneaology, John Quackenboss's full name was John Anthony Quitman Quackenboss. John Anthony Quitman was my paternal grandfather's uncle, the same John Anthony Quitman who was governor of Mississippi for one day and Mexican War hero who once owned Monmouth Plantation in Natchez, Mississippi