Steamer Kentucky Home Sunk

On Monday night, [July 29], between 9 and 10 o'clock, the new stern wheel steamer, Kentucky Home, Capt. Geo. W. Reed, bound for Louisville, from Pittsburg, came in collision with the huge Cincinnati and Louisville U. S. Mail steamer Telegraph, No. 3, Capt. Sam Hildreth, in Sugar Creek Bend, about five miles above Warsaw, Ky., and in less than five minutes went down in twenty feet of water.  It appears that both steamers were under full headway - the Telegraph ascending the Indiana shore, when the Kentucky Home rounded the point.  Capt. Phillips, the pilot of the Telegraph, gave the usual signal by blowing the whistle twice, for starboard, which was properly answered from the other boat. 

For some unknown cause, however,  when within two hundred yards of the Telegraph, the Kentucky Home suddenly changed her course, making across the Telegraph's bows.  The engines of the Telegraph were immediately reversed, and had made two or three revolutions backwards, when her bow struck the Kentucky Home on the larboard [left] side, forward of the boilers, and directly opposite the hatch, cutting nearly through her, sweeping away the boiler deck, together with her bell, derricks, freight on boiler deck, "nigger" engine, and contents of the bar, and several staterooms.

The officers of the Telegraph immediately ran out lines and made fast to the wreck and used every exertion to rescue those on board.  In one moment, Capt. Hildreth and the watchman manned the yawl, to rescue those that might have fallen or leaped overboard front he wreck, while Capt. Phillips very properly ordered the engineers to stop the starboard engines, and examine the wheel, where three men were found clinging to the buckets and saved.

From all accounts there were only two persons drowned - a deck hand and a foreman, who were in the hold of the Kentucky Home getting out freight for Madison.  They are probably lost, as they were not seen after the accident occurred.  The Telegraph remained at the wreck two hours, and brought the passengers and crew here, except Capt. Reed, and Mr. Williams, pilot on the Kentucky Home, who remained.

The Kentucky Home lies near the Indiana shore, sunk to the hurricane desk, and will doubtless prove a total loss.  She had on board but few passengers, and one hundred fifty tons of freight for Louisville.  She was built at Pittsburg, by Capt. Geo. M. Reed, Clerk Jas. Mellan, and others, for $17,000, with insurance in that place for $12,000.  Capt. Reed has been very unfortunate.  It will be remembered that a few months since, the steamer Forrester, belonging to him, was destroyed by fire at New Richmond, O.

The only damage sustained by the Telegraph was the loss of her jackstaff, and breaking of a few sky-lights.


from the New York Times, August 3, 1855, where they noted they were reprinting from the Cincinnati Commercial of August 1.