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    [Destruction of the Civil War Steamer Ruth]. Archive of Documents , thirteen total, including an official copy of the court proceedings. That copy reads on the cover sheet, "Official Copy for Major N. S. Brinton Paymaster U.S.A." (Eighty-two pages, 8" x 12.5". Bound at the top margin by string. Stains to front and back paper covers.) The title of the copy reads, "Proceedings of a Court of Inquiry commenced by the Special Orders No. 408. War Department Adjutant General's Office, Washington, Sept. 11th 1863. Destruction of Steamer Ruth by fire!"

    The remaining twelve documents consist of a copy of General Orders No. 344, issued by E. D. Townsend, and eleven original depositions from many of the surviving paymasters aboard the Ruth at the time of her sinking: Majors J. W. Brigden, N. S. Brinton, T. D. Greenwalt, J. M. Pumphrey, W. H. Jameson, and W. W. White. There are also statements by others, including a "diving bellman" who examined the wreckage.

    On the night of August 4, 1863, shortly before midnight after a refueling stop at Cairo, Illinois, the Steamer Ruth enroute to Vicksburg with eight Union payroll masters and $2.6 million dollars in army payroll onboard mysteriously burned. The money was reported destroyed. Twenty-six of the one hundred fifty passengers, military and civilian, were killed. Robert Louden, a Confederate saboteur was implicated in the disaster. He confessed to the destruction and was tried and convicted. This archive of the tragedy's investigation has been well preserved.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    April, 2013
    11th Thursday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 2
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 573

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