City of Waco
|Name:||City of Waco|
|Operator:||Mallory Line, New York|
|Builder:||Delaware River Iron Ship Building and Engine Works, Chester, Pennsylvania|
|In service:||August 1873|
|Fate:||Burned and sank, November 9, 1875|
|Length:||242 ft (74 m)|
|Beam:||36 ft (11 m)|
|Propulsion:||Steam engine, single screw|
The ship was built in 1873 by John Roach & Sons at their Delaware River Iron Ship Building and Engine Works in Chester, Pennsylvania for the Mallory Line of New York City. She made twenty voyages between New York and Galveston before she sank.
On the afternoon of November 8, 1875, the ship arrived off Galveston, but heavy weather made it impossible to enter the port, so the ship hove to offshore and waited for the storm to subside. Shortly before midnight a fire broke out aboard, rapidly engulfing the ship, which burned down to the waterline before sinking with the loss of all 56 crew and passengers.
An investigation into the tragedy discovered that the ship had nine hundred 5 US gal (19 l) cans of Astral lamp oil stored on deck, in direct contravention of maritime regulations which forbade the transport of such a dangerous cargo on a passenger ship.
The wreck was broken up with explosives in 1900 to clear the entrance to the port and then largely forgotten. It was rediscovered in 2003, and explored by marine archeologists of the Texas Historical Commission.
- Turner, Allen (July 24, 2005). "Historians explore tragedy of the City of Waco ship". Houston Chronicle. Retrieved 29 July 2012.
- Colton, Tim (2012). "Merchant Shipbuilding Chester, Chester Shipbuilding, Delaware River Iron Shipbuilding & Engine Works, J. Roach & Sons Shipbuilding, Reaney, Son & Archbold". shipbuildinghistory.com. Retrieved July 29, 2012.
- Kalafus, Jim (June 28, 2007). "The Public Be Damned: One Black Week in 1875". encyclopedia-titanica.org. Retrieved 29 July 2012.
- Hall, Andy (April 2005). "City of Waco located in Galveston Bay". Current Archeology in Texas (Austin, Texas: Texas Historical Commission) 7 (1): pp.1–3. Retrieved July 29, 2012.
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