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General Slocum / Maryland

Cape May Chart

Shipwreck General Slocum

Type:
shipwreck, barge, USA
Built:
1891, Brooklyn NY USA, as General Slocum
Specs:
( 235 x 37 ft ) 1284 gross tons, 4 crew
Sunk:
Monday December 4, 1911
storm - no casualties
Depth:
25 ft ( 30 ft, including mud )

The coal barge Maryland sank in heavy weather with no casualties - an utterly forgettable occurrence, were it not for the hulk's previous existence as the side-wheel excursion steamer General Slocum, and the disaster that befell her. On Wednesday June 15, 1904 the General Slocum caught fire in the East River, New York City.

Shipwreck General Slocum New York Times

The old wooden ship burned fiercely from stem to stern; the situation worsened by negligence and incompetence on the part of the owners, the captain, and the crew. In just minutes the General Slocum burned to the waterline. Over 1000 persons, mostly women and children, died in the flames or drowned in the swift currents of Hell Gate. Entire families perished, and a community of German immigrants was destroyed, leaving just grieving husbands and fathers, many of whom subsequently took their own lives.

Shipwreck General Slocum

Shipwreck General Slocum
The charred remains were lifted from the river bottom and rebuilt as a barge.

The remains of the ship were salvaged and rebuilt as a barge, rechristened Maryland. The Maryland sank three more times before she was finally abandoned. The wreck was rediscovered with reasonable certainty beneath several feet of sand and muck by author Clive Cussler. I doubt it is worth diving.

USCG Report on the sinking


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I make no claim as to the accuracy, validity, or appropriateness of any information found in this website. I will not be responsible for the consequences of any action that is based upon information found here. Scuba diving is an adventure sport, and as always, you alone are responsible for your own safety and well being.

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