Sangamon County 
 Historical Society

 

 

 

 
 

Sangamon County Historical Society

The Sultana Tragedy and its Springfield Connection

  • October 20, 2015
  • 5:30 PM - 7:00 PM
  • Public Lincoln Library 326 S. Seventh Street, Springfield, IL

The Sangamon County Historical Society will host attorney Jerry O. Potter as he talks about The Sultana tragedy and details the strong Springfield connection that led to America's greatest maritime disaster. 

On April 27, 1865, a wooden-hulled steamer named The Sultana was overloaded with war-weary Union soldiers returning from the front when it suddenly exploded and sank in the Mississippi River, near Memphis, Tennessee.  

More than 1,800 soldiers, including veterans of some of the bloodiest battles of the Civil War and survivors of the Andersonville prison camp died en route to their homes and families in the North.  

It was a tragic ending to the Civil War, yet it was overshadowed by the turbulent events that shook the nation at the same time, including the assassination and funeral of President Lincoln, and the manhunt and capture of his assassin.  

As a result, the explosion of The Sultana has been all but passed over and its Springfield connection is not well-known.  

This event is free and open to the public.  Refreshments will be served.  

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