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An Ocean Tragedy

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New York, Aug. 17. - T e steamship Geiser, of the Thingvalla line, which left New York Stiturday, August 11, for Stettin, was run into off Cape Race Tuesday by the steamship Thingralla, of the same line. Her gide was stove in and she sauk rapidly. The panic-strickon people were got into boats as rapidly as possible, the Thingvalla's boats beiag also used in tho work of rescue. The Geiser sank so fast, however, that before the bosta retumed f rom the Thing valla af ter tbeir flrst trip, the disabled steamer had gone down, leaving scores of people struggling in the water. Many of these were picked up, but wben the roll was called on board the Thingvalla it was found that eighty passenger and thirty-three of the crew of tbe Geiser were missing. The Hamburg line steainship Wieland, wbich was in the yicinity, carne up in time to assist in the work of rescuing.and she took the passengere trom the Thingvalla, the latter proceeding in a damaged condition for Halifax, while the Wieland proceeded to New York, arriving at quarantine late yesterday afternoon. The collision occurred off Sable island. The Geiser sauk in flve minutes. The Thmgvalla's passengers, 455 in number, were transferred to the Wieland and brought here with the fourteen of the passengers and se venteen of the crew of the Geiser. All the others on the Geiser, eighty passengers and thirty-three of the crew, were drowned. The Thingvalla is trying to reach Halifax. The exact extent of her injuries are unknown. The Thingvalla left Stettin July 20, and Copenhagen Aug. 4 for New York. She is commanded by Capt. Laub. She is 1,841 tons register. The Geiser was of 1,871 tons. The collision occurred about 4 o'clock Tuesday morning. First Mate Henry Brown had ben in charge, the captain having retiredatll p. m., the night being perfectly clear and no danger apprehended. About 4 o'clock Capt. Moller was awakened by a cali from the chief officer on the bridge, who said there was danger of a collision. A moment luter there was a shrill blowing of whistles, which awakened the passengers, but before they could get on deck or seize life-preservers there was a terrible shock, and the vessel's side was crtiahed in. Some of the watert.ght compartments were broken nto, and the ship began at once to sink. Those on board were thrown into confusión and panic. A rush was made for the boats. Capt. Moller had rushed to the bridge clothed only in his night dress. He says he heard two whistles, meaning that his steamer would keep on her course. He recognized the Thiugvalla approaching amidships on the starboard side. The Geiser's engines were reversed, aud she was backing water. The samd was being done by the Thingvalla, but both steamers were under too heavy a headway to avert the catastrophe. Capt. Moller continu s: "The passengers had now been awakened, and were scrambling over each other iu wild confusión, in an effort to reach the upper decks. They forgot the first rule on board ship in case of accident, to seize life preservers. I called to them to do so, but tbey paid no hoed. I gave orders to man the boats, and the small boat astern was lowered, but the settling of the steamer aft at this moment sank the boat. In less than two minutes from the time I reached the bridge we were struck, and within the same length of time thereafter the vessel was under water. I had hardly given orders to man the life and sinall boats when I was swept from the bridge. The panic-stricken passengers made a jump for the few boats that were launched, and the boats were immediately capsized. As soon as I carne to the surface I began to swim. I sa iv no hing in the darkness butthe masts of the ship, but I heard the awful cries of those wno were truggling in the water or sinking to death. I suppose I had been in the water flve minutes when I came uear a rowboat from tne Thingvalla and was picked up. The offlcers and crew of the Thiigvnlla did everything that human beings could do to save the Uves of those who went dow.i with the Geiser." Other accounts corrobórate the captain's statement as to tbe panic of the passengers and the swaniping of the boats. The passengers were mostly farmers from the northwest, who had by yearsof industryand economy accumulated a competence, and were going on a visit to their native land. Many were especially attracted thither at this time by the great ezposition at Copenhagen. debate on the Fi-ench spoliation claim continued, tbs debate being pending w hen the house adjourned. During the session the Kearney and Stookton statues were accepted, and eutogies pronounced.


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