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Battleship Maine blown up, Feb. 15, 1898

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Battleship Maine blown up, Feb. 15, 1898

Posted: 1089056599000
Classification: Biography
Edited: 1116900943000
Surnames: Sigsbee, Jenkins, Merritt, Blanco

United States Battleship Destroyed in Havana Harbor

One Hundred or More of the Crew Killed and Many Wounded

Captain Sigsbee's Statement. Cause Unknown

Havana, Feb. 15.--At a quarter of 10 o'clock this evening a terrible explosion took place on board the U.S. cruiser Maine in Havana harbor. Many are killed or wounded. All the boats of the Spanish cruiser Alfonso XIII, are assisting.
As yet the cause of the explosion is not apparent.
The wounded sailors of the Maine are unable to explain it.
It is believed that the cruiser is totally destroyed.


Havana, Feb. 16, 2 a.m.--By a miracle, Capt. SIGSBEE and most of the officers of the Maine were taken off in safety, but 100 of the crew at least were killed. Many of the survivors were taken off by the boats of the Spanish cruiser Alfonso XIII.
At this moment the hull of the ship is burning, the flames illuminating the harbor and making a striking scene for the thousands gathered on the water front.
It is apparent to the observers on shore that the vessel is sinking rapidly to the bottom of the bay.


Washington, D.C., Feb. 16.--The Secretary of the Navy received the following telegram from Capt. SIGSBEE:
"Maine Blown up in Havana harbor at 9:40 and destroyed. Many wounded and doubtless more killed and drowned. Wounded and others are on board the Spanish man-of-war and Ward line steamer. Send lighthouse tender from Key West for crew and the few pieces of equipment still above water. No one had other clothes than those upon him."
"Public opinion should be suspended till further report. All officers are believed to be saved. JENKINS and MERRITT are not yet accounted for. Many Spanish officers, including representatives of Gen BLANCO, are now with me and express sympathy. (Signed) "SIGSBEE"
(Source: Earlington Bee, Thur., Feb. 17, 1898)

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