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Entry Category: Water - Starting with J

J. S. McCune [Steamboat]

aka: Brilliant (Steamboat)
aka: USS Brilliant (Tinclad Gunboat)
The J. S. McCune, originally the Brilliant, was a sternwheel paddleboat that served as a Union tinclad gunboat during the Civil War before carrying cargo and passengers on the Mississippi and White Rivers. The vessel caught fire and was destroyed on the White River on December 6, 1867, with the boat’s steward perishing in the blaze. The Brilliant was a 226-ton sternwheel paddleboat built for $21,000 at Brownsville, Pennsylvania, in July 1862. The vessel was 157 feet long and thirty-one feet wide and had a four-and-a-half-foot draft. The U.S. Navy bought the boat on August 13, 1862, at St. Louis, Missouri, and refitted it as a tinclad gunboat armed with two rifled 12-pounder cannon and two smoothbore 12-pounders. Still named …

J. Wilson [Steamboat]

The J. Wilson was a steamboat that was destroyed when two of its boilers exploded as it left Columbia (Chicot County) on January 6, 1853, resulting in dozens of deaths. Captain John Rotan and J. M. Craig had the J. Wilson built in 1852 with plans to use the vessel to transport freight and cotton along the Mississippi River. Rotan served as the vessel’s captain. The steamboat had just taken a load of freight owned by A. H. Davies and Johnson Chapman aboard at the landing at Columbia on January 6, 1853, when two of its boilers exploded, completely destroying the vessel’s forecastle and a third of its hurricane deck roof. A report in the Washington Telegraph stated that “all …

John Adams [Steamboat]

The John Adams was a steamboat that hit a snag in the Mississippi River and sank, killing 130 passengers and crew members on January 27, 1851. The John Adams was a 298-ton sidewheel paddleboat built in Cincinnati, Ohio, in 1848 by Captain Henry A. Jones and his partners to run the route between Cincinnati and New Orleans, Louisiana. The vessel was headed upriver at full steam with a full load of cargo and passengers—many of them returning from the California Gold Rush, along with immigrants from Germany, Ireland, and Italy—when the vessel struck a snag at around 3:00 a.m. on January 27, 1851, near Island No. 82, located between Columbia (Chicot County) and Gaines’ Landing (Chicot County). The pilot, a …

Junction Bridge

The Junction Bridge is a lift-span bridge crossing the Arkansas River between downtown Little Rock (Pulaski County) and North Little Rock (Pulaski County). One of six bridges linking the two downtowns, the Junction Bridge was originally constructed as a railroad bridge in 1884; it was rebuilt in 1970, then converted to serve as a pedestrian bridge in 2008. Its southern end rests upon the geological feature that gave the city of Little Rock its name. The Little Rock, Mississippi River and Texas Railroad and the Little Rock and Fort Smith Railroad created a partnership in the early 1880s, envisioning a route that would stretch from the Gulf Coast to the Indian Territory (present-day Oklahoma). A new bridge across the Arkansas …