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New-York tribune. [volume] (New York [N.Y.]) 1866-1924, July 01, 1900, Image 3

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"When the great red wave of fire came sweep-
Ing over the three piers of the North German
Lloyd Line the huge hulk of the Kaiser Wit
helm der Grosse slowly began to emerge from
the cloud of smoke. A fleet of tugboats were
straining- at their towllnes. When only a short
distance into the stream the ropes creaked, a
thrill ran through the ship and the tugboats
churned the water with their idle propellers.
The Mp ship had struck bottom. At this point
a Tribune reporter put off from shore in a
row-boat and headed for the Kaiser Wilhelm.
When the rowboat was about one hundred feet
away it Did be seen that the hie; liner was
again Boating. Her starboard side was on fire.
The life caving boats were burning on their
davits, and along the edge of the promenade
deck ran tongues of flame. With a fire tug
alcn.cFide Lying three streams upon the burn-
Ing parts of the ship, the Kaiser Wilhelm was
towed out into the midd'.e of the stream.
Put all this time the great billows of flre
were rolling over the other three ships of the
]in». and no effort seemed to be made to save
any one of them. From the rowboat the ships
and the r>' -p. the storage houses in the rear.
and the bartres and lighters lying along the
edge of the stream all appeared enveloped in
one great blaze.
Several tugs mad' a dash into the conflagra
order to save either one of the burning
but; the fiery wind sweeping down from
oth baffled their attempts. The river had
c rate so rough from the swashing of the
tugboats thßt the reporter's row boat was almost
It was filling with water so rapidly.
t. that the reporter went on board the
tug Seven Brothers.
At this time the three remaining ships of the
German line — the Saale. the Bremen and the
Main— were still moored to their piers and en
] with the fire, which seemed to have
Bw^t over all with instantaneous rapidity. The
Baale lay the furthest down stream, with her
prow to land and her starboard side next to
the pier. On the other eide of the same pier, to
the northward, with her port aide to the pier,
;a.y the Bremen. Opposite to tha Bremen,
against the next pier, the Kaiser Wllhelm had
been moored prior to her being towed into mld-
Ftr»am. On the other side of this pier, further
op stream, with her port side against the
rooden framework, lay the Main.
Upon approaching closer to the Saa'.e. which
baring caught fire first, now burned fiercely
from stem to Mem, it could b« seen that many
»f !tE officers and crew were jumping into the
f-T^am. Some sank without coming to view
a^ain, and some upon coming to the surface
Work lii In «■ Good Cn.n««.
"In the institution where I am employed as»
Dorse (the Home for Aged Women) we find many
ladies suffering from gastric trouble caused by
ci Mv own personal experience is that since a
Child I have been a moderate drinker of coffee,
jut most of the latter years have suffered from
acidity of the stomach, sluggish liver and nerv
"I finally gave up coffee entirely about three
yetrs ago" upingr hot water in Its place. Of
course, after removing the cause the symptoms
iisappeared, but I seemed to need a beverage
more strengthening than hot water, as my oc
cupation of nurse required considerable exertion.
I began to look about for a suitable breakfast
beverage, and undertook the preparation of one
by browning some wheat berries and using that
as coffee, but the result was far from satis
factory. Finally I came across Poslum Food
Coffee on a visit at my home, In Hostile. N. J..
and found it exactly fitted the case.
"r have been using it regularly and Introduced
It to our institution. When it was first served
It was not satisfactory, but I looked into the
natter and insisted upon having it boiled fully
"ifK-en minutes after the actual boiling had
started, not counting the time that It was on the
F!ove before boiling began. The next time it ap
peared you would not think it was the same
article, it ires so much 'improved. Several of
the patients oecided to use it to the exclusion of
coffee, and I found that its use reduced the num
ber of cases of Indigestion. The result has been
very gratifying, and for two years now Postum
Food Coffee has been in dally use at the Home.
"Mrs. Matilda Seaver and Miss Anna Merrill
are desirous that their names be used to help
forward the good cause. My mother has been
great] helped by the discontinuance of coffee.
She was formerly subject to cramps, but they
have entirely disappeared since she has aban
doned coffee and taken up Postum Food Coffee.
UefiXiectfully. Miss £. Stryker, Elizabeth. N. J.
clutched at each other or at floating billets of
wood or at the barges and lighters which were
only partly on flre.
Many, however, were seen lying down face
flat on the deck of the vessel, as if rendered
unconscious by the smoke and heat.
On approaching still near»r it was seen that
the ship was loose from the pier, and slowly
drifting out Into the stream. A strong ebb tide
was running. As the ship came out from the
pier h»r stern was caught by the current and
the prow was brought around against the blaz
ing pier. The ship now swung off into the stream
with her prow northward.
Three tugs now ran toward her. and the first
to rf»aoh her %vpf the Eugene Grasselll. in charge
of Captain James A. Fox. The other two tugs
were the M. Moran and the Dowitt C. Ivins, both
owned by the Moran Wrecking Company. As
many a? twenty men now flung themselves into
thf water, and were re.-c.j^d by the crews of
the tupboats.
On the side of the ship toward the wind hung
holster, consisting of a huge bucket at the
end of an iron chain. Eight stokers and firemen
were hanplng to th«» steel links, and three men
were In the bucket. All were crying piteously
for h^lp. Only two of them could speak Eng
lish, and one kept yelling:
•"Throw uf= a line, for God's sake — throw us a
line. We can't stand it! It's hell! We can't
stand it!"
Even ap he spoke tongues of flame shot out
from the portholes in the after part of the ship.
A smaller tug now ran up under the cloud of
smoke, and, throwing a line to the chain of men.
hauled the great bucket on board. The men
then shinned down to the tug. Several were so
severely burned that they were put on another
tug and carried to the Jersey shore.
In spito of the combined efforts of five tugs,
the whole flotilla was being carried by the cur
rent to the New-York shore. Captain Fox, who
was In charge of the wrecking party, signalled
for further help. By this time the Saale and
her struggling rescuers were off Pier 18, this
Other tugs now came up, among which were
the George P. Cooper, the Ell B. Conine, the
Dispatch, the Cornelius Van Cott, the James D.
Leary. the Champion, the Hustler, a wrecking
tug; the Mutual and the Coney Island.
The New-Yorker, which had by this time ex
tinguished the fire along the deck parts of the
The Kaiser Wilhelm der Gro««« Saved. The Bremen burning.
Kaiser Wllhelm der Grouse, now steamed up
to the Baale and poured several streams on
the fore part of the ship. The water had no
more apparent effect upon the blaze than a
shower of rice. It could be fen that the whole
interior of the vessel was aflame. As the ferry
boat Montclalr, of the Hoboken Line, passed
the burning ship a heavy explosion was heard,
which caused the ship to lurch heavily to port.
When the tugboat, with The Tribune re
porter on beard had reached that part of the
ship which was away from the wind, two
bodies were seen stretched ont on the lower
deck. Near the prow a man could be seen
squirming with his head, and trying In vain
to wriggle out of a port hole. The opening was
only a foot wide, and the Imprisoned sailor
was of a stout build. Occasionally, he put out
his head and yelled in German, "Wasser. wasier,
Ich sterbe!"
A stream from one of the tags began to play
on him. First he would put out one arm for
the water, then the other, then each leg In turn.
The fire was gathering closer about him, as
could be seen by the ruddy light in the other
portholes At last, after a struggle of nearly
half an hour, he sank back from the porthole
and was not seen auain.
John Rupps, an assistant engineer, and a deck
hand by the name of Tells were picked up after
this from a stick of wood to which they had
clung. They said they hud Jumped into the
stream from the Saale. but had floated away
down stream by a different course.
Chief rmcev S< heffer and Second Officer Zan
d.-n Of the Saale both escaped uninjured by
leaping into the water. They were carried to
the steamship Kaiser Wilhelm der Qrosse and
iron) there to the Haale by the tug Seven Broth-
I « the way down each told his experience
t.> a Tribune reporter. Their interviews are given
Shortly after the Saale drifted away from her
pier the Bremen m seen moving out into the
stream. Bines the fire had swept upon the
Bremen from the pier there was no. possible
means of escape except by water. Chief Officer
Ahborn cut the ropes to the fore of the vessel,
and Third Officer Block cut them away aft.
All was made ready to tow out the vessel, and
heavy hawsers were uncoiled and laid out on
the lower decks. But the tugboat? near paid no
attention to the repeated calls for help.
Officer Block had draßared out a megaphone
and made redoubled efforts to have th^ ship
towed out into the stream. As there appeared
to be no hope of saving tbe vessel th<- officers and
crew Jumped Into the water. Captain Nierlch
■was the last of the officers to leave the vessel
There were several women on board, and a life
boat had been made ready and filled with three
women and certain members of the crew. The
davits were hardly swung out before the ropes
broke and the boat fell into the stream below.
The force of the fall swamped the boat, but
two of the women were dragged up onto a
lighter and afterward taken ashore. One woman
was seen sliding down to an adjacent lighter by
a rope. She was rescued. The other woman and
members of the crew could not bo found.
The Bremen was therefore practically dpsert
ed when she began to drift out Into the stream.
"WTi«n once loose, however, she began to move
down toward the T-iay with great rapidity. At
first it appeared in v;iin to prr pple with her.
Her sides were covered with flames, and the
tugboats which approached her had no helping
hand aboard to make fast a line. On she went
with the stream, like some wild beast of the
deep, followed by a school of smaller craft Be
cause of the force of the south wind, the course
of the drifting ship was not directly down
stream, but along a diagonal course to the
southwest. This carried her over to th" New-
York shore. It was not until she was in danger
ous proximity to the pier of the Old Dominion
Line that a sufficient force of tugboats had
come to the rescue of the ship.
The flotilla of tugboats Included the Mattle,
the Maria Hoffman, the F-. B. A rn..n. the James
A. Lawrence, the William Beaman, the Howard,
the Edwin Hawley, the I. J. M> rritt. a wracking
tug; the Robert White, the El Amiga, the
Theresa Verdon, the Admiral Robert White, the
William Goodwin, the Bastchester, the Will
iam Walker and the Komach. Most of, ihe tug
boats wars throwing on slender si eama ol
water from th. nozzles of their
Wlien the Seven Brothers, with The Tribune
reporter on board, reached the Bremen, the
latter had been towed Into midstream. A gang
of men from the wrecking tug I. J. Merritt, were
aboard of her and were hauling through the
port holes additional lines of hose. The ship
had listed heavily to port, and It was said that
she would soon go to the bottom. The water
thrown upon her did not appear to have any
pen eptible effoct upon the flames whatever.
The result apparent was in keeping the fire
from lapping out of the port holes. The iron
sides of the ship in many places, however, were
at a red heat.
The steamship Main lay up against her pier
ami burnej with the burning wooden frame
work No attempt was made to haul her out.
Those on board sought escape by leaping over
board, and swimming to the lighter. As the
fire ate down to the lower parts of the ship she
listed heavily, and sank slowly beside her pier.
A gigantic, slowly turning pillar of parti-col
ored smoke, with a base line of living, leaping
flame, marked the burning piers of the North-
German Lloyd Steamship Company in Hoboken,
as viewed from the New-York shore. In the
btream, almost abreast of the piers, lay the
great Kaiser Wilhelm der Grosse, while below
and about, opposite the People's Line pier, a
whirl of smoke showed where the remorseless
fire was reducing the Bremen to utter WtecTe and
ruin. Further down the river and; 1 just above
the Statue of Liberty, a myriad of smaller craft
surrounding, lay the Saale, grim and ghastly,
her bow, while clear of smoke and flame, show
ing all too plainly the devastating marks the
fire had left upon her. Columns of iimoke pour
ing out of her waist indicated where thsflr* Still
held it.« own unchecked, and waa eating out the
vitals of the ship.
Here, there and everywhere were flaming cot
ton barges, adding to the general desolation of
the scene.
"When the flre first broke out the Kaiser Wil
helm der Grosse was towed out of her dock and
brought to anchir in the stream. Then the
Saale broke loose from her moorings, and
started, a mass of fire, for the New-York shore.
A host of tugs went in pursuit, but, the wind
and tide with her. she held fatefully on. The
Saale grazed the pier of the People's Line and
then, the tugs at last gaining control, she was
towed down to Th- Jersey flats, where she
burned herpolf out, a piteous spectacle.
Hardly was the scare following the Saale's
onslaught on the New-York river frontage over
than the Bremen in her turn broke loose and
headed also for the New-York shore. Again the
accompanying tugs failed to gain control of the
burning monster until she had all but attained
her object and crashed into the river front of
New-York. This time it was the new pier that
hns just been completed for the Reading Rail
road that was threatened, and it escaped by the
narrowest of squeezes. The tugs then took her
across the river, where she burned with un
diminlshed fierceness for over an hour.
When tho fire was gradually brought under
control the tugs took her, a charred and
dismal looking wreck, sunk by the stern, to a
point opposite Castle Point, the home of the
Hoboken Stevenses.
As the boats floated down the river men were
Jumping In steady succession from the blazing
decks. These men were picked up by the ac
companying tugs, and landed at the nearest
available piers. Sometimes they were pitifully
injured, and then the ambulance and the sur-
geon were summoned quickly to their aid.
Sometimes they had suffered not at all physi
cally, and were able to go away by themselves.
At th.- pier of the Norwich Lin* 1 a number of
these victims were landed. All but three were
able to go away alone, but those three had to be
carried on stretchers.
The same thing happened on every pier in
that neighborhood.
The tops of the buildings holding views of the
North River and the heads of all the piers up
and down its front were black with the watch
in;- people. The story had gone the rounds that
•at h of thoso burning ships was a tiiarnel
house, and It had a visible effect on the spirits
of the people. One of the cotton barges that
was burning drifted down the river and made
Its way Into the slip of the Pavonia ferry.
A pursuing tug there caught up and made fast
to It and started to pull It out, but the tug Itself
took flre. and promptly cut loose from its dan
gerous charge, which at once headed for the
pier of the Fall River Lino. It came so near
that the hose from the Puritan and the City of
Taunton were brought to play upon it. Then a
twist in the current caught and carried the
barge into midstream again.
About R o'clock the Etruria. with a heavy list
to starboard, came Into port. Kv^ry man.
woman and child on board was on that star
board side watching with all their eyes the
strange sight that greeted tnem on their en
trance Into the port of New-York. About this
time the fire at the piers grew fiercer, and for
safety's sake the Kaiser WDheha was moved
further up the stream. Through the haze of
smoke she looked like a huge phantom ship as
she silently moved northward. For an hour the
point where the Bremen was burning her use
fulness away was marked by a huge cloud of
smoke. Now and again a puff of wind would
lift an edge of the pall, and then the shadowy
outline of the bow or stern of the dying monster
could he momentarily made out. but for the
most part a cloud of smoke resting <~>n the water
was all the indication that there was of the tre
mendous and destructive conflagration that waa
there going on.
Into this encircling and deadly pall of smoke
the nippy little tugs darted, and came out with
a dash and a swish. Finally, when it was de
tern^ned to move the Bremen up the river, the
smoke still closely encircled her. and it was to
all intents and purposes a pillar of smoke that
moved over the surface of th* water. This
smoke came up to, mixed in with and passed
through the cloud arising from the burning
piers, and then came to rest on the surface of
the river a short distance further on. Then as
inch by inch the fighters gained control of the
ftre the outlines of the ship, the battered, pitiful,
wounded outlines, revealed themselves, and the
awful extent of the wreck was apparent to the
most casual observer.
In the mean time, clearly thrown out against
the southern sky, the Saale smouldered on, her
gaunt outline each moment growing gaunter, as
she became more and more of a complete wreck,
and then came a distant muffled report that
seemed to Indicate the exploding of her boilers.
For a while after this the fire within her hull
raged more fiercely, but it. too, was finally
checked. and as the evening fell was well i*der
The smoke cloud from the burning piers
changed its color as the material that fed the
flames change! its character, and formed at
times a color scheme of trrt-at beauty. At its
base the flames danced and roared, at times
showing only dimly, at others leaping up In
their full strength. As the night fell the fire
seemed to burn more brightly, and then it was
seen that between the piers and the river a
cordon of guarding tugs was drawn.
Through it and in spite of it all the remorse
less tratlic of the river kept on. Crowded to
their capacity, the ferryboats crossed and re
crossed. Up and down, thither and yon. pas
senger steamers, lighters, barges and the thou
sand and one other boats that ply upon the
city's great waterway and care for its varied
business pursued their regular vocations.
When it first became apparent that shipping
on this side was threatened flre alarms were
sent in. which soon brought engines rattling
down to West-St from all directions. Details of
police from the stations adjacent to the river
were also quickly on the ground. The fire en
gines patrolled the river front from Twelfth-st.
to the Battery, while the efforts of the police
were confined to keeping the crowds from press-
Ing out upon the uiers to view the picture of
The necessity of prompt action on the part
of the Fire and Police Departments waa quick
ly apparent to the shipping men who had
viewed with alarm the approach of the burning
vessels. Of the multitude of tugs and fire
boats that had been called to the scene of th»
fire, many had attached hawsers to the burn
ing craft. The object was to tow them Into
midstream, and if it was then found Impossible
to subdue the flames, to run them aground on
the flats off the Battery. The utmost difficulty,
however, was found in handling the burning
vessels. The heat was so iatrnsn that no living
creature could remain aboard of them. The
tugs clustered around then as thick as flies,
puffing, and screeching at intervals, and pour-
Ing streams of water on then from every avail
able point.
The Bremen, which had been apparently
pushed from her dock by a big flotilla of tugs
that swarmed around her on every side, was
particularly hard to control. She was loaded
down with a rich cargo of general freight and
merchandise, on which the flames had got a firm
hold. The smoke was pouring out in clouds
from the portholes of her lower decks, while a
mass of flame and smoke arose clear above her
The course of this burning vessel was a most
irregular one, and thousands of people watched
her as she Beared the New-Tot* shore.
Closer and closet she came under the influence
of the strong ebb tide that was running, until
finally with a crash she brought up against the
pier of the People's Albany LIB*, at Canal-st.
Her big bow then swung off and smashed into
the new pier of the Reading Railroad. Ju?t
*boy« it. staving its side in like breaking an
The tire engines rattled quickly to the scene,
but the pier did BOt catch tire, fortunately, and
there waa no need for their services. It was a
narrow c.«. ■;ip- fa* the pier, and also for those in
close proximity, including the piers of the New-
York Central and Hudson RKer Railroad and
the Vacate Mail Steamship Company.
JlO.Oo round trip ly ERIE RAILROAD. July «.
Tickets good for return until August 4th. .»,
Shining in popular favor — the outing
striped ftaimc
"\ on hare a of procuring
our high grade .striped ilannel suit, for
mer price s.'.M.uo. reduced to $*20.00.
Trousers, |&M Made and tailored in
the sinnrte>t manner, li you want up
to-date style, have the concave -
ders. narrow
back, with black trimminj
Samples, fashion booklet and measur
ing guide free.
Grand Rapids
Ne Furniture
There is a wealth of sentiment surround
ing our reproductions from the Antique.
The simple beauty of Colonial furniture
is faithfully reproduced in these new-old
designs. The high tester bed — the chest
of drawers — the old "Plymouth" Rocker
suggest the '"Old Daddy" atmosphere.
Grand Rapids
Furniture Company
_. *». Incorporated •*
34th. Street West
„ Nos. 133-13-7
Minute trcrrn Broadway*
Used by Eminent Artists.
Srcond-lland iprlKhli of (•noil Maker*.
$85— 5125. Grands. $175—
Marian! Wine— World Famous Tonic
V rltten endorsements from more than 9,000
physicians. Never has -anything received such
high recognition from the medical profession:
therefore. Vtn Marianl can be taken with per
fect safety
Sold by all Druggists. Refuse Substitutes.
1 Al ri|]C!IIA 221 East 38th St., and
ULCAnOIIIU 525 West 23d St.
Steam A Air Altering A Relaying. TV,. 1331 MX
OF New Jersey, Eastern New York and N»w Kng'and br
districts. £sc. and SOc: hamlsoMely colored; roads and
points at Interest shown; of dealers or by mail; sand i"»
descriptive catalogue. Gu!J* to Greater New York. 23c
GEO. H. WALKKK A CO.. Lithographers. Harcourt St.,
Boston. Juno 30. Th« United States transport
McPherson. having on board the rlrst detachment
of the Cuban teachers whs ar» to attend the sum- '
mer school at Harvard University this aeajon, a*»
rived In Boston Harbor this morning. She reac&eit
the Navy Yard early this afternoon. Thar* am
121 women and IOC men on the McPherson. T2i<%
transport Crook, with a second detachment of,
teachers, passed Highland Light at 9:30 o'clock
this forenoon.
Cambridge, Mass., June 30.— The Cuban teachers
who landed at the Navy Yard at 1:30 o'clock this
afternoon from the M • Person arrived her* on
special cars at 3 o'clock. They were received at .
Memorial Hall by the special committee and es
corted to their rooms by Spanish speaking guides.
All of the collide building* were profusely decorat
ed It is planned to give to the Cubans their first
taste of Yankee customs by a brilliant Fourth of
July calibration.
Red Bank. N. J.. June 30 <Speclnl>.->John C. Brill,
postmaster at Oceanic, has tern removed from tha
office on account of an alleged shortage in his ac
counts. An Inspector from the Postofflce Depart
ment made an investigation yesterday and found
that the shortage was about C.209. most of whlc!»
was in the money onler department. BriJl'a bonds
men, George B. Snyder. Prank* McMahon and Will
lam Naughton. made good the deficiency. Brill, win
was appoint?. i postmaster three y^-irs UgOt, says h«
does not know how the shortage occurred. He waa
arrested this morning, and furnished bonds to ap
pear for examination.
ur. rnv.tvr sails from bataxa.
Havana. June 30.— Ernest Lee Conant left on
board the Havana to-day for the United States,
presumably In connection with the Neely case. H«
Is the attorney representing the United SMtea In
the postal fraud cases here, and Seflor Andrade says
It will be foolish to proceed with the other .•*..«
until the Neely case Is settled.
Surgeon-General Rpe<l and I>rs. Carroll. Airra
monte and Lazcar. the Commission Secretary Root
recently appointed to Investigate acute infectious
diseases in the island, have bestto operations at
Quemados«, where several cases of yellow fever
have occurred during the last few weeks. The con
servative portion of the local press heartily ap
proves of the Commission, which, besides yells*"
fever, will also investigate leprosy. acclimating
fever. nr.alarta. and. in fact, everything infectious.
St. Louis, June CO. — At a meeting of the Commit
tee of Fifty, representing the trades *nd labor
unions of the city, it was decided to-day to e.mvass
St. Louia on July . to collect funds for the purchase
of busses for the use of strikers to be used !a
competition with the St. Louis Transit Company-
Mayor Zelsenhein has decided that he will not
Interfere with th* usual celebration of the National
holiday because of the strike. H has issued a proc
lamation, however, prohibiting the discharge of
guns, revolvers or pistols and the explosion of dy
namite, cannon crackers, bomb* m oowder «■ tix.,

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