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Originally published in 1892, Loss of the Sultana and Reminiscences of Survivorsis a collection of first-hand accounts by those who lived to tell the story of perhapsthe worst maritime disaster in U.S. history.On the Mississippi River just above Memphis at two o?clock on the morning of April27, 1865, the steamboat Sultana, carrying over 2,400 passengers (it was licensed to carry only 356), exploded and sank. Over 1,700 people perished.Most of the passengers were Union soldiers recently released from Confederateprisons. Many were from East Tennessee. They had boarded at Vicksburg, where thelongest siege of the war had finally ended in Confederate surrender, ending theVicksburg campaign.The soldiers, homeward bound from Andersonville and Cahaba Confederate prisons,had survived the terrors of battle, the loss of close comrades, physical and psychological wounds, the risky confinement of hospital, the humiliation of capture andsurrender, escape and recapture, homesickness, boredom, the daily threat of death bystarvation, disease, suicide, robbery, injury, or death by raiders.Chester D. Berry?one of the survivors?compiled facts, records, and personalaccounts of other survivors, resulting in this compelling and profound testimony to thehuman spirit in the face of tragedy.