Raising The Sultana

Pvt. William Carter Warner's Story

Sylvia Clemons | 20 February 2015 | Comment(s)

William Carter Warner was born in Cincinnati, Ohio on May 6, 1848 to the parents of Henderson Warner and Rosannah Carter.  William enlisted in the 9th Indiana Cavalry at an early age of 15 on October 24, 1863.  He served in Company B until September 25, 1864 when he was captured by the Confederate army at Sulphur Branch Trestle in Alabama along with 799 others.  The Union side lost 200 men during this battle.  The men captured that day were taken to Cahaba prison.  

By April 1865 the Civil War was coming to an end prisoners were no longer being exchanged, but were simply paroled where they were transported by railcars and taken to Vicksburg, Mississippi.  They were put in Camp Chase along with other prisoners from Andersonville Prison.  They stayed there until boarding the Sultana on April 25, 1865.  Everything seemed to be going great despite the overcrowding soldiers until the early morning of April 27 when the explosion occurred. 

William’s son Robert C Warner said that his father didn’t talk about his time during the Civil War.  It wasn’t until later in his life that he told his account of his experience during the explosion of the Sultana.  William told how he and one of his good friends were sleeping when the steamboat blew up.  He woke up out in the middle of the Mississippi River cold as could be.  The only light he had was the light from the flames on the boat.  In order to survive he took off his long john bottoms and tied together two boards to float on.  At that moment he saw a hat floating by and he grabbed it and put it on while holding onto the boards.  At the time of his rescue all he was wearing was the hat and the top part of his long johns.  He was treated at Washington Hospital for a slight contusion.  He was mustered out of the army on July 12, 1865. 

In the 1870 census he is living in Indiana with his dad and step mother, Martha Calhoun, along with their four younger children; Perlee, Charles, Bart, and Leiu.  Still a work in progress hope to find lots more. 

 I know he married in 1910 to Jessie M Carter and they had two sons named William B and Robert C. 
  He died in 1933 in Wellington, Kansas and was buried at Prairie Lawn Cemetery.   


Ancestory.com http://trees.ancestry.com/tree/77603744/person/38364618047  

The Q&A Times http://theqandatimes.com/userend/artdesc/2840  

Family Search: https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:MFX5-CPX  

Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War https://books.google.com/books?id=G69FYeqpVzwC&pg=PA103&lpg=PA103&dq=william+carter+warner+sultana+survivor&source=bl&ots=iEXJK58uIA&sig=jgWWFwDFvlAi_Ebqlz48DWbOD6o&hl=en&sa=X&ei=CLvmVNHDCY6xyASU5oKwCQ&ved=0CB4Q6AEwAA#v=onepage&q=william carter warner sultana survivor&f=false  

Forum: The Southern Patriot http://pub20.bravenet.com/forum/static/show.php?usernum=1660961694&frmid=2342&msgid=92431&cmd=show  

Find A Grave Memorial #26677231 http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=26677231    

Indiana Historical Society http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=14&ved=0CC4QFjADOAo&url=http://ww...