06 July 2013

Released From Cahaba, Then Lost OnThe Sultana

Source of Sultana Picture

From the History of Henry County:


Thomas was born July 4, 1836, and was married April 12, 1860, to Ellen M.Cooper.  He joined Company E, 9th Indiana Cavalry that was organized by Captain Volney Hobson.

He was captured near Franklin, Tennessee. December 1, 1864, along with Robert W. Gilbreath and Andrew J. McCormack, Sultana survivors, and all were held, as prisoners of war, in Cahaba Prison, Alabama, until March, 1865, when they were released on parole and sent to Vicksburg, Mississippi, where they remained until they boarded the doomed Sultana, homeward bound. Laboyteaux, less fortunate than his companions, was lost and his body never recovered.

See my blog post about Cahaba prisoners and the Sultana disaster.

More from the History of Henry County, Indiana:

"Andy McCormack, Thomas Laboyteaux and myself were sleeping together on the hurricane deck, about half way between the pilot house and the bow of the boat, dreaming of home and friends. The first thing I knew of the explosion, was standing on my feet, looking right down into the boiler room. The whole of the vessel, amidship, was torn in pieces; fire quickly followed the explosion and the red glare of the flames disclosed a scene of terror and tragedy." 

Ellen Laboyteaux received a widow's pension based upon Thomas's Civil War service.


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