Lottie Sleigh explosion, Merseyside, 1864.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
Plate from the Illustrated London News (Vol 64/1 p 101) The explosion on board the Lottie Sleigh took place on the 15 Jan 1864. The ship was a barque, an African trader which, having loaded 11 tons of gunpowder was preparing for sea, when a paraffin lamp was upset in the hold: this set fire to the ship and caused the explosion. No lives were lost, but the property destroyed on both sides of the river, especially in Birkenhead was considerable.