The Condor
A model of the Condor
A model of the Condor
A Model of The Condor on display at Fort Fisher
The placard adjoining the model above

Lower Cape Fear Historical Society
The Archives & Library: Online Collections: Mary Sanders Notes
 I have been asked to write up my War experience. Well I had war experience, and much of it.
In the beginning of the war the ladies of Wilmington N.C. organized a Soldiers Aid Society of which I was a member. We met daily made comfortables, & clothes for the soldiers, knit socks for them in [illegible] did any and everything we could to provide for our Army. When the seat of Government was moved from Montgomery Ala. to Richmond a deputation of our Society would meet each train and provide a meal for our troops being rushed to the scenes of action......
 We were there when the "Condor", the steamer on which Mrs. Greenhow was returning from Europe, was wrecked. Maj. Stevenson found her body being on the beach where it was washed up after she was drowned. He tenderly raised her, shook the sand from her clothing and calling for a litter placed her thereon. The remains  was sent to Wilmington and all that is mortal of this famous lady rests in our beautiful Oakdale Cemetery.

Wilmington was not without it's feminine war heroes as well. The city's history claims Rose O'Neal Greenhow as its own. She was a Confederate spy who's infamy led her to be imprisoned several times at Washington's Capitol Prison as a war criminal. Known as "Rebel Rose", she was returning to Wilmington, via Nassau from Europe aboard the steamer Condor. She carried many dispatch cases for President Davis as well as a leather pouch filled with donations to the Confederacy in gold, which she wore around her neck. The Condor beached in the channels on September 30, 1864 as a result of efforts to evade the blockading fleet. Fearful she would be captured and returned to a Union prison, Greenhow requested a dinghy to take her ashore. The small boat capsized near the shore in rough waters, and she was drowned. When a young soldier found her body on the beach it was said that there was a large amount of gold sewn into her gown, presumably for safekeeping until she reached Richmond, VA. She was buried with great ceremony and honor at Oakdale Cemetery in Wilmington, and the Ladies Memorial Association erected a memorial over her grave in 1888. Although Rose Greenhow was not a native of the city, because she is buried here, she is one of the many war heroes Wilmington proudly claims.

Civil War Naval Chronology 1861-1865
Published 1966 by Naval History Division , Office of the Chief of Naval Operations , Navy Department , Washington D.C.
October 1864
USS Niphon, Acting Master Kemble, ran British blockade runner Condor aground off New Inlet, North Carolina. Niphon was prevented from destroying the steamer by intense fire from Fort Fisher. Among the passengers on board Condor was one of the most famous Confederate agents of the war, Mrs. Rose O'Neal Greenhow. Mrs. Greenhow, fearful of being captured on the grounded runner with her important dispatches, set out in a boat for shore, but the craft over-turned in the heavy surf. The crew managed to get ashore, but the woman, weighted down by $2,000 in British gold in a pouch around her neck, drowned.