BLUNT, Simon Frazier
BLUNT, Simon Fraser (1818-1854), born in Southampton County, Virginia on August 1, 1818, he graduated from the Naval Academy at Annapolis as a commissioned officer of the U.S. Navy. On January 27, 1846, Blunt married Ellen Lloyd Key (1821-1884), one of eleven children of Francis Scott Key, in Washington, D.C. They had three children:
- Alice Key Blunt (1847-1927)
- John Yell Mason Blunt (1848- )
- Mary Lloyd Blunt (1850- )
First Lieutenant Blunt accompanied a survey party to California during 1849-1850. His sketches of the California coast were included in a series of charts, including:
- Chart of the Farallones and entrance to the Bay of San Francisco, California (1850)
- Chart of the Bay of San Pablo, Straits of Carquines, and part of the Bay of San Francisco (1850)
- View of Benicia from the anchorage east of Seal Island (1852)
Blunt was in master in command of the Winfield Scott when it ran aground at Middle Anacapa Island on December 2, 1853.
Blunt died in Baltimore, Maryland on April 27, 1854 at age 36. He is buried in Mount Olivet Cemetery (Plot Area H), Frederick County, Maryland.
» Winfield Scott
In the News~
December 29, 1853 [DAC]: “Among the passengers by the Republic, which leaves today for Panama, is Captain Simon F. Blunt, late commander of the steamship Winfield Scott. Captain Blunt proceeds to the Atlantic States on a visit to his family and for the purpose of representing in person, the loss of the steamer of which he formerly had commanded. Captain Blunt, during the time he has been on this coast, has added much to his previous well-established and enviable reputation. Those who have had the pleasure of sailing with him cannot easily forget his urbane manner and his kind regard for, and attention to the comfort of his passengers. As a skillful navigator, he stands high in his profession, and those who know him here can easily understand that the late loss of the Winfield Scott cannot in any degree be attributed to carelessness or lack of skill on his part. Such accidents will happen, and often have, where the greatest precautions have been taken. The gentlemen of the Pacific Mail Company, honorable and just men as we know them to be, would be slow to set their seal of reprobation upon him did they know him as do we in California. We merely echo the universal wish of the community in expressing hope that they will not be disposed to deal harshly, or even censure Captain Blunt on account of the unfortunate accident; and we yet hope to see him return in command of a steamer which shall be worthy of such a commander.”