|According to family information, Benjamin Houp was involved in Wilson's Calvary Raid of March 22 to April 2, 1865. On April 2, Selma, Alabama was attacked by Wilson's Union Forces. It was during this raid that Benjamin Houp was believed captured. He would have been taken to Cahaba Prison near Selma, Alabama. His stay as a prisoner would be brief.
On April 9, 1865, CSA General Robert E. Lee would surrender the Army of Northern Virginia thus ending the Civil War.
Union prisoners from Cahaba Prison (and from Andersonville) were taken to Vicksburg, Mississippi where they were paroled on April 21, 1865. At first they boarded the Sultana in an orderly manner with an accurate listing of passengers being recorded. Soon however, the swell became so large that it got out of hand and they clambered aboard wherever they could find standing room. There were hundreds from Cahaba on board. Finally, they were on their way home.
As amazing as the story of the Sultana sounds, it was not viewed as the biggest story of the day. The report of the Sultana was buried on the 4th page of the New York Times. What was the biggest story? One must remember that less than a week after the Civil War ended President Lincoln was assassinated (April 14, 1865). On April 26, 1865, John Wilkes Booth was killed. The capture and murder of Booth took coverage away from the Sultana tragedy.