The medium clipper Southern Cross was built for Baker, Morrill of Boston by E. & H.O. Briggs at East Boston. Launched on 19th March 1851, she was registered at 938 tons and measured 170 feet in length with a 36 foot beam. Predicted to be a flyer, her maiden voyage to San Francisco proved a fiasco when she was twice dismasted whilst on her second passage, she narrowly escaped destruction when a serious fire was discovered in her lower hold. Once these mishaps were behind her, her subsequent career was more successful although she never really achieved what had been expected of her. In the spring of 1863 she was chartered to take cargo of dye woods from Buena Vista (Mexico) to New York but on 6th June was captured by the Confederate raider Florida who, having taken off her passengers and crew, put her to the torch and left her to burn.