The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Daily British Whig (Kingston, ON), Nov. 28, 1879

Full Text



Recently mention was made of the wreck of the schr. Phelps, and of the loss of Downey, one of the crew, and a Kingstonian. The survivors have given a statement of the accident to the Oswego Palladium. Downey was the last to leave the ship. He died on the piece of deck upon which he jumped. He crawled out on one of the spars, the main and mizzen masts having fallen out. At that time he expected to get the piece clear and drift ashore, as they were not over sixty yards from the shore, and two others thought they would go ashore all right. But it was lucky that they did not as the piece of deck got foul of the wreck, and Robbie could not get it clear, so the poor boy perished. Downey, the poor fellow, could not get back to where the others were. They kept crying to him to keep up. He had good courage to the last. The poor fellow perished. He lay down and died. He was frozen to death. He lay right where his companions could see him all night and the next day. It was a hard sight.


The steamer Hastings is in winter quarters.

The tug Franklin went down to tow up the sunken barge Saxon, and is now engaged in bringing her up. The Saxon's own pumps keep her free. Her grain cargo is nearly a total loss.

The steamer Traveller got up with her tow this morning, having got past the sunken barge Saxon in the Beauharnois Canal. The ice is quite heavy and troublesome at Valleyfield.


The Seymour Disaster.

The Rochester Democrat (a little late) recounts the incidents of the Seymour disaster near Oswego, and from information supplied by some of the survivors it proceeds to charge the responsibility of the accident upon those whom it believes to be at fault. It says that in answer to a signal Mr. Arnold went aboard the Seymour and he and Capt. Fleming consulted as to the propriety of putting into Sackett's for the night; that Captain Fleming, of the Seymour, assured him that the weather was favorable and they would reach Oswego between twelve and one o'clock that night; that Mr. Arnold thereupon returned to his boat. The statement charges Captain Fleming with failing to exert himself to save life and property in the emergency, and with culpable negligence in abandoning the dredge Gordon at daylight after clinging to her all night and towing her along until learning the fact she was under water and not towing into port. The statement says that provided the property now visible along the shore can be towed into port without further loss the aggregrate value of the portion damaged will not exceed $25,000 to $30,000. Mr. Arnold, Thomas Smith, Captain Thompson and Henry Hickler, of the tug John Hickler, are to be congratulated for their heroism, and the conduct of the crew of the Riter, in abandoning her, is characterized as cowardly. The crew of the tug Becker, all lost, are charged with demoralization, and with the loss of the dredge Gordon by repeated collisions with her, while trying to get aboard of her.

The Murray Canal.

Sir John does not represent Kingston's interests now, and he has a bone or two to pick with his old constituents. This Murray Canal project will give him an opportunity to begin the squaring up. [Ontario]

The Belleville people are welcome to all the favors they can get from Sir John Macdonald. Our friend on the Ontario ought to know the value of his promises. At the same time it must be remembered that the Premier has not Murray Canal on the brain, and that he may not take so kindly to the scheme as some expect.

Media Type:
Item Type:
Date of Original:
Nov. 28, 1879
Local identifier:
Language of Item:
Rick Neilson
Copyright Statement:
Public domain: Copyright has expired according to the applicable Canadian or American laws. No restrictions on use.
Maritime History of the Great Lakes
WWW address
Powered by / Alimenté par VITA Toolkit

My favourites lets you save items you like, tag them and group them into collections for your own personal use. Viewing "My favourites" will open in a new tab. Login here or start a My favourites account.

Daily British Whig (Kingston, ON), Nov. 28, 1879