The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
British Whig (Kingston, ON), Dec. 4, 1882

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The sloop Pilot, with plank, has arrived.

The schr. White Oak is loaded with barley for Fairhaven. The trip is a very late one.

The steamer Armenia, of the Deseronto and Ogdensburg Line, has been sold for $9,000.

The steambarge Saxon was frozen in at Trenton. She had a load of barley for Oswego.

The steamer Quinte passed down on Saturday to Ogdensburg with a load from Deseronto. She has one more load to take to the same port.

The schr. Oliver Mitchell, with wheat from Toronto to Ogdensburg, is in port. She came down the lake against a head wind and had a rough passage. A tug will take her to her destination. Capt. Curran is a skillful navigator.

The tug McArthur has succeeded in getting the schr. G.M. Case off Hinckley's Point and taken her to Oswego. The tug will tow a number of vessels from Oswego to this port.

Capt. Geo. W. Smith, of Chicago, died at Marine City, aged 66 years. He was born at Utica and married and lived at Clayton. He began sailing in 1832 and left the lakes in 1862. He lost his eyesight in 1870 and was thereafter known as the "blind captain." He owned the schr. Clayton Belle, which was lost on Lake Huron this season.


It is the duty of the Government to improve the navigation off Prince Edward County, the dangers of which have been so clearly pointed out. The Department of Marine and Fisheries is to some extent responsible for the late fearful Folger accident, there having been a neglect to provide safeguards the necessity of which have been repeatedly demonstrated. In fair weather vessels can sail past dangerous shoals, and the skillful navigator does not much depend upon lights to guide him beyond points off whose treacherous character he is fully aware, but in the stormy period is generally experienced before navigation ceases every little aid is of advantage and one cannot be too near a beacon or life saving station.

It is possible that the Government may not have abandoned its purpose to perform a service so highly commended by all who know the value of it, that delay has been occasioned by Cabinet changes leading to the retirement of Hon. J.H. Pope and the elevation to his place of Hon. M. McLelan. The latter has shown his interest in the matter by providing one life boat, which has, by the bye, not been located yet in consequence of differences of opinion among the local politicians. One boat, however, cannot afford the protection demanded. There must be at least three stations, properly manned and equipped, as suggested by Capt. Donnelly, otherwise the frequency of shipwreck and loss of life cannot have taught the lessons expected of them. The American Government have done their whole duty in the protection of vessel property. Our Government must now see the only wise course that remains open to them.



Capt. Dennis has been to see the wreck of the schr. Henry Folger. The bodies that came ashore were badly mangled by being beaten on the rocks by the surf. They were at once coffined and buried. Upon the body of the Captain was found the following bill of lading: "Schr. H. Folger, cleared from port of Cleveland, Ohio, Nov. 23rd, 1882, laden with 693 tons of coal, bound for port of Brockville, Ont. for P.D. Conger and Grand Trunk Railway Co."

Wreck First Discovered.

The Henry Folger was first observed by the lighthouse keeper half a mile off Salmon Point at daylight on Friday morning. Two men could be seen lashed to the rigging. An unsuccessful attempt was made to launch a boat to rescue them. The schooner went to pieces about 11 o'clock and two bodies were washed ashore, which have been identified as those of Capt. McDonald, of Clayton, and First Mate Wiley, of the same place. Only the two bodies have thus far been recovered. They were buried at Cherry Valley on Saturday, but the friends arrived today and they have been disinterred and taken away. It is supposed that the schooner struck the shoal during the night, the lighthouse being obscured by the snow storm. About thirty tons of coal came ashore and is lying in piles on the beach.

A Gallant Life-Saving Crew.

The schooner Henry Folger when first seen was about three-quarters of a mile from shore. Her mizzen mast was gone, and her stern had the appearance of being stove in. A volunteer crew, consisting of D. Hudger, Jonathan Bowerman, Peter Pickman, H. Huff and S. Manning, launched a staunch fishing boat, and made an attempt to reach the ill-fated vessel, but although making almost superhuman efforts failed to reach the wreck, the gale and breakers proving too much for their strength. About 9 o'clock the mainmast went down, and the timbers could be seen to heave, and the seas washing through her. A few minutes later the foremast toppled over, and nothing was left of what was a few hours before a fine schooner, commanded by a brave captain, and manned by a fine crew of eight men.

A Dangerous Spot.

The Folger struck on almost the same spot the International was wrecked, with the loss of her crew, some fourteen years ago. There have been some nineteen or twenty vessels ashore within a stretch of seven or eight miles east and west of Salmon Point during the last twenty years. Four, the Ellen, Wellington, Jessie, and Henry Folger, lost all hands; the International lost five hands, making a total loss of forty. The Government have had two metallic life boats stationed at the point for some five years, but this spring removed them to other points. A lifeboat station is needed on this point, thoroughly equipped, and in charge of a trained life-boat crew. The men on the Folger could have been saved if the necessary boats, thoroughly equipped, could have been obtained.

Another Vessel Ashore.

The schooner Case, of Ogdensburg, to Oswego, had one side broken and ran ashore opposite Clayton. The str. Maud, after working two hours, was unable to haul her off, and a Kingston tug was telegraphed for. She was taken off during the day without damage.

Here and There - Most of the steam and sailing craft have been settled in their winter quarters.

In the case of the schr. Erie Stewart vs. M.T. Co., tried in the Marine Court on Saturday, the demurrer was allowed; amount at stake a trifle over $60.

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Dec. 4, 1882
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Rick Neilson
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Public domain: Copyright has expired according to the applicable Canadian or American laws. No restrictions on use.
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British Whig (Kingston, ON), Dec. 4, 1882