The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
British Whig (Kingston, ON), Nov. 17, 1883

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It takes brave men to make sailors at such a season.

The steamship Athabasca lies at South Bay, windbound.

The schr. Oliver Mowat, ore laden for Fairhaven, is lying at Waupoose Island.

Six men perished by the Fitzgerald disaster at Port Rowan. No bodies have been found. The vessel is a total wreck.

The tug Glide is waiting for moderate weather to go out and look after the barge Milwaukee. Captains have no hope that she will ever be found.

The schr. Denmark, of Calvin & Son's fleet, has arrived at Port Colborne. In the late gale her canvass was blown away and her anchor lost. She is bound for Garden Island, light.

The agitation for the employment of only men cooks upon the vessels has been again resumed. Such being the case scandals would not be of the frequency they are at present.

Two pontoons of the Dominion Wrecking Company will be brought to Kingston next spring. They are at present in the Gulf of Canso. They lift 1,500 tons each and are valued at $18,000. If the pontoons were here now it would be an easy matter to raise the propeller Oneida, sunk near Clayton.

The tug Active has come back from South Bay, having parted her hawser in the passage up to South Bay with the steamship Athabasca. She returned to secure another hawser. The steamship Algoma left Prescott at noon.

It is feared that the barge Ryan has been lost with all hands. She was owned at Sandusky, commanded by Capt. Walker, and valued at $20,000. The Ryan was in tow of the steam barge Ohio on Sunday night with the Johnson, but during the gale the vessels were forced to separate. The Johnson went ashore and was scuttled; the Ohio reached Pigeon Bay.

The navigation of the Rideau Canal has been suspended for the present, perhaps for the season, in consequence of the ice which is so thick all along it that the boats cannot force their way through it. The steam barge Anglin is at Seeley's Bay, the tug Eleanor and raft at Brewer's Mills, and the tug Edmond and barges at Washburn, all fast since Tuesday last. They are heavily laden with freight which will have to be forwarded by vehicle to its destination, as further progress by water cannot be made.



Loss of the Schr. Fitzgerald and Her Crew.

Her Master's Last Trip and Sad Death.

It was hoped that the people of Kingston and vicinity would escape bereavement by the loss of dear ones in the terrible gales that swept the lakes during the past week. But this hope has been dispelled. A telegram announces that Captain Daniel Langan, of Wolfe Island, went down with the schr. E. Fitzgerald, near Port Rowan, on Thursday. The vessel was then en route from Detroit to Buffalo, and during a terrific snow storm was beached a few miles west of the West End Lighthouse, Long Point. The life-saving crew from Port Rowan went at once to the rescue, but Capt. Woodward reports that some 10 minutes after striking the crew of the schooner launched the yawl and seven or eight men were seen to enter her. The

Yawl Swamped In A Second

after leaving the ship, and one by one the men went down till the last sailor succumbed to the undertow when almost within reach of shore. If the crew could have weathered the storm in the rigging the life-boat would have attempted a rescue, but they took to the yawl before the life-boat reached the beach. Many willing hands watched their movements but could do nothing. The name of the schooner could not be ascertained for some time owing to the blow and the fact that she was covered with ice.

Vessel Last Here.

It was only a few weeks since that the schooner was in port with a cargo of grain. Capt. Langan was about 32 years of age and of a sea-faring family, two of his brothers being, like himself, Captains of vessels. The widowed mother and the sister of deceased live at Marysville, and only last evening received a letter from the Captain in which he thanked God for the preservation of his life in the terrible gales through which he had just passed. He told of the hard work he had had, that he was completely tired of sailing and that

This Was His Last Trip.

Poor fellow! he little knew how prophetic were the words. The Captain was genial and industrious, and his death, in such a sad way, will carry sorrow to many hearts.

Statement Of The Late Mate.

There were rumors this morning that James Loftus, of this city, was mate of the ill-fated craft, but such was not the case. He is at present in Kingston and was met by a Whig reporter this morning. He said he left the schooner at Detroit on Saturday. He left her because whenever the vessel entered a port his wages were stopped. Captain Langan may have had another Kingstonian for mate, as he told Loftus before the latter left that he intended to telegraph for George Riley. Whether Riley accepted is not known. William Able, of Buffalo, was a hand before the mast, and one of the Scotchmen who came out several years ago to man Garden Island vessels. The cook was a Buffalo woman.

A Brave Genial Fellow.

Rev. Fr. Spratt this morning received a telegram also announcing the calamity. The deceased had been one of Fr. Spratt's parishioners, and an active worker in the interest of all benevolent, charitable and church schemes. Mr. Langan had other narrow escapes before, but he was always plucky and brave, and, on the water as well as on land, did not flinch from the performance of a duty. He was a member of different societies, but with temperance work was particularly identified.

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Nov. 17, 1883
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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.
Maritime History of the Great Lakes
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British Whig (Kingston, ON), Nov. 17, 1883