The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
British Whig (Kingston, ON), Nov. 20, 1886

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No attempt will be made to rescue the barge Bolivia, ashore near Oswego until next spring.

The schr. Speedwell, ashore at Braddock's Point, is on a sandy bottom and can be gotten off with slight damage.

One of the hatches on the prop. Myles was torn off yesterday. It will be repaired today and pumping resumed.

The schr. Craftsman has gone up the Bayof Quinte to load barley for Oswego. The prop. Scotia loads barley at Port Hope and Toronto for Erie, Pa.

The prop. Alma Munro was at Napanee this week and her size startled the people. While turning she struck in the river and a hundred men had to haul on a line to get her off.

The schrs. Ida Walker and Queen of the Lakes are ashore near the mouth of Weller's Bay. The life boat from Wellington took the crews off. Both vessels will be a total loss.

Yesterday the steamer Pierrepont left Cape Vincent for Kingston by way of the foot of Wolfe Island. On turning and heading up the river the full force of the gale was encountered. Some time was spent without gaining more than a quarter of a mile, and at times the boat seemed to stand on edge. The purser's room, kitchen and cabin were flooded with water. The captain at length gave up the attempt and headed for Gananoque. The bulwarks were smashed, and the boat shows signs of hard usage. Seven passengers and the mail and express matter were despatched to Kingston by the G.T.R.

Chicago, Nov. 20th - The schr. Lucerne, lost during the storm, was driven on Point Chequamegon. The vessel was loaded with iron ore and went down with all hands. Not less than ten were on board.

Chicago, Nov. 20th - A special from Washburn, Wis., says the steamer Barker started out in search of the John Lucerne, but had gone only a few miles when the spars of the vessel were seen just above the water. Three men were found lashed on the rigging. They were immediately brought to the city. One was recognized as the second mate. The vessel is lying in 40 feet of water. The Lucerne left this port with a crew of nine men, all of whom are supposed to have been lost. The bodies were covered with from one to six inches of ice.



A List Of The Disasters During The Season.

Detroit, Nov. 19th - During the past three weeks there have been twenty-six vessels of the lake marine wiped out of existence and several others that are sunk or stranded, may not be recovered. More than half these losses have come from vessels sinking in deep water.

In 1883, when upwards of 100 vessels were totally destroyed, but five of them were sunk, while this year seventeen have gone down and fifteen are buried so deep that it is not likely that one of them will ever be raised. The first to go down was the propeller Oconto, which struck a rock in the St. Lawrence River last summer and sunk in 125 feet of water, involving a loss of nearly $100,000. The next to sink was the steam barge Milwaukee, which was run down and sunk by another steam barge while crossing Lake Michigan. Then the steamer A. Booth ran on a rock in Lake Superior while steaming through a dense fog, and went to the bottom.

Early in the fall the schooner F.J. King sprung a leak and went down in Lake Michigan while bound for Chicago with ore. The steamer Selah Chamberlain, while running at a rapid rate through a fog, was run into and sunk by the John Pridgeon, jr. The loss was $65,000. Following this the steamer W.L. Brown, of Chicago, sprung a leak and sunk in Green Bay, adding another loss of $30,000. The George M. Chase, O.M. Bond and Belle Mitchell, all canal schooners, went down in Lake Erie in one week, drowning fifteen persons. These three losses are said to be the result of the vessels being overloaded. The schooner Lady Dufferin broke from her moorings, struck a reef and sunk in Georgian Bay. The next loss was the bark Eureka, which broke away from the steamer J.H. Prentice and foundered, drowning the entire crew. Then the schooner S.J. Tilden was run into and sank by the propeller Arabia near Port Huron. The schooner M. Stalker was run down by a Canadian barge while at anchor, and sent to the bottom of the straits, and the schooner Ellen Spry sprung a leak and sunk near the Manitous. The loss of the schooner Detroit, which went down off Summer Island, swells the list to fifteen.

The lists represents vessels and cargoes worth $400,000, while the addition of other total and partial losses from various causes will give an aggregate of nearly $800,000. Among other vessels that are sunk and not included in the list of total losses are the City of Sheboygan, which lies in twenty-five feet of water near Detour, and the Canadian steamer Myles, which struck a reef and sunk at Kingston. Even though the Myles should be raised the loss on her, including cargo, will amount to $50,000.

During the season of 1885 sixty vessels, of which twenty-two were steam and thirty-eight sail craft, passed out of existence, involving a loss of $1,016,200. Fourteen of these sunk, twenty-two went ashore, nineteen were burned, four capsized and were broken up by the seas, and one, the tug Frank Moffat, was blown to pieces at Sombra by the explosion of her boilers. The wreck of the steamer Algoma at Isle Royale, L.S. on November 7th, involving a loss of $300,000, was the chief disaster on the lakes in 1885, and this year, the sinking of the steamer Oconto in the St. Lawrence river, by which $100,000 worth of property was lost.

The record of disasters during the gale of Wednesday and Thursday is an appalling one. Reports show that the following vessels foundered: Barge Emerald, near Kewaunee, five lives lost; barge F.M. Dickinson, near Kewaunee, three lives lost; two unknown schooners, one supposed to be the Helen, near Port Sherman; an unknown schooner, near Hog Island reef, and the barge Star of the North, near East Tawas, the fate of the crew being unknown.

The vessels known to have been driven ashore are: Barge Wallace and consort, on Ocolay Beach; several vessels at Presque Isle, many lives lost; schooners South Haven, near Port Sherman; Mary, near Blenheim, Ont.; Pathfinder, near Two Rivers; Cayaloga, and two scows in North Bay; P.S. Marsh and an unknown schooner at St. Ignace; Harvey Bissell, near Alpena; propeller City of New York, near Cheboygan; schooner Kolfage, near Goderich, Ont.; propeller Nashua, on Grass Island, Green Bay; barge Bissells, near Kewaunee; schr. Golden, below China Beach; propeller Belle Cross and barges, across from China Beach; schooner Florida, on Marquette Beach; the barges Buckout, McDougall, Baker, and Golden Harvest, near East Tawas; two unknown schooners on Old Mackinac reef.

Duluth, Minn., Nov. 20th - The propeller Siberia is five days over due. The propeller Cuba, in last night, reports the storm the worst known in the history of Lake Superior.

p.8 A Bridge Blown Down - over Wolfe Island canal, below Marysville.

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Nov. 20, 1886
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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. 20, 1886