The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Daily News (Kingston, ON), Oct. 29, 1857

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p.2 Marine News

Another Severe Gale - Schooner Wrecked - The wind, which was in the south-east last evening, changed into the north-east during the fore-part of the night and blew a perfect gale. The Schooner Christiana, Capt. Patterson, from Picton, with a cargo of 2000 bus. barley, in attempting to come in the harbor at about eleven o'clock, under foresail and jib, lost her gaff, and in consequence she broached to, struck the pier, and in a few moments was a complete wreck. The Captain and crew (four in number) managed to get on the pier, and thereby saved their lives. Pieces of the wreck are strewn along the shore above the pier. The Christiana was a Canadian vessel, and it is probable that she was insured. The barley was consigned to George Ames. [Oswego Times 26th]

Signals of Distress Getting Useless - The following communication from a sailor not only in the professional sense, but in all the qualities of head and heart, is opportune just at this time when the lakes are stormy, and large fleets are constantly out.

Editor Commercial:- Not long since we read that the captain of the steamer Sam Ward, saw a schooner with a signal of distress flying off Point au Barques, but didn't go to her relief. Later we have an account of Capt. Harding in the Tug Salvor being broke down in Lake Michigan and lying at the mercy of the wind and sea, with a signal of distress flying; that a top-sail schooner passed along, and went on her way rejoicing, if a man with a heart in his bosom could rejoice after being guilty of so infamous an act; but fortunately for Capt. Harding another vessel came along whose master had a true sailor's heart, and towed him into port. More recently the schooner Goodell was on the rock off the East Sister, with a signal of distress flying. A propeller passed by so near that the captain of the schooner could read her name, but I forbear to give it as the captain must have been asleep, and probably all hands. It must have been so, or they could not have found it in their hearts to have passed her. [Buffalo Com. Adv.]

Wreck - The schooner Dahlia, Capt. Campbell, was wrecked on Mouse Island recently. After the vessel struck she pounded back and forth for some time, until badly stove on the starboard side, and then rested closely against the island, the shore of which, at the point where she struck, was of perpendicular jagged rocks, about twenty feet in height. The crew saved themselves by watching their opportunity between seas, and clambering up the rocks to land. This was a difficult operation, owing to the slipperiness of the rocks, and in his efforts thus to get off, the first mate, O.P. Hamilton, of Oswego, had three of his ribs broken. [Oswego Times]

Wreck of the Steamer Reindeer

Twenty-one Lives Lost - Terrific Gale and Snow Storm on the Lakes

About noon of yesterday the propeller Mears arrived in port from Big Point Sauble, bringing intelligence of the wreck of the Canadian steamer Reindeer, about 8 miles north of the Point. She also brought over Chas. Rowe, the mate of the schooner Alwilda - also lost - who communicated to us some of the particulars. On Tuesday last two men arrived at Point Sauble, almost naked, and their feet badly frozen, who informed the people of the neighborhood that they were firemen on board of the Reindeer, and that they were the sole survivors of the entire crew, she having been wrecked the previous evening. They stated that all Monday a most terrific gale blew from S.W.S., suddenly shifting to all points of the compass with a tremendous sea running. The steamer kept up pretty well all the forenoon, but in the afternoon she shipped a heavy sea, which extinguished the fires, and the Captain had no recourse left but to set the helm up and make for the beach.

For several hours in the evening the snow storm and hurricane increased in fury, and it was utterly impossible to do or see anything. Those on board could only await with anxiety the fate which they knew awaited them. At length - somewhere about midnight the steamer struck, and almost instantly the sea broke over her, and washed the whole crew into the lake, where twenty-one of them found watery graves. The two men who escaped were firemen, and they state that they are utterly unable to relate how or or in what manner they were saved. The first they knew after she struck, was when they found themselves on the rocky beach. Next day the steamer was nearly all broken to pieces, and her timbers and cargo were strewn along the shore for miles.

The Reindeer was a side-wheel steamer, known here by sailors as a "Polly-wog." She was owned by Holcomb & Henderson, of Montreal, and sailed from this port on the 16th instant, with 13,000 bushels of wheat, 61 barrels tallow, and some flour, for St. Joseph, where she was to take on some flour, and then start for Kingston. She had a crew of twenty-one, and two passengers. The name of the Captain was George Patterson, a Scotchman who belonged to Kingston. He was much respected by all who knew him. The name of the steward was James Henery, and that of the purser, Charles Bradford; but these are all the names which can be obtained from the agent of the steamer at this port. She was eight or ten years old, and was valued at from fifteen to twenty thousand dollars. The cargo was owned by Renaud and Frere, of Montreal. Both vessel and cargo were insured. [Chicago Press]

p.3 Imports - 27,28.

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Oct. 29, 1857
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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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Daily News (Kingston, ON), Oct. 29, 1857