Distressing Occurrence. - On Wednesday last the new and beautiful schooner Henry Clay, Capt. Duncan Campbell, of this port, bound to Cleveland, Ohio, with a cargo of 618 bbls. of salt, and having on board nine persons, was capsized in a gale and immediately sunk, near the mouth of Niagara river. The steamer Canada, Capt. Richardson, happened fortunately to be in sight of here at the time of the accident, and immediately went to the assistance of the unfortunates who were thus suddenly launched upon the boiling waters. By the most strenuous exertions he was enabled to pick up three of the hands, and the remaining six persons had sunk into a watery grave. Among them were Capt. Campbell, Charles, an interesting son of Mr. E. T. Trowbridge, of this village, aged 8 years, and two of the hands named Thomas James and Wilson Pullock, and two Irish emigrants, a man and his wife, whose names we have not learned. Capt. Campbell has a wife and five children in this village, to whom this affliction is peculiarly distressing. He had but a short time removed to this place from New-York, and this was his first voyage on our Lake. We are pleased with the expressions of sympathy by our fellow citizens of the Seaman's Friend Society, and we doubt not they will be responded to by all classes of our citizens; and that his widow, although cast among strangers and deprived of her stay and support, may find hearts that can sympathize, and hands that can render every needful assistance in this world, and thus, in a measure, soften her deep affliction. The vessel and cargo belonged to Mr. Henry Fitzhugh of this village, whose loss is estimated at about $5,000.
The melancholy news of the loss of the schr. Henry Clay, was received in town with feelings of deep and solemn interest. The Bethel flag was immediately hoisted over the chapel, half-mast high, in token of respect for the deceased, which was followed by all the shipping in port. A meeting was notified for that evening, which was crowded with a solemn audience. The following resolutions were unanimously adopted, after an highly affecting discourse by the Chaplain.
Resolved, That while we contemplate with awful reverence the sudden loss of the schr. Henry Clay, feelings of the most lively gratitude are due to Almighty God for rescuing, by his gracious interposition, three of her crew from a watery grave.
Resolved, That we deeply sympathize with our respected friends Capt. Trowbridge and Lady, for the sudden death of an interesting son. Resolved, That we tenderly sympathize with the afflicted widow of the late Captain Campbell, on the sudden death of her husband, and that we are not only desirous to extend to her the consolations of religion, but to afford any temporal assistance herself and orphan children may require.
Resolved, That in view of this awful dispensation, we feel called upon to renew our diligence in extending the blessings of the gospel to our fellow men navigating the western Lakes and rivers.
The undersigned, passengers on board the steam packet Canada, cannot refrain from expressing their admiration and praise at the perseverance and skill evinced by Capt. Richardson this day, in rescuing from a watery grave three of the crew of the schooner Henry Clay, of Oswego, which vessel was unfortunately capsized, in a violent squall, a short time after passing the Canada, on her way to the Welland Canal.
From the violence of the gale, and consequent roughness of the Lake, the saving of three persons was attended with extreme difficulty; and had it not been for the very great exertions and perseverance of Capt. Richardson, and the sailors employed by him on this occasion, under Divine Providence, not a person could have been saved.
Capt. R. En.
Josiah T. Marshall,
R. W. Prentice.
Francis G. Stanton,
Joshua G. Dix,
Wednesday, 20th July, 1831.