The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Daily News (Kingston, ON), Nov. 17, 1870

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p.2 Port Rowan, Nov. 17th - The steam-barge Empire, of Detroit, bound for Buffalo, with a cargo of lumber and shingles, sprung a leak off this harbour last night. The Captain run her for shore. She struck about a mile above the new cut and about a half a mile from the beach. About half an hour after striking she went to pieces. The crew, fourteen in number, had a very narrow escape. They succeeded in making rafts and drifted ashore on the lumber which is strewn all along the beach.

The Steamer Picton - The new steamer Picton, built at Mill Point by Mr. P.F. McQuaig, to run on the route between Belleville and Montreal, in connection with the St. Helen, is expected to make her first trip downwards this week.

The Late Wreck Near Picton - The late disastrous wreck of the schooner Jessie, near Picton, which resulted not only in the loss of the vessel and cargo, but also the life of the entire crew, four of whom belonged to Kingston, has given rise to serious suggestions, both from parties interested in shipping and the press of this vicinity, for the immediate establishment of a life boat service on the most exposed and dangerous points along the coast of Prince Edward. The Picton Times, in referring to this subject, says:- "Either life boats or powerful tugs, built especially for the purpose, might be despatched to look out for vessels helpless and drifting upon certain destruction." After speaking of the many instances of which this mode of assistance has been instrumental in saving innumerable lives on the coasts of Ireland and England during heavy gales, it goes on to state:- "The expense of fitting up such boats would, no doubt, be considerable, and probably too great for private resources, but why should it not be assumed by the Government? .....For purposes of defence against warlike aggression, money is spent without stint. Why then against appalling calamities such as will again and again occur, as surely as the sun will rise tomorrow, should not provision for rescue be made without reference to expenditure?"


The propeller Europe, of the Merchant Line, and sister propeller of the Shickluna, recently burned at Port Colborne, passed down this morning on her first trip from St. Catherines to Montreal with a cargo of 3,300 ? barrels of flour and apples.

The steamers Osprey and Passport, both bound upwards, were detained at Swift's wharf today, owing to the heavy south wind which prevailed on the lake.

Gone To Pieces - The schooner Ben Flint, which recently capsized and drifted ashore on Big Point Sauble, has gone to pieces. Her topsides have been washed upon the beach near where she struck, and the bottom drifted several miles north, where it also stranded. Much of the ill-fated schooner's outfit was saved in good condition. The lumber and timber which formed her cargo are scattered along the shore for miles, and will prove nearly a total loss to the owners.

The Union Burned - The tug Union was burned to the water's edge and sunk - a total loss - at Saginaw on Tuesday night. She was out on the bay on the lookout for a tow, and while the crew were at supper the flames burst out through the deck. The hands had barely time to launch the yawl and make their escape, so rapid was the spread of the flames. The fire broke out when she was a few miles from the Au Gres Point. The crew landed near Saginaw. The vessel belonged to B. Boutelle, who was on board at the time of the fire, and W. Mitchell and Wm. Westover. She was insured for $7,000.

Breaking Up - The continued rough weather has rendered impossible any attempt to recover the machinery of the steamer Orion, wrecked a short time since at Grand Haven. The engine is reported to be badly damaged, but not entirely ruined. The shaft broke recently, and let one of the wheels drop to the bottom of the lake, where it now lies with the piece of broken shaft to which it is attached, projecting above the surface of the water.

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Nov. 17, 1870
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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), Nov. 17, 1870