The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Oswego Palladium (Oswego, NY), Tuesday, May 12, 1874

Full Text
A Bright Sky A Smooth Lake and a fair Breeze for the Bolivia

The launch of Ald. Morgan M. Wheeler's new schooner from the foot of West Third st., took place at ten o'clock this morning. Although the notice of the hour of launch was short, an immense throng of people gathered on the beach, the hills and the piers. the bright smiles of handsome women and the happy joyous laughter of innocent youth lent to the scene a gala appearance and stalwart men looked happy when they thought that Neptune was to receive another bride. At ten o'clock precisely the last wedges were drive home, the after and centre blocks removed and the handsome vessel started with the spring of an athlete, tripping the forward blocks and as she proceeded on her journey increasing the momentum which was to carry her clear off the shore out on to the bosom of Ontario.

At the main truck in a bundle was the burgee and as the vessel started the halliards were pulled and a flag bearing the name of the new craft, Bolivia, after one of the South American states, was unfolded to the breeze. Cheers from the throats of the hundreds who were on deck of the vessel went up when she started, and were answered from the shore by the other cheers and waving of hats and handkerchiefs. From the time the schooner first started, up to the time she was out on the lake, there was no halt, nothing in fact act to mar the pleasure of the crowd. Her stern cleaved the water cleanly and when her bow for the first time struck blue Ontario it flirted back to the shore, wavelets of joy in response to the well wishes of the crowd.

The frames of the new schooner were chopped out last December, her keel laid in January, and since then she has grown under the watchful eye of not only the owner but thousands of people who have visited the shore. The Bolivia is the largest vessel ever built at this port, and will, we think, prove the greatest carrier.

She has an easy sheer, true to the line, with a good run and entrance, and although she appeared a little full on the stocks, yet in the water she is as clean as any of the canal vessels. The timber used in her construction was selected by Ald. Wheeler and is of the best oak, while her fastenings are as solid as can be made with iron. She is a three and after, well fitted and furnished, and has everything required by a first class vessel, which she is.

Her dimensions are: Length over all 143 feet, beam 26 feet 2 ½ inches, depth of hold, in the shoalest place, 12 feet, 3 inches, and measures about 360 tons. She will carry about 20,000 bushels of wheat through the canal or over 25,000 bushels to Buffalo. She was built from the moulds and under the supervision of Mr. Peter Dufrane, a first class mechanic, who for many years had charge of Shicklunas ship yard at St. Catharines and reflects credit upon his skill and workmanship. The cabin, which is without doubt one of the largest and most tasty of any on the lakes, was built by Archie Preston. It is finished in grand style, has a new feature, inside blinds on the windows, and is painted in handsome colors, nicely blended and grained in imitation of black walnut and curly maple.

Morris Welch, the artist, has no reason to fear a comparison with any work. The hull of the schooner is painted with good taste, disregarding the the usual barber pole style, and was done by G. Skinner, while the stern of the schooner is a picture indeed, painted by J.G. Phillips. The wire rigging was furnished by Daniel Lyons, while the other rigging and running gear is from the well known ship chandlery of Captain J.M. Barrow. H.W. Green, who sails always fit like a glove, furnishes the sails.

The Bolivia is owned by Ald. Morgan M. Wheeler, who now has a fleet of five schooners and cost ready for sea $25,000. She will be commanded by Captain David Bothwell, formerly of the Jamaica, a thorough competent seaman who is always on time. As soon as the centre board is shipped the new schooner will load and take her departure for Chicago. We wish her fair winds and high freights and success to her enterprising owner.

@Oswego Daily Palladium

Media Type:
Item Type:
This vessel was built by Goble, although not directly mentioned here.
Date of Original:
Tuesday, May 12, 1874
Local identifier:
Language of Item:
Richard Palmer
Copyright Statement:
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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Oswego Palladium (Oswego, NY), Tuesday, May 12, 1874