The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Algonquin (Schooner), 2 Jun 1845

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      Up to this period, the American Fur Company has principally monopolized the fisheries of the fresh water ocean of the north west, and that company, with the Hudson Bay Company, the trade of the vast region beyond Lake Huron, stretching away to the mouth of the Columbia River on the west, with Hudson's bay on the north. As far as possible, they have hitherto kept the public in ignorance of their operations, particularly pertaining to the fisheries under their control. But the rapidly increasing demand for lake fish, together with the information obtained the past season in regard to the practicability of established fisheries on Lake Superior, as well as the exhaustless resources of that great fish pond, have induced several of our enterprising citizens to associate under the style of the Cleveland North Western Lake Company, for the purpose of establishing fishing stations on Lake Superior, and embarking in the north western trade generally. The principal members of the company, are Messrs. Mendenhall & Richardson and the Messrs. Converses. The ALGONQUIN, a new schooner of 60 tons, purchased and fitted up expressly for the expedition, sailed from this port for Sault Ste. Marie last week. The company intend to take their vessel over land, and the Canada side of the Sault, this fall - launch it into the river above, and be ready for operations on Lake Superior with the opening of navigation next spring. They will have to raise the schooner from the water below the Sault - place it on ways - and slide it something more than half a mile of before launching. Considering the climate, the difficulty of obtaining machinery and help, and the elevation of obstacles to be surmounted - the undertaking would seem herculean to most persons, and impracticable to many. In connection with their business in this city, the company intend to establish a trading post at the Sault and erect a store house the coming winter, and in the spring establish a post at La Point, on Lake Superior. They apprehend no serious opposition from the companies that have so long monopolized the fisheries and trade of the north west, and enter upon the new enterprise with a zeal and determination characteristic of the universal Yankee nation, in seeking every avenue to the source of prosperity and wealth. The services of a skillful captain and competent pilot have been secured, and should success crown the expedition, it will probably become the nucleus of extensive future operations. The single craft, with her bold and hardy adventurers from this port, will prove the pioneer in opening to honorable competition, the treasures of commerce of the father of lakes, and when the Ship Canal at St. Marie is completed, will be followed by hundreds of sail laden with products yet unappreciated, and just beginning to be known as important items in the trade of the lakes. Success to the new enterprise. - Cleveland Herald.
      Oswego Palladium
      Wednesday, Nov. 20, 1839
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      The schooners UNCLE TOM and SWALLOW have been safely launched into Lake Superior, after being drawn around the falls of St. Mary. There are now upon the lake, the ALGONQUIN, UNCLE TOM and SWALLOW. A new brig is being put up on the shores of the lake by O. Newberry, of this city. Success to the new trade. - Detroit Adv.
      Daily National Pilot, Buffalo
      Monday, June 2, 1845

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      Sault Ste. Marie, June 3, 1845
      FROM LAKE SUPERIOR - The schooner ALGONQUIN arrived yesterday with about 3 tons of Copper mineral from the Pittsburg Co. Works, being the first sent down this season. It is to be sent to Boston. It is packed up in half barrels, weighing about 300 lbs. each, and is said to be worth $220 per ton, delivered in Boston.
      Daily National Pilot, Buffalo
      Friday, June 13, 1845

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      (From the Detroit Free Press)
We notice in some of our exchange papers, various accounts of the number of vessels on Lake Superior, which are very imperfect. Many seem to be under the impression that until a few years past, there were no vessels of any considerable tonnage on that Lake. This is an error.
As early as I806, the fur companies owned two or three schooners that navigated those waters - Mr. Houghton, in his excellent work on the minerals of the section, gives an account of several. The schooner "RECOVERY," belonging to the British North-Western Company, before the last war. As soon as the two countries were known to be at odds, a stratagem was resorted to in order to save her. She was secreted in a narrow bay, on the south side of Isle Royal, and stripped of her spars, and covered with brush wood, where she lay until peace was declared. She was afterwards run down the rapids of the Ste. Marie, and used in the lumber trade on Lake Erie, by Capt. Fellows. -- Her hull now lies off Fort Erie.
The schooner "MINK," was in commission there before the war. She was also run down the rapids, and Tom Hammond, an Officer, who served under the gallant Perry on Lake Erie, employed her as a freighting craft for some years in this vicinity. She was finally sunk in the River Rouge, a few miles below us.
The third vessel, from Lake Superior, which had been employed there - name not recollected - was run down the rapids, and unfortunately went to pieces.
From I8I5 to I822, we learn from Mr. Houghton's work, the Lake was navigated by only a small schooner.
Some twelve years since, the fur business was again prosecuted with much success, and the American Fur Company built the "ASTOR" of II2 tons. Her timbers were got out at Charleston, O., in the fall of I834, and was shipped to the Sou in the Spring following, by Oliver Newbury Esq.- the timber and plank was carried to the head of the rapids and put together. She was finished in August, and was sailed for La Pointe, by Capt. C.G. Stannard, who continued to command her until I842, when his brother took charge of her. She was wrecked at Copper Harbor in I844, where her hull is still to be seen.
In I837,the fur company built two other vessels of some 20 tons each; one of them, however, was never launched. The "MADELINE" was sailed by Capt. Angus, and employed in the fish trade.
In I838,the fur company built the schooner "Wm. BREWSTER" of 73 tons, John Wood, master. Four years after she was run down the falls, and is, we believe, now on Lake Erie.
The fleet on the Lake is now rapidly increasing. Since the mines on it's shore have commenced working, considerable tonnage is required, and will rapidly increase yearly. The present force on the lake is:
Steamboat JULIA PALMER 280 tons
Propeller INDEPENDENCE 280
Schooner NAPOLEON 180 tomns
Schooner ALGONQUIN 70 tons
Schooner MERCHANT 70 tons
Schooner SWALLOW 71 tons
Schooner UNCLE TOM about 40 tons
Schooner CHIPPEWA about 40 tons
Schooner FUR TRADER about 40 tons
Schooner SISKAWIT about 40 tons
      The Daily Courier
      Saturday, July 17, 1847
      . . . . .
      The Pride of the Lakes in 1840.
The resurrection of the schooner ALGONQUIN, one of the first to engage in the Lake Superior trade, is of unusual interest, and the suggestion that she be rebuilt and rigged out for exhibition at the World's Fair is worthy the attention of marine interests. Dredging Contractor Moran unearthed the hull at East Superior and it was drawn out onto the shore. The ALGONQUIN was built at Black River in 1839 by Capt. G.W. Jones. She was 60 feet long and 19 feet beam, had two masts and could carry from 50 to 60 tons. Capt. J.D. Aligns, still living at Bayfield, Wis., decided to put the vessel into the fur trade on Lake Superior and hauled her nearly two miles overland around St. Mary's falls. The then large schooner did a passenger and freight business that might be envied by some of the large line boats of today. She carried flour front the Sault to Superior for $1.25 a barrel and her arrival at Superior created more of a sensation than the launching of a whale. Shortly after the boat was sold to Anton Gordon she sprang a leak at the Superior dock, where she has quietly lain for a quarter of a century. Capt. John McKay, Capt. George P. McKay's father, moved to the Sault in 1845 to take charge of the ALGONQUIN which was then engaged by a Boston firm that was prospecting for copper. Captains Rockwood, Goldsmith and Southwick commanded the vessel at different times. It is probable that the recovery of this pioneer commerce builder on the lakes will be celebrated at Superior with appropriate ceremony.
      Marine Review
      June 25, 1891

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vessels on Lake Superior
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William R. McNeil
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Maritime History of the Great Lakes
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Algonquin (Schooner), 2 Jun 1845