THE STEAMER CITY OF BUFFALO. - The hull of this far famed steamer has been purchased by Hon. E.S. Prosser, of this city, who will convert her into a propeller. She is of about the same tonnage as the steamer WESTERN METROPOLIS, recently converted into a bark, and now in commission, having made two round trips between this port and Chicago. The CITY OF BUFFALO, when completed, will be larger than any propeller on the lakes by some four hundred and fifty tons, and will have a carrying capacity of about forty-five to forty-eight thousand bushels of corn. There is a tendency now and has been for several years, to increase the size of propellers as well as sailing vessels, and if the reason why is asked, it is because large class vessels can carry cheaper and will make more money than small ones.
Buffalo Daily Courier
Monday, June 22, 1863
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A MAMMOTH PROPELLER. -- The magnificent steamers CITY OF BUFFALO and WESTERN METROPOLIS, that were the finest floating palaces ever moved upon the lakes, have passed from their original form, the former having been converted into a mammoth propeller and the latter into a splendid barque, both vessels being the largest of their class now on the lakes. We have before given a description of the barque WESTERN METROPOLIS. In her reconstruction fifty feet was cut from her bow, leaving 275 feet long. During the season of 11863 she made several trips between this port and Chicago, in one of which she brought from Chicago a cargo of 72,500 bushels of oats, and on another 45,500 bushels of wheat and a thousand barrels of provisions. The CITY OF BUFFALO, in changing her to a propeller, has the same sized hull as when originally built for a steamer, being 331 feet long, 40 feet beam and 15 feet 9 inches hold, and will have a measure of 2,000 tons Government measurement. The alteration is being made at the yard of Bidwell & Mason; although she is not yet completed the work has so far progressed that she has been launched, her arches and hull greatly strengthened, and her new boiler and engine are in place. It is believed she can carry 100,000 bushels of oats or an equal tonnage of other grain. The boiler and engine are from the engine works of David Bell, of this city, the latter being 50-inch cylinder and 38 inch stroke. The boiler is tubular, and designed to make sufficient steam to give her speed adequate to her immense carrying capacity. The day of small vessels is fast passing away, and this mammoth propeller when compared with the first vessel of 47 73-95 tons, registered in the District of Buffalo Creek in the year 1817, will indicate the changes in the character of our lake vessels.
Buffalo Daily Courier
December 16, 1863
THE STEAMER CITY OF BUFFALO. --- The magnificent steamer CITY OF BUFFALO, so well known as one of the grandest of Floating Palaces ever navigating the lakes has been altered into a screw steamer, designed for carrying freight. The alteration was made during the past winter, at the ship-yard of Mason & Bidwell. This screw steamer is 330 feet long, 40 foot beam, 15 feet hold, and her tonnage, government measurement, is 1742 (?) tons.
Her engine is 50 inch bore, and 28 inch stroke. Her screw propeller wheel is of the Philadelphia pattern, and is 12 feet in diameter. They were made by David Bell, of this city.
She can carry, in 12-1/2 feet draught of water, 1500 tons, which is equal to 50,000 bushels of wheat. She is to be commanded by Captain T.W. Steele, who was for several years, master of the propeller GALENA, of the New York Central Line. He is an experienced and skillful Lake Navigator, and his ability entitles him to be master of this mammoth propeller, the largest navigating the lakes.
She is owned by Hon, E. S. Prosser, and will soon leave for Chicago. Her powerful engine and fine model will probably give her greater speed than any propeller navigating the lakes.
Buffalo Commercial Advertiser
April 21, 1864