The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
John Plankinton (Propeller), 1 Apr 1887

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The new steamship, JOHN PLANKINTON, on the stocks at Wolf & Davidson's shipyard is named after one of Milwaukee's business men. The new vessel will be the largest ever built at a Lake Michigan port. She will compare favorably with the largest wooden steamships afloat on the lakes. An idea can be had from the fact that she is 306 feet long and is expected to carry 2,800 tons of coal or 100,00 bushels of corn, and will cost $150,000. She is to have a triple expansion engine, the first of its kind ever put into a vesel at Milwaukee, and only two of which are as yet in use on the lakes and is being built by the S.F. Hodge & Company, of Detroit. The engine is 20 and 32 and 54 by 42 inches stroke. Two Scotch boilers 11 and a half feet long and 12 feet in diameter, to carry 150 pounds of steam. She is to have steam steering gear, windlass and capstan, and hoisting pony engine on deck, having in all eight engines beside her big engine Her wheel will be 13 feet.
      The Marine Record
      Thurs.April 14, 1887 p.2

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new vessel building
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William R. McNeil
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Maritime History of the Great Lakes
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John Plankinton (Propeller), 1 Apr 1887