J. H. Mead (Schooner), U75722, 23 Jun 1916
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WEATHER-BEATEN SCHR. BIDS FAREWELL TO LAKES AFTER 40 YEARS.
Could she but speak the language of mortals, the weather-beaten schooner J. H. MEAD would unfold a tale of pioneer days on the Great Lakes, paramount to "Sinbad the Sailor" for wild adventure and every bit the equal of the best sea stories for genuine romance.
Simply to look at the old MEAD as she lay along the dock of the T. Sullivan Lumber Co., unloading her cargo of hemlock several days ago, was to think back fifty years to the generation when sailing vessels ruled the lakes, and few were the peer of the J. H. MEAD. This is attested by the plain fact she has ridden the storms of her long life without suffering the maladies of old age.
'Twas a sight for old and young to see the MEAD come sailing down the lake under full sail, canvas straining in the breeze and her long bowsprit dipping to "smell the bottom" then pointing to the sun. She came in from a Michigan port and went to the foot of Austin Street, and her consignee's dock, by way of the ship canal. Spectators lined the canal banks to witness the passage.
Ships of the MEAD type - staunch wooden boats of years ago - fast are passing into the Valhalla of all good boats. Less than six remain. Not with restlessness, they are not remaining idle. Lumber men prefer the old wooden schooners. In fact, the modern boats are not practicable for lumber carrying. There is a terrifying scarcity of wooden "bottoms" this season. Buffalo lumber dealers have prophesied that a few more seasons will see the creation of a new breed - the steel lumber boats, built for the lumber trade exclusively.
For the J. H. MEAD this was her last trip on the Great Lakes. Upon unloading her cargo she proceeded through the Welland Canal to the St. Lawrence River and the sea, where she has been sold into cost-wise service for a New York firm.
Salt water men prize the stocky wooden boats. They are recruiting them at any price at all to get them to ocean trade. Consequently, when the MEAD arrived in Buffalo, it was her farewell voyage over the fresh waters she has sailed for more than forty years.
Buffalo Daily Courier
June 25, 1916
Schooner J.H. MEAD. U. S. No. 75722. Of 409.03 tons gross; 388.58 tons net. Built Sheboygan, Wis., 181874. Home port, Chicago, Ill. 171.0 x 29.0 x 11.0
Merchant Vessel List, U. S., 1897
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- gone to ocean
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- William R. McNeil
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- Copyright status unknown. Responsibility for determining the copyright status and any use rests exclusively with the user.
Maritime History of the Great Lakes