The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Detroit Gazette (Detroit, MI), 24 Oct. 1823, page 1

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We noticed in our last the safe return of the steam-boat Superior, to Buffalo; since which, the following communication has been forwarded us for publication, by a passenger in the boat.--Utica Ga..

"As an evil report spreads faster than a good one, you probably have heard that the Steam-Boat Superior was lost in Lake Michigan, on her passage to Green Bay. The false rumor probably originated in the circumstance of her having touched at one of the islands to take in wood, at which time some Indian canoes passed at a distance.--When they arrived at Mackinac they reported that she had gone ashore; which they really supposed to be the fact, and offered to join a party to go to her aid. This rumor went to Drummond's island, and so rapid was the spread of the report from thence, that it reached Detroit, thence down Lake Erie, &c. four or five days ahead of the safe returning boat. She was absent six days longer than had been advertised, owing to bad weather from mackinac to the Bay; but she sustained no injury whatever. Returning, she sailed from Detroit on Saturday, the 6th September, in a storm of rain. The captain would not have left port in such unfavorable weather, but for the anxiety he apprehended would be felt below on account of the rumor afloat that he was lost. After leaving the mouth of Detroit river, the storm increased; the captain, with his accustomed prudence, put back and anchored. The storm having abated a little, he got under weigh at eight o'clock on the morning of the 7th calculating to make Sandusky Bay.--The wind soon increased to a violent gale, and it was impossible to make Sandusky.--Put-in-Bay was to us, what it has been to many a vessel in distress, a harbor of safety; where we rode at anchor till the 9th. We lost some wood, and one of the hands, whose death was cause by a fall; but the boat itself sustained not the least damage, and maintained her character as The Superior. In this gale, during the heaviest part of which we were out, there were some of the best schooners that navigate these lakes lost. The Erie, Captain Peas, a fine vessel, well manned, a discreet and able captain, was capsized, nearly opposite Cleaveland; her masts were cut away, when she righted, and drifted ashore, with fourteen passengers and crew all safe.

"The advantage a steam-boat has over a vessel, in a gale, is decided, and appears obvious; her steam power enables her to keep off from a lee shore. Perhaps it will be said that the Walk-in-the-water went ashore. True; but had she been well built, (as every vessel, steam or other, should be, to weather the hurricanes of Lake Erie,) she would not have gone ashore. The present boat was built upon the knowledge obtained in the disaster of the Walk-in-the-water. A more staunch vessel, of her size, perhaps, was never afloat. to say she is well commanded would hardly be doing Captain Rogers justice; for, in addition to all the qualifications of a good captain, he adds those of a gentleman in an eminent degree.

"It is a remarkable fact, that Lake Erie is 32 inches higher than it was in 1820, as measured at the dock at Portland. The Sandusky marshes are therefore under water for a great distance back from the Lake."

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24 Oct. 1823
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Dave Swayze
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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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Detroit Gazette (Detroit, MI), 24 Oct. 1823, page 1