STEAMER SOCAPA GOT THROUGH ICE FIELD.
Pounded Away For Hours And Finally Got Through South Breakwall Entrance.
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It may be said that navigation opened from this port yesterday when the steamer SOCAPA, Capt. Elmer Crane, left her berth at the West Shore Dock and departed for Lorain, where she will load coal for up the lakes. The SOCAPA had been fueled and manned for the start for over a week, but the appearance of the ice wes such as to discourage Capt. Crane. The rain of Thursday softened the field considerably and it was concluded to make the attempt to get through yesterday morning.
The steamer accordingly left her dock at 7 o'clock in tow of the tugs GEE and DANFORTH and proceeded to the breakwater, where the tugs left her. She did not go far beyond the wall, however. While the ice was found to be soft it was driven in to this end of the lake in great quantities, and after bucking it unsuccessfully for a couple of hours the steamer turned about and ran in on the inside of the wall. It was reported that there was a long stretch of open water at the south end of the wall, so Capt. Crane worked his vessel on down and soon saw that he could get up the lake quite a distance before striking the field. It was reported that if he could get up as far as Point Abino he would find easy going, so without halting he proceeded into the ice jam.
His maneuvers were watched with interest and it was thought by many that he would never be able to get through. He kept at it, however, and was finally seen to make some headway. Finally, about 3 o'clock the SOCAPA was seen to draw steadily away, and at 4:30 P. M. was quite out of sight.
Reports from up the lakes would indicate that no further trouble will fall to the SOCAPA. She is one of the Tomlinson fleet and is a 500 footer. The only other boats now ready to go are the W. A. ROGERS, lying at the breakwater, and the big steamer WOLVIN, lying at Coxe Brothers coal dock.
Buffalo Sunday Morning News
Sunday, April 1, 1906
Steam screw SOCAPA. U. S. No. 202088. Of 6,272 tons gross; 4,826 tons net. Built West Bay City, Mich, 1905. Home port, Duluth, Minn. 504.0 x 54.0 x 26.7 Freight service. Crew of 25. Of 1,800 indicated horsepower.
Merchant Vessel List, U. S., 1909
SOCAPA.* Built May 20, 1905 Bulk Propeller -Steel
U. S. No. 202088 6272 gt -4826 nt 504' x 54' x 26.7'
* Renamed (b) GEORGE G. BARNUM - US -1915
(c) HENNEPIN - US -1936
Converted to se1f-un1oader in 1957.
Frank Wheeler & Co., West Bay City Shipbuilding Master List
Institute for Great Lakes Research