Great Lakes Fleet Page Vessel Feature -- Mapleglen
By George Wharton
Launched May 5, 1960; this traditional styled straight deck bulk carrier was built as hull #165 by Collingwood Shipyards, Collingwood, ON and was christened as Carol Lake for Carryore Ltd., Montreal, PQ (later St. Catharines, ON). She is powered by a 9,350 horsepower General Electric steam turbine engine burning heavy fuel oil giving her a rated service speed of 17.8 m.p.h. and is equipped with a bow thruster. Her 21 hatches feed into 6 holds where she can carry 24,400 tons at maximum Seaway draft of 26 feet and is capable of carrying 26,100 tons at her maximum mid-summer draft of 27 feet 1.5 inches.
Carryore Ltd. began operations in 1959 with bulk carrier Menihek Lake followed by the Carol Lake; both vessel comprising the entire fleet. Both vessels, built new for the fleet, were constructed to take advantage of the 'new' dimensions allowed for transiting the newly completed St. Lawrence Seaway from Montreal to Lake Ontario. At the time these vessels were laid down, the announced maximum length allowed was to be 715 feet. Although Carryore was a Canadian based company, its shareholders were American. National Steel owned 44% of the shares with Youngstown Sheet and Tube, Armco Steel, Hanna Mining, and Wheeling Pittsburgh owning the remainder. Hanna later acquired the Armco shares and managed the fleet. Since Carryore's mission was the movement of Labrador ore to the steel ports on the Great Lakes, both vessels were named for lakes in the Labrador region. As part of Carryore's small fleet, Carol Lake's activity was consequently focused on hauling iron ore from Gulf of St. Lawrence ports to various Great Lakes ports with some return loads of grain back to St. Lawrence River ports.
While sailing under the Carryore banner, the Carol Lake was involved in a couple of reportable incidents. On September 14, 1962, she was in collision with the Horace S. Wilkinson in the Welland Canal causing serious damage to the latter vessel. On October 20, 1976, she struck a lock wall in the St. Lawrence Seaway causing $75,000.00 damage.
After being laid up in Hamilton in 1985 following the demise of the Carryore operation; Algoma Central Corp., Sault Ste. Marie, ON purchased the Carol Lake in 1986 renaming her Algocape(1) in 1987. As part of the Algoma fleet, her activities continued in the grain and iron ore trades but she was often laid up due to fluctuations in the grain industry.
The Algocape was sold to P.& H. Shipping Ltd. (Parrish & Heimbecker), Mississauga, ON and was renamed Mapleglen(2) in 1994. The vessel's namesake is the maple tree; a long-time symbol of Canada, combined with the common fleet suffix "glen". The name had been chosen without knowing at the time that there had been an earlier vessel in the Canadian registry with that name. The Mapleglen(1) entered service in Buffalo, NY, June 1, 1887 as the wooden-hulled bulk steamer Wyoming. She was 241 feet ling, 39.75 feet in beam, 14.75 feet in depth, and 1952.8 GRT. The Wyoming came into Canadian registry in 1919 when acquired by Canada Steamship Lines and was renamed Mapleglen at that time. She sailed for the fleet until 1925 when she was abandoned and scuttled in Lake Ontario off Amherst Island near Kingston, ON. The vessel is actually preserved as a dive site today.
Parrish & Heimbecker is well established in the grain business and used the Mapleglen and her fleetmate Oakglen to carry grain products to elevators in ports such as Owen Sound, Midland, Goderich, and Port Colborne, ON as well as St. Lawrence River ports. Return loads of iron ore or coke rounded out the Mapleglen's activities. The Mapleglen actually sailed under the P. & H. Shipping banner, a company founded in 1982 to carry the parent company's grain cargoes following the demise of Soo River Co. who had been under contract to handle much of Parrish & Heimbecker's grain for a number of years. Throughout her tenure with Algoma and P. & H., the Mapleglen had no serious incidents.
On July 9, 2001; the Mapleglen with her fleetmate Oakglen were purchased with their contracts by Canada Steamship Lines thus giving CSL additional grain-carrying capacity without having to commit these cargoes to their self-unloaders. The Mapleglen retained her black hull but was given the CSL colors on her stack and the CSL houseflag beside her name.
Capacity (tons) 26,100
Photo of MAPLEGLEN at Port Colborne