The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Charter (Propeller), aground, 21 Aug 1856

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Propeller CHARTER, cargo oats, flour and rye, started a leak and was run ashore near Fairport.
      Buffalo Commercial Advertiser
      January 31, 1857 (1856 casualty list)

      . . . . .

      PROPELLER ASHORE. - The Cleveland Plains Dealer of yesterday contains the following:
"On Tuesday evening the propeller CHARTER, Capt. Maxwell, left this port for Buffalo, having on board 780 bbls flour 900 bushels corn, and 3,800 bushels oats. The gale from the north-west increased in violence and the sea was very heavy. When nearly off Grand River she sprung a leak, and efforts were made to gain that port; but the water gained so fast on her as to put out her fires, and she went ashore not far from the mouth of that river. Her load of flour floated off her deck, and lies on the beach. Her hold is full of water, and the corn and oats will probably mostly be lost. Her flour was insured in the Corn Exchange Insurance Co. Mr. Bond, the agent of the American Transportation Company, went down on the propeller SANDUSKY to her last evening, and returned this morning, confident of being able to put her afloat in a few days by means of pumps.
      Buffalo Daily Republic
      Saturday, August 23, 1856

      . . . . .

      The propeller CHARTER of the American Transportation Co., was sunk six miles above Fairport at 6 A. M. Aug. 21. The captain and crew were saved. The propeller NIAGARA has gone to her assistance with a pump.
      Daily Democratic Press
      August 25, 1856

      . . . . .

      ABANDONED. - The Cleveland Herald, of Yesterday, says all attempts to get off the propeller CHARTER are unavailing, and she has been abandoned, the storms, since her going on, have so seriously injured her hull as to convince her owners that she can be of no further use. Her engine and other things of value, will be taken out immediately. Her upper works have been cut away, and her officers and crew today ordered to come here. The propeller BACKUS came up last night, with the vessels in tow which were sent down several days since to assist in getting her off. Her cargo of corn, oats and flour are of course wet, but what disposition will be made of them, we have not learned. She belongs to the American Transportation Company.
      Buffalo Daily Republic
      Friday, August 29, 1856

      . . . . .

      The American Transportation Company have contracted with Isaac Coffin of Fairport, for the raising of the propeller CHARTER, and her delivery here at the marine railway of Stevens & Presley. - Cleveland Herald, 12.
      Buffalo Daily Republic
      September 13, 1856

      . . . . .

      Mr. Green, the submarine explorer, has taken up his head-quarters at Detroit, and will during the season, make descents to a number of steamboat wrecks, with the view of recovering machinery and other property. Among them are the following: The NORTHERN INDIANA, sunk at Point Pelee in 1854; the WISCONSIN, sunk at West Sister Island, near Sandusky, in 1852; the CHESAPEAKE, sunk near Conneaut about the year 1847; the NORTHERNER, sunk some years since near the foot of Lake Huron; the propeller CHARTER, sunk off Fairport in 1855; and the propeller CITY OF OSWEGO, sunk 16 miles below Cleveland in 1855. The OSWEGO had a cargo of merchandise worth some $15,000, part of which it is thought, may yet be available. The CHESAPEAKE also had some freight. The other boats named contained but little of value aside from their machinery.
      Buffalo Daily Republic & Times
      Thursday, April 29, 1858

      . . . . .
Steamer CHARTER, 197 tons, built Huron, Ohio, 1849. Rig changed to propeller March 22, 1853. Vessel stranded August 21, 1856 about 6 miles above Fairport, Ohio. No lives lost.
      Merchant Steam Vessels of the U.S.A.
      1790 - 1869, Lytle - Holdcamper List

Media Type:
Item Type:
Reason: aground
Lives: nil
Hull damage: $6,000
Cargo: $3,000
Freight: oats, rye, flour
Remarks: Total loss
Date of Original:
Local identifier:
Language of Item:
Geographic Coverage:
  • Ohio, United States
    Latitude: 41.75004 Longitude: -81.27399
William R. McNeil
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Charter (Propeller), aground, 21 Aug 1856