The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Globe (Propeller), exploded boiler & sunk, 8 Nov 1860


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Propeller GLOBE, exploded her boiler while lying at the wharf at Chicago and sunk. Total loss with 16 lives.
      Buffalo Morning Express
      March 11, 1861. (Casualty List, 1860)

      . . . . .

      ANOTHER PROPELLER EXPLODED - A COMPLETE WRECK. - A special dispatch to Capt. E.P. Dorr from Chicago, states that the propeller GLOBE exploded in the harbor, and is a complete wreck. It is not known whether there was any lives lost or not - The
Captain, Amos Pratt, is however, safe. The GLOBE is an old vessel that was built in 1848 at Trenton, Mich., and altered over seven years ago into a propeller. She is rated as B 2, and valued at $17,000. She is owned by W.O. Brown of this city, and had no doubt just arrived at her dock in Chicago from this port. She was loaded, when she left here, with 5 or 6,000 bbls. of green apples and some other freight, from Messrs. Little & Arnold, and H.H. Howe.
      Buffalo Daily Republic
      Thursday, November 8, 1860

      . . . . .

      The prop. GLOBE burst her boiler at Chicago yesterday forenoon, and is a perfect wreck. Several persons were killed, the names of whom will be found in the telegraphic report, and a number were seriously injured. The GLOBE was an old boat, and probably had a defective boiler. She was built to run as a side-wheel steamboat, and several years ago was altered into a propeller, making the largest boat of that class on the lakes. She never was considered a profitable investment, and was valued at only $15,000, of which amount $10,000 will be recovered on the insurance. She was built at Trenton, and was owned in Buffalo. She probably had freight on board, which will be lost or damaged.
      The frequency of these boiler explosions on the lakes has excited much comment, and with good reason. The number that have ocurred this season gives reason to suppose that the lakes will soon rival the Mississippi in its palmiest days, for they have come thick and fast. The only plausible reason is that the boats have been neglected, on account of the falling off in business, and that either the engineers or the boilers are very bad, probably the latter. The boats heve been run as long as they could be run without repairs, and now the results begin to display themselves.
      Detroit Free Press
      November 9, 1860

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      T H E E X P L O S I O N O F T H E G L O B E.
      The Chicago Journal comes to us with the particulars of the explosion of the propeller GLOBE, Capt. Amos Pratt, on Thursday morning, at her dock in Chicago:
      The GLOBE arrived in Chicago Thursday morning, with eight or nine passengers and a cargo of apples and hardware. At the time of the accident all the passengers had left the boat. The engineers and firemen were in the engine room taking off a cylinder head. The steam had been blown off from one of the boilers and the fire put out. The other boiler had but little steam on, as they had just commenced getting it up to hoist freight. The second mate says there were not more than ten pounds on at the time.
      While thus engaged the boiler exploded with terrific force, tearing the propeller into atoms, and strewing the housetops, streets and the river with the splintered debris.
The dead bodies taken from the ruins were those of Mary Ann Golden, a little girl who was picking up apples on the dock; James Hobbie, of Chicago, who had just stepped on board; Patrick Donohoe, who was walking along the street when a piece of the wreck fell on his head; David Gibbons, of Chicago; Peter Barnhard, of Erie, Pa., was taken out alive, and died soon afterwards. The total number supposed to have been killed is fifteen. The crew of the GLOBE numbered twenty five in all, and it is supposed that the most of them were on board. Benjamin Wilson, First engineer; Richard Forsyth, Second engineer, and four firemen are known to have been killed.
David Dunn, a drayman, was very badly injured by a falling beam; John Haydon of Rochester, N.Y., was injured about the head, but will likely recover; Julien Hatch, living on Wells Street, had his leg terribly cut below the knee; Michael Cusick was severely injured about the head, and lies in a precarious condition; O.H. Salisbury was blown into the river, but he escaped with slight injuries; N. Luddington, Lumber merchant, who was driving along Wells Street, in a buggy, was knocked out of it by a falling beam.
      He was badly injured upon the hand and side, but will recover; C.H. Burns, the clerk of the boat was blown into the air some distance, fell upon the hurricane deck, and escaped with some slight injuries upon the head and hip; Robert Stoddard, First mate, was badly injured, but will recover; Charles Vedder had his head severely cut and is in a dangerous condition. A German, name unknown, is lying at the Marine Hospital in a comatose condition. John Rolfe of Buffalo was cut about the head and face, but will recover. Several others escaped with injuries too slight to need particularizing.
      The force of the shock was terrible. The long block of buildings adjoining on the north side of the river was shaken as by an earth-quake. A number of other buildings were badly injured.
      One of the fenders of the boat, weighing about 200 pounds, was blown through the air, and hurled into the rear of Larrabee & North's dry goods store, over a block from the dock, in its course taking out a circular piece, a foot in diameter, from the centre of an iron shutter.
      The cause of the calamity is stated by the captain and mate to be this: - The engineer had received orders to get up steam on the donkey engine, to hoist out freight. The boiler was exceedingly hot, and but a trifling amount of steam on. The pumps were set at work, and the cold water pumped in at once caused the explosion.
      The Journal says the GLOBE was owned by Dr. Helmer, of Rockport, N.Y. She was valued at $15,000 and insured for $10,000.
      Buffalo Daily Republic
      Saturday, November 10, 1860

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      THE WRECK OF THE PROPELLER GLOBE. -- ANOTHER BODY FOUND. -- Martin Quigley, of Chicago, has contracted with the owners for the removal of the wreck of the propeller GLOBE, now ling in the harbor at that city. Mr. Quigley made several descents, on Saturday, in submarine armor, for the purpose of inspection and in preparation to secure appliances for raising, which is to be done by a coffer dam. In the afternoon the body of a man was found in the hull, believed to have been one of the missing firemen.
      Buffalo Commercial Advertiser
      March 19, 1861

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      There was quite a crowd of spectators gathered, throughout Saturday, to watch the progress and process of operations about the sunken wreck of the ill-fated prop. GLOBE, at Hale's dock, near Wells St. bridge. Martin Quigley, the contractor, is to receive for the removal $1,500, to be paid by the owners of the GLOBE, and also such profit and advantages as the wreck itself may furnish. The woodwork is all removed to the water's edge. Mr. Quigley made several descents on Saturday, in submarine armor, for the purpose of inspection and in preparation to secure appliances for raising, which is to be done by a cofferdam. On Saturday afternoon the body of a man was found in the hull, believed to be one of the missing fireman. -- Chicago Tribune, March 18.
      Detroit Free Press
      March 20, 1861

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The hulk of the GLOBE is being rapidly removed, and Friday workmen were taking out the boiler, the last of the machinery. The hulk has been burned to the water's edge, and the sunken will easily be removed in a few days. - Chicago Journal
      Buffalo Commercial Advertiser
      March 4, 1861

      . . . . .

GLOBE paddle-wheel steamer (rig changed to screw June 19, 1856). Built Trenton, Mich in 1848, of 1,223 tons. First Home Port, Detroit. Exploded at Chicago November 8, 1860, with the loss of 15 lives.
      Merchant Steam Vessels of the U.S.A.
      1790 - 1868, Lytle - Holdcamper List

      . . . . .

      RELIC OF A WRECK.
      On Friday evening last the O.B. Green Dreging Company, which has the government contract for dredging the Chicago River, while at work between Fifth Avenue and La Salle Street brought up with the scoop an old-fashioned safe. It was lined on the inside with wood and had a key lock. The firemen on the YOSEMITE examined the relic and said it undoubtedly belonged to the old steamer GLOBE. This steamer blew up in the river in 1861, at about the same spot where the safe was found. She had a cargo of apples, and that was lost with all the other contents of the craft. Nothing was found in the safe, which the Green Company will keep as a relic. The GLOBE was one of the old-time sidewheelers which plied between Buffalo and Chicago, and had been converted into a screw-wheel steamer only a very few seasons prior to the explosion which ended her existence.
      Milwaukee Wisconsin
      November 23, 1896


Media Type:
Text
Newspaper
Item Type:
Clippings
Notes:
Reason: exploded boiler & sunk
Lives: 16
Hull damage: $17,000
Cargo: $3,500
Remarks: Total loss
Date of Original:
1860
Subject(s):
Local identifier:
McN.W.4215
Language of Item:
English
  • Illinois, United States
    Latitude: 41.85003 Longitude: -87.65005
Donor:
William R. McNeil
Copyright Statement:
Copyright status unknown. Responsibility for determining the copyright status and any use rests exclusively with the user.
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Globe (Propeller), exploded boiler & sunk, 8 Nov 1860