The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Western Star (Propeller), U200376, aground, 24 Sep 1915

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Steamer Sinks off Clapperton Island
The steel steamer Western Star, owned by H.K. Oakes, Cleveland in charge of Captain Sloan, struck on Robertson Rock, north of Clapperton Island, on the North Shore, at 10 a.m. on Friday and sank in two hours. The crew of twenty and four passengers, Mr. and Mrs. John M. Daly of Toledo and Mr. and Mrs Frank M. Howard of London Ont., rowed to Clapperton Island, half a mile, in the life boats, and they were towed by a gasoline boat thirty miles to Little Current. The steamer was carrying seven thousand tons of coal from Toledo to Little Current for the Empire Coal Company of Montreal. There is seventy feet of water at the stem of the boat and fourteen at the bow. The stem is submerged up to No.4 hatch. It is thought both vessel and cargo can be saved. The passengers are all safe and well. Clapperton Island is situated in the north Channel about half way between Gore Bay and Little Current. It has been the scene of many mishaps and disasters in years past.
      Owen Sound Sun September 28,1915
      September 28,1915

WESTERN STAR Steamer, Stranded September 24, 1915 on Robertson Rock, Georgian Bay, during thick weather; crew and passengers taken off; abandoned by owners to the Underwriters as a constructive "Total Loss", loaded with coal; insured for $200,000. The Great Lakes Towing Co. given the contract to raise vessel and deliver to an American Port on it's bid of $58,500, or 65 per cent of value of vessel, underwriter's option; wrecking company purchased the coal cargo of 7,000 tons for $3,000.
      The Marine Review, February 1916


WESTERN STAR Steam Screw. U. S. official No. 200367. Built 1903 and of 4,764 Gross Tons. with 26 persons on board, vessel stranded in Georgian Bay, Lake Huron, September 24,1915. No lives being lost. Vessel however listed as a Total Loss.
      Loss of American Vessels Reported During the
      Year 1916. Merchant Vessel List of U. S. A. 1916


      Assisted by Great lakes tugs Kentucky and A. W. Colton the steamer Western Star has been taken from Ecrose to Toledo where temporary repairs will be made to damage sustained by the freighter on Robertson Rock Georgian Bay. Upon completion of these the boat will go to Midland to complete the work. The Western Star Salvaged recently by Capt. Alexander Cunning wrecking master of the Great lakes towing Co. after she had hung on the rocks for two years was sold by underwriters a few days ago to the Valley Cramp Steamship Co. for $358,000.
It is estimated the necessary repairs will cost $100,000 to $150,000 additional. The Playfair interests are behind the purchase.
      The Saturday News(Collingwood)
      November 17,1917
      [Courtesy Bill Hester]

      George Wyers, Buffalo diver, who raised the supply boat ARCTIC in the Buffalo River a few days ago, has been offered inducements to join the expedition that is about to try and recover the treasure from the steamer MERIDA [ocean].........
      Wyers worked on the wreck of the EMPRESS OF IRELAND about two years ago in the Gulf of St. Lawrence and helped to recover a good many bodies. He also worked on the wreck of the W. C. RICHARDSON off Buffalo a few years ago, and last year he helped in the wrecking of the steamer WESTERN STAR in Georgian Bay. He is now with the American Towing Co., at this port.
      Buffalo Daily Courier
      July 19, 1916

      Steam screw WESTERN STAR. U. S. No. 200376. Of 4,764 gross tons; 3,593 tons net. Built Wyandotte, Mich., 1903. Home port, Oswego, N.Y. 416.0 x 50.03 x 29.0 Steel built. Passenger service. Crew of 19. Of 1,450 indicated horsepower.
      Merchant Vessel List, U. S., 1906

Media Type:
Item Type:
Reason: aground
Lives: nil
Freight: coal
Remarks: Got off
Date of Original:
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Geographic Coverage:
  • Ontario, Canada
    Latitude: 46.0575 Longitude: -82.224444
William R. McNeil
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Western Star (Propeller), U200376, aground, 24 Sep 1915