The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Sunnyside (Schooner), U22388, sunk by collision, 20 Aug 1883


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Cheboygan, Mich., Aug. 20. -- The schooner SUNNYSIDE, together with the schooners S.H. FOSTER and DEWEY, in tow of the steam barge BARNUM, was struck by a squall at 9 o'clock last night, off the North Fox, bound down. The SUNNYSIDE luffed up and struck the FOSTER abaft the starboard main rigging, carrying away the rigging and mainmast of the FOSTER. The SUNNYSIDE pounded alongside the FOSTER for over an hour, when she finally dropped back and went down in probably thirty fathoms of water. The crew got on the FOSTER, and arrived here this afternoon. The FOSTER is inside leaking and badly crippled. Both schooners were loaded with ore for Cleveland.
      J.W. Hall Great Lakes Marine Scrapbook, August / September, 1883
     


Aug. 20. -- The fine schooner SUNNYSIDE has gone to the bottom with a full cargo of ore. She was in tow of the BARNUM together with the schooners FOSTER and DUROY bound from Escanaba to Cleveland at 9 p.m. last night (19th.) when about four miles off North Foxt Island, they encountered a squall. The SUNNYSIDE ran into the FOSTER and a large hole was stove into the SUNNYSIDE's bow. She filled rapidly. For two hours the crew tried to save her but she then snapped her tow line. The crew left in the boats and in a few minutes she rolled over and sank in 30 fathoms of water. The SUNNYSIDE was built by Campbell & Co. of Detroit in August 1963. C. Carr of Cleveland was her owner. She was registered at 563 tons.
      Port Huron Daily Times
      Wednesday, August 22, 1883


      THE FOSTER AND SUNNYSIDE.
      Further of the Wreck
      [Special Telegram to the Inter Ocean.]
Cheboygan, Mich., Aug. 21. -- The FOSTER is still here. An examination shows that her decks are started. Her deck-beams, stanchions and frames are broken and split all along the starboard side. Her props are moved several inches out of place, and although she doesn't leak much at present it is evident she is badly damaged. She is insured for about $18,000, and owned by J.C. Gilchrist, of Vermilion. The SUNNYSIDE was insured in three companies for $15,000, and owned by Robert Kerr, her master. At the time of the collision it was blowing hard from the southwest, pitch dark and raining. All three vessels carried some headsail. This caused the SUNNYSIDE to shoot ahead of the FOSTER, for the three schooners had broken adrift from the BARNUM and struck the FOSTER on the starboard amidship. The crew of the FOSTER leaped on the SUNNYSIDE, but jumped back on discovering they were on the sinking vessel, and the crew of the SUNNYSIDE took to their boats and pulled away to the DEWEY about half a mile away. The Captain's wife escaped in her night clothes and had a rough experience, as she is in poor health and was nearly exhausted when the DEWEY was reached. The SUNNYSIDE went down bow first, and her stern was blown to pieces in going down by the air which made a loud report. The chart shows over sixty fathoms of water in that vicinity. The steambarge BURNUM passed down last night with the --? --
      J.W. Hall Great Lakes Marine Scrapbook, August, 1883



Cleveland. -- During Tuesday afternoon the following dispatch was received at the Marine Insurance Agency of Mr.W.B. Scott, in the Iron Exchange building on Water Street: "SUNNYSIDE collided with Schooner S.H. FOSTER last night and sank in deep water four miles north of North Fox Island. Crew saved." This was dated at Cheboygan, Mich.,and signed by Captain Robert Kerr, master and owner of the Schooner SUNNYSIDE. No cause for the misfortune are given except the statement that it was in the night, and the inference, also, that it was thick weather. That it was the result of mismanagement is not believed, so far as we know, by any in this port, and least of all as the fault of Captain Kerr, who is one of the most careful masters on these lakes, as evidenced by the fact that this is the first mishap of any kind whatever that has fallen to him, notwithstanding that he has sailed these waters for thirty years. Captain Kerr, about two years ago, purchased the SUNNYSIDE of Thomas Axworthy for $18,000. She was insured in the Thames & Mersey and Exchange, of New York, and the Union of Philadelphia, for $5,000 in each. Her cargo, about 10,000 tons of ore, it is believed is insured in the Continental, of New York. The S.H. FOSTER is owned by S.H. Gilchrist, of Vermillion. - Cleveland Report.
      Marine Record
      Aug. 23, 1883



Cheboygan. -- The FOSTER is still here and an examination shows that her decks have started, her stanchions and beams are broken and split anlong the starboard side, her props are moved several inches out of place, and although she does not leak much at present it is evident she is badly damaged. She is insured for $18,000 and is owned by J.C. Gilchrist of Vermillion. The SUNNYSIDE was insured in three companies for $15,000 and owned by Robert Kerr, her master. At the time of the collision it was blowing furiously from the Southwest, pitch dard, and raining. All three carried the same head sail, and this caused the SUNNYSIDE to shoot ahead of the FOSTER, for the three Schooners had broken adrift. The SUNNYSIDE striking the FOSTER on the starboard side amidship. The FOSTER's crew leaped on to the SUNNYSIDE, but jumped back, discovering that they were on the sinking vessel, and the crew of the SUNNYSIDE took to their boats and pulled away to the DEWEY, about half a mile away. The SUNNYSIDE went down in probably thirty fathoms of water. -- Cheboygan Report.
      Marine Record
      Aug. 23, 1883

      . . . . .
     
      HOW THE SUNNYSIDE WENT DOWN
      The propeller W. H. Barnum arrived down at an early hour yesterday morning, bringing the crew of the lost schooner Sunnyside, with the exception of the captain, who remained on the schooner Dewy with his wife. Robert W. Kerr, first mate of the Sunnyside, makes the following statement regarding her loss:
We left Escanaba with 928 tons of ore Sunday morning, August 19, in tow of propeller W. H. Barnum, the schooners S. H. Foster and A. J. Dewey also in tow. We had thick weather all day until about 5 p.m., when it cleared off abreast of Poverty Island.
Crossing the foot of Lake Michigan we had the wind about south by west, with quite a sea running. It began to look squally about 9:30 p.m. and we took in all out canvas but the foresail and foretopsail. A very heavy squall, accompanied by blinding hail and rain, struck us about 10:30, parting all our tow lines. In the height of the squall we discovered the Foster close on our lee bow, heading up across our bows.
The Foster was so close that a collision was unavoidable, so our wheel was put down so as to strike her at as an acute an angle as possible. We struck her just abaft of the main rigging, which, with the mainmasthead, was carried away, also a number of stanchions.
Our bowsprit, jibboom and foreyard were carried away. The bowsprit in slewing around opened up her stem, and she commenced to fill immediately. The pumps were sounded and the water was found to be over the sounding rod. We made a hole in the forecastle floor and found the water nearly up to it. We were satisfied that she could not be kept afloat and lowered the boat and put the captain's wife on board of the Dewey, which was hove to a short distance to leeward, and then returned to the Sunnyside. Going on board we found the water even with the top of the hatches forward. We hastily secured her books and papers and pulled off a short distance. In less than 10 minutes after we left her, and an hour after the collision, she went down head foremost in 30 or 40 fathoms of water.
      North Fox Island bore about south by east three or four miles distant. We pulled off down the lake and met the barge about 20 minutes afterwards coming back after us. It picked us up and hoisted the boat on deck. The Barnum picked the Foster up at daylight, but as she was leaking so badly she took a tug at Cheboygan and towed in there. Captain McGregor of the Barnum is a perfect gentleman. He and all on board used us handsomely. We saved nothing but what we had on.
      THE LOCATION OF THE WRECK
Special dispatch to The Post and Tribune.
Escanaba, August 22. - Capt. Corin of the Ed. Kelley reports passing yesterday a quantity of wreckage evidently belonging to a large schooner and which showed evidence of a collision, between North Fox and the Beaver, and a wreck with the head of a broken spar six or eight feet out of water, about three miles off the head of the North Fox. It is supposed here that the wreck is that of the Sunnyside, which left here Sunday morning in tow of the steamer W. H. Barnum.
      Detroit Post and Tribune
      Thursday, August 23, 1883
     
      . . . . .

      THE LOSS OF THE SUNNYSIDE AND CARGO.
The sunken schooner SUNNYSIDE measures 563 tons. She was built at Detroit by Campbell & Owen in 1863, was rebuilt in 1874, was owned by Kerr, of Cleveland, rated A 2, and was valued at $18,000. Insured.
      The S.H. FOSTER, damaged by the collision [or fouling], is owned by Foster et al, of Cleveland. She is insured.
      Both the vessels were iron ore loaded, and, as announced yesterday, were in tow of the steambarge BARNUM, the schooner DEWEY being in the tow. Whether there will be a law suit remains to be seen.
      J.W. Hall Great lakes Marine Scrappbook, August, 1883
     

     
Robert W. Kerr, first mate of the SUNNYSIDE, gives the following details of her loss: We left Escanaba for Cleveland with 928 tons of ore, Sunday morning, August 19, in tow of the propeller WILLIAM H. BARNUM, the Schooners S.H. FOSTER and A.J. DEWEY also being in the tow. We had thick weather all day until about 5 p.m.,when it cleared up abreast of Poverty Island.
Crossing the foot of Lake Michigan, we had the wind about South by West with quite a sea running. It began to look squally about 9:30 p.m.,and we took in all our canvas but the foresail and foretopsail. A very heavy squall, accompanied by blinding hail and rain, struck us about 10:30, parting all our tow lines. In the height of the squall we discovered the FOSTER close on the lee bows, heading up across our bows.
The FOSTER was so close that a collision was unavoidable, so our wheel was put down, so as to strike her at as acute an angle as possible. We struck just abaft the main rigging, which with the mainmast head, was carried away, also a number of stanchions. Our bowsprit, jibboom and foreyard were carried away. The bowsprit in slewing round, opened up her stem, and she commenced to fill immediately. The pumps were sounded and the water was found to be over the sounding rod. We made a hole in the forecastle floor and found the water nearly up to it. We were satisfied that she could not be kept afloat and lowered the boat and put the captains wife onboard the DEWEY, which was hove to, a short distance to leeward, and then returned to the SUNNYSIDE.
Going on board we found the water even with the top of the hatches forward. We hastily secured her books and papers and pulled off a short distance. In less than ten minutes after we left her, and an hour after the collision, she went down head foremost in thirty or forty fathoms of water.
North Fox Island bore about south by east, three or four miles distant. We pulled off down the lake and met the barge about twenty minutes afterwards, coming back after us. It picked us up and hoisted the boat on deck. The BARNUM picked the FOSTER up at daylight, but as she was leaking so badly she took a tug at Cheboygan and towed in there.
      Marine Record
      Aug. 30, 1883


Bark SUNNY SIDE. U. S. No. 22388. Of 563 tons gross. Built Detroit, Mich., 1863. Foundered Lake Michigan August 21, 1883. 164.0 x 34.0 x 13.0. Three masts.
      Herman Runge List


Bark SUNNY SIDE. U. S. No. 22388. Of 563.44 tons gross. Home port, Detroit, Mich.
      Merchant Vessel List, U. S., 1869
     


Media Type:
Text
Newspaper
Item Type:
Clippings
Notes:
Reason: sunk by collision
Lives: nil
Freight: ore
Remarks: Total loss
Date of Original:
1883
Subject(s):
Local identifier:
McN.W.10244
Language of Item:
English
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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Sunnyside (Schooner), U22388, sunk by collision, 20 Aug 1883