Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Walk-in-the-water (Steamboat), aground, 7 Nov 1821
Full Text

The report of the loss of the steam-boat WALK-IN-THE-WATER, is fully confirmed. We learn the following particulars from one of the passengers, who arrived in town a few days since by land: the boat left Black Rock on Wednesday the 4 o'clock, P.M. having on board a large quantity of merchandize, and about 75 passengers. The weather was calm, but black clouds and appearances of rain were observed in the north-west. After proceeding up the lake about 6 miles from Buffalo, the wind was so strong ahead as to induce the captain to put about and anchor in Buffalo Bay. At this time the rain poured down in torrents, the wind blew almost a hurricane, and the usual darkness of the night rendered their situation still more unpleasant. Between 10 and 11 o'clock, she commenced leaking, and dragging her anchors. They commenced working the pumps with the steam-boat machinery, but nothwithstanding all their efforts, the water in the hold was constantly increasing. She continued to drift until she struck, when they immediately cut the cables and she went ashore, on a sandy beach, and the passengers and crew were all safely landed, a few minutes before day-break. The keel of the boat is said to be broken in two or three places, and the whole must be terribly shattered. The goods on board belonging to different individuals,were wet and considerably damaged.
From the time she commenced dragging her anchors until she went ashore, the scene must have been truly awful. From the darkness of the night, it was impossible to tell how far they were from shore, and they were also apprehensive of being stranded on the rocks. The torrents of rain--the whistling of the wind--the dashing of the waters,and the constant croaking and rocking of the ship, conspired to render the scene beyond description. Every one on board, with whom we have conversed, speak in the highest terms of the master, Captain J.Rogers, whose calmness, and persevering endeavors to save the boat, excited the admiration of all. ---- Buffalo Journal
      Cleveland Weekly Herald
      Tuesday, Nov. 13, 1821

Media Type
Item Type
Reason: aground
Lives: nil
Freight: mechandize &c.
Remarks: Total loss
Date of Original
Local identifier
Language of Item
Geographic Coverage
  • New York, United States
    Latitude: 42.88645 Longitude: -78.87837
William R. McNeil
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Maritime History of the Great Lakes
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Walk-in-the-water (Steamboat), aground, 7 Nov 1821