The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Empire (Propeller), aground, 23 Nov 1870


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The Steambarge EMPIRE from Detroit, bound for Buffalo with lumber, sprang a leak off Port Huron on Wednesday night and was run ashore about half a mile above "New Cut" and a half a mile from the beach. She went to pieces in half an hour. The crew escaped, all saved.
      Erie Daily Dispatch
      Monday, November 21, 1870:



      The steambarge EMPIRE, the loss of which we gave in yesterday's issue, was owned by Messrs. J.& T. McGregor, of Detroit. She was uninsured and her loss falls with great severity upon her owners, who, in a few days, would have consummated the sale of her for the sum of $26,000. In addition to this, the freight list was worth $2,800. She was loaded at Bay City and Tawas.
      Buffalo Commerical Advertiser
      November 22, 1870 3-6



      We learn from Capt. C.W. Gray, of the stmb. EMPIRE, the following particulars of the loss of that vessel and the narrow escape of the crew. The EMPIRE was bound from Port Huron to Buffalo with a cargo of lumber. All went well until 10:00 Wednesday night when nearly off Port Burwell, Canada, the vessel sprung a bad leak. Capt. Gray, however, kept her on her course until midnight when it was found that she had made 7 ft. of water. It was evident from the rate at which water had gained on them that the best effort of the crew would not keep her afloat until she reached port. The EMPIRE was accordingly headed for the Canada shore, and beached near Port Ryan. One hour after striking, the vessel, without warning, split in two lengthwise and precipitated the crew, 14 in number into the water. The sea, which was running high at the time, dashed the floating timber and planks, which composed the cargo, against the struggling men and made their situation doubly dangerous. The captain received a severe blow on the face and was otherwise slightly injured.
      All the men were more or less bruised. The cook and one of the hands were rescued from under a pile of lumber in a senseless condition. Fortunately, however, all hands finally succeeded in reaching shore. The men remained on the beach until daylight, but finding the vessel had entirely disappeared they sought shelter at the house of Mr. Becker, who resides about 8 miles, the nearest house, from the scene of the disaster. The shipwrecked mariners were kindly treated by Mr. Becker and received the attention their exhausted conditions demanded. The men lost everything except what they had on their backs.
      Buffalo Commercial Advertiser
      November 21, 1870 3-6



      The stmb. EMPIRE, the loss of which we gave in yesterday's issue, was owned by Messrs. J.& T. McGregor, of Detroit. She was uninsured and her loss falls with great severity upon her owners, who, in a few days, would have consummated the sale of her for the sum of $26,000. In addition to this, the freight list was worth $2,800. She was loaded at Bay City and Tawas.
      Buffalo Commerical Advertiser
      November 22, 1870 3-6


The steambarge EMPIRE, Capt. C.W. Gray from Port Huron for Buffalo, with lumber, sprung a leak last week and was beached near Port Ryan. Soon afterwards she broke in two and the crew saved themselves with difficulty.
      Port Huron Daily Times
      November 25, 1870

Port Ryan, ? Port Ryerse ?



EMPIRE paddle wheel steamer of 1140 tons, built Cleveland 1844. Official U. S. Number 8559. after a long lay-up was rebuilt as a sloop barge Aug. 2, 1862. Rig changed to propeller April 25, 1870 and foundered near Point Rowan, Ont. Nov. 23, 1870 with no loss of live.
      Merchant Steam Vessels of the U. S. A.
      Lytle - Holdcamper list 1790 to 1869


EMPIRE Steamer of 1136 Tons, built by G.W. Jones at Cleveland in 1844 of 253'6" x 32'8" x 14'2". Rebuilt as steambarge EMPIRE and on Nov. 12, 1870 she sprung a leak and was beached near Port Ryan, Lake Erie, where she soon broke in two and was a total loss..
      Early American Steamers
      by Erik Hyle

      . . . . .

The machinery and the remains of the steam barge EMPIRE, which was wrecked some three years since at Long Point Cut, in Lake Erie, has not yet been recovered. The owners of the same, who reside in this city, intend starting out the coming week with an expedition to recover the boiler and such other effects as may be of value.
      Detroit Free Press
      August 16, 1873


RELICS OF THE STEAMBARGE EMPIRE. - Captain Snow's wrecking barge MONITOR, came over quietly from the Canada side of the river, where she had been moored for some time past, and deposited on the Tug Association's dock the wheels, together with some old chain and other traps, and then proceeded to the foot of Campau avenue, where she left the boiler, all belonging to the old steam barge EMPIRE, wrecked some years ago. -- - Detroit Tribune
      Cleveland Herald
      October 5, 1876


Media Type:
Text
Newspaper
Item Type:
Clippings
Notes:
Reason: aground
Lives: nil
Freight: lumber
Remarks: Total loss
Date of Original:
1870
Subject(s):
Local identifier:
McN.W.12694
Language of Item:
English
Geographic Coverage:
  • Ontario, Canada
    Latitude: 42.6168 Longitude: -80.46638
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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Empire (Propeller), aground, 23 Nov 1870