The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Macedonian (Schooner), aground, 23 Nov 1829


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The schooner MACEDONIAN, Captain Foster, was wrecked on the Eastern Sister, in the cluster of Islands between the mouth of the Detroit River and Put-In-Bay. The following are the circumstances, as nearly as we can obtain them:-The MACEDONIAN left the mouth of Detroit River on Sunday the 22nd.ult,the wind from the South, and weather intensley cold. When abreast of Middle Sister a squall struck them from the S.W.,which carried away their fore-sail, threw her down so as to discharge her deck loading, after which she put about for Detroit River. Before they could reach the mouth of the river, the wind shifted, and blew a hurricane from the North. The vessel now became ice-logged; the decks were covered fore and aft with ice, from one to two feet thick; the jib sheets were frozen fast amid-ship; there was not a sheet or stay that would render in the blocks, and the only way to put about was to wear ship; this was done, and they shaped their course, as nearly as the frozen situation of their sails and rigging would permit, for Put-In-Bay. In the afternoon of Monday in endeavoring to run to windward of the Eastern Sister, the heavy sea which was running, drove them on the island, and those on board were compelled to see her thrown upon the rocks by swell after swell, so frozen and immovable were the sails. She at length rested where the waves made a constant breech over her.
      Now came the moments of terror! There were eleven persons on board. Some prayed, some swore, and others stood mute, meditating what should be done. One, seemingly experienced in such disasters, threw himself from the deck, and after being carried as near the shore as a wave could take him, would cling to a rock to prevent the undertow from carrying him back, until the next advancing surge would help him on his journey. In this way he reached the land. Others followed his example. One man would have been lost in the attempt, but for the assistance afforded him by a more athletic companion in trouble. In this manner ten of the eleven on board had reached the shore, when night began to fall; but no persuasion could induce the one left to try the experiment. By means of some powder, which had been taken ashore in a tight horn, a fire was struck in a log house, which, but for this circumstance, might never have sent forth another smoke. The fish were thrown upon the coals awhile, and then eaten.
      The shouts of him who had remained on board, were heard at intervals through the night, as he raised his voice above the storm. At length the lingering daylight came, and he was still holding on upon the wreck. He was now persuaded to make the attempt and reached the shore, though so exhausted he was unable to stand. The storm abated in the forenoon, so much that they were able to get a barrel of hard-bread from the wreck, and on tuesday it became so far moderated that the small boat was enabled to go over to Sandusky Bay.
      Messrs. Merwin, Giddings & Co.,of this port, have very generously sent the schooner MINERVA, doubly manned, with extra anchors and cables, to aid in getting her off, or at least to secure her cargo, which consists principally of White Fish
      Cleaveland Weekly Herald
      Thursday, December 3, 1829 p.3 col.1 & 2

      . . . . .
     
Since the above was in type, the MINERVA from Detroit, brought the crew, rigging, and such of the freight of the schooner MACEDONIAN as could be saved
      Cleaveland Weekly Herald
      Thursday, December 3, 1829 p.3 col.1 & 2
     
      . . . . .

The following extract are from the Cleaveland Herald of the 3rd instant: ---
"The schr. Macedonian, Captain Foster, was wrecked on the Eastern Sister, one of the cluster of islands between the mouth of the Detroit River and Put-in-Bay. The following are the circumstances, as nearly as we can obtain them: -- The Macedonian left the mouth of the Detroit River on Sunday, the 22nd ult., the wind from the south, and weather intensely cold. When abreast of the Middle Sister, a squall struck them from the S. W. , which carried away her foresail, threw her down so as to discharge her deck-loading, after which she put about for Detroit River. ---
Before they could reach the mouth of the river, the wind again shifted, and blew a hurricane from the north. The vessel now became ice-logged; the decks were covered fore and aft with ice, from one to two feet thick; the jib-sheets were frozen fast amid-ship; there was not a sheet or stay that would render in the blocks, and the only way to put about was to wear ship.* This was done, and they shaped their course, as nearly as the frozen condition of their sails and rigging would permit, for Put-in-Bay. In the afternoon of Monday, in endeavoring to run to windward of Eastern Sister, the heavy sea that was running drove them on the island, and those on board were compelled to see her thrown upon the rocks by swell after swell, so frozen and immovable were the sails. She at length rested where the waves made a constant breach over her.
"Now came the moments of terror! There were eleven persons on board. Some prayed, some swore, and others stood mute, meditating what should be done. One, seemingly experienced in such disasters, threw himself from the deck, and after being carried as near the shore as a wave could take him, would cling to the rocks to prevent the undertoe from carrying him back, until the advancing surge could help him on his journey. In this way he reached the land. Others followed his example. One man would have been lost in the attempt, but for the assistance afforded him by a more athletic companion in trouble. In this manner ten of the eleven on board had reached the shore, when night began to fall; but no persuasion could induce the one left to try the experiment. By means of some tinder, which had been taken ashore in a tight (--)orn, a fire was struck in a log house, which but for this circumstance, might not have sent forth another smoke. A barrel of fish was also secured, which had worked from the deck of the vessel. The fish were thrown on the coals awhile, and then eaten.
The shouts of him who had remained on board were heard at intervals through the night as he raised his voice above the storm. A length a lingering day-light came, and he was still holding on upon the wreck. He was now persuaded to make the attempt, and reached the shore, though so exhausted he was unable to stand. The storm abated in the forenoon, so much that they were able to get a barrel of hard-bread from the wreck, and on Tuesday it became so far moderated that the small boat was enable to go over to Sandusky Bay.
"Messrs. Merwin, Gidding & Co, of this port, have very generously sent the schr. Minerva, doubly manned, with extra anchors and cables, to aid in getting her off, or at least to secure her cargo, which consists principally of White Fish.
      "Since the above was in type, the following vessels have arrived:
. . .
      "The Minerva from Detroit brought the crew, rigging and such of the freight of the schr. Macedonian as could be saved."
      Detroit Gazette
      Thurasday, December 10, 1829



Media Type:
Text
Newspaper
Item Type:
Clippings
Notes:
Reason: aground
Lives: nil
Freight: fish
Remarks: Total loss
Date of Original:
1829
Subject(s):
Local identifier:
McN.W.12977
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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Macedonian (Schooner), aground, 23 Nov 1829