The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Trader (Schooner), capsized, 13 Nov 1835

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From the Conneaut Gazette EXTRA - Nov.13
At an early hour this morning, the hull of a vessel was seen off our harbor, and with the aid of a spy glass, one person was discovered on board; but as the lake was rough and the wind to the Northward, it was impossible to go out to the vessel. About 3 o'clock, however, when she had drifted within about 30 rods of the shore, one mile east of the harbor, two or three individuals plunged into the lake, and succeeded in getting on board, when a scene of horror and distress presented itself to their view. The individual before discovered, proved to be the mate, by name of Henry Waghorn. He was unable to help himself much, and seemed indifferent about getting on shore, and by his side, lashed to the windlass, were the lifeless bodies of two men, and in the cabin ten more of men, women, and children. The mate was put on shore, and soon the lifeless bodies of four men, three boys, four girls, and one woman were taken on shore, and decently interred, in the burying ground attached to the Presbyterian Meeting House.
      After the mate had become revived and able to converse, we learned from him the following particulars relative to the accident. The schooner is the TRADER, of and from Otter Creek, Canada, loaded with lumber and bound for Cleveland, with a crew of four, including the Captain and mate, and ten passengers. There was a widow lady and six children, name not known, and three gentlemen, one by name of John Richardson. On Wednesday morning, when between Ashtabula and Grand River, about daylight, a squall struck the schooner which split all the sails and rendered her unmanageable; and about 11 o'clock A.M. two heavy seas struck her in quick succession, which capsized her and carried away both her masts and bowsprit, and stove a hole in her larboard bow. At the moment she capsized, all on board were below. In about five minutes she righted again, when the mate, two of the hands and one passenger (name not known), got upon the deck, and all succeeded in lashing themselves to the windlass, except the passenger, who was swept overboard. The Captain and remainder of the passengers did not attempt to come on deck, but remained in the cabin, about two thirds filled with water, until they died, which was between ten o'clock that night and daylight the next morning. Their groans and cries for help continued until about daylight. The widow was bound for Cleveland, where she had a son residing. If the lake should continue calm, it is probable the vessel may be got off, and towed into our harbor.
      Cleveland Daily Herald
      Wednesday, November 17, 1835

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Item Type:
Reason: capsized
Lives: 13
Freight: lumber
Remarks: ?
Date of Original:
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Geographic Coverage:
  • Ohio, United States
    Latitude: 41.94756 Longitude: -80.55424
William R. McNeil
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Trader (Schooner), capsized, 13 Nov 1835