The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Niagara (Schooner), sunk, 7 Sep 1887

Full Text

Schooner NIAGARA, of 726 Ton. Built 1873 and owned by J. Corrigan. Home port, Cleveland. Class A 2. On September 7, 1887 vessel with a cargo of ore foundered in Lake Superior, and became a total loss. Property loss, hull $30,000 cargo $9,000
      1887 Casualty List (Total Loss)
      Marine Record, Dec. 15, 1887 p.4

The Schooner NIAGARA foundered in a gale 10 miles above Whitefish Point at 11 A. M. Wednesday, while being towed by the AUSTRALASIA and iron ore laden. No report of the rescue of the crew of eight.
      Port Huron Daily Times
      Friday, September 9, 1887

During the disastrous gale that swept down lake Superior from the northwest on the 7th. the schooner NIAGARA, of Cleveland, foundered in seven fathoms of water, and her entire crew of ten men and captain Clements, were drowned. The disaster was reported at the Sault when the steamship AUSTRALASIS in whose tow the NIAGARA was passed through the canal on her way to lake Erie. The AUSTRALASIA left Ashland with the NIAGARA in tow on the 5th. Both were bound for Ashtabula. The NIAGARA was laden with 1,400 tons of iron ore. Some say that she was overloaded. Tuesday after weathering Keweenaw Point the wind freshened up in the northwest, and kept increasing in violence until it had developed into a furious gale. During the gale the AUSTRALASIA and her consort labored heavily and at 11 o'clock Wednesday morning the tow line parted. They were then ten miles above Whitefish Point and about fifty miles above the Sault. Just as the NIAGARA broke adrift a furious blast of wind struck her and blew the foresail and mainsail clear out of the ropes. With no canvas to steady her she fell off into the trough of the sea. For an instant she lay on her starboard side with her lee rail under water, and the waves sweeping over her, and then she was lifted on the crest of a mighty wave. As she righted, there was a loud crash, and her lofty spars toppled over, tearing up deck and crushing the bulwarks as they fell into the sea. The crew of the AUSTRALASIA witnessed the breaking up of the vessel, but were powerless to render any assistance. They saw Captain Clements with his men around him, trying to chop away the wreckage. At the same time it was seen that the yawl was being made ready and was soon after launched, but it was impossible for it to live in the sea that was running at the time, and soon after capsized. Shortly after the men took to the yawl the vessel sunk. She lies in seven fathoms of water, ten miles this side of Whitefish Point and five miles from shore. Her mizzen mast just reaches above water, and her main and foremasts are floating near with other pieces of wreckage. Captain Walte of the UNITED EMPIRE, who passed through the wreckage saw no trace of any of her ill-fated crew and believes that all were lost. He states that though not many miles from shore and the Whitefish Point life saving station, no small boat could have lived in the terrible sea which was running there Wednesday.
Although reports were current that Captain Clements family, consisting of wife and five children were aboard the NIAGARA, it has been ascertained that they were not, and are safe at home in this city.
Captain Clements was not only an efficient master but a man of pleasing address and excellent character and habits and had sailed for years on the Lakes. Before coming to the lakes he had been a sailor on salt water. The names of the mates were John McBeath, first mate; Willian Quinn, second mate; Thomas Prince was steward. The names of the rest of the crew were A.L.Hishler, --- Conners, John Martin, son of a fisherman on Beaver Island who it is said took out with hin about $200 in money. Charles Anderson, Prussian, and Steven McMannkins, Canadian, Robert Rayne an Irishman. The young man John Martin, was said to have been a cousin of Captain Clements. The schooner NIAGARA, of 726 tons, was built at Tonawanda by Parsons in 1873, valued at $30,000 and classed A 2. She was owned by Captain James Corrigan and was insured for $25,000
      The Marine Record
      Thurs. Sept. 15, 1887 p.4

Cleveland.---The body of Captain George Lloyd of the schooner NIAGARA, was found on the beach near the scene of the wreck some weeks since and taken to Ashland where he was buried. (part)
      The Marine Record
      Thurs. Oct. 20, 1887 p.1

Media Type:
Item Type:
Reason: sunk
Lives: 10
Hull damage: $30,000
Cargo: $9,000
Freight: ore
Remarks: Total loss
Date of Original:
Local identifier:
Language of Item:
Geographic Coverage:
  • Michigan, United States
    Latitude: 46.76947 Longitude: -84.95258
William R. McNeil
Copyright Statement:
Copyright status unknown. Responsibility for determining the copyright status and any use rests exclusively with the user.
Maritime History of the Great Lakes
WWW address
Powered by / Alimenté par VITA Toolkit

My favourites lets you save items you like, tag them and group them into collections for your own personal use. Viewing "My favourites" will open in a new tab. Login here or start a My favourites account.

Niagara (Schooner), sunk, 7 Sep 1887