The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
S. H. Johnson (Propeller), aground, 24 Nov 1887

Full Text

Propeller S.H. JOHNSON, of 100 Tons. Home port, Chicago. Built 1875 and owned by Mears. Class B 1. On November 24, 1887 vessel went ashore on Lake Michigan and became a total loss. Property loss, hull $6,000 cargo $3,000
      1887 Casualty List (Total loss)
      Marine Record, Dec. 15, 1887 p.4

The Steambarge JOHNSON and tow are stranded about 9 miles south of Kenosha. The crew of 12 on the steambarge were rescued. The barge is a total wreck
      Port Huron Daily Times
      Saturday, November 26, 1887

Kenosha.---The steambarge S.H. JOHNSON, withher cargo of 163,000 feet of lumber, left Muskegon for Chicago, at 7 p.m. Wednesday, November 23. The JOHNSON had in tow a scow containing 385,000 brick for the St.Paul railroad. The severe storm that swept over the lake reached the steambarge and her tow in the center of the lake, and the struggle between the surging seas and the unfortunate vessels soon thereafter ensued. In addition to the strong wind, the lake was shadowed by a drizzling rain.
Early on the following morning Captain Connell concluded to adopt the wise course of anchoring the scow and entering the port of Kenosha with the steambarge. On endeavoring to do this the tow-line connecting the steambarge with the scow, became hopelessly entangled in the JOHNSON's wheel, and both drifted towards the shore. They struck bottom about 600 feet outward in the lake and nine miles southof kenosha about 8 o'clock a.m. A dispatch from the station agent at the state line, containing a brief notice of the wreck, reached the life-saving station at Kenosha at 9:30 a.m.,and the crew, with their equipments, reached the scene of the disaster at 1:30 p.m. Your correspondent, with a horse and buggy, arrived on the ground an hour and a half in advance of the life-savers, as it required time to load the surf boat, morter and its carriage on wagons, and the condition of the road was such as to retard the progress of the heavily laden teams. The first line thrown out by the mortar was unsuccessful, but the second reached the steambarge and was securely fastened to the foremast by the suffering and affrighted crew, who were successfully transferred to the shore in one hour and forty minutes. About three hundred people had gathered on the shore and there was plenty of willing hands to aid the life-saving crew. The steambarge was owned by Charles Mears, of Chicago, was valued at $12,000, and was a total loss; no insurance. The names of the officers and crew were as follows: Richard Connell, master; Philip Willis, mate; Daniel Sherman, first engineer; John Niner,second engineer; Daniel Gates, Arthur Callahan, firemen; Charles Booker, steward; Edward Rohr and Edward Callahan, deck hands. On the tow John Bundy and another name not known, making altogether twelve persons saved by the life saving crew and their volunteer assistants.
      The Marine Record
      Thurs. Dec. 1, 1887 p.5

Kenosha.---Further particulars in relation to the wreck of the steambarge S.H. JOHNSON and tow are as follows: The tug KITTIE SMOKE, with about twenty helpers transferred the brick from the tow onto another scow with the exception of about 75,000 bushels which were thrown into the lake and the scow that constituted the JOHNSON's tow and the brick that was saved, was taken to Chicago. Captain Thomas Clark, who is the agent of Charles Mears, the owner, is now at this port with steam pumps and divers and as soon as the weather is favorable an effort will be made to rescue the steambarge.
      The Marine Record
      Thurs. Dec. 8, 1887 p.5

Media Type:
Item Type:
Reason: aground
Lives: nil
Hull damage: $6,000
Cargo: $3,000
Freight: lumber
Remarks: Total loss
Date of Original:
Local identifier:
Language of Item:
Geographic Coverage:
  • Wisconsin, United States
    Latitude: 42.58474 Longitude: -87.82119
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.

S. H. Johnson (Propeller), aground, 24 Nov 1887