The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
S. F. Gale (Brig), U22343, sunk, 1 Nov 1876

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The scow-schr. CHARLES CRAWFORD, Capt. Averill, reports seeing the spars of a sunken schooner 14 or 15 miles north of Celveland. No one could be seen on or near the wreck. There are so few vessels out now that it ought to be an easy matter to tell what vessel this is, buy nobody seems to know.
      Buffalo Commercial Advertiser
      December 2, 1876 3-5

      From reports received here yesterday there can no longer be any doubt but that the vessel which foundered near Fairport, on lake Erie, last Thursday, was the old brig S.F. GALE. It seems probable, also, that Capt. Hilson and the entire crew, 7 in number, have perished, as no work has been heard of them since they left Kelley's island with their load of stone for Erie. Capt. Hilson has family residing in Chicago.
      A letter from Cleveland dated Sunday, states that a dispatch had been received at that port from Painesville, dated December 2, which said: "A vessel foundered off the headlands in Lake County, on Thursday last. Friday night the cabin and two trunks were washed ashore containing female clothing and a man's photograph. Papers and books bearing the name S.F.GALE were also found on the beach. None of the crew have been found."
      Detroit Free Press
      December 5, 1876

There is scarcely any doubt that the vessel which was reported sunk in Lake Erie, off Cleveland is the S.F. GALE, of Erie. A cabin and 2 trunks have washed ashore. One trunk contains ladies clothing. One article from the wreck bearing the name of the S.F. GALE has been found. The schr. GALE was loaded with limestone, and bound from the islands to Erie, and as she is overdue it is believed the crew have perished.
      Buffalo Commercial Advertiser
      December 5, 1876 3-5

It is believed 2 vessels went to the bottom of Lake Erie in the blow of Wednesday and Thursday. It is pretty cerrtain that the one off Fairport is the schr. S.F. GALE. There is another reported about 10 or 12 miles off Cleveland, but what her name is cannot be ascertained. A tug was to have been sent to investigate matters.
      Buffalo Commercial Advertiser
      December 6, 1876 3-4

It is now doubtful if there has been more than one vessel lost off or near this port. It is now settled that the S.F. GALE is the first reported and the latter may have been confounded with the first. The tug men and ship brokers know of no missing vessels. So says the Cleveland Herald.
      Buffalo Commercial Advertiser
      December 7, 1876 3-4

      No longer any doubt that the brig S. F. GALE is lost with all hands on Lake Erie -- The Captain leaves a family in Chicago
From dispatches received here yesterday there can no longer be any doubt that the vessel which foundered near Fairport, on Lake Erie, a day or two since, was the old brig S. F. GALE. It seems positive also that the entire crew, seven in number, perished. Captain Hilson resided in Chicago, where he leaves a family.
      The J. W. Hall Great Lakes Marine Scrapbook, Fall 1876

Media Type:
Item Type:
Reason: sunk
Lives: 7
Freight: stone
Remarks: Total loss
Date of Original:
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Geographic Coverage:
  • Ohio, United States
    Latitude: 41.75004 Longitude: -81.27399
William R. McNeil
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S. F. Gale (Brig), U22343, sunk, 1 Nov 1876