The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Zealand (Propeller), sunk, 6 Nov 1880

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Propeller ZEALAND of 402 tons foundered Lake Ontario, near Scotch Bonnet Island, Nov. 6, 1880. Ex CITY OF CHATHAM, built 1872, rebuilt Hamilton 1875. 132 x 24 x 12.
      Provisional List of Canadian Steamships
      1808 to 1930. World Ship Society

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An Associated Press despatch from Montreal this morning says: "There is now no doubt that the prop. ZEALAND foundered on Lake Ontario during the recent gale. Portions of the wreck have been found. She had 14,000 bu, wheat and 2,000 barrels of flour on board. She was commanded by one of the proprietors. It is believed all hands are lost."
The prop. ZEALAND was owned by Capt. Edward Zealand, of Hamilton, Ontario, and is believed to have been in charge when the vessel foundered. The ZEALAND was built from the bottom of the prop. CHATHAM, coming out in 1874. She was valued at $26,000 in the Inland Lloyd Register, rated A1 1/2, and was 284 tons burden. She was running, we are informed in the Merchants' Line between Chicago and Montreal. Capt. Zealand began his sailing when he was a boy, and at 15 years of age commanded his first vessel. He was a good seaman, and as a man, was greatly respected. He leaves a family and 4 brothers, all of the latter being seafaring men.
      Buffalo Commercial Advertiser
      November 10, 1880 3-4

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Oswego, Nov. 10. -- Capt. Edward George, of the schooner MARY TAYLOR , which arrived at Oswego yesterday, reported that about 10 miles from Point Peter he passed through a great number of barrels of flour, among which was a yawl boat with its quarter stove in, and found it marked "Garden City, XXX Clarksville." The boat and flour are supposed to have been on the steamer ZEALAND, which left Toronto at 10 o'clock on Saturday night for Montreal with a deck load of flour.
      Hamilton, Nov. 10. -- The following is a list, as far as can be ascertained, of those on board the propeller ZEALAND: Edward Zealand, Captain and owner; Joseph Mullet, of lachine, first mate; Thomas Dewly, of St. Catharines, 1st. engineer; Thomas Armstrong, of Hamilton, carpenter; rest of crew supposed to be Toronto men.
      Port Hope, Nov. 10. -- Capt. Henning, of the schooner MARIE ANNETTE, just arrived, reports having seen a hawser box with steamer ZEALAND painted on it, with door frames and cabin material floating near it, bearing the appearance of the upper works of the wreck of a steamer, about 15 miles south of Long Point. He could see no signs of a vessel.
      The propeller was full canal size, and being built by Mr. A. Robertson, of Hamilton, in 1874, was a comparatively new vessel. Her cost at that time was $32,000, and even at present, with the recent depression of ship property, she was valued at $25,000. Her machinery was taken from the propeller CHATHAM, burned a few years ago, Burlington Bay, and she had been kept in excellent repair, most of her woodwork being new. She was engaged in the lake trade between St. Catharines and Montreal, and had hitherto a successful season, meeting with no accident. On Saturday she was in the best shape to meet a storm, as she only drew nine feet. At about half-past six o'clock that night she steamed out into the darkness, and has not since been seen.
      The crew numbered in all about 16 men. The cargo was valued at $15,500, and was insured for $14,000 in the Manhattan of New York and Greenwich of New York, each company holding one-half. The vessel was insured in the Phoenix, of Brooklyn.
      We learn that the flour, (360 bushels) constituted her deck load, and that she carried, besides, a cargo of wheat consigned to Messrs. A.W. Ogilvie & Co., of Montreal. Last Thursday the propeller was in this harbour, having discharged, at the M.T. Co.'s wharf, her grain to avoid running the river, the water in which is now very low; at the same time she unloaded a quantity of apples, which were forwarded to Montreal in a barge by the K. & M. Forwarding Company. The ZEALAND was owned and sailed by Capt. Zealand, an experienced mariner, a brother of the Captain of Messrs. Calvin & Son's ocean vessel GARDEN ISLAND.
      Kingston Whig-Standard
      Wednesday, November 10, 1880

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      No late news has been received regarding the missing stm. ZEALAND, and it is almost certain that she has gone to the bottom of Lake Ontario with her crew and passengers. Portions of the boat have been passed in the lake and her yawl boat was also seen. The ZEALAND ran in the Western Express line of steamers between St. Catharines and Montreal. She left the Northern Elevator in Toronto on Saturday night last about 7:00, which would be about 5 hours prior to the gale striking her. She was laden with wheat and flour from L. Coffee & Co., for Montreal. She was commanded and owned by Capt. Ed Zealand, and had a crew of 16 or 18 men. The ZEALAND was an excellent propeller, about 5 years old, and was rebuilt from the hull of the CITY OF CHATHAM, which burned at Hamilton about 6 years ago. Her owner and captain, Edward Zealand, hails from Hamilton, where he has resided for many years. Notwithstanding the telegram announcing the wreckage, it is of course possible that the ZEALAND may only be disabled and in a harbor of refuge. Still the chances are against her, as no telegram has been received from her. She was insured for $16,000 in the Manhattan and Greenwich Co. of New York.
      Buffalo Commercial Advertiser
      November 11, 1880 4-4

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Crew of the ZEALAND. -- The crew of the ZEALAND, if full, consisted of 16 persons, but from the way in which they were shipped it is impossible to give their names or residences excepting the following: Edward Zealand. Captain, Hamilton; Thom. Dewey, 1st. engineer, St.Catharines; leaves a wife and four children; David Taylor, 2nd engineer, Port Colborne. unmarried; Joseph Malette, 1st. mate; Montreal, unmarried; Thomas Danos Legic. 2nd mate, near Cornwall, unmarried; Thomns Armstrong, ship carpenter, McNab Street, Hamilton, leaves a wife and daughter; Miss Frances, lady's maid, Montreal. The two deck hands were known on board as George and Jack, the former being an Englishman and the latter from Toronto, his real name being George, but changed to distinguish him from his chum. The cook's name is unknown. She was a widow, formerly a resident of Hamilton.
A theory among vesselmen is that the ZEALAND had hugged the north shore, on the way down, on Saturday night, till they approached Presque Isle. It would be necessary to haul out into the lake, which would bring the vessel into the trough of the sea, where she became unmanageable and rolled over. It is the opinion that the vessel would have lived through the gale, with the wind and sea after her, and that only such an occurrance, or an accident to the machinery, caused her disaster. She was insured in the Phoenix for $18,400 and the cargo in the Manhattan and Greenwich Co.'s of New York for $14,000. In such case, however, she was reinsured by those companies, so that the loss to them will be small.
      Kingston Whig-Standard
      November 11, 1880

All hopes of the safety of the prop. ZEALAND has been abandoned. As she was a freight boat and had no cabin accommodation, it is not expected that any passengers were on board, but her crew numbered about 16. From the way in which they were shipped it is impossible to obtain a more complete list than the following: Edward Zealand, Captain, of Hamilton; Thomas Dewey, first engineer, St. Catharines, leaves a wife and 4 children; David Taylor, second engineer, Port Colborne, unmarried; Joseph Marlette, first mate, Montreal, unmarried; Thomas Danost Lejice, second mate, Cornwall, unmarried; Thomas Armstrong, ship carpenter, Hamilton, leaves a wife and daughter; Miss Francis, lad's maid, Montreal. The 2 deck hands were known on board as George and Jack, the former an Englishman and the latter hailing from Toronto. The cook belonged to Hamilton. Her name cannot be remembered. She was a widow and leaves no family. The master of the ill-fated propeller, Capt. Edward Zealand, was well and favorably known to all sailors on Lake Ontario. He was born and bred a sailor. His father was the well-known Capt. Edward Zealand, who was the first man on board the notorious CAROLINE, which was sent over Niagara Falls in 1812(sic). The late Capt. Zealand has been a lake Captain all his life, and has commanded some of the best vessels on the Lower Lakes. He was a citizen of Hamilton, where he leaves a wife and a large family. His sailor life has been full of adventures. He has been wrecked several times, and escaped all dangers, to go down unseen in one of the worst storms that ever swept Ontario,
      Buffalo Commercial Advertiser
      November 12, 1880 1-5

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The Propeller ZEALAND appears to have reached a point off Port Hope or Cobourg when the storm struck her, and the wind being from the Southwest, the captain would, probably entertaining doubts of making either of those harbours, stand off toward the middle of the lake and the south shore. The Zealand was not loaded to her full capacity, having only 12,000 bushels of wheat in addition to the flour on board, and if struck by a heavy sea, whether anything went wrong with the machinery or steering gear or not, would be almost certain, if struck by a heavy sea, to list over so much as to cause the cargo to shift. When this occurred, steerage way would be lost, and the steamer would probablly either founder and go down immediately, or after labouring a short time in the trough of the sea, split and go to pieces. What lends a degree of greater probability to this theory is the fact that portions of the wreckage have been picked up near Port Hope. A young man named Andrew Chestnut of Barriefield, brother of an engineer of the same name who resided in St. Catharines, is amongst the lost. He was the youngest of seven sons. The name of the cook was Mary Ann Park. She was an Irish woman, between 35 and 40 years of age, and has relatives residing in Buffalo. The two wheelsmen were from Toledo, Ohio, but their names are unknown. The firemen were a Norwegian, shipped at Montreal and a man who was known by the name of Frank, and who is said to have at one time sailed on the PRUSSIA, of St. Catharines.
      Kingston Whig-Standard
      November 12, 1880

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      The lost propeller Zealand.
      The Guiding Star Encounters a mass of her wreckage- no doubt that she has foundered
Port Dalhousie, Ont. Nov. 10. The schooner Guiding Star, Capt. Wm. Griffin, arrived this morning from Oswego and reports having passed pieces of a cabin, bed clothes, water tank and barrels of flour. The flour was made and
marked by W. T. Tyson & Son, Clarksburg, Ont. One of the crew says they passed the schooner Ariel, picking up the flour. The lake was filled with portions of wreck, and it is supposed to be some propeller bound from Toronto to Kingston. Pieces of white railing were also picked up.
      Special despatch to the Palladium.
Hamilton Ont. Nov. 11. Up to the present time no news of the prop. Zealand has been received except as to the finding of parts of her cabins and cargo. In fact any hopes as to the safety of any of her crew are not now
entertained. Much sympathy is felt here in respect to Captain Zealand and his family. He leaves a wife and five children. He was a life long citizen of Hamilton and had a host of friends. The crew of the Zealand if full, consisted of sixteen persons, but from the way in which they were shipped it is impossible to give the names or residences excepting the following:
Edward Zealand, captain Hamilton Thos. Dewsey, first Engineer St. Catharines, leaves a wife and four children. David Taylor, second engineer, Port Colborne, unmarried; Joseph Malette, first mate, Montreal unmarried, Thos. Danos Lefie, second mate, Cornwall unmarried Thomas Armstrong, ship carpenter, Hamilton leaves a wife and daughter, Miss Francis Lady¹s maid Montreal . The two deck hands were known on board as George and Jack , the former being an Englishman and the latter hailing from Toronto. The cook belonged at Hamilton, but her name cannot be remembered . She was a widow and leaves no family. Capt. Thomas Zealand, brother of deceased and his eldest son Edward, have left for the north shore to make search for any debris of the wreck or bodies which may be washed ashore.
The Zealand was full canal size, built by A. Robertson of Hamilton, in 1874, and was comparatively new. Her cost was $32,000 and even with the depreciation of ship property, she was valued at $25,000. Her machinery was taken from the propeller Chatham, burned a few years ago in Burlington Bay, and she had been kept in excellent repair., most of her wood work being new. She was engaged in the lake trade between St. Catharines and Montreal. Saturday she loaded at Toronto with 12,000 bushels of wheat and 360 bbls. Of flour which was a moderate cargo, and left her drawing only 9 feet of water. Captain Zealand was 53 years old.
      Special despatch to the Palladium
Consecon, Nov. 11. Capt. Courson of the schooner Nellie Sherwood picked up a gangway of the propellor Zealand this forenoon in Weller¹s Bay It was marked Steamer Zealand in large letters.
      Oswego Palladium
      November 11, 1880

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      The Zealand's mate found
Picton Ont. Nov. 18.- A fisherman reported to J. Redmond, inspector of fisheries for the county of Prince Edward, that a body had come ashore at Point Peter, having a life preserver attached with the name Zealand marked on it. Another fisherman reports having found an empty chest with the lid torn off, also with the name of the steamer Zealand on it. Mr. Thomas Zealand arried here do-day and proceeded at once to Point Peter. He identified the body that came ashore as that of Demas Lajice of the ill-fated steamer Zealand.
      Oswego Palladium
      November 23, 1880

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      Reward for Capt. Zealand's Body.
A son of Capt. Edward Zealand of Hamilton, lost with the propeller ZEALAND on Lake Ontario November 7, 1880, offers $200 reward for the body. Capt. Zealand was 53 years old, 5 feet 9 inches high, dark hair and dark brown
beard turning slightly gray, a gold ring on little finger of left hand and a tattooed ring on large finger of same hand.
      Oswego Palladium
      Tuesday December 7, 1880

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The Toronto Globe says: "In regard to several boats lost of late, and the connected apparent fatalities, the following facts will be of interest: The CITY OF CHATHAM and the MARY A. ROBINSON were both built by Hyslop and Ronald, in the Chatham docks, about six years ago, and were afterwards both burnt, the former in Burlington Bay, here, near the Great Western Railway freight wharf, and the latter in her trip between Chicago and Port Colborne. Both boats were then rebuilt, the CITY OF CHATHAM being rechristened the ZEALAND, and the MARY A. ROBINSON the SIMCOE, and now both boats, within a few days of each other, have gone down with such fatal consequences. It might be stated that at the sale here of the hull of the CITY OF CHATHAM, after being burnt, there were only two parties, Mr. J.H. Killey and Mr. Zealand, both of this city, who made bids, the latter gentleman being the purchaser. Hence the name of ZEALAN. It also might be stated that mate Jim Parsons, lost with the SIMCOE, was formerly pilot of the Gun-boat PRINCE ALFRED during the Fenian raid, and afterwards captain of the ill-fated CUMBERLAND, which went to pieces on a rock in Lake Superior in a fog. The second engineer, Mr., McAntley, lost with the SIMCOE, was the son of engineer McAntley, who was lost in the WAUBUNO disaster on the Georgian Bay. Further facts could be given, but the above are the most singular."
      The J.W. Hall Great lakes Marine Scrapbook, November, 1880

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The search for the hull of the lost tug PALMER (WALKER) has resulted in turning up the remains of the steamer ZEALAND, lost 20 years ago. Although a great deal of searching was done for the ZEALAND, no trace was ever found of her before. She carried a valuable cargo, and when she went down, all of her crew perished. The Donnelly Wrecking & Salvage Co., Kingston, which found the wreck of the ZEALAND will make an investigation to ascertain whether any part of the cargo can be recovered profitably. The ZEALAND sank near Nicholson's Island in Lake Ontario.
      Buffalo Morning Express
      May 26, 1899 3-3

NOTE: - The Buffalo article was copied word for word by the Marine Record, June 8, 1899. The reference to the tug PALMER is an error, and was meant to be the tug WALKER, (JAMES A. WALKER ) foundered 100 yds. from Nicholson Island, Oct. 22, 1898, it was also found and raised.)

      The Donnelly Wrecking & Salvage Co. of Kingston, Ont., in a recent effort to locate the wreck of the tug WALKER near Nicolson's island, came upon the wreck of the steamer ZEALAND, which was lost about twenty years ago.
      Marine Review
      June 1, 1899


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Reason: sunk
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Remarks: Total loss
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William R. McNeil
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Zealand (Propeller), sunk, 6 Nov 1880