The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Detroit Free Press (Detroit, MI), Nov. 20, 1874

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A SCRAP OF MARINE HISTORY. - There is a slight error in the statement which is going its rounds relative to the propeller B. F. Wade. The Wade has been in service twelve years, and was the second steamer to experiment with the walking-beam in a screw steamer, the engine used, if we mistake not, having formerly been in the steamer Chief Justice Robinson, on Lake Ontario. Owing to its continually breaking down it was deemed a failure and taken out to be replaced by one of the usual kind. The Wade was built by Captain Jacobus Woolverton (now deceased) at Newport, on the River St. Clair, and is 1250 tons burden. The first experiment of the walking-beam engine above referred to was on board the Water Witch, which had the steamer Fashion's engine, and with it was lost, with all hands the machinery in question being, beyond a doubt, mainly the cause of the sad calamity. They have not been tried since.

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The WATER WITCH was also built by Wolverton at Newport (Marine City, Mich) in 1861 and was lost in 1863. Her engine reportedly transferred power to the shaft by a "cog-wheel" arrangement. She was reputedly the fastest vessel on the lakes (capable of 18 mph!). She foundered in a gale in Saginaw Bay, and, since there were no survivors and no trace of her was ever found, the statement that her engine caused the disaster is pure speculation. WADE was at the time of this article being divested of her engine and converted to a barge.
Date of Original:
Nov. 20, 1874
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Dave Swayze
Copyright Statement:
Public domain: Copyright has expired according to the applicable Canadian or American laws. No restrictions on use.
Maritime History of the Great Lakes
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Detroit Free Press (Detroit, MI), Nov. 20, 1874