The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Orion (Schooner), sunk, 31 Aug 1872


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The many that give the thought to those that go down to the sea in ships, have had their misgivings to-day of the loss of life and property, by the sudden, unwarned gale of yesterday and last night.
      As one of the results of the hurricane, for it can be called little less, is the loss of the schooner ORION of Hamilton. From a conversation with Captain Daniel Pease, of the lost vessel, we gather the following particulars: the
ORION had a cargo of free stone from Cleveland, Ohio for Brockville, Ontario and was running down this lake with a free wind over the port quarter under foresail , main sail fore stay-sail and jib, the mizzen sail ( she being a three masted fore and after), gaff topsails and other jibs furled. The night was what seamen term a dirty one, and the captain had been on deck during the whole night, and as morning broke gray in the east, was congratulating himself upon passing safely through, and the near approach of his destination.
At six o¹clock yesterday morning, Capt. Pease went into the cabin, roused the cook and while lighting his pipe at the fire stared in the stove the vessel gave a lurch to the starboard and as she did not righten the captain stepped out of the cabin aft to the man at the wheel and asked him if the vessel was on her course and upon being told that she was, at once concluded something was wrong, and ran forward and called the men from the forecastle. When the men came on deck the pumps were tried, and water was found in plenty. The captain descended into the forecastle and found that the water had reached the floor, and was rising rapidly. He saw that all hope of saving the vessel was gone, returned to the deck and gave orders to luff the vessel up into the wind and to lower the yawl. The latter order was obeyed not a minute too soon, as the crew had only time to get into the boat and cut the stern davit tackle, while the captain unrove the bow tackle, and the Orion with another lurch, made a plunge and went down head first. The pressure was so great when she went down that it burst the decks and hatches with a report as loud as a gun and sent splinters and pieces of wood flying in all direction.
At the time she went down she was ten miles this side of Long Point, on Lake Ontario, and about seven miles from land. The depth of water is impossible for the captain to state, suffice it to say that the trucks were not even in
sight when she struck bottom. Now came the tug of war for the crew: afloat in an open boat, no sail, but two oars, with the waves rolling mountains high and white caps constantly breaking over its sides to run before the wind was there only safety. Once a sail was sighted, and with a signal of distress flying they made an effort to attract the attention of the passing vessel, but without avail. Bailing and rowing by turns the crew passed the time as best they might, still running down the lake, until Nine Miles Point, below this city, was sighted and shortly after a safe landing was effected in the bay just below the point at half past one yesterday afternoon.
After the crew -eight men in all- were safely landed and the boat pulled up high and dry, and getting something to eat, they started for New Haven station, where they took the Rome train to this city. The crew saved nothing except the clothes they wore, and the captain losing even his books and money.
The Orion was owned by Captain Edward Zealand, of Hamilton, was of considerable age, although she was rebuilt some four or five years ago. The Captain does not know whether there was any insurance, but thinks there was.
      Oswego Daily Palladium
      Saturday August 31, 1872

      . . . . .

Oswego, Aug. 31 - A gale of unusual severity for this season of the year has prevailed here since Thursday. The schooner ALPHA, from Toronto, for this port went ashore, five miles below the harbor, and will probably be a total wreck. Her crew were taken off in the life-boat last night. The schooner ORION, from Cleveland for Kingston, with building stone is sunk off Long Point, Canada. He crew drifted ashore in the yawl, nine miles below here yesterday. The schooner RICHARDSON, from Toronto, with corn is ashore at Presque Isle.
      The Toronto Mail
      Monday, September 2, 1872

      . . . . .

Disasters on Lake Ontario - A dispatch dated Oswego, August 31st says: The schr. ALPHA from Toronto, has been wrecked in this harbor; crew saved. The schr. ORION, from Cleveland for Kingston, is sunk off Long Pt., Canada; crew saved. The schr. RICHARDSON from Toronto, is ashore at Presque Isle.
Another dispatch syas the brig OCEAN of Hamilton, commanded by Capt. Dunn, and freighted with stone from Cleveland to Picton, sprung a leak on Lake Ontario yesterday (Friday) morning, and sunk in 15 minutes. The crew of 7 made land at a distance of 30 miles in an open yawl through a heavy sea. It is probable that the other marine disasters have occurred on the lake.
      Detroit Tribune
      September 2, 1872 4-7



The schr. ORION which became a total loss during the late storm on Lake Erie, was owned by E. Zealand of Hamilton. She came out in 1853 and was rebuilt in 1867. She was 210 tons burden, classed A2 and was valued at $10,000 in gold.
      Detroit Tribune
      September 7, 1872 4-6
     
      . . . . .

      MARINE DISASTER
      THE "ORION" OF HAMILTON
      (The Oswego Palladium gives the following:)
"From a conversation with Capt. Daniel Pease, of the lost vessel, we gather the following particulars: The ORION had a cargo of freestone from Cleveland, Ohio, for Brockville, Ontario, and was running down this lake with a free wind over the port quarter, under foresail, mainsail, fore stay-sail and jib, the Mizensail (she being a three masted fore-and-after), gaff-top-sails and other jibs firled. The night was what seamen term a dirty one, and the Captain had been on deck during the whole night, and as morning broke grey in the east, was congratulating himself upon passing safely through, and the near approach of his destination. At 6 o'clock yesterday morning Capt. Pease went into the cabin, roused the cook, and while lighting his pipe at the fire started in the stove, the vessel gave a lurch to the starboard, and as she did not righten, the Captain stepped out of the cabin aft to the man at the wheel and asked him if the vessel was on course, and being told that she was, at once concluded that something was wrong, and ran forward, and called the men from the forecastle. When the men came on deck the pumps were tried, and water was found in plenty. The Captain descended into the forecastle and found that the water had reached the floor, and was rising rapidly. He saw that all hope of saving the vessel was gone, returned to the deck and gave orders to luff the vessel up into the wind, and to lower the yawl. The latter order was obeyed not a moment too soon, as the crew had only time to get into the boat and cut the stern davit tackle, while the captain unrove the bow tackle, and the ORION with another lurch, made a plunge and went down head first.
The pressure was so great when she went down that it burst the decks and hatches with a report as loud as a gun, and sent splinters and pieces of wood flying in all directions. At the time she went down she was about ten miles this side of Long Point, on Lake Ontario, and about 7 miles from land. The depth of water it is impossible for the captain to state, suffice to say that the trucks were not even in sight when she struck bottom. Now came the tug-of-war for the crew; afloat in an open boat, no sails but two cars, with the waves rolling mountains high, and white caps constantly breaking over it's sides, to run before the wind was their only safety. Once a sail was sighted, and with a signal of distress flying they made an effort to attract the attention of the passing vessel, but without avail.
Bailing and rowing in turns the crew passed their time as best they might, still running down the lake until Nine Mile Point, below this city, was sighted and shortly after, a safe landing was affected in the bay, just below the Point at 1:30 yesterday afternoon. After the crew--eight men in all--, were safely landed and the boat pulled up high and dry, and getting something to eat, they started for New Haven station, where they took the Rome train to this city. The crew saved nothing except the clothes they wore, the Captain losing even his books and money. The ORION was owned by Captain Edward Zealand, of Hamilton, and was of considerable age, although she was rebuilt some four or five years ago. The Captain does not know whether there was any insurance, but thinks there was.
      The Toronto Mail
      Friday, September 6, 1872

      . . . . .


Media Type:
Text
Newspaper
Item Type:
Clippings
Notes:
Reason: sunk
Lives: nil
Freight: stone
Remarks: Total loss
Date of Original:
1872
Subject(s):
Local identifier:
McN.W.15973
Language of Item:
English
  • Ontario, Canada
    Latitude: 43.933888 Longitude: -76.892777
Donor:
William R. McNeil
Copyright Statement:
Copyright status unknown. Responsibility for determining the copyright status and any use rests exclusively with the user.
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Orion (Schooner), sunk, 31 Aug 1872