The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Portage (Schooner), sunk, 26 Jul 1878

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Port Rowan, July 27. -- During the gale yesterday the schooner PORTAGE, laden with coal from Fair Haven to Toledo, sank eight miles west of this port. Crew saved.
The PORTAGE was a scow schooner of 224 tons, and was valued at $3,000.
      Detroit Free Press
      July 28, 1878

      . . . . .

Port Rowan, July 27. -- Dauring the gale of yesterday the schooner PORTAGE loaded with coal from Fairhaven to Toledo, sank eight miles west of here, close to shore. All hands saved.
      Toronto Globe
      July 29, 1878
      . . . .

      A VESSEL SUNK - Port Rowan, July 27. - During the gale of yesterday, the schooner PORTAGE, coal laden from Fairhaven to Toledo, sunk when eight miles west of here. Crew saved.
      Detroit Post & Tribune
      Monday, July 29, 1878

      . . . . .
Port Burwell, July 29. -- The schooner PORTAGE of Buffalo, loaded with about 400 tons of coal, sunk near the shore 10 miles east of here on Friday night in about four fathoms of water. No lives were lost.
      Toronto Globe
      July 30, 1878

      . . . . .
      The schooner PORTAGE, which sunk off Port Rowan last Friday, lies in twenty-three feet of water, and will prove a total wreck. The vessel was owned by F. Horton, of Erie, was valued at $3,300, registered 221 tons burden, and was calssed B 2. She was built in 1862 and underwent repairs in !872-74. --- Erie Dispatch
      Cleveland herald
      Friday, August 2, 1878
      . . . . .

      THE PRINCE ALFRED. - The Canadian wrecking tug PRINCE ALFRED was missing on Sunday and yesterday, and many inquiries were made as to her whereabouts. She has gone to Port Burwell, where her officers and owners will inspect the wreck of the schooner PORTAGE which recently sank there, and which lays in about 20 feet of water. From there she will go to Cleveland and take on coal and then return to Windsor. Should it be found that the PORTAGE can be raised, and satisfactory arrangements can be made, she will again go to the wreck with a view to raise what remains. Mr. Quinn, the diver, went down on this trip to inspect the PORTAGE, and the future disposition of the schooner will depend upon what he reports concerning her condition.
      Detroit Post & Tribune
      Tuesday, August 6, 1878

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      HOME AGAIN. - The Canadian wrecking tug PRINCE ALFRED arrived back at Windsor at noon yesterday, from her expedition to the wreck of the schooner PORTAGE. Capt. Innes reports that the schooner is not worth raising. She is going to pieces fast, and already her deck is gone. The coal which composed her cargo will probably be secured.
      Detroit Post & Tribune
      Thursday, August 8, 1878

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The PRINCE ALFRED is engaged in the effort of raising the schooner PORTAGE, lying in 20 feet of water at Port Burwell.
      Toronto Globe
      August 10, 1978
      . . . . .

      THE WRECKING EXPEDITION. - The Canadian wrecking tug PRINCE ALFRED expected to leave for the wreck of the schooner PORTAGE, last night, Manager McDonald has decided not to send the M.C. UPPER, down as a lighter, but will raise the coal in the sunken schooner and put it on the deck of the tug. When a fair deck load has been secured it will be taken to Port Stanley and sold, and then the tug will return for another until, when about half the cargo is out, the vessel will be raised and towed to either Toledo or Detroit.
      Detroit Post & Tribune
      Tuesday, August 20, 1878

      . . . . .

      NO GOOD. - Manager McDonald of the Canadian Wrecking Company received a telegram from Capt. Innis of the PRINCE ALFRED yesterday, which stated that the schooner PORTAGE is fast going to pieces. Her deck is all gone, her stern is out, and the cargo of coal in her has become so scattered that it will not pay for being raised. The telegram further stated that the ALFRED was about to return home, in which event she will arrive at Windsor this morning.
      Detroit Post & Tribune
      Saturday, August 24, 1878

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The PRINCE ALFRED is back from Port Burwell having accomplished nothing in the way of taking the coal from the sunken PORTAGE.
      Detroit Free Press
      Sunday, August 25, 1878
      . . . . .
PORTAGE, American schooner of 224 tons reg., foundered owing to stress of weather on July 17, 1878. Bound Toledo from Fairhaven, U. S. Foundered near Port Rowan.
      Statement of Wreck & Casualty
      Dept. of Marine & Fisheries, 1878

Media Type:
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Reason: sunk
Lives: nil
Freight: coal
Remarks: Total loss
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  • Ontario, Canada
    Latitude: 42.65009 Longitude: -80.8164
William R. McNeil
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Portage (Schooner), sunk, 26 Jul 1878