The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Bob Hackett (Propeller), sunk by collision, 8 Sep 1885

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The tug BOB HACKETT collided with the Western Line propeller St. MAGNUS bound from Kingston to Port Arthur near the head of Bois Blanc Island, on the range about 7:45 P. M. Tuesday and sunk in 16 feet of water. She was built at Detroit in 1869 and measured 162 tons.
      Port Huron Daily Times
      Wednesday, September 9, 1885

      . . . . .

      The Canadian Tug Bob Hackett Sunk in a Collision near Amherstburg
A report reached this city last midnight that the Canadian tug Bob Hackett had collided with the Western Line propeller St. Magnus, bound from Kingston to Port Arthur, near the head of Bois Blanc Island (Detroit R.) on the range, about 7:45 p.m. and sunk in sixteen feet of water. Capt. Young, of the tug John Owen, which passed up with a tow at 1:30 this morning, verified the report, and stated that the Hackett was sinking when he passed her at 9 p.m., and that her port light was just above water. The mate of the ferry Hope, which arrived up at 2:30, reports that the lights shown by the St. Magnus were very dim and could hardly be discovered when the collision occurred.
The Hackett was one of the best known tugs on the river and was commanded by Capt. Geo. Odette. She was built in this city in 1869 by Jones, measured 162 tons, rated A2½, and was valued in the Inland Lloyd's register at $5,000. She was sold at auction last spring and was bought in by several Windsor capitalists, Odette & Wherry being the principal owners. Very little repairs had been made on her since she was built, and consequently she was pretty well used up. The amount for which she was insured could not be learned last night, although it was learned that the Western Assurance Company, of Toronto, carries a marine risk on the hull.
      Detroit Free Press
      September 9, 1885

      . . . . .

      The Hackett's Checkered Career.
The FREE PRESS correspondent at Amherstburg, writing of the tug Bob Hackett, says: The Hackett was built in Amherstburg for the Windsor & Lake Shore route about twenty years ago by J. P. Jones for Robert Reynolds and Felix Jones, of Windsor, and was cut in two and lengthened at Amherstburg about 1872. She ran on the above route for years, until a larger boat was found necessary, when the Lake Breeze, which was burned at Leamington with the loss of one life, took her place. The Breeze was succeeded by the Erie Belle, which was blown up at Kincardine, with the loss of several lives.
The Hackett has been sunk several times and damaged by fires. She was sunk at Windsor, Walkerville and Amherstburg, all within five years, but always had enough insurance to raise her. She has changed owners so often that it was difficult to keep track of her and there are many old bills standing against her or her former owners.
The tug Bob Hackett is sunk about 800 or 1,000 feet above Bois Blanc Island, nearly in the channel. Steamers with big tows should be careful not to get too far to westward at this point. She sunk in five minutes after being struck, and clothing containing money belonging to several of her crew went with her. One man, it is reported, lost $160, another $15, and a third $20.
      The Hackett - St. Magnus Collision.
The crew of the tug Bob Hackett, sunk by collision with the propeller St. Magnus Tuesday night, were taken off by the propeller. The tug was cut to the keel. The wheelman of the Hackett claims that the St. Magnus showed only her starboard light, so he started to pass to the starboard. The Magnus then whistled for port and the Hackett responded, but the wheelman barely had time to put his wheel about when the collision occurred. He says when he went aboard the Magnus he looked particularly for her red light but there was none. He then went into the cabin and a few minutes after came back and found it lighted.
Dominion Marshall John Campbell, who sold the tug at forced sale in March last for $1,360, says that Sol. Wigle is the sole owner. Odette & Wherry have no interest in her. She carried $4,000 fire insurance and $1,200 marine, the latter by the Western Company of Toronto. R. A. Reynolds, the Windsor agent of the company, stated yesterday that she would no doubt be raised, though the company had left it's decision in the matter to its inspector, Capt. J. T. Douglas, who was expected at Windsor last night. Mr. Reynolds said he has no doubt that the St. Magnus was to blame, and they would seize her. The stem of the Magnus was broken and her starboard planks shivered by the shock. The planking was patched at the Detroit Dry-dock, where she left late in the afternoon.
      Detroit Free Press
      September 10, 1885

      . . . . .

Tug BOB HACKETT, of Windsor sank at Amherstburg September 9, 1885. Loss valued at $1,200. She was of 162 tons, built 1869. Partial Loss. No cargo.
      Partial Losses on the Lakes, 1885
      Cleveland Leader
      December 7, 1885

      . . . . .

Judge Horne has given his decision in the case for damages brought by the owners of the tug Bob Hackett against the propeller St. Magnus on the 8th of September, 1885, when the craft collided between Limekilns Crossing and Bois Blanc Island, and the Bob Hackett was sunk and proved a total wreck. The Judge found the St. Magnus at fault, and directed a reference.
      Detroit Free Press
      September 6, 1887

Media Type:
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Reason: sunk by collision
Lives: nil
Hull damage: $1,200
Freight: nil
Remarks: Total loss ?
Date of Original:
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Language of Item:
William R. McNeil
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Bob Hackett (Propeller), sunk by collision, 8 Sep 1885