The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Abert (Steamboat), aground, 18 Oct 1844

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THE "ABERT" - This craft which secured a lodgement upon the banks of this ship canal, during the great gale last fall, is undergoing an overhauling preparatory to being relaunched and brought into service. She has been re-baptized and is now called the U. S. Stmr. SURVEYOR. Various alterations are being made in her machinery. Sidewheels, working perpendicularly, instead of horizontally, have been put on and her engine raised to the same position and made to work in the same manner as that of the MICHIGAN, it having been found impracticable to do anything with Lieut. Hunter's plan. False sides have been put on, giving her greater strength and breadth of beam, and a new coat of paint has been given to her inwardly. The SURVEYOR is commanded by Captain F.P. Billings, as sailing master, and Thomas Smith goes on board as first engineer. It is understood that she is to be launched some time next week, and be ready for service on or about the middle of June. The crew are on board, fitting rigging, painting &c., under the orders of Captain Billings.
      Daily National Pilot, Buffalo
      Thursday, May 15, 1845

      . . . . .

      The U. S. Steamboat SURVEYOR, (late ABERT) was launched on Saturday last. She is commanded by our friend Capt. Billings and will be ready for service in a few days.
      Daily National Pilot
      Monday, May 26, 1845

      . . . . .

      The steamer SURVEYOR, connected with the U. S. Survey service, is about to bid farewell to these waters, to assume duties on Lake Ontario, where she will probably remain the remainder of her time. She is an iron steamer, and, being a sidewheeler, will necessitate the removal of one of her wheels in order to pass through the Welland Canal. The SURVEYOR was first called the ABERT, and commenced duty on the lakes in 1843, having been built at Buffalo. During the terrible gale on the 18th day of October, 1844, she was cast high and dry into one of the streets of Buffalo, but was got off without damage. In October 1846 she rode out a gale at Kelley's Island while other craft had to seek refuge elsewhere. Throughout her thirty years of service on the upper lakes she has successfully encounted all storms with which she had to contend, and now that she is to leave us, we part with regret. The U. S. Survey Steamer SEARCH is to be immediately laid up.
      Detroit Free Press
      July 28, 1874

Media Type:
Item Type:
Reason: aground
Lives: nil
Remarks: Got off
Date of Original:
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Geographic Coverage:
  • New York, United States
    Latitude: 42.88645 Longitude: -78.87837
William R. McNeil
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Maritime History of the Great Lakes
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Abert (Steamboat), aground, 18 Oct 1844