The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
R. Hallaran (Schooner), U110434, sunk, 2 May 1900

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Marquette, Mich., May 2. - The first wreck of the season on the Great Lakes occurred today off Stannard Rock, about 20 miles west. The schooner HALLORAN, ore laden, sprang a leak and went down, but her crew of eight were taken off by the steamer DRAKE, which had the HALLORAN in tow. The vessel was owned by Corrigan, McKinney & Co., of Cleveland, and was bound from Two Harbors to Conneaut.
      Saginaw Courier-Herald
      May 3, 1900

      . . . . .

      Heavy Sea Had caused a Leak Too Big To Stop.
      Marquette. May 2. --The schooner B. HALLARAN, bound down Lake Superior, with a cargo of ore, in tow of the steamer DRAKE, sank eight miles off Stannard Rock at 7 o'clock this morning in the heavy northwest gale and snowstorm. The crew, consisting of seven men and a woman cook, were rescued after heroic work by the crew of the DRAKE.
      The DRAKE and HALLARAN took on a cargo of iron at Two Harbors and were bound for Conneaut. Capt. Nicholson, of the DRAKE, reports that about 11 o'clock last night a heavy sea rose, causing the schooner to labor so heavily that the course was changed so that the schooner would ride easier and at the same time run for Marquette for shelter. Soon after the crew of the HALLARAN blew a distress signal and through the megaphone notified the steamer that their vessel had sprung a leak and that water was making so rapidly in the hold that the pump would not keep the schooner free. A line was cast off from the steamer and she went back to take off the crew from the sinking schooner. The crew of the HALLARAN launched their yawl and were drawn alongside the DRAKE.
After all had been taken aboard but the captain of the schooner, the DRAKE drifted down, and crushed the yawl against the schooner's side. The captain of the HALLARAN had taken the precaution to tie a line around his waist and he was finally hauled aboard the steamer, not, however, without suffering injuries to his lower limbs. The woman cook was also slightly injured.
The HALLARAN did not sink immediately, and the DRAKE cruised around in the vicinity, but at 7 o'clock this morning the vessel disappeared in the fog and is supposed to have sunk. The DRAKE continued the search until 11:30 o'clock, when she turned and came to Marquette without having been able to discover a trace of the lost boat.
The HALLARAN was 189 feet long and had a tonnage of 698. She was built in 1880 and was largely rebuilt last winter. She was owned by Corrigan, McKinney & Co., of Cleveland.
      Milwaukee Library Scrapbook
      May 3, 1900
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      Cleveland, May 3. -- The schooner HALLARAN, which foundered on Lake Superior yesterday, was insured for $11,000 with Smith, Davis & Co., of Buffalo. The cargo of ore, which was owned by the Carnegie Steel Co., was also covered with insurance.
      Milwaukee Library Scrapbook
      May 4, 1900

The schooner HALLARAN was leaking before the time the distress whistle was blown, but it was not supposed she was making any more water than her pumps could easily take care of. Capt. Nicholson assigns the failure of her pumps to work to the fact that when she was rebuilt last fall, chips were left under the timbers and that these got awash and chocked the pumps. At any rate, they failed to work. The HALLARAN was built in 1880 at Cleveland, was 189 feet lang and had a gross registered tonnage of 698. On the present trip she was carrying nearly 1,600 tons of ore.
      Milwaukee Library Scrapbook
      May 5, 1900
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      The exact location of the schooner R. HALLARAN, which sunk off Stannard Rock last Wednesday, is not known. It is thought that she is far enough below the water line not to interfere with navigation.
      Milwaukee Library Scrapbook
      May 8, 1900

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The name of one of the seamen lost with the Charles Foster is probably Fred Lee, an Englishman. The schooner passed this port, bound up, November 21, in tow of the IR0N DUKE, it being the first art of the trip which proved to be her last. Corrigan, her owner, telegraphed from Cleveland to Capt. J. W. Westcott to buy a new yawl and ship one man. Lee was engaged, and as the tow passed, he sculled the yawl out to the FOSTER and was taken aboard, together with the yawl. He was a young man, heavy and well-built, but of course nothing is known of his relatives or friends. It is thought certain here that he stayed on the boat after clearing for the down trip, as is the custom of many sailors going to Lake Superior, especially this time of the year, unless they intend to take to the lumber woods, which very few do.
The story of the foundering, as told by Capt. Ashley, of the steamer, sounds odd to local vessel men. The mysterious part of it is the allegation that without the slightest previous warning the schooner made one big dive and shot straight to the bottom, to be seen no more. How a vessel 225 feet long, fully loaded, with three heavy masts, could find space enough between two waves to dive to the bottom is the statement that makes people
doubtful. Even on the ocean it would be hard to conceive such a formation of the waters, let alone a little pond like Lake Erie, where the seas are short and choppy compared to the big upper lakes.
The condition of the schooner is considered her to have been good, otherwise she would not have been able to obtain the insurance which expired December 1 at noon. After she was brought back from the coast, and passed into the hands of James Corrigan, he spent a lot of money in making the repairs necessary to give her a good rating. Nobody accuses him of overloading her, a charge commonly made against the older class of vessels this year, for, being unable to get an insurance extension, except at prohibitive rates, he would be very likely to load her in the best possible trim to make her ride the seas well. Vesselmen are agreed that while the FOSTER was seaworthy, yet craft of her class should never be out after November 25, at the furthest, and the careful owner lays them up even before that date.
James Corrigan will probably remember the year 1900 as long as he lives. He began the navigation season with the foundering of the schooner R. HALLARAN, under similar circumstances, on Lake Superior, with the loss of several lives. She was a smaller boat than the FOSTER, and insured for part of her value. The capsizing and foundering of the schooner-yacht IDLER off Cleveland with Mr. Corrigan's wife and several daughters, was one of the noted disasters of the year in this country. About the same time he got an adverse verdict in a lawsuit against John D. Rockefeller for $1,200,000 he claimed was due him on some mining property. Several of his vessels, other than the two mentioned have gone ashore and been otherwise injured this season. The demon of disaster has scarcely left him this season.
      Detroit Free Press
      December 11, 1900

NOTE: Eight lives were lost when the FOSTER (US#125581) foundered off Presque Isle, Pa., December 9.

The schooner R. HALLARAN, which was abandoned in a sinking condition by the steamer M.M. DRAKE in a recent gale within sight of Stannard Rock. It is believed, Captain Ed Chambers, keeper of the Stannard Rock light, writes the Mining Journal at Marquette, Mich., that on the morning of May 2, which was the date of the HALLARAN'S loss, he sighted a schooner about 9 o'clock, which was making bad weather. At 10:10 o'clock the vessel disappeared, and Captain Chambers believed she foundered at that time. The report shows that the HALLARAN remained afloat three hours after the time she was lost sight of by the crew of the DRAKE, and they believe she had then sunk.
      Milwaukee Wisconsin
      May 13, 1900
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      Schooner R. HALLARAN. Official U. S. No. 110434. Home port, Fairport, O., of 698 gross tons, 663 tons net. 189 x 36 x 17.6. Built 1880 at Toledo by Bailey. Owner or manager, Jas. Corrigan. Repaired 1899. Built of oak. American.
      Great Lakes Register, 1900

Media Type:
Item Type:
Reason: sunk
Lives: nil
Freight: iron ore
Remarks: Total loss
Date of Original:
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Geographic Coverage:
  • Michigan, United States
    Latitude: 47.18047 Longitude: -87.2293
William R. McNeil
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Maritime History of the Great Lakes
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R. Hallaran (Schooner), U110434, sunk, 2 May 1900