The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
William Livingstone (Propeller), collision, 19 Oct 1896

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      Large Three-Masted Barge Run Down at Colchester This Morning
      Owned by Capt. M. M. Drake--Her Crew saved.
Amherstburg, Ont., Oct. 19. - The GRAND TRAVERSE, from Marine City, Mich., a large three-masted barge, owned by Capt. M. M. Drake of Buffalo, N. Y., was run down by the LIVINGSTONE of Wyandotte, Mich., in the channel three miles east of Colchester, Ontario, early this morning.
      The GRAND TRAVERSE sank quickly, but the crew was rescued and brought in here at 11 o'clock.
      Buffalo Evening News
      Monday, October 19, 1896

      . . . . .

      Steamer GRAND TRAVERSE Run Down By Steamer LIVINGSTONE.
      Amherstburg, Ont., Oct.19. -- The steamer GRAND TRAVERSE of the Lackawanna line and the steamer LIVINGSTONE collided early this morning near Colchester Light. The GRAND TRAVERSE sank immediately, the crew being taken off by the LIVINGSTONE. There is now nothing to be seen of the sunken craft but her spars and smokestack. The LIVINGSTONE turned back and arrived here about noon.
      The LIVINGSTONE did not stop here, but continued on her way to Detroit with the crew of the GRAND TRAVERSE on board. The LIVINGSTONE's prow was badly crushed in.
      The GRAND TRAVERSE is a wooden steamer of 749 tons net measurement. She was built at Marine City by Morley in 1879, rates A 2, and has an Inland Lloyds valuation of $25,000. The Lackawanna Railway Company owns her.
      Detroit, Mich., Oct. 19. -- The steamer LIVINGSTONE which was in collision with the GRAND TRAVERSE at 5 o'clock this morning, abreast to Colchester, returned here at 1 o,clock this afternoon. The LIVINGSTONE struck the GRAND TRAVERSE on the port side, amidships, cutting her nearlt in two and causing her to sink in five minutes in 30 feet of water. The crew all took to the rigging and were saved by the boats from the LIVINGSTONE and brought here. The LIVINGSTONE's stem was knocked off from her water line and a couple of her plates are cracked above the water line, but no leak was caused.
      Chicago, Ill., Oct. 19. -- The GRAND TRAVERSE, after being laid up most of the season, went into commission at noon Sunday, and had not been in service twenty-four hours before she was sunk. The LIVINGSTONE had also been out of commission but was loaded with grain at Armour's on Friday. The GRAND TRAVERSE was valued at $25,000.
      Milwaukee Library Scrapbook
      October 19, 1896

The steamer GRAND TRAVERSE of the Lackawanna Line and the steamer LIVINGSTONE collided early Monday morning at 5 A. M., ! ½ miles north of Colchester light in Lake Erie. The GRAND TRAVERSE, built in 1879 and measuring 869 tons, sank immediately, the crew being taken off by the LIVINGSTONE whose bows were badly crushed. The GRAND TRAVERSE had been laid up most of the season and had gone into commission at noon on Sunday. The LIVENSTONE was downbound with grain.
      Port Huron Daily Times
      Tuesday, October 20, 1896

      . . . . .
The Detroit Free Press says that the LIVINGSTONE and GRAND TRAVERSE were in charge of their first mates, and each blames the other. Not a man of either crew will tell the story, as they have been ordered by their agents and owners to keep quiet until the case comes to trial or is up for settlement. It seems that the atmosphere was clear, and that those on each boat could plainly see the lights of the other. Dawn was just beginning to appear, but all was practically in darkness.
The above collision has caused more or less talk in Buffalo marine circles. Yesterday a group of skippers were referring to it and one of them said that he heard the GRAND TRAVERSE blew 3 times for the port side, but the LIVINGSTONE never answered her signals. Of course this is mere hearsay and it does no help the matter one way or another. Captains who have passed the wreck say that the GRAND TRAVERSE is directly in the course. This may be, but when she was struck, she was liable to swing around. It will undoubtedly prove to be an interesting case for the courts to decide.
      Buffalo Morning Express
      October 23, 1896 3-1

Media Type:
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Reason: collision
Lives: nil
Remarks: Repaired
Date of Original:
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Geographic Coverage:
  • Ontario, Canada
    Latitude: 41.98339 Longitude: -82.93314
William R. McNeil
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William Livingstone (Propeller), collision, 19 Oct 1896