The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
James Ruggles (Schooner), aground, 29 Nov 1838

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The schooner JAMES RUGGLES of Dunkirk, bound to Chicago with a full cargo of merchandize, ran aground on the outside of the peninsula at this place, a few days since in a snow squall, in endeavoring to get round into the road stead, the vessel being much ice-loged, and crew nearly worn out with fatigue and exposure. At the time the Cutter was assisting the schooner SANDUSKY off ashore at the head of the Peninsula; but having got her nearly into the bay, and out of danger, she repaired immediately to the assistance of the RUGGLES with the Cutter, and notwithstanding the inclemency of the weather, succeeded in getting nearly all the cargo out, and on Saturday evening got her afloat, and off to anchor; but having lost her rudder, and otherwise out of repair, she was unable to get under way, and the wind being ahead, the Cutter was too small to take her in tow and weather the point to get into the harbor. In the mean time the steamer NORTH AMERICA came along, when Lieu. Ottinger endeavored to get her to go and tow the RUGGLES in; but the captain excused himself by saying his boat was heavy loaded, steered bad, &c., and before another steamer came along, which was late in the afternoon, the wind had increased to a gale, heaving in a heavy sea, when she parted her cables and went ashore again, where should the weather continue in its present inclement state, she will in all probability go to pieces. However, I see the Cutter is out at her again, and I am in hopes she may yet be saved.
      The JAMES RUGGLES is a vessel of the first class, about 200 tons burthen, only a year old, and valued at about $12,000. She still has one-third of her cargo on board, in a damaged state, which they will undoubtedly get ashore the first opportunity. The loss will probably amount in all to 15 or $20,000, (should the vessel be lost.) (part extracted from article entitled "Steam Revenue Cutter")
      Erie Gazette
      November 29, 1838

Media Type:
Item Type:
Reason: aground
Lives: nil
Hull damage: $15,000
Freight: merchandise
Remarks: Total loss
Date of Original:
Local identifier:
Language of Item:
Geographic Coverage:
  • Pennsylvania, United States
    Latitude: 42.12922 Longitude: -80.08506
William R. McNeil
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Maritime History of the Great Lakes
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James Ruggles (Schooner), aground, 29 Nov 1838