The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Henry Rooney (Schooner), sunk, 22 Oct 1879

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      In yesterday's telegraph despatches the loss of the schr. H. ROONEY off Charlotte, and the drowning of the cook, Mrs. Charlotte Fisk, of Buffalo, was briefly noticed. The vessel went down about daylight and the crew got ashore at Sea Breeze in the yawl boat. Mrs. Fisk was in bed at the time of the disaster. The captain called her, but it seems that she did not respond to the calls and as no time was to be lost the men jumped into the boat and the woman went down with the schooner. The crew, when landed, were in a most dilapidated condition, some of them having no shoes not coats. They were all soaked through and nearly frozen. The vessel was loaded with lath and limestone. She is sunk in 40 or 50 ft. of water, and is a total loss. The cause of the sinking is not stated.
      Buffalo Commercial Advertiser
      October 24, 1879 3-5

Brig HENRY ROONEY - Recovery of her Anchors, Chains, etc. - Performance of a Kingston Diver. -- Many of our readers will remember the brig HENRY ROONEY, which foundered in a gale last October about five miles east northeast of Charlotte. The ROONEY had on board when she went down 300 tons of limestone and a million and a half of lath. The wrecked vessel was purchased by Messrs. Dodds & Siebel who finally secured a diver named Patrick Burke, of Kingston, to attempt the job of stripping the vessel, and they are much pleased with his success. Burke for many years tended the line for John Quinn, the famous deep water diver of Detroit, Mich. For the last three years he has been engaged in diving in the Detroit River, blasting and excavating rock to deepen the channel. He has never been down so deep as in this case. Burke reports that the ROONEY is lying almost on an even keel, the cabin is entirely gone, and the deck a mess of tangled rope, torn sails, wire and rigging. The hatches are gone, and the hatchways are filled with huge piles of lathes. She lies in 64 feet of water. At this depth Burke succeeded in securing and saving three anchors, weighting respectively 2,280, 1,120 and 850 lbs.., besides chain cables, blocks and other things. Messrs. Dodd & Siebel speak in the highest terms of the work done by Burke. It is the greatest depth ever reached by a diver in Lake Ontario, and has seldom been equalled elsewhere. Burke says the water is terribly cold and at midday objects can only be seen a short distance owing to the depth and density of the water. Burke is a thickset, muscular fellow, weighing about 160 lbs. He is affable and good natured. He understands thoroughly the work the work in which he is engaged, and has secured most of the articles of value from the vessel. -- Rochester Sunday Morning Herald.
      Kingston Whig-Standard
      October 23, 1880

Media Type:
Item Type:
Reason: sunk
Lives: 1
Freight: lath & limestone
Remarks: Total loss
Date of Original:
Local identifier:
Language of Item:
Geographic Coverage:
  • New York, United States
    Latitude: 43.25506 Longitude: -77.61695
William R. McNeil
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Maritime History of the Great Lakes
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Henry Rooney (Schooner), sunk, 22 Oct 1879