John Burns, a ferry boy on Buffalo River, started at 7:30 Saturday evening to scull 2 passengers, Mrs. Frayzes and her daughter, aged 17, across to the Island, on the south side of the Blackwell Canal where they live. He had worked his little flat boat along at good speed until near the Watson Elevator when he and his passengers perceived a large river tug coming quietly but swiftly into the harbor. The boy saw his danger, and sculled with all his strength to avert the accident, at the same time hallooing to those on the tug. The frightened female occupants of the boat united their voices with that of the boy, but their efforts were futile, and in less time than is required to describe it, the big craft, which proved to be the ANDREW J. SMITH , had run down the frail ferry boat, crushing it beyond repair, and leaving the 3 weak occupants struggling in the water and screaming for dear life. The movement of the tug was checked as quickly as possible, but before those on board could render aid to the human beings in the water, they had been rescued by a ferry boat boy named James Burns, who thus prevented a frightful catastrophe. Mrs. Fratzes received several ugly scalp wounds. She and her daughter were taken home and attended by a physician. The ferry boat boy now mourns the loss of his boat.
Buffalo Commercial Advertiser
October 27, 1879 3-1
Steam screw ANDREW J. SMITH. U. S. No. 105624. Of 235.58 tons gross; 168.15. Built Buffalo, N.Y., 1876. Home port, Detroit, Mich.
Merchant Vessel List, U. S., 1884