The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
H. M. Ballou (Schooner), U11734, overboard, 6 Oct 1868

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Drowned in Lake Ontario - We were shocked to learn yesterday that Capt.John B. Barrus, master of the schooner 'Hosea M. Ballou,' of Oak Orchard, was accidentally drowned on Tuesday night about 12 o'clock. It appears that while the vessel was bound from Oswego to Port Colborne, C.W., the wind
blowing from the south-east and a heavy sea rolling - a change of watch occurred, and the Captain stepped down to the Cabin to retire for the night.
      He soon heard some confusion above, as if something had been carried away, when he stepped quickly on deck, and, unfortunately, just in time to be swept overboard by the main sheet boom, which happened to be in the act of jibing. The Mate, Ezra Philbrick, who was forward at the time, heard the Captain's voice, and immediately went aft. He did not then know that the unfortunate man was overboard until he heard his voice the second time, when he immediately lowered the boat, and, with the assistance of a deck hand, started in pursuit.
      After a fruitless and dangerous search, they returned to the vessel nearly exhausted. The accident occurred while the vessel was abreast of Big Sodus, and about two hours previous to the burning of the ill-fated propeller Perseverance, which must have happened in the same locality.
      Too much praise cannot be given to Mr. Philbrick, the mate, in his untiring efforts to save the life of his Captain, and in also bringing the vessel safely to Oak Orchard, which port she arrived at about twelve hours after the accident.
      Capt. Barrus, whom we knew well, was a sober, honest, quiet and industrious man, and an able and experienced sailor, having spent most of his life on the water, and a large circle of friends will mourn his untimely end. - Rochester Democrat, Saturday
      Oswego Daily Advertiser Times
      Monday, Oct. 12, 1868
      Lake Captain Drowned Notice. - Captain J.B. Barrus, of the schooner H.M. Ballou, was lost overboard and drowned last Tuesday night, off Big Sodus. he was about 6 feet 2 inches tall, of 200 pounds weight, light mustache, no whiskers. He was dressed in a black frock coat, black velvet vest, Harris caesimere pants and white shirt. He also wore a silver watch and chain, and had about $200 in money on his person.
      Should the body be found information immediately sent to H.C. Murray, Carlton, Orleans Co., N.Y., will be thankfully appreciated.
      Oswego Daily Advertiser Times
      Monday, Oct. 12, 1868

Schooner H.M. BALLOU. U. S. No. 11734. Of 54.76 tons gross; 52.03 tons net. Built Oak Orchard, N.Y., 1867. Home port, Sodus Point, N.Y. 80.0 x 17.0 x 6.0
      Merchant Vessel List, U. S., 1886
NOTE:-- Became Canadian 1887/88 [ C 90814]

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Reason: overboard
Lives: 1
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  • New York, United States
    Latitude: 43.25729 Longitude: -76.96663
William R. McNeil
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H. M. Ballou (Schooner), U11734, overboard, 6 Oct 1868