The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Oswego Palladium (Oswego, NY), Monday April 12, 1880

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An April Tornado
The Sudden Storm which caught Lake Ontario Shipping- The schooner David Andrews ashore the Gardner and the barges etc.

The mild weather of Saturday was followed about midnight by one of the most sudden and violent changes ever known here in this most changeable climates. A gale of snow and wind swept down over the lake with almost terrific fury. The snow was blinding, the wind attained a velocity of 30 miles an hour, and such vessels as were outside had a wild night of it. The schooner David Andrews, Capt. McCrimmon bound from Napanee to Toronto with 12,000 bushels rye, was struck by the gale, driven out of her course and in the midst of the blinding snow went ashore near Four Mile Point below this city. Capt. Blackburn of the Oswego life station was notified, went down with his crew, took off the crew of the Andrews and brought them to this city. Vessel and cargo are owned by Downey Bros. Of Napanee and are insured. The wind freshened last night and it was believed that she would go to pieces. The tug Gardner from Ogdensburg with four light barges belonging to Whitney of Detroit and bound for the Welland canal was struck by the gale near the Gallous. Becoming unmanageable in the tow, the barges cut loose and made sail for themselves. Three of them reached this port yesterday afternoon after a most tempestuous struggle outside, and the fourth anchored in Mexico Bay, where she rode out the storm. The Gardner went down this morning to tow her to this port. The schooner J. J. Hill of Youngstown came in during the gale. She threw her anchors in the lower harbor, but they did not get hold, and she was driven against the bridge under full headway, partly turning the draw and carrying away her boom. The gale made a commotion among the harbor shipping, but no serious damage was done. Capt. McCrimmon sent us the following note of acknowledgment:

Oswego April 11, 1880

I return thanks to Capt. Blackburn, keeper of life saving station No.3, and his crew for the prompt assistance in rescuing myself, daughter and crew of the schooner David Andrews, and putting us safely on shore, dry, with part of our clothing.

Capt McCrimmon

Mr. Downey and captain Dobbie returned from the Andrews this afternoon and report her lying easy in the sand, not much out They anticipated no danger of her breaking up, but the heavy sea and storm running down the lake this afternoon make them entertain fears that she may go to pieces.

The tug Gardner will take the Whitney barges three of which are here and one at Mexico Bay to Port Dalhousie. The barges are bound through the canal. The Gardner has gone after the barge anchored in Mexico Bay.

The schooner Canadian Capt. Blanchard, stone-laden from Kingston to Charlotte, ran in here this morning.

The schooner Mary Ann Lydon, light bound from Kingston to Port Hope, was compelled to run in here by the storm.

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Monday April 12, 1880
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Richard Palmer
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Public domain: Copyright has expired according to the applicable Canadian or American laws. No restrictions on use.
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Oswego Palladium (Oswego, NY), Monday April 12, 1880