There have been several vessels raised as from great depths as the OCONTO lies in, and wreckers think the Canadians should have success. "The steamer F. E. SPINNER was sunk in St. Marys River, in the Canadian Channel," said Captain J. J. Rardon, "and her stern was in 125 feet of water. The bow was somewhat higher. Two or three divers were paralyzed by working under the great pressure of the water, but they kept right on with the work, and finally got the boat up in good shape. The Canadian steamer CITY OF COLLINGWOOD, a passenger boat, went down off Cove Island, in Georgian Bay, in 110 feet of water. She was brought to the surface. The steamer ONEIDA was sunk in seventy-five feet of water in Alexandria Bay, not far from where the OCONTO lies, and the ARMOUR, which went down in collision at Southeast Bend, in St. Clair River, was seventy-five feet from the surface.
All of these successful wrecking jobs were in comparatively still water, where the diver had a good chance to work right along without interruption. The Lehigh liner CAYUGA which was sunk by the J. L. HURD off Skillagalee light, lies out in the open. There is 120 feet of water there, and the wind and sea have a full sweep. This is responsible for much of the delay of the wreckers in getting any results from their labors." The Donnelly Company is an old concern, and has done many good pieces of wrecking work. The founder of the firm, John Donnelly, died recently. His two sons, Thomas and John, have been active managers of the business for some time, and will continue it.
Milwaukee Library Scrapbook
July 25, 1900
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The SPINNER has a penchant for colliding in the Soo River and shooting to the bottom. In 1886, or thereabouts, when owned in Canada and known as the QUEBEC, she was cut down by an American freighter and went to the bottom near Sailor's Encampment in 75 feet of water. The feat or raising her out of that great depth in the swift current was a notable one. The Murphy Wrecking Company, of this city, after weeks of hard labor, much risk and considerable expense, finally brought her to the surface. The wreckers were compelled to take the steamer as payment for their work. She was brought down here, rebuilt, given an American register and sold to Thomas Adams and Jesse H. Farwell, of this city. By them she was operated for some years, towing the schooners JEREMIAH GODFREY and SHAWNEE, until four or five years ago, they sold her. She was worth before the collision about $25,000 and was uninsured. Her rating was A 2.
Detroit Free Press
October 16, 1900