The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
The Commodore was joyful
Oswego Palladium (Oswego, NY), 26 Nov 1886

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And He is Also Out an Oyster Supper - Safe Arrival of a Vessel for Whose Safety Alarm was Felt

"If you bring in the schooner F.D. Barker tonight I'll buy a oyster supper for you and your crew," said Commodore Thomas Crimmins, manager of the tug fleet, to captain Redford, as the latter steamed away in his tug to begin his weary watch at the mouth of the harbor for incoming vessels last night.

"All right; if the Barker comes along I'll catch 'her,'" responded the captain, and Commodore Crimmins with a Palladium reporter turned to walk home.

There was great anxiety along the wharves yesterday for the safety of the schooner Barker, Captain James Scott. She left the Welland Canal Tuesday morning in company with the schooner Comanche. A northwest gale set in soon after, but the vessels did not put in an appearance, and it was thought they had sought shelter behind Braddock's Point.

Night before last, when the Comanche was towed into port in a disabled condition, having been dismasted and nothing had been heard from the Barker, it was feared she had met with misfortune. Telegrams were sent to Charlotte and it was learned that an unknown schooner was at anchor at Braddock's Point Wednesday night, but that yesterday morning she was gone, having sailed away. Early in the morning it began snowing hard and became very thick on the lake. At dark the wind veered to the northwest and there was every promise of a dirty night. That was why Commodore Crimmins was so anxious that Captain Redford should keep a sharp lookout.

After getting part way home, he decided to go to the lake instead. The reporter accompanied him and they arrived at the lighthouse just in time to see the steam tug away out into the darkness and the storm. The life crew were in their boat in the river and they reported that a vessel burning a torch had been sighted a short distance northeast of the harbor, and that the tug was making for her. In about an hour she steamed into the harbor with a vessel in tow.

"Is that the Barker?" shouted the Commodore as the tug drew near.

"Yes," came back the answer.

"Good! Good! Good!," shrieked the the Commodore, jumping up and down on the pier and clapping his hands. "I am glad she's safe," and away he started as fast as his short legs could carry him to take the good news to Capt. Scott's family. The Barker had a tempestuous experience but came in safe and sound.

Before the Barker got under Braddock's Point she experienced very heavy weather. The sailors were awe stricken by the sight of a cat that had been made a pet by the crew. The animal was crazed by fright, and getting out of the cabin sprang upon the binnacle box and gave vent to the most unearthly yells and finally disappeared.

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Date of Publication:
26 Nov 1886
Richard Palmer Collection
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Geographic Coverage:
  • New York, United States
    Latitude: 43.4664070514698 Longitude: -76.518874168396
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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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The Commodore was joyful