The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Scanner, v. 7, n. 2 (November 1974)
Scanner (Toronto, ON), Nov 1974

Bascom, John N., Editor
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Meetings; The Editor's Notebook; Time Travel Anyone?; Ship of the Month No. 43
Date of Publication:
Nov 1974
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Toronto Marine Historical Society
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Friday, December 6 - 8:00 p.m. at the Museum, Movie Night featuring four films: "Building of a Goelette" - the construction of the JEAN RICHARD; "Atlantic Rescue" - featuring FOUNDATION VIGILANT; "Yankee Clipper" - a film on the days of the clipper ships; "Ships in the Ice" - showing severe ice conditions around Montreal in the fall of 1959.

Friday, January 10 - 8:00 p.m. at the Museum. (Please note change in date of meeting). Open slide night featuring passenger vessels. Members are invited to bring slides of topical interest.

The Editor's Notebook

Re. membership fees; If you have been wondering whether you are paid up for the 1974-75 season, don't worry. If you receive this issue, then you're all paid up. It's the others who will do the worrying!

Re the January Meeting: Please be sure to note that the January meeting has been scheduled for the SECOND Friday of the month rather than the first. This has been done so as not to interfere with the Christmas-New Year's holiday period when people usually find themselves quite busy enough without having meetings to remember. For February we will revert to the usual date.

Our October slide night proved to be a great success. Our members' slides featured subjects ranging in location from the Canadian west coast to the British Isles with many stops in between. We had such a variety that perhaps we should think about opening our own travel bureau! Please remember that we would appreciate receiving suggestions for meetings and offers from members who might wish to present a program on a subject of their choice.

In the New Member Department, a hearty welcome goes out to Kevin Kilgallon of Toronto, to David Michelson of St. Clair Shores, Michigan, and to Thomas A. Sykora of Rocky River, Ohio.

Marine News

Well, the axe has finally fallen and a dark cloud of gloom has descended upon the world of the shipping observer. For, you see, the final curtain has been brought down on the career of the smallest American non-specialty bulk carrier operating on the Great lakes, the Kinsman Marine Transit Company's veteran steamer JAMES E. FERRIS. Built in 1910 at Ecorse by the Great Lakes Engineering Works as their Hull 71, she measured 444 feet in length, 56.2 feet in breadth, and 31 feet in depth. Her tonnage was 5494 Gross, 4153 Net. Christened ONTARIO, she was one of the three vessels built for the Northern Lakes Steamship Company of Cleveland, the other two being ST. CLAIR and CHAMPLAIN. In 1916 she was acquired by Hutchinson's Pioneer Steamship Company, Cleveland, and her name was changed to F. R. HAZARD. Renamed JAMES E. FERRIS in 1924, she served Pioneer until October 1961 when Hutchinson transferred her to the Buckeye Steamship Company. She remained with Buckeye until 1969 when she entered the Kinsman fleet. The FERRIS, in your editor's opinion one of the most handsome steel freighters ever built, seldom carried iron ore in her later years but could usually be found running grain down the lakes to Cleveland and Buffalo and returning upbound with salt for Lake Superior. She was rarely seen running light. FERRIS operated for the better part of the 1974 season but was due for her regular inspection this fall and, we understand, was in need of considerable repair work. As a result, she was sold to Marine Salvage Ltd., Port Colborne, and on October 10 and 11 she unloaded her last grain cargo at Buffalo. On the 12th she proceeded under her own steam to Port Colborne, passed down through Lock 8, and snubbed around on the Robin Hood elevator dock. She then backed down the west side of the canal and tied up in the old channel north of the junction with the new Welland bypass. There steam was let down, the cabins were shuttered up, and the crew left. And there she lies at the time of this writing, a cold ship waiting for the long tow overseas, her doors and ports all welded closed.

The camera of Alan W. Sweigert caught JAMES E. FERRIS entering Cleveland harbour late in her lifetime.Let us forget for a moment that the FERRIS happens to be a longtime favourite of ye ed. and also of many others, and let us turn our thoughts to the economics of vessel operation. Certainly if a ship requires an inordinate expenditure for repairs then her continued operation must be reviewed very carefully. But what bugs us is the idea apparently held by most vessel operators that only the biggest and the best will do. The older, smaller steamers are quickly disappearing and new construction seems limited to the supercarrier type that will efficiently service large operations such as steel mills and hydro plants. But what will become of the small businessman who only needs or has capacity for a small shipment of the commodity in which he deals and who may not have either a large dock nor one on a deep water channel? Is he to be denied transportation because shipping lines cannot or do not wish to carry small loads? Already a number of Canadian businesses have felt this pinch and no doubt U.S. firms have already done so, although at least south of the border there is usually alternate rail transportation available. Take as an example the case of Montana Mills at Cleveland who have a dock that only small vessels can service. Since the retirement of the even smaller JOE S. MORROW in 1973, the FERRIS has carried their grain. Her place in turn will be taken by the 531-foot HARRY L. ALLEN, but she won't be around long, probably not past the end of the 1975 season. Then what?

We don't really like to editorialize in these pages, but the retirement of the FERRIS means more than just the loss of a single steamer. It is symptomatic of an all too common lack of desire to do what may not be fashionable. Almost anything can be accomplished if a man sets his mind to give it a good try and maybe, just maybe, it is time that some vessel operators reassess their goals for the next few years. They might be shocked at the future that could lie in store for the smaller, older vessels.

But for the JAMES E. FERRIS it will be too late, for she is dead. She will soon be gone. And we shall remember.

Last month we reported that the Toronto steam sidewheel ferry TRILLIUM had been taken to Port Colborne for rebuilding by Herb Fraser & Associates. On our last visit to Port Colborne, we looked for her along the West Street wharf and were somewhat surprised that we could not find her there. We subsequently located TRILLIUM inside what used to be the E. B. Magee drydock at Barney's Bend, the drydock where the Beaconsfield canaller BELVOIR was built in the mid-fifties. There are several construction shacks on her deck as well as a crane alongside and it appears that the work of refurbishing her machinery is progressing. Fraser's contract only covers the machinery and the reconstruction of the main deck and the work on the upper superstructure will apparently be done when the ship returns to Toronto during 1975. The date for the completion of the rebuilding has now been pushed back to late in 1975 and it now looks rather doubtful that she will actually enter service during the coming season.

On October 9 the small sandsucker C. W. CADWELL was towed to Whitby by the tug LAC MANITOBA. The CADWELL, idle now for two full years at Toronto and fitted last year with the old Fairbanks diesels from the ferry SAM McBRIDE, is to be fitted now with a new propeller as her own, even with modification, was unable to perform properly with the new engine behind it. At the same time, we hear rumours to the effect that the vessel's new owners would not be averse to selling the ship and the whole episode leaves us much confused. We's just awaitin' for the day we see her come into port under her own power with a cargo of sand, but we are beginning to despair of ever seeing that day!

The Sun Lines' cruise motorship STELLA MARIS II made her last departure for the season from Toronto on Thursday, October 10th, and by now she will be heading into her winter schedule on the lower east coast. Once again her decks seemed particularly barren of the throngs of passengers one would expect to see, and we wonder whether she will be back in the spring.

We can now confirm the safe arrival of four more old lakers at European scrapyards after the long Atlantic tow. BEN W. CALVIN and JACK WIRT arrived at Valencia, Spain, prior to June 7, 1974. On June 16th, CRISPIN OGLEBAY arrived at Santander in tandem tow with LA, the former BETHLEHEM which had been sold for use as a grain storage in West Germany but which had been resold by Danish buyers to Spanish breakers. She was apparently renamed for the tow, although we do not know the reason for the change. Meanwhile we can report that the Spanish buyers who purchased HARRIS N. SNYDER and CLIFFORD F. HOOD have been identified as Hierros Ardes S.A., Bilbao

Reference the news item of last month, we have it on the best authority that ELMDALE has indeed been rechristened K. A. POWELL (II) by the Goderich Elevator & Transit Company Ltd. We have not as yet seen the ship with the new name on her and would appreciate hearing from anyone who may have observed her.

The date is August 9, 1973 and MATTHEW ANDREWS is upbound in Lake Nicolet, St. Mary's River. Photo by the Editor.MATTHEW ANDREWS was towed on October 9 to Windsor and she was due to remain there for about three weeks prior to entering service for the Hindman Transportation Company Ltd. Romeo Machine Shop was scheduled to do certain work on the ship prior to her entering service.

We goofed last month when we stated that the trip made by STEWART J. CORT to Lake Erie during the Welland Canal closure was her first revenue run to that lake. We have since been reminded that she took pellets to Lackawanna on her last trip of the 1973 season prior to going into winter quarters at Erie. We understand that since her summer trip down, she has made several other junkets to Lackawanna this year.

Bidding on the passenger steamer NORISLE, called by the Ontario Northland Transportation Commission, closed on October 15. Although we are not aware whether other bids were received, it was known that the City of Owen Sound was anxious to acquire the vessel. On October 22nd it was officially announced that the steamer is to be given to the city which was her home port and the idea apparently is that she be turned into a floating museum and/or restaurant. While it is pleasant to think that NORISLE will be preserved, we get the cold shivers thinking about her being used as an eatery. Such plans crop up a dime a dozen, but how many ever come to function? The market for such an eating place in Owen Sound must be extremely limited and NORISLE is too good a vessel to be relegated to such a sleazy future. On the other hand, we suppose that anything is better than seeing a twenty-nine-year-old vessel go to the scrappers.

Last month we reported the cancellation of the construction of Hull 202 at the Toledo yard of the American Shipbuilding Company. We have heard that the dropping of the order is due simply to the financial position of the American Steamship Company for whom the self-unloading stemwinder was to be built. Their expansion program was apparently just a bit too ambitious and their plans just could not accommodate the expenditure at this time. By way of contrast, Hull 712 for BoCo at Sturgeon Bay is progressing well and should be ready in 1975. This vessel will bear the unlikely name of SAM LAUD.

Contrary to our report in the October issue, Bethlehem will not peddle one of their new and ex-BoCo orders at Bay Shipbuilding to U. S. Steel. Both vessels will be built and delivered to Bethlehem and U.S.S. will have its own re-designed carrier to be known as Bay Shipbuilding Hull 718. It will be completed after the first of the Bethlehem boats.

Last month we tried to set our readers' minds at ease concerning the future of the Columbia craneship W. C. RICHARDSON. When we stated that she was likely to continue in operation, we were referring to the immediate future in an attempt to allay rumours that she was to be retired very soon. Nevertheless, all good things come to an end (a la FERRIS?) and it seems that the RICHARDSON is due for her five-year survey at the end of the 1975 season. Columbia will operate her for the remainder of 1974 and through the 1975 season, but after that her chances do not look good.

The United States Steel Corporation has decided to reject all bids on the veteran steamers HENRY H. ROGERS and GEORGE G. CRAWFORD which were to be disposed of for scrapping. It seems that the steel trust will cut the boats up themselves and we presume that this may also be the future which lies in store for other surplus units of the tinstack fleet.

It looks as if Lake Ontario's flirtation with the hovercraft is over, at least for the present. The service between Toronto, Niagara-on-the-Lake, and Youngstown, New York, was brought to a premature end in early October after the nearly tragic accident involving TORYOUNG 2, even though the run was originally to have continued through until October 15th. On October 11th the Toronto Harbour Commission seized the damaged vessel, then resting on the wharf at the foot of Toronto's Parliament Street where repairs wore to be done, in an attempt to collect reimbursement for the expenses incurred in towing the vessel to safety after her accident. Shortly thereafter, the principals of Can-Am Hover Express, the operating firm announced that they were in financial difficulties and that the line would cease operations. It is known that some of the crewmen on the two hovercraft were experiencing problems in collecting their wages, this despite the fact that the line appeared to enjoy good patronage from the travelling public during the summer months. Now if only we could get a steamboat running on the route...

We have received a report to the effect that the Halco tanker LAKE TRANSPORT is not destined to be used as a bunkering tanker in Spain but will instead be sold for breaking up in Canada. We find this rather surprising since we had been advised of a date for her fitting out for the transatlantic crossing and we knew several persons who were to be aboard as crew for the trip. More information is sought on this item.

The crew of the Compagnie Generale Transatlantique liner FRANCE finally ended their seizure of the vessel in mid-October and the ship was berthed at Le Havre after a lengthy ride at anchor in the harbour. The action by the seamen, although enjoying considerable support amongst the men of the French merchant marine, failed to force a return to operation for the famous vessel and it is apparent that FRANCE will soon be sold. It appears that a number of prospective buyers are interested in the ship and it is to be hoped that she will be returned to service even if not on the North Atlantic.

The Algonquin Corporation's canal tanker CARDINAL is fast disappearing at Strathearne Terminals in Hamilton. As of mid-October, most of her stern was gone and cutting was progressing up the deck towards the bridge structure.

The scrapping berth at Ramey's Bend (Marine Salvage Ltd.) is once again full and this time around the slip contains quite an odd assortment of vessels. On October 7th, the tug G. W. ROGERS arrived at Humberstone with the former L.S.M.187, latterly known as JACQUES GRAVEL, and the following day the former drill rig NORDRILL was brought into the scrapping yard. In addition, on October 19th your editor observed in the scrapping berth the half-gone carcass of the Canadian Dredge & Dock steam dredge LELAND. JACQUES GRAVEL, a former wartime landing craft, was once used on the east coast in the pulpwood trade and recently has lain mouldering away in the Canadian Dredge & Dock boneyard at Kingston where LELAND has also reposed for several years. JACQUES GRAVEL has just got to be the most ugly vessel we have ever laid eyes on and frankly we are not sorry to see her go for scrap. NORDRILL is the former Canada Steamship Lines steam canaller SIMCOE which for a decade served as a platform for a drill rig in Lake Erie. She did not operate in 1974 and is eventually to be replaced by CONISCLIFFE HALL. NORDRILL has not only lost her pilothouse (a new helmsman's cabin was erected aft) but she has also lost her steam plant and for the last few years of her active service she was pushed around by a Harbourmaster outboard engine.

A late report indicates that not only will the former Kinsman bulk carrier JAMES E. FERRIS remain in the old Welland Canal for the winter prior to going overseas, but that she will be joined soon by another laker which has also been purchased by Marine Salvage for scrapping. The ship has not yet been properly identified, but we assume that it will be KINSMAN VOYAGER.

A frequent visitor to the Welland Canal during the latter part of the 1974 season has been the small motorship J. A. Z. DESGAGNES which is carrying pitch to Baie Comeau from Detroit under charter to the Canadian Reynolds Metals Company. The DESGAGNES was built in 1959 as the pulpwood carrier LIEVRE CONSOL for Anticosti Shipping Ltd. and in 1962 she was renamed VISON CONSOL. Earlier this year Anticosti sold her to Rail & Water Terminal (Quebec) Inc. of Pointe au Pic, Quebec, and in addition to being given her current name, was converted to carry general cargo.

The newest Hall tanker, DOAN TRANSPORT, has now entered service. Your editor observed her upbound in the Welland Canal on October 19th. A stemwinder, she is not a bad looking ship at all, despite the fact that she has a transom stern. Her passage up the canal on the 19th, her maiden voyage in the service of her new owners, was delayed slightly because of winch troubles.

C. P. Steamships Ltd. has sold its containership C.P. EXPLORER, for many years a visitor to the lakes under the Canadian Pacific flag and carrying the name BEAVERPINE, "to the Arion Shipping Corp.," Liberia, and rechristened (c) MOIRA.

A recent report in the Toronto Globe and Mail concerning the imminent commissioning of the new Branch Lines tanker LEON SIMARD, mentioned that the old tanker SPRUCEBRANCH had been sold. While we had earlier known that the ship was sold for Mediterranean use, we had not been aware of the fact that the vessel was actually sold first to Marine Salvage Ltd. and then to the overseas buyers.

Living on borrowed time, the Chesapeake & Ohio Railway's steam carferry PERE MARQUETTE 10 is still shuttling back and forth across the St. Clair River between Sarnia and Port Huron, although it won't be long before her rather plaintive sounding whistle is stilled forever. The C&O is going the same route as Canadian National and converting to barge operation and with this end in mind the railway has had Defoe Shipyards at Bay City transform the former scow B&O 452 into a tow-boat named C&O 452. The pusher, equipped with an elevated pilothouse and powered by three diesel outboard units., was launched on September 20 and no doubt soon will make her appearance on the river. At that time, PERE MARQUETTE 10 will be reduced to a barge, presumably in the same manner as PERE MARQUETTE 12 which is now Canadian National's ST. CLAIR. It will be a sad day for steamboaters.

Meanwhile, the C.N. steam-powered carferry SCOTIA II, idle at Sarnia for several years and never actually used in regular service on the Sarnia crossing, looks more and more decrepit with each passing day. She has been severely vandalized and we have heard rumours to the effect that the railway may decide to dispose of her.

Time Travel Anyone?

The summer of 1974 was certainly a dismal one for lake shipping observers and photographers. What with the Welland Canal accident and the Canadian engineers' and deck officers' strikes, the shipping channels wore pretty bare of traffic.

Things were different back in 1919, however, and just to show you what you missed we reproduce here a section of the vessel passages column taken from the Detroit Free Press of June 11, 1919. The clipping came to us through the courtesy of fellow member Harry J. Wolf of Detroit.

DETROIT - June 10 - Upbound:

Adam E. Cornelius, Francis Widlar, 9:l0 p.m. Monday; Andrew S. Upson, 10:30; W.F. White 12:l5 a.m. Tuesday; B. F. Berry, 2:00; A. C. Hall, 2:l5; Dickinson (sic), Wyandotte, Munising, 2:30; Clemens A, Reiss, 3:15; Glenorchy, 3:30; W. D. Matthews, 4:40; Uranus, 5:45; August Ziesing, 6:l0; William P. Palmer, 6:45; J. S. Ashley, 7:55; Thomas Walters, 8:00; Huron, 8:05; J. Leonard Replogle, 8:10; Martian, 9:00; Sidney 0. Neff, 9:40; James E. Davidson, ll:20; James B. Neilson, Marcia, ll:30; Henry H. Rogers, 12:25 p.m.; Francis L. Robbins, 1:00; Herman H. Hettler, 1:45; Emory L. Ford, 3s45; Hazen Butler, 4:00; Price McKinney, 4:30; Robert J. Paisley, 5:00, Cor alia, 5:30; Joseph Sellwood, 6:l5.

DETROIT - June 10 - Downbound:

Captain Thomas Wilson, 7:50 p.m., Monday; A. T. Kinney, 8:20; La Belle, 8:30; Cygnus, 9:00; Harvard, 9:10; Sonora, P. P. Miller, 10s30; Frank O'Connor, 10:35; Henry G. Dalton, 11:10; Delos W. Cooke, George G. Crawford, midnight; W. H. Sawyer, l:00 a.m. Tuesday; Mecosta, 1:30; Calumet, 2;00; Imperial, S. O. Co. No. 41, 10:30; tug Q. A. Gilmore, Calcite, 10:45; Kearsarge, ll:05; tug John M. Truby, Wisconsin, dredge No. 1, 11:15; Douglass Houghton, George H. Corliss, 11:00; Alexander McDougall, Magna, 12:15 p.m.; Renown, ls50; Boston, 5:15; Charles H. Bradley,6s05.

SAULT STE. MARIE, MICHIGAN - June 10 - Upbound:

Cuyler Adams, Alex B. Uhrig, J.T. Hutchinson, 8s00 p.m. Monday; Midvale, 8:20; James C. Wallace, W. Grant Morden, 10:30; John H. McLean, W. LeBaron Jenney,l:30 a.m., Tuesday; W. D. Rees, 2:30; Augustus B. Wolvin, 4:00; William Livingstone, 5:00; W. G. Pollock, 6:00; Maunaloa, Maia, D. O. Mills, 7:30; Winnipeg, Muncy, Glenlyon, 9:00; Matthew Andrews, Frank H. Goodyear, W. K. Bixby, 10:30; Jacob T. Kopp, noon; William P. Cowan, 4:00; Athabasca, 5:00; Edward N. Breitung, 5:30.

SAULT STE. MARIE, MICHIGAN - June 10 - Downbound:

W. Grant Morden, Jupiter, Myron, Miztec, 9:00 p.m. Monday; Thomas F. Cole, 10:00; Leonard B. Miller, Hagarty, 11:00; General Garretson, Superior City, midnight} Clarence A. Black, Sidney G. Thomas, l:30 a.m. Tuesday; Adriatic 2:00; Queen City, 3:00; Pegasus, Marquette, 3:30; Samuel Mather (large), Frank C. Ball, 5:00; John Ericsson, Maida, R. R. Richardson, 7:00; J. K. Dimmick, 8:00; Herbert F. Black, Willis L. King, William E. Corey, 8:30; Lyman C. Smith, Samuel Mitchell, Henry Phipps, 9:30; John J. Boland, 10:00; Agawa, 10:30; Horace F. Wilkinson, D.G. Kerr, 11:30; B. F. Jones, Sir Trevor Dawson, l:00 p.m.; George W. Perkins, Malietoa, 2:00; Philip Minch, Charles Hubbard, 3:00; Elbert H. Gary, Alexis W. Thompson, 4:30; George F. Baker, 6:30.

Ship of the Month No. 43

Homer Warren

It was during the early morning hours of Tuesday, October 28, 1919, that the old wooden bulk carrier HOLER WARREN (C. 130222) cleared the port of Oswego, New York, at the eastern end of Lake Ontario, laden with 494 tons of coal consigned to Toronto. Weather conditions at the time of her departure were anything but good, the lake being stirred up by one of those nasty south-easterly blows that frequently hit the Lake Ontario area late in the season.

HOMER WARREN, still in the service of Shannon and Garey, is downbound in Little Rapids Cut in this 1912 photo by A. E. Young.Due to the near gale force winds and heavy seas, HOMER WARREN hugged the lea of the south shore while proceeding up the lake. Later in the day she was sighted west of Sodus, N. Y., and at that time she was heading out into the lake for the crossing to Toronto, a crossing that she was never to complete. Soon after she was sighted off Sodus, she must have been overcome by the heavy seas, for on the following morning, October 29th, part of her wheelhouse and other wreckage together with four bodies came ashore, mute evidence that HOMER WARREN had foundered. No survivors made shore, all hands perishing in the sinking of the little steamer.

The loss of HOMER WARREN caused quite a stir in Toronto where she was owned by the Milnes Brothers who carried on a local fuel supply business under the name of the Milnes Coal Company. Her Master at the time of her loss, Captain William Stalker, and her Chief Engineer, W. H. Kerr, both held a small interest in the vessel.

Undoubtedly some observers would have considered that HOMER WARREN was just another worn-out wooden freighter that was pushed to the very extremity of her profitability. Nevertheless, although this was probably quite true, the ship actually had a long and distinguished career.

She was built 'way back in 1863 at Cleveland by shipbuilders Peck and Masters, and she was designed as a combination passenger and package freight propeller. Powered by a direct acting engine, her wooden hull measured 177.65 feet in length, 28.16 feet in the beam, and 11.85 feet in depth, her tonnage being registered as 656 Gross, 556 Net. Christened ATLANTIC, she entered service for the New York Central Railroad although she was actually owned by Dean Richmond, an executive officer of the railroad. She served the N.Y.C. operating from Buffalo up the lakes to various ports. Her official number was U. S. 298.

ATLANTIC was a typical lake propeller of her tine. She was fitted with the familiar arch hog traces which gave her wooden hull the necessary strength and which extended up over the level of the hurricane deck. Her long upper cabin was surmounted by a clerestory which extended all the way from the officers' quarters behind the pilothouse to the after end of the cabin. She carried one very tall mast forward, the mast being rigged for auxiliary sail, and her funnel was mounted well aft in the usual style. Her stack was tall and rather heavy in appearance. The main cabin on the upper deck came to a point forward and above it was the large octagonal pilothouse whose roof came to a peak surmounted by a ball on which perched a huge eagle.

The year 1867 saw ATLANTIC sold to the Union Steamboat Company, a subsidiary of the Erie Railroad. She operated out of Buffalo to Lake Superior ports until 1882. Latterly, she was a part of the pool service operated by the Lake Superior Transit Company on behalf of the Erie and several other railroad-controlled lake lines.

In 1882, the vessel passed to S. B. Grummond of Detroit, and he placed her on his service between Detroit and Cleveland, a run on which ATLANTIC operated in direct competition with the Detroit & Cleveland Navigation Company. Needless to say, Grummond remained the opposition line and never took over first place. By 1894 ATLANTIC was operating on what was known as Grummond's Mackinac Line, serving Cleveland, Toledo, Detroit, Alpena, Mackinaw City and St. Ignace. By 1898 she had been relegated to reserve boat status and was in lay-up quarters at Detroit.

The early wooden lake passenger vessels were particularly susceptible to fire, especially when they were laid up, and ATLANTIC was no exception. She was still idle at Detroit when on August 27, 1899, she caught fire and sustained severe damage before the flames were brought under control. The Grummond Line took no steps to repair the steamer and she remained in her damaged condition until she was sold in 1901 to E. L. Brown of Detroit. She was towed to West Bay City, Michigan, where she was given a thorough rebuild at the yard of James Davidson.

She was converted to a bulk carrier intended principally for the lumber trade. Her revised dimensions after the conversion were 176.6 x 29.5 x 11.8 and her tonnage was 448 Gross, 281 Net. The original power plant was removed and replaced by a steeple compound engine with cylinders of 22" and 42" and a stroke of 36". She was placed in service for the lumber fleet of Shannon and Garey, Saginaw, Michigan, and she was renamed (b) HOMER WARREN in honour of a Detroit industrialist.

After more than a decade of service as a freighter, HOMER WARREN was sold in 1914 to the Peninsula Tug & Towing Company of Wiarton, Ontario. She entered Canadian registry with Owen Sound as her home port and she continued in the lumber trade, this time on the other side of the border. After four years under this ownership, she was acquired by the Milnes Brothers of Toronto and the same year, 1918, she was transferred to the names of the Milnes gentlemen, James Henry Milnes, James Herbert Milnes and John Percy Milnes as well as Stalker and Kerr previously mentioned.

HOMER WARREN did not last long for the Milnes Brothers, but then it is hardly to be expected that she could have done so. She was 55 years old when they purchased her, a ripe old age for a wooden vessel, and her hull was beginning to show its age. Nevertheless, she was a good-looking little workhorse and it is fitting that she passed out while hard at work on her usual Lake Ontario coal run rather than rotting away in a forgotten backwater. It is, however, to be regretted that she took her entire crew with her when she took her final plunge to the bottom of the lake.

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Scanner, v. 7, n. 2 (November 1974)

Meetings; The Editor's Notebook; Time Travel Anyone?; Ship of the Month No. 43