The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
The Ericsson Propeller
Oswego Palladium (Oswego, NY), 14 Apr 1841

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The Ericsson Propeller. - This improvement to steam navigation is attracting considerable attention among commercial gentlemen on both sides of our lake. Besides the vessels constructing at this oct to be propelled by this invention, we observe by the last British Whig that three vessels are being built at Kingston on the same principle. From the experiments already made, the complete success of this invention is now hardly considered problematical, and we may date a new era in our lake commerce with this important improvement.

The following certificate of the success of this Propeller on a recent trial in the harbor of New York, will be read with satisfaction.

April 4, 1841

To Capt. Ericsson -

Dear Sir - The undersigned having been invited to an excursion down the Harbor this day, in the bark "Clarion," with your steam propeller, deem it a duty to express our entire approbation of her speed and power as a steamer, connected with a sailing ship. At 10:45, we were abreast of Corlies Hook, with a fresh head wind from S.S.W. At 12:48 we were abreast of Fort Richmond, distant 10 1-2 nautical miles, without the aid of canvass, the wind veering directly ahead, the actual speed thro' the water being by log 7 1-4 knots per hour, or 8 3-8 English miles - the consumption of coal being 300 lb. per hour.

The result of this experiment we deem more extraordinary when t is considered that the cylinders are only 28 inches diameter, 2 feet 8 in. stroke, and the pressure of steam on the boilers only 7 1-2 lbs. to the square inch. In making a trial in the wind with canvass, we are decidedly of opinion it is of the greatest advantage, and as practical seamen we recommend it to the commercial community.

In conclusion sir, allow us to congratulate you on the consummation of your most sanguine wishes, having achieved all you promised, and more than could be expected from an engine of such small dimensions. We are, respectfully, Sir,

Your friends and most obd't servants
J.A. Pierce,
B.B. Williams,
Tyler Parsons,
W.A. Howard, Commanding steamship Lion

Media Type:
Item Type:
Date of Publication:
14 Apr 1841
Personal Name(s):
Doolittle, Sylvester ; Stockton, R. F.
Richard Palmer
Language of Item:
Geographic Coverage:
  • New York, United States
    Latitude: 43.4678097970306 Longitude: -76.513933227539
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Maritime History of the Great Lakes
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The Ericsson Propeller