The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Loss of a Steam Barge
Cleveland Leader (Cleveland, OH), 18 Sep 1868

Full Text

Loss of a Steam Barge.--The propeller barge Illinois, owned by the Messrs. Ives of Windsor, laden with 116,000 feet of lumber was lost on Sunday morning off Port Austin while on the passage to Detroit. The wind at the time was blowing strong from the northward an heavy seas running when, owing to a worthless article of fuel, steam could no longer be kept up she became unmanageable, and consequently had to succumb to the elements. Her crew saved themselves by taking to the small boat and pulling to the shore and arrived at Detroit by the steamer Metropolis. The Illinois was not insured. With the loss of the propeller-barge Illinois, passes away another relic of by-gone days. The Illinois was built at Detroit in 1838, for O. Newbury, Esq., late of Detroit who in times of early steamboating, was one of the most prominent ship owners on the lakes. The Illinois came out in the fall of the above year, commanded by Captain Chesley Blake. Robert Davis was first mate and W. Caverley, recently deceased, second mate. She made one round trip between Buffalo and Chicago and then laid up at this port, being still in an unfinished state. She was 755 tons, old style, with low-pressure, cross-head engine, subsequently transferred to the Illinois No. 2, now also defunct. After several years she passed from the command of Captain Blake to that of Captain Archibald Allen, who run her one season and then took charge of the Nile. A few years since she was raised from where she lay sunk at the lower end of the city, and constructed into a steam barge, with propeller engine, at which time her timbers and planking were found to be in sound condition -- and up to the last to a certain extent. She existed to attain the ripe age of thirty years, and, like many others, has at length succumbed while fighting desperately with the elements.

Media Type:
Item Type:
Date of Publication:
18 Sep 1868
Personal Name(s):
Ives ; Newbury, Oliver ; Blake, Chesley ; Davis, Robert ; Caverly, W. ; Allen, Archibald
Language of Item:
Geographic Coverage:
  • Michigan, United States
    Latitude: 44.0821479924132 Longitude: -83.0119627832031
Copyright Statement:
Copyright status unknown. Responsibility for determining the copyright status and any use rests exclusively with the user.
Maritime History of the Great Lakes
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Loss of a Steam Barge