The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
North Star (Parry Sound, ON), December 5, 1879

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Now that the first shock of surprise and grief at the Waubuno disaster has somewhat abated, it is natural that attention should be turned to the cause which have produced such fatal results. The chief point round which interest necessarily centres is the seaworthiness of the vessel itself. Every passenger who travels by water is bound, and thoroughly understands the nature of the obligation , to incur a certain amount of risk - wind and weather.

To suppose that a vessel is in an unfit condition for service and that her officers are unaware of the fact is to suppose them utterly unfit for the position of trust they fill, and to stretch the point a step further, that is, to imagine that officers acquainted with the unseaworthiness of their ship refrain from informing their employers of the fact, is to imagine a reserve on the part of those employed, which people in general can neither understand nor appreciate. It would be manifestly unjust, in the face of numerous and contradictory rumours which are afloat respecting the Waubuno both when she left this port as well as Collingwood to give publicity to those rumours. The investigation, which we have every reason to believe the friends of those lost on the ill fated vessel are already setting in motion, will no doubt be thorough and searching. Nor should the owners of the vessel be adverse to any such investigation. Either their vessel was fit for passenger traffic or she was not. In the former case no investigation can alter the facts, in the latter no strictures can be too severe. The question is not how the Waubuno was wrecked on the Georgian Bay, but whether she was fit to be on the water at all. The fact that years ago she weathered far worse storms than the one she went through on the 22nd of November has nothing to do with the case in point, or if it proves anything, proves that years ago she was in better condition to carry on the battle against the elements. The Waubuno was built in 1865 and consequently had seen fourteen years service.

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December 5, 1879
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Bill Hester
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Public domain: Copyright has expired according to the applicable Canadian or American laws. No restrictions on use.
Maritime History of the Great Lakes
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North Star (Parry Sound, ON), December 5, 1879