The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
British Whig (Kingston, ON), 12 Dec 1898

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p.1 The Canal Closed - Port Colborne, Dec. 12th - The Welland canal was officially closed today for the season. The steamer Iona was ordered to go into winter quarters and will move into the canal and be secured for the winter. The Ralph and Harold have heard nothing from their owners and are still undecided what to do.


The steamer Arabian, in tow of the tug Thomson, arrived in port from Prescott yesterday. She is now tied up at the north side of Swift & Co.'s wharf, where she will lie for the winter and receive repairs. Her upper bulwarks are stove in and she is badly strained in the forward deck, the beams being cracked and wrenched. However, it is a wonder the steamer was not so badly wrenched that foundering would have followed.

Capt. Patenaude says she left Port Dalhousie at 4:50 a.m. Sunday. The weather was fine and there was no sign of a gale. At 11 a.m. wind came up from the east, bringing up snow. At three o'clock the wind increased to a gale, heavy snow accompanying it. At ten o'clock that night the gale was terrific, the snow being very wet as it fell. Capt. Patenaude says he never saw a gale having such a velocity. Between one and two o'clock Tuesday morning the wind shifted and the steamer labored in a cross sea. Seas boarded her decks, smashing the bulwarks, breaking windows and creating great alarm. A window in the captain's cabin was broken in and the room filled with water. Capt. Patenaude had all his effects destroyed or badly damaged.

At twelve o'clock noon Tuesday, while abreast of the light and two miles south of the False Ducks, the connecting rod broke, causing the cylinder head to blow out. Anchors were at once cast and the steamer rounded head to the wind. Seventy-five fathoms of chain were let out for each anchor. One of the hooks of the starboard anchor snapped off through strain it was called upon to bear. Capt. Patenaude did not expect a tug would be able to reach him after purser Hoppins went ashore, so severe was the gale. After lying at anchor for sixty-nine hours the tug Thomson hove alongside and took the Arabian in tow. If the steamer had not been a staunchly built boat she never would have rode out the gale.

p.2 Incidents of the Day - The steamer Chieftain left the government dry dock on Saturday, and this morning the steamer Armenia entered for repairs.

p.6 Meeting With Success - The Collins Bay Rafting company is meeting with encouraging success at Cornwall in raising the sunken portions of the wrecked bridge. The one span has been raised with the exception of one corner, which dragged on the bottom. A pontoon was placed under this portion on Saturday, and it was expected that today the whole thing would be grounded in shallow water. The wreck is now 800 feet below the bridge site.

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12 Dec 1898
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  • Ontario, Canada
    Latitude: 44.22976 Longitude: -76.48098
Rick Neilson
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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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British Whig (Kingston, ON), 12 Dec 1898