The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
British Whig (Kingston, ON), 11 Dec 1903

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The Schooner Robert Macdonald On the Lake.

[Rochester Post-Express]

Capt. A. Matthews, of Charlotte, has returned from his trip with his schooner, the Robert McDonald, after a rough experience on the lake. He was out in the storms that are supposed to have wrecked the Emerald. He went from Charlotte to the Bay of Quinte and took on a cargo of lumber at Trenton. He was obliged to put back to Trenton three times before he could make the run across the lake.

The first time Capt. Matthews ran out of Presque Isle Bay he got half way across the lake to Charlotte when there came up a gale from the north-west. He had to put back. The second trial was made several days later. Ice had formed on the bay and the schooner pounded a hole in her bow on the water line. The water poured into the forecastle, but the hole was caulked and the schooner went on her way until the furnace light at Charlotte was visible. At that time the sea was so high that the captain feared he would lose his deckload, and the adverse wind obliged him to put back again.

This time Capt. Matthews sought shelter at South Bay and saved a ten mile run to the east about the Ducks and back by running through the narrow channel between Timber Island and South Bay Point. Although the captain had not been down the channel in seven or eight years, he took his schooner through the difficult passage at midnight. The channel is not much wider than that in the mouth of the Genesee river. He says that when he could dimly see the bluffs outlined against the sky, the lay of the channel all came back to him. Years ago he was familiar with it.

At Waupoos, on South Bay, 10,000 feet of lumber were taken off the deck load and the schooner finally made Charlotte with a favorable wind, making the 100 miles from Waupoos in about fourteen hours. Capt. Matthews found that his lumber yard had been ravaged by a big fire in his absence.

Incidents of the Day - The steamer Arabian, from Fort William to Kingston, wheat laden, was the last boat of the season to pass Port Colborne.


Experience Which The Steamer Pierrepont Underwent.

It must be bad weather indeed when the sturdy gunboat Pierrepont loses her way in the channel separating Wolfe and Garden Islands, a distance of about a mile. One would think that having run the route so long, all that would be necessary would be to start the engine going and she would find the way herself.

Leaving Wolfe Island at a quarter past nine Friday morning, the Pierrepont headed, as supposed, for Garden Island. However, a heavy snow storm arose in the thick weather, the pilot of the gun boat lost his bearings. The whistle was freely sounded and the signal was taken up by one of the steamers at Garden Island. Guided by this sound the Pierrepont changed her course and finally ran alongside the Garden Island wharf at five minutes past ten o'clock. Some of the lady passengers felt timid over their experience and refused to proceed further. The Pierrepont, however, reached the city in safety.

p.6 Purchase About Complete - a new steamer to be added to the White Squadron next summer.

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11 Dec 1903
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Geographic Coverage:
  • Ontario, Canada
    Latitude: 44.22976 Longitude: -76.48098
Rick Neilson
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pd [more details]
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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), 11 Dec 1903