The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
British Whig (Kingston, ON), 22 Nov 1906

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p.1 Cost A Large Sum - Georgian Bay Canal estimated to cost $125,000,000; scheme is to construct a canal from the great lakes to Montreal by way of the French River, Lake Nipissing and the Ottawa River.


The Steambarge Resolute Went Down.

Toronto, Nov. 22nd - The steambarge Resolute, owned by Haney & Miller, contractors, foundered off the western gap this morning. In an effort to reach shore in a small boat, six of the crew were lost. They are:

John Harrison, chief engineer, Deseronto.

Thomas Topping, second engineer, Deseronto.

David White, deckhand, Prescott.

Harry McGregor, fireman, Bath, England.

John Burns, fireman, Port Colborne.

Nels Neilson, wheelsman.

The Resolute, with her consort, the Locke, was from Erie with coal for Rogers & Co., and both vessels had been lying off the western gap since two o'clock, yesterday afternoon, waiting for the weather to moderate so as to get into Toronto harbor.

At 4:50 o'clock this morning, Capt. John Sullivan, in command, saw that the Resolute was likely to go to pieces and determined to try and reach shore in the boats. One containing six men was upset and all on board drowned. Those on the second boat were saved and were Capt. John Sullivan, Capt. John Fahey, Andrew Hicks, wheelman, M. Haney and Lizzie Callaghan, cook.

The body of Topping was washed ashore.

The Resolute has practically gone to pieces, but the Locke is riding out the gale outside the gap.

All that is in sight of the sunken craft is the top of a mast with some canvas floating from it. Messrs. Haney & Miller purchased the ill-fated boat last spring, from the Rathbun company.

The storm on the lake last night was one of the worst experienced, the waves lashing the shore in a furious manner. The wind is still very high.



Mariners say that, last night, and this morning's hurricane is the hardest gale for some years. In the harbor the scene was one of grandeur, the huge white capped waves rolling from nine to fifteen feet high. Across the harbor at Point Frederick, nothing can be seen but spray. Navigation today is at a standstill, no vessels venturing in the blow. There have been no reports of any vessels being wrecked as yet, but in a blow like today's, it will go hard with any vessels caught crossing the lakes.

A Tug Damaged.

The Montreal Transportation company's fine tug Emmerson left Kingston, Wednesday afternoon, with four grain laden barges for Montreal. In the vicinity of Clayton, N.Y., the anchors were dropped as it was very dark. Soon the wind began to blow a hurricane, and the tug was dragged on the shoal at the head of Round Island. The Emerson left her barges anchored, and this morning at ten o'clock, arrived in port and will be put on the dry dock for repairs.

Last night, members of the crew say, was the wildest on the river in years and to make matters worse it was very dark. The darkness was given as the reason for the tug and barges anchoring, as it was unsafe to proceed down through the islands. The crew consider that the crew got off lightly, under the circumstances, the only wonder being that the barges were not damaged.

Marine Notes.

The schooner Mary Ann Lydon cleared light for Sodus.

The steamer City of New York cleared from Richardsons' for Quebec, with 20,000 bushels of oats and barley.

The elevator at Richardson's is pretty well crowded at present. The steamers Simla and Ames have yet to arrive with grain.

The schooner W.J. Suffel is loaded with feldspar for Charlotte, but was unable to put out this morning owing to the severe storm.

Swift's: steamer Picton down today; steamer Aletha down and up today; propellor Cuba up today; propellor Persia up today.

The steamer Black Rock arrived at Richardsons' from Chicago, with 60,000 bushels of wheat. She will clear today with coal for the west.

Several pieces of lumber were noticed coming down the lake this morning, which appeared like wreckage. However, no reports of any mishaps have been received as yet.

Messrs. Davies, of Quebec, have received instructions from the North American Wrecking company to take measurements of the Bavarian to find out if she can be placed in the Levis graving dock. Capt. Saunders, Lloyds surveyor, from New York, sent to report to the underwriters, states that the Bavarian will most assuredly sail the ocean again, and he has hopes that she can be repaired here.



The Chauncey Hurlburt Driven Ashore.

Leamington, Ont., Nov. 22nd - This morning, about five o'clock, the Chauncey Hurlburt, a steambarge, was driven aground by a fierce storm which raged here last night. The crew of thirteen were all saved.

It was loaded with pig iron from Manistique, Mich., for Buffalo. It is hard in the sand, and is expected to go to pieces soon. It is owned by J.C. Tegan, Detroit, and sailed by Capt. Parsons.

The Hurlburt had in tow the D.C. Clint, a small barge which broke away in the storm. It is supposed to be wrecked, and the crew of eight probably drowned.

Another barge went aground at Point Pelee. The crew of twenty-two were rescued by the Point Pelee life saving crew. The name of the last named boat has not been learned.

Four Men Drowned.

Grand Rapids, Mich., Nov. 22nd - A message from Holland states that four men who were caught on the crib work of the new pier, by the storm, were washed away during the night and drowned. An unknown barge and schooner have been wrecked 6 miles south of Grand Haven.


William Lesslie, who performed the extraordinary feat of floating the steamship Bavarian, arrived in Kingston Wednesday night, and today he was a very busy man, receiving the congratulations of his many friends. He is suffering from a severe cold, and it was with much difficulty that he chatted with a representative of the Whig this afternoon.

"Yes, it was a great task," said Mr. Lesslie, "but I was confident from the start off that I would be successful."

Mr. Lesslie referred to his having used the compressed air method in floating the Bavarian, the same method he said he had used when he released the steamship Scottish King, which was stranded off the Newfoundland shore. A great many of the experts he says expressed the opinion that he would not succeed. In fact some of them believed that it was somewhat of a foolish idea. Needless to say those who had so expressed their opinions were greatly surprised when the result was known. Mr. Lesslie states that suggestions of various kinds were made to him by different people, while he was carrying on his work, and that some of them were quite ridiculous.

"It would have meant a great deal of expense to me for nothing in return if I had not succeeded," said Mr. Lesslie, "as I took the contract on the chance of releasing the vessel."

Mr. Lesslie will return to Quebec in a few days to look after some matters of interest.

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22 Nov 1906
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  • Ontario, Canada
    Latitude: 44.22976 Longitude: -76.48098
Rick Neilson
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Maritime History of the Great Lakes
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British Whig (Kingston, ON), 22 Nov 1906