The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Chronicle & Gazette (Kingston, ON), Nov. 28, 1835

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p.2 Conneaut, Nov. 13th.

Shipwreck and Loss of Life - At an early hour this morning a hull of a vessel was seen off our Harbor, and with the aid of a Spy Glass, one person was discovered on board; but as the Lake was rough, and the wind to the northward, it was impossible to go out to the vessel. About 8 o'clock, however, when she had drifted within about 30 rods of the shore, one mile west of the Harbor, two or three individuals plunged into the Lake, and succeeded in getting on board, when a scene of horror and distress presented itself to their view. The individual before discovered, proved to be the mate, by name Henry Waghorn. He was unable to help himself much, and seemed indifferent about getting on shore, and by his side, lashed to the windlass, were the lifeless bodies of two men, and in the Cabin ten more of men, women and children. The mate was put on shore, and soon after the lifeless bodies of four men, three boys, four girls and one woman, were taken on shore, and decently interred, in the burying ground attached to the Presbyterian Meeting House.

After the mate had become revived and able to converse, we learn from him the following particulars relative to the accident. The schooner is the Trader, of and from Otter Creek, Canada, loaded with lumber and bound for Cleveland, with a crew of four, including captain and mate, and ten passengers. There was a widow lady and six children, name not known, and three gentlemen, one by name of John Richardson. On Wednesday morning, when between Ashtabula and Grand River, about daylight, a squall struck the schooner which split all the sails and rendered her unmanageable; and about 11 A.M. two heavy seas struck her in quick succession, which capsized her, and carried away both her masts and bowsprit, and stove a hole in her larboard bow, at the moment she capsized, all on board were below, in about five minutes she righted again, when the mate, two of the hands and one passenger, (name not known) got upon deck, and all succeeded in lashing themselves to the windlass, except the passenger, who was swept overboard. The Captain and remainder of the passengers did not attempt to come on deck, but remainded in the Cabin, about two-thirds filled with water, until they died, which was between 10 o'clock that night and daylight the next morning. - The groans and cries for help continued until about daylight. The widow was bound for Cleveland, where she has a son residing. If the Lake should continue calm, it is probable the vessel may be got off, and towed into our Harbor. [Gazette]

The Gale - On visiting the harbor yesterday, the ravages of the storm, though more destructive than ever before known in this place, was less than we had anticipated. The greatest amount of damage seemed to be around and near the foot of Main Street. The Creek was completely filled with lumber, collected by the current, and forming a solid bridge over the creek, above the principal body of shipping.

The schooner Tecumseh lies aground at the head of the pier, and the Col. Benton, one of the finest vessels on the lake, ran ashore several miles above, with the loss of her deck load. Several steamboats lay high and dry, and one sloop, with all her sails set, lays in Ohio street, in front of Mr. Rathbun's large storehouse.... [Buffalo Star]

On Friday night, during a gale on Lake Champlain, two schooners foundered. One named the North America, and the other the ____, both with cargoes. One of the boats of the steam boat Phoenix was swept away. [Montreal News Room Register]

A Hurricane - Yesterday about 6 o'clock P.M. as several of the Steam Boats were entering the harbor, a violent hurricane suddenly arose, which was nigh doing serious injury to them and some of the craft in the bay; the Transit was driven ashore after having cleared the buoy at the mouth of the Harbour; she has not been yet got off, and it is feared that the accident will much impair that excellent and very commodious Boat. It is to be regretted that one man, a foreigner, lost his life, by being swept off the plank by the breeze, while passing from the Britannia, on which he was a passenger, to the wharf - his body was found this morning, a Coroner's Inquest was held on it, and a verdict returned of - accidental drowning.

The Transit is just now being towed in to the wharf by another Steam Boat. [Toronto Courier]

p.3 We are happy to have to announce the safe arrival of the diagonal barge Quebec, with its enterprising proprietor, Mr. George on board, at Ferris' Point, near Kingston. The good sailing qualities of the Quebec have been now amply proved, having been out in both those tremendous gales, when so many lives and so much property were lost. On Monday last the Quebec was seen off Oswego, laboring in the heavy snow storm which was then blowing, and serious apprehensions being entertained by the spectators for her safety, several individuals bravely volunteered to proceed in boats to her assistance, which was accordingly done. On their reaching the vessel, Mr. George thanked them for their kindness and accepted their aid in towing the Barge into port, at the same time expressed his full confidence in the capabilities of the Quebec to weather the gale. Mr. George remained in Oswego a few days until the weather cleared up, and then proceeded on his voyage, which so far has so happily terminated.

Disasters on Lake Ontario - We are sorry still to have to add fresh instances of the unparalled fury of the gale of the 11th. The schooner Willis was lost on the shoals above Gravelly Bay and all hands perished - another schooner, name unknown, struck on the same shoal and went to pieces, and her entire crew consigned to a watery grave. The shoals are strewed with pieces of the wrecks and 13 hats have been picked up on the beach. The insurance office at Oswego estimate that 13 schooners have been totally lost during that gale on the Lakes Ontario and Erie - that 150 lives have been lost in consequence.

The schooner George Canning, Capt. Smith, belonging to Chippewa, on her voyage upwards sprung both her masts at the Devil's Nose, and had to return to Kingston for repairs, and will be there laid up for the winter.

For the Chronicle & Gazette.

Mr. Editor, - Having understood this morning that a Company have actually been formed to erect a Marine Rail way in this Town, and that Horse power is to be used instead of Steam for the saving of expense, as an Engine could be but occasionally needed, I beg leave through your columns to offer a remark or two. As the erection of a machine or machines shall be needed for horse power, which probably may be in a short time laid aside for steam, if business succeeds well, I am of opinion that it would answer well to use an engine of such power as would saw boards, grind grain, or perform such services as the town may be much in want of - the power of which engine might be applied to hauling up vessels when required. The expense, no doubt, would be a good deal more; but from what I hear in general talked concerning this piece of enterprise, and the desire that people of ordinary circumstances seem to have of becoming Shareholders, I am of opinion that cash sufficient could be raised among even Mechanics and small dealers in town, in 10 or 20 dollar shares. An offer of such a nature has not been made to them to assist improvements for the town as a yet, and, therefore, they should not be looked upon as less enterprising than their richer fellow men until their spirit for enterprise would be put to the test. So general has the opinion been in town for some time past that a Marine Railway would be of incalculable benefit to all classes, and so great the desire to see it executed that it was the intention of Mechanics and others to make the attempt themselves unless abler hands had taken up the business......

A Mechanic of the Town.

Kingston, Nov. 26th, 1835.

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Nov. 28, 1835
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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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Chronicle & Gazette (Kingston, ON), Nov. 28, 1835