The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Argus (Kingston, ON), Nov. 26, 1850

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A Family Cast Away on Lake Superior, Seven Days without Provisions.

We are indebted to Geo. Witherell, Esq., of this city, just returned from a summer residence at Eagle Harbor, Lake Superior, for the following facts:

Mr. Griswold, wife and small child, with a boy about seventeen, the son of Mr. Haverstraw, set out a few weeks since in a skiff from Eagle harbor, to reach Eagle river, some ten miles distant up the coast. Witherell was engaged building a Government light-house on the point projecting out into the harbor from main land, and saw the company as they rounded the point on their perilous voyage. It was then blowing quite strongly off land, and fears were entertained that a shift in the wind would beach them on a bold and bad shore.

Determined to have plenty of leeway, the little craft was observed to put out some distance into the lake, and was soon lost sight of. It never reached its destination. Days and weeks passed, nothing was heard from the adventurers. The coast between the two points was daily traversed, and pieces of the wreck supposed to be found, but no tidings of the sufferers. At length all hope was given up, and their friends mourned them as dead. But the sequel proved otherwise. After three weeks absence this little crew were all found safe at the Sault. They had been picked up two weeks before by a coasting schooner on the Canada shore, whither they had been seven days drifting. The distance across the lake at that point must be from 250 to 300 miles. It appears that the boat got too far from shore, and the wind increasing, drove them into the lake. Night came on, and the wind not abating, the boat was put in charge of a lad, who was a half-breed and well acquainted with the lake. He got up a sort of sail and put before the wind for the Canada shore.

Seven days and nights they spent on this lonely sea without seeing a vessel, without shelter and without food. The wind changed several times and kept them for days out of sight of land. When found, they had entirely surrendered themselves up to their fate. How they lived so long under such exposure and without food, is a most unparalleled mystery. Their discovery was a mere accident by the schooner, which, solitary and alone, happened to be coasting along the Canada shore.

Altogether, this is one of the most remarkable incidents that has ever occurred on these lakes, noted as they are for adventures, shipwrecks and escapes. [Cleveland Plain Dealer]

p.3 The schooner Minesota with the 1st cargo of Lake Huron copper ore ever shipped for a European port, the Montreal Herald says, is now in the Canal Basin, Montreal. The Minesota met with an unfortunate accident that may possibly prevent her voyage across the ocean. She took the ground at the entrance of the Lachine Canal, and received so much injury that it has been necessary to keep the pumps going ever since.

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Nov. 26, 1850
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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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Argus (Kingston, ON), Nov. 26, 1850