Maritime History of the Great Lakes

Scanner, v. 27, no. 8 (May 1995), p. 2

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MARINE NEWS 2. Perhaps the biggest news of the spring season is the return to Great Lakes service of a vessel that has been absent from fresh water since 1989. She is SEA BARGE ONE, (a) ADAM E. CORNELIUS (III) (89), (b) CAPT. EDWARD V. SMITH (91), which has had a chequered career on the Canadian east coast since her sale by the American Steamship Company of Buffalo. In a recent issue, we r e counted her history since leaving the lakes, and noted that early this year, she had been acquired by Halifax Grain Elevator Ltd., supposedly for use as a grain transfer barge at Halifax. We had,, however, heard reports that she would be returning to the lakes and, in fact, she has done just that, under the ownership of the elevator's subsidiary, Great Lakes Transportation Ltd., and with a charter to Canada Steamship Lines. SEA BARGE ONE, a stern notch barge with her original forward cabin configuration intact, had been und er going repairs to her self-unloading gear at Halifax since December of 1994, and she cleared that port on April 27th in tow of the Irving tug ATLANTIC HICKORY, (a) IRVING MIAMI (95), a 921-ton, 7, 200 h. p. tug which was built in 1973. SEA BARGE ONE was at Clarkson, Ontario, on May 9th, unloading a cargo of gypsum ore, and she then proceeded up the Welland Canal, bound for Thunder Bay. On the St. Clair River, she had a scrape with the USS Great Lakes Fleet self-unloader PHILIP R. CLARKE, and accordingly the U . S. Coast Guard insis ted that she be escorted by another tug on the St. Mary's River. The tug which stood by was W. I. SCOTT PURVIS, and the tow eventually made its way safely to the Canadian Lakehead. We understand that SEA BARGE ONE will make a number of trips with grain from Thunder Bay to Duluth, and also will do any other work that can be found for her. She doesn't look her best at this time, and she is now "just a barge", but it is indeed pleasant to see the return to the lakes of this former steamer that was built in 1958 at M an i towoc, Wisconsin. There have been some interesting changes to the lay-up fleet at Toronto. On May 10, SEAWAY QUEEN departed to return to active service. However, on May 2nd, CANADIAN PATHFINDER, (a) BAIE ST. PAUL (94), never having operated u n der her new name, departed in tow of ARGUE MARTIN, JAMES E. McGRATH, LAC COMO and GLENEVIS, bound for the St. Lawrence River. As we had predicted last issue, she since has departed for breakers in India, accompanied in tandem tow of a Russian tug by CANADIAN HARVEST, (a) RIMOUSKI (94), which had been laid up at Montreal. It is said that this tow will be followed by CANADIAN HUNTER and ALGOSTREAM, (a) SIMCOE (94), also bound for India, during the summer months. The HUNTER has been thoroughly stripped out at To ronto during her long lay-up, and observers have already noted white "towing marks" painted on ALGOSTREAM at Montreal, and although she had operated in 1994, she had been stripped of her bowthruster. Although Toronto lost CANADIAN PATHFINDER as a lay-up, on May 11th it gained CANADIAN VOYAGER, (a) BLACK BAY (94), which arrived from Montreal under tow of the McKeil tugs JERRY NEWBERRY (the former KAY COLE), LAC ERIE and JAMES E. McGRATH. We understand that Seaway Bulk Carriers intends to have CANADIAN VOYAGER taken to Port Weller Dry Docks later in 1995 to give her major hull repairs necessary to put her in condition for further service. The return to operation of Port Weller Dry Docks, following the workers' agreement to a new contract during April, produced a major rebuilding con tract involving the repair of major damage suffered during the winter at Montreal by the P & H Shipping steamer MAPLEGLEN, (a) CAROL LAKE (87), (b) ALGOCAPE (I) (94), which buckled in her number 5 hold during repairs to her deck. Towed up from Montreal to Port Weller, MAPLEGLEN was placed on the drydock and has been undergoing a complete replacement ofthe structural members of the hull in the affected cargo hold. We are indeed pleased that the beautiful MAPLEGLEN's damage was not fatal, and that the Port Weller shipyard was able to overcome is lengthy labour problems and return to ac tive operation in time to work on the P & H steamer.

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