Maritime History of the Great Lakes

Scanner, v. 36, no. 6 (March 2004), p. 6

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Ship of the Month - cont'd. (sometimes reported as 6, 500) Indicated Horsepower at 30 revolutions per mi­ nute and could propel the steamer at 18 m. p. h. Steam at 160 p. s. i. was pro­ duced by eight single-ended, coal-fired, Scotch boilers equipped with forced draft. Each boiler measured 13'9" in diameter by 11'6" in length. There were 16 furnaces with a total of 381 square feet of grate surface. The boilers also were manufactured for the vessel in 1907 by the shipyard. The new ship was not only the grandest and largest passenger steamer yet built on the lakes, but she was arguably the most handsome vessel the D & C ever operated. She had a straight stem, with the anchors set well back and hung from hawseholes, and a graceful counter stern. The main deck, which D & C called Deck A (the line lettered its ships' decks upward, rather than downward as did most other operators), was enclosed from the bow to just abaft the paddleboxes. It contained the impressively opulent entrance hall which was designed, along with the rest of the interior, by Louis 0. Keil. Also located on the Main Deck were the purser's office, the baggage room, considerable freight space (latterly used for automobiles) and, right aft, the diningroom which could serve 225 passengers per sitting. Passing up the elegant and gilded grand staircase, one entered the three- deck-high aft atrium, a shorter version of which was located forward of the stack casings. There was much use of gilt and African mahogany throughout and the galleries and ceilings were lavishly decorated. On B Deck were a number of lounge chairs which could be used by passengers (often commercial travellers) who purchased deck passage only without stateroom privileges. There was a combination of inside and outside staterooms on this deck, as well as ten parlours. On Deck C above, there also were both inside and out­ side rooms, as well as eight parlours. On D Deck was located a narrower deckhouse which contained a single row of staterooms down either side with three exits on either side to the outer deck. Several staterooms were bunched at the forward end, behind the mas­ ter's cabin. The deckhouse also contained ample lounge space which, when the ship first came out, was sometimes utilized as a convention facility. The deckhouse had a vaulted and lavishly decorated ceiling with murals on the bulkheads and a clerestory admitting light from above. On the deck outside were located the steamer's lifeboats, six per side, and all worked with ra­ dial steel davits. All told, CITY OF CLEVELAND had 390 staterooms, could ac­ commodate 1, 451 passengers in them, and carried a crew of 225 in the early years. It was said that as many as 2, 500 day excursion passengers could be carried. The pilothouse, forward on the hurricane deck, was truly a piece of Kirby art. Large and tall, it had 13 big windows in its curved front, each divided into upper and lower halves, and each of those halves into three sections, which gave the house a magnificent grace. A large nameboard was placed below the windows, Originally there was a small sunvisor over the windows but la­ ter this was removed and sunshade was supplied simply by the overhang of the monkey's island and a small visor was placed over only the centre window. The ship often was navigated from a small open bridge on the monkey's island and a dodger was placed around this navigation area with a prominent awning overhead. In later years, the open bridge was expanded to include the en­ tire monkey's island, around which a closed rail was built, and a permanent cover placed overhead. Toward the end of the ship's life, the overhead sun­ shade was removed but the bulwark remained. Flying bridge wings extended out from the roof of the texas cabin, which was located abaft the pilothouse. The steamer had a straight steering post forward and jackstaff aft, plus two tall and heavy masts, the foremast originally being fidded. There were two relatively large smokestacks set in tandem, only barely raked, which were surrounded by a number of large ventilator cowls designed to draw fresh air down to the boiler rooms. A single steam whistle was carried on the leading face of the first funnel. A ship of the C L E V E L A N D ' S proportions deserved, we think, a more impressive voice.

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