Maritime History of the Great Lakes

Scanner, v. 36, no. 8 (May 2004), p. 13

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Ship of the Month - cont'd. Tomlinson, quite understandably, was not satisfied with this pittance in view of the extensive damage suffered by SYLVANIA, and tried to establish that RENVOYLE had been operating with a defective rudder. The case went to court during the winter of 1970-1971. The judge finally called the attorneys to his chambers and urged that the matter be settled. A settlement, repor­ tedly in the amount of $600, 000, was worked out and the litigation was con­ cluded. In the interim, RENVOYLE was towed to Ashtabula and from December 1967 until September 1968 she lay at the old carferry slip. She then was moved to the Acme scrapyard, where the dismantling of the vessel was begun on December 5, 1968. Most of the hull was cut up there during 1969, but part of it was re­ tained to be sold to the Empire Marine Company, of Albion, Pennsylvania. This latter firm allegedly planned to convert the remains into a salvage and diving barge. As of January of 1972, however, this had not been done and Acme reported that the remains of the hull still were lying at Ashtabula. Scrapping later was completed there. RENVOYLE was loved by her crews as well as by ship watchers around the lakes. She was well maintained and, although living conditions aboard were crowded by today's standards, they were as good if not better than aboard other ships of her period. Former crewmen recall that "she was one of the finest little ships ever to ply the lakes" and "a real little lady in a sea", this despite the fact that she was almost 400 feet long overall and yet had only the beam of a canaller. The vessels of today are built for economy of operation and maximum carrying capacity, and very few survive that retain the trim lines and graceful ap­ pearance that made RENVOYLE such a beautiful ship. The Great Lakes are much the poorer for that. A good ship now is almost forty years gone, but she lives on in memory. * * * Ed. Note: For their help in putting together this major remake of the REN­ VOYLE story, we extend our most sincere thanks to Don Boone, Skip Gillham, Capt. Gerry Ouderkirk, Vern Sweeting and Gordon Turner. If any members can provide further information, and particularly in respect of the accident that gave GLENLEDI her "bloody nose" in the spring of 1926, we would be most grateful to hear from them. * * * * * KNOW YOUR SHIPS 2004 The 45th edition of this annual directory of vessels plying the lakes, in­ cluding regular salt-water visitors, is now available. The usual features have been continued and now there is a listing of engine data for major lake ships. The 148-page volume is filled with excellently reproduced colour pho­ tographs. Featured vessel is MICHIPICOTEN, for which a detailed and illus­ trated history is provided. A photo of MICHIPICOTEN also graces the front cover. Know Your Ships 2004 is produced by the Marine Publishing Co., of which T. M. H. S. member Roger LeLievre is proprietor. It is available at book and gift shops around the lakes, or may be ordered by phone at (906) 632-8417, or on line at www. knowyourships. com The price is U. S. $14. 95 plus $4. 00 packing and postage. * * * * * OUR SUMMER BREAK This is just a reminder that there is NO June issue of "Scanner". We'll come your way with the Mid-Summer issue, probably in late August, and then again in October. * * * * *

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