Maritime History of the Great Lakes

Marine Record (Cleveland, OH), August 1, 1895, p. 10

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10 THE MARINE RECORD. MARINE LITIGATION. THE TILDEN-ARABIA COLLISION. The daily press has already called attention to the de- cision handed down Friday by Judge Ricks in the case of M. A. Bradley and others vs. The Western Transit Co. The collision occurred nearly nine years ago, and the case has been pending in the courts for a consider- able time. It was heard by Judge Ricks three years ago, but he reserved his decision, andit was not made known until last week. Both vessels are still in commission, the Tilden now being owned by EH. S. Pease. On the night of October 23, the barge Tilden, loaded with iron ore, lay at anchor in the St. Clair River, just below the Middle Ground, awaiting the steamer Fay, which was to tow her down. The Fay came down with the Rhodes in tow and passed between the Tilden and the Canadian shore. She was still so far from the Canadian shore that she continued to starboard her helm, came about below the Tilden and passed up along- side, about thirty feet from the Tilden, and towed the Rhodes alongside at about the same distance. The tow- line was then passed from one schooner to the other, but while this was being done the bow of the Rhodes fell away toward midstream until only herred light showed upstream, The master of the Arabia, which was coming down, saw the red light only, and supposed the Rhodes was a schooner bound for the Canadian shore. The master of the Fay said he blew two whistles when the Arabia was seven-eighths of a mile distant, opposite the Sarnia elevator. The Arabia answered, but continued on her course. The Fay then blew a second signal of two whistlés, which was again answered by the Arabia with- out changing her course. The captain of the Fay testi- fied that when the Arabia was abreast of him he gave several short sharp whistles and called out to the Arabia: “Starboard! why don’t you starboard and keep clear of my vessels??? He says he then heard a cry on the Arabia of ‘‘ Starboard, man, starboard!’’ However, the helm of the Arabia was ported and crossed the Rhodes’ bows. Just as she caught the Rhodes’ bows the towline waslet go and then the collision with the Tilden occurred. : The libelant claimed that the distance between the Tilden and the Canadian shore was 1,200 feet, and that ‘had the Arabia kept on in the ordinary course of ves- sels, she would have cleared the Fay’s tow by 600 feet. The respondent claimed that the master of the Arabia had the right to assume that the Rhodes was a Canadian bound vessel, and that she had accordingly the right to pass astern of the vessel; that she had no right or rea- son to consider the Rhodes a part of the Fay’s tow, al- though the Fay had two lights at her masthead. The decision states that the first important fact to be considered was that the Tilden was anchored in a usual and safe place, well over to the American side. Most of the witnesses agreed that she was in a proper position, 340 feet from the dock, and 380 feet from the shore ; the river was 1,900 feet wide there and 1,650 feet wide just above. The witnesses agreed that the main chan- nelin 1886 was on the Canadian side, and that vessels took it, whether passing up or down. _ The Fay showed the proper lights, and so did the tow. So the ship and tug are one vessel. (The Civilta and the Restless, 103 U.S. 701.) The Fay’s masthead light indi- cated a tow. and while this may not have been notice of more than one vessel, yet the fact that the third ves- sel showed an anchor light,and was in the customary place for vessels to anchor awaiting tow, should have put the master of the Arabia on inquiry asto what re- lations the three vessels bore to each other. He had abundant time and opportunity to decide this question. His speed was variously estimated at from 12 to 17 miles, so he was about four minutes running from the Sarnia elevator to where he collided with the Tilden. It was clearly his duty to have watched the lights and to have determined the relations of the vessels from their move- ments. Ifthe time was not sufficient, at this speed, he should have checked down in order to clearly determine the question. The evidence was overwhelming that the red light on the Rhodes did not change its position ma- terially, and as the engines of the Fay had been started, in order to head the Rhodes up stream, the red light must have moved slightly toward the American side. ‘The only contention of the respondent is that he had reason to believe that the schooner was ‘sailing and bound for the Canadian shore. He says he saw the sails, but does not pretend to know how much wind there was, and evidently gave no consideration to these facts, all of which were important elements to weigh. A number of witnesses gave it’as their opinion that the Arabia could have escaped the tow after the danger signals were given by the Fay. The preponderance of the tes- timony is that the sails on the Rhodes were furled. The masters of the Fay and Rhodes so testified, and it was the usual rule when entering St. Clair River. It has been contended that there was carelessness on the part of the master of the Fay in maneuvering his vessel at the time he took up the Tilden, but the major- ity of the many experts testified that the maneuvers were proper and usual under such circumstances. There was some testimony that the Tilden should have displayed.a torch as a danger signal, and that the Rhodes should have done likewise. The anchor light of the Tilden was in itself a signal that she was in a posi- tion of rest, and this signal protected her from any col- lision with moving vessels) The burden of proof is on the steamer to show that. she was free from fault. Many masters of long experience testified that they would not have looked for a torch upon either the Til- den or the Rhodes, and that the absence of such asignal would not in their judgment, excuse a steamer in such a case. “T have carefully considered all. the testimony in this case,’’ concludes the decision, ‘‘and am driven to the conclusion, by a great preponderance of it, that the master of the Arabia was wholly in fault, and that through his negligence the collision occurred. A decree may be drawn accordingly, referring the case to a mas- ter to assess the damages.”’ SUIT AGAINST TUG OWNERS. In the United States District Court at Milwaukee, lately, the case of C. W. Elphicke, Edward Kohnert and W. B. Hotchkiss, owners of the schooner F. W. Gifford, against C. H. Starke, Conrad Starke and W. H. Meyer, owners of the tug W. H. Simpson, was tried. The schooner Gifford left Chicago April 8, 1894, corn laden, for Pott Huron, encountered a-storm 30 miles northeast of Milwaukee and tried to make the latter port. The tug Simpson took her in tow, and, it is al- leged, by mismanagement, sent her to bank against the Benjamin coal dock at the Milwaukee River. It is claimed that the schooner was damaged $2,500, lost $825 by reason of delays and was obliged to pay the Benja- min Coal Co. $598 for damage to the dock. Damages are claimed to the amount of $4,000. The plaintiff ten- dered the tug owners’ usual fee for towing, which was refused. The answer of the tug owners is that the Gifford was found out in the lake in a heavy storm in a helpless condition and taken into port; that the crew on the schooner, while going up the straight cut, neglected to obey the signal from the tug; that the very heavy sea was running into the harbor, and that by reason of the neglect of the crew to obey the signals, the tug was in danger of being run down by the schooner; and that in order to avoid this and prevent the schooners going to bank, the lines which had been slacked to allow the crew to shorten them, had to be suddenly jerked, when it parted, resulting in the damage complained of. Markham & Nickerson, of Milwaukee, represent the libelants, and M. C. Krause the tug owners. The case was submitted on July 12, and is still under advisement. A CHICAGO RIVER COLLISION. The steamer Majestic was libeled at Chicago last Friday afternoon by James Corrigan, owner of the steamer Australasia, on account of a collision ‘between the two boatsin Chicago River, Nov.1, 1894. The Majes- tic was coming down in tow of the tug Van Schaack arid the Australasia, coal laden, was bound up in tow of the tug Crawford. The bill stated that the Majestic was coming at a high rate of speed, beyond control and af- ter striking a dock, corraled in the Australasia, which had come to a full standstill. The Majestic struck the Australasia a heavy blow some ten feet abaft of the stem, and caused damages amounting to $4,000... The Majestic was bonded. BOTH WERE TO BLAME. Judge Ricks disallowed all claims for damage in the suit of the Bradley Transportation Co. against the owners of the tug John Gregory, for the loss of their tug, the Forest City, by collision with the -Gregory in September, 1888. The amount of damages asked for was $7,000. Both tugs were racing for a tow, when, ac- cording to the evidence, the Forest City began crowding upon the Gregory, and was sunk in a collision that oc- curred in consequence. ‘The Gregory’s owners had filed a cross libel, but Judge Ricks held that while the Forest City was to blame for the collision, yet the Gregory was sufficiently culpable to debar her owners from collecting any damages. ; ‘moved with the least possible amount of friction, and THE WINTER WHARF DROP. The winter wharf drop, of which the American Ship Windlass Co. is the sole manufacturer is producing the same favorable results that all the machines manufact- ured by this company do. This drop is made for pas- senger foot bridges, ship or ferry bridges, etc. It is de- signed to move up and down to meet the varying re- quirements of tides and light or loaded vessels. The bridge is operated through worm gearing and stands locked where left. The arrangement is in itself made a perfect balance, and is therefore capable of being from the nature of the mechanism, is at once powerful, Simple and free from danger of derangement. The drops or bridges at India Wharf, Boston, are 25x12 feet, and are of heavy proportions and capable of taking 20 tons over them with the greatest safety, yet they can be quickly raised or lowered by one man.—Philadelphia Price Current. rr ae —eEE HEADQUARTERS ON THE LAKES. DeGrauw, Aymar & Co. have appointed Mr. A. Osier as their representative to look after their lake trade in cordage, chain, and other vessel supplies. Mr, Osier will pay frequent visits to all the lake ports between Buffalo and Duluth and Chicago in the interest of this firm. His headquarters will be in Bay City. This firm manufactures anchors, and has the U.S. agency for the Vulcan and Tyzack stockless anchors. EEE ee Oe NEWLY ENROLLED LAKE TONNAGE. The following lake vessels were newly enrolled in the United States List of Merchant Vessels during tHe week ended July 20, with their official numbers: No. 127,098, steam canal boat Alpha, built in and hailing from Cleveland, 132.23 tons gross, 85;08 tons net; No. 86,321, tug Good Will, built in and hailing from Buffalo, 65.63 tons gross, 44.63 tons net; No. 62,947, barge Wannegan, built at and hailing from Oswego, N. Y., gross and net tonnage, 58.94, ED Os ee TRADE NOTES. The Almy Water Tube Boiler Co., of Providence, R. I., have removed from the corner of Clifford and Eddy Sts. to their manufactory, Nos. 178-184 Allen’s Avenue. The St. Lawrence River Skiff, Canoe & Steam Launch Co., are about to remove their establishment from Clay- ton, to Ogdensburg, N. Y., where they will begin at once the construction of a large manufactory. The building site is 400 x 230 feet, and the company expects to be in its new quarters by October. Capt. John C. Pringle, master of the yacht Penelope, has just written to H. G. Trout, at Buffalo, as follows, from St. Clair, Mich.: ‘‘ The wheel purchased from you for yacht Penelope is giving entire satisfaction. It in- creased the yacht’s speed 4% mile per hour on the same steam pressure and coal consumption, and backs a great deal better than the old wheel. It is the best wheel, by long odds, that we have ever had on the yacht.”’ The Huyett & Smith Manufacturing Co., of Detroit, is making the blowers and draft appliances for the new side wheel steamer that is being built for the Cleveland & Buffalo Transit Co. They are also to furnish similar appliances for the two large steamers building at John Roach’s shipyards, at Chester, Pa., for service between New York and New London. Special engines are being constructed for these blowers. The high-lights of the Midsummer Holiday Century are three beautiful wood-engravings by Cole, after cele- brated pictures by Rubens, the cuts having been made in the presence of the pictures themselves; a fully illus- trated decription by Philo N. McGiffin, of the battle of the Yalu River between the Japanese and Chinese fleets, in which the writer commanded the Chinese ironclad Chen Yuen; a comiment on this memorable engagement by the distinguished naval critic,Capt. A. IT. Mahan, entitled ‘“* Lessons from the Yalu Fight;” an engaging illustrated installment of Sloan’s Life of Napoleon, in- cluding the second campaign in Italy and the battle of Marengo, with maps, battle scenes, and portraits made especially for this work. Dr. Henry Van Dyke contrib- utes an article on ‘Old-Fashioned Fishing.’ In ‘‘A Bit of Italian Merrymaking,’’ Mrs. Scott-Uda describes the Lilies of Nola, an Italian city, the “‘ lilies ”’ being turrets eighty or ninety feet high representing the different trades, and carried about on movable platforms. Ape J valid sys Skit out debate ete Siestiae ytten ee Sr< Aw Say thread

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