Chapter 38
Table of Contents

Title Page
1 Introductory
2 Geological
3 Poetry of the Lakes
4 Description
5 The Aborigines
6 French Discovery and occupation
7 Story of La Salle and the Griffin
8 Struggle for Possession
9 Under English Rule
10 Beginnings of Lake Commerce
11 War of 1812
12 War of 1812, Continued
13 War of 1812, Concluded
14 Growth of Traffic
Commerce Through St. Mary's Canals
15 Early Navigation on Lake Superior
16 The Convention of 1847
17 A Half Century Ago
18 Lake Canals
19 Lake Canals, Concluded
20 Harbors
21 Lighthouses
22 Life Saving Service
23 Development of Lake Vessels
24 The Lake Carriers
25 The Sailor
26 Navigation
27 Lumber Traffic
28 Grain Traffic
29 Coal Traffic
30 Iron Ore and Iron Industries
31 Miscellaneous
33 CHRONOLOGY.The Beginnings
33 After the War of 1812
34 1821-1830
35 1831-1840
36 1841-1850
37 1851-1860
38 1861-1870
39 1871-1880
40 1881-1890
41 1891-1898
42 List of Lake Vessels
Table of Illustrations


The navigation of 1862 commenced with the freights ruling firm and remunerative. Tugs received from $25 to $35 per vessel for towing from Lake Huron to Lake Erie. The tug E. M. Peck carried the broom on the rivers, claiming a superiority of speed over all others. The barks Northwest and Oneonta had a trial of speed between Chicago and Buffalo. Both vessels passed through the rivers in the same tow, but the latter succeeded in reaching Buffalo first. The bark Sleipner from Bergen, Norway, Captain Waage, arrived at Detroit, August 24, en route to Chicago with 105 passengers on board. The schooner Oriole, Captain McAdam, laden with ore, collided with the steamer Illinois, and sunk with the loss of twelve lives, including the captain, his wife and mother-in-law. The bark British Lion arrived at Detroit wire-rigged, the first with a wire fitout on the lakes, Capt. R. Gaskin master and owner. A freshet took place in the Genesee river, forcing the steamer Maple Leaf from her winter moorings into Lake Ontario with only her captain on board. The schooners Col. Cook and Minnesota shared a like fate, but all soon after got into port again little harmed. The propeller Stockman, built for the fishing trade and for a time on passenger routes, was this season converted into a brig.

Struck by Lightning. - A singular fatality occurred on board the schooner Fortune on the night of May 1, on Lake Erie. The crew were engaged in making sail immediately after a heavy thunder squall. John Corbett, first mate, with the crew, were at the fore halliards on one side of the mast, and Neil Duncan, second mate, was on the opposite side, also aiding in making sail. A bolt of lightning killed both mates, but the rest of the crew were unharmed. The mates were not more than three feet apart.

Opening of the Navigation. - Navigation opened at Buffalo March 28, the propeller Eclipse, Captain Crosby, being the first boat to leave for Toledo, arriving at that port the following day. The Welland canal did not open until April 10, although some vessels which were laid up at Port Colborne sailed from there April 4. The Sault canal was in readiness for business April 27, the steamer City of Cleveland, Capt. George Ryder, being the first boat through; the Straits of Mackinac, April 19, the propeller Prairie State, coming eastward, the first to pass through.

First Iron Propeller Built. -- In 1862 the propeller Merchant was built at Buffalo, the first iron propeller on the lakes. Her iron hull was 192 feet keel measurement, and 200 feet over all, afterward lengthened 30 feet. She engaged in the freight and passenger service between Buffalo and Chicago, developing a speed of 14 miles an hour.

Sailed for Europe. -- The schooner Sirius, laden with oil, took her departure from Detroit September 11 for Liverpool, and was wrecked at Farther Point October 20. The bark Thomas F. Park, Capt. William McLeod, departed from Detroit for Liverpool, laden with oil, October 22, but on reaching Quebec her way was obstructed by ice, and there she went into winter quarters.

Steamboat North Star. Built at Cleveland in 1854. Length 274 feet; 1,106 tons; splendidly furnished for Lake Superior line; speed 16 miles an hour; burned at Cleveland in 1862. From "American Steam Vessels." copyright 1895, by Smith & Stnton.
Other Events of 1862. - The tugs Magnet and G. H. Parker conveyed from Lake Huron to Buffalo, passing Detroit September 4, a raft which contained 4,000,000 feet, and was successful throughout in the transfer. The lights of St. Clair flats were extinguished December 1, and navigation closed December 20. January 1: Propeller Montgomery leaves Buffalo for Chicago. February 22: Steamer North Star burns in Cleveland. March 29: Propeller Portsmouth fast in the ice on Lake Erie. Navigation opens between Cleveland and Detroit March 31. April: Seamen's wages $1.00 to $1.25 per day. Schooner North Star, sunk at Point Pelee island in the fall of 1861, raised. Propeller Mary Stewart sunk at Buffalo. Schooner Antares, first sail vessel of the season, leaves Buffalo on 9th. Schooner H. B. Hubbard sunk in Cleveland. Tug E. C. Blish sunk at Detroit: 22, scow Hayes sunk at Sandusky. May: Brig Saxon and propeller Missouri collide and the former sunk. Propeller Euphrates sunk at Sandusky. Schooner Rapid sunk on Lake Erie by collision with the Narragansett; one life lost. June: Propeller Chicago sustains damages from collision with the wrecked tug Zouave at Lake St. Clair. July: Bark Wm. Sturgis and schooner S. H. Lathrop collide in Point Pelee passage; Lathrop sunk in seven fathoms of water. Schooner Australia capsized; Captain Jackson and crew rescued by bark Naomi. Bark Sam Ward collides with schooner Convoy on Lake Erie, sinking the latter. August: Schooner Lucy Anchard struck by lightning near Welland canal. Propeller B. F. Bruce burned off Port Stanley on Lake Erie. Propeller Globe sunk at Buffalo. Schooner S. J. Lathrop sunk on Lake Erie, raised. Steamer Kaloolah lost at Sanguin, Lake Huron. Schooner C. C. Trowbridge sunk in St. Clair river by collision with tug Turner. September: Steamer Little Nell explodes at Saginaw City. October: Schooner Kirk White sunk. Barge St. Lawrence sunk at Buffalo. Schooner Lady of the Lake lost near Manitowoc. November: Brig Black Hawk wrecked at Point Betsey. Schooner Monarch lost near the mouth of the Sandusky bay; six lives lost. Schooner Lucy Raab a total wreck at Middle island reef. Bark Ogontz wrecked at Chicago. Schooner C. Reeve sunk by collision with the schooner Exchange at Oak Orchard.

The following craft also passed out of existence, and were total losses during the season of 1862: Steamer Bay City, formerly the Forest City, wrecked at clay banks, Lake Erie; propeller Pocahontas lost on Long Point, Lake Erie; propeller Moira sunk off the Ducks, Lake Ontario; propeller General Taylor lost at Sleeping Bear; propeller California wrecked on Mohawk reef, Lake Erie; propeller Bay State foundered in Lake Ontario, and twenty-two lives lost; tug Zouave exploded in Lake St. Clair, and four lives lost; tug Union exploded off Chicago, and three lives lost; tug Tom Cochrane, wrecked on Point Albino; bark Northern Light wrecked at Port Barwell; brig Ocean Eagle wrecked at Sheboygan. The following named vessels were all schooners: Pacific lost at the Humber, Lake Ontario; Souvenir foundered in Lake Michigan, and four lives lost; Cadet foundered in Lake Erie, with loss of six lives; Zephania foundered in Lake Ontario, crew saved; Sirius wrecked at Father Point, St. Lawrence; Christiana wrecked on Lake Ontario; Flora Watson sunk by schooner H. Ross, in Lake Erie; Ontonagon wrecked near Oswego; Chief Justice Marshall wrecked near Barcelona; Post Boy lost near Dunkirk; A. Moulton wrecked in Lake Ontario; Mary Ann wrecked in Lake Ontario; Condor lost on Lake Michigan; Bridget wrecked on Long Point, Lake Erie; Helen Mar wrecked at Oak Orchard, Lake Ontario; Mary foundered in Lake Ontario, with loss of five lives; Excelsior lost at Port Stanley, Lake Erie; Huntress wrecked at Port Maitland, Lake Erie; A. Stowell lost near Sodus, Lake Ontario; Stephen A. Douglass went down in Lake Michigan. The following named vessels were all scows: Rugby lost on Lake Erie, with seven lives; Forest Chief wrecked at Cleveland; Lily lost off Vermilion, with one life.

Total loss on hull and cargo, $1,162,173; number of disasters, 300; lives lost 154.


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Volume II

Some of the transcription work was also done by Brendon Baillod, who maintains an excellent guide to Great Lakes Shipwreck Research.