Captain P. Smith
Captain P. Smith was born in County Cavan, Ireland, in 1827, a son of John and Catherine R. Smith, and unites in his individuality the blood of the Osbornes and Sheridans. His parents emigrated to the United States in 1836, and on his arrival in this country the father purchased a number of horses and drays, and engaged in teaming. In 1840 he bought a farm a mile and a half southeast of Newburg, where the family remained six years, returning to Cleveland in 1846.
Patrick Smith's opportunities for attending school were limited to a few years, but his innate shrewdness and faculty for good management have brought him a high degree of prosperity and the esteem of his friends and associates. On looking back over his boyhood days he finds that almost all of his schoolmates and early playfellows have passed to the grave. In 1847 Captain Smith bought a pile driver and embarked in business for himself. He purchased a dredge in 1848 and was then prepared to do contract work both for the city and government. In 1849 he extended his operations by purchasing stone quarry property at Independence and Amherst, which he worked with good results. In 1873 he started the tug line known as Smith's tug line, now conducted by his sons, L.P. and J.A. Smith, put up an office at Main street bridge, and operated the tugs L.P. Smith, Belle King, Shoo Fly and Maggie Sanborn. In 1874 he occupied an office on Front street, overlooking the lake, and added the tugs James Amadeus, Mary Tuttle and S.S. Stone to his marine property. In 1878 he built the tug Peter Smith, and in 1879 added the H.N. Sprague, which was lost on Long Point; she split her stern post and when beached listed toward the sea and was torn to pieces by the waves. In 1880 Captain Smith built the Patrick Henry and in 1884 he purchased the Gates. The following year he retired from the active management of the business, transferring it to his sons, although he kept a fatherly supervision over it. Subsequent to the transfer, however, Captain Smith added the schooners Selkirk, Hinckley, the noted Colonel Cook (whose bones now lie on Avon Point), and the H.P. Baldwin, and the new steamers Margaret Olwill and J.H. Farnan to the vessel property of the line, and in 1896 the powerful tug Chauncey Morgan was purchased.
Captain Smith is particularly known for his sterling integrity and business qualifications. What he performed was always thoroughly done. While in active business he was always very tenacious of his reputation for fidelity to engagements of all kinds, suffering nothing to deter him from keeping an appointment or agreement. He is a strong believer in the duty and dignity of labor, and always sympathizes with the industrious poor, often helping them out of pecuniary difficulties, and his circumstances are such that he has also been enabled to help his Church with a free hand. He possesses a warm heart and a generous disposition, and is very careful never to wound the feelings of any one, and his counsel and advice are sought by many. Religiously he is opposed to dissipation in any shape.
Captain Smith was united in marriage to Miss Margaret Olwill, on October 26, 1850, and they had four children -- Louis P., James A., Estelle G. (now Mrs. James Canalle), and Augusta S. (now Mrs. James Spankle). In 1888 Captain Smith married his second wife Miss Mary F. Burns. The family residence is at No. 224 Washington street, Cleveland, Ohio.
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This version of Volume II is based, with permission, on the work of the great volunteers at the Marine Captains Biographies site. To them goes the credit for reorganizing the content into some coherent order. The biographies in the original volume are in essentially random order.
Some of the transcription work was also done by Brendon Baillod, who maintains an excellent guide to Great Lakes Shipwreck Research.