Captain George Lyman Durand
Captain George Lyman Durand has advanced steadily in his chosen profession, and has been successful in the various offices he has held on shipboard. He is a good addition to the list of lake masters who have done honor to Vermilion, Ohio, where he was born January 8, 1857, a son of Ira Edson and Rachel (Tisdale) Durand. The father was a native of Ohio, and the mother of Syracuse, N.Y.; they met and were married in Vermilion, and are now united in the better work, the father passing over the dark river October 9, 1869, and the mother following, in November, 1876.
Captain Durand was but twelve years old when his father's death occurred, which made it necessary for him to earn his own livelihood. Up to this time he had attended the public schools, and made a good record as a student. His first work was on the scow S.B. Conklin, where for the two seasons he served as cook. In the spring of 1872 he shipped as boy on the steamer Samuel Mather with Capt. Lucius Edson, who became a warm friend of young Durand, and at the end of two seasons promoted him to the office of second mate, which he filled acceptably during the season of 1874. The next spring he joined the steamer W.R. Stafford, with Captain Cummings. This was followed by four seasons in various capacities on the H.J. Webb, Sophia Minch, Samuel Mather and C.P. Minch, he being second mate on the last named vessel.
In the spring of 1879 Captain Durand was appointed mate of the schooner Anna P. Grover, of which his uncle, Homer Durand, was managing owner, and held that office two seasons, when he was promoted to be master of the same. This was followed by a season as mate on the schooner G.H. Warmington. After engaging in business ashore two years, the Captain again came out as mate of the Anna P. Grover, and in the spring of 1887 assumed command of her and sailed her with good business success five consecutive seasons. After passing the seasons of 1889-90 as master of the schooner Scotia, he was again appointed to the Anna P. Grover, and sailed her two seasons. In the spring of 1893 Captain Durand turned his attention to steam, going as second mate of the William Edwards, followed by a season in the Emily P. Weed, transferring in 1895 to the J.C. Gilchrist, as mate. In 1896 he entered the employ of the Bessemer Steamship Company, as mate of the new monitor Alfred Krupp, transferring to the Sidney G. Thomas as master the next year, during the time her captain was ill. Later on, there being no vacancy in the Bessemer Steamship Company, the Captain served as first mate on the new barge Amazon for a short time; at that time the Amazon was considered the largest freighter on the lakes, and in July, 1897, he was appointed master of Sir W. Le Baron Jenny, of the Bessemer line, which he laid up in the fall. In the spring of 1898 he was appointed master of the monitor Alexander Holley, which he considers one of the stanchest and most seaworthy craft on fresh water.
On January 25, 1882, Captain Duran was wedded to Georgianna Babcock, of Florence, Ohio. The children born to this union are Perry Burgess, Mary, Genevieve and Clara Lucille, all pupils of the public school of Florence, Ohio.
Perry Burgess, a bright boy of fifteen, and a pupil of the high school for the past four winters, may rightly be called one of the youngest second mates on the lakes, he having very acceptably filled this position on the Holley under his father during the season of 1898.
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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.