Jacob Ryan was born in 1869 in the town of Welland, Ontario, and there attended school. After commencing the active work of life he was employed as a butcher, at railroading, and various other occupations on land until he began the calling which he now follows. The first boat he was on was the John Hanlon, a ferry-boat which is still in active service between Toronto and the Island, and from her he went on the steambarge W. B. Hall, which ran between Port Arthur and Kingston. His next berth was on the steamer Garden City, which is owned in St. Catharines, and ran at first on the route between Toronto and Port Dalhousie. From her he transferred to the Empress of India, owned by Mr. A. E. Hepburn, of Picton, which runs on the same route during the week, with one weekly trip to Charlotte, N. Y., on Saturday nights. In 1895 Mr. Ryan served until August on the propeller Africa, which was engaged in the lumber business between Georgian Bay and Buffalo. The very month he left her at Buffalo, in fact the very next trip, the Africa went down with all hands on board, no less than twelve lives being sacrificed in the merciless waters of Lake Huron. Only three of the bodies were ever found, those of the two wheelsman and the second engineer. Mr. Ryan naturally considers this a very lucky escape. Then it was that he went on the fine sidewheel steamer Spartan, of the Richelieu & Ontario Navigation Co.'s line, which plied between Montreal and Toronto and intermediate ports on Lake Ontario and the St. Lawrence river. From the Spartan he shifted to the Rosemount, an ironclad screw boat, which was brought across the Atlantic from Newcastle-upon-Tyne, and is one of the largest Canadian freighters plying on the great Lakes; her route was between Fort William and Kingston. At the beginning of the season of 1896 he became second engineer of the screw steamer Queen City, which is engaged in the lake excursion business out of Toronto. Mr. Ryan is unmarried. He resides at No. 66 Albert street, Toronto.
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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.