Thomas W. Bristow
Thomas W. Bristow was born in England, March 15, 1848, and came to America in the spring when he had attained his tenth year. His father, William Bristow, was for many years a shipbuilder, being employed by the Detroit Dry Dock Company, and he still resided in Michigan.
Our subject was apprenticed, in 1861, to the shipbuilder's trade, and served seven years at wood and iron building. He then went on the ocean as ship's carpenter, and remained five years, during which time he visited South and Central America, South Africa and Australia. Finally returning to the United States, he settled at Wyandotte, Mich., and was employed by the Detroit Dry Dock Company for nine years as assistant superintendent. During his stay in Detroit he had charge of the building of twenty vessels. In 1887 he came to Cleveland and took the position of superintendent of construction in the Cleveland Ship Building Company, which position he held until September, 1898. At this place he has superintended the building of twenty-six vessels, some which are the James Watt, Queen City, Lackawanna, Scranton, Yale, Nicolas and the Michigan Central ferry Transfer. In all, he has launched fifty-three boats, a record which is of great credit to any man, and which is probably equalled by few, if any, at the present time.
The Cleveland Ship Building Company removed its plant to Lorain, Ohio, in 1897, that being the largest shipyard on the lakes, and in September, 1898, Mr. Bristow retired from the company, going into business for himself as marine surveyor and consulting shipbuilder, with offices in the Western Reserve Building, at Cleveland, Ohio.
Return to Home Port
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.