Captain Henry W. Stone
Captain Stone was born April 9, 1847, at Vermilion, Ohio, where he resided until he was sixteen years of age. He attended the public schools at Vermilion and also those of Cleveland, during the winter months, finishing what may be termed a liberal education at Baldwin University, Berea, Ohio. In 1863 he removed with his parents to Cleveland, where he commenced his sailing career by shipping on the schooner David Wagstaff. For three years he applied himself diligently to the task of learning a seaman's duties, and in the spring of 1866 he shipped before the mast in the new schooner Escanaba. The following seasons, having obtained a thorough knowledge of the duties of a seaman by study and observation, united with practical experience, he was promoted to the office of second mate.
When but twenty-two years of age the Captain went on the new schooner Fayette Brown, on which he had appointed chief officer, and he exhibited so much seasmanship and superior business capacity to that position that he was given command of the schooner New London. He steadily attained to more responsible positions, and in the spring of 1872 he brought out the new schooner D.P. Rhodes, and which he remained for seven years, doing successful work each season and winning and retaining the entire confidence of his employers. He was next appointed master of the stanch schooner Thomas Quayle, sailing her for five seasons. His eminent qualifications up to this time as master of sailing vessels prompted his employer to place him in command of the steamer Superior, which boat he handled for two seasons with ability and success, transferring from her to the E.B. Hales, and thence to the steamer Henry Chisholm, on which he remained for two seasons. In 1887 the firm of M.A. Bradley built the steamer Gladstone, of which boat Captain Stone was appointed master, and he retained this new command three seasons, thus rounding up a period of twenty-six years in the Bradley employ, during which he had steadily worked his way upward from an ordinary seaman in a 560-ton schooner to master of the latest built and one of the largest lake steamers afloat at that time.
It may have been observed that up to this time Captain Stone had handled wooden vessels only. It is held that it requires a greater degree of skill and efficiency to navigate the lakes in iron and steel steamers. However that may be, Captain Stone, in 1890, was appointed to the command of the large new steamer La Salle, built by the Cleveland Ship Building Company to the order of the Lake Superior Iron Company, one of the strongest ship-owning firms on the lakes. Several years ago it was generally believed, and that belief still obtains in a great measure, that wind or weather could have no appreciable effect on the fine, powerful, three to four-thousand-ton steel steamers built on the lakes, hence that class of steamers were driven, loaded or light, in all weather, under all conditions, and at their full speed. For five seasons, under command of Captain Stone, the La Salle was kept well at the head of the list in point of carrying the largest cargoes, chiefly iron ore, and in making almost schedule time from port to port. In 1895 Captain Stone resigned his command with the Lake Superior Iron Company to take charge of the North Land, built by the Globe Ship Building Company, and universally known as the best ship on the lakes, she and her sister ship, the North West, Capt. G.A. Minor, being considered the two most elevated commands on the lakes. Thus Captain Stone, who, in sailors' parlance, crawled through the hawse-pipe of a small schooner, has attained to the best command on fresh water (for, being of later build, the North Land is generally considered slightly superior to her sister ship); that is, he has risen from a small boy on a small schooner to master of a twin-screw steel passenger steamer of 4,244 tons gross. He is a member of the Ship Masters Association, and carries Pennant No. 184.
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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.