Frederick Henning was born in the city of St. Catharines in the year 1861, and attended the public schools of Lockport, N.Y., for several years, and then went to Montreal, where he served his time with Mitchell & Co., master machinists, who did a large trade in steam fitting, marine work, etc. About the earliest responsible engineering work in which Mr. Henning engaged was the running of one of the first consolidated locomotives on the Canadian Pacific railroad through the Roger's Pass in the Rocky Mountains, in the days of construction of snow shed work fifteen years ago.
The first steamboat on which he served was the tug William Ross, plying in the Georgian Bay service. He then went on the steamer Cherokee, running between Collingwood and French river. Seventeen years ago he went out to Canada's prairie province of Manitoba, and went on the steamer Millie Howe, plying on Lake Winnipeg. He went from her to the Hudson Bay Company's boat, the Colville, which was engaged in taking supplies to the various Hudson Bay posts on Lake Winnipeg. At that time a Hudson Jack had been hoisted at a spot at the head of the Nelson river, which was said to be the most northerly point, navigable for steamboats, in Canada. However, Mr. Henning hauled down the flag and replanted it at a more northerly point, and there, in that far Northland, it waves proudly in the breeze to this day. Mr. Henning put the engines in the steambarge Red River, and ran her for one season, her route being a round of Lake Winnipeg ports. She was afterwards burned and rendered useless. Nine years ago he went on the side-wheel passenger steamer Aurora, which also ran on Lake Winnipeg and is still in service. Then he took charge of the engines on the government tug, Sir Hector, which was engaged in dredging at the mouth of the Red River.
Then Mr. Henning went east to Toronto, and had charge of the ferry steamer, Mascotte, which was afterward destroyed by floating ice in Sixteen Mile creek, Oakville, Ontario. From this boat he went on the ferry steamer Sadie, now called Shamrock, and he then went to the upper lakes again, taking charge of the steam- barge, Lothair, which was engaged in the lumber business between Cleveland, Ohio, and Blind River. She afterward foundered off Tobermoray, her machinery, however, being recovered. From this boat he went on the steambarge W.B. Hall, which ran between Port Arthur and Kingston. It is interesting to note that the engines on this boat were those that had been taken out of the famous tug Robb, which has become historic as one of the improvised gunboats on the Niagara river during the Fenian raid of 1866. Then Mr. Henning went on the ferry boat Canadian (now the Thistle), and remained on her until he was sent for to put the machinery in the new hydraulic dredge on the Hudson river. Last summer he rendered the same service on the hydraulic city dredge, the Daniel Lamb, in the Toronto harbor.
This gentleman had during the seasons of 1894-95 been on the pleasure steamer J.W. Steinhoff, the same boat on which he has charge of the engines at present, her name having been altered to that of the Queen City.
Mr. Henning is married, and with his wife and baby girl reside at No. 17 Soho street, Toronto. He is a member of the Independent Order of Foresters, the Odd Fellows, and the Ancient Order of United Workmen.
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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.