A Remarkable Deliverance. - Capt. W. Jones, of Cleveland, in 1878 related the following wonderful deliverance in 1833 of a passenger from a wrecked schooner New Connecticut, and the facts were then remembered and vouched by a number of the older vessel men. Said Captain Jones:
"In the autumn of 1833 Capt. Gilman Appleby, of Conneaut, Ohio, was captain and part owner of the schooner New Connecticut. A steamboat was then being built at Conneaut (the North American), of which Captain Appleby had charge and was for many years her master. An aunt of his then residing at Black Rock, below Buffalo, was visiting a brother at Erie. The lady went to Conneaut in company with a nephew to visit a brother there. After remaining there some time she became exceedingly anxious to get home. Captain Appleby, who was busy with the steamboat, endeavored to dissuade her from taking the home journey until he should be going out with his vessel, when he would take her home. His efforts, however, in that direction were unavailing, and he had her taken on board the schooner to go to Buffalo in charge of the crew. Everything passed off quietly until after the vessel passed Erie, when a sudden squall struck her and roller her over on her side. She nearly filled with water, but continued to float. The crew, lowering the vessel's yawl, jumped in and pulled for the shore, leaving the woman in the cabin, as they supposed, drowned. The party landed at or near Portland, Chautauqua Co., N.Y., and made their was as best they could to Conneaut.
"Three days after the accident Captain Wilkins, of the steamboat William Peacock, in coming down from Detroit, was besought by Captain Appleby to board the wreck if he saw it, and if possible get the body of his aunt out of the cabin and convey it to Buffalo. Captain Wilkins discovered the disabled vessel drifting down the lake, and, after coming alongside, Capt. Wm. Henton (then first mate of the Peacock) boarded the wreck and made search. The schooner lay upon her side, and, to all appearances, was full of water. A pole was employed, and it was supposed every part of the cabin was touched, and as no object in the shape of a human body was reached, the conclusion was, that the body had floated out of the cabin into the lake; hence further search was given up. Two days afterward Captain Appleby came down with a vessel with facilities to right the schooner and tow her into the nearest port.
"When the vessel had nearly reached a level position, the woman walked through the water and came up the stairs to the deck. She was caught by Captain Appleby and supported, while her son, who was present, wept and the sailors screamed. Five days and nights had she been in the water, a portion of the time up to her armpits. She could not lie down, and what sleep she obtained was while standing. All the food she had was a solitary cracker and an onion, which floated on the water. She stated that after the vessel capsized, and was abandoned by the crew, she found herself alone in water waist deep. The cabin door was open, but the water was two feet above it, and the sea made constant changes in her position. While Captain Wilkins stopped, she could hear the boarding party talk, and walk on the vessel, and although she used her voice to the utmost to attract attention she could not make them hear. She saw the pole thrust into the cabin door by Captain Henton, and asked if she should hold on it and be pulled out, but no answer came.
"This event occurred 45 years ago," continued Captain Jones, "and I never heard of a parallel case, either on the lake or other waters, and her salvation from drowning may be regarded as little less than a miracle."
New Vessels. -- The new steamer Uncle Sam commenced plying between Detroit and Buffalo, calling at intermediate landings, early in the spring of 1833, commanded by Capt. L. Stiles. She was 280 tons burden, low pressure, with walking-beam engine.
In 1833, the steamer Britannia, of 200 tons, was built at Kingston, Canada, and launched, as were also the Cobourg, of 500 tons, the Kingston, and the Brockville, each being named after the place at which she was built.
Some Events of 1833. -- The first steamer that arrived at Saginaw is said to have been the Governor Marcy, of 161 tons, commanded by Capt. R.G. Mackenzie. She went upon a regular route to that port about 1837. In March, 1833, a revenue cutter of 62 tons was landed at Erie, and the Collector gave it the name of Lewis McLane, but the Secretary changed it to Erie.
Other Events of 1833. -- April: Navigation open at Cleveland April 7. Congress appropriates $31,700 for the improvement of Buffalo harbor. July: Schooner John Q. Adams, Capt. B. Stanard, struck by lightning near Fort Gratiot; three lives lost. September: Schooner New Connecticut capsized on Lake Erie and sunk; one life lost. October: Steamboat George Washington, Captain Walker, wrecked near Long Point; loss about $60,000; no insurance. Steamboat Governor Marcy launched at Black Rock. Schooner Utica, of Detroit, capsized near Erie, and drifted ashore at Elk creek. Schooner Alert, Captain Randall, ashore near Buffalo. Schooner Eagle, Captain Wilkinson, aground at Buffalo. Schooner Louisa Jenkins, Capt. Royal Pember, wrecked at Point Albino. Schooner America, Captain Foster, lost deck- load during a storm on Lake Erie; 17, schooners Young Amaranth, Bolivar and Recovery damaged during the storm on Lake Erie. Oswego packet ashore near Point Frederick. Schooner John C. Spencer launched at Buffalo. November: Steamboat General Porter launched at Black Rock. Steamboat Oswego launched at Oswego. December: 2,975 arrivals and departures at Buffalo during the season.
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Some of the transcription work was also done by Brendon Baillod, who maintains an excellent guide to Great Lakes Shipwreck Research.