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Tarantau Scrap Tow Update

The Tarantau was towed into Port Weller yesterday afternoon by the tugs Alice A, Vac and Lac Como. The tow departed Toronto yesterday morning and is heading for International Marine Salvage of Port Colborne for scrapping.
Please send in any pictures you have taken of the tow Click here to e-mail

Reported by: Skip Gillham and John Stark

Norris Departs Dry Dock in Thunder Bay

The James Norris departed Pascol Engineering's drydock at 1500hrs yesterday. She was towed by the tugs Peninsula and George N. Carleton over to the Keefer Terminal. The vessel was to warmup her engine and take on fuel there. On Monday she will load a cargo of potash at Valley Camp.

The Norris was on Pascol's drydock for 13 days, arriving October 18. She was in for repairs to her damaged forward ballast tank, damaged that occurred when the vessel struck bottom in the channel entering Ludington, MI.

Reported by: Ron Konkol

Seaway Update

On October 28 the following vessels were transiting the St. Lawrence Seaway between Montreal (St.Lambert lock) and Iroquois lock. Upbound was the tug LAC VANCOUVER towing the barges Resolute No. 11 and Resolute No. 14 for delivery to a point just above St. Lambert lock. In addition, the tug delivered the barge Quensa to Valleyfield. All the barges were in ballast.

The only laker transiting was ALGOWOOD with iron ore for Burns Harbor from Quebec City. Salties were APTMARINER with steel for Hamilton, MALYOVITZA also underway with steel for Detroit. Both vessels will go to Duluth to load grain before leaving the Lakes. CONSENSUS MANITOU with steel coils for Oshawa and Strange Attractor for Toronto with cement clinkers. In addition reported upbound were CATHERINE DESGAGNÉS for Milwaukee with pig iron from Tracy (Sorel) and THALASSA DESGAGNÉS for Sarnia from Morrisburg in ballast. Downbound was another Desgagnés vessel, PETROLIA DESGAGNÉS for Montreal in ballast from the Soo. Other downbounders were the salties YICK HUA with peas from Thunder Bay, ZIEMIA TARNOWSKA with wheat from the lakehead and LITA with corn from Duluth.

Nine lakers transited, namely Algoma's ALGOVILLE and ALGOCAPE with soya beans from Duluth, ALGONORTH carrying the same type of grain but from Thunder Bay all for delivery at Port Cartier originally but enroute, Algoville was diverted to Montreal. ALGORIVER was heading for Baie Comeau with corn, ALGOSOUND with wheat from Prescott for delivery at Quebec City and JOHN B. AIRD from Hamilton and ALGOBAY from Morrisburg, both in ballast were going to Pointe Noire. The two other lakers were Upper Lakes Shipping QUEBECOIS for Baie Comeau with corn and CANADIAN TRADER with soya beans for Port Cartier from Duluth. In addition, there was the Canadian tanker DIAMOND STAR for Montreal in ballast from Oakville and the tug ESCORT PROTECTOR for Tracy pushing the tank barge McAsphalt 401 in ballast.

Follow-up to earlier reports. The COMEAUDOC which is still loading from trucks in Montreal is also loading corn in addition to soya beans. As a matter of fact, she is loading mostly corn.

CARTIERDOC which spent about six days for repairs lately had her steering gear fixed up. The tug DANIEL McALLISTER is in fact on display between Lock 1 and Lock 2 in the Lachine Canal near the Lock Cafe. She is secured to the bottom of the canal bed in a cradle.

Other news: On October 29, demolition of the former Canadian Vickers Shipyard administrative building began. Once it is done, only two other buildings will remain. Canadian Vickers closed its door on Dec. 31, l989. The administrative building was built 87 years ago according to a newspaper report and is currently owned by the City of Montreal. According to my notes, the last ship built by Canadian Vickers was the icebreaker NORMAN McLEOD ROGERS in 1969. Ship repairs went on until about 1979 and until 1989, Canadian Vickers was manufacturing reactors and other components for American submarines.

Reported by: René Beauchamp.

Twin Ports Report

Tadoussac has been an infrequent visitor to the Twin Ports this season, but it was in Duluth on Oct. 30, backed into the General Mills elevator slip and discharging grain into the receiving hopper.

Reported by: Al Miller

Toledo Report

Canada Steamship Lines' Jean Parisian and the Nanticoke were set to depart ADM/Countrymark and Anderson E Elevators Saturday night. This trip to Toledo by the Parisian was the first this season. Both ships were assisted up the Maumee River by tugboats

Comeaudoc Loading

The Comeaudoc is scheduled to finished loading cargo on Monday, she has been loading in Montréal since October 06. The loading crew have been working from 6:00 a.m. to midnight recently trying to finish the loading as quickly as possible.

The Comeaudoc currently has over 22,000 tonnes on board and only 1,600 tonnes remain which will bring her winter storage load to around 24,000 tonnes. Her cargo consists mostly of Corn with some Soya beans also being loaded.

The vessel has been loading via conveyors and trucks for the past four weeks. One by one the trucks have been dumping to the conveyors which in turn load the ship which is docked at Section 25 of the Port of Montréal. Each truck brings in an average of 35-40 tonnes and over 600 trucks have discharged into her so far.

As of Friday evening, she has loaded 7206.15 tonnes of Soya and 15097.18 tonnes of Corn. It is uncertain where she will be docked after she is finished loading.

Reported by: Steve Sliwka

Empire and Tilden Mines Resume Production

Cleveland Cliffs recently resumed iron ore production at the Empire and Tilden Mines in the Upper Peninsula. Both mines ship ore through Marquette and Escanaba.

Reported by: Jim Zeirke

Today in Great Lakes History - October 31

CANADIAN EXPLORER's sea trials were conducted on October 31, 1983 on Lake Erie where a service speed of 13.8 m.p.h. was recorded.

The EDWIN H. GOTT was christened October 31, 1978 .

On October 31, 1973, the H.M. Griffith entered service.

J.W. McGIFFIN cleared Midland, Ont. on her maiden voyage October 31, 1973 bound for Thunder Bay, Ont. to load iron ore for Hamilton, Ont.

The CADILLAC (4) was launched October 31, 1942 as a) LAKE ANGELINA

ELMGLEN (2) cleared Owen Sound, Ont. on October 31, 1984 on her first trip in P. & H. colors.

On October 31, 1966 while downbound in the St. Marys River loaded with 11,143 tons of potash for Oswego, NY, the HALLFAX ran aground on a rocky reef and settled to the bottom with her hold full of water. She had grounded on Pipe Island Twins Reef just north of DeTour, MI.

The CHARLES L. HUTCHINSON (3) struck a reef the night of October 31, 1925 three miles south of Manitou Island, off the Keweenaw Peninsula, on Lake Superior.

On October 31, 1983 the SYLVANIA was towed out of the Frog Pond by the harbor tugs ARKANSAS and WYOMING. She was handed over to the tug OHIO for delivery to the Triad Salvage Co. at Ashtabula, OH arriving there on November 1st. Dismantling was completed there in 1984. Thus ended 78 years of service. Ironically the SYLVANIA, the first built of the 504 foot class bulkers, was the last survivor of that class. During her career with Columbia Transportation, the SYLVANIA had carried over 20 million tons and netted over $35 million.

On 31 October 1883, CITY OF TORONTO (wooden passenger-package freight sidewheeler, 207', 898 GC, built in 1864 at Niagara, Ontarion) caught fire at the Muir Brothers shipyard at Port Dalhousie, Ontario and was totally destroyed. She previously had her paddle boxes removed so she could pass through the Welland Canal, and she was in the shipyard to have them reassembled that winter.

Data from: Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Jody Aho, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history
Please e-mail if you would like to contribute a significant event in Great Lakes history

Saginaw Arrives

Gaelic Tugboat Company's Patricia Hoey met the tug Roger Stahl and Saginaw in lower Lake Huron yesterday morning and safely docked the vessel in Sarnia.

At 0810 the tug Patricia Hoey had secured a line to the Saginaw's stern, acting as the trailing tug with the Roger Stahl in the lead. The tow continued downbound and passed under the Blue Water Bridge, where boat watchers lined the shoreline to view and photograph the event.

The tugs effortlessly guided the 640-foot Saginaw through the swift current under the Bridge and turned the vessel just below the Government Dock in Sarnia. The Gaelic tugs maneuvered the Saginaw into her slip at the Dock.

Lower Lakes Towing will spend the next month renovating the Saginaw and expects to have her ready to sail by December 1. As of yesterday, the ship's former name had been painted out and the stack was painted in the Lower Lakes Towing colors.

The operation began on the night of October 19 when the Stahl departed the Gaelic Tugboat Company dock in Detroit. The trip was not an easy one but the tug Roger Stahl proved she could take what mother nature could dish-out.

Crossing Lake Superior with the Saginaw in tow, the tug encountered heavy weather while battling 12-foot seas. The Saginaw with ten Lower Lakes Towing employees aboard, was riding very high in the water with her bow thruster above the water line. Riding this way makes her more susceptible to heavy weather.

On Wednesday the tow again met with heavy weather on Lake Huron. The storm hit the tug with 8-foot waves over her bow, Captain John Wellington kept the 3,000 horsepower tug moving at a reduced speed to safely weather the storm.

Both Gaelic tugs returned to the tug yard on the Rouge River in Detroit Friday evening.

Crew on the Roger Stahl Crew on the Patricia Hoey
Captain: John Wellington
Chief Engineer: Jim Salsburg
Mates: Brian Smith and Joey Reaume
Crewmembers: Andy Trynka and B. Fredrickson
Captain: William Cline
Chief Engineer: Roger Stahl
Mate:  Vern Holton
Crewmembers: Brendon Murphy and Anthony Smith

The tow on lower Lake Huron
The tug Roger Stahl guiding the Saginaw into the Government Dock

Tarantau Scrap Tow

Shortly before 10:00 a.m. this morning the Tarantau was towed from her Cherry Street slip in Toronto with the tug Alice A in the lead. There were about two dozen people on the vessel when she left the slip and her radar was turning.

She is expected to arrive at Port Weller in the Welland Canal sometime this afternoon.

She was to be towed across Lake Ontario by several McKeil tugs and is heading for International Marine Salvage of Port Colborne, Ontario. A former member of the Canada Steamship Lines fleet, the Tarantau has been laid-up in Toronto since December 23, l996.

Reported by: Jeff Cameron, Roger LeLievre Bill Bird, and John Stark

Twin Ports Report

Presque Isle is scheduled to make another call at Midwest Energy Terminal on Nov. 2. The boat has made several calls there this season to carry coal to Nanticoke. The rest of the SMET line-up is composed of its regulars this season: St. Clair, Oct. 29; Columbia Star, Oglebay Norton, Canadian Transport, Oct. 30; Paul R. Tregurtha, Oct. 31; Canadian Enterprise and Walter J. McCarthy Jr., Nov. 1.

Reported by: Al Miller

Collision Bend

Collision Bend on the Cuyahoga River came close to its name yesterday. Collision Bend is one of the many turns in the twisting river. An unidentified dredge barge exited the turn Friday heading down the Cuyahoga just as the American Republic was about to enter the turn heading up river.

The vessels maneuvered to avoid each other but it is reported that there was not much room between the two vessels.

The American Republic is regarded as one of the most maneuverable vessels on the Lakes. Her special design features include four steering rudders, four flanking rudders, twin propellers in fixed Kort nozzles and 1500 hp bow and stern thrusters. These features allows her to navigate the winding river without tug assistance.

Sailors withdraw plea, turn away union help

The Cleveland Plain Dealer reported yesterday that the Filipino crew members on the saltie Evangelos have withdraw their pay complaint filed with the union. Nine of twelve crew members had signed power of attorney statements with the union on Saturday but all had withdrawn their statements by Tuesday of this week.

The ship has since sailed for Casablanca. It is believed the shipping company put pressure on the crewmen through a hiring agency in the Philippines which would have blacklisted the crewmembers for future jobs.

Reported by: Rex Cassidy

Today in Great Lakes History - October 30

The tugs GLENADA and MOUNT McKAY towed AMOCO ILLINOIS from Essexville on October 30, 1985 and arrived at the M&M slip on November 1st. where she was to be scrapped.

The CADILLAC (4) and her former fleetmate CHAMPLAIN (3) arrived under tow by the the Dutch tug/supply ship THOMAS DE GAUWDIEF on October 30, 1987 at Aliaga, Turkey to be scrapped there.

The ISLE ROYALE (2) (Canal Bulk Freighter) was launched October 30, 1947 as a) SOUTHCLIFFE HALL for the Hall Corporation of Canada Ltd. (which in 1969 became Hall Corporation (Shipping) 1969 Ltd.), Montreal.

On 30 October 1874, LOTTA BERNARD (wooden sidewheel "rabbit", 125', 147 T, built in 1869 at Port Clinton, OH) was carrying general merchandise from Silver Islet to Duluth when she foundered in a terrific gale off Encampment Island in Lake Superior. Three lives were lost. She was capable of only 4 miles per hour and was at the mercy of any fast rising storm.

Data from: Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history
Please e-mail if you would like to contribute a significant event in Great Lakes history

Saginaw to Arrive today

Gaelic Tugboat Company's Patricia Hoey departed her Detroit dock in the Rouge River just after mid-night and is planning to meet the Stahl and Saginaw in lower Lake Huron this morning. She will assist the tow through the swift currents under the Blue Water Bridge and help dock the Saginaw in Sarina's Government Dock. It was originally reported she would be towed to the North Slip.

At last report the tow is estimating 0830 Friday morning for Lights 11 & 12 in lower Lake Huron.

Check back through out the day for updates and pictures.

Click here for a computer enhanced image of the John J. Boland with Lower Lakes Towing colors and the name Saginaw.

Reported by: Bill Hoey Jr., Gaelic Tugboat Company

Twin Ports Report

Twin Ports grain shipments are moving smoothly following a week of clear skies. On the morning of Oct. 28, the Kastor P was loading at Cargill B1, Lady Hamilton was at AGP, and Marion Green and Canadian Ranger were loading at Harvest States. Panay R. and an unidentified saltie were anchored on the lake waiting for berths.

H. Lee White called in Duluth on Oct. 27 to unload at the Reiss Inland dock. It then was scheduled to proceed to Two Harbors to load taconite pellets.

Reported by: Al Miller

Marquette Update

The Elton Hoyt 2nd pulled into Marquette's upper harbor Wednesday to take on a load of ore. The Canadian Transfer was scheduled to make its third visit within a week early yesterday morning. Also due in at the upper harbor was the Charles M. Beeghly, this was her first visit back since the big storm last weekend.

The Charles E. Wilson was also due in yesterday and will pay a visit to Marquette's lower harbor.

Reported by: Art Pickering

Traffic Remains Steady in Saginaw

On Thursday morning several vessel were departing Saginaw. The Algorail was outbound passing under the I-75 Bridge (Zilwaukee) at 10:00 a.m. She had arrived to unload at the Burrough's Dock in Saginaw Wednesday afternoon.

The Herbert C. Jackson was outbound at the front range lights 15 minutes later. The Jackson apparently suffered no damage on Monday when she was temporaraly stuck in the muddy river bottom a few hundred yards north of the Veterans Memorial Bridge in Bay City. She unloaded part of her cargo at the Bay Aggregate Dock in Bay City and unloaded the remaining cargo at the Rock Products Dock in Saginaw.

Reported by: Lon Morgan, Mike Levengood and Stephen Hause

Canadian Century Repairs Complete

The Canadian Century departed the Port Weller Dry Docks some time Monday. The vessel had been in Dry dock since October 3rd or 4th undergoing rudder repairs. She returned to service departing the dry dock heading upbound.

Reported by: John Stark

Crews Seek Legal Action for Pay

Sunday's Cleveland Plain Dealer reports that the crew members aboard the saltie Evangelos began a court fight for back wages on Saturday in the Welland Canal as they signed documents to begin the process.

Officials of U.S. and Canadian maritime unions are battling the owners of the Evangelos over an estimated $100,000 the unions say is owed the ship's 12-member Filipino crew.

On October 14 the vessel was inspected by the Seafarers International Union in Cleveland after they received complaints of improper pay, poor food and filthy linen. The union received complaints from 13 Filipino crewmembers on the Panamanian registered vessel. The sailors stated they were paid $300 to $400 a month well below the $1200 monthly set by a labor agreement.

The captain of the vessel denies the claim. The Plain Dealer quotes Captain Stavros Fotinos as shouting "Ridiculous" to reporters as the ship locked through. In the middle of the captain's denial, nine crew members signed powers of attorney authorizing the unions to sue for claimed back pay.

The court battle against the owner, Stavros Roussos Management and Chartering S.A. of Piraeus, Greece, was to begin this past Monday in a Montreal court.

Click here for the complete story from the Cleveland Plain Dealer
The paper has also run an interesting feature on Ships of Shame

Reported by: Rex Cassidy

Life at the Flats Book

Written by Michael M. Dixon, illustrated with numerous historical photographs and accounts of early life at the St. Clair Flats, 288 pages, Library of Congress catalog card number 87-71779. If purchased from the non profit, all volunteer SOS Channel Lights organization, all profit goes toward saving the Old South Channel Range Lights just off the southeastern tip of Harsens Island in Lake St. Clair.

A quality publication, it is hard bound with a dark blue cover with gold printing. Size is approximately 9x12 inches.

Publishers: Mervue Publications and St. Clair Delta Publishing Price: $59 plus postage, or pick up in Mount Clemens.
SOS Channel Lights
P.O. Box 46531
Mount Clemens, MI 48046
Phone (810) 772-1888

Reported by: Chuck Brockman

Today in Great Lakes History - October 29

ALGOLAKE was launched October 29, 1976

On October 29, 1986 the JAMES R. BARKER, who had suffered an engine room fire, was lashed side-by-side to the thousand-foot WILLIAM J. DE LANCEY and towed this way to Sturgeon Bay, Wis. for repairs.

The b) CANADIAN EXPLORER was christened on October 29, 1983 at the Port Weller Dry Docks.

The National Transportation Safety Board ruled on October 29, 1991 that Total Petroleum was responsible for the fire that destroyed the tanker JUPITER because of faulty moorings and exonerated the BUFFALO from primary responsibility.

On the afternoon of October 29, 1987 while upbound with coal from Sandusky, OH, the ROGER M. KYES ( b) ADAM E. CORNELIUS) went aground on Gull Island Shoal in Lake Erie's Middle Passage and began taking on water. About 3,000 tons of coal was transferred to the AMERICAN REPUBLIC after which the KYES freed herself the next morning. Damage from the grounding required extensive repairs.

The tug portion of the PRESQUE ISLE (2) departed New Orleans on October 29, 1973.

The H.C. HEIMBECKER's last trip started at Thunder Bay, Ont. with a load of grain bound for Owen Sound, Ont. where, on October 29, 1981, it was discovered that one of her boilers was cracked. When unloading was completed on October 30th, the HEIMBECKER proceeded under her own power to Ashtabula, OH for scrapping.

On 29 October 1892, ZACH CHANDLER (3 mast wooden schooner-barge, 194', 727 GT, built in 1867 at Detroit) was carrying lumber from Ashland, WI in tow of the steamer JOHN MITCHELL when the two became separated in a northerly gale in Lake Superior. The CHANDLER was overwhelmed and broke up on shore about three miles east of Deer Park, MI. Five of the crew made it to shore in the lifeboat and the Lifesaving Service saved two others, but one perished. Three years earlier, the CHANDLER stranded at almost the same spot and sustained heavy damage.

Data from: Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history
Please e-mail if you would like to contribute a significant event in Great Lakes history

Saginaw Tow Update

The tug Roger Stahl with the Saginaw in tow spent last night running at reduced speed in the northern part of Lake Huron. The tow cannot pass under the Blue Water Bridge until daylight. The tow is estimating 0900 Friday morning for lights 7 & 8 in lower Lake Huron.

Gaelic Tugboat Company's Patricia Hoey is expected to leave the Detroit dock some time tonight and meet the Stahl and Saginaw in lower Lake Huron. She will assist the tow through the swift currents under the Blue Water Bridge and help dock the Saginaw in Sarina's North Slip.

The 2000 HP tug will be under the command of Captain William Cline from Port Huron. The namesake of the tug Roger Stahl will be the Chief Engineer onboard the Patricia Hoey.

Daily reports will be listed here as the tow progresses, check back for updates.

Click here for a computer enhanced image of the John J. Boland with Lower Lakes Towing colors and the name Saginaw.

Reported by: Bill Hoey Jr., Gaelic Tugboat Company

Toledo Update

The grain rush continued in Toledo yesterday. The Paterson was at ADM Countrymark Elevator, The Gordon C. Leitch is at Anderson's "K" Elevator, and the CSL Niagara is at Anderson's "E" Elevator.

All three vessels started loading their cargoes yesterday and should depart today depending on how the loading process goes.

The tug James Pallidino still remains in drydock at the shipyard, no word on why she is in for repairs.

Reported by: Jim Hoffman

Oil Rig Welded to Ship

Tuesday morning in Sept-Iles Bay the ship Mighty Servant 1, a oil rig carrier, fill her ballast tanks with sea water and was almost totally submerged. Only the pilothouse and stern stacks were above water.

The oil rig Petrobas 36 hauled by tugs, started moving in direction of the carrier. After a two hours the tugs succeed in positioning the Petrobas just above the submerged deck of Mighty Servant 1.

The Mighty Servant 1 started to pump her ballast waters out raising at a rate of 30 cm per minute.

This particular oil rig is the heaviest structure to ever have been lifted in maritime history.

In order to secure the rig for the 3 week Atlantic Ocean trip to Brazil, workers attached chains and welded the 35-story structure to the deck.

Reported by: J.F. Boutin

Pellet Production to Resume

Pellet production at National Steel Pellet Co. near Keewating, Minn., is expected to resume Oct. 29 following a nearly one-week shutdown for repairs.

A cooler for taconite pellets stopped operating Sunday night, allowing some of the white-hot pellets to fuse to the machine. Production had to be stopped to repair the cooler.

Plant officials said they expected to lose 93,000 to 100,000 tons of production, although they noted that the plant was ahead of this year's production schedule. Pellet shipments continued from stockpiles.

Reported by: Al Miller

Busy day at Southdown

In Charlevoix yesterday there were five ships at the Southdown cement plant. The Southdown Conquest, Southdown Challenger, an unidentified tug/barge and the tug Dorothy Ann and barge Pathfinder with a load of Gypsum. The tug Dorothy Ann was reported to be detached from the barge Pathfinder, it is unknown why. The Challenger was waiting to load.

Reported by: Dustin Sadowski

Today in Great Lakes History - October 28

The CANADIAN PIONEER's maiden voyage was on October 28, 1981 to Conneaut, OH to take on coal for Nanticoke, Ont.

The CANADIAN TRANSPORT (2) was launched October 28, 1978 for Upper Lakes Shipping Ltd., Toronto, Ont.

GEMINI was christened October 28, 1978 at Huron, OH.

The GEORGE M. CARL (2) was launched October 28, 1922 as a) FRED G. HARTWELL (2)

D.M. CLEMSON (2) was launched October 28, 1916

CHARLES M. WHITE was launched October 28, 1945 as a C4-S-A4 cargo ship a) MOUNT MANSFIELD for the U.S. Maritime Commission (U.S.M.C. Hull #2369).

On 28 October 1887, BESSIE BARWICK, a 135' wooden schooner built in 1866 at St. Catherine's, Ontario as a bark, left Port Arthur for Kingston, Ontario with a load of lumber during a storm. For more than ten days, her whereabouts were unknown. In fact, a westerly gale drove her into the shallows of Michipicoten Island and she was pounded to pieces. Her crew was sheltered by local fishermen and then made it to the Soo in a small open boat.

Data from: Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history
Please e-mail if you would like to contribute a significant event in Great Lakes history

Saginaw Tow Update

10:00a.m. update
The tug Roger Stahl and Saginaw locked through Soo Locks just after 7:00a.m. this morning. The tow should pass under the Blue Water Bridge at first light Friday Morning. The Gaelic tug Patricia Hoey will meet the tow in lower Lake Huron to assist the Saginaw into the North Slip in Sarnia.
Click below for pictures of the tow locking through.
Animation of the tow exiting the Poe Lock (80k)

Original report
The tow was scheduled to arrive off Whitefish Bay on Lake Superior just after mid-night this morning.

The assist tug Wilford Cohen is expected to meet the tow at 0300. The tow may arrive at the locks before daylight, be sure to check the live cam.

Daily reports will be listed here as the tow progresses, check back for updates.

Click here for a computer enhanced image of the John J. Boland with Lower Lakes Towing colors and the name Saginaw.

Reported by: Bill Hoey Jr., Gaelic Tugboat Company
Thanks to: Jim and Barb Noetzel, Scott McLellan, Robert Anderson, Brian Bernard, Dave Wobser, Dean J. Frazer and Jim Grill for saving the live cam images and reporting.

Twin Ports Report

Several salties were in the Twin Ports on Oct. 26 for routine loads of grain, but one vessel stood out: The 468-foot Dutch-flag Marion Green was maneuvering into the Harvest States elevator without assistance from tugs -- an exceedingly rare move for a saltie in the Twin Ports.

Reported by: Al Miller

City of Milwaukee Move

The Traverse City Record Eagle Newspaper reported yesterday that if voters here decide to welcome the historic SS City of Milwaukee with open arms on Nov. 2, the ship's one-mile journey from Elberta will be an expensive one for the volunteer group that owns the 68-year-old carferry.

The Society to Preserve the SS City of Milwaukee would have to pay $500,000 to dredge a path for the ship across Betsie Bay. The group currently has about $100,000 set aside for the carferry's journey and subsequent permanent installation. Society officials say they have more funds coming in the form of donations.

Further complicating the issue is that the city of Frankfort has a lien on the ship's title, which could cause a roadblock should the society wish to mortgage the boat to raise capital.

Last week, representatives from the society asked the Frankfort city council to consider removing the lien but deny that they plan on mortgaging the boat for money.

"We just want to keep our options open in case the voters say no," said society secretary Duane Nugent, referring to the Nov. 2 vote which will decide the City of Milwaukee's fate.

If voters turn down a proposal to move the boat from Elberta to Frankfort, the society plans to send the boat to Mackinaw City, which the group claims would like to use it as a tourist attraction.

According to Nugent, the lien dates back to 1984 when the state transferred the ferry to the city of Frankfort. On the title, the state Department of Transportation placed a condition stating that the boat could never be used as collateral to borrow money. It also granted the city a lien against the boat.

In September, the society asked MDOT to release the collateral condition, which it did, but the city's lien remains.

Nugent says the group already has other funding lined up through a U.S. Department of Agriculture guaranteed loan program. According to Nugent, the loan would require no collateral and would be federally guaranteed in case of default. Roger Griner, the society's vice president who Nugent says is responsible for securing the loan, could not be reached for comment. Frank Smith, Frankfort city supervisor, said he worries that Frankfort will ultimately be responsible for costs incurred by the society and its efforts to preserve the boat. "Look, any of those volunteers could walk out tomorrow and guess who's left with the liability," said Smith.

"We don't want to be the eventual owner of this million-dollar project," he said, referring to the costs associated with dredging, purchasing land for parking and providing a permanent place for the ship. Last Monday, the Frankfort city council voted to table the lien release request until the society formally wrote and requested the release rather than asking verbally.

Smith had his doubts as to what the council would decide about the lien when it next meets on Nov. 15.

"If somebody provides us with a contract with the city of Mackinaw City that shows they've accepted the vessel, then we would consider releasing the lien," he said.

"But ultimately it is up to city council."

For more information on the City of Milwaukee click here

Reported by: Mike Dell, Lake Ann Michigan

Oglebay Norton Reports a 13% Increase in Third Quarter Earnings

Oglebay Norton Company yesterday announced results for the third quarter and nine months ended September 30, 1999. Third quarter highlights include the following:

Net income increased 13.2% to $6.4 million from $5.7 million in the year earlier period and earnings per share, assuming dilution, were $1.32, a 10.9% improvement compared to $1.19 in the third quarter of 1998.

Proceeds from the sales of the Global Stone Detroit Lime Company and Global Stone Ingersoll Ltd. and cash generated from operations resulted in a $70 million reduction in total debt from $350 million, at the end of the second quarter of 1999, to $280 million. This lowered the company's leverage ratio (total debt to last twelve-months reported EBITDA) to 3.9 times from 4.9.

Successful completion and ratification of a new five-year labor agreement with the United Steelworkers of America covering unlicensed vessel personnel in the Marine Services segment.

Oglebay Norton Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer John Lauer said, "We are pleased with our strategic accomplishments in the third quarter, however, we are far from satisfied with our third quarter income from operations."

"Our Marine Services segment is performing better than the rest of the industry. We operated the entire fleet throughout the quarter at 100% of capacity. However, we did not compare favorably to our record third quarter of 1998. Revenues were down 4% primarily due to low water levels. Income from operations was down 19% ($.22 per share) compared to last year resulting from low water levels combined with higher fuel costs. While Marine Services is behind last year's record level, if weather conditions cooperate, the operating trend of the third quarter should continue through the fourth quarter, producing the second best year of the segments long history."

"Industrial Sands operations had a strong quarter with revenue up 7% and income from operations up 26% compared to last year, primarily as a result of improvement in the oilfield markets and continuing strong momentum from our Orange County operation. Our Brady, Texas operation just registered its first quarterly increase in tonnage in the last five quarters. It appears this trend is continuing in the fourth quarter. With continuing strength in Orange County, we are confident of a strong fourth quarter and solid increases for all of 1999."

"Despite softness in some of the traditional markets for lime and limestone, non-recurring events at two of our facilities, and delays in closing the sales of Global Stone Ingersoll and Global Stone Detroit Lime, Lime and Limestone segment income from operations increased 6% on flat revenue compared to last year. Demand is strong in most of our key markets, particularly in the industrial fillers markets. We do not anticipate any of the issues we experienced during the third quarter in this segment to continue into the fourth quarter and are projecting solid gains in total segment sales and operating profit for the year as a whole."

In the third quarter, the Lime and Limestone segment sold a dock located in Detroit, Michigan. Non-recurring gains from the disposition of assets increased earnings by $900,000 or $0.19 per share. The purchase price received for Global Stone Ingersoll and Global Stone Detroit Lime was treated as an adjustment to the 1998 purchase price of Global Stone Corporation, and therefore, no gain was recognized.

Mr. Lauer concluded: "Our emphasis in the fourth quarter will be to offset the unavoidable impact of low water levels on Marine Services with robust performance in our minerals segments."

Oglebay Norton Company, a Cleveland, Ohio-based company, provides essential minerals to a broad range of markets, from building materials and home improvement to the environmental, energy and metallurgical industries. Building on a 145-year heritage, our vision is to become the premier growth company in the industrial minerals industry.

To access the live or taped web-cast of the conference call, visit the Oglebay Norton Company website at
To access the replay via telephone, dial 1-800-475-6701, from within the United States and 1-320-365-3844, from outside the United States. The Access Code is 471870.

Algoma Steel Announces Results for the Quarter

Algoma Steel announced yesterday its financial results for the quarter ended September 30, 1999.

A net loss of $16.8 million or $0.32 per share was incurred in the third quarter. This compares to a second quarter loss of $26.9 million or $0.51 per share and a net loss of $12.9 million or $0.25 per share in the third quarter of 1998.

Financial and Operating Results
The loss from operations for the quarter was reduced to $4.7 million from a $15.4 million loss from operations in the second quarter. Lower shipments of negative margin structural and tubular products and improved selling prices for sheet contributed to the improvement as did a successful municipal tax appeal and a forgiveness of debt in a subsidiary which totaled $9 million. The latter two items reduced the after-tax net loss in the quarter by $7.6 million.

Steel shipments decreased to 500,000 tons for the third quarter from 571,000 tons in the second quarter. The decline in shipments was due to the elimination of the seamless tubular and structural product lines as well as lower sheet shipments due to summer customer shutdowns. The exit from these businesses has resulted in higher flat rolled sales with 495,000 tons of shipments in the third quarter versus 436,000 tons shipped in the third quarter of 1998.

The workforce level at September 30 was 4,250 people compared to 4,500 people at June 30 and 5,200 people in mid-1998.

In late August, the Canadian International Trade Tribunal made a material injury finding covering cold rolled sheet originating in or exported from Belgium, Russia, the Slovak Republic and Turkey. Imports from these countries must be at normal values as determined by Revenue Canada, otherwise they will be subject to anti-dumping duty.

Based on a complaint by Algoma and another Canadian producer of carbon steel plate, Revenue Canada has initiated an investigation into the alleged dumping into Canada of product from Brazil, India, Indonesia, Finland, Thailand and the Ukraine. The investigation will also look at countervailable subsidies on product from India, Indonesia and Thailand. A preliminary determination with respect to dumping and countervailable subsidies is expected early in the new year with final determinations expected in the second quarter of 2000.

The Township of Michipicoten has stated that it will initiate a class action lawsuit against the Company in respect of arsenic in the soil in the Wawa area. The Company has no reason to believe that the arsenic in the soil represents a health risk. The Company plans to participate with the Township and the Province in appropriate studies respecting this issue. The Company intends to conduct a vigorous defense of any action brought against it.

Demand for steel products remains strong with sheet prices continuing to strengthen. Plate prices appear to be stabilizing with some producers announcing price increases.

The main operating priorities continue to be improving productivity at the DSPC and cutting costs throughout the Company.

Algoma Steel Inc.
Mario Dalla-Vicenza, 705/ 945-2400 705/ 945-2412 FAX

Rouge Industries Posts Third Quarter Loss of $11.0 Million

Tuesday Rouge Industries, Inc. reported a net loss of $11.0 million or $0.49 per share for the third quarter of 1999 compared to net income of $5.5 million or $0.25 per share in the third quarter of 1998. The loss in 1999 was due in part to the continuing effects of the February 1, 1999 Rouge Complex Powerhouse explosion and fire.

"I am pleased to report that we have returned our steelmaking operations to the pre-explosion production levels during the third quarter, and we are now producing and supplying our full range of high quality steel products to our customers,'' said Carl L. Valdiserri, chairman and chief executive officer.

Steel product shipments totaled 671,000 tons, 73,000 tons or 12.2% higher than the third quarter of 1998, which was impacted by the GM strike, and 299,000 tons higher than the second quarter of 1999. Raw steel production in the third quarter totaled 778,000 tons, 34,000 tons or 4.6% higher than the third quarter of 1998 and 437,000 tons higher than the second quarter of this year. The Company took delivery during the third quarter of the last 37,000 tons of the slabs and coils purchased this year to ensure continued steel supply to its customers. The Company's operating income in the third quarter was adversely impacted by $33.1 million of direct and indirect costs attributable to the powerhouse explosion. These costs include $32.6 million of additional property damage and business interruption costs, and $500,000 of professional service costs that are not covered by the insurance policy. The property damage and business interruption costs have been partially offset by $26.8 million of income for anticipated insurance recovery. This recovery amount is net of a $5.8 million reserve, which the Company believes is appropriate given the complexity of the issues surrounding the insurance claim process.

"In addition to the powerhouse related costs, the Company's results were also adversely affected during the quarter by electricity service interruptions and prohibitive electricity rates at our ladle refining facilities, the electrogalvanizing facility (Double Eagle Steel Coating Company) and the hot dipped galvanizing line (Spartan Steel Coating) during periods of extremely hot weather during the quarter,'' stated Gary P. Latendresse, vice chairman and chief financial officer. ``These three facilities have always been supplied by the local public utility under an interruptible supply contract. During periods of high demand, electricity shortages caused the utility company to restrict supply to virtually all of its interruptible supply customers in our geographic area or to pass through exceedingly high purchased electricity cost premiums incurred by the utility to maintain supply,'' added Mr. Latendresse.

Through September 30, the Company has recorded costs of $186.0 million directly and indirectly attributable to the explosion. Insurance recoveries of $149.2 million have been recorded through September for property damage and business interruption losses of $182.4 million. The recovery amount is net of a $33.2 million reserve. To date, the Company has been advanced $129.0 million against the business interruption and property damage costs. The Company will continue to record explosion related costs and insurance recovery amounts until the new powerhouse is completed and it is no longer dependent upon the temporary electricity and steam facilities.

"Our order book continues to be reasonably strong, and we expect shipments in the fourth quarter to be only slightly lower than the third quarter,'' said Mr. Valdiserri. "Although we expect the fourth quarter steel price increases to hold, we remain focused on our internal cost reduction efforts to improve profitability and earn an acceptable margin. Productivity, yield and quality throughout the steel making operations are improving, and we are concentrating on additional spending controls and purchasing initiatives to further lower our costs. We are also starting to see cost improvements coming from Spartan Steel Coating, and we expect to see our new waste oxide facility contributing to lower costs in the fourth quarter,'' concluded Mr. Valdiserri.

The Company expects that the new co-generation powerhouse, being constructed on Rouge Steel property by an affiliate of CMS Energy Corporation and scheduled to commence operation by mid 2000, will not only lower the Company's costs but will greatly improve supply reliability. The new plant is expected to provide Rouge Steel with a non-interruptible supply of lower cost energy even during the hottest days of the year.

Today in Great Lakes History - October 27

The PAUL THAYER (b) EARL W. OGLEBAY) was christened on October 27, 1973 at Lorain.

While the JAMES R. BARKER was up bound October 27, 1986 on Lake Huron above buoys 11 & 12, a high pressure fuel line on the starboard engine failed causing an engine room fire, which was extinguished by on-board fire fighting equipment. Fortunately no one was injured. On October 29th the BARKER was lashed side-by-side to the thousand-foot WILLIAM J. DE LANCEY (b) Paul R. Tregurtha) and taken to Sturgeon Bay, Wis.

On her maiden voyage the HOCHELAGA (2) departed Collingwood on October 27, 1949 for Fort William, Ont. to load grain for Port Colborne, Ont.

The FRANCIS E. HOUSE was laid up at Duluth, MN on October 27, 1960 and remained idle there until April, 1966 when she was sold to the Kinsman Marine Transit Co., Cleveland and was renamed c) KINSMAN INDEPENDENT (1).

On October 27, 1973 the HENRY LALIBERTÉ struck an embankment while backing from the Frontier Dock Slip at Buffalo, NY and damaged her steering gear beyond repair. As a consequence she was laid up there.

The RED WING (2) and the FRANK A. SHERMAN departed Lauzon, Que. on October 27, 1986 in tandem tow by the Vancouver based deep-sea tug CANADIAN VIKING bound for scrapping in Taiwan.

On 27 October 1869, ALFRED ALLEN (wooden schooner, 160 T, built in 1853 at Pultneyville, NJ as J. J. MORLEY) was bound for Toledo, OH with 500 barrels of salt when she went on the Mohawk Reef near Port Colborne, Ontario in a blizzard. She washed free and drifted to the mainland beach where she was pounded to pieces. No lives were lost.

Data from: Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history
Please e-mail if you would like to contribute a significant event in Great Lakes history

Saginaw Tow Update

10/26: 9:30 a.m.
At 0800 this morning the tug Roger Stahl checked in on the downbound course, just past Marquette in Lake Superior. She reported 10 to 12-foot seas with a forecast calling for the weather to improve this afternoon. The tow is expected to make Whitefish Bay at 2300 hours tonight. The Saginaw and Stahl should be at the Soo during daylight hours.

The tug Wilford Cohen is expected to meet the tow at Whitefish Bay and assist the tow through the Soo Locks and then release near Detour.

Daily reports will be listed here as the tow progresses, check back for updates.

Click here for a computer enhanced image of the John J. Boland with Lower Lakes Towing colors and the name Saginaw.

Reported by: Bill Hoey Jr., Gaelic Tugboat Co.

Jackson Stopped by Low Water

Added 6:05 p.m. Monday
The Herbert C. Jackson was stopped in the muddy bottom of the Saginaw River for about an hour Monday. She was stuck a few hundred yards north of the Veterans Memorial Bridge in Bay City, Michigan. The Jackson was heard asking the bridge for an opening several times between 1630 and 1730 as it attempted to free itself. At about 1700 hours, the Jackson reported to the Coast Guard that it was stopped in the middle of the Saginaw River shipping channel.

Southwesterly winds of about 20 miles per hour had lowered the water level in the river to -2" yesterday afternoon.

At about 1735 hours, the Jackson requested another bridge opening, and a few minutes later, reported to the Coast Guard that it was free and moving through the bridge.

Reported by: Stephen Hause and Lon Morgan

Tug and Barge Run Out of Fuel

Coast Guard units from Houghton, Duluth and Traverse City were dispatched Sunday evening to assist a 46-foot National Park Service tug that apparently ran out of fuel about nine miles from the upper entrance to the Keweenaw waterway on Lake Superior.

The tug E. J. Colomb was towing a 100-foot barge Beaver loaded with heavy equipment. An National Park Service workboat reportedly took the tug under tow while two vessels from Station Portage in Houghton towed the barge into the waterway. The tug arrived at the Lily Pond Marina near Houghton about 10 p.m. and its two crew members were reported safe.

Along with the boat from Houghton, the USCG dispatched a helicopter from the Traverse City air station and the cutter Sundew from Duluth. The helicopter flew to Houghton Co. Airport, MI and remained overnight as a forward deployed resource in the event the tow failed.

The Courtney Burton made herself available to assist and diverted to scene. Her assistance was not needed.

Reported by: Al Miller

Seaway Update

Sunday was rather quiet in the Seaway. Upbound with iron ore were four lakers, namely: CSL NIAGARA for Nanticoke, ALGOCEN for Hamilton, ALGOSOO for Lorain and CARTIERDOC for Chicago. Cartierdoc had been in Montreal since Oct.19 possibly undergoing some minor repairs at shed 6.

Also upbound was the laker CANADIAN VOYAGER in ballast for Prescott from Baie Comeau. Before entering the Seaway however, she called in Montreal to take on bunkers at section 94.

Other vessels upbound were the tanker SATURN heading for Oswego with bunker oil and the salties MLJET and MOOR LAKER both with steel for unloading in Hamilton and Detroit respectively.

Only four vessels transited downbound, the salties EVANGELOS with soybeans pellets from Thunder Bay and TRIAS with soybeans from Duluth. The lakers MAPLEGLEN with dried beans loaded at Toledo was en route to Quebec City and MONTREALAIS with wheat from Thunder Bay was on her way to Montreal for Elevator No.4

Reported by: René Beauchamp.

Marquette Update

The first winter storm of the year has come and gone and vessel traffic was getting back to business Monday. The Algosteel and the Charles M. Beeghly both of which arrived late last Thursday spent Friday and Saturday in port waiting for the storm to subside. The American Mariner was anchored in the lower harbor over the weekend also waiting for the storm to subside.

After three days of gale force winds with 15-20 foot waves, snow and rain, the sun finally warmed the region Sunday and Lake Superior finally calmed down. That allowed the three vessels in port to depart early Sunday and permitted traffic to resume.

The Paul R. Tregurtha arrived after weathering the storm in Thunder Bay, she was sailing from Superior with a load of western coal.

The Canadian Transfer to arrive in the upper harbor to load taconite for Algoma Steel at the Soo. Transfer had been on the hook in Whitefish Bay since late Friday night to wait out high winds. She is scheduled for a week of trips out of Marquette.

Finally on Monday morning the Joseph H. Thompson arrived.

Reported by: Art Pickering, Robert Oom and Rod Burdick

Oglebay Norton to Discuss Third Quarter Results Today

In a recent press release Oglebay Norton announced a live internet broadcast today at 11:00 a.m. Eastern Time.

The Company's Chairman, President and CEO, John N. Lauer, and Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, David H. Kelsey will discuss 1999 third quarter earnings results at its conference call that will be broadcast live.

Click here to listen

Dofasco Plans Live Results

Yesterday Dofasco announced that the conference call with the financial community, which regularly accompanies the Company's release of its quarterly consolidated results, will be broadcast live across the Internet. Interested investors can access the call through the "Finance & Shareholders" page at For those investors unable to listen to the call live, the audio file will be archived and available for subsequent listening.

Dofasco will release its third quarter results at 10:00 a.m. on Wednesday, October 27th. The conference call will take place at 1:00 p.m. that afternoon.

Dofasco is a leading North American steel producer. Product lines include hot rolled, cold rolled, galvanized and tinplate flat rolled steels, as well as tubular products. Dofasco's wide range of steel products is sold to customers in the automotive, construction, steel distribution, packaging, pipe and tube, manufacturing and appliance industries.

Bethlehem Steel Results

Bethlehem Steel Corporation will broadcast its quarterly earnings conference call on Wednesday, October 27, at 2:30 PM EDT.

Click here to listen

GATX Announces Quarterly Results

On Friday the board of directors of GATX Corporation, the parent company of American Steamship Company declared a quarterly dividend of $0.275 per common share, payable December 31, 1999, to shareholders of record December 15, 1999.

The board also declared a quarterly dividend of $0.625 per share on the $2.50 preferred stock, payable December 1, 1999, to shareholders of record November 15, 1999.

American Steamship Company's net income for the quarter fell to 0.7 million down from 2.7 million last year. Year to date net income fell to 2.4 million vs. 5.5 million last year.

In announcing the figures, GATX explained the drop as "over all the environment on the Great Lakes is very tough these days not only for American Steamship Company but for there competitors as well..." sighting iron ore shipments that are down due to the lingering effects of steel imports, low water levels, and a pricing environment that was described as "quite competitive".

Click here to listen to the GATX announcement

LTV Declares Common Stock Dividend

Last week the LTV Corporation announced that its Board of Directors declared a cash dividend of $O.03 per common share, payable on December 7, 1999 to stockholders of record at the close of business November 15, 1999.

This is LTV's fifteenth consecutive quarterly dividend paid on common shares.

The LTV Corporation is a manufacturing company with interests in steel, metal fabrication and leading steel technologies. Last year LTV reported sales of $4.3 billion.

Reported by: LTV

Saginaw Tow Crossing Lake Superior

Report added Monday at 3:30 p.m.
The tow is travelling the regular downbound course on Lake Superior. They have an ETA of 0300 Tuesday morning off Copper Harbor, in Michigan's Upper Peninsula. With Gale warnings in effect, the tow may go to anchor on the east side of the Keweenaw Peninsula.

The forecast calls for the northwesterly gales to diminish by dawn today as the wind turns to the north at 25 knots. This means they would have rode out the worst of the weather before reaching the shelter of the Keweenaw.

If they continue and maintain their speed it will be Wednesday morning when the tow arrives at the Soo Locks.

Report added Monday at 10:00 a.m.
The tug Roger Stahl and Saginaw are planning to make eight knots and the voyage is expected to take approximately five days. Ten personnel are expected to ride the Saginaw during the voyage. The tug Wilford Cohen will meet the tow at White Fish Bay and assist the Saginaw and Stahl through the Soo Locks and then release near Detour. The Gaelic tug Patricia Hoey will meet the tow at the Lake Huron Cut and assist the tow through the Blue Water Bridge and into the dock at Sarnia, Ontario.

Daily reports will be listed here as the tow progresses, check back for updates.

Click here for a computer enhanced image of the John J. Boland with Lower Lakes Towing colors and the name Saginaw.

Reported by: Bill Hoey Jr., Gaelic Tugboat Co.

Saginaw Tow Departs Duluth

Report added Monday at 3:00p.m. - Update with new pictures
Gaelic Towing's tug Roger Stahl drew a lot of attention in the Twin Ports on Oct. 24 when it arrived to tow the Saginaw down the lakes.

Capt. John Wellington wasted no time in taking the Stahl from the Duluth piers to the Murphy Oil dock at Duluth's port terminal to fuel. After about an hour, Wellington, tug and crew proceeded to Fraser Shipyards to pick up the Saginaw.

The Stahl, formerly the USCG tug Kaw, is powered by twin diesel engines. Capt. Wellington is well known around the lakes, and several acquaintances stopped by to pay their regards. The captain was a gracious host but all business taking the tug into the yard, occasionally using binoculars to size up a buoy and quietly issuing directions to the wheelsman.

Boatwatchers and old sailors watched the process from several vantage points around the harbor. About 100 people were present at the Duluth piers as the Stahl departed with the Saginaw in tow, assisted by a tug from Great Lakes Towing.

The photos here offer a glimpse into the size and capabilities of the Stahl. It was interesting to note that even with the latest in navigation technology, the tug's crewmen still needed to know traditional seamen's skills to prepare the tow line for the Saginaw.

Photographs (Click on text to view).

  • Roger Stahl fueling at the Murphy Oil dock in Duluth
  • Capt. John Wellington, center facing camera, talks with two crewmen while two guests -- Wes Harkins and Dick Bibby -- look on.
  • The Stahl's wheeslman guides the tug through Duluth harbor.
  • The view as the Stahl enters Fraser Shipyards
  • Approaching the Saginaw
  • The Saginaw at its dock about an hour before the tow. The name has been painted out and the gangway removed. The master had to come ashore in a manbasket hoisted by a crane.
  • The Roger Stahl with Saginaw in the background
  • Stahl crewmen rigging the tow line
  • Stahl's engine room from top of ladder. The two engines produce 3,000 horsepower.
  • Stahl's port diesel engine with crewman
  • Stahl's pilothouse taken from the bow.
  • The Stahl's towing bollard located aft of the superstructure
  • The Stahl's cable winch. Dick Bibby, former Hanna agent in Duluth and avid boat historian, stands alongside to give it scale.
  • The Stahl's messroom.

    Check back for updates as the tow progresses.

    Reported by: Al Miller

  • News Reporters wanted

    I would like to invite anyone interested in reporting from their area to send in reports for this news page when ever they see anything interesting. Reports can be sent by e-mail or by using a form if the sender does not want credit.

    If you would like credit your name (or company name) will be listed on the news page and I can also add links to any web sites you like. This is also a good way to link more traffic to a web site.

    Currently we could use more reports on the fall grain rush, specifically in the Welland Canal and Seaway. If you become a regular contributor I can create an About the Author web page.

    Click here to E-mail
    Click here to send news using the form.If you would not like to have your name used remember click the "no" button

    Today in Great Lakes History - October 26

    LOUIS R. DESMARAIS was christened October 26,1977.

    On October 26, 1968 the R. BRUCE ANGUS grounded in the St. Lawrence River near Beauharnois, Que. Sixteen hundred tons of iron ore were lightered to free her and she damaged 65 bottom plates.

    The HUTCHCLIFFE HALL and OREFAX were sold October 26, 1971 to the Consortium Ile d'Orleans of Montreal made up of Richelieu Dredging Corp., McNamara Construction Ltd. and The J.P. Porter Co. Ltd.

    On October 26, 1924 the E.A.S. CLARKE (2), anchored in the Detroit River opposite the Great Lakes Engineering Works because of dense fog was struck by the B.F. JONES (1) near her after deck house which caused the CLARKE to sink. No lives were lost.

    On October 26, 1977 the MENIHEK LAKE struck a lock in the St. Lawrence Seaway sustaining damage estimated at $400,000.

    On October 26, 1971 the ROGERS CITY (2) had her A-frame collapsed while unloading at Carrollton, MI on the Saginaw River. Her unloading boom was cut away and temporary repairs were made at Defoe Shipbuilding Co., Bay City, MI.

    The tug ROUILLE was launched on October 26, 1929 as Hull 83 of Collingwood Shipyards Ltd.

    The schooner HEMISPHERE, which was being sought by the U.S. Marshals at Detroit and the St. Lawrence River, escaped at the Gallop Rapids and has gone to sea.

    On 26 October 1851, ATLAS (wooden propeller, 153’, 375 T, built in 1851 at Buffalo) was carrying flour from Detroit to Buffalo when she was blown to shore near the mouth of the Grand River (Lorain, OH) by a gale, stranded and became a total loss. No lives were lost.

    Data from: Max Hanley, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Father Dowling Collection,Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

    This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history
    Please e-mail if you would like to contribute a significant event in Great Lakes history

    Saginaw Tow Departs Duluth

    10:00am update:
    They are planning to make eight knots and the voyage is expected to take approximately five days. Ten personnel are expected to ride the Saginaw during the voyage. The tug Wilford Cohen will meet the tow at White Fish Bay and assist the Saginaw and Stahl through the Soo Locks and then release near Detour. The Gaelic tug Patricia Hoey will meet the tow at the Lake Huron Cut and assist the tow through the Blue Water Bridge and into the dock at Sarnia, Ontario.

    Original report:
    The steamer Saginaw was towed from Fraser Shipyards in Superior on the afternoon of Oct. 24 by the Gaelic tug Roger Stahl with assistance from a the tug Minnesota from Great Lakes Towing Co.

    The Saginaw tow left Duluth about 6 p.m. under tow of the Stahl, with the GLT tug handling the stern line until the tow was well outside the piers of the Duluth ship canal. The Saginaw's former name, John J. Boland, was painted out on the stern and bow and the nameboards had been removed.

    The Stahl arrived at 1 p.m. under command of Capt. John Wellington. The tug fueled at the Murphy Oil dock, then proceeded to Fraser Shipyards. A tug from GLT arrived at 4 p.m. to assist in getting the Saginaw out of the harbor. The GLT tug handled the stern and the Stahl was on the bow.

    Apparently some problems arose in removing the Saginaw from the shipyard. Several people watching the process said the bow line came lose and the Saginaw was blown into a mud bank. After swinging the stern for about 20 minutes, the vessel came free and the tow proceeded. Because of the wind from the south, it was a tight squeeze in getting the Saginaw past the abutments of the old Clough Avenue street-car bridge that remain in the shipyard. Once out of the yard, the tow moved quickly.

    Photographs (Click on text to view).

  • Tug Roger Stahl arriving from the Lake Superior
  • Close up view
  • Video of the tug arriving (168k)

  • Tug Roger Stahl and Minnesota working together towing the Saginaw from Fraser Shipyards
  • Saginaw and tugs leaving Fraser Shipyards
  • Leaving Fraser Shipyards
  • Close shave with the old Lamborn Avenue bridge abutment.
  • GLT tug Minnesota helping Saginaw and Stahl
  • Stahl and GLT tug have emerged from Howard's Bay and are proceeding out of St. Louis Bay.
  • Tow is approaching Blatnik Bridge at mouth of St. Louis Bay
  • Leaving St. Louis Bay and entering Duluth Harbor
  • All leaving St. Louis Bay
  • Approaching Duluth ship canal
  • All are approaching Duluth ship canal to depart
  • Approaching Duluth ship canal
  • Tow under the Aerial Lift Bridge
  • Stern of the Saginaw under the Aerial Lift Bridge and departing Duluth probably forever

    Check back for updates as the tow progresses.

    Reported by: Al Miller

  • DeTour Update

    USS Great Lakes Fleetmates John G. Munson and Cason J. Callaway, along with Interlake Steamship Company's Herbert C. Jackson were anchored off Pipe Island at the upper end of DeTour Passage from Friday evening until late Saturday or early Sunday. Yesterday afternoon another Interlake vessel, the Elton Hoyt 2nd, remained at the Drummond Island dolomite dock.

    Reported by: Marc & Jill Vander Meulen

    Reiss Waits out Weather

    The Richard Reiss was seen at anchor very close to the Canadian shoreline just off Buffalo Harbor on the morning of the 24th.

    The Coast Guard hailed the vessel on the radio asking if everything was ok after receiving phone calls of a ship aground on Lake Erie. The captain explained that he was waiting out the wind while in the lee of Point Abino.

    Reported by: Brian Wroblewski

    Former Bob Lo Office Fire

    At approximately 5:15 pm Sunday the old Bob Lo office building at the Detroit Marine Terminal caught fire. Fire crews responded quickly and appeared to have the fire under control.

    The former Bob Lo office building is the low building right at the end of Clark Street with the Detroit Marine Terminal sign on top, not the large warehouse just south of it.

    News from Tawas Bay - Lake Huron

    Seen at anchor, waiting out the weather on Saturday were the barge Pathfinder and a Canada Steamships Lines self-unloader. Both had departed by Sunday noon.

    Reported by: Rick Schwinke

    Today in Great Lakes History - October 25

    The ALGOBAY departed on her maiden voyage October 25, 1978 from Collingwood light for Stoneport, Mich. to load stone for Sarnia, Ont.

    The STERNECLIFFE HALL entered service on October 25, 1947.

    The HURON (4) arrived at Santander, Spain October 25, 1973 in consort with the WYANDOTTE (2) towed by the German tug DOLPHIN X. for scrapping.

    October 25, 1895 - Shenago No. 2 (later Pere Marquette 16) was launched in Toledo, Ohio. She was built by the Craig Shipbuilding Company for the United States & Ontario Steam Navigation Company and later became part of the Pere Marquette carferry fleet.

    The engines of the propeller WESTMORELAND, which sank in 1854 near Skillagalee Reef in Lake Michigan, were recovered and arrived at Chicago on 25 October 1874.

    ARK was built on the burned out hull of the steamer E. K. COLLINS as a sidewheel passenger steamer in 1853 at Newport, MI, but she was later cut down to a barge. On 25 October 1866, she was being towed along with three other barges down bound from Saginaw, MI in a storm.. Her towline parted and she disappeared with her crew of 6. The other three tow-mates survived. There was much speculation about ARK's whereabouts until identifiable wreckage washed ashore 100 miles north of Goderich, Ontario.

    Data from: Max Hanley, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

    This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history
    Please e-mail if you would like to contribute a significant event in Great Lakes history

    Tow Departs

    7:30 EDT update by Ken Newhams:
    The tow departed the shipyard at 6:00 CDT
    A picture of the tow has been added on the Duluth Shipping News page, check back for updates through out the night and tomorrow.

    5:00 EDT update by Al Miller:
    The crew of the Roger Stahl is preparing to depart Fraser Shipyards in Superior sometime this evening with the steamer Saginaw in tow. The Saginaw, formerly the John J. Boland, has a long history on Lake Superior. It was the first vessel into Reserve Mining Co. in Silver Bay, hauling coal in there before the taconite plant began operating. The Boland also carried the first cargo of low-sulfur western coal from Midwest Energy Terminal when it opened in the mid-70s.

    3:00 update by Ken Newhams:
    The Gaelic Tugboat Company's tug, the Roger Stahl, came under the Duluth Aerial Lift Bridge at 1 PM today (Sunday, October 24). She will take on fuel at the Murphy Fuel Dock before moving over to Fraser Shipyard in Superior to pick up the Saginaw (formerly the John J. Boland). The Roger Stahl will be assisted by a tug from the Great Lakes Towing Company until they get out into the lake. Under tow, the Saginaw will be taken to Sarnia, Ontario where she will be restored to life again as a Great Lakes cargo boat, working mostly in the stone trade. She is now owned and will be operated by Lower Lakes Towing Ltd. of Port Dover, Ontario. Aboard the Saginaw during the tow will be about 9 of the crew who will work the boat when she returns to duty. That includes Captain Scott Bravener, an owner of the boat and her captain.

    More pictures at Duluth Shipping News

    Reported by: Ken Newhams and Al Miller

    Great Coverage

    My thanks to Al Miller and Ken Newhams of the Duluth Shipping News for helping with this outstanding coverage. The Duluth Shipping News page also has great pictures posted to the site.

    Tug Set to Depart

    11:00 update:
    The Tug Roger Stahl departed the Keweenaw Waterway at 0001 this morning and should be inbound the Duluth piers at 1300 (local time). The Stahl will fuel at Murphy Oil and then shift to Fraser Shipyards at 1430.

    Once the Saginaw in ready for tow the Stahl will call for an assist tug to depart. They should be backing away from the dock at 1600 local time.

    Check back for updates through out the day.

    Original report
    The Roger Stahl attempted to cross Lake Superior yesterday at 5:00pm. The tug traveled a few miles out into the lake and turned back in the face of 12-foot seas.

    She was expected to depart some time this morning to make the 14 hour trip across Lake Superior.

    Jim Noetzel photographed the tug at dock in the Keweenaw Waterway Saturday.
    Bow view
    Stern view
    The towing winch

    Please send in any pictures that you take of the tug or towing operation.

    Reported by: Bill Hoey Jr., Gaelic Tugboat Co.

    Saginaw in Superior

    Crews continue working on the Saginaw at Fraser Shipyards in Superior. Below are pictures taken yesterday.
    A last glimpse of the Saginaw at Fraser Shipyards
    The Canadian flag flying from the Boland's fantail.
    The U.S. courtesy flag and "under tow" signal (the partially obscured black diamond) flying from the foremast halliards.

    Reported by: Al Miller
    Click here for a new book written by Al.

    Sykes In Green Bay

    Repairs started Friday to the Wilfred Sykes appear to be finished and the vessel's bow is back in the water.

    Saturday afternoon she was waiting out the weather along with the barge St. Marys Cement and tug Triton.

    Heavy Weather Causes Delays Across the lakes

    Heavy weather has caused most vessel sailing on the lakes to seek shelter. Reports from yesterday are included below.

    Vessels seeking shelter from Lake Superior at the ore docks in Marquette yesterday were the Algosteel and Charles E. Beeghly.
    Sandy Chapman included these pictures with the report:
    The Algosteel at dock
    Lake Superior

    Ron Konkol reporting from Thunder Bay on northern Lake Superior saw the following vessel at anchor: Yick Hua , Algonorth, Paul R. Tregurtha, James R. Barker and the Algolake. All vessels departed the area by Saturday Evening.

    Tom Kelly reports that the Southdown Challenger has been anchored in Suttons Bay, Lake Michigan for two days riding out the storm. In addition to her anchor and deck lights, a strange orange light glows from just aft of the pilot house - yes, a jack-o-lantern.

    At the south end of Suttons Bay a 30' sailboat was being pounded by the waves after breaking loose from her mooring.

    The Adam E. Cornelius was waiting inside Grand Haven Piers prior to proceeding to Milwaukee. Midnight Saturday was 48 hrs waiting for wind to decrease.

    Lon Morgan reports from Saginaw that the Walter J. McCarthy Jr. arrived at the Essexville Power Plant on the 21st at 1300. She unloaded her cargo, and about 2100 that evening made a security call that she would be departing soon. The crew on the McCarthy later cancelled her departure. As of Saturday afternoon, she remained at the dock. The water level in the Saginaw River had dropped substantially due to strong winds out of the west/southwest.

    In the St. Clair River Saturday afternoon most traffic was waiting for weather. Andrew Severson reports that the following boats were tied up or anchored in the river. Philip R. Clarke was tied up at the Azko salt dock in St. Clair. Canadian Venture went to anchor off of Recor Point. The Petrola Desaganes was tied up at the lower end of the Shell dock in Coruna Ont. Algomarine was going to Imperial Oil for fuel and planned to stay until the weather lifted. The only traffic moving was downbound traffic. The saltie Mina Cebi downbound, the Algosar departed the government dock downbound to the Imperial Oil lower dock.

    Water levels in the lower Detroit River were as low as +02.0 yesterday afternoon. The weekly forecast called for levels of +15.0 Chuck Pike reports that the Mina Sebi anchored at the Belle Isle Special Anchorage Area at 2:00pm.

    Brian Wroblewski reports that in Buffalo yesterday evening the Richard Reiss was docked at the Black Rock Canal tie up wall. She was waiting out the weather in the calm waters of the canal because there were two vessels already occupying the dock at her next loading port.

    Wind and Seas cause Salty to Drift

    The salt water vessel Arktis Faith was anchored off of buoys 11 & 12 in Lake Huron yesterday afternoon. The vessel reported to Sarnia Traffic that her anchor would not hold. The vessel requested to lift anchor and proceed north at dead slow, without a pilot returning to pick up her pilot at 0400 this morning.

    The vessel planned to hoisted anchor and proceeded northwest of Buoys 11 & 12 anchoring there. At 6:30pm the Arktis Faith was back on the hook and holding.

    Reported by: Andrew Severson

    Taylor Update

    Last weekend the Myron C. Taylor was unable to unload her cargo in Saginaw due to an unloading system failure. She sailed to Sturgeon Bay shipyard for repairs.

    The bucket elevator system on the Taylor, which carries cargo from the spar deck level to the unloading boom, was severely damaged when the vessel attempted to unload at Saginaw Rock last week.

    The aging system, which had just undergone some minor repairs to strengthen it, literally ripped itself apart after running for about 30 minutes. The Taylor was loaded too deep to turn around in the Saginaw River turning basin, so the Great Lakes Towing Tug Wisconsin was dispatched from Detroit to tow the Taylor out into deep water in Saginaw Bay. From there she proceeded under her own power to Bay Shipbuilding at Sturgeon Bay for repairs--essentially rebuilding the entire bucket elevator system.

    USS Great Lakes Fleet hopes the project can be completed within 4 weeks and the vessel can return to service to finish out the season. The Taylor is carrying "egg meal" in 2 of her holds, which is similar to beach sand. Since the cargo is damp, there's concern that it will freeze in the hold if temperatures drop while the boat is undergoing repairs. In all likelihood, a crane with a clamshell bucket will be used to remove the egg meal. It's unclear at this time whether the cargo will be transferred to another USSGLF vessel for movement to Saginaw Rock, or whether it will merely be piled on the dock at Sturgeon Bay and reloaded into the Taylor after it has been repaired.

    Deck crewmembers were discharged the day the ship reached the dock at Sturgeon Bay and the balance of the crew, engineers, oilers, and galley personnel departed the vessel on the morning of October 22.

    Reported by: Mark L. Thompson

    Today in Great Lakes History - October 24

    TEXACO WARRIOR (2) was launched October 24, 1969 as a) THUNTANK 6.

    The PHILIP D. BLOCK along with the W.W. HOLLOWAY scrap tow arrived Recife, Brazil. October 24,1986

    The THOMAS W.LAMONT and her former fleetmate, ENDERS M. VOORHEES arrived at Alegeciras, Spain on October 24, 1987 on the way to the cutters torch. The LAMONT was one of the last bulkers that retained her telescoping hatch covers to the very end.

    The NIPIGON BAY arrivied Thunder Bay, Ont. on October 24, 1980 where repairs were made from damage caused by her grounding a earlier in the month.

    On 24 October 1855, ALLEGHENY (wooden propeller, 178’, 468 T, built in 1849 at Cleveland) was carrying general merchandise and passengers in a storm, when she anchored near the Milwaukee harbor entrance for shelter. She lost her stack and then was unable to get up steam and was helpless. She dragged her anchor and came in close to the beach where she was pounded to pieces. There was no loss of life. Her engine and most of her cargo were removed by the end of the month. Her engine was installed in a new vessel of the same name built to replace her.

    Data from: Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

    This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history
    Please e-mail if you would like to contribute a significant event in Great Lakes history

    Tug Waits at Houghton

    The tug Roger Stahl continues to wait out the storms on Lake Superior at Houghton, MI on the Keweenaw Waterway. The latest reports from the tug call for her to wait until morning and depart sometime on Saturday.

    Please send in any photos that were taken.

    Reported by: Bill Hoey Jr., Gaelic Tugboat Co.

    S.S. Saginaw update

    Yesterday in Superior the Saginaw was being prepared for her tow to Sarnia by employees from Lower Lakes Towing.

    Colt Edin reports that the pilot house shutters were being removed and there were lights and people in the pilot house. One of the anchors was lowered a few feet so that birds nests and debris would fall out, they were then bulled back up. A Canadian flag is now flying from the stern, but an American flag is still flying on top of the pilothouse. There are people all over the ship.

    Ken Newhams with the Duluth Shipping News was on board the Saginaw yesterday and has put together a web page with pictures. Click on the link above.

    Seaway Update

    The following vessels were noted as having transiting the Seaway on Oct.21 between St. Lambert and Iroquois locks. Upbound were the lakers MANTADOC in ballast for Thunder Bay from Sorel, JOHN B. AIRD with iron ore for Ashtabula from Pointe Noire, ALGOISLE and TADOUSSAC with iron ore also and both for Hamilton, Algoisle having loaded at Port Cartier and Tadoussac at Pointe Noire.

    In addition, there was two Desgagnés vessels, their new tanker MARIA DESGAGNÉS heading for Clarkson loaded with petroleum products from the Maritimes, and their bulker AMELIA DESGAGNÉS bound for Toledo with aluminum bars from Pointe Noire.

    Four salties completed the scene, CARO for Windsor in ballast, FEDERAL SCHELDE for Oshawa with steel, CAPETAN MICHALIS for Detroit with steel coils and SPAR GARNET with steel for Hamilton.

    There was less traffic downbound. The tug EVANS McKEIL pushing the tank barge Salty Dog I loaded with calcium chloride for possibly Halifax, the Cleveland Tankers SATURN in ballast for Quebec City from Oswego, the Rigel Shipping tanker DIAMOND STAR on charter to Groupe Desgagnés bound for Montreal in ballast from Bronte, the laker ALGOSOUND with wheat for Quebec City from Prescott and the salties EAGLE with corn from Windsor and STOLT EGRET with fuel oil from Clarkson.

    Still loading from trucks in Montreal is COMEAUDOC. She is loading a storage cargo of soy beans. Later on, she will be towed to a wintering berth situated near the grain elevator in Montreal and will wait for the cost of grain to raise before unloading in the spring.

    Arriving for lay up in Montreal on Oct.19 was the general cargo ship LADY FRANKLIN. She had completed several trips to Arctic destinations since the beginning of summer, most of her cargo having been loaded at Côte Ste.Catherine in the St. Lawrence Seaway.

    Reported by: René Beauchamp.

    Twin Ports Report

    Gale force winds on Lake Superior Oct. 22 prompted several vessels to seek shelter until the weather moderated. Forecasts called for northwest winds to 45 knots and waves 7 to 11 feet in height. At midday, the weather buoy near Outer Island in the Apostles was reporting northwest winds at 25 knots and seven-foot waves.

    Columbia Star, bound for Midwest Energy Terminal in Superior, was reported anchored above the Soo and due at Duluth on Oct. 24. Courtney Burton, carrying stone for CLM dock in Superior, also was reported anchored above the Soo. Buckeye, bound for Silver Bay, and Armco were at the Soo. American Mariner was anchored off Marquette.

    Some vessels kept moving despite the weather. Joe Block arrived Duluth for the DMIR dock. James R. Barker departed Duluth in the morning and Algolake and Canadian Transport both arrived to load coal.

    Reported by: Al Miller
    Click here for a new book written by Al.

    Green Bay

    The Wilfred Sykes arrived in Green Bay yesterday evening with her bow raised. She docked at Western Lime Corp. where crews arrived to do some type of repairs. A welders arc could be seen from the front anchor pocket. At last report she was still tied up at the dock.

    Mid-afternoon Friday the Agawa Canyon was at anchor in upper Green Bay riding out the Northwest Gale. The Messabi Miner is upbound through Port des Morts passage off the tip of the Door County Peninsula at 1:00 PM CDT yesterday.

    Reported by: Jim Robinson

    Cuyahoga in Saginaw

    On Friday afternoon the Cuyahoga arrived at the General Motors dock in Saginaw. It is unusual for freighters to use this dock. However, at least one other delivery was made here in recent weeks. Most likely, the dock space is being used by a local stone company for additional space to receive and store materials.

    Reported by: Stephen Hause

    Barge on the Cuyahoga

    A St. Mary's Cement barge entered the Cuyahoga River yesterday afternoon and was heading up river on tow from a Great Lakes Towing tug.

    The Barge just beat the third squall of the day by about a half hour. The squall started with snow, quickly progressed to sleet and then a mix of sleet and rain.

    USX-U.S. Steel profits drop 86 percent

    Steelmakers USX-U.S. Steel and Nucor Corp., Nos. 1 and 2 respectively, had opposite third-quarter results as U.S. Steel's profit plunged 86 percent while its smaller rival's earnings rose for the first time in eight quarters.

    U.S. Steel's net income fell to $8 million, or 7 cents a share, from $58 million, or 63 cents. Nucor's profit from operations in the quarter ended Oct. 2 rose 4.7 percent to $68.2 million, or 78 cents a share, from $65.1 million, or 74 cents, in the year-earlier period. U.S. Steel's sales dropped 11 percent while Nucor had a slight increase.

    Today in Great Lakes History - October 23

    The CECILIA DESGAGNES was launched October 23, 1970 as a) CARL GORTHON, for Rederi A/B Gylfe, Hälsingborg, Sweden.

    GRAND RAPIDS Rail Car Ferry was launched October 23, 1926 for the Grand Trunk-Milwaukee Car Ferry Co., Muskegon, MI.

    WILLIAM B. SCHILLER was launched October 23, 1909 for the Pittsburgh Steamship Co., Cleveland, OH.

    October 23, 1926 - The Grand Trunk carferry Grand Rapids was launched in Manitowoc. She entered service in December of 1926.

    October 23, 1952 - The S.S. Spartan arrived Ludington on her maiden voyage.

    On 23 October 1868, F. T. BARNEY (wooden schooner, 255 T, built in 1856 at Vermilion, OH) collided with the schooner TRACY J. BRONSON and sank below Nine Mile Point, NW of Rogers City in Lake Michigan. The wreck was found in 1987 and sits in deep water, upright in almost perfect condition. Max Hanley, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze,

    Data from: Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

    This is a smallsample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history
    Please e-mail if you would like to contribute a significant event in Great Lakes history

    Saginaw Sale Official

    Lower Lakes Towing Ltd. of Port Dover, ON is pleased to announce the addition of the Steamer John J. Boland to our Company. The vessel was officially purchased from Clemons Ships Ltd., Englishtown, NJ, on October 22, 1999.

    The vessel has been renamed Saginaw and will be towed to Sarnia with the Gaelic Towing Company tug Roger Stahl. ETD Duluth is Friday p.m., weather permitting. The vessel is registered out of Nanticoke, ON.

    The name, like the Cuyahoga, continues to pay tribute to the heritage of our North American Rivers and our customers who use them.

    Shelley Machine, of Sarnia, ON, has been awarded the contract to retrofit the vessel to Canadian new vessel standards.

    We would like to take this opportunity to thank our customers, suppliers and supporters who have helped make this expansion possible. The Saginaw will provide our customers with new found flexibility and security in our services, for today and long term.

    Click here for a computer enhanced image of the John J. Boland with Lower Lakes Towing colors and the name Saginaw.

    Reported by: Lower Lakes Towing Ltd.

    Congratulations Lower Lakes Towing

    Congratulations to Lower Lakes Towing on the purchase of the Saginaw. The boatwatching community is glad to see this unique boat added to the fleet, may she have a safe and profitable career.

    Click here for the Great Lakes & Seaway Shipping Salute

    Tug Waits at Houghton

    10:30am update
    The tug Roger Stahl is presently tied up on the Houghton, MI side of the Keweenaw Waterway near the Portage Lift Bridge in the Keweenaw Peninsula. She arrived early this morning and is expected to shift to the West entrance of the waterway later today or tomorrow morning.

    Gale warnings are up on Lake Superior with the Stannard Rock lighthouse reporting wind gusts to 47 knots. A weather buoy in eastern Lake Superior reported waves over 13 feet at 10:00am.
    Map of the area

    Original report:
    The tug Roger Stahl was due at Houghton, MI on the Keweenaw Waterway at 2400 last night. Captain John Wellington's intentions were to lay for weather. A strong cold front is forecast to cause storm force winds by early afternoon. Winds in excess of 50 knots will build waves to 14 to 18 feet.

    Daily reports will be listed here as the tow progresses, check back for updates.

    Reported by: Bill Hoey Jr., Gaelic Tugboat Co. Additional information reported by Jim Grill

    Canadian flag raised on the Saginaw

    The Canadian flag was raised on the stern flag pole of the Saginaw early Thursday afternoon for the first time.

    A small group of sailors from Lower Lakes Towing were busy preparing the Saginaw for her tow from Superior's Fraser Shipyards. Among the work observed underway Thursday was the delivery of fuel, assumed to be for the onboard diesel electric generator. Also, the stern anchor was raised.

    The Boland's name boards on the pilot house have been removed. It has been mentioned that the name boards are to be donated to a museum by American Steamship Co., although which museum has not yet been identified.

    Other work finished include the locking of the Boland's propeller and rudder in place for the tow.

    With the most recent weather forecast for Lake Superior calling for gale and storm warnings today, the tow is not expected to get underway from Superior until this coming Saturday or Sunday.

    Reported by: Terry Sechen

    Twin Ports Report

    After a couple of slow days, the Twin Ports grain trade is returning to its usual brisk fall pace. On Oct. 21, the saltie Lita is loading at Cargill B1; Canadian Trader is at Harvest States 2; and Algoville was loading at General Mills in Duluth. The Hilal 2 and Olympic Miracle were anchored on Lake Superior waiting for grain berths. As of now, Hilal 2 will likely be out there until Oct. 25 waiting for the Cargill berth. The Ziemia Tarnowska and Kinsman Independent are scheduled to arrive Oct. 22 for grain.

    Midwest Energy Terminal is going to be busy for the next few days. Paul R. Tregurtha was fortunate enough to be first in line Oct. 22. Algolake was due to arrive next and anchor on the lake until the Tregurtha clears the berth. Then James R. Barker is expected to arrive and lay by at the port terminal. Behind the Barker is the Canadian Transport, which also is expected to anchor out on the lake until its turn at the berth. American Mariner is due to arrive in Duluth on Oct. 22 to unload stone at the Reiss Inland dock, then it, too, will join the line at Midwest Energy Terminal.

    Philip R. Clarke is scheduled to make an unusual appearance at Escanaba on Oct. 23. John G. Munson is making one of its periodic calls to unload coal at Ontonagon, Mich., on Oct. 23. Myron C. Taylor is still not listed on the GLF vessel update and apparently remains at Sturgeon Bay shipyard for repairs.

    Reported by: Al Miller
    Click here for a new book written by Al.

    Marquette and Weather Update

    The Algorail made another visit yesterday morning to Marquette's upper harbor. Strong winds delayed the vessel from entering the harbor on Thursday.

    Weather warnings were posted for the Lake Superior region for a strong storm system that was to arrive Thursday evening.

    The storm is predicted to make travel on Lake Superior rough and will cause coastal flooding on the north shore of the Upper Peninsula. This storm will also bring snow to the region and current predictions call for 2-3 inches by Saturday. Temperatures were expected to rise as high as 60 degrees Thursday before driving into the low teens by today. Additional warnings are possible. Ship travel on Superior will be uncomfortable for the next few days.

    This storm system will bring dropping temperatures across the Lakes with gale or storm warnings forecasted for all of the Lakes.

    Reported by: Art Pickering

    Ballast Troubles

    On Monday an Enhanced Seaway Inspection / Ballast Water Exam was conducted on the motor vessel Pany R in Montreal. Seven of the vessel's nineteen ballast tanks were found to be non-compliant for salinity, the requirement is 30 ppt and the tanks ranged from 0-15 ppt. The vessel was advised that upon arrival in U.S. waters a retention letter requiring the vessel to retain all the ballast in those seven tanks would be issued.

    The vessel applied to Canadian Authorities for permission to dump the non-compliant ballast in Montreal. Canada approved the request and the vessel discharged the non-compliant ballast while in Montreal harbor.

    While the Pany R was still in Montreal, a U.S. Coast Guard Marine Safety Detachment determined that the remaining 12 ballasted tanks were in technical non-compliance because the ballast water exchange was conducted within 200 nautical miles of the U.S. coast. A policy by the Marine Safety Office Buffalo allows for alternate exchange sites with approval from the Captain of the Port.

    Excluded from these sites are exchanges off the coast of Virginia and North Carolina due to the higher risk of taking on non-indigenous fresh water species from the Chesapeake Bay outflow.

    The Pany R. departed Montreal and was boarded at the Snell Lock by the Marine Safety Detachment. Their investigation determined that six tanks were exchanged off the North Carolina and Virginia coast, however, those tanks had already been discharged in Canada.

    No ballast was required to be retained and vessel was released to proceed to Duluth to load grain.

    Today in Great Lakes History - October 22

    The PRESQUE ISLE (2)'s tug completed her sea trials on October 22, 1973 in New Orleans.

    On October 22, 1986 the ALGOCEN spilled about four barrels of diesel fuel while refueling at the Esso Dock at Sarnia.

    The TOM M. GIRDLER departed South Chicago light on her maiden voyage, October 22, 1951, bound for Escanaba, MI where she loaded 13,900 tons of ore for delivery to Cleveland, OH.

    The THORNHILL (1) grounded on October 22, 1973 just above the Sugar Island ferry crossing in the St. Marys River.

    On 22 October 1887, C.O.D. (wooden schooner-barge, 140', 289 GT, built in 1873 at Grand Haven, MI) was carrying wheat in Lake Erie in a northwest gale. She was beached three miles east of Port Burnell, Ontario and soon broke up. Most of the crew swam to shore, but the woman who was the cook was lashed to the rigging and she perished.

    October 22, 1929 - The S.S. Milwaukee (formerly Manistique Marquette and Northern 1) sank in a gale with a loss of all 52 hands. 21 bodies were recovered. Captain Robert McKay in command.

    On October 27, 1929, a Coast Guard patrolman near South Haven, Michigan, picked up the ship's message case, containing the following handwritten note:
    "S.S. MILWAUKEE, OCTOBER 22/29 8:30 P.M.
    The ship is taking water fast. We have turned around and headed for Milwaukee. Pumps are working but sea gate is bent in and can't keep the water out. Flicker is flooded. Seas are tremendous. Things look bad.
    Crew roll is about the same as on last pay day.
    (signed) A.R. Sadon, Purser."

    Data from: Max Hanley, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

    This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history
    Please e-mail if you would like to contribute a significant event in Great Lakes history

    Tug Enters Lake Superior

    At 0650 this morning the tug Roger Stahl had just entered Whitefish Bay in Lake Superior. The vessel will sail along the south shore of Lake Superior for the Keweenaw Waterway and should be at the entrance some time around mid-night.

    An approaching strong cold front may delay her departure from the waterway as the weather forecast calls for gale to storm force winds with 13 to 17-foot waves.

    The tug is bound for the Fraser Shipyards in Superior, WI to tow the former John J. Boland, now Saginaw to Sarnia, ONT.

    Daily reports will be listed here as the tow progresses, check back for updates.

    Click here for a computer enhanced image of the John J. Boland with Lower Lakes Towing colors and the name Saginaw.

    Reported by: Bill Hoey Jr., Gaelic Tugboat Co.

    Seaway Update

    On Oct. 19, it was quite busy in the Seaway between St. Lambert and Iroquois locks, mostly for vessels travelling upbound. In ballast was the barge ATL-2402 under tow of Atlantic Alder and Atlantic Oak bound for Sarnia. Others were the tanker Saturn for Oswego loaded with asphalt. the laker Quebecois, Canadian Venture and Canadian Provider with iron ore all for Hamilton, Algosound in ballast for Prescott, the tanker Diamond Star with diesel fuel for Bronte, the small passenger ship Canadian Empress (capacity 66 passengers) bound for Kingston and completing her last cruise in the Seaway this year, the salties Kamenitza and Pany R. in ballast for Duluth, Millenium Raptor with stainless steel for Detroit, Grant Carrier with pig iron for Marinette, Peonia with sugar for Toronto, Rhea with fluorspar for Windsor, Great Laker with steel for Hamilton and Thorsriver with general cargo for Hamilton also.

    Downbound were the following lakers: CSL Niagara with stone for Quebec City, Algocen with soybeans for Port Cartier, Capt. Henry Jackman with sand for Côte Ste.Catherine and Algosoo in ballast for Pointe Noire. The salties were Alexandria loaded with soybean pellets, Kapitonas Domeika with ball clay, Malene Sif and Jian She 36 both in ballast. In addition, the Canadian Coast Guard ship Caribou Isle went to Cornwall from Prescott.

    Reported by: René Beauchamp.

    Toledo News

    The latest vessel line up at Toledo has both the Canadian Miner (Andersons "K") and the Mapleglen (ADM) arriving yesterday morning at there respective Elevators.

    The saltie Golden Laker is due for an undetermined elevator in Toledo and it is uncertain which tugboat company will service her. Due for Toledo World Terminals is the Great Laker.

    The harvest is in full swing now as all three Elevators are busy with semi trucks bringing the grain in.

    Reported by: Jim Hoffman

    Bridge Delays Traffic

    A cable replacement project at the Norfolk Southern One Bridge on the Cuyahoga River in Cleveland caused a longer than expected delay for traffic in the River. The U.S. Coast Guard approved repair schedule called for a 36-hour closure for bridge maintenance. Due to unexpected difficulties, the bridge remained closed for an additional nine hours, delaying two inbound vessels. The vessel are believed to be The tug Frank Palladino Jr. with barge Kellstone I and the tug Dorothy Ann and barge Pathfinder.

    The bridge was operational at 8 p.m. on October 19th. The second phase of the cable replacement was scheduled to take place after the delayed vessels offloaded their cargo and departed the river.

    Lakes Continue to Drop

    Recent drops in all five Great Lakes are startling scientists Tuesday's Detroit News reports. The scientists believe water levels will ebb still lower, and may signal a period of extreme lows seen only every 30 years. Commercial freighters sailing the Lakes have been forced to reduce the amount of cargo carried in order to negotiate shallow rivers and canals. The low water levels have caused numerous vessel groundings this season.

    "We're watching a severe and really remarkable fall," said Roger L. Gauthier, supervisory hydrologist with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' Detroit District. "The water is falling faster than we first anticipated this summer, and we are not bottoming out yet."

    Lakes Michigan and Huron retreated 5 inches just the past month. Lakes Erie and Ontario dropped 6 inches, and Lake Superior, at the top of the system, fell by 3 inches.

    Water experts expect further declines over the next four weeks. Whether marinas and shipping lanes will be further affected next spring depends on winter snowfall. Forecasters are reluctant to make a guess.

    On all five lakes, extreme low waters are raising issues that affect shipping, property, fishing, drinking water, wildlife and public health.

    Lakes Michigan and Huron are down by 17 inches from a year ago; Lake Erie is down by 16 inches; and Lake Ontario by 3 inches, according to federal figures. The lone exception is Lake Superior, the largest and deepest lake in the system, which has risen a half foot from last year. Scientists say recent rains over Canada replenished the lake, but the increase is not enough to dramatically flood the lower four lakes.

    "Even with Superior, it looks like we're facing the possibility of 30-year lows. The drop during the past two years has been quite extensive," said Dr. Frank H. Quinn of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in Ann Arbor. As a rule, the Great Lakes swell to their highest in summer, as spring melting rolls down the system. Levels ebb to their lowest in winter, when snow and freezing temperatures slow flows from tributaries.

    The last such low was charted 35 years ago, in 1964, a year when thousands of acres of new beach were exposed on Lake Michigan, and a similar expanse of rocks appeared on the shores of Lake Huron. "The year of 1964 was a time of drought," Gauthier said. "Conditions on the lower four Great Lakes this year now qualify as a drought, and our records suggest we are overdue for below-average levels of water." Click here for the full story.

    Lighthouse and Island Sold for $86,003

    The Detroit News reports that Tuesday a Saginaw County diver bought a Lake Superior lighthouse and the island it sits on offering $86,003.

    Scott Holman of Freeland, a longtime explorer of Great Lakes shipwrecks, turned in the highest amount of 85 sealed bids for the Granite Island Lighthouse, 10 miles off the coast of Marquette.

    Lighthouses seldom are sold to the public. Neither are islands. So Tuesday's sale of the 1868 structure and its 2 1/2-acre island roused interest across the country.

    "We were very pleased with the amount of competition today," Melissa Green, the U.S. General Services Administration officer in charge of selling the island, is quoted as saying.

    Bids came from as far as California. The second-highest offer was $80,000; the low, $11. Holman's bid application will be reviewed, and assuming there are no problems, he'll get the deed to Granite Island. The buyer has been familiar with the remote outpost since the late 1950s, when he opened a diving shop in Marquette.

    Holman said he plans to restore the dilapidated lighthouse, vacant since 1939. Eventually, he'll offer tours to groups interested in seeing what life was like 100 years ago for a Great Lakes lighthouse keeper.

    Today in Great Lakes History - October 21

    The JOHN B. AIRD arrived at Sarnia, Ont. October 21, 1990 for repairs after suffering a conveyor belt fire a week earlier.

    The JAMES A.FARRELL and fleetmate RICHARD TRIMBLE were the first vessels to lock downbound in the newly opened Davis Lock at the Soo on October 21, 1914.

    On October 21, 1954 the GEORGE M.HUMPHREY(2) set a record when she took aboard 22,605 gross tons of iron ore at Superior, WI. The record stood for six years until 1960.

    The crew on the SAMUEL MATHER (3) was safely removed from the badly exposed steamer on October 21, 1923 by the Eagle Harbor life saving crew. She had run aground on the 19th.

    It was announced on October 21, 1986 that Canada Steamship Lines and Upper Lakes Group would merge CSL's Collingwood shipyard and ULS' Port Weller shipyard and create Canadian Shipbuilding & Engineering (1986) Ltd.

    On 21 October 1941, AMERICA (steel tug, 80', 123 GT, built in 1897 at Buffalo) was on a cable along with the big tug OREGON off Belle Isle in the Detroit River trying to pull the steel bulk freighter B. F. JONES off a bar. The cable tightened, pulling AMERICA out of the water and spinning her upside down. Six of the crew of 13 lost their lives. AMERICA was later recovered.

    Data from: Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

    This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history
    Please e-mail if you would like to contribute a significant event in Great Lakes history

    Tug Departs for Superior

    The tug Roger Stahl departed the Gaelic Tugboat Company yard on the Rouge River in Detroit at 2335 last night, under the command of Capt. John Wellington of Sault Ste. Marie, MI. The tug is bound for the Fraser Shipyards in Superior, WI to tow the former John J. Boland, now Saginaw to Sarnia, ONT. The tug is expected to arrive in Superior mid-day on Friday.

    The tug checked in at 0650 this morning at Lake Huron Buoys 7 & 8. With an ETA for Detour at 2400 tonight. Daily reports will be listed on this site as the tow progresses, so all ship enthusiasts can get their pictures.

    Click here for a computer enhanced image of the John J. Boland with Lower Lakes Towing colors and the name Saginaw.

    Reported by: Bill Hoey Jr., Gaelic Tugboat Co.

    Norris Arrives

    The James Norris arrived in Thunder Bay yesterday at day break. She entered Pascol Engineering's drydock for repairs to damage suffered in Ludington, MI on Friday.

    The U.S. Coast Guard reports that the vessel struck bottom in the channel while approaching Ludington causing minor damage to the forward ballast tank. The vessel was cleared to sail for Thunder Bay on Saturday Morning.

    Reported by: Ron Konkol

    Crews Save Woman

    Yesterday afternoon the MV Canadian Empress, a 108' passenger boat was docked at Section 4 at Port De Trois-Rivieres in the St. Lawrence River. The ship's deck hand and purser were notified that a woman had fallen in the water from the shore. Deckhand Samuel Kennedy and purser John Cook responded immediately. Kennedy tied a life line to himself and dove into the water off the ship's bow while Cook tied the line to the ship.

    Kennedy managed to get a hold of the woman as Captain Stephen Steels arrived with life rings. Clinging to the life rings, both were pulled to a ladder on the face of the wall. Captain Steels descended the ladder and pulled the woman up.

    The local police and rescue units were notified and the woman was transported to a local hospital.

    Reported by: Chief Engineer Mel Boyd, M.V. Canadian Empress

    Twin Ports Report

    Duluth's Aerial Lift Bridge was closed for repairs starting about 8 a.m. Oct. 19 and continuing for about 24 hours. A number of vessels, including a loaded Edwin H. Gott, were required to proceed down the seldom-used Superior Front Channel to use the Superior Entry. The Gott's presence at the DMIR shiploader forced the stone-laden Arthur M. Anderson to tie up on the east side of DMIR Dock 6 to wait for a turn at the stone chute.

    Reported by: Al Miller
    Click here for a new book written by Al.

    Toledo News

    The Canadian Miner is due off the coal docks at 0300 this morning bound for Anderson's "K" Elevator.

    The Mapleglen is making a return visit today, she is due off the coal docks around 0600. It is believed that she is returning to the ADM Elevator to load.

    Reported by: Jim Hoffman

    Cargo Totals Fall Again in September

    Shipments of iron ore, coal and stone from U.S. and Canadian Great Lakes ports totaled 15.2 million net tons in September, a decrease of 8.5 percent compared to the corresponding period last year. For the season, shipments of the major dry-bulk commodities stand at 99,962,836 tons, a decrease of 6.8 percent compared the same point in the 1998 navigation season.

    September iron ore cargoes decreased 7 percent. The season-to-date total represents a decrease of 9.4 percent.

    The 8.9 percent decrease in coal loadings in September leaves the trade essentially unchanged from 1998's end-of-September total.

    Stone loading were off 10.2 percent in September; the season-to-date total represents a decrease of 8.2 percent.

    Reported by: Lake Carriers' Association Click here for more information

    September Cargo Report - Cuyahoga River

    Added to the Lakes Carriers' Association home page yesterday is the September Cargo Report for the Cuyahoga River.

    Click here for the report

    Today in Great Lakes History - October 20

    The SCOTT MISENER (3) proceeded to the Port Arthur shipyard for dry docking and repairs on October 20th, After striking bottom October 15, 1973 near Whaleback Shoal on the St. Lawrence River.

    OTTO M. REISS (2) was launched October 20, 1906 as a) JAMES S. DUNHAM for the Chicago Navigation Co. (D. Sullivan & Co., mgr.) Duluth, MN.

    PETER A.B. WIDENER was launched October 20, 1906 as a) PETER A.B. WIDENER for the Pittsburgh Steamship Co. (later the U.S. Steel Corp. in 1952), Cleveland, OH.

    The tug RESCUE was sent from Port Huron to Tawas, MI to release the 246' barge OCEAN which was grounded. After pulling the barge free, Capt. Fitch of RESCUE began towing her down Lake Huron, but the storm got so bad that he was about to turn back and run for Tawas. However, the captain of OCEAN yelled that they were alright and to go ahead down the lake. Soon the seas got the better of the barge. The tug kept with her until she was about to sink. Then the line was cut, the tug turned about, ran under her lee, and rescued her crew of 9 from the lifeboat. The barge then sank. On the way down Lake Huron, opposite Port Sanilac, the RESCUE picked up 6 men and 1 woman from the wrecked barge JOHN F. RUST. In this one trip, the RESCUE earned her name by rescuing 16 persons!

    On 20 October 1863, E. S. ADAMS (3 mast wooden bark, 135', 341 GC, built in 1857 at Port Robinson, Ont.) was carrying 18,500 bushels of wheat on a clear night when she collided with the American bark CONSTITUTION resulting in the loss of the ADAMS. One life was lost. Neither vessel was blamed for the accident.

    Data from: Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

    This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history
    Please e-mail if you would like to contribute a significant event in Great Lakes history

    Saginaw Tow Set for End of Week

    The towing of the John J. Boland - Saginaw from Fraser Shipyard in Superior has been delayed until Thursday or Friday of this week, Oct 21 or 22.

    Gaelic Towing's tug Roger Stahl will be the tug used to tow the Boland from Superior to Sarnia. The Roger Stahl is currently scheduled to arrive Duluth-Superior Wednesday night or early Thursday, she is sailing from Gaelic's dock in Detroit on the Rouge River.

    Lower Lakes Towing has confirmed that the new name for the John J. Boland will be SAGINAW.

    Click here for a computer enhanced image of the John J. Boland with Lower Lakes Towing colors and the name Saginaw.

    Reported by: Terry Sechen

    Myron Taylor Arrives at BayShip

    USS Great Lakes Fleet's Myron C. Taylor arrived in Sturgeon Bay waters shortly after sunrise Monday, October 18, did a 180 degree turn and backed down the bay to Bay Ship for repairs to her conveyor system. The Taylor is no stranger to these waters, putting into the local shipyard the past several winters.

    Reported by: Paul A. Graf and Al Miller

    Seaway News

    Yesterday afternoon the CSL Niagara stopped south of Main Duck Island. She needed to clear a leak in a hydraulic line for the steering gear. She lost about 40 minutes and then got under weigh. She was due at Cape Vincent at 1600 but arrived there at 1645.

    The Frontenac was inbound Adolphus Reach, at 2040 heading for Picton. She is likely loading cement clinker for Essexville.

    Reported by: Ron Walsh

    Twin Ports Report

    USS Great Lakes Fleet apparently is serious about putting Roger Blough into the limestone trade. The vessel, which recently carried what may be its first load of stone to the DMIR dock in Duluth, is scheduled to make two more stone trips in the coming weeks. The Blough is due to load in Port Dolomite on Oct. 18 and unload in Duluth Oct. 20. From there, it will proceed to Two Harbors to load taconite pellets for the downbound trip. It's due back at the Duluth dock on Oct. 28 with stone.

    Edwin H. Gott and Presque Isle are becoming regulars at Nanticoke. The Gott is due to load taconite pellets Oct. 18 at DMIR Duluth for delivery to Nanticoke on the 22nd. Presque Isle is due there Oct. 19 with coal from Midwest Energy Terminal in Superior.

    John G. Munson made an unusual call to Silver Bay on Oct. 17 to load taconite pellets for delivery to Conneaut.

    The DMIR docks in Duluth and Two Harbors are expecting a busy and varied week. Here's the line-up:
    Two Harbors -- Indiana Harbor, Arthur M. Anderson, Oct. 19; Edgar B. Speer, Oct. 20; Roger Blough and St. Clair, Oct. 21; American Mariner, Cason J. Callaway, Oct. 23; John G. Munson, Oct. 24; Edwin H. Gott, Oct. 25.

    Duluth -- Edwin H. Gott, Oct. 18; Arthur M. Anderson (stone), Oct. 19; Roger Blough (stone), Oct. 20; Joe Block, Oct. 22; Presque Isle (stone) Oct. 23; Louis R. Desmarais, Oct. 24; Indiana Harbor, Frontenac, Oct. 25; Roger Blough (stone), Oct. 28.

    Reported by: Al Miller
    Click here for a new book written by Al.

    Toledo News

    The Next grain boat due in Toledo is the Canadian Miner followed by Quebecois both are headed for Andersons "K" Elevator. The Miner is due in today with the Quebecois about three to four days later. Gaelic towing will be handling both tows.

    October 28th is scheduled to be a busy day in Toledo, three boats due at the same elevator on the same day. Because of the line up there will probably be some changes. On the average it takes from 1 1/2 to 2 days to load a boat at the elevators.

    Reported by: Jim Hoffman

    Today in Great Lakes History - October 19

    GEORGE A. SLOAN ran aground off Bob-Lo Island in the Amherstburg Channel on October 19, 1987. She was released when she unloaded part of her cargo to the CALCITE II. SLOAN was repaired in Toledo.

    ALGOSEA was christened on October 19, 1976 at Port Colborne.

    The BUFFALO was able to leave the Saginaw River once it opened on October 19, 1990. The river was closed after the tanker Jupiter exploded as the Buffalo passed.

    The KINSMAN VOYAGER was launched October 19, 1907 as a) H.P. BOPE for the Standard Steamship Co., Cleveland, OH.

    The WILLIAM LIVINGSTONE (c CRISPIN OGLEBAY (1) had the honor on October 19, 1912 of being the first vessel to navigate the opening of the Livingstone Channel named after the man who helped conceive the idea of a separate down bound channel on the east side of Bob-Lo Island in the lower Detroit River. Mr. Livingstone, President of the Lake Carriers Association at the time, piloted his namesake vessel in the channel on that historic trip.

    The crew on the stranded WILLIAM C. MORELAND was removed in gale force winds on October 19, 1910 by the Portage life saving crew.

    On October 19, 1923 the SAMUEL MATHER (3) was driven onto Gull Rock on Lake Superior near Keweenaw Point during a snow storm and gale winds. The crew was safely removed from the badly exposed steamer on October 21st by the Eagle Harbor life saving crew.

    The B.H. TAYLOR (b) ROGERS CITY (2) sailed from Lorain on her maiden voyage on October 19, 1923

    On 19 October 1868, PARAGON (wooden schooner, 212 T, built in 1852 at Oshawa, Ont. as a brig) was being towed up the St. Clair River by the tug WILLIAM A. MOORE with a load of lumber in the company of four other barges. During a gale, the tow was broken up. While the tug MOORE was trying to regain the tows, she collided with PARAGON causing severe damage. 4 were drowned, but two were rescued by the Canadian gunboat/tug PRINCE ALFRED. PARAGON was then towed into Sarnia, but she sank there and was abandoned in place.

    Data from: Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

    This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history
    Please e-mail if you would like to contribute a significant event in Great Lakes history

    James Norris Arrives with Damage

    The James Norris arrived in Ludington Friday with some type of damage that caused her to take on water. Officials from the U.S. Coast Guard Grand Haven station came up to investigate and divers were sent to inspect the vessel. The Coast Guard reports that the vessel struck bottom in the channel while approaching Ludington causing minor damage to the forward ballast tank.

    She was allowed to depart Ludington Saturday morning and headed to Thunder Bay for dry dock repairs.

    Before the Norris was damaged she was due to load sand at Construction Aggregates in Grand Haven. This was a rare trip into Lake Michigan for the vessel.

    Click here for a picture of the vessel taken on Saturday by Max Hanley

    Reported by: David Swain and Max Hanley

    Sarnia Report

    Spotted in Sarnia Sunday was the salt water vessel Finikas loading at the elevator. The Algonova is in what appears to be temporary lay-up at the south end of the North Slip (end of Exmouth St.) and the Fisheries and Oceans vessel Limnos was in at the Government Docks.

    Reported by: Jamie Kerwin

    Owen Sound Report

    After a long absence, salt is due to be shipped into Owen Sound in the near future. Cargill has obtained a contract to supply 30,000 tons to the county of Grey for winter maintenance. The first load aboard the Cuyahoga was due to arrive in Owen Sound on October 22nd. This date has been cancelled as a new pad for unloading is still under construction.

    The site is just west of the Great Lakes Elevator Company's elevator and up to now, the employee's parking lot and lawn. The reason for the delay is the removal of old footings of a former cement mill which stood on the site at the turn of the century.

    Reported by: Peter Bowers

    Twin Ports Report

    Fred R. White Jr., an occasional visitor to the Twin Ports, arrived at Duluth early Oct. 16.

    Click here for a picture of the vessel arriving
    Click here for a mpg video including the vessel blowing a salute (large file 589k)

    Reported by: Al Miller
    Click here for a new book written by Al.

    Lighthouse News

    Pottawatomie Lighthouse Gets New Lantern Room
    The stone Pottawatomie lighthouse on Rock Island, WI recently received a new lantern room. The circa 1858 lighthouse did not have a lantern room for many years. It had been removed sometime after the light was automated in the mid 40's. The new lantern room is made of copper and matches the lighthouse quite nicely.

    Galloo Island and Lighthouse Sold
    2,000 acre Galloo Island located off of Point Vincent, New York was sold to the highest bidder. Before the auction the island was owned by a group of businessmen from Switzerland. Bids started at 1 million dollars and in less than 10 minutes P. J. Kemper of New York gave the winning bid of $2, 472, 500.00. Aside from the island, Mr. Kemper also received the Galoo Island lighthouse, boats, docks, and a mansion located on the island. He does not plan on developing the island any more than it already is.

    Reported by: Colt Edin

    Seaway Ships 1999 Mid-season illustrated edition

    René Beauchamp's popular annual publication is to be released the second or third week of September. The booklet offers a complete list of all new ships which transited the St. Lawrence Seaway up to the end of August, both foreign and inland vessels. Corrections and additions to previous editions. Cost: $3.65 including postage.

    Click here for More Information

    Today in Great Lakes History - October 18

    The ALVA C. DINKEY departed Quebec City, October 18, 1980, in tandem with her former fleetmate GOVERNOR MILLER towed by the FedNav tug CATHY B.

    Tragedy struck on the WILLIAM C. MORELAND's fifth trip October 18, 1910 loaded with 10,700 tons of iron ore from Superior for Ashtabula, OH when she stranded on Sawtooth Reef off Eagle Harbor, MI on Lake Superior. Visibility had been very limited due to forest fires raging on the Keweenaw Peninsula and the Lake was blanketed with smoke as far as one mile off shore. The MORELAND hit so hard and at such speed that she bounced over the first reef and came to rest on a second set of rocks.

    On 18 October 1896, AUSTRALASIA (wooden propeller bulk freighter, 282', 1829 GT, built in 1884 at W. Bay City) was carrying 2,200 tons of soft coal when she caught fire, burned to the waterline and sank 3 miles east of Cana Island in Lake Michigan. The Bailey's Harbor Lifesavers saved her crew.

    Data from: Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

    This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history
    Please e-mail if you would like to contribute a significant event in Great Lakes history

    Taylor Towed from Saginaw

    The Myron C. Taylor had been in Saginaw at the at Saginaw Rock Products dock since Thursday evening. The tug Wisconsin arrived from Detroit yesterday morning and began towing the vessel stern first downriver toward Saginaw Bay.

    The Taylor attempted to unload her cargo of stone but serious problems with the unloading system prevented the vessel from doing that. It is reported that repairs to her bucket system could not be made at the dock. South winds the last few days lowered the water level in the river and it may not have been possible for the Taylor to turn around in the river while still loaded.

    The Wisconsin towed the Taylor stern first out of the Saginaw River to the Saginaw Bay into deep enough water to turn her around. She was then expected to sail for Sturgeon Bay for repairs, sailing with out the tug.

    Reported by: Dan Maus, Lon Morgan and Stephen Hause

    Boland - Saginaw Update

    According to Duluth's Boatwatchers' Hotline at 10:00 a.m. on Saturday, the John J. Boland - S.S. Saginaw is scheduled to be towed from Superior some time this week. The Hotline reports her destination will be Port Stanley, this report does not appear to be accurate as her temporary load line certificate is reported to only be good to go as far as Sarnia.

    Check back for more details as they become available.

    Reported by: Jody L. Aho

    Crewman Evacuated From Cornelius

    At 10:00 a.m. this morning, the Adam E. Cornelius enroute to Toledo, contacted the U.S. Coast Guard Group Detroit requesting a the medical evacuation of a 45-year-old male crewman who was complaining of chest pains. The Coast Guard is currently arranging for the man to be taken from the vessel.

    The Coast Guard launched a 41-foot rescue boat from Station Toledo and a helicopter from Air Station Detroit after receiving flight surgeon authorization. The patient was initially transferred to the 41-foot rescue boat and then hoisted to the helicopter for aerial transport to St. Vincent Hospital in Toledo.

    Seaway - Welland Update

    Noted yesterday on the St. Lawrence was the cruise liner Norwegian Sky which is still in the Davie Shipyard drydock. According to reports, she is expected to be at the yard until at least the 28th of this month. Apparently the damage to her propellers/rudders is taking longer to repair than expected, mostly because of the delicate nature of the repairs.

    On Thursday in the Welland Canal the Canadian Century was still at Port Weller Dry Docks undergoing repairs to her rudder. Next to the Century in the graving dock is the next CSL forebody under construction.

    The forebody of the former J.W. McGiffin, which is being dismantled at the Port Colborne shipbreakers at Wharf 57 in the Welland Canal, looks like it is slowly getting smaller.

    In Eastport, Hamilton the old Canadian Explorer forebody was spotted tied up at section 26/pier 26.

    Reported by: Ken Hamilton

    Today in Great Lakes History - October 17

    The CANADIAN PROSPECTOR was launched October 17, 1963 as a) CARLTON (2)

    The MONTCLIFFE HALL was launched October 17,1959 for Transatlantic Bulk Carriers, Monrovia, Liberia as a) EMS ORE

    With an inexperienced Taiwanese crew, boiler problems and the collapse of Lock 7's west wall in the Welland Canal on October 17th, SAVIC's (CLIFFS VICTORY) departure was delayed until December 17, 1985 when she departed Chicago under her own power.

    The carferry PERE MARQUETTE 19 was launched October 17, 1903.

    On 17 October 1871, CASCADEN (2 mast wood schooner, 138 T, built in 1866 at Saugeen, Ontario) was carrying much needed supplies for the Cove Island Lighthouse keeper and his family who were in desperate straits. But she went ashore 3 miles below Cape Hurd near Tobermory, Ontario in a storm and was wrecked.

    Data from: Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

    This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history
    Please e-mail if you would like to contribute a significant event in Great Lakes history

    Boland to be Renamed

    Reports from Lower lakes Towing confirm that the company is buying the John J. Boland and the vessel will be renamed SAGINAW.

    The vessel is expected to depart under tow some time next week for a lower lakes port.

    Check back for more details as they become available.

    Reported by: Ted Coombs

    Tarantau Sold for Scrap, New Forebody Planned

    The Tarantau was officially sold for scrapping last week to International Marine Salvage of Port Colborne, Ontario. The big self-unloader, a member of the Canada Steamship Lines fleet, has been tied up in Toronto since December 23, l996.

    The next forebody replacement project at Port Weller Drydocks is the H. M. Griffith. She is due into the yard about December 15 and will re-enter service sometime next Spring.

    Reported by: Craig Gammon

    Crewman Evacuated from the Arthur M. Anderson

    Thursday afternoon, The U.S. Coast Guard received a request from Great Lakes Fleet for the medical evacuation of a 44-year-old male crewman who had fallen and hit his head. A 47-foot boat from the U.S.C.G. station St. Ignace with local EMS technicians onboard was sent to conduct the medevac from the 707-foot freighter. The patient was successfully transferred, but there are no updates at this time on his injuries or condition.

    Myron C. Taylor Delayed in Saginaw

    The loaded Myron C. Taylor arrived October 13 at the front range lights entering the Saginaw River. It appears that she came into the river Wednesday, then turned around and went out into the bay early Thursday morning possibly to wait for the water level to rise.

    Early yesterday morning she was docked at Saginaw Rock Products dock in Saginaw, MI.

    The ship was still sitting low in the water, apparently she has not discharged her cargo. During the early morning hours of Friday, two Great lakes Towing tugs departed their slip in Ecorse and sailed for Saginaw, to aid the Taylor in some way.

    The David Z. Norton, also in the River, had finished unloading at Wirt Stone in Saginaw and made a close pass by the Taylor to enter the turning basin.

    Reported by: Lon Morgan and Stephen Hause

    Union Inspects Saltie in Cleveland

    A report in Friday's Cleveland Plain Dealer reports that the saltie Evangelos was inspected by the Seafarers International Union yesterday in Cleveland after they received complaints of improper pay, poor food and filthy linen. The union received complaints from 13 Filipino crewmembers on the Panamanian registered vessel. The sailors stated they were paid $300 to $400 a month well below the $1200 monthly set by a labor agreement.

    The crew also stated they had no juice or bread and only received water to drink. The captain offered union inspectors cokes upon arrival and stated the crewmen were given 3 soft drinks a week, he was surprised to learn there was no bread.

    Members of the International Longshoremans Union threatened to halt unloading and refuse to untie docklines if the crewmembers complaints were not settled. They also threatened to advise the Coast Guard so the ship could be inspected.

    The captain agreed to buy bread immediately, clean the offending linens and purchase more food in Thunder Bay the ships next port of call. The pay issue was not settled as the ships Greek owner stated the bulk of crew pay was sent to the crewmembers homes in the Philippines. Union officials in Cleveland stated the ships payroll books were a mess. Their inspection also found filthy bathrooms, a barely working washing machine and bad tasting drinking water. The captain refused inspection of the food stores.

    Reported by: Rex Cassidy

    Toledo's King Bridge Fails as Freighter Approaches

    The Martin Luther King Bridge on the Maumee River failed mechanically yesterday as the Manitoulin prepared to pass through it's draws. Assisted by two tug boats, the Manitoulin managed to stop 50 yards from the bridge and back herself to the Navy Bistro on the east bank of the Maumee.

    She remained docked until 6:00pm when the bridge managed to open allowing the freighter to pass.

    Dredging in The Rouge

    Lake Michigan Contractors are dredging the Rouge River which leads from the Detroit River to the Rouge Steel Plant. The Dredge Illinois started in the turning basin near the Rouge Steel plant last week and is now past the Fort Street bridge.

    Three days ago the Dredge Ojibway arrived and began digging at the short cut entrance near the Detroit River. The tugs Shirly Joy and Curly B are shuttling dump scows back and forth to Point Mouilee.

    Live Chat

    If you missed our live chat with Al Miller last night tonight Click here for a transcript of the chat.

    Today in Great Lakes History - October 16

    On October 16, 1990 the JOHN B. AIRD's loop belt caught fire while loading mill scale at Inland Steel Mill, East Chicago, Ill. Fueled by coal dust left over after unloading coal at the mill, 1,400 feet of the rubber conveyor belt burned causing nearly $500,000 in damages.

    ALGOWEST set a cargo record for a 27,517 tonne load of grain down the Seaway October 16, 1982 to Port Cartier, Que.

    The RIO ORINOCO grounded off Anticosti Island, Que. on October 16, 1990 and was abandoned. Later she was salvaged by Le Groupe Desgagnes (1981) Inc., refloated, repaired and renamed d) THALASSA DESGAGNES.

    Sea trials of the MERTON E. FARR were successfully completed October 16, 1920.

    On October 16, 1954 the SCOTT MISENER (3) became the first laker to load a record 800,000 bushels of grain on the Great Lakes when she was loaded with barley at Fort William, Ont. for delivery to Port Colborne.

    The WILLIAM G. MATHER (2) was towed from her Cuyahoga River berth on October 16, 1990 by the GLT tugs IDAHO and DELAWARE, she was placed at her permanent station next to the 9th Street Pier of Cleveland's North Coast Harbor.

    On 16 October 1912, JAMES BUCKLEY (2 mast wood schooner-barge, 161’, 442 GC, built in 1884 at Quebec City) was carrying coal and being towed by the tug WILLIAM PROCTOR in consort with the barges H.B. and MENOMINEE in Lake Ontario. The BUCKLEY separated from this group in a storm and was driven into the shallows off the coast of Jefferson County, NY. The tug PROCTOR delivered MENOMINEE to Cape Vincent, then returned in time to take BUCKLEY’s crew out of the rigging - hand over hand on a heaving line - before BUCKLEY finally sank.

    Data from: Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

    This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history
    Please e-mail if you would like to contribute a significant event in Great Lakes history

    Townsend Enters Lay-up

    The Paul H. Townsend arrived in Milwaukee yesterday for lay-up. The vessel is holding a storage load of cement and there is no scheduled departure date for this lay-up.

    Reported by: Andy LaBorde

    Plane Crashes in Lake Erie

    Two men were in a Chatham hospital yesterday after a Cessna 208 Caravan 1 aircraft made an emergency landing in Lake Erie on Wednesday evening. An engine fire forced them to ditch the plane into the lake, three miles east of Point aux Pins, Ontario.

    The occupants were rescued by a U.S. Coast Guard helicopter from Air Station Detroit at 10 p.m. A rescue swimmer was deployed to recover the survivors who were then brought to an awaiting ambulance at Chatham Airfield in Ontario. The two men, on their way from Windsor to Hamilton, walked from the Coast Guard helicopter to the ambulance, where they were reported to be in good condition despite being in the cold Lake Erie water for 1 1/2 hours.

    The Transportation Safety Board was to tow the plane ashore on Thursday as it investigates the accident.

    Reported by: Mike Bennett

    Twin Ports Report

    Canadian Mariner is paying a rare visit to the Twin Ports. After unloading at St. Lawrence Cement, it cleaned its holds and then shifted to General Mills elevator in Duluth, where it was loading on the morning of Oct. 14.

    Kinsman Independent has become a semi-regular at General Mills' Elevator S in Superior. It was loading there Oct. 14.

    Kapitonas Domeika earned the distinction of being one of the few salties to sail to the extreme western tip of the St. Lawrence Seaway. It loaded bentonite at Hallett Dock 6, which is the westernmost commercial dock on the Seaway, located up the St. Louis River in Duluth. The saltie was moving down the river with the aid of two tugs on the morning of Oct. 14. The journey from the Atlantic Ocean to Duluth is 2,342 statute miles.

    Reported by: Al Miller
    Click here for a new book written by Al.

    Rochester to Toronto Ferry Service

    Lake Ontario Fast Ferry Corp. is working with a new shipbuilder on an order of two fast ferries for a proposed service between Rochester, NY. and Toronto.

    William Wilkinson, president of the ferry company, said it is working with Royal Schelde Shipbuilding of The Netherlands. Because of delays in financing, the company lost a building slot with Australian shipbuilder Austral LTD. Wilkinson said the Dutch shipyard has open production slots and is working with them to close a deal. The service may start in 2001.

    Reported by: Ron LaDue

    Lay-Ups Affect September U.S.-Flag Float

    With 5 U.S.-Flag lakers idled for various lengths of time during the month of September, U.S.-Flag cargo movement on the Great Lakes slipped to less than 12 million tons of dry-bulk commodities. That is one of the lowest monthly levels recorded in recent years excluding start-up and close-of navigation months. In comparison to a year ago, the September U.S.-Flag "float" represents a decrease of 11.2 percent or 1,504,894 tons.

    The U.S.-Flag lakers idled in September were the ROGER BLOUGH (43,900 g.t. per trip capacity); ARTHUR M. ANDERSON (25,300); and ELTON HOYT 2ND (22,300). Remaining in their season-long inactive status were the EDWARD L. RYERSON (27,500) and JOHN J. BOLAND (20,109).

    The most significant fall-offs came in iron ore and stone. Iron ore cargoes carried in U.S.-Flag lakers decreased 12.7 percent to only 5.5 million tons. Stone loadings in U.S. bottoms fell by nearly 700,000 tons.

    For the season, U.S.-Flag carriage stands at 77.8 million tons, a decrease of 9 percent or 7.7 million tons.

    Reported by: Lake Carriers' Association Click here for more information

    Shipping on the Radio

    Minnesota Public Radio recently recorded a live program from the Canal Park Marine Museum on Duluth's waterfront. In a program titled Lake Superior Shipping and Shipwrecks they interviewed the director of the Duluth Seaway Port Authority, a ship agent and a ship captain who has sailed the Great Lakes for 37 years.

    The first hour focuses on the shipping industry and its future in Duluth. The second hour is dedicated to shipwrecks.

    Click here to listen to the program

    Today in Great Lakes History - October 15

    On her maiden voyage the LEON SIMARD (b) L'ORME NO.1. ) was spotted traveling eastward on the St. Lawrence River October 15, 1974.

    The WOLVERINE (4) departed in Columbia Transportation Division colors October 15, 1974 on her maiden voyage from Lorain light to load stone at Stoneport, MI for delivery to Huron, OH.

    HERBERT C. JACKSON cleared Fraser Shipyard on October 15, 1988 after having the 1000 h.p. bow thruster installed from the JOHN SHERWIN.

    The PAUL H. CARNAHAN came out on her maiden voyage October 15, 1961.

    On October 15, 1984 the a) JOHN O. McKELLAR (2) was sold to P.& H. Shipping of Parrish & Heimbecker Ltd., Mississauga, Ont. and renamed b) ELMGLEN (2).

    Scrapping began on October 15, 1988 of the JOHN T. HUTCHINSON at Kaohsiung, Taiwan by Li Chong Steel & Iron Works Co. Ltd.

    The C.H. McCULLOUGH, JR. was laid up on October 15, 1969 at Manitowoc, WI.

    The MELDRUM BAY was launched October 15, 1949 as a) COVERDALE for Canada Steamship Lines, Montreal, Que.

    The SCOTT MISENER (3) struck bottom October 15, 1973 near Whaleback Shoal on the St. Lawrence River reportedly damaging sixty of her bottom plates. She proceeded to the Port Arthur shipyard for dry docking and repairs from October 20th through the 28th.

    On October 15, 1980 the NIPIGON BAY, loaded with ore for Hamilton, Ont., grounded at the "crossover" near Brockville, Ont. on the St. Lawrence River and sustained a 100 foot rip in her bottom plates. She proceeded to Thunder Bay, Ont. arriving there on October 24th where repairs were made at an estimated cost of $500,000.

    The R. P. MASON (3 mast wooden schooner, 115’, 155 GT, built in 1867 at Grand Haven, MI) was bound from Chicago for Detroit when she struck a rocky reef near Waugoshance Point in the Straits of Mackinac on 8 October 1871. Water gushed in an 8-foot hole. However, she was temporarily patched and her cargo of grain, flour and meat was taken off over the next few days. The tug LEVIATHAN took her in tow, going to Little Traverse Bay, when, on 15 October, they encountered a gale near Cross Village, MI. The MASON broke free and capsized. 5 died and 4 were rescued. The MASON drifted ashore upside down. She was eventually salvaged and sailed for another 46 years. She ended her days when she burned in Lake Michigan in 1917.

    The tug DOUGLAS caught fire near Wyandotte while going down the Detroit River and sank. The crew all jumped overboard and were saved by the steam yacht JOSEPHINE, except for John Cassidy, one of the firemen, who drowned. A few days later, plans were made to raise and rebuild the DOUGLAS.

    Data from: Jody L. Aho, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, James Neumiller, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

    This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history
    Please e-mail if you would like to contribute a significant event in Great Lakes history

    Sailor Released

    The sailor who swam nearly five miles to shore after falling off a freighter into a chilly Lake Superior has been released from the hospital.

    Scott Richards returned home on Tuesday after receiving a plane ticket to Cleveland from the steamer's owner, Oglebay Norton Company of Cleveland.

    Richards had been in stable condition at the Keweenaw Memorial Medical Center on Monday where he was treated for hypothermia and exposure. The Oglebay Norton Company stated that this was the first time in their history that a seaman had fallen into open water while at sea.

    Reported by: Jim Grill

    Twin Ports Report

    For the second time in recent weeks, Harvest States elevator in Superior is performing the increasingly rare task of loading two straight-deckers at the same time. Kinsman Independent and Algocen were both under the chutes on the morning of Oct. 13.

    Reported by: Al Miller
    Click here for a new book written by Al.

    Oil Rig Moves on St. Lawrence

    The giant oil rig Petrobas 36 (ex Spirit of Columbus) left Quebec harbour Wednesday night after spending more than two years at Wharf 29, where the Davie Shipyard made major transformations.

    The operation started after 21h30 with the help of seven tugs, three Z-drive and four conventional. Slowly but surely, this unusual group of vessels departed in direction of Sept-Îles, where Petrobas 36 will be inspected and then moved on a special oil rig carrier.

    At about 6h00 yesterday morning, Petrobas 36 was able to pass under tricky Hydro-Québec high tension lines in Beaumont, with the helped of a low tide. This delicate move went very well and the eight vessels cleared away. At 9h00, Petrobas and her helpers were right in front of the small and beautiful village of St. Michel-de-Bellechasse.

    It was a spectacular sight to see this giant - very high and big - structure moving slowly on a calm but rainy St-Lawrence River, carefully watched by a helicopter.

    Algosound, downbound with a load of grain, was a few kilometers away, expecting to bypass on the north side of the channel.

    A much bigger tug, waiting near Banc-Brûlé bank, is expected to replaced the former tugs and lead Petrobas 36 to Sept-Iles.

    Reported by: J.F. Boutin

    Bridge Out in Toledo

    Yesterday evening the U.S. Coast Guard reported that the Martin Luther King Bridge over the Maumee River in Toledo was stuck in the closed position due to an electrical problem. Crews were working to restore service to the bridge.

    There was no mention of what ships were above or below the bridge waiting to exit or enter the grain terminals.

    Reported by: Dean J. Frazer

    Tug in Dry Dock

    In other Toledo news, the new tug James Pallidino was spotted in the drydock at Toledo Shipyard yesterday. She has been there for several days now and it is unkown why she is in the drydock.

    Reported by: Jim Hoffman

    Welland Canal Report

    The former bow of the Canadian Explorer is still tied at the dock in Hamilton Harbour. The stern of the vessel was removed last year and fitted to the bow section of the former Hamilton Transfer creating the Canadian Transfer.

    On Sat. Oct 9, an injured crewman was taken off the Lok Pratap when she entered the canal. The man had to stay overnight in the hospital.

    The Canadian Venture was sailing east with grain for Port Cartier on Saturday. She was expected to take 12 hours and 10 minutes to travel from Port Weller piers to Cape Vincent.

    The Canadian provider was also eastbound for Baie Comeau. she had a cargo of soya beans from Toledo.

    The Canadian Century was still in Port Weller Drydocks undergoing repairs on Mon. Oct. 11.

    Reported by: Ron Walsh

    Stone Trade Loses More Ground In September

    Shipments of limestone and gypsum from U.S. and Canadian Great Lakes ports in September fell 10 percent (or nearly 500,000 net tons) compared to the corresponding period last year. While Canadian ports registered a small increase, loadings at U.S. stone docks slipped significantly. The dramatic fall-off at American ports in part reflects that some U.S.-Flag lakers which backhaul stone were idle because of lack of demand for iron ore.

    For the season, the Lakes stone trade stands at 26,552,646 tons, a decrease of 8.2 percent.

    Reported by: Lake Carriers' Association Click here for more information

    New Vessel Feature

    Each day this week the Fleet Photo Gallery will feature a different Great Lakes vessel. Today we spotlight the history of the Canadian Miner.

    Click here to visit the gallery

    Today in Great Lakes History - October 14

    The keel to the JAMES R. BARKER was laid on October 14, 1974. She was to become Interlake's first 1000 footer and the flag ship of the fleet for Moore McCormack Leasing, Inc. (Interlake Steamship Co., Cleveland, Ohio, mgr.).

    On October 14, 1983 the CHI-CHEEMAUN encountered 48 knot winds after departing Tobermory with 113 passengers bound for South Baymouth. Due to high wind and waves the captain decided to find shelter rather than to continue on or return to port. The ferry made her way around the Bruce Peninsula southeast to Dyer Bay where she dropped anchor for the night, however she had no overnight accommodations. Complimentary meals were served and activities were organized by the crew. The anchor was lifted the next morning and the ferry returned to Tobermory.

    The GEORGE A. STINSON departed Detroit on her maiden voyage October 14, 1978 light for Superior, WI to load iron ore pellets for delivery to the Great Lakes Steel Division of the National Steel Corp. at Zug Island in River Rouge, MI.

    On October 14, 1966, loaded with potash bound for Oswego, NY, the STONEFAX collided with the Norwegian salty ARTHUR STOVE and sank in the Welland Canal between Locks 7 and 8.

    On 14 October 1875, it was discovered that thieves had completely stripped the canvass and rigging from the schooner FORWARDER owned by Little & Brown. The schooner was lying about three miles below Port Huron.

    On 14 October 1822, APPELONA (wooden schooner, 45’, 37 T, built in 1814 at Henderson, NY) was bound from Oswego for Genessee, NY when she was struck by lightning in Lake Ontario and sank about 15 minutes. All hands were injured but abandoned her for shore and all survived.

    Data from: Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

    This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history
    Please e-mail if you would like to contribute a significant event in Great Lakes history

    Sam Laud Grounds

    The Sam Laud ran aground without damage, pollution or injuries while outbound from Port Inland with a load of limestone. Port Inland is located in Northern Lake Michigan.

    She remained aground for four hours before removing enough ballast water to float free without assistance.

    The U.S. Coast Guard reports that the Laud was slightly left of the privately maintained range lights when she grounded and was loaded to within half a foot of the charted depth of the privately dredged channel.

    Fishing Trawler Sinks

    Three fishing trawler crew members were rescued from Lake Erie on Monday after the packing around the propeller shaft failed and the boat sank near Erie Pa.

    The 65 foot Carol Sue II out of Sandusky sank six nautical miles northeast of Conneaut. The three had life jackets and were rescued from the 62 -degree lake by a Coast Guard 47-foot motor lifeboat from Erie after about 1 1/2 hours in the lake. The Coast Guard also sent a rescue boat from nearby Ashtabula, and a helicopter from Air Station Detroit.

    The passing Richard Reiss aided in the rescue, helping to vector the motor lifeboat to the three persons in the water.

    The three, John Fresch and Chuck Coy-Kendall of Sandusky and Jim Wilson of Port Clinton, were treated by first-aid crew members and released.

    Minor oil Spill in the Snell Lock

    U.S. Coast Guard investigators responded to a report of oil pollution in Snell Lock at Massena, NY. after the Indian Flagged Lok Maheshwari had departed downbound.

    The Saint Lawrence Seaway Development Corporation stopped navigation of the Seaway at 10:30 a.m. The investigation found approximately eight gallons of bilge slops in the lock chamber. Op-Tech Environmental Services was hired for the clean-up and navigation of the Seaway resumed at 4:30 p.m.

    Transport Canada Marine Safety boarded the Lok Maheshwari at Montreal and conducted an investigation and collected bilge slop samples. A U.S. Coast Guard Safety detachment will continue the investigation to determine the source of the oil.

    Seaway Update

    Finally leaving the Lakes on Oct.9 in ballast and bound for Trois-Rivieres from Toronto where she arrived on July 24 was the Singapore-flag general cargo ship THORSCAPE. She had entered the Seaway on July 22 bound for Hamilton and the proceeded to Toronto. After unloading cargo, her charter by Canadian Christensen African Lines was over and she was sold. Not finding cargo right away, she anchored off Toronto harbour.

    Making her third trip of the season in the Seaway lately was the self-unloader CUYAHOGA. Contrary to the first trips when she came to Montreal, her third trip ended at Côte Ste. Catherine where she unloaded salt on Oct.11. Her cargoes destined to Montreal were salt also. So far, she did not venture to ports situated east of Montreal.

    Since a few weeks, dredging operations is underway in Montreal harbour. Two firms are doing the job, Harbour Development of Saint John, N.B. and Verreault Navigation of Les Méchins, QC It is expected they will be working until sometime in December. Harbour Development is using the dredge CRANEMASTER, the tug SWELLMASTER, the crewboat IRVING CHESTNUT and two mud scows.

    Verreault has the dredge I.V. No.8 and the self-propelled mud carriers I.V. No.9, I.V. No.11 and I.V. No.13. They were converted from small newsprint carriers in the late sixties, early seventies. As newsprint carriers, they were in service from Donnacona, QC to New York by way of the Richelieu and Hudson rivers.

    Reported by: René Beauchamp.

    Twin Ports Report

    Elton Hoyt 2nd arrived in Duluth Oct. 12 to unload stone. From there it's scheduled to go to Two Harbors to load taconite pellets.

    Grain traffic remains brisk. On the morning of Oct. 12, Munteborg was loading at General Mills in Duluth after unloading wood pulp at the Duluth port terminal; Lake Superior was loading at AGP; and Algocen and Gunay A were loading at Harvest States elevator.

    Although most salties leave the Twin Ports with grain, Kapitonas Domeika is loading bentonite (a clay-like substance often used as a binder) at Hallett Dock in Duluth.

    Reported by: Al Miller
    Click here for a new book written by Al.

    Big Dip In Lake Erie Coal Trade

    Coal loadings at Lake Erie ports slipped nearly half a million tons in September. Loadings totaled 2,135,281 net tons, a decrease of 476,146 tons compared to the corresponding period last year. For the season, the Lake Erie coal trade stands at 14.2 million tons, a decrease of 8.5 percent.

    Reported by: Lake Carriers' Association Click here for more information

    Risley Expected to Lay-up

    The Coast Guard Ship Samuel Risley is expected to start a six week lay up at the Parry Sound Coast Guard Base and will then commence buoy operations on November 10th.

    The CCGS SIMCOE will be brought out of cold lay-up in November to begin operations in the St. Lawrence Seaway as a conventional crewed ship and will run until approximately the end of December. After the lower section of the Seaway buoys have been changed over to winter spars she is expected to go back in to lay-up until spring when she starts again replacing the buoys.

    More on the Man Overboard

    U.S. Coast Guard vessels and aircraft were scrambled Sunday night to respond to the message that a crewman was missing from the Buckeye, the Duluth News-Tribune reported.

    At 11:55 p.m. Sunday, the Coast Guard launched a helicopter from Air Station Traverse City, the buoy tender Sundew from Duluth, and a 47-foot rescue boat from Station Portage in Houghton, Michigan, the Coast Guard reported.

    By the time the crew of the Buckeye realized that 28-year-old Scott Richards was missing, the vessel was an estimated 90 miles away en route to Silver Bay, Minnesota. The vessel reversed course to aid in the search. The Coast Guard estimates that Richards already was ashore in Eagle Harbor, Michigan, by the time he was discovered missing.

    On Monday, people involved in the incident were marveling at Richards' survival.

    "At 8 o'clock it's about totally dark, nobody knows you're missing," Keweenaw County Sheriff Ron Lahti told the News-Tribune. "That feeling alone would be enough for most people to quit."

    Richards told the sheriff he went out onto the deck around 8 p.m. to make a cellular telephone call. While on deck, he noticed some barrels had come loose as the boat rolled in the two- to three-foot seas off Eagle Harbor. As he worked on the barrels, he slipped and fell.

    Needless to say, Richards' arrival at a house in Eagle Harbor surprised the inhabitants, an elderly couple named Clarence and Anne Bach.

    "Clarence and I are both 80 years old and we live in Eagle Harbor," Anne Bach told the News-Tribune. "Anyway, there was this soft knock on the door at 3:30 in the morning... Clarence went to the door. There was this tall young fellow who said, `I just fell off an ore carrier, would you call the sheriff?' At 3:30 in the morning you just wonder who this person is who said he just fell off an ore carrier. What are you supposed to believe?"

    Reported by: Al Miller
    Click here for a new book written by Al.

    Today in Great Lakes History - October 13

    The SASKATCHEWAN PIONEER made her first trip out of Thunder Bay, Ont. with grain on October 13, 1983.

    The tug GLENADA towed the BROOKDALE (2) from Port Colborne to Newman's scrap yard at Port Maitland, Ont. the week of October 13, 1980.

    On October 13, 1902 the MAUNALOA collided with her whaleback consort BARGE 129 on Lake Superior and sank it 30 miles northwest of Vermilion Point, which is between Upper Michigan's Crisp and Whitefish Points. The MAUNALOA had been towing the BARGE 129, both vessels loaded with iron ore, when the towline parted in heavy seas. While trying to regain control of the barge, they came together and the steamer's port anchor raked the side of the barge which started taking on water. The crew was taken off the barge before it sank.

    On 13 October 1875, off Alpena, Michign, the tug E. H. MILLER had her boiler explode while racing with the tug CITY OF ALPENA -- both in quest of a tow. The ALPENA, who was ahead of the MILLER when she blew up, immediately turned around to pick up survivors. The ALPENA sunk in minutes. The engineer, fireman and a boy were rescued, but the captain and cook were lost. The fireman was in such poor shape that it was thought that he would not live.

    Data from: Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

    This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history
    Please e-mail if you would like to contribute a significant event in Great Lakes history

    Man Overboard Swims Five Miles to Safety

    At 0400 yesterday morning a resident of the Eagle Harbor area was awaken by a knock on his door, half asleep going to the door he could see a bright object out over the lake, the light was a US Coast Guard helicopter from air Station Traverse City looking for the very person who was knocking on his door.

    This man was identified as Scott Richards, 28 of Willoughby Hills, Ohio, who is a crewman on the Buckeye. Richards reports he was securing some drums on the stern when he fell overboard, about 4 to 5 miles off shore between Copper Harbor and Eagle Harbor.

    The man last remembers being on board at 8:00 PM and is not sure of the time he fell overboard. Richards spent all night swimming in the 46-degree waters and made it to safety on a rocky Lake Superior shoreline.

    Richards was taken to Keweenaw Memorial Hospital, in Laurium, where he was listed in stable condition, suffering from hypothermia.

    He was not wearing a life jacket when he slipped under the ship's fence and into the water, a 30 to 50 foot drop. The waters were rough with waves estimated at 6 to 8 feet, according to authorities from the United States Coast Guard Group Sault Ste Marie.

    The Marquette Mining Journal quotes a Coast Guard officer as saying that the maximum survival rate given Richards' age, physical condition and the elements was estimated at about six hours.

    Crews on the Buckeye first noticed the man missing when he did not report for his watch at mid-night yesterday morning. The boat was searched and when he could not be found the U.S. Coast Guard was called. A motor lifeboat from station Portage/Hancock was launched along with the air search from Air Sation Traverse City.

    Reported by: Jim Grill, Robert Oom and John Rice

    Algolake in for repairs

    The Algolake arrived in Sarnia at approximately 18:45 yesterday for repairs on her propeller. It is believed that she had lost part of a propeller blade on Lake Superior and that a new one was on the way to Sarnia today.

    Also in Sarnia yesterday was the Jean Parisien at the elevator. She was still docked at 7pm last night.

    Reported by: Jamie Kerwin

    Canadian Transfer at Lorain

    The Canadian Transfer made her first visit up the Black River in Lorain, Ohio Sunday. She arrived early morning (about midnight) and took quite some time to get in to the harbor and up past the first bridge. She also had to pass the Reserve which was docked at the Lorain Pellet Terminal.

    The Reserve departed shortly after the Transfer passed by. The Transfer said she was planning to depart at 7am, but wasn't seen leaving the harbor until about noon on Sunday.

    Reported by: Chris Wilson

    Presque Isle Back for Coal

    Presque Isle is scheduled for another load of coal Oct. 15 at Midwest Energy Terminal in Superior. Her last trip was a load of coal from Superior to Nanticoke, due there on the 10th.

    Reported by: Al Miller
    Click here for a new book written by Al.

    Bridge and Traffic in Buffalo

    News reports indicate the Norfolk Southern railroad is asking government authorities to close a section of the Buffalo River. The railroad wants the area above the Concrete Central grain elevator closed to all shipping traffic. Norfolk Southern would like to lower the old Nickel Plate drawbridge and lay welded rail across the span to speed up train traffic through South Buffalo.

    They propose the construction of a pipeline and tanker dock below the bridge to allow gas cargoes bound for Mobil Oil to be unloaded without the vessels coming so far up the river. A few years back ConRail suggested a similar idea and Mobil blocked the plan, keeping the river open as a federally funded waterway.

    Hopefully, for boatwatchers sake, Mobil will once again keep the river open.

    Reported by: Brian Wroblewski

    Today in Great Lakes History - October 12

    The JEAN PARISIEN suffered considerable bottom damage when she ran aground near Comfort Island about a mile west of Alexandria Bay, NY. She was released October 12, 1981 and returned to service after repairs were completed at the Vickers Montreal yard.

    The CLIFF S VICTORY was sold October 12, 1985 to Hai International Corp. of New York for scrapping in the orient and transferred to Panamanian registry. Her name was changed to c) SAVIC, utilizing the "S" from CLIFFS, the "VIC" from VICTORY and inserting an "A". All the other letters were painted out.

    The JOHN A. KLING sailed on her maiden voyage October 12, 1922 light from Manitowoc to load stone at Rockport, MI.

    The Keel was laid October 12, 1925 for the COLONEL JAMES PICKANDS.

    The SYLVANIA returned to service on October 12, 1967. She sank at the Peerless Cement Co. dock at Port Huron, MI in June of that year after being struck by the Canada Steamship Lines package freight steamer RENVOYLE.

    The tug EDNA G. remained at Two Harbors until October 12, 1993 when she was towed to the Fraser Shipyard at Superior, WI by the GLT tug KANSAS. She is now on display as a floating exhibit for the city.

    On October 12, 1967, the Canadian Leader entered service as the last new steam-powered vessel on the Great Lakes. The vessel, originally named Feux Follets by her first owners, Papachristidis Company Limited, was given her present name when it was sold to Upper Lakes Shipping in 1972.

    At 3:00 a.m., 12 October 1870, the 76 ton tug ONTARIO caught fire and burned to the waterline while lying at Harrow's dock in Algonac, MI.

    On 12 October 1901, ALVINA (wooden schooner-rigged scow-barge, 89’, 95 GT, built in 1871 at Fair Haven, MI) was being towed by the steamer WESTON and had a load of 700 barrels of lubricating oil. They were bound from Cleveland for Manistique. The ALVINA was overwhelmed in a storm and sank near Thunder Bay Island in Lake Huron. Her entire crew made it to shore in her yawl. Her cargo was salvaged five days later.

    Data from: Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

    This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history
    Please e-mail if you would like to contribute a significant event in Great Lakes history

    Mild Winters to Close Mine for Three Weeks

    The Goderich Signal Star reports that the Sifto salt mine in Goderich, Ontario will shutdown for three weeks between now and Christmas. The mild winters over the last couple of years has reduced the demand for salt. Eighty percent of the mine's output of salt is used for ice-melting applications.

    The mine will close for one week beginning October 11th and will close the weeks before and after Christmas. The mine employs 250 workers.

    The company is also experiencing strong competition from the salt mine in Detroit who has increased their production.

    Reported by: Philip Nash

    Crewman Evacuated from the Reserve

    The Reserve was upbound on the Detroit River yesterday when a 39 year old crewmember required emergency service. The vessel went to anchor in the Belle Isle anchorage and the J.W. Westcott Company's Joseph J. Hogan was dispatched to transfer the man.

    The Hogan took the crewman to a waiting ambulance in Heart Plaza for transfer to a local hospital.

    Reported by: Chuck Pike

    Busy Day in Toledo

    The Algoisle was inbound Toledo at the pumpout station about 1415 yesterday, with the Algorail leaving C+O coal dock and the Nanticoke downbound from the N + W railway bridge. Another busy day in Toledo with many vessel working in the same area.

    The Algoisle arrived at Anderson's and was waiting to load soybeans starting today through Tuesday or Wednesday. Once loaded the vessel will sail for Baie Comeau.

    The Nanticoke was loading at Anderson's and the Windoc was loading next door at Cargill.

    Reported by: Ken Hamilton

    Canadian Century In Port Weller Dry Docks

    The Canadian Century is in Port Weller Dry Docks for rudder repairs. October 3rd the vessel arrived at Port Coulborn Lock 8 of the Welland Canal when she lost steering due to a problem with her Port Rudder. It is reported that the rudder was lost from the 16' mark down. Her cargo was transferred to the Algowood and the Century was assisted by two tugs through the Welland Canal to the dry dock for repairs. It is unknown when the vessel will depart Port Weller Dry Docks.

    Reported by: John Stark

    New Feature

    By request a new feature to the site, the Boatnerd Voting Booth. A web page where you can click and vote and then see the results.

    This week's vote: Your favorite Grain Boat.

    Click here to vote

    Today in Great Lakes History - October 11

    The BAIE COMEAU II cleared Sorel October 11, 1983 as c) AGIA TRIAS, Panamanian registry #1355. Her Canadian registry was closed on October 12, 1983. Her mission was to carry grain from New Orleans, La. to Mexican and Caribbean Island ports and sailed at least into the 1987 season. Subsequently she was renamed d) OCEAN VIEW, e) SEA DIAMOND, f) GOLDEN CREST and g) ATLANTIC WOOD in 1991 for Nexus Maritime Co. S.A., St. Vincent. Disposition unknown.

    The MERCURY (2) scraped the South Grand Island Bridge in the Niagara River in heavy fog on October 11, 1974. Her forward mast snapped off, the midship mast was tilted and her smoke stack was toppled. She proceeded after the mishap to G&W Welding at Cleveland under her own power for repairs.

    WHEAT KING, under tow arrived at Chittagong, Bangladesh on October 11, 1989 to be broken up.

    On 11 October 1913, THOMAS H. CAHOON (3 mast wooden schooner-barge, 166’, 431 GT, built in 1881 at E. Saginaw) was carrying lumber in tow of the steamer C. W. CHAMBERLAIN. They were bound from Sault Ste. Marie to Byng Inlet. However during a storm, the CAHOON stranded and went to pieces on “Kenny Shoal” by the southwest corner of Innes Island in Georgian Bay. No lives were lost.

    Data from: Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

    This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history
    Please e-mail if you would like to contribute a significant event in Great Lakes history

    Hoyt Departs

    Interlake Steamship Company's steamer Elton Hoyt 2nd, in temporary lay-up at Rouge Steel since August, was set to depart her lay-up dock at 5:00pm yesterday. She was headed upbound for Drummond Island.

    Gaelic Tugs free Algomarine

    About 3 am on Friday, October 8 the Algomarine reported she was aground approaching the General Chemical dock at Amherstburg Ontario. As the vessel neared the dock to unload her cargo of stone she became lodged tight to the bottom, unable to free herself.

    The call for help went out to Gaelic Tugboat in Detroit for assistance. Gaelic dispatched the 2,000 hp tugs Shannon and Patricia Hoey to the scene, arriving in early morning hours.

    After various attempts to free the vessel, Gaelic dispatched two additional tugs, the 2,000 hp tug Carolyn Hoey and the 3,000 hp tug Roger Stahl. Finely after several hours of heavy pulling and pushing the vessel was freed at 7:30 PM. As the Algomarine approached the dock it was found that the low water level would not allow the loaded vessel closer than 8 feet from the dock.

    Cruise Ship in the Seaway

    The 377-foot cruise ship Seabourn Pride passed Brockville/Maitland eastbound at yesterday at 1030 a.m. She is expected to tie up at the Coast Guard docks in Prescott overnight.

    The lifeboats have to be off-loaded at Prescott in order for the ship to pass through the Iroquois Locks because it is too wide. They did this on the upbound trip, floating the lifeboats to Prescott and loaded them back on after they had transited the lock. It was quite an operation to watch.

    Reported by: Rose Phillips

    Saguenay Update

    M.A.C. Gagne (former Saguenay) was removed from Pascol Engineering's drydock in Thunder Bay Friday morning. She was placed back at the P. Gagne dock on the Kam River.

    Early last month the vessel entered the Pascol Engineering drydock where Pascol employees removed the vessel's self-unloading boom.

    Reported by: Ron Konkol

    Twin Ports Report

    Duluth's port terminal was the hot corner for boatwatchers late Saturday afternoon. The 441-foot Munteborg was in the terminal's main unloading berth, Gunay A was in the outer end of the berth at layby and Cason J. Callaway was right around the corner fueling at the Murphy Oil dock.

    The rest of the harbor was busy, with grain vessels taking the typical late-season measure of loading on the weekends. Joe Block was under the gravity chutes at the DMIR ore dock; Canadian Transport was finishing loading at Midwest Energy Terminal; Lake Ontario was loading at AGP; Canadian Ranger was loading at Harvest States berth 1; and Verdon was in Harvest States berth 2. Gordon C. Leitch remained in layby at General Mills in Duluth.

    Reported by: Al Miller
    Click here for a new book written by Al.

    Busy Night in Toledo

    A rather large number of vessel were moving on the Maumee River Saturday evening. At roughly 5:00 p.m. the Windoc started the parade with the salty Alexandria heading into TWI, Donald C Hanna and her barge into B.P., the cement barge Integrity and tug Jacklyn M. into Lafarge.

    Outbound for the lake there was the Algosound assisted by two tugs and the Algorail was to meet her at the shipyard.

    Spurts of traffic like this do happen in the Maumee river but not very often.

    Today in Great Lakes History - October 10

    While downbound with coal in the St. Lawrence River on October 10,1981, the JEAN PARISIEN suffered considerable bottom damage when she ran aground near Comfort Island about a mile west of Alexandria Bay, NY.

    The BROOKDALE (2) was towed out of Toronto on October 10, 1980 by the tug GLENADA, assisted by the tug TERRY S. She was one her way to the cutters torch.

    The CHAMPLAIN (3), with her former fleetmate CADILLAC (4) was towed past Gibraltar October 10, 1987 heading for Aliaga, Turkey for dismantling by Cukurova Celik Endustrisi A.S.

    The SAVIC (CLIFFS VICTORY) cleared New York on October 10, 1986.

    The HULL NO.1, ex KINSMAN ENTERPRISE(1), being towed by the Polish tug JANTAR arrived in Aliaga, Turkey on October 10, 1989 to be scrapped there.

    On 10 October 1905, CHARLES H. BURTON (3 mast wooden schooner, 158’, 514 GT, built in 1873 at Bangor, MI) was carrying coal in a storm in Lake Erie when she was driven ashore 4 1/2 miles east of Barcelona, NY and broke up. No lives were lost. She had been built on the hull of the bark GLENBULAH which had burned in the Chicago fire of 1871.

    Data from: Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

    This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history
    Please e-mail if you would like to contribute a significant event in Great Lakes history

    Algomarine Aground

    The Algomarine grounded in the Amherstburg Channel of the Detroit River yesterday morning. By afternoon there were four Gaelic Tugboat Company tugs working to free the vessel. Those on scene were: the Carolyn Hoey, Patricia Hoye, Shannon and Roger Stahl.

    Plenty of traffic in the Twin Ports on Oct. 8

    Burns Harbor was loading at BNSF ore dock, with George A. Stinson expected to tie up at the Duluth port terminal to wait its turn and Algosteel expected to anchor in the lake to wait for the berth following the Stinson.

    Harvest States elevator remains busy. Quebecois and Goviken were finishing their loads Friday morning (this is a correction from Thursday's post). Both vessels are expected to depart soon. Waiting for Harvest States berth 1 are Verdon and Canadian Ranger, both anchored on the lake. After Algocen finishes unloading at St. Lawrence Cement, its expected to go out on the lake to clean its holds, then wait for Harvest States berth 1.

    Other grain traffic included Lake Ontario loading at AGP in Duluth and Gordon C. Leitch arriving for Peavey Connors Point.

    Saltie Gunay A was unloading steel coils at the port terminal.

    Reported by: Al Miller
    Click here for a new book written by Al.

    Canadian Steamship Lines M.V. Nanticoke arrives in Toledo

    The M.V. Nanticoke arrived at the Khulman Dock at 0430 yesterday morning. She was standing by to shift to the Andersons Dock to load grain as soon as an unidentified Canadian boat finishes loading.

    In May of this year the Nanticoke was side ways in the Maumee river above the Conrail Bridge due to a bridge delay. She was assisted by the tugs Louisiana and Carolyn Hoey.

    Today in Great Lakes History - October 09

    The CHIMO (b) CANADIAN RANGER) was moved onto the Port Weller Dry Dock on October 9, 1983 where work began to cut her apart forward of her aft located pilot house and engine room.

    The GULF MACKENZIE (b) L. ROCHETTE) was launched October 9, 1976

    The SASKATCHEWAN PIONEER arrived in the Welland Canal on her delivery trip October 9, 1983 en route for her formal christening at Thunder Bay.

    The JAMES DAVIDSON was launched October 9, 1920 for the Globe Steamship Co., Cleveland, OH (G.A. Tomlinson, mgr.)

    On October 9, 1984 the PATERSON (1) was sold to Shearmet Recycling, a Thunder Bay ship breaker, and was broken up at their Mission River dock.

    The a) COL. JAMES M. SCHOONMAKER (b) WILLIS B. BOYER) sailed from the shipyard on her maiden voyage on October 9, 1911 to Toledo, OH where she loaded coal bound for Sheboygan, WI. The SCHOONMAKER was the largest vessel on the Great Lakes when she came out. For much of the decade this vessel either broke or held many bulk cargo records.

    On 9 October 1820, ASP (wooden schooner, 57 T, built in 1808 at Mississauga, Ontario) was carrying lumber and staves when she sprang a leak near Long Point in Lake Ontario. She waterlogged, then capsized. The upturned vessel was driven across the lake and finally went ashore off the Salmon River at Mexico Bay, NY and broke up quickly. 9 of the 11 onboard lost their lives. She was originally built as the British armed schooner ELIZABETH.

    Data from: Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

    This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history
    Please e-mail if you would like to contribute a significant event in Great Lakes history

    Boland Sold

    KDLH-TV in Duluth reported Oct. 7 that the John J. Boland has been sold to Lower Lakes Towing. The report did not cite any sources or give any timetable for when the vessel might leave Superior, where it has been laid up since December 1998.

    Rumors suggest that the vessel will be towed from Fraser Shipyards to Sarnia on October 15 weather permitting.

    Look for updates on this web site as new information becomes available.
    Click here for a computer enhanced image of the Boland in LLT colors.

    Reported by: Al Miller
    Click here for a new book written by Al.

    Blough Unloads

    As of 4:30 p.m. Oct. 7, Roger Blough was still unloading at the DMIR ore dock. The vessel is backed into the dock, listing slightly to port and discharging stone from the port side. The conveyor runs under the dock and delivers the stone into a large storage yard, where a stacker/reclaimer was piling the stone into a very long, tall pile. The discharge rate didn't seem to be great, but it was steady.

    Reported by: Al Miller
    Click here for a new book written by Al.

    Scrapping Continues

    The forebody of the J.W. McGiffin is being dismantled at the Port Colborne shipbreakers at Wharf 57 in the Welland Canal. The stern of the McGiffin was removed and attached to new forebody creating the CSL Niagara.
    Click here for a picture taken in late September.

    Reported by: Ken Hamilton

    Twin Ports Report

    John G. Munson is scheduled to make an unusual trip to Marysville, Mich. It loads in Toledo and is expected in Marysville about 10 a.m. Oct. 10. GLF usually sends its shorter boats on these trips.

    Calcite II is reported in the Sturgeon Bay shipyard for repairs. There's no estimated departure date.

    A couple of unusual GLF trips: Presque Isle is making another coal run from Superior to Nanticoke, due there on the 10th. Myron C. Taylor is scheduled to load at Drummond Island on Oct. 8.

    Herbert C. Jackson is expected to make one of its unusual trips to the Twin Ports when it arrives in Duluth on the 7th for Hallett Dock.

    Harvest States elevator in Superior appears to be the busiest in port this season. A couple seasons ago, it was uncommon to see two vessels loading there at once. This season it's happened numerous times. On Oct. 7 the saltie Verdon was loading at berth 1 while Quebecois was in berth 2, having slid in there shortly after Lake Champlain departed.

    Reported by: Al Miller
    Click here for a new book written by Al.

    Great Lakes Lighthouse Festival

    This weekend is the Great Lakes Lighthouse Festival in Alpena, MI. Every year in October, the city of Alpena holds the Great Lakes Lighthouse Festival. The celebration highlights the long history of these sentinels which guard Michigan's freshwater seas. The festival runs October 8-10, 1999 and will be held at the Civic Center. For more information call 517-356-4433 or 800-4-ALPENA.
    Click here for more information

    What is your favorite grain boat?

    New question on the Letters to the Editor - Cyber Survey page, What is your favorite grain boat? Click here to comment

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    Today in Great Lakes History - October 08

    The Keel was laid October 8,1976 for the 660 ft. forward section of the a) LEWIS WILSON FOY (b) OGLEBAY NORTON ) for the Bethlehem Steel Co., Cleveland, Ohio.

    The MATHEWSTON (b RALPH S. MISENER (2) entered service on October 8, 1922. On her maiden voyage she sailed from Port Arthur with 11,634 tons of barley and wheat.

    The Canadian registry for MENIHEK LAKE was officially closed on October 8, 1985 with the notation "sold Spain."

    The WILLIAM G. MATHER arrived on October 8, 1988 in tow of the GLT tugs WYOMING and ALABAMA at the G&W Shipyard at Collision Bend in the Cuyahoga River to be refurbished.

    On 8 October 1906, PASADENA (wooden barge, 250’, 1761 GT, built in 1889 at Cleveland as a propeller bulk freighter) was carrying coal, in tow of the steamer GLADSTONE, bound for Superior, WI. The PASADENA went out of control in a gale and her skipper had the tow line cut. She was thrown against a pier near the upper entry to the Keweenaw Waterway and pounded to pieces in a few hours. Two lives were lost, but 8 made it to shore on the floating wreckage.

    Data from: Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

    This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history
    Please e-mail if you would like to contribute a significant event in Great Lakes history

    Western Coal Continues March Toward Another Record Season

    Shipments of western coal from Superior Midwest Energy Terminal totaled 1,787,469 net tons in September, an increase of 75,000 tons compared to a year ago. For the season, loadings at SMET stand at 11.5 million tons, an increase of 6.9 percent or 750,000 tons. Barring an unexpected slowdown in loadings at SMET, the facility will again set an all-time record for coal shipped in a navigation season.

    KCBX in South Chicago loaded 250,000 tons of coal in September, essentially the same as last year. For the season, coal shipments from KCBX total 1,748,634 tons, an increase of 150,000 tons compared to the same point in the 1998 navigation season.

    Reported by: Lake Carriers' Association Click here for more information

    Tour Boat Hit by Wave - Update

    As reported yesterday a 100-foot tour boat took a heavy swell over its bow while transiting Lake Ontario on Tuesday, knocking out its windows and the vessel began taking on water.

    The vessel is the Infinity II, a charter boat that spent last summer running cruises on Lake St. Clair and the upper Detroit River. The Infinity is headed to New York where she has been purchased by new owners.

    Today in Great Lakes History - October 07

    The ALGOWOOD was launched October 7, 1980 for Algoma Central Marine, Sault Ste. Marie, Ont.

    PAUL THAYER (b) EARL W. OGLEBAY) was launched October 7, 1973 for the Union Commerce Bank Trustee, Cleveland, OH and managed by Kinsman Marine Transit Co., Cleveland. She was built under Title XI of the Merchant Marine Act of 1970 for $12.6 million.

    BIRCHGLEN was launched October 7, 1926 as a) WILLIAM McLAUCHLAN, US.226176, for the Interlake Steamship Co., Cleveland, OH.

    BLACK RIVER, Lake Bulk Freighter. Built as a Steel Barge in 1897 by the F.W. Wheeler & Co., she was Launched October 7, 1896 as a) SIR ISAAC LOTHIAN BELL

    The HUTCHCLIFFE HALL was raised October 7, 1962 and taken to Port Weller Dry Docks for repairs. She had sunk after a collision a few days earlier.

    The MADISON suffered a fire on October 7, 1987 while lying idle at Muskegon and was badly damaged.

    On 7 October 1873, the PULASKI was launched at the Archibald Muir yard on the Black River in Port Huron. Her dimensions were 136' x 26' x 11', 349 gt. She was a three mast "full canaler", painted white and her private signal was a red M on a white ground bordered with blue. Her sails were made by Mr. D. Robeson of Port Huron.

    On 7 October 1903, ADVENTURE (wooden propeller bulk freighter, 108’, 142 GT, built in 1875 at Detroit as a schooner) caught fire while tied to the Kelly’s Island Line & Transport Co. dock. The blaze spread so quickly that those on board barely escaped. She was towed from Kelly’s Island out into Lake Erie by the tug SMITH to save the dock and the adjacent schooner ANDERSON.

    Data from: Father Dowling Collection, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

    This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history
    Please e-mail if you would like to contribute a significant event in Great Lakes history

    Blough to Unload Stone

    Roger Blough is due to unload stone starting at 6:30 p.m. Oct. 6 at the DMIR dock in Duluth. Apparently the hopper and conveyor system installed there several years ago to handle stone included a lower hopper that can accommodate the Blough's shuttle-style unloading boom. The boat tested it recently and is now ready to use it for a full cargo.

    Reported by: Al Miller
    Click here for a new book written by Al.

    Seaway Update

    Arriving at Sorel on Sept. 4 at section 16 on the Richelieu River was ALGOCATALYST. A month later, she was still there. She saw little service since her purchase by Algoma from Enerchem last winter.

    Still laid up in Montreal is ENERCHEM TRADER. There's no official words of what's in store for this tanker.

    Entering the Seaway for the first time on Oct.4 was the Cunard Line 9,975 gr.t. cruise ship SEABOURN PRIDE carrying 212 passengers. According to the Seaway, her first call was to be Prescott, Ont. She is scheduled to be back in Montreal on Oct.10. Her agent is Kerr Norton Marine.

    The new tug OCEAN JUPITER (II) which is servicing the Port of Montreal since only recently is to be sold to a Dutch firm along with a sistership being built at the Ile aux Coudres shipyard. A larger tug will be built to replace Ocean Jupiter.

    The tug DANIEL McALLISTER owned by the Quebec Maritime Museum (formerly the Bernier Maritime Museum) is now on display, externally only, in the Lachine Canal above Lock 2 since last spring. No visitors are allowed aboard yet. She is not tied up to bollards her keel having been bolted to the shallow canal which will reopen to navigation for pleasure crafts only and having an air draught of 8 ft or less in three years.

    On Oct. 9, another new book will be on the market, this one published by Soulanges Canal Development Society. This date will coincide with the 100th Anniversary of the opening of the Soulanges Canal which links two lakes, Lake St. Louis at its eastern end and Lake St. François. Cost of the book will be $29.95 and it will be illustrated with about 100 photos.

    Reported by: René Beauchamp.

    Mantadoc in Port Stanley

    The Mantadoc arrived in Port Stanley at 6:30 pm Monday evening to load grain at the Top Notch elevators on the west dock.

    The Mantadoc finished loading and tied up at the south end of the harbour waiting for the wind to die down. The vessel chose to await the weather after the wind and waves proved too dangerous an exit. The Mantadoc will be heading next to Hamilton to finish loading.

    Reported by: Joan Wilton

    Tour Boat Hit by Wave

    A 100- foot tour boat took a heavy swell over its bow while transiting Lake Ontario on Tuesday. The wave knocked out its windows and the vessel began taking on water through the windows. The vessel diverted to Sodus Bay and the USCG's Station Oswego 44-foot motor life boat was able to take the vessel in tow to Sodus Bay while a rescue helicopter assumed standby. The vessel moored safely in Sodus Bay for repairs.

    Today in Great Lakes History - October 06

    Repairs were completed on the Algosoo by Herb Fraser & Associates at the Welland Dock on October 6 1986. She had suffered a serious fire at her winter mooring on the west wall above Lock 8 at Port Colborne, Ont. on March 7, 1986.

    The bow section of the PRESQUE ISLE (2) arrived Erie October 6, 1972. The section was towed from Defoe Shipbuilding at Bay City, MI by the tugs MARYLAND and LAURENCE C. TURNER. The total cost to construct the tug/barge thousand footer was approximately $35 million.

    On October 6, 1981 the ERINDALE's bow was damaged when she hit the Allanburg Bridge abutment running downbound in the Welland Canal

    On October 6, 1980 LAC DES ILES grounded in the Detroit River just below Grassy Island, the result of a faulty steering mechanism. She freed herself a few hours later. The damage caused by the grounding ended her career.

    On 6 October 1870, the schooner E. FITZGERALD was launched at the Fitzgerald & Leighton yard at Port Huron, MI. Her dimensions were 135' x 26' x 11'.

    On 6 October 1873, JOHN A. McDOUGALL (wooden schooner-barge, 151’, 415 GT) was launched at Wenona, MI. She was built at the Ballentine yard in only five weeks.

    Data from: Father Dowling Collection, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

    This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history
    Please e-mail if you would like to contribute a significant event in Great Lakes history

    Anderson Departs

    GLT tugs assisted Arthur M. Anderson in easing out of its lay-up berth yesterday in Fraser Shipyards. After backing out of the berth and turning in the yard, the Anderson moved ahead to another shipyard dock to complete preparations for resuming its season.

    She was scheduled to load in Two Harbors yesterday and proceed to Gary IN arriving on October 7th.

    Pictures below by Al Miller
    Anderson departing
    tug guiding the Anderson
    Anderson and tug under bridge

    Reported by: Al Miller and David French.

    Hoyt to Depart

    Interlake Steamship Company's steamer Elton Hoyt 2nd is scheduled to depart her short term lay-up this Saturday, October 9.

    Twin Ports Report

    The Roger Blough is scheduled to make a rare trip carrying stone arriving in Duluth on October 6th. Previously, the DMIR Duluth dock had an elevated hopper to receive stone. Apparently the dock has been modified or special equipment has been brought in to handle the Blough's lower unloading boom.

    After a couple of slow weeks, business seems to be picking up at the DMIR ore docks. Here's the line-up:
    Two Harbors: Arthur M. Anderson, Oct. 4; John G. Munson and Edwin H. Gott, Oct. 6; Philip R. Clarke, Roger Blough, Oct. 7; Edgar B. Speer, Oct. 8; Cason J. Callaway and American Mariner, Oct. 9.

    Duluth: Mesabi Miner, Oct. 3; Indiana Harbor, Oct. 4; Presque Isle and Courtney Burton, Oct. 5; Philip R. Clarke and Roger Blough, both to unload stone, Oct. 6; Joe Block, Cason J. Callaway (unloading stone) and Louis R. Desmarais, Oct. 9; Mesabi Miner, Oct. 10; Indiana Harbor, Oct. 11.

    Reported by: Al Miller
    Click here for a new book written by Al.

    October 1 Vessel Survey

    The U.S.-Flag Great Lakes fleet had 61 of its 69 vessels in service on October 1, a decrease of four hulls compared to a year ago. However, the total should climb to 63 this week with the sailings of the dry-bulk carrier ARTHUR M. ANDERSON and the cement carrier PAUL H. TOWNSEND. Still idled is the self-unloader ELTON HOYT 2ND. Yet to sail this season are the straight-deckers EDWARD L. RYERSON and KINSMAN ENTERPRISE.

    Reported by: Lake Carriers' Association Click here for more information

    Today in Great Lakes History - October 05

    On Saturday afternoon, Oct. 5 1997, while passing White Shoal Light on their way to Charleviox, the Medusa Challenger was hit by a water spout. The only danage reported was a spotlight on the pilothouse bridge wing lifted out of its support and crews bikes stored on deck rose vertically. The 1906 built boat was also reported to have been vibrating in an unusual manner. Another boat in the area reported wind gusts of almost 100 mph in the brief storm. That same day the eastern UP was hit with a violent storm that blew down trees a foot in diameter.

    The ARTHUR B. HOMER, loaded with ore, was in a head-on collision, October 5, 1972, with the unloaded Greek salty NAVISHIPPER at Buoy 83 in the Detroit River's Fighting Island Channel. NAVISHIPPER reportedly had no licensed pilot aboard at the time, a violation of Maritime law. There were no injuries, but the HOMER suffered extensive bow damage up to and including part of her pilothouse.

    The GEORGE M. HUMPHREY (2) was christened on October 5, 1954 for the National Steel Corp. (M.A. Hanna Co., mgr.), Cleveland, OH.

    HUTCHCLIFFE HALL was in collision with steamer RICHARD V. LINDABURY on a foggy October 5, 1962 off Grosse Pointe Farms in Lake St. Clair. The canaller suffered a 12 foot gash on her port side forward of her after cabins and sank. She was raised October 7th and taken to Port Weller Dry Docks for repairs.

    On October 5, 1967 while outbound on the Saginaw River after discharging a load of limestone at Saginaw, MI, the J.F. SCHOELLKOPF, JR.'s steering failed which caused her to hit the west side of the I-75 Zilwaukee Bridge. The SCHOELLKOPF, JR. incurred little damage but the south bound lanes of the bridge were out of service for several days until repairs were completed.

    The ARTHUR H. HAWGOOD was launched October 5, 1907 for the Neptune Steamship Co. (Hawgood, mgr.), Cleveland, OH.

    On 5 October 1889, BESSEMER (wooden propeller bulk freighter, 178’, 436 GT, built in 1875 at St. Clair, MI) was carrying iron ore along with her consort SCHUYLKILL (wooden schooner, 152’, 472 GT, built in 1873 at Buffalo) in Lake Superior. They were struck by a rapidly rising gale and ran for the Portage Ship Canal. It became obvious that BESSEMER was sinking. The two collided and went onto a reef at the mouth of the canal and they both broke up quickly. The crews were able to jump onto the breakwater. The wrecks partly blocked the canal until they were dynamited the next September.

    Data from: Jody L. Aho Joe Barr, Dave Swayze and Ahoy & Farewell II

    This is a small sample, the book includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history
    Please e-mail if you would like to contribute a significant event in Great Lakes history

    Twin Ports Report

    Crewmen were aboard Arthur M. Anderson early Oct. 3 firing up its boilers. The vessel is expected to depart Fraser Shipyards some time around noon today and arrive in Two Harbors about 11 p.m.

    Although the peak of the grain rush is still a few weeks away, some grain boats were loading Sunday. Kinsman Independent had all the spouts working at its berth at Harvest States while a ULS boat -- probably Canadian Venture -- was loading at Peavey. Algocape was at a layby berth waiting to start at Cargill on Oct. 4. Lok Maheshwari was at AGP and Lok Pratap was anchored on the lake.

    Reported by: Al Miller
    Click here for a new book written by Al.

    Windsor's Waterfront

    After nearly 150 years of blocked access, a continuous strip of riverfront parkland from the Ambassador Bridge to Hiram Walker distillery is nearing completion. October 2, 1999 the park was officially opened by the Mayor of Windsor, Mike Hurst. On hand was the cruise ship C Columbus and her passengers.

    They could not have timed it better. A walk started from the Ambassador Bridge to the New Civic Terrace and another walk started from Hiram Walkers to the Civic Terrace.

    Now boat watchers will have a 3-5 mile stretch of water to watch and take pictures. So bring lots of film and good set of walking shoes.

    Reported by: Ken Kilbreath

    Today in Great Lakes History - October 04

    On October 4, 1979 the ST. LAWRENCE NAVIGATOR arrived at the Port Weller Dry Docks, St. Catharines, Ont. where she was lengthened to the Seaway maximum length of 730' overall. A new bow and cargo section was installed including a bow thruster and was assigned Hull #66. New tonnage; 18,788 GRT, 12,830 NRT, 32,279 dwt. The ST. LAWRENCE NAVIGATOR was renamed c) CANADIAN NAVIGATOR in 1980 and now sails for ULS Corp.

    The TEXACO BRAVE (2) was launced today in 1976 by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Shimonoseki, Japan for Texaco Canada Ltd., Don Mills, Ont.

    On October 4, 1980 the ARTHUR B. HOMER was laid up for the last time at Erie, PA.

    As a result of the collision between the PARKER EVANS and the SIDNEY E. SMITH, JR. 4 months earlier alternate one-way traffic between the Black River Buoy and Buoys One and Two in Lake Huron was agreed upon by the shipping companies. This happened on on October 4, 1972

    The JAMES E. FERRIS' last trip before scrapping was from Duluth, MN with a split load of 261,000 bushels of wheat for Buffalo, NY arriving there October 4, 1974.

    The JIIMAAN, Twin Screw RoRo Cargo/Passenger Ferry built to Ice Class 1D standards had its Keel laid October 4, 1991

    On October 4, 1982, the Benjamin F. Fairless laid up for the last time in Duluth. She was towed out of Duluth on her way to an overseas scrapyard on June 17, 1988.

    On 4 October 1877, BRITISH LION (3 mast wooden bark, 128', 293 T, built in 1862 at Kingston, Ontario) was carrying coal from Black River, OH to Brockville, Ont. She was driven ashore at Long Point in Lake Erie by a storm and wrecked. She was the first bark on the Lakes to be wire rigged and she was built for the Great Lakes - Liverpool trade.

    Data from: Jody L. Aho Joe Barr, Dave Swayze and Ahoy & Farewell II

    This is a small sample, the book includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history
    Please e-mail if you would like to contribute a significant event in Great Lakes history

    USS News

    After unloading taconite pellets at Gary on Oct. 2, Roger Blough is scheduled to proceed to Port Dolomite to load stone Oct. 4 for delivery to Duluth on the 7th, according to the USS Great Lakes Fleet vessel hotline. This is a highly unusual move because the Blough almost always carries taconite pellets. It could be an effort to increase the vessel's versatility or a short-term effort to keep it moving after coming out of lay-up.

    Several GLF vessels are carrying coal these days. Calcite II will load coal in Ashtabula on the 2nd for delivery to Green Bay on the 5th. Philip R. Clarke loads coal in Conneaut on Oct. 2 for delivery to Dunkirk on the 3rd. Myron C. Taylor is due in Toledo on the 3rd to load coal.

    Reported by: Al Miller and David French

    Hoyt Rumors

    Interlake Steamship Company's steamer Elton Hoyt 2nd, in temporary lay-up at Rouge Steel since August, is rumored to be departing her lay-up berth on October 9.

    Work will begin on Monday to prepare the boat for sailing, with all crewmembers scheduled to report later in the week.

    Cruise Ship Grounding update

    The tug assisting in the refloating of the Norwegian Sky last week was McKeil Marine's Techno Venture. She was Anchored off Cacouna (approx. ten miles away) with a barge when they were called to help. She left the barge at the anchorage and went to assist.

    The Techno Venture is the old Foundation Salvage tug "Foundation Venture", originally a British WWII boom defense boat.

    Soo Web Cam Hit By Lightning

    The web page for the Soo Locks Web Cams shows that camera #2 is out of service. The US Army Corps of Engineers reports that the camera was struck by lightning and that repairs are underway.

    Reported by: Jim Zeirke

    Today in Great Lakes History - October 03

    The E.G. GRACE was delivered to the Interlake Steamship Co., Cleveland on October 3, 1943. The E.G. GRACE was part of a government program designed to upgrade and increase the capacity of the U.S. Great Lakes fleet during World War II. In order to help finance the building of new ships, the U.S.M.C. authorized a program that would allow existing fleets to obtain new boats by trading in their older boats to the Government for credit. As partial payment for each new vessel, a fleet owner surrendered the equivalent tonnage of their existing and/or obsolete vessels, along with some cash, to the Maritime Commission.

    On 3 October 1887, ALBION (wooden propeller steam barge, 134’, 297 GT, built in 1862 at Brockville, Ont.) was carrying lumber and towing the schooner ARK in a foggy night during a gale. She stranded on the rocks near Grindstone City, MI in Lake Huron. The U. S. Lifesaving Service rescued her crew and some of her gear and cargo, but she was totally wrecked the next day. The schooner ARK survived.

    Data from: James Neumiller, Jody L. Aho, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze and Ahoy & Farewell II

    This is a small sample, the book includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history
    Please e-mail if you would like to contribute a significant event in Great Lakes history

    Mackinaw Replacement

    The House/Senate Conference Committee on Transportation Appropriations has agreed to provide $3 million for design and planning of the replacement for the Coast Guard icebreaker Mackinaw and $10 million for a "down payment" on building a new multi-mission ship for heavy icebreaking on the Great Lakes, according to a news release from U.S. Rep. Dave Obey and Sen. Herb Kohl, both of Wisconsin.

    Total cost of building such a ship would be an estimated $128 million. The Coast Guard put in its original request for the replacement icebreaker more than a decade ago.

    The transportation appropriation bill must still receive approval from the House and Senate, and be signed by the president.

    Reported by: Al Miller
    Click here for a new book written by Al.

    Cruise Ship Grounding update - Shipyard Sold

    The M/V Norwegian Sky moved Thursday night from Québec Harbour wharves 105/106 to Davie Shipyard in Lévis.

    The three hour trip is reported to have gone fine with the vessel moving under her own power and escorted by three Group Océan tugs.

    The giant passenger ship was slowly winched from the entrance of the dock to its end. Repairs started Friday Morning and are expected to take three weeks.

    In related news, the Davie Shipyard has finally been sold.
    An agreement was reached late Thursday afternoon with the yard being bought by a consortium of three companies: Sintek - an American society, Québec's Groupe Océan and Groupe Desgagnés. The value of the transaction is estimated at $22 million (c) Canadian. Owners plan to give new life to this shipyard, but no firm contract for ship or oil rig building has been signed yet.

    Reported by: J.F. Boutin
    Click here for a live cam on the Norwegian Sky

    Today in Great Lakes History - October 02

    CANADIAN OLYMPIC was christened on October 2, 1976 at St. Catharines. Her name honors the Olympic Games that were held at Montreal that year.

    The TADOUSSAC (2) departed Collingwood on her maiden voyage October 2, 1969 to load iron ore at Fort William, Ont.

    The AMERICAN last operated in 1956 and then was laid up at Manitowoc, WI. On October 2, 1972

    The JOHN T. HUTCHINSON and CONSUMERS POWER (3) arrived at Kaohsiung, Taiwan October 2, 1988 where dismantling began on October 14th by Li Chong Steel & Iron Works Co. Ltd.

    On her maiden voyage October 2, 1943, the E.G. GRACE cleared Lorain bound for Superior, WI to load iron ore.

    The HOCHELAGA (2) departed Toronto October 2, 1993 in tow of the McKeil tugs GLENBROOK and KAY COLE for Montreal, Que and then to the cutters torch.

    On October 2, 1969, the Tadoussac entered service.

    On 2 October 1888, OLIVER CROMWELL (wooden schooner-barge, 138', 291 T, built in 1853 at Buffalo) was being towed by the steamer LOWELL in a storm in Lake Huron when she broke her towline. She rode out most of the storm at anchor, but then she snapped her anchor chains and she was driven ashore at Harbor Beach, MI where she broke up.

    Data from: Jody Aho, Joe Barr, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

    This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history
    Please e-mail if you would like to contribute a significant event in Great Lakes history

    c. Columbus Makes Unscheduled Stop

    Strong winds yesterday cancelled a planned stop at Parry Sound for the cruise ship c. Columbus. As an result, the ship sailed to Owen Sound. Local tourist officials on short notice put together a tour of the local museums, Tom Thompson Art Gallery as well as tours of several local scenic spots.

    Due to low water, the Columbus dropped anchor about a 1/2 mile out and the ship's two water taxis were used to ferry passengers to and from waiting busses on Owen Sound's east side dock immediately north of the long idle Nindawayma.

    The ship was expected to sail about 7PM for Tobermory.

    Reported by: Peter Bowers

    Cruise Ship Grounding update

    The cruise ship Norwegian Sky was delayed from moving to Davie Shipyard yesterday due to weather. She is expected arrive at the yard today for what is expected to be a three week stay.

    The 848-foot ship went aground last Friday in the St. Lawrence River.

    Reported by: J.F. Boutin
    Click here for a live cam on the Norwegian Sky

    Twin Ports Report

    Duluth's Boatwatchers' Hotline reported Sept. 30 that the laid-up Arthur M. Anderson will depart Fraser Shipyards on Oct. 4 bound for Two Harbors.

    Duluth's DMIR ore dock was unusually busy Sept. 30, handling American Mariner and Buckeye in the morning, with Frontenac due that evening.

    Twin Ports boatwatchers got to see several boats that aren't common in the area. Louis R. Desmarais took a rare load from BNSF ore dock in Superior; Sam Laud loaded a partial cargo in Silver Bay and then topped it off in Two Harbors; Charles E. Wilson loaded in Two Harbors; St.Clair made one its increasingly common runs to the Midwest Energy Terminal in Superior; Algocape arrived to unload at St. Lawrence Cement (once finished, it will clean its holds and then load grain at Cargill); Oakglen was due back for another load of grain from the Peavey and Harvest States elevators.

    Lee A. Tregurtha is scheduled to make one of its occasional appearances in the Twin Ports when it loads coal at Midwest Energy Terminal on Oct. 1. Other vessels scheduled include: Canadian Enterprise, Oglebay Norton and Canadian Transport, Oct. 2; Paul R Tregurtha, Oct. 3; and Walter J. McCarthy Jr. , Oct. 4.

    Reported by: Al Miller
    Click here for a new book written by Al.

    Seaway Update

    On Sept. 29, Comeaudoc was shifted by two tugs owned by Groupe Ocean from jetty 1 in the Old Port of Montreal to section 25. According to a Montreal harbour spokesman, she will be loading grain at this location from trucks, the operation lasting about 21 days.

    Expected to go up the Seaway on Sept. 29 or 30 was the Ukrainian flag Mariupol heading for Buffalo. Her port of registry is Mariupol. Built in 1977, she completed a few trips to Great Lakes ports under her original name of Arctic Skou when owned by the Danish company Ove Skou and when on charter to J.Lauritzen, also of Denmark. She had a sistership named Blatic Skou also a regular visitor to ports around the Great Lakes.

    Three ships were renamed at St. Lawrence River ports since last summer, one of them lately. Only one has a direct link with Great Lakes shipping, the C.C.G.S. Montmagny which was taken out of service while at Sorel and "renamed" 1999-01 there after having been taken over by the Crown Assets Corporation for disposal. She was built in 1963 by Russel Bros. at Owen Sound, Ont. To my knowledge, she had been always based at Sorel to work in the Laurentian region.

    On August 13, the container ship Cast Bear was renamed Bear in Montreal and sailed the following day for Jamaica, her funnel painted all blue, the white letter C for "Cast" having been painted off. She and three other fleetmates have been replaced in service by three vessels much faster.

    On or about Sept. 23, the bulk carrier Morland changed name and registry in Montreal. Previously registered in Vanuatu, She hoisted the Greek flag and was renamed Seabee. Two days later, she was at anchor at Sorel waiting to dock at the Quebec Iron & Titanium facility at Tracy.

    Reported by: René Beauchamp.

    Grain Boats Pass Detroit

    Three upbound lakers past the J.W. Westcott's station on the Detroit River Thursday. The Algogulf on her first trip, the Kinsman Independent and the Oakglen. The grain rush continues.

    Reported by: Sam Buchanan

    Contract Update

    Unlicensed employees aboard Interlake Steamship Company's eight vessels are studying the company's latest contract offer and are expected to vote on it within several weeks, the Duluth News-Tribune reported Sept. 30.

    Jim Weakley, manager of marine operations for Interlake, told the newspaper that the contract offer includes additional wage and benefit concessions than a previous offer. The provisions exceed the pattern set in contracts reached last summer with mine workers at several Iron Range mines.

    Other reports put the ballet deadline as October 7. If ratified the contract will run through July 31, 2004. The new contract offers a pay raise, bonuses, numerous increases in health, insurance and pension benefits. The tentative agreement is also reported to hold language restricting manning changes, offering monetary compensation if implemented and no layoffs for current employees.

    Today in Great Lakes History - October 01

    The CHICAGO TRADER was laid up on October 1, 1976 at the Frog Pond in Toledo.

    Dismantling commenced October 1, 1974 on the KINSMAN INDEPENDENT (1) at Santander, Spain.

    On 1 October 1843, ALBANY (wooden brig, 110T, built in 1835 at Oswego, NY) was carrying merchandise and passengers when she went aground in a storm and was wrecked just a few miles from Mackinaw City, MI.

    Data from: Jody Aho, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series

    This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history
    Please e-mail if you would like to contribute a significant event in Great Lakes history

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