Great Lakes & Seaway Shipping News Archive

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* Report News


Gott Engine Repairs Underway; Season Extended at Soo

12/31
Grey skies and snow flurries greeted vessels transiting the St. Marys River Tuesday. The Edwin H. Gott, running at reduced speed on her port engine only, passed upbound at mid-morning with the help of the "G" tug Missouri. The Gott picked up parts for the broken starboard engine from the Soo Marine supply boat Ojibway. Repairs are planned as the vessel crosses Lake Superior.

Downbounders Tuesday included Adam E. Cornelius, American Republic, Canadian Olympic, Reserve, Atlantic Erie, Lee A. Tregurtha and St. Clair. Upbound traffic, in addition to the Gott, included Stewart J. Cort, Joseph L. Block, Anglian Lady/barge and Presque Isle.

The closing dates announced Tuesday have the MacArthur Lock closing as scheduled Jan. 15 but the Poe Lock will stay open until Jan. 25 to accommodate late season demand.

American Republic at Mission Point
Stewart J. Cort enters the lower end of Little Rapids Cut. Sure looks like December now.
Edwin H. Gott - stern view clearly shows only the port engine operating.
Bow view of the Gott, upbound at Mission Point. Tug Missouri can be seen on the Gott's starboard bow.
Supply boat Ojibway heads back to the dock after delivering spare engine parts to the Gott.
Tug Missouri, at the Gott's stern, prepares to help the larger vessel into the Poe Lock.
Joseph L. Block at Mission Point.

Reported by: Roger LeLievre


Cuyahoga Visits Alpena

12/31
The Cuyahoga arrived in Alpena around 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday. It carefully made its way into the river and tied up at the Alpena Oil Dock and delivered just under 9,000 tons of road salt. It was thought that no more salt was ordered after the huge pile was covered up with black tarps, it is unusual to have salt brought this late in the season.

The classic laker was sporting some Christmas lights above the pilothouse and Santa near the smokestack. The Cuyahoga departed by 8:30 p.m.

In other news, the tug Jacklyn M and barge Integrity was taking on cement at Lafarge Tuesday afternoon. The Steamer Alpena was expected to be in Toledo, OH on Tuesday night. The J.A.W Iglehart arrived in Detroit Tuesday morning for winter lay-up.

Cuyahoga unloading.
Another view.

Reported by: Ben & Chanda McClain


Run Away Barge Alarms Authorities

12/31
American and Canadian authorities were put on alert late Monday night investigating reports of a barge and a large number of 55-gallon drums lashed together adrift in the St. Clair River. After extensive search efforts, with authorities believing the barge could be a threat to local power plants, the barge in questions was found to be a work barge that had broken loose from a project in the Pine River

A 41-foot Coast Guard utility boat from the Port Huron station and a helicopter from the Coast Guard Air Station Detroit were part of the efforts searching the river near Marine City and Algonac.

Lt. Greg Fondran of the Coast Guard's 9th District headquarters in Cleveland said the reports were being treated as potential terrorism because of the proximity of the power plants along the river.

The Royal Canadian Mounted Police and Ontario Provincial Police also were assisting in the search, Fondran said.

Reported by: Frank Frisk


Frontenac in Milwaukee

12/31
The Frontenac departed St. Marys Cement in Milwaukee late Tuesday afternoon after delivering a partial cargo of cement clinkers. Assisting the Frontenac was the Great Lakes Towing tug Arkansas. This was also the last tow of the season for the G-Tugs before winter lay up.

Frontenac unloading Tuesday morning
pilot house
pilot house
attaching tow line
towing out

Reported by: Andy LaBorde


Marquette Update

12/31
The Michipicoten came into Marquette at dusk on Tuesday. She began loading ore almost immediately after her arrival. The Saginaw is expected on Wednesday.

Ore dust above the dock as the train cars are emptied into the pockets.
Michipicoten arriving in the harbor at dusk.
Michipicoten coming in to the dock.
Bow view

Reported by: Lee Rowe


Today in Great Lakes History - December 31

Upon suggestion from the U.S. Maritime Commission, surplus World War II cargo vessels, many of which had laid up on the James River, were made available for sale under the Great Lakes Vessel Sales Act of 1950 (enacted September 28, 1950) to be converted for Great Lakes use. The Act allowed Great Lakes fleets to purchase up to 10 surplus ships by December 31, 1951 and receive a 90% cost subsidy to convert and refurbish them for Lakes use. The first such conversion occurred when the Cleveland-Cliffs Iron Co. of Cleveland, OH bought the NOTRE DAME VICTORY on December 10, 1950.

The GEORGE M. HUMPHREY was laid up for the last time at the old Great Lakes Engineering Works slip at River Rouge, MI beginning December 31, 1983.

The QUEDOC (2) was laid up for the last time on December 31, 1984 at Toronto, Ont. along side the SENATOR OF CANADA.

On 31 December 1884, ADMIRAL (wooden propeller steam tug, 49 gt, built in 1883 at Chicago) had her boiler explode in Chicago harbor. All four of the crew was killed.

In 1884 the PERE MARQUETTE NO. 1 ran aground at Ludington.

December 31, 1919 - The entire Ann Arbor carferry fleet was tied up in Frankfort due to bad weather.

On 31 December 1889, H. M. Loud of Oscoda, Michigan sold the 551 ton wooden schooner ANGUS SMITH to Mitchell Brothers of Marine City, Michigan for $16,000. The vessel was built in 1871.

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


This is a small sample, the books 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




St. Lawrence Seaway Closes 45th Navigation Season

12/30
The Montreal/Lake Ontario section of the St. Lawrence Seaway officially closed for the season on December 28, 2003, with the passage of the tug, Ocean Golf, through the St. Lambert Lock near Montreal, Quebec at 3:56 a.m. The Seaway opened its 45th shipping season on March 31 and remained open for 273 days in 2003.

The CSL Laurentian will be the last upbound vessel to transit the Welland Canal Monday afternoon at around 2 p.m. The last was the tug Sea Eagle II and barge on Sunday.

"Although we aren't setting any tonnage records yet, traffic was steady throughout the season and made substantial gains this fall," said Richard Corfe, President of The St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corporation. "The laker fleet was solidly booked right through to the end of the season. I am also pleased with the initial reports on our new Automatic Vessel Identification System (AIS), which completed a successful first season of operation with enthusiastic reviews from shipmasters." AIS became mandatory this year for commercial vessels plying Seaway waters from Montreal to Long Point, on Lake Erie. The system improves traffic management and increases safety.

Mr. Corfe also commented that 2003 saw the definition of a new Vision for the Corporation and the launching of the bi-national study of the Great Lakes/Seaway system. "The Canadian government and the Corporation are full partners in the baseline phase of this essential study," he said. "This study will provide realistic information for decisions on where and how investments should be made in our infrastructure."

In the meantime, the Seaway continues to automate its locks and bridges, and commenced this year a six-year project to convert lock machinery on the Welland Canal to hydraulic operation. Construction has also begun on a new operations control centre at the Glendale complex.

The waterway's binational Web site is thriving. "We had well over a million page print requests in 2003," said Mr. Corfe, "and our Web site traffic volume continues to grow at an annual rate of over 80%. Our new marketing video and e-business features, too, are proving popular with Seaway customers."

In 2003, the estimated combined cargo passing through the Welland Canal and the Montreal/Lake Ontario sections of the system was approximately 40.87 million metric tonnes, about 1.3 percent less than in 2002. Iron ore was again a strong performer, with cargoes amounting to 10.87 million metric tonnes, up by 12.8%. Although Canadian grain increased by more than 6%, overall grain shipments declined by 6.1%. General cargo dropped by 37% compared to 2002 while other bulk cargo decreased by approximately 5%.

Estimated cargo traffic was about 32 million tonnes on the Welland Canal (0.8% less than last year), while traffic on the Montreal/Lake Ontario section was some 29 million tonnes, 2.4% less than in 2002. There were almost 4400 vessel transits within the Seaway.

The St. Lawrence Seaway System closes during the winter for maintenance on its 13 locks and connecting channels. This year's winter works program is again a substantial one, amounting to $7.8 in the Montreal/Lake Ontario section and $16.2 on the Welland Canal. Work will include improvements to bridges, locks, communications and power facilities, roads, weirs, and walls.

The Seaway navigation season next year will begin in March on a day as yet to be determined. This is a special year as it marks the 50th anniversary of the beginning of construction of the Seaway and the 175th anniversary of the first Welland Canal.

Reported by: Ron Walsh and Jimmy Sprunt


Iglehart Returns to Service

12/30
The J. A. W. Iglehart arrived in Alpena on Monday ending her temporary lay-up that started December 4 in Muskegon. She departed around 5 p.m. bound for Detroit.

Reported by: Herm Phillips


Wilfred Sykes sports new paint job

12/30
The Wilfred Sykes was brought in to Sturgeon Bay for a 5 year and a new paint job recently. She is due to load in either Escanaba late this week.

Wilfred Sykes from across the channel
View from the park
Stern view with Bayship crane
View from Bayship
Bow at Bayship
Stern at Bayship
Edward L. Ryerson, fleet mate of the Wilfred Sykes

Reported by: Jason Leino


Twin Ports Report

12/30
The end of the year and the beginning of 2004 are shaping up to be relatively busy in the Twin Ports, considering the lateness of the season.

Monday saw Atlantic Erie departing the DMIR ore dock in Duluth late in the afternoon after arriving Sunday. Nanticoke and George A. Stinson were scheduled to load at BNSF ore dock in Superior on Monday.

BNSF is expected to be busy again today, with Philip R. Clarke making a rare call there to load pellets destined for Ecorse. Paul R. Tregurtha and Canadian Transport are scheduled to load at Midwest Energy Terminal today.

Ringing out the old year on western Lake Superior will be Edgar B. Speer, due to load Jan. 31 in Two Harbors, and Algowood, loading at Midwest Energy Terminal. Vessels scheduled to begin the new year at western Lake Superior ports include Presque Isle at BNSF, Herbert C. Jackson at Midwest Energy Terminal and Edwin H. Gott in Two Harbors.

Normally in late December, ice would be clogging the harbor, the DMIR ore dock would be shut down or shipmasters would be trying to flush enough ice out of the slip so their ships could get close enough to the dock wall, and bitter cold would be causing trouble on the long conveyor belt between the BNSF storage yard and the dock. This year, however, recent mild weather -- with temperatures near 40 degrees and light rain -- has helped control the port's usually thick December ice. Although much of the harbor was covered with ice Monday, earlier ice-breaking efforts, vessel traffic and river currents had combined to form a broad lane of open water running from the end of the DMIR ore docks, past Midwest Energy Terminal up to the corner of the port terminal. Vessels have appeared to have little or no trouble maneuvering in port.

In other news
Midwest Energy Terminal appears to be on the way to setting a record for its latest vessel loadings ever. Its previous latest load was on Jan. 8, 2002. Currently, the dock is scheduled to load Paul R. Tregurtha on Jan. 11 and Jan. 17, 2004.

Edgar B. Speer, which was sidelined for rudder work, is back on its usual run. It's due to load pellets at Two Harbors on Jan. 31 and deliver them to Gary on Jan. 3.

Paul R. Tregurtha will be a late-season workhorse in the coal trade. The vessel is still scheduled to load four more coal cargoes this season today, loading for St. Clair; Jan. 4, loading for Nanticoke; Jan. 11, loading for St. Clair; and Jan. 17, loading for Taconite Harbor.

Reported by: Al Miller


Busy Day on the St. Marys River

12/30
Monday was another busy day in the St. Marys River, with shippers taking advantage of the warm weather and lack of ice to make as many trips as possible before the Soo Locks close Jan. 15.

Downbound traffic consisted of Walter J. McCarthy, Cason J. Callaway, Columbia Star, Roger Blough, Cedarglen, Canadian Progress and David Z. Norton. Upbounders included Canadian Transport, American Mariner, Lee A. Tregurtha, Algowood, Edgar B. Speer, Sam Laud and Algomarine.

Sunrise on the St. Marys River
Walter J. McCarthy downbound near Nine Mile Point. Notice the almost complete lack of ice.
Cason J. Callaway at Mission Point.

Reported by: Roger LeLievre


Green Bay Update

12/30
Last Monday was a busy day for the port of Green Bay as several terminals were busy receiving stockpiles of cargo for the up coming winter months. The John G Munson made a visit with a load of coal for the C Reiss coal Dock. The Munson was assisted turning and going stern first through the bridges up to C Reiss by the tug Indiana. The Tug Rebecca Lynn and her barge A-410 departed Northeast Asphalt Dock after discharging cargo. The Algosteel unloaded a cargo of rock salt at the Fox River Dock.

In the slip at Fox River Dock
Boom in the saddle all ready to depart
Departing the Slip at Fox River Dock
Making the sharp left hand turn to enter the main river from the slip. The stern was 5 feet off and the side was about 8 feet off, this was some impressive ship handling as she never touched either dock while departing
Into the main river departing Green Bay
Tug Indiana waits for the Munson in the ice at the East River Turning Basin
John G Munson inbound Green Bay
Inbound the Fox River
Wide view inbound
Close up inbound
Approaching turning basin
Indiana gives a push on the stern to start the turn.
Half way around in the turning basin
At Walnut St Bridge going up to C. Reiss
Stern view clear of Main St Bridge
At RR Bridge outbound Green Bay.
Massive salt pile unloaded from the Algosteel for the long Wisconsin winter ahead.

Reported by: Scott Best


Algomarine in Milwaukee

12/30
The Algomarine delivered a cargo of road salt to Milwaukee Sunday. A lone sail boat took advantage of the spring-like weather and cruised in the inner mooring basin as the Algomarine unloaded.

Algomarine
Lone sail boat

Reported by: Andy LaBorde


Saginaw River News

12/30
The Mississagi paid a late-season visit to the Saginaw River on Monday, calling at the Buena Vista dock near the I-75 bridge at Zilwaukee.

The Mississagi had arrived at the mouth of the river early Sunday evening but was unable to continue up the river because bridge tenders are not on duty full time this late in the season. The vessel tied up the Essroc dock in Essexville for the night and proceeded up to its dock in the morning. After unloading during the day, it was outbound late Monday afternoon.

Pictures by Todd Shorkey

Mississagi downbound near Veteran's Park in Saginaw
Another view
Mississagi passing Cheboyganing Creek
Stern view

Reported by: Stephen Hause, Lon Morgan and Todd Shorkey


Port Weller & Port Colborne

12/30
Port Weller Dec. 28
Algolake
Another view
Parisien & Enterprise
Another view
Vac & McGrath

Port Colborne Dec. 26
Canadian Prospector viewed from across channel
Lineman pulls ropes in to wall
Canadian Prospector stern view
Canadian Prospector readies for coming winter
Prospector bow
Anglian Lady & PML2501 wait for better weather at Wharf 20
All that remains of Algogulf & Kinsmen Enterprise
Canadian Transfer at Wharf 6
Caboose for Trillium Railway
International Salvage tug Charlie E ( ex Louis T ) at West St. Wharf
John Spence & barge at Wharf 16
Rear view of Canadian Transfer at Wharf 6

Reported by: Alex Howard


Hamilton Report

12/30
Sunday morning saw the west end of Lake Ontario shrouded in heavy fog. The CSL Niagara arrived at 9 a.m. after proceeding through the Burlington Ship Canal at 4 knots. She arrived with a load of iron ore pellets from Point Noire Quebec for Stelco. By the time she departed at 3 p.m. the fog had lifted and she headed out into Lake Ontario for the Welland Canal.

The Rt. Hon. Paul J. Martin had arrived off the Burlington Piers sometime around 10 a.m. and waited outside in the lake hoping the fog would lift. She finally proceeded through the ship canal at 1 p.m. also heading to Stelco with a load of iron ore from Point Noire.

In the mean time the Canadian Miner who had been in the harbor for 2 days finally finished unloading her iron ore at Dofasco because one of the two shore unloading bridges had broken down. She will winter right where she unloaded.

The Canadian Provider departed Dofasco at 4 p.m. after unloading her cargo and proceeded out into Lake Ontario for about five hours to clean holds before returning to winter in the harbor.

The tug Sea Eagle II and barge St. Mary's Cement II arrived at 9:30 p.m. for lay-up.

Reported by: Eric Holmes and Patricia Burgon


Halifax Update

12/30
With the end of the Seaway season for another year, ships are moving to the coast to work for the winter. Algosar arrived at Imperial Oil in Dartmouth (Halifax Harbor) on Monday morning. She was followed that evening by the tug Everlast with the barge Norman McLeod.

The only sign of a winter has been the Algocatalyst, which has been in and out of lay-up all year. She arrived December 13 in ballast and tied up with shore power connected. Black oil work out of Dartmouth appears to have been taken up by Jade Star, which has made several trips since November. She sailed from Halifax Christmas morning.

Reported by: Mac Mackay


Buffalo Shipmasters Lodge Back in Business

12/30
The newly-reactivated International Shipmaster's Association Buffalo Lodge #1 will host a grand re-opeing party on Jan. 10. The event, which begins at 5 p.m., will be held at the Lower Lakes Marine Historical Society Museum, 66 Erie St., Buffalo, NY.

All new members paid and in good standing will be sworn in at this time. The original Buffalo charter will be on display.

For more information, contact Carrie Philbin, Buffalo Lodge #1 Secretary-Treasurer, at clphilbin@hotmail.com.

Preliminary meetings to re-establish the lodge were held in August.

The ISMA was originated in 1886 by a group of ship captains in Buffalo, N.Y. as a benevolent association to assist widows and orphans of sailors lost on the Great Lakes. As the lake captains embraced the idea, other lodges were soon formed at various ports. In 1891, the first convention was held in Buffalo were the Grand Lodge was established to oversee the entire organization. The Buffalo Lodge #1 was active up until the late 1970s.

Today, at 118 years old, the ISMA still thrives with the Grand Lodge and 16 local lodges around the Great Lakes in the US and Canada and over 750 members. While it no longer has a benevolent fund, the association serves as a voice for licensed maritime professionals and works closely with shipping companies and government authorities on both sides of the border to promote safety in navigation on the Great Lakes. Through local lodge meetings and the annual convention, the ISMA brings together mariners and maritime professionals from all parts of the marine community.

Reported by: Capt. George Haynes


St. Lawrence River Traffic at Verchères

12/30
Federal Baffin, broadside view, departing the Contrecoeur dock, Dec. 20.
Federal Baffin, stern view, Dec.20.
Federal Baffin being swung around by tugs and about to follow the Rt. Hon. Paul J. Martin’s wake downbound from Contrecoeur, Dec.20.
Tug Ocean Echo II backing away from the stern of Federal Baffin as the turn is almost complete. Ocean Golf is still on the big bulker's bow, Dec.20.
Tanker Sirius 1 upbound off Verchères to Montréal, Dec.20.
Stern view
Fednav's Federal Yukon downbound off Verchères on its last trip on the Lakes this season, Dec.20.
Utviken downbound off Verchères from Montréal-Seaway, Dec.27.
Cashin following Utviken, Dec.27.

December 21- Mystic Seaport and a few of the ships exhibited there.
Charles W. Morgan, the last of her kind, this whaling ship was built in 1841 and worked 80 years before being laid up in 1921. 20 years later, she arrived in Mystic to be preserved to this day in remarkable condition. Notice the Christmas tree atop her main mast which is 110 feet above the deck.
Joseph Conrad was built in 1882 as Georg Stage as a training vessel for the Danish merchant service. and served as such until 1934. Alan Villiiers bought the schooner and put her under the British flag for a round the world trip that lasted 2 years. Another change in ownership in 1936 brought her under the US flag as a private yacht and in 1947, she became an exhibit at Mystic where she serves as a static training vessel.
Valiant looks old but she was built in 2002 for East Coast Yacht Charters Inc. as a yacht based at Mystic offered to chartering. She's 97 feet long , 20 feet on the beam but while she was built along 1920's yacht lines, she offers modern day amenities.
Canmar Venture, one of the three new 965 foot container ships now coming to Montréal, shown downbound off Verchères, Dec.16.
Stern view
Cabot downbound from Montréal on its weekly run to St. John's, Newfoundland, Dec.16.
Stern view
Marinette, a symbol of longevity, downbound off Verchères from Montréal-Seaway, Dec.16.
Stern view
MSC Brianna shown downbound off Verchères from Montréal, Dec.16.
Stern view
Yong Kang anchored off Sorel-Tracy while awaiting a berth at Contrecoeur, Dec.19. The tug Ocean Hercule is standing by alongside for assistance in case the ship starts to drag its anchors in the heavy ice and a river pilot is also on board as an emergency precaution.
Saginaw downbound off Verchères from Montréal-Seaway, Dec.20. A rare bird in our parts bound for Sorel to unload a cargo of grain then to Québec City and the Seaway.
MCT Arcturus, the former Arcturus, with new funnel markings downbound off Verchères from Montréal, Dec.20.
BBC Brazil downbound off Verchères from Montréal, Dec.20.
Stern view
Regina Oldendorff downbound off Verchères from Montréal-Seaway, Dec.20
Groupe Océan tug Ocean Hercule towing fuel barge Arca from Montréal to Les Méchins for a refit, Dec.20.
Nice broadside view of Ocean Hercule in ice, Dec.20.
Arca, the former Josée M and for many years the Imperial Lachine, off Verchères, Dec.20. She worked during the last 7 months refueling ships in the Port of Montréal replacing Horizon Montreal in this task.
Canadian Provider, on her last trip downriver off the season, downbound off Verchères, Dec.20.
Federal Polaris downbound in ballast off Verchères from Port of Montréal berth 46 where she spent a week unloading a cargo of sugar, Dec.20.
Stern view
Canfornav's Puffin downbound off Verchères from Montréal-Seaway, Dec.20.
Stern view
Rt. Hon. Paul J. Martin downbound off Verchères from Montréal-Seaway to Baie-Comeau with a load of grain (and a damaged bow-thruster), Dec.20.

Reported by: Marc Piché


Griffon Works the Lower Lakes

12/30
A photographic tour of the lower lakes on board CCGS Griffon. December 3 to 28, 2003.

Oswego light on December 4. The Griffon was sent to remove a light buoy and replace it with a winter spar. My first visit to Oswego, although we didn’t tie up there.
Stephen B Roman in Oswego. She had arrived just a short while before we did.
Singer Island on a very cold morning. The sign down by the wharf says it will be open to the public in the spring.
Jo Spirit upbound in Brockville Narrows on Dec 5 Whatever happened to all that lovely cold weather.
Toro passing close to the Griffon in Brockville Narrows.
Launching a winter spar from the deck of the Griffon. The fellow on the ladder is disconnecting the wire to the buoy lantern so we don’t go flashing down the river!
Simcoe leaving the CG base in Prescott to start “thinning” the buoys in the St Lawrence prior to full-scale pick-ups.
Gordon C Leitch downbound below Iroquois lock on December 10.
MCT Arcturus downbound in Alexandria Bay. Once she was past the Griffon went through the American Narrows.
Our RHI/FRC towing a small weather buoy into the dock at CCIW in Burlington. There is a man on the buoy to give you a better idea of the size.
Algoisle quietly fading in Toronto.
Captain Matthew Flinders secured in Toronto. She was built in Australia and subsequently purchased by Mariposa Cruise Line and sailed to Toronto, at a top speed of 8 knots!. In the mid 90’s she was used as a casino ship in West Palm Beach / Riviera Beach Florida. I was Captain on her for part of the casino experience.
Dec 14. James A Hannah and barge waiting at Wharf 1 Welland canal for better weather before sailing.
A gaggle of buoys. These buoys are from Rochester and Oswego areas. The Griffon picked them up for the winter and left them at wharf 1 Welland Canal.
Atlantic Superior downbound, leaving lock 1, Welland canal.
CSL Tadoussac in lock 1 Welland canal, downbound, December 15.
CCGS Griffon in Port Weller drydock. The ship was in for a quick repair job.
Federal Yukon on the approach wall above lock 1. There was a wonderful procession of salties leaving the Great Lakes before the Seaway closed.
Close-up of the Plimsoll Mark and Load line of the Federal Yukon. Her Classification Society is Norske Veritas (NV) She can load deeper if sailing in Tropical Fresh Water (TF) than if sailing in Winter Water (W).
Panoramic view of the Jean Parisien as she awaits her fate at the fitout wall of Port Weller Dry Docks.
December 17, Algosoo downbound in the Welland canal below the Homer bridge.
Canadian Navigator clear of lock 7 and downbound in the pool toward lock 6 east.
The bow of the Jean Parisien at PWDD. She has an unusual bulbous bow. It appears to be an afterthought.
A view of the Iryda from the bridge of the Griffon. The Iryda has just cleared lock 1 and is proceeding toward Lake Ontario.
December 21, Algonorth approaching lock 1 upbound.
As December 21 draws to a close the Hero, with the Port Weller pilot boat and dogs tucked in along the starboard side, leaves the Welland canal for Lake Ontario. The dogs belong to the pilot boat crew and rush out to greet the pilot as he comes down the ladder from the ship.
Pineglen upbound toward lock 1.
The Cuyahoga below lock 1 downbound on December 22.
The crew of the Griffon use the ship’s barge to change a buoy above lock 1. The light buoy has been lifted onto the deck of the barge and the winter spar is being prepared for hookup to the anchor and subsequent floating. In the background are the Canadian Enterprise and Jean Parisien at the fitout wall at Port Weller drydock.
Canadian Transfer laid up at Wharf 6, Welland canal, Thorold. December 27, 2003.
View of lock 8 from the bridge of CCGS Griffon. We have a better view forward than many merchant ships but still not an unobstructed view. To the left is the bow of the Canadian Progress which is laid up at Ramey’s bend.

Reported by: Paul Beesley


Today in Great Lakes History - December 30

On December 30, 1987 the THOMAS WILSON under tow in the North Atlantic heading to be scrapped, parted her towline and sunk near position 34_08'N by 61_35'12"W (approximately in line with Cape Hatteras, NC) early the next day.

GEORGE M. HUMPHREY (1) was launched December 30, 1926.

The first steel carferry PERE MARQUETTE was launched in nearly completed form on December 30, 1896. The ship was built for the Flint & Pere Marquette Railroad (predecessor to the Pere Marquette) and entered service just a few weeks later.

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


This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history




Algolake Arrives

12/29
The Algolake arrived at Port Weller Dry Docks Sunday morning and was assisted into the deep dock stern first by the tugs Vac and James E. McGrath.

Reported by: Jimmy Sprunt


Buffalo Released; Traffic Slow at Soo

12/29
Vessel traffic was quiet in the St. Marys River Sunday. Down bounders included Algonova, Middletown, John J. Boland, Indiana Harbor and Atlantic Huron. The Buffalo was also downbound but grounded near Pipe Island, north of Watson's Reef, in the lower St. Marys River, partly blocking the downbound channel. At 5 p.m. the Purvis tug Reliance and a salvage barge were enroute from Sault, Ont., to assist the stranded vessel. Buffalo was reported free at about 10 p.m. Sunday.

Upbounders included Philip R. Clarke and Paul R. Tregurtha, both of which locked up in the early evening. Michipicoten was underway at 9 p.m. from Algoma Steel bound for Marquette. Fred R, White Jr. was on a one-hour precall for DeTour at 10 p.m.

Middletown downbound at the Rock Cut.
Middletown (wide view)
Middletown (stern)
Paul R. Tregurtha upbound at Mission Point at 8 p.m. Sunday.
Tregurtha (stern)
Clyde's Drive In at Mission Point, laid up for the winter. No more Big C burgers until spring.

Reported by: Roger LeLievre


Today in Great Lakes History - December 29

B.F. JONES (2) was launched December 29, 1906 as a) GENERAL GARRETSON.

KINSMAN INDEPENDENT (1) was launched in 1906 as a) WILLIAM B. KERR.

The GEORGE M. HUMPHREY (1) was christened on December 29, 1926.

The GOLDEN HIND was laid up for the last time on December 29, 1985 at Toronto.

On 29 December 1813, ARIEL (4-gun armed schooner, 112 t, built in 1813 at Erie, PA as part of Perry's fleet) ran aground in a squall at Black River (now Buffalo) and was burned by the British.

CAROLINE (wooden sidewheeler, 71', 46 t, built in 1822 at New York City) was chartered to transport arms and munitions to Navy Island near Buffalo. On 29 December 1837, she was commandeered by about 60 Canadian rebels under the command of a Royal Navy officer at Schlosser on the Niagara River. In the fight that followed, she was set afire, abandoned and allowed to drift down the river. Some sources say that she went over the Falls. This incident caused hostile feelings along the U.S. northeastern frontier for many months.

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


This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history




Buffalo Grounds

12/28 10:30 p.m. Update
About 10 p.m. the Buffalo was pulled free from the spot where she grounded early Sunday afternoon. The big tug Reliance arrived on scene about 8 p.m. and began to try to pull the Buffalo off Watsons Reef in the lower river north of Pipe Island.

The Buffalo was then to head across the channel over to Drummond Island to the anchorage known as Black Rock Point. The vessel is expected spend the night there and will wait for Coast Guard inspection before she departs the St. Marys River system.

Original Report
Early Sunday afternoon the downbound Buffalo grounded in the lower St. Marys River near Pipe Island off DeTour, Michigan. The vessel was reported to have experienced a steering malfunction that caused the grounding.

The Buffalo's stern is blocking the downbound channel and all traffic in the river is using the upbound course.

Buffalo was unable to free her self and the tug Reliance with barge PML 9000 departed Sault Ste. Marie, Ont. late Sunday afternoon. The tug was expected to be on scene about 8 p.m. and crews will begin working on a plan to refloat the Buffalo. If needed, the barge can be used to off load some of the ship's cargo.

Reported by: Fred Williams, Roger LeLievre and Cathy Kohring


Last Laker Upbound

12/28
The CSL Laurentien entered the Seaway Saturday night bound for Toledo. She marks the last ship in the Seaway for the 2003 season.

Reported by: René Beauchamp and Ron Walsh


Unseasonably Warm Weather Keeps Ice Away at Soo

12/28
With sunshine and temperatures at Sault Ste. Marie near 40 Friday and Saturday, it is hard to believe Jan. 1, 2004 is less than a week away. Fog closed the St. Marys River early Saturday morning and there is only a trace of ice along the shore to prove that it is really winter. Rain is forecast for Sunday and part of Monday with continued warm temperatures promising to keep winter at bay.

Daylight traffic around the Soo Locks was sparse Saturday. Mesabi Miner locked downbound just before sunrise, with Arthur M. Anderson following around noon. The upbound Saginaw passed Mission Point at 5 p.m.

Yankcanuck remains at Algoma Steel and Algonova is at the Purvis dock in Soo Harbor.

Traffic picked up considerably after dark. Downbound vessels included Joyce L. VanEnkevort/Great Lakes Trader, Jane Anne IV/Sarah Spencer and H. Lee White. Upbound in the river were Charles M. Beeghly, Atlantic Erie, Algocape, Wolverine, Earl W. Oglebay, Nanticoke and Reserve.

Soo supply boat Ojibway heads out to service the Anderson.
Ojibway passes the Anderson.
Arthur M. Anderson at Mission Point.
Arthur M. Anderson at the Rock Cut.
Another view, Rock Cut.
Anderson, stern view.
Saginaw at Mission Point.
Saginaw, stern view

Reported by: Roger LeLievre


John M. Selvick in Milwaukee

12/28
The John M. Selvick, towing three empty grain barges, arrived in Milwaukee early Saturday morning. The 1898 built Selvick is one of the oldest commercial tugs still working on the lakes.

After they are loaded the barges will be taken to Chicago where river pusher tugs will then take them down the Illinois and possibly the Mississippi rivers.

John M. Selvick.
Barges.
Loading.

Reported by: Andy LaBorde


Clarke Visits Detroit

12/28
Saturday the Philip R. Clarke was unloading iron ore at the Number 1 Ore Dock at United States Steel Great Lakes Works, Zug Island.

Bow view.
Stern view.
Another view.

Reported by: Wade P. Streeter


Toledo Update

12/28
The tug Susan W. Hannah and barge Southdown Conquest was at the Cemex Dock unloading cement on Saturday. There were no other active vessels in port at the time of this report.

There are no vessels at the Shipyard at this time. No active vessels have arrived at Toledo yet for winter lay-up. The last ore boat of the season for the Torco Ore Dock will be the CSL Laurentien on Wednesday. The CSX Coal Docks and Midwest Terminal Stone Docks are now closed down for the season.

Reported by: Jim Hoffman


Today in Great Lakes History - December 28

The HENRY FORD II was laid up in the Rouge Steel slip at Dearborn, MI on December 28, 1988.

On 28 December 1907, CALDERA (steel propeller freighter, 504', 6328 gt) was launched at W. Bay City, MI.

On 28 December 1881, the steamer R. J. GORDON arrived in Port Huron from Marine City on her maiden voyage with a large number of passengers. She was powered with a steam engine with an 18" cylinder and 20" stroke. Her dimensions were 116' long with a 26' beam. She cost nearly $20,000 and was built to run between Algonac and Lexington.

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 includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history




Soo Traffic

12/27
Sunshine and shipping was the order of the day Friday on the St. Marys River. Downbound passages during the afternoon were Edgar B. Speer and Gordon L. Leitch. Upbound in quick succession were Roger Blough, David Z. Norton and Cason J. Callaway.

Yankcanuck was loading at Algoma Steel.

Late evening downbound traffic included the Alpena, which locked down after dinner, Lee A. Tregurtha and Stewart J. Cort, which was inbound at Ile Parisienne at 9:30 p.m. Upbounders in the system after dark included Adam E. Cornelius and American Republic.

Roger Blough in the Lower St. Marys River upstream of Pipe Island (near DeTour)
Blough upbound at Mission Point.
Drummond Islander IV makes the mainland dock at DeTour.
Cason J. Callaway at Mission Point at dusk.
Callaway (stern view)
David Z. Norton, inbound off DeTour
David Z. Norton at Mission Point at dusk (stern view).
John D. Leitch at Mission Point.
Leitch (stern view).
Leitch and Blough bows passing.
Linda Jean, pilot boat at DeTour, laid up for the winter.
Ferry Sugar Islander displays Christmas lights atop her pilot house.
Museum ship Valley Camp at the Soo.
DeTour's Christmas decorations included this small boat, abandoned at the side of the road.

Reported by: Roger LeLievre


Busy Friday in Manistee

12/27
Shipping in Manistee has yet to slow down for the winter as three vessels called in Manistee on Friday.

The tug Evans McKeil and barge KTC 115 departed Manistee around 8 a.m. after loading brine at General Chemical for Amherstburg. The tug Tony Mackay will take the Evans' spot pushing the barge when the duo reaches Amherstburg.

The Capt. Ralph Tucker departed Manistee at 3 p.m. also having loaded brine at General Chemical for Amherstburg. She should return to Manistee around 11 a.m. on Tuesday.

The Mississagi arrived Manistee at 10:15 p.m. loaded with stone for Seng's #1 dock from Meldrum Bay. The vessel is expected to depart Saturday morning. This is the latest arrival of a stone shipment into Manistee in several years. Usually the dry bulk season ends the first week of December.

Reported by: Chris Franckowiak


Prospector Arrives for Lay-up

12/27
Friday morning the Canadian Prospector was upbound in the Welland Canal, heading for the Wharf 12 stone dock in Port Colborne. It arrived around noon and soon after had her anchors placed on the dock for her winter stay.

By 4 p.m. she was still running extra lines out at the bow and stern. Also laid up in the canal was the Canadian Transfer, tied up at wharf 6 Industrial Dock in Thorold.

The tug Anglian Lady with barge was tied up at the Government Dock wharf 20 and John Spence and barge was secure at wharf 16, both seemingly waiting for the winds on Lake Erie to die down.

At I.M.S scrap yard, the forward sections are all that remain of the Algogulf & Kinsmen Enterprise. The Comeaudoc is completely gone.

Reported by: Alex Howard


Today in Great Lakes History - December 27

The SAVIC (Cliffs Victory) cleared the Welland Canal Christmas night 1985 and finally anchored at Pointe aux Trembles near Montreal, Que. December 27th awaiting another load of scrap. The SAVIC remained there the entire winter, because the underwriters ordered that her hull be re-enforced by welding straps to her stress points for her overseas journey.

The THOMAS LAMONT as a single tow arrived at Aliaga, Turkey on December 27, 1987 where she was scrapped. The LAMONT was one of the last bulkers that retained her telescoping hatch covers to the very end.

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


This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history




Twin Ports Report

12/26
John D. Leitch arrived in the Twin Ports in the wee hours of Christmas morning. The boat loaded coal at Midwest Energy Terminal and was gone by 9 a.m. James R. Barker and Columbia Star were both scheduled to arrived at the coal dock late in the day.

Down the harbor, Stewart J. Cort and Great Lakes Trader were due at BNSF. Boatwatchers were greeted with the curious sight toward evening of the Great Lakes Trader's square-ish tug with its towering pilothouse motoring briskly down the icy Front Channel, apparently having dropped off its barge so it could travel solo to the fuel dock. Joseph H. Thompson Jr. also was due at BNSF late Thursday or early today.

Reported by: Al Miller


Alpena Update

12/26
The Steamer Alpena arrived back at Lafarge Wednesday morning after delivering to Marysville, MI and Whitefish, ON. It took on another cargo of cement and departed by 10am to head for Lake Superior and its next destination of Heron Bay, ON.

The Jacklyn M barge Integrity is expected to be in port on Christmas evening. The Integrity had stopped at Muskegon earlier in the week to load the Paul H. Townsend so it will have a winter storage cargo.

Reported by: Ben & Chanda McClain


St. Clair & Detroit River Traffic

12/26
St. Clair & Detroit River Traffic December 24
Tug Menasha downbound escorting the Capt Henry Jackman off Marysville.
Another view
Capt Henry Jackman downbound.
Algoeast loading at Suncor Sarnia Upper Dock.
Atlantic Huron upbound at Stag Island Upper Light.
Another view.
Tug Jerry G & barge NT 1803 upbound in the St. Clair River.
Another view.
Buffalo upbound in Lake St. Clair.
Another view.
John J Boland unloading coal on Zug Island in the Rouge Short-Cut Canal.
Another view.
Another view.

Detroit Dec. 22
Philip R Clarke outbound the Rouge River.
Turning upriver.
Bow shot upbound off Zug Island.
Presque Isle unloading on Zug Island.
Charles M Beeghly downbound before turning into the Rouge River.
Being towed just above the Conrail Bridge.
Being towed past the Gaelic Tug Dock.
Tug James A Hannah and barge Hannah 5401 loading at Marathon at the Fort Street Bridge in the Rouge River.
Another view.
James A Hannah bow & stern.
Another view.
Diamond Jack
Another view.
Tug Acushnet at the Gaelic Tugboat Co. Dock.
Tug Carolyn Hoey at the Gaelic Dock.
Another view.
Tug William Hoey.
Another view.
Capt. William A. Hoey III.
Tug Susan Hoey.
Another view.
Diamond Queen.
Tug Forney.
Another view.
Tugs Susan Hoey & Shannon.
Gaelic Tugboat Co. Dock.

Reported by: Mike Nicholls


Welland Update
12/26
The Canadian Enterprise arrived at Port Weller Dry Docks on the evening of Dec. 23 and moored along side the Parisien. She will reportedly be dry docked after the holidays.

Also making a rare visit back to the area is the Canadian Transfer, downbound to W6, the Industrial Dock at Thorold. She was due to arrive there early hours of Thursday.

Reported by: Jimmy Sprunt


Seaway West News

12/26
The last ocean vessel has entered the Seaway. The Cashin passed Cape Vincent Thursday afternoon and arrived at the Iroquois lock at 7:45 p.m.

Decommissioning of Aids to Navigation has been completed in the eastern Lake Ontario and upper St. Lawrence River.

Reported by: Ron Walsh


Today in Great Lakes History - December 26

In 1981 the ENDERS M. VOORHEES laid up for the last time at Duluth's Hallett Dock #5.

On 26 December 1916, the wreck of the wooden self-unloading freighter TOPEKA was leveled by dynamiting. She sank just off Windsor/Sandwich, Ontario in the Detroit River on 15 April 1916 in a collision with the small steamer CHRISTOPHER. Her machinery was removed prior to dynamiting.

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


This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history




Last Saltie Heads for the Sea

12/25
The salt water ship Cashin was downbound in the Welland Canal Wednesday marking the final passage of saltie for the season. The Spar Ruby and Patria were also headed off the lakes ahead of the Cashin at St. Lambert.

Reported by: Ron Walsh


Atlantic Huron in Sarnia

12/25
The Atlantic Huron was in Sarnia Wednesday docked in the North Slip at the south end of the dock. She had the bow heavily ballasted leaving the propeller out of the water.

Repair crews appeared to be inspecting the propeller or the seal. Several trucks where parked near by and a number of workers where standing on a work barge that had been moved in.

Reported by: Jamie Kerwin


Soo Traffic

12/25
The latest report of the Soo Locks closing for the season is set for January 15 with a possible extension for the Poe Lock.

Soo Traffic was light on Christmas Eve as the season winds down. Upbound was the Joyce L Van Enkevort & Great Lakes Trader, Arthur M Anderson, Jane Ann IV & Sarah Spencer, American Mariner, Joseph H Thompson & Jr, James R Barker, Yankcanuck, Columbia Star, Alpena and Lee A. Tregurtha.

Downbound included the Wolverine, Algowood, Tadoussac, Herbert C. Jackson and Fred R White Jr.

Reported by: Chris Jackson


Toledo News

12/25
The tug Invincible and barge McKee Sons was loading grain at Andersons "K" Elevator. The next scheduled ore boat due into the Torco Ore Docks will be the CSL Laurentien on Tuesday 30 Dec. She will be the last ore boat of the season for this dock site.

The Algomarine is due into the Midwest Terminal Stone Dock on Thursday 25 Dec. most likely she will be the last stone boat of the season for this dock site.

The CSX Coal Docks are now closed for the season, the Lee A. Tregurtha was the last coal boat loaded on Tuesday 23 Dec. There are no vessels in at the Shipyard at this time.

Classic Views of Toledo Shipping
Nordale at Midstates Elevator loading grain.
Robert C. Norton inbound Maumee Bay bound for the C&O Coal Docks to load coal.

Reported by: Jim Hoffman


Christmas Dinner Southdown Challenger

12/25
December 25, 2002

APPETIZER'S
OYSTER COCKTAIL SHRIMP COCKTAIL
VEGETABLE TRAY ASSORTED OLIVES
APPLE CIDER STUFFED CELERY
CHEF'S SALAD
WALDORF SALAD

SOUPS
OYSTER STEW CHICKEN NOODLE

ENTREES
SURF & TURF W/DRAWN BUTTER
ROAST TOM TURKEY W/SAGE DRESSING
BAKED VIRGINIA HAM PINEAPPLE RING
MASHED POTATOES SWEET POTATOES
GIBLET GRAVY
HOT DINNER ROLLS
WHOLE CRANBERRY SAUCE

DESSERTS
PEACH PIE PUMPKIN PIE
MINCE MEAT PIE APPLE PIE
ICE CREAM FRUIT CAKE
PLAIN SUGAR DATES

REFRESHMENTS
COFFEE TEA MILK HOT CHOCOLATE
SOFT DRINKS HARD CANDY
CIGARS CIGARETTES GUM EGG NOG

Dinner is prepared.
Dinner is served.

Reported by: Andy LaBorde


Today in Great Lakes History - December 25

The E.G. GRACE carried 14,797 tons of taconite ore on her last trip out of Taconite Harbor, MN bound for South Chicago, IL and then was laid up at Ashtabula, OH on December 25, 1976 with engine trouble which often plagued the six "Al" ships powered with Lentz-Poppet engines. The lay-up of the E.G. GRACE lasted until April, 1984 when she became the first Maritimer to be sold for scrap.

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


This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history




Russians win the Battle of the Rouge

12/24
Russian steelmaker OAO Severstal has won the bidding war for financially troubled Rouge Steel after agreeing to make key investments in the mill and retain most of its work force.

Severstal was awarded the bid for Rouge by U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Mary Walrath during a hearing in Wilmington, Del. Severstal's final bid was $285.5 million, beating out Pittsburgh-based U.S. Steel Corp.

Severstal is expected to import steel slabs from Russia to be finished at the Rouge mill. Rouge's 80-year-old blast furnaces, which have been connected to the deaths of six workers and multiple injuries, were reported to prevent it from staying competitive and avoiding bankruptcy.

It's unclear what effect Severstal's ownership will have on the Great Lakes vessels that been supplying the Rouge with taconite pellets. Gov. Jennifer Granholm offered the purchaser of Rouge a variety of tax and other incentives if Rouge's new owner continues operating the company's Dearborn mill and buying pellets from mine in Michigan's Upper Peninsula. It was not announced whether Severstal would pursue those incentives.

Reported by: Frank Frisk


Owen Sound Lay Up

12/24
Owen Sound Harbour will be a busy place again this winter as Algoma Central plans to winter two, possible three of its lake freighters in port.

Algoma Central spokesman Captain Jim Pound told CFOS Radio that the Algomarine and Algoway are scheduled to arrive in port at the end of the shipping season. He says a decision on a third vessel has yet to be made. Pound says the ships should enter port near the end of December or early January.

He says exactly when is determined by how much cargo is available to ship. Pound reported the reason they continue to send vessels to Owen Sound is because of the availability of skilled labor to work on the ships on the off season. He says easy access to the harbor walls makes this an ideal port to conduct repairs to the ships.

Reported by: David Shearman


Twin Ports Report

12/24
Edgar B. Speer is returning to service after losing one of its rudders in the St. Marys River. The vessel was scheduled to depart the shipyard at Sturgeon Bay on Dec. 22 bound for Two Harbors. It's due there the 24th.

Another Great Lakes Fleet vessel of interest is the Philip R. Clarke, which is scheduled to make a rare visit to the BNSF ore dock on Dec. 24. It will load pellets for delivery to Zug Island in Detroit.

Christmas Day is shaping up to be a busy one for some Lake Superior ports. John D. Leitch, James R. Barker and Columbia Star are all due to load the 25th at Midwest Energy Terminal in Superior. Arthur M. Anderson is scheduled to arrive Two Harbors on the 25th.

Reported by: Al Miller


Seaway West Update

12/24
The Cashin will be the last salt water vessel eastbound in the Welland Canal and the Seaway. She has been unloading in Sault Ste. Marie, at Algoma Steel.

Tuesday's water temperature at St. Lambert was 0.3 C as compared to 0.9 C in 2002 and 1.0 C for a ten year average. At midnight Dec. 22 there were 11 ocean vessels above St. Lambert and 2 above Port Weller. This compares with 11 and 1 in 2002. There have been extensive delays in the Montreal- Lake Ontario section due to the presence of ice and one way traffic in some sections.

Reported by: Ron Walsh


Capt. Kurth R. Grainger

12/24
On Sunday of Capt. Kurth R. Grainger of Manitowoc, Wisc. passed away. Kurth was a past Grand President of the International Shipmasters Association, one of the founding members of ISMA Lodge # 18 in Green Bay where he served as secretary-treasurer for many years, and one of a few crew members that remained of the Str. Theodore Roosevelt. Capt. Grainger was with the Reiss Steamship fleet for many years, with the remaining years at American Steamship, retiring in 1978.

Services will be held Friday, with visitation from 9:00 to 11:00 at the First Lutheran Church in Manitowoc.

Reported by: Charlie Geiger


Today in Great Lakes History - December 24

December 24, 1969 - The CITY OF FLINT 32 made her last trip out of Ludington pulled by 2 tugs. She was sold to Norfolk and Western Railway Company to be converted into a river ferry barge and renamed ROANOKE.

On 24 December 1910, ALSAKA (wooden propeller bulk freighter, 165', 348 t, built in 1878 at Detroit, formerly ACORN) was sheltering from a storm a few miles from Tobermory, Ontario, when she caught fire from an overheated boiler and burned to a total loss. She was originally built as a sidewheel passenger vessel and when rebuilt in 1889, her engine went into the steamer FRANK E. KIRBY.

On 24 December 1875, the Port Huron Times listed the following vessels at winter lay-up at St. Clair, Michigan -- Scows: ANNA H. MOORE, A. MONROE, MYRTLE, CLIPPER VISION, J. SNADERS and B. MONROE; Steamers: BERTIE DAHLKE and HELEN; Schooners: JOHN RICE and M. R. GOFFE; Barges: MILLIN and JUSTIN R. WHITING; Tug: C. M. FARRAR; and Dredge: H. LIFIAN.

On Christmas Eve of 1979 While at her temporary dock in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, the E.M. Ford sank when gale force winds forced her from her moorings and repeatedly slammed her bow into the dock facing. By Christmas morning her stern was settled on the bottom, her engine room flooded. Her storage cargo of powdered cement was partially flooded also. By afternoon, the proud steamer lay sunken at her dock. She stayed on the bottom for several weeks as crews had to remove a solid 3 feet of hardened cement and patch her holed bow. On January 20th, 1980 she was refloated and towed to Bay Shipbuilding where work began on rebuilding her.

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


This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history




Laud Closes Holland

12/23
The Sam Laud closed the port of Holland for the 2003 season on Monday, arriving around noon and departing at about 3:00 p.m. She brought a very light load of stone for Brewer's.

Even with a light load it was a challenge to enter the port as efforts to dredge the sand bar that formed in November have been thwarted by prevalent winds and waves. The dredge has been waiting in Lake Macatawa for a break in the weather, but that hasn't happened.

The sand bar has closed the harbor since the Wilfred Sykes and Undaunted/Pere Marquette 41 went aground in early December.

For Holland, 2003 was down from the record cargoes of 2002. For the year there were 57 inbound loads, 6 outbound loads, and 5 calls by passenger vessels.

Reported by: Bob Vande Vusse


Twin Ports Report

12/23
The DMIR's Duluth ore dock, which for many years closed in mid-December because of thick ice in the slip, answered the call for extra duty Monday when it loaded the St. Clair. A Great Lakes Towing tug was hired to break ice in the turning basin off the end of the docks and in the slip. This season the St. Clair has been a frequent caller at the DMIR dock in Two Harbors, but has appeared only occasionally in Duluth. Even more surprising, the dock is scheduled to load the James R. Barker on Jan. 12. The dock has seen little activity this fall but is expected to begin receiving pellets from the newly reopened United Taconite plant near Eveleth, Minn.

Elsewhere in port, Paul R. Tregurtha arrived early in the morning to load coal at Midwest Energy Terminal for delivery to Taconite Harbor. It's due to return Wednesday to load coal for St. Clair, Mich. Algowood also was scheduled to load coal Monday.

Down the harbor at Allouez, George A. Stinson and CSL Tadoussac were expected at BNSF ore dock.

In an article in the Sunday Duluth News Tribune, Cleveland-Cliffs reaffirmed that it will try to reopen the idle taconite loading facility at Taconite Harbor. Cliffs owns the facility, which was part of the defunct Erie Mining Co. A company spokesman told the newspaper that reopening the facility to handle taconite pellets from United Taconite and, possibly, Hibbing Taconite, would enable it to reduce the cost of shipping its pellets. While the Taconite Harbor shiploader is closer to the lower lakes and faster than other ore docks, it lacks adequate storage space and rail connections. However, the Cliffs official expressed hope that those changes could be made by 2005.

Reported by: Al Miller


Year end traffic in Green Bay

12/23
The port of Green Bay has seen a lot of traffic as the 2003 season winds down. The Cason J. Callaway arrived at 4 p.m. with a load of coal from Toledo, Ohio for the Fox River Dock Sunday afternoon. Unloading took just over nine hours and the Callaway departed around 1:30 a.m.

The tug Rebecca Lynn and barge A410 arrived Sunday around 7 p.m. with a load of liquid asphalt for the Construction Resource Management terminal they remained in port over night and departed Monday around Noon. the Algosteel arrived in Green Bay Monday morning just after 7 a.m. with a load of 21,000 tons of salt for the Fox River Dock. Unloading took about six hours and they departed just before 2 p.m.

The John G. Munson arrived Monday morning about 10 a.m. with a load of coal from Toledo for the C. Reiss Coal company. They were expected to unload for seven hours and depart Monday night around 7 p.m. The last vessel to arrive was the tug Barbara Andrie with barge A390 loaded with liquid asphalt for the Construction Resource Management terminal. The will unload over night and depart Tuesday morning.

Cason J Callaway entering the slip
Coal Pile at night
Stern View of the Callaway
Close up at night
Rebecca Lynn A-410
Christmas lights on the Rebecca Lynn
Rebecca Lynn approaching the Main St. bridge
Outbound under Tower drive bridge
Algosteel inbound before sunrise
Algosteel under Tower Drive Br.
The pilot house
View on deck
Salt in the cargo hold
View down the cargo tunnel
Salt on the conveyer belt
Engine room
Controll room
large salt pile
View looking forward
Fox River Dock from the Algosteel
Stern view at the Fox River dock
Tug Indiana pushing the Munson to the dock
Christmas lights at night
Stern view of Christmas lights
Almost to C. Reiss Coal dock
Tug Barbara Andrie
Barbara Andrie-A390

Reported by: Jason Leino


Toledo Update

12/23
The American Mariner finished loading coal at the CSX Docks and departed Monday morning. The Birchglen finished loading grain at Andersons "K" Elevator and departed late Monday morning under tow of the "G" Tugs Louisiana (bow) and Idaho (stern). The tow encountered problems with The Martin Luther King Bridge and was delayed about an hour on her outbound transit of the Maumee River.

The Atlantic Erie was at anchor in the western basin of Lake Erie waiting for water levels to rise before she could proceed to the Torco Ore Dock to unload ore. Unknown eta for the Torco Ore Dock at this time. There are no vessels at the Shipyard at this time. The Armco, Buckeye, and Armco remain in lay-up at their respective dock sites. These vessels are now on the current winter layup list and will no longer be reported on the daily update.

The next scheduled coal boats due into the CSX Coal Docks will be the John J. Boland and Lee A. Tregurtha on Tuesday. The Lee A. Tregurtha will be the last coal boat of the 2003 season for the CSX Docks.

The next scheduled ore boats due into the Torco Ore Dock after the Atlantic Erie will be the Atlantic Huron on Tuesday, followed by the CSL Laurentien on Tuesday 30 Dec. The CSL Laurentien will be the last scheduled ore boat of the 2003 season for the Torco Ore Dock.

The Algomarine is due into the Midwest Terminal Stone Dock late Wednesday evening to unload stone. Most likely she will be the last stone boat of the season for this dock site.

Classic Views of Toledo Shipping
The steamboat Soo River Trader downbound the Maumee River from the Craig Bridge. She just finished loading a grain cargo at one of the elevators upriver.
The Northern Venture inbound Maumee Bay bound for the C&O Coal Docks to load a coal cargo.

Reported by: Jim Hoffman


Clarkson Update

12/23
James Norris arrived from Colborne with limestone for St. Lawrence Cement just after 9 a.m. Sunday. She was fighting a severe Northwest blow and decided to go to anchor off Oakville at 9:45 rather than attempt her approach under such adverse wind conditions. She weighed anchor just after noon. Even though the wind had abated she had difficulty getting alongside. Finally by 1:30 she was secure and unloading began.

Reported by: Bryan Ridley


Busy Sunday in Quebec Harbor

12/23
With winter conditions prevailing on the St. Lawrence River, many ships were docked in Quebec Harbor engaged in different trades.

In the St. Charles River, CSL Nanticoke was loading coal for a Great Lakes port. The Aegean Sea (Bahamas) was loading scrap iron for an Asian port. The Federal Yukon was loading zinc for the port of Antwerp Belgium; the Liberian bulk carrier Dorothea Oldendorff was loading grain for Casablanca, Morocco. The Arctic (CAN-Federal Shipping) was awaiting orders.

The Diamond Star (Can) was loading at the Ultramar marine Terminal (St-Romuald) for Montreal.

At the Anse-aux-Foulon Terminal, the Mecta Star ( Bahamas) was unloading urea and the chemical tanker Arcturus was loading commercial liquid fats for a foreign port.

Since early December, the pilot changes at the Quebec Pilot station are now done by the Groupe Ocean Tug Ocean Charlie which took over from the fast summer pilots cutters Ocean Guide and Ocean Express.

Summer pilot cutters Ocean Guide and Ocean Express retired for the winter season
Ocean Charlie at Quebec Pilot boarding station.
CSL Nanticoke
Federal Yukon.
Dorothea Oldendorff at Bunge Grain loading terminal.
Deep Sea Groupe Ocean tug Ocean Delta returning from an assignment.

Reported by: Frederick Frechette


Today in Great Lakes History - December 23

The IMPERIAL ST. CLAIR was selected to participate in the three-year winter navigation experiment during which the Soo Locks remained open all year. On December 23, 1976, at the very onset, she ran aground entering ice-jammed Parry Sound on Georgian Bay in a blinding snow squall. One of her cargo tanks ruptured spilling 1,800 barrels of diesel oil.

The SAVIC (Cliffs Victory) was downbound past Detroit, MI December 23, 1985 by-passing a 15,000 ton load of scrap because of the lack of time to clear the Seaway.

CHARLES DICK was sold for scrap to Marine Salvage Ltd., Port Colborne, Ont. on December 23, 1976.

The SIR TREVOR DAWSON was laid up after the War until December 23, 1920 when she was sold to Pioneer Steamship Co. and renamed c) CHARLES L. HUTCHINSON (3).

On 23 December 1905, JAMES B. WOOD (steel propeller freighter, 514', 7159 gt) was launched at W. Bay City, MI. In 1913, she was renamed ARCTURUS.

On 23 December 1885, MARY MARTINI (wooden propeller passenger-package freight vessel, 85', 91 gt, built in 1877 at W. Bay City) stranded on Brule Point, 13 miles east of Grand Marais, MN on Lake Superior in fair weather. A navigational error was blamed. She became a total loss but her passengers and crew were taken off by the Duluth tug T. H. CAMP.

In 1903 the PERE MARQUETTE 20 arrived Ludington on her maiden voyage.

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


This is a small sample, the books 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




Busy Saturday in Manistee

12/22
Saturday was a busy day in Manistee as two vessels arrived in port. The Maumee had anchored off of Manistee early Friday morning waiting for strong Northwest winds to subside before entering port. The wind abated Saturday morning, and the vessel arrived at the piers around 7:30 a.m. This was the Maumee's third trip in this year, and she arrived with a load of coal from South Chicago's KCBX dock for the Tondu Cogeneration plant. The McKee Sons was in port last Tuesday, also with a load of coal for Tondu. By the looks of the stockpile there may be another shipment before lay-up. The vessel finished unloading at 4:30 p.m. and after a short delay waiting for a bridge tender at Memorial St. bridge departed through the piers around 5:45 p.m. heading upbound.

The Capt. Ralph Tucker made a return trip to Manistee Saturday arriving at 10:30 a.m. in ballast from Bay City, Michigan to load brine at General Chemical. This was the first trip back since Capt. Wilf Seymour left the vessel for retirement. The Tucker departed around midnight heading for Amherstburg. The tug Evans McKeil and barge KTC 115 will be arriving soon for General Chemical to load brine, she's been waiting for weather to improve before heading down Lake Michigan. McKeil plans to ship brine year round out of Manistee again, pending heavy ice conditions.

Reported by: Chris Franckowiak


Hamilton Report

12/22
Sunday the Petrolia Desgagnes departed the Petro Canada Pier in Bronte ( Oakville ) Ontario at 7:30 a.m. heading downbound. The Jane Ann IV and barge Sarah Spencer departed Hamilton at 8:15 a.m. The Canadian Navigator arrived in Hamilton at 10 a.m. going to Dofasco with coal from Sandusky.

After unloading she will head to Ashtabula for more coal for Dofasco. The Algonorth departed at 11 a.m. heading to the Port Weller anchorage due to high winds on the lake. At 11:30 a.m. the Emerald Star arrived off the Petro Canada Pier in Bronte and dropped anchor also because of the high winds.

Reported by: Eric Holmes


Today in Great Lakes History - December 22

The SAVIC (Cliffs Victory) finally arrived at Masan, South Korea December 22, 1986 for dismantling there which was completed in 1987.

DETROIT EDISON (2) grounded on Gray's Reef in northern Lake Michigan, December 22, 1980, inflicting heavy damage to 350 feet of her bottom.

The GORDON C. LEITCH (1) was laid up on December 22, 1981 no longer economically able to compete and was used for grain storage at Toronto.

RAYMOND H. REISS arrived at Ramey's Bend, Port Colborne, Ont. on December 22, 1980 for scrapping there.

LIGHTSHIP 103 was commissioned December 22, 1920.

On 22 December 1922, CORNELL (wooden propeller tug, 72', 66 gt, built in 1888 at Buffalo) foundered somewhere between Cleveland and Erie, PA while enroute to new owners in Syracuse, NY. She had a crew of 8. The weather was clear and mild with almost no wind. She had just been put back into service and inspected after several years of idleness. Her ice-encrusted lifeboat was found on 26 December, 25 miles east of Long Point, containing the frozen body of the fireman.

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


This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history




Michipicoten Visits Hamilton

12/21
Saturday, the Lower Lakes vessel Michipicoten was downbound in the Welland Canal. She was heading to Hamilton with a load of Canola. This is the ship's first trip ever through the canal since her name change.

Also in the canal upbound at Lock 2 was the snow covered John D. Leitch, returning from a trip down below with a cargo of ore.

Pictures by Alex Howard
Michipicoten bow view
Another view
Front view
Side view
Forward cabins rear view
Stern view Lock 3
Jean Parisien
John D. Leitch enters Lock 2
Snow covered decks of Leitch
Another view
Michipicoten enters Lock 3
Michipicoten stern view heads for Lock 2

Reported by: Alex Howard and Jimmy Sprunt


Algoisle Arrives in Hamilton

12/21
Friday evening the tugs Vigilant and Progress towing the Algoisle into to Hamilton Harbor to Pier 26. The Algoisle has spent the last few years in lay-up at Toronto. The Frontenac arrived shortly after the Algoisle and delivered coal to Stelco. The tug Salvor and barge McCleary's Spirit arrived at 8:30 p.m.

Reported by: Eric Holmes and Wally Grisold


Frantz in Cleveland

12/21
Saturday morning found Cleveland covered in lake effect snow with a lot of late season activity. The Joseph Frantz arrived in the early morning and spent the day loading ore at the Whiskey Island terminal for the shuttle run to ISG. The English River was unloading cement at the Lafarge terminal. The Wolverine had completed its CBT and ISG unload and was heading to the upper lakes at 9 a.m.

Later in the morning the Fred White arrived to unload a partial cargo forward of the Frantz and then head upriver to complete its unload at ISG. At 4 p.m. the G tug New York and California headed out to greet the incoming Algoway. She was preceded by the Cuyahoga who made a beautiful turn into the old river bed without tug assistance. She was due to unload stone at Ontario and then pick up a load of salt at Cargill.

The Algoway followed close astern the Cuyahoga and proceeded upriver to unload stone at the CRP dock.

Pictures by Rex Cassidy
Joseph H. Frantz
Another view
Fred R. White Jr.
Algoway
Tug New York
Algoway
George A. Stinson
Cuyahoga
Another view
Backing

Pictures by Munroe Copper
Joseph H. Frantz and Fred R. White Jr. at Cleveland Bulk Terminal
Ojibway tugs & barges
Algoway
Cuyahoga
Franz & White at CBT
English River
Tugs Champion & General
Boat sign
Tug Champion

Reported by: Munroe Copper and Rex Cassidy


New Tug for Upper Lakes Group

12/21
A large tug named Commodore Straits, bearing Upper Lakes Group house flag, is tied-up in front of the Canadian Trader in section 2 of the port of Trois-Rivieres, Quebec. Recently arrived from Vancouver, where she had been laid up and for sale, the tug may be used to push the Canadian Trader after she is converted to a barge, as well as Barge Laviolette

The Commodore Straits was built in 1966 by Halifax Shipyards Ltd. under the name Haida Brave for Reliance Towing Co. (Kingcome Nav.Co.) In 1978, she was renamed Commodore Straits by new owner, Cosulich Holdings. According to the Transport Canada website, the new owner is the number company 1168596 Ontario Inc., with an address at 49 Jackes Avenue, Toronto. That is the same address listed for Upper Lakes.

There is no word as yet on a new name for the tug, or what work may be needed to prepare her for her new role. Docked at Section 2.

Reported by: Yves Richard


Reliance in Trenton

12/21
The tug Reliance and barge arrived at the former McLouth Steel property (now DSC Corporation) in Trenton, Michigan Friday afternoon with a load of Algoma Steel coil stock. She began offloading that day and finished up Saturday afternoon. She left approximately 3:30 p.m. with the assistance of the Gaelic tug Patricia Hoey North bound back to the Soo.

Docked.
Departing.

Reported by: Robert Burns


US Steel submits bid for Rouge Steel

12/21
U.S. Steel Corp. is making a big for Rouge Steel, challenging the nonbinding letter of intent that Rouge signed with Russian steelmaker Severstal.

U.S. Steel was expected to bid in Friday's bankruptcy auction for Rouge Steel's assets. The results of the auction will be subject to a bankruptcy court hearing Monday.

Mike Dixon, U.S. Steel spokesman, declined to provide details of the company's bid.

"Rouge has said Severstal's bid is about $215 million. I can say that our bid is greater than $200 million," he said.

Rouge officials were not immediately available for comment.

Rouge filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Wilmington, Del., in October, listing $558.1 million in assets and the same amount in debts. The bankruptcy filing came the same day as the nonbinding agreement with the Russian firm was announced.

Reported by: Frank Frisk


Could the Columbia sail again?

12/21
The organization overseeing the $500 million Riverwalk development on Detroit's riverfront will conduct a feasibility study to determine whether the former Bob-Lo steamer Columbia could be restored and returned to service.

Matt Cullen, a General Motors Corp. executive and cochairman of the Detroit Riverfront Conservancy, said the feasibility study, costing $200,000 to $300,000, will be completed in about six months.

The 101-year-old steamship, which once carried as many as 2,500 passengers at a time between Detroit and the amusement park on Boblo Island, could get new life if the study shows the vessel can be made seaworthy again.

The Columbia is docked in a slip at Nicholson Terminal & Dock Co. in Ecorse, said Dale Scrace, senior construction manager with Hines, the Houston-based real estate firm working with GM on renovation at Renaissance Center, including the RiverWalk segment there.

Scrace said the Columbia's hull is sound and that most of the deterioration, such as rotted wood, is in the superstructure.

If the study shows that refurbishing the boat for action along the Detroit River makes sense, Cullen said WJR-AM pledges an aggressive promotional and fund-raising campaign.

Scrace said the U.S. Coast Guard has indicated it would recertify a renovated Columbia to carry around 1,200 to 1,500 people.

If returned to service, the Columbia would become one of the attractions of Detroit's $500-million redevelopment of the riverfront from Hart Plaza to Belle Isle, including the 3-mile inaugural section of the Detroit RiverWalk. Half the RiverWalk for walking, jogging, cycling and skating is slated for completion by 2005 and the rest by 2006.

Cautioning the Columbia's restoration is "just a vision at this point," Cullen added that it "would be an incredible symbol of what we're trying to accomplish."

In their heyday, the Boblo boats Columbia and Ste. Claire carried about 600,000 passengers a year. They were taken out of service in 1991, two years before the park closed for good.

Reported by: Sam Buchanan


Saginaw River News

12/21
As the 2003 shipping season nears it close, the Saginaw River has remained busy with commercial vessels visiting at least 30 times so far during December. On Saturday, five vessels could be seen at docks along the river. The Alpena finished unloading cement at the Lafarge terminal in Saginaw in the morning and was outbound early Saturday afternoon. The Alpena had arrived on Friday evening.

Four vessels were docked in Essexville early on Saturday afternoon. The tug Mary E. Hannah, with its tank barge, was unloading at the Triple Clean fuel dock. The Hannah had also arrived on Friday evening.

Across the river at the Dow dock, the tug Karen Andrie was waiting with a tank barge for its turn at Triple Clean.

The Canadian Transfer was unloading potash from Thunder Bay at the NorthStar dock, just downstream from Triple Clean. Further downstream, the CSL Tadoussac was unloading cement clinkers at the Essroc plant.

The Transfer departed first, pulling away from the moorings and then turning in the river almost directly off the dock. The 650-foot vessel had little clearance, with the two tugs and their barges near its bow and stern. The Hannah and Tadoussac both departed later Saturday afternoon. On Friday morning, the Capt. Ralph Tucker was outbound from the Dow dock. The Tucker had arrived Thursday morning.

The Invincible-McKee Sons was outbound from the Wirt dock in Bay City on Friday afternoon. The tug-barge had arrived late Thursday evening and had lightered at the Sargent dock in Essexville before moving up to the Wirt dock.

Pictures by Stephen Hause
CSL Tadoussac unloads cement clinkers at Essroc.
Canadian Transfer eases past the Mary E. Hannah and its barge at Triple
Clean as the Transfer leaves the Northstar dock in Essexville.
Karen Andrie, with its tank barge, waits across the river at the Dow dock for its turn at the Triple Clean dock.
Canadian Transfer in the middle of its turn off the NorthStar dock. The Mary Hannah can be seen near the bow, while the Karen Andrie's barge can be seen at the stern.
Its turn complete, Canadian Transfer starts outbound.
Canadian Transfer passes the CSL Tadoussac.
Alpena outbound from Saginaw.
Capt. Ralph Tucker upbound at Essexville on Thursday.
Stern view of the Capt. Ralph Tucker as it approaches the Dow dock.

Pictures by Todd Shorkey
Canadian Transfer outbound clear of Essroc
Bow view passing USCG Station Saginaw River
Stern view
CSL Tadoussac unloading at Essroc
Another view
Tug Karen Andrie waiting at the Dow Chemical Dock
Tug Mary Hannah unloading at Triple Clean

Reported by: Stephen Hause, Lon Morgan and Todd Shorkey


St. Clair River Traffic

12/21
USCGC Hollyhock returns home.
Algonova downbound for the Shell Oil lower dock.
She will load for Soo, ONT.
Stern view heading down river
Algowood upbound after stopping for fuel at Shell Oil.
Stern view heading for Lake Huron
A Squirrel comes out of his den to inspect the passing Algowood.
Southdown Challenger shines in the light of a setting sun.
Stern close up
Bow close up
Southdown Challenger steams out into Lake Huron.

Reported by: Scott Tomlinson


Detroit Traffic

12/21
Algosoo unloading Petroleum Coke at Zug Island Area B, in the old Rouge River.
Algosoo close up.
Algosoo out in the Detroit River heading upbound for Sault Ste. Marie.

Reported by: Mike Nicholls


Toledo update

12/21
The John G. Munson was loading coal at the CSX Docks. The Birchglen made her first trip into Toledo under her new name. She arrived at Andersons "K" Elevator around 12:30 p.m. to load grain. She is expected to depart late Sunday evening or during the day Monday depending on the loading process.

There are no vessels at the Shipyard at this time. The Armco, Buckeye, and Courtney Burton remain in layup at their respective dock sites.

The next scheduled coal boats due into the CSX Docks will be the American Mariner on Sunday. The John J. Boland on Monday. The last coal boat of the season for the CSX Docks will be the Lee A. Tregurtha on Tuesday. The next scheduled ore boats due into the Torco Ore Docks will be the Atlantic Erie and John D. Leitch on Sunday. The Atlantic Huron on Tuesday.

The last ore boat of the season for the Torco Ore Docks will be the CSL Laurentien on Sunday 28 Dec. The Algomarine is due into the Midwest Terminal Stone Dock to unload stone on Wednesday evening.

Reported by: Jim Hoffman


Hamilton Update

12/21
Saturday shipping started early at 2 a.m. as the Algosar departed Hamilton heading downbound in time to clear the Seaway before closing. The Frontenac departed at 530 am going to Bowmanville Ontario. The tug Anglian Lady and her partly loaded oil barge arrived at 630 am. The Petrolia Desgagnes arrived at the Petro Canada Piers in Bronte ( Oakville )Ontario at 11 am. The refueling ship Hamilton Energy left Hamilton Harbour at 11 am also and went to meet the Petrolia Desgagnes. After refueling the Petrolia she returned to Hamilton at 230 pm. The tug Tony McKay and barge arrived at 5 pm. The Anglian Lady and barge departed at 6 pm but waited inside the harbor to allow the Michipicoten to enter through the Burlington Piers before proceeding out into the lake.

Reported by: Eric Holmes


Mailboat Enters Lay-up

12/21
The U.S. Mail Boat J.W. Westcott II entered winter lay-up on Friday. The Westcott departed her Detroit dock Friday morning under command of Captain Sam Buchanan heading upbound for Gregory's Marina behind Belle Isle.

The last vessel serviced by the mail boat was the Michipicoten. The mid river delivery was made off downtown Detroit in an ice free river.

The Westcott arrived at Gregory's to find the marina mostly ice free with only a few fields of one-inch think ice. The Westcott made quick work of the ice and backed to the dock.

The Westcott will join fleet mate Joseph J. Hogan when it is pulled from the water next week and placed on the dock for the winter.

The pilot boat Huron Maid has returned to Port Huron ending pilot service in Detroit. Two pilots now board salt water ships and both will ride to Port Colborne.

The Westcott Co. will continue freight and mail service by truck for vessels arriving in Detroit.

Westcott II at its Detroit dock Friday.
Inside the Westcott Station Dispatcher Bill Redding makes final arrangements.
Capt. Sam Buchanan (right) and deckhand Mike Knowles will take the mail boat to lay-up.
Heading for the John G. Munson.
"Mail by the Pail".
Munson continues down river.
Decked out with Christmas lights.
Heading down river to deliver to the David Z. Norton at Sterling Fuel.
David Z. Norton fueling.
Delivery.
Heading up river.
Wolverine is the next delivery.
Lowering the bucket.
Departing we exchange salutes.
Wescott Co. President Jim Hogan at the dock.
We depart upbound for the winter.
Capt. Buchanan calls Sarnia Traffic (just as the main radio cuts out).
Michipicoten is the last delivery of the season.
Along side.
Forward cabins.
Stack.
Michipicoten continues downbound.
We continue upbound.
Capt. Buchanan and Fleet Engineer Dave Domino relax while Mike Knowles gets in "wheel time".
Approaching downtown.
Ligthouse under construction at St. Aubin Park Marina.
Turning into Gregory's Marina.
Heading for the dock.
Tug Princess.
Ice is much thinner than last year.
Westcott II powers through.
Capt. Buchanan turns the Westcott to back to the dock.
Turned.
Ready to be pulled from the water.
Fleet mate Joseph J. Hogan all ready on the dock.

Reported by: N. Schultheiss


Today in Great Lakes History - December 21

The 437-foot bow section of the Roger Blough was float launched December 21, 1968 less ballast tanks because the existing dry dock wasn’t wide enough to accommodate her 105-foot width.

The WILLIAM G. MATHER was laid up for the last time December 21, 1980 at the Hocking Valley coal dock at Toledo, OH.

AMOCO ILLINOIS was laid up for the last time at Bay City, MI on December 21, 1980.

HOCHELAGA (2) was laid up on December 21, 1981 for the last time at Cardinal, Ont.

The OUTARDE (3) operated until December 21, 1983 when she was laid up for the last time at Toronto.

On 21 December 1891, the whaleback steamer CHARLES W. WETMORE tied up at the dock at Everett, Washington, ending a voyage of 93 days that started in Philadelphia and went around the tip of South America.

On 21 December 1879, CITY OF TOLEDO (wooden propeller package freighter, 413 gt, built in 1865 at Ogdensburg) was carrying winter provisions from Milwaukee to Ludington. In a white squall, she struck a reef and was stranded 7 miles north of Ludington, a few hundred yards from shore. Some of the crew made it to shore and sought help. The local Lifesaving Station was only in the planning stages, but a crew captain was on hand. He hastily assembled a volunteer lifesaving crew and over a five hour period, rescued all on board. None of the 24 person crew was lost.

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


This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history




Last Saltie Departs

12/20
Spar Ruby departed Duluth on Friday morning after completing its load at AGP, making it the last saltie of the season for the Twin Ports. With the salties gone and little or no traffic expected at the DMIR dock, vessel traffic will be slow with probably just a few vessels a day calling at Midwest Energy Terminal, BNSF ore dock and occasional loads of salt, stone or domestic grain.

Reported by: Al Miller


Duluth ore dock to receive United Taconite pellets

12/20
Duluth's DMIR ore dock may get a reprieve when it begins receiving pellets from United Taconite resumes production next week.

United Taconite -- formerly the idled EVTAC -- resumed processing taconite this month and is expect to produce its first pellets Monday. This winter the pellets will be shipped by the Duluth, Missabe & Iron Range Railway to its ore dock in Duluth.

Pete Stephenson, DMIR's vice president and general manager, told the Duluth News Tribune that the railroad has no formal agreement with United Taconite but is hauling crude ore to the plant and will carry pellets to Duluth under an interim pact.

Although only a couple of ships may be loaded during the remainder of the current navigation season, pellets stockpiled in Duluth during the winter will be loaded aboard ships next spring. That means about 65 DMIR ore dock workers will return to work then, Stephenson said.

EVTAC closed in May when one of its former owners declined to use any more of the company's pellets. Cleveland-Cliffs and Laiwu Steel of China purchased the mine and processing plant in November and plan to run them at their 4.3-million-tons-a-year capacity.

The pending arrival of pellets from United Taconite is good news for the Duluth dock. The historic facility has seen little activity this fall and winter as the last stockpiled EVTAC pellets were hauled away. Loss of the EVTAC trade called into question the necessity of the railroad maintaining the Duluth dock along with its busy dock in Two Harbors.

However, the good news is tempered with uncertainty. CN is expected to complete its purchase of Great Lakes Transportation -- including the DMIR -- in 2004. CN officials have inspected the idle ore-loading facility at Taconite Harbor to determine the feasibility of using it to handle United Taconite pellets. Such a move almost certainly would leave the Duluth dock idle.

Reported by: Eric Jackson


Cities celebrate 'Christmas Tree Ship' today

12/20
A tug bearing Christmas trees will sail from Two Rivers to Manitowoc today to celebrate the fabled Rouse Simmons -- known to Boatnerds as the lost "Christmas Tree Ship."

The Rouse Simmons was among several schooners that carried Christmas trees from upper Michigan forests to lower Lake Michigan ports at the beginning of the 20th century. The Simmons was memorialized in the press as the "Christmas Tree Ship" after it sank off Two Rivers in a storm on Nov. 23, 1912. Captain Herman Schuenemann and his crew were lost.

Events begin at 10:30 a.m. at the Roger’s Street Fishing Village in Two Rivers, with volunteers caroling in period costume, and a display of the Rouse Simmons' wheel and other artifacts.

Re-enactors aboard the tug are scheduled to depart about 11:45 a.m. from the Roger’s Street Fishing Village on the East Twin River, destined for a gala at the Wisconsin Maritime Museum in Manitowoc.

Maggie Becker, volunteer and co-organizer of the event, said if seas permit she will board the ship in costume as Barbara Schuenemann, the captain’s wife whom took it upon herself to carry on the annual business after her husband's death.

Upon the ship’s arrival about 1 p.m., carolers will welcome it into the harbor. Warm refreshments will help welcome a crowd into the museum after the 15 trees have been distributed. The recipients of the trees are already designated, including some needy families from the area.

Reported by: Jeff Davis


Marquette Update

12/20
The John Boland took on a load of ore late Thursday while the Kaye Barker arrived. After loading, the K. Barker remained tied at the dock apparently waiting out the weather. After the Boland left, the Joseph Block came in with a load of coal.

Pictures by Kris Rowe
John J. Boland at night
Kaye Barker arriving
K. Barker bow view in the morning

Pictures by Lee Rowe
Kaye Barker loaded and waiting
Joe Block unloading coal.
Ice on the Block.

Reported by: Lee Rowe


Dorothy Ann Pathfinder in Green Bay

12/20
The Dorothy Ann and barge Pathfinder arrived in Green Bay at 12:15 pm on it's third trip to Green Bay this season with a load of coal for the Fox River Dock. The Fox River dock is one of the few remaining terminals still getting traffic this late in the season. They are also expecting a load of salt on the Algosteel and another load of coal on the Cason J. Callaway on Sunday. The John G. Munson will also bring in a load to this dock on Monday or Tuesday.

Dorothy Ann Pathfinder
Stern View
Unloading
Christmas Tree
Bow at night
Stern at night

Reported by: Jason Leino


Detroit Traffic

12/20
Michipicoten downbound off Zug Island.
Stern view
Light tug Keewatin upbound off Zug Island.
Bow telephoto
Stern
Stern telephoto

Reported by: Mike Nicholls


This Week at Clarkson

12/20
Monday, Synnove Knutsen completed loading and sailed from the Petro Canada pier. She had arrived late Friday or early last Saturday.

Thursday James Norris arrived early. She spent the day at the St. Lawrence Cement dock unloading a cargo of stone. The Norris sailed eastbound just after mid afternoon.

Mid afternoon Friday a tow passed by out in the lake. An unidentified Algoma boat was being towed by two tugs Westward on what appeared to be a course for Hamilton. The laker was riding very high, there were no flags of any kind.

Reported by: Bryan Ridley


Today in Great Lakes History - December 20

The SAMUEL MATHER (5) was towed from Ashtabula on December 20, 1975 to Port Colborne, Ont. where her boilers were converted to oil-fired burners by Herb Fraser & Associates and renamed c) JOAN M. McCULLOUGH.

The FRONTENAC (4)'s scrapping process was completed there December 20, 1985.

The CRISPIN OGLEBAY (1) hauled her last cargo, a load of salt, into Rochester, NY on December 20, 1973 and then was laid up at Kingston, Ont. for the winter.

The Keel was laid for the PERE MARQUETTE 22 on December 20, 1923.

In 1910 the PERE MARQUETTE 18 (II) was launched at South Chicago. She was the only Great Lakes carferry to be built in Chicago.

December 20, 1979 - The Interstate Commerce Commission approved the termination of the C&O's Milwaukee run. C&O terminated the run the following year.

On 20 December 1867, ALIDA (wooden propeller packet/tug, 81', 58 gt, built in 1856 at Saginaw, MI) had her boiler explode in the Saginaw River. She caught fire and burned to a total loss. This little packet/tug was the only steamer to regularly venture up the Saginaw River beyond the mouth of the Flint River.

On 20 December 1873, the Great Western ferry MICHIGAN was finally launched at the Jenkins yard in Walkerville, Ontario. Her launching was originally scheduled for 18 December, but she stuck on the ways. She was built for use on the Detroit River and her dimensions were 282' x 72'6" beam.

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


This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history




Duluth ore dock to receive United Taconite pellets

12/19
Duluth's DMIR ore dock may get a reprieve when it begins receiving pellets from United Taconite resumes production next week.

United Taconite -- formerly the idled EVTAC -- resumed processing taconite this month and is expect to produce its first pellets Monday. This winter the pellets will be shipped by the Duluth, Missabe & Iron Range Railway to its ore dock in Duluth.

Pete Stephenson, DMIR's vice president and general manager, told the Duluth News Tribune that the railroad has no formal agreement with United Taconite but is hauling crude ore to the plant and will carry pellets to Duluth under an interim pact.

Although only a couple of ships may be loaded during the remainder of the current navigation season, pellets stockpiled in Duluth during the winter will be loaded aboard ships next spring. That means about 65 DMIR ore dock workers will return to work then, Stephenson said.

EVTAC closed in May when one of its former owners declined to use any more of the company's pellets. Cleveland-Cliffs and Laiwu Steel of China purchased the mine and processing plant in November and plan to run them at their 4.3-million-tons-a-year capacity.

The pending arrival of pellets from United Taconite is good news for the Duluth dock. The historic facility has seen little activity this fall and winter as the last stockpiled EVTAC pellets were hauled away. Loss of the EVTAC trade called into question the necessity of the railroad maintaining the Duluth dock along with its busy dock in Two Harbors.

However, the good news is tempered with uncertainty. CN is expected to complete its purchase of Great Lakes Transportation -- including the DMIR -- in 2004. CN officials have inspected the idle ore-loading facility at Taconite Harbor to determine the feasibility of using it to handle United Taconite pellets. Such a move almost certainly would leave the Duluth dock idle.

Reported by: Dan Jackson


Twin Ports Report

12/19
John J. Boland's stay in Fraser Shipyards earlier this week was necessary so the ship could undergo the rebuilding of its boom belt gearbox. The gearbox froze during unloading operations in Marquette, causing a minor fire to the belt.

Spar Ruby, the Twin Ports' last saltie of the season, spent Thursday loading at AGP in Duluth. The ship is expected to depart today.

Also Thursday, Oglebay Norton loaded coal at Midwest Energy Terminal while Stewart J. Cort and Reserve were expected at BNSF ore dock in Superior.

Reported by: Al Miller


Marquette Update

12/19
The American Mariner loaded or in Marquette in Thursday while the John J. Boland brought stone. The Boland will move to the upper harbor for a load of ore, and will be joined at the dock by the Kaye Barker. A rare trip by the Joe Block with a load of coal is also expected Thursday night.

John Boland unloading stone. Truck at bottom of pile there to haul stone to the mines.
Boland cabins.

Reported by: Lee Rowe


Saginaw River News

12/19
A new visitor to the Saginaw River was seen on Thursday morning with the arrival of the tanker Capt. Ralph Tucker. This is the first known visit by the Tucker to the river. The vessel was docking at Dow Chemical near Bay City about 1130 a.m.

On Wednesday morning, the Algoway was outbound from Saginaw after being delayed for a day by weather. The Algoway stopped briefly about noon at the old Bay Aggregates dock in downtown Bay City due to wind, but finally departed the river early in the afternoon.

The Sam Laud arrived early Wednesday evening at the new Bay Aggregates dock in Bangor Township near the mouth of the river. The Laud was outbound about midnight.

The Coast Guard cutter Hollyhock has been busy on the Saginaw Bay the past two days, setting winter aids to navigation.

Reported by: Stephen Hause, Lon Morgan and Todd Shorkey


Toronto Update

12/19
Thursday the Algoisle was at the Redpath Dock unloading sugar. The barge Laviolette has been rafted to the outside of Canadian Mariner. Both have sugar cargoes for Redpath over the winter.

Reported by: Bill Bird


Today in Great Lakes History - December 19

The ASHLAND was launched December 19, 1942 as the L6-S-B1 class bulk carrier a) CLARENCE B. RANDALL (1). She laid up for the last time on the same day in 1979.

The ELMGLEN (2) ran aground December 19, 1989 near Johnson Point in the Munuscong Channel of the St. Marys River. Downbound loaded with grain, she had been diverted to the Munuscong Channel because of difficulties encountered by her fleet mate BEECHGLEN in the ice clogged West Neebish Channel.

Because of the increased demand for iron ore during the Korean conflict more ships were needed and as a consequence the yards on the Great Lakes were operating at capacity. In December 1950 the Republic Steel Corp. bought 70% of Nicholson--Universal stock in order to purchase ships from the surplus fleet.

On 19 December 1927, ALEXANDRIA (wooden propeller freighter, 97', 201 gc, built in 1902 at Chatham, Ontario) burned in the harbor of Little Current, Ontario off the Government Dock where her remains still lay.

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


This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history




Bob-Lo Boat Columbia May Be Part of Detroit's Redevelopment

12/18
The 101-year-old former Bob-Lo vessel Columbia, which once ferried passengers between Detroit and an amusement park on Bob-Lo Island in the Detroit River, could sail again if a study shows it is practical to repair. An article in Wednesday's Detroit Free Press indicated that a feasibility study should be completed in about six months.

The announcement was part of a presentation showing the completed design concept for a $500-million redevelopment of the Detroit riverfront from Hart Plaza to Belle Isle.

Cautioning the Columbia's restoration is "just a vision at this point," Matt Cullen, a General Motors Corp. executive and cochairman of the Detroit Riverfront Conservancy, said the vessel's restoration "would be an incredible symbol of what we're trying to accomplish."

The Columbia and its sister ship, the Ste. Claire, were taken out of service in 1991, two years before the Bob-Lo park closed for good in 1993. The Ste. Claire is currently undergoing restoration by private owners in Lorain, Oh.

Columbia is presently docked in a slip at Nicholson Terminal & Dock Co. in Ecorse. Reports state the vessel's hull is sound and that most of the deterioration, such as rotted wood, is above-deck.

Reported by: Roger LeLievre


Last Oceangoing Vessel Departure

12/18
The Port of Duluth-Superior's last ocean vessel of the season is expected to depart early Friday (December 19), while Great Lakes traffic should continue for about another month.

The Panamanian-flagged Spar Ruby is expected to complete loading about 18,500 metric tons of wheat destined for Morocco at AGP Grain Limited, Duluth, at about 11:30 p.m. Thursday (December 18). She should exit via the Duluth Aerial Lift Bridge early Friday (December 19).

The Spar Ruby is expected to exit the St. Lawrence Seaway System on December 24. The Montreal-Lake Ontario and Welland Canal sections of the System are scheduled to close to traffic midnight December 26. Vessels not clearing the locks prior to midnight December 26 will be accepted only under written agreement and will be assessed operational surcharges, and all vessels must be clear of the System by midnight December 29.

Laker traffic in the Port is expected to continue into mid-January because of the fixed closing date for the Sault Ste. Marie Locks of midnight January 15.

The Spar Ruby’s departure will mark the close of the Port's 2003 St. Lawrence Seaway oceangoing vessel navigation season. The Port’s final Seaway transit last year was December 16 with the departure of the Marshall Islands-flagged Lake Ontario.

The Port’s latest Seaway departure since the System’s 1959 opening occurred December 22, 1984, with the exit of the Liberian-flagged Federal Calumet.

The 584-foot bulk carrier Spar Ruby was built in 1985 at Sasebo Heavy Industries Co., Japan. Commanded by Captain J. S. Grewal, she is operated by Fednav International, Ltd., Montreal. Local agent for the vessel is Fedmar International and the stevedore is Ceres, Inc. AGP Grain and Fedmar International have the distinction of loading the last ocean ship for this and the past four seasons, with the Spar Ruby, Lake Ontario, Spar Garnet, Lake Champlain and the Lady Hamilton.

Reported by: Lisa Marciniak, Duluth Seaway Port Authority


Algocen repairs at Sarnia

12/18
Crews Continued repairs to the Algocen's bow on Wednesday. She suffered the damage colliding with the dock on Monday.

Crews repairing the bow
Another view

Reported by: Alan Mann


Twin Ports Report

12/18
John J. Boland departed from Fraser Shipyards on Wednesday. It had been in the yard since approximately Sunday undergoing repairs.

By late Wednesday afternoon, Spar Ruby was the only saltie remaining at the Twin Ports. The ship was loading at AGP elevator in Duluth, and its departure will make it the last saltwater vessel of the season here.

Reported by: Al Miller


Cleveland Update

12/18
Tug Eagle just down from the MCM Yards.
Champion across from the MCM Yards
The Champion by St. Marys
The Firetug Anthony J. Celebreeze Wednesday morning with engines running by the Collision Bend firehouse.
Stern view

Reported by: Munroe Copper


Seaway West Update

12/18
The parade of eastbound traffic continued Wednesday. The federal Yukon, Puffin, and Flintermaas all passed Cape Vincent. The Olympic Melody was eastbound in the Welland Canal clearing Port Weller shortly after 8 p.m.

The Saginaw made an unusual visit to the Seaway heading eastbound Wednesday. The Rt. Hon Paul J. Martin and Canadian Provider were eastbound. Westbound traffic included the Pineglen and John D. Leitch.

The tug Robinson Bay, tug performance and barge were westbound, 1215 Coi, to decommission buoys in the American section of the Seaway. They are at Clayton for the night.

The seaway released its November 30 tonnage figures. Total combined traffic in the Welland and the Seaway is 25,882,000 tons as compared to 26,925,000 last year. Grain tonnage is down while iron ore shipments are up. Coal is about the same in the Welland but is down in the Seaway. Other bulk cargo is up but the general cargo figures show a decline.

Water temperature at St. Lambert on Dec. 17 is 0.2 C as compared to 0.9 C in 2002 and a ten year average of 1.6 C As of midnight Dec. 16 there were 31 ocean vessels above St. Lambert and 17 above Port Weller. This is compared to 30 and 19 last year.

Reported by: Ron Walsh


St. Lawrence River Traffic at Verchères

12/18
OOCL Montreal downbound off Verchères from Montréal, Dec.8.
Cast Premier upbound off Verchères to Montréal, Dec.8.
MCT Arcturus, the former Arcturus recently renamed in Montréal, upbound off Verchères to Montréal, Dec.9.
Algoeast upbound off Verchères from Sorel-Tracy to the Seaway, Dec.10.
Another view
Algoville downbound off Verchères from the Seaway with a blanket of fog in the background, Dec.10.
Cast Premier downbound off Verchères from Montréal, Dec.10.
Ostkap upbound off Verchères to the Seaway, Dec.12.
TK Rotterdam upbound off Verchères on her second trip to the Seaway, Dec.12.
Iver Spirit upbound off Verchères to Montréal, Dec.12.
Federal Polaris deeply laden with a cargo of sugar, upbound off Verchères to Montréal berth 46, Dec.12.
Sir Walter, the former Rubin Stork, downbound off Verchères from Montréal-Seaway, Dec.13.
Atlantic Erie downbound off Verchères from the Seaway on a freezing blustery morning, Dec.13
Montrealais downbound off Verchères from the Seaway, Dec.13.
Mélissa Desgagnés downbound off Verchères from the Seaway, Dec.13.
Orna downbound off Verchères from Montréal-Seaway, Dec.13.
Iver Spirit downbound off Verchères from Montréal in ballast, Dec14.
Ziemia Gornoslaska downbound off Verchères from Montréal-Seaway, Dec.14.
Lykes Inspirer downbound off Verchères from Montréal to South Africa, Dec.14.
Véga Desgagnés upbound off Verchères to the Seaway, Dec.14.
BBC Italy downbound off Verchères from Montréal-Seaway, Dec.16.

Reported by: Marc Piché


Today in Great Lakes History - December 18

The NANTICOKE was launched December 18, 1979.

The tug America freed the ore carrier Irving S. Olds in 1956 after the Olds grounded entering the River Raisin from Lake Erie. The Olds stuck at a 45 degree angle to the channel, while entering for winter lay up.

GEORGIAN BAY was launched during a snow storm on December 18, 1953

The JOHN T. HUTCHINSON was laid up for the last time December 18, 1981 at Cleveland.

On December 18, 1921 gale force winds drove the CARMI A. THOMPSON ashore at Buffalo, NY where she was laid up with grain for winter storage. She ended up wedged between the LOUIS W. HILL and the MERTON E. FARR. The THOMPSON was released on January 5, 1922 but required the replacement of 156 hull plates before her return to service.

The ALABAMA was launched in 1909.

On 18 December 1899, BARGE 115 (steel whaleback, 256', 1169 gt, built in 1891 at Superior, WI) was carrying iron ore in a storm on Lake Huron when she broke from her tow steamer well out in the lake. She went ashore five days later at Pic Island off Thunder Bay, Ontario, and broke up. Her crew was thought to be lost, but they showed up days later after a long trek through the wilderness.

On 18 December 1959, BRIDGEBUILDER X (propeller tug, 71', 46 gt, built in 1911 at Lorain, Ohio) foundered in a storm while enroute from Sturgeon Bay to N. Fox Island on Lake Michigan. Two lives were lost. She had been built as the fish tug PITTSBURG. In 1939, she was converted to the excursion boat BIDE-A-WEE. Then she was converted to a construction tug for the building of the Mackinac Bridge and finally she was rebuilt in 1958 as a logging tug.

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


This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history




Final Salties for the Twin Ports

12/17
The last salties of the season are expected to clear port by Friday. As of Tuesday, Iryda was loading at AGP; Spar Ruby was waiting at the port terminal after unloading steel; Hero was loading at Cenex Harvest States; and Kwintebank was unloading wood at the port terminal. Spar Ruby is likely to be the last to leave after loading at AGP.

John J. Boland was in Fraser Shipyards, apparently undergoing repairs for a fire that occurred in Marquette.

Reported by: Al Miller


Terminals get last loads of for the season

12/17
Two more terminals received the last scheduled loads of the season in Green Bay. The Rebecca Lynn and barge A-410 arrived in Green Bay Monday evening with a load for Northeast Asphalt. The Alpena made one last visit to Green Bay after making more than a dozen trips to the Lafarge dock with cement. The only other shipments expected in port this season are loads of coal to C. Reiss Coal Co. and the Fox River Dock.

At Northeast Asphalt.
Tug Rebecca Lynn.
Rebecca Lynn with barge A-410.
S.T. Crapo and barge A-410.
Approaching Mason St.
Through the railroad bridge.
Approaching the dock.
Next to fleet mate S.T. Crapo.
Stacks of Crapo and Alpena.
Alpena's Christmas tree.
Stern View.
Unloading Equipment.

Reported by: Jason Leino


Algocen Under Repair

12/17
The Algocen was under repair in Sarnia on Tuesday after suffering damage colliding with the dock on Monday. It appears that she is receiving complete repairs to the damage as welders where working on her port side bow.

The bow was very close to the east wall of the Government Docks and no loading was taking place Tuesday night.

Reported by: Jamie Kerwin


Saginaw River News

12/17
Gusty winds and low water levels Tuesday held two vessels to their docks in the Saginaw River.

The Algoway tied up for the night at the Sargent dock in Zilwaukee to await better weather before making the outbound transit through Bay City. The vessel had arrived at the Sargent dock late Monday afternoon with salt from Goderich.

The Algoway had finished unloading late Tuesday morning, but returned the dock after turning at Sixth Street in Saginaw. Water levels in the Saginaw River had dipped to 18 inches below datum in the afternoon, with southwesterly winds gusting to 36 miles per hour.

The vessel expected to start outbound on Wednesday morning. The tug Karen Andrie and its tank barge were also delayed several hours after unloading at the Triple Clean fuel dock in Essexville. The pair was outbound about 9 p.m. Tuesday.

Reported by: Stephen Hause, Lon Morgan and Todd Shorkey


Cleveland Traffic

12/17
Tugs Champion & Valerie B attending barges Tuesday.
Another view
The bumboat Forest City was lifted out of the Cuyahoga Tuesday morning.
Barge Ojibway along with the Tugs Empire State, Bonnie G & another at the back corner of ISG Steel.

Reported by: Munroe Copper


Oshawa Update

12/17
Tuesday the TK Rotterdam was in Oshawa, Ontario unloading steel coils, having arrived early Monday morning. The ship departed that afternoon heading to Hamilton, Ontario to load Grain.

Also in port, the Doug McKeil and barge Ocean Hauler were leaving Oshawa as the tug relocated from the notch to the towing position.

Full starboard view of the TK Rotterdam.
Looking down on the MAN main engine cylinder heads.
Engine control room.
Engine manual control station.
looking forward along the port side.
2nd Engineer Florin Catalin Birasteanu & 3rd Officer Lonut Drasovean.
Another port side view.
Doug McKeil & Barge Ocean Hauler as seen from the TK Rotterdam.
Another View.
Ocean Hauler Barge being pushed to the dock by the Tug Atomic.
Doug McKeil relocating from the notch to the front to begin the tow.
Doug McKeil towing the Barge Ocean Hauler out of Oshawa.
TK Rotterdam continued unloading.
TK Rotterdam starting to leave Oshawa for Hamilton, Ontario.
TK Rotterdam & the Tug Atomic leaving Oshawa in the fading light.
Tug Atomic leaving Oshawa after assisting the TK Rotterdam.

Reported by: Jim Gallacher


Seaway West Update

12/17
The rush to the sea is on. Tuesday the salt water ships Federal Welland, Spar Jade, Bluewing, Ziemia Tarnowska, Ostkap, Puffin, and Federal Yukon had passed or were due to pass Cape Vincent, eastbound.

Other traffic in the area included the CSL Tadoussac arriving in Picton to take a load of cement clinker to Essexville, Michigan. The Algocape and the tug John Spence with barge were also eastbound. the Algowood was expected in Toronto Tuesday evening.

The English River was westbound heading for Oswego. The Petrolia Desgagnes was westbound for Bronte, while the Vega Desgagnes was also westbound along with the Nanticoke.

Tuesday the water temperature at St. Lambent was 0.3 C as compared to 1.1 C in 2002 and a ten year average of 1.7 C. As of midnight, Dec. 16, there were 36 salties above St. Lambert and 21 above Port Weller. This compares with 35 and 23 last year. The power to weight restrictions have been postponed.

Reported by: Ron Walsh


Weekly Updates

12/17
The weekly updates have been uploaded.
Click here to view


Today in Great Lakes History - December 17

C.L. AUSTIN was launched December 17, 1910 as a) WILLIS L. KING

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

The NEW QUEDOC sank at her winter moorings at Midland, Ont. December 17, 1961 with a load of storage grain. The sinking was caused by the automatic sea valves that were accidentally opened.

The ROGERS CITY (2) was laid up for the last time at Calcite, MI on December 17, 1981.

On December 17, 1955, in heavy fog, the B.F. AFFLECK collided head-on with her fleetmate HENRY PHIPPS in the Straits of Mackinac. Both vessels were damaged but were able to sail under their own power for repairs.

In 1905 the Anchor Line steamer JUNIATA was launched at the yards of the American Shipbuilding Company in Cleveland. The JUNIATA was the first large passenger boat built in Cleveland since the NORTH LAND and NORTH WEST. Today the JUNIATA exists as the National Historic Landmark MILWAUKEE CLIPPER.

On 17 December 1875, the steamboat JENNISON of Captain Ganoe's line which ran between Grand Rapids and Grand Haven burned at Grand Rapids. She was laid up for the winter just below the city on the Grand River. She was insured for $12,000.

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 includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history




CSL's Jean Parisien Arrives at Drydock

12/16
Canada Steamship Line's bulk carrier Jean Parisien arrived over the weekend at Port Weller Dry Docks where she was placed at the fit-out wall. She is expected to remain at the fitout wall until her owners decided if she will receive a new fore body. Her sailing to Port Weller is a good indication that the conversion will be completed.

This fall, after her sailing certificate expired, she saw use as a stationary topping-off boat In Montreal. At the time reports indicated she was finished as an active carrier. However she was recently inspected and allowed to sail from Montreal to Hamilton with ore and then on to Port Weller.

A report in 2000 indicated that the vessel was to receive a new fore body and be lengthened to 740 feet in 2003, however the work was never carried out.

Jean Parisien entered service in 1977.

Reported by: Jimmy Sprunt and Roger LeLievre


Sykes in for Survey

12/16
The classic steamer Wilfred Sykes arrived at Bay Shipbuilding in Sturgeon Bay Monday morning for her five-year inspection, which is estimated to take around 10 days. When it is complete, the Sykes is expected to re-enter service on the Marquette-Rouge Steel ore run until the Soo Locks close for the season.

Pictures by Vic DeLarwelle
Backing into the steel face dock, to pump off ballast prior to entering the graving dock.
Shot from across the bay, stern with Speer in back ground .
Bow View at steel face across the yard.
Wilfred Sykes in the St. Marys River this past August headed for Marquette. Roger LeLievre

Reported by: Vic DeLarwelle and Roger LeLievre


Grounding Grounds Port Huron Pilot Boat

12/16
The Port Huron pilot boat Huron Belle, running close to shore on lower Lake Huron to avoid heavy seas, grounded Friday, sustaining damage that has put her out of service for the rest of the season. The pilot boat Huron Maid, which had been stationed in Detroit at the J.W. Westcott Co. dock, was sent to Port Huron to take its place.

The shift means that the pilots getting on vessels at Port Huron are now doubled up and the two pilots will stay with the ship until it gets to the Welland Canal and vice versa.

Meanwhile, the mailboat J.W. Westcott II will make its final deliveries this Friday and then enter winter lay-up.

Reported by: Roger LeLievre


Frantz Makes Unusual Trip

12/16
The Joseph E. Frantz arrived in Port Colborne Sunday night to load at the Goderich Elevator (former Government Elevator/National Habours Board) in the outer harbor. It is unusual to see a ship at that dock.

By early afternoon she was low in the water and appeared to be ready to leave. The load is likely going to Buffalo.

Reported by: Jimmy Sprunt and Christopher Wilson


Algocen in Sarnia

12/16
The Algocen arrived off Sarnia Monday morning shortly after 6 a.m. headed for Cargill in Sarnia to load her final load of the season for Montreal and lay up was to follow.

As she was approaching the dock she struck the west end of the Cargill dock causing damage to the dock and ship. Damage was above the water line just left of the dead center on her bow. The damaged consisted of scraped paint and a four-foot gash shaped like a sickle.

It is unclear why she struck the dock but she was moving with no tugs and the wind was from behind from the southwest.

Temporary repairs were being made in Sarnia and she is expected to head back down the Seaway.

Reported by: Barry Hiscocks


Amelia Desgagnes in Green Bay

12/16
The Amelia Desgagnes made a late season trip into Green Bay with a load of 2,000 tons of pig iron for the Fox River Dock. The Amelia Desgagnes first made stops in Toledo, Ohio and Marinette, Wisc. and was due to depart Green Bay Monday night at 6 p.m. to load grain in Windsor, Ont. The Rebecca Lynn also arrived in Green Bay Monday night with a load for Northeast Asphalt.

Ameila Desgagnes
View Forward
View Aft
Magnet used to unload the pig iron
Stern View

Reported by: Jason Leino


Alpena Update

12/16
The Steamer Alpena arrived at Lafarge in the early morning hours on Monday. It took on cement for Green Bay, WI and departed around 7 a.m.

The tug Jacklyn M and barge Integrity have also been delivering to ports on Lake Michigan, including South Chicago and Milwaukee. It is expected to be back in Alpena on Wednesday.

The Maumee was loading at Stoneport Monday evening. The Joseph H. Thompson and Cason J. Calloway are on the schedule for Tuesday.

Reported by: Ben & Chanda McClain


Saginaw River News

12/16
The Algoway was inbound the Saginaw River Monday afternoon, passing through Bay City around 2 p.m. She headed upriver to the Sargent Dock in Zilwaukee to unload salt. The Algoway is expected to be outbound early Tuesday morning.

Also inbound on Monday was the tug Karen Andrie and her tank barge. The pair called on the Triple Clean Liquifuels Dock in Essexville to unload. She is expected to be outbound mid-afternoon on Tuesday.

Reported by: Stephen Hause, Lon Morgan and Todd Shorkey


Toledo Update

12/16
The Olympic Melody was loading grain at ADM/ Countrymark Elevator. The CSL Niagara was loading grain at the Andersons "E" Elevator. The Canadian Transfer is scheduled into Andersons "K" Elevator to unload potash.

The Armco, Buckeye, and Courtney Burton remain in layup at their respective dock sites. There are no large vessels in at the Shipyard at this time.

The next scheduled coal boats due into the CSX Docks will be the Calumet on Tuesday. The John G. Munson and Lee A. Tregurtha on Weds. The Cason J. Callaway and American Mariner on Thursday. The Fred R. White Jr. and Maumee on Saturday, followed by the John J. Boland and Charles M. Beeghly on Monday (22 Dec.).

The next scheduled ore boats due into the Torco Ore Docks will be the Canadian Enterprise on Tuesday.

Classic Toledo views
Sarniadoc downbound the Maumee River from the Cherry Street Bridge. She just finished loading a grain cargo at one of the upriver elevators.
Pierson Daughters in her first year of operation for the Soo River Company loading grain at the Midstates Elevator. Note the original Soo River color scheme for this vessel. She was the former Charles M. Schwab from the Interlake Steamship Company.

Reported by: Jim Hoffman


Cleveland Traffic

12/16
Forest City Monday waiting to be lifted ashore at the boatyards near Collision Bend.
Stern view
Tug Valerie B waiting at the Willow St. Bridge on the old Cuyahoga spur at 4:15 p.m.
The barges Rhode Island and MCM #55 at the MCM yards with the Rhode Island being worked on.
MCM #55
Another view
Work on the dredge

Reported by: Munroe Copper


Hamilton Update

12/16
Monday was a busy day in Hamilton. The Halifax arrived in the about 9 a.m. going to Stelco. The Atlantic Superior arrived at 1:45 p.m. going to Stelco to discharge coal. The tug James A. Hannah and barge arrived at 2:15 p.m. going to Columbia Chemicals.

The CSL Tadoussac followed shortly after that at 3 p.m. going also to Stelco. After discharging her cargo she is expected to proceed to Picton, Ontario. The Saginaw was seen shifting piers in the harbor and will be heading to Sorel, Quebec.

Reported by: Eric Holmes


Seaway West Update

12/16
The rush to the sea before the lakes freeze over has begun. There were no salties upbound Monday but there were several heading for the ocean.

The Marinette, Chios Sailor, Lady Hamilton (ex-Saskatchewan Pioneer), Chios Charity, Federal Welland, Spar Jade, and Bluewing were all expected to pass Cape Vincent Monday. The Birchglen, Capt. Henry Jackman, Algonorth, and Nanticoke were all westbound. The English River, Canadian Transport and Algocape were eastbound.

The snow was heavy on Sunday causing the Cape Vincent pilot boat to be out of service until Monday morning. This delayed the Marinette for several hours. The weather looks reasonable for the next few days.

The water temperature at St. Lambert is 0.3 C, as compared to 0.9 for 2002 and a ten year average of 1.6 C. As of midnight Dec. 14, there were 37 salties above St. Lambert and 27 above Port Weller. This compares to 38 and 28 last year.

Reported by: Ron Walsh


Today in Great Lakes History - December 16

On December 16, 1966 while loading at Montreal, the CABOT ( b CANADIAN EXPLORER) rolled over on her side and sank with a loss of two lives. She was refloated on January 18, 1967.

In 1983 HILDA MARJANNE's forward section, which included a bow thruster, was moved to the building berth at Port Weller Dry Docks where it was joined to CHIMO's stern. The joined sections would later emerge from the dry dock as the b) CANADIAN RANGER.

The IMPERIAL BEDFORD was launched December 16,1968.

J.W. McGIFFIN was launched December 16, 1971.

The tug/barge PRESQUE ISLE departed light from Erie December 16,1973 on its maiden voyage bound for Two Harbors, MN. (This was the latest maiden voyage date at that time.) There the PRESQUE ISLE loaded 51,038 long tons of taconite pellets for delivery to Gary, IN. After this ice covered trip, the vessel returned to Erie for winter lay-up. The PRESQUE ISLE was the second thousand foot vessel on the Great Lakes (the Erie-built STEWART CORT which came out in 1972 was the first) and was the last large vessel built at the Erie shipyard.

While in tandem tow on the way to scrapping with the former Ford Motor Co. steamer ROBERT S. McNAMARA, the BUCKEYE MONITOR developed a crack in her deck amidships. The crack extended down her sides to below the waterline and she sank at 0145 hours on December 16, 1973 at position 43°30'N x 30°15'W in the North Atlantic Ocean.

BENSON FORD (2) made her last trip to the Rouge where she was laid up on December 16, 1984.

The PIC RIVER was the last to use the old Welland City Canal on December 16, 1972 as the new Welland by-pass opened the following spring.

WOLFE ISLANDER III arrived in Kingston, Ontario on December 16, 1975. Built in Thunder Bay, she would replace the older carferries WOLFE ISLANDER and UPPER CANADA on the Kingston - Wolfe Island run.

The WILLIAM A. IRVIN sustained bottom damage in Lake Erie and laid up December 16, 1978 at Duluth, MN.

THOMAS WILSON operated until December 16, 1979, when she tied up at Toledo. During that final year, the vessel carried only thirty cargoes and all were ore.

On 16 December 1906, ADVENTURER (wooden propeller steam tug, 52', built in 1895 at Two harbors, MN) broke her moorings and went adrift in a gale. She was driven ashore near Ontonagon, MI on Lake Superior and was pounded to pieces.

On 16 December 1954, the 259' bulk carrier BELVOIR was launched at the E. B. McGee Ltd. yard in Port Colborne, Ontario. She was built for the Beaconsfield Steamship Co. She sailed in the last years before the Seaway opened. During the winter of 1958-59, she was lengthened 90 feet at Montreal. She left the Lakes in 1968 and later sank in the Gulf of Honduras with the loss of 21 lives.

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


This is a small sample, the books 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




Maumee in Green Bay

12/15
The Maumee made a late season visit to Green Bay Sunday morning with a load of salt from Goderich, Ont. The Maumee arrived at the Fox River Dock first at 2:30 a.m. and unloaded 7,000 tons of salt. After they unloaded they departed the Fox River Dock at 6:15 and headed for the Georgia Pacific to finish the unloading.

The Maumee departed Georgia Pacific around 11 a.m. and was outbound at Buoy 30 around 12:30 p.m.

Bow View
Wide View
In the Slip
Downbound
Breaking Ice
Heading for the Railroad Bridge
At the RR Bridge
Turning
At Georgia Pacific
At the Metro Launch
Departing Green Bay

Reported by: Jason Leino


Amelia Desgagnes Unloads In Marinette

12/15
Sunday morning saw the Amelia Desgagnes inbound the Menominee River with a load of pig iron for Marinette Fuel & Dock. Only a thin layer of ice was encountered on the trip up-river. After unloading here, the ship will head to Green Bay, WI to complete the unload. The only other ship currently scheduled to unload in Menominee/Marinette is the Calumet, which should arrive later in the week with coal for Menominee Paper Co.

Unloading at Marinette Fuel & Dock.

Reported by: Dick Lund


Saginaw River News

12/15
The Algoway was outbound from Saginaw on Sunday morning after unloading salt overnight at the Sargent dock in Zilwaukee. The vessel is expected to return to the Saginaw River late Monday or early Tuesday with another load of salt from Goderich, Ontario.

On Friday morning, the Algorail was outbound after delivering a load from Meldrum Bay to the Burroughs dock at Zilwaukee. The Algorail had remained at the dock a full day after unloading due to windy conditions. Also outbound Friday was the tug Mark Hannah, which departed the Dow dock that morning.

With the shipping season winding down on the Saginaw River, the two state highway bridges in Bay City will no longer be manned after Monday, requiring ships to give advance notice of arrivals and departures. The two city-owned bridges will reportedly be manned for another week on a 24-hour basis.

A Coast Guard work boat was operating in the river last week, setting winter aids to navigation.

Reported by: Stephen Hause, Lon Morgan and Todd Shorkey


St. Clair River Traffic & Cleveland Traffic

12/15
December 12
Catherine Desgagnes downbound off St. Clair.
Another view.
Marysville, upbound the St. Clair River, being towed by the tug Shannon.
BBC Italy (Antigua & Barbuda) downbound at Sarnia.
Another view.
Algoway at the Sun Oil Upper Dock in Sarnia.
Another view.
Saginaw passing tanker Lake Eva (Marshall Islands) at the Bayer Dock in Sarnia.
Lake Eva (Marshall Islands).
Barge Marysville & tug Shannon loading at the Sun Oil South Dock in Sarnia.

Cleveland December 13
Tug Prairie State ashore in Cleveland.
Another view.
Tug Eagle on the Cuyahoga River.
Tugs Ohio & Superior in the old river.
Another view.
Tug Valerie B working at the Lakefront Dock Water Plant.
Tug Alabama in the old riverbed.
Tug Tennessee.
Great Lakes Towing Dock in the old Cuyahoga riverbed. The closest two tugs are the Pennsylvania & Delaware.

Reported by: Mike Nicholls


Welland Traffic

12/15
Below are images taken on Saturday
The first series was taken Saturday at the old Guard Gate above Lock 7. They show Spruceglen upbound with titanium slag loaded in Sorel bound for Ashtabula.
Spruceglen
detail of bulbous bow
stern view

BBC Italy downbound at Bridge 5, loaded with grain from Thunder Bay, next stop Montreal then to top off then to Europe.
Under Bridge 5, Glendale Avenue.
Close-up of bow. If you look closely you can see crew members chipping off ice. Must have been windy on the passage across Lake Erie.
Stern view as she heads for Lock 3.

The tug Keewatin and barge stone merchant are seen approaching Bridge 11. They are upbound for Ashtabula with slag from Hamilton.
Keewating and Stone Merchant approaching Bridge 11
"Bow" of Stone Merchant. Looks like it must ship a lot of water when any kind of sea is running.
"Self-unloading" gear aboard the barge. A front end loader and diesel powered conveyor.
Close-up of tug which earlier this year arrived on the Great Lakes from the Arctic.
Mississagi is upbound between Locks 6 and 7. She is loaded with coke from Quebec bound for Sault Ste. Marie. Coke is a common cargo aboard lakers but it seems to move all around to various lake ports, for export from St. Lawrence ports and here appears to be an imported load. It is light and low value and must not be a major revenue producer but probably pays for the fuel, in this case Mississagi's return trip from taking grain from Hamilton to Sorel.
Algomarine upbound between Locks 1 and 2 for Serpent Harbour with slag from Hamilton.

Reported by: David Bull


Know Your Ships Holiday Sale

12/15
Marine Publishing Co. is offering a holiday sale until Jan. 15 on the 2003 edition of "Know Your Ships." The book has been reduced to $12.95 (regular price, $14.95). In addition, Frank Mays' new book, "If We Make it to Daylight," his true-life story of survival after the Carl D. Bradley sank in Lake Michigan in 1958, is also in stock, priced at $14.95. Both are available at www.knowyourships.com


Last Minute Christmas Ideas from Force 5

12/15
Limited Quantity Specials:
31 x 32 Interlake Flags $45.00 each
Great Laker caps- $7.50 each in stock items only
Boatnerd Grey Tees $5.00 each in stock items only
1 Boatnerd windbreaker- size XL $18.00
1 Boatnerd grey full zip hooded fleece size XL $18.00
Boatnerd Denims misc size One time special only $12.00 each in stock items only

E-mail Veronica Petron to order or for more details.


Weekly Updates

12/15
The weekly updates should be uploaded Monday night.


Today in Great Lakes History - December 15

The ROBERT KOCH went hard aground December 15, 1985 on Sheldon Point off Oswego, NY loaded with 2000 tons of cement when her towline parted from the tug R. & L. NO.1. Dragging her anchors in heavy weather, she fetched up on a rocky shelf in 16 feet of water 300 yards off shore.

The NORTHCLIFFE HALL (2) departed Kingston on December 15, 1974 headed for Colombia with a load of newsprint. She traded briefly in the Caribbean and then laid up at Houston, TX. later to return to the lakes.

On December 15, 1972 the GEORGIAN BAY was reported as the last ship to pass through the city of Welland as the new $8.3 million by-pass channel was to be ready for the beginning of the 1973 shipping season. (Actually two other ships, the TADOUSSAC and PIC RIVER, followed her through.)

The JOHN E.F. MISENER (2) was laid up for the last time on December 15, 1982 at Port McNicoll, Ont.

JOE S. MORROW was launched December 15, 1906.

The RED WING (2) was laid up for the last time at Toronto on December 15, 1984 due in part to the uneconomical operation of her steam turbine power plant.

The ROGERS CITY (2) cleared Lauzon on December 15, 1987 in tow of the Maltese tug PHOCEEN on the first leg of her tow to the cutters torch.

On December 15, 1988, Purvis Marine's ANGLIAN LADY departed Mackinaw City with the CHIEF WAWATAM under tow, arriving at the Canadian Soo the next day. During the winter of 1988-89, Purvis removed items tagged by the State (including the pilot house) and began converting her into a barge.

On 15 December 1888, GEORGE W. ROBY (wooden propeller, 281', 1843 gt,) was launched at W. Bay City, MI. She was built by F. W. Wheeler (hull #45).

Below is a winter lay-up list as published in the Port Huron Times on 15 December 1876.
At Port Huron -- Steam barges: ABERCORN, BIRKHEAD, BAY CITY, H. D. COFFINBURY, WILLIAM COWIE, N. K. FAIRBANK, GERMANIA, GEORGE KING, V.H. KETCHUM, MARY MILL, MARY PRINGLE, E. W. POWERS, D. F. ROSE, SALINA, TEMPEST. Propellers: CITY OF NEW BALTIMORE. Tug: CORA B. Schooners and Barges: T. Y. AVERY, BUCKEYE STATE, GEORGE W. BISSEL, KATIE BRAINARD, D. K. CLINT, DAYTON, S. GARDNER, A. GEBHART, C. G. KING, T. G. LESTER, MARINE CITY, H. R. NEWCOMB, J. H. RUTTER, REINDEER, C. SPADEMAN, SAGINAW, ST. JOSEPH, TAYLOR, TROY, C. L. YOUNG, YANKEE. At Marysville -- D. G. WILLIAMS, 7 tow barges, JUPITER, and LEADER.

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 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

12/14
The grain rush continued in the Twin Ports on Saturday, with CSL Laurentien paying a surprise visit to the Peavey elevator in Superior to load a grain cargo. Elsewhere, Seaguardian II was loading at Cenex Harvest States berth 1 and Isolda was loading at AGP. Iryda remained anchored on the lake. Spar Ruby started the day in the port terminal's steel berth alongside, but no work appeared to be under way. By evening the vessel had shifted down the slip so it was alongside the warehouse. Down the harbor in Allouez, the Frontenac was laying inside the entry close to midday Saturday, apparently waiting for Burns Harbor to finish at the BNSF ore dock.

The last two salties of the season - Hero and Kwintebank - are now expected today, although Iryda also will be among the last to clear port.

Just when it looks like the DMIR dock is done for the season, another ship is scheduled to take the pressure of the dock in Two Harbors. A few days ago it was the Cason J. Callaway, and on Monday the Roger Blough is scheduled to load there.

The full schedule for Great Lakes Fleet on Saturday was
-Edwin H. Gott unloading at Zug Island and departing. Due at Two Harbors Dec. 16
-Presque Isle due at Gary Dec. 15 and back at Two Harbors Dec. 18
-Roger Blough due at DMIR Duluth Dec. 15 and Gary Dec. 18
-Arthur M. Anderson departing Buffington Dec. 13, due Calcite today and back to Buffington Dec. 16
-Cason J. Callaway due at Lorain today and Stoneport Dec. 16
-Philip R. Clarke departed Calcite Saturday, due at Marine City today and Stoneport Dec. 15
-John G. Munson was due Saturday night at Gladstone, due at Meldrum Bay today and to Fairport Dec. 16

Reported by: Al Miller


Hamilton Update

12/14
Saturday the Canadian Coast Guard ship Griffon arrive in Hamilton at 8:30 a.m. going to Pier 25 and then heading back out into Lake Ontario at 10:30 a.m. The Jean Parisian arrived in Hamilton at 1 pm with iron ore for Stelco. After unloading she is heading to Port Weller. The refueling ship Hamilton Energy departed at 3 p.m. heading to Port Weller. The Algocen then departed at 7:30 p.m.

Reported by: Eric Holmes


Seaway West News

12/14
The Jean Parisien was bound for Hamilton with an eta of 1210 for Burlington Piers.

The tugs Salvor and Bonnie B III secured the La Violette to the Cape Vincent breakwall early Saturday morning, due to the high wind on Lake Ontario. The Bonnie B III then left to go across the lake and meet the Tony McKay, with the barge salty Dog. The Salvor was expected continue the tow alone.

Reported by: Ron Walsh


Today in Great Lakes History - December 14

On December 14, 1984, the William Clay Ford (1) laid up for the final time at the Rouge Steel plant in Dearborn.

The JIIMAAN was towed out of dry dock on December 14, 1992 by the tugs JAMES E. McGRATH and LAC VANCOUVER to the fitout dock for completion.

The CHICAGO TRIBUNE was sold for scrap in 1988 and was towed up the Welland Canal on December 14, 1988 by the tugs THUNDER CAPE and MICHAEL D. MISNER to Port Colborne, Ont.

On December 14, 1926, the W.E. FITZGERALD was caught in heavy seas and suffered damaged frames and hull plating. Repairs consisted of replacing nearly 25,000 rivets and numerous hull plates.

The package freighter George N. Orr, a recent war acquisition from the Canada Atlantic Transit Company is wrecked off Savage Point, Prince Edward Island on December 14, 1917. She was enroute to New York City with a load of hay.

On 14 December 1883, MARY ANN HULBERT (wooden schooner-barge, 62 gt, built in 1873 at Bayfield, WI) was carrying railroad workers and supplies in tow of the steamer KINCADINE in a storm on Lake Superior. She was sailing from Port Arthur for Michipicoten Island. The HULBERT was overwhelmed by the gale and foundered, The crew of five plus all 15 of the railroad workers were lost.

December 14, 1903 - The PERE MARQUETTE 20 left the shipyard in Cleveland on her maiden voyage.

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


This is a small sample, the books 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

12/13
The last-minute grain rush continued in the Twin Ports on Friday, but all the activity was confined to just two elevators -- Cenex Harvest States in Superior and AGP in Duluth.

At CHS, Herbert C. Jackson was loading at CHS 1 and Puffin was at CHS 2. Seaguardian II was expected to arrive late to load at this terminal.

At AGP, Kapitonas Andzejauskas was expected to finish its load Friday and then depart, clearing the berth for either Isolda or Iryda, both of which have been anchored on the lake waiting for the berth. Spar Ruby is expected to arrive late for the port terminal, one of several salties to arrive in recent weeks carrying steel coils. Once unloaded, it's expected to shift to AGP when the berth opens.

Kwintebank, carrying lumber for the port terminal, and Hero are expected to be the last salties of the season when they arrive Saturday. Both are expected to load grain before departing, so it isn't clear whether one of these ships or one of the ships waiting for AGP will be the last saltie to depart this season.

Elsewhere, Oglebay Norton was loading at Midwest Energy Terminal. If the schedule holds, SMET still has 24 ships to load before calling it quits in mid-January.

Also Friday, the Michipicoten wad expected to load at BNSF ore dock in Superior. And, in an unusual movement, the James R. Barker reportedly is due at one of the Hallett docks to unload coal. No word on the coal's destination.

During the warmer months, most vessel work on the salties ceases in late afternoon. But with the end of the season so near, work continued well into Friday evening. At 6:30 p.m., the Jackson had its boom swung inboard but four spouts continued to pour grain into the ship's hatches to top off the cargo. Over at the port terminal about 8:30 p.m., Spar Ruby was in the steel berth with hatches open and deck lights on as steel coils were being unloaded.

Reported by: Al Miller


Marquette Update

12/13
Friday was a busy day for Marquette shipping, with the H. Lee White bringing a load of stone to the lower harbor, followed by the John J. Boland. The Charles M. Beeghly and Michipicoten took on ore. The loading was slow because of frozen doors on the pockets. The Mesabi Miner arrived in the harbor and tied up waiting for the Michipicoten to finish loading so she could come in to unload coal.

H. Lee White unloading stone in the lower harbor
Charles M. Beeghly, bow view
Beeghley wide view
Michipicoten at the dock loading
Bow view, bow thrusters out of water
Forward cabins. Note the Canadian/American flags painted on the cabins.
Mesabi Miner arriving
Mesabi Miner waiting in the harbor

Reported by: Lee Rowe


Cleveland Update

12/13
Friday afternoon the David Z. Norton was unloading at ISG steel on the Cuyahoga River
Tug New York attaching the stern lines to tow the Norton.
Tow down river.

Reported by: Munroe Copper


Seaway West Update

12/13
The tug Salvor has begun to move again. She was westbound Friday evening. The Bonnie B III and La Violette are believed to also be in tow. The Jean Parisien was following westbound.

Seaway Bulletin number 7 stated the water temperature at St. Lambert was 0.4 C as compared to last year's temp. of 0.4 C and the ten year average of 2.3 C. As of midnight, Dec. 11, there were 43 salties above St. Lambert and 35 above Port Weller. Last year the numbers were 50 and 35 respectively.

The buoys in the area have been replaced by winter markers. The CCGC Bittern will be leaving sometime soon to head for winter berth in Burlington, weather permitting. She should also be undergoing engine replacement. This vessel is to be replaced by a new 47 foot cutter either late next year or early in 2005. A new Coast Guard base will also be built in Kingston for the Bittern crew. The location is not known. Bittern during an incident involving the ferry Quinte Loyalist.

Reported by: Ron Walsh


Today in Great Lakes History - December 13

The CANADIAN ENTERPRISE entered service on December 13, 1979.

On December 13, 1989 the HENRY STEINBRENNER (4) was laid up at Toledo's Lakefront Dock.

The G.A. TOMLINSON (2) arrived under her own power at Triad Salvage Inc., Ashtabula, OH on December 13, 1979 to be scrapped.

The THOMAS WILSON ran aground in the St. Marys River on December 13, 1976. The accident required lightering before she would float free.

On 13 December 1872. the Port Huron Times added three vessels to those in winter lay-up at Port Huron: Steamer MARINE CITY, tug JOHN PRINDEVILLE, and wrecking tug RESCUE.

December 13, 1906 - The ANN ARBOR NO. 4 departed for Manitowoc with her first cargo.

In 1929 the McLouth Steamship Company filed a claim against the City of Port Huron for $687 because its sand sucker, the KALKASKA, was held up for 27-1/2 hours in the Black River because of an inability to open the north span of the Military Street Bridge.

On 13 December 1961, SWEDEN (formerly L. C. SMITH, steel propeller, 414', 4702 gt, built in 1902 at W. Bay City, MI) arrived in tow at Savanna, Italy for scrapping.

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


This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history




Mapleglen reaches Alang, India

12/12
After a 82 day trip across many bodies of water and sometimes severe weather the tug Seaways 2 with the Mapleglen in tow arrived at Alang, India on December 4. The tow started from Montreal on Sept. 13. Crews have all ready begun scrapping her, the former Carol Lake and Algocape built in 1960 was a classic carrier which served four different companies over a span of 42 years.

The Seaways 5 is making progress with the double tow of Seaway Queen and the Oakglen, the convoy is presently passing Walvis Bay on the West Coast of Africa, no date of arrival was given for the double tow, future progress will be added to the news channel.

Mapleglen tow departing Montreal with the Seaways 2 on the bow and the McKeil tug Progress on the stern.
Seaway Queen at the Valleyfield bridge under tow of the McKeil tugs Doug McKeil on the bow and tug Seahound on the stern to Montreal

Reported by: Kent Malo


Canadian Leader Has Steering Problems

12/12
On her way to Baie Comeau carrying grain from Thunder Bay, the Canadian Leader experienced problems with her steering system. The vessel went to anchor on Wednesday in the anchorage off Buoy 11 in Lake Huron above Port Huron/Sarnia in order to fix the problem. The vessel departed the anchorage the next day after repairing the problem.

Once the Leader reached Sans Souci on Harsens Island above Lake St. Clair, the vessel again experienced steering trouble. She then checked down her speed and utilized the backup steering system. They considered anchoring at the Ojibway Anchorage in Windsor, but were allowed to proceed through the system. She was escorted by two tugs from the River Rouge in Detroit down to Lake Erie.

Plans call for having the problem repaired at Wharf 16 in Port Colborne.

Reported by: Angie Williams and Barry Hiscocks


Back up Mailboat Enters Lay-up

12/12
The back up mail boat Joseph J. Hogan entered winter lay-up Thursday at Gregory's Marina behind Belle Isle on the Detroit River. The Hogan sailed to lay-up piloted by Capt. Art Brooks.

The J.W. Westcott II and pilot boat Huron Maid are expected to lay up as early as next week. Ice conditions in the river and salt water ship traffic will determine the actual date.

The J.W. Westcott Company is both the marine post office and pilot station in Detroit.

Reported by: Capt. Sam Buchanan


Detroit/Wayne County Port Authority Awarded Homeland Security Grant

12/12
The Detroit/Wayne County Port Authority (DWCPA) announced Thursday that the Port Authority was awarded $450,000 under the Port Security Grant Program of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. Yesterday, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security announced a total of $179,025,900 in Port Security Grants demonstrating the Department's commitment to enhance security at our nation's key ports and facilities. The Port Authority's grant award is among 442 projects to receive funds for security enhancements. The Port Security Grant Program provides resources for security planning and projects to improve dockside and perimeter security which is vital to securing critical national seaports.

"This is a great opportunity for the Port Authority to collaborate with both the City of Detroit and Wayne County port security officials in securing our critical seaport. We will pursue more partnerships like this in order to enhance the ongoing security and economic development of Detroit and the State of Michigan," said Hertel. "This award further demonstrates the important role the Port Authority has in securing the Port of Detroit which is a key port and border crossing in the United States. We welcome these opportunities for collaboration," said Art Blackwell, DWCPA's Board Chairman.

The DWCPA submitted their grant application in collaboration with the Detroit Police Harbormaster/Marine Dive Unit, and Wayne County Sheriff, Marine Unit to acquire seven new vessels, a port security enhancement identified by the U.S. Coast Guard, Detroit. These vessels will patrol the Rouge River petroleum/chemical corridor and select sites on the Detroit River seen as high-risk, 140 square miles of water total. The addition of these security vessels will allow for 24-hour, full season patrols of these facilities, and along the narrowest portions of our navigable system by vessels moving hazardous products to and from the facilities mentioned. By not implementing these measures, current officers of the City and County, will be unable to conduct effective surveillance efforts that require water-based patrol units and subsurface investigations.

The Transportation Security Administration, the United States Coast Guard and the Department of Transportation's Maritime Administration evaluated the Port Security Grant Applications and selected the grant award recipients. The latest round of grants has been awarded to 442 projects in 326 locations to 235 applicant organizations from across the nation.

Reported by: Phil Meier


Saltie Renamed

12/12
The Cyprus flagged tanker Jakov Sverdlov arrived at Dow Chemical in Sarnia,ON. on Tuesday afternoon to unload. Since her arrival she has been renamed Lake Eva. When unloading is completed, she will head down to Hamilton,ON. It's unknown at this time if the Lake Eva has been sold or chartered, or if she still flies the Cypriot flag.

Reported by: Barry Hiscocks


Toronto to provide ferry berth

12/12
Toronto's port authority pledged Wednesday to build a new terminal for a proposed cross-lake ferry.

The terminal would be the Canadian terminal for a high-speed ferry running between Toronto and Rochester, N.Y. Located off Cherry Street, the $8C million building will house a waiting area for passengers, retail space and facilities for customs and immigration.

“This is the final piece of a puzzle that everybody has been looking at for a very long time,” said Howard Thomas, president of Canadian American Transportation Systems.

The Port Authority’s pledge comes with two strings attached. One requires the city of Toronto to make good on a $7.2 million scheduled payment by Jan. 1. The other requires the city to help pay for a sewage system. It's unclear whether those conditions will be met.

CATS plans to shuttle between Rochester and Toronto several times a day. The $42.5 million ferry will be able to carry 750 passengers and 238 cars.

The ferry is now in Australia undergoing sea trials. It is expected to set sail for Lake Ontario in February.

Reported by: Scott Killenbeck


Twin Ports Report

12/12
Duluth harbor was busy as the sun rose Thursday. In port, Joseph H. Thompson was unloading salt at the Cutler Magner dock. A couple miles off the piers, Herbert C. Jackson was inbound for the Duluth entry.

At midday, the Thompson was proceeding down the front channel toward the BNSF ore dock, where it was to load taconite pellets. Also scheduled there Thursday was Stewart J. Cort and Halifax.

Herbert C. Jackson was still at the Murphy Oil fueling dock at midday, apparently waiting for a grain berth to open.

Indiana Harbor was loading at Midwest Energy Terminal.

By the end of the day, the Jackson was still at the port terminal waiting for a grain berth. Three salties were loading grain and three more were anchored on the lake also waiting for berths.

Cason J. Callaway unloaded at Hallett 5 during the day. The vessel had been scheduled to be one of four boats due at the DMIR dock in Two Harbors to load. Instead, the Callaway was diverted to the DMIR ore dock in Duluth and by evening was under the shiploader loading pellets for delivery to Lorain.

Among the Great Lakes Fleet boats, Edwin H. Gott was anchored in the St. Marys River because of low water levels. John G. Munson was due in Toledo, and was then scheduled to call at Gladstone, Mich., on Dec. 13.

Reported by: Al Miller


Kwintebank in Menominee

12/12
Shortly before noon on Thursday, the Kwintebank arrived in Menominee with one last load of pulp this season for a local warehouse. This should be one of the last ships of the season in Menominee and Marinette. Menominee Paper Co. still has a load of coal coming; a load that has already been rescheduled four times. Ice is beginning to form on the Menominee River, but caused the Kwintebank no problems Thursday.

Kwintebank at the dock (note that no hatch covers are removed)
Wide view from across the river (This photo shot 12-minutes later - note the hatch covers stacked in front of the deckhouse)
Close-up of deckhouse
Crewmembers position the unloading apparatus later that afternoon
A load of pulp arises from the hold

Reported by: Dick Lund


Kingston Update

12/12
The Tug Salvor, tug Bonnie B III and barge La Violette remained in Prescott for repairs Thursday.

The Jean Parisien was westbound in the seaway. She was to have made her last trip in September of this year but appears to have been given an extension. Her destination is unknown but she is loaded with iron ore. The Mississagi was also westbound.

The water temperature at St. Lambert was 0.4 C, as compared to last year at 0.4 C and the ten years average at 2.3 C . At midnight Dec.10, there were 43 ocean vessels above St. Lambert and 35 above Port Weller. This compared to 50 and 38 for last year.

On her reported last trip in September.

Reported by: Ron Walsh


Today in Great Lakes History - December 12

The push tug a) PRESQUE ISLE (2) was launched December 12, 1972 as Hull #322 by the Halter Marine Services, Inc., New Orleans, LA.

The SPINDLETOP (e BADGER STATE) was launched December 12, 1942 for the United States Maritime Commission.

The WHEAT KING returned to Port Weller Dry Docks on December 12, 1975 for lengthening to the maximum Seaway size of 730 feet overall for the iron ore and grain trade thus ending her salt water activities.

One unusual trip for the WOODLAND occurred when she arrived at Toronto, Ont. on December 12, 1987 to load a 155 foot, 135-ton self-unloading unit for delivery to the Verolme Shipyard in Brazil where the Govan-built Panamax bulk carrier CSL INNOVATOR was being converted to a self-unloader.

On Monday December 12, 1898, the AURORA was fast in the ice at Amherstburg, Ontario, when a watchman smelled smoke. The crew tried to put out the fire, but to no avail. They were taken off the burning vessel by the tug C.A. LORMAN. The ship burned to the water's edge.

On December 12, 1956, the once proud passenger vessels EASTERN STATES and GREATER DETROIT were taken out onto Lake St. Clair where they were set afire. All the superstructure was burned off and the hulls were taken to Hamilton, Ontario, where they were scrapped in 1957.

On 12 December 1872, the Port Huron Times listed the following vessels at winter lay-up at Sarnia, Ontario:
Schooners: MARY E. PEREW, KINGFISHER, UNADILLA, ONEONTA, AMERICAN, J.G. MASTEN, PELICAN, UNION, B. ALLEN, and CAMDEN;
Brigs: DAVID A. WELLS, WAGONER, and FRANK D. BARKER;
Barks: C.T. MAPLE, EMALINE BATES, and D.A. VanVALKENBURG;
Steamer: MANITOBA.

On 12 December 1877, U.S. Marshall Matthews sold the boiler and machinery of the CITY OF PORT HURON at auction in Detroit, Michigan. Darius Cole submitted the winning bid of $1,000.

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


This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history




Crewmen Still Missing From Tipped Stellamare

12/11
Three crewmen missing since their cargo ship tipped over Monday at the Port of Albany remained missing Tuesday night. Treacherous conditions and the frigid waters of the Hudson River stalled a search for the men, at least two of whom were thought to be trapped in the hull of the Dutch Antilles-registered, 289-foot heavy lift ship Stellamare, which authorities said was listing at a 45-degree angle. One crewman may have gone overboard.

The accident occurred when 661 tons of steel turbines, built by General Electric and bound for Italy and Romania, apparently shifted. Rescuers told the New York Daily News they heard no sounds of life inside the hull. Fifteen other crew members were rescued. Eight were injured, one critically.

The vessel, owned by Jumbo Shipping Co. and built in 1982, has been in the Seaway system in the past, although not in recent years.

Pictures of the Stellamare

Reported by: Roger LeLievre, Dave Wobser, Todd Quickenton, John Meyland, Sam Buchanan, Tom Perrin, John Mazza, Don Detloff, Mary & Jeff Swingle


Toronto can save Lake Ontario ferry

12/11
The company trying to launch fast ferry service between Toronto and Rochester by next spring is hoping the Toronto Port Authority will agree to pay for a passenger terminal.

Howard Thomas, president of Canadian American Transportation Systems (CATS) said he hopes the port authority's board of directors will vote this week to spend $6 million to refurbish an old warehouse it owns near Cherry Beach.

For proponents of the ferry — which will take passengers across Lake Ontario in 2 hours and 15 minutes — getting a terminal built in Toronto is key to the multi-million-dollar project.

Even though Rochester is putting the finishing touches on a new terminal at the mouth of the Genesee River — paid for with $60 million in government funding — the ferry cannot start without a terminal in Toronto.

"If the board approves the terminal, then it gets us in service in May," said Dominick DeLucia, CATS chairman who is based in Rochester. "Any further delays to the project would be difficult to overcome."

Reported by: Mark Philmore


Duluth Seaway Port Authority to Receive Port Security Grant

12/11
The Duluth Seaway Port Authority was notified today (December 10) that it will receive a Port Security Grant of $400,600 to help offset the costs of meeting new Maritime Transportation Security Act requirements.

“Congressman James L. Oberstar’s assistance was vital in obtaining the funds,” said Duluth Port Director Adolph Ojard.

“It proves once again he is a dedicated supporter of this Port,” he said.

The funds are part of the Transportation Security Administration’s Port Security Funding Grant Program in the FY’04 Homeland Security Appropriations bill and will be administered through Maritime Administration.

“The Program provides resources for security planning and projects to improve dockside and perimeter security which is vital to securing our critical national seaports,” said Secretary of Homeland Security Tom Ridge.

“Although the Duluth Seaway Port Authority took immediate and dramatic steps after the September 11, 2001, attacks to tighten Port security at its own expense, the Coast Guard’s final regulations regarding port facility security set forth requirements beyond the scope of normal operations,” said Ojard.

“The huge financial expense of implementing new security systems and programs had us concerned that we would only be able to meet minimum requirements. We will now be able comply with the July 1 deadline for Port facility security improvements, but it should be noted that this in no way will bear the full expense of Port security requirements,” he said.

The Transportation Security Administration, the United States Coast Guard and the Department of Transportation’s Maritime Administration evaluated the Port Security Grant Applications and selected the grant award recipients. The latest round of grants were awarded to 442 projects in 326 locations to 235 applicant organizations from across the nation.

Reported by: Lisa Marciniak, Duluth Seaway Port Authority


Tariffs helped Northwest Indiana steel producers

12/11
Northwest Indiana's major steelmakers are better positioned to compete with foreign companies than before President Bush placed tariffs on steel imports, experts and labor leaders say.

After several years of consolidation, Indiana companies are now leaner, perhaps helping shield them from bankruptcies following Bush's decision last week to repeal the tariffs.

"For a lot of different reasons, this is really the heart of the industry and those are flagship plants, and that is an advantage for steelworkers living in northwest Indiana," Jim Robinson, United Steelworkers of America District 7 director, told the Hammond Times newspaper.

Steel analyst Charles Bradford agreed, telling The Times that consolidation is not over. He predicted more mills will close in West Virginia, Ohio and Pennsylvania.

Bradford said it was not tariffs that pushed steel prices high enough to create profitable margins. Instead, the main factor in the price spike in 2002 was the shutdown of LTV Steel, which operated a mill in East Chicago and others in Cleveland. Once LTV was bought up by International Steel Group and began producing again, steel prices declined.

He also issued a caution for northwest Indiana steelmakers, pointing out that even the most modern integrated steel facility is still almost 40 years old.

"Those guys in northwest Indiana are not as good as people say they are," Bradford said.

Bradford put Weirton Steel, WCI Steel and Rouge Industries at the top of the list for companies that will be particularly vulnerable to competition from imports and any softening in prices. All three are operating under Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

Reported by: Andy Garling


US Marshals to deputize four Coast Guard Boarding Officers

12/11
Four United States Coast Guard Boarding Officers will receive a special deputization from the United States Marshal, Western Michigan District, in a short ceremony tomorrow afternoon at Coast Guard Group Sault Ste. Marie.

This deputization is part of a larger program in which one thousand Coast Guard Boarding Officers will receive a special deputization to give authority to the Coast Guard to conduct shore-side security patrols of waterfront facilities, part of the Coast Guard’s continued support of the homeland security mission.

Reported by: USCG


Weather Slows Lakes Limestone Trade in November

12/11
Weather-related delays took a toll on the Great Lakes limestone trade in November. Shipments from U.S. and Canadian Great Lakes ports totaled only 3.4 million net tons, a decrease of roughly 13 percent compared to a year ago and the month's 5-year average. Weather delays were significant. One of the largest U.S.-flag carriers reported losing the equivalent of 65 sailing days during the month.

For the year, the Lakes limestone trade stands at 30.8 million net tons, a decrease of approximately 8.6 percent compared to the same point in 2002 and the 5-year average for the January-November period.

Reported by: Lake Carriers' Association


Twin Ports Report

12/11
With only a few days remaining in the Twin Ports saltwater shipping season, several salties are crowding the port to load last-minute grain cargoes and a few more are expected in the next couple days.

As last report, the last saltie expected for the season will be one of the Wagenborg vessels carrying German lumber to be unloaded at the port terminal.

Salties in port Wednesday were mostly scheduled for the two grain terminals that have been the busiest this season Cenex Harvest States in Superior and AGP in Duluth. Puffin and Federal Welland were loading at Cenex Harvest States while Kent was loading at AGP. Isoda and Kapitonas Andzejauskas were anchored out on the lake waiting for AGP. Ziemia Tarnowska was loading at Cargill B1, which has been quiet most of the season, but which has handled several vessels in recent weeks.

Elsewhere in port, Algowood was finishing a load at Midwest Energy Terminal with Paul R. Tregurtha fueling and waiting to load. Canadian Olympic was due at the dock late in the day.

Right now, the Paul R. Tregurtha is scheduled to be the last ship of the season to load at Midwest Energy Terminal, with a Jan. 13 loading schedule for a cargo destined to Taconite Harbor. If all goes as scheduled, that means the Tregurtha will be hauling seven loads of coal out of SMET between Tuesday and the end of the season.

Also Wednesday, Yankcanuck reportedly was in port for an exceedingly rare visit to unload coke at Hallett 5. Down the harbor, CSL Tadoussac and George A. Stinson were loading at BNSF ore dock.

Someone at Great Lakes Fleet must be thankful they chartered the George A. Stinson this fall because the Edgar B. Speer remains off the schedule while getting its rudder replaced at Sturgeon Bay. GLF's other big boats remain busy in the taconite trade, with Edwin H. Gott due in Detroit Dec. 12, Presque Isle due at Two Harbors today to load for Gary, and Roger Blough due at Gary on Dec. 12.

The DMIR's Duluth ore dock remains idle and, with the return of cold weather, may be done for the season. The Two Harbors dock is busy, however, especially today. Columbia Star, Joe Block, Presque Isle and Cason J. Callaway are all due there today. Walter J. McCarthy Jr. also is scheduled to pay another rare call there Dec. 14, to be followed by the Gott, Blough and St. Clair on the 15th.

Reported by: Al Miller


Marquette Update

12/11
A major snowstorm in Marquette on Wednesday has the Wilfred Sykes loaded but remaining tied up at the dock. No other arrivals expected until the storm abates.

Wilfred Sykes at dock on a stormy evening.
Wilfred Sykes bow view

Reported by: Lee Rowe


Saginaw River News

12/11
The Saginaw River remained busy on Wednesday with visits by three vessels to Saginaw-area docks.

The John J. Boland was inbound shortly after 10 a.m. with a load for the Saginaw Asphalt-International Materials dock in Carrollton Township. The vessel had arrived in the Saginaw Bay late Tuesday evening, but had anchored for the night due to reduced visibility.

Inbound just behind the Boland was the Canadian Transfer, with a load for the Sargent dock at Zilwaukee.

Both vessels reached their docks about 2 p.m. and both departed shortly after 5 p.m. At that time, the Algorail was upbound through Bay City going to the Burroughs dock at Zilwaukee.

With all three vessels underway at the same time, a bit of a traffic jam was created in the river. After turning at the Sixth Street turning basin in Saginaw, the Boland pulled back into the dock to allow the Transfer to enter the turning basin.

The Boland stopped again further down the river, near the I-75 Bridge at Zilwaukee, to give the Algorail time to tie up at the Burroughs dock. By about 7:30 p.m., the Algorail was clear of the shipping channel and the Boland could continue outbound, followed by the Canadian Transfer.

Reported by: Stephen Hause, Lon Morgan and Todd Shorkey


Toledo Update

12/11
There are no vessels in port at the time of this report. There are no vessels in at the Shipyard at this time. The Armco, Buckeye, and Courtney Burton remain in layup at their respective dock sites.

The next scheduled coal boats due into the CSX Docks will be the John G. Munson, Lee A. Tregurtha, and American Mariner on Thursday, followed by the Calumet on Sunday. The next scheduled ore boats due into the Torco Ore Docks will be the Peter R. Creswell on Thursday, followed by the Atlantic Erie on Thursday 18 Dec.

Middletown as a bulk carrier going through spring fitout while at the Lakefront Ore Docks.
The Northern Venture at Midstates Elevator loading grain.

Reported by: Jim Hoffman


Cleveland Traffic

12/11
The Palladino & Kellstone 1 heading up the Cuyahoga at the Columbus Rd. Bridge Wednesday.
Close up
Isadora and Olympic-Melody unloading
Isadora & Spar Garnet bows from last week.

Reported by: Munroe Copper


Onboard the Algoport

12/11
Algosteel transferring potash to us at Cote St Catherine wharf
Closer view
Shifted to load in after holds
Shifting
Transfer continues
1st mate Clarence Vautier
New containership MSC Brianna approaching Quebec City upbound
Passing
Stern view

Reported by: Ken Hamilton


Today in Great Lakes History - December 11

TEXACO CHIEF (2) was launched December 11, 1968.

The H. LEE WHITE (2) collided with the Greek salty GEORGIOS on December 11, 1974 near St. Clair, MI and had to return to Nicholson's dock at Detroit, MI for inspection.

On December 11, 1979 while about 11 miles off Manitou Island near the Keweenaw Peninsula, the ASHLAND's engine stalled due to a faulty relay switch. Caught in heavy weather and wallowing in the wave troughs, she put out a distress call. True to Great Lakes tradition four vessels immediately came to her assistance: two thousand footers, LEWIS WILSON FOY and EDWIN H. GOTT, along with WILLIS B. BOYER and U.S.C.G. cutter MESQUITE.

WILLIAM CLAY FORD (1) loaded her last cargo at Duluth, MN. December 11, 1984.

PERE MARQUETTE 21 passed down the Welland Canal ( loaded with remnants of Port Huron's Peerless Cement Dock) on December 11, 1974 towed by the tugs SALVAGE MONARCH and DANIEL McALLISTER on the way to Sorel, Que. where she was laid up.

The fishing boat Linda E. vanished on Lake Michigan along with its three crewmen on Dec. 11, 1998.

WHEAT KING was laid up for the last time December 11, 1981.

On 11 December 1872, the Port Huron Times listed the following vessels in winter lay-up in Port Huron:
Sailing Craft:
A.H.MOSS, FOREST HUNTER. MARY E. PEREW, SEA BIRD, REINDEER, T.S.SKINNER, L.W.PERRY, ADAIN, LITTLE NELLIE, MAGGIE, PRINCE ALFRED, CAPE HORM, KITTIE, JOHNSON (wrecker), CHRISTIANA, HOWE, C.G.MEISEL, AUNT RUTH, W.R.HANNA, IRONSIDES, GOLDEN FLEECE, JOHN L. GROSS, WARRINGTON, ANGLO SAXON, MOORE, LADY ESSEX, ANNIE, FORWARDER (sunk), GROTON, NORTHWEST, FRED H. MORSE, GEM OF THE LAKES, D.J.AUSTIN, CZAR, JAMAICA, ANNIE (scow), AND HATTIE.
Sidewheel Steamers: 8th OHIO, WYOMING (lighter).
Propeller Steam Barges: W.E.WETMORE, SANILAC, CITY OF DETROIT.
Tugs: KATE MOFFAT, TAWAS, HITTIE HOYT, FRANK MOFFAT, J.H. MARTIN, JOHN PRIDGEON, BROCKWAY, GLADIATOR, CORAL, GRACE DORNER (small passenger vessel), AND C.M. FARRAR.

On 11 December 1895, GEORGE W. ADAMS (wooden schooner-barge, 231', 1444 gt, built in 1875 at Toledo, Ohio) was in tow of the steamer CALEDONIA with a load of coal, bound from Cleveland for Chicago. Her hull was crushed by ice and she sank near Colchester Shoals on Lake Erie. A salvage operation on her the following summer was a failure.

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 includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history





Barge Damaged

12/10
Barge Laviolette, under tow of the tugs Salvor and the Bonnie B III, was involved in an incident Tuesday near Cornwall, Ont., in which the barge was pushed into the Bonnie B III. There was no damage to the tug but reports indicate the Barge Laviolette may have been holed above the waterline. The trio is tied at the upper wall of the Snell Lock awaiting clearance to go to Prescott for repairs.

The Barge Laviolette is loaded with sugar from Trois Rivieres bound for Toronto for winter storage. Services Maritimes Laviolette Inc. of Trois Rivieres operates the vessel, which is the bow and cargo section of the former ULS Group bulker Canadian Explorer.

Reported by: Kent Malo, Spencer Miller and Roger LeLievre


Mississagi Visits Sorel-Tracy

12/10
The self-unloader Mississagi transited the Seaway for the first time Monday heading Sorel-Tracy at Section 14 to deliver a cargo of wheat. After having been delayed by fog in the Montreal area, she arrived at Sorel-Tracy on Tuesday.

Reported by: René Beauchamp


J. A. W. Iglehart Joins Fleet mate Townsend in Lay-up

12/10
The J. A. W. Iglehart arrived at the Lafarge terminal in Muskegon in the early morning hours of December 4. After unloading she shifted to the West Michigan Mart Dock for a temporary lay-up arriving there on the morning of December 5th. She now joins fleet mate Paul H, Townsend which has been in lay-up since October 10th more than likely for the season. The Iglehart is expected to return to service on or around the January, 2 2004.

Reported by: Herm Phillips


Tug and Barge Have Trouble Entering Holland

12/10
The tug Undaunted and barge Pere Marquette 41 became stuck while attempting to enter the Holland, Mich. Piers sometime before dawn Tuesday. About 10 a.m. the tug Carol Ann arrived to assist.

After about ninety minutes of maneuvering the tug and barge broke free and proceeded into Lake Macatawa with their load of gravel.

A Corps of Engineers survey boat was on the scene and reported depths of only 16 1/2 feet in spots, the PM41 appeared to be drawing 18 feet.

Reported by: Paul


Seaway News

12/10
Two ships were renamed in Montreal recently, both Seaway visitors. On or about Nov. 26, the tanker Arcturus had her name changed to MCT Arcturus. This tanker transited the Seaway for the first time in 2001. The ship is presently in Montreal and her next destination is Mississauga. Two fleet mates, also Seaway visitors, Almak and Altair were renamed respectively MCT Almak and MCT Altair lately according to the Equasis website.

Monday the Canadian ship Lady Franklin was renamed Mariam III following her sale to North Korean interests. She has been laid up in Montreal since October 2002. Since 1990, this vessel transited the Seaway several times going mostly to Côte Ste. Catherine to load supplies for the Arctic

The former Canadian Coast Guard vessel Montmagny built in 1963 at Owen Sound finally departed her lay up berth at Sorel-Tracy under tow of Epinette II on Nov. 19 for the drydock at Les Méchins, QC Now named 1999-01 since 1999 and owned by Navigation Saint Laurent Inc., she has been laid up at Sorel-Tracy since 1999.

After a two weeks delay, the Barge Laviolette finally departed Montreal on Dec. 8 bound for Toronto with a storage cargo of sugar and under tow of Salvor and Bonnie B.III . That barge, formerly the forepart of Canadian Explorer had been in use at Trois-Rivières since Nov. 8, 2000.

The tug Jerry G. owned by Groupe Ocean arrived in the Welland Canal on Nov. 29. There are unconfirmed reports she has been chartered or sold to Northern Transportation Ltd. , owner of the big tug Keewatin. At last report, Jerry G. departed Courtright Tuesday for the Sarnia Government dock.

Reported by: René Beauchamp


Saginaw River News

12/10
The Maumee entered the Saginaw River at 5:15 p.m. Tuesday on its third visit to the river within five days. After lightering at the Wirt Stone Dock in Bay City, the vessel continued up to the Wirt dock in Saginaw on Tuesday evening.

On previous visits, the Maumee unloaded a split load early Saturday at the Sargent dock in Zilwaukee and the Saginaw Rock Products dock. On Sunday evening, the vessel called at the Wirt dock in Saginaw.

Other vessels visiting the Saginaw River in the past few days include the tug Rebecca Lynn, calling at Bit-Mat on Saturday with a tank barge. The Agawa Canyon delivered salt to the Sargent dock in Zilwaukee on Monday. The CSL Tadoussac was outbound Monday afternoon from the Essroc cement plant in Essexville.

Reported by: Stephen Hause, Lon Morgan and Todd Shorkey


Oshawa Update

12/10
On Monday the salt water ship Ida was in port unloading rebar and steel beams. She departed Tuesday for Hamilton, Ontario to load.

Ida docked on Monday.
Another view.
Part of Ida's cargo.
Ida superstructure.
Tugs Lac Como & Glenevis with Ida in the background.
Departing Tuesday
Ida starting to turn assisted by tugs Glenevis & Lac Como.
Ready to depart.
Underway bow passing.
Stern passing.
Ida on her way to Hamilton, Ontario
Tug Lac Como on her way to Toronto after a job well done.

Reported by: Jim Gallacher


St. Lawrence River Traffic at Verchères

12/10
Patria upbound off Verchères to Montréal, late afternoon, Dec. 2.
Bulker Qing Ping downbound off Verchères with a full load of grain from Montréal berth 54, Dec.2.
Following Qing Ping was Canadian Navigator, Dec. 2.
Deep draft tanker Protank Orinoco assisted by tugs is about to pass anchored Fednav bulker Federal Schelde on her way to the Tracy wharf to unload her oil cargo, Dec 3.
Protank Orinoco approaching the Tracy oil dock, Dec. 3.
965-foot long container ship Canmar Spirit sailing downbound off the Verchères dock from Montréal on Dec.3. Notice the high water level in relation to the dock, some 5 feet above chart-datum, as opposed to last year's level at this time which was slightly below chart-datum.
Canada Maritime's most recent renaming, Canmar Endurance, the former Cast Performance upbound off Varennes on her first trip in her new livery, Dec. 4.
Seaway regular Jo Spirit upbound off Verchères, Dec. 4.
Early morning view of Flintermaas with darkened background skies, upbound off Verchères for Montréal and the Seaway, Dec. 5.
Weekly Montréal caller Cabot upbound off Verchères from St. John's, NFLD, Dec. 5.
Broadside view of Cabot with ice on her stem, Dec.5.
Oil pollution control vessel Simec M-01 which is based at Verchères with other 3 other similar units breaks ice in the basin prior to being hauled out of the water for the winter, Dec. 5.

Reported by: Marc Piché


Onboard the Algoport

12/10
Outbound from Little Narrows, almost clear the Bras D'Or lakes
Another view
Another view
Table Head, NS
Mermaid statue at Portneuf, PQ
Another view
Waiting for the pile to get taken away before continuing to unload
Looking forward
Docked
Truck along side

Reported by: Ken Hamilton


Updates

12/10
News updates for the missing days below have been added. Lots of pictures.


Today in Great Lakes History - December 10

CEDARGLEN loaded her last cargo at Thunder Bay, Ont. on December 10, 1984 carrying grain for Goderich, Ont.

Cleveland-Cliffs Iron Co. of Cleveland, OH bought the NOTRE DAME VICTORY on December 10, 1950. She would later become the CLIFFS VICTORY.

The IRVIN L. CLYMER was laid up at Superior, WI on December 10, 1985 for two seasons before returning to service April 30, 1988.

An explosion occurred in the IMPERIAL LEDUC's (b NIPIGON BAY ) forward tanks on December 10, 1951. This happened while her crew was cleaning and butterworthing the tanks. Five crew members were injured with one eventually dying in the hospital. Multiple explosions caused extensive damage in excess of $500,000.

On December 10, 1905 the WILLIAM E.CORY finally was pulled free and refloated after grounding in late November.

FRANK A. SHERMAN laid up for the last time at Toronto on December 10, 1981.

Donated by Cleveland-Cliffs to the Great Lakes Historical Society on December 10, 1987, the WILLIAM G. MATHER was to become a museum ship at Cleveland's waterfront.

PAUL H. CARNAHAN and her former fleet mate, GEORGE M. HUMPHREY (2), arrived safely under tow at Kaosiung, Taiwan on December 10, 1986 for scrapping.

ATLANTIC (formerly MANITOULIN, wooden propeller passenger/package freight, 147', 683 gt, built in 1880 at Owen Sound, Ont.) was bound for Byng Inlet with lumber camp supplies when she was caught in a storm and grounded in the lee of Pancake Island in Georgian Bay. Her cargo and aft cabin were thrown overboard to lighten her, but she caught fire and was destroyed. Her passengers and crew took to her boats and survived.

On 10 December 1891, a fire started on MARY (2-mast wooden schooner, 84', 87 gt, built in 1877 at Merriton, Ontario) when an oil stove in the kitchen exploded. The vessel was at anchor at Sarnia, Ontario and damages were estimated at $10,000. The CORISANE (2-mast wooden schooner-barge, 137', 292 gc, built in 1873 at Marine City, MI) was tied up alongside MARY and she also caught fire but the flames were quickly extinguished. She was towed away from MARY by the ferry J. C. CLARK.

The PERE MARQUETTE 3 ran aground in 1893 north of Milwaukee.

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


This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history




High winds push Chinese bulk carrier ashore in St. Lawrence River

12/09
The stormy weekend weather with winds gusting up to 60 mph pushed the Chinese bulk carrier Yong Kang (836f-225m-74,500 dwt-built 2001) ashore on Saturday off St-Jean Island of Orleans in the Lower St. Lawrence River.

The bulk carrier was at anchor awaiting Pier availability in Quebec Harbour when it dragged its anchor until its bow rested on the rocky shelved shores of the Island of Orleans.

A Group Ocean tug from Quebec City assisted in freeing the ship late Saturday and escorted the Yong Kang to section 52 in the St. Charles River Terminal of Quebec Harbour to partially offload its cargo of nickel and bauxite. A preliminary survey indicates several fractures on its bottom plates and a ballast tank is taking on water.

The ship will sail to Becancour to offload the remaining cargo, it will then return to Quebec and a final decision will be made about repairs.

Several lakers where in Harbour over the weekend. CSL Birchglen and Spruceglen offloading grain from Thunder Bay for Bunge along with Canadian Enterprise awaiting a pier to load iron ore for the Lakes. The Ceres big tanker Cap Laurent (147,436 dwt-Greek-built 1998) offloaded Norwegian crude oil at the Ultramar Terminal at St-Romuald across the River from Quebec. A Croatian saltie also departed late Sunday afternoon with a cargo of grain for a European port.

Yong Kang at section 52 St. Charles River.
Spruceglen awaiting departure of Birchglen
Stern of Birchglen at section 18 offloading grain for Bunge.
Canadian Enterprise awaiting pier availability.

Reported by: Frederick Frechette


Ferry company again planning Lake Michigan service

12/09
Fast-Kat Ferry Services plans to make another attempt to operate a Lake Michigan ferry between Chicago and Benton Harbor, the Herald-Palladium newspaper reported.

Officials of Grand Rapids-based LEF Corp., which owns the proposed ferry service, told Cornerstone Alliance representatives during a recent meeting that the ferry would operate from May to October and make four round trips daily. The ferry would carry up to 300 passengers but no cars.

LEF planned to start ferry service last May that would have carried people between Chicago's Navy Pier, Racine, Wis., and St. Joseph. The plan failed, in part, because of a lack of funding and lack of a vessel.

Gayle Evans, the spokeswoman for LEF, refused to comment on the company's plans for ferry service, but she said an official announcement would be made later this month.

Reported by: Doug Fairchild


Cargoes Decline in Toledo

12/09
Barring a late-season rush, the port of Toledo likely will see a drop in ships and cargo for the third straight year according to a story by the Associated Press from the Toledo Blade.

Through October, 85 fewer ships used Toledo wharves than during the same period last year. Cargo volume has dropped more than ten percent.

Dick Gabel is vice president of a union that represents about 150 dock workers. He told the news service that it’s been a slow year and that when the ships don't come in, his people don't work. Work has picked up recently at the city's grain docks. The early part of the year was slow, but a robust corn harvest led to a wave of ships last month.

Reported by: Alan Baker and David Patch


Seaway News

12/09
Salties are still making their way up the Seaway for one last cargo. The Kapitonas Marcinkus, Kwintebank, Melissa Desgagnes, Sea Guardian II and Regina Oldendorff, passed Cape Vincent Monday.

An unusual tow has tied above Upper Beauharnois Lock. The Salvor and Bonnie B III are towing a 498 foot barge.

The water temperature at St. Lambert lock is dropping. It went from 1.6 C , on the 4th to 0.3 C Monday. At Midnight on Dec. 7 there were 47 salties above St. Lambert and 34 above Port Weller. this compares to 47 and 40 last year.

Lake Ontario's water level is 30 cm ( 1 foot) above last year. A CBC item stated that other lakes were holding their own or rising. There was more than the usual precipitation in November. According to Water Level News, Lakes Ontario and Michigan-Huron reversed the seasonal level decline while Superior and Erie declined less than usual.

The Seaway has waived surcharges for Dec. 23 and 24. They have also stated that any vessel wishing transit after Dec. 26 will have to have a written agreement. They further state that all vessels will have to be clear of the system by Dec. 29

Reported by: Ron Walsh


Twin Ports Report

12/09
The impending end of the grain season is bringing a surge of last-minute salties to the Twin Ports. On Monday, the Federal Saguenay was loading at Cenex Harvest States 2, Chios Charity was at Cargill B1 and Virginiaborg was at General Mills in Duluth. Federal Welland was expected later in the day, and more salties are expected throughout the week. Also expected to arrive for grain cargoes today are Joseph H. Frantz and Herbert C. Jackson.

No ships are presently scheduled for the DMIR's Duluth ore dock, but the Two Harbors dock remains busy. Roger Blough, St. Clair and George A. Stinson are due there today; Cason J. Callaway is due to load Wednesday; and Columbia Star, Joe Block and Presque Isle are all scheduled for Thursday.

Reported by: Al Miller


Marquette News

12/09
The Michipicoten took on a load of ore in Marquette on Monday. The American Mariner was expected later that day. Tuesday should see the Lee A. Tregurtha, the return of the Michipicoten, and the Wilfred Sykes late.

Michipicoten leaving on a hazy day.
American Mariner approaches on an unseasonably warm evening.
American Mariner at dock, wide view

Reported by: Lee Rowe


Erieau Fire Department gets a new life saving watercraft

12/09
The Erieau, Ontario Fire Department has been out on several life saving calls in the recent past which had to include rescue service helicopter from Selfrige Airforce station in Michigan to rescue stranded duck hunters in frigid waters-and their dogs, over turned canoes in rough water that could kill.

In response to this the city purchased a 22-foot Zodiac Hurricane to enable the fire department to respond to calls.

In related port news, Saturday at 1pm at the Erieau Commercial fisherman’s wharf "Santa Arrives in Erieau". This annual event draws hundreds of visitors from all over to see the jolly old man arrives aboard the Lady MacKenzie a commercial fish tug.

New Zodiac.
At the dock.
First trip out.

Reported by: Jayne Parker


Detroit Traffic

12/09
Monday afternoon two lakers pass downbound out of Lake St. Clair, passing Belle Isle, near the Coast Guard Station. The Gordon C. Leitch conducted a fire and lifeboat drill off the island, sounding nine impressive blasts from her whistle and the crew (not on watch) gathered on deck.

Captain Ralph Tucker being followed by Gordon C. Leitch passing Peach Island.
Captain Ralph Tucker passing Coast Guard Station Belle Isle.
Gordon C. Leitch passing Coast Guard Station Belle Isle.
Gordon C. Leitch continuing down river passing Dossin Museum.

Reported by: Tom Welles


Cleveland Traffic

12/09
Earl W. Oglebay at St. Marys Cement on the way to ISG
Olympic Melody and the Isadora unloading steel at the Cleveland Port.
The Barge Pathfinder came in to the harbor entrance around 2:30, took on a small delivery and departed by 2:59 p.m.
The Reserve passing the old C.G. Station at 3:21 to unload at CBT.

Reported by: Munroe Copper


Welland Traffic

12/09
CSL Laurentien clear of Lock 3 headed to Toldeo with a cargo of iron ore Monday.
Passing entry above Lock 7-Rt Hon. Paul J. Martin and Algosoo.
Martin, named after the father of the man who will become Canada's new prime minister later this week approaching guard gate with iron ore for Toledo.
Algosoo with coal for Clarkson sliding along the wall.
Algosoo entering Lock 7.
Canadian Navigator in Port Weller harbor approaching Lock One.
Entering Lock One.

Reported by: Bill Bird


Today in Great Lakes History - December 09

JUPITER (2) was christened December 9, 1975.

The JEAN PARISIEN left Quebec City on her maiden voyage December 9, 1977.

CLIFFS VICTORY ran aground December 9, 1976 near Johnson Point in the ice -laden Munuscong Channel of the St. Marys River.

The FRANK C. BALL ( b) J.R. SENSIBAR, c) CONALLISON) was launched on December 9, 1905.

The ARTHUR B. HOMER was towed by the tugs THUNDER CAPE, ELMORE M. MISNER and ATOMIC to Port Colborne, Ont., December 9, 1986, and was scrapped there the following year.

HILDA MARJANNE was launched December 9, 1943 as a) GRANDE RONDE.

The keel for the SHIERCLIFFE HALL was laid on December 9, 1949.

On 9 December 1871, CHALLENGE (wooden schooner, 96', 99 t, built in 1853 at Rochester, NY) missed the piers at Sheboygan, WI in heavy weather, stove in some of her planking and sank. She was a particularly sleek craft, actually designed as a yacht and once owned by the Light House Service as a supply vessel.

On 9 December 1874, the Port Huron Times reported that "the old railroad ferry steamer UNION at Detroit is having machinery taken out and preparing to go into permanent retirement, or perhaps to serve as a floating dining room for railroad passengers."

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 includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history





Mackinaw Visits Chicago

12/08
The USCG Mackinaw was docked at Chicago's Navy Pier Sunday. The ice breaker was transformed into the "Christmas Tree Ship" for the weekend to help deliver Christmas Trees to needy Chicago families with the assistance of the Salvation Army.

The Mackinaw was docked next to the Captain of the Helm memorial. Chicago Lodge 3 of the International Shipmasters Association erected the memorial to honor all Great Lakes sailors.

The Mackinaw docked at Navy Pier
Memroial
Skyline in background

Reported by: Andy LaBorde


Soo Traffic

12/08
After a slow day for traffic on Saturday, things picked up on Sunday. Saltys were the rule rather than the exception all day long. By Sunday night five salties were anchored in the lower river near Detour. The saltys are: Isolda, Patria, Ziemia Tarnowska, Kent, Kapitonas Andzejauskas. Anchored above the locks in Whisky Bay are the Orna, and Margaretha Green. The salties are waiting for daylight navigation of the river and pilots.

Passing upbound during the day on Sunday were, Middletown, Quebecois, John B Aird, Spar Garnet, Federal Welland, Federal Yukon, Edwin H Gott, Lee A Tregurtha, and Catherine Desgagnes. Downbound was the Pineglen, Gordon C Leitch, Presque Isle, and Charles M Beeghly who was using a tug due to a bow thruster problem. The Algoway who has been loading slag at the Export Dock for over 36 hours was getting ready to depart Sunday evening which will allow the Algomarine to take her place at the Export Dock.

Pictures by Scott Best
Charles M Beeghly and tug Missouri downbound off West Pier.
Bluewing heads upbound off West Pier.
Crewmembers were decorating the Pilot House roof with Christmas lights as they departed the lock downbound.
Stern view clearing the locks, (Note ice on bow from her trip down Lake Superior from Thunder Bay)
Spar Garnet moves into the Mac Lock with assistance from the Tug Missouri.

Pictures by Ken Towne
Algolake passes Mission Pt. downbound Saturday.
Columbia Star at the west Pier as she lines up for the Poe Lock downbound.
Columbia Star at Mission Pt. under a waxing gibbous moon.

Reported by: Scott Best


New ships visits Green Bay

12/08
Green Bay got a new visitor today with a late season cargo of lumber from Germany for the newly renovated K&K Warehousing in Green Bay. The Marinette arrvied Green Bay Sunday morning around 8:15 am and was assisted to the dock by the G tugs Texas and Indiana. After a relativly qucik unload they were underway around 3:45 PM. The John G. Munson was also in port this morning after waiting dock space in the channel out in the bay of Green Bay. The Munson unloaded stone from Stoneport, Mich at Great Lakes Calcuim. The John G. Munson departed Green Bay Sunday afternoon Meldrum Bay, Ont

Bow View Unloading
Stern View
Christmas Lights
At the Dock
View from Walnut St. bridge
Unloading Lumber
Unloading Crane

Reported by: Jason Leino


Hamilton Update

12/08
Saturday the Algosoo departed Hamilton at 3 pm and head toward the Welland Canal and then onto Ashtabula, Ohio. The Mississagi arrived in Hamilton at 6pm. The tug Anglian Lady and tank barge arrived at 7 pm going to Pier 23. The tug Doug McKeil and barge arrived at 8:30 pm.

Sunday theCanadian Provider arrive in Hamilton at 8 am from Port Cartier Quebec with iron ore pellets for Dofasco.After discharging her cargo she will head to Thunder Bay. The Petrolia Desgagnes arrived at the Petro Canada Piers in Bronte (Oakville) at 8 am. The Fret Meuse arrived in Burlington Bay at 9:30 am and waited for the refuelling ship Hamilton Energy to come out and meet her. The Hamilton Energy departed the Fret Meuse at 2 pm and the Muese was under way at 2:30 pm heading down Lake Ontario.

The tug Anglian Lady and barge departed at 11 am as did the tug Doug McKeil and her barge both heading to the Welland Canal. The Mississagi then departed at 1 pm heading down Lake Ontario.

Reported by: Eric Holmes


Cuyahoga and Edgar B. Speer in Sturgeon Bay

12/08
The Cuyahoga and Edgar B. Speer remained at Bayship last weekend. The Cuyahoga is bow-first in the drydock and the Speer is in the slip next to the drydock. The Cuyahoga was blown into a dock wall by high winds when departing Cleveland, Ohio and is in for bottom work. The Edgar B. Speer lost its starboard rudder in the lower St. Marys river last week and is in to get it replaced. There is no word on when either vessel will depart.

Speer bow
Stern
Edgar B. Speer
Speer and Cuyahoga
Across the Channel
Wide View
Bow Thruster
Cuyahoga in the Drydock
Another View
Cuyahoga and Speer
Pilot House's

Reported by: Jason Leino


Detroit & St. Clair Traffic

12/08
Detroit and Rouge River Dec. 6
Agawa Canyon unloads at LaFarge on the Detroit River
Edwin H. Gott departing the face of Zug Island
Pulling away
Halifax departing Blue Circle cement in the Rouge
Close up of Starboard Bow
Halifax churns up the rouge

St. Clair River Dec. 7
CSL Tadoussac upbound at Marysville, MI
Bow view
CSL Tadoussac continues upbound
Walter J. McCarthy, JR. at Port Huron
Stern View
Heading under the bridges
H. Lee White upbound at Port Huron, MI
Stern view heading for Lake Huron
Tug Everlast with her barge Norman McLeod
Close up of Tug Everlast
Everlast joins a salty and the St. Marys Cement II in Sarnia.
Algosteel downbound under the Bluewater Bridges
Stern View
Algosteel pulling away
Her Barge Stone Merchant with a heavy load
Stern View
Close up of Keewatin in the notch
St. Clair upbound at Port Huron
Paul R. Tregurtha upbound past Marysville heading for Superior, WI for another load of coal.

Reported by: Scott Tomlinson


Interlake Flags

12/08
Force 5 is offering a Special this week three Interlake SHIP flags. The large flags measure 72" x 43" and are the same flags flown on the ships. Cost is $60.00 each plus shipping
E-mail Veronica Petron to order or for more details.


Weekly Updates

12/08
The weekly updates have been uploaded.
Click here to view


Today in Great Lakes History - December 08

The CANADIAN ENTERPRISE was christened December 8, 1979.

JAMES DAVIDSON was laid up for the last time on December 8, 1969 at Toledo, OH.

The MERLE M. McCURDY collided with U.S. Steel s PHILIP R. CLARKE opposite Grosse Pointe Farms, MI on Lake St. Clair, December 8, 1974.

On 8 December 1886, BELLE (2-mast wooden schooner, 61', 40 gc, built in 1866 at Port Dalhousie, Ontario) burned while frozen in at anchor.

On 8 December 1854, WESTMORELAND (wooden propeller passenger/package freight vessel, 200', 665 t, built in 1853 at Cleveland) was carrying supplies for Mackinac Island, including liquor and supposedly $100,000 in gold. She capsized in a storm due to the heavy seas and the weight of the thick ice on her superstructure. She sank in the Manitou Passage in Lake Michigan and dragged one of the loaded lifeboats down with her. 17 lives were lost. There were many attempts to find her and recover her valuable cargo, but her wreck wasn't found until 1874, twenty years after she sank.

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


This is a small sample, the books 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




Speer Arrival

12/07
The Edgar B. Speer entered Sturgeon Bay from Green Bay Friday. As the Speer was making the turn off from Green Bay at Sherwood point, the ship reported that it had loss its bow thruster and could not restart it.

The Speer made a very slow approach to Bay Ship, where tugs from Selvick marine took the Speer under tow and push it to berth #15. She entered berth Stern first, this will allow the shipyard to repair the rudder and bow thruster problem.

The shipyard took out a spare rudder and rudder post, and loaded it on trucks to be rebuilt and returned to the yard, even though the missing rudder was found.

The new rudder will take about 10 days as crews sand blast, repaint and air test the rudder. The rudder post work will take about the same amount of time as crews refinish the rusted areas.

Inbound off sherwood point
Off graving dock with tugs going to aid
Close up of stern "note missing rudder starboard side"
Backing into berth #15 with aid of tugs on port side
Spare rudder being loaded
Spare rudder post on truck

Reported by: Vic DeLarwelle


Bray Departure From the Corps Boat Basin

12/07
Last week the crews boarded up windows and sealed all of the deck hatches and vents for the trip down Lake Michigan, at MCM Marine before she left the Soo. The Bray was towed to Mackinaw City the previous weekend, by the Drummond Islander II, under the command of Capt. John Wellington. She was moored at the old State ferry docks. The Holly Marine tug that picked up the PAJ in Detroit hit some bad weather on Lake Huron, and had to wait Alpena.

Pictures by Carmen Paris
Bray ready to depart
Bow view
With the Bunyan
Another view
Close up
Departing

Reported by: Charlie Lampman


Marquette Update

12/07
The John J. Boland came into Marquette on Friday for a load of ore. The Charles M. Beeghley loaded ore in Marquette Saturday on a calm winter night.

John J. Boland bow view, LS&I train on dock.
Boland wide view.
Beeghly Bow view.
Wide view at dock

Reported by: Lee Rowe


Green Bay Traffic

12/07
The Sam Laud arrived in Green Bay around 5 pm Friday night with a load of 18,000 tons of limestone from Port Inland, Mich for the Western Lime dock. This is the last scheduled load to Western Lime for now. On Saturday the Catherine Desgagnes arrived in Green Bay around 2 pm with a load of 2,000 tons of pig iron for the Fox River Dock. The John G. Munson also arrived but is anchored out in the bay at the outer bouys waiting for the Catherin Desgagnes to depart the slip. The John G. Munson has a load of stone for Great Lakes Calcuim from Stoneport, Mich. The John G. Munson should get to the slip sometime early Sunday morning. The Marinette is enroute to Green Bay from Toledo, Ohio. They will either arrive Sunday evening or Monday morning with a load of lumber for the K&K dock.

Sam Laud at Western Lime
Unloading
Bow View at Western Lime
Inbound
Going in the slip
Night view in ice
Unloading at night
Stern View

Reported by: Jason Leino


Clinton River and Metro Beach Pics

12/07
Luedtke is going to doing some major work in the Clinton River, which is a popular pleasure boat center that empties into Lake St. Clair. Pictures below were taken at the mouth of the Clinton River.

Old supply tug Oceanis now a personal yacht brought in 3 years ago and registered in Cape May, New Jersey (docked by the boat launch at Metro Beach).
Close up of Kurt Luedtke
Luedtke tug and dredge
Close up of dredge

Reported by: Andy Severson


South Chicago Update

12/07
Saturday afternoon the Calumet and Saginaw were both in South Chicago at KCBX terminal.

Loading with booms swung out as they are taking on cargo.

Reported by: H. Lund


Today in Great Lakes History - December 07

On December 7, 1969 the TEXACO CHIEF (2) collided with the Canadian bulker PETITE HERMINE near Prescott, Ont. and suffered light damage.

In 1990 the ENERCHEM LAKER was sold to Environment Protection Services, Inc., Panama and departed Montreal on December 7, 1990 for off Lakes service with the new name d) RECOVERY VIII.

The LEADALE (2) sank in the Welland Canal on December 7, 1982 and was declared a constructive total loss.

The GEORGE R. FINK (2), under tow, arrived at Gandia, Spain prior to December 7, 1973 for scrapping.

W.W. HOLLOWAY was laid up December 7, 1981 for the last time at Toledo’s frog pond.

On December 7, 1932, the MARQUIS ROEN caught fire at Meacher's dock at Bay City, and before the fire was brought under control, the cabins and after end were destroyed.

Captain John Roen of the Roen Steamship Co. died on December 7, 1970.

On December 7, 1906 the R.L. IRELAND stranded on Gull Island in the Apostle Islands, Lake Superior.

PERCIVAL ROBERTS, JR. was launched December 7, 1912 for the Pittsburgh Steamship Co.

The steel side-wheel passenger steamer EASTERN STATES was launched on December 7, 1901, by the Detroit Shipbuilding Company for the Detroit and Buffalo Steamship Company.

The railcar ferry ANN ARBOR No. 2 was launched on December 7, 1892.

In 1906 the ANN ARBOR NO. 4 arrived Frankfort on her maiden voyage.

December 7, 1909 - Marquette & Bessemer No. 2 (1) foundered in Lake Erie with a loss of all hands.

On 7 December 1894, KEWEENAW (steel steamer, 291', 2511 gt, built in 1891 at W. Bay City) was seen groping toward the coast of the State of Washington in a severe gale. With distress signals flying, she put back to sea and foundered. She was built by F.W. Wheeler (hull #73) for salt water service. Built in two pieces, she was towed down the St. Lawrence and reassembled at Montreal.

On 7 December 1866, M. BALLARD (2-mast wooden schooner, 116', 288 t, built in 1855 at Cleveland) was lost with all hands in a storm on Lake Ontario.

The wooden propeller bulk freighter MORLEY was launched at Marine City on 7 December 1878. She was on the stocks for two years and was built for the Morley Brothers and Hill. She was a double decker with side arches between decks with iron straps. She also had iron trusses running through the center. Her boiler was on the main deck and she had the engine from the tug WM. PRINGLE. She had three spars, a centerboard, and could carry 45,000 bushels of grain.

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


This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history




Rudder Found

12/06
The Edgar B. Speer's rudder that was lost on Thursday was located Friday and does not present a hazard to shipping. The rudder was located in 45 feet of water near Lime Island in the lower St. Marys River. It is expected to be recovered over the next few days.

It is unknown how the rudder was lost but the Speer arrived at Bay Shipbuilding in Sturgeon Bay, Wisc. Friday afternoon for repairs. Also in the ship yard is the Cuyahoga having steel work completed. The Cuyahoga was approaching Dock 20 in Cleveland when she was pushed into the dock by high winds.

Reported by: Scott Best


Saginaw River News

12/06
Vessel traffic remained steady on the Saginaw River as fleet mates called on separate docks Friday.

First the tug Invincible & barge McKee Sons lightered at the Sargent Dock in Essexville during the afternoon. The pair then continued upriver to the Saginaw Rock Products Dock to finish unloading.

About the time the McKee Sons was arriving at Saginaw Rock, the Maumee was inbound passing Light 1 of the Entrance Channel. Her security call indicated that she was headed to the Sargent Dock in Zilwaukee to unload. The Sargent Dock has been very popular over the last week as numerous vessels have called there to unload.

Both the McKee Sons and Maumee are expected to be outbound on Saturday.

Reported by: Stephen Hause, Lon Morgan and Todd Shorkey


Onboard the Algoport

12/06
Loading gypsum at the dock in Little Narrows
Lots of dust with the wind off the dock
Checking the fwd draft
Closeup of bow thruster
View of stb shipside and dock
Stem-on view
Portside view
Another view of the bow
Looking down the loading dock on shore
Fall colors in Little Narrows, Nova Scotia
Another view
Another view

Reported by: Ken Hamilton


Unique Throw Blanket

12/06
Force 5 is offering a unique throw blanket. This is a one of a kind throw blanket woven with the Interlake Logo manufactured for their company. Size is 46" x 140" and price is $150 Click here to view.
E-mail Veronica Petron to order or for more details.


Today in Great Lakes History - December 06

In 1988 the HON. PAUL MARTIN was renamed b) ATLANTIC ERIE.

The H. LEE WHITE (2) was launched December 6, 1973.

The CONSUMERS POWER (3) was laid up for the last time at Erie, PA on December 6, 1985.

On December 6, 1988 an arsonist set fire to the after end of the FORT CHAMBLY while she was laid up.

The GOLDEN HIND was launched December 6, 1951 as a) IMPERIAL WOODBEND.

LAWRENDOC (2) was launched December 6, 1961 at the Collingwood Shipyards.

On December 6, 1909 while upbound at "Mud" Lake on the St. Marys River in a blinding snow storm, the HARRY A. BERWIND collided with the loaded HENRY STEINBRENNER (1) which received a 70 foot wide hole on her starboard side and sank up to her cabins.

On 6 December 1874, the Port Huron Times reported that the Port Huron Dry Dock Co. had been declared bankrupt and Mr. John Johnston had been appointed assignee of the company by the U.S. District Court.

The OCONTO grounded near Charity Island in Saginaw Bay on 6 December 1885. The passengers and crew were saved. She was built at Manitowoc in 1872 by Rand & Co. and owned by Capt. Gregory W. McGregor and Rensselaer VanSycle. She was later recovered but only lasted until July 1886 when she went down in the St. Lawrence River with a valuable cargo of merchandise. Although several attempts were made to recover her, she remains on the bottom and is a frequent charter dive target to this day.

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


This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history




Speer Loses Rudder

12/05
The 1000-foot Edgar B. Speer lost its starboard rudder Thursday afternoon in the lower St. Marys River near Lime Island. The Coast Guard has set up one way traffic in the area because the lost rudder could be an obstruction and hazard to other ships. It is unknown if the rudder is on its side or laying upright.

Crews are expected to attempt to recover the rudder on Friday. Thursday night the Speer lifted anchor in the lower river and departed downbound, possibly heading to the ship yard for repairs.

River traffic at the Soo was brisk on Thursday with nine upbounds and fifteen downbounds by late afternoon. Included in the traffic was at least six salties, coupled with the tugs and pilot changes made a busy scene in the local harbor. Rare visitors in the harbor included the Biscayne Bay, Gemini and Sir Walter.

Reported by: Scott Best


Tilden mine suffers equipment breakdown

12/05
A critical piece of equipment failed late last month at Cleveland-Cliff's Tilden mine in Michigan's Upper Peninsula, shutting down the facility's processing plant.

A "riding ring" on the pelletizing plant's kiln cracked Nov. 26, forcing the kiln to be shut down. Repairs are under way, but a similar failure in 1998 required 12 weeks to repair.

The shutdown is expected to reduce Tilden's 2003 production by 300,000 tons to about 7 million tons. Maintenance work scheduled for early next year has been moved up so it can be done at the same time as the repairs.

Cliffs owns 85 percent of the Tilden Mine, and Stelco Inc. owns 15 percent.

Reported by: Kevin Lonehart


Drill Barge in for the Winter

12/05
The natural gas platform Timesaver II returned to Port Stanley on Lake Erie for winter lay up Wednesday night. The Timesaver is a platform rig that acts as a collector, compressor and pumping station for natural gas and is owned by Talisman Energy Corp.

The platform sits spring, summer and fall six miles south east of Port Stanley and seven miles south of Port Bruce.

High winds and rough seas delayed its winter arrival. Wide view in Port Stanley
Close up
Crew departing

Reported by: Ted Coombs


Twin Ports Report

12/05
Amid a brilliant red sunrise and fairly mild temperatures, Indiana Harbor pulled away from Midwest Energy Terminal about 7 a.m. Thursday, clearing the berth for Walter J. McCarthy Jr., which was waiting at the Duluth port terminal. Algolake was due at the dock later in the day.

Elsewhere in port, Kapitonas Stulpinas was loading at AGP elevator. Down the harbor, James R. Barker, Stewart J. Cort and Frontenac were scheduled throughout the day to load at BNSF ore dock.

Midwest Energy Terminal used to close by mid-December each season. Now, with its increased tonnage of recent years, the dock operates much later. This season, the dock now has vessels scheduled to load at least through Jan. 2, although that may change according to weather conditions.

The dock's 345 load of the season is scheduled to be Paul R. Tregurtha on Dec. 20. Other late-season callers are expected to be Columbia Star on Dec. 29, Oglebay Norton on Dec. 23, Mesabi Miner on Dec. 30 and Paul R. Tregurtha on Jan. 2.

Boatwatchers in Marquette will get plenty of opportunities to photograph the Herbert C. Jackson. The boat is scheduled to load coal for Marquette on Dec. 17, 20 and 22.

Reported by: Al Miller


Marquette Update

12/05
Sunny weather on Monday saw both the Herbert Jackson and Lee A. Tregurtha in for a load of ore. The Tregurtha is still minus her bow anchor.

Herbert Jackson loading.
Lee A. Tregurtha bow view, missing anchor.
Lee A. Tregurtha wide view at dock.

Reported by: Lee Rowe


Mark Hannah in Green Bay

12/05
The Mark Hannah and barge E-63 made their fourth trip to Green Bay this season bringing with them a cargo of Calcium Chloride. They arrived Wednesday night at the US OIL dock around 9 p.m. The tug and barge also brought in cargos in the months of April, June and July. Traffic to this terminal was down this year due partially to low water levels.

U.S. Oil is trying to get a grant that would allow for some dock improvements and dredging of an additional 5-8 feet of depth from the channel to the terminal along the river on Green Bay's east side. Currently U.S. Oil only has about 16 feet of depth which only allow ships to arrive half-full. U.S. Oil is the Port of Green Bay's only active terminal on the east side of the river.

At U.S. Oil
Mark Hannah
Under the Bridge
View Across the River
Close Up of Mark Hannah

Reported by: Jason Leino


Saginaw River News

12/05
Two-way traffic was the rule Thursday on the Saginaw River as several vessels arrived and departed.

Inbound late Wednesday evening were the Joyce L. VanEnkevort with barge Great Lakes Trader, and the tug Mary E. Hannah with a tank barge. At the same time, the Agawa Canyon was outbound from Saginaw.

The Great Lakes Trader docked at the Wirt Stone Dock in Bay City. The Hannah's destination was the Triple Clean fuel dock in Essexville. The Hannah had just enough time to turn and back into the dock before the Agawa Canyon passed. The tug Mary E. Hannah was outbound from the Triple Clean Dock at 9:30 p.m.

Early Thursday morning, the VanEnkevort-Trader was ready to depart the Bay City dock for the Wirt dock in Saginaw, but had to wait another hour for the Alpena to pass outbound from the Lafarge terminal at Saginaw. The Trader unloaded at Saginaw during the day and departed that dock at about 4:30 p.m. The Algoway entered the river at about 10:20 a.m. Thursday with another load of salt from Goderich for the Sargent dock at Zilwaukee--the fifth load of salt to be delivered in the past week.

The U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Hollyhock was working Aids to Navigation in the outer bay near the Charity Islands. Once finished, she will head to Lake Erie to work Aids to Navigation before returning to the Saginaw Bay to place the winter marks in the Entrance Channel. With low temperatures dropping into the teens over the past few nights, there is some ice already forming along the edge of the river.

Pictures by: Todd Shorkey
U.S.C.G. Cutter Hollyhock tied up at the Consumers Energy Dock
Another view
Algoway upbound nearing the I-75 bridge
Another view
Stern view

Pictures by: Richard Fosgitt
Passing
Close up

Reported by: Stephen Hause, Lon Morgan and Todd Shorkey


Cleveland Update

12/05
Spar Garnet unloading steel Thursday afternoon.
Isodora also delivering steel.
Fret Meuse was taking on the old machinery that was loaded on the barge Milwaukee from the day before.
Another view.
Tug Superior along side
Tug Champion leaving after delivering a barge loaded with concrete sewer pipes. Landing craft.

Reported by: Munroe Copper


Sandusky Update

12/05
On Thursday at noon the Algosoo was under the coal loader almost full. The John B. Aird was tied up behind her waiting to move under the loader.

Reported by: Dave Wobser


12/05
Crew change while in the lock
Cote St Catherine lock looking astern while clearing the lock
Lykes Raider downbound
another view
passing by
bowthruster in action
stern view showing her ro/ro ramp
another view
cows down having a drink just below Iroquois Lock
Canadian Transport upbound around Robertson Pt
Stern view

Reported by: Ken Hamilton


Marine Mart Saturday

12/05
Great Lakes Maritime Institute (Dossin Museum) Marine Mart, December 6 at a new location - the Casino on Belle Isle. New location is much larger and all dealers will be on the same floor. 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. The Casino is not a gambling establishment but used a meeting point for individuals and groups. It is located in full view of the shipping channel near the entrance of the island just east of the Scott Fountain. The Marine Mart features dealers selling books, photographs, postcards, artwork and artifacts. Call 313.852.4051 for more information.




Maritime artist visits Alpena, Michigan

12/05
Maritime artist Steve Witucki will be at Riverside Gallery in Alpena on December 7, 2003 from 1pm to 4pm. He will be remarquing purchases and discussing what motivated him to paint his pictures. Select originals will be on display. Refreshments will be served.

Steve is a Wheelsman on board the Edwin H. Gott and does all of his painting on the ship. Steve has many murals throughout the former Great Lakes Fleet and has sailed on many vessels in his 29 year career. Steve has a talent with water that is unmatched, after all, who better to paint water than a sailor.

Reported by: Robert Doyle


Today in Great Lakes History - December 05

Tanker SATURN was launched in 1973 as a) SATURN (4) for Cleveland Tankers.

SIR JAMES DUNN was launched in 1951.

The keel was laid for the E.G. GRACE on December 5, 1942. This was the last of the six ships built by AmShip in the L6-S-A1 class for the United States Maritime Commission and was traded to the Interlake Steamship Company in exchange for older tonnage. She would later become the first of the "Maritime Class" vessels to go for scrap in 1984.

On 5 December 1874, the steam barge MILAN was scheduled to be hauled ashore at Port Huron to replace her "Mississippi wheel" with a propeller.

The wooden 100' schooner BRILLIANT was close to Sheboygan, Wisconsin on 5 December 1857 where she was scheduled to pick up a load of lumber when she went on a reef close to shore and sank. No lives were lost.

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


This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history




Cliffs, Laiwu close deal for EVTAC

12/04
Cleveland-Cliffs Inc. and Laiwu Steel Group of China made it official Wednesday when company officials completed the paperwork to official take possession of EVTAC Mining near Eveleth, Minn.

Cliffs owns 70 percent of the mine and processing plant and Laiwu owns 30 percent. The operation is now known as United Taconite.

The mine and plant previously were known as Eveleth Mines, and later became EVTAC

Cliffs officials have said they hope to resume plant operations by mid-December and to produce the first pellets before Christmas.

Company officials have said United Taconite pellets will be consumed domestically while pellets from a Cliffs property in eastern Canada will be loaded for ocean freighters for shipment to Laiwu's steel plants in China. Recent press articles have stated that demand for taconite pellets is so great in China that the country's steelmakers are willing to pay $100 a ton for pellets while domestic steelmakers are balking at paying $34 a ton for the product.

Reported by: Steve Ross


Saginaw River News

12/04
The late season rush on the Saginaw River continued on Wednesday with the arrival of the Alpena and the Agawa Canyon.

The Alpena entered the river early in the morning with a load of cement from the vessel's namesake city for the Lafarge terminal in Saginaw. The Agawa Canyon arrived early in the afternoon at the Sargent dock in Zilwaukee with a load of salt from Goderich, Ontario.

Outbound on Wednesday afternoon was the tug-barge Invincible-McKee Sons. The vessel had delivered stone to the Wirt docks in Bay City and Saginaw. After turning at Sixth Street in Saginaw, the Invincible-McKee Sons waited at the Burroughs dock for the Agawa Canyon to pass upbound.

Pictures by Stephen Hause
Agawa Canyon makes the turn at Cheboyganing Creek while upbound Wednesday on the Saginaw River.
Invincible-McKee Sons waits at the Burroughs dock for the Agawa Canyon to pass.
Steamer Alpena alongside the E.M. Ford at Saginaw.

Reported by: Stephen Hause, Lon Morgan and Todd Shorkey


Conquest in Owen Sound

12/04
The barge Conquest arrived in Owen Sound on Tuesday to unload a cargo of cement. The barge remains painted with the single name Conquest and Cemex has not been added.

Bow view
Close up of unloading boom

Reported by: Ed Saliwonchyk


Cleveland Traffic

12/04
Barge Milwaukee at the south end of LTV/ISG being loaded with heavy equipment from an auction several weeks ago.
Tug General crane barge in late November.
Corps of Engineers dock with the William C. Mather in the background.

Reported by: Munroe Copper


Today in Great Lakes History - December 04

ALGOSOO (2) was the last ship built on the Lakes with the traditional fore and aft cabins, her maiden voyage took place today in 1974.

The IMPERIAL QUEBEC entered service on December 4, 1957.

LIGHTSHIP 103 completed her sea trials December 4, 1920.

At 0210 hours on December 4, 1989 the MESQUITE ran aground in 12 feet of water at a point one-quarter nautical mile off Keweenaw Point. After a struggle to save the ship, the 53 persons aboard abandoned ship at 0830 hours and boarded the Indian salty M/V MANGAL DESAI which was standing by.

On 4 December 1873, a gale struck Saginaw bay while the CITY OF DETROIT of the G. T. Line was carrying 8,000 bushels of wheat, package freight and 26 crew and passengers. She was also towing the barge GUIDING STAR. The barge was cut loose in the heavy seas at 3:30 am and about 7:00 am the CITY OF DETROIT sank. Captain Morris Barrett of the GUIDING STAR saw three of the CITY OF DETROIT's crew in one lifeboat and only one in another lifeboat. The CITY OF DETROIT went down stern first and the passengers and crew were seen grouped together on and about the pilothouse. Capt. Barrett and his crew of seven then abandoned GUIDING STAR. They arrived at Port Elgin, Ontario on 6 December in their yawl with their feet fully frozen. The barge was later found and towed in by the tug PRINDEVILLE.

On 4 December 1838, THAMES (wooden passenger/package-freight side-wheeler, 80', 160 t, built in 1833 at Chatham, Ontario) was burned at her dock in Windsor, Ontario by Canadian "patriots" during a raid on Windsor involving more than 500 armed men.

The M/V Emerald Isle completed her maiden voyage from Beaver Island to Charlevoix on December 4, 1997. Her first cargo included a few cars and 400 passengers. Emerald Isle replaced Beaver Islander as the main ferry on the 32 mile run.

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


This is a small sample, the books includes many other vessels with a much more detailed history





Reopened EVTAC could revive Taconite Harbor, hurt others

12/03
Reopening EVTAC Mining Co. may spark the revival of pellet shipping from Taconite Harbor while casting doubt on the future of the DMIR's historic Duluth ore dock and hurting the BNSF ore dock in Superior.

Cleveland-Cliffs Inc. is acquiring bankrupt EVTAC in a deal that gives it a 70-percent share of the mine and processing plant near Eveleth, Minn. Chinese steelmaker Laiwu Steel Group will own the remaining 30 percent. The new plant will be named United Taconite.

The Duluth News Tribune reported Tuesday that Cliffs wants to ship United Taconite pellets through the former LTV Steel Mining Co. shiploader facility in Taconite Harbor. The facility has been idle since LTV closed in 2001, although the port has continued to receive occasional ships unloading coal for the small power plant there.

Shipping United Taconite pellets through Taconite Harbor would cost an estimated $2.50 a ton compared to the $4 a ton that EVTAC spent shipping pellets through the DMIR ore dock in Duluth, according to experts cited by the newspaper.

In addition, the newspaper reported that Cliffs eventually would like to ship pellets from Hibbing Taconite through Taconite Harbor.

EVTAC used to ship its pellets by the DMIR to the railroad's dock in Duluth, where they were loaded aboard lake freighters. Since EVTAC shut down and ran out its inventory, that dock has loaded few ships and been used mostly to receive limestone cargoes.

Hibbing Taconite, managed by Cliffs, has always shipped its pellets via the BNSF railroad to its modern shiploader in Superior's Allouez neighborhood. That dock today is used only by Hibbing Taconite and the smaller National Steel Pellet Co., now owned by U.S. Steel. Losing Hibbing Taconite would drastically cut the dock's tonnage and drastically reduce the Twin Ports' role as an ore-shipping port -- a standing it has held for more than a century.

Two state lawmakers and local officials were scheduled to meet Tuesday to discuss Taconite Harbor's revival.

According to the newspaper, reopening the shiploader, building a needed pellet storage area and adding needed rail lines would cost between $30 million and $40 million. Cliffs would pay about $8 million and the rest would come from federal money.

Because of its location and self-unloading system, the Taconite Harbor dock is considered to be the most efficient ore-loading pier on Lake Superior. It's about 40 miles northeast of Two Harbors and about 60 miles closer to lower Great Lakes steel mills than iron ore docks in Duluth and Superior.

"It's the fastest dock on the lake," Sen. Tom Bakk, DFL-Cook, told the newspaper. "And it saves about six hours of boat time."

Railcars are unloaded on a railroad trestle that stands above a 1,200-foot-long concrete that can hold about 100,000 tons of taconite pellets. The dock can unload a 96-car train in about 15 minutes.

In contrast, the Duluth DMIR dock is several hours farther up the lake than Taconite Harbor. Once a boat enters Duluth harbor, it needs nearly another hour to slowly proceed through port and into St. Louis Bay to tie up at the dock. While the dock has a shiploader facility, in the past it often still loaded smaller boats with gravity chutes.

The BNSF ore dock in Superior was built in the 1970s to handle the bigger boats then being built. It's located just inside Superior Entry, so docking time is minimized. However, as smaller mines closed over the years, the dock was left captive to serving taconite plants on the BNSF rail lines. This included Hibbing Taconite along with National Steel Pellet Co. and Butler Taconite, the latter two once operated by Hanna Mining Co. Butler was closed and dismantled a number of years ago, and NSPC's future has often been in doubt until it was purchased by U.S. Steel earlier this year.

Reported by: Al Miller


Vancouverborg Stops in the Welland Canal

12/03
Tuesday the saltie Vancouverborg was stopped above Lock Seven in the Welland Canal. She was in Lock 7 downbound when her engine failed, she was then raised and winch out of the lock. The problem is reported to be a broken rocker arm which is being flown from the Netherlands. Repairs are expected to be completed in the next several days.

Pictures by Bill Bird
Vancouverborg at the wall above Lock 7.
Gordon C. Leitch upbound clear of Lock 3.
Canadian Prospector clearing Lock 6 upbound.

Reported by: Bill Bird and Kent Malo


Alpena Update

12/03
The cement silos at Lafarge were busy on Tuesday loading the Alpena and the J.A.W Iglehart. The Alpena finally arrived back in port around 4:30 p.m. after being delayed by weather. It departed at 8 p.m., heading for Saginaw. The J.A.W Iglehart came in after the Alpena cleared the channel. The Iglehart is expected to go to Muskegon with its cargo. The Jacklyn M barge Integrity will also load cement early Wednesday morning once the Iglehart leaves.

Reported by: Ben & Chanda McClain


Saginaw River News

12/03
Shipping traffic remains busy this week on the Saginaw River, but strong winds, low water levels and traffic congestion have caused some headaches and delays for the ship masters.

The Algoway and Joyce L. VanEnkevort-Great Lakes Trader spent much of the day on Monday waiting for winds to subside or for other traffic to clear.

The Algoway had arrived at the mouth of the river late on Sunday evening and tied up at the Essroc dock in Essexville to wait for improved weather. The vessel was destined to remain there for 24 hours. The Algoway was carrying material loaded at the A.B. McLean Export Dock in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario.

Up the river at Saginaw late Sunday evening, the Joyce L. VanEnkevort-Great Lakes Trader was unloading at the Sargent dock while the Agawa Canyon was unloading at the old General Motors dock.

Early Monday morning, the Agawa Canyon finished unloading and started outbound after turning at Sixth Street in Saginaw. The Joyce L. VanEnkevort waited for the Canyon to pass before continuing up to Saginaw Rock Products. Algoway remained at Essroc, intending to continue up the river once its fleet mate had cleared.

But by Monday afternoon, winds had picked up enough to hold both the VanEnkevort and Algoway at their docks for several hours. The Joyce L. VanEnkevort-Great Lakes Trader was finally able to turn and start outbound early Monday evening. The Algoway continued to wait at Essexville for the other vessel to clear, and was at last able to start up to Saginaw late Monday evening.

The job of unloading, however, was not to be routine for the Algoway. The vessel stopped first at Burroughs, but was unable to reach a distant corner of the dock while facing upriver. It continued up to the GM dock to unload, then turned at Sixth Street and returned to Burroughs to finish unloading. It is unusual for a vessel on the Saginaw River to turn around before it has completely unloaded its cargo.

The Algoway was finally outbound late Tuesday afternoon, but faced a few more tense moments as it approached the Lafayette Bridge in Bay City. A mechanical problem with the bridge caused a short delay in opening, forcing the vessel to stop in the river for several minutes.

The Canadian Transfer arrived early Tuesday afternoon at the Sargent dock near Zilwaukee with a load of salt from Goderich. The Transfer was outbound early Tuesday evening.

The tug-barge Invincible-McKee Sons was inbound on the Saginaw River at about 7:30 p.m. Tuesday evening. The tug and barge were heading to lighter at Bay City Wirt before continuing upriver to finish unloading at the Saginaw Wirt Dock.

McKee Sons - Invincible unloading at Bay City Wirt
Canadian Transfer downbound passing the McKee Sons

Reported by: Stephen Hause, Lon Morgan and Todd Shorkey


Toledo Update

12/03
The salt water vessels Marinette and Peonia were at the T.W.I. Dock unloading cargo on Tuesday. The salt water vessel Spring Laker was at Andersons "K" Elevator loading grain. The Maumee finished loading coal at the CSX Docks and departed Tuesday afternoon. The Frontenac finished unloading ore at the Torco Ore Dock and departed Tuesday afternoon.

There was an Andrie Fleet tug/barge combo loading cargo at the B-P Dock. The Mary E. Hannah with her barge was at the old Interlake Iron Dock waiting for weather conditions to improve on Lake Erie. They loaded there cargo at the Sun Dock.

The Armco, Buckeye, and Courtney Burton remain in layup at their respective dock sites. There are no vessels in at the Shipyard at this time.

The next scheduled coal boats due into the CSX Docks will be the Philip R. Clarke and Atlantic Erie on Wednesday. The Lee A. Tregurtha on Friday, followed by the Atlantic Superior on Monday. The next scheduled ore boats due into the Torco Ore Docks will be the John B. Aird on Wednesday. the Atlantic Superior on Sunday, followed by the CSL Niagara and Rt. Hon. Paul J. Martin on Monday.

Cliffs Victory inbound Maumee Bay with a load of ore to be unloaded at the C&O Ore Dock.
St. Lawrence Prospector of the Upper Lakes Fleet at the Andersons Layby slip waiting for a berth to load grain at one the elevator complexes. Soon after this view was taken she was rebuilt and now sails as the Canadian Prospector for the Upper Lakes Fleet.

Reported by: Jim Hoffman


Cleveland Traffic

12/03
David Z. Norton across from St. Marys Cement unloading stone on Tuesday.
Forest City, former bum boat in a small cove just north of St. Marys on the Cuyahoga.
Tug Putzfrau on the west Cuyahoga bank just north of St. Marys Cement.
Sancho - Right across from the Putzfrau
Earl W. Oglebay heading for ISG

Reported by: Munroe Copper


Toronto Report

12/03
The saltie Ziemia Tarnowska continued unloading at Redpath Sugar dock Tuesday afternoon. The cement carrier Stephen B. Roman was also in port unloading at the Essroc dock. The saltie Hero, which arrived early Tuesday, was unloading at Pier 52. Hero is the sixth saltie of the season with a cargo other than sugar.

The saltie Sir Walter departed early Monday for Hamilton, with McKeil harbor tug assistance. The usual harbor tug Atomic has been replaced by the tug Lac Como. Atomic went to Hamilton last week for dry docking at Heddle's yard for her 5 year inspection.

Reported by: Art Church


Today in Great Lakes History - December 03

The CANADIAN AMBASSADOR was launched December 3, 1982.

ROBERT W. STEWART (b. AMOCO MICHIGAN) was launched in 1927.

In 1909 the LeGRAND S. DEGRAFF collided with the steamer HARVARD while downbound in the Detroit River in fog.

The IRVING S. OLDS was laid up for the final time on December 3, 1981 at the Hallett Dock #5, Duluth, MN due to market conditions and her inability to compete with the 60,000 ton carrying capacity of the self-unloading thousand foot bulk freighters.

On 3 December 1872, the officers and crew of the schooner E. KANTER arrived home in Detroit, MI. They reported that their vessel was driven ashore near Leland, MI in Lake Michigan on 26 November and was broken up by the waves.1898, PACIFIC (wooden propeller passenger/package freighter, 179'. 918 gt, built in 1883 at Owen Sound, Ontario) caught fire at the Grand Trunk dock at Collingwood, Ontario. She burned to a shell despite a concerted effort to save her. She was later towed out into Georgian Bay and scuttled.

On 3 December 1850, HENRY CLAY (2-mast wooden brig, 87', 163 t, built in 1842 at Huron, Ohio) was driven ashore at Point Nipigon in the Straits of Mackinac. She suffered little damage, but she was high and dry and unsalvageable. Her crew and passengers were picked up by the passing steamer TROY.

Back during the rough days of November on the lakes, the crews of the Imperial Oil Tankers, would wet the tablecloths in the mess rooms, to keep their plates, glasses and silverware from sliding off the tables.

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


This is a small sample, the books 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




U.S. Administration to abandon steel tariffs

12/02
The Bush administration has decided to repeal its 20-month-old tariffs on imported steel to head off foreign retaliation against products from politically crucial states, news services reported Monday.

Federal officials would not say when President Bush will announce the decision but said it is likely to be this week. Bush decided in March 2002 to impose tariffs of 8 percent to 30 percent on most steel imports from Europe, Asia and South America for three years. The tariffs were aimed at discouraging other countries from propping up their steel industries by dumping low-cost or under-cost steel on the U.S. market. The last wave of imports triggered bankruptcies throughout the American steel industry. European countries had vowed to respond to the tariffs, which were ruled illegal by the World Trade Organization, by imposing sanctions on up to $2.2 billion in imports from the United States, beginning as soon as Dec. 15. Japan issued a similar threat Wednesday. The Europeans particularly were targeting imports from states that could make a difference in whether the president wins a second term.

Reported by: Frank Frisk


Mackinaw’s Christmas Ship Sails Again

12/02
The tradition started almost 100 years ago – pine trees, cut fresh from the woods of Northern Michigan, loaded onto the sailing vessel Rouse Simmons and shipped to families in Chicago. Chicagoans became accustomed to purchasing their wreaths and trees this way as a festive start to the holiday season. Tragedy temporarily ended the “Christmas Ship” when in 1912 the Rouse Simmons was lost in a blizzard along with 17 crewmembers and over 5000 trees.

Today, Chicago’s Christmas Ship is active as a charitable event organized by the Unified Marine Community of Chicago in cooperation with the United States Coast Guard Cutter Mackinaw, a 290-foot icebreaker, home ported in Cheboygan, MI. Part of Mackinaw’s Fall routine involves work-up trips in preparation for the icebreaking season. In conjunction with the work-up trip to Chicago, Mackinaw is able to transport trees to be donated to Chicago’s disadvantaged families. The icebreaker arrives in Chicago on December 5th at 8 a.m. where it will be decorated with strings of lights to add to the festive atmosphere of this event.

Additionally, the crew of the Mackinaw will distribute 100 trees throughout the northern Michigan area. The Cheboygan Post of the Michigan State Police, Cheboygan County Sheriff’s Department, City of Cheboygan Department of Public Safety, Salvation Army, and northern Michigan Coast Guard units are working together to distribute these trees to disadvantaged families.

The Coast Guard Cutter Mackinaw has an active role in many charitable events including most recently the Haunted Ship which raised over 2,500 non-perishable food items donated to the Cheboygan Salvation Army Food Bank, and over 150 new children’s books donated to First Book.

The Mackinaw will be open for public tours in Chicago at Navy Pier on December 6th and 7th from 1:30 to 5pm.

Reported by: ENS Nikki Wood


Low Water and Winds Stop Shipping at the Soo

12/02
Strong winds and low water have sent vessels to anchor in the St. Marys River on Monday. Downbound vessels anchored include the Federal Kumano and Spruceglen. At 11:45 the Lower Pool reading was -18 inches with the Rock Cut at -10, having come up from -15 most of the day.

The Upbound Indiana Harbor is anchored in the lower river, along with the upbound BBC Italy. The George A Stinson and Virginaborg are near Detour and not sure if they will anchor or proceed up. Winds have been gusting over 45 mph all day.

Several other vessels are anchored in Whitefish Bay and waiting to cross Lake Superior until winds die down. The Charles M Beeghly and Margaretha Green are moored at Algoma Steel, and the Saginaw is anchored waiting to dock at Algoma Steel. The Presque Isle, who was anchored in Hay Lake, has proceeded downbound slowly as the Rock Cut continues to rise.

Reported by: Scott Best


Maumee Visits Detroit

12/02
The Maumee was downbound at Belle Isle Monday afternoon headed for Detroit Bulk Terminal with a load of stone. She completed unloading around 9 p.m. and was headed for fueling then on to Toledo to load coal.

Pictures by Wade Streeter
Maumee unloading
Close up of the bow.
Close up of the stern.
The Tug Kurt Luedtke rests for the night at the Detroit Bulk Storage Dock in Ecorse.
Great Lakes Towing Tug Maine awaits her next assignment.
One of the oldest tugs on the lakes the Great Lakes Towing tug Wisconsin built in 1896.
The tug Vermont at the Great Lakes Towing Dock.
Downbound above Belle Isle. By Michael koprowicz

Reported by: Michael koprowicz and Wade P. Streeter


Twin Ports Report

12/02
Midwest Energy Terminal now has vessels scheduled through Dec. 20 as the end of the shipping season looms.

The coal terminal currently has 20 more ship-loadings scheduled. Oglebay Norton was at the dock Monday morning, with Canadian Olympic anchored on the lake waiting for the dock. Paul R. Tregurtha and Canadian Provider are scheduled to load today.

Herbert C. Jackson, which isn't a frequent visitor to the Twin Ports, is set to make three late-season calls for coal. It's scheduled to load Dec. 15, 18 and 20 to shuttle coal to the Shiras generating station at Marquette.

Elsewhere in the Twin Ports on Monday, two Great Lakes Towing tugs helped the saltie Orsula into the Cenex Harvest States No. 1 berth about 7:30 a.m. Nearby, the Joseph H. Frantz was at the General Mills elevator in Superior waiting to finish its load and depart. Edwin H. Gott was due at the BNSF ore dock in Superior and Cason J. Callaway was expected to arrive late for the Reiss Inland dock.

No vessels are currently scheduled for the DMIR ore dock in Duluth but the Two Harbors dock is busy this week. Roger Blough is due there today; St. Clair, Cason J. Callaway and George A. Stinson on Wednesday; Joe Block and Columbia Star on Thursday; and Edgar B. Speer on Friday.

Changes in the steel industry continue to send Great Lakes Fleet vessels to unusual ports. As mentioned above, the Gott was scheduled to load again at BNSF in Superior. Presque Isle is due at Detroit's Zug Island today and then is scheduled to load at BNSF on Friday.

GLF boats also are making a number of trips to Meldrum Bay. The latest is John G. Munson, which loaded there and is en route to Fairport, Ohio.

Reported by: Al Miller


Marquette Update

12/02
Strong winds and snow squalls that brought occasional white-outs made for a full harbor in Marquette on Monday. The H. Lee White and American Mariner remained tied up in Marquette after loading. The Mariner tied up in the harbor, and the White remained tied at the dock because of the strong winds and snow squalls out on the lake.

The Middletown came into the harbor and tied up, also waiting out the weather. She was not taking on a load. The Michipicoten came in and loaded.

American Mariner tied out in the harbor loaded and waiting on the weather.
The H. Lee White loaded and remaining at the dock.
Michipicoten at the dock.
Wide view of the Michipicoten loading.
The Middletown came in to the harbor to tie up...now you see her.
Now you don't
View of the Middletown with the American Mariner visible in the distance

Reported by: Lee Rowe


Low water levels crimp ship canal

12/02
A combination of silt and low water levels is causing problems for ships using the Sturgeon Bay and Lake Michigan Ship Canal, but the Corps of Engineers says it has no immediate plans to dredge the waterway.

The canal cuts through the Door County peninsula, providing a shortcut that saves ships 100 miles on trips to the ports of Green Bay, Sturgeon Bay and Marinette.

But the canal constantly fills with silt and generally requires dredging every 10 to 15 years. It was last dredged in 1994. Recent low lake levels may have speeded up the silting process, resulting in depths of only about 17 feet at the canal's entrance.

Local officials say dredging is needed soon or the shallow water could create financial burdens for ships trying to enter the waters of Green Bay.

“Some of our customers are uncomfortable with the water depth and therefore will sail around Door County to get into Green Bay,” Pat O’Hern, vice president in charge at Bay Shipbuilding Co. in Sturgeon Bay, told the Green Bay Press-Gazette. “That’s a lot of time, fuel and money, up to six or eight hours more under way.”

O’Hern said the canal is especially vital after Green Bay freezes because the channel provides a direct link to open waters of Lake Michigan. Most of Bay Shipbuilding’s traffic comes just as the bay is freezing over.

Sturgeon Bay Mayor Colleen Crocker-MacMillin, the U.S. Coast Guard and Bay Shipbuilding have requested the Army Corps dredge the canal. U.S. Rep. Mark Green forwarded their requests.

Green received a reply in October from the Corps office in Detroit that said the need for dredging throughout the Great Lakes is “exceptional” due to low water.

“At this time, we have no plans to dredge at the Sturgeon Bay and Lake Michigan Ship Canal.”

A spokesman in Green’s office said this week the congressman’s staff is researching the issue and trying to determine the Corps’ responsibility on the shoaling.

Reported by: Chad Daley


St. Lawrence River Traffic at Verchères

12/02
Downbound Frontenac meets two Fednav ships, Federal Welland & Federal Agno, off Varennes, Nov.24.
Federal Welland upbound off Varennes to Montreal berth 46 with a load of sugar, Nov.24.
Federal Agno upbound off Varennes to the Seaway, Nov.24.
Cast Prominence, the former Canmar Courage, on her second trip as such, upbound off Verchères to Montréal. Nov.25.
Cast Prominence, broadside view, Nov.25.
Upboud traffic off Verchères, Canadian Ranger, Bluewing & Peonia in the distance, Nov.25.
Canadian Ranger on her first commercial trip in 2 years, upbound off Verchères to Toronto with a load of salt, Nov.25.
BluewinG upbound off Verchères, Nov.25.
Bluewing, stern view, passing Canadian Ranger off the Verchères dock on a blustery day, Nov.25.
Old-timer Techno-Venture towing barge Jean Raymond off Verchères, Nov.27.
Nice early afternoon lighting conditions on OOCL Bergium downbound off Verchères from Montréal, Nov.27.
Nirint Trader upbound off Varennes to Montréal, berth B-7, with a load of boxes and vehicles, Dec.1.
Nirint Trader stern view off the Verchères dock in 35-knot wind conditions, Dec.1.

Reported by: Marc Piché


Workboat Report

12/02
We are at a definite end of an era for older single screw tugboats, as they are now being scrapped or sunk as artificial reefs in great numbers. Newer twin screw and tractor models are replacing these traditional old style tugs.

McAllister is scrapping the Gregg McAllister, William H. McAllister, and Capt. Bill. Their tug Wilmington will be sunk on a reef. The Gregg was known on the Lakes as the S.M Dean which towed the coal barges Constitution and Maida.

Moran has sold for reefing their tugs Georgia Moran, Kings Point, and Vincent Turecamo. About a dozen more of these classic tugs, from various companies, will be scrapped or sunk in the next six months.

The four ATF's owned by the Escanaba & Lake Superior Railway are being scrapped. They were purchased years ago, reportedly for use on Lake Michigan. Two are on the West Coast and the other two, the Papago and the Paiute, are being scrapped in Chesapeake, VA.

The Navy and Marad are also in scrap mode, as they Philly Naval yard has both graving docks in use, with two ships in each dock, all being dismantled. Only four WW-II era vessels remain, the cruiser Des Moines and three YO (Yard Oiler) tankers, similar to what the sandsucker J.S. St. John was built off.

Down in the Chesapeake, a local recycler is busy dismantling ships out of the James River reserve fleet. The last of the C-4's, the Marine Fiddler, is currently being stripped for scrapping and the Victory ship, Catawba Victory, has just been towed in awaiting her turn.

The canal tug Chaplain, which has been seen visiting the Lakes in recent years at such ports as Monroe, MI and Rochester, NY, has sunk somewhere in the Northeast and is a total loss.

Philadelphia fire tug Bernard Samuel.
Mothballed carrier America at the Philly Naval yard.
Old WW-II Navy YTB's in lay-up.
William H. McAllister under the torch.
USCG Spar awaiting her fate.
Canaller Tenacious.
Canaller Athena at night with a crane barge.
Pushing a Caustic barge.
Sunset as we near Baltimore.
Tugs Big Daddy and Purple Hays.
Their fleet mate Grape Ape.
Clearwater's big twin screw Courageous.
Delaware County power plant under restoration, next to Hay's Shipyard.
USS Des Moines, once a possible museum ship on the Lakes, is nearing the end of her days in lay-up, as the neighboring vessels are all being cut up.
The R.E. Derecktor, formerly the Laker Elmglen, in use as a dry-dock in Chesapeake, VA.
The classic Georgia Moran awaiting sinking as a reef.
Gregg McAllister, formerly the Lakes tug S.M. Dean, being scrapped in Norfolk.
The once-proud Captain's chair of the Gregg.
Holly's Chicago tugs Holly Ann and Margaret Ann at 92nd Street on the Calumet.
Railroad tug James McAllister outbound on the Delaware.
Formerly the YTB 770, Jeffrey McAllister passes the laid-up carrier Inchon in the Philly back basin.
Last of the C-4's, the Marine Fiddler is being stripped for scrapping in Chesapeake, VA.
Huge tug Norfolk, formerly the McKeil tug Vortice, sits in Chesapeake.
One of two ATF's owned by the Michigan-based firm, Lake Superior & Escanaba Railway, now being scrapped. Here we see the Paiute.
Classic tug Resolute on her way to get a line on the port side of a ship she will dock.
Dredge Richmond working the Schuylkill River.

Reported by: Franz VonRiedel


Onboard the Algoport

12/02
On the wall upbound approaching St Lambert Lock
Looking up the wall
Entering the lock as watchman Melton Keeping looks on
Secured in the lock
Looking forward
Mooring winches
Containership Nedlloyd Aukland in Montreal
Another view
Algosound with her markings painted out awaits disposal
Another view

Reported by: Ken Hamilton


Port Everglades, Florida Traffic

12/02
As the hurricane season comes to a close, the passenger ships return to the Caribbean and south Florida. Over twenty large cruise ships were in Port Everglades over the five day Thanksgiving weekend.

The Cat which spends its summers running between Maine and Nova Scotia in now operating between Port Everglades and Freeport Bahamas.
The high speed Olympia Voyager inbound Port Everglades.
Discovery Sun outbound for Freeport on its daily run with several Billion Dollars of ships in the background.
Tanker Seabulk Trader with the pilot boat off Port Everglades.
Century outbound Port Everglades in the sunset.
The 1953 built Regal Empress outbound for her two night trip to Nassau Bahamas.
Enchantment of the Seas outbound for sea showing off her new rock climbing wall aft of the stack.
Zuiderdam outbound for sea in the late evening.
Golden Princess ablaze with lights headed for sea.
The true paddle powered Pilgrim Belle sails from Veterans Park in Delray Beach.

Reported by: Bill Hoey


Marine Mart this Saturday

12/02
Great Lakes Maritime Institute (Dossin Museum) Marine Mart, December 6 at a new location - the Casino on Belle Isle. New location is much larger and all dealers will be on the same floor. 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. The Casino is not a gambling establishment but used a meeting point for individuals and groups. It is located in full view of the shipping channel near the entrance of the island just east of the Scott Fountain. The Marine Mart features dealers selling books, photographs, postcards, artwork and artifacts. Call 313.852.4051 for more information.




Edward G. Fike

12/02
Services for Edward G. Fike, a tugboat deckhand who along with his crew mates received a Coast Guard commendation for rescuing six boatmen in 1991, was held Monday morning near Cleveland.

The 66-year-old Parma resident died of complications from lung cancer Wednesday at the Cleveland Clinic Hospital.

Fike was a deckhand on the Great Lakes Towing Co.'s 90-foot tug, Wisconsin, when the Coast Guard asked his crew for assistance in the Dec. 14, 1991, rescue.

One tugboat had capsized under Lake Erie's choppy waters off Rocky River. Another tug and a crane barge were adrift.

Because the Coast Guard's 41-foot search- and-rescue vessel wasn't rated for waves over 8 feet, the Wisconsin and its crew were enlisted to brave the 10- to 12-foot waves, 30-degree temperatures and wind gusts of 50 mph to tow the hapless vessels to safety behind the Cleveland Harbor breakwater.

Fike, a Cleveland native, began working on tugboats at age 17. He worked for Great Lakes Towing Co. for 40 years before retiring in 1998. During the winter months, Fike worked for Pipefitters Local 120.

He served as a union steward and pension plan trustee for Seafarers International Union and a Democratic ward leader in Parma. He also belonged to St. Francis De Sales Catholic Church in Parma, Elks Lodge 1938 and Eagles Aerie 4204.

In the late 1960s and early 1970s, Fike played Santa Claus at Holy Family Cancer Home and Parmadale Children's Home.

His wife of 40 years, Cecilia, died three years ago.

Fike is survived by his daughters, Ann Russo of Strongsville and Denise Albertino of Parma; son, Edward of Los Altos Hills, Calif.; five grandchildren; a sister; and a brother.

Reported by: Cleveland Plain Dealer


Today in Great Lakes History - December 02

OTTERCLIFFE HALL was launched December 2, 1968 .

The GEORGE R. FINK (2) (b - ERNEST T. WEIR 1). under tow passed Gibraltar on December 2, 1973 and arrived at Gandia, Spain prior to December 7, 1973 for scrapping.

GOVERNOR MILLER was launched in1937.

The NIPIGON BAY last ran in 1982 and was laid up at Montreal on December 2nd.

Twenty-five years ago today, the brand new carferry Wolfe Islander III sailed into Kingston from Thunder Bay Ontario. The new 55 car ferry would replace the older ferries Wolfe Islander and Upper Canada.

On 2 December 1874, the steam barge GERMANIA was launched at King's yard in Marine City, MI. The Port Huron Times of 4 December 1874 reported that she "is probably the cheapest boat ever built in Marine City, wages and material, iron, etc. being very low." This was due to the nation just recovering from the "Panic of 1873". The vessel's dimensions were 144' overall x 56'2" x 11'9.

On 2 December 1832, the wooden schooner CAROLINE was carrying dry goods worth more than $30,000 from Oswego to Ogdensburg, NY in a violent storm. She capsized and sank off Ducks Island on Lake Ontario with the loss of one life. Five survived in the yawl and made it to the island in 6 hours. After much suffering from the cold and snow, they were rescued by the schooner HURON.

Duluth - December 2, 1950 - In the early part of this week there were as many as 41 Great Lakes vessels lined up in the Duluth-Superior harbor awaiting their turn to take on their cargoes of iron ore. Freezing temperatures prevailed at the Head of the Lakes and ore steaming operations permitted loading only of about ten boats per day.

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


This is a small sample, the books 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




Busy Day in Saginaw

12/01
The Saginaw River saw its busiest day in several weeks on Sunday, with a steady parade of commercial vessels entering and departing the waterway. The Buffalo was the first arrival, entering the river at about 8 a.m. with a load for the Bay Aggregates dock near Bay City. About an hour behind the Buffalo was the Invincible-McKee Sons, which went up the river to deliver coal to the Saginaw Asphalt-International Materials dock in Carrollton Township.

The Agawa Canyon was inbound about 1:30 p.m. as the Buffalo was departing. The Buffalo waited at the Consumers Energy dock at the mouth of the river for the inbound vessel to pass. The Agawa Canyon had departed Meldrum Bay, Ontario, at the north end of Lake Huron, about 12 hours earlier with a load for the Burroughs dock near the I-75 Bridge.

Invincible-McKee Sons departed its dock about 4:15 p.m. to turn and start outbound while Canyon arrived at its destination. At the same time, the fourth vessel of the day, Joyce L. VanEnkevort-Great Lakes Trader, was entering the river on its way to the Sargent dock in Essexville. The Great Lakes Trader - Joyce L. VanEnkevort lightered at the Sargent Dock in Essexville before departing and heading upriver to finish at the Sargent Dock in Zilwaukee. The Joyce L. will also be detaching from the Trader and going to re-fuel. The Algoway was also inbound at the Pump-out Island at 11:15 p.m. heading to lighter at Burrough's then finish at the GM Dock.

Reported by: Stephen Hause, Lon Morgan and Todd Shorkey


POCHARD at the Soo

12/01
Sunday afternoon the salt water ship POCHARD was upbound at the Soo. Other traffic included the ALGOVILLE, CHARLES M BEEGHLY and PAUL TREGURTHA. Down bound were DOBRUSH, WALTER J MCCARTHEY JR, and ALGOCEN.

POCHARD.

Reported by: B Barnes


Cleveland Update

12/01
Great Lakes Towing yard showing all the tugs at rest with the Laurentine in the GLDD yards.
Kingfisher Barge on Cuyahoga east bank at winter layover.
OBO Vacuum Cleaner Barge preparing for winter layover - west Cuyahoga bank.
Calumet at Halite/Cargill Salt mine taking on salt
Another view
Another view
Freighter Isolda resting at Cleve. Port Authority

Reported by: Munroe Copper


Toronto Report

12/01
The saltie Sir Walter arrived Saturday night and went to the west face of Terminal 51, facing north. This is only the fifth saltie to arrive this season not carrying sugar.

The Algoisle is now out past the knuckle at Pier 52, while Algobay has been moved from the Turning Basin by Toronto Drydock, to the old Texaco dock just inside the Cherry Street Bridge where Algoisle was. The reason for the move is construction of the new Hydro One facility at the dock Algobay departed.

Algobay is slated to be used as a "tanker" in an upcoming film scheduled to begin shooting in December.

The Canadian Ranger is out along the end of the Redpath plant, while Ziemia Tarnowska is unloading sugar in the slip.

Pictures by Neil Walsh
Algobay at her new berth
Close-up
Canadian Mariner with sugar load
Canadian Ranger and Ziemia Tarnowska in the background
Bow view
Ziema Tarnowska profile
Algoisles new berth

Pictures by Peter Walden
Canadian Mariner loaded with sugar for off loading later
The Algoisle, stern view, in the Cherry Beach turning basin channel
Tugs Lac Como and Glenevis waiting orders
Clamshell dredge working in the Keating Channel near the Don River
Saltie IRMA unloading at Redpath Sugar
Harbour Commission tugs William Rest and Fred Scandretti at the Queen Elizabeth dock
Longer view of the Algoisle
Fireboat William Lyon MacKenzie under Cherry Street bascule bridge

Reported by: Art Church


Today in Great Lakes History - December 01

On December 1, 1974 the Canadian motor vessel JENNIFER foundered on Lake Michigan in a storm. Her steel cargo apparently shifted and she foundered 24 miles southwest of Charlevoix, MI. The JENNIFER went to the bottom in water too deep for any salvage attempt.

The FRED G. HARTWELL, the last boat built for Franklin S.S., was delivered to her owners on December 1, 1922 but her maiden voyage didn't occur until early 1923 because of unfavorable weather conditions.

The SASKATOON’s ownership was transferred to the Canada Steamship Lines Ltd., Montreal on December 1, 1913 when the company was formed and all six vessels of the Merchants Mutual Line were absorbed by CSL in 1914.

The HUDSON TRANSPORT was put up for sale by Marine Salvage in December 1982.

On December 1, 1934, the United States Coast Guard cutter ESCANABA was involved in the rescue of the crew of the whaleback HENRY CORT off the piers at Muskegon, Michigan.

On 1 December 1875, BRIDGEWATER (3-mast wooden schooner, 706 t, built in 1866 at Buffalo as a bark) grounded on Waugoschanee Point in the Straits of Mackinac. She was released fairly quickly and then was towed to Buffalo, NY for repairs. In Buffalo, she was gutted by fire. In 1880-82, the propeller KEYSTONE was built on her hull.

In 1909 the Marquette & Bessemer No. 2 (1st) sank on Lake Erie, 31 lives were lost.

December 1, 1985 - The SPARTAN broke loose from her moorings at Ludington in a storm and ended up near Buttersville Island. She was pulled off on December 5 by the Canonie tugs SOUTH HAVEN and MUSKEGON with the help of the CITY OF MIDLAND 41. It took about 10 hours.

On 1 December 1875, the Port Huron Times reported: "The schooner MARY E. PEREW went ashore in the Straits of Mackinac and by the brave efforts of the people on shore, her crew was rescued from perishing in the cold. Her decks were completely covered with ice and the seas were breaking over her. The vessel has a large hole in her bottom made by a rock that came through her. She will prove a total loss." On 7 December 1875, that newspaper reported that MARY E. PEREW had been raised by a wrecker and would be repaired.

On 1 December 1882, DAVID M. FOSTER (wooden 3-mast schooner, 121', 251 t, built in 1863 at Port Burwell, ON as a bark) was carrying lumber from Toronto to Oswego, New York in a storm. She was picked up by a harbor tug outside of Oswego for a tow into the harbor, but the tow line broke. The FOSTER went bows-on into the breakwater. She was holed and sank. No lives were lost. Her loss was valued at $3,300.
Image of the Foster Photo used with permission of Historical Collections of the Great Lakes/BGSU

On 01 Dec 1934, the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter ESCANABA (WPG-64) (165', 718 gt, built in 1932 at W. Bay City, MI) was involved in the rescue of the crew of the whaleback HENRY CORT off the piers at Muskegon, Michigan; also that winter, she delivered food to the residents of Beaver Island, who were isolated due to the bad weather.
Image of the Escanaba Photo used with permission of Historical Collections of the Great Lakes/BGSU

The SULLIVAN BROTHERS (steel straight-deck bulk freighter, 430', 4897 gt, built in 1901 at Chicago, IL as FREDERICK B. WELLS) grounded at Vidal Shoal on Tuesday evening, 01 Dec 1953. She was loaded with grain and rested on solid rock. She was recovered.
Image of the Frederick B. Wells Photo used with permission of Historical Collections of the Great Lakes/BGSU

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


This is a small sample, the books 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




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