Great Lakes & Seaway Shipping News Archive

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State OKs Coke Plant in Toledo

9/21 - U.S. Coking Group got authorization yesterday to build the latest version of its proposed FDS Coke Plant along Lake Erie's Maumee Bay. The permit was issued by the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency, which also announced that it will take comments on plans to fill 0.69 acres of a wetland for the coke project.  Comments on the wetland project will be accepted by the Ohio EPA at a public hearing at 7 p.m. Oct. 4 at Oregon City Hall, 5330 Seaman Rd. The agency also will take them in writing through Oct. 11.

The site has no trees and is at Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority Facility 2 in Toledo, near the CSX Coal Docks. U.S. Coking Group, a consortium of unidentified investors, is being represented by Francis X. Lyons, a former Midwest regional administrator for the U.S. EPA who yesterday said the group was pleased by the Ohio EPA's new permit. He described it as a modification of an existing permit issued in June, 2004. That's a big distinction, one that the Ohio Attorney General's Office reviewed for days before yesterday's announcement.

If changes are deemed substantial enough to start the permitting process anew, U.S. Coking Group could be subject to more costly federal EPA regulations for smog-forming ozone that could make the project unfeasible. Those regulations took effect days after the project was submitted in 2004. With overtime help from the Ohio EPA and the city of Toledo, the applicant beat the deadline. Mr. Lyons said financing and insurance issues still need to be worked out. But he said the coke plant should cost between $450 million and $500 million. Construction likely would begin in the fall or spring and take two years, he said. "The company is pleased this significant milestone has been achieved. We look forward to proceeding with the project," Mr. Lyons said.

The project's chief opponent is the Sierra Club, which maintains that Ohio EPA Director Joe Koncelik lacks the legal authority to issue a new permit while the 2004 document remains on appeal. Both U.S. Coking Group and the Sierra Club appealed it for different reasons. While the Ohio EPA said that its recent negotiations were intended to resolve U.S. Coking Group's appeal, Sierra Club attorney Dennis Muchnicki claimed the agency "capitulated to the demands of FDS again." Agency spokesman Dina Pierce disagreed but was unable to cite a specific example in which the Ohio EPA went against U.S. Coking's wishes. U.S. Coking appealed on the grounds that the 2004 permit issued by former Ohio EPA Director Chris Jones was unfair for imposing an unprecedented 36-pound annual cap on mercury emissions.

The agency, under Mr. Koncelik, has agreed to be flexible on the mercury issue, while figuring on 51 pounds a year as a goal - not a requirement. The agency will allow up to 48 days of uncontrolled venting for maintenance.

From the Toledo Blade


Joseph H. Thompson Reported Aground

9/21 - Update - Joseph H. Thompson departed Duluth around 9:30 a.m., Wednesday morning. She was able to free herself Tuesday evening, and presumably able to discharge the rest of her cargo of salt before departing.
Reported by Ken Newhams

9/21 - Update - The tug had disengaged from the barge and was seen pushing one other side of the barge trying to get the barge loose. The barge is lightering some of its cargo onto the closest piece of land.

9/20 - 4 p.m. Update - Joseph H. Thompson Jr. arrived in port early Tuesday to unload salt at the Cutler-Magner dock. The tug-barge combo was angled into the slip in an unusual angle at midday, and it wasn’t clear weather it was stuck or unloading in a different location.
Reported by Al Miller

9/20 - 2 p.m. - The Joseph H. Thompson is currently aground just inside the Duluth Harbor entry, right next to the Bayfront Festival Park. The Thompson arrived in Duluth this morning around 8 a.m. to unload salt.
Reported by  Brandon Kohlts


Today in Great Lakes History - September 21

On 21 September 1892, the whaleback steamer JAMES B COLGATE (steel propeller whaleback freighter, 308 foot, 1713 gross tons) was launched by the American Steel Barge Co. (Hull #121) at W. Superior, Wisconsin. She only lasted until 1916, when she foundered in the "Black Friday Storm" on Lake Erie with the loss of 26 lives.

ALGOWAY left Collingwood on her maiden voyage in 1972, and loaded salt for Michipicoten, Ontario on Lake Superior.

On 21 September 1844, JOHN JACOB ASTOR (wooden brig, 78 foot, 112 tons, Built in 1835, at Pointe aux Pins, Ontario but precut at Lorain, Ohio) was carrying furs and trade goods when she struck a reef and foundered near Copper Harbor, Michigan. She was owned by Astor’s American Fur Company. She was reportedly by the first commercial vessel on Lake Superior.

On 21 September 1855, ASIA (2-mast wooden schooner, 108 foot, 204 tons, built in 1848, at Black River, Ohio) was carrying corn from Chicago for Buffalo when she collided with the propeller FOREST CITY off the mouth of Grand Traverse Bay. ASIA went down in deep water in about 10 minutes, but her crew just had enough time to escape in her boat. The schooner HAMLET picked them up.

Data from: Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Ahoy & Farewell II, Historical Collections of the Great Lakes, B.G.S.U. and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series. This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history


Buffalo Waterfront Renovations Progressing

9/20 - Reports in the local news media indicate that the Seneca Nation of Indians has narrowed their list of downtown Buffalo casino sites, and the Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority's Metro Rail terminal at the foot of Main St. may be the favorite.

The building's history dates back to 1917 when it was built as a multimode passenger station with rail, water, and trolley connections. Interestingly, trains entered the facility via an elevated right of way that led to the upper level concourse. Many of the large lake steamers once called at its docks along the Buffalo River.

The South American was the last passenger boat to use the facilities there, ending service in 1969. The railroad shut down operations soon after and the main station complex quickly fell into disrepair. The building was purchased by the NFTA from the City of Buffalo in 1979 with the coming of the MetroRail system to downtown. The passenger portion of the terminal was demolished in 1980 but the train sheds were retained for use as the Metro Rail shop facilities.

The upper level train concourse remains empty and is considered a prime downtown redevelopment site. A recent renovation of the building's exterior and surrounding property has been completed offering the public a great view of the ships passing along the Buffalo River.

Construction is finally underway at the Erie Canal Harbor along the Buffalo River. Contractors recently began work after a series of delays and postponements lasting nearly seven years. The first phase involves moving the old Hamburg sewer drain, a nearly 300 foot long concrete culvert placed along the bottom of the old Commercial Slip.

The slip walls are being rebuilt with steel sheet pile and will be covered by the original stone blocks dating from the time of the Erie Canal. Archeological firms are also busy at the site digging for artifacts long since buried by years of backfilling. Stone tools have been found that may have been left behind by the original Native American tribes that used the Buffalo River area as a hunting ground 1,000 years ago.

The original street level from the Erie Canal period is roughly 4 to 5 feet below current road grade and will be restored to it's 1800's appearance as work progresses. The Commercial Slip will be returned to navigation while the Central Wharf District is restored with shops and restaurants. A maritime history center is also part of the plan including a Great Lakes Museum tied to the new Bass Pro Shops inside the old Buffalo Memorial Auditorium.

Reported by  Brian Wroblewski


William G. Mather Getting a New Home

9/20 - The popular Cleveland landmark museum ship William G. Mather, the former flagship of the Cleveland-Cliffs fleet, will be moved on Saturday, September 24 to a new home about 825 feet from its present Ninth Street Pier home to Pier 32 at the Port of Cleveland. The Tugs are ordered for 10 a.m. The Move should only take about an Hour.

Museum Director Holly Holcombe explains "the move has been contemplated for a number of years, and Pier 32 was the original location considered when the Mather became a museum in 1987." "However, operations at the Port used the space until recently."

When the Great Lakes Science Center opened in 1996 it was thought that a number of synergies could be realized between the science center and the Mather. The City of Cleveland, the science center and the museum staff, began in 2001 to develop a marketing study and strategic plan for the Cleveland waterfront. The conclusion was that all entities would benefit from the re-location of the Mather.

The new dock space is located less than 300 feet directly north of the science center and Cleveland Brown's stadium, and will have available garage and open lot parking. It is envisioned that programs can be co-sponsored to the benefit of both attractions. The first such event will be a Tall Ship Challenge named "Cleveland-Huntington Harbor Fest 2006". Other possibilities include sharing of volunteer staff and gift shops.

The Mather was built in 1925 at Great Lakes Engineering in River Rouge and retired in 1980. Often referred to as "The ship that built Cleveland", the Mather was donated to the Great Lakes Historical Society in 1987 by the Cleveland-Cliffs Iron Company.

The move on Saturday will be a spectator event with no riders allowed on the boat, except authorized deckhands to operated the winches. The Ninth Street Pier will be an excellent location to view the move and spectators may want to bring their own lawn chairs. The museum ship will be closed to the public for the rest of the season until the normal Spring opening date.


Munising Tour Boat Suffers Fire

9/20 - Passengers expecting a slow cruise to view the breathtaking sights of the Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore got a lot more excitement than usual Sunday. The 76 passengers and three crew members aboard the Miner's Castle were evacuated from the ship after an engine caught fire at about 4:20 p.m. and the vessel became disabled about six miles from its base in Munising, according to the ship's captain, Chuck Cook.

The 68-foot ship, owned by Pictured Rocks Cruises Inc., was towed back to the Munising City Dock by its sister ship, the Miss Superior, arriving about 1 1/2 hours after the incident took place, Miss Superior Capt. Dave Karbon said. Ironically, the Miner's Castle became disabled while viewing its namesake, one of the highlights of the national lakeshore that can only be appreciated from the lake, Cook said.

"We were about three-quarters of a mile southwest of Miner's Castle when we lost electrical power," Cook said. "Fortunately, there were only light northwest winds and the waves were less than a foot." However, life rafts that inflate to about 25 feet by 25 feet were inflated and placed in the water next to the ship, which is 68 feet long, 17 feet wide, weighs 82 tons and can carry 150 passengers, Cook said. While nobody had to be placed into the rafts, the precaution was taken because the ship cut its power to prevent any further spread of fire and was at the mercy of the waves, according to Karbon.

The Miss Superior, which like the other four tour boats in the company's fleet has a maximum speed of 14 mph, reached the Miner's Castle 20 to 25 minutes after the distress call, docking alongside and transferring the passengers in about five minutes, according to Karbon. Much smaller, private boats headed out to the scene in advance of the Miss Superior, and Coast Guard personnel from the Marquette station also arrived on the scene in case of complications, Karbon said.

Miss Superior not only boarded the 76 passengers, but towed the Miner's Castle back to the Munising dock, taking about an hour and a half and reaching port nearly five hours after the cruise originally began at 1 p.m. Cook said he didn't know the extent of damage to the Miner's Castle, but that Coast Guard personnel from the Sault Ste. Marie station were expected to arrive in Munising today to investigate.

Also assisting with the rescue were the Munising Fire Department and Alger County Sheriff's Department

Reported by Lee Rowe from the Marquette Mining Journal


Lampton Power Plant Update

9/20 - Chamber of Commerce Board Chair Sheryl Bovay and President Gary McDonald, were part of a community delegation/partnership that visited Energy Minister Dwight Duncan, August 18, 2005. Local political leaders, the Economic Partnership and the Chamber embraced the premise that: “Lambton Generating Station is the flagship environmentally of power plants that will keep Ontario’s Power Grid working until the transition to other power sources can be made, thus permitting Ontario to achieve its clean air targets sooner and keep Ontario’s economic engine running smoothly.

Its planned closure in 2007 creates significant economic hardships and power reliability concerns for our region and the province.”

The Minister offered to come to Sarnia Lambton in October to continue a dialogue with local leaders and the community on his government’s energy plan and coal reduction strategy and the impact of these on our community. There was optimism expressed by the Minister in the ability of this area to take advantage of our unique access to natural gas and gas storage and hydrogen in the area. He believes that more investment in Ontario will be taking place utilizing these products, and he felt Sarnia Lambton was well positioned to take advantage of this.

There was no movement in the government’s plan to close Lambton Generating Station by 2007

Reported by Lampton Chamber of Commerce


Port Reports - September 20

Marquette - Lee Rowe
The American Mariner loaded ore at Marquette on a balmy Sunday late afternoon. The Lee A. Tregurtha came in on the south side of the dock to pick up a deckhand/passengers, then backed out to anchor in the harbor as that side of the dock was loaded for the Michipicoten which arrived later.

The Lee A. finally made her way back to the dock on the north side on a very rainy Monday morning and loaded that afternoon. She left almost a full day after first arriving in the harbor. The Charles M. Beeghly is expected on Tuesday

Alpena - Ben & Chanda McClain
Three vessels called at Lafarge on Saturday. The J.A.W Iglehart was in port loading in the early morning hours, followed by the G.L. Ostrander/barge Integrity in the afternoon.

The American Republic arrived around 4:30pm, backing into Lafarge and tying up at the coal dock to unload a cargo of coal. The Republic went on to load at Stoneport on Sunday.

Paul H. Townsend was under the silos on Sunday morning, taking on cement for Muskegon. The Townsend was outbound in the bay before 1pm.

The Alpena made stops at Milwaukee and Waukegan over the weekend and is expected to return Tuesday morning.

Pride of Michigan, Sturgeon, and Denis Sullivan were tied up in the Thunder Bay River over the weekend.

Saginaw River - Todd Shorkey
Numerous vessels have plied the waters of the Saginaw River the past few days.  Friday saw the John J. Boland unload at the Bay Aggregates dock.  This is the first visit of the year by the Boland.  The tug Gregory J. Busch was inbound for her home dock and the CSL Tadoussac was inbound for the Essroc dock in Essexville.

On Saturday there were visits by the Sam Laud, unloading at the Bay Aggregates dock in Bay City and by the tug G.L. Ostrander and barge Integrity who unloaded at the LaFarge dock in Carrollton.

Monday saw the tug Rebecca Lynn and her barge call on the Bit-Mat dock in Bay City to unload.

Buffalo - Brian Wroblewski
J.A.W. Iglehart unloading by the Ohio St. Lift Bridge on Monday. She arrived around 12:45 p.m. and departed at 8 p.m.

The tug Karen Andrie and barge A397 were at Noco Monday evening.

Duluth/Superior - Al Miller
The grain trade continues to improve. Tuesday morning five loading berths were occupied: Ziemia Gomoslaska was at Peavey in Superior, Utviken and Federal Margaree were at CHS in Superior, Isolda was at AGP in Duluth and CSL Laurentien was at Cargill B1, completing its load and leaving at midday. Anchored out were Federal Fuji and Ivi.


Photo Gallery Updates - September 20

News Photo Gallery updated

Public Photo Gallery updated


Today in Great Lakes History - September 20

John Jonathon Boland was born on 20 September 1875, in New York.  Along with Adam E. Cornelius, he formed the partnership of Boland and Cornelius in 1903, and was one of the founders of the American Steamship Company in 1907.  He died in 1956.

On September 20, 1986, vandals started a $5,000. fire aboard the laid up NIPIGON BAY at Kingston, Ontario where she had been since April, 1984.  

GEORGE A STINSON's self-unloading boom was replaced on September 20 1983. The boom had collapsed onto her deck due to a mechanical failure on the night of April 19, 1983, at Detroit, Michigan. No injuries were reported. She continued hauling cargoes without a boom until replacement.  

On September 20, 1980, the EDGAR B SPEER entered service for the U.S. Steel Fleet.  

The CHARLES E WILSON sailed light on her maiden voyage from Sturgeon Bay September 20, 1973, bound for Escanaba, Michigan to load ore.  She was renamed b.) JOHN J BOLAND in 2000. 

The CHARLES M WHITE was christened at Baltimore, Maryland on September 20, 1951.  

On 20 September 1873, W L PECK (2 mast wooden schooner-barge, 154 foot, 361 gross tons) was launched at Carrollton, Michigan.  

On 20 September 1856, COLONEL CAMP (3-mast wooden bark, 137 foot, 350 tons, built in 1854, at Three Mile Bay, New York) was carrying wheat to Oswego, New York when she collided with the wooden steamer PLYMOUTH and sank in just a few minutes. No lives were lost.  

Data from: Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series. This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history



McCarthy and Blough make contact in lower St. Marys River

9/19 - The Walter J. McCarthy Jr. and Roger Blough came in contact with each other early Sunday morning near DeTour village, Michigan on the St. Marys River which ships transit on their way to or from the Soo Locks in Sault Ste. Marie, MI.

The Walter J. McCarthy Jr. was heading up bound coming from Lake Huron and the Roger Blough was up bound from Lake Michigan. Conditions in the area at the time of contact were foggy.

The United States Coast Guard directed both vessels to go to anchor in the Hay Lake anchorage to under go inspections. After inspections were complete, both the vessels proceeded up bound for the locks with the Walter J. McCarthy Jr. locking up first around 3:30 p.m. and the Roger Blough locking up around 5 p.m. Both vessels checked out of the river system later Sunday night.

The Walter J. McCarthy Jr. had some visible scrape marks on her paint and the Roger Blough had about a 60 foot crease in the hull above the waterline. Neither vessel took on any water from the incident.

Reported by: Scott Best and Jason Leino


Dislodged Gate Partially Sidelines Poe Lock

9/19 - A dislodged de-watering gate partially sidelined the Poe Lock for about 12 hours on Friday before the lower-end gate was coaxed back into position at the side of the approach canal, the Corps of Engineers reported. The de-watering gate moved partially off the wall about 11 a.m. Friday morning and rock and other material lodged under the gate from the turbulence caused by passing ships. The gate malfunction forced temporary closure of the Poe Lock to the largest of ships for a 12-hour period Friday.

Accumulated rock and bottom material gathered around the gate prevented a speedy return to the de-watering gate's normal position. Before the gate could be moved back into its recess, a Corps tug and crane barge crew removed some 70 tons of material from around the gate, including some chunks of sandstone weighing as much as 200 pounds.

By 11 p.m. Friday, the gate was finally cleared of debris and was re-secured into its recess. The gate is normally fastened into the recess by cables, one of which apparently parted, allowing the gate to swing partly outward.

The dislodged gate forced five larger ships to delay scheduled passages through the Poe during the day on Friday. Three 1,000-foot vessels: Mesabi Miner, Paul R. Tregurtha, and Indiana Harbor tied up on Locks piers or lay at anchor during the day. Also delayed was the 858-foot tug barge Presque Isle and one saltwater vessel, Federal Magaree. Other vessels inbound for the Lock delayed arrival times to allow for backed-up river

Reported by Roger LeLievre from the Sault Evening News


Round Island Lighthouse For Sale

One of the premier boat watching spots on the Great Lakes is for sale, according to an article in the current issue of Lakeland Boating magazine. Round island, located opposite Lime Island, in the lower St. Marys River, can be yours for a mere $3.3 million.

The totally renovated and expanded lighthouse is the only dwelling on the 8 acre island and has three bedrooms, two baths, 2200 square feet of indoor space and 4,000 square feet of decking on two levels, in addition to its own water and sewage treatment systems.

Round Island was featured in Great Laker magazine last year. More information about the renovation project is available on the Boatnerd Lighthouse website.


Port Reports - September 19

Toronto - Charlie Gibbons
The Canadian Ranger departed Redpath Sugar dock late Sunday night bound for the Welland Canal.

It is expected that the salty Pochard will leave anchor and shift back into the Redpath slip early this morning to continue unloading.

The tall ship Fair Jeanne arrived in port late Saturday night and remains at Pier 4, along with the megayacht Sunrise.

The island ferry Thomas Rennie is still on Toronto Drydock undergoing it's five year inspection.

The Stephen B. Roman in at the Essroc dock Sunday, likely to depart Monday.

According to the Hamilton transit page Peter Cresswell was headed for Toronto.


Today in Great Lakes History - September 19

At Rush Street in Chicago, Illinois, a hand-operated ferry carried pedestrians across the Chicago River. The ferry operator would pull on a rope, hand over hand, to move the ferry across the river. At a signal from schooners, the rope was dropped and the schooner would sail over it. On 19 September 1856, the rope was dropped but the impatient passengers picked it up to move the ferry themselves. The incoming schooner snagged the rope and the ferry was spun around and capsized. 15 people were drowned.

When Cleveland Tankers new SATURN entered service and made her first trip to Toledo, Ohio on September 19, 1974, she became the first of three tankers built for the fleet's modernization program.

The EDGAR B SPEER departed the shipyard on her maiden voyage for U.S. Steel on September 19, 1980, bound for Two Harbors, Minnesota where she loaded her first cargo of taconite pellets.

The twin screw rail car ferry GRAND HAVEN of 1903, was laid up in the spring of 1965, at the old Pennsylvania Dock at Cleveland, Ohio and later at dockage on the Old River Bed where she sank on September 19, 1969.

September 19, 1997 - officials at Lake Michigan Carferry, Inc. announced that the CITY OF MIDLAND 41 would be converted to a barge.

On 19 September 1893, SAMUEL BOLTON (wooden schooner-barge, 150 foot, 330 gross tons, built in 1867, at Bangor, Michigan as a schooner) was loaded with lumber and being towed in fog in Lake Huron. She got lost from the tow and drifted ashore near Richmond, Michigan where she broke in two and was then torn apart by waves. She was owned by Brazil Hoose of Detroit.

On Saturday, 19 September 1891, at 11:00 a.m., the whaleback steamer CHARLES W WETMORE left Philadelphia, Pennsylvania loaded with the materials to build a nail mill, iron smelter and shipyard for the new city of Everett, Washington. Her skipper was Captain Joseph B. Hastings and she had a crew of 22.

On 19 September 1900, the Great Lakes schooner S L WATSON foundered off Cape Cod, Massachusetts. She had been sent to the Atlantic the previous autumn by her owner J. C. Gilchrist of Cleveland.

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 include many other vessels with a much more detailed history


Port Reports - September 18

Saginaw River - Todd Shorkey
The Saginaw River saw visits from three vessels on Friday. First in was the John J. Boland who called on the Bay Aggregates dock in Bay City to unload. The tug Gregory J. Busch was next, traveling up to her home dock in Carrollton. Finally, the CSL Tadoussac was inbound for the Essroc dock in Essexville to unload clinker. Both the John J. Boland and the CSL Tadoussac were outbound later in the day.

Port Dalhousie - David Bull
Late Saturday afternoon there were three ships in the Port Dalhousie anchorage. It has been a long time since there has been this many waiting here. Ships anchor here waiting pilots, waiting for docks to become available or waiting future orders. The Port Dalhousie anchorage is just west of the Port Weller entrance to the Welland Canal on Lake Ontario.

Berdyansk, registered Ukraine, arrived today after discharging cement at Hamilton. Woody, registered Greece, chartered to Canfornav, and like all of Canfornav's owned or chartered vessels is named for a duck, arrived Friday.

Polsteam's Isadora, registered Cyprus, is one of their "I" class and has been anchored since Wednesday.

 Buffalo - Brian Wroblewski
Courtney Burton was still unloading at General Mills Sunday evening.

The Karen Andrie was Eastbound through Long Point & bound for Buffalo at 7:00 p.m.


Photo Gallery Updates - September 18

News Photo Gallery updated

Public Photo Gallery updated


Today in Great Lakes History - September 18

On 18 September 1855, SEBASTOPOL (wooden side-wheel steamer, 230 foot, 863 tons, built in 1855, at Cleveland, Ohio) was sailing on Lake Michigan in a gale. Her cargo included copper, tin, lead and iron ingots, safes and general merchandise. Her skipper misread the shore lights while she was coming in to Milwaukee and she stranded 500 feet from shore, broadside to the storm waves which pounded her to pieces. Most of the crew and 60 passengers were saved with the help of small boats from shore, but about 6 lives were lost. This was the vessel’s first year of operation. Her paddlewheels were fifty feet in diameter.

On 18 September 1679, GRIFFON, the first sailing ship on the upper Lakes, left Green Bay with a cargo of furs. She left the explorer Robert Cavelier, Sieur de la Salle, behind. GRIFFON never reached her planned destination.

The E J BLOCK returned to service on September 18, 1946, as the first large bulk freighter powered by a diesel-electric power plant and one of the first equipped with commercial radar on the Great Lakes.

On September 18, 1959, the HENRY FORD II ran aground in the St. Marys River and damaged 18 bottom plates.

On September 18, 1958, the BEN MOREELL, a.) JAMES MAC NAUGHTON collided with and sank the car ferry ASHTABULA in the harbor at Ashtabula, Ohio. Captain Louis Sabo was in command of the ASHTABULA.

LAKE WINNIPEG was the first vessel to enter the Nipigon Transport fleet. She loaded her first cargo of 22,584 gross tons of iron ore clearing Sept Îles, Queec on September 18, 1962, bound for Cleveland, Ohio.

The Pere Marquette carferry CITY OF MIDLAND 41 (Hull#311) was launched on September 18, 1940, at Manitowoc, Wisconsin. She was built by Manitowoc Shipbuilding Corporation at a cost of $2 million. She was named after Midland, Michigan for one of the Pere Marquette Railway's biggest customers, Dow Chemical Co. She was christened by Miss Helen Dow, daughter of Willard H. Dow, president of Dow Chemical Co. Converted to a barge in 1998, renamed PERE MARQUETTE 41.

On 18 September 1871, E B ALLEN (wooden schooner, 111 foot, 275 tons, built in 1864, at Ogdensburg, New York) was carrying grain when she collided with the bark NEWSBOY and sank off Thunder Bay Island in Lake Huron.

On 18 September 1900, the large steamer CAPTAIN THOMAS WILSON was taken from her launch site on the Black River in Port Huron out to the St. Clair River. The tug HAYNES was at the bow and the tug BOYNTON at the stern. It took an hour and a half to maneuver through the various bridges. Newspapers estimated that a couple thousand persons watched the event. Once the WILSON made it to the St. Clair River, she was towed to Jenks Shipbuilding Company where she was completed and received her machinery.

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 include many other vessels with a much more detailed history


Hannah Tug Suffers Fire in Welland Canal

9/17 - The James A. Hannah reported a fire in their product boiler Friday as the tug and barge was approaching Lock 2 while downbound in the Welland Canal.

Originally the Captain stated that his crew was checking out the situation but a later call to Seaway Welland indicated the tug required assistance.

St Catharines Fire Department was on scene quickly and the local Police cordoned off the area.

The barge is carrying a cargo of liquid asphalt.

Pictures in the News Photo Gallery.

Reported by Paul Beesley


Today in Great Lakes History - September 17

On 17 September 1898, KEEPSAKE (2-mast wooden schooner, 183 foot, 286 gross tons, built in 1867, at Newport [Marine City], Michigan) was carrying coal from Ashtabula when she was struck by a terrible storm on Lake Erie. Her rudder was damaged, a sail torn away and her bulwarks were smashed. The CITY OF ERIE saw her distress signals at 3:30 a.m. and came to help. With the CITY OF ERIE’s searchlight shining on the doomed schooner, a huge wave swept over the vessel taking away everything on deck and snapping both masts. The crew, some only half dressed, all managed to get into the lifeboat. They rowed to the CITY OF ERIE and were all rescued. Three days later, the other lifeboat and some wreckage from the KEEPSAKE were found near Ashtabula by some fishermen.

GRIFFON (Hull#18) was launched September 17, 1955, at St. Catharines, Ontario by Port Weller Drydocks Ltd. for Beaconsfield Steamship Ltd., Montreal, Quebec. Renamed b.) FRANQUELIN in 1967, c.) EVA DESGAGNES in 1987. Sold foreign in 1989, renamed d.) TELCHAC, scrapped at Tuxpan, Mexico in 1992.

On September 17, 1985, PATERSON suffered a crank case explosion as she was bound for Quebec City from Montreal. She was repaired and cleared on September 21. Renamed b.) PINEGLEN in 2002.

On 17 September 1830, WILLIAM PEACOCK (wood sidewheel steamer, 102 foot, 120 tons, built in 1829, at Barcelona, New York) suffered the first major boiler explosion on Lake Erie while she was docked in Buffalo, New York. 15 - 30 lives were lost. She was rebuilt two years later and eventually foundered in a storm in 1835, near Ripley, Ohio.

On 17 September 1875, the barge HARMONY was wrecked in a gale at Chicago, Illinois by colliding with the north pier which was under water. This was the same place where the schooner ONONGA was wrecked a week earlier and HARMONY came in contact with that sunken schooner. No lives were lost.

On 17 September 1900, a storm carried away the cabin and masts of the wrecked wooden 4-mast bulk freight barge FONTANA. The 231-foot vessel had been wrecked and sunk in a collision at the mouth of the St. Clair River in the St. Clair Flats on 3 August 1900. She had settled in the mud and gradually shifted her position. She eventually broke in two. After unsuccessful salvage attempts, the wreck was dynamited.

Tragedy struck in 1949, when the Canada Steamship Lines cruise ship NORONIC burned at Pier 9 in Toronto, Ontario. By morning the ship was gutted, 104 passengers were known to be dead and 14 were missing. Because of land reclamation and the changing face of the harbor, the actual site of Noronic's berth is now in the lobby of the Harbour Castle Westin hotel.

Data from: Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, James Neumiller, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series. This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history



Spirit of America arrives in New York City

9/16 - The newly built Spirit of America reached its final destination Thursday arriving in New York. The new ferry was in the final hours of a 22-day excursion from its birthplace in Wisconsin to New York Harbor, where it will begin a long indentured servitude as the newest member of the Staten Island ferry fleet.Along the way, the ferry, named the Spirit of America, startled some Canadians on the Great Lakes who shouted, "Are you lost?'" according to Annette Hobbs, 24, one of the 15 crew members who worked and camped aboard the ferry during its voyage. But not everyone along the route, from the Great Lakes, along the St. Lawrence Seaway to Quebec, to the Atlantic Ocean, to Long Island Sound and eventually to the East River, was so helpful.

One crew member, Ben Stout, 34, said that when they sailed through the Cape Cod Canal, deep in Boston Red Sox territory, several fishermen made obscene gestures and yelled an instruction about what to do with the Yankees. Closer to home, but no less rude, was the construction worker who Ms. Hobbs said mooned her from the Bronx side of the Whitestone Bridge.

Though most onlookers were not as hostile, many appeared confused by the sight of a New York City ferry in their waters, said Mr. Stout, who said he had "danced with this girlfriend," meaning the ferry, since June. He and the other workers who made the trip from Wisconsin slept on air mattresses and in sleeping bags during the voyage and used the ferry's snack bar to cook hamburgers on hot plates, Richard Menkes, 59, the captain for this trip, said. A few of the deflated mattresses were rolled up and placed neatly near large suitcases yesterday, and leftover pizza slices sat in boxes alongside Dunkin' Donuts containers on the snack bar's gleaming silver counter.

Gazing out a window toward Staten Island, the city's transportation commissioner, Iris Weinshall, said, "It's just such a sense of accomplishment," adding that the Transportation Department was working on plans to replace the two 20-year-old ferries still in the fleet within eight years. The new $40 million ferry is the last of three new 4,500-passenger boats replacing even older ferries.

Drifting through a light drizzle that moistened the sticky air, the ferry announced its noon arrival at the St. George terminal on Staten Island with several blasts of its horn. Inside the terminal, passengers were waiting to board the American Legion, the 40-year-old ferry that the Spirit will replace. The newcomer is part of a $400 million project that includes not only the three new ferries, but also the reconstruction of the Whitehall ferry terminal in Manhattan, which was badly damaged by a fire in 1991.

The ferry began its journey at the Marinette Marine Corporation's shipyard, in Marinette, Wis., on Aug. 25. Around 9 a.m. yesterday, it picked up Transportation Department officials who were aboard a launch off City Island. Before it reached the ferry, the launch had stopped at Hart Island, to drop off a Correction Department van with several prisoners who were assigned to bury bodies at the potter's field there.

Even if the ferry drew some stares along its route, it remains an international icon. Whenever he tells people, even abroad, that he works for the Staten Island ferry, James Weber, 58, who has been a deckhand for more than half his life, said, "I always get a smile."

From the New York Times


USCG and RCMP working together

9/16 - For the first time in history, U.S. and Canada maritime law enforcement officials have joined forces in the battle against terrorism and smuggling on Lake St. Clair, and the Detroit and St. Clair rivers. A 2-week pilot program is under way between the U.S. Coast Guard and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police along Detroit's international border that is designed to help increase security and improve maritime law enforcement. "This will be the first time ever, anywhere in Canada where we will work with the U.S. Coast Guard," said Angelique Dignard, a constable with the Windsor-based Royal Canadian Mounted Police. "They're looking at the program to help maritime law enforcement on both sides of the border. It's breaking barriers."

The "Shiprider" program aims to keep people safe from terrorism, said Rear Adm. Robert Papp Jr., commander of the 9th Coast Guard District, noting that Michigan and Canada have a 1,500-mile international border in the Great Lakes system. Papp and Dignard introduced the program at the Coast Guard Station in St. Clair Shores on Thursday. He said Windsor-based officers of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, commonly called Mounties, will be riding with Coast Guard personnel on 25-foot patrol boats along international waters through next week. If the program is successful, a decision will be made whether to make it a full-time commitment. "There are no additional costs for the program because we will be patrolling the areas we normally do," Papp said. "The program is a more effective way of arresting smugglers or those who break the law in international waters."

Coast Guard boarding officers from stations in Belle Isle and St. Clair Shores will be riding with the Mounties. The arrangement, which involved special training for all the participants, allows a single patrol boat to enforce the law in both the United States and Canada. The Americans will take the lead on U.S. waters, while Canadian Mounties will enforce laws on Canada's side. "This is real exciting," said Bill Blair, a BM1 Petty Officer at Belle Isle. "I'm glad to see we'll be able to pursue people who break the law over international borders. It's going to be good."

Moreover, the Shiprider program will "help assess the viability of developing a long-term Canada-U.S. program," said Papp, noting the project is consistent with commitments outlined in the Security and Prosperity Partnership between the United States, Canada and Mexico. "The international border between the United States and Canada on the Great Lakes is a source of pride for our two countries," Papp said. "(But) for those who would do us harm, this border can be used as a shield for criminal activity." Papp said the patrols will help deter smugglers of marijuana, weapons and cash. "There are thousands of pounds of drugs, millions of dollars in cash, weapons -- up to cows -- trying to be smuggled over our borders," Papp said. "If you can smuggle a cow through, you can smuggle a terrorist."

Mike McDonnell, director general of Border Integrity for the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, said enhancing a bi-national partnership is the wave of the future in maritime law enforcement. "Both countries are better able to detect and prevent criminal activities that could pose a serious threat to national and international security," McDonnell said.

Reported by Frank Frisk from the Goderich Signal-Star



Today in Great Lakes History - September 16

On 16 September 1893, HATTIE EARL (wooden schooner, 96 foot, 101 gross tons, built in 1869, at South Haven, Michigan) was driven ashore just outside the harbor of Michigan City, Indiana and was pounded to pieces by the waves.  No lives were lost.

At about 8:30 a.m. Sunday, September 16, 1990, the inbound motor ship BUFFALO passed close by while JUPITER was unloading unleaded gasoline at the Total Petroleum dock in the Saginaw River near Bay City, Michigan. As the BUFFALO passed the dock's aft pilings broke off and the fuel lines parted which caused a spark and ignited the spilled fuel. At the time 22,000 barrels of a total of 54,000 barrels were still aboard. Flames catapulted over 100 feet high filling the air with smoke that could be seen for 50 miles. The fire was still burning the next morning when a six man crew from Williams, Boots & Coots Firefighters and Hazard Control Specialists of Port Neches, Texas arrived to fight the fire. By Monday afternoon they extinguished the fire only to have it re-ignite that night resulting in multiple explosions. Not until Tuesday morning on the 18th was the fire finally subdued with the assistance of the U.S. Coast Guard's BRAMBLE and BRISTOL BAY. The tanker, which was valued at $9 million, was declared a total constructive loss, though the engine room was relatively untouched. Unfortunately the fire claimed the life of one crew member who drowned attempting to swim ashore. As a result the Coast Guard closed the river to all navigation. On October 19th the river was opened to navigation after the Gaelic tugs SUSAN HOEY and CAROLYN HOEY towed the JUPITER up river to the Hirschfield & Sons Dock at Bay City (formerly the De Foe Shipyard) where a crane was erected for dismantling the burned out hulk. Her engines were removed and shipped to New Bedford, Massachusetts for future use. The river opening allowed American Steamship’s BUFFALO to depart the Lafarge dock where she had been trapped since the explosion. JUPITER's dismantling was completed over the winter of 1990-91. Subsequent investigation by the NTSB, U.S. Coast Guard and the findings of a federal judge all exonerated the master and BUFFALO in the tragedy.

P&H purchased all nine of the Soo River's fleet on September 16, 1982, for a reported C$2.5 million and all nine returned to service, although only four were running at the end of the season.

NORISLE went into service September 16, 1946, as the first Canadian passenger ship commissioned since the NORONIC in 1913. 

On September 16, 1952, the CASON J CALLAWAY departed River Rouge, Michigan for Duluth, Minnesota on its maiden voyage for the Pittsburgh Steamship Co..

On 16 September 1895, ARCTIC (2 mast wooden schooner, 113 foot, 85 gross tons, built in 1853, at Ashtabula, Ohio) was rammed and sunk by the steamer CLYDE in broad daylight and calm weather. ARCTIC was almost cut in half by the blow. The skipper of CLYDE was censured for the wreck and for his callous treatment of the schooner’s crew afterwards. Luckily no lives were lost. 

On 16 September 1877, the 46 foot tug RED RIBBON, owned by W. H. Morris of Port Huron, Michigan, burned about 2 miles below St. Clair, Michigan. Capt. Morris ran the tug ashore and hurried to St. Clair to get assistance, but officials there refused to allow the steam fire engine to go outside the city. The tug was a total loss and was only insured for $1,000, half her value. She had just started in service in May of 1877 and was named for the reform movement that was in full swing at the time of her launch.  

On 16 September 1900, LULU BEATRICE (2-mast wooden schooner, 72 foot, 48 gross tons, built in 1896, at Port Burwell, Ontario) was carrying coal on Lake Erie when she was wrecked on the shore near the harbor entrance at Port Burwell in a storm. One life was lost, the captain’s wife.  

Data from: Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, Jody L. Aho, James Neumiller, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series. This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history  


Atlantic Huron get prop repairs in Goderich

9/15 - It was a little like getting a flat tire on a family vacation when the lake freighter Atlantic Huron limped into the Goderich harbour with a broken propeller late last week. As the curious looked on from shore, a team from Shelley Machine and Marine out of Sarnia arrived with three new blades for the vessel and spent the rest of the day and much of the night doing the repairs.

The ship, one of the last maximum-sized lakers built by the Collingwood Shipyards in 1983, was empty when it arrived, making the tricky repairs easier to accomplish. The Atlantic Huron is well known to Goderich as she spent the 2004 winter lay-up here.

With the repairs complete, Captain Tim Poste and his crew took on wheat and set sail for Halifax.

From the Goderich Signal-Star


New Mackinaw impresses many during its sea trials

9/15 - Two weeks into its builders' sea trials, the new U.S. Coast Guard cutter Mackinaw is easing into an operational schedule and impressing those who are aboard. "We're still early in the trials, but it looks like the ship will meet the requirements we've set," stated Capt. Ian Grunther, project manager for the Coast Guard's Great Lakes Icebreaking Capability Replacement Project. The detail is a very lengthy-named phrase for replacing the U.S. Coast Guard cutter Mackinaw that has served the Great Lakes for nearly 62 years while homeported in Cheboygan.

Grunther is cautious when speaking about the new vessel's progress. The ship is replacing a successful piece of equipment that has done the job since World War II, but has grown increasingly expensive to maintain and buy replacement parts to repair. The original Mackinaw will be decommissioned in June of next year. "It's going as expected," Grunther explained. "Our major system vendors are onboard, making sure everything works the way it is supposed to work. We have Marinette Marine Corporation workers out here in Green Bay painting and installing things even though we are on sea trials. There are 12 current Mackinaw crewmembers per day sailing with the ship along with 15 more from Project Resident Office Marinette. Right now we are fine tuning the steering systems and working on the integrated propulsion systems."

According to Grunther, meticulous attention to detail led to the successes the cutter has had so far since its April 2 launch in the Menominee River. "We spent a lot of time at the dock calibrating everything and chasing gremlins," he said. "That has paid off. We've been doing lots of grooming things to prepare for our full sea trials. Some things you can't do until you really get out to sea. We've seen 15.8 knots already and the specs are for 15." Grunther added that a day or two may be added to the original nine-day schedule to test the systems, but said the whole idea is based on getting the product the Coast Guard ordered and the taxpayers paid to build.

"We're on board for quality assurance," he said. "I'm still a little guarded. I'm not rushing anything to completion. Our goal is to deliver reliability." Asked about the ship's projected arrival date in Cheboygan of Nov. 13, Grunther hinted that the six-week delay in beginning the sea trials may not affect the ship's acceptance by the Coast Guard and delivery to the Straits of Mackinac. "It's still a little soon to tell because we haven't gone through all the major systems yet," he admitted. "But we're exceeding my expectations as far as progress goes. It bodes well."

From the Cheboygan Daily Tribune


Toledo to lose Shipyard Operator

9/15 - Despite millions of dollars in pledged public aid for modernizations and upgrades, the Toledo Shipyard’s operator has indicated that it will pull anchor by the end of October, costing the area about 70 jobs. Wisconsin-based Manitowoc Marine Group, currently operating a ship building and repair yard at 2345 Front St., via its subsidiary, Toledo Shiprepair Co., met with and sent letters to local managers and employees yesterday saying the company would cease operations at the site by Oct. 31.

The operator, which has leased the shipyard from the Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority since 1992, also met with top officials of the port authority yesterday to say they would be activating a clause in their lease allowing them to move out after a notification period of 120 days. The period would begin at the end of this month, and allow the company to be free of their lease’s obligations by Jan. 31.

Jim Hartung, president of the port authority, said he was reviewing the lease to see if the company’s interpretation of the clause was correct. Regardless, Mr. Hartung said he would not fight too hard to keep the operator beyond its obligations. “I want an operator in that facility that is 100 percent committed, that will be aggressive in the marketplace to make that facility profitable. I’m not looking for an operator held there by some legality,” Mr. Hartung said, adding that he and others had been in negotiation with the company about upgrades at the shipyard for years, and had yet to receive a site plan.

Over the last several years, a package of public assistance was put together to modernize and upgrade the “bare bones” facility, including $5 million in federal dollars, $1 million from Lucas County, and $1.5 million from the city of Toledo. Manitowoc said in March, 2003, that it hoped to add 150 to 300 jobs to the facility.

Mr. Hartung said he met in person with the company’s president, Robert Herre, yesterday morning to ask why the company was leaving. “Essentially, they were saying that the facility in Toledo was not competitive, productive, or profitable — which are the same reasons they used three or four years ago looking for the public/private partnership,” Mr. Hartung said.

Mr. Hartung said that when he asked Mr. Herre why the public money would not be enough to make the facility profitable, he was not given an answer. “Essentially, there was no answer,” Mr. Hartung said. “I don’t recall the exact words ... I was not satisfied.” Mr. Hartung noted that there had been a turnover of Manitowoc Marine Group’s management within the last year — including Mr. Herre, who took the reins in February — sparking major changes in the company’s corporate planning for future development. Mr. Herre could not be reached for comment last night.

“I’m hoping that the city and the county and the federal monies can remain earmarked and set aside,” Mr. Hartung added. U.S. Rep. Marcy Kaptur (D., Toledo), who fought to secure the federal grant money to modernize the facility, suggested in a statement yesterday that the dollars would stay in place. “I view [the money] as a down-payment on the future of the Great Lakes maritime industry in Toledo and a readily available resource to attract a new operator for the Toledo Shipyard,” she said.

Fred Keith, business manager of Boilermakers Local 85, which has about 60 union members at the site, agreed that it would be best to look for an operator that is committed. “The guys that are working there, it will be devastating, but we’re not going to let it go downhill,” he said. “We’re going to look at this as an opportunity. If somebody doesn’t want to be there, let ‘em go and get somebody new.”

From the Toledo Blade


Discovery Channel to air shipwreck program

9/15 - The Discovery Science Channel will be airing a program about shipwrecks on the lakes and in Thunder Bay. It was filmed aboard the museum ship Willis B. Boyer in Toledo, OH. It features Captain Erik Wood and Captain David G. Brown author of "White Hurricane". The airing dates are not yet listed in the Channels website.

Reported by Captain Erik Wood.


Port Reports - September 15

Saginaw River - Todd Shorkey & John Soderquist
The Algoway arrived on the Saginaw River early Tuesday morning stopping to unload at three different docks. She called on the Bay Aggregates dock in Bay City first, then moved upriver to the Buena Vista dock in Saginaw before finishing at the Valley Asphalt dock. Algoway was expected to be outbound late Tuesday afternoon.
Algoway outbound Bay City at 18:15, and was held up more than an hour by the Salzburg bridge stuck in a part open position.

The tug Joe Thompson, Jr. & barge Joseph H. Thompson were inbound the Saginaw River early Wednesday morning carrying a split load. The pair lightered at the Sargent dock in Essexville then continued upriver to finish at the Saginaw Rock Products dock in Saginaw. They were outbound for the lake Wednesday afternoon.

Overnight Wednesday on the Saginaw River, the Algoway was inbound traveling to the upper river to unload at the Sargent dock in Zilwaukee. She then turned in the Sixth Street basin and was outbound for the lake Thursday afternoon.

Alpena - Ben & Chandra MacClain
The Paul H. Townsend made its way into port around 1:30pm on a warm and hazy Monday. It took on cargo for Green Bay, WI and departed after 5pm. The J.A.W. Iglehart was loading at Lafarge on Tuesday and was outbound in the bay by 3pm, heading for Milwaukee.

The G.L. Ostrander/barge Integrity was in Milwaukee on Wednesday.

The Steamer Alpena is expected to return to port late Thursday night.

The Manistee arrived at Lafarge around 2:30am on Wednesday. It tied up at the coal dock and unloaded slag into a hopper. The Manistee departed mid morning and headed to Stoneport to take on cargo.

Cleveland/Ashtabula - Dave Wobser
The Calumet was tied up at the mouth of the Cuyahoga River on Tuesday and Wednesday with no visible activity. On Tuesday, her boom was over a stone pile, but on Wednesday the boom was back on deck. She appeared to be loaded.

Wolverine went up the river on Tuesday evening and came back down early Wednesday.

H. Lee White was loading coal at the ConRail dock in Ashtabula on Tuesday.

Marquette - Lee Rowe
The Michipicoten continues her many runs between Marquette and Algoma Steel. The Great Lakes Trader/Joyce VanEnkevort brought stone to Marquette's lower harbor Wednesday, then took on a load of ore Thursday. The Herbert C. Jackson is expected Friday.

Duluth/Superior - Al Miller
For the first time in a long time, several Twin Ports elevators were all loading ships the same day on Thursday. At Peavey in Superior, which has seen only light traffic this season, the Antikeri was loading.

At CHS, which has been the ports’ busiest elevator this season, the parade ships continued with Canadian Miner loading at the gallery (on the heels of Courtney Burton, which loaded Wednesday) and Chios Sailor loading in berth 2.

In Duluth, Iryda was loading at AGP. Canadian Leader was supposed to anchor on the lake to wait for the Peavey berth.

Milwaukee - Paul Erspamer
Wednesday night was apparently cement boat night in Milwaukee's inner harbor. Tug G.L. Ostrander and barge Integrity unloaded at the LaFarge silo. Meanwhile, J.A.W. Iglehart waited patiently at the wall immediately behind the "Ostrander".

At the south end of the turning basin, tug Sea Eagle and barge St. Mary's Cement II unloaded into the hopper at the St. Mary's plant.


Photo Gallery Updates - September 15

News Photo Gallery updated

Public Photo Gallery updated


Today in Great Lakes History - September 15

On 15 September 1886, F J KING (wooden schooner, 140 foot, 280 tons, built in 1867, at Toledo, Ohio) was carrying iron ore from Escanaba, Michigan to Chicago, Illinois. She sprang a leak and sank in a heavy southwesterly gale three miles off Rawley Bay, Wisconsin. Her crew reached shore in the yawl. Her loss was valued at $7500.

The A H FERBERT of 1942, was towed out of Duluth by the Sandrin tug GLENADA September 15, 1987, they encountered rough weather on Lake Superior and required the assistance of the another tug to reach the Soo on the 19th. On the 21st the FERBERT had to anchor off Detour, Michigan after she had run aground in the St. Marys River when her towline parted. Her hull was punctured and the Coast Guard ordered repairs to her hull before she could continue. Again problems struck on September 24th, when the FERBERT went hard aground at the Cut-Off Channel's southeast bend of the St. Clair River. Six tugs, GLENADA, ELMORE M MISNER, BARBARA ANN, GLENSIDE, SHANNON and WM A WHITNEY, worked until late on the 26th to free her. The FERBERT finally arrived in tow of GLENSIDE and W N TWOLAN at Lauzon, Quebec on October 7th.

The str. WILLIAM A AMBERG (Hull#723) was launched September 15, 1917, at Lorain, Ohio by American Ship Building Co. for the Producers Steamship Co., (M.A. Hanna, mgr.). Renamed b.) ALBERT E HEEKIN in 1932, c.) SILVER BAY in 1955, d.) JUDITH M PIERSON in 1975 and e.) FERNGLEN in 1982. Scrapped at Port Maitland, Ontario in 1985.

On September 15, 1925, the JOHN A TOPPING left River Rouge, Michigan light on her maiden voyage to Ashland, Wisconsin to load iron ore for delivery to Cleveland, Ohio.

September 15th lightering was completed on the AUGUST ZIESING, she had grounded above the Rock Cut two days earlier blocking the channel.

September 15, 1959, was the last day the U.S. Coast Guard Buoy Tender MESQUITE was stationed at Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan.

MIDDLETOWN suffered a fire in her tunnels on September 15, 1986. 2nd & 3rd degree burns were suffered by two crew members.

In 1934, the ANN ARBOR NO. 6 collided with the steamer N F LEOPOLD in a heavy fog.

September 15, 1993 - Robert Manglitz became CEO and president of Lake Michigan Carferry Service after Charles Conrad announced his retirement and the sale of most of his stock.

On 15 September 1873, IRONSIDES (wooden propeller passenger/package freight vessel, 220 foot, 1123 tons, built in 1864, at Cleveland, Ohio) became disabled when she sprang a leak and flooded. The water poured in and put out her fires. She sank about 7 miles off Grand Haven, Michigan on Lake Michigan. Reports of the number of survivors varied from 17 to 32 and the number lost varied from 18 to 28.

On 15 September 1872, A J BEMIS (wood propeller tug, 49 tons, built in 1859, at Buffalo, New York) caught fire while underway. The fire originated under her boiler. She ran for shore but sank 3⁄4 mile short, about 6 miles from Alpena, Michigan. No lives lost.

 Data from: Max Hanley, Joe Barr, David Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, James Neumiller, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series. This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history


Today in Great Lakes History - September 14

Captain Albert Edgar Goodrich died on 14 September 1885, at the age of 59 at his residence, 1474 Michigan Avenue, Chicago, Illinois. He was a pioneer steamboat man and founded the Goodrich Transportation Company, famous for its passenger/package freight steamers on Lake Michigan.

The J J SULLIVAN (Hull#439) was launched September 14, 1907, at Cleveland, Ohio by American Ship Building Co. for the Superior Steamship Co. (Hutchinson & Co., mgr.). Renamed b.) CLARENCE B RANDALL in 1963. She was scrapped in 1988.

On 14 September 1871, R J CARNEY (wooden barge, 150 foot, 397 gross tons) was launched at Saginaw, Michigan.

The 203 foot wooden schooner KATE WINSLOW was launched at J. Davidson's yard in East Saginaw, Michigan on 14 September 1872.

The steamer ASIA sank in a storm off Byng Inlet on Georgian Bay September 14, 1882. Over 100 people lost their lives with only 2 people, a man and a woman being rescued. ASIA was built in St. Catharines, Ontario in 1873, and was bound from Collingwood, Ontario to the French River and Canadian Sault.

Data from: Clive Reddin, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, James Neumiller, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series. This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history



Port Reports - September 13

Milwaukee - Paul Erspamer
The Algomarine, which arrived in Milwaukee on Sunday, remained in the port as of Monday evening. She was at the northernmost municipal pier in the outer harbor. This pier is usually frequented by ocean vessels. It appeared to be served by a dockside mobile crane.

Saginaw River - Todd Shorkey and Gordy Garris
The American Republic was inbound the Saginaw River Monday morning headed all the way up the river to the Saginaw Asphalt dock in Carrollton. She completed her unload and was outbound for the lake Monday afternoon.

The Paul H. Townsend was also outbound very early Monday morning after unloading at the LaFarge terminal in Carrollton.

On Sunday the tug Joyce L. VanEnkevort and her barge Great Lakes Trader departed from the Saginaw Wirt dock early in the morning after unloading overnight. She was outbound passing through the Bay City Bridges by 11 a.m. Sunday headed outbound for the lake.

Also outbound on Sunday was the tug Rebecca Lynn and her tank barge after unloading overnight at the Bit-Mat dock in Essexville.

Buffalo - Brian W.
There was an unusual amount of Welland Canal and cross Lake Erie traffic on Monday night. Ships included the Algosteel, CSL Laurentien, Canadian Navigator, Commodore Straights, English River, Federal Secura, Petrolia Desgagnes, Prinzenborg, Orsela, Jane Ann IV and barge Sarah Spencer, Montrealais, White Star, and the Zima Gorislavska.


Photo Gallery Updates - September 13

News Photo Gallery updated

Public Photo Gallery
New albums in Shipping - Detroit River album


Today in Great Lakes History - September 13

On 13 September 1872, the wooden schooner RAPID left Pigeon Bay, Ontario bound for Buffalo, New York with 5000 railroad ties. While on Lake Erie, a storm blew in and Capt. Henderson decided to turn for Rondeau. While turning, the vessel capsized. Annie Brown, the cook, was trapped below decks and drowned. The seven other crew members strapped themselves to the rail and waited to be rescued. One by one they died. Finally, 60-hours later, the schooner PARAGON found the floating wreck with just one man, James Low, the first mate, barely alive.

The EDMUND FITZGERALD's sea trials occurred on September 13, 1958.

The HOFFMAN (United States Army Corps of Engineers Twin Screw Hopper Dredge) collided with the Japanese salty KUNISHIMA MARU at Toledo, Ohio, September 13, 1962. Reportedly the blame was placed on the pilot of the Japanese salty. Apparently the damage was minor.

On September 13, 1968, the AUGUST ZIESING grounded in fog two-hundred yards above the Rock Cut in the St. Marys River. The grounded vessel swung into the shipping channel blocking it until September 15th when lightering was completed.

September 13, 1953 - The PERE MARQUETTE 22 made her second maiden voyage since she was new in 1924. She was cut in half, lengthened, had new boilers and engines installed.

On 13 September 1875, CITY OF BUFFALO (wooden schooner, 91 foot, 128 tons, built in 1859, at Buffalo, New York as a propeller canal boat) beached and sank after striking a rock in the St. Mary’s River. The tug MAGNET worked for days to release her before she went to pieces on 19 September. No lives were lost.

On 13 September 1871, the bark S D POMEROY was anchored off Menominee, Michigan during a storm. Archie Dickie, James Steele, John Davidson and James Mechie were seen to lower the yawl to go to shore. Later the empty yawl drifted ashore and then the bodies of all four men floated in.

Data from: Max Hanley, Joe Barr, David Swayze, James Neumiller, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series. This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history


Van Enkevort Selected as Lessee for Erie Shipyard

9/12 - The Erie-Western Pennsylvania Port Authority voted Friday to negotiate a lease with Van Enkevort Tug & Barge of Escanaba, Michigan, for the former Litton Industries shipyard in Erie.

The shipyard, most recently operated by Metro Machine Corp., has one of only two graving docks on the Great Lakes capable of accommodating 1000-foot-long vessels. Van Enkevort was one of two finalists considered by the Port Authority for the shipyard lease.

Citing $100 million in repair and shipbuilding contracts over the next five years, Van Enkevort indicated that it will need some 200 employees in the first 12 months for its anticipated shipyard activities.

Van Enkevort also plans to build an ATB unit consisting of a 740-foot self-unloading barge and 135-foot tug at the Erie yard; it is anticipated that the ATB would be a sister vessel of the current Great Lakes Trader.

If built, the proposed ATB would be the first new hull delivered by the Erie shipyard since the barge Presque Isle was built in 1973.

Reported by John J. Michael


LSSU Web site provides view of underwater fish

A window to the underwater world has recently been established by the Lake Superior State University Aquatics Lab, allowing anyone with Internet service to get a glimpse of what goes on beneath the turbulent waters immediately behind the Edison Sault Power House.

"The majority of them are Atlantic salmon," said Fisheries Biologist Roger Greil operating out of the Aquatics Lab. "We're seeing a few pinks and a fair number of chinooks." While those who study fish and their habits have employed sophisticated tools and research devices to conduct these activities for many years, it is only in recent weeks that this opportunity has become available to the general public through the university's Web site at by clicking on the fish cam link. Once there, the viewer can watch the fish schooled in one of the powerhouse's eastern tunnels.

Asst. Professor Ashley Moerke of Lake Superior State University also serves as the CO-Director for the Aquatics Research Lab. "It is really neat," she said of the underwater camera. "We have just had it up for over a week and were already getting a lot of feedback." Moerke said the word has gotten out very quickly about the new device and she has heard positive feedback not only throughout the local area, but across the ocean as well coming in the form of a Scottish colleague. In fact, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources has also expressed an interest in linking to this site. Moerke credited the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for the grant money which was used to purchase the underwater camera. She also quickly added that were it not for the efforts of Steve Mason and, the vast majority of the public would be unable to view this underwater world.

"We couldn't provide the actual feed on-line," she explained. "The reason you can see it is really due to them." For the time being, those who access the site can enjoy seeing the fish in their natural environment. Moerke said the future calls for the addition of educational tools which will help the viewer identify the various fish - the various salmon, whitefish, suckers, walleye, northern pike and others - which can be seen throughout the year.

From the Soo Evening News



Port Reports - September 12

Duluth/Superior - Al Miller
Columbia Star was tied up at the old Lakehead Pipeline Dock in Superior’s East End on Sunday undergoing repairs. No word on what work was being done, but the vessel was ballasted down by the stern, exposing the entire bow thruster tunnel.

The fall grain rush, such as it is these days, has begun. Most of the traffic in recent days has focused on the CHS terminal in Superior. Both loading berths have often been filled in the past two weeks. On Monday morning, the Spruceglen was loading at the CHS gallery. Also loading grain Monday was BBC Russia at the AGP elevator in Duluth. Salties Antikeri and Irma also were due in port to load.

Midwest Energy Terminal continues its busy pace. Oglebay Norton arrived Sunday evening to load. Paul R. Tregurtha was in port Monday morning to load, to be followed by Canadian Enterprise and Walter J. McCarthy Jr.

Marquette - Lee Rowe
The American Mariner loaded ore at Marquette on a very warm and humid Sunday. The Michipicoten came in for a load as well. The tug Dorothy Anne and barge Pathfinder is expected Monday with coal, and will then take on ore.

Milwaukee - Paul Erspamer
Sunday the Algomarine delivered a load of salt in Milwaukee's Inner Harbor, then proceeded stern-first downriver to the outer harbor, before pivoting and moving out onto Lake Michigan at about 7 p.m. Meanwhile, the John J. Boland was delivering coal at the Greenfield Avenue WE Energies dock, before it, too departed at about 10  p.m.

Alpena - Ben & Chandra McClain
Saturday was a busy day at Lafarge with three vessels coming in to load cement. The Paul H. Townsend was first to arrive, tying up before 5 a.m. and departing around 9 a.m. for Saginaw. The J.A.W. Iglehart waited at anchor out in the bay Saturday morning until the Townsend had passed. The Iglehart took on cargo for Green Bay. The Steamer Alpena arrived in port Saturday night to load for Duluth and was outbound in the early morning hours on Sunday.

The tug G. L Ostrander and barge Integrity was expected to be in St. Joseph on Sunday. The training vessel Denis Sullivan was tied up in the Thunder Bay River on Sunday.

An American Steamship vessel (possibly the Buffalo) brought coal to Lafarge early Friday morning. The Kaye E. Barker was expected to load at Stoneport Sunday night followed by the Great Lakes Trader.

Cleveland - Bill Kloss
Annalisa unloaded at Port of Cleveland docks today. Isolda is still unloading. Wolverine was at Cleveland Bulk Terminal today and Maumee loaded salt at Cargill.

Toronto - Charlie Gibbons
The salty Pochard was anchored in the inner harbor so that divers could work on the hull. The tug Janice C. No. 1 arrived in port Sunday and was working along the vessel's starboard side during the day. Canadian Ranger arrived at Redpath sugar during the night and was unloading into the hopper. Stephen B. Roman also returned to port early Sunday. Refloating operations are expected at Toronto Drydock on Monday for the yacht Sea Kids Six. The island ferry Thomas Rennie is scheduled to go on the dock afterwards.


Photo Gallery Updates - September 12

News Photo Gallery updated

Public Photo Gallery
New albums in Shipping - Mail Boat, Iroquois Lock, Willowglen Tow,
Port of Oswego and Detroit River albums.


Today in Great Lakes History - September 12

On 12 September 1902, EXPERIMENT (2-mast wooden schooner, 65 foot, 50 gross tons, built in 1854, at St. Joseph, Michigan) was carrying fire wood in a storm on Lake Michigan when she went out of control in the harbor at St. Joseph, Michigan after swerving to miss an unmarked construction crib. She wrecked and was declared a total loss. Her crew was rescued by the Lifesaving Service. Three days later she was stripped and abandoned in place.

The ROGER BLOUGH was laid up at Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin from September 12, 1981, through 1986, because of economic conditions.

CANADIAN PIONEER was christened at Port Weller Drydocks Ltd. on September 12, 1981, by Mrs. Louise Powis, wife of the Chairman and President of Noranda Mines for Upper Lakes Shipping Ltd..

CARTIERCLIFFE HALL, a.) RUHR ORE, was towed by the tug WILFRED M COHEN to Collingwood, Ontario for repairs from a June 5th fire and arrived at Collingwood Shipyards Ltd. on September 12, 1979. Renamed c.) WINNIPEG in 1988, and d.) ALGONTARIO in 1994.

Canadian Shipbuilding & Engineering Limited at Collingwood, Ontario closed the yard on September 12, 1986, after 103 years of shipbuilding. She was famous for her spectacular side launches. 214 ships were built at Collingwood.

While unloading steel in South Chicago from the a.) CANADA MARQUIS on September 12, 1988, a shoreside crane lifting a payloader into the hold, collapsed onto the ship. CANADA MARQUIS had a hole in her tank top and damage to her hatch coaming. She sails today on the ocean and lakes today as e.) BIRCHGLEN, for CSL.

On 12 September 1900, ALBACORE (2 mast wooden schooner, 137 foot, 327 tons, built in 1872, at Port Dalhousie, Ontario) had a storm blow out her sails, driving her into the seawall at Fort Bank just east of Oswego, New York where she broke up. The tug J NAVAGH tried unsuccessfully to save her. Her crew of 7 was rescued by the U.S. Lifesaving Service.

After an extremely dry summer, forests were burning all over the Great lakes region in the Autumn of 1871. The smoke from these fires affected navigation. Newspaper reports stated that on 12 September 1871, 38 ships and four strings of barges anchored near Point Pelee on Lake Erie due to the restricted visibility caused by the smoke from the forest fires.

On 12 September 1900, the schooner H W SAGE was raised by the Mc Morran Wrecking Company and was then towed to Port Huron for repairs. She had sunk near Algonac, Michigan in a collision with the steamer CHICAGO on 30 July 1900.

Data from: Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, James Neumiller, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series. This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history


Teakglen Arrives in Thunder Bay

At 1 p.m. Sunday a shadow emerged from the haze that was hanging across the Bay of Thunder Bay. As the Tug Glenada passed through the South entrance of the breakwall, the shadow became a familiar shape of a boat that once graced the harbour of Thunder bay quite frequently at one time. It has been a few years but the Mantadoc, now bearing the name Teakglen, once again passed through the north breakwall entrance of our port. Only this time she was under the tow of the Purvis Tug Avenger IV with the Thunder Bay Tug Glenada now taking up the stern line.

After a brief stop outside the breakwall to shorten the tow line, and to allow the local tug Glenada to set up at the stern of the Teakglen, it was towed trough the opening and into dock at Pascol. Wind and waves were probably a factor in coming through the breakwall opening as it seemed to take some time to get set up.

An unseasonably hot and hazy day greeted the trio as they slowly made their way into the inner harbour and lined up for the layby dock at Pascol Engineering. With the Avenger IV easing the Teakglen ahead and the Glenada tugging on the stern, she slid smoothly alongside the dock as a few onlookers eagerly snapped photos. It is unknown at this time what is to be done to the Teakglen but rumour has it that she is to be fixed up and put back into service for her new owners. The Teakglen was not immediately put into drydock. Those on hand were happy to see her in the bay again.

Pictures in the  News Photo Gallery

Reported by Rob Farrow and Andy Ellam


Old Mackinaw (83) Heads for Toledo

USCG cutter Mackinaw was down bound in the St. Clair River Sunday morning. The icebreaker is reported to be heading for Toledo and the Toledo Shiprepair Dry Dock. There was no room for the Mackinaw on the Sturgeon Bay dry dock.

Pictures in the News Photo Gallery and Public Photo Gallery

Reported by Mike Nicholls


Port Report - September 11

9/11 - Toronto - Charlie Gibbons
The salty Pochard was taken from Redpath Sugar slip early Saturday morning by the Group Ocean tug Omni Richelieu. Pochard went to anchor in the inner harbor.

Canadian Ranger is expected to arrive soon to unload at Redpath. CCG Griffon was in port Saturday morning but departed early in the afternoon.

9/11 - Saginaw River - Gordy Garris
The Saginaw River was busy on Saturday with at least 4 vessels transiting the banks of the river. First was the Walter J. McCarty, Jr. who called on the Consumers Power Plant in Essexville to unload coal. She departed by early afternoon, backing out to Light 12 in the Saginaw Bay to turn around to head outbound for the lake.

Inbound early Saturday evening was the barge Great Lakes Trader and the tug Joyce L. Van Enkevort returning for their third visit to the river in the past three days. She lightered at the Bay Wirt dock and then continued to complete unloading at the Saginaw Wirt dock. The pair were expected outbound early Sunday morning.

The Paul H. Townsend was inbound the Saginaw River less than 15 minutes after the tug Joyce L./Great Lakes Trader had departed the Bay Wirt dock and began her trip upriver. The bridge tenders let the Townsend follow the pair through while the bridge spans were still up. The Townsend cleared all the bridges and headed upriver to unload cement at the Carrollton Lafarge Terminal. She was expected to be outbound the Saginaw River early Sunday evening.

The tug Rebecca Lynn and her tank barge called on the Bit-Mat dock in Essexville to unload. The pair were expected to be outbound early Sunday morning.

9/11 - Buffalo - Brian Wroblewski
The Herbert C. Jackson was unloading at ADM and seemed to be just about done Sunday afternoon.

The Courtney Burton backed out of the harbor Saturday evening about 8:45 p.m. She was being towed by an unknown tug. The move was quite a sight at night, there was much scanning of the harbor with powerful searchlights to locate the buoys. Once they were out beyond the buoys, the tug detached and came back up the river. The tugs usually move around from the stern to help push the bow around to get the ship lined up with the gap, but the Courtney Burton swung around with just her thruster and in 15 minutes or so she was out the gap and on her way.


Willowglen tow in the Seaway

9/11 - Update 7:00 a.m. - Ron Walsh
The Willowglen arrived at Iroquois lock at 5:30 p.m. Both the Tony Mckay and Progress called Seaway Iroquois and inquired about inspection. The Inspector arrived at 6:40 p.m. The Montrealais, Annalisa, Emerald Star and yacht Sunrise were allowed to pass upbound as the Willowglen tow was tied to the upper wall for inspection. The tow finally passed through Iroquois lock, downbound, after the Grande Mariner.

Sunday morning at 6:00 a.m. the tow was eastbound at CIP # 5

9/10 - Update 7:15 p.m. - Ron Beaupre and Frederick H. Hager
At 7:15 p.m. the up bound Emerald Star is spotted in Iroquois Lock. The Grande Mariner was just above the lock and will take the lock from the Star. Below the lock the luxury yacht Sunrise, registered in Georgetown, Cayman Islands, will be the next up bound. Meanwhile, the Willowglen tow is tied at the far end of the upper approach wall undergoing inspection by a Seaway Authority official prior to entering the Seaway.

Pictures in the News Photo Gallery and Public Photo Gallery

9/10 - Ron Walsh
The Willowglen tow was eastbound in the Seaway about 10 a.m. Saturday morning. She was at the Cape Vincent breakwall last night at 10 p.m. The tug Tony McKay, tug Progress and Willowglen are expected at Brockville around 1:30 p.m.


Photo Gallery Updates -
September 11

News Photo Gallery updated

Public Photo Gallery
New albums in Shipping - Mail Boat, Iroquois Lock, Willowglen Tow,
Port of Oswego and Detroit River albums.


Today in Great Lakes History - September 11

On 11 September 1883, EXPLORER (2-mast wooden schooner, 48 foot, 33 gross tons, built in 1866, at Chatham, Ontario) struck rocks and went down on Stokes Bay on the outside of the Bruce Peninsula.  Her crew was visible from shore clinging to the wreck until the vessel broke up.  All five were lost.

The GEORGE M HUMPHREY of 1927, was patched and refloated on September 11, 1944. She had sunk in 80 feet of water after a collision with the steamer D M CLEMSON of 1916, off Old Point Light, on June 15, 1943. On May 6, 1944, the barges MAITLAND NO 1 and HILDA were employed as pontoons for the salvage operation positioned over the sunken hull. Cables were attached to the HUMPHREY's hull and to the barges. The hull was raised through a series of lifts which allowed it to be brought into shallower water. Partial buoyancy was provided by the HUMPHREY's ballast tanks which were pumped out to about 25% of capacity. The HUMPHREY was patched and refloated on September 11, 1944. She was taken to the Manitowoc Ship Building Co. first for an estimate of repairs which totaled $469,400, and then was towed to Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin for reconditioning which was completed at a reported cost of $437,000. Captain John Roen's Roen Transportation Co. assumed ownership on September 18, 1944 and the next year the ship was renamed b.) CAPTAIN JOHN ROEN. She re-entered service on May 1, 1945, chartered to the Pioneer Steamship Co. on a commission basis. Renamed c.) ADAM E CORNELIUS in 1948, and d.) CONSUMERS POWER in 1958.  Scrapped at Kaohsiung, Taiwan in 1988.

September 11, 2001 the former Bob-Lo boat STE CLAIRE was towed from Detroit to Toledo. She was later towed to Lorain, Ohio, Windsor, Ontario and in August, 2005, she was taken to Belanger Park in River Rouge.

On September 11, 1987, while in lay-up at Point Edward, Ontario, the FORT YORK caught fire which gutted her bridge.

Carrying cargoes off the Lakes, the CANADA MARQUIS departed Halifax bound for Philadelphia with a cargo of grain. The HON PAUL MARTIN departed Halifax the same day on her way to Tampa with a load of gypsum.

The HORACE JOHNSON sailed on her maiden voyage light from Lorain, Ohio on September 11, 1929, bound for Two Harbors, Minnesota to load iron ore.

On 11 September 1895, S P AMES (2 mast wooden schooner, 61 foot, 43 gross tons) was driven ashore at Pointe aux Barques, Michigan in a storm. She was quickly stripped before she went to pieces. She had been built in 1879, at Montrose, Michigan, in farm country, well inland, on the Flint River by Mr. Seth Ames. He wanted to use her to return to sea, but he died the day before her hull was launched.  

On 11 September 1876, the schooner HARVEST HOME sank on Lake Michigan while bound from Chicago for Cleveland with a load of scrap iron. She was about 26 miles off Grand Haven, Michigan. The crew were taken off by the schooner GRACIE M FILER just as the boat was going down.  

Data from: Joe Barr, David Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, Jody L. Aho James Neumiller, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series. This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history



Port Report - September 10

9/10 - Cleveland - Bill Kloss
Edwin H. Gott unloaded at Cleveland Bulk Terminal, her first time in there. Reserve was unloading unloading at CBT as well.

9/10 - Welland Canal - Paul Beesley
Grand River Navigation’s Manistee made her first visit to the Welland Canal with this name.  She was carrying iron ore for Hamilton and is expected to pick up a load of slag for Alpena for her return trip up the canal. This vessel, formerly the Richard Reiss, was sold to Grand River Navigation in January, 2004 for 1.8 million dollars.  

She is powered by a 2,950 horsepower diesel engine (her original power plant being replaced in 1976) and is equipped with a bow thruster. Her 16 hatches feed into 6 compartments where she is capable of carrying 14,900 tons at her maximum mid-summer draft of 24 feet 7 inches. She is equipped with a 250 foot bow-mounted self-unloading discharge boom that can be swung 105 degrees to port or starboard.

Pictures in the News Photo Gallery.



Huron Lady II offers St. Clair Flats Cruise

Huron Lady II Cruises is offering “The Flats” Cruise aboard the Huron Lady II Monday, October 10 at 10 a.m.. This 7- hour cruise takes you from Port Huron downriver past St. Clair, Marine City and Algonac, then past scenic and historic Harsens Island and the beautiful St. Clair Flats known as the “Venice of the Great Lakes”. Along the way you will learn about the Golden Age of Steamboating with Michael M. Dixon, Author of "When Detroit Rode the Waves and "Life at the Flats". Along the way view Great Lakes freighters, lights and beautiful waterfront homes. The price is $72. A noon dinner will be served on board. Call 888-873-6726 or visit for more details.

Reported by Capt. John Rigney


Today in Great Lakes History - September 10

On 10 September 1884, the 137 foot steam barge HENRY HOWARD was sailing up bound with the schooner-barge GEORGE WORTHINGTON in tow when she caught fire near Harsen’s Island at the mouth of the St. Clair River. The fire broke out near the HOWARD’s engine room and spread rapidly. The vessel was beached on the island but the WORTHINGTON ran against her and was thus scorched. No lives were lost. The HOWARD was valued at $5,000, but only insured for $3,000 by her owners, B. Hoose and Julia Miner.

The whaleback tanker METEOR was towed from Manitowoc, Wisconsin by the tug JOHN ROEN IV to Superior, Wisconsin on September 10, 1972.

The b.) KINSMAN ENTERPRISE turned 75 years old on September 10, 2002. When she entered service as a.) HARRY COULBY, on this date in 1927, the 631-foot bulk freighter was the third largest on the Great Lakes.

While up bound in the Welland Canal on September 9, 1986, it was noted that the port anchor of the J W MC GIFFIN was missing, her chain was almost touching the water. Rebuilt with a new cargo hold section by Port Weller Drydocks, Ltd., in 1999, renamed b.) CSL NIAGARA.

On 10 September 1909, COLUMBUS (wooden propeller bulk freighter, 136 foot, 439 gross tons, built in 1874, as the tug JOHN OWEN) burned to a total loss at her dock at Gargantua, Ontario in Lake Superior. She was cut loose and allowed to drift out into the bay where she sank. The top of her engine reportedly still shows above the water.

September 10, 1979 - The SPARTAN was laid up. She remains in Ludington, MI.

The barge N MILLS was launched at P. Lester's yard in Marysville, Michigan on 10 September 1870. Her dimensions were 164 feet x 30 feet x 12 feet.

Data from: Max Hanley, Joe Barr, David Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, Jody L. Aho, James Neumiller, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series. This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history



Courtney Burton Headed to Buffalo

The Courtney Burton made her up bound transit through the Welland Canal today after transiting down 2 days ago for Hamilton. She was in Lock 3 around 10:00 a.m and appeared off Buffalo around 6:00 p.m.

Today, she carried about 17,000 tons of grain for Buffalo – a half load. This is rumoured to be a one-time venture although the ship did require new hatch seals and a dust collector on her self-unloading boom.

Pictures in the News Photo Gallery.

Reported by Paul Beesley and Brian Wroblewski



Willowglen on the Move

scrap tow of Willowglen has departed Hamilton and at 07:45 a.m. Friday morning is now at mid-Lake Ontario. The McKeil tug Tony McKay is the lead tug with Progress assisting. The tow is due at Iroquois Lock tomorrow morning.

Reported by Ron Beaupre



Port Burwell in running for ferry base

9/9 - Port Burwell is among the locations being looked at as a Canadian base for a Lake Erie ferry. Emphasizing it’s a long shot and very preliminary, Bayham Mayor Lynn Acre said she had phone calls from Seaport Management about Port Burwell becoming the port for a cross-lake ferry. “We’re going to start dialogue through our economic development committee and see where it goes,” she said.

Acre said she was up front with the representative, telling him about the problems with the Port Burwell Harbour and accessibility. She does believe if such a proposal could come to fruition it would receive support in the village. Proposals to bring a ferry to Port Stanley have met with some resistance from residents of that village. “People there in years gone by were used to the (former coal boat) Astabula and I think they miss that bustling,” she said.

The mayor said she had the impression more than one company was interested in locating a ferry in Port Stanley and Seaport being one of them. She didn’t know any further details of what was being planned, such as what type of ferry it could be or the points it would potentially run between. Port Burwell does have vacant land where a ferry port could be built, although most of it is in private hands. On the east side of the creek, the majority of the land is owned by a numbered company from Toronto. On the west side, the same company owns a portion of the land, as does Talisman and the Ministry of Natural Resources.

Mayor Acre said it is too early to tell where the proposal might go. “We’ll sit down and listen to them for sure,” she said. “We’re going to start dialogue through our economic development committee and see where it goes.” 

From the The Tillsonburg News




Port Reports - September 9

Saginaw River by Todd Shorkey
Wednesday on the Saginaw River saw two outbound vessels. First out was the tug Joyce L. Van Enkevort and barge Great Lakes Trader who had unloaded at the Wirt dock in Saginaw. The pair was followed by the tug Invincible and barge McKee Sons who had also unloaded at the Wirt dock in Saginaw.

Inbound late Wednesday was the Maumee who called on the GM dock in Saginaw. She unloaded overnight and was outbound Thursday afternoon. Maumee was delayed at the Lafayette bridge, holding position in the channel just upriver from the bridge until an electrical problem could be fixed and the bridge opened. After around an hour she was back on her way to the lake.

Back Thursday night was the tug Joyce L. and the Great Lakes Trader. The pair called on the Sargent dock in Essexville and was unloading there at the time of this report. It is likely she will continue upriver to finish her unload at the Saginaw Rock Products dock and be outbound Friday.

Marquette by Lee Rowe
The Lee A. Tregurtha made another of her frequent trips to Marquette. The Michipicoten, another frequent visitor to the dock, continues to make her round trips between Marquette and Algoma. The Kaye E. Barker came in for ore on Thursday, with fleetmate Charles M. Beeghly expected in the morning, although she may have to wait for dock space.

The Mesabi Miner had a long wait at anchor in Marquette's harbor while the Charles M. Beeghly loaded ore. The Miner's load of coal required her to tie up on the same side of the dock the Beeghly was using, hence the wait.

Buffalo by Brian Wroblewski
Construction began in early September on flood improvements along Cazenovia Creek in South Buffalo. Bank sloping and other changes were being made above Stevenson St. to help prevent the large ice jams that have occurred during the Spring Thaw on an almost yearly basis. This area lies just upstream from the end of the navigable section of the Buffalo River and cannot be reached by either the Buffalo fire tug COTTER or the tracked "DUK" vehicles used on the upper sections for icebreaking near South Park Ave.

The Courtney Burton is supposed to be back in the Welland Canal, up bound for Buffalo on Friday. The Jackson should also be here within a week.

The Karen Andrie just showed up with barge A-390 at the Buffalo North Entrance. She is inbound for the Black Rock Canal at 8:o p.m. The Captain just told Seaway Long Point they will be heading out around 12 midnight on Saturday.

Cheboygan, MI by Fred Stone
On Friday, Calumet entered the Cheboygan River and unloaded stone from Port Dolomite at the Durocher yard. This is the second time this summer for a Lower Lakes Transportation boat in Cheboygan. On May 20, Maumee delivered stone also to Durocher from Port Dolomite. Self-unloaders are a very rare sight in the Cheboygan River.



Photo Gallery Updates -
September 9

News Photo Gallery updated

Public Photo Gallery
New albums in Shipping, Scenic, Model and Other/Personal/Off Topic


Today in Great Lakes History - September 09

On 09 September 1886, GENERAL WOLSELEY (wooden side-wheel steamer, 103 foot, 123 tons, built in 1884, at Oakville, Ontario) caught fire on her way to Dyer’s Bay, Ontario. She was run ashore for the crew to escape near Cape Croker on Georgian Bay and burned to the water’s edge.

The WOLVERINE (Hull#903) was launched September 9, 1974, at Lorain, Ohio by American Ship Building Co. for the Union Commerce Bank (Ohio), Trustee (Oglebay Norton Co., mgr.), Cleveland, Ohio.

DETROIT EDISON (Hull#418) was launched September 9, 1954, at Manitowoc, Wisconsin by Manitowoc Ship Building Co. for the American Steamship Co. (Boland & Cornelius, mgr.) Buffalo, New York.

The Steamer PERE MARQUETTE 18 sank on September 9, 1910, with a loss of 29 lives. No cause for the sinking has ever been determined. The PERE MARQUETTE 17 picked up 33 survivors, losing 2 of her own crew during the rescue.

The first of two fires suffered by the Grand Trunk carferry GRAND RAPIDS occurred on September 9, 1980. The cause of the fire was not determined.

On 9 September 1929, the ANDASTE (steel propeller self-unloading sandsucker, 247 foot, built in 1892, at Cleveland, Ohio) was probably overloaded with gravel when she “went missing” west of Holland, Michigan. The entire crew of 25 was lost. When built, she was the sister of the “semi-whaleback” CHOCTAW, but was shortened 20 feet in 1920-21, to allow her to use the Welland Canal.

On 9 September 1871, Captain Hicks of the schooner A H MOSS fired the Mate, a popular fellow, in a fit of anger the same time that a tug arrived to tow the schooner out of Cleveland harbor. The crew was upset to say the least, and when the tow line was cast off and Capt. Hicks ordered the sails hoisted, the crew refused to do any work. The skipper finally raised the signal flags and had the tug towed his vessel back into the harbor. When the MOSS dropped anchor, he fired the entire crew then went ashore to hire another crew.

The m/v ROY A JODREY (Hull#186) was launched in 1965, at Collingwood, Ontario by Canadian Shipbuilding & Engineering Co. Ltd. for Algoma Central Railway Ltd.

Data from: Max Hanley, Joe Barr, David Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series. This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history



Hurricane Katrina Affecting Grain Shipments

9/8 - New Orleans - The Port of New Orleans, one of the five busiest in the nation, is out of commission, and that threatens to create a mushrooming crisis for many U.S. industries. Farmers in the Midwest depend on it to ship their wheat, corn, soybeans and other grains. The Mississippi River links to the Ohio, the Illinois and the Missouri rivers, and manufacturers from across the Midwest depend on vast fleets of inland river barges to carry chemicals, steel, rubber and other cargoes to world export through New Orleans. Before Katrina, about 60 percent of the nation's exports of raw grains floated down the Mississippi, but Katrina brought the grain trade to a near halt. Grain elevator operators had been holding inventory for months because of low world prices. Now, as the approaching harvest season for corn and soybeans creates increased demand for empty storage silos, a grain-export crisis looms.

The Port of New Orleans has slowed from a bustle to a crawl as berths once reserved for giant cargo ships make way for floating hotels that will provide living quarters for about 1,000 people involved in port activities. Port President and Chief Executive Officer Gary P. LaGrange hopes the port can be back to about 50 percent of normal operations within a month. "Six months from now, I really believe we'll be up to 100 percent," LaGrange said optimistically during an interview Wednesday at port offices overlooking the muddy Mississippi River. For port users, who shipped more than 31 million tons of general cargo through New Orleans last year, six months may seem like an eternity. Meanwhile, the lobby of the port's office building is a staging area for state police SWAT team officers.

Senate Finance Committee Chairman Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, warned Wednesday that "while the devastation caused by Katrina in Louisiana is severe, initial reports indicate that the situation could be worse from the standpoint of resuming grain exports." The U.S. Coast Guard this week reopened the river to barge traffic and ocean-going ships that draw less than 39 feet of water. River terminals normally operate 24 hours a day on three shifts, but for now the river is open to traffic only during the daytime.

To move Midwest grain supplies that are backing up, the National Grain and Feed Association is asking Louisiana parishes to let vessels on the Mississippi load grain at night even if they aren't allowed to move downstream until dawn. The partial reopening of the Mississippi doesn't much help the largest grain exporters, such as Minnesota-based Cargill Inc. It uses giant vessels that draw 42 or 45 feet of water and must call at river terminals where barges offload grain directly onto them. "The overriding issue remains that our grain export activities are at a standstill," said David Feider, a Cargill spokesman in Minneapolis.
Cargill has studied rail and truck options and determined that "the best option remains staying right where we are," he said. A single barge load of grain is equivalent to 15 railcars or 60 tractor-trailer rigs. Soaring fuel costs make truck transport less attractive, and railcars are not available to take grain toward Great Lakes outlets such as the Port of Duluth, which would be an illogical route for southbound shipments.

A strong U.S. economy has left railroads with few spare locomotives to divert for grain shipments. Besides, railcars used to transport grains, called hopper cars, are allocated months in advance and there are few to spare. "For the last three years we've been short (railcars), and this is probably the tightest we've ever seen the market. Before the hurricane, this was the tightest market ever," said Ed McKechnie, chief commercial officer for Watco Companies, owner of the grain-carrying Mississippi Southern Railroad and the Missouri & Oklahoma Railroad. In North Dakota, where grains are shipped by rail to ports in Washington state, farmers fear that railroads might not deliver hopper cars because Katrina created needs in the Midwest. "There is concern with railcar availability. The less options you have, the more it can impact your market," said Lance Gaebe, a policy adviser to North Dakota Gov. John Hoeven.

Back in New Orleans, an estimated 1.6 million large bags of coffee beans remain locked in port warehouses, but Port CEO LaGrange believes most of them can be salvaged. However, frozen poultry products destined for export are a total loss. Bananas could move through neighboring ports, but University of Delaware maritime specialist James Corbett said Wednesday that as much as 20 percent of the refrigerated containers used to transport bananas are positioned at the hard-hit Port of Gulfport in Mississippi. "This could affect the price of bananas and winter fruits into the Southeast region, and also in the Northeast region," he said.

Reported by Knight Ridder News


Port Reports - September 8

9/8 - Alpena by Ben & Chandra McClain
The Paul H. Townsend arrived at Lafarge around 5am on Tuesday. It took on cement for Green Bay, WI. Tuesday evening saw the Steamer Alpena returning to its namesake port. It loaded cement and departed around midnight bound for Milwaukee.

The J.A.W Iglehart was anchored outside of Cleveland on Wednesday, waiting for the English River to depart. The G.L Ostrander is expected to be in Alpena on Thursday afternoon.

The Maumee loaded at Stoneport on Wednesday morning, followed by the Great Lakes Trader.



Today in Great Lakes History - September 08

On 08 September 1868, HIPPOCAMPUS (wooden propeller, 152 tons, built in 1867, at St. Joseph, Michigan) stranded in a storm off St. Joseph, Michigan and was pounded to pieces. 36 of the 41 passengers were lost. Litigation continued until 10 November 1884, when the owner was held innocent of blame in the U. S. Court at Grand Rapids, Michigan.

The a.) GEMINI (Hull#745) sailed on her maiden voyage in August, 1978, from Levingston Shipbuilding Co., at Orange, Texas, to load fuel oil at Baytown, Texas, for delivery at Detroit, Michigan. Passing upbound the next month on September 8th through the Welland Canal, GEMINI became the largest U.S. flagged tanker on the Great Lakes with a capacity of 76,000 barrels. GEMINI was renamed b.) ALGOSAR in 2005.

The W E FITZGERALD (Hull#167) was launched September 8, 1906, at Wyandotte, Michigan by Detroit Ship Building Co. for the Chicago Navigation Co., Chicago, Illinois (D. Sullivan, mgr.).

The bulk freighter HENRY A HAWGOOD was launched September 8, 1906, at Cleveland, Ohio by the American Ship Building Co. for Minerva Steamship Co. (W.A. & H.A. Hawgood, mgr.), Cleveland. Renamed b.) C RUSSELL HUBBARD in 1912 and c.) W W HOLLOWAY in 1935.

The RADIANT departed the shipyard September 8, 1913, light on her maiden voyage bound for Montreal, Quebec.

September 8, 1970 - The MILWAUKEE CLIPPER made her last run from Milwaukee, Wisconsin.On September 8, 1985, the downbound the Panamanian NORCHEM collided with the upbound CANADIAN PROSPECTOR near Kanawake, Quebec. PROSPECTOR had little damage but NORCHEM was ripped open near her port anchor.

On 8 September 1885, ADVANCE (wooden schooner, 119 foot, 180 gross tons, built in 1853, at Milwaukee, Wisconsin) was carrying wood when she became waterlogged and capsized in a gale and blinding rain near Port Washington, Wisconsin in Lake Michigan. All but one of her crew of 7 drowned when her yawl capsized in the surf.

On 8 September 1871, the schooner MORNING LIGHT was sailing from Kelleys Island on Lake Erie with a cargo of stone for Marquette, Michigan in heavy weather. Trying to enter the Detroit River, the crew miscalculated their position and ran the ship aground on Pointe Mouille, just below Gibraltar. The crew scuttled the vessel in the shallow water to save her from harm. The following day, the tug GEORGE N BRADY was sent out with steam pumps and hawsers and the MORNING LIGHT was raised and towed to Detroit for repairs.

Data from: Max Hanley, Joe Barr, Al Miller, David Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, James Neumiller, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series. This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history



August Great Lakes Stone Trade Down 10.6 Percent
Shipments Below Month's 5-Year Average

9/7 - Cleveland - Shipments of limestone from U.S. and Canadian Great Lakes ports totaled 4.7 million net tons in August, a decrease of nearly 11 percent compared to a year ago, and slightly shy of the month's 5-year average. High inventories at many receiving docks accounted for much of the decline.

For the year, the Great Lakes limestone trade stands at 23.5 million net tons. While the end-of-August YTD total represents a decrease of 4.3 percent compared to a year ago, the trade is still more than 6 percent ahead of its 5-year average.

The 5-year average for the month of August is 4,739,685 net tons. Of the total, 3,842,092 tons were shipped from U. S. ports and 897,593 from Canadian ports.

The 5-year YTD average is 17,768,903 from U. S. ports and 4,393,894 from Canadian ports, for a total of 22,162,797 net tons.

The report covers shipments from the U. S. ports of Calcite, MI; Drummond Island, MI; Kellys Island, OH; Marblehead, OH; Port Inland, MI; and Presque Isle, MI. Canada ports are Bruce Mines, Manitoulin Island, Port Colborne and Smelter Bay, all in Ontario.

Reported by the Lakes Carriers' Association


Marquette Planning Commission Backs Ore Dock Plan

9/7 - MARQUETTE - The Marquette Planning Commission Tuesday gave its initial support to a developer's plan to renovate the abandoned ore dock in Marquette's Lower Harbor. The planning commission voted unanimously to send the plans to the Marquette City Commission for approval, recommending the ore dock be zoned as a Planned Unit Development.

It also recommended that the city commission hold additional public hearings on the plans and that it authorize city administration to discuss the legal arrangement of the purchase or leasing of the ore dock to the developer, The Ore Dock, LLC. Following 2.5 hours of public comment and discussion, the planning commission also recommended that the city commission support The Ore Dock in proceeding with legislative issues at the state level. "I get the sense that we like the concepts, and we're saying as an advisory board that the city commission should continue to look at this proposal with the community," planning commission Chairman Tom Tourville said.

The Ore Dock has proposed renovating the dock into four floors. The bottom floor would contain parking. The second would consist of about 25 apartments, each about 1,500 square feet. The third and fourth floors would make up about 25 two-story lofts, each about 3,000 square feet. A roughly 10-foot promenade would be extended around the dock, creating 2,200 feet of additional waterfront property. About 5,000 square feet of interior space would also be reserved for public use, the usage of which would be left to the city to decide.

Most public comment at the well-attended meeting was positive toward the plans. However, some residents were concerned with the price tags the condos would carry. Ray Gregory, a candidate for the city commission in the November general election, said that with another luxury development along the Lower Harbor, Marquette residents would begin to feel like "visitors" in their own city. "I note that the median income of people of the city of Marquette is a little over $29,000 per year," he said. "I've got a feeling, looking at the numbers going into this project, that these condos are not going to be offered anywhere within the range of anything that can practically be purchased by a vast majority of local residents."

Gary Kropp, a Marquette native and Milwaukee-based founder of The Ore Dock, conceded that the condos would be "premium housing." However, considering that it would be at least two to three years for the units to become available even if The Ore Dock receives permission to build, "to talk about pricing right now would be a little bit premature," he said. Jack Leadbetter, also a candidate for the city commission, applauded the developers for their "foresight and vision." "They may be rather pricey, and not in my range, but that's OK," he said.

Because the ore dock is built on state bottomlands, The Ore Dock would need a legislative amendment legalizing the renovation of the dock into condos. Kropp said he has contacted officials from the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality and the governor's office, both of which have told him there was a "very strong likelihood" that law could be amended if he receives permission from the city to move forward.

Marquette resident and local maritime expert Fred Stonehouse said he "could not be more enthusiastic" in his support for Kropp's plan. "Boy, what a great opportunity to take a liability for the city of Marquette and turn it into a public asset," he said.

Courtesy of The Mining Journal, reported by Mike Arendt


Courtney Burton in Welland Canal

Courtney Burton made her first trip through the Welland Canal in many years. It has been reported that her last trip through was in 1966.

She took on fuel early in the morning, at Port Colborne, and then left the fuel dock and sailed down bound. Of interest, she is not able to lift her steering pole so that has to be factored into her length for lock transits.

Pictures in the News Photo Gallery.

Reported by Paul Beesley


Teakglen on the move

The Puvis Marine tug Avenger IV, assisted by the Sarnia based tug Menasha, towed the Teakglen from Sarnia about 2:45 p.m. Wednesday headed for Thunder Bay.

The tugs struggled with the tow fighting the swift current below the Blue Water Bridges. Once in lower Lake Huron the tug Menasha turned back for Sarnia. The Avenger IV will continue the tow across Lake Huron and will be joined by the tug Scott Purvis at DeTour to assist for the journey upward through the St. Marys River.

The Teakglen is reported to be heading for Thunder Bay to be refitted and put back into service.

Reported by Frank Frisk and Angie Williams


Hurricane could result in more Great Lakes shipments

Hurricane Katrina has shut down the terminus of the nation's largest single grain artery - the Mississippi River - at least temporarily. The disruption could force farm commodities to flow to other destinations, such as the Twin Ports, particularly if grain-handling facilities in New Orleans and the Port of South Louisiana remain out of commission for weeks to come.

"I've heard reports that it could be anywhere from one to 14 weeks before normal operations resume," said Carrol Duerr, manager of the Colfax Farmers Elevator in Colfax, N.D., and the Midwest Shippers Association. He observed that uncertainty about the port's outlook makes it difficult for shippers who normally send crops down the Mississippi to determine whether they should make alternative plans this year.

If the shipping disruption lasts only a week or so, Chuck Hilleren, president of Guthrie-Hubner Inc., a ship agent in Duluth, suspects the Twin Ports will see little additional business. But if it takes a month or more for exports to again flow through the mouth of the Mississippi, he said Great Lakes ports could receive a significant bump in grain shipments. Facilities in the New Orleans area typically handle about 2 billion bushels of crops -- or 50 percent of U.S. farm exports -- each year.

Hilleren said that the Twin Ports, in contrast, handle 4 to 5 percent of the nation's annual grain exports. "Even a little blip in the system could double our business overnight," Hilleren said. He pointed out that when the Mississippi flooded 10 years ago, it resulted in increased business to the Twin Ports. "It sounds sick, but we may benefit from what happened to New Orleans," said Steve Sydow, operations manager for Fedmar International's ship agency in Duluth. "It's the nature of the business."

Ron Johnson, the Duluth Seaway Port Authority's director of trade and economic development, said it's really too soon to tell what impact events in Louisiana will have on Duluth. Johnson said the availability of railcars, inbound cargoes for the Great Lakes and ships that are properly sized for the St. Lawrence Seaway will all have an effect on the flow of commodities to Duluth.

Efforts to assess the damage done to shipping facilities in New Orleans and in the port of South Louisiana continued Friday, as crews from National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration used sonar to sound shipping channels in search of sunken barges, shipping containers and other wreckage that could pose a hazard to ships. Even though most of Louisiana's port activities are at a standstill, barge traffic continues to head down the Mississippi.

"It's still business as usual for us," said Larry Laber, who manages a CHS elevator in Winona, Minn. Although his facility isn't into its busy season, Laber said it continues to send two or three loaded barges down the river daily.

From Duluth News Tribune


Port Reports - September 7

Duluth-Superior by Al Miller
The Manistee paid a rare call to the Twin Ports on Tuesday, arriving with salt to unload at Hallett Dock 8 and then moving to the BNSF ore dock to load taconite pellets.

Hallett 8, located near Midwest Energy Terminal on the Wisconsin side of the harbor, is beginning to handle more bulk cargoes, such as salt, after being used mostly for lumber and wood the past few years. Hallett Dock Company plans to close its dock up the St. Louis River at the head of navigation, so apparently more traffic is being routed into Hallett 8 and the Hallett dock next to the DMIR ore dock.

A vessel that appeared to be Agawa Canyon was loading Tuesday morning at Midwest Energy Terminal while the Walter J. McCarthy Jr. waited nearby in the turning basin for its turn at the dock. Also nearby was Quebecois, the latest in a string of vessels to load at CHS elevator.

On Monday, the St. Clair made the unusual trip of loading coal at Midwest Energy Terminal and delivering it about two miles away at CLM dock in Superior. The dock needs coal periodically and delivery by self-unloader is much faster than truck or rail.

Saginaw River by Todd Shorkey
The CSL Tadoussac was outbound the Saginaw River early Tuesday morning.  It is unknown if she was able to offload her cargo at Essroc, or if she departed heavy.  Inbound Tuesday was the tug Joyce L. Van Enkevort and barge Great Lakes Trader.  The pair lightered at the Bay City Wirt Dock and then continued upriver to finish at the Wirt dock in Saginaw.  Inbound behind the Trader was the tug Invincible and barge McKee Sons.  The pair stopped at the Wirt dock in Bay City and was unloading there as of 11 p.m. Tuesday.  Both vessels are expected to be outbound early Wednesday morning.


Photo Gallery Updates -
September 7

News Photo Gallery updated

Public Photo Gallery
New albums in Shipping, Scenic, Model and Other/Personal/Off Topic


Today in Great Lakes History - September 7

On September 7, 1978, the ROGER M KYES lost all power in Lake St. Clair requiring tug assistance from the Great Lakes Towing Co. tugs MARYLAND and MAINE which escorted her to the Great Lakes Steel dock. Renamed b.) ADAM E CORNELIUS in 1989.

The CADILLAC of 1943, was laid up on September 7, 1981, for the last time at Toledo, Ohio. She was later transferred to a West coast marine operation in preparation for conversion for a proposed container ship for service between Chicago, Detroit and Quebec City. However these plans never materialized.

On September 7, 1921, the D G KERR pulled up to the ore dock at Two Harbors, Minnesota to load exactly 12,507 gross tons of iron ore in the record breaking time of sixteen and a half minutes. This was accomplished through the cooperation of the dock superintendent, the dock employees concerned, the ship's captain and crew and the Pittsburgh Steamship Co. as a means of "showing up" the competition. Her time of arrival and departure to and from the dock took only nineteen minutes. For comparison, a good average loading time at that time was about three hours and forty-five minutes.

On September 7, 1975, on the St. Marys River loaded with iron ore pellets, the WILLIAM G MATHER, forced out of the channel by a salt water vessel, struck bottom. Upon proceeding further onto Lake Huron it was soon discovered that her pumps were unable to cope with incoming water caused by the damage. She was beached at Frying Pan Island (De Tour, Michigan) in 19 feet of water when it became evident they couldn't make dock.

On 7 September 1883, LAURA BELL (wooden schooner, 138 foot, 269 gross tons, built in 1870, at Toledo, Ohio) was carrying coal from Cleveland, Ohio to Marquette, Michigan when she stranded off Shot Point, east of Marquette in Lake Superior. Her crew spent 3 days in her rigging and all but one was rescued by a tug from Marquette.

September 7, 1916 - The PERE MARQUETTE 3 ran aground 10 miles north of Milwaukee.

September 7, 1996 - The American Society of Mechanical Engineers designated the propulsion system of the BADGER a mechanical engineering landmark.

The launch of the 188 foot wooden schooner ELIZABETH A NICHOLSON was set for 4:00 p.m., on 7 September 1872, at E. Fitzgerald's shipyard in Port Huron, Michigan. Just before 4:00 p.m., a telegram was received at the shipyard from Capt. Nicholson, the owner of the new vessel, which read, "Wait a while. We are coming." The launch was delayed until another dispatch was received which said to go ahead anyway. The boat Capt. Nicholson was on had broken down. The launch went well. The vessel was painted deep green with her name in gilt. All present cheered the sight, but there was no party afterwards. All of the food and beverages for the celebration were with Capt. Nicholson on the disabled vessel.

On 07 September 1883, the COLORADO (wooden schooner-barge, 118 foot, built in 1866, at Fairport, Ohio) was in tow of the steamer DON M DICKINSON along with the schooner-barge N P GOODELL in a gale on Lake Huron. As the gale worsened, the string of vessels went to shelter in the harbor at Sand Beach (now Harbor Beach), Michigan. The COLORADO broke loose as they entered the harbor. Deckhand Abbot Way jumped on to the breakwater with a line to secure the COLORADO, but the line broke as soon as it went taut. It broke three times and the barge drifted out into the gale, stranding Mr. Way on the breakwater with six foot waves washing over it. He managed to get to the harbor light at the end of the breakwater and climbed up above the waves where he was stranded for two hours until the crew of the Lifesaving Station got to him. COLORADO beached herself with no loss of life. She was later recovered and lasted until 1902 when she was abandoned.

Data from: Max Hanley, Joe Barr, Tin Stackers - The History of the Pittsburgh Steamship Company, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history


Rand Acquisition Corp. to Acquire
Lower Lakes Towing and Grand River Navigation Company

Rand Acquisition Corporation announced Tuesday that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire privately-held Lower Lakes Towing Ltd. and Grand River Navigation Company, Inc. Port Dover, Ontario-based Lower Lakes Towing, together with its wholly-owned U.S. subsidiary, Lower Lakes Transportation Company, is a leading provider of bulk freight shipping services throughout the Great Lakes region. Grand River charters four U.S. flag vessels to Lower Lakes Transportation under long-term time charters.

Under the terms of the acquisition, Rand, through its newly-formed subsidiary, will purchase all of the stock of Lower Lakes Towing and Grand River for $53.73 million less the amount of indebtedness to be refinanced at closing of the acquisition. The transaction will be financed through a combination of cash on hand, the private placement of $15.0 million of Rand's newly-created Series A Convertible Preferred Stock and $22.5 million of senior debt financing from an institutional lending source.

The companies, which began operations in 1994, operate a fleet of seven River Class self-unloading carriers and one integrated self-unloading tug/barge unit representing more than one-third of all River Class vessels servicing the Great Lakes. The companies have long-term contracts with a diverse customer base in the construction aggregates, integrated steel, salt, agriculture and electric utility industries to transport aggregates, iron ore, coal, limestone, salt, agricultural products and other dry bulk commodities. The companies' smaller, more versatile, self-unloading fleet is able to gain entry to ports that are difficult or impractical for larger ships to access. In addition, the fleet characteristics, cargo mix and skilled management facilitate highly efficient and productive operations.

The companies are the only carriers able to offer significant domestic port-to-port services in both Canada and the U.S. on the Great Lakes. Grand River's vessels operate under the U.S. Jones Act, which dictates that only ships that are built, crewed and owned by U.S. citizens can operate between U.S. ports. Lower Lakes Towing's vessels operate under the auspices of the Canada Marine Act, which requires Canadian commissioned ships to operate between Canadian ports. In connection with the acquisition, Rand will impose customary limitations on its share ownership to ensure continued Jones Act compliance.

For the fiscal year ended March 31, 2005, the combined companies generated net revenue of approximately $44.9 million, which produced adjusted EBITDA of approximately $9.7 million. From fiscal year 2002 through fiscal year 2005, net revenue increased at a compound annual rate of approximately 20.3% and adjusted EBITDA grew faster, at an annual rate of approximately 30.1%. Adjusted EBITDA is defined as earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization, adjusted for non-recurring and unusual items.

Laurence S. Levy, Chairman and CEO of Rand, stated, "I could not be more enthusiastic about this transaction. After a comprehensive due diligence effort, we found the companies to be an extremely attractive investment opportunity. The companies have developed a 30% share of the niche Great Lakes River Class bulk freight market, and benefit from substantial regulatory and asset-oriented barriers to entry. They have built an attractive, diversified base of customers, which are generally serviced under long-term contracts. Additionally, the companies' expert management, which has long-standing industry relationships, together with the well maintained fleet provide considerable competitive advantages."

Mr. Levy continued, "From a financial perspective, the business has historically been characterized by consistent revenue and EBITDA growth, and stable, predictable cash flow. Looking forward, the companies are positioned to benefit from continued economic improvement and end market growth. Additionally, I believe this transaction and Rand's conservatively leveraged balance sheet will produce a strong vehicle with which to pursue acquisition opportunities for other companies operating under the Jones Act."

Scott Bravener, President and CEO of Lower Lakes Towing, added, "I believe strongly in our future prospects and am confident that the companies will benefit from Laurence's leadership and extensive experience operating and growing logistics businesses. We look forward to consummating this transaction and combining our strengths."

Management of the acquired companies will remain unchanged following the acquisition. Rand intends to appoint Scott Bravener, Lower Lakes' President and CEO, to its Board of Directors, and Rand may otherwise increase the size of its Board in connection with the acquisition, but Rand has not granted to any person or entity the right to appoint individuals to its Board.

The investment banking group of NatCity Investments, Inc. is acting as financial advisor to Lower Lakes Towing in the transaction.


Port Reports - September 6

Buffalo by Brian Wroblewski
Karen Andrie showed up off the Buffalo North Entrance at 1PM. They were due out at 8:00 a.m. Tuesday.
The American Mariner call in for the Gateway Terminal in Lackawanna around 3:00 p.m. on the 5th.

Milwaukee by Paul Erspamer
On Sunday, saltie BBC Russia was at Milwaukee's Heavy Lift dock, loading. Cruise vessel Grande Caribe was berthed at Pier Wisconsin, just south of the art museum. Tug Barbara Andrie and barge A-390 discharged at the liquid bulk terminal/pier in the outer harbor.


Today in Great Lakes History - September 06

On 29 August 1872, a storm struck Lake Erie.  On 06 September 1872, nine days after she set sail from Port Colborne for Detroit, the schooner J W SARGENT was listed as missing in the Detroit newspapers – probably a victim of that storm.  Later on the same day that the newspaper announcement was published, the SARGENT arrived in Detroit.  Captain William Simms stated that the storm drove him south to Erie, Pennsylvania where he sheltered for a few days.  He sent a telegraph message to the ship’s owner but the news was not relayed to Detroit.  The SARGENT only lasted another three months.  In November 1872, a storm got her on Lake Erie.

The BADGER was launched on September 6, 1952, at Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin. In a christening ceremony that included the SPARTAN (launched earlier that year). The BADGER was named in honor of the University of Wisconsin. The BADGER was built by Christy Corporation, and is powered by two Skinner 4 cylinder Steeple Compound Unaflow Marine Steam engines, developing over 7,000 horsepower. She was the last of the large, coal-fired steamers to be built in the United States, and the only ship of her type still operating on the Great Lakes. The BADGER offers seasonal passenger service from Ludington, Michigan to Manitowoc, Wisconsin from mid May to early October.

The BELLE RIVER began her maiden voyage when she loaded 56,073 long tons of western coal at Superior, Wisconsin on August 31, 1977, and arrived at Detroit Edison Co.'s Belle River power plant at Recors Point on September 6, 1977. today sails as b.) WALTER J. MC CARTHY, JR.

On September 6, 1992, the H LEE WHITE was in tow of the "G" tugs COLORADO and LOUISIANA entering the Trenton Channel when she struck a section of the toll bridge at Grosse Ile, Michigan knocking down a 150 foot span immediately east of the main river channel. The WHITE was not damaged but a new section of the bridge had to be installed at a cost of $1.7 million. The bridge was back in service in late January, 1993. The U.S. Coast Guard investigated this casualty and their report states that it was the failure of the bridge tender to operate and open the bridge which caused this casualty. The Coast Guard found that the master of the WHITE was operating his vessel in a prudent and lawful manner including the use of whistle signals.

The CHARLES E. WILSON completed her sea trials in 1973.  Renamed b.)  JOHN J. BOLAND in 2000.

The GEORGIAN BAY collided with the steamer CHARLES HUBBARD in the fog-covered lower St. Marys River September 6, 1955.

On September 6, 1989, the twin screw rail car ferry GRAND RAPIDS left Muskegon, Michigan in tow of the tugs ANGLIAN LADY and PRINCESS NO 1, and arrived at Port Maitland, Ontario on September 11th. Scrapping was completed in the fall of 1994.

On 6 September 1887, BLUE BELL (2-mast wooden scow-schooner, 84 foot, 122 gross tons, built in 1867, at Milwaukee, Wisconsin) was carrying lumber from Wilt’s Bay, Michigan to Milwaukee when she missed the harbor entrance at Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin in a storm. She was driven ashore where she broke up. Her crew made it to the beach with the aid of the local U.S. Life Saving crew. The total loss was valued at $5,000.

On 6 September 1871, the wooden schooner ROSA STEARNS, loaded with coal, was battling a storm for hours off Cleveland, Ohio. The ship was driven on the stone breakwater about 1:00 a.m. and was pounded to pieces. The crew jumped onto the breakwater and crawled to safety as the waves crashed over them.

Data from: Joe Barr, Jody L. Aho, Max S. Hanley, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series. This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history



New Mackinaw on Sea Trials

The new USCG Mackinaw also called "Great Lakes Ice-breaker" went out on its first builders trials Monday morning.

 They departed the dock at Marinette Marine around 9:30 a.m. after some delays. The tugs Escort and Erika Kobasic assisted the Mackinaw down river.

For the next 7-9 days the Mackinaw will conduct trials on the bay of Green Bay and tie up at night at Marinette Fuel & Dock, above the Ogden St. Bridge.  

Pictures in the News Photo Gallery

Reported by Scott Best


CSL Tadoussac Boom Trouble

CSL Tadoussac arrived in the Saginaw River early Monday morning to unload cement clinker at the Essroc Terminal in Essexville.  While deploying her unloading boom, the brakes failed causing the boom to crash down to the dock.  Reports indicated that at the time of the accident the brakes were "smoldering".  The Captain of the CSL Tadoussac radioed US Coast Guard Station Saginaw River to report the incident and asked them to inform other large vessels to transit the area at a very slow speed.  No injuries were reported.
Pictures in the News Photo Gallery

Reported by Todd Shorkey


Lake Superior begins its dip early

Amid reports that Lake Superior's water level is already heading downward, the Corps of Engineers sharply reduced water releases to the lower Great Lakes.
In a statement, the Corps said outflow through power plants and the Lake Superior Compensating works was cut by 14 percent to 77,700 cubic feet per second. As a lingering drought continued to blanket much of the Upper Great Lakes region, the Corps said water supply to Lake Superior was significantly below average in a dry August.

Water supply to Lakes Michigan and Huron was likewise below normal last month. The monthly reports indicated Lake Superior began its seasonal decline a month early, falling by two inches in August - when the Big Lake normally rises slightly. As September began, Lake Superior stood at eight inches below its long term average and three inches lower than last year at this time.

The early decline in Lake Superior water levels comes after a period of protracted drought in the Upper Lakes region that extends back to the start of 2005. The entire Upper Peninsula has shared in the lengthy period of well-below average rainfall that continued in August, despite slightly wetter conditions. At Sault Ste. Marie, a yearly rainfall deficit that brushed eight inches in July remained at seven full inches below the norm in August, despite moderate to heavy rains late in the month. Even with the late rains, the monthly total at Sault Ste. Marie fell slightly short of average.

Meanwhile, Lakes Michigan and Huron fell by two inches in August and were 16 inches below their average for September as the month began.
As in the past, the bulk of the 77,700 cubic feet per second released from Lake Superior into the lower St. Marys River this month will be diverted for hydroelectric power generation. Altogether, 73,200 cubic feet per second of the total outflow is going for hydro generation purposes. The sharp reduction in Lake Superior water releases follows an increase in releases late in the summer and a period of two weeks during which all or most of the gate in the Compensating Works were opened for short periods, greatly increasing the flow over the St. Marys Rapids.

This month, the gates will be opened the equivalent of one-half gate open - or four gates opened 10 inches. Water flow in the fisheries channel at the north end of the Compensating Works will not be affected by the sharp overall cut in water releases. Normally, all three of the Upper Great Lakes decline steadily starting in August and September. The decline normally continues for the balance of the calendar year and plateaus early in the new year. The Upper Great Lakes normally begin to rise again late in the winter and early in spring, propelled upward by snow melt across a large watershed extending from Northern Ontario across the lower Lakes.

From the Soo Evening News


Teakglen Headed for Thunder Bay

The Teakglen is expected to be towed to Thunder Bay early this week according to reports from Sarnia. The vessel was rumored to be heading for scrapping when she was towed to Sarnia from Goderich last month.

Recent reports say that the worked couldn't be completed in Sarnia so the vessel will be towed to Thunder Bay where crews will refit the vessel for service.

Pictures in the News Photo Gallery

Reported by Frank Frisk


Port Reports - September 5

Saginaw River by Todd Shorkey

The tug Joe Thompson, Jr. and barge Joseph H. Thompson were inbound the Saginaw River late Saturday night.  The pair called on the Materials Services dock up in Saginaw unloading overnight.  They were outbound Sunday morning.
Inbound early Sunday morning were the tug Undaunted and barge Pere Marquette 41 and the tug Rebecca Lynn and her tank barge.  Both called on the same slip in Bay City with the Undaunted unloading at Bay Aggregates and the Rebecca Lynn unloading at Bit-Mat.  The Undaunted and Pere Marquette 41 were outbound Sunday afternoon and the Rebecca Lynn and her barge were expected to be outbound early Monday morning.  Also inbound on Sunday was the tug Invincible and barge McKee Sons.  The pair called on the Sargent dock in Essexville to lighter before continuing upriver to finish unloading at the Saginaw Rock Products dock.  They are expected to be outbound Monday morning.
The tug Gregory J. Busch was outbound Sunday evening pushing the deck barge STC 2004.

Saginaw River by Gordy Garris
The Indiana Harbor made a rare visit to the Saginaw River on Saturday calling on the Consumers Power Plant in Essexville to unload coal. She arrived inbound at the Pump-Out Island around 11am and was secured to the Consumers Power Plant dock, beginning to unload by 12:30pm. The Harbor was expected to be outbound the Saginaw River late Saturday night.

The barge McKee Sons and the tug Invincible were outbound the Saginaw River early Saturday morning after unloading overnight in Saginaw. The pair had arrived late Friday night with a split load.

Welland Canal by David Bull
c.Columbus has returned to her usual fall schedule of Great Lakes cruises after being absent during 2004.  She was upbound in the Welland Canal on Saturday.



Webcam Fund Raising

The popularity of the Detroit River Livecam has literally worn out the present equipment and at this time we are starting a Fund Raising Drive to replace the camera. This new Web Cam Fund Raising Project includes the option of using PayPal.

Beginning in July 2003, the Great Lakes Maritime Institute and the Dossin Great Lakes Museum have provided a unique service to the maritime community. The 'Detroit River Watch' has brought the passing lake and ocean freighters, motor and sailboats, and even the rowing shells to the home and office monitors of the boat watching community.  

This popular feature has not come without a price. Since the start of the project over two years ago, the counter on the webpage has logged more than 600,000 visits. Numerous viewers have enjoyed the connection to our maritime heritage, and the over use of the current equipment now requires replacement equipment. Additionally the expense of our high speed wireless connection over the past two years has cost almost $8,000.00.  

The Dossin Great Lakes Museum is located on a main shipping channel, and the 'Detroit River Watch' camera is interactive and extremely popular. Control access is available to viewers to actually follow and zoom in on a passing vessel in real time.

The new equipment will offer the same user control, a stronger zoom and more robust hardware to accommodate the heavy usage the camera sees.

The group was ready to start a fund raising drive when the existing camera failed. All funds raised will go toward the purchase of the new camera, payment of the monthly connection charges and expansion of the camera network. Before the failure of this unit GLMI had planned to add a second river watch camera at a location below the Ambassador Bridge, giving live user controlled images of over half the Detroit River. This second camera is planned for but will depend on the fund raising.

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4th Annual Capt. Cathy's Cruise for Kids

The event will be held on Sunday, September 11, from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. We will once again be taking 200+ children and their families from Children's Hospital and Most Holy Trinity Church on a three hour boat tour across the Detroit River on the Diamond Jack River Boat.

Reported by Gary Nasiatka


Photo Gallery Updates -
September 5

News Photo Gallery updated

Public Photo Gallery
New albums in Shipping, Scenic and Model


Today in Great Lakes History- September 5

On 05 September 1898, the MONTGOMERY (wooden schooner-barge, 204 foot, 709 tons, built in 1856, at Newport [Marine City], Michigan as a passenger/package freight steamer) sank in 21 feet of water on Lake St. Clair after colliding with the whaleback barge 137 (steel barge, 345 foot, 2480 gross tons, built in 1896, at W. Superior, Wisconsin) which was being towed by the ALEXANDER MC DOUGALL (steel propeller semi-whaleback freighter, 413 foot, 3686 gross tons, built in 1898, at W. Superior, Wisconsin). The MONTGOMERY was raised and repaired. She lasted another two years – breaking up in a storm in 1901.

On September 5, 1964, the 730-foot bulk freighter LEECLIFFE HALL sank after colliding with the Greek ocean vessel APPOLONIA in the St. Lawrence River.

The CHI-CHEEMAUN completed her sea trials on September 5, 1974, and then cleared the Collingwood shipyard on September 26th.

The BENJAMIN F FAIRLESS cleared Lorain on her maiden voyage September 5, 1942 for the Pittsburgh Steamship Co..

The J P MORGAN JR returned to service September 5, 1948, after repairs suffered in an accident in June.

The NEW QUEDOC arrived at McLouth Steel, Trenton, Michigan on her maiden voyage September 5, 1960, with a load of Labrador iron ore.

The WYANDOTTE of 1916, a.) CONNEAUT, was towed down the Welland Canal on September 5th & 6th, 1973, on her way to the cutters torch.

On 5 September 1905, ABERCORN (wooden propeller “rabbit”, 126 foot, 261 gross tons, built in 1873, at Marine City, Michigan) burned at the dock at Goderich, Ontario While unloading coal. She reportedly caught fire from the explosion of a signal lamp.

The schooner CALEDONIA, wrecked the previous autumn near the Fishing Islands on Lake Huron, was raised and arrived in Port Huron, Michigan on 5 September 1882, under tow to be rebuilt. 

 Data from: Joe Barr, Father Dowling Collection, Jody L. Aho, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series.  This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history


Diamond Belle Fall Tour Set for October 2

Diamond Jack's River Tours has set their annual fall color tour of the Detroit River for Sunday October 2, 2005. The Diamond Belle will depart the Wyandotte dock at 10 am and head up bound, passing USS Great Lakes Steel, Nicholson's Terminal, the former Bob-Lo steamers Columbia and Ste. Claire. The cruise will continue up the river passing under the Ambassador Bridge to downtown Detroit. Then turning down bound, the Diamond Belle will cruise along the Canadian shore passing downtown Windsor, Sandwich, Ojibway, and LaSalle following the channel east of Fighting Island. Down bound the Livingston Channel we will view Stony Island and the west side of Bob Lo. The vessel will turn up bound again at light D-33 passing the east side of Bob Lo, the old lighthouse from 1836, and the town of Amherstburg and Fort Malden Canada. Continuing up bound along Grosse Ile and its many large homes we will see Grosse Ile lighthouse from 1906, before returning to the Wyandotte dock at Bishop Park at 3:00 pm. Tickets are by reservation at $60 per person including a buffet luncheon on board. Phone 313-843-9376 for more information


Today in Great Lakes History- September 4

On 04 September 1889, the new steamer CHEROKEE (wooden propeller freighter, 209 foot, 1002 gross tons) arrived in Port Huron, Michigan from M. P. Lester’s yard in Marine City, Michigan for the Phoenix Iron Works in Port Huron to installed the engine and boiler.  Her outfitting was then completed by Carleton and Cole of Port Huron.  

Two favorites of many boatwatchers, entered service on August 4. The WILLIAM CLAY FORD  entered service on August 4, 1953, and the EDWARD L RYERSON entered service on August 4, 1960.

The ONTADOC of 1975, sailed to Holland with a load of bentonite from Chicago, Illinois on August 4, 1979.  ONTADOC sails today as the b.) MELISSA DESGAGNES, renamed in 1990. 

The E J BLOCK was laid up for the last time at Indiana Harbor, Indiana on August 4 1984, and was sold for scrap in late May, 1987.

The D M CLEMSON left Superior on August 4, 1980, in tow of Malcolm Marine's TUG MALCOLM for Thunder Bay, Ontario where she was dismantled. 

The HOCHELAGA (Hull#144) was launched August 4, 1949, at the Collingwood Shipyards Ltd., Collingwood, Ontario for Canada Steamship Lines Ltd., Montreal, Quebec.

On a foggy August 4, 1977, the POINTE NOIRE went hard aground near the entrance to the Rock Cut in the St. Marys River and blocked the channel. After her grain cargo was lightered by Columbia Transportation's crane steamer BUCKEYE, the POINTE NOIRE was released on August 6th. She was reloaded in Hay Lake and continued her down bound trip. Repairs to her bottom damage were completed at Thunder Bay. Ontario.

On 4 September 1902, ALICE M BEERS (2-mast wooden schooner, 105 foot, 154 gross tons, built in 1864, at Algonac, Michigan) was light when she hove to off the dock at Glen Arbor, Michigan in a gale. However, she slipped her anchor and was driven onto the channel marker. She was holed and drifted ashore where she later broke up. No lives lost.

On 4 September 1876, CITY OF PORT HURON, a wooden steam barge, sank a few miles off shore near Lexington, Michigan at about noon. She was heavily loaded with iron ore and sprang a leak at about 11 o'clock. Most of the crew managed to get on top of the cabin while two were in the forward rigging as she went down in 6 fathoms of water. The heavy seas washed over those on the cabin. Captain George Davis and two others floated ashore on wreckage while a fish boat picked up the five others. No lives were lost.

 Data from: Joe Barr, David Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, Jody L. Aho, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series.  This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history


Soo Locks 150th Anniversary Closing Ceremonies
Featured Politicians and Pickets, but few boats

A crowd of several hundred witnessed the Soo Locks 150th Anniversary Closing Ceremonies in front of the Locks Visitors Center Friday afternoon.

A delegation of dignitaries including Governor Jennifer Granholm, U.S. Senator Carl Levin and Congressman Bart Stupak were on hand to make remarks before a time capsule was buried in front of the Visitors Center. The dignitaries and committee members poured buckets of sand to fill the hole containing the time capsule.

A Locks Open House, from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. allowed visitors to access the area between the MacArthur and Poe Locks, and inside the first floors of the Administration and Davis Buildings.

Unfortunately, the only boat traffic was the Alpena, who locked up just after the Open House began. BBC Russia locked down after leaving Algoma Steel, just as the Open House closed.

Musical selections were provided by the Dodworth Saxhorn Band. The group is an Ann Arbor-based recreation of a 19th-century community brass band. The group was accompanied by ladies and gentlemen in period costumes.

Finally, a group of protestors carried picket signs on the sidewalk in front of Locks Park. The group was asking the governor for help after being fired on Wednesday at the local Kewadin casino.



Port Reports - September 3

Marquette by Lee Rowe
The Michipicoten arrived at Marquette's ore dock on Thursday. The Herbert C. Jackson and John J. Boland loaded ore on Friday. The James R. Barker arrived with coal. The Saginaw arrived later for ore. The Jackson departed and returned to the dock and is waiting for parts.


Ashtabula Marine Museum Restoration Project

Ashtabula Marine Museum and The Lincoln Electric Company are sharing the restoration work of the world's first electrically welded steel vessel with more than a little help from her many friends. She is a tug-style boat originally named the Dorothea M. Geary. “This boat was built locally in the Port of Ashtabula back in 1915,” states Ashtabula Marine Museum Director, Betty Carnegie. "We were fortunate to be able to obtain her inexpensively; her last owner, F. Ned Dikmen, publisher of Great Lakes Boating, advertised that she was sitting in a Wisconsin boat yard available for donation to any charitable non-profit organization with an interest in restoring it," she added.

The director began to tell of the boat’s journey home, “She was delivered by a large truck owned by DMH Marine Transport and it seemed like it was just a long trailer full of rusty metal! Several said and continue to say, it wasn’t worth the effort to try to save her and a few others felt that it was worth a try.” Mrs. Carnegie continued, “After all, a museum is for preserving history and what better way to preserve history than to take something historic that was forgotten, so many times sold, modified and torn apart and find a way to try to put it back together again and finally preserve a historic boat built right here in Ashtabula!” “It is almost like trying to put Humpty Dumpy back together again. And, from what I am told, even the King’s Men didn’t even try to take on that job!”

The rusted hull of the 40-ft. tug-style workboat was unloaded from the truck by Koski Construction with help by museum members Ken Novak and Neil Barton. It is now sitting in a secure area and back in her rightful spot of history in the Ashtabula Harbor area. "We hope the vessel can be used for more than a museum display, perhaps providing rides aboard an “historic boat on the river and/or lake including possibly to the Ashtabula Lighthouse when both have been restored," said Bob Frisbie.

In 1915, the Geary Boiler Works and Machine Shop of Ashtabula Harbor built the Dorothea to service other boats with boiler or mechanical problems and sometimes break through ice on the lake. Company owner Francis L. "Frank" Geary named the boat after his youngest daughter Dorothea M. Geary, but her 10-yr-old sister Lillian was given the honor of doing the christening. After locating several descendants of the Geary family, the museum is pleased that some are now staying in close contact with the project and are sharing the excitement about the Dorothea coming back to Ashtabula. The boat had several previous owners around the Great Lakes and multiple uses including being a service boat, then a Sea Scout training vessel (renamed “Ugh the Tug”), and finally, a pleasure boat. “The museum plans to restore the boat's name to Dorothea M. Geary someday with a "Rechristening" once restoration work has been completed,” stated Frisbie.

While donation of new Ľ” steel is being sought, money donations may also be made to the "Geary Project" payable to the "Ashtabula Marine Museum." The Great Lakes Marine and Coast Guard Memorial Museum mailing address is: P.O. Box 1546, Ashtabula, OH 44005-1546. The museum is located at 1071 Walnut Blvd., Ashtabula; phone number is 440-964-6847.

Reported by Robert Frisbie  


Raffle Winner Announced

The Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan Convention & Visitors Bureau would like to congratulate Christian P. Kamm, from Rocky River, Ohio who is the lucky winner for the drawing of the 150th Soo Locks Anniversary Celebration, on September 2, 2005 for a five night cruise aboard a Great Lakes Fleet freighter. Included in this prize is the ability to bring up to five guests along for the ride, which will occur during the 2006 shipping season.


Photo Gallery Updates -
September 3

News Photo Gallery updated

Public Photo Gallery
New albums in the Shipping


Today in Great Lakes History - September 3

On September 3, 1899, the Great Lakes Towing company’s RED CLOUD (wooden propeller tug, 62 foot, 40 gross tons, built in 1883, at Buffalo, New York) was sailing on Lake Erie for Lorain, Ohio when a storm forced her to head for port at Cedar Point, Ohio. However she was thrown on a reef and broke in two – a total loss. The crew made it to Sandusky, Ohio.

On September 3, the BELLE RIVER (now WALTER J MC CARTHY JR) set a then Great Lakes record for coal when it loaded 62,802 tons of coal at Superior Midwest Energy Terminal on its maiden voyage. This record has since been surpassed many times.

At Lorain, Ohio keel laying ceremonies for the 437 foot bow section of the ROGER BLOUGH (Hull#900) took place on September 3, 1968, and was float launched December 21, 1968, less ballast tanks because the existing dry dock wasn’t wide enough to accommodate her 105 foot width.

SOODOC (Hull#210) of 1976, on her maiden voyage from Collingwood, Ontario, loaded salt at Goderich, Ontario on September 3, 1976. Renamed b.) AMELIA DESGAGNES in 1990.

U.S. Steel's SEWELL AVERY was laid up for the last time September 3, 1981, at Superior, Wisconsin.

The THOMAS W LAMONT was laid up for the last time at Duluth’s Hallett dock #6A on September 3, 1981.

The H H PORTER sailed on her maiden voyage for the Brier Hill Steamship Co. (Pickands, Mather, mgr.) on September 3, 1920, light from Lorain, Ohio to load iron ore at Two Harbors, Minnesota. Renamed b.) WALTER E WATSON in 1957 and c.) NATIONAL TRADER in 1973.

On September 3, 1985, PHILIP R CLARKE plowed into the Drawbridge Cove Marina in Lorain's Black River damaging 5-10 small craft and sinking one at the steel dock. CLARKE managed to stop before hitting the Route 6 drawbridge.

On 3 September 1887, BULGARIA (wooden propeller, 280 foot, 1888 gross tons) was launched at West Bay City, Michigan by J. Davidson, as their hull number 16.

September 3, 1910 - The MARQUETTE & BESSEMER NO 2 (Hull#450) was launched in Cleveland, Ohio by the American Ship Building Co. for the Marquette & Bessemer Dock & Navigation Co. She was the replacement for the MARQUETTE & BESSEMER NO 2 of 1905, (Hull#428), which foundered on Lake Erie, December 7, 1909.

On 3 September 1869, the 167 foot wooden propeller BOSCOBEL burned about two miles below St. Clair, Michigan. Three lives were lost. The ship was only about two years old and was in service of the New York Central Railroad, though owned by the Peshtigo Lumbering Co. of Chicago. The burned hulk was raised in 1876 and rebuilt as a schooner-barge at Algona, Michigan. She lasted until 1909 when she sank on Lake Huron.

Data from: Max Hanley, Joe Barr, David Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, James Neumiller, Jody L. Aho, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history


Some cargo diverted from Gulf could go through Great Lakes

Some cargo that cannot be transported through Gulf Coast ports because of the damage from Hurricane Katrina might be diverted through northern Indiana harbors, an official said.

Jody Peacock, spokesman for the Ports of Indiana, said shipments of clump iron ore from China that were to be loaded onto barges in New Orleans had been delayed there.

Those shipments, along with countless others, travel up the Mississippi River to the Illinois River, north to Lake Michigan and over to the port in Burns Harbor, 10 miles east of Gary.

With the shipments stopped in New Orleans, it has forced importers, exporters and transportation experts to devise the next-best route. “The business world is planning and planning and planning and figuring out how to go about dealing with this issue,” Peacock said.

Cargo that traditionally travels by water through the Gulf ports could go to Houston then north on the Mississippi River to Midwest states, but some parts of the river might not be able to accommodate oceangoing vessels.

Shipments could head east on a train and then transfer to a truck to reach their destinations, racking up high fuel costs, he said.

Diverting the ships through the St. Lawrence Seaway to the Great Lakes to Burns Harbor would allow the cargo to remain on water, resulting in significant transportation savings, he said.

“The Port of Indiana Burns Harbor might even become the New Orleans of the North if this is an extended (closure),” he said.

According to Peacock, one barge moved by one tugboat takes up one quarter of a mile of river channel. The same amount of cargo transported on rail cars would make up two and a quarter trains and take up 3 miles of track.

If transported on roads, it would take 870 trucks over 34 miles of highway. With fuel costs skyrocketing, the option of barge travel becomes even more attractive, Peacock said. “This has tremendous implications for the transportation industry in Indiana,” Peacock said.

From the Associated Press


Jones Act waiver for Oil and Gasoline

President George W. Bush said Thursday that he has instructed Secretary of Homeland Security Chertoff to temporarily waive the requirement that oil and gasoline be transported from one U.S. port to another via U.S. -flag ships.

How the waiver will actually be implemented and how long it will last remains to be seen.

In a statement the president said: "Another challenge we face is that the downed pipelines are causing the need to transport gasoline to needed markets by ship. Under current law, shipping between American ports can only take place on American ships, and there are currently not enough American ships to move the oil and gasoline to where it's needed. So today I've instructed Secretary of Homeland Security Chairman Chertoff to temporarily waive this requirement, so foreign ships can also help distribute oil and gasoline to where it's needed. Today's action will further help us move gasoline to accommodate the demands of the American citizens."

From the Marine Log


Captain of Imbat Pleads Guilty

Hassan Atkas, a Turkish citizen, the Captain of the trouble Maltese vessel Imbat Pleaded guilty in a Quebec City courtroom August 31,  pleaded guilt to violating to a section of the immigration Act obliging him to immediately report a crew member's disappearance in the case of three of eight sailors who deserted the ship between Aug. 12 and Aug. 21.

Atkas pleaded guilty after the RCMP arrested him on Tuesday. The Mounties searched the Imbat for information, such as the ship's log and other records, as the Crown accused Mr. Atkas of not telling immigration officials that eight sailors had fled the ship. The Turkish crewmen have claimed refugee status.

The court ordered him to pay a $3.000 fine for each of the three sailors. In addition the Citizenship and Immigration Department served Atkas a deportation order, which bars him from returning to Canada. The owner of the Imbat Bora Shipping, was fined $25,000 per sailors for eight defections. Mr. Atkas's lawyer said at the arraignment hearing this week that Mr. Atkas took over the ship only the day before the first man left the ship.

The Imbat was allowed to sail after Transport Canada was satisfied that the Imbat had a minimun crew of 15, the ship left Quebec City for Salerno Italy at 6 p.m. Aug. 31.

From the Montreal Gazette & Toronto Globe and Mail, reported by Charlie Gibbons and Kent Malo


Today in Great Lakes History - September 2

On 02 September 1902, the White Star Line’s TASHMOO (steel side-wheel excursion steamer, 308 foot, 1344 gross tons, built in 1900, at Wyandotte, Michigan) hosted President Theodore Roosevelt when he came to Detroit, Michigan to speak to Spanish American War veterans. The vessel took the president and his party on a sight seeing tour up and down the river while flying the president’s blue and gold flag from the main mast.

The BROOKNES (Hull #1177) was launched on September 2, 1970, at Glasgow, Scotland by Lithgows Ltd. for "Langra" Schiffahrsges G.m.b.H. & Co., Hamburg, Germany. Brought to the Lakes in 1976, converted to a self-unloader and renamed b.) ALGOSEA and sails today as c.) SAUNIERE.

ROBERT KOCH's first trip was on September 2, 1977, up the Welland Canal bound for Buffalo with cement.

The W F WHITE was one of the earliest ships built as a self-unloader on the Great Lakes. On her maiden voyage September 2, 1915, the WHITE loaded coal at Erie, Pennsylvania and sailed for Menominee, Michigan. She was the largest self-unloading bulk carrier on the Lakes at that time with a cargo capacity of 10,500 tons.

The RALPH H WATSON departed light September 2, 1938, from Detroit, Michigan upbound to load iron ore at Duluth, Minnesota. She was built as part of a fleet modernization plan for the Pittsburgh Steamship Co., Cleveland, Ohio. of four new "GOVERNOR MILLER' class bulk carriers, the other two were the JOHN HULST and the WILLIAM A IRVIN. The WATSON was only the fourth steam turbine powered vessel on the Lakes

HUBERT GAUCHER ran aground in the lower St. Lawrence on September 2, 1988. It took three tugs to free her, repairs took place at Quebec City.

ZIEMIA TARNOWSKA lost her engine while docking at Pier 24 in Cleveland, ramming the dock and caused about $100,000 in damage on September 2, 1988. The Polish vessel had minimal damage to her bulbous bow.

On 2 September 1851, BUNKER HILL (wooden sidewheeler, 154 foot, 457 tons, built in 1835, at Black River, Ohio) burned to a total loss at Tonawanda, New York.

The COLONEL ELLSWORTH (wooden schooner, 138 foot, 319 gross tons, built in 1861, at Euclid, Ohio as a bark) was beached on Whitefish Point in Lake Superior the entire winter of 1895-96. She was repaired and put back into service late in the summer of 1896. Then, on 2 September 1896, the newly rebuilt vessel collided with the schooner EMILY B MAXWELL about 6 miles from White Shoals on Lake Michigan and sank at about 4:00 a.m. Her crew escaped in the yawl and was picked up by the MAXWELL.

Data from: Max Hanley, Joe Barr, David Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, James Neumiller, Jody L. Aho, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history


Taconite producers feel the fuel pinch

Iron Range taconite producers are feeling the fuel pinch just like the rest of the nation.

"We use about 10,000 gallons a day, so you do the math," said Jonathan Holmes, general manager of Mittal Steel USA Minorca Mine near Virginia. "We're seeing the same changes in pricing that everyone else sees."

Except on a million-dollar scale. In 2003, Iron Range taconite plants used more than 25 million gallons of diesel fuel, said Frank Ongaro Jr., president of the Iron Mining Association of Minnesota. And that was during a slow year for the industry.

With the iron ore industry now in the midst of a boom and the onset of winter just months away, fuel consumption by the six taconite plants this year could be about30 million gallons, Ongaro said.

Taconite producers use diesel fuel to power mammoth-sized haul trucks, bulldozers and hydraulic shovels. The fuel tank of a typical 240-ton truck holds 800 gallons and is refueled once every eight hours.

Fuel consumption for a 240-ton truck -- depending on the length of haul and topo-graphy -- is about 30 gallons an hour, according to Craig Hartmann, United Taconite's area manager of mining. Bulldozers burn about 10 gallons an hour and shovels about40 to 50 gallons an hour, he said.

Fuel consumption for the six North American iron ore mines managed by Cleveland-Cliffs Inc. is about 24 million gallons a year, said Dana Byrne, a Cleveland-Cliffs spokesman.

As of last week, diesel prices were 55 cents per gallon higher than the company had projected for the year, he said. At that rate, Cleveland-Cliffs' fuel costs for the year would be $13.2 million higher than anticipated.

"It's pretty significant for our operating costs," Byrne said. "In addition, we're seeing a lot of delivery charges and surcharges being added to the cost of supplies being delivered to the mines."

The fuel prices are an un-expected cost that siphons money away from other areas of taconite production, Ongaro said. "It adds up to millions of dollars of costs that could otherwise go to other uses, like improvements and upgrades," he said.

U.S. Steel's Minntac Mine in Mountain Iron, North America's largest taconite plant, operates a fleet of30 production trucks, said John Armstrong, a U.S. Steel spokesman. U.S. Steel's Keewatin Taconite plant operates 13 production trucks.

Each of the trucks consumes 800 gallons of diesel fuel in a 24-hour period, he said. A 1-cent-per-gallon increase in the cost of fuel translates into a half-cent to 1-cent hike in the cost of producing a ton of taconite pellets, Holmes said.

"I don't think anybody would have guessed what fuel prices would be this year," Holmes said. "It's a concern. Hopefully, there won't be any supply shortages."

Skyrocketing natural gas costs are also taking a toll on taconite production costs. Taconite plants use natural gas to bake taconite pellets and heat their gigantic metal buildings.

With winter on its way and the necessity to heat buildings and keep diesel-powered equipment from freezing, taconite plant managers are bracing for even higher costs. "We just can't sit still," Holmes said. "We have to look at other ways to offset the impact and to be able to run more efficiently."

From Duluth News Tribune


Port Reports - September 1

Tuesday saw the barge Great Lakes Trader and tug Joyce VanEnkevort loading at the ore dock after dropping stone at the lower harbor.

Wednesday was a little more exciting day as the Michipicoten came in and received a larger load than ordered. The ore dock reportedly loaded 37 extra cars in the dock and had not recorded the ore. Michipicoten waited for the arrival of her fleet mate the Saginaw so she could  offload some of the ore piled above her hatches. The two ships tied up at the end of the dock and the Michipicoten used her boom to load the ore into the Saginaw's hatches.

Buffalo by Brian W.
The Courtney Burton arrived on Wednesday evening, heading to unload at General Mills. She was expected to depart Thursday afternoon.


Diamond Belle Fall Tour Set for October 2

Diamond Jack's River Tours has set their annual fall color tour of the Detroit River for Sunday October 2, 2005. The Diamond Belle will depart the Wyandotte dock at 10 a.m. and head upbound, passing USS Great Lakes Steel, Nicholson's Terminal, the former Bob-Lo steamers Columbia and Ste. Claire.

The cruise will continue up the river passing under the Ambassador Bridge to downtown Detroit. Then turning downbound, the Diamond Belle will cruise along the Canadian shore passing downtown Windsor, Sandwich, Ojibway, and LaSalle following the channel east of Fighting Island. Downbound the Livingston Channel we will view Stony Island and the west side of Bob Lo. T

The vessel will turn upbound again at light D-33 passing the east side of Bob Lo, the old lighthouse from 1836, and the town of Amherstburg and Fort Malden Canada. Continuing upbound along Grosse Ile and its many large homes we will see Grosse Ile lighthouse from 1906, before returning to the Wyandotte dock at Bishop Park at 3:00 pm. Tickets are by reservation at $60 per person including a buffet luncheon on board. Phone 313-843-9376 for more information.


Photo Gallery Updates -
September 1

News Photo Gallery updated

Public Photo Gallery
New albums in the Shipping


Today in Great Lakes History - September

On 01 September 1891, EDWARD H JENKS (wooden propeller freighter, 119 foot over all, 180 gross tons, built in 1882, at Port Dover, Ontario as the passenger/package freight steamer E M FOSTER) was carrying limestone up the Detroit River during a foggy night when she collided with GEORGE W MORLEY (wooden propeller freighter, 193 foot, 1045 gross tons, built in 1888, at W. Bay City, Michigan) in a misunderstanding of passing signals. Three were killed in the collision and the JENKS quickly sank at Ballard's Reef on the Detroit River. Her cargo kept her in place until she was recovered the following month and rebuilt.

Tragedy struck four days after the launch of the AGAWA CANYON, September 1, 1970, when the ship was rocked by an engine room explosion killing one of the crew and injuring seven more. The AGAWA CANYON entered service in November, 1970. New engines were fitted in 1975, equipped with four 10 cylinder, two stroke cycle, single acting opposed piston diesel engines, built in 1970, by Fairbanks, Morse (Canada), Kingston, Ontario. Total bhp 6,680. Rated service speed: 12 knots (13.8 mph).

The TEMPLE BAR (Hull#101G) was launched September 1, 1970, at Govan, Scotland by the Govan Division of Upper Clyde Shipbuilders Ltd. for Lambert Bros. (Shipping) Ltd., London, England. Renamed b.) LAKE NIPIGON in 1977, c.) LAKETON in 1984, d.) LAKE NIPIGON in 1986, and e.) ALGONORTH in 1987.

Upon her arrival at Quebec City on September 1, 1962, the LAKE WINNIPEG was the first vessel of the Nipigon Transport Ltd. (Carryore Ltd., mgr.) fleet.

The self-unloader B H TAYLOR (Hull#787) was launched September 1, 1923, at Lorain, Ohio by American Ship Building Co., the third self-unloader built for the Bradley Transportation Co., Rogers City, Michigan. Renamed b.) ROGERS CITY in 1957. Scrapped at Recife, Brazil in 1988.

From September 1, 1947, to September 15, 1959, the U.S.C.G.C. MESQUITE was stationed at Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan

On 1 September 1854, ABIAH (2-mast wooden schooner or brig, 134 foot, 353 tons, built in 1848, at Irving, New York) was sailing light from Chicago, Illinois to Oconto, Wisconsin when she capsized and sank in a squall about 10 miles off Sheboygan, Wisconsin. The schooner L LUDDINGTON rescued her crew and 2 passengers.

The 135 foot wooden schooner JOSEPH E SPARROW was launched at Bangor, Michigan on 1 September 1873.

On 1 September 1900, the Canadian steamer ADVANCE (wooden propeller package freighter, 168 foot, 1178 gross tons, built in 1884, at St. Catharines, Ontario) was placed in service. In August 1899, when she was named SIR S L TILLEY, she had caught fire off shore, about 7 miles from Fairport, Ohio and was destroyed. However, the hull was later recovered and used as the basis of the steamer ADVANCE. She lasted in this role until 1903, when she burned again.

September 1, 1919 - A switchman was killed in the yard at Manitowoc, Wisconsin while the ANN ARBOR NO 6 was being loaded. This caused a delay of four hours in her sailing time. September 1, 1931 - W.L. Mercereau retired as superintendent of steamships, a position he had held since 1899.

Data from: Max Hanley, Joe Barr, David Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, James Neumiller, Jody L. Aho, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series This is a small sample, the books include many other vessels with a much more detailed history

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