Great Lakes & Seaway Shipping News Archive

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* Report News

Port Reports -  September 30

Marquette, Mich. - Rod Burdick
John B. Aird loaded ore at the Upper Harbor on Sunday. The visit was her first since the Summer of 2011 and followed visits in 2013 by fleet mates Algowood, Algosteel, Peter R. Cresswell, Algolake, Capt. Henry Jackman and Algosoo.

Buffalo, N.Y. – Brian W.
The Robert S. Pierson remained at Burnett Dock Sunday night with no foreseeable time to head up to Lake & Rail. City of Buffalo DPW employees are still working on the broken Ohio Street Lift Bridge.

The tug Krista S. was passing Cleveland on the south shore of the Lake headed for Buffalo Sunday with more dredge equipment, possibly arriving Monday evening.

Toronto, Ont. - Jens Juhl
The bulker Garganey is in the final stage of discharging sugar out of holds 5 and 6 after doing the end-for -end turn around with the assistance of the tugs Ocean Golf and Omni Richelieu. The Toronto Port Authority ferry David Hornell VC is alongside Terminal 52 for scheduled maintenance, including a replacement of the main engines

 

Algoma Equinox prepares for China departure

9/30 - Algoma Equinox now shows Davao, Philippines, as her next port. It is assumd she will follow track of Algoma Mariner and recent CSL Trillium ocean trips.

Andy Torrence

 

Help wanted: Marine engineers at Lower Lakes

9/30 - Lower Lakes is looking for competent, practically skilled Marine Engineers with 1st or 2nd Class TC Motorship certification to join our team. Canadian Great Lakes dry bulk or related experience would be considered an asset; however a strong work ethic, attention to detail and the ability to work in a fast paced environment are considered prerequisites for this position. Strong interpersonal and communication skills are a must, as is a leadership style based on mutual respect of all Officers and Crew within a proactive, team oriented work environment. Candidates must be bondable, possess a valid passport and will have all applicable certificates and Transport Canada medical in good order.

If you are a leader or potential leader that is looking for a change, we offer a very competitive wage and benefit package, positive work environment and an industry leading leave system with a Month On, Month Off work rotation on a year round basis.

Applicants who meet the job requirements for this position are encouraged to send a resume and cover letter to: Personnel Manager, Lower Lakes Towing Ltd. PO Box 1149 – 517 Main Street, Port Dover, ON Ph: (519) 583-0982 Fx: (519) 583-1946, email: jobs@lowerlakes.com

 

Updates -  September 30

News Photo Gallery Special Gallery featuring the conversion of the former rail ferry Viking
Historical Perspectives Gallery updated - New pictures in the Champlain Gallery
 

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  September 30

On September 30, 1896, SUMATRA (wooden schooner-barge, 204 foot, 845 gross tons, built in 1874, at Black River, Ohio) was loaded with railroad rails in tow of the steamer B.W. ARNOLD in a storm on Lake Huron. The SUMATRA was blown down and foundered off the Government Pier at Milwaukee. Three of the crew was lost. The four survivors were rescued by the ARNOLD and the U.S. Lifesaving Service. The SUMATRA was owned by the Mills Transportation Company.

The 660-foot forward section of the BELLE RIVER (Hull#716) was side launched on September 30, 1976, at Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin, by Bay Shipbuilding Co. Renamed b.) WALTER J. McCARTHY, JR. in 1977.

ARTHUR SIMARD entered service on September 30, 1973, sailing to Montreal, Quebec, to load gasoline.

GOVERNOR MILLER was towed down the Welland Canal on September 30, 1980, in tow of TUG MALCOLM, STORMONT and ARGUE MARTIN on her way to Quebec City.

ROBERT C. STANLEY departed light on her maiden voyage from River Rouge, Michigan, on September 30, 1943, bound for Two Harbors, Minnesota, to load iron ore.

On September 30, 1986, the Canadian Coast Guard vessel CARIBOU ISLE struck a rock in Lake Huron's North Channel and began taking on water. C.C.G.S. SAMUEL RISLEY arrived and helped patch the ship. The pair then departed for Parry Sound, Ontario.

On September 30, 1888, AUSTRALIA (wooden schooner, 109 foot, 159 gross tons, built in 1862, at Vermilion, Ohio) was carrying cedar posts from Beaver Island to Chicago when she encountered a gale. She was laid on beam ends and sprung a leak. She headed for shelter at Holland, Michigan, but struck a bar and foundered in the mouth of the harbor. The wreck blocked the harbor until it was removed on October. 5 Her crew was rescued by the U.S. Lifesaving Service.

On September 30, 1875, AMERICAN CHAMPION (wooden scow-schooner, 156 tons, built in 1866, at Trenton, Michigan) dropped anchor to ride out a gale near Leamington, Ontario, on Lake Erie. The chains gave way and she struck a bar and sank to the gunwales. The crew of eight spent the night in the rigging and the next day a local woman and her two sons heroically rescued each one.

1906: The first FAYETTE BROWN ran into the pier entering Lorain, became disabled and stranded on the beach. The ship was refloated with considerable damage. It last operated as c) GLENMOUNT in 1923 and was scrapped about 1928.

1913: CITY OF LONDON sank off Point Pelee, Lake Erie after a collision with the JOE S. MORROW. The hull was later dynamited as an obstacle to navigation.

1964: DUNDRUM BAY was a pre-Seaway visitor to the Great Lakes on charter to the Hall Corporation. The vessel was driven aground on this date as f) ESITO near Necochea, Argentina, while traveling in ballast. The hull broke in two and was a total loss.

1965: PROTOSTATIS, a Greek Liberty ship, went aground on Traverse Shoal, Lake Ontario, while enroute from Detroit to Genoa, Italy, with a cargo of scrap. The vessel was lightered and refloated with the aid of tugs. It went to Kingston to anchor and reload in the shelter of Wolfe Island.

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

 

Port Reports -  September 29

Marquette, Mich. - Rod Burdick
Hon. James L. Oberstar and Michipicoten loaded ore at the Upper Harbor on Saturday.

Alpena, Mich. - Ben & Chanda McClain
Saturday morning the tug G.L Ostrander and barge Integrity arrived at Lafarge to load product for Detroit. American Courage made its way into the Thunder Bay River on a windy Saturday evening. It tied up and unloaded coal at the Decorative Panels International plant. Alpena is due in port early Sunday morning.

Marblehead and Sandusky, Ohio - Jim Spencer
The tug Victory and barge James Kuber continued loading Saturday night at the Lafarge stone dock at Marblehead. The pair arrived early Saturday morning. At Sandusky, Herbert C. Jackson loaded at the NS coal dock and sailed Saturday evening for Detroit.

Buffalo, N.Y. – Brian W.
On Saturday evening, the Robert S. Pierson remained tied up at the Burnett Dock while City of Buffalo DPW employees were working on the broken Ohio Street Lift Bridge.

The tug Defiance and barge Ashtabula came in around 9:30 a.m. for the Sand Supply Landing and began discharging cargo around 10:30 a.m. The crew hoped to have a relatively quick unload of about 6-8 hours. The barge was filled with a split cargo of fine and coarse sand and the crew started the unloading process with the 8,000 tons of coarse product. The pair was towed out of the City Ship Canal by the tug Washington at about 5:45 p.m. Saturday. They were abeam of Point Abino, headed westbound on the lake for Ashtabula, Ohio by 7:45 p.m.

The tug crew that towed the Defiance out mentioned that the lift bridge may be down for "some time" and it was unknown when the Pierson would be able to go upriver to unload at Lake & Rail. The G-tugs are able to lower their mast on a hinge and sneak under the bridge if they have to, and this was how the Washington was able to come downriver and assist the Defiance and Ashtabula.

 

Updates -  September 29

News Photo Gallery

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  September 29

September 29, 1930, for the first time in the history of Pittsburgh Steamship Company, the boats of the fleet loaded more than one million tons in a seven-day period. The 64 Pittsburgh boats loaded 1,002,092 tons of cargo between 9/23 and 9/29.

The J. H. SHEADLE (Hull#22) of the Great Lakes Engineering Works, was launched September 29, 1906, for the Grand Island Steamship Co. (Cleveland-Cliffs Iron Co., Cleveland, Ohio, mgr.) Renamed b.) F. A. BAILEY in 1924, c.) LA SALLE in 1930. Sold Canadian in 1965, renamed d.) MEAFORD, and e.) PIERSON INDEPENDENT in 1979. She was scrapped at Santander, Spain, in 1980.

Henry Ford II, 70, of Grosse Pointe, Michigan, passed away on September 29, 1987. Mr. Ford's namesake was the Ford Motor Company self-unloader.

On September 29, 1986, the Polish tug KORAL left Lauzon, Quebec with the JOHN E. F. MISENER and GOLDEN HIND enroute to Cartagena / Mamonal, Columbia, for scrapping.

September 29, 1892 - The ANN ARBOR NO 1 was launched.

On 29 September 1872, ADRIATIC (3-masted wooden schooner-barge, 139 foot, 129 net tons, built in 1865, at Clayton, New York as a bark) was in tow of the tug MOORE along with three other barges in Lake Erie in a heavy gale. She became separated from the tow and foundered. The entire crew of 7 was lost. The wooden schooner DERRICK was used in salvage operations. On 29 September 1854, she had just positioned herself above the wreck of the steamer ERIE off Silver Creek, New York on Lake Erie when she went down in a gale. She had spent the summer trying to salvage valuables from the wreck of the steamer ATLANTIC.

On 29 September 1900, the steamer SAKIE SHEPARD was re-launched at Anderson's shipyard in Marine City. She had been thoroughly rebuilt there during the summer.

1974: J.A.Z. DESGAGNES and HAVRE ST. PIERRE collided while trying to pass on the St. Lawrence. The former often visited the Great Lakes but was scrapped in Croatia as e) A. LEGRAND in 2003-2004. The latter, originally a Dutch coastal vessel, worked on the St. Lawrence and around Eastern Canada but was deleted from Lloyds Register in 1999.

1982: ATLANTIC SUPERIOR went aground off Wellesley Island in the American Narrows of the St. Lawrence. This new member of the Canada Steamship Lines fleet was released October 1 and repaired at Thunder Bay. It was back on the Great Lakes in 2012.

EASTERN FRIENDSHIP first came to the Great Lakes in 1986. It had been stranded off the coast of Bangladesh as d) TONY BEST since April 10, 1993. While refloated on June 21, the anchors dragged on July 24 and the ship went aground again. The hull later cracked and the ship sank on this date in 1993.

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

 

Port Reports -  September 28

Buffalo, N.Y. – Brian W.
Algosteel arrived in Lackawanna at 12:30 p.m. with salt for the Gateway Metroport Main Dock. Robert S. Pierson arrived this evening around 6:30 p.m. for the Lake & Rail Elevator but was delayed by a malfunction at the Ohio Street bridge. The ship waited in the turn off the Lafarge Cement dock but the operator was still unable to lift the bridge after about 45 minutes of trying. She backed down the river and tied up for the evening at the Burnette Trucking dock along Ganson Street. This was the first time that a self-unloader had tied up there since the days when it was owned by Penn Dixie many decades ago and it was also only the third time a large vessel had docked there in at least the last 30 years.

 

Richelieu beached at scrapyard in Turkey

9/28 - In the past week, the retired Canada Steamship Lines bulk carrier Richelieu (III) has been beached for scrapping at Aliaga, Turkey. The vessel was brought ashore between the Rochdale One, a former passenger ship, and the ACIF. The latter was best known as Pacific Princess and was the featured vessel in the television show "The Love Boat.”

Skip Gillham

 

Deliberate sinking of ships panel added to October 5 Blue Byway Seminar

9/28 - Oswego, NY/Great Lakes Seaway Trail – A panel discussion of the deliberate scuttling of historic ships with ties to the Great Lakes Seaway Trail waters of the St. Lawrence River, Lake Ontario, Niagara River and Lake Erie has been added to the October 5 Great Lakes Seaway Trail Blue Byway Seminar at SUNY Oswego in Oswego, NY.

Sarah Tichonuk , a sa Nautical Archaeologist with the Lake Champlain Maritime Museum, Vergennes, VT, will join Dive Captain Dale Currier and New York Sea Grant Coastal Recreation and Tourism Specialist Dave White for the panel and open discussion at the 9am to 1pm event.

The practice of deliberately sinking ships from significant military to commercial vessels creates artificial reefs suitable for recreational divers, diver training programs, and tourism promoters.

Other presenters on the 9 am-1 pm program include Christopher Nicholson, designer of the remotely-operated underwater vessel used by National Geographic to film the wrecks of the War of 1812 schooners in Lake Ontario. National Weather Service Forecaster Bob Hamilton will present information on the historic weather conditions that influenced the Revolutionary War wreck of the HMS Ontario. He will also share his recent research into the 1913 White Hurricane on the Great Lakes.

The event is part of the Great Lakes Seaway Trail Underwater Series of maritime heritage and recreation programs Find more information on the October 5 at www.seawaytrail.com/dive.

 

Openings Remain For Maritime Museum Boatbuilding Class

9/28 - Aspiring boat builders still have an opportunity to gain first-hand skills in the age-old craft when the Door County Maritime Museums annual boatbuilding class gets underway Oct. 19 at the museum in Sturgeon Bay. The class is open to beginners as well as experienced woodworkers. Only two spots remain for the upcoming class in the cedar strip construction project.

Volunteer instructors Bob Schottmuller and David Morgan have selected a Whitehall because this boat is slightly narrower than a boat with a traditional skeg and displays an elegant wine glass transom. Noted for being fast, seaworthy, and capable of carrying a large load, Whitehalls were the workhorse of commercial ports in the 19th century. Fitted with double oarlocks and when rowed in tandem, the Whitehall is a quick straight-tracking bullet. The classic smooth lines of the craft, coupled with the fluid rowing motion of the oarsman, are guaranteed to turn heads.

Hull #18 continues the museums long-standing tradition of teaching the wooden boatbuilding craft, keeping the maritime tradition alive, said Trudy Herbst, the museums director of development. The class has built a variety of boats such as the Abenaki Canoe, Beach Peapod, Cosine Wherry, and Lawton Tender.

Classes are on Saturdays, October through Thanksgiving and will resume after New Years Day. Class registration for Maritime Museum members is $325 and $425 for non-members. The finished boat will be the grand prize in the museums annual fundraising raffle to fund the non-profit organizations daily operations.

Call the museum at (920) 743-5958 for additional information or to enroll for the class.

 

Updates -  September 28

News Photo Gallery
Saltie Gallery updated with pictures of the Elbeborg, Harbour First, Blacky, Fairlift, HHL Amur, and Torrent

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  September 28

On September 28, 1980, BURNS HARBOR entered service, departing Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin, bound for Superior, Wisconsin, to load pellets.

THOMAS WILSON left Toledo on September 28, 1987, in tow of the tug TUSKER for overseas scrapping. WILSON had been laid up since December 16, 1979.

On 28 September 1891, THOMAS PARSONS (2 mast wooden schooner, 135 foot, 350 tons, built in 1868, at Charlotte, New York) was carrying coal out of Ashtabula, Ohio, when she foundered in a storm a few miles off Fairport in Lake Erie.

On 28 September 1849, W.G. BUCKNER (wooden schooner, 75 foot, 107 tons, built in 1837, at Irving, New York) was carrying lumber in a storm on Lake Michigan when she sprang a leak, then capsized. The man to whom the cargo belonged was aboard with his wife and five children. One child was washed overboard while the wife and three children died of exposure. The schooner ERWIN took off the survivors plus the bodies.

1921: The W.H. RITCHIE caught fire and sank at Port Arthur, ON where it had become a bulk grain transport vessel. The remains were uncovered during dredging work in 1961.

1946: BRIG. GEN. M.G. ZALINSKI, built at Lorain in 1919 as a) LAKE FROHNA and later operated inland in the package freight trade as b) ACE, hit the rocks off Pitt Island, British Columbia. The vessel was enroute from Seattle to Whittier, Alaska, with a cargo of army supplies, and sank in 20 minutes. All on board were rescued by the tug SALLY N. and taken to the fishing village of Butedale.. The hull was located in June 2011 and is upside down.

1960: CHICAGO TRIBUNE and SHENANGO II were both damaged in a collision in the St. Clair River off Marysville.

1973: FRANK R. DENTON and FEDERAL SCHELDE (i) collided in the St. Marys River with minor damage to both ships. The former was scrapped at Ashtabula in 1985-1986. The latter began Seaway service when new in 1968, returned as b) C. MEHMET in 1977 and was delivered to the scrappers at Nantong, China, on March 16, 1999.

1998: ANDROS TRANSPORT, a Fortune Class cargo ship, first came through the Seaway in 1978. Flooding occurred in the engineroom in the Caribbean off Trinidad as d) GRIGOROUSSA on this date while traveling in ballast. The crew of 15 were removed and the ship was towed into Port au Spain. It was declared a total loss, sold to Mexican shipbreakers, and arrived at Tuxpan, under tow for dismantling on December 4, 1998.

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

 

Port Reports -  September 27

Grand Haven, Mich. - Dick Fox
The St. Marys Challenger paid this port its second visit of the season, crossing the pier heads about 11:45 a.m. on a beautiful, clear fall day. It is expected to leave this evening after unloading at the St. Marys Terminal in Ferrysburg

Indiana Harbor, Ind.
Manitowoc was unloading at Mittal Thursday evening.

Buffalo, N.Y. – Brian W.
The Rebecca Lynn and barge A-397 were unloading at the Noco Product Terminal in Tonawanda Thursday evening.

Toronto, Ont. - Jehns Juhl
The Polsteam bulker Lubie departed Redpath early Thursday morning. The Hong Kong-registered Carganey arrived in port shortly after and began unloading sugar at Redpath. The ship channel bridge at the foot of Cherry Street is finally back in operation. It is business as usual for marine traffic but not for vehicle traffic. The former two-lane, two-way bridge is now restricted to a single one-way lane with traffic flow and direction controlled by signal lights at either end of the bridge.

 

‘Whistles on the Water’ connects visitors with history of Great Lakes shipping

9/27 - St. Clair, Mich. – More than three dozen steam whistles from bygone lake freighters and passenger ships will be on display in St. Clair on Saturday, Sept. 28, as part of the fifth annual “Whistles on the River.” Many of the antique whistles will be attached to a huge steam boiler and blown on site.

“Ours is probably the greatest gathering of large steam whistles the world,” said Dave Michelson, the local whistle maestro and the onsite narrator for Whistles on the Water.

“When you’re close to them, they’re too loud to hear,” said Al Johnson, who owns Johnson Hydraulics in St Clair and built the boiler. “You don’t get the true sound unless you stand back 200 feet.”

Johnson has assembled perhaps the largest portable steam boiler on earth, specifically designed to blow whistles – a diesel-powered, 175 horsepower engine and a huge Johnston fire-tube boiler capable of generating 250 pounds of steam pressure per square inch, mounted on a 24-foot trailer. The rig stands 13.5 feet high. He fitted the boiler with a movable manifold with 20 ports for mounting 20 whistles.

“The boiler gives you an accurate reproduction of what the whistles actually sounded like,” said Michelson, of New Baltimore. “The boiler trailer is amazing. There is nothing like it in the world. Al has gone all out on it.”

Free ear plugs will be available to all visitors. The event runs 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on the boardwalk.

One of the whistles that will be sounded during the event is that of the South American.

The South American was a 314-foot passenger excursion ship built in 1914 in Ecorse, Mich., for the Georgian Bay Line. It cruised on the Detroit River, Lake St. Clair, the St. Clair River and Lakes Huron, Michigan and Superior during the warm months, May through September.

“In these parts, it was very well known, especially by high school students in Marine City, St. Clair and Algonac who took senior class trips on the South American,” said Michelson. “Both of my uncles, who went to Marine City High, took their senior class trips on the South American.”

The students took the first trip of the year, from the ship’s winter port in Holland to Mackinac Island, then traveling through the locks to Duluth before returning to the island and onto Detroit – all in four days. During its regular schedule, the ship stopped in Chicago, not Holland.

“They were powerful, fast vessels,” Michelson said, with oil-fired engines and horsepower topping 2,000.

Its sister ship, the North American, ran the same route, roughly in the opposite direction, which would allow passengers to leave Detroit on the South American on a Sunday night, spend Monday night at the Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island and head back to Detroit aboard the North American on Tuesday.

The South American’s three-chamber whistle was manufactured by Crosby Steam Gage and Valve Company of Boston, standing 30 inches high and 12-inches in diameter.

“Its three-note chord is considered by many to be the nicest sounding whistle ever made,” said Michelson, although he prefers the eight-inch Crosby. “This whistle really brings back memories.”

As a boy, Michelson remembers the South American heading upstream on the St. Clair River on Sunday evenings just after dinner.

“We’d be standing on the shore waving towels and bed sheets, whatever we could find, to get it to blow the whistle.”

The North American was retired in 1965 and the South American in 1967 due in part to stricter fire regulations for overnight vessels, Michelson said.

“And our whole way of looking at travel was changing due to the growing popularity of the automobile and the interstate highway,” he said.

Michelson and his crew will blow steam whistles from several freighters during the event, including the Sidney E. Smith, Jr.

“The Sidney E. Smith, Jr. was in a collision and sank in the St. Clair River under the Blue Water Bridge on June 5, 1972,” said Michelson of the 480-foot vessel was built in Toledo in 1905. “It was a major six-month salvage operation involving the U.S. Navy.”

The freighter was headed upriver with a load of coal when it veered across the river and struck the down-bound vessel Parker Evans.

“No lives were lost, but it rolled on its side and sank right in the shipping channel,” said Michelson. The whistle is owned by the Port Huron Museum.

The two large side-by-side whistles from the tanker Mercury, on display in the River Crab restaurant in St. Clair Township, will also see action Saturday. Built in 1911, the petroleum tanker operated until 1974, when it was sold for scrap.

Chuck Muer, who established the River Crab, was a fan of old steam whistles and acquired the Mercury whistles. He collaborated with maritime artist Jim Clary to stage a whistle blow at the restaurant in the early 1970s, using compressed air, not steam.

The Voice

 

Open house Saturday at Port Huron Coast Guard station

9/27 - Port Huron, Mich. - The crew of Coast Guard Station Port Huron is scheduled to hold an open house, allowing members of the public to tour the station and speak with the members of the crew on Saturday.

The station will be open for visitors from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m

. Visitors will be able to tour the station's new 45-foot Response Boat-Medium, which the crew accepted and began training on in August. The RB-M will replace the 41-foot Utility Boat and is a more capable platform for search-and-rescue and law enforcement operations. It allows Coast Guard crews to get to the scene of a maritime emergency faster and safer. In addition, the station will have their 25-foot Response Boat-Small available for tours.

Members of the Coast Guard Auxiliary will be present at the event as well. Members of the public will be able to speak to auxiliarists about scheduling a free vessel safety check and other local Auxiliary resources and obtain information about joining the organization.

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  September 27

September 27, 1959: The West Neebish Channel, through which downbound traffic normally passes, was temporarily closed to permit dredging to the maximum Seaway depth of 27 feet. Two-way traffic was instituted in the Middle Neebish Channel until dredging was completed.

On 27 September 1877, the HIPPOGRIFFE (wooden schooner, 295 tons, built in 1864, at Buffalo, New York) had just left Chicago for Buffalo, loaded with oats, on a fine day with clear weather. The crew saw EMMA A. COYNE (wooden schooner, 155 foot, 497 tons, built in 1867, at Detroit, Michigan) approaching from a long way off loaded with lumber. The two vessels' skippers were brothers. The two schooners collided about 20 miles off Kenosha, Wisconsin. The COYNE came along side and picked up the HIPPOGRIFFE's crew a few minutes before that vessel rolled over and dove for the bottom.

The CITY OF GENOA arrived with the first cargo of iron ore for the new factory at Zug Island, reported The Detroit Free Press on September 28, 1903.

The H. M. GRIFFITH experienced a smoky conveyor belt fire at Port Colborne, Ontario on September 27, 1989. Repairs were completed there.

ROGER M. KYES proceeded to Chicago for dry-docking, survey and repairs on September 27, 1976. She struck bottom in Buffalo Harbor September 22, 1976 sustaining holes in two double bottom tanks and damage to three others.

GEORGE M. HUMPHREY under tow, locked through the Panama Canal from September 27, 1986, to the 30th on her way to the cutter’s torch at Kaohsiung, Taiwan.

The tanker IMPERIAL COLLINGWOOD (Hull#137) was launched September 27, 1947, at Collingwood, Ontario by Collingwood Shipyards Ltd. for Imperial Oil Ltd., Toronto, Ontario. Renamed b.) SEAWAY TRADER in 1979, sold off the Lakes in 1984, renamed c.) PATRICIA II, d.) BALBOA TRADER in 1992.

September 27, 1909 - The ANN ARBOR NO 4 entered service after being repaired from her capsizing at Manistique, Michigan the previous May.

On 27 September 1884, WALDO A. AVERY (wooden propeller, 204 foot, 1,294 gross tons) was launched at West Bay City, Michigan. Her construction had been subcontracted by F. W. Wheeler & Co. to Thomas F. Murphy.

On 27-29 September 1872, a big storm swept the lower lakes. On Lake Huron, the barges HUNTER and DETROIT were destroyed. The tug SANDUSKY rescued the 21 survivors from them. The schooner CORSAIR foundered off Sturgeon Point on Saginaw Bay at 4 p.m. on Sunday the 29th and only 2 of the crew survived. The barge A. LINCOLN was ashore one mile below Au Sable with no loss of life. The barge TABLE ROCK went ashore off Tawas Point and went to pieces. All but one of her crew was lost. The schooner WHITE SQUALL was sunk ten miles off Fish Point -- only one crewman was saved. The schooner SUMMIT went ashore at Fish Point, 7 miles north of Tawas with two lives lost.

1911: The water-logged wooden steamer THREE BROTHERS was beached off South Manitou Island, Lake Michigan. The cargo of lumber was salvaged but the 23-year-old vessel was left to rot.

1912: The wooden steamer GEORGE T. HOPE, loaded with 2,118 tons of iron ore, foundered in Lake Superior near Grand Island when it began leaking in heavy weather. All on board were saved.

1934: SASKADOC departed Erie, Pa., for the short run to the Welland Canal with 7,500 tons of coal and the hatches left open. The vessel encountered a storm on the lake, developed a list and arrived 11 hours late.

1943: NORMAN B. MACPHERSON, a small canaller in the Upper Lakes fleet, went aground on Hammond Shoal in the American Channel of the St. Lawrence near Alexandria Bay, N.Y.

1969: OPHELIA was a Great Lakes caller before the Seaway opened. The West German freighter also made 16 trips inland from 1959 to 1964. It was under Greek registry when it was abandoned off Sibu, Sarawak, with a fire in the engine room, on this date in 1969. The vessel was enroute from Sibu to Kuching, China, and the hull drifted aground as a total loss.

1991: OGDENSBURG was built as a barge to ferry rail cars across the St. Lawrence between Prescott and Ogdensburg. The vessel had joined McKeil as a regular deck barge in 1988 and broke loose in a storm on this date in 1991 while working off Blanc Sablon, Q.C. carrying heavy construction equipment. Refloated, the hull was towed to Hamilton and became one of three former railway barges rebuilt as a floating drydock.

Data from: Skip Gillham, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Max Hanley, Russ Plumb, Mike Nicholls, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series.

 

Port Reports -  September 26

St. Marys River
The river was closed due to heavy fog from 1 a.m. until 9 a.m. Wednesday. The Sam Laud was waiting above the MacArthur Lock while the Alpena, Roger Blough and American Century waited below the lock.

Alpena, Mich. - Ben & Chanda McClain
On Tuesday morning the Samuel de Champlain and barge Innovation were at Lafarge loading cement. Also arriving on Tuesday night was the tug Defiance and barge Ashtabula. The Defiance unloaded coal at the Lafarge dock and departed Wednesday morning. The Alpena arrived in port around 8 p.m. on Wednesday to load cement. The Dean Marine & Excavating tug Kimberly Ann along with dredging equipment was in the river on Wednesday. The company is dredging the small boat harbor.

Saginaw River - Todd Shorkey
Manitowoc was inbound the Saginaw River early Monday morning, unloading at the GM dock in Saginaw. She was outbound later in the day. Olive L. Moore - Lewis J. Kuber were also inbound on Monday, carrying a split cargo for the Bay City and Saginaw Wirt Stone docks. The pair finished unloading and were outbound late Monday

Lorain, Ohio - Phil Leon
Dorothy Ann Pathfinder arrived in Lorain around 2 a.m. Wednesday morning. She cleared the Charles Berry Bridge on her way out at 8:15 a.m. and headed NE back toward Marblehead/Lakeside.

 

CSL to repower two vessels at Sturgeon Bay

9/26 - Sturgeon Bay, Wis. - Canada Steamship Lines will send CSL Niagara to Sturgeon Bay, Wis., in early December to be re-powered. She should be followed in mid-December by fleet mate Rt. Hon. Paul Martin, which will undergo the same process. Both vessels will have their Manchester-built 10-cylinder Pielstick engines replaced by new MaK engines of the new generation. This represents a significant investment as both vessels have two engines. The new engines will be more economical on fuel consumption and less polluting overall.

Nothing has been confirmed about the other sisters CSL Laurentien and CSL Assiniboine, but it is suspected that they will be next in line for the same conversion.

 

Buffalo River cleanup enters next phase

9/26 - Buffalo, N.Y. – The last mile or so of the Buffalo River’s 6.2-mile journey snakes past some of the city’s most promising real estate these days, magnifying the impetus for a hastened environmental recovery of this decades-long contaminated waterway.

Details about the next phase of revitalizing and restoring the river – a $44 million shot in the arm designed to cure its toxic ills – were revealed Monday in the Old First Ward Community Center.

The publicly and privately funded effort will be allocated to ridding chemically contaminated sediments left in the river from the city’s industrial heyday. Other aims include improving water quality in the river and promoting fish and wildlife habitats, according to Jill M. Jedlicka, executive director of Buffalo Niagara Riverkeeper.

“The river is our future,” Jedlicka said. “It’s defined our history. It’s going to define where we’re going.”

Construction crews have been mobilizing equipment for the last week or so, with plans to begin dredging operations along the “side slope” banks of the riverbed area near the South Park Avenue Bridge on Oct. 7.

This phase of the project will include removing the side slope sediments from the river, which contain more than 100 different industrial contaminants – consisting of mainly lead, mercury, PCBs and other pollutants. About 488,000 cubic yards – about the volume of 153 Olympic-size swimming pools – of contaminated sediment are expected to be removed.

A clamshell bucket will load the sediment onto barges. Most of it will be transported and disposed of at a confined disposal facility operated by the Army Corps of Engineers on the shore of Lake Erie about 3 miles south of the mouth of the river. A small amount – an estimated 4,200 cubic yards – of the most contaminated sediment will be removed to a yet-to-be-named hazardous-materials landfill.

By the end of this fall, two large segments upstream are expected to be dredged, along with portions of the City Ship Canal.

“This project is now moving,” said John J. Morris, the remediation director for Honeywell Inc., a significant private contributor to the project. “This is the opportunity to restore a river that is a part of the community and will be part of the community.”

The initial phase of the Buffalo River’s restoration project was undertaken in 2011 and 2012 by the Corps of Engineers. About 550,000 cubic yards of sediment were dredged from the river’s navigation channel over that time. Combined with this dredging and removal effort, more than 1 million cubic yards of toxic sediment will be extracted from the river as part of the cleanup.

“It’s a milestone,” said Mary Beth Giancarlo, a Chicago-based U.S. Environmental Protection Agency scientist who is also an East Aurora native and is assigned to the Buffalo River to provide technical assistance to the project. “It’s a major step.”

About $22 million will be contributed by the EPA to remediate this, one of its 30 designated “areas of concern” on the Great Lakes, and the other $22 million is contributed by private industry.

To date, 15 other Great Lakes sites with legacy waste from industry have been completed as part of the federal government’s Great Lakes Restoration Initiative, including those in Ohio, Indiana and Wisconsin.

“We’re working our way around the Great lakes, and now it’s Buffalo’s turn,” said Marc L. Tuchman of the EPA’s Great Lakes Office.

Dredging work will begin upstream and advance downstream during this next phase of work, officials said.

The final component of this stage of the project is scheduled to occur in 2015, with restoring aquatic habitat to the river and in-water plantings of a variety of vegetative species including wild celery. These plants are expected to assist in returning fish and other aquatic life to the river after the water is rid of the toxic chemical contaminants.

Buffalo News

 

Tickets are available for Great Lakes Maritime Institute annual dinner

9/26 - Detroit, Mich. – Tickets are now available for the Great Lakes Maritime Institute annual dinner, to be held at 2 p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 27 at Blossom Heath Inn in St. Clair Shores. The dinner will commemorate the tragic Storm of 1913, bringing together four elements to commemorate the 100th anniversary of this event. The dinner includes a presentation by marine artist Robert McGreevy, and a silent auction of items recently recovered from the steamer Regina. Dinner tickets are $40 per person. For details, and to purchase tickets, visit www.glmi.org.

 

Obituary: Rene Mullin

9/26 - Rene Mullin of Brimley, Mich. passed away at Marquette General Hospital on Sept. 20. He was born Sept. 5, 1943 in Thessalon, Ont., and was proud to have sailed the Great Lakes for over 48 years. He spent many years with the Inland Steel fleet; his last boat was the Wilfred Sykes. His wife, Bonita, survives. Funeral services were held Wednesday at Hovie Funeral Home in Sault Ste. Marie.

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  September 26

September 26, 1930, the schooner OUR SON, launched in 1875, sank during a storm on Lake Michigan about 40 miles WSW of Big Sable Point. Seventy-three year old Captain Fred Nelson the crew of OUR SON were rescued by the self-unloader WILLIAM NELSON.

September 26, 1937, the Canadian Seaman's Union signed a tentative wage contract. Sailors would continue a two watch system (working 12 hours every 24 hours) and be paid the following monthly wages: Wheelsmen and Oilers - $72.50, Watchmen and firemen - $67.50, Second Cooks - $52.50, deckhands and coal passers - $50.00, porters - $45.00, Chief Cooks on the Upper Lakes - $115.00, and Chief Cooks on Canal boats $105.00.

September 26, 1957, Taconite Harbor, Minnesota loaded its first cargo of 10,909 tons of taconite pellets into the holds of the Interlake steamer J. A. CAMPBELL.

On 26 September 1892, JOHN BURT (3-mast wooden schooner, 138 foot, 348 gross tons, built in 1871, at Detroit, Michigan) was carrying grain in a strong northwest gale. Her rudder broke and she was blown past the mouth of Oswego harbor and was driven hard aground. Two died when the vessel struck. The U.S. Lifesaving Service rescued the remaining five crewmembers. The vessel quickly broke up in the waves.

CHI-CHEEMAUN cleared the shipyard on September 26, 1974.

H. M. GRIFFITH was christened on September 26, 1973 at Collingwood for Canada Steamship Lines.

C.C.G.S. GRIFFON (Hull#664) was launched September 26, 1969 by Davie Shipbuilding Ltd., Lauzon, Quebec for the Canadian Coast Guard.

ROGER M. KYES returned to service on September 26, 1984; she had grounded off McLouth Steel and ended crosswise in the Detroit River's Trenton Channel a month before. She was renamed b.) ADAM E. CORNELIUS in 1989.

The BELLE RIVER was sideswiped by the Liberian FEDERAL RHINE, of 1977, at Duluth on September 26, 1985. Both vessels received minor damage.

On 26 September 1914, MARY N. BOURKE (wooden schooner-barge, 219 foot, 920 gross tons, built in 1889, at Baraga, Michigan) was docked at Peter's Lumber Dock in St. Mary's Bay, 15 miles north of St. Ignace, Michigan. The crew was awakened at 9:30-10:00 p.m. by smoke coming from her hold and they escaped. The BOURKE burned to the waterline and the fire spread ashore, destroying the dock and a pile of lumber.

At 3 a.m., 26 September 1876, the steam barge LADY FRANKLIN burned while moored near Clark's dock, about three miles from Amherstburg, Ontario in the Detroit River. One life was lost. This vessel had been built in 1861, as a passenger steamer and ran between Cleveland, Ohio and Port Stanley, Ontario. In 1874, she was converted into a lumber freighter, running primarily between Saginaw, Michigan and Cleveland. The burned hull was rebuilt in 1882.

1979: MAHONI, an Indonesian-registered freighter, went aground on the west coast of Taiwan and was abandoned by the crew. The ship was refloated in June 1980 and sold to Taiwanese shipbreakers for scrapping at Kaohsiung. It had been a Seaway saltie as b) CLARI beginning in 1968 and returned as c) ARNIS in 1970.

Data from: Skip Gillham, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Russ Plumb, Mike Nicholls, Ahoy & Farewell II, Father Dowling Collection, and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series.

 

Algoma Central to name new ship after city of Sault Ste. Marie, Ont.

9/25 - Sault Ste. Marie, Ont. – Algoma Central Corporation announced Tuesday that it will name one of its new environmentally-advanced Equinox Class vessels after the city of Sault Ste. Marie, Ont.

Greg Wight, president and CEO of Algoma Central Corporation, revealed the news as part of a keynote speech delivered at a luncheon hosted by the Sault Ste. Marie Chamber of Commerce on the future of Great Lakes-Seaway shipping.

"We want to pay tribute to the long-standing relationship that has existed between our company and Sault Ste. Marie and to recognize the important role that marine shipping plays within this community," Wight said. "Accordingly, I am pleased to announce that Algoma Central will be naming one of its new Equinox Class vessels the Algoma Sault."

Algoma Central Corporation owes its formative years to Sault Ste. Marie. It was first incorporated in the city back in 1899 as the Algoma Central Railway Company, which created a rail line from Sault Ste. Marie to the main Canadian Pacific rail line for the transport of iron ore and timber.

Algoma Central, which is now headquartered in St. Catharines, has evolved into the largest Canadian-flag shipowner in the Great Lakes with 32 Canadian flag vessels.

The Algoma Sault is expected to arrive to trade in the Great Lakes-Seaway region for the beginning of the 2015 navigation season.

Algoma Central, and its customer the Canadian Wheat Board, have invested close to $500 million in 10 new vessels. The first Equinox Class vessel, the Algoma Equinox, is expected to arrive in the Great Lakes in November 2013.

These new lakers, which will carry a variety of cargoes that North American industry depends upon, including grain, iron ore, coal, construction materials and salt, are equipped with the latest technology to make them significantly more efficient and environmentally-friendly than any existing vessels.

"The Equinox Class will carry more cargo, at higher speeds using less fuel; resulting in a 45 percent reduction in greenhouse gases. Algoma will also be installing exhaust gas scrubbing systems for the eight new Equinox Class vessels that will virtually eliminate sulfur oxide emissions," Wight said.

Algoma Central Corporation

 

Port Reports -  September 25

Houghton-Hancock, Mich. Kaye E. Barker made an unusual upbound passage through the Portage Canal on the Keweenaw Peninsula Tuesday.

Marblehead and Sandusky, Ohio - Jim Spencer Tug Dorothy Ann and the Barge Pathfinder loaded anew Tuesday at the Lafarge stone dock at Marblehead. At Sandusky, the Saginaw loaded at the NS coal dock.

Toronto Lubie arrived at Redpath over the weekend with a load of raw sugar.

 

Mesabi Miner first laker to be converted to LNG-diesel dual fuel operation

9/25 - Interlake Steamship has chosen Toromont engines from Caterpillar-MaK as it converts its 1,004-foot Mesabi Miner to LNG-diesel dual fuel operation. Taylor-Wharton will supply the LNG fuel tanks, four of which will be mounted vertically in the vessels tail.

Interlake Steamship’s 1,004-foot Mesabi Miner is to be fitted with four vertically mounted LNG fuel tanks by Taylor-Wharton.

It will be the first such project on the Great Lakes. No timetable for the project was given.

These details were revealed at HHP Summit 2013 in Chicago Tuesday by Interlake president Mark Barker. His firm owns eight and operated nine Great Lakes cargo ships.

The key to the plan, which has been contemplated for several years, was the participation of Shell as a supplier-partner. “That’s what really catapulted this project to the next level,” Barker said in Chicago.

Shell is building a natural gas liquefaction and multi-modal fuel delivery facility, one of three in North America, at Sarnia, Ont.

The Mesabi Miner will be fitted with twin Caterpillar-MaK 6M 46DF Toromont engines, replacing venerable PC2.2 Pielsticks. The four Taylor Wharton tanks will each be able to hold 200 cubic meters, or 52,800 gallons, of liquefied natural gas.

HHP Insight

 

Hollyhock crew's getting homesick

9/25 - Port Huron, Mich. – The U.S. Coast Guard cutter Hollyhock will be back in Port Huron waters soon. Ensign Brendan Crowley said the 225-foot buoy tender and its crew will return to Port Huron in late October or early November.

The Hollyhock has been in dry dock since July 12 at the Coast Guard yard on Curtis Bay in Maryland.

During drydock, the Hollyhock has received maintenance such as sand blasting, repainting, and overhauls for the propeller and rudder system. Internal work has included resurfacing of the galley deck and mess deck.

Crowley said the scheduled maintenance period takes place every few years. “For the most part, the crew has stayed here with the ship,” he said. “We act as inspectors while the drydock maintenance is being done.”

Crowley said some crew members take leave during the drydock period. “At any given time, probably about half the crew is here,” he added.

Depending on when maintenance work finishes, Crowley said the crew expects to leave drydock toward the end of October. “We’re looking at starting our fall buoy run just after Thanksgiving,” he said.

The trip back to Port Huron is about 1,900 nautical miles and takes about two weeks. Crowley said the crew is looking forward to getting back to family and friends in Michigan.

“Even with (the crew) being able to take a little leave, it’s been a long time away from home and away from families for a lot of people on board,” Crowley said.

When not handling buoys or handling other operations including breaking ice in the winter, the Hollyhock docks at 2700 Omar St. in Port Huron.

Port Huron Times Herald

 

Tata Steel ships iron ore from Canada to European plants

9/25 - Tata Steel has shipped first consignment of iron ore fines from its Canadian resource project to its European plants.

The consignment is from the project called the direct shipping ore (DSO) and is part of the several iron ore projects that Tata Steel is pursuing in Canada.

Tata Steel Minerals Canada (TSMC), an 80 percent-owned outfit by Tata Steel, sent across the North Atlantic 77,000 tonnes of fines on September 14 from Sept-Iles — an iron ore terminal on the St. Lawrence River that links Great Lakes to North Atlantic. During this fiscal, Tata Steel plans to ship one million tonnes of processed iron ore – fines or pallets.

To provide iron ore security to Corus units in the UK and the Netherlands, Tata Steel has been pursuing the projects since the 2006 acquisition. In 2013-14, Tata Steel planned to ship one metric ton and in 2014-15 its target is three metric tons.

The fines movement on rail had begun in July from TSMC’s crushing and screening plant to the terminal. TSMC had produced three long tons of fines last year and it has resumed production this summer in the sub-arctic eastern Canada, Tata Steel sources told Business Line.

“Production and rail haulage from the DSO project are now well established and seaborne shipments have now begun,” a statement from TSMC said. Sources, however, said the current port arrangement is interim. “We are working on an alternative plan – an access to an upcoming port facility,” a company official said.

The DSO project’s underlying asset contains 64.1 metric tons of proven and probable reserves of a little less than top grade iron (58.8 per cent) content.

Tata Steel also is involved in exploratory projects in Canadian Quebec and Labrador and Newfoundland.

Business Line

 

$7 million project keeps Apostle Islands lighthouses shining

9/25 - Bayfield, Wis. – They have stood sentinel on the Apostle Islands for decades, some for more than a century, helping boaters navigate tricky Lake Superior waters, lashed by wind and waves, sleet and snow. Now they're finally getting a makeover.

Lighthouses on five of the Apostle Islands are undergoing major restorations this year at a cost of $7 million.

"They're our rock stars," said Dave Cooper, Apostle Islands National Lakeshore cultural resource specialist. "People come from all around the country to see them. It's great to see them getting some TLC."

Lighthouses on Michigan, Devils, Long, Sand and Outer islands are being restored this year, with work expected to be completed next year. Crews had hoped to begin in April but got a late start because of weather — on May 6 there was still 14 inches of snow on the ground, and ice breakup at marinas was later than usual.

Among the lighthouse renovation work:

■ Michigan Island: Reroofing the old light, powerhouse and quarters for the keeper and assistant keeper; the interior of the old light is being rehabilitated for public access including refinished floors, doors and plaster with new exhibits planned next year; repairs to windows, plaster and iron columns to the new light tower base; repairs to bricks and porches on the keeper's quarters; dock repairs; and the old narrow gauge tramway will be restored with new ballast and ties.

■ Sand Island: New metal roof and repairs to gutters on the lighthouse.

■ Devils Island: Concrete footings of the light will undergo major repairs; windows, porches and interiors of keeper's and assistant keeper's quarters will be repaired along with brick re-pointing; fog signal building will be repainted along with repairs to the foundation and exterior.

■ Outer Island: Repainting and repair of the lantern; reroofing, re-pointing and repainting of the masonry tower; repairs to windows, interiors and repainting of outside trim on the lighthouse; improving ventilation; removing hazardous materials; foundation and roof repairs to the fog signal building.

■ Long Island: Major repairs to the concrete footings of the LaPointe light tower and minor repairs to the metal structure; improving ventilation; and efforts to combat moisture and mold in the keeper's quarters.

Sawyers are also clearing trees that have gradually encroached on some of the lighthouses.

"It's work a responsible steward needs to do when looking at a 100-plus-year-old structure and its surrounding landscape," Apostle Islands National Lakeshore Superintendent Bob Krumenaker said.

The work doesn't include Raspberry Island, whose lighthouse is the most accessible and therefore the most popular in the park, with 6,000 to 10,000 visitors a year. It has been renovated in recent years.

Park officials identified $14 million in needed renovations to Apostle Island lighthouses, not including Raspberry.

"But we didn't have $14 million. So we had to say, 'What are the highest priorities to keep these lighthouses standing and in reasonable condition for the next century?'" Krumenaker said. "What's being done this summer is stabilization, it's not restoration."

Like many lighthouses on the Great Lakes, the Apostle Islands structures, aside from Raspberry Island, have needed restoration for many years, said Terry Pepper, a lighthouse historian based in Mackinaw City, Mich.

The Apostle Islands facilities are an interesting assemblage of lights that run the gamut of styles, time periods and construction. Ranging from small stone lighthouses to among the tallest towers in the Great Lakes, they're made from both brick and cast-iron construction and were erected under incredibly difficult conditions. They include lighthouses built during the earliest days of lighthouse construction and some of the youngest on the Great Lakes.

"It's probably one of the more interesting geographically centered collection of structures in the country," said Pepper, executive director of the Great Lakes Lighthouse Keepers Association.

Renovation work has not been a picnic.

Travel time is about an hour between each of the lighthouses under renovation, with Outer Island more than an hour's boat ride from Bayfield. A large World War II landing craft is used to move big equipment, and most of the construction workers camp at the sites for four days before returning to shore. That means everything they need, from paint and windows to Weber grills and bug spray, must be transported by boat to the work sites. Often it's a long haul from where the boats land.

Crews stay in tents or in lighthouse keeper's quarters. There's no running water or electricity, but there are biting flies and mosquitoes.

Two of the lighthouses — at Devils Island and LaPointe on Long Island — are getting new concrete foundation pads to replace ones that are crumbling after more than a century, work that's delicate and difficult, Cooper said. Some of the light towers are undergoing repairs to the lanterns that involve installing wooden bracing so they're not damaged.

And it's not just 21st-century repairs and restorations — crews are ensuring the historic integrity of the buildings. And that can be part sweat and part detective work.

For example, crews are testing the plaster used on the Michigan Island original light tower constructed in 1857 that they know is not made from lime or portland cement plaster, said Jeff Ashton, the project's construction manager. They want to know what it's made from so it can be re-created.

"It's a cement plaster which was used in the 1800s and you just can't find that material. We use the term cement with sidewalks, but it's not the same cement as 100 years ago," Ashton said. "If you can't get the product and you're trying to do patches, how do you deal with that while respecting the historic fabric?"

Ashton and crew members repairing the old keeper's quarters and lighthouses have been impressed with the craftsmanship of the original construction workers, especially considering that every brick, every door knob, each Fresnel lens and door was brought from the mainland.

"Overall the buildings I've seen out here are top-notch," Ashton said. "The keeper's quarters at Devils Island, I would use the word exquisite. They hauled the bricks out there. I don't know how in the heck they got them out there. There's no easy way."

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

 

Port Huron Museum extends hours for Storm of 1913 Remembered exhibit

9/25 - Port Huron, Mich. – The Storm of 1913 Remembered exhibit at the Port Huron Museum has garnered a lot of attention in its first week.

So much so that the museum will be open six days a week through to the close of the exhibit, Jan. 12. The exhibit can be seen 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday. The museum is usually closed Mondays and Tuesdays.

Juanita Gittings, chairwoman of the museum’s Board of Trustees, said the exhibit’s opening reception attracted the largest turnout in at least five years with more than 300 people.

“We were flabbergasted at the number of people that came out,” Gittings said. “The interest has been huge.”

She said she can’t remember a more enthusiastic response to one of the museum’s exhibits.

Port Huron Times Herald

 

Goderich plans events to mark the Great Storm of 1913

9/25 - Goderich, Ont. – The Port of Goderich and Lake Huron shore communities are honoring the lost souls and ships of “The Great Storm 1913” over an extended period this year, culminating in a special series of remembrance activities on November 8, 9 and 10. A permanent memorial is also being built, for which donations are being accepted.

Museums along the lakeshore communities will host special displays. Art galleries in Goderich will present special exhibitions. And the Goderich Little Theatre will mount the musical drama “November 9, 1913: The Great Storm,” written and directed by Warren Robinson, with production & music by Eleanor Robinson.

The Goderich activities will also include a major exhibition combining Heritage & Education Displays with a broad marine trade show and job fair exhibition called “Careers on the Water and More.”

Participation has already been confirmed by major partners in the marine shipping industry, marine trade companies, as well as marine heritage and education groups from across the Great Lakes basin. The Georgian College International Marine Training Program will be a major player with their on-site simulators.

Government agencies including the DFO Canadian Coast Guard & Hydrographic Services are expected to be present. Support for the job fair has been confirmed by the Centre for Employment & Learning of the Avon Maitland District School and its job re-training partners at the provincial and federal levels.

There will be special commemorative ceremonies at the memorial plaque overlooking Goderich Harbor, at the plot for the unknown “SAILORS” in Maitland Cemetery, Goderich, and hopefully the unveiling of a special permanent memorial sculpture on a bluff-site overlooking the lake.

For details and times, please consult www.1913storm.ca, where updates to the comprehensive schedule will be provided throughout year.

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  September 25

In tandem tow, MENIHEK LAKE and LEON FALK JR. arrived at Vigo, Spain, on September 25, 1985. The MENIHEK LAKE was scrapped at Vigo, and the FALK was towed to Gijn, Spain, for scrapping.

HENRY C. FRICK departed Bay City on her maiden voyage on September 25, 1905 and rammed and damaged the Michigan Central Railroad Bridge at Bay City.

On 25 September 1869, COMMENCEMENT (2-mast wooden schooner, 75 foot, 73 tons, built in 1853, at Holland, Michigan) was carrying wood in her hold and telegraph poles on deck from Pentwater, Michigan, for Milwaukee when she sprang a leak 20 miles off Little Sable Point on Lake Michigan. The incoming water quickly overtook her pump capacity. As the crew was getting aboard the lifeboat, she turned turtle. The crew clung to the upturned hull for 30 hours until the passing steamer ALLEGHENY finally rescued them. COMMENCEMENT later washed ashore, a total wreck.

1922: AUBE, on her first trip back under this name, went aground off Carleton Island, while carrying 65,000 bushels of grain. Tugs released the stranded vessel the following day.

1978: FRANQUELIN (ii) went aground in the Seaway below Beauharnois. Once refloated, the ship went to Canadian Vickers in Montreal for repairs and was caught there in a labor dispute.

1980: DERWENTFIELD, a British-flag freighter, first came through the Seaway in 1975. The ship grounded on this date as c) CAVO ARTEMIDI off Brazil, while enroute from Vitoria, Brazil, to Rotterdam, Holland, with a cargo of pig iron and broke in two as a total loss.

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

 

Port Reports -  September 24

Marquette, Mich. - Rod Burdick
H. Lee White loaded ore at the Upper Harbor Monday afternoon into the evening.

Sandusky and Marblehead, Ohio - Jim Spencer
Interlake's tug Dorothy Ann and barge Pathfinder loaded Monday at Marblehead's Lafarge dock. Loading at the NS coal dock in Sandusky was the Manistee, which sailed for Green Bay. Sunday the tug Victory and barge James L. Kuber loaded at the NS dock for Ashtabula.

Huron, Ohio - Jim Spencer
Cason J. Callaway arrived at the Huron Lime Co. dock Monday afternoon and discharged a limestone cargo.

 

Badger adds trips to schedule

9/24 - Ludington, Mich. – Due to the increased need to accommodate wind tower cargo, Lake Michigan Carferry (LMC) will be scheduling additional round trip evening crossings of the SS Badger from Sept. 23 through Oct. 12.

"The demand for additional crossings is great news and will offer additional fall travel options for our passengers and added benefit to our staff and port cities,” said Pat McCarthy, VP of Shore Operations for Lake Michigan Carferry. The company is also offering a discount to travelers.

"LMC has provided cost effective transportation for over-dimensional commercial business and wind towers for the past several years. The need to offer additional crossing to accommodate commercial business again demonstrates the important transportation option that the SS Badger provides," McCarthy added.

Many of these commercial loads are 150 feet long and weigh over 150,000 pounds. The Badgers normal departure times will be continued, he said.

The ferry missed three days of sailing last week due to a boiler tube problem.

Ludington Daily News

 

Crews stay busy with maintenance, dredging

9/24 - The Manitowoc crane barge and its accompanying tugs, the Racine and Kenosha, are regularly deployed from the Kewaunee Area Office to do work in the Detroit District and adjacent Chicago District in southern Lake Michigan.

Recently its nine-member crew completed breakwater maintenance at Milwaukee Harbor in Milwaukee, Wis., and Calumet Harbor in Chicago, Ill.

At Milwaukee Harbor, workers placed armor stones along the north wall – a 700-foot section of the four-mile-long breakwater, said Joe Kane, captain of the Manitowoc.

A few weeks later, the crew rebuilt 1,150 feet of the Calumet Harbor breakwall in South Chicago. This included recharging 50-foot segments enclosed and partitioned by sheet piling, called “cells” – by placing core stone in each cell. After placing core stone (crushed limestone) into the cells, crews placed cut stones, each weighing up to nine tons, along the top of the cells. Then they added armor stone along the sides. The crew also shored up the sheet piling on the sides of the breakwall. Next summer, the crew will devote considerable time to grouting the Calumet Harbor breakwalls.

On July 31, the Manitowoc crew arrived at Indiana Harbor in East Chicago, Ind., to begin dismantling a decaying steel superstructure from atop the pier. The catwalk-like structure, 2,300 feet long, was corroded and coming loose from some of its attachments to the concrete pier.

Crews removed the structure in pieces, which they loaded onto the Manitowoc. The Corps worked out an arrangement with a local scrap metal company to take possession of the metal, thus eliminating disposal concerns. “It’ll be a win-win for both of us,” Kane said.

On the dredging front, several key projects were recently completed, said Mollie Mahoney, project manager in the Operations Office. These include Green Bay, Wis., and the Michigan harbors of Holland, Muskegon, St. Joseph and New Buffalo. Grand Haven Harbor was slated to be done by Aug. 31.

Several dredging projects were ongoing as of mid-August, including the Detroit River, Saginaw River/Bay, the Saginaw River turning basin emergency dredging and Manistee Harbor. Approximately a dozen other dredging projects had been awarded by mid-August or were scheduled to be awarded in the coming weeks.

Last winter, Congress approved a relief package for areas affected by Hurricane Sandy. The legislation included $2.6 million for seven Detroit District dredging projects intended to eliminate shoaling in storm-affected navigational channels.

The state of Michigan also approved $5.9 million for dredging seven harbors.

“Due to the addition of Hurricane Sandy projects, emergency dredging in the Saginaw River and the seven state of Michigan dredging projects, the district’s fiscal year 2013 dredging program has turned out to be much more robust than anticipated,” Mahoney said.

She added the district has been pleased with the dredging proposals received this year. “They have been competitively priced and have allowed us to use our limited dredging dollars more effectively.”

Dredging Today

 

Updates -  September 24

News Photo Gallery

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  September 24

The EDMUND FITZGERALD's first cargo of taconite pellets was loaded September 24, 1958 at Silver Bay, Minnesota for Toledo, Ohio.

The PERE MARQUETTE 22 entered service September 24, 1924.

In early morning fog on the St. Clair River on September 24, 1962, the J.L. REISS was hit three glancing blows by U.S. Steel's SEWELL AVERY. The AVERY had lost control just below Robert's Landing and crossed the channel from the Canadian side and struck the REISS, which was proceeding slowly by radar on the U.S. side.

On September 24, 1952, the CHARLES L. HUTCHINSON entered service. This vessel was renamed b.) ERNEST R. BREECH when it was sold to the Ford Motor Company in 1962, and it was renamed c.) KINSMAN INDEPENDENT, when it was sold to Kinsman Lines in 1988. Sold Canadian in 2005, and renamed d.) VOYAGEUR INDEPENDENT. She sails today as the motorship e.) OJIBWAY.

On September 23, 1991, J.W. MC GIFFIN rescued several people in a 24-foot pleasure craft off Presque Ile State Park. The group had been disabled since the day before. They were taken aboard the McGIFFIN and their boat taken under tow. The MC GIFFIN was rebuilt with a new forward section and renamed b.) CSL NIAGARA in 1999.

September 24, 1924 - The PERE MARQUETTE 22 arrived at Ludington, Michigan on her maiden voyage.

On 24 September 1902, H.A. BARR (3 mast wooden schooner, 217 foot, 1,119 gross tons, built in 1893, at W. Bay City, Michigan) was in tow of the saltie THEANO with a load of iron ore in a storm 30 miles off Port Stanley in Lake Erie. She broke her towline in giant waves and foundered. THEANO rescued her crew.

On 24 September 1879, the tug URANIA was towing the schooner S V R WATSON into Sand Beach at about noon when the schooner struck the tug amidships, cutting a hole in the hull and sinking her in three fathoms of water. No lives were lost.

1901: M.M. DRAKE was towing the schooner barge MICHIGAN across Lake Superior when the latter began to sink. The steamer came alongside to take off the crew when a towering wave bashed the two vessels together resulting in heavy damage. Both vessels went down, but all except one sailor were rescued by the passing ships NORTHERN WAVE and CRESCENT CITY.

1915: WESTERN STAR ran aground on Robertson Rock, Georgian Bay, while enroute to Little Current with a cargo of coal. The ship was badly damaged and early attempts to refloat the freighter failed. It was not released until September 18, 1917, and was rebuilt at Detroit. The ship returned to service as b) GLENISLA in 1918 and was scrapped at Hamilton as c) PRESCOTT in 1962-1963.

1937: NEEBING foundered with the loss of 5 lives in western Lake Superior while towing the barge COTEAU in a heavy storm. The crane-equipped ship was approaching the Nipigon Strait, with a load of gravel for Red Rock, ON at the time. Nine sailors were rescued.

1947: MILVERTON, downbound with a cargo of coal, and TRANSLAKE, upbound with crude oil, collided near Iroquois, ON. The latter got caught in the current and veered to port resulting in the collision. The former, one of the few oil-burning canal ships, had the fuel lines rupture, caught fire, drifted downstream and grounded at the head of Rapide Plat. The ship burned for two days and 11 sailors were killed. Despite the heavy damage, MILVERTON was refloated, repaired and later sailed as c) CLARY FORAN and d) FERNDALE (i) before being scrapped at Hamilton in 1963.

1952: BAYTON was loading at Pool 4A Elevator at the Canadian Lakehead when there was an explosion at the elevator and chunks of concrete rained down on the deck of the Colonial Steamship Co. (Misener) steamer. One person was killed and nine more were injured.

2008: DRAGOMIRESTI was a Romanian freighter that first visited the Seaway in 1992 to load a food aid cargo in Thunder Bay for Sudan & Yemen. The ship was driven aground as j) CHUN JIANG, about 22 miles from Macao in Typhoon Hagupit. The crew were removed by helicopter.

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

 

Port Reports -  September 23

Saginaw River - Todd Shorkey
Indiana Harbor called on the Consumers Energy dock in Essexville early Sunday morning to unload coal. She backed from the dock later in the afternoon, turned at Light 12 and headed outbound for the lake. Samuel de Champlain - Innovation were inbound Sunday night, calling on the Lafarge Cement dock in Essexville to unload. The pair was expected to be outbound Monday morning.

 

Proposed oil shipping terminal on Lake Superior put on hold

9/23 - Superior, Wis. – A proposed oil-shipping terminal on Lake Superior has been put on hold.

Wisconsin Public Radio reports it means oil tankers won't be sailing from western Lake Superior to the East Coast for now.

The terminal would have shipped crude from the Bakken oil fields in North Dakota. Superior Calumet Refinery manager Kollin Schade says the size and cost of an oil terminal means his company needs a refinery on the east coast as a partner. He says nobody has stepped forward with a long-term commitment to make it feasible.

Duluth Port Director Adolph Ojard says he's not surprised. He says he doesn't know if it makes economic sense to move crude oil on the Great Lakes. He says it's more efficient to move it by rail and pipeline.

Associated Press

 

Chautauqua takes Port Huron area by storm

9/23 - Port Huron, Mich. – Al Lewandowski teaches geography at St. Clair County Community College and has lived in the Port Huron area all his life. And even he admits to not being aware of the significance of the Great Storm of 1913 until this year’s centennial thrust it back into the limelight.

“The storm of 1913 was certainly a powerful event in the psyche of the community, and I think we have forgotten about that,” Lewandowski said. He was a presenter Saturday at the Blue Water Chautauqua at McMorran Place, portraying Lawrence Anderson, a weather observer in November 1913 at the Cleveland office of the the U.S. Weather Service.

The Great Storm of 1913, also known as the White Hurricane, battered the Great Lakes from Nov. 7-10. It sank as many as 19 ships and claimed more than 250 lives on the lakes — there likely were additional deaths on land because of the ferocity of the storm.

The Port Huron Museum, which is marking the centennial of the storm with an exhibit titled “The Storm of 1913 Remembered,” organized Saturday’s chautauqua.

Susan Bennett, the museum’s executive director, said the idea was to gather the experts in one spot.

“I think to come up with 14 different presenters, and the top-notch people in the field are here ... I think this is a wonderful experience for the people in the community,” she said.

“It represents a ton of research on the part of the (authors) who wrote these books and did these videos (about the storm),” Bennett said.

David G. Brown, of Port Clinton, Ohio, is the author of “White Hurricane,” considered one of the best accounts of the storm.

“The people in this area have been ignored by what I call the Boston Brahmin historians,” he said, “These are the broad backs and shoulders that moved the iron that made the tanks that won World War II. It saddens me that people are ignorant of where they come from.”

Port Huron Times Herald

 

Updates -  September 23

News Photo Gallery
Saltie Gallery updated with pictures of the Chem Hydra and Federal Miramichi

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  September 23

September 23, 1922, the 306-foot NEPTUNE loaded the first Head-of-the-Lakes cargo of pig iron at Zenith Furnace, Duluth, Minnesota. The 5,000 tons of malleable pig iron was delivered to Buffalo, New York.

September 23, 1975, HERBERT C. JACKSON lost power while upbound on Lake Superior. She was towed back to the Soo by the USS straight decker D.G. KERR.

September 23, 1952, the steamer CHARLES L. HUTCHINSON became the first boat christened at Cleveland since the early years of World War II. The 644-foot HUTCHINSON, Captain T. A. Johnson, was the new flagship of the Pioneer fleet and one of 35 boats in the three fleets operated by Hutchinson & Co. Renamed b.) ERNEST R. BREECH in 1962, c.) KINSMAN INDEPENDENT in 1988. Sold Canadian in 2005, and renamed d.) VOYAGEUR INDEPENDENT. She sails today as the motorship e.) OJIBWAY.

On 23 September 1910, the BETHLEHEM (steel propeller package freighter, 290 foot, 2,633 gross tons, built in 1888, at Cleveland, Ohio) was carrying general merchandise when she went ashore in a gale on the SW side of S. Manitou Island in Lake Michigan. Lifesavers and the crew unloaded her over several days. Although battered by several storms while ashore, she was eventually pulled free and repaired. She lasted until 1925, when she was scrapped.

The scow WAUBONSIE was launched at the Curtis yard in Fort Gratiot, Michigan on 23 September 1873. 1935: HURRY-ON was a Great Lakes visitor in 1934 when it loaded bagged flour at Port Colborne. The ship was lost off Port Hood Island, near Judique, NS, after developing leaks and a list. The lifeboat swamped twice and five were lost.

1961: CRYSTAL JEWEL, inbound for London in thick fog, was in a collision with the B.P. Tanker BRITISH AVIATOR. The captain was seriously injured and his daughter was killed. The vessel first visited the Great Lakes in 1960 and was enroute from Duluth to London with a cargo of grain at the time of the accident. The vessel grounded and, after being released, was taken to Rotterdam where the entire mid-ship superstructure was replaced. The ship made many more trips through the Seaway and returned as b) MELTEMI in 1970. It was scrapped at Busan, South Korea, after arriving as d) TETA on July 17, 1979.

1980: FERNLEAF first visited the Seaway in 1965 and returned as b) AALSUM in 1974. The ship was detained at Basrah, Iraq, in 1981 as c) INICIATIVA on this date in 1980 and declared a total loss in December 1981. It was salvaged in 1993 and renamed d) DOLPHIN V but perhaps only for a trip to the shipbreakers. The vessel arrived at Gadani Beach December 27, 2003, and dismantling began at once.

2000: Vandals attacked the museum ship NORGOMA at Sault Ste. Marie, Ont., breaking windows, light fixtures and setting off fire extinguishers, leaving an estimated $15,000 in damage.

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

 

Carferry Badger resumes daily sailings

9/22 - Ludington, Mich. - – Cool and gusty northwest winds blew over northern Lake Michigan beneath a partly cloudy sky as the SS Badger steamed out of Ludington Saturday morning. It marked a resumption of the daily schedule to Manitowoc, Wisconsin, which had been cancelled late Wednesday, when boiler tube problems were found.

The engine-room crew worked nearly round the clock and deep into the night Friday to assure resumption of the schedule. The season continues through Oct. 13.

Jim Spencer and Erik Jonasson

 

Port Reports -  September 22

Marquette, Mich. - Rod Burdick
Lakes Contender loaded ore at the Upper Harbor on Saturday.

Grand Haven, Mich. - Dick Fox
Ashtabula and Defiance delivered a load to Verplank's Dock in Ferrysburg about 11:30 a.m. Saturday.

Saginaw River - Todd Shorkey
Friday morning saw the tug Undaunted and her barge, Pere Marquette 41, call on the Bay Aggregates dock in Bay City to unload. The pair finished by early in the evening and backed from the slip, headed for the lake. Olive L. Moore - Lewis J. Kuber were back again, this time with a split cargo for the Bay City Wirt Stone Dock and the GM dock in Saginaw. The pair was expected to be outbound early Saturday morning.

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  September 22

On September 22, 1958, the EDMUND FITZGERALD entered service, departing River Rouge, Michigan for Silver Bay, Minnesota on its first trip. The FITZGERALD's first load was 20,038 tons of taconite pellets for Toledo. The vessel would, in later years, set several iron ore records during the period from 1965 through 1969.

While in ballast, the ROGER M. KYES struck bottom in Buffalo Harbor September 22, 1976, sustaining holes in two double bottom tanks and damage to three others, whereupon she proceeded to Chicago for dry docking on September 27, 1976, for survey and repairs. Renamed b.) ADAM E. CORNELIUS in 1989.

While being towed from Duluth, Minnesota by the Canadian tug TUSKER on September 22, 1980, the D. G. KERR rammed into the breakwater at Duluth causing $200,000 in damages to the breakwater. The tow apparently failed to make the turning buoy leaving Duluth Harbor.

On September 22, 1911 the HENRY PHIPPS collided with and sank her Steel Trust fleet mate, the steamer JOLIET of 1890, which was at anchor on the fog-shrouded St. Clair River near Sarnia, Ontario. The JOLIET sank without loss of crew and was declared a total loss. The PHIPPS then continued her downbound journey and collided with the Wyandotte Chemical steamer ALPENA, of 1909, but incurred only minor damage.

The T.W. ROBINSON and US.265808 (former BENSON FORD) departed Quebec City in tow of the Polish tug JANTAR bound for Recife where they arrived on September 22, 1987. Scrapping began the next month in October.

MATHILDA DESGAGNES was freed from polar ice in the Arctic on September 22, 1988, by the West German Icebreaker Research Vessel POLARSTERN.

September 22, 1913 - The ANN ARBOR No. 5 struck bottom in the Sturgeon Bay Canal and damaged her rudder and steering gear. After undergoing repairs at Milwaukee, she was back in service the following October.

On 22 September 1887, ADA E. ALLEN (wooden propeller steam barge, 90 foot, 170 gross tons, built in 1872, at Walpole Island, Ontario.) caught fire while moored at Amherstburg, Ontario. She was cut loose and set adrift to prevent the fire from spreading ashore. She drifted to Bois Blanc (Bob-Lo) Island and burned to a total loss.

On 22 September 1882, Mr. H. N. Jex accepted the contract to recover the engine and boiler from the MAYFLOWER, which sank in the Detroit River in 1864. He was to be paid $600 upon delivery of the machinery at Windsor, Ontario. He succeeded in raising the engine on 12 October and the boiler shortly thereafter.

1917: The wooden steamer WILLIAM P. REND, a) GEORGE G. HADLEY, foundered off Alpena while carrying livestock. All 9 crewmembers were rescued.

1951: The Liberty ship THUNDERBIRD visited the Seaway in 1959. Earlier, on this date in 1951, the ship received major bow damage from a head-on collision with the Chinese freighter UNION BUILDER (built in 1945 at Brunswick, GA as a) COASTAL RANGER) at the entrance to Colombo, Ceylon. THUNDERBIRD was also a Great Lakes trader as d) NEW KAILING in 1964 and scrapped at Kaohsiung, Taiwan, in 1967.

1979: OCEANIC KLIF first visited the Seaway in 1971. The ship stranded near Las Palmas, Canary Islands, while on a voyage from Kamsar, Guinea, West Africa, to Port Alfred, QC with calcinated bauxite and was abandoned by the crew.

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

 

 

Lake Superior levels only one inch below average; cold weather to thank

9/21 - Duluth, Minn. – Lake Superior water levels are now reported as being only one inch below average.

According to the Army Corps of Engineers, Lake Superior levels fluctuate an average of 33 inches annually from evaporation alone, which is up from 22 inches annually in the 1960s.

However, this year's cooler water and air temperatures coupled with longer ice cover in the spring have helped boost Lake Superior's levels to its current point.

Lakes Michigan and Huron are up seven inches, but are still 17 inches below average, meaning ships still have carry lighter loads in Lake Superior to make the voyage through the seaway.

Port Authority Facilities Manager Jim Sharrow says the Duluth Port is working with the Corps of engineers to deepen the most critical parts of the Saint Mary's River.

"Three percent of the gross national product of the United States of America has a component of raw material that moves through the St. Marys River," said Sharrow, "how can we afford not to maximize its potential?"

Sharrow added that the port is still working with Congress in an effort to utilize all of the Harbor Maintenance Fund for much–needed harbor, and channel, dredging operations.

Northland’s News Center

 

Port Reports -  September 21

Lorain, Ohio - Phil Leon
Algoway left the Lafarge Dock 1, cleared the Charles Berry Bridge, and was almost out of Lorain harbor at 4:42 Friday.

 

Obama takes on coal with first-ever carbon limits

9/21 - Washington, D.C. – The Obama administration will press ahead Friday with tough requirements for new coal-fired power plants, moving to impose for the first time strict limits on the pollution blamed for global warming.

The proposal would help reshape where Americans get electricity, away from a coal-dependent past into a future fired by cleaner sources of energy. It's also a key step in President Barack Obama's global warming plans, because it would help end what he called "the limitless dumping of carbon pollution" from power plants.

Although the proposed rule won't immediately affect plants already operating, it eventually would force the government to limit emissions from the existing power plant fleet, which accounts for a third of all U.S. greenhouse gas emissions. Obama has given the Environmental Protection Agency until next summer to propose those regulations.

The EPA provided The Associated Press with details of the proposal prior to the official announcement, which was expected Friday morning. The public will have a chance to comment on the rule before it becomes final.

Despite some tweaks, the rule packs the same punch as one announced last year, which was widely criticized by industry and Republicans as effectively banning any new coal projects in the U.S.

That's because to meet the standard, new coal-fired power plants would need to install expensive technology to capture carbon dioxide and bury it underground. No coal-fired power plant has done that yet, in large part because of the cost. And those plants that the EPA points to as potential models, such as a coal plant being built in Kemper County, Miss., by Southern Co., have received hundreds of millions of dollars in federal grants and tax credits.

Coal, which is already struggling to compete with cheap natural gas, accounts for 40 percent of U.S. electricity, a share that was already shrinking. And natural gas would need no additional pollution controls to comply.

The regulations have been in the works since 2011 and stem from a 1970 law passed by Congress to control air pollution. In 2007, the Supreme Court ruled that that law, the Clean Air Act, could be applied to heat-trapping pollution. The EPA already has issued rules aimed at curbing global warming pollution from automobiles and the largest industrial sources.

An EPA official told the AP that the rule doesn't specify any particular technology. But the official acknowledged that carbon capture was the only current technology available for a company to meet the threshold of 1,100 pounds of carbon dioxide emissions per megawatt hour of electricity. To put that in perspective, a modern coal plant without carbon controls would release about 1,800 pounds per megawatt hour.

The official spoke on condition of anonymity because the announcement of the rule had not been made.

The administration went back to the drawing board after receiving more than 2 million comments on its first proposal, which was legally vulnerable because it required coal and natural gas to meet the same limit. Coal and natural gas now have separate standards, but the latest proposal will almost certainly to be litigated once it becomes final, which the law requires the EPA to do in a year.

The legal argument likely will be based around whether carbon capture and storage is a demonstrated technology.

The EPA will seek comments on whether to subject three coal plants in various stages of the development to the new standard, or treat them as existing sources. They include Wolverine Power Cooperative's plans for a new power plant near Rogers City, Mich.

The Associated Press

 

Updates -  September 21

Saltie Gallery updated with pictures of the Chem Hydra, Eeborg, Elisabeth Schulte, Federal Miramichi, Federal Yukina, Lubie, Varnebank, and Weser
 

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  September 21

On 21 September 1892, the whaleback steamer JAMES B. COLGATE (steel propeller whaleback freighter, 308 foot, 1,713 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.

1907: The passenger ship PICTON, a) CORSICAN caught fire and burned at the dock in Toronto. The hull was later converted to a barge and was, in time, apparently abandoned near the Picton Pumping Station.

1907: ALEX NIMICK, a wooden bulk freighter, went aground near west of Vermilion Point, Lake Superior, and broke up as a total loss. The vessel was enroute from Buffalo to Duluth with a cargo of coal and six lives were lost

1921: The 3-masted schooner OLIVER MOWAT sinks in Lake Ontario between the Main Duck and False Duck Islands after a collision with KEYWEST on a clear night. Three lives were lost while another 2 sailors were rescued from the coal-laden schooner.

1924: The whaleback self-unloader CLIFTON, the former SAMUEL MATHER, foundered in Lake Huron off Thunder Bay while carrying a cargo of stone from Sturgeon Bay to Detroit. All 25 on board were lost.

1946: A second typhoon caught the former Hall vessel LUCIUS W. ROBINSON as b) HAI LIN while anchored in the harbor at Saipan, Philippines, on a voyage to China.

1969: AFRICAN GLADE, a Seaway caller in 1963, lost power in the Caribbean as c) TRANSOCEAN PEACE and was towed into Port au Spain, Trinidad. The repaired ship departed for Durban, South Africa, in April 1970 only to suffer more boiler problems enroute. The vessel was sold for scrapping at Kaohsiung, Taiwan, later in the year.

1977: HELEN EVANS suffered steering problems and went aground on Whaleback Shoal while upbound with iron ore in the St. Lawrence. There was minor damage and the vessel was released September 23.

1982: CALGADOC left the Great Lakes in 1975 and saw service in the south as b) EL SALINERO. The ship sank on this date in 1982 on the Pacific off the coast of Mexico.

1985: ELTON HOYT 2ND struck the 95th Street Bridge at Chicago and headed to Sturgeon Bay for repairs.

1988: The small tug MARY KAY sank in a Lake Ontario storm enroute from Rochester to Oswego. The former b) CAPT. G.H. SWIFT had recently been refitted and went down after a huge wave broke over the stern. It had seen only brief service on Lake Ontario after arriving from the Atlantic in 1987.

1993: The tug DUKE LUEDTKE sank in Lake Erie about 12 miles north of Avon Point when the ship began taking water faster than the pumps could keep up. One coastguardsman was lost checking on the source of the leak when the vessel rolled over and sank.

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

 

Port Reports -  September 20

Thessalon, Ont.
Wednesday a crewman fell overboard from the Algoway while the vessel was loading stone at Thessalon. The crewman was uninjured.

Buffalo, N.Y. – Brian W.
Capt. Henry Jackman remained in Lackawanna Thursday morning. She was tied up at the south end of the wall at the Gateway Metroport Main Dock where they usually unload salt. The Rebecca Lynn and barge A-397 departed Tonawanda overnight.

 

S.S. Badger stalled by boiler tube problem

9/20 - Ludington, Mich. – The crew of the carferry SS Badger is evaluating when it will be able to sail again after it canceled Wednesday’s sailing due to a malfunction with a boiler tube that has been difficult for the company to find and repair.

Lake Michigan Carferry, the company that owns the Badger, said Thursday that it continues to use all of its resources to resolve the problem and return the Badger to service at the earliest possible time.

"We have experienced a malfunction with the boiler tubes that has been difficult to find and repair. We continue to use all of our resources to resolve the problem and return the Badger to service at the earliest possible time,” a spokesman said.

"This is the first time this season that we have not sailed due to mechanical issues', the spokesman noted.

Ludington Daily News

 

Despite wet summer, Lake Superior level still 10 inches below normal

9/20 - Ironwood, Mich. – After significant increases in the water level of Lake Superior over the past few months, the lake level held relatively steady in August and remains lower than long-term averages.

According to Kevin Crupi, of the National Weather Service office in Marquette, the Lake Superior level stood at 601.86 feet above sea level on Aug. 1 and ended the month slightly higher at 601.94 feet.

August 2013 water levels on Lake Superior were about three to four inches higher than in August of 2012, but still about 10 inches below long-tern norms.

“Greater evaporation associated with higher water temperatures nearly balanced incoming run-off from the land drainage basins,” Crupi explained.

The average water level in July was 601.6 feet.

Ample rainfall this spring and summer has returned the lake to more typical levels after several years of drought.

Crupi, citing data provided by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, said the long-term Lake Superior average for August is 602.13 feet, but in August of 2007 the lake had dropped all the way to 600.43 feet.

The highest August average on record was 603.22 feet in 1952.

While Ironwood has received more than twice as much precipitation this year compared to 2012, other communities surrounding the lake, like Duluth, have experienced dry summers.

The Climate Prediction Center forecasts above normal temperatures for the Upper Peninsula from October through the end of the year, along with above normal precipitation.

The Daily Globe

 

Wreck of Canadian schooner Ocean Wave discovered on Lake Ontario

9/20 - Toledo, Ohio – The National Museum of the Great Lakes, owned and operated by the Great Lakes Historical Society announced Thursday that their collaborative association with shipwreck explorers Jim Kennard, Roger Pawloski and Roland Stevens has produced another important shipwreck discovery on Lake Ontario, the Canadian schooner Ocean Wave.

“The National Museum of the Great Lakes provides funding for Kennard and his colleagues that has resulted in some of the most significant shipwreck discoveries in the past several years,” said Christopher Gillcrist, Executive Director of the National Museum. “The collaborative approach of our not-for profit organization underwriting a volunteer search team’s out of pocket expenses is a model for this type of work everywhere.”

In early November 1890, the Ocean Wave, heavily laden with a cargo of hemlock lumber and lath, was bound for Oswego from Trenton, Ontario. When the schooner was within 15 miles of its destination, it encountered a sudden and violent squall from the south. The winds at Oswego were recorded as high as 34 mph, however in the middle of the lake they could have been over 45 mph. The waves created by these high winds may have exceeded 12 feet in height. The following day there were several reports from ships coming into port that they had passed what appeared to be the schooner Ocean Wave bottom up and floating in the lake. A section of the stern with lath was seen floating northward. A tugboat was sent out from Oswego to rescue any survivors and possibly retrieve the sinking ship. The schooner was observed to be on its port side with just a portion of the starboard rail above the water and her spars floating nearby. The stern had been washed away and only a small portion of the lumber cargo remained in the hold. The yawl was still attached to the schooner but there were no survivors. The squall must have come very fast and hit hard, not giving the crew any time to reach the yawl and possible safety. Because the Ocean Wave was so badly broken up and the cargo of lumber nearly gone it was not worth towing back to Oswego.

After the squall the winds subsided for the next week and the Ocean Wave continued to float around Lake Ontario at the mercy of the wind and lake currents becoming a hazard to other ships. Ten days later, some of the debris from the schooner reached Mexico Bay at the eastern end of Lake Ontario. However, the Ocean Wave was not with these pieces of flotsam, the ship had finally sunk along the way.

The wife of the late Captain Brokenshire said that there were five persons on the Ocean Wave – her husband Capt. Brokenshire and William Martin of Port Hope; Mr. Smith of Port Hope; Mr. Joseph Wells of Belleville, and an unknown man. Captain Brokenshire left 11 children. Three of whom were still at home the oldest being 12 and the youngest six years old.

The shattered remains of a sunken wreck were initially located in 2012 using a high resolution Deepvison side-scan sonar system during a search for shipwrecks in Lake Ontario. This summer, the team returned to the wreck site three times, deploying a VideoRay remote operated vehicle (ROV) to obtain video recordings and sonar measurements of the shipwreck in an effort to identify the sunken ship.

The wreck was that of the remains of an old schooner. The deck, much of the stern and the cabin are missing. The masts are gone except for a small stub about 3 or 4 feet of the foremast. Both sides of the ship have fallen away and lay next to the hull. Except for the area around the bow, most of the schooner lies flat as a pancake on the bottom. The anchors that would have hung on the bow rail and the windless used to hoist them are also gone. The scene of the wreck site is most characteristic of a ship that capsized with its parts and pieces torn or fallen away while upside down during a violent storm. Sonar measurements were made by both the ROV and the side-scan sonar.

The survey of historic shipwrecks in Lake Ontario was funded by a grant from The National Museum of the Great Lakes/Great Lakes Historical Society of Vermillion, Ohio.

 

New Port Authority director named in Duluth

9/20 - Duluth, Minn. – The Duluth Seaway Port Authority will be welcoming a new Executive Director on Oct. 1. Transportation executive Vanta E. Coda II was officially appointed to that position at a recent Port Authority Board of Commissioners' meeting in Duluth.

He succeeds Adolph Ojard, who announced in May his decision to retire and who will be leaving Sept. 30 after more than a decade at the helm of the agency, capping a career in the maritime and transportation industries that has spanned 40-plus years.

Mr. Coda, 46, brings to this leadership post over 20 years of experience in multi-modal transportation and logistics. Much like Ojard, he began his career in the rail industry and, similarly, is leaving a management position in the Gulf to move to Duluth.

During his career, Coda developed expertise in transportation marketing and sales, pricing, and financial analysis working with a wide array of customers and across many commodity lines including coal, aggregate, chemicals, petroleum, steel, wind generation and heavy-lift products. He has had responsibility for moving product via inland waterways (brown water) and across oceans (blue water) alike, as well as by rail and truck across North America. Most recently, he served as Director of Fuel Transportation for Dynegy Inc. in Houston, Texas.

In accepting this position, Coda becomes only the seventh director the Port Authority has had in almost 60 years.

 

26th Annual Gales of November celebrates Lake Superior maritime heritage

9/20 - Duluth, Minn. – Register now to attend the 26th annual Gales of November, the Lake Superior Marine Museum Association’s annual maritime conference and fundraiser.

The two-day educational, fundraising and networking event begins Friday, November 1 with a joint luncheon with the Duluth-Superior Propeller Club at Grandma’s Sports Garden, 425 Lake Ave. South in Canal Park in Duluth. The luncheon’s keynote speaker is Tim Cochrane, superintendent of the Grand Portage National Monument. Friday afternoon provides various tour options including behind-the-scenes tours at of the Lake Superior Maritime Collections at the University of Wisconsin-Superior, Superior Public Museum’s Fairlawn Mansion and at the Great Lakes Aquarium. The day concludes with an Opening Gala reception, sponsored by Lake Superior Magazine, at the Lake Superior Maritime Visitor Center in historic Canal Park.

Gales of November festivities resume at 8:30 a.m. Saturday, November 2, at the Duluth Entertainment and Convention Center. The day is filled with maritime related educational presentations, a trade show, an interactive maritime activities area, a silent auction and an opportunity to win the summer 2014 “Cruise of a Lifetime” raffle on the 1,000-foot Edwin H. Gott. Saturday’s keynote luncheon presentation features Steve Elliot, Minnesota Historical Society Executive Director.

Tickets to Gales of November are required. Immediate Gales of November details and registration information can be found at www.LSMMA.com.

 

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 could be fabricated. She was renamed b.) AMERICAN SPIRIT in 2004.

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

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.

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.

1970: MARATHA ENDEAVOUR, enroute from Chicago to Rotterdam, broke down in the Atlantic and sent out a distress call. The ship was taking water but survived. The 520-foot long vessel had been a Seaway trader since 1965 and returned as b) OLYMPIAN in 1971. The ship arrived at Huangpu, China, for scrapping as c) HIMALAYA on January 9, 1985.

1980: The Canadian coastal freighter EDGAR JOURDAIN was built at Collingwood in 1956 as MONTCLAIR. The ship had been a pre-Seaway trader to the lakes and returned as b) PIERRE RADISSON in 1965, c) GEORGE CROSBIE in 1972 and d) EDGAR JOURDAIN beginning in 1979. It was wrecked at Foxe Basin, off Hall Beach in the Canadian Arctic, after going aground. The ship was abandoned, with the anchors down, but disappeared overnight on December 15, 1982, while locked in shifting pack ice. It is believed that the vessel was carried into deeper water and, at last report, no trace had ever been found.

1982: BEAVERFIR served Canadian Pacific Steamships as a Seaway trader beginning in 1961. The ship stranded off Barra de Santiago, El Salvador, as d) ANDEN in a storm on this date in 1982 after dragging anchor. Sixteen sailors from the 26-member crew perished.

2011: MINER, a) MAPLECLIFFE HALL, b) LEMOYNE (ii), c) CANADIAN MINER broke loose of the tug HELLAS and drifted aground off Scaterie Island, Nova Scotia, while under tow for scrapping at Aliaga, Turkey. The ship was a total loss and, in 2013, was still waiting to be dismantled and removed.

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

 

Former rail ferry Viking under conversion

9/19 - Menominee, Mich. – The carferry Viking is now under conversion to a flat deck barge. She was built in 1925 at Manitowoc, Wis., as the Ann Arbor No. 7 and was renamed Viking in 1964 when she was rebuilt and converted diesel.

The current owners tried many different business ventures over the last 10 years to keep the Viking running but each was met with its own challenges.

The SS Badger wanted to purchase the Viking to run it as a car ferry but, unfortunately, due to regulations, that did not pan out either. She is not being scrapped but converted to a flat deck barge.

 

Baie St. Paul arrives in Montreal with grain

9/19 - Baie St. Paul, Canada Steamship Lines' first of four new Trillium-class self-unloading bulk carriers, was expected to arrive in Montreal, Que., Wednesday to unload grain. Although the Baie St. Paul has been in Montreal before, this is the first time that she has unloaded grain. The vessel loaded the cargo in Thunder Bay and will be unloading at Section 56 Elevator 4. According to the Port of Montreal's website, the Baie St. Paul will head to Superior, Wis., after it has unloaded. This is also the first time that any of the new Trillium-class vessels from CSL has carried a grain cargo, as they have been carrying mostly coal and iron ore for customers around the Great Lakes/Seaway region.

Denny Dushane

 

Port Reports -  September 19

Marquette, Mich. - Rod Burdick
Herbert C. Jackson and Michipicoten arrived to load ore at the Upper Harbor on Wednesday.

Quebec - Jens Juhl
Early Wednesday morning three cruise ships arrived within three hours. At 6.30 a.m. the Grande Mariner tied up to pier 19 next to the naval museum. The 137,308 GT Explorer of the Seas arrived at 8:30 and tied up at the cruise ship terminal 22. At pier 21, the Norwegian square-rigger Sorlandet departed for its trans-Atlantic voyage to the Azores. Half an hour later the French-flagged mini-cruise ship Le Boreal tied up at pier 21. Total passenger capacity of the four cruise ships visiting Quebec exceeds 8,000, and they are bringing a shipload of tourist dollars to the port.

 

2012 grain drought hits Seaway volumes

9/19 - Niagara, Ont. – The St. Lawrence Seaway is still reeling from last year’s tough grain crop. But it says its shipping is poised to rebound as new Canadian prairie and American grain begins moving for export overseas.

According to the St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corp., total cargo shipments on the waterway were just over 19.3 million tonnes from March 22 until Aug. 31, down 9% compared to the same period last year.

Year-to-date total grain shipments are 3.3 million tonnes, down 6% over the same period in 2012.

The Seaway maintains this is an improvement over the previous month and reflects a jump in grain activity in August.

“Last year, much of the US grain crop was suffering from a significant drought,” said Seaway spokesman Andrew Bogora. “Inventories as much as per usual, and that meant we did not see the same volumes flowing through the logistics system.”

Bogora said inventories – one way or anther – tend to carry over one year to the next, and hence the impact for 2013 to date.

“This year, conditions are markedly better in the entire grain belt, whether it be Canadian or U.S.,” he said. “So we are quite bullish on the prospects for a surge in grain shipments this fall.”

Meanwhile, liquid bulk shipments through the Seaway also had a strong showing in August, due to an increase in demand for liquid asphalt. Transported supplies for manufacturing are also “somewhat soft” at the moment, Bogora said. That’s reflected in iron-ore shipments being down from last year.

While the American and Canadian auto trade is quite strong, “I think it’s fair to say other sectors of the manufacturing economy are not quite as strong,” he added.

Bogora adds dry bulk shipments, which includes cement and various aggregates has also had a slight decline and that reflects a “soft-patch” in the construction industry.

St. Catharines Standard

 

Port Huron museum Chautauqua features concert of historical proportions

9/19 - Port Huron, Mich. – The Blue Water Chautauqua, a special part of the “Storm of 1913 Remembered” exhibit, is a one-day gathering of scholars, authors, musicians and Great Lakes enthusiasts who will present a glimpse of the life and times, tragedies and aftermath of the Storm of 1913. Blue Water Chautauqua will be held Saturday, Sept. 21 at McMorran Place, Port Huron, Mich.

Blue Water Chautauqua presentations during the day and evening concert will include: 'The Wexford' - Paul Carroll; 'Finding the Regina' - Wayne Brusate; 'The US Lifesaving Service' - Paul Schmitt; 'Weather Report: November 1913' - Al Lewandowski; '40 ft. Waves at the Fort Gratiot Lighthouse and Lightship' - Dick Wicklund; 'Storm' - in concert with Ric Mixter and Dan Hall; School For Strings - 'Water Music' - Dr. Rebekah Brown; Shanty and folk music – Ourselves.

Details at www.porthuronmuseum.org

 

Updates -  September 19

News Photo Gallery
Four new book reviews are up on the Great Lakes Bookshelf
Lighthouse Gallery updated - New photographs and updated information about Pottawatomie Light located on Rock Island in Lake Michigan.

 

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. 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 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.

 

Port Reports -  September 18

Lorain, Ohio - Phil Leon
Dorothy Ann Pathfinder arrived in Lorain Tuesday morning about 7:15 and was down by the high-level bridge unloading.

Buffalo, N.Y. - Brian W.
Rebecca Lynn - A397 were still unloading at Noco Tuesday evening. The Innovation - Samuel D Champlain arrived around 8 p.m. Monday for Lafarge; they departed around 6 a.m. Tuesday for Alpena.

Quebec - Jens Juhl
The cruise ships Summit and Grande Caribe were in port this weekend. Both vessels departed Monday. The Norwegian square-rigger Sorlandet was alongside pier 21 next to the Quebec Naval Museum. Queen Mary II arrived at noon Tuesday and tied up at Pier 103. Salties presently in port are the motor vessel Arctic, the bulker IDC Diamond and the products tanker MTC Matterhorn. Algoma Transport is alongside Terminal 53

 

Report says Lake Erie ports boost economic activity

9/18 - A recently-completed study undertaken by a regional planning agency has shown that two Lake Erie ports are generating at least $100-million annually in economic activity. The report, financed by the Erie County (OH) Regional Planning Commission, concentrated the period from August, 2012 to September 2013.

Planning Commission Director Steven Poggiali said the report also revealed that activity at the ports of Sandusky and Huron helped the county recover the 2,900 jobs lost during the current recession and added 1,700 new jobs. The recovery outstripped both the national and Ohio recovery rate, he added.

According to the new report, Huron harbor handled in-bound cargoes worth $12-million during the period studied, primarily in iron ore, limestone and grain. The harbor has since seen a sharp reduction in iron ore deliveries and grain shipping has evaporated.

The Sandusky harbor - one of the more active coal shipping ports on Lake Erie - shipped cargoes valued at more than $50-million, the study found. The bulk of the coal shipped from the NorfolkSouthern coal dock is bound for Canadian ports, officials have long held.

Jim Spencer

 

Great Lakes levels bounce back after record lows

9/18 - Harrison Township, Mich. – Eight months ago, prospects for this year’s boating season on the Great Lakes were dim.

In January, lakes Michigan and Huron hit their lowest-ever recorded levels for the month. Years of drought-like conditions coupled with back-to-back winter/spring seasons producing little precipitation prompted harbor masters and marina owners to worry about boats running aground in shallow waters and the maritime economy taking another hit.

The crisis atmosphere helped trigger a $21 million emergency dredging program for 58 harbors in the state. At the time, Jack Witt, owner of Pentwater’s Snug Harbor, was worried about what lay ahead.

“Everybody is just praying that Lake Michigan will not go down any farther,” he said in February.

Somewhere along the way, however, Mother Nature decided to pitch in. Harbors and marinas around the state enjoyed a better than expected seasonal rise in the lakes during spring and early summer that cleared the way for better boating conditions and averted the crisis some expected.

For Brian Kelley, manager at Sundog Marina in Harrison Township, the boost has been a pleasant surprise.

“This season, everyone seems to be having a good time,” he said. “It’s not gloom and doom. We have a boat sales department here, and our numbers are better than they were last year.”

In Pentwater, a west Michigan harbor town south of Ludington, improved lake levels led to a gradual improvement in business as the summer progressed.

“Our water levels came back to a point that was just a little below where they were in 2012,” Witt said. “As a result of the weather, we were off on our transient dockage (docking fees for visiting boats) this July compared to the end of last year. But we had such a strong August, we’re finishing with more sales year-to-date than we had for the entire year last year.”

The boost comes courtesy of the rain and snowfall that accumulated in the first months of 2013.

“We’ve seen a much greater seasonal rise than we did a year ago,” said Keith Kompoltowicz, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ chief of watershed hydrology. “We had more snow build up throughout the Great Lakes Basin, particularly in the northern region. And then we had an unbelievably wet spring.”

Lake Superior typically experiences a seasonal rise of a foot, but this year the number was closer to 20 inches. Likewise, lakes Michigan and Huron normally have an 11-inch increase, but the wet weather drove that figure to about 20 inches.

While lakes St. Clair and Erie last year experienced almost no seasonal rise at all, both this year had an increase of almost 2 feet.

Kelley said boaters have noticed. “Nobody is talking about hitting bottom (of the lake) any more,” he said.

As welcome as the heightened seasonal increase in water levels has been, it still does not leave the Great Lakes in particularly good shape compared with historical data. Each of the lakes remains well below its long-term average.

Kompoltowicz said it would take six months of above-average wet weather to get the lakes back to their normal levels.

The shipping industry in particular would like to see higher lake levels to accommodate its business.

In the late 1990s, when lake levels were riding high, the larger coal transports hauled an average of 71,000 tons of cargo per trip. As of last month, those same ships were carrying roughly 64,000 tons of coal or almost 10 percent less.

“This is not a case of ‘Happy Days Are Here Again’ by any means,” said Glen Nekvasil, vice president of the Lake Carriers Association. “That’s why we need the dredging.”

Early in 2013, Michigan embarked on an emergency dredging program allocating funding for 58 projects across the state. The bulk of those sites were the state’s 44 harbors of refuge — a string of ports spaced 30 miles apart that act as a maritime safety net.

Twelve of the 58 projects have been completed, according to the state Department of Natural Resources. Physical dredging work is under way at six sites, and permit approval has been granted for 30 more.

State officials set up and expedited the permitting process to help communities get a jumpstart on the work, and the process has gone at about the pace they expected, they said. But a handful of harbors have yet to submit their paperwork.

“We want to keep this moving as fast as we can,” said Paul Petersen, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources’ waterways grant program manager. “We think the bulk will be done by the end of 2013, but, realistically, some work will could continue through the spring of next year.”

Nicki Polan, executive director of the Michigan Boating Industries Association, said her constituents have been pleased with the pace of the state’s emergency dredging program.

“We’ve been very happy to see the program come together the way it has,” she said. “We’ve really heard very little in the way of negative reactions to this point.”

The Detroit News

 

Welcome’s re-berth still in air

9/18 - Traverse City, Mich. – Pardon the pun, but a rotting Bicentennial wooden replica of a 1770s sailing vessel hasn’t worn out its welcome in Grand Traverse Bay.

The Welcome, sunken in a watery grave, would be a welcome dive attraction in West Bay, local divers and underwater preserve enthusiasts say.

“One of the reasons we were formed in 2007 was to bring intentional sinkings to the bay,” said Alisa Kroupa, president of the Grand Traverse Bay Underwater Preserve.

Doug Bell, owner of Scuba North, Traverse City’s only dive shop, said he “wholeheartedly” supports the sinking of the Welcome somewhere on the bottom of West Bay. The vessel probably would have to lie at rest on its side because it does not have a flat bottom hull, he said.

“Ideally, it would be nice if it was accessible from shore for all levels of divers,” he said.

Intentional ship sinkings in Lake Michigan have done “nothing but benefit” areas that have created dive attractions, Bell said.

Kroupa said no location has been discussed yet. Under state guidelines, the Welcome cannot be scuttled in fish spawning grounds or areas where it would become a navigation hazard. The top of the vessel also has to be at least 45 feet below water surface. Because of its mast, the sloop would have to be sunk at 90 feet if it could sit upright on the bottom, she said.

She believes it would be best to sink the Welcome on its side at least 58 feet deep, which would allow most divers certified to swim to 70-foot depths in open water to visit the boat. Only divers with advance certification are certified to go down 90 feet.

The Maritime Heritage Alliance, a Traverse City boat preservation group, decided weeks ago to seek a state permit to sink the Welcome. The request won’t be filed with the Department of Natural Resources until later this year. MHA board members said they don’t expect a decision until early 2014.

The Welcome, a replica of a 1774 fur-trading era sloop, was constructed for display during the mid-1970s in the Mackinac Straits area as part of the nation’s 1976 Bicentennial celebration. The MHA became the Welcome’s custodian in 1992 and its owners in 2006.

The Mackinac Island Commission has said that it doesn’t want the boat back, but it apparently hasn’t closed the hatch on that possibility.

“Currently, we’ve not offered to take it back, but we’re discussing it internally as an option,” Steven Brisson, deputy director of Mackinac State Historic Parks marketing and programs, said this week.

One option might be to take her back for dry dock display.

“We don’t have a plan for it, but some staff here feel it would be nice to find options other than sinking,” he said. “The Welcome was a popular display while being constructed.”

Mike Will, director of the Discovery Center – Great Lakes across the parking lot from the MHA buildings, said the Welcome’s fate has been an emotional topic this summer for historic boat preservationists. Initially, he hoped the Welcome could become a M-22 roadside icon for the Discovery Center. He now supports sinking the vessel because of the prohibitive cost of removing it from the water, repairing and putting a roof over it.

“Shipwrecks are a great resource,” he said. “Boats reach an end of life and die, too. It’s better and more fitting to sink her than to take her to the landfill. That way we can preserve some of her history here.”

Traverse City Record-Eagle

 

Updates -  September 18

News Photo Gallery

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  September 18

On September 18, 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 50 feet in diameter.

On September 18,1679, 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.

E J BLOCK, a.) W. R. WOODFORD of 1908, 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. She lasted until scrapped at Ramey's Bend in 1988.

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

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 Isles, Quebec, 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 September 18, 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 September 18, 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.

1909: LACKAWANNA lost steering and sank in the St. Clair River with a hole in the starboard bow after a collision with the wooden schooner CHIEFTAIN off Point Edward.

1918: BUFFALO, formerly the Great Lakes package freighter a) TADOUSAC, b) DORIC, was torpedoed by U-117 and sunk off Godfrey Light and Trevose Head, Cornwall, UK

1942: ASHBAY traded on the Great Lakes for Bay Line Navigation from 1923 until 1935 when it was sold for Brazilian coastal service. The ship was sunk by gunfire from U-516 on this date at the mouth of the Marowyne River, Brazil, as c) ANTONICO and 16 lives were lost.

1942: NORFOLK, enroute from Surinam to Trinidad, was hit, without warning, by two torpedoes from U-175, on the starboard side near the British Guiana Venezuela border. The Canada Steamship Lines ship went down in minutes. Six lives were lost was well as the cargo of 3055 tons of bauxite destined for Alcoa.

1958: ASHTABULA sank in Ashtabula harbor after a collision with the inbound BEN MOREELL. All on board were rescued but there were later two casualties when the captain committed suicide and an insurance inspector fell to his death while on board.

1970: HIGHLINER was heavily damaged amidships as d) PETROS in a fire at Tyne, UK. The vessel was not repaired and, after being laid up at Cardiff, was towed to Newport, Monmouthshire, for scrapping on June 12, 1972.

1978: The British freighter DUNDEE was a pre-Seaway trader into the Great Lakes and returned through the new waterway on 14 occasions from 1959 to 1962. It foundered in the Mediterranean as g) VLYHO near Falconera Island after an enginer oom explosion caused leaks in the hull. The vessel was enroute from Chalkis, Greece, to Tunis, Tunisia, at the time.

Data from: Skip Gillham, 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.

 

U.S.-Flag cargo movement on lakes 10 million tons in August

9/17 - Cleveland, Ohio – U.S.-flag Great Lakes freighters carried 10.5 million tons of dry-bulk cargo in August, an increase of more than 1 million tons, or 10.6 percent, compared to a year ago. The August float was also on par with month’s long-term average and slightly ahead of Julys 10.3 million-ton total.

U.S.-flag lakers moved 4.5 million tons of iron ore in August, 77.5 percent of all ore moving on the Lakes/Seaway that month. The 4.5 million tons represent a virtual repeat of a year ago, but a slight decrease compared to the month’s long-term average.

Coal shipments in U.S. hulls totaled 2.4 million tons in August, 76.4 percent of all coal moving on the Lakes that month. The 2.4 million tons represent an increase of 39.3 percent compared to a year ago, and are 80,000 tons better than the month’s long-term average.

The 3 million tons of limestone hauled by U.S.-flag lakers in August represent 81.3 percent of the Lakes trade in that commodity that month. The 3 million tons also represent increases of 8.7 and 2.8 percent compared to a year ago and the month’s long-term average.

Through August, the U.S.-flag float stands at 53.5 million tons, a decrease of 1.5 percent compared to a year ago. Iron ore cargos are down by 3.2 percent. Coal loadings are up 7 percent. Shipments of limestone are 4.6 percent off last year’s pace.

Lake Carriers Association

 

Port Reports -  September 17

Marquette, Mich. - Rod Burdick
Near-sisters H. Lee White and Joseph L. Block met outside the Upper Harbor Monday afternoon. White was departing after loading ore while Block was arriving to unload stone into the hopper.

Cedarville & Port Inland, Mich. - Denny Dushane
At Cedarville, Joseph L. Block arrived on Sunday late in the morning to load and departed on Sunday later in the day. Wilfred Sykes was due at Cedarville on Monday in the early morning. The tug Undaunted along with the barge Pere Marquette 41 are due on Thursday in the early morning.

At Port Inland, Joseph H. Thompson arrived on Sunday morning early and loaded. They departed later in the day. Wilfred Sykes was due to arrive at Port Inland on Monday very late in the evening and are also scheduled to return to Port Inland on Thursday in the morning.

Stoneport, Mich. - Denny Dushane
Great Republic loaded at Stoneport on Monday and they was expected to depart around 3 p.m. Lewis J. Kuber was at anchor and due to get the dock around 4 p.m. on Monday following the Republic's departure. There are three vessels scheduled on Tuesday, with the Great Lakes Trader arriving at lunchtime followed by the American Mariner the late afternoon and the Peter R. Cresswell in the late evening. No vessels are scheduled for Wednesday. For Thursday, two vessels are due, with the Cason J. Callaway in the late morning followed by Kaye E. Barker with no time listed.

Toledo, Ohio - Denny Dushane
John B. Aird unloaded an iron ore cargo at the Torco Dock on Monday. Also due to arrive at the Torco Dock is the Rt. Hon. Paul J. Martin on Tuesday in the late evening, followed by H. Lee White on Wednesday in the morning along with the 1,000-footer James R. Barker in the early afternoon. At the CSX Coal Dock, the H. Lee White is due on Wednesday in the evening. Manitowoc is due at CSX on Saturday very late in the evening. Lakes Contender is due to load coal at the CSX on Friday, September 27, in the early morning. Also due on the 27th at the CSX Coal Dock is the John D. Leitch in the early afternoon and the Catherine Desgagnes very late in the evening. The Desgagnes will be pumping water for six hours prior to loading. Two vessels are due at the Midwest Terminal Stone Dock with limestone cargoes. Baie Comeau has been taken off the schedule. The revised lineup now has John D. Leitch due on Friday, September 27 in the early morning followed by the CSL Niagara on Monday, September 30 in the late morning. The salty Maccoa of Cyprus registry also arrived in Toledo recently and appears to be loading at the Midwest Terminal Overseas Dock. Scrapping of the Phoenix Star continues at the Ironhead Shipyard's large drydock.

Buffalo, N.Y. – Brian W.
Monday Cuyahoga was tied up at the south end of the Lackawanna Canal at 7:24 a.m.

 

St. Lawrence Seaway shipping season hits mid-point with uptick in cargo shipments

9/17 - Washington, D.C. – While total cargo movements through the St. Lawrence Seaway in August remained in the negative column (down 9 percent over 2012), the 19.3 million metric tons of cargo moved through the system represented an improvement over last month’s statistics. Ingenuity and resourcefulness, hallmarks of the Seaway System and its users, were evident at U.S. ports around the region.

U.S. ports spent the generally slow month of August continuing work on infrastructure projects and securing new cargo shipments.

"So far in 2013 we have seen general cargo volumes double over last year at the Port of Toledo. This is a good sign that the port is building momentum and that our investments in the equipment and infrastructure at the facility are paying off," said Joe Cappel Director of Cargo Development for the TLCPA. "We're also excited about the progress of construction at the new Ironville terminal which will expand our capacity for cargo storage and handling."

Jason Lowery, Director of Corporate Development for Midwest Terminals at the port added "We have been fortunate to maintain existing customers and pick up a couple new accounts in 2013. That’s a trend we hope to continue through the balance of the year and into 2014."

The Port of Indiana-Burns Harbor reported a 28 percent increase in August shipments versus 2012 and an eight-month total that is 21 percent ahead of last years pace. The 2013 growth was driven by significant increases in shipments of fertilizer, semi-finished steel as well as steel-related raw materials and byproducts.

“We have had four consecutive months of increased shipments,” said Rick Heimann, port director for the Port of Indiana-Burns Harbor. “Our port companies handle a diverse mix of cargoes, but being located in the steel capital of North America certainly has a tremendous impact on volumes coming through this port on ocean, lake and barge routes.”

Construction is currently underway at the Port of Indiana on significant infrastructure improvements, including a mainline rail reconstruction project scheduled to be finished by the end of September.

In addition to the uptick in general cargo traffic at the ports, U.S. grain was also a bright spot for the month.

U.S. grain shipped through the Seaway has risen 37 percent through the end of August over the same period last season, suggesting American wheat, corn and soybean exports through the St. Lawrence Seaway System may enjoy an excellent year if weather conditions cooperate through harvest in October, said Rebecca Spruill, Director of Trade Development. Liquid bulk cargoes are also faring well having topped 2 million tons, 6 percent above their level at 2012s mid-season juncture.

Additionally, as reported by the St. Lawrence Seaway, year-to-date cargo shipments for the period March 22 to August 31 were 19.3 million metric tons. Overall, cargo categories were mixed. While steel production throughout the Great Lakes states is beginning to make a comeback, iron ore and coal shipments remained down in August by 15 and 2 percent respectively. Within the dry bulk category, scrap metal was up 3 percent as well as pig iron at 6 percent.

Marine Delivers

 

Climate a primary factor on lake levels

9/17 - Milwaukee, Wis. – Placing water retention structures in the St. Clair River may not be enough to counteract the effects of a warming climate and raise Lakes Huron and Michigan to their normal levels, experts said Monday.

As water surface temperatures and evaporation rates continue to rise, low water is likely to be a long-term problem despite significant improvement this year following heavy snows in winter and a rainy spring, according to testimony during the annual meeting of the Great Lakes Commission.

“Water levels go up and down,” said Scudder Mackey, coastal management chief with the Ohio Department of Natural Resources. “It’s a natural process, something that we have to learn to live with.”

Levels have been mostly below normal on all five Great Lakes since the late 1990s, but the drop-off has been most severe on Huron and Michigan, which scientists consider one lake because they are connected.

Huron-Michigan has jumped 20 inches since January, exceeding its usual seasonal rise, said Keith Kompoltowicz, a meteorologist with the Detroit office of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Still, it remains 17 inches below its long-term average. Lake Superior is also slightly below its long-term average, while Lakes Erie and Ontario have exceeded theirs.

Groups representing shoreline interests in Lake Huron, particularly in sprawling Georgian Bay, say climate isn’t the only reason water there is extraordinarily low. They blame dredging, gravel mining and other activities that eroded the floor of the St. Clair River on Huron’s southern end, accelerating the flow toward Lake Erie.

Studies have shown those actions caused Huron and Michigan to fall 10 to 16 inches. Some groups put the loss at 20 inches.

In April, the International Joint Commission – which advises the U.S. and Canada about the Great Lakes and other shared waters – recommended a study of installing structures resembling underwater speed bumps in the St. Clair that could raise Huron and Michigan by 5 to 10 inches. Neither federal government has acted on the proposal.

A panel discussion before the Great Lakes commission, which represents states and Canadian provinces in the region, revealed skepticism about the idea.

“Lows on Lakes Michigan and Huron may remain if we have increased evaporation and less precipitation, even if we put in compensating structures,” said Mackey, who participated in the International Joint Commission study.

It could take up to 25 years to plan, design and build the structures and another decade for them to boost levels as much as hoped, said Deborah Lee, regional business director for the Army corps. In the meantime, they could rise or fall on their own.

“We can’t predict what the effects of climate will be with the accuracy to make these kinds of decisions,” Lee said.

Roger Gauthier, chairman of a group called Restore Our Water International, which favors regulating the lake levels, said structures could be installed much faster than Lee predicted. Once in, they could boost Huron-Michigan 60 percent within three years, he said.

“We need to ... be able to act in a time frame that treats this like a crisis,” he said.

Trying to regulate Huron-Michigan would require a difficult balancing act among competing interests, said Daniel Injerd of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources.

Gauthier countered that all would benefit from more stable and reliable levels.

AP’

 

Expressions of Interest sought for Port Weller dry dock

9/17 - The St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corporation (SLSMC) is seeking non-binding Expressions of Interest (EOI) to enter into a long-term lease for the operation of the Port Weller dry docks and berthing wall facilities. The facilities are located on the St. Lawrence Seaway south of Lock 1 on the Welland Canal in Niagara, Ontario. They include two operational dry docks (one deep and one shallow) with direct canal access and a berthing wall for above waterline ship repairs. An office building and multiple other buildings over 16.76 acres of land support the dry docks and are a complement to the facilities.

Interested experienced dry dock operators must offer commercial ship repair services to both the local marine community, and to the national and international users of the St. Lawrence Seaway. The lands and buildings may also be concurrently utilized for a number of other profitable purposes. Following a review of all EOIs by the evaluation committee, the SLSMC will invite submissions by way of Request for Proposal (RFP), which proposals shall be binding upon the participating applicants in accordance with the terms of the RFP.

It is anticipated that there will be considerable interest in this unique marine facility strategically located on the St. Lawrence Seaway. Interested parties are encouraged to utilize the EOI process to explain and highlight to the SLSMC their capabilities and expertise by submitting an EOI questionnaire.

Expression of Interest submissions are to be received by October 4.

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  September 17

On September 17, 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 crankcase explosion as she was bound for Quebec City from Montreal. She was repaired and cleared on September 21. Renamed b.) PINEGLEN in 2002.

On September 17, 1830, WILLIAM PEACOCK (wood side wheel 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 September 17, 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 September 17, 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 August 3,1900. 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.

1909: The towline connecting the ALEXANDER HOLLEY and SIR WILLIAM FAIRBAIRN broke in a Lake Superior storm and the former, a whaleback barge, almost stranded on Sawtooth Shoal. The anchors caught in time and it took 5 hours to rescue the crew.

1980: HERMION began Great Lakes trading shortly after entering service in 1960. The vessel stranded as d) AEOLIAN WIND, about a half mile from Nakhodka, USSR, during a voyage from North Vietnam to Cuba. The ship was refloated on October 8, 1980, and scrapped in 1981 at Nakhodka.

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

 

A new Coast Guard Ship will be stationed at Kingston

9/16 - Kingston, Ont. – According to local news reports Kingston will be the new base for the mid-shore patrol vessel, CCGS Corporal Teather C.V. The vessel will deal with national security, potential threats and endorce federal laws in Lake Ontario and the St. Lawrence Seaway. The 42-metre-long and seven-metre-wide vessel will be temporarily berthed at the LaSalle Causeway until a permanent dock can be designed and built. It is hoped that a berth can be arranged in the Confederation Basin, in downtown Kingston.

The ship is capable of speeds up to 25 knots and can be away from its base for up to two weeks. There will be nine Coast Guard crew and three police officers aboard.

The ship is named after RCMP Corporal Robert Gordon Teahter. He was an RCMP diver and received his Cross of Valour for using his diving skills to rescue two fishermen from the overturned hull of their vessel, in 1981. He passed away in 2004.

Ron Walsh

 

Steam whistles sing of Great Lakes shipping history

9/16 - St. Clair, Mich. – When “Whistles on the Water” hits downtown St. Clair Saturday, Sept. 28, the ear-piercing, body-thundering salutes of steam whistles from a bygone era of Great Lakes shipping will be the main sound heard by visitors.

But behind the unique blast of each whistle lies a story that evokes a vanished time.

“The showpiece whistle at this year’s event is the whistle from the Straits of Mackinac ferry known as Chief Wawatam,” said Dave Michelson, a resident of New Baltimore whose knowledge of the history of shipping on the lakes is encyclopedic. “Chief Wawatam is a famous ice-breaking railroad and car ferry that traveled year-round between Mackinaw City and St. Ignace. It was built in 1911 in Toledo.”

The ship was nearly 340 feet long and 62 feet wide.

“Its design is what makes the ferry revolutionary,” said Michelson. “Prior to Chief Wawatam, ice breakers split ice with their bows. With this ferry, the principle of riding on top of the ice came to be. It remains the principle of ice-breaking today. The Straits were a forbidding place to operate in winter. The ice was so hard on the early wooden vessels that they lasted only a few years.”

Toledo Shipping won the contract for the unusual design of the ferry, which featured a propeller under the bow of the ship that sucked water from beneath the ice.” The design used gravity to smash the ice.

“As the bow rode on top of the ice, it broke it up,” said Michelson.

The ship attracted international attention. “Representatives of Russia, Finland and Sweden came over to observe the new technology,” said Michelson, who will blow more than three dozen historical whistles at the event, which runs 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on the St. Clair boardwalk, and tell stories about their origins. “The whistle is among the largest we’ll have at Whistle on the Water – a very deep sounding whistle.

“You feel the whistles as much as you hear them,” said Michelson. “The human ear can pick up low frequencies better than high frequencies. If you had a dense fog out on the lake, the only way you’d know a ship was out there was by the sound it made.”

With their human cargo, passenger ships tended to have the largest whistles of any lake vessels.

The Hamonic was one of the best-loved passenger ships in the Great Lakes, built by the Northern Navigation Company in Collingwood, Ontario, in 1908 to run back and forth from Sarnia to what is now Thunder Bay on Lake Superior. Known for its graceful lines, the ship ran when the Soo Locks were ice-free, roughly between April and mid-October.

The ship was often referred to by its hull number at the shipyard – “Ship 22,” said Michelson.

On July 17, 1945, the Hamonic was docked at the wharf at Point Edward, across the St. Clair River from Port Huron, where the casino now stands.

“A fire inside the freight shed spread to the ship,” said Michelson. “Through the skill of the captain and crew, they managed to get the ship away from the shed and out into the river. The fact that it was daylight and the passengers were not sleeping helped save all the passengers except one. The captain drove the bow of the Hamonic into the shoreline south of the wharf, occupied by a coal yard, a frequent stop for steamships that operated on coal. The crane operator used his clamshell claw to lift the passengers to safety.

“The whistle from the Hamonic will be the largest we will have at the event,” said Michelson. “It’s made not of brass or bronze like most of the steam whistles, but steel. Cast into the bottom of the whistle is the number 22. It was created uniquely for Ship 22. It’s about seven feet tall and emits a very, very deep sound.”

The Voice News

 

Pomorze Zachodnie sold for scrap

9/16 - The former Polsteam bulk carrier Pomorze Zachodnie has been sold to Pakistani shipbreakers and arrived at the scrapyard in Gadani Beach, on August 23, 2013.

The 591'4" long by 75'5" wide vessel had been built at Avellandeda, Argentina. The keel was laid as Hull 48 in June 1984 and the ship was launched as Ziemia Tarnowska on December 18, 1984. It was completed as Pomorze Zachodnie on March 15, 1985, and joined the Polish Steamship Co.

Pomorze Zachodnie first visited the Great Lakes in 1985 and, on December 16, 1985, cleared the Twin Ports with 12,000 metric tonnes of sunflower seeds for Portugal.

The vessel was a regular trader through the Seaway and made 22 voyages to our shores from 1996 through 2006. It often brought steel to Cleveland, Burns Harbor, Toronto, Hamilton or Chicago before loading grain at Thunder Bay, Milwaukee or Duluth for overseas delivery.

In September 1999, the vessel stopped at Sarnia to take on soybeans for France. The ship was also known to bring sugar inbound in 2002 and carry peas on an outbound voyage in 2001.

Pomorze Zachodnie last called inland in September 2006 stopping at Toledo and Milwaukee. It spent its final years in deep sea trading, mostly around Western Europe.

The vessel was listed as Sea Way and registered in Belize when it arrived at Gadani Beach.

Skip Gillham

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  September 16

On September 16, 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 the tanker 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 Defoe 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.

Parrish & Heimbecker Ltd. 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.

The 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 September 16, 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 September 16,1877, 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 September 16, 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.

1892 The wooden propeller VIENNA sank in foggy Whitefish Bay after beiing hit broadside by the wooden steamer NIPIGON. The latter survived and later worked for Canada Steamship Lines as b) MAPLEGRANGE and c) MAPLEHILL (i) but was laid up at Kingston in 1925 and scuttled in Lake Ontario in 1927.

1901 HUDSON was last seen dead in the water with a heavy list. The steeel package freighter had cleared Duluth the previous day with wheat and flax for Buffalo but ran into a furious storm and sank in Lake Superior off Eagle Harbor Light with the loss of 24-25 lives.

1906 CHARLES B. PACKARD hit the wreck of the schooner ARMENIA off Midddle Ground, Lake Erie and sank in 45 minutes. All on board were rescued and the hull was later dynamited as a hazard to navigation.

1937-- The large wooden tug G.R. GRAY (ii) of the Lake Superior Paper Co., got caught in a storm off Coppermine Point, Lake Superior, working with GARGANTUA on a log raft and fell into the trough. The stack was toppled but the vessel managed to reach Batchawana and was laid up. The hull was towed to Sault Ste. Marie in 1938 and eventually stripped out. The remains were taken to Thessalon in 1947 and remained there until it caught fire and burned in 1959.

1975 BJORSUND, a Norwegian tanker, visited the Seaway in 1966. The 22--year old vessel began leaking as b) AMERFIN enroute from Mexico to Panama and sank in the Pacific while under tow off Costa Rica.

1990 JUPITER was unloading at Bay City when the wake of a passing shipp separated the hose connection spreading gasoline on deck. An explosion and fire resulted. One sailor was lost as the ship burned for days and subsequently sank.

2005 Fire broke out aboard the tug JAMES A. HANNAH above Lock 2 of the Welland Canal while downbound with the barge 5101 loaded with asphalt, diesel and heavy oil. City of St. Catharines fire fighters help extinguish the blaze.

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

 

Port Reports -  September 15

Marquette, Mich. - Rod Burdick
Herbert C. Jackson arrived Saturday afternoon at the Upper Harbor and loaded ore into the evening.

Grand Haven, Mich. - Dick Fox
Undaunted and barge Pere Marquette 41 brought a load into Verplank's Dock in Ferrysburg early Saturday afternoon. It was still unloading at 4 p.m. This was its second visit of the week.

Buffalo, N.Y. – Brian W.
Saturday morning, the Defiance and barge Ashtabula had shifted to the south end of the Lackawanna Ship Canal.

 

Obituary: Capt. William G. Barnhardt

9/15 - Port Huron, Mich. – William G. “Bill” Barnhardt, 72, of Kimball Township, died Friday, September 13, at home, unexpectedly.

A licensed marine surveyor and ship captain, he was a co-founder of the U.S. Naval Sea Cadets Corp, FC Sherman Division, and was instrumental in bringing the SCS Grayfox, the largest Sea Cadet training vessel in the U.S., to Port Huron.

For many years, Bill spent countless hours aboard the Grayfox helping young men and women learn about life aboard a naval vessel. He was a founding member of Holy Redeemer Lutheran Church and served the church in many different capacities. He was a member of the International Shipmasters Association, Navy League of the United States and the Port Huron Power Squadron, enjoyed fishing up north at his cabin, and served on the Kimball Township Fire Board for 25 years.

Visitation will be 7-9 p.m. Monday and 2-4 and 6-9 p.m. Tuesday in Pollock-Randall Funeral Home. Funeral services will be at 11 a.m. Wednesday, September 18, in Holy Redeemer Lutheran Church, 4475 West Water, Port Huron. The Reverend Andrew Schroeder will officiate.

Memorials may be made to Holy Redeemer Lutheran Church or the FC Sherman Division of the Sea Cadets.

See more at this link

 

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 $7,500.

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 another tug to reach the Soo on the 19th. On the 21st the FERBERT had to anchor off Detour, Michigan, after she ran 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 steamer 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. Renamed b.) WILLIAM A. REISS in 1934, she was scrapped at Alang, India, in 1994.

On 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. Second and third degree burns were suffered by two crew members. She was renamed f.) AMERICAN VICTORY in 2006.

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, 1,123 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 about six miles from Alpena, Michigan. No lives lost.

1882: The wooden passenger steamer ASIA got caught in a wild storm crossing Georgian Bay, fell into the trough and sank stern first. There were 123 passengers and crew listed as lost while only two on board survived.

1915: ONOKO of the Kinsman Transit Company foundered in Lake Superior off Knife Point, while downbound with wheat from Duluth to Toledo. The crew took to the lifeboats and were saved. The hull was located in 1987, upside down, in about 340 feet of water.

1928: MANASOO, in only her first season of service after being rebuilt for overnight passenger and freight service, foundered in Georgian Bay after the cargo shifted and the vessel overturned in heavy weather. There were 18 casualties, plus 46 head of cattle, and only 5 survived.

1940: KENORDOC, enroute to Bristol, UK, with a cargo of lumber was sunk due to enemy action as part of convoy SC 3 while 500 miles west of the Orkney Islands. The ship had fallen behind the convoy due to engine trouble, and was shelled by gunfire from U-48. There were 7 casualties including the captain and wireless operator. H.M.S. AMAZON completed the sinking as the bow of the drifting hull was still visible.

1940: The Norwegian freighter LOTOS came inland in 1938 delivering pulpwood to Cornwall and went aground there in a storm. The ship was torpedoed and sunk by a German submarine while about 15 miles west of Rockall Island, Scotland, while inbound from Dalhousie, NB for Tyne, UK.

1962” A collision between the HARRY L. FINDLAY of the Kinsman Line and the Greek Liberty ship MESOLOGI occurred at Toledo. The latter began Seaway service that year and made a total of six inland voyages. It was scrapped at Aioi, Japan, as f) BLUE SAND after arriving in November 1969.

Data from: Skip Gillham, Max Hanley, Joe Barr, David Swayze, Father Dowling Collection, James Neumiller, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series.

 

Great Lakes Coal Trade Up 11-Plus Percent in August

9/14 - Cleveland, Ohio – Shipments of coal on the Great Lakes totaled 3.2 million tons in August, an increase of 9.9 percent over July, and an increase of 11.1 percent compared to a year ago.

Shipments from Lake Superior ports totaled 2.1 million tons, an increase of 31.4 percent compared to a year ago. Included in that total were 313,000 tons loaded in Superior, Wisconsin, and transshipped to Quebec City for loading into oceangoing colliers. Exports to Europe from Superior total 1,157,000 tons through August.

Loadings in Chicago totaled 296,000 tons, a decrease of 22 percent compared to a year ago. Shipments from Lake Erie ports totaled 752,000 tons, a decrease of 12.5 percent compared to a year ago.

Year-to-date the Lakes coal trade stands at 14.3 million tons, a decrease of 1 percent compared to a year ago.

Lake Carriers Association

 

Port Reports -  September 14

Cedarville & Port Inland, Mich. - Denny Dushane
At Cedarville, Philip R. Clarke arrived around noon on Thursday to load and departed late in the evening. The tug Undaunted with the barge Pere Marquette 41 were also due to arrive on Thursday during late evening. Wilfred Sykes was also due in early on Friday and the Joseph L. Block is due on Sunday in the early morning.

At Port Inland, the Manistee arrived around suppertime and loaded a cargo of limestone. The Joseph L. Block is due to arrive on Saturday during the early afternoon and the Joseph H. Thompson rounds out schedule, arriving on Sunday in the early morning hours.

Stoneport, Mich. - Denny Dushane
Cason J. Callaway was expected to arrive on Friday around suppertime. Following the Callaway will be the Algorail, which will be going to anchor and will get the loading dock following the Callaway. There are no vessels scheduled for Saturday. Due on Sunday is the Lewis J. Kuber in the morning. On Monday the Kaye E. Barker is due in the early morning and the Lakes Contender is due.

Toledo, Ohio - Denny Dushane
The tug Victory and barge James L. Kuber loaded coal on Friday at the CSX Coal Dock. Also due to load coal is the Lakes Contender on Saturday in the early afternoon. Algolake is due to load on Sunday in the early morning and the H. Lee White is due on Wednesday in the early afternoon. CSL's new Baie Comeau is expected to arrive with a limestone cargo on Friday, September 20 in the early morning for the Midwest Terminal Stone Dock. This would also be the Baie Comeau's first trip to Toledo as well. Among expected arrivals at the Torco Dock are Lakes Contender, due to arrive on Saturday in the early morning. John B. Aird is due on Monday in the early morning. Following the Aird is the Rt. Hon. Paul J. Martin due on Tuesday in the late evening. The H. Lee White is due on Wednesday in the early morning, followed by the 1,000-footer James R. Barker also due in on Wednesday in the early afternoon. Algosoo wraps up the Torco Dock lineup arriving on Friday, September 20 in the late evening. Scrapping of the Phoenix Star is still ongoing at Ironhead's Marine large drydock.

Buffalo, N.Y. – Brian W.
Thug Defiance and barge Ashtabula tying up at the Gateway Metroport Main Dock in Lackawanna Friday night. The pair were just off the North end of the pier & setting out lines to the wall along the limestone unloading apron.

 

Motion to accept consent decree good news for SS Badger

9/14 - Ludington, Mich. – Lake Michigan Carferry is one major step closer to being allowed until the end of 2014 to complete a coal ash retention system that would allow the SS Badger to continue its 60-year history of sailing on Lake Michigan.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Department of Justice (DOJ) filed a motion to enter the consent decree proposed concerning the SS Badger's discharge of coal ash into Lake Michigan.

Lake Michigan Carferry (LMC) announced Friday evening that "after a thorough and lengthy evaluation of the more than 7,000 public comments submitted during the consent decree public comment period" that the DOJ and EPA filed the motion to enter the decree.

A federal judge will still have to accept it. The agreement will result in the elimination of the Badger’s ash discharge prior to the start of the 2015 sailing season.

“The consent decree process has been extensive and has taken much longer than we had hoped. This action is a huge milestone on the long road we have been traveling to keep the Badger sailing. This ensures that the Badger will be sailing long into the future,” stated Bob Manglitz President & CEO of LMC.

“The revised consent decree has been strengthened based on public comments on the proposed consent decree that was lodged in March,” said EPA Region 5 Administrator Susan Hedman. “These revisions increase certainty that the S.S. Badger will stop discharging coal ash to Lake Michigan at the end of the 2014 sailing season.”

According to the EPA, the proposed consent decree has been revised to double stipulated penalties for non-compliance with the deadline for ceasing coal ash discharges, to limit the mercury and coal ash content of coal used by the S.S. Badger during the 2014 sailing season, and to require LMC to report information on the quantity of coal ash discharged by the S.S. Badger. The proposed consent decree also requires LMC to pay a $25,000 civil penalty for violating mercury water quality standards in 2012.

LMC stated it had started taking action to reduce and ultimately eliminate the ash discharge prior to the start of the consent decree process by using coal that produces less ash.

LMC has also been working toward eliminating the ash discharge during the review process by starting the engineering and design work necessary for the installation of a sophisticated ash retention system — a technology never before implemented on a steamship.

In the press release, Manglitz said, “On behalf of the 200 Lake Michigan Carferry employees, we want the people of Ludington and Manitowoc to know that our commitment to providing carferry service between the port cities has never wavered and we thank them for their strong support. In 1992, Charles Conrad had a dream to extend the carferry heritage for another 100 years. Well, we still have 80 years to go to fulfill his dream.”

Ludington Daily News.

 

Festival celebrates Buffalo’s maritime history

9/14 - Buffalo, N.Y. – The Buffalo Maritime Festival, a 4-day event running through Sunday, celebrates Buffalo’s rich nautical history. The festival began with the arrival of two majestic tall ships, the Lynx and Peacemaker, which serve as centerpieces a variety of events, shows and activities. Highlights include tours and hands-on demonstrations with the tall ships, as well as rowboat rentals, music, shows, walking tours and re-enactments, food trucks, a Beer Garden presented by the Liberty Hound, Fireworks and more.

Details at canalsidebuffalo.com/buffalo-maritime-festival

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  September 14

September 14, 1962, the HORACE S. WILKINSON was involved in a collision with the Canadian freighter CAROL LAKE in the Welland Canal. Rather than repair the WILKINSON, Wilson Marine had her towed to Superior, Wisconsin, for conversion to a barge. All cabin superstructure, the engine, boilers, and auxiliary machinery were removed. The stern was squared off and notched to receive a tug. The WILKINSON was renamed WILTRANCO I and re-entered service in 1963, as a tug-barge combination with a crew of 10, pushed by the tug FRANCIS A. SMALL of 1966.

September 14, 1963, the BENJAMIN F. FAIRLESS, Captain Earl C. Bauman, received a National Safety Council Award of Merit for operating 1,001,248 consecutive man-hours without a lost time accident. This accomplishment required 15 years, 600 round trips, and 1,200 passages through the Soo locks.

Captain Albert Edgar Goodrich died on September 14,1885, at the age of 59, at his residence in Chicago. 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 at Windsor, Ontario in 1988.

On September 14, 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 two people, a man and a woman, rescued. ASIA was built in St. Catharines, Ontario, in 1873, and was bound from Collingwood, Ontario, to the French River and Canadian Sault.

1960: The Bahamas registered vessel ITHAKA stranded 10 miles east of Chhurchill, Manitoba, after the rudder broke and the anchors failed to hold in a storm. The ship had served on the Great Lakes for Hall as a) FRANK A. AUGSBURY and e) LAWRENCECLIFFE HALL (i), for Canada Steamship Lines as b) GRANBY and for Federal Commerce & Navigation as f) FEDERAL PIONEER.

1965: FORT WILLIAM, which recently entered service as a package freight carrier for Canada Steamship Lines, capsized at Pier 65 in Montreal. There was an ensuing fire when part of the cargo of powdered carbide formed an explosive gas and five were killed. The vessel was refloated on November 22, 1965, repaired, and still sails the lakes a b) STEPHEN B. ROMAN.

1970: The barge AFT, the forward part of the former STEEL KING (ii), arrrived at Ramey's Bend, Port Colborne, under tow of the tug HERBERT A. for dismantling. The barge had been part of a tandem tow with the dipper dredge KING COAL but the latter broke loose in a Lake Erie storm and sank.

1998: The Cypriot-registered STRANGE ATTRACTOR first came through the Seaway in 1989 as a) LANTAU TRADER. It returned under the new name in 1996 and lost power on this date in 1998 while leaving the Upper Beauharnois Lock and had to be towed to the tie up wall by OCEAN GOLF and SALVAGE MONARCH. The ship was soon able to resume the voyage and continued Great Lakes trading through 2003. It arrived for scrapping at Aliaga, Turkey, as d) ORIENT FUZHOU on August 7, 2009.

Data from: Skip Gillham, Clive Reddin, Joe Barr, Dave Swayze, Russ Plumb, Father Dowling Collection, James Neumiller, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series.

 

Poe Lock closed for repairs Thursday

9/13 - Sault Ste. Marie, Mich. The Poe Lock closed Thursday at 10:20 a.m. for 8-10 hours for unspecified repairs. Vessels needing to use the Poe were being advised to either anchor or to tie up (with lockmaster approval) at the lock wall. Downbound vessels delayed were Ken Boothe Sr. and barge Lakes Contender, Emilie, Burns Harbor. Federal Rideau was upbound. Traffic was moving again by mid-evening.

Phil Clayton

 

Port Reports -  September 13

Marquette, Mich. - Heather Arpoika and Rod Burdick
It has been a busy week for the LS&I Ore Dock, with visits from Herbert C. Jackson, Lee A. Tregurtha, Kaye E. Barker, and a couple visits from Michipicoten. Near sister ATBs were at the harbors in Marquette Wednesday afternoon. Ken Boothe Sr. and barge Lakes Contender loaded ore at the Upper Harbor, while Joyce L. VanEnkevort and barge Great Lakes Trader unloaded stone at the Lower Harbor.

Sarnia, Ont.
Algorail left layup Thursday afternoon and headed for Stoneport. CSL Tadoussac and Frontenac remain in layup.

Sandusky, Ohio - Jim Spencer
Herbert C. Jackson loaded during the early Thursday, before sailing for Detroit.

Welland Canal
A slow day saw Algocanada downbound at Lock 7 at dusk, with CSL Assiniboine, Stephen B Roman, Algowood and Algolake spaced out between there and Port Colborne.

 

Great Lakes iron ore trade down 9 percent in August

9/13 - Cleveland, Ohio – Shipments of iron ore on the Great Lakes totaled 5.8 million tons in August, a decrease of 10 percent compared to July, and a drop of 9 percent compared to a year ago. Loadings also trailed the month’s long-term average by 10 percent.

Shipments from U.S. ports totaled 5.1 million tons, a decrease of 6 percent compared to a year ago. The August total included 447,000 tons shipped to Quebec City for loading into oceangoing vessels and delivery overseas. Year-to-date overseas exports from U.S. Great Lakes ports total 1,994,000 tons.

Shipments from Canadian ports to Great Lakes destinations totaled 728,000 tons, a decrease of 24 percent compared to a year ago.

Year-to-date, the Lakes iron ore trade stands at 35.4 million tons, a decrease of 8 percent compared to a year ago. Loadings are 5 percent below the long-term average for the January-August timeframe.

Lake Carriers Association

 

Dredging projects planned for part of Detroit River, Lake Superior harbor in Upper Peninsula

9/13 - Detroit, Mich. - Dredging projects are planned for part of the Detroit River as well as a Lake Superior harbor in Michigan's Upper Peninsula, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers said.

The Corps' Detroit District announced this week that Cheboygan-based Ryba Marine Construction Co. got a nearly $1.5 million contract for maintenance dredging of the lower Detroit River. It includes dredging 150,000 cubic yards of material where the river runs into Lake Erie.

"This important dredging project will help maintain a key Great Lakes navigational channel to keep cargo moving — products like iron ore, limestone, coal and cement that are vital to the regional economy," Lt. Col. Robert Ells, district engineer, said in a statement.

Work in the East Outer Channel is to begin in mid-September and end in mid-November.

Meanwhile, Muskegon-based Great Lakes Dock & Materials got a $265,500 contract for maintenance dredging of Little Lake Harbor, located about 30 miles east of Grand Marais. It includes dredging 31,000 cubic yards of material that will be used to build up area beaches.

"This dredging project provides access to a designated harbor of refuge that offers mariners shelter from storms," Ells said. "The recreational and fishing boat traffic in Little Lake Harbor is also vital to the local economy."

The work on that project is to begin in mid-September and end by early October.

The Associated Press

 

Great Lakes water levels improve, but still too low

9/13 - Water levels in the western Great Lakes are back up a bit, but the debate continues over how and whether to seek additional gains.

Early this year, Lake Superior's water level was well down, and the connected lakes, Michigan and Huron, hit record lows. Superior is now close to average for this time of year, and the others are up some, but still below average.

At the Great Lakes Commission meeting in Milwaukee Monday, Scudder Mackey, of the Ohio office of coastal management, said climate change may bring more variability to lake levels, but generally long-term lows. “Low water impacts on Lake Michigan [and] Huron may remain if we continue to have increased evaporation and decreased precipitation, irrespective if we've put in a 5-10” compensatory structures in the upper St. Clair River.”

The St. Clair River near Detroit remains a point of contention, as some say too much water is emptying southbound out of Lake Huron and adding to the problems in Huron and Michigan.

Roger Gauthier is with Restore Our Water International, a U.S/Canadian group of shoreline property owners and businesses. He says changes should be installed in the St. Clair River to retain water. He also wants more dredging in the 140 Great Lakes harbor mouths, so bigger vessels can use shallower harbors. “Michigan came up with $20 million, which was a very significant endeavor to start that process, but a number of coastal communities are highly affected by not being on the priority list.”

Gauthier says some of the structural changes near Detroit could happen within 5 to 7 years, with a price tag of around $300 million, though he agrees climate change could be the main influence on what happens to lake levels.

Superior Telegram

 

Steel production rises by 27,000 tons in Great Lakes states

9/13 - Raw steel production in the country's Great Lakes region was about 655,000 tons in the week that ended Saturday, according to an American Iron and Steel Institute estimate.

Production rose by about 27,000 tons, or about 4.3 percent from the week prior, marking the second straight week of increased production in the Great Lakes region after six straight weeks of declines. Most of the raw steel production in the Great Lakes region takes place in Indiana and the Chicago area.

Production in the Southern District was estimated at 671,000 tons last week, down from 705,000 tons a week earlier.

Total domestic raw steel production last week was about 1.87 million tons, up from 1.86 million a week prior

U.S. steel mills had a capacity utilization rate of 78.1 percent last week, which is up from 77.5 percent a week earlier. The capacity utilization rate had been 70.4 percent at the same time last year.

So far this year, domestic steel producers have had a capacity utilization rate of 77.2 percent, which is up from 77 percent during the same period in 2012.

Domestic mills have produced an estimated 66.5 million tons of steel this year, down 4.4 percent from the same period last year. The mills had made about 69.4 million tons of steel by Sept. 7, 2012.

Steel exports increased by 2.2 percent in July over June, according to the American Institute for International Steel. Total steel exports rose to 1.087 million tons in July, up from 1.064 million the month prior.

The demand for steel internationally remains weak despite the gain. Exports have dropped 9.5 percent so far this year, compared to the same period in 2012.

Northwest Indiana Times

 

We Energies asks to close plant in city

9/13 - Marquette, Mich. - We Energies has filed a request with its regional transmission organization to suspend operations at the Presque Isle Power Plant.

The request comes just weeks after Cliffs Natural Resources announced it would switch electric suppliers for the Empire and Tilden mines, shifting from We Energies to Chicago-based Integrys Energy Services Inc.

"The reason that we have made that filing and have requested to suspend operations ... was because after the decision by the mines to change the power suppliers, we had to rebalance our supply in order to better match what is now a reduced demand," We Energies spokesman Brian Manthey said today. "That supply comes from the Presque Isle Power Plant, for the most part."

We Energies filed a recent request with its regional transmission organization to suspend operations at the Presque Isle Power Plant, seen here from Lake Superior. The request, officials said, is a direct result of a decision by Cliffs Natural Resources to no longer purchase power from We Energies. (Journal photo by Jackie Stark)

Cliffs energy usage totaled about 85 percent of We Energies' electrical demand in Michigan, Manthey said.

The request - filed recently with the Midcontinent Independent System Operator, which oversees electric distribution in 15 states and the Canadian province of Manitoba - calls for plant operations to be suspended beginning in February of 2014. Manthey said officials anticipate an approved suspension would be for about a year. The company would then have the ability to request extensions.

However, if MISO ultimately decides the plant is too vital to the stability and reliability of the regional electric grid, the organization may agree to offer "system support resource payments" to We Energies in exchange for keeping the plant in operation. Those payments may ultimately be factored into electric rates across the MISO footprint.

"We've got to look at whatever options or whatever is out there to rebalance the supply or to take a look at what the costs are and if the costs should be borne at this point, with the reduced demand," Manthey said.

Previous MISO studies have indicated that the Presque Isle Plant is important to regional electric reliability, but have advised against the construction of additional major transmission infrastructure in the event the plant is operational.

The Cliffs decision has also impacted the long-term prospects for the plant, and Manthey said officials are revisiting the specifics of a joint venture with Cadillac-based Wolverine Power Cooperative.

The original deal called for Wolverine to invest between $130 million and $140 million in pollution controls at the plant, in exchange for a minority share.

"Because of the change in our perspective to the plant, our supply of power, we have talked with Wolverine about making changes in the joint agreement," Manthey said. "For the long term, unless changes can be made to the agreement, the situation could lead to the full or partial death of the plant."

Manthey would not state what changes, exactly, We Energies officials were hoping to see.

He said the current agreement has been approved by the public service commissions of both Michigan and Wisconsin, as well as the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. Approval is still needed from the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality.

Ken Bradstreet, government affairs consultant with Wolverine, verified today that talks were ongoing with We Energies. He said the specific details of the discussions were unknown.

"Of course we're talking to We Energies, because this is an important project we're engaged in and there's some real significant issues that have come out as a result of the decision by Cliffs," he said. "We're still continuing to pursue the necessary permits, and we'll continue to do so until instructed otherwise."

About 170 people are currently employed at the Presque Isle Power Plant.

The Mining Journal

 

Red Cliff band resumes barrel recovery operation off North Shore

9/13 - Duluth, Minn. – The U.S. Coast Guard confirmed Wednesday that a barrel recovery operation is in progress on Lake Superior near the McQuade Safe Harbor.

A crane on a platform being held by a tugboat could be seen at the popular landing Wednesday afternoon about 13 miles northeast of Duluth. Buoys marked a safety zone around the area.

According to the Coast Guard, it’s a continuation of a project being paid for with $3.3 million of U.S. Department of Defense money through the Red Cliff Band of Lake Superior Chippewa based near Bayfield.

The band raised 25 barrels last summer through its contractor, EMR of Duluth, and found that they contained active explosives — detonators for cluster bombs — along with other industrial waste. Experts earlier this year said the materials did not pose any immediate threat to human health or the environment.

The cache was 45 barrels short of what the band had planned to pull up in 2012. The band cut back on its earlier plan to retrieve 70 barrels to save enough money to deal with the explosives, Melonee Montano told the News Tribune in March. She’s the band’s environmental director.

Messages left with officials with the Red Cliff band were not immediately returned Wednesday.

Because there were no federal Department of Transportation approved facilities to receive explosives on the Great Lakes, and because they couldn’t get a waiver, Red Cliff and EMR staff took the detonators out of the old, rusting barrels, placed them in new containers and threw them back in the lake. In March, band officials said they hoped to get waivers to recover and bring the containers to shore by summer.

It isn’t clear if the effort seen Wednesday was an attempt to claim the barrels dropped last year.

It is estimated that nearly 1,500 barrels from a Honeywell weapons plant in the Twin Cities area were secretly dumped in Lake Superior between 1957 and 1962. They were hauled north of Duluth and dumped offshore from the Lester River area and up to Two Harbors. The existence of the barrels wasn’t confirmed until 1977 and several recovery efforts have been made since then.

Most examinations of the contents of the barrels in the 1990s determined that they were generally safe and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and Minnesota Pollution Control Agency concluded that more recovery wasn’t necessary.

The Red Cliff band took up the cause in 2005 when it found it could use federal grants to do more study.

Duluth News Tribune

 

BoatNerd Welland Gathering Sept. 13-15

The annual Welland Canal BoatNerd Gathering is scheduled for Sept. 13-15. Once again, Boatnerds will gather at the Welland Canal for socializing, sharing pictures, slides and videos, plus watching the passing traffic. We will tour International Marine Salvage, on Saturday morning, and be able to see the scrapyard. Friday and Saturday evenings the group will gather at the Canadian Corps building in Thorold to share pictures, slides and videos. There is no admission charge. There will also be a few vendor tables available.

See the Gathering Page for details

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  September 13

On 13 September 1894, the GLOBE (steel propeller package freighter, 330 foot, 2,995 gross tons) was launched by the Globe Iron Works (Hull #53) at Cleveland, Ohio. She was lengthened to 400 feet and converted to a bulk freighter in 1899, when she was acquired by the Bessemer Steamship Company and renamed JAMES B. EADS. She lasted until 1967, when she was scrapped at Port Weller Drydocks.

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 200 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 - 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. Marys 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.

1967 – The former Great Lakes passenger ship NORTH AMERICAN sank in the Atlantic (40.46 N / 68.53 W) while under tow for a new career as a training ship at Piney Point, Maryland.

1988 – The Cypriot freighter BLUESTONE, at Halifax since August 19, had 3 crewmembers jump ship at the last minute claiming unsafe conditions due to corrosion in the tank tops, but this could not be checked as the vessel was loaded.

Data from: Skip Gillham, Max Hanley, Joe Barr, David Swayze, James Neumiller, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series.

 

Poe Lock Closed for Repairs

9/12 - The Poe Lock closed today at 10:20 a.m. for 8 to 10 hours for unspecified repairs. Vessels needing to use the Poe are being advised to either anchor or to tie up (with Lock Master approval) at the lock wall. Downbound vessels currently are Ken Boothe Sr., Emilie, Burns Harbor and upbound is the Federal Rideau.

Phil Clayton

 

Lakes limestone trade up nearly 13 percent in August

9/12 - Cleveland, Ohio – Shipments of limestone on the Great Lakes totaled 3.6 million tons in August, an increase of 3.7 percent compared to July, and 12.8 percent better than a year ago.

Shipments from U.S. ports totaled 3.15 million tons, an increase of 18.1 percent compared to a year ago. Loadings at Canadian quarries slipped by nearly 13 percent, falling to 485,000 tons.

Year-to-date the Lakes limestone trade stands at 16.5 million tons, a decrease of 4.6 percent compared to a year ago, and 7 percent below the long-term average for the January-August timeframe.

Lake Carriers Association

 

Port Reports -  September 12

Grand Haven, Mich. - Dick Fox
Cuyahoga came in late Tuesday evening with a load of stone for Meekhof's D & M dock, next to the power plant on Harbor Island in Grand Haven and was gone well before dawn.

 

Memorial wreath for Wexford shipwreck

9/12 - Grand Bend, Ont. – A permanent memorial wreath for the Wexford will be unveiled Sat. Sept. 28 at the site of the shipwreck, eight miles off the shore of Grand Bend.

The Wexford is one of a dozen ships destroyed in the four-day Great Storm of 1913. Dubbed the White Hurricane, the storm raged over the Great Lakes and was responsible for more than 250 deaths.

The ceremony, beginning at 10 a.m., will honor the crew of the shipwreck and 100th anniversary of the sinking of the ship.

Save Ontario Shipwrecks (SOS) Huron Shores is hosting the event and they have installed extra mooring lines at the site in anticipation of increased boat traffic. A reception will be held at the Lambton Heritage Museum beginning at 12:30 p.m. Everyone is welcome to both events. The museum will feature displays about the Wexford, her crew and the Great Storm. For more information contact Krissy Nickle at krissy@nickle.ca.

The Wexford Crew Memorial is one of many events taking place as part of ‘A Remembrance – The Great Lakes Storm of 1913’. Communities along the shoreline of the Great Lakes will host plays, lecture series, art exhibitions and special museum displays to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the storm

www.1913storm.ca

 

City moves to seize Captain John's restaurant

9/12 - Toronto, Ont. – The captain of Captain John’s is ready to go down with his ship. Councillors on the government management committee gave the order Monday to seize the ship, which has been at the centre of a waterfront battle, according to local Councillor Pam McConnell.

City officials maintain John Letnik — the owner of the floating former restaurant at the foot of Yonge St. — owes almost $750,000 in taxes and hasn’t paid his water bill since 2006. The exact advice to city staff approved by the committee remains confidential and council still has to approve the next steps.

But despite the gathering storm, Letnik says he won’t abandon ship. “I am not leaving the boat,” Letnik said after the vote. “They may have to force me. We’re probably going to end up in court with a long battle.”

Letnik wouldn’t rule out chaining himself to the ship if officials try to evict him.

“Why don’t they give me a fair lease?” he asked. “I’d like to walk off the ship after ... 43 years with dignity not like a dog.”

The restaurant hasn’t served food since June 2012 when the city shut off the water supply.

McConnell said “enough is enough” when it comes to Captain John’s.

“As much as I think we enjoyed Captain John’s at the time in which he was running a great restaurant, that time is over,” she said. “The bills are still remaining and he is not going to be able to get another lease so therefore he has to make a decision, does he go with dignity or do we fight him to the death.”

McConnell admitted the ship is an “icon of the city and well-known” but added it has become “rusted and dead.

“I would recommend to him that he figure out a way to walk off that gangplank and to get on with the rest of his life because Captain John’s is over,” she said.

Former councillor Chris Korwin-Kuczynski appeared before the committee in defense of Letnik.

“He brought so much to this city and today you are going to kick him in the butt,” Korwin-Kuczynski told the committee.

Mark Richardson, vice president and general counsel for the Toronto Port Authority, confirmed the federal agency has a lien over the ship for berthing fees of more than $200,000.

Richardson said although a number of individuals have come forward with proposals to buy the ship and move it out of Toronto, any sale would need the consent of the owner and all of the creditors — unless otherwise ordered by the court.

Waterfront Toronto says Letnik owes them $140,000 for the use of the land adjacent to his ship.

Toronto Sun

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  September 12

On 12 September 1903, the R E SCHUCK (steel propeller bulk freighter, 416 fott, 4713 gross tons) was launched by the American Ship Building Company (Hull #327) at Lorain, Ohio for the Gilchrist Transportation Company. She was purchased by the Interlake Steamship Co. (Pickands, Mather & Co., Mgrs.) in 1913, and renamed b.) HYDRUS. However, she foundered in the "Big Storm" of 1913, on Lake Huron with all hands; 24 lives were lost.

On 12 September 1902, EXPERIMENT (2-mast wooden schooner, 65 foot, 50 gross tons, built in 1854, at St. Joseph, Michigan) was carrying firewood 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.

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. Renamed b.) PIONEER in 1987.

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. Collship was famous for its 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 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 seven 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 McMorran 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.

1889: ROTHESAY, a wooden sidewheel passenger vessel, collided with the tug MYRA in the St. Lawrence between Kingston and Prescott. The latter sank with the loss of 2 lives. The former was beached on the Canadian shore where it settled and was abandoned. The wreck was dynamited in 1901 and part of it remains on the bottom in 35 feet of water.

1900: The wooden steamer JOHN B. LYON began taking water in a storm about 25 miles east of Ashtabula and sank in Lake Erie. There were 9 lost with only 6 rescued from the 19-year old vessel.

1917: GISLA was built at Wyandotte, MI in 1916 and went overseas for war duty. The vessel was hit by gunfire from U-64 in the western Mediterranean off Cape Palos, Spain, and sunk by a timed bomb. The ship was carrying nuts and vegetable oil from Kotonou, Dahomey, for Marseilles, France, when it was attacked.

1919: The wooden barge CHICKAMAUGA began leaking in huge seas off Harbor Beach, MI while under tow of the CENTURION and the ore laden vessel sank the next day. The crew of 10 was rescued by the JAMES WHALEN and the wreck was removed the following year.

1928: B.B. McCOLL was virtually destroyed by a fire at Buffalo while loading and had to be abandoned as a total loss. The ship was salvaged, rebuilt and last sailed as h) DETROIT. The ship was scrapped in 1982-1983 at Lake Calumet, IL.

1953: MARYLAND was mauled by a storm on Lake Superior and 12 hatch covers were blown off. The ship was beached near Marquette and all 35 on board were saved. The ship was abandoned but the extensive bottom damage was repaired and the ship resumed service as d) HENRY LALIBERTE.

1989: POLARLAND began visiting the Great Lakes in 1968 and returned as b) ISCELU in 1980, c) TRAKYA in 1981 and d) TRAKYA I in 1982. The ship was lying at Hualien, Taiwan, as e) LUNG HAO during Typhoon Sarah and got loose in the storm prior to going aground. The hull broke in two and was a total loss.

1989: SACHA, Liberian registered SD 14, began Seaway trading in 1973. It returned as b) ERMIONI in 1982. The ship stranded on the wreck of the ORIENTAL PEARL while approaching Bombay, India, from Tampa as d) SAFIR on December 22, 1984, and sustained considerable damage. This was repaired but SAFIR was lost after stranding on a reef off Tiran Island in the Red Sea on September 12, 1989.

2006: TORO went aground in the St. Lawrence off Cornwall Island with damage to the bulbous bow and #2 hold. The ship, enroute from Thunder Bay to Progresso, Mexico, with a cargo of wheat, was released September 18 and repaired at the Verreault shipyard in Les Mechins, QC before resuming the voyage on October 27. The vessel had previously visited the Great Lakes as a) LA LIBERTE, c) ASTART and d) ULLOA. It was still sailing as g) XING JI DA as of 2011.

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

 

Port Reports -  September 11

Lorain, Ohio - Phil
Joseph H. Thompson arrived at 8 a.m. Tuesday.

 

Heavy rains bring Lake Erie levels back to normal

9/11 - Erie, Pa. – A wetter-than-usual year has been good for Lake Erie and the rest of the Great Lakes basin. Water levels across the Great Lakes are up, with Lake Erie now above its long-term average for the first time in more than two years.

The latest forecast from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, which tracks water levels, calls for Erie to remain above its long-term average for at least the next six months.

This turnabout is in stark contrast to a year ago, when each of the Great Lakes was either at or closing in on record low levels. Sunday's pool level for Lake Erie was reported at 571.36 feet, slightly above the long-term average for that day of 570.80 feet.

Compared with a year ago, Lake Erie is up about 8 inches. That's been good news to boaters and to personnel and visitors at Presque Isle State Park.

Before levels climbed back, "we were worried about having to close some launching areas," said Ryan Rager, assistant park manager at Presque Isle State Park. Rager said the lake levels started climbing back in November and reached average numbers in June.

The rising water levels coincide with the region's wet weather. Year-to-date precipitation for the city of Erie is nearly 8 inches above normal and 13 inches above the same time period in 2012.

According to data from the National Weather Service in Cleveland, as of Sunday night Erie had received 34.86 inches of precipitation (mostly rain) so far this year. Normally, Erie receives 26.9 inches to this point. In 2012, Erie had just 21.88 inches by this time.

A similar weather pattern has been experienced across the Great Lakes. Chicago, Detroit and Marquette, Mich., are all well ahead of average and year-ago rainfall amounts.

Water levels across the Great Lakes have risen throughout the year. Most trailed their year-ago levels until June. Now, Lakes Erie and Ontario are above their long-term average and Superior is just below its long-term average. Lakes Michigan and Huron remain far below their long-term averages but are well above their record lows of a year ago.

Erie Times-News

 

Manitowoc port spurs economy

9/11 - Manitowoc, Wis. – Manitowoc is one of the larger commercial ports in Wisconsin that combined with those handle more than 40 million tons of cargo valued at more than $8 billion and are the link to supporting almost 10,000 jobs, according to a news release from the state transportation office proclaiming this “Wisconsin Ports Week.”

Among the products shipped out of Manitowoc recently were 26-ton spools of oil pipe from DeepFlex, eventually flown using the world’s largest airplane to Amman, Jordan, in the Middle East.

The initial leg of the trans-continental journey was coordinated by Peninsula Logistics. Based at One Maritime Place across from the Wisconsin Maritime Museum, brothers Alex and Peter Allie and their business partner, Troy Flentje, are seeking to increase activity in the port of Manitowoc.

“The most challenging part of getting our business off the ground is getting our name out there,” Alex Allie said of the 3-year-old venture. “We have a world-class facility with heavily reinforced steel wall, 600-ton crane pads and rail access ... we’re letting customers know we can save them a lot of money.”

Water transportation is an efficient and environmentally responsible way to transport bulk commodities, the Ports Week release states. A barge can move one ton of cargo more than 600 miles on a gallon of fuel. This is more than by rail, 478 miles, or by truck, 150 miles.

In 2012, nearly 270,000 tons of cargo entered or left the port of Manitowoc. The vast majority was shipments of concrete on the St. Marys Challenger and St. Marys Conquest to the St Marys Cement terminal across from the Manitowoc River peninsula manufacturing complex, City Centre, with Peter Allie the principal owner.

The concrete is then delivered to Vinton Construction for road projects, as well as Crew, Fricke and Harvey said Michael Dailey, plant manager for St Marys Cement with its own vessels and port operation. But that is only one commodity that can be efficiently moved via waterways. “We would like to get in more bulk cargo ... pig iron, steel coils, aluminum billets, brass copper coils for the Fox Valley and local businesses,” Flentje said.

“We think there is a lot of potential, underused river footage here that we can put to work especially with the warehousing the Allie family has,” he said.

“I think the growth we’re going to have will take a couple of years until the economy really turns around,” Peter Allie said. “A lot of companies out there haven’t really looked into shipping by water, or even rail.”

The trio have two Manitowoc Company cranes on site that have loaded stone and granite from quarries for shipment by Michaels Corporation out of Brownsville.

Fiberglas tanks were loaded on to a barge for eventual delivery to a nickel mine in Labrador, Canada.

They said their facility is maritime security approved by the U.S. Coast Guard, which allows them to bring in foreign flag vessels from anywhere in the world.

And, unless the straits of Mackinac are frozen over, the shipments from Manitowoc head north out the Great Lakes to the St. Lawrence Seaway and into the Atlantic Ocean or south to Chicago, connecting with the Mississippi River and into the Gulf of Mexico, possibly through the Panama Canal to the Pacific Ocean.

“There’s no glitter to this but Manitowoc is a hardworking port with economic impact to the community,” said James Anderson, chairman of the city’s Harbor Commission. “With an environmental science degree, I thought being connected to water resources would be a good fit with me.”

Anderson and city Harbormaster Paul Braun from the Planning Department, said a hot button issue is dredging, which was last performed in Manitowoc in 2009 with federal stimulus funds.

A U.S. Army Corps of Engineers reports indicates dredging is currently required and, if not done, could result is job loss locally and regionally.

Its reports states if the harbor was closed to commercial traffic, commodities would have to be transported by rail or truck with increased costs and emissions from exhaust.

Dailey confirmed loss of channel depth results in light loading and increased transportation costs. When arriving in Manitowoc, the Conquest and Challenger’s hulls are going down about 17 feet into the river.

“We need another two or three feet for fuller loads,” Dailey said. He recently told the commission his company had been awarded a $475,000 Harbor Assistance Grant with the state picking up 80 percent and the Canadian-headquartered company the remainder for a dredging project.

“The depth of the water is the key to having commerce,” said Ron Cleveringa, vice president of sales and marketing for Burger Boat Co., the Manitowoc manufacturer since 1863 initially of small fishing boats and eventually wooden military minesweepers, as well as renowned luxury yachts and commercial vessels.

“From our perspective, we have to be careful we don’t take on something that when we put it in the water, it hits the bottom,” Cleveringa said. “The more water, the more opportunity for Burger and anybody else who uses the river.”

He said Burger Boat is in the final design stage for the Grayling, a fisheries research vessel commissioned by the U.S. Geological Survey to be fabricated in its Manitowoc shipyard for delivery in 2014.

In recent years, Burger also built a vessel for the state Department of Natural Resources and Chicago’s Leading Lady for tourist cruising.

He said the company continues to do refit and repair work for commercial vessels and yachts and supports other shipyards.

Barges filled with giant stone for shoreline reinforcement projects are also part of the economic impact generated for Manitowoc by having a commercial port.

There also is human cargo. Jason Ring, president of the Manitowoc Area Visitor & Convention Bureau, said Great Lakes Cruise Co.’s Grand Mariner docked in Manitowoc five times this year.

“Greet the day in lovely Manitowoc, WI, nestled on the sparking shores of Lake Michigan,” declares its marketing brochure.

“Most times, the ship has 84 passengers ... they dock and take on supplies while the passengers explore downtown,” Ring said, noting Beerntsen’s Confectionary and its old-fashioned candy and ice cream store is popular with the maritime tourists.

They also spend time and money at other businesses and attractions, like the Wisconsin Maritime Museum and Rahr-West Art Museum, Ring said.

Rich Larsen is the president and general manager of the Manitowoc Marina, less than a half-mile from where the Grand Mariner and the Niagara Princess dock in the Manitowoc River near the Cobia submarine.

His business also is part of the economic mix of a commercial port and Lake Michigan harbor. Larsen has entered into a long-term lease to use 20,000 square feet in a new storage facility the Allies are creating on Wollmer Street near their peninsula operations.

Larsen said a travel lift will be able to take boats up to about 90 feet in length the couple of blocks from the river dock to the new facility.

Larsen hopes to lure additional boat owners for winter storage and-or mechanical and maintenance work similar to what the marina already does at its Maritime Boulevard operation. “It’s all about jobs,” he said.

Manitowoc Herald Times

 

Wind-powered fun: Twin Ports excursion business sets sail

9/11 - Duluth, Minn. – Since he started ShipShape Products in 2005, Jim Welinski has worked hard to make the Duluth boat canvas business a success. His business serves fellow boat owners and sail enthusiasts. But he wasn’t getting in enough sailing time himself.

“Life isn’t all about cell phones and computers,” he said. “And boating isn’t all about jet skis, speedboats and water-skiing.”

So in July, Welinski launched a second business, Moon Shadow Sailing, offering daily sailboat rides on Lake Superior and in the Duluth-Superior Harbor that are affordable for the average tourist.

He’s one of four Coast Guard-certified captains sharing skipper duties on his two sailboats — the 37-foot Moon Shadow and the 42-foot Makena, a luxury cruiser he recently purchased for his new excursion business.

“Sailboats are marvelous feats of engineering,” Welinski said.” Bringing a 19,000-pound boat up to 5 knots of speed is exhilarating. It’s great. To feel the wind and to feel the waves and to see how the sailboat responds to force of the wind is phenomenal.”

Moon Shadow offers up to three cruises a day from the Minnesota Slip just east of the Duluth Entertainment Convention Center. Welinski captains a couple of those cruises each week while still running ShipShape with his wife, Barbara.

Sails are weather-dependent. Routes depend on the wind direction, but generally they sail beneath the Aerial Lift Bridge and spend an hour on Lake Superior. They may cruise up the North Shore to Brighton Beach or along Park Point beaches and through the Superior Entry for a complete trip around Park Point.

If weather is challenging, they stay in the sheltered conditions of the harbor. But if the weather is bad with fog, rain or extreme winds, trips are canceled or postponed.

The sailboat rides also give people who are interested in sailing a chance to try it out. So if they want to help raise the sails or steer the boat, they can.

Besides his own love of sailing, Welinski started Moon Shadow Sailing because he saw a niche to fill.

“There’s such an opportunity here on Lake Superior,” he said. “It amazed me that no one else was actively offering sailing charters.

Actually, there are others in Duluth who offer charter cruises for groups of up to six people. But unlike Moon Shadow Sailing, they charge group rates, not individual rates, with groups basically renting the boat and the captain for a private cruise.

Under Capt. Jerry Paulson, Carriage House Charters has been offering private sailboat rides on the 33-foot Aeolos for seven years. Paulson offers four-hour cruises from Harbor Cove Marina on Park Point for a group rate of $280 for four-hour cruises or $560 for eight-hour cruises.

“Most people are tourists,” Paulson said. “Most of them have a little bit more experience than the average tourists, more adventure in them than the average tourists and probably a little more money than the average tourists. What they all have in common, is they are doing something nice for themselves or for someone else.”

Besides sailing lessons, Northern Breezes Sailing School also offers charter cruises from Harbor Cove Marina. Groups of up to six people pay $400 for three- and four-hour cruises and $800 for a full day, according to its website.

Duluth News Tribune

 

P&H begins talks to take over Owen Sound harbor

9/11 - Owen Sound, Ont. – Parrish & Heimbecker Ltd. has been given the green light by Transport Canada to negotiate with the federal agency for the takeover of the federally-owned Owen Sound harbor, Mayor Deb Haswell said Monday night.

The company, which owns and operates the Owen Sound grain elevators, is now reviewing environmental and technical information, provided by Transport Canada, and is expected to decide over the next four to six weeks whether it will continue with the divestiture discussions, she said.

Owen Sound, meanwhile, decided not to submit a proposal to assume ownership of the port, by the July 31 deadline imposed by Transport Canada, due to the “risks and liability that were identified by the city” and because “the city is not in a position to operate a port given the specific expertise required,” the city said in a statement, which was given to the media at the end of Monday's council meeting.

Haswell said Transport Canada has made it clear that it will not dredge the Owen Sound harbor until it is divested to another interest. The announcement that Transport Canada has selected P&H as the entity that it will enter into divestiture negotiations with could be a significant step closer to the city's ultimate goal of seeing the port dredged, she said.

“We've never been this far in the process of divestiture and it's been ongoing for close to 15 years. So we've certainly turned a corner,” she said in an interview.

Haswell said the city is committed to working with P&H and Transport Canada to develop and maintain a mixed-use harbor and to ensure public access is maintained at the port.

“At the end of the day if P&H and Transport Canada are able to come to an agreement, and the Owen Sound port is determined to be a viable, long-term investment for this private company, then it will be a very good news story,” she said.

“We can't anticipate what the outcome will be at this time but we have made our position very clear to Transport Canada and the proponent, P&H, that we want very much to see our harbor have the same look and feel that it has today. And obviously ensuring the ongoing commercial viability of the port is something that this council has felt strongly about and the community has felt strongly about.”

If the two sides reach an agreement, the city will hold a town hall-style meeting so the public can address the new owners of the harbor, she said.

Transport Canada had announced that its port divestiture program, which was established to transfer regional and local ports to other interests, would end on March 31, 2014.

The federal agency asked interested parties to submit divestiture plans for the Owen Sound port by July 31, the city said. P&H did so by the deadline.

Haswell said P&H is familiar with the Owen Sound harbor.

The statement from city hall says P&H has the expertise and knowledge to enhance and sustain the port's commercial business operations.

“They also have the capacity to encourage growth of shipping from this harbor to other facilities,” it says.

The city says Transport Canada has indicated “that they remain committed to transferring ownership and operation of the Port of Owen Sound to a local interest, which is better positioned to operate the port in a manner that is efficient and responsive to local needs.”

Sun Times, Owen Sound

 

BoatNerd Welland Gathering Sept. 13-15

The annual Welland Canal BoatNerd Gathering is scheduled for Sept. 13-15. Once again, Boatnerds will gather at the Welland Canal for socializing, sharing pictures, slides and videos, plus watching the passing traffic. We will tour International Marine Salvage, on Saturday morning, and be able to see the scrapyard. Friday and Saturday evenings the group will gather at the Canadian Corps building in Thorold to share pictures, slides and videos. There is no admission charge. There will also be a few vendor tables available.

See the Gathering Page for details

 

Boatnerd Gathering Special

9/11 - Sassies Stake-out, an eatery just north of the Skyway and above Lock 2, has a new owner. Hours are daily from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.You can eat and watch the ships go by. This coming weekend, Boatnerd Gathering at the Welland Canal, they are offering a hot dog, fries and drink for $5. Ask for the Boatnerd Special.

Paul Beesley

 

Updates -  September 11

Saltie Gallery updated

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  September 11

1872, at Milwaukee, the Wisconsin, which was transferred to the Atlantic coast from Lake Erie in 1898, struck Romer Shoal off the shore of Staten Island and was wrecked. She was sailing from Norfolk, Virginia to Saco, Maine at the time. Her crew managed to reach the Life Saving Station through the heavy surf.

September 11, 1969, the Bethlehem steamer LEHIGH, Captain Loren A. Falk, delivered the first cargo to the new Bethlehem Steel mill at Burns Harbor, Indiana. The cargo consisted of 15,700 tons of taconite pellets loaded at Taconite Harbor, Minnesota.

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 percent 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. She was scrapped at Kaohsiung, Taiwan in 1988.

September 11, 2001, the former Bob-Lo boat STE. CLAIRE was towed from Detroit to Toledo by Gaelic's tug SHANNON. In August 2005, she was taken to Belanger Park in River Rouge and in the spring of 2006 she was returned to Nicholson's Slip in Ecorse by Gaelic's tugs PATRICIA HOEY and CAROLYN HOEY.

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

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 was taken off by the schooner GRACIE M. FILER just as the boat was going down.

1942: H.M.C.S. CHARLOTTETOWN, a Canadian naval corvette built at Kingston, ON in 1941, was torpedoed and sunk by U-517 on the St. Lawrence near Cap Chat, QC. Nine of the 64 on board were lost. 1946:

The former Hall freighter LUCIUS W. ROBINSON, heading for new service in the Far East as b) HAI LIN, ran into a typhoon on the Pacific during its delivery voyage but was unscathed.

1961: The retired PERSEUS, under tow for scrapping overseas, broke loose of the tug ENGLISHMAN, and was abandoned in rough seas near the Azores. It was later found drifting and taken in tow only to sink on September 21.

1968: GRINDEFJELL, a pre-Seaway and Seaway-era visitor for the Norwegian Fjell Line from 1953 to 1965, put into Mozambique as b) LENRO after fire had broken out in a cargo hold. The flames spread and, at one time the hull glowed red hot. The ship was gutted, later capsized and was abandoned as a total loss. The vessel was enroute from Assab, Ethiopia, to Rotterdam, with a cargo of bagged niger seed expellers and had to take the long way around due to the Suez Canal being closed. The hull was either scrapped or scuttled.

1987: An arson fire gutted the bridge and top deck of the laid up former C.S.L. package freighter FORT YORK at Sarnia. There had been another suspicious fire three weeks earlier that had been extinguished.

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

 

Port Reports -  September 10

Alpena, Mich. - Ben & Chanda McClain
Sunday evening the tug Samuel de Champlain and its barge Innovation came into Lafarge to load cement. The tug G.L Ostrander and barge Integrity followed the de Champlain under the silos. Monday morning the Alpena was waiting out in the bay and headed into port once the Ostrander departed.

Saginaw River - Todd Shorkey
American Integrity was inbound on the Saginaw Bay early Monday morning, headed for the Consumers Energy dock in Essexville to unload. Once finished, she backed from the dock and out to Light 12, before turning around and heading for the lake. American integrity was outbound by 9 a.m. Monday.

Sandusky, Ohio - Jim Spencer
Manistee loaded for Green Bay overnight Sunday and was upbound on Lake Huron by early evening Monday.

Buffalo, N.Y. - Brian W.
American Mariner remained at General Mills and the Rebecca Lynn was at the Noco Product Terminal in Tonawanda Monday evening. English River departed overnight and was downbound in the Welland Canal at 7 a.m., headed for Bath, Ont., to load more cement.

 

Dredging slated For Escanaba Harbor

9/10 - Escanaba, Mich. – Dredging of the Escanaba harbor is expected to begin this week with the cost of the project being fully funded by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources. The Escanaba City Council awarded the bid for the work at Thursday's regular meeting.

The council awarded the dredging bid to MCM Marine of Sault Ste. Marie in the approximate amount of $142,620. MCM was among nine contractors that submitted bids to remove about 14,000 cubic yards of sand from the harbor, a spokesman for the city said.

Marquette Mining Journal

 

Group ask parties to declare stance on former Canadian Miner

9/10 - Main-A-Dieu, N.S. – The Main-a-Dieu Community Development Association has sent letters to the leaders of the three main political parties requesting a definitive policy statement on how to dispose of the wreckage of the former laker Canadian Miner.

The shipwrecked bulk carrier broke free of its tow line two years ago off the coast of Cape Breton during a cross-Atlantic voyage and ran aground Scatarie Island, a provincially-protected wilderness area.

The association believes each party during the provincial election campaign should reiterate its position on the provinces responsibilities to the Miner.

At present there seems a clear divide between the NDP, which refuses to spend a dime on a salvage and places all responsibility on federal authorities, and the Liberals and Progressive Conservatives, who recognize the political and moral imperative of provincial as well as federal action, said association committee member Sean Howard.

The Main-a-Dieu Community Development Associations own position on the Miner is its complete removal from the island, followed by a comprehensive site remediation.

Howard said from the day the ship ran aground Scatarie it assigned primary blame with the federal government for licensing the towing of the vessel without securing an adequate bond or insurance from the owners. However, with Ottawa’s inaction, the Nova Scotia government should also be politically and morally obligated to undertake a salvage operation, he said.

The association also asked the new federal Transport Minister Lisa Raitt to give the file a full and fair review. Association vice-president Amanda McDougall said she’d like to see the same provincial and federal government co-operation as was the case when it came to fixing the damaged Gabarus seawall.

Recent statements by Minister Raitt promising a 'decision' on a possible salvage are encouraging, though it's important she hear not just from her own officials but also the community, the province and other interested parties, McDougall said.

The Greek ocean-going tug Hellas was towing the Miner to Turkey on Sept. 20, 2011, when its line broke free and the ship ran aground on the shores of Scatarie Island.

The province has maintained the wreck is a federal responsibility while Ottawa has indicated it poses no hazard to either navigation or the environment. A New York-based salvage company attempted a salvage job but the company walked away, claiming government bureaucratic hurdles.

Cape Breton Post

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  September 10

On 10 September 1890, the PORTER CHAMBERLAIN (wooden propeller bulk freighter, 134 foot, 280 gross tons, built in 1874, at Marine City, Michigan) was floated free of the Wolverine Drydock in Port Huron, Michigan where she had steel arches installed. When she floated free, the arches broke in three places and she stayed in Port Huron to have them repaired.

September 10, 1952, the forebody and afterbody of the future JOSEPH H. THOMPSON arrived at the American Shipbuilding yard in South Chicago. The two sections were delivered to the lakes via the Mississippi River and Chicago Ship Canal. The afterbody departed Baltimore, Maryland on August 2 and the forebody departed Pascagoula, Mississippi on August 21.

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 Harsens 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 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, Michigan.

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.

1910: PERE MARQUETTE 18, inbound for Milwaukee with 29 rail cars, began leaking and sank 30 miles off Sheboygan, Wis. There were 33 survivors but 29 were lost including the captain.

1918: The barge SANTIAGO, under tow of the small bulk carrier JOHN F. MORROW, sank in Lake Huron off Pointe aux Barques without loss of life.

1940: A.E. AMES was once part of Canada Steamship Lines. The vessel was sold for saltwater service about 1917 and was lost, via enemy action, as c) GINETTE LEBORGNE on this date in 1940 when it struck a mine on the Mediterranean, west of Sardinia, while returning demobilized troops from North Africa to France.

Data from: Skip Gillham, Max Hanley, Joe Barr, David Swayze, Russ Plumb, Father Dowling Collection, Jody L. Aho, James Neumiller, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series.

 

Venerable Edward L. Ryerson slides into new slip

9/9 - Duluth, Minn. – One of the Duluth-Superior Harbor’s most familiar residents moved to a new home on Friday.

The freighter Edward L. Ryerson, which had been in layup since May 2009 at Fraser Shipyards in Superior, where it was easily seen by traffic on the Blatnik Bridge, was towed a short distance to a slip at Barko Hydraulics.

“Fraser is doing some work on the dock so we had to move out of the way,” said Tom Wiater, president of Central Marine Logistics, which operates the Ryerson.

Fraser needs to do soil testing in the slip where the Ryerson was docked, and then possibly some dredging work, said Fraser yard superintendent Mike Peterson. It’s part of the longer-term, multimillion-dollar improvement and expansion project underway at Fraser in recent years.

The American Victory, another freighter on long-term layup at Fraser, also recently moved to a new berth. It’s now located farther south on the Superior waterfront, near Barker’s Island.

The Ryerson is a 730-foot freighter with some distinctive, streamlined Art Deco styling; it was built in Manitowoc, Wis., and entered service in 1960 as the flagship for Inland Steel. In 1998, ownership was transferred to Indiana Harbor Steamship Co., with operation of the Ryerson handled by Griffith, Ind.-based Central Marine Logistics.

The Ryerson is a straight-deck freighter, meaning that — unlike almost all other freighters on the Great Lakes — it doesn’t have a self-unloading system. It was out of service for a few years in the 1990s, then spent seven years in layup in Sturgeon Bay, Wis., before returning to service in 2006. It sailed in 2007, 2008 and briefly in 2009 before going back into layup, this time at Fraser.

Wiater said there are no prospects on the horizon for the Ryerson to get back into service — but he noted that when the ship has been called upon in the past, there hasn’t been much advance notice.

The Ryerson may have some peeling paint and is dusty inside, Wiater said, but it’s been well-maintained and is in good condition. It passed a U.S. Coast Guard inspection before Friday’s move.

Wiater traveled from Indiana to oversee Friday’s move. He said he hadn’t sailed aboard a freighter in 15 years, and had a great time Friday taking on the role of captain of the Ryerson — if only for about 90 minutes — as Heritage Marine tugboats moved the venerable vessel under the Blatnik Bridge and maneuvered it into its new berth.

“I had a blast,” Wiater said. “It was well worth the drive up here.”

Duluth News Tribune

 

Port Reports -  September 9

Marquette, Mich. - Rod Burdick
Vessels loading ore at LS&I during the weekend included James L. Kuber, Kaye E. Barker and Michipicoten.

Grand Haven, Mich. - Dick Fox
Buffalo came in about 7 a.m. Sunday with a load of stone for Verplank's Dock in Ferrysburg. This was its first visit of the season. It departed early afternoon.

Lorain, Ohio - Phil Leon
Manitowoc arrived inside the Lorain harbor at 11:45 a.m. Saturday and was making her way to the Charles Berry Bridge.

Sandusky, Ohio - Jim Spencer
CSL Thunder Bay cleared the NS coal dock early Sunday for Hamilton. It marked the first visit of the Thunder Bay to Sandusky and came one month after the 738-foot long freighter took her first load of iron ore downbound through the Welland Canal.

Buffalo, N.Y. – Brian W.
Rebecca Lynn and barge A-397 are expected for Buffalo around noon Monday. The American Mariner and the English River were both in port Sunday evening.

Toronto, Ont. - Jens Juhl
The Canadian Coast Guard ice breaker Griffon arrived at 7 pm Friday and moored alongside at Sugar Beach. The vessel called in to pick up a crewmember and departed at 8 a.m. Saturday. The Greek bulker Apollon departed Saturday afternoon after more than a week alongside at Redpath discharging sugar. A ship flying the Greek flag is rare these days. Apollon was built in Japan as the Spring Lake in 1996. Federal Margaree is in the final stage of discharging sugar at Terminal 52.

Montreal - René Beauchamp
Spruceglen, laid up since July 14, went back in service on Sunday, leaving for Sorel-Tracy.

 

Appeals court says NY state, not salvagers, own historic 19th century schooner in Lake Erie

9/9 - New York - A 19th century schooner at the bottom of Lake Erie that salvagers claim played a critical role in the War of 1812 and was later an Underground Railroad freedom boat belongs to New York state rather than the salvagers who found it, a federal appeals court said Thursday.

The ruling by the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Manhattan was another blow to Massachusetts-based North East Research LLCs plans to raise the well-preserved, two-mast schooner intact and install it as a tourist attraction in an ice-cold freshwater aquarium on Buffalos waterfront.

The state has said it views the shipwreck as a cultural and historic asset although it doesn’t believe the ship is the former U.S. Navy vessel salvagers say it is and that its primary goal is to preserve and protect it.

“It’s very frustrating,” North East founder Richard Kullberg said of multiple obstacles in a two-decade quest to raise the shipwreck and establish a watery museum. “Buffalo needs to have something spectacular to get people to come up here.”

The state attorney general’s office referred questions to the New York State Parks, Recreation & Historic Preservation, which said it is reviewing the decision.

The appeals court upheld a 2011 decision by a federal judge in Buffalo on grounds the vessel can be considered abandoned by its owners because it has rested at the bottom of Lake Erie, utterly forgotten and undisturbed, for at least 150 years.

A three-judge panel noted no owner had ever tried to find or recover the wreck, a location the National Park Service found eligible for placement on the National Register of Historic Places in March 2009 at the request of the state.

The company claimed title to the 80-foot wooden ship under maritime law but the state intervened, citing the Abandoned Shipwrecks Act of 1987. The act gives the state ownership of vessels embedded in submerged state property. The boat lies 170 feet underwater near Dunkirk, N.Y.

The state has argued the ship is an abandoned and nameless 1830s schooner that sank carrying grain and hickory nuts. The state suspended Northeast’s permit to explore the ship in 2008, saying divers had mishandled human remains. North East denies the allegation.

North East argued, and the appeals court accepted as true for the purposes of its ruling, that the boat is the Caledonia, a wooden schooner built in 1799 as a merchant vessel used in the fur trade. The British installed cannons when Lake Erie became a battleground in the War of 1812, but the Caledonia was later captured on the Niagara River and converted into an American warship before playing a role in a key victory in the Battle of Lake Erie.

After the war, the Caledonia was sold and was not mentioned in reports after 1818.

A North East expert, James Sinclair, had told the lower court the sunken vessels lack of identifying markings and the fact that its owners were active in the abolitionist movement in Erie, Pa., was consistent with the boats purported use in smuggling slaves across Lake Erie to Canada. Sinclair said the Pennsylvania merchants renamed it the General Wayne. It is believed to have sunk, fully intact, during a storm in the 1830s with no known survivors.

Kullberg said the revelation of the wrecks location through the court case has attracted recreational divers and damage.

“It’s a shame, he said. It’s just going to collapse.”

Associated Press

 

DeTour Reef Light to be recognized

9/9 - DeTour, Mich. – A public dedication ceremony for the DeTour Reef Light Station state historical marker commemorating the historic offshore lighthouse is scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 28, at 3 p.m. The marker will be located at the MDOT scenic parking area on M-134 approximately five miles west of DeTour Village and two miles east of the rest stop, where the lighthouse is first sited from the highway.

The public is invited to attend the 30-minute ceremony and to a gathering afterwards at the Mainsail Restaurant in DeTour Village.

Located one mile offshore in northern Lake Huron at the entrance to the St. Marys River in DeTour Passage connecting to Lake Superior, the DeTour Reef Light Station stands as a proud icon to Michigan’s maritime history since 1931. The DRLPS, established in 1998 by local volunteers, has restored the lighthouse and has offered public tours since 2005.

Soo Evening News

 

Costa Concordia salvage project gets green light

9/9 - Rome. Italy – Italy has given the go-ahead for an ambitious attempt to set upright the Costa Concordia cruise liner, which went aground near an Italian island in 2012, killing 32 people.

The national Civil Protection agency said Friday the operation will be carried out later this month, once final safety certificates are issued. The exact date depends on calm seas near Giglio Island.

If engineers and crews succeed in righting the Concordia, the vessel will be eventually towed to a port for dismantling.

The manslaughter trial of the Concordia's captain, Francesco Schettino, resumes on Sept. 23. The ship struck a reef, took on water and listed badly before capsizing off Giglio's port.

Prosecutors alleged Schettino steered the boat too close to shore. Schettino claims the reef didn't appear on his navigational charts.

 

Updates -  September 9

News Photo Gallery

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  September 9

On 09 September 1889, the FOLGER (wooden propeller wrecking tug, 69 foot, 64 gross tons, built in 1881, at Kingston, Ontario) was sailing upbound past St. Clair, Michigan when fire was discovered in her engine room. Her wheelsman stuck to his post as long as possible, trying to beach her at Courtright, Ontario, but the flames engulfed the vessel and all hands had to abandon her.

September 9, 1936. For the second consecutive day, boats of the Interlake and Pittsburgh fleets collided. The SATURN collided with the HENRY H. ROGERS in heavy fog above Whitefish Bay. The SATURN continued upbound to repair damage at Superior Shipbuilding. The ROGERS continued downbound to South Chicago where the anchor of the SATURN was removed from the Mate's starboard cabin.

September 9, 1940, the steamer MARITANA, Captain Charles E. Butler, went to anchor in Whitefish Bay due to weather. When they retrieved their anchor the next day, they also recovered a second anchor. The second anchor had an oak stock 12 feet across and 17 inches in diameter. The 8 foot forged metal shank was stamped with a date of 1806.

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 towline 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 tow his vessel back into the harbor. When the MOSS dropped anchor, he fired the entire crew then went ashore to hire another crew.

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

1924: A fire aboard the ship SOUTH AMERICAN at Holland, MI destroyed thhe upper works of the popular passenger steamer.

1964: A collision between the GEORGE R. FINK and the Swedish freighter BROHOLM occurred in zero visibility on Lake Huron just north of the Bluewater Bridge. The latter, on her only voyage through the Seaway, received a gash on the starboard side above the waterline while the former had only minor damage. BROHOLM arrived at Hsinkang, China, for scrapping as d) PROODOS on September 2, 1974.

1977: The British freighter PERTH began service to Canada in 1951 and ooperated into the Great Lakes until 1960. The ship ran aground about 200 miles south of Suez as e) GEORGIOS on this date but was later refloated and taken to Suez. The ship was arrested there and subsequently sank on October 1, 1979. The hull was likely refloated and dismantled at that location.

1993: INDIANA HARBOR received major hull damage when it struck Lansing Shoal. The ship was repaired at Sturgeon Bay.

Data from: Skip Gillham, Max Hanley, Joe Barr, David Swayze, Russ Plumb, Father Dowling Collection, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series.

 

Port Reports -  September 8

Cedarville & Port Inland, Mich. - Denny Dushane
At Cedarville, the Herbert C. Jackson arrived at 7 a.m. on Saturday to load a limestone cargo. The tug Leonard M and barge Huron Spirit are due to arrive on Sunday in the early afternoon.

At Port Inland, Wilfred Sykes was due to arrive in the late morning on Saturday, followed by the Herbert C. Jackson arriving in the evening hours on Saturday. The Pere Marquette 41 and Undaunted are due in on Sunday in the late morning to load.

Calcite & Stoneport, Mich. - Denny Dushane
At Calcite, the Michipicoten loaded at the South Dock and was expected to depart around 10 a.m. Saturday, headed for Essar at Sault Ste. Marie, Ont. Cuyahoga was to arrive about the time of the Michipicoten's departure also loading at the South Dock. The James L. Kuber is due on Sunday in the evening, loading at the North Dock and the Sam Laud wraps up the schedule arriving on Monday for the South Dock in the early afternoon.

At Stoneport, Lewis J. Kuber loaded on Saturday and they was expected to depart around 7 p.m. Great Lakes Trader was also due to arrive in the early afternoon on Saturday, followed by the Algoma Olympic during the evening. There are no vessels presently scheduled for Sunday. Two vessels are due on Monday, with the Philip R. Clarke arriving in the morning followed by the tug Defiance and barge Ashtabula arriving in the late evening.

Toledo, Ohio- Denny Dushane
Algowood is the next vessel scheduled to load coal at the CSX Dock on Wednesday at noon. Following the Algowood at the CSX Coal Dock will be the James L. Kuber, which is due on Thursday in the early afternoon. After that will be the Lakes Contender, due in on Friday in the late morning. Algolake is due to arrive at the CSX Coal Dock on Saturday during the early afternoon and the Saginaw rounds out the coal dock lineup arriving on Tuesday, September 17 in the late morning. Two vessels are scheduled to arrive at the Midwest Terminal Stone Dock with limestone cargoes in the coming days. Among the arrivals are the Algowood on Wednesday in the early morning. CSL's new Baie Comeau makes her first appearance and visit to Toledo on Wednesday, September 20 in the early afternoon for the Midwest Terminal Stone Dock. There’s lots of activity scheduled at the Torco Dock, with the Lakes Contender arriving on Friday just after midnight with an iron ore cargo. Other vessels scheduled to arrive with iron ore include the John B. Aird arriving in the late evening on Saturday, September 14. The Rt. Hon. Paul J. Martin is due to arrive on Monday, September 16 in the morning, and following them is the H. Lee White due on Tuesday, September 17 in the late afternoon along with the Algosoo also due on the 17th in the late afternoon. James R. Barker rounds out the Torco Dock lineup arriving in the early afternoon on Thursday, September 18. Scrapping continues at the Ironhead Shipyard's large drydock on the Phoenix Star.

 

Goal nearly reached for Cana Island Light Station restoration drive

9/8 - Sturgeon Bay, Wis. – The Door County Maritime Museum and Door County Parks Department are nearing its goal of raising almost $2.6 million for improvements and restoration work at the historic Cana Island Light Station in Baileys Harbor.

The three-year campaign has secured gifts and pledges totaling more than $2,407,000, over 93% of the organizations' original goal.

“We are on the stretch run," said Museum development director Trudy Herbst. "We deeply appreciate the generosity and support of the many organizations and individuals who've gotten us this far.”

The fundraising campaign received a big boost from a large matching grant offered by the Jeffris Family Foundation headquartered in Janesville. The Jeffris Family Foundation preserves the cultural history and heritage of Midwestern small towns by assisting non-profits with the restoration of regionally and nationally important historic buildings and other essential preservation projects.

Funds raised to date have enabled Door County Parks to install new toilet facilities on the island and construct a visitor parking facility adjacent to the natural stone causeway that connects Cana Island to the mainland.

A comprehensive Historic Structure Report was completed in 2009 outlining the stabilization and restoration work needed on the island's historic buildings including the light tower, keeper's quarters, oil house, privy, and barn.

The Door County Parks Department and the Maritime Museum are in the midst of the review and selection process for architectural and engineering firms qualified to complete the plans and specifications for unique historic restoration work needed to preserve this iconic Door County light station for future generations. The County hopes to begin portions of the work as early as next spring.

Those interested in making a donation toward the restoration project can contact the Door County Maritime Museum at (920) 743-5958. Donation can also be made on-line through the Donations & Membership page on the Maritime Museum website at www.dcmm.org.

 

Author to speak on Great Storm of 1913

9/8 - As the 100th anniversary of the Great Storm of 1913 approaches, the Huron County Museum will be hosting a number of speakers “to tell the story” in the upcoming months.

Speaking on Thursday, Sept. 12 will be author Cathy Beveridge, who has recently released a novel about the infamous storm called “Stormstruck.” This is the third volume in Beveridge’s series about Canadian disasters. The first, “Shadows of Disaster,” tells the story of Canada’s deadliest landslide and the second novel, “Chaos,” in Halifax is about the Halifax explosion.

The idea for “Stormstruck” was initiated when Beveridge was touring Ontario and a student suggested she write a story about the Great Storm of 1913.

As a resident of western Canada, Beveridge had never heard about the storm, which rocked parts of the mid-western-U.S. and southwestern Ontario, causing over 200 deaths. According to organizers, Beveridge began researching historical accounts of the storm and was astounded by the scope of the disaster.

After a visit to Goderich and other areas of Huron Country, Beveridge knew she wanted to tell the story.

She will speak at the museum of Goderich from 7:30 to 9 p.m. Organizers said this family-friendly evening is the kick-off to a community-wide book club for children aged nine to 13 hosted at libraries across Huron County.

Signed copies of “Stormstruck” will be available for purchase at the museum.

To register for the event, e-mail angela.horbanuik@gmail.com.

Goderich Signal Star

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  September 8

September 8, 1936, the Interlake steamer CRETE and the Pittsburgh steamer CORNELL collided in heavy fog above Whitefish Point. After temporary repairs were made in the Weitzel lock, the CRETE proceeded to Chicago Shipbuilding to repair a damaged bow. The CORNELL proceeded to Manitowoc to repair damage to her starboard side just forward of her boiler house.

On September 8,1868, HIPPOCAMPUS (wooden propeller, 152 tons, built in 1867, at St. Joseph, Michigan) stranded in a storm off St. Joseph and was pounded to pieces. 36 of the 41 passengers were lost. Litigation continued until November 10,1884, when the owner was held innocent of blame in the U. S. Court at Grand Rapids, Michigan.

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 up bound the next month on September 8 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 on 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.

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

September 8, 1970 - 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 September 8,1885, 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 seven drowned when her yawl capsized in the surf.

On September 8,1871, the schooner MORNING LIGHT was sailing from Kelley's 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.

1860: The wooden passenger and freight steamer LADY ELGIN sank in Lake Michigan following a collision with the schooner AUGUSTA with an estimated 297 lost their lives.

1979: The Norwegian carrier INGWI first came through the Seaway in 1960 and made about 10 trips inland through 1967. The hull was reported to have fractured as b) OH DAI enroute from Singapore to Calcutta. The ship foundered in the Bay of Bengal but there was speculation at the time that this was an insurance fraud.

1980: The idle rail car ferry GRAND RAPIDS sustained fire damage from a blaze in the pilings at Muskegon, buckling plates on the car deck. It was extinguished by the U.S.C.G. and Fire Department.

2010: The tug MESSENGER came to the Great Lakes for the Gaelic Tugboat Co. in 1984 and was renamed b) PATRICIA HOEY. It was later sold and became c) NEW HAMPSHIRE and then d) SEA TRACTOR II before leaving the lakes, via Oswego, about 1991. It was known as e) SHARK when scuttled as an artificial reef near Miami, on this date in 2010.

Data from: Skip Gillham, Max Hanley, Joe Barr, Al Miller, David Swayze, Russ Plumb, Father Dowling Collection, James Neumiller, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series.

 

Port Reports -  September 7

Duluth, Minn.
Heritage Marine tugs towed the laid-up steamer Edward L. Ryerson to a new lay-up dock Friday near the Cenex Harvest States #1 elevator. The move was made so Fraser Shipyards can do work on the dock at which she had been tied. American Victory was moved on Thursday.

St. Marys River
CSL’s new self-unloader Baie Comeau was upbound in the lower St. Marys River on her maiden voyage late Friday night. Earlier in the evening, Mississagi made a rare upbound passage and docked at Essar Steel. She was expected to be back downbound sometime after midnight.

Grand Haven, Mich. - Dick Fox
The Algoway delivered a load of salt to Verplank's dock in Ferrysburg. It crossed the pier heads at 4:45 p.m. and blew a salute as it departed at about 1 a.m.

Sandusky, Ohio - Jim Spencer
The Herbert C. Jackson was bound for Detroit Thursday, having loaded all day at the Norfolk-Southern coal dock. Inbound and said to be expected about 2 a.m. Friday was the Manistee.

 

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.

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 16 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 19 minutes. For comparison, a good average loading time at that time was about three hours and 45 minutes.

On September 7, 1975, on the St. Marys River loaded with iron ore pellets, WILLIAM G. MATHER, forced out of the channel by a saltwater vessel, struck bottom. Upon proceeding further onto Lake Huron it was 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 p.m., on 7 September 1872, at E. Fitzgerald's shipyard in Port Huron, Michigan. Just before 4 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.

1901: WAWATAM ran aground on Gratiot Beach above Port Huron with the whaleback barge #102 in tow.

1929: CHARLES C. WEST went aground on Gull Rock Reef damaging both frames and plates. The repair bill topped $46,000.

1942: OAKTON of the Gulf & Lake Navigation Co. was torpedoed and sunk in the St. Lawrence by U-517 about 15 miles west of Cape Gaspe. It was struck amidships on the port side and went down stern first without any loss of life except the ship's St. Bernard dog. The ship had a load of coal on board from Sandusky, Ohio, to Cornerbrook, NF when hit. Two other Greek ships, MOUNT TAYGETUS and MOUNT PINDUS were struck in the same attack with the loss of 6 lives.

1956: The former Canada Steamship Lines freighter WINONA stranded on a sand bank at Aparii, Philippines, island of Luzon, as b) EDDIE while enroute to Japan with a cargo of logs. The ship broke in two and was a total loss.

1965: AMARYLLIS was driven ashore about 1.5 miles north of Palm Beach Inlet, Florida, during Hurricane Betsy. The crew lived on board for another 4 months keeping up steam in hope of being refloated but the ship was eventually abandoned as a total loss. The vessel, enroute from Manchester, England, to Baton Rouge, LA in ballast, visited the Great Lakes in 1959. The hull became increasingly unpopular with local residents and, in 1975, a gravel road was built to the ship to truck the scrapped steel away. The remains were later floated off and sunk off West Palm Beach as an artificial reef.

1979: INDIANA HARBOR loaded a record 61,649 tons of iron ore at Two Harbors.

1997: NORTH ISLANDS, a Cypriot flag SD14, came through the Seaway in 1994 and loaded peas at Thunder Bay for Cuba. The vessel went aground near San Antonio, Chile, after losing her propeller. The ship broke in two, but all 30 on board were rescued by a helicopter from the Chilean Navy.

Data from: Skip Gillham, 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

 

Port Reports -  September 6

Superior, Wis.
The steamer American Victory was towed from her lay-up dock at Fraser shipyard to a new long-term lay-up berth next to Elevator M in Superior Thursday morning. The G-tugs North Dakota and Kentucky handled the tow, moving the American Victory past the also-laid-up John G. Munson and Edward L. Ryerson, neither of which is expected to see service this season.

Marquette, Mich. - Rod Burdick
Algosoo loaded ore on Thursday at the Upper Harbor on her first visit since November 2011.

St. Marys River
Most of the traffic Thursday was in the morning. Up early were the tug Zeus/barge Deegan and Alpena, followed later in the morning by Joseph L. Block, Atlantic Huron, the Marquette ferry Isle Royale Queen III, Great Republic and Algoma Discovery. Polsteam’s Iryda was upbound in the evening, passing the downbound American Century in Soo Harbor. As night fell, the downbound HHL Mississippi was headed for the locks in Whitefish Bay.

Holland, Mich. - Herm Phillips
Calumet entered through the piers shortly after dark on Wednesday with stone for Verplanks. After unloading she departed before dawn, bound for South Chicago.

Detroit River - Ted Hanifan
Baie Comeau was upbound Thursday morning on her maiden voyage with a load of ballast stone for Windsor Ont. After unloading, she will depart for Superior, Wis.

Buffalo, N.Y. – Brian W.
The R/V Lake Guardian was at anchor just South of Windmill Point off Buffalo Harbor Thursday morning. She's the first vessel east of CIP 16 in at least the last three weeks.

 

Duluth port gets $10 million for dock upgrades

9/6 - Duluth, Minn. – The port of Duluth will receive $10 million in federal aid to rebuild and expand a general cargo dock, according to a news release issued Tuesday by Sens. Amy Klobuchar and Al Franken and Rep. Rick Nolan.

The improvements will target Docks C and D and also will pay for improvements to existing road and train connections. The docks have been used in the past as a laydown area to store wind power equipment in transit through the port.

The funding comes from the Transportation Investment Generating Recovery, or TIGER, program, which was part of a federal economic stimulus package administered by the U.S. Department of Transportation.

The Duluth Seaway Port Authority has applied for TIGER funding in the past but came up empty in four previous rounds. The authority still has not received any official word on its latest application, but Adolph Ojard, its executive director, said he was encouraged to hear from congressional delegates Tuesday.

“It’s a very competitive process. There are hundreds of projects chasing very little money,” Ojard said, noting that the authority has been a finalist for grant funding in the past but didn’t make the final cut.

The port authority has proposed a $16 million project that would include stabilizing the docks with the installation of new steel pilings, dredging adjacent waters to seaway depth, better securing the area and installing turnouts onto the property from the adjacent Canadian National and Burlington Northern rail lines.

Besides applying for federal aid, the port also is in line to receive $3 million in Minnesota Port Development Assistance funds.

The remaining $3 million has already been set aside by the port authority for a local match, Ojard said.

“We’re in a good position to move forward quickly, but we’ll need to review the grant contract to see when and how the funds will be released,” he said. Ojard expects the work could be completed in one to two construction seasons.

The port authority purchased Garfield Pier, which is home to Docks C and D, in 1997 and spent about $3 million to tear down a grain elevator, preparing the site for future redevelopment.

The grant money could complete the job and none too soon, according to Ojard. He said the pier was built on wooden cribbing and the steel bolts used to secure the original timbers have been rusting away.

“If we waited much longer we would have lost the structural integrity of the pier,” Ojard said, noting that two sections of seawall already have failed and fallen into the slip.

The proposed improvements will further set the table for future development of the 28-acre site, which has 3,000 feet of dock face.

“That’s a strategic property with tremendous value, and we’re prepared to deal with multiple opportunities,” Ojard said.

He suggested the property could be put to use in any number of ways, including handling materials for the region’s paper industries or supplies for new and proposed mining projects the Range.

“Strengthening the Port of Duluth-Superior helps strengthen the economy in Duluth and helps businesses across Minnesota,” said Klobuchar in a prepared statement. “This support will help ensure the Port has 21st century facilities and can continue to play a vital role in delivering Minnesota’s products to markets across the world.” Franken said the grant would create jobs and improve the global competitiveness of regional industries.

“As the busiest port on the Great Lakes, the Duluth Port connects some of Minnesota’s most important industries to partners and consumers across America and the world,” Franken said in a statement.

Nolan said the project is a “once-in-a-generation opportunity to renovate and revitalize our essential Port of Duluth-Superior, making the port and the city of Duluth more competitive by expanding the number of shippers, diversity of cargo, and volume of shipments in and out of the harbor.”

Duluth News Tribune

 

Great Lakes Shipyard receives contract for U.S. Fish & Wildlife’s Spencer F. Baird

9/6 - Cleveland, Ohio – Great Lakes Shipyard has been awarded a contract by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, an agency of the Department of the Interior, for the five-year drydocking and inspection of the R/V Spencer F. Baird.

The shipyard hauled the Baird out using the 770-ton Marine Travelift. Work includes drydocking, a complete exterior repainting, bow thruster replacement, five-year survey and other miscellaneous repairs. The project is to be completed early November.

Operated by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the 95-foot Baird is a fish stocking and population assessment vessel that will annually stock nearly 4 million lake trout into lakes Huron and Michigan, furthering a four-decade effort by the Service and its partners to restore depleted lake trout populations in the Great Lakes and establish self-sustaining populations of this native fish, which was nearly wiped out in the late 1950s due to invasion of sea lampreys, overfishing and pollution. Of some 90 science vessels on the Great Lakes, the Spencer F. Baird is the only hatchery fish distribution vessel in operation, distributing fish reared at the Fish and Wildlife Service's Iron River National Fish Hatchery in Wisconsin and Pendill’s Creek and Jordan River national fish hatcheries in Michigan.

To learn more, visit www.thegreatlakesgroup.com.

 

Updates -  September 6

News Photo Gallery

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  September 6

On September 6,1872, 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 a August 29 storm that struck Lake Erie. 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. A christening ceremony 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 Uniflow 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.

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. Renamed in 1990, she sails today as b.) WALTER J. McCARTHY, JR.

On September 6, 1992, 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 that 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.

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

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 September 6, 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 September 6,1871, 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 a.m. and was pounded to pieces. The crew jumped onto the breakwater and crawled to safety as the waves crashed over them.

1908: The wooden steamer CHAUNCY HURLBUT began leaking and was beached at Whitefish Point, Lake Superior, along a rough and rocky shore. It became a total loss and the hull was removed in August 1910 and sunk in deep water.

2009: ALGOPORT ran into heavy weather from tropical storm DeJuan while under tow of the PACIFIC HICKORY, broke up and sank in the Philippine Sea about a week's tow from the destination of Jiangyin, China.

Data from: Skip Gillham, Joe Barr, Jody L. Aho, Max S. Hanley, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series.

 

Port Reports -  September 5

Duluth, Minn.
Waterfront reports indicate the laid-up steamer American Victory will be moved to a new location Thursday morning in order to allow for new dock construction at Fraser Shipyard. The laid-up steamer Edward L. Ryerson is expected to be moved eventually as well.

St. Marys River
The Marquette-based passenger vessel Isle Royale Queen III was upbound in the lower St. Marys River late Wednesday evening after undergoing repairs in the Straits area. The vessel reportedly was damaged Aug. 20 when it struck some rocks underneath the surface of Lake Superior just off Presque Isle Park, sustaining injuries to the port propulsion system. Other traffic Wednesday included the saltie Federal Schelde, headed downbound for Hamilton. She was proceeded down the river by Sam Laud and Roger Blough, and followed several hours later by the Stewart J. Cort.

Sandusky, Ohio - Jim Spencer
The tug Victory and barge James L. Kuber loaded at the NS coal dock Wednesday.

Montreal, Que. - René Beauchamp
Cedarglen has arrived in Montreal for a short term lay up, according to the Port of Montreal website.

Algoma Equinox update - Andy Torrence
Algoma Equinox, the first 31,200 DWT Great Lakes/Seaway gearless bulk carrier built by Nantong Mingde for Canada’s Algoma Central Corporation, sailed for sea trials on Sept. 3.

 

Richelieu still at anchor off Aliaga scrapyard

9/5 - The retired former Canada Steamship Lines bulk carrier Richelieu (iii) was still at anchor at Aliaga, Turkey, on Sept. 4. The vessel arrived under her own power on Aug. 28.

This ship has been a regular Great Lakes trader since it was built at Hoboken, Belgium, as Federal Ottawa in 1980. The 730-foot-long freighter first came inland for Fednav in 1981, and traded through the Seaway most years through 2012.

It was launched on October 20, 1980, and got into trouble during trials on the North Sea, sustaining some minor damage from a collision with the Karine due to fog on December 11, 1980.

Federal Ottawa usually brought steel to Great Lakes ports and departed for overseas with various grains. But there were exceptions. It took on chrome ore, which had been mined during World War II, at Duluth for Sweden on August 26, 1988.

Then, on December 20, 1990, it loaded the first of the tunnel rail cars at Quebec City for the soon-to-be-completed rail link between the United Kingdom and Europe under the English Channel.

After five trips through the Seaway in 1994, the ship returned to the Seaway on April 7, 1995, as Lake Erie. Re-registered in the Marshall Islands, the vessel was carrying steel coils for Detroit.

Between 1995 and 2007, the Lake Erie made in the neighborhood of 40 trips through the Seaway. In addition to the usual staple cargoes, the ship also carried ore pellets, potash, bentonite, flax, peas, soybeans and wheat.

Following a sale to Canada Steamship Lines in 2008, the ship remained on charter to Fednav until becoming Richelieu for CSL in 2009. It was painted in company colors in 2010 and was active in the grain trade between the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence storage elevators.

After being idle at Montreal, Richelieu sailed August 10, 2013, for Aliaga, Turkey, and arrived there August 28. It will be beached for dismantling and recycling when the berth becomes available.

Skip Gillham

 

Badger continues sailing: Feds remain mum

9/5 - Ludington, Mich. – The SS Badger has returned to a single round-trip sailing for the rest of its 2013 season, now that Labor Day and the unofficial end of the summer tourism season has passed.

It has been a good season for Lake Michigan Carferry (LMC) and there is still more than a month to go.

“The cool spring did affect our May numbers a bit,” Terri Brown, LMC director of marketing and media relations, said Tuesday. “The overall season though has been strong and passenger counts are higher than 2012. Once again this season we’ve seen passengers from all across the United States.”

But LMC hasn’t seen one thing it has been awaiting from the government of the United States – a decision on the proposed consent decree to allow it to store coal ash on the SS Badger as a means to meet Environmental Protection Agency’s order to stop discharging the coal ash into Lake Michigan.

In March the EPA and the U.S. Department of Justice announced it would accept public comments on the proposal to give LMC two years to complete construction on board the Badger of a means to store the coal ash generated by the coal-fired steamship, the last known to be operating in the United States, and develop a way to transfer and dispose of the ash on land.

In late July, the EPA, without comment or fanfare, posted on its website the more than 7,000 comments the proposal generated during a public comment session in spring.

Meanwhile, according to information sent anonymously to the Ludington Daily News, LMC has proposed a schedule of work to meet the proposed settlement. The Department of Justice, which is charged with reviewing public comments and making a recommendation whether to accept the consent decree, which a federal judge would have to approve, has made no comment about progress toward a resolution.

LMC, according to Brown, “has not received a final decision from the DOJ or EPA. We believe that we are very close,” she added.

The only comment the DOJ would make to the Ludington Daily News other than the matter is still under review, is to say more time has been granted for LMC to respond to the proposed civil penalty if LMC fails to meet the terms of the consent decree.

The proposed agreement calls for LMC in 2013 and 2014, to reduce discharge of coal ash from the Badger and pay a $25,000 civil penalty for violating mercury water quality standards in 2012.

According to Brown, “the Badger is generating less ash in 2013 than it did in 2012. This is a result of the major mechanical improvements on the Badger that took place during 2012.”

Ludington Daily News

 

Steel production rises by 24,000 tons in Great Lakes states

9/5 - Raw steel production in the country's Great Lakes region was about 628,000 tons in the week ending Aug. 31, according to an American Iron and Steel Institute estimate.

Production rose by about 24,000 tons, or about 3.9 percent from the week prior, breaking a streak of six straight weeks that steel production had declined in the Great Lakes region. Most of the raw steel production in the Great Lakes region takes place in Indiana and the Chicago area.

Production in the Southern District was estimated at 705,000 tons last week, down slightly from 707,000 tons a week earlier.

Total domestic raw steel production last week was about 1.86 million tons, roughly the same as what it was a week prior.

U.S. steel mills had a capacity utilization rate of 77.5 percent last week, which is down from 77.7 percent a week earlier. The capacity utilization rate had been 76.3 percent at the same time last year.

So far this year, domestic steel producers have had a capacity utilization rate of 77.2 percent, which is down from 77.8 during the same period in 2012.

Domestic mills have produced an estimated 62.8 million tons of steel this year, down 4.4 percent from the same period last year. The mills had made about 65.7 million tons of steel by Aug. 31 in 2012.

Steel imports inched up by 0.6 percent in July, according to the American Iron and Steel Institute. The United States has imported 18.2 million tons of steel so far this year, which is down 11 percent from the same time last year.

Hot-rolled sheet imports from foreign competitors were up by 19 percent in July, as compared to June. Overall, imports account for about 23 percent of the market share so far this year.

Northwest Indiana Times

 

New Lake Superior boat tours feature North Shore sights and heritage

9/5 - Silver Bay, Minn. – When it comes to starting up Lake Superior boat tours, you couldn’t have picked a worse year, entrepreneur Jay Hanson said. A wintry spring. A chilly June. A foggy July.

“This is probably the worst year in 65 years to start,” said Hanson, of Duluth, who launched North Shore Scenic Cruises in late June with two partners. “Up to July 20, we canceled two-thirds of our trips because of the fog.”

Since then business is looking up for the new excursion line based at the Silver Bay Marina using the 64-foot Wenonah, a boat with a long history on the North Shore.

Now they’re averaging 27 passengers per cruise, better than the 25-passenger goal they had for the first season of daily cruises. Eventually, they hope to average 45 passengers, though the boat can hold twice that.

The new excursion line is filling the niche left by the 2006 departure of the Grampa Woo III, which offered North Shore tours out of Beaver Bay and Two Harbors.

At the same time, Hanson and his partners have given new life to the Wenonah, a no-frills boat that shuttled people from Grand Portage to Isle Royale for decades.

Hanson, who also owns Superior Scuba Center, teamed up with fellow divers Dan Goyen of Duluth and Richard Rezanka of Grand Rapids to start North Shore Scenic Tours.

Their years of sailing Lake Superior, diving for shipwrecks and learning about the area’s history is paying off. It’s part of the narrated tour.

“We all have stories,” Hanson said. “And what’s cool (is that) people want to hear them. The questions people ask are things I’ve learned over the years.”

Hanson put his scuba diving business on hold to devote his time to getting the excursion line going. Goyen and Rezanka, who have full-time jobs, are there on weekends and their days off. Three part-time crew members also help out.

Serving as both captain and narrator on a cruise with 30 passengers, Hanson talked about the North Shore and its history, including American Indian heritage and the heyday of the logging, trading and fishing industries. Over a loudspeaker, he pointed out geological formations, such as an outcropping that had been the middle of a volcano. He pulled close to shore to show an old fish house that had been converted into a cabin and for an up-close cruise past Northshore Mining and its ore docks. At one point, he drew near Gold Rock Point, which towers over the 1905 Madeira shipwreck.

“It’s one of the best shipwreck dives in the world that you can actually do from shore,” Hanson said as a floating diver’s flag indicated divers were down there exploring the wreck as the Wenonah passed.

The tour narration is still a work in progress. Plans are to supplement the live narration with video segments of shipwrecks and other images on flat screens. A way to offer concessions to passengers also is being worked out.

Karen Swanson of Minneapolis took the cruise while visiting the North Shore with a friend. While she visits the area regularly, she said the cruise was a rare chance for her to actually get out on the lake.

“We have been coming to the North Shore for years but have never taken a cruise, so I insisted,” Swanson said as the boat headed toward Split Rock Lighthouse. “Most of the time I come in the winter and ski, so this is a new experience.”

Hanson had had his eye on the Wenonah for an excursion line for some time. He attempted to buy it from the longtime owner, the Grand Portage-Isle Royale Transportation Line, but the deal fell through. Then, last year, a man building a marina in Superior bought the Wenonah to use as the marina office/store. A few weeks later, Hanson got the Wenonah by trading a tugboat for it with some cash thrown in.

Built in 1960, the Wenonah had shuttled people from Grand Portage to Isle Royale from 1964 to 2010. Low lake levels prevented its entry into the Hat Point Marina in Grand Portage in 2007 and 2008 and ended its runs completely in 2010, said Don Szczech, who owns the transportation line.

For two years the Wenonah was docked in Washburn before it was sold and then acquired by Hanson.

“It’s a good fit for the area, because it has a history to it,” Hanson said. “A lot of people say I took my first trip to Isle Royale on the Wenonah in 1965. And now they have kids of their own.”

The Wenonah’s certification had lapsed, however, and it needed a good amount of work to get re-certified by the U.S. Coast Guard.

“It took all winter, with the amount of work they wanted us to do,” Hanson said.

Certification came through in mid-June. The two-hour cruises started in late June. Most go south to Split Rock Lighthouse, while some go northeast to Shovel Point and Palisade Head.

All total, Hanson said he’s invested more than $50,000 in the venture, even selling his charter boat to pay for the Wenonah’s repairs.

It’s not the first time the Wenonah has been used for sightseeing. When it wasn’t used for the Isle Royale passenger runs in 2007 and 2008, Szczech used it to take people on shoreline cruises out of Grand Marais.

“It was a bust,” Szczech said. “You just couldn’t generate enough interest from people to just go for a boat ride.”

That surprised him. “I thought this could really turn into something,” he said. “I poured a lot into it and did a lot of advertising.”

Thousands of tourists visit Grand Marais in the summer. But, he said, “unless it’s a bluebird perfect day and the whole family wanted to go, it wasn’t happening.”

Still, he wishes Hanson well.

“I hope it works,” Szczech said. “Jay’s a nice guy. He really wants to make this thing work. I wish him all the luck in the world.”

Hanson said he’s in it for the long haul. He admits the Wenonah isn’t in the same league as the Grampa Woo III, an elegant 115-foot yacht that was big enough and fancy enough for gourmet sit-down dinner cruises.

“We’re more a picnic shelter-on-the-water kind of thing,” Hanson said. “We don’t profess to be anything we’re not.”

Before the cruises started up, the new owners’ efforts went into the mechanical repairs and upgrades needed to get the Wenonah re-certified and cruise-worthy. Over the next few years, they plan to paint and spruce up the boat.

Linda Napier of St. Paul was impressed by their efforts to get started so quickly.

“I like that this is just a start-up,” said Napier, who took the cruise while visiting the area with family. “It’s not some big corporate operation. They invested a lot to put this together, so they could start up this year.”

Hanson said it’s been a labor of love to turn what he described as a pickup truck taking people to Isle Royale into something more. But for the first couple of years, he said, it’ll be a learning curve.

Duluth News Tribune

 

Updates -  September 5

News Photo Gallery

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  September 5

September 5, 1899, the DOUGLASS HOUGHTON grounded at Sailors Encampment and sank when rammed by her barge, JOHN FRITZ. The HOUGHTON completely blocked St. Marys River traffic for five days. More than 300 boats were delayed at an estimated loss of $600,000.

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, 2,480 gross tons, built in 1896, at W. Superior, Wisconsin) which was being towed by the ALEXANDER McDOUGALL (steel propeller semi-whaleback freighter, 413 foot, 3,686 gross tons, built in 1898, at West Superior, Wisconsin). The MONTGOMERY was raised and repaired. She lasted another two years before breaking up in a storm in 1901.

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

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

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

NEW QUEDOC arrived at McLouth Steel, Trenton, Michigan, on her maiden voyage September 5, 1960, with a load of Labrador iron ore. Renamed b.) QUEDOC in 1963. QUEDOC was scrapped at Curacao Island, Lesser Antilles in 1985.

The WYANDOTTE of 1916, a.) CONNEAUT, was towed down the Welland Canal on September 5- 6, 1973, on her way to the cutter’s torch at Santander, Spain.

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 September 5, 1882, under tow to be rebuilt.

1896: The Canadian passenger ship BALTIC, built in 1867 as FRANCES SMITH, burned at the dock in Collingwood. The hull drifted to shallow water and remained there for several years.

1964: A. & J. MID-AMERICA, a Seaway caller in 1963, was driven ashore at Lantau Island near Hong Kong by typhoon Ruby. The vessel was refloated October 5 but came ashore again days later during typhoon Dot on October 13. Refloated October 21, the vessel returned to service and was scrapped as e) UNION TIGER at Inchon, South Korea, after arriving in April 1968.

1964: The former HEMSEFJELL, a pre-Seaway trader, was also blown aground at Hong Kong as d) PROSPERITY during typhoon Ruby but released on October 5. It was scrapped in Thailand during 1972.

1964: The three-year old bulk carrier LEECLIFFE HALL sank in the St. Lawrence, 65 miles below Quebec City, following a collision with the APOLLONIA. Efforts to beach the ship failed and three lives were lost. The hull was dynamited as a hazard to navigation in 1966. The latter, a Greek freighter, had been a Seaway trader in 1964 and was repaired at Levis, QC. The ship was scrapped at Shanghai, China, as c) MAYFAIR after arriving on May 3, 1985.

Data from: Skip Gillham, Joe Barr, Russ Plumb, Father Dowling Collection, Jody L. Aho, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series.

 

Port Reports -  September 4

Marquette, Mich. - Rod Burdick
Kaye E. Barker and Michipicoten loaded ore Tuesday evening at the Upper Harbor.

Sandusky, Ohio - Jim Spencer
CSL Laurentien arrived at the NS coal dock Tuesday morning to begin loading for an unspecified Canadian port.

Toronto, Ont. - Jens Juhl
Toronto Island ferries had a busy Labor Day weekend. In order to handle the heavy holiday traffic, the smaller Ongiara and William Inglis were put on the Hanlan’s Point and Ward’s Island run. The larger Sam McBride and Thomas Rennie operated exclusively on the Centre Island/city side shuttle. Late Monday afternoon the 161-foot Trinity luxury yacht Destination Fox Harb'r Too departed Toronto after spending the better part of last week moored at Harborfront. The vessel is for sale with a price tag of $19.9 million.

Baie Comeau update - Denny Dushane
CSL’s new self-unloader Baie Comeau has been removed from the Midwest Energy Coal Terminal schedule in Superior, Wisconsin. Latest reports and updates now show that her first Great Lakes cargo will be a load of iron ore pellets from Superior, Wisconsin and the BNSF #5 Dock. They have a tentative ETA for the BNSF #5 Dock in Superior for Sunday, Sept. 8 at approximately 4 a.m.

 

Algoma Equinox sea trials may be underway

9/4 - Algoma Equinox appears to be undergoing sea trials. She moved off the Nantong shipyard dock and anchored in the Yangtze River. Her destination was listed as Zhou Shan with ETA of 0800 on Thursday 9/5/13. Zhou Shan is a series of islands off China's east coast in the East China Sea.

Andy Torrence

 

Detroit’s West Jefferson drawbridge to remain closed until at least 2015

9/4 - River Rouge, Mich. – Work on the West Jefferson bridge that was damaged in May when it was lowered onto a passing ship isn't expected to begin in earnest for several months.

According to Cindy Nocerini Dingell, the deputy chief operating officer for the Wayne County Department of Public Services, the bridge probably won't be open for traffic until early 2015.

"The bridge was extensively damaged, " she said. "We've just received the consultant's report, now we're sifting through that,"

Dingell said eventually the county will have to solicit bids for design and rebuilding the bridge.

No one was injured because of the accident. The 45-year old operator allegedly was intoxicated when she lowered the bridge as the 670-foot freighter Herbert C. Jackson, carrying 23,000 tons of iron ore, was passing underneath. A foreman took the operator, a woman, for drug and alcohol testing before she was sent home. She was terminated in May after an investigation found her to be at fault.

Hydraulics and gears on the drawbridge, which connects the cities of Detroit and River Rouge, were heavily damaged on the north side of the bridge. There was minor damage to the ore carrier.

In the short term, repairs to the north side might need to be rushed in order to stop it from falling into the water. Motorists can use I-75 as a detour.

Another bridge over the river was already under construction when the West Jefferson Bridge was damaged. The bridge at Fort Street and Oakwood Boulevard in Detroit's Delray neighborhood is expected to be closed for about 18 months while it is repaired.

The bridge was originally constructed in 1922, and was eligible for the National Register of Historic Places as a significant monument to early 20th century engineering. It is unclear whether that eligibility will be changed by any rebuilding or new construction caused by the accident.

The News Herald

 

Great Lakes water levels inching toward normal

9/4 - Lakes Superior, Michigan and Huron continued a months-long move toward normal water levels in August, according to the International Lake Superior Board of Control.

Lake Superior started its annual fall-winter drop, declining about a half-inch in August, the normal amount for the month. The big lake sits 3.2 inches below normal, but 7.9 inches above the Sept. 1 level last year.

Michigan and Huron dropped a half-inch in August, a month they usually drop 1.6 inches. The lakes are 6.3 inches above the Sept. 1 level last year and 17 inches below normal.

Duluth News Tribune

 

Coast Guard helicopter crews to end operations at seasonal air facilities in Michigan, Illinois

9/4 - Cleveland, Ohio – The Coast Guard's Great Lakes air stations closed their seasonal air facilities in Muskegon, Mich., and Waukegan, Ill., Tuesday following their annual assignment to support Coast Guard operations in southern Lake Michigan and the surrounding areas.

The air facilities operate during the traditional boating season, which runs from Memorial Day weekend to Labor Day weekend, to provide enhanced search and rescue services due to the high volume of summer boaters off Chicago, Milwaukee and other southern Lake Michigan areas.

Both air facilities opened this year on May 24, prior to Memorial Day.

Air Facility Muskegon, which falls under the command of Coast Guard Air Station Detroit, is located at Muskegon County Airport, while Air Facility Waukegan, falling under Coast Guard Air Station Traverse City, Mich., is located at Waukegan Regional Airport. Both air facilities are staffed by aircrews deployed from their parent air station and maintain two aircrews and one MH-65C Dolphin rescue helicopter to provide search and rescue services 24 hours a day during the summer.

Air Facility Waukegan responded to 19 search-and-rescue cases this summer, while Air Facility Muskegon responded to 14.

Both air stations operate under the direction of the 9th Coast Guard District, headquartered in Cleveland, to provide multi-mission capabilities in the Great Lakes region.

 

Port authority investing in infrastructure at Burns Harbor

9/4 - Portage, Ind. – Indiana's port authority has launched a few major construction projects at the Port of Indiana-Burns Harbor.

The Ports of Indiana Commission recently approved $1.7 million in spending on new rail and sewer infrastructure at the 600-acre port on the southern shore of Lake Michigan.

Burns Harbor-based Tranco Industrial Services Inc. was hired for $508,000 to reconstruct the main railroad line at the deep-water port in Portage. The project includes rehabilitating 2,500 feet of rail and replacing 1,000 crossties.

The reconstruction is aimed at updating the port's aging three-mile rail loop, which was built in 1980. The rail line circles the port, connecting the 500 or so ships and barges that dock there every year with the 30 port-based companies such as Feralloy and Leeco Steel. The loop hooks into the adjacent Norfolk Southern Rail Yard.

An estimated 13,000 railroad cars pass through the port every year.

Once the latest rail work is completed, about half of the line will have been rebuilt since 2010.

"It is important that we maintain the port infrastructure and keep it in top shape in order to provide maximum receipt and delivery flexibility for the businesses located here," port director Rick Heimann said.

The commission also hired Crown Point-based LGS Plumbing to do $1.2 million in sanitary sewer improvements at the port.

Workers will replace about 1,900 feet of sewer pipe that runs under the freight and commuter rail lines.

The rail line reconstruction is expected to take two months, and the sewer project will span three months once it gets started after Labor Day. An estimated 24 construction workers will be employed over the next few months on the various projects.

Maris and Son of Hobart also will replace the roofs of four buildings at the port, which handles more ocean-going cargo than any other Great Lakes port, as well as 15 percent of the U.S. steel trade with Europe.

The port is a major hub for steel processing, since it is home to 10 steel companies and near three steel mills.

Northwest Indiana Times

 

Artist to speak about 1913 storm at program in Harsens Island

9/4 - Harsens Island, Mich. – The Harsens Island St. Clair Flats Historical Society will present artist, author and historian Jim Clary, who will offer a program on The Great Lakes Storm of 1913, at 3 p.m., Saturday September 14 at the Lions Hall, 230 La Croix, Harsens Island.

The Great Storm was a blizzard with hurricane-force winds that devastated the Great Lakes basin in the Midwestern United States and the Canadian province of Ontario from November 7 through November 10, 1913. The storm was most powerful on November 9, battering and overturning ships on four of the five Great Lakes, particularly Lake Huron. Deceptive lulls in the storm and the slow pace of weather reports contributed to the storm's destructiveness.

 

Updates -  September 4

News Photo Gallery

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  September 4

On September 4,1889, the new steamer CHEROKEE (wooden propeller freighter, 209 foot, 1,002 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 completed by Carleton and Cole of Port Huron.

On September 4, 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.

1921: The former laker RANDOLPH S. WARNER was cut in two to leave the Great Lakes during World War One. It was rebuilt with the pilothouse amidships and sank on this date about 40 miles off the Bosporus after reportedly striking an unrecovered mine.

1926: HARSEN, loaded with a cargo of sand, capsized and sank in a storm 3 miles northeast of the Pelee Passage Light in Lake Erie. The wooden-hulled vessel was a total loss.

1961: IMPERIAL HAMILTON caught fire while loading ethyl gasoline at Sarnia and sustained considerable damage. Six on board were injured.

1963: The Egyptian freighter SALAH ELDIN, a former Victory ship, caught fire in the crew quarters in Hamilton but the blaze was extinguished before it reached the cargo hold. The vessel almost capsized due to the weight of water but it remained upright. Two crew were injured and the Chief Steward died. The ship was towed out by GRAEME STEWART and JAMES BATTLE on November 22, 1963, for Quebec City and sold as is, where it became d) MERCANTILE VICTORY after a refit at Houston, Texas. Another fire on April 23, 1964, this time in the engine room on the Red Sea shortly after re-entering service in March 1964, led to an eventual resale to Spanish shipbreakers. The vessel arrived at Castellon for dismantling on May 10, 1965.

1967: The tugs MICHAEL McALLISTER and AMERICA towed the retired passenger ship NORTH AMERICAN through the Welland Canal enroute to a new career as a training ship for the S.I.U. at Piney Point, MD.

1972: NORSE CORAL was new when it entered the Seaway in 1962 and returned as b) TOTEM STAR in 1963. The ship opened the Seaway season on April 8, 1964, and returned to our shores as c) SILVERBEACH in 1965. It sustained heavy damage off Victoria, BC while inbound from Hong Kong to Vancouver on this date due to a collision with the C.E. DANT. The two ships were locked together. They were towed to Victoria the next day and then separated September 6. The damage was repaired and the former lakes trader survived until scrapping at Xingang, China, in 1986.

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

 

Baie Comeau, last of new Trillium self-unloaders, enters Seaway

9/3 - Baie Comeau, the fourth and final new Trillium-class self-unloading vessel built in China for CSL, has entered the St. Lawrence Seaway system for the first time. Baie Comeau had an ETA for the St. Lambert Lock at approximately 9:10 p.m. Monday evening. The vessel's first stop will be in Windsor, Ontario, where she will unload ballast stone that was used to help assist in her transit across the oceans. While in Montreal, the ship also had additional fittings and supports removed before commencing Great Lakes/Seaway service. After unloading in Windsor, Baie Comeau is expected to load her first Great Lakes cargo, coal from the Midwest Energy Terminal in Superior, Wisconsin. From there the ship will then travel the length of the St. Lawrence Seaway and unload her cargo in Quebec City, Quebec.

Denny Dushane

 

Port Reports -  September 3

St. Marys River
Traffic on a grey and blustery Labor Day included the upbound Philip R. Clarke, Burns Harbor, American Century and, later in the day, American Century, Tim S. Dool, American Mariner, Undaunted/Pere Marquette 41 and Indiana Harbor. Algomarine was upbound in the lower river in the evening, but headed east to Bruce Mines. As night fell, the Clarke went to anchor for weather in the lee of Whitefish Point, with Edgar B. Speer on the hook south of Ile Parisienne waiting for more favorable water levels in the lower river. There was no downbound traffic for most of the day, however Arthur M. Anderson and Edwin H. Gott were downbound in the evening. As night fell, the Gott went to anchor in the Nine Mile anchorage until water levels in the Rock Cut improved.

Cedarville, Mich. - Denny Dushane
Joseph L. Block is expected to arrive on Wednesday during the early afternoon.

Port Inland, Mich. - Denny Dushane
Manitowoc was scheduled to arrive in the early evening on Labor Day to load. Wilfred Sykes is due early in the morning on Tuesday. Calumet is also due in on Tuesday in the early evening. Joseph L. Block wraps up the Port Inland dock lineup with a late evening arrival on Tuesday.

Calcite, Mich. - Denny Dushane
The tug Defiance and barge Ashtabula loaded and were expected to depart at 8 a.m. on Labor Day. H. Lee White was anchored outside of Calcite to load after the Ashtabula was finished. Buffalo and Great Republic are due Tuesday morning. Due on Wednesday are the tug Leonard M and barge Huron Spirit in the early morning to load at the North and South docks.

Stoneport, Mich. - Denny Dushane
Lewis J. Kuber was expected to arrive at Stoneport around suppertime on Labor Day to load. Joseph H. Thompson is due on Tuesday afternoon. Cason J. Callaway and the barge Pathfinder are due in to load Wednesday.

Saginaw River - Todd Shorkey
Recent traffic included:
8/23 - Olive L. Moore/Lewis J. Kuber - Essexville Wirt Sand and Stone dock & Saginaw Wirt Dock
8/24 - Manitowoc - Bay City Wirt Dock
8/25 - Olive L. Moore/Lewis J. Kuber - Bay Aggregates Dock.
8/26 - Calumet - GM Dock
8/26 - American Integrity - Consumers Energy Dock
8/27 - Olive L. Moore/Lewis J. Kuber - Bay Aggregates Dock
8/30 - Olive L. Moore/Lewis J. Kuber - Bay City Wirt Dock & Saginaw Wirt Dock
9/1 - Olive L. Moore/Lewis J. Kuber - Bay Aggregates Dock

For the month of August, there were 21 commercial vessel deliveries on the Saginaw River. This was up by six over the same period last year and on par with the five-year average of 21 passages for August. For the year to date, there have been 84 vessel passages. This is only one passage less than the same period last season. Compared to the five-year average it is two passages less. It appears shipping traffic has leveled out on the Saginaw River after the continual decreases year after year. While it is encouraging, the deliveries are still a far cry from what they were just 8 to 10 years ago.

 

Michigan woman sells lamps from 1920 yacht Delphine, owned by Dodge family

9/3 - Detroit, Mich. – A Waterford Township woman is about to part with two lanterns she says once adorned a yacht owned by auto baron Horace Dodge.

The lanterns from the S.S. Delphine are among thousands of items to be sold by Ellen Kelley at an auction Sept. 7 in Otter Lake, according to The Oakland Press. Kelley said her family acquired the lanterns through friends of the Dodge family, who lived in Grosse Pointe Farms.

“They were like an extension of my dear friends who knew the Dodge family,” Kelley, 68, told the newspaper. “They’re like a part of my history, not just a part of local history.”

The 258-foot Delphine was built for Dodge in 1920 and launched after his death in 1921. The Delphine burned and sank in 1926 near New York. It was acquired by the U.S. Navy in 1942, restored and converted into the flagship U.S.S. Dauntless, serving in the Pacific Fleet during World War II.

Auctioneer Tim Freese of Otter Lake said he plans to ask for $250 for each lantern. Kelley said she knows she has to let go of the lanterns and other family heirlooms she has collected over the years.

“I’m turning over a new leaf,” said Kelley, a retired teacher. “I feel like I can actually retire now that I’m letting that stuff go.”

The Delphine is still around and now harbored off the North Africa coast in Tunisia, the newspaper reported. It is listed for sale on yachtworld.com for $39 million.

Dodge had three yachts, said Joel Stone, senior curator at the Detroit Historical Society.

“But this was the largest and the largest private yacht in the world at the time it was built,” Stone said. “His son, Horace Junior, also raced boats and started his own boat-producing company.”

Detroit Free Press

 

Interior welding slows Grand Haven lighthouse project

9/3 - Grand Haven, Mich. – Although the unofficial end of summer is just a couple of days away, a project aimed at refurbishing Grand Haven’s lighthouses is far from over.

Preservation crews have been inside the inner lighthouse, working to complete structural repairs using special steel plates to support the structure, City Manager Pat McGinnis said. Forty of these have been placed around the inside perimeter of the inner light to fortify the seam and guarantee permanent structural stability, he said.

According to McGinnis, the plates have been welded around the inner seam of the lighthouse using a specialized welding method recommended by structural engineers, a civil engineer, the project manager and the contractor on the job.

McGinnis noted that the issues inside of the lighthouse were discovered when crews were sand blasting them. When the metal was blasted, the corrosion around the first seam was worse than expected, he said. Over the past three weeks, engineers, managers and contractors have been discussing alternatives to a solution that would allow for the final coating of the inside and outside of the structure.

Once the repair work is completed, preservation crews can begin to work on the next part of the project. A final coat of primer can be added, and then a fresh coat of red paint.

Grand Haven Lighthouse Conservancy’s Marci Cisneros noted that the painting is dependent on good weather. The hope is to have the process move along fast enough to get everything done before the winter, he said.

Grand Haven Tribune

 

Battle of Lake Erie 200 years later

9/3 - Put-In-Bay, Ohio - There were plenty of differences between the pivotal Battle of Lake Erie on Sept. 10, 1813, and its bicentennial re-enactment this afternoon.

About eight miles off Put-in-Bay, hundreds of costumed volunteers used diesel engines, radars, GPS and other modern tools to supplement the sails and compasses of 200 years ago.

They fired blanks instead of cannonballs. They wove their tall ships among Coast Guard ships, police boats, a ferry, a fireworks barge and an estimated 2,000 pleasure boaters. They sailed on Labor Day beneath planes, with power plants in sight on distant shores.

As of yore, though, participants hoisted sails, climbed tall rigs and felt the isolation of life at sea.

"I like the independence and self-reliance," said Marcia Flynn, who helped sail the Friends Good Will, a replica ship from the Michigan Maritime Museum. "You didn't have the modern conveniences. Your entire world was on deck or aloft in the rig."

Among the contemporary touches, the re-enactors included women. "Thank goodness things have changed a bit," said the Goodwill's captain, Adele Arlitt.

Two hundred years ago, despite heavy losses, some 557 Yankees led by Oliver Hazard Perry stunned the British navy in a pivotal battle of the War of 1812. The victory made two slogans famous. Perry flew a flag that said, "Don't give up the ship." Afterwards, he reported, "We have met the enemy, and he is ours."

The re-enactment climaxed a five-day bicentennial celebration staged by the Lake Erie Heritage Foundation. Thousands of visitors saw a re-enactment village and ships from as far as Norway with rigs up to 126 feet tall. They caught music by the Ohio State University marching band and other performers and took in Perry's Victory and International Peace Memorial.

Six ships restaged the battle and 11 others carried spectators. The ships left port at noon and were scheduled to fight shortly after. But it took them until nearly 2 p.m. to reach their positions in crowded waters.

Before the battle, the weather was breezy and murky, with moments of drizzle, and the waves were a foot or two high. But the battle brought bright sunshine and more wakes than waves.

At the height of the battle, a Perry impersonator rode a longboat from a disabled Yankee ship to a sound one to help secure the victory.

On shore, Michael and Rebecca Cooper of Wilmington, O., camped out for four days in 1813-style clothes in the re-enactment village.

Michael, who belongs to a historical group called the United States Regiment of Riflemen, said, "The War of 1812 really put the United States on the international map. It developed the national anthem and a national sense of identify. It wasn't just individual states any more. It was a unified nation."

Cleveland Plain Dealer

 

Hornblower vows appeal as judge upholds state's no-bid agreement with Maid of the Mist

9/3 - A state supreme court justice from Niagara County has dismissed a competitor's legal challenge aimed at reopening a contract currently held by the Maid of the Mist Corp. to operate boat tours at the base of the Falls.

In a decision issued Thursday, New York State Supreme Court Justice Catherine Nugent Panepinto ruled that state officials, including New York State Parks Commissioner Rose Harvey and New York Power Authority President and CEO Gil Quiniones, acted appropriately and within the law when they agreed to modify the terms of a 2002 agreement between the state and the Maid to cover plans for the conversion of the state-owned Schoellkopf Power Station site into storage facilities for the company's fleet.

Hornblower Cruises, a California-based firm that will begin offering boat tours of its own from the Canadian side next year, had challenged the legality of the process that led to the signing of the 2012 memorandum of understanding that altered the terms of the Maid's original tour operation deal with the New York state. The company's attorneys argued that state officials entered into the modified agreement without seeking competitive bids for service as required by law.

In her ruling, Panepinto noted that the court is compelled to "exercise a high degree of judicial deference to the involved state agencies" and that the court may also "recognize other reasonable interpretations of the work described in the amendment." Panepinto determined that it was "not irrational" for the New York State Comptroller's Office to conclude that the docking facility "does not alter the identity or main purpose of the original contract." Her ruling describes the state comptroller's conclusion that public bidding was not required prior to construction as "reasonable."

"This is just another confirmation that everything was done properly," said Maid attorney Brian Gwitt. "From the Maid of the Mist's standpoint, they believed they did everything properly and this is just confirmation."

Richard C. Jacobs, vice president and general counsel for San Francisco-based Hornblower, said his company is "deeply disappointed" with Panepinto's decision and plans to appeal.

"We don't think it reflects the requirements of New York state public bidding laws," Jacobs said. "We will undoubtedly be appealing this case."

Gwitt said Hornblower's attorneys have 30 days to file an appeal. For now, Gwitt said, Panepinto's decision clears the way for work to continue on the Maid's storage facility, which is currently under construction. If all goes as planned, Gwitt said the company will have its facility completed in time to allow for Maid of the Mist boats to be removed from the water and placed into storage before winter.

"Everything is expected to be in place before fall," Gwitt said.

Completion of the project would allow Maid of the Mist boats, which have been ferrying passengers along the lower Niagara River since 1846, to continue offering trips from the American side next year, and beyond. Hornblower has acquired exclusive rights to storage facilities located on the Canadian side of the river under an agreement with the Niagara Parks Commission. The company will launch its fleet next year.

At least one other legal challenge remains for Maid's endeavor on the American side. The Niagara Preservation Coalition, a local group that maintains state and federal agencies failed to protect the integrity of the historic Schoellkopf site during the storage facility's construction, has asked a federal judge to intervene on its behalf. The group filed its federal lawsuit after having several similar cases dismissed at the state level. The case is still pending.

A temporary restraining order that temporarily halted the construction project was lifted on procedural grounds in state supreme court in April. The coalition also filed a request for a preliminary injunction in June after members of the group took pictures of steel girders from the site being loaded into bins destined for the scrap yard. A panel of judges in the state supreme court’s appellate division denied that request.

Niagara Gazette

 

Updates -  September 3

News Photo Gallery
New Video on our YouTube Channel

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  September 3

September 3, 1919, the WILLIAM A. McGONAGLE loaded a record 15,160 tons of soft coal at Toledo, Ohio for delivery to Gary, Indiana. The record lasted less than 24 hours as the D. G. KERR, Captain Harry Harbottle, loaded 15,532 tons of coal at the same Toledo dock for delivery to Gary.

September 3, 1942, the 250-foot STEEL VENDOR, Captain G. L. Kane, sank at 3:45 a.m. on Lake Superior with a cargo of 3,000 tons of iron ore. The lone casualty was Oiler John N. Sicken. Twenty-two survivors were rescued by the CHARLES M. SCHWAB, Captain Alfred Drouillard, and 2 survivors were rescued by the WILLIAM G. CLYDE, Captain David M. LeRoy. Other boats standing by were the B. F. AFFLECK, ELBERT H. GARY, JOLIET, and EUGENE P. THOMAS.

September 3, 1957, the HARRIS N. SNYDER of the Boland & Cornelius fleet, Captain Elmer Murray and Chief Engineer Frank Mc Cabe, rescued 2 from the waters of Lake Michigan. Not only did the crew rescue Mr. and Mrs. Leslie Colby, but the crew used the unloading boom to recover their sailboat and place it on the deck of the SNYDER. The entire maneuver only required 55 minutes.

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. McCARTHY, 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. She was towed to Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, in 1987, where the superstructure was removed and the hull was sunk for use as a dock.

THOMAS W. LAMONT was laid up for the last time at Duluth’s Hallett dock #6A on September 3, 1981. She was scrapped at Aliaga, Turkey, in 1987.

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. She was scrapped at Thunder Bay, Ontario, in 1978.

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 September 3,1887, BULGARIA (wooden propeller, 280 foot, 1,888 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 MARQUETTE & BESSEMER NO 2 of 1905, (Hull#428), which foundered on Lake Erie, December 7, 1909.

On September 3, 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 Algonac, Michigan. She lasted until 1909, when she sank on Lake Huron.

1905: The GEORGE STEPHENSON was blown aground at Pointe Aux Pins, Lake Superior and struck by her consort barge JOHN A. ROEBLING. Both were released and returned to service.

1942: DONALD STEWART, a canal trader for Canada Steamship Lines, was torpedoed by U-517 and sunk while in a convoy on the Gulf of St. Lawrence while carrying barrels of aviation fuel and bulk cement for the air base at Goose Bay, Labrador. Three members of the engine room crew were lost.

1944: LIVINGSTON, a former Great Lakes canal ship, was torpedoed and sunk by U-541 in the Atlantic about 80 miles east of Cape Breton Island. Fourteen lives were lost but another 14 were spared and rescued.

1965: The tanker EASTERN SHELL sank the small wooden goelette MONT BLANC in a collision blamed on fog about 20 miles from Trois Rivieres. All crewmembers of the pulpwood carrier were rescued.

1970: KENNETH made a single trip to the Great Lakes in 1959. It caught fire in the engine room on this date off the coast of Israel while enroute from Alexandria, Egypt, to Tripoli, Libya, as h) CHRISTINA MARIA. The ship was abandoned by the crew, towed into Haifa, Israel, September 6 and sold to Israeli shipbreakers later in the year.

1998: ORKANGER, a chemical tanker that first came through the Seaway in 1977, began leaking while inbound at Rio Grande, Brazil, as e) BAHAMAS with 12,000 tons of sulphuric acid and sank in the harbor. The hull was eventually refloated but never repaired although it had subsequent renames and was reported as broken up in 2003 as h) ORIENT FLOWER.

Data from: Skip Gillham, Max Hanley, Joe Barr, David Swayze, Russ Plumb, Father Dowling Collection, James Neumiller, Jody L. Aho, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series.

 

Port Reports -  September 2

Alpena, Mich. - Ben & Chanda McClain
The Yorktown arrived in the Thunder Bay river around 11 a.m. on Saturday. Passengers were able to leave the vessel and do some sightseeing in the area. The Yorktown departed the river at 4 p.m. The tug Defiance and barge Ashtabula was at Lafarge on Sunday, unloading coal. The Alpena is expected to return on Monday.

Toronto, Ont. - Jens Juhl
The saltie Lyulin departed early Sunday morning. The English River departed and cleared the east gap at 6:15 p.m. that evening. An hour later the Federal Margaree arrived and tied up at terminal 52.

 

Lake Erie lockout ends on razor-thin union vote

9/2 - Hamilton, Ont. - U.S. Steel's third Canadian labour dispute is over. Workers at the company's Lake Erie plant in Nanticoke voted Friday by a thin margin to accept a third version of the company's final offer.

Workers voted 57 per cent in favour of a package they had rejected twice before by margins of 70 per cent.

In a note posted to its Internet site, leaders of Local 8782 of the United Steelworkers said 790 of the union's nearly 1,000 members voted.

"The Committee would like to thank USW Local 8782 members for their large turnout to all the information meetings and the votes," the note added. "Thank you for your support through these trying times."

In an email exchange, U.S. Steel Canada spokesman Trevor Harris welcomed the end of the dispute.

"Today, the employees of Lake Erie Works expressed their desire to put an end to this labour dispute and return to the business of making steel," he wrote. "We are pleased to be in a position to begin the recall of our workforce in the coming days. We anticipate that all employees will return to work in the next 30 days.

"While it is unfortunate that circumstances led both parties into this labour dispute, we are pleased that we are emerging with a fair contract that will help to make Lake Erie Works sustainable and competitive in both the Canadian and global marketplace for the next five years," he added. "At U.S. Steel Canada, we are looking forward to our future and working with our employees to deliver the high quality steel products our customers demand."

Work on scheduling the restart of the complex starts Saturday, union president Bill Ferguson said. The plant's blast furnace is expected to take three weeks to restart, but the coke ovens could take six to eight months to restart because the company currently has a surplus of coke on the ground at its Hamilton and Lake Erie facilities.

Workers whose departments are not restarting immediately will be assigned other duties.

U.S. Steel locked the gates of the Nanticoke plant in late April to its latest package of contract changes it said were vital to making the plant "competitive."

The latest package was negotiated in Pittsburgh recently in meetings arranged by the international headquarters of the United Steelworkers. The local union negotiating committee did not recommend accepting the deal and members interviewed after union information meetings on Wednesday were generally cool to it.

The package included the strong language protecting workers from having their jobs contracted out members had demanded; restored a signing bonus to $2,500 after an earlier cut to $2,000; dropped demands for increased co-payments for prescription drugs and adding a lump-sum payment of $500 for each year of a five-year term in lieu of a wage increase.

On the negative side, the package continued to demand changes to the cost-of-living allowance that would trigger payments only when inflation hits 3 per cent and capped vacation entitlements for current and future employees at five weeks. (Workers who already have more than five weeks' vacation keep that entitlement.)

Workers currently average around $65,000 a year or $31 an hour. Union members have been locked out since late April. U.S. Steel has said it needs changes in the labour agreement to make the plant "competitive."

Since taking over the former Stelco in 2007, U.S. Steel has twice before locked out Canadian workers Lake Erie from August 2009 to April 2010, and Hamilton from November 2010 to October 2011.

Hamilton Spectator

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  September 2

On 02 September 1902, the White Star Line’s TASHMOO (steel side-wheel excursion steamer, 308 foot, 1,344 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 sightseeing 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. She sailed most recently 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.

1905 The large wooden schooner PRETORIA, which cleared Superior with ore under tow of the VENEZUELA, hit a fierce storm and the steering gear failed. The vessel fell into the trough after the tow line snapped and the barge broke up off Outer Island. Five crew were rescued and another five were lost.

1905 IOSCO and the schooner OLIVE JEANETTE foundered off Huron Island, Lake Superior, with the loss of 19 lives on the former and another 7 on the latter. Both were downbound with iron ore and were last seen near Stannard Rock. Also, the SEVONA stranded on a reef in a Lake Superior storm and broke in two as a total loss. Seven drowned from the bow section when they tried to come ashore on hatch rafts. The wreck was dynamited in 1909 after the boilers had been salvaged.

1914 THOS. R. SCOTT became waterlogged and sank during a storm in the deepest part of Georgian Bay off the east coast of the Bruce Peninsula. The ship was swamped in a storm while carrying lumber from Cockburn Island to Owen Sound and all on board were saved. The hull was located using sidescan sonar in 1994.

1926 BURT BARNES, a wooden three-masted schooner, foundered in Lake Ontario while carrying 210 tons of coal from Sodus Point to Picton. The crew abandoned the ship in the yawl boat near Picton and were blown across the lake and came ashore safely 12 miles west of Rochester.

1972 The Cypriot freighter AEGIS WISDOM and the Italian vessel LIBRA collided in fog on the St. Lawrence near Les Escoumins. The former, which had been launched in March, was on her first trip outbound from the Seaway and was heavily damaged aft. The vessel was towed to Lauzon for repairs and survived until scrapping at Alang, India, as d) ANGELIKI II following arrival on January 14, 1997. LIBRA, dated from 1965 but did not come to the Great Lakes until 1975. It was scrapped in Mainland China as b) DEPY in 1986.

1975 CHICAGO TRIBUNE, enroute from Thunder Bay to Collingwood with grain, went aground in Georgian Bay and had to be lightered by the CHARLES W. JOHNSON, working with the tug ROD McLEAN. After being released and unloaded, the ship went to Port Weller Dry Docks for repairs.

Data from: Skip Gillham, 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.

 

Port Reports -  September 1

Sandusky, Ohio - Jim Spencer
Calumet was outbound Saturday night, having loaded at the NS coal dock.

Toronto, Ont. - Jens Juhl
Two cement carriers, the Stephen B. Roman and the English River, were in port Saturday. The saltie Lyulin was discharging a sugar cargo at the sugar stockpile at Terminal 52. The Apollon is unloading at the Redpath refinery.

 

USCG Rescues Stricken Crew Member from Freighter at Bayfield

9/1 - A 60-year-old crewmember who became ill aboard a freighter in Lake Superior was rescued by the U.S. Coast Guard on Saturday morning and taken to an Ashland hospital.

The man was not identified and his condition at Ashland Memorial Medical Center was not immediately known.

According to the Coast Guard, the man began showing symptoms of a stroke while aboard the Edwin H. Gott, a 1,000-foot laker, about 40 miles northwest of Bayfield.

The crew aboard the ship sent a distress signal to the Coast Guard, and reported the man's condition was deteriorating rapidly.

At Bayfield, Coast Guard officials sent a crew, with two emergency medical technicians aboard, on a 45-foot response vessel.

The vessel arrived at the Gott at 9:20 a.m. The Gott's crew used a crane to lower the man in a rescue basket to the deck of the Coast Guard vessel.

The Coast Guard vessel arrived back at Bayfield at 10:45 a.m., and the man was transferred by ambulance to the Ashland hospital.

Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel

 

Wind turbine truck delays SS Badger sailing

9/1 - The SS Badger was delayed after a semitruck carrying wind turbine parts had trouble exiting the carferry Saturday morning.

Passengers were held up disembarking from the overnight cross-lake trip to Ludington as the truck was against the exit stairway.

The truck, the first vehicle off, maneuvered back and forth until it was freed and able to exit, allowing the rest of the vehicles and passengers off.

The carferry crew was able to work quickly to get its next set of passengers on and get back on schedule this morning.

The SS Badger is still making two cross-lake trips per day through the holiday weekend, returning to one trip per day on Tuesday.

Ludington Daily News

 

Updates -  September 1

Saltie Gallery updated with pictures of the Federal Hudson, Federal Margaree, Federal Schelde, Harbour Feature, Jan S, Orsula, and YM Saturn.
 

 

Today in Great Lakes History -  September 1

September 1, 1880, the Cleveland Vessel Owners Association, later Lake Carriers’ Association, was created, with Alva Bradley as its first president.

September 1, 1892, the upbound WESTERN RESERVE, flagship of the Kinsman fleet, sank approximately 60 miles above Whitefish Point. There were 31 casualties among the crew and passengers. The lone survivor was Wheelsman Harry W. Stewart.

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, 1,045 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, 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, 1,178 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.

1916 DRONNING MAUD, a Norwegian freighter visited the Great Lakes on charter to Keystone Transports beginning in 1909. It hit a mine in the North Sea on this date and sank off the east coast of England, between Southwall and Lowestoft.

1929 EDWARD BUCKLEY caught fire and was destroyed in the North Channel of Georgian Bay. The blaze broke out aft while enroute to Little Current to load pulpwood. The hull burned to the waterline and sank near Narrow Island Lighthouse. Local fishermen rescued the crew.

1936 The Canadian canaller BENMAPLE of the Port Colborne & St. Lawrence Navigation Company, sank in the St. Lawrence at about 0400 hours, near Father Point, after being hit in fog by the inbound liner LAFAYETTE. A wheelsman was killed but all others on board were rescued.

1983 INDIANA HARBOR sets a record loading 67,896 tons of iron ore at Escanaba.

Data from: Skip Gillham, Max Hanley, Joe Barr, David Swayze, Russ Plumb, Father Dowling Collection, James Neumiller, Jody L. Aho, Ahoy & Farewell II and the Great Lakes Ships We Remember series.

 



News Archive - August 1996 to present


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