American Mariner
IMO 7812567

Tied up above Lock 7 on the Welland Canal, Sept. 4, 2016.
(Michel Gosselin)


American Mariner is a self-unloading bulk freighter built by Bay Shipbuilding Co., Sturgeon Bay, WI, for American Steamship Co., Buffalo, NY. Although initially to be named Chicago (3), she was launched Aug. 2, 1979 as the American Mariner. Her maiden voyage took place April 18, 1980 from Sturgeon Bay for Escanaba, MI, to load taconite pellets for Ashtabula, OH.

Driving a single controllable pitch propeller are twin 3,600 horsepower V-20 GM diesel engines giving her a rated service speed of 15 m.p.h. American Mariner is equipped with bow and stern thrusters. Her seven holds are fed through 24 hatches. She is capable of carrying 37,200 tons at her maximum mid-summer draft of 30 feet 11 inches. Her stern-mounted, self-unloading system feeds a 250-foot boom that can swing 105 degrees to port or starboard and can discharge at a rate of up to 6,000 tons per hour.

American Mariner was the ninth of 10 vessels built for American Steamship Co. under Title XI of the Merchant Marine Act of 1970. Under this program, U.S. shipping companies could modernize their fleets or build new vessels utilizing government guaranteed financing and tax- deferred benefits.

On April 28, 2000, the vessel lost steering and struck Light number 7 in the Lake Huron Cut. The Mariner was loaded with taconite for Ashtabula, OH. A survey of damage from the accident revealed a 30-foot by 10-foot tear in the forepeak and another 6-inch-wide tear on the starboard bow stretching nearly 25 feet. Flooding from this damage was so severe that the forward cargo hold and tunnels flooded. Temporary repairs were made to control the flooding and the crew lightened the vessel by offloading 3,100 tons of cargo from the number one hold into fleet mate Adam E. Cornelius. She was refloated and underway on Saturday the 29th. Because American Mariner was blocking the channel, the U. S. Coast Guard temporarily closed the area to commercial navigation. The river closure delayed more than 23 vessels.

American Mariner has frequently transited the Welland Canal, which many U.S.-flagged lake boats cannot accomplish due to the dimensional restrictions of the waterway (740 feet maximum overall length, 78 feet width, and 26 feet draft).


Written by George Wharton.



Ship Particulars
Length 730' 00" (222.51m)
Beam 78' 00" (23.77m)
Depth 45' 00" (13.72m)
Midsummer Draft 30' 02" (9.19m)
Unloading Boom Length 250' (76.2m)
Capacity 37,300 tons
Engine Power 7,200 bhp diesel
Previous Names
Chicago (3) under construction
American Mariner 1979 - Today

 


Chicago - under construction
(American Steamship Co.)

Launching into the water, Aug. 2, 1979.
(Roger LeLievre)

The name Chicago being applied to the bow, Winter 1980.
(Skip Meier collection)

     
American Mariner 1980 - Today
(American Steamship Co.)

Plowing through the ice.
(Peter Worden collection)

Entering Thunder Bay Harbor.
(Gene Onchulenko)

Outbound Muskegon, Jan. 4, 2000.
(Scott Golin)

Steering failure sent the Mariner into Light 7, April 28, 2000.
(USCG)

Another view.
(USCG)

Times Herald article about the grounding, April 29, 2000.
(Roger LeLievre collection)

The tug Manitou escorting the Mariner after being pulled free, April 29, 2000.
(Roger LeLievre)

At Toledo Shiprepair.
(unknown)

Close up of damage.
(unknown)

Repairs underway in the dry dock, May 6, 2000.
(unknown)

Close up.
(unknown)

Close up after repairs, June 3, 2000.
(Al Miller)

Coming into Ashtabula, Aug. 10, 2000.
(TZ)

Another view.
(TZ)

Winter lay-up at Bay Shipbuilding, Feb. 2001.
(Dick Lund)

Lay-up in Toledo with the Sam Laud, July 2001.
(Jim Hoffman)

Aerial view while in Toledo, July 14, 2001.
(Don Coles)

Another view.
(Don Coles)

On the Detroit River, Sept. 3, 2001.
(Mike Nicholls)

Stern view.
(Mike Nicholls)

Unloading coal at the Rouge River mouth, Dec. 2, 2001.
(Mike Nicholls)

Another view.
(Mike Nicholls)

G-Tugs helping out in Rouge River, May 7, 2002.
(Mike Nicholls)

Underway on the Detroit River, Oct. 6, 2002.
(Mike Nicholls)

Loading ore in Marquette, Oct. 26, 2002.
(Lee Rowe)

Stern view.
(Mike Nicholls)

Unloading coal at the Reiss Coal Dock in Ashland, Oct. 28, 2007.
(Chris Mazzella)

Closer view.
(Chris Mazzella)

View from on the hill by Highway 2.
(Chris Mazzella)

Finished loading at SMET in Superior, Aug. 17, 2009.
(Tom Caine)

Passing Conner's Point.
(Tom Caine)

Crossing Duluth Harbor with a storm rolling in.
(Tom Caine)

Unloading coal at the Shiras Power Plant in Marquette, Aug. 18, 2009.
(Lee Rowe)

Loading coal at the CSX Dock in Toledo, Sept. 6, 2009.
(Bob Vincent)

Stern view.
(Bob Vincent)

Approaching Lock 7 on the Welland Canal, Dec. 25, 2009.
(Bill Bird)

Sliding into the lock.
(Bill Bird)

Passing the Arthur M. Anderson in the St. Marys River, March 28, 2010.
(Roger LeLievre)

Approaching the Muskegon Lighthouse, April 23, 2010.
(Herm Phillips)

Through the piers.
(Herm Phillips)

Stern view in the entrance channel.
(Herm Phillips)

Unloading at the General Mills Frontier Elevator in Bufflalo, June 7, 2010.
(Brian Wroblewski)

Backing away from the City Ship Canal, coming under the Buffalo Skyway Bridge, and is heading into the Watson Basin.
(Brian Wroblewski)

J. W. Westcott finished with a delivery and heading back to their dock, Oct. 14, 2010.
(Roger LeLievre)

Upbound in Port Huron, Aug. 30, 2012.
(Kevin Majewski)

Passing under the Blue Water Bridge.
(Kevin Majewski)

Tied up for the winter along side the Arthur M. Anderson, Feb. 8, 2014.
(Daniel Lindner)

A closer view.
(Daniel Lindner)

Upbound under the Ambassador Bridge, May 22, 2016.
(Neil Schultheiss)

Tied up above Lock 7 on the Welland Canal, Sept. 4, 2016.
(Michel Gosselin)

Stern view.
(Michel Gosselin)

Taking the lock after the Federal Hunter.
(Michel Gosselin)

     

 


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