Freeman's Journal and Daily Commercial Advertiser, September 17, 1897

The supposed loss of the Lord Dufferin

Liverpool Thursday

A Board of Trade inquiry into the supposed loss of the Lord Dufferin was opened today at Liverpool. The vessel, which was new, was built at Belfast for Liverpool owners. She sailed from Barry Docks in June 1896 bound for Monte Video with coal. She there discharged and left in ballast on Oct 7th for New York to load a cargo for Sydney. She has not been heard of since. The evidence adduced showed her to have been a well built equipped ship. No light was thrown upon her fate.

Liverpool Mercury Sept 18th 1897

The Board of Trade inquiry regarding the supposed loss of the Liverpool four masted ship Lord Dufferin was concluded yesterday afternoon at the Dale St, Police-buildings, before Mr STEWART, stipendiary magistrate, with Captains ERSKINE and EDWARDS as nautical assessors. The vessel left Monte Video for New York in ballast on the 7th October and has not since been heard of. The judgement of the court was to the effect that they found that when the vessel last left the United Kingdom she was in good and seaworthy condition in regard to the hull and equipment, and the same when she left Monte Video for New York. With regard to the manning the crew consisted of the following :- Master, three mates, carpenter, steward, assistant cook, 14 able seamen, two ordinary seamen, and four apprentices who were on their first voyage.

The sand ballast [1240 tons] put on board the vessel at Monte Video was in the opinion of the court sufficient. From the evidence before the court it was impossible to arrive at any conclusion as to the cause of the loss of the vessel. Her cost was £18,405, her hull was insured for £18,000, and the freight she would have taken on board had she arrived at New York was £3250, which was insured for £1500. There was not sufficient evidence to enable the court to assign the cause of the loss of the vessel.

Wreck of a Liverpool ship

The fine steel barque Helenslea belonging to Liverpool is reported a total wreck, but all of the crew have been saved. The Helenslea belonged to Messer CHADWICK, WAINWRIGHT and Co of this city, and on the 1st July left the Clyde with a valuable cargo of general goods for Fremantle, Western Australia.

Yesterday the owners received a cable to say the vessel had been wrecked at Inaccessible Island. The cable was received at Capetown and stated all of the crew had been saved and landed there. Another cablegram received in Liverpool said the crew had been saved by the Dumfriesshire, this is another Liverpool vessel belonging to Messers GOFFEY. It is assumed the men reached the island after the vessel had been wrecked, and were subsequently taken off by the other Liverpool barque. Inaccessible Island is one of three forming the Tristan d' Acunha group, which lie in the track of vessels bound for Australia. The Helenslea was under the command of Captain DAVIES, who belongs to Bangor, North Wales. She was built at Dundee in 1882, and was classed 100 A 1 at Lloyd's. Both vessel and cargo were reported as a total loss. The disaster happened on the 24th of August.

The cable steamer Silvertown from London bound to the North Atlantic, put into Queenstown yesterday morning with her machinery disabled. When it is repaired she will resume her voyage.



Liverpool Mercury, Jan 7th 1899

Fatal boating accident at Malta.

News was received at Heywood, Lancashire of a boating disaster in Valetta Harbour, Malta, with the loss of 3 lives.

Letter to Mr Joseph CHADWICK of Heywood

“Florian Barracks, Malta, Dec 15th 1898.

Sir I regret to inform you that your son, Private CHADWICK is missing from a boat, which capsized off St Almo Point, in Valetta Harbour on Tuesday last, December 13th. There were eight men in the boat, five were saved, three are missing, so far none of the bodies have been found.

Colin MC NAB, Lieut Adjudant, 1st Border Regt.

Fatal explosion on a Warship

At Haslar Hospital, Plymouth, Wednesday

The coroner concluded his inquiry on the death of George BRIMSCOMBE, one of two stokers injured by the explosion on HMS ANDROMEDA, Dec 15th, Mallen. The other injured man said he and the deceased were working in the lower coal-bunker, when they heard what they thought were instructions to go into the bunker above them. They climbed up, BRIMSCOMBE, with a naked light, and an explosion occurred – accidental death.

A telegram received in Liverpool, dated St Thomas, Tuesday, announcing the steamship IDA, owned in Spain and managed by Messers Bahr Behrend and Co, was totally lost at Anegada on December 31st. The crew of 13 were saved and landed at St Thomas. The IDA was on a passage from Liverpool to Porto Rico, via Spain, and left here on the 10th December.

On Thursday morning off the Nore, the schooner HENRICH bound from Thames Haven to Newcastle-on-Tyne, carrying a cargo of napthia and gasolene was blown up by an undetermined cause, supposed to be the cargo by the expansion of fumes. The crew managed to escape, but one man broke his leg. The vessel owned by Mr Thomas BURTON of Faversham was not insured and was blazing when the crew left. The crew, were landed at Sheerness and the injured man was taken to hospital in Chatham.

Captain ALKENHEAD of the Liverpool steamer POWNEE, owned by Messers Phelp Bros, on arrival at New York, landed 10 people from the British schooner DEER HILL, which was abandoned in mid-ocean. The crew, were 8 and there were two women on board. On the 8th December the DEER HILL was sighted in distress, Capt BURNS of the DEER HILL signalled he wished to abandon ship. The PAWNEE stood by till the 12th of December owing to the heavy seas and bad weather, they were unable to send a boat out till that time.

The steamer NORANMORE, 3677 tons, commanded by Capt JEPSON of the Johnstone Line, Liverpool, has arrived in Cork harbour with steering damaged. She is brand new and was on her maiden voyage, built by Messers Doxford and Co, Sunderland, which port she left in ballast on the 16th ult for Norfolk, Virginia. Though owned in Liverpool she is under the Belgian flag.

The account of the wreck of the GLENAVON given by survivors:-

Frank LOWE, one of the passengers says, when the vessel struck Capt PITHIE and Chief Officer DIXON were on the bridge and Quartermaster SMITH was at the wheel. I was walking about the deck when I heard the order “Full speed astern” given which was executed immediately. The Capt sent below to ascertain the damage, and thinking he could get her back to Hong Kong, found it no use attempting this when hearing that the forehold was rapidly filling from four holes. He turned the vessel towards land with the intention of beaching her but she went down head, first.

Four boats were launched and the European passengers with Miss CROKER, the Stewardess, were placed in the 1st boat, in charge of 2nd officer STRAITON, the other Europeans being, 3rd engineer PHELPS, 4th officer MORTON, Carpenter MILD, Chief steward WILSON, Dr WALLACE, Quartermaster BLACK, SALMON and EVANS and Storekeeper SWEETMAN. When cruising about we met Mr AINSLEY and a 3rd boat half filled with water. He asked for a baler, but we could not supply him.

2nd officer BOYD, said when the last boat was lowered there remained on the vessel, myself, Capt PITHIE, Chief officer DIXON, Quartermaster SMITH, 2nd steward WILSON, all wearing lifebelts. We jumped overboard, WILSON and the Chief Officer swam for the boats, but I and the Quartermaster SMITH and the Captain, made for land, 2miles away. After a terrible struggle we reached there, but SMITH died of exhaustion soon afterwards.

We found ourselves on Ling Ting Island, where we met 4th engineer DOUGAL with William CLARKE and a dozen Chinese, who were in the last boat and made for land. A junk took us to Cheung Chau Customs Station, from where we were brought to Hong Kong.

Liverpool Mercury, Saturday 14th Jan 1899

Perilous trip on a Donaldson Liner

The Donaldson Liner ORTHIA, which broke her propeller shaft in mid-Atlantic, was towed back to the Clyde on Tuesday and berthed in the Graving Dock for repairs having been towed from the Island of Mull by three tugs.

Capt COLE interviewed

“As we left Glasgow for Boston on Christmas Eve all went well for a few days till our shaft broke. Very strong weather was experienced at the time, but we were in the track of ocean-going vessels and kept our minds easy.

We were about 180miles from the nearest coast and rigged every available sail, which proved of little service, as we drifted eastwards and were perilously near the Skerryvore shore. We drifted for 10days till we got within 30miles of Tobermory, where we cast out two great anchors, between the Islands of Mull and Coll.

The weather was very rough but despite that I called for volunteers and six brave men came forward, two English, two Irish and two Scotsmen a good combination. 30miles was the distance they had to transverse before reaching Tobermory, where we could telegraph for assistance. They reached their destination at midnight on Thursday and two tugs were sent out and took us out of our dilemma. That is all I have to say.”

The crew showed that time occupied in drifting was not devoid of excitement, the courage and coolness displayed by the Captain inspired the crew and it was impossible to speak too highly, of the bravery of the crew who volunteered their services to get help.

The Captain did not leave his post and never removed his clothes for 12days.

A curious fact was that while beacons and rockets were fired, no notice was taken of them by the various lighthouse-keepers, who must have seen them.


The steamer JENNY OTTO of North Sheilds, from Palamos for Burntisland with a cargo of cork shavings, stranded near Craster early on Wednesday, she will probably be a total wreck, 21 crew landed with apparatus.


Italian steamer VITTORIA bound from Genoa for Buenos Ayres with a cargo of general goods, arrived with cargo on fire, preparations being made for scuttling the vessel, the passengers of 400 are being landed.

Telegram later

VITTORIA a total loss, passengers and crew saved and landed here, all cargo lost.

The VITTORIA is a steel screw steamer of 4290 tons, owned by La Veloce Navigazione Italiana Genoa.

Gibraltar Monday

The British steamer LOCH ETIVE arrived today with 4 men of the foundered steamer WOOLER.

Messers STEEL YOUNG and Co received confirmation of the loss of the WOOLER off Portugal. They are in hope that the rest of the crew of 19 will be found. The WOOLER was bound from Barry for Las Palmas with a cargo of coal. The crew mainly foreigners were shipped at Bremen.

Names of those rescued.

Boatswain and 3 seamen, [Marin TIMLYANONE, Carl KENNING, Souelo CHERMAN] landed here, steward washed overboard and drowned. Remainder of the crew washed off the steamer and drowned.

Official list of those on board including the 4 survivors mentioned.

Capt COLE, of London, Chief mate Frederick STORM of West Hartlepool, 2nd mate Edwin BUTCHER of Plymouth, Chief engineer FAIRWEATHER of London, 2nd engineer A. BLACK of West Hartlepool, 3rd engineer L. DOWST of London, Carpenter C. FOSTER, Steward Ernest SAMPSON, Cook A. PETERSEN, engineers steward A. MC KELLOR, AB’s H. PETERS, P. TITZKE, and R. OTHIME, Donkeyman H. SCHLICK, Firemen, C. RANDSON, E. NOETHER, C. WEHNERT, W. GOLTZA, August TROSKEN

Survivors story

The WOOLER encountered fearful weather off Ashanti. The sea broke completely over the vessel and large quantities of water entered the hold, rendering the steamer waterlogged and prevented her steering. At last on the 2nd day of the storm a huge wave came over and swamped her, causing her to sink immediately, and leaving the crew struggling in the water.

5 of them including the narrator managed to lay hold of the only remaining, boat, that even capsized, for a time they could hear the cries of help from their drowning comrades. One of the five died from exposure. For 2days no help came, then the LOCH ETIVE, sighted and rescued them. 19 of those on board drowned.

Steamers sheltering in Queenstown

A most terrific storm from the south-east burst over Queenstown on Sunday morning, and raged with unabated fury. The old inhabitants and masters of the battered steamers taking refuge there, stated it was the worst they had ever experienced.

3 steamers sought shelter on Saturday in a crippled condition. The DART, which had been off the coast with a damaged propeller was towed into harbour by the steamer POCKLINGTON of Hartlepool, which fell in with her on the 3rd inst, 350miles west of Fastnet. The POCKLINGTON is 885 tons and was bound from Demerara with rum and sugar for Liverpool. She carried away her bits and damaged her boats while passing hawsers.

The DART is a new vessel on her 2nd voyage, 2057tons, bound from Philadelphia with oats and maize for London.

On the 29th ult in, 49.30 north, long 18.15 west, a terrific gale burst over her. Huge seas leaped aboard and smashed all of her boats and she was completely disabled by the loss of her propeller.

On the same day the NEWBY of Hartlepool, from Philadelphia, bore down on her, the storm too great to do anything she stood by till the next morning and took her in tow for an hour, the hawser parted then the NEWBY left her. The DART afterwards drifted about helplessly and encountered terrific weather.

A German steamer the PARTHIA from New Orleans bound for Hamburg, fell in with her and took her in tow, within 10mins the hawser parted and she left her.

The POCKLINGTON stood by all night and in the morning of the 4th towing was resumed, on the 6th the hawsers again parted, and with much trouble were renewed, then off Daunt’s rock they again parted for the 3rd time and were renewed, the steamer was then safely towed into port.

Liverpool Mercury, 21st Jan 1899


Heligoland telegraph, The British ship FAIR WINDS from Iquique for Hamburg is stranded here, crew saved.

Halifax Nova Scotia, the fire in the cargo of the steamer WERNETH HALL of Liverpool is still burning this morning, accordingly the hold was flooded, 3,000 bushels of grain destroyed.

Messers ANDREWS WEIR and Co of Glasgow reported that the sailing ship LAUREL BANK sailed from Shanghai on 31st Aug for Portland and has not been heard of. Capt LINDSAY, Chief mate BAIRD and the carpenter and apprentice belong to Scotland, the 2nd mate HART, belongs to London. The crew shipped at New York

New York Thursday, the steamer MENOMINEE from London has arrived with the Captain and 20 crew of the steamer GLENDOWER abandoned during the voyage from Philadelphia to Sligo. She encountered terrible weather on the 7th, an enormous sea washed off everything and filled her with water. MENOMINEE rescued the crew in the 12th inst.

The British steamer HEATHFIELD of London from New York with wheat, arrived at Queenstown on Tuesday morning and reported a serious fire occurred on board. 36 hrs after leaving New York a large fire was discovered in the forecastle. A fireman named Henry MURRAY was burnt to death. After much difficulty the fire was extinguished.

Lloyds agent at Gravesend reports that the Norwegian steamer BREIDABLIK from Valencia and the large barge ALICE MARY of Rochester from Margate Light, collided on Tuesday afternoon above the Nore Light. Latter vessel foundered, crew saved. Former vessel was uninjured.

Lloyds agent at Cuxhaven reports the four masted ship FALLS OF FOYERS, Jumin, for Hamburg, an iron ship of 2009 tons reg, owned at Glasgow, stranded on rocks at Heligoland and was sunk in deep water and totally lost. The whole crew were saved and landed at Cuxhaven.

Salvage for an Anchor Liner

The ETHIOPIA which left Greenock on Friday, Moville on Saturday, put back to Moville on Monday with the steamer TAMPICO in tow, her tail and shaft broken and completely disabled.

The TAMPICO a large steamer of 1916 tons, left Rotterdam on the 29th ult bound for Baltimore, via Sunderland.

The valuable salvage was almost secured by the Liverpool steamer BEACON LIGHT, of the Anglo American Oil Co, Oldhall St, Liverpool. She passed Dunnet Head on Sunday morning and was proceeding slowly, two engines, intermediate eccentric gear broken. She had the TAMPICO in tow for 26hrs but the tow line broke on January 19th and she lost sight of the TAMPICO.

The salvage of the ETHOPIA will mean a substantial prize for the Anchor Line, Captain and crew as the TAMPICO is a valuable steamer and comparatively new. Built in 1895 by Messers John LAING of Sunderland for the Neptune Steam Navigation Co of Sunderland. Messers W and T. W. BIRKNEY being the registered managers.

Collision off Lowestoft

The smack UNA of Lowestoft entered the harbour on Sunday morning towing the Lowestoft trawler ORPHAN GIRL badly damaged, the crew of 4 were missing.

The skipper spotted the trawler on the fishing grounds, 40 miles S.E off Lowestoft, her mizen mast and bowsprit gone, bows stove in, port quarter smashed and rigging carried away. The small boat was on deck containing the men’s oily frocks.

Telegram Tuesday from Lowestoft states 4 hands of the crew of the ORPHAN GIRL landed at Hamburg, all well, HIRAM collided with the ORPHAN GIRL on the 12th, crew climbed on board and were taken to Hamburg.


Western Mail [Cardiff], Feb 13th 1899

Trying voyage from Penarth

Our Baltimore correspondent writing on January 31st says :- Like a great spectre ship the Lord Dufferin of the Lord Line of Dublin and Belfast, seventeen days from Penarth, steamed slowly into harbour yesterday and berthed at Pier 4, Canton. Shipmen and longshoremen stared at the vessel, and failed to recognise her under the heavy mantling of snow and ice which covered her decks, upper works and cordage. The Lord Dufferin was first into port with news of the tremendous snowstorm which swept over the lower bay on Saturday night and her captain gave an account of very trying experiences.


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