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The schooner Orion (1853)


Port of Picton Registry, Number 5 of 1853

Name: ORIONType: schooner
Official Number:
Tons (gross): 168.94 Tons (net): 168.94
Where Built: Mill PointPort of Registry / Hail: St. Picton, no. 5 of 1853
Build Year: 1853Value:
Builder’s Name & Date of Certification: David Tate, 1st Sept. 1853
Master’s Name: Lotswick StantonSubscribing Owners: Arthur Yeomans, farmer
Length: 102 feetBreadth: 22 feet
Depth of Hold: 9 feetMasts: 2
Stern: squareBowsprit: [square, sic]
How Built: carvel, frame wood and ironHow Rigged: schooner
Figure-head: none Decks: 1



See also the entry for the schooner Orion in our ships Database.

Notes and newspaper transcriptions

  1. Subscribing owners: Arthur Yeomans, a farmer of Athol sole owner sold to Wm. Ford & Thos. Maxwell, joint owners from Kingston dated Oct. 25th.1855 who sold to Edward Zealand Mariner of Toronto dated: April 4th. 1858
  2. Toronto Globe, March 6, 1855 : GREAT SALE -- STEAMERS, -- SCHOONERS, -- BARGES. The subscriber will sell at Public Auction, in the City of Kingston on Thursday I2th. of April next (at noon, if not previously disposed of by private sale, the whole of their stock of Steamers, Schooners, Barges, viz.-) ... Schooner "ORION " built in I853; capacity 2,500 barrels of Flour, is one of the fastest sailers on the Lakes, and is fore-and-aft rigged -- well found. Terms of sale -- liberal. Apply to Thomas Maxwell & Co. or to R. Jackson, Auctioneer.
  3. Buffalo Commercial Advertiser, Jan. 15, 1859 (1858 Casualty List) : ORION Schooner, struck by lightning off Racine, which split her mainmast. Property loss $200.
  4. Oswego Daily Palladium, Saturday August 31, 1872 : The many that give the thought to those that go down to the sea in ships, have had their misgivings to-day of the loss of life and property, by the sudden, unwarned gale of yesterday and last night. As one of the results of the hurricane, for it can be called little less, is the loss of the schooner ORION of Hamilton. From a conversation with Captain Daniel Pease, of the lost vessel, we gather the following particulars:
    The ORION had a cargo of free stone from Cleveland, Ohio for Brockville, Ontario and was running down this lake with a free wind over the port quarter under foresail , main sail fore stay-sail and jib, the mizzen sail ( she being a three masted fore and after), gaff topsails and other jibs furled. The night was what seamen term a dirty one, and the captain had been on deck during the whole night, and as morning broke gray in the east, was congratulating himself upon passing safely through, and the near approach of his destination.
    At six o¹clock yesterday morning, Capt. Pease went into the cabin, roused the cook and while lighting his pipe at the fire stared in the stove the vessel gave a lurch to the starboard and as she did not righten the captain stepped out of the cabin aft to the man at the wheel and asked him if the vessel was on her course and upon being told that she was, at once concluded something was wrong, and ran forward and called the men from the forecastle. When the men came on deck the pumps were tried, and water was found in plenty. The captain descended into the forecastle and found that the water had reached the floor, and was rising rapidly. He saw that all hope of saving the vessel was gone, returned to the deck and gave orders to luff the vessel up into the wind and to lower the yawl. The latter order was obeyed not a minute too soon, as the crew had only time to get into the boat and cut the stern davit tackle, while the captain unrove the bow tackle, and the Orion with another lurch, made a plunge and went down head first. The pressure was so great when she went down that it burst the decks and hatches with a report as loud as a gun and sent splinters and pieces of wood flying in all direction.
    At the time she went down she was ten miles this side of Long Point, on Lake Ontario, and about seven miles from land. The depth of water is impossible for the captain to state, suffice it to say that the trucks were not even in sight when she struck bottom. Now came the tug of war for the crew: afloat in an open boat, no sail, but two oars, with the waves rolling mountains high and white caps constantly breaking over its sides to run before the wind was there only safety. Once a sail was sighted, and with a signal of distress flying they made an effort to attract the attention of the passing vessel, but without avail. Bailing and rowing by turns the crew passed the time as best they might, still running down the lake, until Nine Miles Point, below this city, was sighted and shortly after a safe landing was effected in the bay just below the point at half past one yesterday afternoon.
    After the crew - eight men in all - were safely landed and the boat pulled up high and dry, and getting something to eat, they started for New Haven station, where they took the Rome train to this city. The crew saved nothing except the clothes they wore, and the captain losing even his books and money. The Orion was owned by Captain Edward Zealand, of Hamilton, was of considerable age, although she was rebuilt some four or five years ago. The Captain does not know whether there was any insurance, but thinks there was.
  5. References to the schooner Orion appear in C.H.J Snider's work:

References and source notes

(1) Various ship registers
(2-4) Maritime historyof the Great Lakes
(5) C.H.J. Snider Schooner Days index, Naval Marine Archive.

Quinte built ships

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Source notes are listed at the end of the data.


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