Welcome To

GLS Downward Bound's

HISTORICAL NOTES ON THE "ERIE L. HACKLEY"


      
  • Passengers on the Hackley were:
    Lawrence Barringer ~ Lost
    Edna Barringer ~ Lost
    George LeClair ~ Lost
    John Haltuc ?Spelling?
    F. Matheison
    Nels Nelson
    Martin Olson
    Milton Olson
    Henry Robertoy ~ Lost
    Freeman Thorp ~ Lost
    Edna Vincent ~ Lost
    Ethel Vincent ~ Lost

  • Crew Members on this voyage:
    Joseph L. Vorous, Captain ~ Lost
    Carl Pelkey, Cook ~ Lost
    Hugh Miller, Deck Hand ~ Lost
    F. C. Blakefield, Purser
    B. McSweeny, Fireman
    Milton Hanson, Fireman
    Orin Rowin, Engineer



The Erie L. Hackley was built in Muskegon. Michigan, in 1882. The ship was 79 feet long, 17 feet wide, and drew only a little over five feet of water. When the ship was 21 years old, it was purchased for $3,000.00 by Captain Joseph Vorous, Henry Robertoy, Orin Bowin, and Edgar Thorp in the spring of 1903.

The ship was put in service on a route from Sturgeon Bay across Green Bay to Menominee, then back across Green Bay to Egg Harbor and north to Fish Creek. From here it went up the Strawberry Channel past Eagle Bluff to Detroit Harbor on Washington Island, and then returned. The Hackley was soon nicknamed the "Egg Harbor Express." All but one of the crew was from Fish Creek. They were as follows:

Captain Joseph Vorous
Carl Pelkey
Frank Blakefield
Henry Robertoy
Blaine McSweeney
Orin Rowin
Hugh Miller
Freeman Thorp

The official name was the "Fish Creek Transportation Company."

The ship left Menominee for Egg Harbor at about 5:45 P.M. on, October 3, 1903. About 15 minutes out of Menominee the storm struck and they tried to head for the lee of Green Island for shelter. A few minutes later the Hackley went down and sank so quickly that no one managed to grab a life preserver. Eleven people perished, including the captain. Eight survivors clung to the wreckage throughout the night and were picked up late the next morning by the steamer "Sheboygan," captained by Asa Johnson.

The foregoing notes were taken from "Ships and Men of the Great Lakes," by Dwight Boyer. Information researched by: William C. Tong, Manager, Bayside Cemetery Association, Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin.


This page was contributed by Jack LaPeer, descendant of Capt. Joseph Vorous.
Please contact Jack for more info. on searching for ancestors from this area or
Jack's family pages, The Lapeer Family Homepage


Author: Jack Lapeer
Copyright © 1999 [J. Lapeer]. All rights reserved.