South East Alaska Shipwrecks ( P )

P G #6 (1917)     The scow P G #6 was lost at Ketchikan in November, 1917

                Mapping and Location : Southeast Alaska  55 20 30 N 131 38 45 W  Charts 17420, 17430

                Sources : 1. H W McCurdy Marine History of the Pacific Northwest (1966) Pg 294, 2. Shipwrecks of the Alaskan Shelf and Shore (1992)

 

P J ABLER (1915)     The 116 ton 97 foot gas screw P J Abler was destroyed by fire September 29, 1915 at Douglas Island near Juneau.  The blaze was ignited when a lighted candle was dropped into the bilge while the vessel was undergoing repairs.  Appraisers who examined the wreck several weeks after the disaster found the burned vessel on Douglas Island destroyed to the bilge and beyond repair.  Both the P J Abler and her cargo were total losses.  The 16 persons aboard survived the disaster.  The vessel was bound for the Kuskokwim River with Captain E B Hoffman at the helm.

                Mapping and Location : Southeast Alaska  58 15 30 N 134 16 30 W  Chart 17315

                Additional Information : Tonnage 116 Gross 78 Net, Length 97.2, Breadth 24.9, Depth 5.9, IHP 80, Built 1900 at Seattle, Registered Nome, ON 150860

                Sources : 1. The Alaska Journal Volume 16 (1986) Pgs 112-114, 2. H W McCurdy Marine History of the Pacific Northwest (1966) Pg 257, 3. Merchant Vessels of the United States (1915) Pg 294

 

PALMER S (1933)     The 8 ton wooden gas screw Palmer S stranded and was lost near Annette Island at 2:30 p.m. December 18, 1933.  The vessel departed Ketchikan that day bound for the Percy Islands with two aboard. George K Steel, owner and master of the Palmer S, made the following remarks in the casualty report:

                “Entrance Port Chester Annette Island S E Alaska”  “Snow and Heavy weather” “Strong wind, snow, heavy sea”  “Vessel going slow”  “Stranding”  “Ga. S. Cora, Phillip Nelson, Everett Hudson, saw wave from flash light and picked up crew from beach”  “Crew nearly frozen when picked up.  Heavy seas and storm caused vessel to break up”

                The Palmer S was a total loss.  She had a value of $2,000 and neither cargo nor insurance.  The crew survived.

                Mapping and Location : Southeast Alaska  55 09 N 131 36 W  Chart 17434

                Additional Information : Tonnage 8 Gross 5 Net, Built 1919, Registered Seattle, ON 217627

                Source : U S C G Report of Casualty December 28, 1933 at Ketchikan by George Steel

 

PANAMA (1925)     The 20 ton 50 foot gas screw fishing vessel Panama sank at 9 a.m. Wednesday February 25, 1925 in Clarence Strait. The vessel departed Santa Anna February 24th bound for Ketchikan with three crewmen on board.  There were 25 tons of fresh herring listed as cargo at the time of the disaster.  The following are excerpts from the casualty report:

                “Between Cape Camano & Guard Island, Clarence Straits, Alaska”  “East wind blowing strong.  Sea rough, dark and snowing”  “Old boat caused her seams to open”  “Seam opened and vessel sunk”  “When vessel sprung leak crew started to pump but vessel sunk in 3 minutes”  “Total Loss”

                The crew of the Panama made it to safety, but the vessel, valued at $2,500 and her cargo, valued at $250, were both lost.  There was $3,000 worth of insurance. 

                Mapping and Location : Southeast Alaska  55 30 N 131 58 W  Chart 17420

                Additional Information : Tonnage 29 Gross 20 Net, Length 50.1, Breadth 14.7, Depth 6.1, IHP 45, Built 1912 at Tacoma WA, Registered Juneau, ON 209592, Master Thomas Butler of Ketchikan, Owners C D Payne 3/5 A W Brindle 2/5

                Sources : 1. U S C G Report of Casualty March 10, 1925 by Thomas Butler at Ketchikan, 2. Merchant Vessels of the U S (1924) Pg 249

 

PEGGY (1925)     The 16 ton 44 foot fishing vessel Peggy was lost at Limestone Point at 10:00 p.m. August 15, 1925.  The vessel departed Craig that day with four crewmen aboard.  The Peggy had a cargo of fish when she foundered.  The conditions were listed as a SE wind and dark.  The crew survived, but the Peggy, valued at $4,000 was a total loss with no insurance.

                Mapping and Location : Southeast Alaska  55 56 50 N 133 36 50 W  Chart 17400

                Additional Information : Tonnage 16 Gross 13 Net, Length 42, Breadth 11.4, Depth 4.0, Built 1915 at Wrangell, Registered Juneau, ON 213999, Master John Louderman of Craig, Owner W F Reichwain

                Sources : 1. U S C G Report of Casualty December 9, 1926 at Juneau by Reichwain, 2. Merchant Vessels of the U S (1924) Pg 251, Merchant Vessels of the U S (1927) Pg 863

 

PETREL (1908)     The schooner Petrel was wrecked at Pybus Bay on Admiralty Island January of 1908.  The vessel was valued at $6,000 at the time of the loss.

            Mapping and Location : Southeast Alaska  57 16 N 134 05 W  Chart 17363

            Sources : 1. Marine Disasters of the Alaska Route (1916) Pg 33, 2. The H W McCurdy Marine History of the Pacific Northwest (1966) Pg 156

 

PHOENIX VII (1929)     The 28 ton 46 foot wooden gas screw Phoenix VII was lost off Annette Island at 6:00 p.m. Sunday March 10, 1929.  The following are particulars from the casualty report filed by Fred May, master and owner of the Phoenix VII:

                “Driest Point, Annette Island”  “Southerly wind, half gale and increasing; sea rough; dark”  “Engine broke down and wind and sea drove vessel against rocks”  “Tried to anchor; two anchors out but only one held letting vessel’s stern go against rocks”  “Ga. S. Ripple came to wreck but account of sea could not get close enough to be of benefit”  “Stranding”  “Total loss”

                The Phoenix VII was listed with a value of $4,000 with no cargo at the time of the disaster.  The crew made it to safety.  The vessel was insured for $2,500.

                Mapping and Location : Southeast Alaska  55 10 40 N 131 36 15 W  Chart 17434

                Additional Information : Tonnage 28 Gross 19 Net, Length 46.4, Breadth 13.9, Depth 5.7, Built 1914 Tacoma WA, Registered Ketchikan, ON 212007

                Sources : 1. U S Coast Guard Report of Casualty March 14, 1929 by Fred May, 2. Merchant Vessels of the United States (1928) Pgs 462-3

 

PIONEER #2 (1923)     The 21 ton wooden scow Pioneer #2 foundered off of Cape Hinchinbrook in a gale the evening of April 9, 1923.  She was being towed by the steamer North Star from Bellingham, Washington to Snug Harbor, Alaska.  No one was on board and there was no cargo.  The vessel broke loose and sank in the rough seas from a heavy gale.  The Pioneer #2 was valued at $1,200 and had $1,200 worth of insurance.

                Mapping and Location : Southeast Alaska  60 14 N 146 39 W  Chart 16700

                Additional Information : Tonnage 21, Built 1922, Registered Juneau and Seattle, ON 168590, Master S Pederson, Owner Pioneer Canneries

                Source : U S C G Report of Casualty December 5, 1923 at Seattle by President of Pioneer Canneries

 

POGOR (1924)     The 12 ton 28 foot wooden gas screw Pogor was destroyed by fire on the beach at Warren Island June 3, 1924.  The vessel had been put on the beach to effect repairs when the blaze of unknown origin consumed her.  The crew of two escaped without injury, but the Pogor, valued at $2,500 was a total loss.  There was no insurance

                Mapping and Location : Southeast Alaska  55 53 N 133 53 W  Chart 17400

                Additional Information : Tonnage 12 Gross 9 Net, Length 28, Breadth 10.5, Depth 5.5, Built 1915 at Anacortes WA, Registered Juneau, ON 214830

                Source : U S Coast Guard Report of Casualty at Juneau June 9, 1924

 

PORPOISE (1923)     The 8 ton 28 foot wooden gas screw Porpoise foundered two miles north of Wrangell at 10:00 p.m. Wednesday February 18, 1923.  The cause of the casualty is listed as “oil pipe stopped up” allowing the Porpoise to founder in a storm.  According to the casualty report, the vessels engine was salvaged and the hull dismantled and abandoned.  The Porpoise had a value of $500 and was a total loss.  The crew survived.

                Mapping and Location : Southeast Alaska  56 28 N 132 22 40 W  Chart 17360

                Additional Information : Tonnage 8 Gross 7 Net, Length 28, Breadth 8.8, Depth 3.5, Built 1910 at Juneau, Registered at Wrangell, ON 207459, Insurance unknown, Master O W Rillion of Wrangell, Owner W Sornberger of Wrangell

                Sources : 1. USCG Report of Casualty February 20, 1923 at Wrangell by O W Rillion, 2. Merchant Vessels of the United States (1922) Pg 310

 

PORT ADMIRAL (1898)     The 37 ton 60 foot wooden schooner Port Admiral stranded at Skagway at 9:00 p.m. Wednesday February 9, 1898.  The following are excerpts from the wreck report:

                “Skagnaway, Lynn Canal, Alaska…Stranding…snowstorm”  “Gale from southeast…blinding snowstorm”  “Let go anchors and chains parted”

                The Port Admiral was assisted by the steamer Alaskan and sustained $1,000 in damage.  Other records indicate the wreck was sold and towed away.  It is included in this compilation as evidence of the wreck may still be on site and of value.

                Mapping and Location : Southeast Alaska  59 27 30 N 135 18 45 W  Chart 17317

                Additional Information : Tonnage 38 Gross 36 Net, Length 60, Breadth 20.2, Depth 5.3, Built 1892 at Port Townsend WA, Registered Port Townsend, ON 150611, Master Harry Barlow of Seattle, Owner Arthur Barlow of Richardson, Last Port Ballard Jan 10, 1897, Destination Skagway, Crew 6, Cargo 60 tons lumber, Vessel Value $35,000, Cargo Value $1,000, Insurance none

                Sources : 1. U S Custom Wreck Report October 3, 1898 at Puget Sound by Harry Barlow, 2.  The H W McCurdy Marine History of the Pacific Northwest (1966) Pg 42

 

PREMIER (1935)     The 14 ton 38 foot oil screw fishing vessel Premier foundered in a storm near Coronation Island at 9:30 a.m. Tuesday October 22, 1935.  Lost in the disaster was Harold Morseth, master and owner of the Premier, and the only one aboard at the time.  The following are excerpts from the casualty report:

                “About ¾ mile from mouth of Egg Harbor, off Coronation Is., Gulf of Alaska’  “Foundering during storm on Oct. 22, 1935”  “Unable to weather storm and heavy seas”  “75 to 100 miles an hour; weather thick; sea choppy”  “Master attempted to reach harbor, but at mouth of harbor vessel was struck by heavy gale of wind and capsized and foundered.”  “Assistance impossible to render”  “Master was apparently attempting to get painter of his rowboat out of Premier’s propeller.  Was seen to be working over side of vessel with boat hook during height of storm.  Master’s body never recovered.  Vessel sank in between 20 and 30 fathoms of water.  An attempt was made to raise the vessel between Nov. 30 and Dec. 18, 1935, but during entire period condition of weather and seas was such as to make it impossible for diver to work on wreck.  The attempt to salvage her was therefore abandoned at that time.  No further attempts have been made since then to salvage vessel.”

                The Premier had a value of $3,500 and was travelling in ballast with no cargo.  There was no insurance.

                Mapping and Location : Southeast Alaska  55 55 30 N 134 19 15 W  Chart 17400

                Additional Information : Tonnage 14 Gross 10 Net, Length 37.8, Breadth 11.2, Depth 5.2, Built 1926 Seattle WA, Registered Ketchikan, ON 225612, Last Port Ketchikan, Destination Sea Fisheries

                Sources : 1. U S C G Report of Casualty January 17, 1936 by Administrator of Estate of Harold E Morseth, Walter B Guy, 2. Merchant Vessels of the United States (1935) Pgs 522-3

 

PRINCE JOHN (1917)     The steamer Prince John was lost at Wrangell Narrows in 1917.  The vessel was valued at $45,000 with cargo at the time of the disaster.

                Mapping and Location : Southeast Alaska  56 31 N 132 55 W  Chart 17375

                Source : Shipwrecks of the Alaskan Shelf and Shore (1992)

 

PRINCE OF WALES (1928)     The 98 ton 58 foot oil screw Prince of Wales stranded and foundered at 2:45 a.m. Saturday November 24, 1928 at St Philip Island.  The vessel departed Ketchikan November 23rd with six crewmen and one passenger on board.  She was carrying 15 tons of general merchandise and mail valued at $1,000.  The following are statements from the wreck report filed by owner Ethel J Neill:

                “40 mile SE wind, heavy sea, moonlight”  “St Phillips Island SE Alaska”  “Stranding and foundering”  “Helmsman allowed vessel to get off course”  “Vessel struck rock 2 hours before low water and remained fast until the rising tide floated her.  There was too much water in the vessel at this time to work the pumps or start the engine.  A temporary gib was put up and the vessel sailed across gulf to Heceta Island, where she was tied with a shore line and a stern anchor.  Two of the crew went to Heceta with the mail, Captain, and remainder of the crew went to Craig for assistance but when they returned the lines had broken and the vessel sunk in 40 fathoms of water”

                The Prince of Wales was valued at $15,000.  The loss to the vessel is listed at $2,000 and cargo as total loss.  There was no insurance on the vessel but $266.73 worth on the cargo.  This vessel is seen in subsequent years back in service.  It is included in this compilation because of the evidence of the wreck that may still be on site and of interest.

                Mapping and Location : Southeast Alaska  55 39 N 133 25 W  Chart 17400

                Additional Information : Tonnage 98 Gross 87 Net, Length 58.5, Breadth 17.6, Depth 8.3, Built 1914 at Winslow WA, Registered Ketchikan, ON 212279, Master Frank Sharp of Ketchikan, Owner Ethel J Neill of Ketchikan

                Sources : 1. U S C G Report of Casualty December 14, 1928 at Ketchikan by Ethel J Neill, 2. Merchant Vessels of the United States (1927) Pgs 454-5, 3. Merchant Vessels of the United States (1938) Pg 254

 

PRINCESS (1910)     The steamer Princess was wrecked at Wards Cove in 1910.  The vessel was valued at $5,000 with cargo.

                Mapping and Location : Southeast Alaska  55 24 30 N 131 43 30 W  Chart 17428

                Sources : 1. The H W McCurdy Marine History of the Pacific Northwest (1966) Pg 180, 2. Shipwrecks of the Alaskan Shelf and Shore (1992)

 

PRINCESS LENA (1930)     The 10 ton 30 foot gas screw Princess Lena stranded and was lost at 11:00 a.m. Monday September 29, 1920 near Douglas Island.  The vessel departed Juneau that day with one person aboard bound for the “Station at Marmion Id., SE Alaska”.  The following are excerpts from the casualty report filed by C A Hayes, agent for the owner:

                “Heavy S E gale; rough seas”  “1 mile So. of Horse Island, Mansfield Peninsula, abreast of Douglas Id., Alaska”  “Stranding”  “Heavy storm, SE gale”  “Nothing could be done.  Vessel broke away from mooring to a barge”  “The tug Fish rendered as much assistance as possible, but a scow broke away at same time and considered more valuable, the tug saved the scow”

                The Princess Lena, valued at $1,000 with no cargo, was a total loss.  There were no casualties.  There was also no insurance.

                Mapping and Location : Southeast Alaska  58 15 15 N 134 43 30 W  Chart 17300

                Additional Information : Tonnage 10 Gross 7 Net, Length 29.8, Breadth 10.4, Depth 3.5, Built 1916 at Juneau, Registered Juneau, ON 214049, Master and Owner Carl H Wiley of Juneau

                Sources : 1. U S C G Report of Casualty October 13, 1930 at Juneau by C A Hayes, agent for owner, 2. Merchant Vessels of the United States (1930) Pgs 472-3

 

PRINCESS SOPHIA (1918)     The 2,320 ton Canadian passenger steamer Princess Sophia stranded and was lost with all hands in Lynn Canal October 23, 1918.  Lost in the disaster were 269 passengers and 74 crewmen.  The vessel departed Skagway bound for Vancouver and ran up on Vanderbilt Reef north of Juneau in a blinding snowstorm.  The harsh weather prevented rescue attempts after the Princess Sophia struck the reef, and the vessel soon slipped off into the icy waters.  The loss of the Princess Sophia is the worst shipping disaster in Alaska Maritime History.

                Mapping and Location : Southeast Alaska  58 35 30 N 135 01 W  Chart 17300

                Sources : 1. The H W McCurdy Marine History of the Pacific Northwest (1966) Pg 299, 2. Shipwrecks of the Alaskan Shelf and Shore (1992)

 

PRINCETON (1939)     The 45 ton 60 foot wooden oil screw Princeton stranded and was lost in Lynn Canal at 8:20 p.m. Thursday October 12, 1939.  The vessel departed Haines that day bound for Sitka.  There were three passengers, three crewmen and a cargo of 4 tons of potatoes.  The following are excerpts from the casualty report:

                “Little Island, Lynn Canal”  “Blinding Storm”  “Moderate gale, rough sea, dark night, snow fall”  “Stranding”  “Steered about 5 degrees off usual course of 140 degrees when light was sighted I steered hard over to 175 degrees or more”  “Game Commission boat M S Bear rescued us Friday, October 13, 1939 3:00 PM”  “Total loss”

                The Princeton, valued at $25,000, and her cargo, valued at $1,600 were total losses.  The passengers and crewmen made it to safety. 

                Mapping and Location : Southeast Alaska  58 32 25 N 135 02 35 W  Chart 17316

                Additional Information : Tonnage 45 Gross 31 Net, Length 60.2, Breadth 14.9, Depth 7.5, Built 1925 at Seattle WA, Call Letters WOFT, Registered Juneau, ON 225145, Master J G Falconer, Owner Board of National Missions of Presbyterian Church US of New York, Insurance unknown

                Sources : 1. U S Coast Guard Report of Casualty October 17, 1939 by John G Falconer at Juneau, 2. Merchant Vessels of the U S (1939) Pg 252

 

2 Responses to South East Alaska Shipwrecks ( P )

  1. George F Shaw says:

    Under “Princess” should be:

    Princess Kathleen, 5873 ton, hit Lena point, about 20 miles NW of Juneau,9 sept 1952. Filled with water over stern, slid off & sank. No fatalities.

    Princess May, 1917 tons. Went up on Sentinal Island reef, about 30 miles NW of Juneau,

    • captaingood says:

      The Princess Kathleen disaster is detailed in the A to Z section of this website. The “Shipwreck by Area 1740-1940” only covers wrecks from before 1940. I will be adding the rest to that section in time. For now the A to Z section is the most complete. The Princess May grounding of 1910 is not included because the vessel was not lost. The 1,000 horsepower tug William Jolliffe was able to pull her off of the reef with a 16 inch hawser. When the hawser was measured after the successful salvage effort it was only 12 inches, testimony to the force required to complete the task. When the Princess Sophia ran up on Vanderbilt Reef nearby eight years later, she suffered a much worse outcome. The Princess Sophia sat perched for 40 hours holding hope of a similar outcome. Unfortunately she slipped off in contrary weather and sank taking all 269 passengers and 74 crewmembers with her. The only survivor was a small dog.

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