Historical Collections of the Great Lakes
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Checklist of HCGL Manuscript Collections
GLMS-1 Chicago Shipbuilding Company
The records of the Chicago Shipbuilding Co. span the years from 1890 to 1962 and document early twentieth-century shipbuilding on the Great Lakes. The bulk of the materials in the collection fall between 1900 and 1950. The most significant record series include dry dock ledgers and reports, legal and labor correspondence, South Yard surveys, financial records, and World War I shipbuilding activities. 13.0 c.f.
GLMS-2 Toledo/Lucas County Port Authority
The records in this collection document the activities of the Toledo/Lucas County Port Authority from 1935 to 1983. The collection includes: minutes, monthly reports, annual reports, correspondence, shipping statistics, engineering reports, financial records, and newsletters. The collection provides excellent sources for the study of the operations of a major port authority and the importance of the St. Lawrence Seaway to the economy of an inland port. 14.0 c. ft.
GLMS-3 Dunbar and Sullivan Dredging Company
This collection includes the records of the Dunbar and Sullivan Dredging Co. of Cleveland and its predecessors: Whitney Brothers; Merritt, Chapman, and Whitney; and Merritt, Chapman, and Scott. The materials in the collection span the years 1902-1964 and document dock, dam, and bulkhead construction around the Great Lakes and along the Mississippi River. Types of materials include: correspondence, contracts, blueprints, specifications, and an extensive series of photographs. The photographs are especially valuable since they depict major private and public port construction projects throughout the Great Lakes, Canada, New York, Boston, and the Mississippi River system. 11.5 c.f.
GLMS-4 Erik Heyl Papers
Buffalo, New York
Marine historian Erik Heyl's papers consist of his research notes, correspondence, and illustrations used to produce his most significant work, the six volume EARLY AMERICAN STEAMERS series published between 1953 and 1969. The materials in the collection provide excellent documentation of the steamship era in American maritime history. Of special interest are Heyl's research notes and illustrations of U.S. and foreign naval vessels of the period. 8.0 c.f.
GLMS-5 Great Lakes Towing Company
Buffalo, New York
In 1899 the Great Lakes Towing Co. was organized to provide tug service at important harbors on the Great Lakes. By combining the fleets of several smaller tug operators, the company assembled a fleet approaching two hundred tugs and became the largest tug operator on the Great Lakes. The bulk of the materials in this collection pertain to the Port of Buffalo from 1902-1966. Types of records include: winter storage and mooring, vessel arrivals and departures, vessels in port, winter storage cargoes, and winter moorings throughout the Great Lakes. 7.5 c.f.
GLMS-6 Paisley and Morrow Steamship Companies
The records in this collection partially document the activities of two subsidiaries of the Oglebay Norton Co.: the J.A. Paisley Steamship Co. and the Morrow Steamship Co., both of Cleveland, Ohio. The bulk of the collection consists of vessel expense records for the Paisley firm for 1952 and 1953. An additional volume includes labor costs, 1943-1953. Records available for the Morrow Steamship Co. include labor costs, 1943-1953 and a general ledger, 1922-1947. 2.5 c.f.
GLMS-7 Archives of the Marine Historical Society
The Archives of the Marine Historical Society of Detroit include minutes, committee records, correspondence and memoranda, speeches and papers, and financial reports. The materials span the years from the Society's founding in 1944 to 1988. In addition, the complete files of The Detroit Marine Historian (1947-1988), the Society's monthly newsletter, as well as other publications are available. The records document the entire history of one of the oldest and most significant historical agencies on the Great Lakes. 5.0 c.f.
GLMS-8 Ship Owners' Dry Dock Company
The brief corporate history (1901-1912) of the Ship Owners' Dry Dock Co. is documented in this collection. The company purchased the assets of the Miller Brothers Dry Dock Co. which had started a shipbuilding and ship repair business in 1855. The business of both companies centered on work from local repairs and building tugboats. The collection includes financial records, minutes, and stock certificates. 1.0 c.f.
GLMS-9 Sault Sainte Marie Collection - Port Mackinac Papers
Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan
This collection is composed of shipping documents from the Sault Ste. Marie area and nearby ports from 1802-1866. Among these documents are shipping manifests, clearance documents, bills of sale, enrollment bonds, Treasury Department circulars to custom collectors at the Port of Sault Ste. Marie and nearby ports, and personal and business correspondence. Early documentation includes significant material dealing with the American Fur Company. 11 rolls of microfilm.
GLMS-10 Jesse Wells Church
Sugar Island, Michigan
This collection is composed of a business journal maintained by Jesse W. Church and other family members to record financial and other aspects of shipbuilding activities operated at Sugar Island, Michigan. The entries date from 1853-1895 and 1903. Cost figures for supplies, design plans, sketches of boats, and brief histories of some of the vessels are included. The Church boatyard specialized in sailing vessels of under fifty feet in length. Many Mackinaw boats were built at the Sugar Island work site. Some steam vessels were also designed by the Church family. Floor plans and elevations for some of the houses on Sugar Island are also included. .5 c.f.
GLMS-11 Great Lakes Waterways Development Association
The Great Lakes Waterways Association functions primarily as a lobbying and educational tool for Canadian shipping interests. Types of records available in the collection are membership records, member correspondence, correspondence with government agencies, news releases, reports, position papers, and speeches for the years 1972-1986. The collection contains excellent information on the contemporary Canadian shipping industry and its efforts to deal with significant changes in the international shipping industry. .5 c.f.
GLMS-12 Tanker M/V POLARIS
Bethlehem Ship Building Co. built the POLARIS in 1945 as LST 1063 for the U.S. Navy at Hingham, Massachusetts. Cleveland Tankers acquired the vessel in 1949 and rebuilt the ship as a tanker. The collection spans the years from 1958 to 1977 when the POLARIS was scrapped and includes correspondence, injury reports, vessel casualty reports, wage scales, and individual trip records. there is no information for the years 1945-1957. 1.0 c.f.
GLMS-13 Steamer PAUL J. TIETJEN
The PAUL J. TIETJEN was built by the American Ship Building Company and was launched at Cleveland, Ohio on January 12, 1907. The vessel was originally the MATTHEW ANDREWS (1907-1933) and later sailed as the HARRY L. FINDLAY (1933-1965). Most of the material in the collection dates from the 1970's and includes service reports, chief engineer's instructions, engine room workbook and log, inspections, and crew members' information cards. 3.0 c.f.
GLMS-14 G. A. TOMLINSON
The records for the G. A. TOMLINSON date from 1968, however the bulk of the collection consists of material generated in 1979, the last year the TOMLINSON was in service. The collection contains records left by the ship's chief engineer, bills of lading, deck logs, crew lists, and labor contracts. The TOMLINSON was built in 1907 by the Great Lakes Engineering Works at Ecorse, Michigan and was originally the D. O. MILLS. 1.5 c.f.
GLMS-15 John E. Poole
This collection documents vessels used in Great Lakes and ocean commerce. Clippings files, research notes, vessel log books, and a 60,000-item card file contain information on marine transportation in the United States and Canada. Events from the period 1814-1958 receive coverage. Scrapbooks form an illustrated record of vessels from c. 1890-1930. Loose clippings are drawn extensively from published articles dated c. 1930-1958. Research notes extracted from a variety of sources describe events for the years 1814-1853. Captain's, Deck, and Engineer's logs offer insights into daily activities on lake vessels for the years 1912-1950. The alphabetically arranged card index is a frequently consulted reference source for vessel history information. 24.5 c.f.
GLMS-16 Arthur C. Frederickson Collection
The Arthur C. Frederickson Collection contains information dating from 1872 through 1969 pertaining to the history of various vessels on the Great Lakes and, in particular, Lake Michigan. Included in the collection are: daily logs, shipwreck logs, crew lists, correspondence, photographs, research notes, articles and other publications, speeches, and subject files. The Frederickson Collection is especially valuable because of his experience in saltwater, the Mississippi River, the Erie Canal, the St. Lawrence Seaway, as well as all of the Great Lakes. 13 c.f.
GLMS-17 Charles T. Harvey Papers
The Charles Thompson Harvey Papers consist of the personal correspondence between Harvey and his wife, Sarah Van Eps Harvey spanning the years 1858 to 1872. Harvey was superintendent of construction and engineer for the St. Mary's Falls Ship Canal connecting Lake Superior and Lake Huron (1853-1855) and was responsible for the construction of an experimental section of the world's first elevated railroad (1868) located in New York City. The bulk of the correspondence deals with the 1858 to 1865 period. In addition to family matters, the letters often deal with Harvey's business activities, especially railroad projects, as well as national politics, and Harvey's inventions. 7 reels of microfilm.
GLMS-18 Portage Lake and Lake Superior Canals
The records in this collection partially document the operations of two canals constructed between 1860 and 1873 to connect Keweenaw Bay on the east side of the Keweenaw Peninsula to Lake Superior on the west. Under the 1890 River and Harbor Act, the U.S. government purchased both canals and made extensive improvements. Included in the collection is a daily journal (Aug. 1891-Dec. 1891) that describes the activities of the engineer in charge of the Portage Lake and Lake Superior Canal during the period when the federal government was improving the canal. Statistical registers (1898-1901, 1919-1929) record, by day, the names of vessels transiting the waterway, their tonnages, cargoes, and whether they were eastbound or westbound. The canals were of critical importance to the copper mining industry of the Keweenaw Peninsula. 1 reel of microfilm.
GLMS-19 Bay Port Fish Company
Bay Port, Michigan
The papers and records of the Bay Port Fish Company and its subsidiaries, the Saginaw Bay Fish Company and the Lake Huron Fish Company, provide sources of information concerning the fishing industry on the Great Lakes during the first half of the twentieth century. The collection is of particular value in documenting the activities and problems of commercial fishermen from the late depression years (from 1936) through the 1960's, including the decline of commercial fishing in Saginaw Bay, Michigan, and Lake Huron in American waters. The collection includes correspondence, reports, legal documents, and financial records. The entire collection spans the years 1894 to 1970, but the correspondence and financial records are complementary only for the years 1936-1967. 29 c.f.
GLMS-20 Point Betsie Life Saving Station Records
The Point Betsie Life Saving Station, built in 1876, housed a captain and a crew of seven surfmen for a season that coincided with the Great Lakes shipping season. Their duties included the rescue of crew, passengers, and cargo of ships in disasters as well as assisting in salvage operations. The collection consists of yearly supply inventory records and incoming correspondence for the period from 1883 to 1919. The majority of the correspondence is from the U.S. Treasury Department. Outgoing letters from the station which would provide a more complete picture of the operation and its crew are not available. 1 reel of microfilm.
GLMS-21 Oliver Hazard Perry
This collection is comprised of copies of official communications from various officers in the U.S. Naval Department (1799-1819) and, more significantly, from Perry to the Naval Department (1806-1819). Of special interest are communications related to the building of the Erie Squadron (1811-1813) and letters from several of Perry's cruises. A wide range of topics are discussed in the correspondence: recommendations, commissions, lists of officers, strategy, logistical concerns, personnel matters, sailing orders, and private concerns. The collection documents Perry's entire naval career from his early days at sea, his work as a gunboat builder at Newport, to his famous victory over the British on Lake Erie during the War of 1812. 1 c.f. & 1 reel of microfilm.
GLMS-22 Ohio and Western Pennsylvania Dock Company
The records of the Ohio and Western Pennsylvania Dock Company partially document the history of the company from 1882-1963. The collection consists of safety committee minutes (1945-1960), company improvement files (1904-1925), vessel lists (1927-1935), labor agreements and grievances (1897-1963), ore shipments (1889-1936), reprimand lists (1905-1907), and operation reports (1908-1913). The operation reports are daily logs of the dock operators and include ore unloading times, references to union activities, transcripts of local union meetings, and copies of various union charters and contracts. 4 c.f.
GLMS-23 Government Weather Station
This collection consists of the daily records of the Weather Station at Alpena, Michigan for the years 1872-1882 and 1885-1917. The journals include weather information such as storms, temperature readings, aureole and lunar halo sightings, sunset predictions, barometer readings, and additional information on visitors and vessel movements. The collection is valuable for the study of early efforts to systematically record weather in the U.S. 1 reel of microfilm.
GLMS-24 Marine Board of Investigation: Sinking of the EDMUND FITZGERALD
The collection contains transcripts, exhibits, and supplementary items from the U.S. Coast Guard Marine Board of Investigation convened on November 18, 1975, eight days after the EDMUND FITZGERALD sank in Lake Superior with her entire crew of twenty-nine men. The purpose of the inquiry was to determine the causes of the tragedy and to examine safety procedures. Indexes are available for exhibits and testimony in addition to an index for each of the seven volumes of the transcript. 5 reels of microfilm.
GLMS-25 U.S. Customs Records: Oswegatchie District
The Customs District of Oswegatchie, New York was established on April 1, 1811. This collection contains one volume of vessel abstracts, 1836-1841, which provides information on date registered, rig and name of vessel, port of departure, tonnage, and officers and crew. Two additional volumes of detailed wreck reports, 1874-1900 and 1902-1925, are indexed by vessel name. 1 reel of microfilm.
GLMS-26 Lorain Electronics Corporation
The Lorain Electronics Corporation was established in 1928 to supply wired music to homes. The company shifted to development work on ship-to-shore telephone communications in 1933. The collection consists of four scrapbooks containing newspaper clippings, magazine and journal articles about the company, photographs, and a small quantity of correspondence. The material spans the years from 1931 to 1976. 1 reel of microfilm.
GLMS-27 Wilson Marine Transit Company
Included are files of the Wilson Marine Transit Company and its predecessors, the Wilson Transit Line and the Wilson Transit Company for the years 1884-1970. Coverage is most extensive in the post-World War II era. Correspondence, subject files, meeting minutes, policy circulars, reports, financial documents, and legal files are all present. This collection is of particular interest to researchers examining the growth of the transportation network on the Great Lakes. Subsidiary companies are represented in the files of the Wilson Marine Transit Company recording the development of new traffic patterns for shipment of goods around the Great Lakes region. 53.5 c.f.
GLMS-28 International Ship Masters' Association
Of interest to those researching the labor history of the Great Lakes shipping industry, this collection presents the records of a benevolent association devoted to the welfare of its members. Files on annual meetings, membership benefits, lobbying interests, and local lodge activities are included. Coverage spans the years 1886-1990. Issues of concern to those actively involved in operating lake vessels are discussed at length providing insights into how these men perceived their roles in the Great Lakes shipping industry. 17.0 c.f.
GLMS-29 Wilford G. Bartenfeld
This collection contains marine architectural subject files regarding vessel construction and conversion projects from 1901 to 1976. Most files are from the period 1940-1960. Many of Bartenfeld's projects involved vessels being converted to and from military uses in the World War II era. The technical aspects of shipbuilding are documented through files on technology and products related to vessel design. Bartenfeld's numerous patents on unloading devices for cargo vessels reflect his significant contributions to marine architecture. 22.0 c.f.
GLMS-30 Delmar R. Webster Collection
This collection contains material compiled by Captain Delmar R. Webster during his career on the Great Lakes. The largest series in the collection contains deck logs from the J. BURTON AYERS for 1945-1973. A log for loading information from the EDMUND FITZGERALD is also included for 1972-1973, as well as meeting information for the 1982 and 1983 conventions of Columbia Transportation Company fleet officers and a subject file on the vessels ARMCO and J. BURTON AYERS for 1976-1987 A loading manual for the ARMCO presents the guidelines used by Captain Webster when monitoring how cargo was stored in the holds of a Great Lakes vessel. 2 cubic feet.
GLMS-31 U.S. Steamboat Inspection Service
Present are 23 volumes containing copies of inspection certificates retained at the Cleveland, OH office of the U.S. Steamboat Inspection Service following examination of steam vessels. These annual inspections permitted vessels to operate on the Great Lakes. The certificates date from 1876-1910. The compiled information focuses on hull materials, boiler tests, recommended crew sizes, and maximum passenger limits for freight vessels, passenger vessels, and yachts. 5.0 c.f.
GLMS-32 Paul J. Ranahan
This collection contains records of vessel damage surveys conducted by Paul J. Ranahan in his career as a marine consultant. Ranahan, a marine engineer, surveyed damage done to vessels involved in accidents to assess the cost of repairs. These records, along with correspondence regarding marine salvage operations, provide a view of the role surveyors like Ranahan played in identifying revenue sources for repair facilities and the expense such accidents caused for vessel owners. The collection contains approximately 730 cases spanning the years 1946-1980. 4.0 c.f.
GLMS-33 Marsh and McLennan Marine Underwriters
The Marsh and McLennan Marine Underwriters company provides insurance for a number of Great Lakes vessels and fleets. The files in this collection document the procedures followed by Marsh and McLennan when investigating damage claims filed by vessel owners, showing the cost of vessel insurance and of the repair of damaged vessels. In addition, the collection contains a short series of files on personal injury claims, one of hull loss records for individual vessel owners, and an analysis of claims paid from 1967-1972 which provides a profile of accident types and monetary damages claimed. 26.5 c.f.
GLMS-34 E.B. "Skip" Gillham
This collection contains items pertaining to waterborne commerce on the Great Lakes and the history of the Welland Canal. The collection includes articles written by Skip Gillham, author and coauthor of numerous books on Great Lakes history, for his weekly column "Ships that Ply the Lakes" in 1991. The column, appearing in the St. Catharines, ONT Standard, details a specific vessel, providing information about recent events and past incidents from its years of service. A file of correspondence concerning the Welland Canal compiles information on its history for readers. The collection also contains a file of cargo reports from the Quebec and Ontario Transportation Company fleet for 1968-1983, recording cargo data and loading and discharge ports for individual vessel trips. .5 c.f.
GLMS-35 U.S. Steamboat Inspection Service
Present are records of the Toledo, OH office of the Steamboat Inspection Service for the years 1870-1931. Included are tensile strength test reports for boiler plate samples (1900-1931), lists of licensed assistant engineers (1890-1907), and lists of licensed pilots (1870-1908). 1.0 c.f.
GLMS-36 Salvage Association, London
The records document investigative activities involved in assessing repair costs for damage done to or by Great Lakes vessels. The files include vessel survey reports, damage reports, and movement reports from 1919-1982. 11 c.f.
GLMS-37 Emmet R. Dowdell Collection
Pictorial and printed material regarding the Great Lakes sailing career of Emmet R. Dowdell and his leisure activities after retirement. Scrapbooks contain photographs, clippings, and brochures spanning the years 1860-1976, including views of vessels and street scenes in Lakewood and Lorain, Ohio. 1 c.f.
GLMS-38 ERNEST T. WEIR Collection
Pilot house log books for the vessel ERNEST T. WEIR from 1954-1969, Assignment of Officers Reports (1958, 1968-9), and weather reports, 1968. 2 c.f.
GLMS-40 THOMAS E. MILLSOP Collection
Daily engine room activities and general vessel inspection, as well as general equipment and its condition, 1953-1975. 1.5 c.f.
GLMS-41 C. Patrick Labadie
This collection contains information on the operation of Great Lakes vessels from 1848 to 1980. Enrollment data for 40 vessels registered between 1848 and 1942 reflects efforts to standardize licensing procedures. Log books for the WILLIAM P. PALMER, the HENRY PHIPPS and other vessels record daily activities during voyages. Meeting minutes are present for the annual meeting of the Masters and Chief Engineers of the Pittsburgh Steamship Division of the United States Steel Corporation for 1956 and 1957. 4.0 c.f.
GLMS-42 U.S. Coast Guard, 9th District
Documented are activities of the U.S. Coast Guard, 9th District office in Cleveland, OH for the years 1911-1971. These files cluster most heavily for the period 1935-1965. Commercial inspection functions are detailed with enrolled license files on 109 vessels. Lifesaving duties are discussed in correspondence files from 1969-1970. The investigative nature of some assignments is reflected in the transcript of the hearing analyzing the collision of the CEDARVILLE and the TOPDALSFJORD in 1965. 4.0 c.f.
GLMS-43 Alberta M. Fraley
This collection contains fleet logs from the Great Lakes Steamship Company and the Wilson Marine Transit Company for the years 1937-1966. These logs include fleet officers' names, positions held, vessel assignments, dates of employment, and performance evaluations. Also present are course materials used by students at the U.S. Maritime Service Officers' School, the Lake Carriers' Association Engineers' School, and the West Side Institute of Technology. 1.0 c.f.
GLMS-44 Lake Carriers' Association
The Great Lakes shipping industry is documented through the files of one of the principal vessel owners' organizations for issues concerning the lakes and one of the primary benevolent associations for persons employed on lake vessels. Subject files on issues from diverting water out of Lake Michigan for the Illinois canal system to pollution control form most of the files in this collection. Records of death beneficiary payments offer information to genealogists tracing family members who worked on lake vessels. Navigation topics are discussed through files on the Coast Guard for 1932-1975. Lake Carriers' Survey for Harbor Improvements records address navigation on such matters as straightening tight turns in harbor ship channels (1927-1951). Communications technology designed to improve navigation is detailed in files on the Radio Technical Commission for Marine Services (1936-1979). The complete collection contains material in scattered form from 1860 to 1910. The majority of the files are from c. 1910 to 1985. Numerous cartographic materials supplement the files. 88. c.f.
GLMS-45 Paasch Marine Services, Inc.
This collection contains files of naval architect Harold Paasch. Subject files and rolled drawings for projects appear consistently for 1947-1976 and in scattered form for 1906, 1927, and 1932. The files in this collection generally apply to vessels of under 100 feet in length. Many survey and patrol boats for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers were built by Paasch. The increased use of aluminum after World War II for ship construction can also be studied. 2.5 c.f.
GLMS-46 Henry N. Barkhausen
The Henry N. Barkhausen Collection contains subject files, newsclippings, and architectural drawings documenting the maritime history of the Great Lakes. The Barkhausen files date primarily from c.1879-1940. Items of note are architectural drawings of 14 schooners built for the Great Lakes trade from 1867 to 1918. Numerous sail plans are included to document this aspect of marine technology. Clippings regarding vessel sinkings in the 1930s and 1940 offer views of reactions to these tragedies in the newspapers of the Great Lakes region. .6 c.f.
GLMS-47 Columbia Transportation Company Collection
This one-half cubic foot collection provides information on the operation of the Columbia Transportation Company. Data on vessels and officers is available, including information on wages, labor costs and company earnings.
GLMS-48 Alice Hass Schultz Marblehead Collection
The focus of this collection of photographs and printed items is the U.S. Coast Guard Station at Marblehead, Ottawa County, OH on Lake Erie. Few items are dated, but they fall in the period from c. 1905-1930. In the collection are 163 black and white photographs and three printed items. .5 c.f.
GLMS-49 COLONEL JAMES PICKANDS Collection
This collection documents daily activities on the COLONEL JAMES PICKANDS (US 225394) from 1952 to 1974. There are 26 log books of chief engineers and deck officers, recording daily events for each trip sailed in the shipping season lasting from April to December.
GLMS-50 United Steel Workers, Great Lakes Seamen Local 5000
Office files from Local 5000 headquarters in Cleveland, OH (1937-1981) form this collection. Most files are post-1960 material. Meeting minutes, financial records, and subject files on organizing elections for employees of the fleets owned by the Interlake Steamship Company, Shenango Furnace Company, and U.S. Steel Corporation appear in sufficient quantity to permit examination of organizing procedures for unions involving lake vessel crews. Contracts and agreements from the 1950s to the 1970s reflect negotiated working conditions faced by vessel crews. 11 c.f.
GLMS-51 Edward N. Middleton Collection
This collection contains correspondence and research notes compiled by Edward Middleton during the course of his preparation of histories of numerous vessels and shipping companies. Events covered in these notes extend from 1833 to 1984. Companies receiving the most extensive treatment are the Crosby Transportation Company, the Goodrich Transportation Company, and the Morton Navigation Company. A clipping file for 1912-1985 describes shipping activities on the Great Lakes. Included also are two rolls of microfilm obtained from the National Archives containing vessel history information. 2.5 c.f.
GLMS-52 Nicholson Transit Company
This collection provides information on the business transactions of the Nicholson Transit company for the years 1923-1925. Daily correspondence and financial papers document the relationship of the Nicholson Company with customers and product suppliers from whom company purchases were made. Automobile manufacturers and dealers appear in many of these files. Correspondence and financial papers for two of the company's subsidiaries are also included. 6.5 c.f.
GLMS-53 Triad Salvage Company
This collection records details of maintenance activities conducted on ten vessels on which the Triad Salvage Company performed salvage and repair work. The records in this subject file date from 1902-1981. 2 c.f.
GLMS-54 Transportation Company Timetables and Brochures
Various Great Lakes Ports
Literature from Great Lakes transportation companies promotes the use of the lake vessels at their disposal by the casual tourist traveler. Items date from 1859 to 1991 and reflect the mass marketing of the idea that travel in the Great Lakes region is feasible on regularly scheduled routes from ports readily accesible to much of the United States and Canada by rail or highway. The Lake Michigan routes from Ludington and Muskegon, Michigan to Milwaukee, Wisconsin and Chicago, Illinois are well documented. Ferry service at the Straits of Mackinac is also represented. Travel in Canadian waters is promoted with timetables for voyages into Georgian Bay and the St. Lawrence River valley. 1.5 c.f.
GLMS-55 John C. Smith
Captain John C. Smith's career on the Great Lakes began in 1929 at the age of 16 and continued until 1946. During his career Smith acquired numerous items pertaining to employment on Great Lakes vessels. A manual listing sample questions from navigation training examinations was studied by masters, mates and pilots in preparation for those examinations. Another manual provides distances between ports to assist navigators in their calculations. Two undated cards illustrate a method of recording weather data and vessel rules. A series of booklets issued to participants in the Lake Carriers' Association welfare plan, which provided assistance to crewmen in between vessel assignments, completes the collection. .5 c.f.
GLMS-56 Hans Hansen Welding Company
This collection reflects the activities of the Hans Hansen Welding Company in Toledo, Ohio through nearly four decades of vessel repair and construction projects, from 1942 to 1979. These project files document the work performed by a company representing marine repair businesses in the Great Lakes region. 5 c. f.
GLMS-57 Ivan S. Brookes
This collection contains copies of data sheets for vessels of the Great Lakes and the Ocean and Coastal trades compiled from official records and published marine directories. Vessel history information is included on these sheets to reflect name changes, place of construction, dimensions, changes in ownership, and other details regarding the boat. Information dates from c. 1822-1975. 4.0 c.f.
GLMS-58 J.S. Morton
Benton Harbor, Michigan
J. Stanley Morton, cofounder of the Graham & Morton Company involved in Great Lakes shipping, recorded observations about the business climate in southwestern Michigan in his diary. A photocopy of his diary for the years 1920-1932 is included as the principal component of this collection. A scrapbook and clippings files provide biographical information on Morton and discuss his career in lake transport. Copies of publications discuss the history of the Benton Harbor-St. Joseph, Michigan region. 1 c.f.
GLMS-60 WLC Marine Radio Company
Rogers City, Michigan
Included in this collection are 11 cubic feet of daily log books from the marine radio station WLC in Rogers City, Michigan for the years 1923-1930. Vessels traveling in Lake Huron received weather data and other navigational assistance from the radio telephone operators at WLC. The daily entries over an eight-year period provide a detailed account of how such a station operated. This time capsule is of interest to researchers studying the development of aids to navigation and safety on the Great Lakes. 11.0 c.f.
GLMS-61 LEON FALK, JR. (U.S. 247576)
The Sun Shipbuilding and Dry Dock Company built the LEON FALK, JR. as the WINTER HILL in 1945. The Skar-Ore Steamship Corp. of Cleveland, OH purchased the vessel from Ships, Inc. in 1960 and renamed it the FALK the following year. This company maintained ownership until the FALK's scrapping in 1985. The collection records daily operational information for the years 1961-1981 and includes ship safety committee minutes, damage report logs, loading logs, miscellaneous cargo logs, trip logs, and a lightbulb order book. The collection also includes a loading manual for the FALK and a 1964 Canadian publication concerning pilotage rules on the Great Lakes. .5 c.f.
GLMS-62 Cleveland-Cliffs Iron Company
This collection contains files of the Cleveland-Cliffs Iron Company that are primarily concerned with discussions of extending the length of the navigation season occurring from 1935-1981. Subject files, log books, symposia papers, and news clippings offer a number of perspectives on the movement among shipping companies toward implementing longer navigation seasons. The logbooks are from the S.S. CADILLAC for 1944-1948, 1972-1973, and 1976-1981. 2.0 c.f.
GLMS-63 R.A. Stearn, Inc.
Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin
This collection contains files on vessel construction design projects completed by Richard A. Stearn's naval architecture firm. Projects are generally from the period 1940-1950. Stearn participated in the design phase of numerous military vessels during World War II and in their postwar conversion to civilian uses. Correspondence and architectural drawings are the principal components of the project files on each vessel. 11.0 c.f.
GLMS-68 G. Victor Chamberlain
This collection contains items accumulated by Captain G. Victor Chamberlain during his career on lake vessels from 1940 to 1981. A file of correspondence reveals the importance of safety issues, while radar logs and loading logs record operations aboard the ship. News clippings, particularly ones covering the sinking of the EDMUND FITZGERALD, provide insight on events of interest to Captain Chamberlain. Navigational and weather-related charts illustrate another area of the captain's interest. The collection is small but does present material useful in understanding the responsibilities and worries of Great Lakes vessel captains. .5 c.f.
GLMS-71 Loudon G. Wilson
This collection documents the history of commercial sail on the Great Lakes through Wilson's research, photographs, clippings from publications, and original artwork. These images record changes in vessel technology from the Viking era of c. 1000 to boats of 1988. Comparisons can be made between rigging specifications for sailing vessels of different centuries. Wilson concentrated heavily on sailing vessels, but also obtained images of steamships. The history of marine art can also be examined through Wilson's selections of art reproductions clipped from publications. Commentaries on style and technique appear in notes made by Wilson, a marine artist himself. Two principal series are of the greatest interest. The Annual Log is a subject file of design developments accessed through a chronological index. The Subject Notebooks filled with photographs and research notes on vessels provide detailed and technical information compiled by Wilson. 14.0 c.f.
GLMS-74 Walter Smith Miscellaneous Ship Drawing Collection
Drawings prepared for lake vessels from 1900-1920 have been assembled from several shipyards. Such companies as Sidney McLouth, Chicago Ship Building, Detroit Dry Dock, and Great Lakes Engineering Works are represented. Unique approaches to vessel design can be viewed in the work of S.B. Kingsbury and Charles L. Seabury. Modelers may find lists of specifications pertinent to their projects. This collection is available only on microfilm. 1 reel of microfilm.
GLMS-75 American Ship Building Company and Predecessors, 1867-1920
Architectural drawings for vessels built by the American Ship Building Company and its predecessors were microfilmed to create this collection. Ten standard drawings such as profiles and deck plans were selected for filming. Most drawings date from 1886-1920. Post-1900 sets tend to be more complete than earlier sets of drawings. Nearly all types of wooden and steel vessels built on the Great Lakes between 1870 and 1920 are represented. 33 reels of microfilm.
GLMS-77 McLean Brothers Fisheries Co.
This collection documents the activities of the McLean Brothers Fisheries Company, a Canadian Lake Erie fishing company, for the years 1908-1960. Included are 48 Fish Account Books, recording the sale of fish to customers; 31 Day Books, recording daily office expenses; and 6 Wage Books, listing employees and wages earned. Income tax returns, gasoline tax refund information, company correspondence and miscellaneous employee and supply purchase records provide additional insight into the expenses faced by a Great Lakes fishing company. 7 reels of microfilm.
GLMS-78 W.H. Wheeler Fish Company
The W.H. Wheeler Fish Company collection documents financial transactions of the company for the years 1905-1938 and 1950-1951. Account records for fish sales and company expenditures provide information on the profits and expenses facing a Lake Erie fishing company, while employee wage information aids in examining Ontario labor conditions. Ecological shifts in Lake Erie marine life can be traced in the records of the species and quantity of fish caught by company vessels. 3 reels of microfilm.
GLMS-79 Tug EDNA G. - Logbooks
Two Harbors, Minnesota
The tug EDNA G. served at Two Harbors, MN from 1896 to 1981. Included in this microfilmed collection are logbooks for the years 1917-1981. Logs for 1936-1940 are missing. Accompanying the logs are ledgers for tug charges covering 1947-1956. Recorded information includes names of assisted vessels, date and type of assistance provided, and tug charges. This collection is available only on microfilm. 4 reels of microfilm.
GLMS-84 U. S. Customs Service
Port Huron Customs Records, Port Huron, Michigan
This collection documents activities of the United States Customs Service office at Port Huron, MI from 1866 to 1958. Bills of sale and enrollment information appear in largest quantities. The issuance of licenses to individual officers on boats and to boats following inspections is documented. Records of harbor entrances and clearances by vessels reflect patterns of vessel traffic at Port Huron. This collection is available on microfilm only. 36 reels of microfilm.
GLMS-87 JOSEPH H. THOMPSON (U.S. 245496)
The Sun Shipbuilding and Dry Dock Co. launched the MARINE ROBIN in 1944 at Chester, PA. In 1950 the vessel was added to the M.A. Hanna Co. fleet and renamed JOSEPH H. THOMPSON. This collection contains vessel records for the years 1976-1982. Correspondence describes maintenance and personnel matters, while various logs record operating details of individual trips during the sailing season. Also included is a 1980 incident report which illustrates the company's accident-reporting process. .5 c.f.
GLMS-91 U.S. Customs Service
Ludington, Michigan District
The sale of vessels recorded at the Ludington, MI office of the U.S. Customs Service for 1864-1949 are presented here. Bills of sale, conveyance records and mortgages include the names of vessels and sale participants and the terms of agreement. In these the researcher can find information on vessel histories and the economic aspects of vessel purchases. The financial and legal files included in the records partially document the regulatory duties of the U.S. Customs Service. 19 reels of microfilm.
GLMS-92 WILLIAM P. SNYDER, JR. (U.S. 209662)
The WILLIAM P. SNYDER, JR. was built by the Great Lakes Engineering Works at Ecorse, MI and launched in 1912. The items compiled here were acquired by the SNYDER's chief engineers between 1932 and 1980. A series of catalogs and one of briefer sales brochures illustrate the choices available to engineers purchasing equipment and parts, and a series of manuals provide the information needed to operate the purchased equipment. A final series containing log books provides information on the daily operations of the engines and boilers the engineers were responsible for maintaining. 7 c.f.
GLMS-93 National Weather Service Station
Included are 84 bound volumes of meteorological observations recorded from 1870 to 1948 at the Cleveland, OH office of the National Weather Service. Observations appear as handwritten notes on printed forms and as extensive notebook commentaries. Information recorded includes wind direction and speed, temperature, relative humidity, precipitation, cloud conditions, and other weather data. 13.5 c.f.
GLMS-94 Lay Brothers Fisheries, Inc.
The operation of a Lake Erie fishing company from 1889 to its closing in 1961 is documented in this collection. Financial and legal papers form the largest part of the collection. A drawing series (1894-1960) show plats for company property and plans for company buildings and equipment. 6.5 c.f.
GLMS-95 Craig Ship Building Company Collection
Collection documents business and personal elements in the life of Great Lakes shipbuilder John Craig. Includes 93 black and white photographs. 4 c.f.
GLMS-98 Mackinac Island Resort Occupational Folklore Collection
Mackinac Island, Michigan
Six audio tapes of interviews of seasonal workers at Mackinac Island (1990) and the resulting research paper prepared for an independent study course in the Department of Popular Culture, Bowling Green State University. 0.5 c.f.
GLMS-100 Inland Steel Company Collection
Engineer's logs, Official Logs, Rough Deck Logs, crew lists and articles of agreement for six freighters owned by the Inland Steel Company, 1978-1981. 3.5 c.f.
GLMS-101 Kenneth R. Hall Collection
Research material for study of the vessels owned by the shipping interests headed by Eber Brock Ward and his family. Events covered in the collection date from 1782-1987. Most information in the collection is concentrated between 1840 and 1910. 2 c.f.
GLMS-103 Albert A. Bartlett
During the early years of his college career, 1941-1942, Albert A. Bartlett obtained summer employment on the Great Lakes iron ore freighters PONTIAC and PETER WHITE. During this time Bartlett photographed his fellow crew members performing routine duties and later arranged 208 of his photos in a captioned scrapbook, a copy of which is presented here. Bartlett's photographs record the daily events of vessel life, capturing crew and officers at work and play. The collection also includes 7 hours of taped interviews, as well as a transcript of those tapes, in which Bartlett describes his work and life as a lake vessel porter. 1.5 c.f.
GLMS-104 Chart Collection
Included are c.2,600 navigational charts for the years 1849-1991. The charts in this collection were primarily published by the governments of the United States and Canada, with occasional examples from state and provincial sources. General charts of the Great Lakes region appear along with those for individual lakes. Connecting rivers and canals are also represented. Although most charts apply to waterways in the Great Lakes basin, a number of charts for the Atlantic Coast and the Mississippi Valley are present. 142 c.f.
GLMS-107 National Weather Service Office, Toledo, Ohio
Includes meteorological observations recorded at the Toledo, Ohio office of the National Weather Service from 1870-1994. 30 c.f.
GLMS-108 John H. Gilbert Collection
The collection contains captain logs and account books for the tugboat TOURIST for 1921-1939, including business affairs, ports of arrivals, passenger lists, crew lists, cargo lists and prices, maintenance entries, cash accounts, newspaper clippings and a 1952 end log entry of the transfer of the TOURIST to Standard Towing Corp. An account book for the tugboat SCHNODEN begins on September 15, 1921 and continues to November 26, 1921.
GLMS-109 Anthony Bocconcelli Collection/FitzSimons & Connell Dredge & Dock Co.
Illinois, Indiana, Wisconsin
Provides photographic documentation of many of the projects of the FitzSimons & Connell Dredge & Dock Co., 1911-1976. The collection includes photographic material (approximately 2700 images) as well as a minimal amount of motion picture film, transferred to DVD. It offers an excellent representation of the work environments of manual laborers, operating in varying weather and safety conditions, in the construction of significant structures, many of which still exist today. The photographs also document the evolution of construction techniques and equipment.
GLMMS 1880 George Kelley Diary
Brief accounts of daily life and work on Kelley's Island in 1880, including cash accounts for the year. AMERICAN EAGLE, a propeller, and JULIA, a schooner, are two Lake Erie vessels that are referenced frequently in the journal entries.
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