Thursday, February 4, 2016

Sidewheeler William Irving

Fred Rogers, More shipwrecks of British Columbia, Douglas and MacIntyre, 1992

The William Irving was built at Burrard Inlet in 1880 as one of the finest riverboats in the Vancouver area. The owner was proud of the boats speed and even had it repowered after a few years to keep it up to date. In 1894 the Fraser River flooded and during rescue and salvage operations the boat ran aground and was sunk and destroyed. The engines were salvaged and used in the steamer Yukoner.


Steve said...

That would be the sternwheeler William Irving.
Here is a photo of the wreck:

The Loss of the William Irving - from Wikipedia:

On June 28, 1894, the vessell R.p. Rithet broke her paddlewheel shaft at Maria Slough, near Ruby Creek on the Fraser River, which disabled the vessel because her sternwheel could not be turned. Upriver another C.P.N. vessel the William Irving was loading freight and cattle at Katz Landing. Captain Irving himself took command of William Irving with a plan to bring Rithet downriver for repair. He proceeded downriver to where Rithet lay disabled and lashed up Rithet next to Irving, so that both vessels could proceed downriver side-by-side. Things went well until they reached Farr's Bluff, where the strong current swung both vessels around, and Irving''s bow smashed into a rock. Some of the crew of Irving began to panic, and jumped onto Rithet. Captain Irving, who was at the wheel, ordered the lines to Rithet cut so that both vessels might not sink. Free of Rithet, Irving kept going downstream, gradually sinking, and eventually hit a sandbar, which caused her to become a total wreck, an uninsured loss of a vessel worth $50,000.

Mister G said...

Thanks for the additions and the link!