Site Orientation #

  • Bulk Propeller
  • 70ffw
  • 210ft Length
  • Amherst Island Graveyard, Lake Ontario

History #

The famous Duncan Robertson launchd the Ionia on 18 June 1890 at his Grand Haven shipyard to his account and that of fellow Grand Havenites banker Nelson Howlett and Captain W. H. Loutit. Measuring 209 x 38 x 19, 1424 gross and 984 net tons, it was powered by locally-built machinery, a fore & aft compound steam engine, 21.5-46” x 42” built by Wilson & Hendrie of Montague, Michigan, and a 11.5’ x 15” firebox boiler built by Johnston Brothers, Ferrysburg. Its maiden trip began 22 July 1890 to Escanaba for Ashtabula with ore.

On 3 October 1890 in dense fog off Waugoshance light near the Straits the bow of the Ionia struck the stern of the steamer Monteagle, damaging the Ionia so badly it was thought a total loss. It managed to make Mackinaw City, though, and repaired enough to be able to arrive at the Milwaukee Ship Yard Company for repairs. The keel and port planking and framing had to be straightened using turnbuckles, jacks, and lines, the keel moved thirteen inches to port and the upper hull over two feet to port. The damaged planking was replaced to beyond the pilothouse and the bow rebuilt.

Nevertheless, the Ionia endured, sold Canadian in 1912 to Hepburn Brothers and renamed Fairfax. Folded into Canada Steamship Line Ltd. in 1916, it was renamed Maplegorge in May 1920. It appears to have been withdrawn from service after the 1920 season and laid up at Kingston, where it was dismantled in 1925 and its remains scuttled in June off Amherst Island southwest of Kingston with other old steamers in a clean up of that city’s waterfront

Selection of Related Articles #

List of Vessels on Registry Books of the Dominionof Canada on the 31st. Day of December, 1920 #

Propeller MAPLEGORGE.* Official Canadian Number 111966. Built at Grand Haven, Mich., U.S.A. in 1890. Of 1367 gross tons; 1019 tons reg. Home port, Picton, Ont. Owned by the Canada Steamship Lines, Montreal, Que. 209.0 x 38.0 x 21.0 and of 83 horse power.
* Formerly FAIRFAX.

Herman Runge List #

Steam screw IONIA.* U. S. No. 100473. Of 1424 gross tons. Built Grand Haven, Mi., 1890. 209.0 x 38.0 x 21.0.
* renamed FAIRFAX – Canada – 1912 [C 111966 ]
MAPLEGORGE – Canada – 1920

Merchant Vessel List, U. S., 1891 #

Steam screw IONIA. U. S. No.100473. Of 1287.34 gross tons;1222.71 tons net. Built Grand Haven, Mi., 1890. 209.2 x 381 x 18.3

Preliminary List of Canadian Merchant Steamships Inland & Coastal. 1809 to 1930. World Ship Society #

Bulk freighter FAIRFAX. Official Canada No. 111966. Of 1367 tons gross. Built Grand Haven, Mich., 1890 as U. S. IONIA. became Canadian 1912, and renamed FAIRFAX. Renamed as MAPLEGORGE 1920. 209 x 38 x 21. DISPOSITION:– Sunk purposely at Kingston, Ont. 1925

Information Held by HCGL #

Registry U.S.
Official Number 100473
Rig Propeller
Dimensions and Tonnage
Length 209.16
Width 38.00
Depth 18.25
Gross Tonnage 1287.34
Net Tonnage 1122.71
Hull Material Wood
Vessel History
Rebuilds Rebuilt, Detroit, MI, March 25, 1903 (209.16 x 38 x 21.25 ; 1418 gross – 1011 net). Canadian measures, 1912 (209 x 38 x 21; 1424 gross – 984 registered). Tonnage change, 1920 (1367 gross – 1019 registered).
Disposition Dismantled at Kingston, Ontario, in 1925; towed to deep water and sunk in Lake Ontario.
Build Information
Builder Robertson, Duncan
Place Built Grand Haven, MI
Date Built 1890-00-00
Source HCGL

Vessel Names #

Name Begin Date End Date Registry Official Number
FAIRFAX 1912-00-00 1920-00-00 CANADA 111966
MAPLEGORGE 1920-00-00 1925-00-00 CANADA 111966

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