Thursday, January 5, 2012

Schooner Thomas G. Smith ~ 10 April 1910

Annual Report of the Operations of the United States Life-Saving Service for the fiscal year ending June 30, 1910:

Stranded 9 miles northeast of station at 2:30 a.m. and sank. Some fishermen discovered her at sunrise and notified keeper. Life saving crew landed her crew of 7, and their dunnage, with surfboat, and brought ashore the schooner’s yawl. Four of the sailors were sheltered for 2 days.

Wreck of the Thomas G. Smith

At 2:30 a.m. on April 10, 1910, the three-masted schooner Thomas G. Smith made a miscalculation in lights, stranded and sunk 9 miles northeast of the station and about 400 yards from the beach. She was enroute from Charleston, SC to New York City with a load of coal.

Local fishermen discovered the vessel at sunrise and reported it to the station around 8 a.m. Keeper Willis was away so Number 1 Surfman Freddit Gillikin launched the lifeboat and went to the vessel with a crew from the station. They removed the vessel's crew along with their personal belongings, and brought them to the station where they were cared for until the 12th. Although the lifesavers were away from the station for over 8 hours, saving 8 lives, the keeper's report contains less than 60 words:

"This vessel stranded nine miles N.E. 1/2 east from this station weather smoky at sunrise some fishermen who were camping near by discovered her and walked to this station and reported same. At 8,20 a.m. the men left station with Beebe surf boat No. 1 man in charge. Services rendered crew with all their belongings took yawl ashore."

The rescued crew of the Smith were E.C. Perkins, Captain, Maine; V.M. Brown, Nova Scotia; Henry Joseph, Camden, NJ; John Dent, NC; Frank Soloman, William Persall, Richard Wallace - all of Philadelphia, PA. The Thomas G. Smith and her cargo were completely lost.

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