Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Schooner Etta M. Barter ~ 27 February 1895

At 5:30 a.m. the morning of March 3 the keeper of the Portsmouth Station sighted a vessel on the beach about 7-1/2 miles ENE of the station. After hring a volunteer crew to assist him (J.W. Robinson, Dennis Mason, Jacob Swindell, Geo. Dixon, Alford Dixon and Guss Mason), they launched the beach apparatus and went to the vessel's assistance. It proved to be the 259-ton schooner Etta M. Barter, which had struck a wreck off shore and had been piloted in and anchored near the beach on February 27. Captain J.W. Bunder and a crew of 7 were taken off by the pilot boat. On March 2 during a strong southerly gale she dragged her anchor and went ashore on the beach. The weather had been so foggy that Keeper Terrell had not been able to see the vessel until the 3rd.

The Barter, of Thomaston, ME, was enroute to New York City from Charleston, SC with a load of yellow pine lumber. Both vessel and cargo were a complete loss.

The Wilmington Messenger
March 5, 1895

... the tug Jones returned yesterday from Ocracoke, where she went on Friday to the assistance of the schooner Etta M. Barter, reported water-logged three miles from shore. The captain of the tug reports that he found the vessel abandoned and stripped, the sail-blocks, and other valuables having been removed.

Both anchors were down and the vessel was entirely submerged. The sea was breaking over her so the tub's crew could not get aboard to cut the anchors so that the vessel could be towed. They gave up the ship and she will probably go to pieces. The schooner is laden with lumber and is bound from Charleston to New York. She is owned by Dunn & Ellot, of Thomaston, Maine, and is valued at about $8,000. The Jones reports that she experienced a heavy gale all the time she was gone.

March 6, 1895

... dragged on an outer reef Saturday and lost her deck load. Her hull has been broken in two, her masts are all adrift ... lies about 75 yards from the beach and the sea is breaking over her.



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