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F. W. Wheeler & Co. (1876-1908)
-- Great Lakes shipbuilder in West Bay City, MI.

Note: The shipyard of F. W. Wheeler & Co., was later owned by the American Shipbuilding Company, of Cleveland, Ohio.

Shipyard of F. W. Wheeler & Co. in 1898, along west bank of Saginaw River.

1883 History. Added Aug., 2009.

History of Bay County, Michigan – H.R. Page, 1883.

Wheeler & Crane Shipyard.

Page 194.

Wheeler & Crane, ship builders, have been in business since 1879, the location of their yard being conveniently situated on the Saginaw River in the First Ward of West Bay City. They do a large business in ship building and repairing, having had during the past three years upward of twenty boats on their docks, among which may be mentioned the Lycoming and Connauaugh, belonging to the Erie and Western Transportation Company. They furnished the timbers for the steamer Clyde, and built for James McBrier, of Erie, Pa., the propellers Fred MacBrier and Galaten, and the Osecola for the Ward Line of steamers, and are at present engaged on a large steam barge for William Forbes, of Port Huron, to cost $75,000. Frank W. Wheeler and Albert A. Crane are the members of the firm.

Frank W. Wheeler is a native of New York, but when twelve years of age came to Saginaw with his parents where he remained ten years. After acquiring an education, he sailed about three years, after which he engaged with his father in ship building. In 1875 he removed to West Bay City and opened a ship yard, and in 1879 formed a partnership with Albert A. Crane, the style of the firm being Wheeler and Crane. Married Eva Armstrong of Saginaw. They have one child, a daughter.

Albert A. Crane was born in the State of New York in 1849, and in 1861 removed to Hillsdale, Mich., and in 1874 came to West Bay City and engaged with Wm. Moots in hardware, also doing business in the line of logs and timber. In 1879 entered into partnership with F. W. Wheeler in ship yard. Married Josey K. Keefer, of Hillsdale, Mich. They have one child living, a daughter.

1886 - W.R. Stafford barge. - Added April, 2011.

The Marine Record - Cleveland, Ohio.

August 5, 1886.

Bay City.

There was launched at Wheeler's drydock, last Thursday the steambarge W. R. Stafford, one of the largest and most complete carrying boats every built on the river, with dimensions as follows: 200 feet long 32 feet beam, 14 feet hold. The boat has a pleasant cabin. She was built by Bay City & Cleveland Transportation Company for the Lake Superior travel. A number of friends were on te boat, guests of the owner, W. R. Stafford, of Port Hope, among them being Mrs. J. W. Symons, Mrs. Albert Davis, Albion; Mrs. Brigham, West Bay City; Captain Armstrong and daughter, of Bay City. Miss Frank Stafford had the honor of christening the boat.

1892 Description of shipyard. - Added Aug., 2009.

1892 – Railway Locomotives and Cars - July, 1892


Page 326.

One of the largest ship-yards on the great lakes, which may be considered a typical lake yard, is the establishment of F. W. Wheeler & Company, at Bay City, Mich. Here both wooden and steel vessels are built, and a great variety of work is done. A view recently taken of the steel plant shows four large vessels on the stocks, although several have lated been launched, and a short account of the work done there will be interesting.

Among the vessels lately completed are Lightships Nos. 51, 52, 53 and 54 for the Lighthouse Department, No. 51 having been launched April 23 and Nos. 52 and 53 together on May 7. These ships were described and illustrated in the JOURNAL for August, 1891, and the plans and specifications there given have been completely carried out with but one change – a compound engine, with cylinders 14 and 24 x 16 in., having been substituted for the single cylinder engine originally proposed. The fourth boat, No. 54 is nearly ready.

Another vessel nearly completed is the W. H. Gilbert, a freight boat for the Hollister line, which will be the largest carrier on the lakes. The dimensions are: Length on keel, 328 ft.; length over all, 345 ft.; breadth, 42 ft. 6 in.; depth, molded, 24 ft.; depth of hold, 12 ft. 3 ½ in.; between decks, 8 ft.; displacement on 16 ft. draft, 5,380 tons; co-efficient of fineness, 79 per cent. The four-bladed sectional propeller is 14 ft. diameter and 16 ft. 6 in. pitch; it is driven with 23-in., 37-in. And 62-in. Cylinders with 44 in. stroke. There are three cylindrical boilers 12 ft. diameter and 12 ft. 6 in. long, built to work at 160 lbs. Pressure. As with many other boats of the same class, the boilers are on the main deck, and the machinery is very far aft., the center of the high-pressure cylinder being on 14 ft. from the after side of the stern-post. She has water ballast.

The yards and machine shops are now very busy, employing 600 men; among the work lately completed are the engines for the lightships; compound engines for the twin-screw tug; compound engines for the new steamer Lora, and a triple-expansion engines for the steamer Ossifrage, which was recently cut in two and lengthened out 31 ft. 6 in. Two other steamers are being made ready, besides a steam yacht 96 ft. long, of stern.

Some large wooden vessels are also built here. The two illustrations give – from photographs for which we are indebted to Mr. Arthur K. Mosely, Draftsman of the Yard – show, the first, the steamer Ungana on the ways; the second, the launch of that ship, which took place in April. Other wooden ships in progress are a duplicate of the Uganda, nearly completed, and a schooner to tow behind her. The latter was launched May 31; she is 240 ft. keel, 39 ft. 6 in. beam, 17 ft. 6 in. deep, and has four masts.

The Uganda is owned by James McBrier and others, of Erie, Pa.; she is expected to carry 2,400 tons of ire ore, or from 95,000 to 100,000 bushels of corn on 16 ft. draft. Her dimensions are: Length between perpendiculars, 290 ft.; length over all 308 ft. 6 in.; beam, molded, 40 ft.; beam, extreme, 41 ft.; depth, molded 23 ft. The engine is a triple-expansion, with cylinders 20 in., 32 in. and 54 in. x 42 in. stroke., and there are two boilers 11 ft. 6 in. in diameter and 12 ft. long, built to carry 160 lbs. Pressure. The captain's cabin is very handsomely fitted up, and all the appointments of the ship are of the best kind.

The fame of this ship has extended beyond the lakes, and the sending of two freighter steamers to the Atlantic Coast was noted some time ago. The firm has also just closed a contract to build a large steel tug for W. G. Wilmont & Company, of New Orleans, La. This boat will be 110 ft. long, 23 ft. beam and 11 ft. extreme depth. The propeller will be four-bladed, 9 ft. 3 in. in diameter; the shaft will be 8 in., driven by a triple-expansion engine with cylinders 16 in., 24 in. and 40 in. x 28 in. stroke. The working pressure will be 160 lbs., and the piston speed about 500 ft. per minute. The boiler will be 12 ft. 6 in. in diameter and 12 ft. 8 in. long. The main deck houses will be of iron, and the boat will have the latest improvements, including two steam capstans, steam steering gear, electric light plant with search light, a donkey boiler and Wheeler condenser. She will be specially adapted for the New Orleans towing service.

It is understood that the success of this tug will be followed by other orders from the sea-coasts.

1892 Ocean vessels. - Added Aug., 2009.

Report on the Internal Commerce of the United States, 1892

Page 47.

The lake shipyards have, during the past few years, demonstrated their ability to turn out work of the very best character at a price as low as prevails in the best shipyards on the coast. In the fall of 1890 the steel steamer Mackinaw, capacity 4,000 tons, was sent to the Atlantic coast from a lake shipyard. This is one of two sister ships built by Wheeler & Company at West Bay City for ocean trade. The Mackinaw was launched at Bay City, towed to Buffalo, cut in two sections, taken by in this shape through the Welland and St. Lawrence canals, and put together at Montreal. The total extra expense occasioned by these processes was about $10,000. In the spring of 1891 the Keweenaw, sister ship to the Mackinaw, was launched at Bay City in two sections. Each section was towed separately to Montreal, where they were put together. Both these vessels have been giving excellent satisfaction in the coastwise and foreign trade on the ocean.

1892 Great Lakes Largest Steamer. - Added Aug., 2009.

1892 – Journal of American Society of Naval Engineers, Inc., 1892

Page 603.

The Largest Steamer on the Great Lakes. -- This title is properly attributed to the mammoth steamer which is being constructed at the shipyard of F. W. Wheeler & Co., West Bay City, Mich., for the Bessemer Steamship Company, of Cleveland, O. The longest lake steamer now afloat is the Sir. William Fairbairn, which measures 434 feet over all. The new boat will be 42 feet longer, or 476 feet in length over all. On the keel the boat will be 456 feet in length, and the breadth of beam will be 50 feet, while the depth of hold will be 29 feet. The capacity at 6,100 tons of iron ore.

The machinery will consist of a quadruple expansion engine, with cylinders, 26 ½, 37, 54 ½ and 80 inches in diameter by 42 inches stroke. Steam will be supplied by four foot steel boilers, allowed 200 pounds pressure. These will each be 13 feet 4 inches in diameter by 11 feet 6 inches in length, and are being constructed by Wickes Bros., East Saginaw, Mich.

Page 660.

Robert W. Wilmot and Wm. H. Brown. -- Few vessels built on the lakes have attracted more attention than the ocean-going steel tugs Robert W. Wilmot and Wm. H. Brown, the former owned by W. G. Wilmot, of New Orleans, and the latter by W. H. Brown, of Pittsburgh. Both were built by F. W. Wheeler & Co., of West Bay City, Mich., and both are intended for service on the Gulf of Mexico. They are the largest and most powerful tugs in the United States, and are fitted with everything in the way of modern appliances used on ships. The Wm. H. Brown was built very rapidly. Her keel was laid September 2, 1896; fifty days later (October 21) she was launched, and she left the shipyard November 11 under her own steam.

The principle dimensions of these tugs are: Length over all, 156 feet 8 inches; length between perpendiculars, 143 feet 4 inches; moulded beam, 28 feet; moulded depth, 17 feet. On account of the very powerful machinery with which they are fitted, and the requirement that they should be able to cross the Atlantic safely, the tugs were made very strong, their scantlings exceeding the highest requirements of the standard registers. Accommodations for owners and crew are provided in a steel deck house 16 feet wide, extending well forward and aft. In this deck house are located the dining rooms, commodious room for owners, and towing machine room. The pilot house and texas, in which are the captain's and mates' rooms, are above the deck house and are also built of steel. The interiors of the pilot house, dining room, engine room, and owners' and officers' rooms are pannelled with mahogany. Large sidelights are fitted wherever necessary. A distilling plant of 2,000 gallons capacity per day is located in the engine room, and a fresh-water receiving tank, holding 1,00o gallons, is place in the hold forward. Aft of the engine room is a dunnage room about 11 feet in length and extending across entire width of the ship. One of the American Ship Windlass Co.'s steam windclasses is placed forward and a steam capstan aft. In the after end of the deck house is a steam-towing machine, having 14 by 14-inch cylinders, also of American Ship Windlass make, and a wire cable of 1 Ύ inches diameter and 200 fathoms length. The steam steering engine is of Williamson Bros.' (Philadelphia) make. There is also a complete electric plant on board, with incandescent lights for all parts of the vessel and a search-light on top of pilot house. The rigging in both tugs is from two steel spars. There is a full set of sails to be used in case of emergency.

The type of engine fitted in both tugs is inverted, direct-acting surface-condensing, triple-expansion, with cylinders 20, 32 ½ and 55 inches, and a common stroke of 36 inches. The cylinders are placed in the order high-pressure, intermediate-pressure and low-pressure. The low-pressure cylinder has a double-ported slide valve, and the intermediate-pressure and high-pressure have single-ported piston valves with spring rings. All valves are worked by the Stephenson double-bar link motion, with adjustable cut-off arrangement, and the valve motion is controlled by a steam reversing gear.

The bedplate is of the box-rider type, cast in one piece with five large main journals. The front columns are of the straight box type, provided with the necessary brackets and journals to support the reverse shaft, and the back columns are cast on the condenser with large bearing surface for the crosshead slippers. The condenser is cast in three sections, having ground joints strongly bolted together, and it contains a cooling surface of 3,000 square feet.

The crankshaft is of wrought iron with steel pins and of the built-up type, 11 inches diameter, with cranks set at angles 120' degrees apart. The thrust-shaft has eight solid thrust-collars, forged on, and the thrust-bearing is of the ordinary horseshoe type, with eight driving collars, faced with anti-friction metal. The propeller-shaft is 11 ½ inches in diameter in the stern-bearing, which consists of cast-iron sleeve in halves, and four sections, 4 feet 6 inches long, arranged so that the sleeve can be without unshipping rudder or propeller. The propeller is of the section type, cast steel, four blades, and secured to shaft by taper and nut.

Connections rods are of wrought iron with upper ends forked to suit crosshead, and the usual bolt connections. The crossheads are of wrought iron with double gudgeons and the slipper forged on. Piston rods are the best machinery steel with tapered ends and nuts for securing pistons and crossheads. The pistons are of cast iron in H. P. and I. P. cylinders, and of cast steel of conical shape in L. P. cylinder. The engine is fitted complete with balance pistons for I. P. and L. P. cylinder valves, balanced throttle valve, worm-pinch gear, cooler service, relief valves for cylinders and valve chests, and all necessary instruments, such as steam and vacuum gauges, clock and revolution counter, and the cylinders are neatly lagged with sheet steel. Both air and circulating pumps are of the independent duplex type, having bronze rods and lined with brass. Condenser and air pumps are so designed that the engine can be worked jet condensing at any time.

Steam is furnished at 180 pounds working pressure by two return-tubular cylinders boilers, 12 ½ by 12 ½ feet, having three 40 inch Adamson furnaces. A 50 inch fan is provided for forced ventilation in fire-hold. When engines are running at 800 feet piston speed per minute, under 180 pounds steam pressure, these vessels are expected to develop a speed of 20 miles an hours. -- “Marine Review.”

Page 902.

S. F. B. Morse. -- There was launched at the Wheeler shipyard at West Bay City, July 31, the steamer Samuel F. B. Morse, building for the Bessmer Steamship Co., and the largest freight-carrying steamer on the Great Lakes. The launch was characterized by no ceremony of any kind. It had been planned for the afternoon previous, but an unavoidable delay gave opportunity for the grease on the ways to dry, so that when it was attempted to launch her the steamer could not be moved, and even the employment of hydraulic jacks proved ineffectual. The Samuel F. B. Morse, which has attracted much attention by reason of her superior size and the expectation that she will break all known cargo records for the lakes when she goes into commission, is 476 feet over all, 456 feet keel, 50 feet beam and 29 feet deep.

Probably the most distinctive characteristic of the vessel is the exceptionally heavy construction throughout. Her displacement on a draught of 17 feet will be 10,500 tons. The engines, which were built by Wheeler & Co., are quadruple expansion, with four Scotch boilers, where were manufactured by Wickes Bros., of East Saginaw, Mich., are each 13 feet 4 inches in diameter by 11 feet 6 inches long, with a steam pressure of 200 pounds per square inch.

The vessel has fourteen hatches, two smokestacks and two steel masts. The Morse is fitted with steam-steering gear furnished by the Globe Iron Works Co., of Cleveland; steam windlass and deck engines by the American Ship Windlass Co., of Providence, R. I.; pumps by Dean Bros., of Indianapolis, Ind.; and a very complete electric-lighting plant by the General Electric Co., of New York. The steamer has the usual accommodations for the crew, all in deck houses. The unforeseen conditions governing her construction make it impossible to give an approximate estimate of the cost, although the original estimate was in the neighborhood of $250,000. -- “Marine Riview.”

1893 The Mackinaw Ship. - Added Aug., 2009.

1893 – Marine Engineer and Naval Architect, 1893.


The inland navigation of the great lakes of North America assumes increased importance day by day, and a whole network of canal has been constructed, and to permit the vessels which frequent them to have access to the river St. Lawrence. But in spite of the success attained in making these canals, and although they cannot yet accommodate vessels of sufficiently large tonnage. To avoid this inconvenience (we learn from the Genie Civil), Messrs. Wheeler & Co., of West Bay City, Michigan, have conceived the idea of building large vessels which can be separated into two parts, to be taken to pieces at the entrance to the Welland Canal, which unites Lake Erie with Lake Ontario at Port Tolborn, and then to be put together again in the docks at Montreal. Below that town, of course, it is possible for vessels with a maximum draught of water to descend the St. Lawrence and thus proceed to sea. The first of those vessels, the Mackinaw, has recently been launched on Lake Michigan. She has a gross tonnage of 3,600 tons. Her length is 285 ½ ft., depth 29 ft., and beam 40 ½ ft. The hull is built entirely of steel, with a double bottom and water ballast. The engines are of the triple-expansion type, with boilers of corrugated plates capable of standing a very high pressure of steam.

The Mackinaw left the building yard at the end of October, 1890, and was taken to Buffalo to receive her engines, which were to propel her at a speed of of 12 knots an hour. There she was places on soaped stocks and one of the rows of rivets was cut for the full length of the joints following the line made by the joining of the plates. Each of the two parts is closed by a stout bulkhead, placed behind these joints. Then, by applying a tackle to one of the parts of the vessel, it was drawn to the basin. The ends of the plates which were left exposed were protected by open planks. The second part of the vessel was treated in similar fashion.

The portion which carries the machinery is carefully balanced, for without being ballasted its draught at the two extremities being less than an inch. The front portions ought to have 100 tons of ballast.

The vessel thus cut in two was taken to the entrance of the Welland Canal and descended Lake Ontario, the after portion proceeding under its own steam at 70 revolutions of the screw per minute, and proceeding stern first. The other portion was towed Having traverses without trouble 43 locks and many rapids, they both reach Montreal in about 11 days. There the converse operation to that which had taken place at Buffalo was performed. The two sections, places on greased ways, were drawn together, and fitted into one another without difficulty, and the vessel put afloat, when she proceeded with her cargo to New York.

Messrs. Wheeler & Co.'s idea is not new, however, as our American cousins believe. We can instance the shipyard of Creusot, at Chalon-sur-Saone, where the same method is frequently employed for taking to Lyons vessels which may be too long for the docks they have to pass.

1898 Shipyard. - Added Aug., 2009.

1898 – Annual Report of the Bureau of Labor & Industrial Statistics,
State of Michigan, 1898.

Page 154.

The largest ship-building plant upon the lakes is situated at West Bay City and owned by F. W. Wheeler & Co. This plant was first established in 1877 as a wooden shipyard. Success in business and a national reputation for workmanship caused the firm in 1889 to remodel and enlarge their plant until it became what it now is, the largest steel ship-building plant upon the lakes, having a valuation of over $500,000. This firm, since it was established in 1877, has built and launched 128 vessels with a total estamated valuation of over $15,000,000. Thirty-two of these vessels were built of steel, four of them are light-ships and were built for the United States government, two others were large steamers built for and at present are engaged in commerce upon the Atlantic Ocean, while three are ocean tugs, also doing duty in that capacity. This plant can have under construction at one time steel vessels with an enormous valuation of over two million dollars. When running full capacity there are employed twenty-five hundred persons, an average wage of $2.50 per day for mechanics and from $1.25 to $1.50 per day for others, with a monthly pay roll of $65,000. During the month of October, 1897, this firm contracted with John D. Rockefeller of the Bessemer Steamship Co., for the building of three steam vessels, one steamer and two consorts, which when completed will be the three largest vessels upon fresh water, altogether carrying over 20,000 tons of iron ore at a single trip. With the completion of the contemplated 20-foot channel, their carrying capacity will be greatly increased. The steamer's dimensions are 475 feet over all, 455 by 50 feet keel beam, and 25 ½ feet deep, exceeding in all dimensions anything now afloat upon the lakes. The barges will be 450 by 50 feet keel beam and 28 ½ feet deep, carrying 7,000 gross tons each. These three boats will cost in the neighborhood of $600,000. In connection with the building cost of these boats, this firm has bids for and are fully confident that they will receive contracts for other large boats to be built at their yards this winter; proving most conclusively that the long looked for prosperity has at last arrived at this institution and that Michigan's part in the commerce of the world is on a decided increase.

1902 Article. - Added Aug., 2009.

Transactions of the Royal Institution of Naval Architects, 1902.

Page 237.

Another cantilever overhead traveling crane of the Brown type was fitted a few years ago at the yard of F. W. Wheeler Company, West Bay City, Michigan, and was placed in the same lines as, and end to, a Brown gantry crane with single cantilever arm – this latter crane will be described later. When the large Lake yards were consolidated, and the American Shipbuilding Company formed, the West Bay City cantilever was moved to the plant of the Detroit Dry Dock Company, Detroit, Michigan, and its overhang increased. This crane, as originally fitted at the Wheeler yard, was operated by steam and had the following characteristics: --

    Overall length of crane – 144 ft. 8 in.
    Maximum arm of crane – 67 ft. 6 in.
    Height of crane above runway track – 15 ft. 10 in.
    Height of crane above ground – 59 ft.
    Gauge of track – 15 ft.
    Designed load on maximum arm – 8,000 lbs.
    State load on arm of 42 ft. 6 in. -- 25,000 lbs.

Since the crane was moved to the Detroit yard the arm has been lengthened one panel, and the capacity of the crane at extreme arm has been reduced to 6,000 lbs. The crane is now operating on a wood trestle 500 ft. long, which was moved from West Bay City with the crane. This wood trestle, together with the original crane, is shown on Plate XXVIII., Fig. 1.

Page 242.

One of the best examples of a real gantry crane, with single cantilever extension, is that now in operation at the American Shipbuilding Company's plant at West Bay City, Michigan. This crane was designed and built by the Brown Hoisting and Conveying Machine Company twelve years ago. It is steam driven, and runs on a wood trestle. The steadying end of the gantry travels on a track close up to the punch shed's open side, while the main gantry crane track is on a trestle close to the building berth, the trestle frame forming staging supports. The crane runs the length of the punch shed, picking material up from any part of the shop front, and trolleying it to any part of the ship, being built in the berth that is covered by the cantilever arm of the crane. Only one building berth is covered with this arrangement, and the vessels launch sideways into a creek. Plate XXXI., Fig. 4, shows the general arrange of the crane, shop and building berth.

1907 launching of Steamer McIntosh. - Added Sept., 2010.

Marine Review – Cleveland, January 3, 1907

Page 21.


The bulk freighter H. P. McIntosh, building at the West Bay City yard of the American Ship Bulding Co. for the Gilchrist Transporation Co., of Cleveland, was launched on Wednesday of this week and was christened by Miss Olive Marie McIntosh in honor of her father. The loyalty of the men to the shipyard during the present trouble with labor was recognized by the board of trade of Bay City, a luncheon being tendered to the men by the board of trade after the lunch, the business men of Bay City acting as waiters. The party from Cleveland included Mr. H. P. McIntosh, J. C. Gilchrist, F. W. Hart, Capt. J. L. Weeks, James Mitchell and Robert Logan.

The McIntosh is a duplicate of the Steamer Gen. Garretson, and is 540 ft. beam and 31 ft. deep. She has sixteen hatches spaced 24-ft. Centers. Her engines are triple-expansion with cylinders 22 ½ , 36 and 60 in. diameters by 42-in. Stroke, supplied with steam from two Scotch boilers, 13 ft. 9 in. in diameter and 11 ½ ft. long, fitted with Ellis & Eaves draft and allowed 180 lbs. Pressure. Capt. W. E. Stewart will sail the McIntosh.

Additional Notes:

    Brief history:

  • Frank W. Wheeler had his first shipyard in 1876, before joining up with Albert A. Crane in 1879. The shipyard's location was just north of the Veterans Memorial Park in Bay City.
  • After Crane departed the partnership, the business went under the name of F.W. Wheeler & Company, and the business name wasn't incorporated until 1889.
  • In 1900 the business was sold to The American Ship Building Company, at which time it was renamed, "West Bay City Shipbuilding," but later they named it to American Shipbuilding West Bay City.
  • In 1908 the shipyard which closed. The Defoe Boat and Motor Works after being forced out of its east side location for construction of the Wenonah Park, they move to the former location of the Wheeler shipyard.

    1896 Locomotive Firemen's Magazine (Page 339).

  • Fourteen Hundred men employed in the shipyard of Wheeler & Co., at Bay City, Mich., struck on March 28 against the check system of payment.
Related Notes & Pages

Frank W. Wheeler

Related pages:
Wheeler, Frank W., bio.
Pictorial: Wheeler Shipyd
NY Times 1892 Article -
Johnson, Levi
Like, James E.
Williams, Geo. F.
Internet References:
[New York Times, 1892]
Article giving a detailed description of Wheeler's shipyard.
People Referenced
Armstrong, Eva
Armstrong, Richard Capt.
Brigham, Mrs.
Brown, W.H.
Corrigan, Agnes
Corrigan, Patrick
Crane, Albert A.
Davis, Albert Mrs.
Forbes, William
Gilchrist, J.C.
Hart, F.W.
Jeffrey, Frank
Keefer, Josey K.
McBrier, James
McIntosh, H. P.
McIntosh, Olive M.
Mitchell, James
Moots, William
Mosely, Arthur K.
Rockefeller, John D.
Stafford, Frank Miss.
Stafford, W.R.
Stewart, W.E.
Symons, J.W. Mrs.
Weeks, J.L.
Wheeler, Frank W.
Wilmont, W.G.
Subjects Referenced
Albion, MI
American Shipbuilding Co.
American Ship Windlass Co.
Bay City, MI
B.C. & Cleveland Trans.
Bessemer Steamship Co.
Brown Machine Co.
Buffalo, NY
Cleveland, OH
Chalon-sur-Saone, FR.
Dean Bros.
Detroit, MI
Detroit Dry Dock Co.
East Saginaw, MI
Erie, PA
General Electric Co.
Globe Iron Works
Hillsdale, MI
Hollister Line
Indianapolis, IN
Lake Erie
Lake Michigan
Lake Ontario
Lake Superior
Lighthouse Dept., Gov.
Montreal, Ont., Can.
New Orleans, LA
New York
Philadelphia, PA
Port Hope, MI
Port Huron, MI
Port Tolborn
Providence, RI
Saginaw, MI
Saginaw River, MI
St. Lawrence Canal
St. Lawrence River
Ward Line
Welland Canal
West Bay City, MI
Western Transportation Co.
W.G. Wilmont & Co.
Wheeler & Crane Co.
Wickes Bros.
Williamson Co.
Vessles Referenced:
  • Clyde (steamer)
  • Connauaugh
  • Fred MacBrier
  • Galaten
  • Gen. Garretson
  • Keewenaw
  • Lightships
  • Lycoming
  • Mackinaw
  • McIntosh
  • R.W. Wilmot
  • S.F.B. Morse
  • Sr Wm. Fairbairn
  • W.H. Brown
  • W.H. Gilbert
  • W.R. Stafford
  • Uganda
  • Related Photos

    Brown gantry crane.

    W. H. Brown, tug.

    W.H. Gilbert, tug.

    Frank Jeffrey

    Frank Jeffrey was a former employee of the F. W. Wheeler Company, having worked for them for two years during the early 1880s. Afterward he continued in the shipbuilding trade for various other companies until he landed a job as superintendent of the Detroit Shipbuilding Company.

    Mr. Jeffrey was born on Oct. 28, 1860, in Scotland where he learned the shipbuilding trade prior to coming to American in 1881. He was married in Bay City on Jan. 28, 1888 to Agnes Corrigan, daughter of Patrick Corrigan. They had two children: Lilly N., b. 1889; and William b. 1892.
    WRITINGS: History As It Was Written Then.