Here are a few more details of the marine and boating history of Funter Bay. With the number of steamships, fishing boats, tugs, barges, etc that have used Funter Bay, posts on this topic could likely continue for a while!
To follow up on the cannery tenders, I’ve tracked down the Thlinket Packing’ Co’s Barron F (seen in a previous post).In the 1940s and 50s it was owned by the Nakat Packing Corp. out of Ketchikan. In was renamed the Frank F (same registry number) sometime between 1950 and 1965, and became a fishing vessel based out of Oregon. Currently it is listed in the USCG database as based in San Diego. Here’s a photo of the boat from 2007 compared to the 1919 photo:
|© John Kohnen||Barron F in 1919|
And this appears to be the same boat in 2010, described as a squid boat from San Pedro CA. It’s looking somewhat modified with trolling poles and a new paint job:
The Frank F seems to be a popular boat with local artists as well!
The former Barron F looks a lot like the Morzhovoi, which I believe is the wreck at Coot Cove. Both were built in Seattle in 1917, probably by the same company (date on photo below is wrong):
Another cannery tender, the Robert Barron, was listed as belonging to Albert Kookesk (Kookesh) of Killisnoo (Angoon) in 1925, and by Matthew Kookesh of Juneau in 1950. As of April 10, 1950 it is listed as abandoned in Angoon.
In addition to boats named after the Barron family, other cannery tenders previously alluded to include some named after the Thlinket Packing Co’s product lines, the Tepee, Peasant, and Sea Rose, and the previously mentioned Buster. I could not find a record of a boat named after the Arctic Belle brand. None of these seem large enough to be the wreck on Highwater Island.
–Peasant, a 46ft 60hp gas boat built in 1926, crew of 6, registry 225554. Owned by Alaska Pacific Salmon Corp in 1930. Owned by PE Harris Co in 1945. Listed as callsign WD5837, owned by Van Baker of Blaine WA in 1965.
Tepee, a 29′, 12hp gas boat, registry 210208. Owned by Alaska Pacific Salmon Corp in 1930. Owned by PE Harris in 1945. In 1965 it was listed as owned by the US govt. in trust for the village of Kake, and used for freight.
–Sea Rose, registry 213376, 7 tons, 29′ gas fishing boat, built 1915 in Seattle. listed as abandoned in 1925.
And coming back to the Nimrod, the wreck at Nimrod Creek, here is some information on that vessel. According to the Merchant Vessel registry, the Nimrod was a 53ft wood-hulled tugboat, built in 1903 in Chuckanut Washington. It is listed at various times as having either a diesel or gas engine, of around 135hp.
The H.W. McCurdy Marine History of the Pacific Northwest mentions the Nimrod: “At Seattle, Capt. C.W. Waterman…. later adding the 53-foot gas tug Nimrod of 1903, and forming the Waterman towing Co, which also remained active on Puget Sound for some years”
Here’s a classified ad run in the June 2, 1918 Sunday Oregonian by Capt. Waterman:
“WANTED Gas tow boat about 50 to 65 ft.. with 40 to 75 H. P.; would consider pleasure boat if power enough and boat could be converted to suit; price must be right. Address C. W. Waterman, 2210 47th av s. S. W.. Seattle, Wash.”
The Nimrod is listed in the 1963 registry as being “dismantled”. Owner Elmer P. Loose Jr. was listed as a Funter Bay resident in 1965, and also owned the Sally Ann. An Elmer Palm Loose is recorded as having passed away March 1962 at Funter Bay (some of these dates would appear to be inaccurate).
When I show people the Nimrod, they ask, “who would name their boat that?” Lots of people, it turns out! The British navy had six ships with that name, and Ernest Shackelton had a ship named the Nimrod. The USCG documentation database lists 9 boats currently with that name. Several others are listed in the historic Merchant Vessel registry.
Here is another local wreck:
-Feb 15, 1959, a 42 foot, 14 ton, 91hp gas boat, the Teddy, was abandoned at Funter. Registry 207218, built 1910 in Astoria OR and listed as a passenger boat in 1911. Listed as a fishing boat owned by Teddy Preston Childers of Funter Bay in 1958, callsign WB7995. (per Merchant Vessels of the United States: Vessels Lost). According to this document, The Teddy was being used as a ferry, and had engine trouble near Pt. Retreat in 1953. The boat was abandoned at the AAGMC mine at Funter (across the bay from the cannery).
I’m still working on tracking down the Highwater Island wreck, and I also have some commercial steamship history to investigate, so stay tuned for more boat-related posts!