steam ship gloucester

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At 7:00 PM on the evening of March 15th, 1912, the four-masted schooner Herbert D. Maxwell left her anchorage near the mouth of the Magothy River and sailed southeast across the Chesapeake Bay toward Kent Island. Built in Maine and designed to haul lumber, the 186 foot cargo ship carried 1150 tons of fertilizer from Baltimore bound for Wilmington, North Carolina.  At her helm was her captain and master, William Quillan accompanied by his brother Elay and first mate J.C. Scott. She carried an additional crew of six deck hands. Since winds were mostly calm, it had been slow going down the Chesapeake.  After a drowsy sail to just south of Sandy Point, the wind completely died causing Captain Quillan to drop anchor once again.  The crew slept until roused by a building northeast breeze at 3:00 AM.  Quillan gave the order to the mate to get underway. After pulling anchor and setting sail, The Maxwell ran under clear skies before a 15-knot wind for about 40 minutes when her lookout made an ominous call, “Lights of a steamer, dead-on ahead!”  Three minutes later, at 4:44 AM on March 16th, the wooden schooner was ripped apart by the 3200-ton northbound steamship S.S. Gloucester.  She sank quickly carrying the first mate and three other crew members to their deaths.  Read More!