Duke of Sutherland 1882

Duke of Sutherland 1882


DUKE OF SUTHERLAND, barque : When lying in the roadstead at Timaru on the evening of May 2, 1882, the barque struck the ground, and filled with water, ultimately becoming a total wreck. An unusually heavy sea was running, and it was dead low water when the Duke of Sutherland struck. She was being loaded with grain, and had over 1,000 sacks of wheat on board, her draught being 18 ft., and there was something like 28 feet of water where she was lying. A number of the crew landed at the breakwater and reported that the barque had grounded and was making water fast. Shortly afterwards the rest of the crew, with the exception of the master, one of his officers and two others, landed in boats from the ship Ben Venue, Captain Henry Rowlands, master of the barque, landed later, and stated that shortly after 7 p.m. he felt the Duke of Sutherland quiver severely, and, imagining she had struck, at once went on deck from his cabin. He found nothing amiss, and concluded that a spar or some other floating object had struck the barque. A few minutes later she struck the bottom with a crash, and he then made signals of distress. These were answered by the ship Ben Venue. Captain McGowan immediately launching one of his boats and proceeding to the Duke of Sutherland. On examination it was found that the vessel’s sternpost had been started, and that she was making water fast. At the inquiry the evidence showed that the casualty was caused through the vessel striking the ground and starting her sternpost in an unusually heavy sea. The barque was sounded three hours before she struck and was then quite dry. The vessel was said to be unseaworthy, but this was proved incorrect. For her age and class she was a strong, well-found vessel.

The Duke of Sutherland, No. 45,590, was a wooden barque of 1,047 tons register, built at Aberdeen, in June, 1865, and her dimensions were length 201.7 ft., beam 34.3 ft., depth 21.8 ft. She was owned by Messrs. Jacobs Brothers, of London.

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