Cape Breton's Magazine

> Issue 41 > Page 56 - Louisbourg Fishermen Rescue U.S. Seamen, 1942

Page 56 - Louisbourg Fishermen Rescue U.S. Seamen, 1942

Published by Ronald Caplan on 1986/1/1 (201 reads)

!S.C. 709 in ice on the bar, I mouth of Louisbourg Harbour ~ ?? '" • -' -"' ?? " i''**?i'l?? was with the Fishery Department at that time--he had called Ottawa and reported it, because it was in his jurisdiction, too. Ottawa told him that the Navy said, 'The salvage operations were progressing favour? ably. ' And there was nobody off then. Those men were freezing to death. Some? thing had to be done," The three-masted Norwegian barkentine An- gelus, Captain Jensen, was in port. Four crewmen, Walter Boudreau, Moncton, N. B., Clarence Mullins and John Hillier, Belle- oram, Nfld., and Joseph Chiasson, New Wa? terford, N. S., took two dories up to Bury? ing Ground Point (now part of the National Park), and launched them. Contending with the wind and sea, they managed to row to the stricken ship. At the same time, L. H. Cann, owner-manager of a ship repair shop on the harbourfront, and Earl Lewis, Fish? eries Inspector, met with Louisbourg fish? ermen, and a rescue attempt by them was de? cided upon. The rescue crew from Louis? bourg was made up of the Bagnell brothers, Charlie, Nelson and Joe, Wilbert Goyetche, Ed Levy and Earl Lewis. They used Goy? etche 's boat, the W.G., which had a shal? low draft, sometimes used as a pilot boat and mainly to deliver stores to ships for Lewis 6c Co, Charlie Bagnell: "There was quite a lot of ice in the harbour at?Che time. When we were going down, we met one of the pilots-- 'Oh, damn it,' he said, 'you can't get near that, the ocean's a sea out there, you can't get near it.' We went down any? way, to have a look. Had to wait for a tug? boat to bring a boat down from the old town, that was up in the upper harbour. When he brought her down and docked her. then he made a road for us out, broke through the ice for us." Captain Jack Savory of the Dominion Coal Co. tug, Ascupart, towed the W.G. as close as possible to the S.C. 709 through the ice. Ed Levy: "Because we couldn't pound our way to it--we'd smash the boat to pieces." (The ice was solid?) "No, no, it was kind of drift ice, it was cakes of ice. But it had been driven down here in the bottom of the harbour. Where the wind was southeast the night before, now the wind was off nor- west. But we didn't have to go very far-- out, oh, perhaps a quarter of a mile through the ice. No more. And we got clear water. She was wide and our boat was only narrow and we went in behind her, kept right up tight to the stern. And we went out, over the bar, where they said no boat could go. Well, cripes, I'd go and Joe Bag? nell 'd go, Nelson used to go out through there every day when we were lobster fish? ing. It's not a very wide space." (Charlie: "Used to call it 'the tail end of the bar,'") "Yeah, it was as wide, I suppose, as the boat shop is long." (Fifty feet.) "Yeah. Of course, she only drew two feet of water." (Charlie: "Not any more.") "'Cause she was built with a shoal draft. And she went out over." Charlie Bagnell: "So we got out and got o- ver the bar, and it was just a mass of white foam. First time we went over, we rounded up, we couldn't make it, we had to make a second circle. The crew were all standing on the deck, and were they ever cold--they couldn't straighten out their hands. We threw a line up, and I don't I Take a Value home today. .... ' CAPE BRETON SHOPPING PLAZA -- SYDNEY RIVER '"''SSHSmi'''' S Now WP ArP '5 MAYFLOWER MALL --GRAND LAKE ROAD Hi?mof??yw • f* || I ''??v Yvv'/'iwv-F PORT. HAWKESBURY SHOPPING CENTRE -- PORT HAWKESBURY '4'JIf' ?? (57)
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