CREW OF THE GOV SAFFORD.—
Story of the Wreck and the Rescue
of Capt Turpin and his Men Off
Bogue Inlet Bar.
Information was received in the city yesterday morning from Baltimore that the steamer Katahdin had arrived in that port with the crew of the ill-fated steamer Governor Safford aboard of her safe and well. This news was welcomed by every one, for the four mariners from Charleston who formed part of the crew of the Governor Safford were most popular here and for many days since their fate was doubtful, and relatives and friends were much worried.
The Governor Safford sailed from Georgetown on Thursday last with Capt Dick Turpin, of this city, in command, and Capt Fred Adair as mate, and in the engineer department Capt John Smith acted as chief, with his son, Frank Smith, as his assistant. The side-wheel steamer was conveyed by the lumber barge Katahdin, of the Atlantic Coast Lumber Company fleet of a million feet lumber carriers. The Governor Safford was to be towed to Cape Henry by the Katahdin, and then she was to proceed under her own steam to New York, where she had been sold. The Katahdin was bound for Baltimore, and after the rescue of the Safford’s crew she prceeded to her destination, from which place the following report was received from the correspondent of The News and Courier:
Baltimore, Md, July 28 — The steamer Katahdin, Capt Queen, with Capt C. M. Turpin and the crew of the sunken steamer Governor Safford on board, arrived here Sunday from Georgetown, S. C. The Safford went down Friday in rough weather, near Bogue Inlet bar.
Capt Turpin did not abandon the Safford until the water had covered the pumps. The crew rowed to the Katahdin, which was standing by. The Safford went down in seven fathoms of water about four miles from the bar. Her position is latitude 34, 37, longitude 77, 6; but she is not a menace to navigation.
The Governor Safford, which belongs to the Atlantic Coast Lumber Corporation, which also owns the Katahdin, was a side-wheel river steamboat. In tow of the Katahdin, but with her own steam up, she left Georgetown Thursday for New York. The Katahdin was to have had her in tow until Cape Henry was reached, and from there was to have proceeded to New York under her own steam.
About 5 o’clock on the afternoon she sailed the wind shifted to the eastward, the sea began to rise and the weather grew rough. Then the seams at the Safford’s guards started and she began to fill. The pumps were started, but the leaks were too big.
Capt Turpin cast off the tow line, and, conveyed by the Katahdin, ran under the Safford’s own steam.
At 7.30 o’clock the next day the water had risen in the hold to such a depth that the pumps were covered. The water was also on a level with the grate bars. Seeing that further fighting against the increasing leakage was futile, Capt Turpin decided to abandon the ship.
Besides Capt Turpin, the officers and crew of the steamer who were brought to Baltimore on the Katahdin were Mate Fred Adair, Chief Engineer John G. Smith, Assistant Engineer Peter Smith and John Francis, deck hand.
The Governor Safford was built in 1884 at Camden, N. J. and registered 307 tons gross. She was 129.6 feet long, 26 feet beam and 7.5 feet in depth. She had lately been rebuilt.
[ The News and Courier – July 29, 1908 — Charleston, SC ]