Great storm on Lough Derg
40 tons of porter lost
All over the course of the Shannon the snowstorm was of the utmost severity. The Grand Canal Company had practically to suspend traffic, and steamers arriving at Portumna from Killaloe and Limerick report the roughest weather yet experienced on Lough Derg.
The steamer Dublin, bound from Shannon Harbour to Limerick with three barges in tow, loaded with 40 tons each of porter for Messrs A Guinness and Co’s stores, Limerick, was almost wrecked on Wednesday, but for the promptitude and presence of mind of the steamer’s crew.
She was nearing Parker’s Point, on the Clare [sic] side of the lake, when the storm was raging fiercest, and this being one of the most unsheltered spots in the course of the Shannon, heavy waves came rolling over the tug and barges and tossed them about. The strain broke the ropes which kept them in tow, and two boats with their crews broke away and went adrift, and were at the mercy of the waves.
The captain of the steamer Dublin (Patrick Moran), seeing the perilous position of the boats and crews, steered with the one boat which he had then in tow to the Tipperary side, and anchored her there in shelter, and again set out to the rescue of the two drifting barges, and after a severe struggle succeeded in getting to their rescue just as they were drifting on to the rocks at the point mentioned.
There were twenty tons each of porter stowed on the decks, and this was promptly secured by covers and lashed by ropes to rings, but notwithstanding this the barrels of porter, from the tossing about of the boats, broke through the covers and lash lines, and were lost on Lough Derg. The steamer’s master again got the barges in tow, and succeeded in bringing them on to Killaloe.
The Irish Times 31 December 1906
Posted in Economic activities, Extant waterways, Historical matters, Industrial heritage, Ireland, Irish inland waterways vessels, Operations, Safety, Shannon, Steamers, waterways, Weather
Tagged barge, Dublin, Guinness, Killaloe, Limerick, Lough Derg, parker Point, Portumna, steam, tug
At the Grand Canal Company’s half-yearly meeting on 22 February 1890, a Mr Geoghegan
[…] said he had heard from a gentleman interested in the trade between Dublin and Limerick that it often took six days for Guinness’s porter to be carried by canal from the former of these cities to the latter. The cause of this he believed was the necessity for trans-shipment at Shannon Harbour.
The Chairman disagreed:
As to the delays at Shannon Harbour there had been some, but he believed these had been caused by floods and storms in the river.
The company had commissioned Mr E Lloyd, engineer and general manager to the Warwick and Birmingham Canal Company, to inspect the Grand Canal and to advise the board. It was estimated that his survey would cost between £100 and £120. The chairman accepted that there were
[…] many matters […] which demanded immediate steps, and these entailed considerable outlay. It has been evidenced that before the property of the company could be stated to be in a thoroughly satisfactory condition some further exceptional outlay would be advisable from time to time.
At the next half-yearly meeting, held on 23 August 1890, the chairman said that the company was considering investing in a more rapid transhipment system “from our barges to the Shannon steamers” at Shannon Harbour, in accordance with Mr Lloyd’s suggestion.
The transhipment shed at Shannon Harbour in June 2008, before its canopy was removed
I do not know whether the transhipment shed at Shannon harbour, and the gantry mechanism on which goods could be loaded and unloaded under cover, was built on Mr Lloyd’s suggestion. It would be interesting to know more of the building’s history.
 The Freeman’s Journal 24 February 1890
 The Freeman’s Journal 25 August 1890
From the British Newspaper Archive run by Findmypast Newspaper Archive Limited, in partnership with the British Library.
Posted in Ashore, Built heritage, Canals, Economic activities, Engineering and construction, Extant waterways, Historical matters, Industrial heritage, Ireland, Modern matters, Operations, Safety, Sources, waterways, Waterways management
Tagged Grand Canal, Guinness, Lloyd, Shannon Harbour, transhipment shed
… in the National Archives of Ireland May 2015 document of the month.
Posted in Economic activities, Extant waterways, Ireland, Irish inland waterways vessels, Operations, Politics, Shannon, Sources, waterways
Tagged barge, boats, Dublin, Grand Canal, Guinness, Ireland, Lough Ree, Operations, pirates, Quaker Island, robbery, Shannon, theft, Waterways Ireland
T W Freeman “The town and district of Carrick-on-Shannon, Co Leitrim” in Irish Geography (Bulletin of the Geographical Society of Ireland) Vol II No 1 1949:
There is no mill in use now, though flour is sent from Rank’s in Limerick by barge to Carrick, but no farther. Before the 1939–1945 war general cargo was also brought to the town by barges which could convey 50 tons of coal; other goods included timber and galvanised iron for builders. At present, stout is the only commodity brought by barge to the solidly-built stone warehouse of the early nineteenth century, whence it is distributed for some twenty miles in every direction.
Posted in Ashore, Built heritage, Canals, Economic activities, Extant waterways, Industrial heritage, Ireland, Irish inland waterways vessels, Operations, Rail, Shannon, Sources, waterways
Tagged barge, Carrick-on-Shannon, coal, galvanised iron, Guinness, Limerick, Ranks, timber, warehouse
An Affecting Charge
The following case lately came for trial before Mr Henn QC, the new Recorder of Galway:— George Hamilton, who for twenty-five years had been in the employment of the Midland Great Western Railway Company as station-master, was indicted for stealing from a hamper some goods, the property of Sir Arthur Guinness, which were addressed to Cong, in the county Mayo. For some time a course of pilfering had been carried on, and the directors, in order to find out who were the guilty parties, employed two Dublin detectives, named Stookman and Healy, who arrived in Galway on Aug 31st, and, concealing themselves in the goods-store in empty barrels, remained on the watch all night. About one o’clock next morning they heard a noise, and observed the prisoner entering the place. Having satisfied himself that he was unseen, he took out his penknife and proceeded deliberately to cut the cords of the hamper and extract some of its contents. The detectives waited until he had taken out a bottle of vinegar, a bottle of pickles, and some cheeses, and then tied up the hamper again. They then issued from their hiding-place and seized him. He begged them for God’s sake to have mercy on his wife and family, and to leave the matter between himself and the manager, but they refused to do so, and, having called the police, gave him into custody. About twenty witnesses were examined for the prosecution, and among them the clerk of the goods store, who swore that it had been locked and the key left with the prisoner.
Mr M’Laughlin QC appealed to the sympathies of the jury, and, pointing out some alleged discrepancies in the evidence, pressed them, if they had a doubt that the prisoner took the articles with a guilty intent, to give him the benefit of it.
The Recorder, in his charge, showed that the discrepancies only proved the truth of the charge, and expressed the deep pain he felt at seeing in such a position a man who had held a respectable position, with a salary of £300 a year, and had young ladies whom he saw in court dependent upon him. He finally burst into tears.
The jury retired, and after three hours’ deliberation returned into court and stated that there was no chance of an agreement. His worship sent them back to their room, and, after being absent for another hour, they brought in a verdict of not guilty, which the Recorder stated he could not endorse, but characterised as monstrous.
The Leeds Times 12 October 1878
The Recorder, Mr Henn, was the father of T R Henn and later lived in Paradise. Sir Arthur Guinness, a stout fellow, was a descendant of this chap and had a small holiday house at Cong on Lough Corrib, where his family had many boats.
Posted in Ashore, Built heritage, Economic activities, Engineering and construction, Industrial heritage, Ireland, Irish inland waterways vessels, Operations, People, Politics, Rail, Scenery, shannon estuary, Sources, Water sports activities, waterways
Tagged boats, cheese, Clare, Corrib, detectives, estuary, Fergus, Guinness, Henn, Ireland, Midland Great Western Railway, Operations, pickles, vinegar, waterways