Paddle steamer wrecks in 1839 Hurricane.
Wooden paddle steamers sunk January 1839 in Mersey River
Duke of Bridgewater, Runcorn Steam Packet, built circa 1823
Eclipse, built Lang & Denny, Dumbarton, 1826
174 grt, 98 nrt, 108 x 18 x 11 ft, engines 150hp by Robert Napier, Glasgow
ex-Runcorn Ferry, in 1839 serving Bangor, Caernarfon, Porthdinllaen, Barmouth weekly from Liverpool.
Refloated and repaired at Runcorn.
Admiral, Seacombe Ferry, built Mottershead & Hayes, Liverpool, 1835
All three vessels were in the Mersey when the hurricane force winds
caused big waves that sank each of them. Records show that the Eclipse
was refloated and eventually put back in
service. The Admiral is listed as lost - and a new large wooden paddle
steamer called Admiral was built in 1840 at Port Glasgow for the Glasgow -
Liverpool service. The Duke of Bridgewater was raised and offered for
sale at Runcorn.
There was loss of life - a fireman from the Eclipse, 2 crew aboard the Admiral and all 7 crew of the Duke of Bridgewater [note some confusion in reports between the Bridgewater packet (which served Ulverston etc from Liverpool at that date) and the Duke of Bridgewater packet to Runcorn].
Liverpool Mercury - Friday 11 January 1839
Admiral, Seacombe Ferry boat, and the Eclipse and Duke of Bridgewater steamers, are sunk in the river.
Morning Chronicle - Wednesday 09 January 1839
The [Duke of] Bridgewater, Runcorn steamer, a total wreck under the wall of the Brunswick Dock pier.
The Admiral, Seacombe-ferry steam boat, sunk a little further on, and only a small part of her topmast could be seen.
GEORGE'S PIER-HEAD. - The Runcorn steam-boat, Eclipse, went down. The fireman, an old and worthy servant of the company, missed his footing in attempting to get ashore, and, falling into the river, was not again seen.
Leeds Times - Saturday 19 January 1839
The accounts report 14 wrecked by the Brighton, 14 by the Pennsylvania, about 53 by the Lockwoods, and 2 the sloop Conway, 4 in flat, 7 the crew of the Runcorn steamer [Duke of] Bridgewater, 1 in the steamer Eclipse, 3 riggers swamped in boat, 2 in the Seacombe steamer.
Liverpool Mail - Saturday 26 January 1839
RUNCORN. The Eclipse Packet. This steam-packet, which was wrecked in the late hurricane, has been got up. Her decks and cabins were completely carried away. but her engines were not found to be seriously damaged. On Monday, she was purchased by Mr. Brundrit, ship builder, Runcorn, for the sum of £310. The Bridgewater packet has not yet been got up.
Chester Courant - Tuesday 19 February 1839
To be sold by private treaty.
THE WRECK of the DUKE OF BRIDGEWATER STEAMER as it now lies at Mr. Mason's yard, Runcorn, together with all the rigging, spars, chains etc., as well as the Engine and Boiler, which had a throrough repair in October last. As she will be permitted (if required) to continue to ply upon the station between Runcorn and Liverpool, it presents an eligible opportunity for an advantageous speculation - Further particulars apply.. Runcorn Feb 15