Sunday, July 31, 2011

Charles W. Parker

Charles W. Parker, March 26, 1910.

The steamship Charles W. Parker was lost (vanished?) east of the southern Jersey coast, with a company of seventeen. (Berlitz, Without a Trace, p. 22.)

If the Charles W. Parker was lost off the Jersey coast, it might not be unreasonable to expect that The New York Times would have covered it. Yet so far the only article I have been able to find is this one:

ATLANTIC CITY, NJ, April 23. — The fishing schooner Charles W. Parker, Capt. Walter Lawson, and eleven men went ashore on the Inlet bar late this afternoon, and is a total wreck. The heavy seas which were running sent the vessel over on her beam end and she started to break up before the life savers could reach her.

Capt. Lawson and his men took to their dories and fought their way through the heavy surf to the shore. All were saved, and the only life lost was that of the craft's mascot, a black dog, which was washed overboard and drowned while the men in the dories were trying to rescue it. The vessel was just starting on a fishing cruise. ("Fishing Craft Wrecked," The New York Times, April 24, 1907.)

Date is off by about three years, type of vessel is wrong, and so is the number of the company. Yet, it's the only article on a lost vessel by that name, and the position is right. Given the shoddy research we've seen from Berlitz & company, I'd hazard a guess that this is the wreck he meant, until I find an account of a wreck that fits better.

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