Safe Passage: Aids to Navigation on the St. Lawrence

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Photograph
Tug "Scout", buoy sevice, Lachine, QC, 1902
Paul Jobin
1902, 20th century
Silver salts on paper mounted on card - Gelatin silver process
8 x 10 cm
Gift of M. Paul Jobin
MP-1986.7.2.10
© McCord Museum
Description
Keywords:  Photograph (77678) , steamer (448) , Transportation (2517)
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Keys to History

Caring for Lighthouses
Tender Ships
The use of gas of different types in buoys and lighthouses required that the lamps be serviced on a regular basis. Government ships such as this one were used for that purpose. The Scout was built in Cardinal, Ontario, and serviced the navigation aids on the St. Lawrence between Montreal and Kingston.

In 1906, a terrible tragedy occurred on the Scout. Three buoys on its deck were being refilled with acetylene when they exploded, killing three crew members and the captain. The ship was, however, repaired and it served until 1934.

  • What

    The Scout was a wooden hull buoy tender measuring 22.8 metres long and 173 gross tons. It was driven by a dual-propeller steam engine.

  • Where

    The Scout was built in Cardinal, Ontario, by J.R. Miller for the Department of Railways and Canals. In 1906, while docked in Kingston, it was badly damaged by a gas explosion.

  • When

    Built in 1900, this buoy tender was completely rebuilt in 1902, when it was transferred to the Department of Marine and Fisheries. After being damaged by a explosion in 1906, it was repaired and used until 1934.

  • Who

    The Scout was rebuilt by the Davis Drydock Company of Kingston in 1902. Its hull, which originally measured 22.8 metres in length, was extended to 32 metres.