Major Great Lakes Vessels
(Vessels measuring 1000 or more gross registered tons)
I have studied the history of Great Lakes vessels off and on for more than seventy years (my first grade-school-era notebook dates from the middle 1930s) and until now most of my records have been in pencil on home grown data sheets, in notebooks and on miscellaneous sheets and scraps of paper. This is an attempt to summarize my information in formal individual vessel histories. Sheets for vessels not yet included (which includes most vessels added to the fleet after the 1980s, which are very adequately covered by other sources) will be added as time is available to organize the information. The final total should be in the neighborhood of 2000 vessels.
The notes in my files are from many many sources, some not fully documented by me, and accordingly some are good and unfortunately some others not so good, and therefore undoubtedly contain errors. And for many of the vessels I don’t have as much information as I’d like but have presented what I have. I will correct errors as I find them or as they are sent to me. I therefore earnestly solicit corrections where they are in order, and suggested additions to the information I should be including to make the record of the individual vessel more complete. Please make use of any of this information, with or without attribution, but I would hope that in return you will feel morally obligated to notify me of any errors or omissions you find (by mail, phone or email below) so that future users will be getting the best information possible.
Why publish this now, in an unfinished state and knowing there are errors in the text? In the foreword to his 1967 study The Lakers of World War I Father Edward Dowling, the late dean of Great Lakes historians, said, “The author is convinced that the best way to learn more about ships is to write and publish what he already knows, be that complete or not. If what he has published is complete and correct, other competent ship historians will confirm his findings. If incomplete, they will invariably supply additional data.” He goes on to describe the development of his Lakers study. He published an early draft “and asked readers for more information. The response was prompt, generous and encouraging.” He did it again a few years later in another publication with the same request and got the same responses. The study as published in 1967 he felt was finally complete and correct. I am only humbly following the lead of Father Dowling.
Before accessing the individual sheets, please read the definitions I have used in recording the information.
Sterling P. Berry
1085 Country Club Drive, St.Clair Shores, MI 48082
email address: spberry AT att.net
My deepest gratitude is due Connie Nassios of Burbank, California for designing and setting up this website. Without her enthusiastic and committed efforts this project would still be long in the future. In addition, it is my good fortune that she married my nephew Ken Berry and gave me my beautiful grandniece in their daughter Abbi.