Arthur Gordon

The schooner Arthur Gordon was originally built as a steamship. She was launched at South Shields in 1854, having a steel hull, a 100 hp engine and a 32 foot long engine room. She was originally owned by the Furness Railway Company, but was sold to Barrow's James Fisher in August 1858. She was re-registered at Lancaster in September 1858, with a note on the Register that the engines had been taken out to make her a three-masted schooner.

The Arthur Gordon was reported "run down and totally lost" on the 16th March 1860 (see Source 1). Source 3 gives more details, reporting that the Arthur Gordon had been carrying 400 tons of iron ore from Barrow to Briton Ferry when she was lost by collision with the steam tug Independence, off the West Hoyle bank on Tuesday, 6th March 1860. The tug had been towing the barque JKL, of Bristol, and though she sank in only ten minutes, her crew managed to launch their boat and reach the safety of the barque. The Arthur Gordon had her side stoved in and sank five minutes after the tug, her crew managing to save themselves in their small boat and reach the steam tug British Queen.

In a court case the owners of the Arthur Gordon and the Independence blamed each other for the loss, but the judgement was against the owners of the tug. The Independence had been sighted early, WNW three miles away, by the Arthur Gordon, which was close hauled and heading NNW on the port tack, about 16 miles off Great Orme's Head. The tug was heading ENE and seemingly tried to pass astern of the brigantine by starboarding her helm at the last minute. The tug hit the starboard side of the brigantine abaft the mizzen, stoving the hull above and below the waterline. The tug's bow was pushed to starboard. The court judged that the rule that steamers should give way to close-hauled sailing vessels applied, despite the fact that the tug had a vessel in tow.

Name Year Built Gross Tons Length (feet) Breadth (feet) Depth (feet) Masts
Arthur Gordon 1854 136 182.5 20.1 12.9 3