"The past actually happened but history is only what someone wrote down." A. Whitney Brown.

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San Juan Archipelago, Washington State, United States
A society formed in 2009 for the purpose of collecting, preserving, celebrating, and disseminating the maritime history of the San Juan Islands and northern Puget Sound area. Check this log for tales from out-of-print publications as well as from members and friends. There are circa 650, often long entries, on a broad range of maritime topics; there are search aids at the bottom of the log. Please ask for permission to use any photo posted on this site. Thank you.

18 August 2017


Built in Portland, OR., in 1911
116.5' x 25.7' x 7.8'
310 G.t. / 226 N.t. 

Click image to enlarge.
Photo purchased from the Puget Sound Maritime, Seattle, WA.
Negative 955-5.
The twin-screw, gas powered freight barge WAKENA owned by Clatskanie Transportation Co and formerly operated in connection with the sternwheeler BEAVER between Portland & Clatskanie was transferred to Puget Sound in Sept 1914 by Capt. Bernt Olsen. Soon after she was sold to Border Line Transport Co. 

1915: Walter Allenby of Seattle, first mate, and August Krotz, quartermaster, were killed by carbon monoxide poisoning aboard the vessel early Nov. 1915. The WAKENA left Tacoma on the morning of 4 Nov, bound for Seattle and towing a large barge alongside. A head wind was encountered all the way to Seattle, with the result that an air pocket was apparently formed between the towing vessel and the barge at the point where the barge rested against the vessel, the gasoline engines of the freighter pumping a steady flow of lethal fumes, which were not dispelled as would normally have been the case. Allenby and Krontz were asleep in their staterooms, which were found to be full of fumes, and it was impossible to revive them upon the WAKENA's arrival in Seattle.

This standard size dated postcard is one of only a few
business documents found to represent the cannery
that operated on Harney Channel, Shaw Island, WA.
It was found in an antique rolltop desk that was once used in
the Shaw Store by proprietor 'Gene' Fowler. The desk was
being cleaned and glued together for a donation to the
Shaw Island Historical Museum. From this document, we
learn of one of the vessels that transported canned fish
and fruit produced by the Shaw Island Canning Co. 

Cannery building at the Shaw Island Landing.
The plant operated between 1911 and 1922.
This photo is dated between 1930 and 1951.
Click to enlarge. 
1925: WAKENA was sold by Border Line transportation to the LaTouche Packing Co for use as a floating cannery in the Alaska herring fishery.

          While bound for Alaska in the service of LaTouche Packing Co the motor freighter WAKENA caught fire off Nanaimo on 27 May 1925 and was completely destroyed, the officers and crew were rescued and taken to Nanaimo by tug BELLE.
Gordon Newell, editor. The H.W. McCurdy Marine History of the PNW. Superior Publishing. 1965.

1 comment:

  1. One of the died men on board of the Wakena in Nov 1915 was a younger brother of my grandfather Paul Krotz.
    His name was August Krotz (not August Krontz. This was a write failure in the Seattle Post Intelligencer from 5th Nov 1915).
    August Krotz was born 9th Jan 1891 in Stettin, Pomerania, Germany. He came in Nov 1913 from Germany to USA.
    Greetings, Andreas Krotz, akrotz (at)hotmail.de


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