Barren Island, NY Yacht MYSTERY Capsizes, July 1887
TWENTY-FIVE LIVES LOST.
A PICNIC YACHT CAPSIZES IN NEW YORK BAY.
DESCRIPTION OF THE TERRIBLE CALAMITY WHICH BEFELL THE CRESCENT YACHT CLUB AND INVITED GUESTS ON A PLEASURE TRIP.
LIST OF THE LOST AND SAVED.
New York, July 12. -- The sloop yacht Mystery, with a German picnic party on board, capsized just off Barren Island, in the entrance to Jamaica Bay, early Sunday night, and many persons were drowned. The yacht was beating in toward Ruffle Bar when the accident happened. A rather stiff breeze was blowing at the time and there was a choppy sea. In going about the yacht "gybed" and at the same time a heavy puff of wind struck the vessel and sent her boom flying round with terrific force, and before the occupants of the boat, many of whom were women and children, could climb up to the windward side the vessel went over, and everyone aboard was thrown into the mainsail, which immediately sunk beneath their weight.
At the stern of the yacht was a row-boat, into which eight men climbed and pulled away, leaving the woman and children struggling in the water. A negro who saw the accident from Barren Island sprang into a row-boat and pulled out to the rescue. The tug-boat Dean saw the accident and also headed for the scene, but had to make a long detour to avoid a sandbar before the screaming, drowning mass of women and children could be reached. By this time the negro was straining every nerve in his efforts to save the picnickers. The frantic women grabbed hold of his boat on every side, and the brave fellow was in danger of being swamped every moment. Those aboard the Dean shouted to him to keep cool until the tug could come to his assistance, and had it not been for his courageous conduct, probably every one of those who were in the water would have been drowned. When the Dean finally came up the colored man had succeeded in getting fourteen women and children into his boat, and was holding fast to others in the water. The tug's people immediately took the terrified and half-drowned women and children out of the row-boat, and the negro went to the assistance of others, picking up three unconscious women, who afterward recovered, while the Dean people got two dead bodies and steamed to Ruffle Bar.
As many of the people at the picnic have little acquaintance with each other it is difficult to arrive at the exact extent of the casualty or the names of those lost, but the latest and most reliable accounts of the number of persons drowned place it at not less than twenty-five. The party were mainly from the eastern district of Brooklyn, and were known as the Cresent Yacht club. It was a nominal organization, simply for the purpose of a chowder party or a picnic. The number of invited guests are known only to the persons who extended the invitations. The following is a list of the lost and saved as far as could be learned up to 10 o'clock this morning:
Lost -- MICHAEL SCHWIND, the blind harmonica player, residence unknown.
MRS. LOUISE OBERNIER and her three children, FRANKIE, LIZZIE and CHARLIE.
MRS. WEISS, of Brunswick.
MRS. FARGO, daughter of Mrs. Weiss, and her child.
ANNIE BADER, seventeen years old, 71 Morrill Street, Brooklyn.
PHILIP and FREDDY LOMBERG and a little girl of the same family.
GEORGE KRING, eight years old, of Canarsie.
NICHOLAS SCHEIDT, of DeKalb Avenue.
Capt. HENRY HENDRICKSON, of Canarsie and his son HENRY, JR.
Two young men supposed to be JAMES BURGESS and MARKS STARK.
There are several others missing.
Saved -- MRS. SCHWEIZER and her son JOSEPH.
MRS. MARY BOOTH and her daughter RACHEL.
MISS LOUISE SIMPSON, Mrs. Booth's sister.
MRS. WILLIAM KRING, of Canarsie.
MARIE O'BRIEN, infant, rescued in Mrs. Kring's arms, died today.
MRS. LOUISE LOMBORG, of Grand Street.
FREDDY BADER, thirteen years old, of 71 Morrill Street.
KATIE LUDWIG, seven years old, of 127 Ellery Street.
IDA OBERNIER, nine years old, of 138 Varet Street.
Daily Evening Bulletin Maysville Kentucky 1887-07-12