Charles E. Frohman Collections

Collection ID: FR-13
Location: FR-13

(Description ID: 594195)

Rutherford B. Hayes Presidential Library & Museums

Steamer B. F. Ferris


Vessel History
Scope and Content

This collection is part of the Charles E. Frohman Collection. 

Vessel History
The Steamer B. F. Ferris was built in Sandusky, Ohio in 1870 by John E. Monk.  She was named after a prominent hardware man in Sandusky, and was 124.66 feet long, 21.66 feet wide, and 7.58 feet deep.  The hull was made of wood.  The Ferris had a gross tonnage of 168 and a net tonnage of 93.  She was first issued to George Ellithorpe, Valentine Doller, Jacob Hass, and William Freyensee.  The first master of the ship was George Ellithorpe.  Jake Haas was the engineer, an William Freyensee was the clerk.  Although built to run from Sandusky, OH to Port Clinton, OH, stopping at Marblehead, Lakeside, Catawba Island and Moore’s Dock, the Ferris stopped going to Port Clinton in 1875 after the Sandusky Bay Bridge was built.  She lay nights at Moore’s Dock and later at Put-in-Bay, OH. 

By March 14, 1882, Andrew Wehrle was her sole owner.  Later she was run by Conrad Van Tien, Adolph Erickhart, and J. H. Jewell with the home port of New Baltimore, MI.  By June of 1890 she was running Saginaw, MI to Winnona Beach.  The following year she was run by Henry Turner to Tawas, MI and Caseville, MI. 

The end of the B. F. Ferris appears to be uncertain.  She burned in the early 1890s, but accounts differ as to exactly when and where.  According to some, she burned off Keweenaw Point, Lake Superior, in 1893.  Other accounts have her burning at Caseville, MI in 1891.  However, it is certain that she was surrendered at Port Huron, MI on October 17, 1893 and endorsed “burned to total loss”. 

Scope and Content
This collection contains record books from the Steamer B. F. Ferris dating from 1870 to 1881.  Included are account books, day books, ledgers, memorandums, fish tallies, and grape accounts.


Box 1

1. Account Book – 1875-1876
2. Account Book – 1876-1877-1878
3. Sturgeon for Spring 1874
4. Memorandum of Steamer Ferris/Sturgeon for 1876
5. Memorandum of Steamer Ferris/Sturgeon for Fall 1878
6. Memorandum of Steamer Ferris/Sturgeon for 1879

Box 2

1. Day Book – 1870
2. Day Book – 1872
3. Day Book – 1876-1878

Box 3

1. Day Book – 1879-1880
2. Ledger No. 2 – 1871
3. Petit Ledger – 1873
4. Grapes - Fall 1870/Tally Book for the Spring Trade 1870
5. Grape Account – 1873-1874
6. Fish Tally – Fall 1870-1871-Spring 1872

Box 4

1. Fish Tally – Spring 1871
2. Fish Tally – Spring and Fall 1876
3. Fish Tally – Fall 1877
4. Fish Tally – 1877-1878
5. Fish Tally – Spring 1878
6. Fish Tally – Fall 1880
7. Fish Tally – Fall 1881