Guiding Star (1869)
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Final Voyage


November 5, 1883. The schooner Guiding Star, bound from Oswego to Milwaukee with 560 tons of coal, stranded in heavy fog at Mequon, 12 miles north of the port at Milwaukee. The vessel went up on the rocks, lifting the stern three feet out of the water. The hull filled with water. Three men and the captain made it to shore on their own in the ship's yawl and the crew from the Milwaukee Life-Saving Station along with the help of the tug Welcome rescued the remaining four crew men the next day. A little over a week later the life-saving crew was again called out to the wreck to assist a wrecking crew who nearly became stranded on the wreck because of high seas.

The underwriters expended $4,000 on attempts to salvage the craft before giving up, stripping the vessel of nearly 100 tons of cargo and part of the outfit. Two steam pumps and two tugs could not save the Guiding Star. Within a few weeks, the schooner broke up and was lost with only two thirds of the cargo of coal being recovered.
Service History


The wooden three masted schooner Guiding Star was built in Oswego, New York at the George Gobel Shipyard in 1869 at a cost of $27,000 and was launched from the Gobel and McFarlenes shipyards on April 4th. In 1874 the vessel was valued at $18,000 and rated A2, her official registration number was 85006.

Last Document Of Enrollment Surrendered: 1/08/1884: Oswego: "Vessel Wrecked".
Today


The schooner Guiding Star was lost in a gale when she was driven ashore approximately twelve miles north of Milwaukee. Part of the vessel's outfit was recovered along with 2/3rds of the cargo. She broke up within weeks of going ashore.
According to Brendon Baillod "What are believed to be the ship's remains lie just south of the parking lot of Virmond Park on the beach buried under the bluff with coal and a salvage cart buried near the keel. After storms, the wreckage is sometimes exposed.". Fathoms Deep But Not Forgotten: Wisconsin's Lost Ships.
 
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