Over the Waves: Steamship Clallam

Everyone is a little superstitious. Whether you need to knock on wood when something negative is said, throw salt over your shoulder when it spills, or carry a lucky rabbits foot (or some sort of item like that), everyone has something they do to give themselves reassurance. This is even more evident when you are around sailors and fishermen - everyone has something they believe will keep fate on their side. From a proper christening when she's launched (or renamed), to objects, rituals and routines, many skippers and their crews have ways of doing things to make sure they stay on the right side of the water.

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Over The Waves: SS Princess May

The Canadian Pacific Railway had been expanding its range since it’s creation in 1881, increasing their portfolio to include both railways and steamships ,and creating a way from someone to travel from Liverpool, UK to Japan, China, or Hong Kong without ever needing to change carriers. In 1901, they purchased the Canadian Pacific Navigation Company and added West Coast coastal ships to their list of services. This new division, the Canadian Pacific Railway Coast Service, sailed a fleet of “Princess” ships from Vancouver, BC to Skagway, Alaska. One of these ships is the one whose story we’re looking at this week – the SS Princess May.

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Over the Waves: A.J. Goddard

During the Klondike gold rush, people rushed to the Yukon to try and cash in on the action. A series of prefabricated sternwheelers were constructed in San Francisco, shipped up to Alaska, and then moved across to the Yukon. They were assembled on the shores of Lake Bennett and then used to transport miners, supplies, and equipment up to Dawson City and back again. Today, only one wreck remains that showcases these unique ships. This week, we're looking at the story of the A.J. Goddard.

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Over the Waves: Mount Royal

British Columbia has a long list of shipwrecks. Many of them are more recent, including decommissioned Navy ships as artificial reefs (such as the HMCS Annapolis this year), and the sinking of the ferry M/V Queen of the North in 2006. Quite a few of them, however, stem from the turn of the century, when the expansion of the Canadian west was in full swing, and steamships were the way to get people and cargo to communities along the rushing rivers. One such ship was owned by the Hudson Bay Company, and met a quick and unfortunate demise on the Skeena River in 1907. This week, we're looking at the story of the sternwheeler Mount Royal.

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Over the Waves: SS City of Ainsworth

This week, we're going straight to the other coast, to the province of British Columbia. In 1898, sternwheeler paddle boats were the most common form of transportation on Kootenay Lake. Three different boats made their way to various ports, moving people and cargo across the bay. Then, one cold day in November of that year, one of the ships was caught in a gale and sank. She wouldn't be seen again for almost a century. Today, we're looking at the story of the SS City of Ainsworth.

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