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The Anita & Bernice L.

 

September 18 1924

Abandon Hope for Sworder

The last thin ray of hope for the return of the swordfishing schooner Anita and Bernice L., Capt. Albert Larsen, has vanished. Fishermen around the waterfront shake their heads dubiously when one mentions the name of this little craft, not heard from since the disastrous storm which swept Georges ands and reaped its toll of death and destruction on August 26. Like the New Bedford schooner Helen Murley, it is believed that the Anita and Bernice L. is a wreck on the ocean bottom, her crew asleep in the deep. The Anita and Bernice L., with a crew of eight men, including the skipper, left here four weeks ago last Monday for Georges banks. Now, after four weeks from port, although not officially given up, the craft is feared to be where many another hardy craft has found its resting place.

Particularly sad will be the breaking of the news to the family of Hilary Conrad of Cherry Hill, Lunenburg County, Nova Scotia. Conrad was making his first trip in the Anita and Bernice L.. as a fisherman out of the States. He had previously followed the sea for many years from the little Canadian seaport, where he leaves a wife and four children waiting for him. A peculiar coincidence connected with the loss of the schooner is found in the fact that Andrew Larsen, a brother of the captain and a nephew of Charles Larsen, another member of the crew, had been fishing all the season in the schooner. At the last moment, he decided he would remain on shore and in his place another man was shipped.

Four members of the crew were married men, the oldest one being 50 years, and the youngest 30.

Following is a list of the members of her crew:

Capt. Albert Larsen, a native of Sweden, about 40 years, leaves a wife and three children
Edward M. Proctor, 42, leaves a wife and two children
Fritz Mann, the engineer, about 40, unmarried
Peter Nelson, unmarried, 50
Joseph Targett of Newfoundland, 50, unmarried
Charles Larsen, 50, uncle to the skipper, native of Sweden, unmarried
Alvin Selig, of Voglers Cove, Lunenburg County, N. S., 30, married
Hilary Conrad of Cherry Hill, Lunenburg County, N. S., 45, a cousin of Selig, married and has a wife and four children.


[Additional information provided April 1999 by Albert Larsen's grandaughter Karen (Larsen) Selig

"I was reading with interest the story of my Grandfather, Capt. Albert Larsen and his schooner being lost in the Gale of 1924. I just wanted to let you know that Albert & Charles Larsen were natives of Norway. My father Albert Larsen is 80 years old and was around 6 years old when his father was lost at sea.
Another interesting fact is that my husband's family also had relatives from Nova Scotia lost on that boat, Alvin Selig & Hilary Conrad. A fact we did not know until the death of my Grandmother Bernice Larsen as we looked through her old papers. Please feel free to email me gselig@shore.net

 

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