Friday, December 29, 1899
Master Mariner Drowned
Capt. John A. Griffin, master
of sch. Lizzie Griffin of this port, was found dead Sunday
morning in the dock where his vessel lay, at Halifax, N. S. He was ashore Saturday
evening, and when found, his foot was caught in the side of the wharf and his head was
under water. From his position, it looked as though he had attempted to board his vessel
and slipped and fell, his foot catching and throwing his head against one of the piles and
rendering him unconscious.
Capt. Griffin was one of the
best known master mariners sailing from this port and for a number of years he was one of
the recognized leaders in the fresh halibut fishery, making some remarkably big trips. He
was a man of kindly and generous nature and his untimely end will be sincerely regretted
by the many who knew him. To his widow and six children, the heartfelt sympathy of a large
circle of friends is given.
The deceased was about 50 years of age and a
native of Bucksport, Me. His family resides at No. 48 Mt. Vernon street, in this city.
His brother William and oldest son John H., are
both at Halifax, N. S., having gone there last week in regard to some repairs which were
being made to the vessel.
The Halifax Herald of Monday gives the
following additional information in regard to the death of Capt. John A. Griffin, of
It has been the custom of Capt. Griffin
always to spend the winter months at his home in Gloucester and to hand his vessel over to
his brother William during that time. When he arrived in Halifax, he wired for his brother
to come to Halifax in order to command the vessel during the winter. He also sent for his
eldest son, John, to come to Halifax and go home with him. The son arrived two weeks ago,
and in conversation with a Herald representative yesterday said that the vessel was ready
to sail last Wednesday, but was delayed by the non-arrival of his uncle, who was to reach
Halifax on Saturday night.
Young Griffin left Fader's
wharf on Saturday evening at 7 o'clock to go to the station to meet his uncle, leaving his
father on the schooner. The train was late and the young man did not wait for it, but
returned, arriving on board the schooner at midnight. His father was not in the cabin or
on board, so the son inquired of one of the crew if the captain had been on board and was
informed the captain said he was going to stay with a friend on shore over night. Getting
this answer which satisfied him, the young man turned in and slept till morning.
Capt. William Griffin arrived
on board at 2 a.m., and also turned in. About 9 o'clock Sunday morning a sailor on a small
steam trawler lying at the wharf, noticed a man hanging face downwards from the steps on
the side of the wharf, evidently dead. He notified the police, who called some of the crew
of the Lizzie Griffin to the wharf to identify the body of their
captain. The son of the deceased and the brother were notified and were overcome with
The body was taken in charge by Undertaker
Spencer, and on Monday afternoon the son started for home with the remains. Capt.
William Griffin will bring the vessel home.