Lillie Parsons

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A 2 masted “Fore and Aft” rigged centerboard schooner built in Tonawanda N.Y. in 1868, she was sailing with 500 tons of coal destined for Brockville when on August 5, 1877 a sudden squall shifted her cargo and pinned her against an island letting her take water, capsizing and sinking her. The large rudder sits proudly upstream with a broad square stern resting on the rock ledges that support her. The masts jutt from beneath her and run out into the channel, while a visit to the vessels bottom shows the drop center board secured in the casing midship.

Located on the upstream/channel side of Sparrow Island in the Brockville “narrows”. The “Lillie” is one of Ontario’s most famous wrecks. Accessing the site from the corner of Sparrow Island at the anchor on shore, one can follow the chain to the bow or swim into the current and down the island contour to follow the island profile upstream to the rudder.

 Dive site description
 Object description
 Lake / river  St. Lawrence River  Official name  Lillie Parsons
 GPS Coordinates  N43 33.2300
W75 43.0900
 Also known as  –
 Access  Boat  Type  Schooner
 Description  Shipwreck  Material  Wood
 Min. / max. depth  40-80 ft  Propulsion  Sail
 Visibility  20-25 ft  Cargo  Coal, lumber, barley,
wheat and salt.
 Current  2-3½ knots  Built by / at  Tonawanda, NY
 Level  Intermediate / Advanced  Built / lauch date  September 5th, 1868
 Thermocline  No  Sunk / flooded  August 5th, 1877
 Bottom type  Rock  Dimensions  131 ft x 26 ft x 10 ft
 Boat traffic  Heavy  Position  Upside down
 Hazards  n/a