FRED G. HARTWELL Launch – Apr. 4, 1908

Fred G. Hartwell Launch – Apr. 4, 1908

This image shows the launching of the Fred G. Hartwell at the Toledo Shipyard on April 4, 1908. (Click here to learn more about the Toledo Shipyard)  Side launchings, while not very common across the globe, were often used in the Great Lakes.  Great Lakes rivers did not have wide channels (certainly not 600 feet wide), and therefore very rarely used the more common stern-first launch.

Once a boat is launched, it still needs a bit of work and the Hartwell didn’t enter service until June 20, 1908.  

The Fred G. Hartwell was 514 feet long, 58 feet wide, was built of steel and had a stern propeller.  The vessel was owned by Mutual Steamship Co., and managed by G.A. Tomlinson. The vessel was sold in 1915, and in 1917 was renamed to Harry W. Croft.  The vessel was owned by several different companies over its career, before finally being scrapped in Spain in 1969.


We want to hear from you! Leave a comment below to tell us about your memories of attending a ship launching.

This exhibit is made possible by visitors like you.  Please consider making a donation to the National Museum of the Great Lakes to help us continue our important work of preserving and making know the history of the Great Lakes.

0 replies

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *