Part of the Acorn Archive

Hearts of Oak






Official Number 110332; Built 1899

29th April 1911, CRAGOSWALD ( Captain Albert Crowthers ), of Newcastle was bound from Barry to Venice, with 4,800 tons of coal, with a crew of 27. The chief engineer had been taken ill 12 hours out from Barry. Rounding Penwith, the ship entered fog, the captain steered carefully past the Runnelstone. Altering course to land the chief engineer, he took the ship into Mountís Bay; the rain obscured his visibility and he mistook the marker for that of Mountamopus ridge; she became stranded on Low Lee Rock off Mousehole. The chief engineer was taken off by lifeboat. The lifeboat returned, and stood by until 5pm; all men were then taken off by lifeboat. The bows were stuck fast and it took four more days of attempted salvage in rough seas.

2nd May, she floated free, and was towed in to Penzance.

7th May, she left for repairs at Falmouth.



The Times 13th June 1911

The Stranding of a steamer in Mount's Bay

Judgement has been given in a Board of Trade inquiry held at Falmouth as to the stranding of the steamer CRAGOSWALD on the Low Lee Rock, Mount's bay, on April 29. The steamer, which belonged to Messrs Lunn and McCoy of Newcastle upon Tyne, was on a voyage from Barry to Venice with coal when owing to the chief engineer's being taken seriously ill, the captain decided to put into Penzance. As the CRAGOSWALD was entering Moun's Bay it went on to the rock. At the time the engines had been stopped, and the steamer was got off after the cargo had been jettisoned. the Court found that the stranding was due to an error of judgement on the part of the Master Albert Arthur Crowther, in not making due and proper allowance for the set of the tides and the currents which ultimately led him to mistake the bouy marking the Low Lee Rock on the west side of Mount's Bay for the Mount-a-mopus Rock on the east side of Mount's Bay. taking into consideration the circumstances in which the master was making for the port of Penzance, the Court acquitted him of any neglect or default, and his certificate was handed back to him.


December of that year, she was swept and taken by a gale which gripped the country from Sunday afternoon (10th), and again she was grounded. This time at Juryís Gap, Dungeness. A week later she was re-floated.


The Times 11th December 1911

Steamer ashore at Dungeness

The steamer CRAGOSWALD, of Newcastle, in ballast, bound from Antwerp to a home port, stranded at Jury's Gap, seven miles west of Dungeness. She first showed distress signals, but no help could be given her, and she came full on the shore. Thirteen of the crew of 25 were rescued by means of rocket apparatus, the captain and officers remaining on board. The CRAGOSWALD lies in a very serious position and last evening was left high and dry close to the high water mark. Her bows were lying through one of the groynes. The CRAGOSWALD is a steamer of 3,235 tons, belonging to Messrs Lunn and MacCoy, and was built in 1899 at Glasgow.




Her luck finally ran out on the 18th April 1917,

when she was torpedoed, without warning, and she sank.

She was 60 miles West by South of Bishop Rock, Isles of Scilly.

Two lives were lost.






Raymond Forward