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Mail advices to hand state" that four more sailers and one steamer well known in tho Australasian trade have just chang-cd owners. The steamer is the Den of Kelly, which the Neptune Steamship Company of Liverpool, Messrs. Fuvness, Withy and Co., secured, and is to be renamed Snowderi Range. The most- important, sailer is perhaps the ship Hippalos, originally known as Arethusa, which Mr. Emit Knudsen, of TilLssand, disposed of to Messrs. Christian, Nielsen and Co., of Laurvig. She is a vessel of 1770 tons gross register, and was built in IS9O. The iron barque Sirius, belonging to iMr. Chr. Trondsen, of Sarpsborg, and originally known as Inca, has also changed owners. She -n-as acquired by Copenhagen buyers, who paid 130,000 kr. for her. , It, is interesting to recall that when Mr. Trondsen secured her he paid 54,000 kr. The barque Pallas, 620 tons gross register, and built in 1881, has been secured by Sandefjord, owners, from Mr T. Christoffersen, of Stathelle, and the steel barque Hebe, ex Olga, built in 1892, and sold nine years ago for 64,000 kr., was acquired by Messrs. Bugg© and i OUen, of Larvik, for 140,000 kr. ] PLUCKY STOKER, For cool heroism and resource the exploit of Mr. Frederick Marshall, for which ho was decorated with the Albert Medal (second class) by the King, would be hard to beat. Tho official record of Marshall s action is as follows:— "M-r shall was in charge of the stokehold in tt.Al.b. Vengeance, when one of the boiler generation tubes burst, filling the stokehold with dense clouds of soot and sueam which flung Marshall across the stokehold, so that it- was only with difficulty he contrived to find his way to the ladder leading to the upper deck. He helped two men up the ladder, and himself twice endeavoured, with a snon<re in ins mouth, to reach the stop valve with out success, owing to the steam, smoke and heat. To protect himself against these he-emptied a sack of potatoes and put the sack across his mouth and nosebut tins was not enough, and he had to put the sack over his head and'shoulders. Inus, blindfolded, with the utmost difficulty, Marshall now , forced his way through the screen door, which had been opened by a- stoker, but blown to by the great weight of steam from inside went down a. short ladder, and groped along a prating 17ft long, to the stop-valve of the injured boiler, which he promptly shut oft. There is little doubt that if this hazardous exploit had not been carried through with such despatch the men remaining in the stokehold would have lost their lives." I AMERICAN SHIPBUILDING RETURNS. The Washington Bureau of Navigation reports that 316 sailing, steam, and unrigged vessels of 46.276 gross tons were built in the U.S.A. and officially numbered during the quarter ended 30th September In the corresponding period of 1914, 233 vessels of 56,510 gross tons were built and numbered. During September itself S3 vessels of 14,301 gross tons were built and numbered. The largest vessels of the month were Franklin, 5266 gross tons built at Camden, N.J., for the Coastwise Transportation Company; and the Fort Lee, 1080 gross tons, built at Wilmington, Del., for the W and A. Fletcher Company In addition, five vessels of 11,776 I gross tons were granted American registry under the Act of 18th August, 1914. Of these three Were British and two Canadian. ;' REOPEN CANAL BY Ist JANUARY. _ Although an official statement is lack- I ing it has become known that- the Panama Canal will again be ready for traffic not later than Ist January next. MaiorGeneral George W Gqethals, Governor of the Canal Zone, continues to maintain an attitude of reticence, declining to com- ! nut himself on any definite date for reopening the canal in view of the uncertainty of slide conditions in the Gaillard cut. General Goethals declares that it is still too early to mako predictions because a largo movement of eartb can happen at any time, although none now is actually in sight. General Goethals expressed gratification at the progress being made by the dredging Beet,'which is coping with a tremendous task in view of the vast quantity of earth set in motion by the last slide. Although General Goethals would not set a date on which he thought the canal might be reopened, other canal engineers expressed the conviction that a sufficient channel would be obtained considerably, before the first of the year which would permit tho passageof light draught vessels. These engineers point out that the channel was originally closed lot a i distance of 1300 feet, and that since the last great slide dredges have restored a thirty-foot channel practically half of that distance and at a width sufficient for the passage of smaller vessels. It is generally conceded that the outlook is considerably brighter, but still too early to set a definite date for the reopening of the canal I FLOATING CASES AT SEA An incident in the voyage of the American schooner Churchill excited the curiosity and interest 6£ her crew It happened on Sunday, 28th November, when the vessel was about 170 miles east of Jervis Bay,' on the coast of New South wales. An alarm of floating wreckage close to the schooner, brought all hands to attention, and Captain Scott promptly swept the locality with his marine glasses He observed, not far distant, about a, dozen cases floating almost submerged. As far as he could make out the cases appeared to be unbroken, and were of the size used for carrying bottled beer, stout wirne, etc. Owing to the boisterous weather prevailing: Captain Scott found it impracticable to manoeuvre his vessel nearer to the flotsam and ieteam for the l'u. r P°sf. of making a closer iawsstigatioii. His baiief that tho cases contained bottles' was strengthened by the appearance on the water of a. number of straw "envelopes,1 such as are used for covering bottles, which had evidently been released from a broken case>-

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SHIPS & THE SEA, Evening Post, Volume XC, Issue 147, 18 December 1915

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SHIPS & THE SEA Evening Post, Volume XC, Issue 147, 18 December 1915