Re Empress of Ireland

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Gavin Murphy

Guest
Geoff-- I am coming in a bit late on this, but the docs. in question relate to the 1914 inquiry into the sinking. Also The Beaver, a magazine of Canadian history I have written for for about 10 years, has a story on the Empress artifact situation in its current issue.

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Gavin Murphy

Guest
Somewhat related to the Empress I suppose.......

An old navy destroyer was purposely sunk just a few kilometres downriver (at St. Luce) from where the Empress went down last week to provide divers with a new location to dive too....this one, of course, not being off limits. The old navy destroyer was about 40 years old before it met its end.

Gavin
 
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Marion Kelch

Guest
> [The warship was called HMCS Nipigon. It was the last St. Lawrence-class destroyer in the Canadian navy to be built and the last to be decommisioned. It entered service in 1964. In 1965 it was the scene of a horrible fire while on a mission. Eight sailors were seriously burned. It was decommissioned in July 1998 but pulled out of retirement in September to help with the recovery of bodies and debris after Swiss Air flight 111 crashed off Peggy's Cove. It was sold to the Societe des recifs artificiels de L'Estuaire du Quebec. It sank in 3 minutes.]
 
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Gavin Murphy

Guest
M and M,

Forgive me if I am wrong, but I seem to recall that the Nipigon was a tribal class destroyer.

If I am wrong, I will eat humble pie!

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Marion Kelch

Guest
> Gavin, I took the information from the CanWest News Service, Montreal Gazette and they described it as "the last St. Lawrence-class destroyer in the Canadian navy". I see absolutely no reference to a tribal class. I'll see if I can find a CBC news item and send it to you. I don't want you eating pie! ]
 
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Gavin Murphy

Guest
Good Lord, maybe we should ALL be eating humble pie! The reference you kindly gave me says, and I quote:

HMCS NIPIGON (shown) and HMCS ANNAPOLIS made up the ANNAPOLIS class, launched in the early 1960s. Both were laid down as shown above, similiar to the ST. LAURENT DDH conversions.

I am not a military man so I will rest my case here. But it does seem a tad complex doesn't it? Now that we have a shell of a navy (essentially patrol frigates and a few damaged Brit subs on lease), it may make things easier to understand.

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Dec 2, 2000
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Would those be the subs which tend to submerge and not want to come up again? I've been hearing some rumblings about that. Rumour has it that this cute little habit makes the crews of these boats very unhappy for some reason.

Oh, in case anybody wants some information on the Tribal class, just go HERE.
 
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Gavin Murphy

Guest
M,

Interesting observation. But actually the problem is getting them seaworthy. I'm not sure if any have sunk........yet. Canada leased 4 from the RN. If I'm not mistaken, not all are delivered yet. Only 2(?). Mind it is keeping Halifax Shipyards in business with all the repair work!

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Dec 2, 2000
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The Halifax shipyards have got to be grateful for the work. The DND has a lot invested in these boats, so they won't just give up on them. What the government does may end up being a very different story. Look at what happened to HMCS Bonaventure. They put her through a very expensive refit only to scrap her barely a year later.
 
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Janet Orpen

Guest
In April my boyfriend and I did a cross Canada trip out to Halifax. We purposly went up the Gaspe, to Remouski to see anything related to the Empress of Ireland. We saw the museum, unfortunatly it was closed. We are divers and wanted to dive the Empress but the St. Lawrence was still under the ice.

While we were driving around we went to see the HMCS Nipigon. I have some photos of it while they were readying it for sinking. I didn't know when it would sink, but now I know. (WRECK DIVE)
One day I will see the Empress where she lays, But I believe artifacts should remain where they are.

Marion I saw the piece on Country Canada and I was so impressed an Albertain took up the fight. I know in the diving community there is a great deal of love for the Empress and no on wants anything to leave Canada.
 
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Marion Kelch

Guest
> [Janet, thanks very much for your moral support. Greatly appreciated. We are indeed in a huge battle to save these artifacts. Last week three members of our Committee, including myself, took a boat to the site of the wreck where the buoys mark the wreck. We held a short ceremony of Remembrance and tossed roses in the water in memory of those who perished. To the west was a foamy sunset. The media showed great interest in our visit and we did five interviews in total including two with Jacquie Czernin of CBC Quebec City. I have met so many people who want the artifacts to stay in Canada. Still it is difficult to get this moral support to translate into dollars, euros, whatever. We have no doubt we can raise the funds over the long term but I'm afraid that Mr. Beaudry may attempt to sell the artifacts to the guy in Florida around the end of September. We are doing everything possible including pushing for a political solution. Thanks again!