Sunday, July 24, 2011

A Diver With Electric Light Searches for a Leak -- July 24, 2011

Whaleback steamers were a fad in the late 1800s. The name Progressist is unusual.

From the 08-August-1895 San Francisco Call. William A Coulter did many maritime drawings for the newspaper. Click on the image to see a larger version.

A Diver With Electric Light Searches for a Leak Under Water.

Yesterday the visitors on the water front were entertained with the labors of a diver searching the bottom of the whaleback steamer Progressist at Folsom-street wharf for a leak. When he donned his brass and rubber suit and let himself sink down in the bay, he carried an incandescent light in his hand, and by its bright gleam his movements could be indistinctly seen under the water, giving his large audience perched on the dock some idea of the work of men who go down in the sea under ships. The current was generated from the trolley of the Dunsmuir coal cars at the bunkers.

The leak was caused by the forcing in of a steel plate near the vessel's bow, and while not large has necessitated the constant use of the steam pump to keep the big ship free from water. The search for the injury will be finished to-day.

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