Francine (#120988)(1884-1901), 48-foot wood-hulled two-masted schooner. Francine sank on June 8, 1901, in the vicinity of Gull Island on the south side of Santa Cruz Island. Francine was returning from San Miguel Island with 196 sacks of guano, about 2 tons, when she sprang a leak. Her crew landed safely on Gull Island before they rowed to Santa Cruz Island where they were returned to Santa Barbara by Captain Maggiolo.
In the News~
October 15, 1898 [LAT]: “Rare Birds Brought From Guadalupe Island. San Diego, Oct. 14.—Four of the most rare birds known to ornithologists were brought up from Guadalupe Island the other day by Harry Drent, a goat-killer of the schooner Fancine [Francine]. They are called the Guadalupe carcar [caracara] and are the size of a small eagle. So far as known the only living birds of that species are on Guadalupe Island, off the coast of Lower California, and are very few in number. Drent in telling how he captured the birds said:
"I winged the first bird with a shotgun and fastened him near a big boulder. I knew from experience with birds in South Africa that the other birds would come near the captive. I laid a snare in the shape of a lariat and in that manner caught three more birds. I saw only three other birds of this variety on the whole island. I noticed where they went and found that they were nesting on a cliff. I let myself down several hundred feet with a rope and secured two eggs. They are worth $500 each. The birds I consider very valuable. I shall offer them to the Smithsonian Institution."
June 2, 1900 [LAT]: “Harry Doddridge has purchased the schooner Francine, intending to fit her up as a floating establishment for the gathering and canning of California crawfish. An eastern market has made arrangements to handle the supply shipped to their place of business.”
April 10, 1901 [SBMP]: “The gasoline schooner Francine, from San Diego, arrived yesterday after a rather slow voyage from her home port. She started to go out to San Miguel Island to bring off a cargo of sheep and wool, but her engine gave out and she has been lying in port for repairs.”
June 11, 1901 [SBDI]: “The gasoline schooner Francine of San Pedro was wrecked on Gull Island, two miles off the south side of Santa Cruz Island late Saturday afternoon. Captain Tacrone and son and his engineer arrived this afternoon from Santa Cruz Island giving an account of the wreck. When between Santa Cruz and Santa Rosa islands they encountered a heavy sea and high wind and sprung a leak. They attempted to run into shoal waters near Gull Island, but the vessel filled so rapidly that they took to the boats and with the greatest of difficulty landed on Gull Island, which is only a rock about an acre in area. After much difficulty they rowed over to Santa Cruz and thence were brought over here. The loss is about $3,000 with no insurance. The Francine has been carrying sheep for the San Miguel Island Company.”
June 12, 1901 [SBMP]: “Another wreck has been added to the already long list of vessels that have found their last berths along the Channel Islands. On Saturday afternoon the gasoline schooner Francine, Captain Tacrone, sprung a leak while between Santa Rosa and Santa Cruz islands. The little vessel attempted to reach shoal water near the island, but could not face the heavy sea that was running. The crew took the boats and landed on Gull Island, and afterward rowed to Santa Cruz and were brought to town by Captain Maggiolo yesterday afternoon. The lost schooner was valued at $3500.”
June 12, 1901 [SBDI]: “The schooner Santa Cruz, which arrived last evening bringing over the ship wrecked crew of the Francine, left this afternoon for the island.”
June 15, 1901 [LAT/SD]: “Captain of schooner Francine blamed by sailor for wrecking. Joseph Cloyd, a sailor of the schooner Francine, Captain Larry Tilson, wrecked on Gull Rock, sixteen miles from Santa Cruz [Island], arrived here today from the north with a strange story. He attributes the loss of the schooner to the gross carelessness of Tilson, who, he says, ordered him to run fatally close to the rock, which she struck, drifted ashore, and commenced going to pieces. He says Tilson was indifferent about rescuing the craft, and that by Tilson’s order he wrote a letter to W. H. Doddridge of San Diego, the owner, stating over Tilson’s signature that the vessel sunk by reason of the heads of the nails being eaten off, allowing the plank to drop off. Finally, he alleges, Tilson, rather than face Doddridge, skipped for San Luis Obispo. Doddridge places credence in Cloyd’s story.”