GLMS 68 - G. Victor Chamberlain Collection
|Title||GLMS 68 - G. Victor Chamberlain Collection|
This 2.5 cubic foot collection was donated to the Historical Collections of the Great Lakes by Captain G. Victor Chamberlain on February 8, 1983. An instrument of gift was signed at the time of transfer. An additional transfer of materials was made in 2009.
Literary and property rights were dedicated to the public. Photocopying is permitted for purposes of conservation and research.
Captain G. Victor Chamberlain was born in about 1916 at Delaware, Ohio. His first sailing was for the Wilson Line in 1934. In 1935 Captain Chamberlain joined the fleet of the Hanna Mining Company as a deck hand. After 1935, Chamberlain's Great Lakes career was spent with the Hanna fleet. On obtaining his original license in 1941, Chamberlain served as the third mate on the DAVID M. WEIR.
Captain Chamberlain was granted a leave of absence from the Hanna fleet during World War II. He attended and graduated from the US Maritime Officer's School at New London, Connecticut. Chamberlain served on transport convoy vessels in the Atlantic, Mediterranean, and Pacific theaters of operations. Captain Chamberlain completed his military service in 1945 as the chief mate of the troopship JOHN BLAIR.
Chamberlain again sailed for the Hanna fleet in the post-war years as a third mate. His first temporary command came with an assignment in 1962. In 1967 he became a permanent master with a command on the MATTHEW ANDREWS. Captain Chamberlain served as captain on the PAUL H. CARNAHAN, LEON FALK, JR., E. E. WEIR, and the GEORGE M. HUMPHREY. Captain Chamberlain's last command before retiring in 1981 was on the GEORGE A. STINSON.
Victor and Margaret Chamberlain live in Sandusky, Ohio. Their two sons have both pursued marine careers as a Great Lakes sailor and as a marine geologist.
Retirement activities have included transporting yachts to the Mackinac Island races and staying active in the Cleveland Lodge of the International Shipmasters' Association. Captain Chamberlain has maintained his Lodge 4 membership since 1943.
|Scope and Content|
This 2.5 cubic foot collection is composed of material acquired by Captain G. Victor Chamberlain during his career on lake vessels from 1940-1981. Small series of correspondence (1958-1977), charts/maps (1927-1974) and printed matter (2002) provide insights into issues of concern to a veteran Great Lakes vessel captain.
Safety issues are frequent topics within the correspondence series. Information on fellow officers in the lake fleet of the US Steel Corporation appears in personnel lists attached to correspondence.
Navigation issues are reflected in the various logs for vessels retained by Chamberlain. The sinking of the EDMUND FITZGERALD in 1975 is covered in many of the clippings Chamberlain acquired.
Practical matters involved in completing trips between ports are covered through charts retained for study of navigational difficulties in river and harbor channels. Weather related charts are also available.
Assorted printed items regarding a captain's interests in equipment purchases, navigational study, weather, and safety issues are present.
This collection is not large, but does present material useful in understanding what Great Lakes vessel captains were responsible for accomplishing in their careers. Routine matters appear in the correspondence and log books. Some of their worst nightmares can be seen in the clippings Captain Chamberlain saved regarding the fate of his colleagues on the WILLIAM B. DAVOCK in 1940 and the EDMUND FITZGERALD in 1975.
1940, 1954, 1964, 1975-1977