JB Ford preservation efforts halted

July 7, 2014

The JB Fords time on these freshwater oceans, is sadly coming to an end.....After several years of efforts by the Steamship Society, we sadly decided at last months board meeting that we must halt our efforts to save the entire vessel. The 1903 built JB Ford has been the main focus of our Society since its inception and has had successes and failures like any group. However with mounting costs to preserve and stabilize the vessel and waning support for this particular vessel, we decided it would be best to let the venerable old workhorse go. We are not however abandoning her completely, Lafarge is still working with us to recover artifacts and significant items from the vessel. We are also hoping to be able to save her forward cabins, but this too in the short term may prove unfeasible. But we are trying regardless of the difficulties faced. The board of directors is still working with people in Alpena and also Lafarge at another opportunity that has less question marks and so far seems to be significantly less expensive, but also appears to have a great deal of support behind it. At this point it is not official, but the Great Lakes Steamship Society is exploring the option of focusing its efforts on the former flagship of Huron Cement, the S.T. Crapo docked in Green Bay, WI. We hope that soon we will have some news and information regarding this change in direction and that we can continue to count on your support as we have these past several years. If you get a chance to snap a photo of the Ford, be sure to do so, as her scrapping is imminent, and likely to happen before winter sets in. Thank you again for all your support. We will keep the news coming as we have it.