Ship from War of 1812 To Visit Toledo (Press Release from 1998)

Ship from War of 1812 to visit Toledo

The Associated Press, August 22, 2098 12:52 pm. Eastern

TOLEDO, Ohio (AP) - One of the nation's most historic ships will visit the city next month.

The Niagara, the flagship on which Commodore Oliver Hazard Perry defeated the British in the Battle of Lake Erie during the War of 1812, will be on display from September 16 to 20 at International Park downtown.

Perry boarded the Niagara after his own ship was disabled during the battle near Put-in-Bay on September 10, 1813. While aboard the Niagara, Perry raised a flag with the words "Don't Give Up the Ship."

Several years after the battle, the Niagara was intentionally sunk. It was pulled from the water and reconstructed for a centennial celebration in 1913.

In 1990, the ship again was rebuilt using what remained of the original wood, making it the only historic square-rigged U.S. warship capable of sailing, said Donald Melhorn Jr, an organizer of a week of activities surrounding its visit.

... "We've been overwhelmed," said Jim Richards, director of the SS Willis B. Boyer, a ship converted into a museum at the same park where the Niagara will dock.

"Teachers have determined it's truly a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to really experience some of the history that helped make us citizens of the U.S. instead of British Canadians."

© The Associated Press, 1998