• Robert Gaskin

Robert Gaskin

Ability: Novice
Depth: 50' - 70'
Built: 1863
Sunk: September 18, 1889

Starting from

Availability: Contact us for booking information

The Robert Gaskin is a double masted iron rigged wood barge that was built in Kingston Ont. by Charles W. Jenkings in 1863. She is 113' x 26', 3332 ton "carvel" and has a square stern, but no galley or figurehead. The Gaskin has an interesting history. As a sailing vessel she struck a shoal and sank. Salvaged and placed back in service, her masts and rigging were remove as she was transformed into a cargo barge. As steam vessels were more prevalent many sailing ships had been converted. Again she slipped under the surface and again was recovered and patched back up. By this time the railroad ferry (William Armstrong) running from Brockville to Morristown had sunk.

The Gaskin was now outfitted as a salvage barge to raise the Armstrong. While pumping steam down to pontoons attached to the Armstrong, one of the pontoons broke loose and shot to the surface striking the Gaskin near the bow. The hole was so large that she sank in only minutes. 

Eventually the Armstrong was recovered, and attempts to again salvage the Gaskin were underway. She was raised just below the surface and while pulling her towards shore, the ropes broke and she went down for the third time. 

She sits on a firm bottom (with light silt) approximately 400' off shore, with her bow facing inland.The Gaskin is near the north side of the main shipping channel, and is in a high traffic area of smaller boats. Dive flags and caution are recommended especially if you are drifting off the wreck, and a chase boat should be used. The bow sits at about 60' depth and the stern is at 70' with a gentle current running across her deck. Descending down the bow mooring line is quite impressive as her hull rises some 15 feet off the river bottom. Divers can visit through the hold and exit via the stern hole with quite ease. 

As you drift over her deck you'll see large timbers reaching across her deck and beyond her hull. At the ends you will find the pulleys used to lift the Armstrong. Looking into the forward hold you will see massive steel drums that were used to hold chain and ropes. Nearing the stern the transom had been blown off and lies on the river bottom making a great way to swim the length of her hull. The Gaskin's deck and stern have suffered from current, numerous anchors, divers touching her, and time; thus allowing easy penetration through the deck. However, each year her decay becomes more evident as silt get brushed away, the wooden planks are again exposed. S.O.S. 1000 Islands Chapter have buoyed the Gaskin to help maintain her for future visiting divers, and would appreciate your help in preserving this site. 

0 reviews for Robert Gaskin

Write a review

Can't read? Reload