Scow Schooner Milton

The 102-foot three-masted scow schooner Milton was built by Ellsworth & Davidson at Milwaukee, Wis., in 1867. It spent 20 years hauling lumber on Lake Michigan, along with hundreds of other small boats nicknamed the “mosquito fleet.” Built to carry as much cargo as possible, many of these flat-bottom boats did not sail very well.
The Milton collided with the ship W.H. Hinsdale at Milwaukee in December 1867, causing about $100 in damage to each vessel. It also ran aground twice during its career.
On 8 September 1885, while transporting a cargo of cedar posts and cordwood, the Milton sank off Two Rivers, Wis., during an autumn storm. The entire crew of five men was lost—three of them brothers.
Object Name
model, rigged scow schooner
Date made
Milton built
Physical Description
wood (overall material)
overall: 16 in x 24 in x 4 in; 40.64 cm x 60.96 cm x 10.16 cm
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
Energy & Power
Industry & Manufacturing
On the Water exhibit
The Development of the Industrial United States
See more items in
Work and Industry: Maritime
On the Water exhibit
On the Water
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Publication title
On the Water online exhibition
Publication URL

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