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The Fleets

Union Steamship Co. of British Columbia

Founded in 1889 and operated passenger and cargo services between Vancouver, British Columbia ports and Alaska. In 1939 the company took over the Frank Waterhouse Company fleet. Services continued until 1959 when the company ceased trading and sold their remaining fleet to the Northland Navigation Co.

Many thanks to Ted Finch for his assistance in collecting this data. The following list was extracted from various sources. This is not an all inclusive list but should only be used as a guide. If you would like to know more about a vessel, visit the Ship Descriptions (onsite) or Immigrant Ship web site.

Red with black top.


Vessel Built Years in Service Tons
Argus 1944 ex- Argo, 1950 purchased from Pacific Petroleum Co. renamed Argus, 15th Jun.1953 burned at Ioco, BC, 1954 converted to transport barge by Straits Towing Co. 517
Camosun (1) 1905 1936 scrapped. 1,369
Camosun (2) 1907 ex- Prince Charles, 1940 purchased from Canadian National Steamships Ltd. renamed Camosun, 1945 sold to Greece renamed Cairo. 1,344
Camosun (3) 1943 ex- HMS St. Thomas (corvette), 1946 purchased from Royal Navy, converted and renamed Camosun, 1958 renamed Chilcotin (2), 1958 sold to Alaska Cruise Lines renamed Yukon Star. 1,835
Capilano (1) 1891 30th Sep.1915 hit rock and sank off Savary Island. 231
Capilano (2) 1920 wooden hull, 1949 retired from service. 374
Capilano (3) 1946 ex- City of Belleville, 1951 purchased from Canada Transport Ltd renamed Capilano, 1959 sold to Northland Navigation Co. renamed Haida Princess. 530
Cardena 1923 1961 sold to Capital Iron & Metals Co., Victoria, BC, hull sunk as breakwater in Kelsey Bay. 1,559
Cassiar (1) 1901 wooden hull, 1925 sold to Seattle owners and converted to dance hall in Lake Washington. 597
Cassiar (2) 1910 ex- Prince John, 1940 purchased from Canadian National Steamships Ltd. renamed Cassiar, 1949 retired from service, 1951 scrapped San Francisco. 905
Cassiar (3) 1946 ex- Blue Peter II, 1951 purchased from Job Bros, St. John's NF renamed Cassiar, 1959 sold to Northland Navigation Co. renamed Skeena Prince, 1,377
Catala 1925 1959 taken over by Northland Navigation Co., resold to Nelson Bros Fisheries and later used as hotel ship at Seattle Century 21 exposition. 1965 wrecked in storm at Gray's Harbour. 1,476
Chasina 1881 ex- Selma, 1917 purchased from All Red Line renamed Chasina, 1923 sold and reported used as rum runner, 1931 resold and went missing ar sea. 258
Cheakamus   see Cheslakee.  
Cheam 1901 wooden hull, ex- Bowena, 1920 purchased from Terminal Steam Nav. Co. renamed Cheam, 1923 retired from service. 1926 scrapped. 821
Chehalis 1897 tug, 12th Jul.1906 sunk in collision in First Narrows. 54
Chelan 1944 ex- Vera C, 1952 purchased fromn U.S. Navy renamed Chelan, 15th Apr.1954 lost off Cape Decision, Alaska with all hands. 541
Chelohsin 1911 4th Nov.1949 ran aground outside Vancouver Harbour, 1951 scrapped. 1,134
Chenega 1916 ex- Northern Express, 1954 purchased from General Sea Transportation Ltd renamed Chenega, 1959 sold to Sannie Transportation Co., Vancouver. 381
Cheslakee 1910 1913 sank, salvaged and rebuilt, renamed Cheakamus, 1942 converted to a tug and sold to U.S. Department of Transport. 526
Chilco 1883 ex- Santa Maria, 1917 purchased from the All Red Line renamed Chilco, 1935 renamed Lady Pam, 1946 sunk as breakwater at Oyster Bay, south of Campbell River. 305
Chilcotin (1) 1944 ex- HMS Hespeler (corvette), 1947 purchased from Royal Navy renamed Chilcotin, 1958 sold to Sun Line, Monrovia renamed Capri. 1,837
Chilcotin (2)   see Camosun (3)  
Chilkoot (1) 1920 1934 sold to Border Line, then to BC Steamships renamed Alaska Prince. 756
Chilkoot (2) 1946 1957 sold to Navieros Unidos del Pacifico, Mexico, later renamed Culiacan. 1,336
Chilliwack (1) 1903 ex- British Columbia, 1919 purchased from Coastwise Tugboat & Barge Co. renamed Chilliwack. 1926 sold to Goose Packing Co. as a floating cannery. 557
Chilliwack (2) 1917 ex- Ardgarvel, 1927 purchased from P. McCallum & Sons, Greenock renamed Chilliwack, 1954 sold to Micronesia Metal & Equipment Co. renamed Iron Shield. 834
Chilliwack (3)   see Island King.  
Comox (1) 1891 1919 scrapped. 101
Comox (2) 1924 wooden hull, 1943 scrapped. 54
Coquitlam (1) 1892 1923 sold to Bervin SS Co., 1939 returned to Union SS Co., 1950 sold to Canadian Fishing Co., 1959 beached at Malcolm Island as breakwater. 256
Coquitlam (2) 1943 ex- HMS St. Thomas (corvette), 1946 purchased from Royal Navy renamed Coquitlam, 1958 sold to Alaska Cruise Lines renamed Glacier Queen. 1,835
Coutli 1904 tug, 1910 sold to Red Fir Lumber Co., Nanaimo. 99
Cowichan 1908 27th Dec.1925 sunk in fog collision with LADY CYNTHIA. 125
Cutch 1884 1890 purchased from Hajeebhoy Abdoolabhoy & Joomabhoy Lalljee, Bombay, 1898 rebuilt to 676 tons, 24th Aug.1900 wrecked on Horseshoe Reef, south of Juneau, salvaged, sold and 1902 renamed Jessie Banning, 1902 resold to Columbian Navy renamed Bogota and converted to gunboat. 324
Eastholm 1913 wooden hull, 1939 purchased from Waterhouse Co., 1957 scrapped. 174
Gray 1909 ex- Petriana, 1939 purchased from Waterhouse Co., 1946 sold to Canadian Transport Co., Vancouver, 1947 sunk as breakwater in Oyster Bay, south of Campbell River. 707
Island King 1920 ex- Columba, 1944 purchased from Bergen SS Co., Bergen renamed Island King, 1954 renamed Chilliwack (3), 1959 sold to Northland Navigation Co. renamed Tahsis Prince. 591
Lady Alexandra 1924 1954 sold as floating restaurant at Coal Harbour, 1980 scuttled at Redondo Beach Calif. 1,396
Lady Cecilia 1919 ex- HMS Swindon (minesweeper), 1925 purchased from Royal Navy renamed Lady Cecilia, 1951 retired from service. 944
Lady Cynthia 1919 ex- HMS Barnstable (minesweeper), 1925 purchased from Royal Navy renamed Lady Cynthia, 1951 sold to Coast Ferries, 1957 scrapped. 950
Lady Evelyn 1901 ex- Deerhound, 1923 purchased from Howe Sound Navigation Co. renamed Lady Evelyn, 1936 scrapped. 588
Lady Pam   see Chilco.  
Lady Rose 1937 1951 sold to Harbour Navigation Co. 199
Leonora 1889 wooden hulled tug, 1919 wrecked off Cracroft Island. 33
Melmore 1892 (ex-Great Western Railway Co., Glasgow),1914 purchased from J. Constant, London, 1916 sold to G. E. Leith, Callao renamed Santa Elena. 424
Northholm 1924 ex- Robert H. Merrick, 1939 purchased from Waterhouse Co. 16th Jan.1943 sank in gale off Cape Scott; loss of 15 lives. 447
Redonda 1944 1955 purchased, 1959 sold. 185
Senator 1881 wooden hulled tug, 1889 purchased as used as Moodyville ferry, 1925 sunk off Bowen Island. 31
Skidegate 1879 wooden hulled tug, 1889 purchased, 1891 rebuilt as passenger / cargo ship, 1897 scrapped. 37
Southholm 1919 ex- E. D. Kingsley, 1939 purchased from Waterhouse Co. renamed Southholm, 1950 converted to barge renamed Bulk Carrier No.1. 1,029
Tournament 1942 1956 purchased from Tidewater Co., 1959 sold to Northland Navigation Co. 149
Triggerfish 1956 6th Oct.1956 sank off Whytecliff; loss of 3 lives. 100
Troubadour 1944 1956 purchased from Tidewater Co., 1959 sold to Northland Navigation Co. 103
Vadso 1881 1911 purchased from Boscowitz Co., 3rd Feb.1914 wrecked and burned near mouth of Nass River. 908
Venture 1910 1911 purchased from Boscowitz Co., 1946 sold to China renamed Hsin Kong S0. 1,011
Washington 1914 1918 purchased, 1918 engines removed and hull sold. 306

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