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The Farewell brothers refused to board the ship, expressing concern that it was already overloaded, crowded, and unsafe. Speedy and the canoe were separated as the storm deteriorated into blizzard conditions during the afternoon and evening of 8 October.The wind had turned and was blowing out of the northeast.The battle schooner or gunboat HMS Speedy sank in a snowstorm in Lake Ontario south of Brighton, Ontario and west of Prince Edward County, on 8 October 1804, with the loss of all hands.The sinking changed the course of Canadian history because of the prominence of the citizens of the tiny colony of Upper Canada lost in the disastrous event.It was established that the mysterious monolithic Horseblock shoal had also vanished.Some suggested the 200-ton Speedy was capable of up-ending - of toppling over this unusual formation.Sir Robert Isaac Dey Grey (of Bruce-Grey County fame), first Solicitor-General of Upper Canada was also on board.
Two of Speedy's crew were required to constantly operate manual bilge pumps to keep her afloat for the journey. Almost immediately upon her launch, she ran aground in the harbour due to the heavy load, resulting in a six-hour delay. Speedy stopped briefly at Port Oshawa to pick up the Farewell brothers who were business partners of the murder victim and key witnesses for the prosecution, and a handful of Natives who were also to provide testimony.
Evidence suggests that Speedy was unaware of being in the area now known as the Sophiasburgh Triangle, where magnetic anomalies purportedly exist and prevent proper compass operation.
And, being unable to sail directly into the northeasterly wind because she was a square-rigger, she had trouble steering.
In spite of her name, Speedy was considered slow for her era.
Because she was constructed from improperly seasoned green timber, she almost immediately began to suffer problems with leaks and dry rot after her commissioning.