On this date in 1925, onlookers along the coast of Huntington Beach could see a high and large plume of smoke and flames from a vessel, leading many to conclude that it must be an oil carrier. Steamers were to dispatched from San Pedro to offer aid, it was said, but they apparently played no part in the resolution of the disaster.
The “oil carrier” was actually a fishing boat, and the crew members had spent part of the morning attempting to extinguish a fire. When the flames grew too large, the crew steered towards the breakers of Seal Beach and beached the vessel. By this point, some of the crew had become overcome by smoke and were given respiratory treatment as soon as the boat hit shore.
– Michael Dobkins