The small cargo passenger steamer Pirate was purchased by the Argyll & Wigtown Steamship Company in 1893 to replace the SS Argyll which had been wrecked on Milleur Point in September, 1893. The Pirate had been built by Scott & Sons of Bowling in 1884 and was a 69nt iron cargo steamer with dimensions of 130.0′ x 21.1′ x 9.9’.
On Friday 6th August 1909 the Pirate anchored off the Scar in Loch Ryan, waiting for thick fog to clear. Around mid morning the steamer Princess Maud, of the Larne and Stranraer Steamship Joint Committee, left the Railway Pier in Stranraer for the Irish coast. As she headed up Loch Ryan the poor visibility obscured the Pirate, which had unwisely been anchored in the main fairway, and the Princess Maud ran directly into the Pirate leaving a large hole on the starboard bow of the stationary vessel. The four passengers and crew were immediately transferred to the Princess Maud, as the Pirate rapidly began to sink and were later landed at Stranraer.
The Pirate had sunk bow first in four fathoms, although her stern remained afloat at certain stages of the tide. Captain Burns of the Glasgow Salvage Association visited the wreck on 10th August and took charge of the salvage operation. The steam lighters Starlight and Sealight soon arrived from Greenock with salvage equipment and work was completed three days later when the Pirate was successfully raised and beached at Stranraer. After temporary repairs she left for Glasgow, under her own steam, on 19th August, returning to service in September.
As an interesting footnote, the Pirate, having escaped destruction in this incident, was finally lost in October 1913 when she ran aground in fog on the Kintyre coast.