Launched on 26th March 1886 as Piscator for Thomas McLaren of Glasgow the steel steamship measured 130.0′ x 21.1′ x 10.0′ and her tonnage was 236 gross tons, 94 net tons. She was powered by a 2 cylinder compound steam engine by Muir and Houston Ltd., Glasgow delivering 55 registered horse power.
She was sold to Compagnie de Chemin de Fer, Congo in December 1889 who renamed her Reine des Belges. She traded for four years on the River Congo before she returned to British ownership in 1893 when she was purchased by Peterhead, Leith and Aberdeen Steamship Company and registered in Peterhead as Ugie.
The Ugie left Peterhead bound for Leith on the evening of 15th March 1900 with a general cargo mainly of oats and whisky. She was under the command of Captain George Strachan although her normal skipper, Captain William Robertson was also aboard. They had a crew of seven men and were also carrying three passengers. She steamed south in calm weather until, between 5 and 6 o’clock the following morning, they were close to Bell Rock steering a course for the Carr Light. At this point the Ugie was struck on the starboard side just forward of the bridge by the Dundee based steam trawler Taymouth. The trawler was steaming at full speed and the collision ripped a huge tear in the Ugie’s hull causing her to fill rapidly and quickly begin to founder. The crew managed to launch the boats and everyone including the passengers disembarked safely to be picked up by the Taymouth before the steamer sank. They had no time to retrieve their belongings before she went down. The Taymouth sustained serious damage to her stem and foreparts but was able to convey everyone safely to Dundee.
At the subsequent enquiry the crews of each vessel blamed the other for the collision in the darkness that morning. The debate surrounding the incident centred on the action taken when the two ships first spotted each other on a collision course less than a quarter of a mile apart. The crew of the Taymouth stated that the Ugie turned towards her after they had sounded a warning and correctly altered their course. However, the crew of the Ugie testified that they heard to Taymouth’s warning but that the Taymouth then did not make the required course adjustment forcing a last minute attempt to avoid the collision by the Ugie. However this was too late and the two ships collided. The court held the Taymouth to be the guilty party and awarded damages to the owners of the Ugie.
The wreck believed to be the Ugie lies in position 56° 22.973’N, 002° 27.742’W oriented 130/310 degrees. She lies in 30 metres and is well broken but still rises 5 metres at some points. The wreckage is beautifully encrusted with colourful sealife.