The following is a transcript from the Otago Witness Saturday 5 September 1874 page 12
Arrival of the s.s. Bruce
The new steamer built to the order of the Harbour Steam Company for the coasting trade, arrived on August 28th from Glasgow, after a long passage of 138 days.
The Bruce was signalled in the morning, and the Geelong at once proceeded to the Heads and towed her to the anchorage off the Port (Chalmers) by noon. The Bruce was taken in tow by the steamer Golden Age and conveyed to Dunedin. Captain J. McFarlane. She is built of iron, and is heavily plated. She is a commodious and staunch passenger and cargo steamer. She has a poop and top-gallant forecastle, the former being 5ft. long, covering a roomy cuddy, that comprises the saloon accommodation. The latter consists of a main saloon, 40ft. long by 22ft. wide, a ladies' cabin, 14ft by 11ft., and the pantry and other offices. The main saloon is beautifully furnished in crimson velvet-covered settees, lockers with mirrors, and highly polished swing trays, tables &c. It has room for 41 passengers. The ladies cabins is perfect as in the case of the main saloon, the seats can, by a simple contrivance, be converted into comfortable sleeping booths. The table being a combination of a dining table an d washstand and is built to hide the ulterior purpose. The ladies' cabin has accommodation for 11 passengers. The main saloon accommodation is also supplemented by a house on the poop, termed the smoking room, and is roomy enough to accommodate six. The forecabin accommodation is also good - 18 passengers can be berthed there. She is fitted with a compound engine of 90 horse-power nominal, built by Stevenson and Sons, of Glasgow. The diameter of the low pressure cylinder is 37 inches, and that of the high pressure cylinder is 23 inches, length of stroke 3 feet. Steam is supplied by one large boiler, having three furnaces; and there is a donkey boiler to feed the steam winches. There is a peculiar feature in the construction of the engines - the connection between the main shaft and the pistons being on the grasshopper principle
There is also a fine roomy galley, and very comfortable officer's quarters.
Her dimensions are:
Length over all, 180ft
depth of hold 10ft 6"
she registers 204 tons.
The Bruce made the passage under canvas. She was lightly rigged as a barque, and this lightness combined with her heavy draught - for she is deeply laden with general cargo - no doubt was conducive to the long passage she made.
Her passage commenced on the 12th April, when the Bruce left Glasgow. Mr McKenzie is her chief engineer, and Mr Thomson chief officer.
The Bruce was wrecked on Taiaroa Head, Otago on 16th October, 1875 on passage from Timaru to Dunedin.