The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Chronicle & News (Kingston, ON), April 22, 1848

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p.2 In the gale of Tuesday the American steamer Niagara went ashore near the mouth of the Genesee River, but we are happy to learn that there is every prospect of getting her off, and that she is so little damaged by the accident that she will again take her place in the line within a fortnight or three weeks. The Rochester Republican gives the following particlars:

"She lost her rudder about 3 o'clock P.M. Tuesday, when six miles from port. Capt. Childs then raised the jib and endeavoring to steer by the small rudder, but the wind being very strong and the sea heavy, he could not make the piers. He then turned her again into the lake and again failed. This was three times repeated without success. One of the steam pipes at length gave way and the utmost confusion and consternation now prevailed among the passengers, about seventy in number, many supposing the boilers had burst. In the midst of the fearful scene, Capt. Childs proceeded to give proper directions for the management of the boat, with the utmost coolness and deliberation. All the fire on board was immediately quenched, and he succeeded in producing order and some degree of calmness among the passengers, by assuring them he would see them safely ashore!

The vessel was now at the mercy of the waves. She floated toward the shore, rolling to and fro, and every few minutes shipping a heavy sea. She soon had two or three feet depth of water in the lower cabin. As soon as she came to water 6 or 8 fathoms deep, the anchors were thrown over. She rode the sea for about an hour, but the storm increasing in violence, she began to drag her anchors, and between eight and nine o'clock in the evening, she grounded within twenty or thirty rods of the shore. It was still impossible to get anyone to the shore. The waves were beating with terrific fury against the steamer, and the small boats could not be passed to the shore. The night was thus passed in the most dreadful suspense - escape or assistance until morning being impossible, and the boat liable at any moment to go to pieces. She was thrown about and constantly striking, which kept the passengers, many of them females, in a state of alarm and confusion.

At nine o'clock, Wednesday morning, the effort to send a boat to the shore was successful. A strong rope was then secured ashore, a small boat was fastened to it with a noose, and by this means all the passengers and their baggage, the latter in a wet and damaged condition, were conveyed safely from their perilous situation to the shore. The work was long and tedious, as only about four or five could be carried at a time, but the Captain and crew labored with an energy and coolness worthy of all praise. And well were they rewarded. They had saved the lives of seventy-five passengers, who testified their gratitude and obligations to Captain Childs in the most warm hearted and enthusiastic expressions of admiration of his conduct. The scene was one of deep feeling and interest, and will not soon be forgotten by those who witnessed it."

p.3 Steam Ferry - The Kingston & Wolfe Island Ferry Company have just placed upon the route their new boat built here for the purpose. The ferry-boat is propelled by a low-pressure engine of 20 horsepower, manufactured at Honeyman's Foundry. We understand that this is the 1st low-pressure engine constructed in this city, and we have been very much pleased in noting its easy and correct working. A proof of the latter may be observed in the fact that it has accomplished 30 strokes per minute - a rapidity of execution which speaks well for the excellency of the workmanship.

Raffle of a Sail-Boat will be held. April 18th

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April 22, 1848
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Rick Neilson
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Public domain: Copyright has expired according to the applicable Canadian or American laws. No restrictions on use.
Maritime History of the Great Lakes
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Chronicle & News (Kingston, ON), April 22, 1848