The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
British Whig (Kingston, ON), Sept. 29, 1835

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p.2 The Assizes - Friday Sept. 25th - Morris vs Prentiss - This was an action brought against one of the owners of the Steam Boat Kingston for damages, occasioned by the sinking of that vessel, near Belleville, last year. Verdict, £56 10s. 3d. This was a most material action, as upon its issue depended the result of several other actions.

Accident - On Sunday night last, as the cook of the Oswego Steam Boat, a colored man, was coming up to town from the boat which was then lying at Freehan's wharf, he walked into the Bay, mistaking it for the wharf and was drowned. We learn that the body was taken up and brought away in the Steam Boat, without awaiting a Coroner's Inquest, which the law in some cases orders and directs to be holden. [Toronto Courier]


To The Editor of the Montreal Herald.

Sir, - I have noticed of late in the Montreal Herald a good deal of discussion about and complaints against the Ottawa & Rideau Forwarding Company; and as I am acting agent to that Company at Montreal, and these complaints attach blame to my conduct in very strong language, and as one charge in particular is supported by a certificate from those who considered themselves aggrieved, I think it my duty, in behalf of myself and those for whom I am acting, to publish an explanation of it. The Reverend gentleman who seems to have headed the said certificate, acted at the Company's stores, when about leaving Montreal, in a way very unbecoming a man of his cloth, by an unnecessary display of litigiousness, and erring a good deal in his statements, the particulars of which I am not disposed to bring before the public, because it is not my wish to injure any person, particularly a man who yet may be employed to teach others to speak the truth; I saw from his conduct that he was likely to prove a troublesome customer, therefore I requested him the favor to allow me to take his luggage out of the boat, and that he would procure his passage another way; to which he would not agree.

These people being taken from Kingston in the Great Britain for the same price that passengers are taken by the steam boats friendly to our line, (which was half a dollar less than their customary charge,) was a piece of friendship or charity that could not be easier repaid, than by signing a certificate, even if it should not be perfectly agreeable to truth, as was the case. The opportunity seemed to be considered, by those who embraced it, of great consequence, as this certificate was seized with avidity, and published, with a view to build up one line at the expense of another. Probably the Great Britain folks forget while they were publishing their generosity to those strangers, that they were also publishing that they charge emigrants half a dollar more than is charged by the other boats friendly to the Ottawa line.

If more is requested about the gentleman whose name figures at the head of this highly prized certificate, it can be obtained at the Ottawa and Rideau Company's Office. As to the reverend gentleman's being told that they would arrive in Toronto in five days, they were only told that we generally deliver goods and passengers at Kingston in five days, and sometimes less. We have had goods and passengers arrived at Toronto in five days from Montreal; any person doubting it can be satisfied of its correctness by calling on me.

As to the barge Noah or any other boat, striking against a rock and receiving injury, I think there was no need of saying so much about it, for we never said or insinuated, that no accident could possibly happen to our boats passing from Montreal to Kingston and back; but I can and do often say, that our boats are better calculated to carry goods and passengers without injury than those by the St. Lawrence only - and this, I feel, will not be denied by the principals in the business of that line.

If I have not published certificates of bad treatment of passengers received in passing up the St. Lawrence, let the forwarders not suppose it is because they never gave offence, or that I had not the power. No, I thought too meanly of such a transaction; but that it may not appear that I am stating what is untrue, I beg permission to publish the following unsolicited certificate from an entire stranger, in his own language. I have more at hand, but hope they will not be required.

Toronto, U.C., August 29th, 1835.

"Having come to the Upper Province this season by the Rapids of the St. Lawrence, and having experienced the most insulting and brutal conduct from Captain ____, also from Mr. ____, contractor for towing the boats, inasmuch as they, contrary to the verbal promise of the owners, ______, we were forced repeatedly to go ashore, and sometimes to drag on the tow rope; but in consequence of my refusal to do so with my family, and resisting their demands, had my bedding damaged by water in bucketfulls poured down upon it, also the above Mr. ____ coming down below to me with a drawn knife, to force me out.

"I have sent a detailed account of the whole to my friends in Edinburgh, that the public may be aware what they have to experience when coming by the Rapids of the St. Lawrence.

Wm. March.

I have thought it best to leave out names, and many other observations relating to the treatment complained of, and refrain from making any comments about the matter, as I can see no good in lengthening or aggravating this subject - for I do not think that mere matters of rivalship in business are of much consequence to the public, and I wish to live in friendship with my neighbors in the same trade, as I always have done, giving and receiving favors from each other.

I deny that any unfair means have ever been taken to get passengers, and would confidently appeal to the masters of steam-boats and others, as to who began the plan of enticing passengers to go by this or that route, or which party tells the toughest stories - certainly it is not the Ottawa Company.

The Ottawa Company has done a very heavy business this season, and has probably met with as few accidents as the varied nature of their route could possibly lead any one to anticipate. If, by their extensive operations, they have prevented a monopoly, and cut down the enormous profits heretofore realized by the River Forwarders, the public, who are gainers, will not complain that two routes are open to them instead of one.

I remain, Sir,

Your obedient servant,

Emery Cushing.

Montreal, 21st September, 1835.



Sept. 25th - The steamer Bytown, Robins, with 43 passengers and goods.

Sept. 27th - The steamer Thomas McKay, Chambers, with barge Sophia in tow (consignees listed)


Sept. 23rd - The steamer Rideau, Bowen, with whiskey & pork for Bytown.

Sept. 25th - The steamer Bytown, Robins, with flour, salt, pork, etc. for Bytown.

Sept. 28th - The steamer Margaret, Moorhouse, with flour etc. for Bytown.

Sept. 29th - The steamer Thomas McKay, Chambers, with 120 blls. pork, Bytown, with barge Sophia in tow, laden with merchandize for Montreal. (consignees listed)

Lake Ontario.

The Fast Sailing Steam Packet


Lieut. Harper, R.N. Commander.

Will leave Kingston for Toronto as follows:


September - Thursday 24 and Tuesday 29.

October - Saturday 3, Thursday 8, Tuesday 13, Saturday 17, Thursday 22, Tuesday 27, and Saturday 31.

November - Thursday 5 and Tuesday 10.

Touching at Oswego, Cobourg, and Port Hope, wind and weather permitting.


Will leave Toronto for Kingston,

September - Saturday 27.

October - Thursday 1, Monday 5, Saturday 10, Thursday 15, Monday 19, Saturday 24, and Thursday 29.

November - Monday 2, Saturday 7, Thursday 12.

Touching at Port Hope and Cobourg.

Passengers leaving Toronto by the above Boat will always meet a Boat at Kingston which runs in connection with the Montreal line of Stages.

All freight payable on delivery.

Kingston, 21st September, 1835.

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Sept. 29, 1835
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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.
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British Whig (Kingston, ON), Sept. 29, 1835