The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
British Whig (Kingston, ON), July 7, 1836

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Rare Doings on Board a Certain Steamer.

Like others of our contemporaries, we plead guilty of having on many occasions been in the habit of lauding masters of steamers and of extolling their urbanity and all that to the skies, when perhaps the object was very undeserving of it, whether with a view to a good swinging advertisement or not, will remain for cauists ? to say. What we may have ever said of the present Captain of the Steamer we allude to, we do not now recollect, but if we did say any thing to his praise we ask pardon of God and man for the offence. The following circumstances in his conduct, which have lately come to our ears, will explain the extraordinary nature of our exordium. The gentleman referred to has lately taken it into his noddle that the purser of the boat (as good a fellow as ever broke bread) has been destined to supercede him in the command of the boat. No longer ago than Thursday last, at once to satisfy his cupidity and revenge, he seized the opportunity of attaching a horse, sent on by the boat in charge of the purser, for a debt on an execution of his own; and on the purser remonstrating with him on the impropriety of his conduct, and the ill character such an act would give the boat, the man broke out into an extreme rage, and abused the purser in the most scurillous and vulgar language, and this in the presence of numerous auditors. Not content with this, on the boat arriving at the head of the Bay of Quinte, he, without the least cause or provocation, seized the purser by the collar and violently ejected him from the boat at the same time bestowing on him the coarsest epithets our language affords. So much for his respect for the purser appointed by the committee of the boat. His next feat of arms was on the Tuesday following, when fastening like a hungry tiger on the pilot of the boat, and after beating and bruising the poor man so unmercifully as to endanger his life, he also was unceremoniously driven from on board. So much for the pilot. Next for the ladies. All steamers have their little stories of scandal, and accordingly every outre act which takes place on board flies like wild fire among the hands. Well the on dit of the vessel is, that the Captain has his cher amie - his lindamira - a too frequent passenger in the vessel, and this, curiously enough, always when there are few or no lady passengers on board; while, for convenience sake, he has his bed made upon the floor of the ladies' cabin. So much too for the ladies. And now for the character of the boat. If the above facts be true, and they cannot be denied, we who are no great travellers ourselves will say this much, as a public censor, that, sooner than travel with a reckless ruffian, egad! we would prefer taking to our stumps and trudging it, rather than sail in the same boat with such a fellow. The Committee would do well therefore to ponder on the magnitude of these charges, and say how the public and travellers are to be protected in future. We know of one company that would sooner consign their goods to the bottom of the lake rather than entrust a single package to the care of the present officers of the boat.

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July 7, 1836
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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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British Whig (Kingston, ON), July 7, 1836