The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Montreal Gazette (Montreal, QC), April 16, 1840

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(copied from British Whig)

We are extremely sorry to find, by the Kingston papers, that the Hon. J. Hamilton's new steamboat, intended for the Long Sault navigation, has met with a serious disaster, which it will take a couple of months to repair. We copy the following notice of the unfortunate occurrence from the Whig: -

The Steamer Ontario - We are extremely sorry to learn, that this new and fast sailing vessel, on her passage from Toronto to Kingston, on Wednesday last, near Port Hope, having the Hon. John Hamilton on board, met with a serious accident to one of her engines. The shaft broke, the working beam gave way in the centre, the piston rod was bent double, and the paddle wheel lost in consequence. The boat put back to Toronto with one wheel only, and yet so fast is her speed, that meeting the Commodore Barrie on her way to Kingston, the latter returned in company to Toronto, to receive her freight and passengers, and was completely distanced by the crippled steamboat.

The Chronicle mentions the accident, and adds:

This disaster may be viewed as a public loss. The spirited proprietor, the Hon. John Hamilton, was on board at the time, and though we learn that the Niagara Dock Company will bear the loss of the damaged machinery, and the loss of time and disappointment to Mr. Hamilton in not being able for the present to test the important experiment contemplated in the construction of this boat, must be great. From the speed of the Ontario, (eighteen miles an hour) it is now generally conceded that she would accomplish with ease the object for which she was built, viz. the surmounting of the rapids of the Long Sault.

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April 16, 1840
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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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Montreal Gazette (Montreal, QC), April 16, 1840