The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Montreal Gazette (Montreal, QC), Aug. 16, 1841

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(copied from Whig by Montreal Gazette, Aug. 16, 1841)

p.2 The Kingston Regatta - The aquatic sports advertised for last Thursday, came off on that day, but the weather was so very tempestuous, as partially to destroy the anticipated pleasure. Lieut. Col. Evarard of the 14th Regiment, somewhat pettishly refused to allow the band of his corps to be in attendance, which was another drawback on the sports. In other respects, the various races went off as well as could be expected; and Capt. Sandom did every thing in his power, aided by the very efficient assistance of his officers, to compensate for the inclemency of the weather.

The first race was for the Silver Cup. Eight boats were entered, but the gale blew so strongly, as to render it an impossibility to start them fairly. During the delay, the Shamrock went ashore, and was hors de combat; and Mr. Hitchcock's Ferry-boat, and a fast-sailing Scow, belonging to Mr. Hinchley, both of Long Island, went off an hour before the others. The remaining five boats, Mr. Taylor's (R.N.) Black Joke, Mr. Willoughby's (R.N.) La Belle Louise, Mr. Hatch's (R.N.) Breeze, Mr. Richard's (of Brockville) Storm, and Mr. Lowe's (of Picton) Red Rover, attempted to start, but it was impossible to do it effectually; as it was also to convey the communication to all the Captains of the changing of the distance to be sailed. The consequence was, that when the boats went off, there was no understanding among the competitors, and the race ended in a false start. The Ferry-boat finding the scow out-sailed her, abandoned the contest, and bore away for home; the Scow pursued her way, and according to her own account ( an account disputed by many) went round Snake Island, returned, and claimed the cup; the Storm, knowing the alteration made, went round the place appointed, returned, and claimed the cup; the Black Joke, missing stays, went ashore; the Breeze lost her top mast in a squall, but notwithstanding this accident could have weathered the Storm, had Mr. Hatch been aware of the alteration made in the distance to be sailed; the Red Rover met with some accident and bore up; and the remaining vessel, Mr. Willoughby's La Belle Louise, followed the Scow in gallant style, weathered Snake Island, and returned to claim the cup. Mr. W. also not being aware of the alteration made by the judges, in the distance to be sailed. Thus, out of eight vessels entered for the cup, three of them claimed it. It followed, as a matter of course, that no award was made, and the decision was left to the Stewards for after consideration. The whole of the entered vessels, (with the exception of the Scow) were very beautiful models of naval architecture; and it was a pity that the state of the weather prevented fair play between them.

The second race was for a purse of £10. Three vessels started; the six oared galley of Captain Sandom, a six oared galley belonging to the Traveller, and a beautiful nondescript craft, called Death, manned by seven Long Islanders. This latter was nothing but a skiff, upwards of thirty feet in length, and her admission had been a matter of dispute before the Stewards, and decided by a bare majority of one. The distance to be rowed was about four miles, and half of it dead to windward, with a heavy sea. When the start was given, the Commodore's galley shot ahead, and had the race been all to windward, would have won; but on rounding the moored boat, the Long Island boat came home on the top of the sea, while the galley had to come through it. The consequence was, that the Long Island boat won by a length or two; but the race was a good one, and the state of the weather a fair counterpoise for the disparity of the build.

The third race was for a purse of £7 10s. Three four-oared gigs were entered for this race, together with the Long Island Death; but there was another misunderstanding as to the latter's admissibility to compete for two prizes. In consequence of her leaky condition, Captain Ballingall's Minkey did not start, and the race was, properly, between Mr. Gregg's (R.N.) gig, and Mr. M'Lean's Grip, a very beautiful boat, but, decidedly, not a gig. But the Long Island boat, pulling four oars, would start, and all three went off. The Long Island boat came in far-ahead, fol lowed by the Grip and the Dock Yard boat; and another wrangle ensued, to be determined by the Stewards.

The fourth race was a Skiff Race, open to all, for two purses of £4 and £2 10s. Four competitors, Mr. Erastus Ives, Mr. James Eccles, Mr. G. Rowley, and Mr. G. Davis. This race (heats of two miles) was easily won by James Eccles, the best skiff puller on Lake Ontario, who had rowed in the two previous races, in the Long Island Death. The second purse was taken by Mr. G. Davis.

The fifth race was the Amateur Skiff Race, for a purse of £5. There were, originally, three competitors, Captain Cameron (Garden Island), Dr. M'Intosh, R.A., and Mr. D. M'Kay (of Kingston); but Dr. M'Intosh withdrew. This race was easily won by Captain Cameron. The trial of strength and skill between Captain Cameron and Dr. M'Intosh remains, as yet, to come off, as it was by consent of the latter that the former went in and won the purse from Mr. M'Kay.

This race closed the sports of the day. The Stewards and others were afterwards handsomely entertained by Captain Sandom, with a dejeuner a la fourchette.

A meeting of the Stewards took place at the British American Hotel, (J.B. Marks, Esq. in the chair,) on the following day, when the disputed matters came up. It was decided, that the silver cup should be sailed for again: as should be also the four-oared Gig Race; the Stewards engaging to double the amount of the purse in case the Brockville boat Grip won.

At the time appointed the Judges attended, but two vessels only were in attendance, the Scow and the Storm. The former, which is a very ordinary scow, and nothing else, went off a few minutes after the Storm, but owing to her build, soon weathered her opponent, and won the cup - proving her capabilities of sailing, both in heavy weather and smooth water, to be very superior. The rowing match then followed, and two boats only came at the scratch; the Grip and the Death. Here again the Long Island Boys were successful; thus carrying off all the prizes. [Kingston Whig]

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Aug. 16, 1841
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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), Aug. 16, 1841