The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Daily British Whig (Kingston, ON), June 24, 1851

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p.2 Unjust Attack Upon Capt. Chambers - When a steamboat master so universally and so deservedly popular on the Bay of Quinte as Capt. Chambers, now of the steamer Henry Gildersleeve, becomes the object of course newpaper vituperation, it excites some little astonishment and begets a curiousity to discover the cause. The Picton Sun of the 17th contains in a letter signed "Justice," a very gross libel upon this gentleman, into the truth of which, and the motives of publication, we shall briefly examine. The libel is much too long to publish in the crowded state of our columns, but the chief allegation consists in taking a passenger for Adolphustown and not landing him. The fact of the matter is, there are two landing places at Adolphustown, one the old and well known wharf, below the ancient Court House; and the other a new wharf, called Allison's wharf, lower down the Bay. At the first wharf the Henry Gildersleeve always stops; at the second only when it suits convenience. "The Physician whose patient was dying" would not land at the first wharf; the boat did not stop at Allison's wharf, and so he was obliged to go ashore at Fredericksburgh, only four miles from the first landing place, and barely three from the second, instead of twelve miles as the writer of the libel falsely asserts. Another allegation is not calling at Allison's wharf for a boy, who wanted to go to the Trent, making some vulgar observations about that boy. Allowing it to be the duty of every steamboat to touch at every wharf, this charge is met by the plump denial on the part of Capt. Chambers, of the fact itself. On the day in question, when the boat neared the wharf, he was informed that there were no passengers, and he made no observation about the boy, because there was no boy to make an observation about. This charge originates in malicious invention. The motives of publication seem very apparent. Some person or persons connected with Allison's wharf are angry because the Henry Gildersleeve does not call sufficiently often at this particular wharf, forgetful that this steamer is a heavy vessel, difficult to manage, and the wharf inconvenient to approach; and knowing no better way to remedy this grievance, commence the game of newspaper abuse. The liberty of the Press is a great blessing to mankind, but it should not be abused; a public servant's character is his capital, his stock in trade, and Captain Chambers has some reason to complain of having been unkindly treated by the Sun, in giving publicity to these allegations without enquiring into their correctness or the animus which prompted them. No person who knows, or who has ever sailed with the master of the Henry Gildersleeve, will believe "that for a temporary engagement and a trifling stipend he would sell himself and sacrifice the interests of the public," as alleged by the Sun, or that he has become "supercilious and disobliging"; consequently the whole charge falls to the ground; but the conduct of the writer of the libel and the imprudence of the publisher of the Sun are not the less reprehensible.

The Welland Canal Marine list shows that 103 vessels passed the canal during the week ending June 17th, of which 40 were bound up and 63 down. Of those passing down, 35 were bound to this port, 17 to Kingston, 4 to Montreal, and 4 to Ogdensburgh.

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June 24, 1851
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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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Daily British Whig (Kingston, ON), June 24, 1851