The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
British Whig (Kingston, ON), May 17, 1883

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"I'll be blowed if the Government isn't too officious altogether," said a mariner who was compelled to report the arrival of his scow from the Rideau Canal. The regulations were new to him and he could see no sense in them. He had taken out the usual coasting license and given bonds that he would not carry contraband goods from Canada to the United States; and to be compelled after all the precautions, to rush up to the Customs House on his arrival here with a couple of hundred cords of wood seemed to him to be very ridiculous. Another scowman had to wait at Rockport, a favorable wind blowing all the while, in order to secure clearance documents. Objection to the new act is very general and many Captains do not feel like complying with it. Some other way of reaching the same end will have to be adopted or there will continue to be howls of indignation that Minister Bowell cannot ignore. The new law makes the work of the Customs officers more laborious and then they receive no higher pay of course. If the Captain has a coasting license he escapes expense in connection with his reports. There had been considerable trouble because the old cargo books were not properly entered, but the difficulty could have been obviated, if instead of receiving the book at the end of the year, the authorities demanded a return of it for inspection every month.

The Active's Tow - The tug Active has arrived at Toledo today minus two of her tow of schooners, the Glenora, and Augustus, which were lost in a squall on Lake Erie on Sunday morning, the towline of the Glenora parting. The tug Green picked up the Glenora a few miles off Turtle Light and took her safely to port. The tug Colton found the Augustus several miles out in the lake, beating about badly.



An appropriation has been granted for a new lighthouse at Deseronto.

The schooner Eureka yesterday from Trenton for Oswego with posts.

Capt. McKee has been placed in charge of the schooner Annie M. Falconer.

The steamer H.A. Calvin is doing the work that the burned Gardiner was engaged in.

The Inland Lloyd's Register is out. It is a complete book. All the Canadian and American vessels are classed in it.

Hon. Alexander's Bay was crowded with vessels this morning giving the harbor a very business-like appearance.

Captain Taylor, Marine Inspector, comes out in cariboo boots. Of course they are new and not the only pair in town.

Belleville harbor will be dredged, the Government having appropriated $6,000 for the work. The dredging has become a necessity.

There is talk of the schooner Sam Cook, sunk near Brockville, being raised. Several insurance men are making an inspection of her.

The Heeney fleet are in from Ottawa with lumber. The schooner Greenwood and the steambarge Norman are loading the same cargoes for Oswego.

The steamer Conqueror has not yet been raised, the Wrecking Company having to await the arrival of her owner, Mr. Ross, from Europe. As soon as he arrives work will be begun upon her.

Captain J.F. Taylor has been appointed Government Inspector of Hulls for a couple of months. He left this morning for Toronto under orders. We hope the appointment will be made permanent.

The schooner Higgie, which arrived here yesterday with 31,000 bushels of corn from Chicago, was the largest craft which so far has passed through the canal. In order to get through the old aquaduct at St. Catharines she had to be lightened.

The steamer Rothesay was to leave here this afternoon for Ogdensburg, there to be docked for repairs. The officers of this craft are: Commander, Capt. Smith; Mate, J. Bushel (late of the Spartan); Purser, F. Roblin; First Engineer, J. Finucan; Second Engineer, M. Penfield.

The schooner Delaware on Saturday night ran aground on the bar off Ship Island. She was loaded with rye for Oswego. The Mary Foster was secured to enlighten the disabled vessel, and the tug Boner towed her into Belleville harbor, leaking badly. About 2,500 bushels of grain were damaged with the water.

The Belleville Ontario has nothing complimentary to say of Captain Larry Spafford, who will have charge of the life station at Poplar Point. He is not a sailor, it says, and his services even in a fishing craft have not been extensive. Captain Hudgins, in charge of Salmon Point Lighthouse, would have been a better appointee.

The steam barge Jim Sheriffs, now lying at the M.T. Co.'s wharf, has been visited by many, and they greatly admired her model. She is a fine craft, open-waisted, with raised decks fore and aft. Her cabin is aft, officers' quarters and wheelhouse in front. The barge is commanded by Capt. Macdonald, a Wolfe Islander, who, in 1855, when Capt. John Donnelly was a boy, was with T. Davis and sailed the schooner Carrier Dove. Canadians are always preferred for important commands because they are industrious and sober. Canadians sail the finest vessels on the Western lakes.

Application For Letters Patent.

The Swan River Lumber Company and the Dominion Navigation Company, of Toronto, have made applications for letters patent. The incorporators of the latter company are Messrs. Samuel Crangle, William Alfred Geddes, John Valentine Trowell, of Kingston. They ask for powers to carry on the business of carriers of passengers and freight, for hire, between different ports and landings on the River St. Lawrence, Lake Ontario, Lake Erie, Lake St. Clair, Lake Huron, the Georgian Bay, and Lake Superior, and the rivers, canals, and water stretches connecting the same and the adjoining gulfs, bays, and streams, including ports on the American side.

Mean Business.

The St. Catharines News declares that the detention of the Persia and other steamers at Kingston, for lack of papers, demands the severest censure. Our contemporary declares that the steamer Persia had her proper inspections but that the Inspector had not made out the necessary certificates. The Customs officials here have a duty to perform, and if the vessel had not her proper certificates it was their duty to stop her. We will remember the loud complaint that went up when it was learned that certain crafts, which went under water, were not inspected. If the Kingston officers were as negligent as some at other ports there would probably be few vessels carrying proper certificates. As the Government must heartily endorse the action of the Kingston officers in their efforts to enforce the law, we join with the St. Catharines News in hoping "that the Government will look into the matter."


Schr. W.J. Greenwood, Port Hope, 6,166 bush. wheat.

Schr. Halstead, Chicago, 25,710 bush. wheat.

Schr. Sweepstakes, Toronto, 12,342 bush. wheat.

Schr. Homer, Chicago, 31,376 bush. corn.

Schr. Florette, Chicago, 19,380 bush. corn.

Schr. Erie Queen, Port Whitby, 14,405 bush. wheat.

St. barge Jim Sheriffs, Chicago, 37,245 bush. corn.

Schr. F.B. Gardner, Chicago, 27,304 bush. corn.

The Montreal Transportation Company received fifteen vessels at their wharves yesterday, aggregating over 300,000 bushels of grain. There are more on the lake coming down.

Yachting Notes - Mr. Offord's new yacht promises to be fast as well as comfortable. She will not make her appearance here until late in June.

The smaller boats belonging to our harbor fleet have been fitted out for the season, and some of them have done considerable sailing, but the weather is altogether too cold to enjoy yachting.

At least two yachts will go from this harbour and participate in the Gananoque regatta. The thing being "open to the world," of course the Emma, now of Toronto, is expected to go into the race with Dow Claus at the tiller.

"It is said," says the Montreal Witness, "that a Kingstonian is about to build a large yacht, and have another dash at the New York Yacht Club for the Queen's plate. Success to him. He will want all our good wishes, if he is to do any better than those who have gone before him."

Very Cozy Rooms - for Sailors' Union.

A New Elevator - being built by Richardson & Son alongside their new warehouse for loading and unloading vessels.

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May 17, 1883
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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), May 17, 1883