The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
British Whig (Kingston, ON), April 16, 1886

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The steamer Pierrepont reached Wolfe Island wharf last night.

The rate of wages paid for sailors shipping at Kingston is $1.25 per day.

The schrs. Jessie H. Breck and Grantham will go to Toledo to load timber for Kingston.

The str. Pierrepont went to Cape Vincent yesterday by way of the Wolfe Island canal.

The schr. B.W. Folger cleared for Bath last evening. She will load grain for Oswego for Richardson & Son.

The steamboat Pioneer, the property of Edwin Dickens, Napanee, has been sold to T.S. Moffatt, of Gananoque.

Capt. Colvin, of the steamer Dominion, fell into the hold of that vessel on Wednesday, but escaped without serious injury.

The tug Frank Perew took a spin around the harbor yesterday afternoon. She has been sold to a dredging company.

The str. Tecumseh and consorts, and barges R. Gaskin, Southampton and Oriental, will leave for the west on Monday or Tuesday.

The prop. Argyle will be launched tomorrow and the str. Thompson with barges Glenora and Gaskin will go to Toronto to load grain for Kingston.

The repairs to the schr. W.R. Taylor are nearly finished. She has received new decks, deck frames, pieces in the rail deck, and topsail and foreyard. The cost of the repairs will be about $3,000.

The schr. F.J. King, an American vessel, rebuilt at Portsmouth last winter, will be ready for service in a few days. She goes to Cape Vincent and receives a new set of sails made by Kingston parties.

The schr. A. Foster will leave for Wolfe Island tomorrow. After loading 4,000 bushels she will return to the city and loads 2,000 bushels more. She will then proceed to Big Sodus. The grain is owned by R.J. Eilbeck.

The steamer Africa, owned by Capt. F. Patterson, of Kingston, was burned to the water's edge at Owen Sound yesterday. The dry dock property, lumber yards, and adjacent property were in danger. The fire is supposed to have started from a stove in the cabin amidships. The boat was fully insured.

The steamer Ontario has been seized at Gananoque under a mortgage, held by Francis A. Hicks, of Watertown. The mortgage is the first lien on the boat, and is for $3,000 and interest. It is anticipated that she will be offered for sale about the middle of May at Gananoque.

Mr. R. Davis will build a steam yacht for Mr. A.R. Allen, of Brockville, son of the late Sir Hugh Allan. It will be fifty ft. keel and 10 ft. beam. The hull will be composed of white oak and the joiner work of cherry and mahogany. There will be a cabin 14 ft. long. The windows will be of plate glass. The cost of the woodwork will be about $1,500. The engine for the yacht will be made in England, and the boiler, steel, at Montreal. The yacht will be built from one of Mr. Davis' designs, and it is calculated that she will carry 50 passengers and run 12 miles an hour. The entire cost of the boat will be $5,000. She will be ready for service about June 15th.


[Rose's Representative Canadians]

Captain John Gaskin, ex-mayor of the city of Kingston, was born in Kingston on the third day of April, 1830. His parents, Robert Gaskin and Margaret Burton, were born in the county Tyrone, in the north of Ireland, and came to Canada in the year 1835. One of their family came to this country with them. The family consisted of eight - four boys and four girls - of whom six are now living, and five married and having large families. His father was a soldier in the rebellion of 1837-38, and turned out with other loyal citizens to defend their homes and firesides. The subject of this sketch received his education chiefly at the preparatory school, conducted by the Rev. John Borthwick but when young went to work with ex-mayor John Flanigan, and remained with him some years. While with him he received his first lessons in business. On leaving Mr. Flanigan's employ he went on board the steamer Scotland, then commanded by Capt. F. Patterson, who gave him his first education in steamboat matters. After that he held positions of responsibility on the steamers Huron, George Moffatt, Brantford and Ranger, all owned by the late firm of Henderson & Holcomb, forwarders. On the last named boat he held the position of captain for two years. A period of five years elapsed between the time when he commenced sailing and the time when he became captain of the Ranger, and he was captain of the Ranger at twenty-four years of age. The second year that he commanded the Ranger was the year of the Fenian raid. He was bound down the St. Lawrence with his steamer, but while passing Prescott, the authorities at that place fired across his bows and wanted him to stop as it was considered unsafe to run down the river. Hearing, however, that there was trouble at Cornwall, or at Malone, near Cornwall, and that the volunteers from Kingston were there, and being one of their number, he was anxious to be among his comrades, and so continued his course until he reached Cornwall and stopped there. On reaching Cornwall he found that the volunteers had just arrived and that

There Was Great Excitement.

The orders of the commanding officer were to allow no boats to pass without reporting. This was done, and the commanding officer asked him what his cargo consisted of and he replied: "Pork, peas and whiskey." The officer replied that the cargo was just what was required, as the pork would feed the men, the peas would do if they were short of shot, and the whiskey would put life in the boys. The captain offered his boat in case she was required to take soldiers to any place. The following morning the volunteers found that the provisions were not as good as some of them got at home, and he had No. 1, his own company, down to the steamer, where they were entertained with the best the boat could afford. The boat was kept there for two days and then released. Before he left there was a large number of boats assembled, and a gun-boat was sent with them as far as Montreal. After getting ten miles down Coteau Lake the gun-boat ran ashore on an island and fired a signal gun asking the steamers to come to her assistance. The Ranger went and pulled her off. Very shortly afterwards the gun-boat got ashore again, and another gun was fired. This time the Ranger did not go to her assistance as they wanted to proceed on their voyage, and it was a dangerous place for a loaded boat to approach. As she was passing, however, the gun-boat fired a shot across her bows and made her stop. The Ranger then came to and got the gun-boat off a second time. While working at her the captain of the Ranger went aboard with a small boat, and in conversation with the captain of the gun-boat Capt. Gaskin remarked that the pilot must be a Fenian. He heard no more of this remark for two days, but while reloading the Ranger in Montreal a soldier approached him and said that the pilot of the gun-boat was being tried by court-martial for being a Fenian. He accompanied the soldier to the St. Lawrence Hall, where the man was being tried, and explained that what he had said was simply a joke, that he did not know anything about the man. That same fall

The Ranger Was Lost On Lake Erie,

on a trip from Toledo to Montreal, in a very severe gale near Port Stanley, but all hands were saved, though with much difficulty. Next year he went on board the steamer Georgian, belonging to the same line, but three years afterward became connected with the Montreal Transportation Company, and commanded the steamer Bruno. He remained in that capacity for two years, being part owner. At the end of the two years she was sold, and he then became outside manager of the company in Kingston. This is the largest transportation firm in Canada, having some fifty-five vessels, consisting of tugs, barges, sailing vessels and elevators, and for some years they have done all their repairing and building in Kingston, and have built here some of the largest vessels ever built in Canada. Capt. Gaskin was an Alderman of the city for several years, and was mayor in 1882, and polled the largest vote ever polled in Kingston, defeating his opponent, William McRossie, by 512. He has been connected with the Orange Order since he was 18 years of age, and passed through the different grades and became county master for South Frontenac. He has always been considered a leading spirit in the order since he joined it, although almost a boy at the time. He is fearless and outspoken in defending the order, and, as the Orangemen of Kingston own considerable property, and have one of the finest halls in the dominion but cannot hold estate in their own name on account of not having Orange incorporation, he holds all their papers. He has also been president of the Irish Protestant Benevolent Society, and also the first president of the Protestant Protective Society. He has always been a Conservative, as his father before him, and he is now Vice-President of the Liberal Conservative Association of Kingston. He has always been connected with the English church. He married, on the 14th of April 1867, Mary McAllister, of Kingston, and has two boys and two girls. His wife died in 1875. He has not married since. There is no man in Kingston who has been abused more by the opposition press, but he always succeeded in keeping "his end up."

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Date of Original:
April 16, 1886
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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), April 16, 1886