The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
British Whig (Kingston, ON), Feb. 8, 1888

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p.4 The Wrecking Laws - Congress has been asked to devote special attention to the wrecking laws, which, as now observed, do not, it is alleged, favour or even do justice to American marine interests. It is further stated that an investigation will be strengthened by statements of vessel owners who claim that they have suffered inconvenience, delay and damage by reason of the department at Ottawa refusing to allow American wrecking tugs and appliances to go to the rescue of their vessels when wrecked in Canadian waters. One of the grievances cited is that of the owner of the schr. Comanche, sunk on the third of November, 1882, in the canal near Port Colborne. Although Buffalo was but twenty miles off, and assistance could have been procured in six hours, American assistance was not permitted. As a result they had to wait for assistance from Amherstburg, nearly 300 miles distant, causing a delay of three days, owing to which the vessel's cargo swelled and almost ruined the vessel. But the Americans do not rest their case upon the facts embraced in one case. Their mariners claim to have been needlessly put about in many instances, while the government has frequently granted indulgences which the law did not cover and did not countenance. That a modification of the wrecking laws, American and Canadian, should take place is quite evident. It is advocated by those most interested, by those who realize how hard they bear upon the vessel owners. There is certainly no hope of securing a continuation of Washington departmental favours unless our marine department is much more liberal in its instructions. This Hon. Mr. Foster will conclude after he has read the evidence collected by the Royal commission, especially that of a practical wrecker at Kingston. If the Canadian wreckers do not object to a change in the law who can do so reasonably?

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Feb. 8, 1888
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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), Feb. 8, 1888