The Georgian Bay and the Neighboring Country
Of the great inland waters of Canada, the Georgian Bay has been among the latest to attract a growing commerce over its surface. The greater part of the country adjacent to the bay, indeed almost all but that which lies on its southern border, is still unsettled. Penetanguishene, which occupies a south-eastern position on the Georgian Bay, is, we believe, the oldest settlement on its borders. It has been a military station between thirty and forty years. Nottawasaga has been settled for seventeen years. But it was not till about eight years ago that the trade of this bay began to assume any sort of importance, or that any considerable number of vessels began to navigate its waters. Indeed it is only from that period that we can date the commencement of what is destined to become a great and important trade. The opening sources of the future commerce of this bay are various. There is the trade in timber, which has for some time been opening on Nottawasaga river to American ports, but principally to Buffalo. This trade, on the eastern margin of the bay, is capable of very great extension; and we believe some government surveys have been made on the north, with a view to granting timber licenses. The French river, to which, if we mistake not, the survey extended, will afford facilities for the prosecution of this trade. Another source of commerce is to be found in the fishing islands off Cape Hurd, on the western portion of the bay. White fish and salmon are caught here; but this branch of industry, which is believed to be capable of indefinite extension, has not yet been pursued on any considerable scale. Probably some 3,000 or 4,000 brls. are taken in a season. The fish are salted down in barrels on the spot; and shipped to market. We observe that white fish is now commanding an unusual large price in the United States; having risen as high as 25 s. a barrel in some cases, the usual price having heretofore often been not over 15 s. These fisheries are doubtless destined to become a source of considerable profit in future. The settlement of the country surrounding the Georgian bay will open up another source of trade in the products of the soil, and the supplying of the producers with such imported articles as necessity and convenience require. Already there is some commerce between such ports as Owen Sound and the mines of Lake Superior. Beef, pork, and other provisions, are supplied to the miners, both on the British and on the American sides; but not to any great extent. But the greatest source of the future commerce of the bay will undoubtedly be found in the opening up of the vast country lying to the east, and which is likely soon to be placed under survey. [Toronto Leader]
The STEAMER GILDERSLEEVE, Capt. Crysler, will leave the United States Wharf, today, at 12 o'clock, for Gananoque, Brockville, Prescott and Ogdensburgh.