The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Daily News (Kingston, ON), April 16, 1855

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p.2 The St. Clair Flats - Mr. George Keefer, a Civil Engineer, of Chatham, C.W., has addressed a letter to Mr. E. Larwill, of the County of Kent, in relation to a Canadian Channel over the St. Clair Flats, known as the Chenaill Ecarte, which, he says, is a more favorable and shorter line of communication than on the American side, and can be opened at one-third of the expense. This channel, Mr. Keefer states, passes west of St. Ann's Island, and, although somewhat crooked, has sufficient depth of water for any vessel, any steamer or boat navigating the lakes. The only obstruction is a bar formed at its southern entrance into Lake Saint Clair, composed of soft blue clay, extending not over four or five hundred yards, and over which vessels drawing not more than six feet of water can easily pass, so that to secure a channel of ten feet water, the actual depth of dredging will not exceed four feet in the whole distance. The channel, however, when opened, would probably require piers to protect it against the wash of the lake. To obviate this difficulty Mr. K. suggests a cut from a bend in the channel, some distance from its entrance, where it approaches very near to the lake. The length of the cut would not exceed a quarter of a mile, and would at once bring a vessel into deep water in the lake, and where it would be so guarded from prevailing winds as to require no protection from piers. The current, which is about two miles an hour, would always keep the channel open. Says Mr. Keefer, "The great necessity for improving the channel, has, I believe, drawn the attention of the leading men of this town, who, I understand, are about petitioning the Government for a grant of five thousand pounds, which will be ample for all the purposes required, not only for opening a proper channel at these flats, but will cut off some sharp points and bends in the channel, by way of shortening the distance and rendering the navigation more perfect. The Government, it appears to me, would hardly withhold so small a favor when the advantages of so trifling an outlay would subserve so useful a purpose, and when they have been expending large sums for other improvements in the country of much less public utility.

Tug Line - We understand that the Provincial Tug Line contract for the ensuing season, has been awarded to Calvin & Cook, formerly contractors.

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April 16, 1855
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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 News (Kingston, ON), April 16, 1855