The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Daily News (Kingston, ON), May 31, 1876

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p.2 Court of Revision - Samuel Fraser, over assessment on vessel property. Laid over.

The Countess of Dufferin - We have it on the very best authority that the builder of the Countess of Dufferin is not American, and never was, and that "he never saw an American model of a yacht to work from." This knocks the wind out of the sails of the New York Herald [Hamilton Times]

The Centennial Yacht - The Countess of Dufferin arrived in the harbour at Toronto last evening. It was expected that a race would come off today in Toronto harbour between the Countess and one of the city yachts.

Marine Notes

The harbour today is very quiet, there being only two arrivals of grain to report.

Montreal Transportation Co. - The schr. Persia arrived with 8,901 bush. peas. The tug Glide arrived with barges Milwaukee, Lancaster, Energy, and St. Lawrence, light.

G.M. Millar & Co. - schr. Nellie Hunter, from Cobourg, with 12,000 bush. wheat.

Jas. Swift's Wharf - Oswego Belle from Hamilton; the props. Persia called from St. Catharines and the Celtic from Hamilton.

Collins Bay, May 30th - Departures - Collins Bay Company's first raft, schr. T.R. Merritt.

Port Colborne, May 30th - Up - schrs. Mary Jane, Port Metcalfe, Bay City, light; Erie Belle, Kingston, Kincardine, light; Eveleen, Toronto, Bear Creek, light; Niagara, Kingston, Georgian Bay, do.; Denmark, do., Bay City, do.; Snow Bird, Stone Bridge, Erie, do.; Samana, Charlotte, Detroit, coal; O. Mowat, Kingston, Bay City, light; Jennie White, do., Cleveland, iron ore; Albacore, Charlotte, Toledo, coal; props. Scotia, Montreal, Duluth, railroad iron; Maine, Ogdensburg, Chicago, gen. cargo; Georgian, Montreal, Port Ryerse, do.

Down - schrs. Eliza Allen, Vermillion, Prescott, stone; Laura Belle, Bay City, Collins Bay, staves; Mary, Toledo, Kingston, corn.

In harbour - schrs. Russian, D.W. McColl, prop. Pittsburg and tow.

p.3 Toronto, May 31st - The yacht Countess of Dufferin is lying off Yonge Street wharf and is being visited by thousands. All sorts of rumours are afloat as to her rate of speed, but Major Gifford and crew are very reticent; and if she has made any very quick time they do not wish it known. This evening an entertainment at the Yacht Club will be given to her crew and passengers. Stock in her is being taken up fast, and all fears of the necessary amount not being forthcoming are gradually being dispelled. She sails at midnight for Hamilton.

p.4 Canadian Shipbuilders and the Montreal Harbour Commissioners

The Montreal Star says: "The question raised by the Harbour Commissioners that Canadian shipbuilders are not able to compete with Americans, receives at once a very decided and emphatic denial from the former, who not only hold that they compete successfully, but also that they will turn out vessels much superior in workmanship, both as regards shipbuilding and engineering, to those received from the United States. It is unnecessary to say that in no part of the world is better timber used in the building of vessels than in Canada, and it is also a well-known fact that that Canadian vessels as regards sea-going qualities are equal, if not superior, to any modern vessels that can be brought against them. There are few nautical men at the present day who are not aware of the fact that American shipbuilders, as a rule, although turning out nicely lined craft, are faulty as regards sea-going qualities and strength. This being the case and an acknowledged fact, the question may well be asked why do our Harbour Commissioners favor American shipbuilders in preference to our own? At all events how is it that our Montreal shipbuilders are not kept informed of the requirements of the Harbour Commissioners? From an interview with the principal shipbuilders of Montreal, we learn that they have been treated in the most extraordinary manner by our Harbour Commissioners. Mr. Cantin states that last September, in reply to an advertisement in the papers, he sent in no less than six proposals, any one of which might have been advantageously accepted by the Commissioners, while Mr. Lefebure and others state they knew it was useless tendering, as the whole affair was intended to mislead, as such requirements would be named in the specifications, so as to make it impossible for a Canadian to compete. It appears in providing specifications for Canadians one of the provisoes named is that the tug in question must be built under the direct supervision of an Inspector of the Commissioners, and extra claused are inserted, which make it next to an impossibility to comply with them. The builders of Buffalo are, however, very differently treated. The vessels purchased from them are all bought built and ready for sea. There is ample proof that foreign nations are satisfied with what Canadians can do in the way of ship-building. The French Government has been lately supplied by Mr. Cantin with two of as fine, trustworthy, sea going vessels as ever left the stocks, and at present there is large steam tender on the stocks in the same yard for the Federal Government, and Mr. Cantin is also about to conclude the contract for a large vessel for a South American House. Still, our own Harbour Commissioners give Canadians the go-by, the taxes raised here being expended by this local Star Chamber in the States. As regards the engineering department, we are assured that Canadians can also compete with Americans; therefore, there remains no reason why our native industries should be ignored and millions of dollars sent out of the country, when the same requirements can be supplied on equally advantageous terms terms at home. This is a matter of supreme importance to the mechanics of the city, and some action should be taken to condemn the course which the Commissioners have been pursuing, and that is so detrimental to the best interests of Montreal. Are these times, we would ask, when the money which should go into the pockets of mechanics and laborers of the city, should be sent into the States to enrich foreign manufacturers? The public most assuredly think not. Is there no remedy that can be applied to stop the course of this irresponsible Harbour Commission?

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May 31, 1876
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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), May 31, 1876