The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Daily News (Kingston, ON), June 28, 1876

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p.1 Steamer Empress of India

Mr. Jas. S. McCuaig, of Picton, furnished the Gazette with an interesting sketch of the new steamer Empress of India launched at Mill Point on the 10th inst. He says she was built during the past winter by contract, at the shipyard of Messrs. H.B. Rathbun & Co., under the superintendency of Mr. Jamieson, the skilful foreman of that branch of their extensive works. She is about 178 feet over all, in length, 26 feet beam and propelled by an engine (part of which was taken from the late steamer St. Helen,) with a cylinder of 33 5/8 inches and will be worked under a pressure of 40 lbs. of steam to the square inch. She has thus far given promise of every expectation in speed, having, on her first trip to Toronto, from this port, made in running time eleven miles the hour with but 20 lbs., half the usual pressure of steam used. She is fitted exclusively for the excursion trade, her promenade deck extending over the whole boat, and aft of her engine she has, on her main deck, a saloon with folding doors extending a distance of about sixty feet to the sternpost. Ascending to the promenade deck by two stair-ways extending from the saloon aft and two forward, excursionists are protected from rain or the heat of the sun by a shade or hurricane deck, canvass covered, extending from the stern-post the whole width of the hull of the steamer one hundred and sixty feet to the wheel-house forward, stationary seats being attached to the upright stancheons supporting it. This is a most enjoyable place for excursionists to spend a few hours steaming about for pleasure on the lake in the refreshing air on the water and free from the heat and dust of the city. Captain A.H. White transacts the business on board, and Captain James Collier, or Captain Nelson Hudgins, assumes the duty of sailing master, Captain Collier being the senior of Capt. Hudgins, having the right of preference between her and the steamer Picton. Mr. Wm. Van Vlack is appointed to the post of 2nd officer and Mr. A. Stanton to that of 3rd officer on board. Mr. Kenny, an experienced, faithful and respected employee of the Company for many years, is transferred from the steamer Picton to her as steward, to be replaced by Mr. Spencer of this place. With the genial and courteous bearing of Captain White, the established reputation by lengthy experience of Captain Collier or Capt. Hudgins - for seamanship, as sailing master, ably assisted by the experience of Mr. Van Vlack as second and Mr. A. Stanton as third officer, I have every confidence this fine steamer will be well and thoroughly conducted. My young friend, Mr. William Porter, the successful manager of the Company's steamer Picton at Toronto represents the stockholders, residing here, while she is engaged at Toronto, and from his lengthy experience in every branch connected with steamboat service and management, the public have a certain guarantee that the duties of his responsible position will be faithfully and courteously performed. This steamer was built at a cost of about twenty-two thousand dollars, and will class A 1 with the *. She is a firm, staunch steamer, thoroughly put together - in fact, she is as strong as skill, with wood and iron, can make her, and well equipped, and her appointments generally are such as will secure the confidence of the travelling public. $10,000 of the stock is subscribed for by the inhabitants of Toronto, the principal portion of which is owned by Arthur Harvey, Esq., of that city. The remaining stock is owned by parties in the vicinity of Picton. The origin of the building of this steamer, is largely due to Mr. Prinyer, of Marysburgh. He visited Montreal, accompanied by Col. Ritchie and Mr. Howard, of Amherst Island; Mr. Plews, of Marysburgh, and Mr. Price and Mr. J.H. Murney, of Picton, to enquire into the advisability of uniting with me to place the engine and boiler of the late steamer St. Helen into a new hull for the Bay of Quinte service between Picton and Bay Ports and Kingston. An unlooked for opposition to the enterprise from Mr. Gildersleeve, of the latter city, countenanced, I regret to say, by a few leading men of my native town, had the tendency to seriously interfere with the ultimate success of the undertaking, which resulted, to avoid the chances of loss to my friend, on my assuming, on behalf of the Company, the whole stock. In adopting this course I was not unmindful of the many discouragements I would have to encounter and surmount, as the cash outlay would be necessarily larger for our resources, and the depression of the transport trade extending. Sustained, however, as I have been, by confidence in the enterprise, the work progressed, and since the opening of the navigation this spring, it has been pushed rapidly to completion, and on Monday morning last, in company with my brother, Mr. P.F. McCuaig, Captain Smith, and Messrs. Wm. Porter, our manager at Toronto; C.S. Wilson, W. Owens, J. Redmond, Price, C.A. McDonnell, J.N. Carter, R. Hadden, Jas. Hart, G.C. Curry, N. Wycott, and other personal friends, I had the proud satisfaction of witnessing the departure of this fine vessel from the port of Picton bound for Toronto, worthily commanded by Prince Edward men, and with a sanguine expectation that our enterprise will be rewarded by a legitimate return of the capital invested." Mr. McCuaig, as an appreciation of the professional skill, energy and superintending ability manifested by Mr. Jamieson, the Messrs. Rathbuns' foreman, presented him with a splendid silver tea set, consisting of seven beautiful pieces, which cost seventy-five dollars in Montreal. Mr. Rathbun, in making the presentation, said Mr. McCuaig was the first to give them a job, the first and the last to give them steamboats to build, namely, the Picton and Empress of India. We hope the Empress of India will prove a financial success to her owners.

p.2 The Countess of Dufferin - The yacht Countess of Dufferin, which is now in our waters will, in the course of a few days, proceed on her voyage to New York, in order to enter the lists for the Queen's Cup, against the yacht Madeline, which has been chosen by the Regatta Committee of New York Yacht Club. Major Gifford, V.C., who is in command, is interested in the success of the Countess of Dufferin to the extent of from $6,000 to $7,000, about $4,000 only having been subscribed throughout the whole of Canada.

Yacht Races - We understand that the open sail boats in the harbour propose having a race on Dominion Day for a flag and sweepstakes. Entries can be made with Mr. John Cockburn up to Friday evening. Five boats have already agreed to take part in it, but we would like to see double this number if it is possible. The second-class yachts, we believe, the Emma and Zitella, go up to Belleville in order to win back their laurels from the Katy Gray, which was successful a short time ago by being sailed by Cuthbert and his crew. The Zitella will be sailed by Capt. Hamilton.

p.3 The Maud - The proprietors of the steamer Maud are showing themselves equal to the occasion by advertising excursions for both Saturday and Monday next. They also say that should the City Fathers take into their heads to have another celebration of Dominion or any other day later in the season, the Maud is at the service of the citizens.

Marine Notes

G.M. Millar & Co. - Arrived - schrs. Floretta, Chicago, 23,300 bush. oats; Bigler, Chicago, 27,800 bush. oats; Nellie Sherwood, 1,070 bush. wheat. Departures - Frontenac, 23,000 bush. oats; Alabama, 13,000 bush. oats; 1,070 bush. wheat, and 15 tons phosphate; America, 18,100 bush. oats, 75 tons phosphate.

St. Lawrence & Chicago Forwarding Co. - Arrived - Montpelier, Milwaukee, 19,500 bush. wheat. The tug Jessie Hall arrived with eight barges having 864 bars steel rails.

J. Swift's - Spartan from Montreal, Lake Michigan from Hamilton; Oswego Belle from Belleville; Passport from Hamilton; America from Montreal.

Port Colborne, June 27th - Up - schrs. Thos. Parsons, Charlotte, Chicago, coal; H.G. Cleveland, Oswego, do., do.; Eveline Bates, Cape Vincent, Cleveland, iron ore; Denmark, Kingston, Cheboygan, light; H. Rooney, do., Toledo, do.; Mary Jane, do., Bay City, do.; Hartford, Oswego, Chicago, coal; Dundee, Kingston, Goderich, light; Penokee, Rochester, Chicago, coal; Delos de Wolfe, Loans Point, do., do.; Yankee Blade, Charlotte, do., do.; Forest Queen, Rochester, Cleveland, iron ore; Clara Youell, Toronto, Black River, light; Montcalm, Rochester, Chicago, coal; Albacore, Kingston, Bay City, light; prop. Lawrence, Ogdensburg, Chicago, gen. cargo; Columbia, Montreal, Detroit, do.; Manzanilla, Collins Bay, blank.

Down - schrs. J.R. Benson, Bay City, Kingston, timber; J.C. Woodruff, Kingsville, Clayton, do.; Siberia, Cheboygan, Kingston, do.; Republic, Detroit, Clayton, do.; Montana, Alpena, do., do.; Montmorency, do., do., do.; Anglo Saxon, Bay City, Collins Bay, do.; Edward Blake, Port Huron, Quebec, do.; Lady Dufferin, Bay City, Kingston, corn; Wm. Home, do., Clayton, timber; Albatross, Opinicon, Garden Island, do.

In Harbour - schrs. Penokee, Delos de Wolf, Mary Jane, Manzanilla, Cataract, Russian, Clara Youell, Albacore, H. Rooney, D. Sharp; D.W. McCall, Dundee, Forrest, Queen, Hartford.

Collins Bay, June 27th - Arrivals - Emerald from Lake Superior, timber. Departures - Bessie Barwick.

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June 28, 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), June 28, 1876