The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Daily News (Kingston, ON), Dec. 5, 1876

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p.3 The Bay - The steamer Pierrepont succeeded in breaking through the ice and reaching Belleville yesterday. She is on her way down today.

The Weather - The harbour is still clear of ice, and bids fair to remain so for a few days yet.

Marine Notes

The schooner Oliver Mowat attempted to sail out of the harbour Saturday night without the aid of a tug. The wind was in the south, and the Captain thought he ran no risk, but as soon as the vessel got outside, a puff from the northeast drove her back along the west side of the light-house pier. Captain Budds and Munson, who have charge of the light-house, saw the perilous situation the vessel was in, and rendered assistance which saved her from going on to the west pier. Lines from the vessel were made fast to the light-house pier, where the craft was held until rescued by the tug C.P. Morey. Captain T. Crimmins, the Commodore of the fleet, says that Capts. Budds and Munson are deserving much credit for their assistance in the emergency. [Oswego Times]

City Council (part) The Power Dry Dock

The Council then went into Committee of the Whole on the Power Dry Dock By-law at 11:35. Ald. Dupuis in the chair. The By-law authorized the city to take 750 shares in the project, which would amount to $15,000. The first clause was passed, and a long discussion ensued on the by-law.

Ald. Gaskin said he felt under a great deal of restraint in opposing the by-law for Mr. Power's Graving Dock, as he would desire that it should be a success, as anything which advanced the material interests of the city should receive the hearty support of the Council. But this Dry Dock would prove disastrous to any party or Corporation who may take stock in it, and nothing proves this more than the fact that Mr. Power has to apply to the Council for assistance. There are several things connected with the project, which in the opinion of practical men, point to defeat. Among these he might mention the apparent inability of Ald. Power to pump out that small portion which he has already excavated and enclosed. Another thing is the character of the limestone rock around Kingston, which is so full of seams and irregular openings, that if there was a possibility of completing the dock, the chances are that it would leak so bad that it would not pay to run it. Those who were in any way posted in this kind of business knew that a dry dock can be more successfully operated where the locality admitted of running off the water without expense, as is done in the Welland and Lachine Canals; and even there the parties have all they can do to make it a successful operation. They depend on the profit derived from the material used. His reason for opposing the by-law was that he was against the city taking stock in it and having to borrow money to do so. In the opinion of most people the city would never get a dividend for the money. He believed it was understood that Mr. Power is to be President of the Dry Dock Co. As he owns the shipyard, he will, of course, find the material used for this graving dock. The dock will get the credit for docking the vessels. If that is the case there is no money in it for the city, and it looks very apparent to him, (Ald. Gaskin) that is the way it will be done, as he made no guarantee in the by-law on what system the dock will be run. Take one case: Say that a vessel or steamer gets ashore on the lake and receives damage which will amount to say $5,000. Mr. Power could take and place her on the graving dock and fix her bottom, which would probably cost $500. He could then take her off and place her alongside the shipyard, completing her repairs there. By that the shipyard, of which he is sole possessor, would receive the $4,500, and the graving dock, in which the Corporation has stock, would receive $500. If Mr. Power wishes to succeed he should have brought into this Council a complete statement of all incumbrances and costs incurred on the dock up to the present time, showing what would be left, if any, of the $15,000 debentures taken by the city. Then the Council could see for themselves if the balance, with the $10,000 promised in section 10 of the bona fide stock not transferable. It is the opinion of parties outside of this Council that the Dock Company could not make a by-law debarring them from transferring their stock. If that is the case, the parties who subscribe the $10,000 stock could do the same as parties did with the Pembroke stock some time ago - transfer it to men of straw. As far as he was concerned, he was against this Council passing a by-law, for the purpose of submitting the same to the taxpayers of the city, as he considered by so doing that would show to the people that they are in favor of its passing. He, as one member of the Council, was against it in the present shape. If Mr. Power had come to this Council asking for a loan of $15,000, giving security for the same, apart from the dock, it would have changed the appearance of things altogether, feeling confidant, as he did, that working the Dry Dock and Shipyard separate the Dry Dock would not pay, but working both together, if the Dock can be made tight, and not cost too much to do so, the chances are that it might pay. It had been said if they had a Graving Dock here that such and such a steamboat or vessel would have remained here to be repaired, whereby the city is losing money. These parties are not well posted, for the reason that the Marine Railway has hauled out large steamboats heretofore, and could do so again if it was kept in good repair. That was the opinion of men well up in that business. Another mistake was made that in commencing to build the Dry Dock it was built too close to the Marine Railway, thus preventing Mr. Powers hauling out side-wheel steamers with guards. In reference to section 9, that all incumbrances, liens and charges against the company His Worship the Mayor was to ascertain these before the debentures are handed over, and the same were to be paid for out of the $15,000 stock of city funds, thus leaving the company free of debt. It looked to him (Ald. Gaskin) that this is a "let up," or in other words to let the parties out who have been against the dock. However painful it may be to him personally to oppose this project, his boundant duty to the electors of Victoria Ward and the city generally compelled him to raise his voice against it, feeling confident that in placing the funds of the city in the dry dock would be placing it where they would get no return.

Ald. Power replied to Ald. Gaskin and showed the advantage to be derived from the dock, urging that during the past season $24,000 had been lost to the city from the fact that no place for docking vessels existed.

After considerable discussion the by-law finally passed through Committee, yeas and nays being taken, when Ald. Gaskin, Carson and Carnovsky voted nay. The by-law was ordered to be advertised in the usual way and the Council adjourned at 1 p.m.

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Dec. 5, 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), Dec. 5, 1876