The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Daily News (Kingston, ON), Dec. 22, 1876

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To the Editor of the Daily News.

Sir; - In your issue of the 20th inst. I have been asked to explain what I did say in answer to the charge of my opposing the Dry Dock By-law in Council, and afterwards stating outside that I intended to vote for it. In reply to Alderman Metcalfe, I said it looked to me very forcibly that this was a put up job, and it looked as if some person connected with the dock had prompted him to ask that question. If not, he deserved a good deal of credit, if he could discover any wrong about it. I said: "I would like to see members of this board who come here to represent the people have the moral courage to protest against certain members advocating their own interest at this board, as by so doing the taxpayers would receive a benefit." To begin, at the last meeting of the Council all that was said by me in reference to the Dry Dock was true, to the best of my knowledge, feeling satisfied that the city would never receive any dividend, but Mr. Power would make the money out of it. That was my belief then, and is so still. At the last meeting of the Council I made a remark that if the dock could be completed it would be to the interests of the Company with which I am connected that I should vote for it, for the reasons: that no matter how much it cost, no matter how much the running expenses should be, no matter how much it leaked, no matter if the city lost the $15,000, no matter if Mr. Power made money out of it, it would be a convenience to the Company and every one connected with the boating business; and although I could not consistently as an Alderman vote to waste the city's money, yet as a private individual I considered I had a right to study my own interest and vote for it. And in viewing the whole matter, as far as I am concerned, I consider I have done my duty as an Alderman to the city in opposing the passage of Mr. Power's Dry Dock By-law in the Council, and showing my views on the subject; and if the citizens see fit to vote for the grant of $15,000, it is their loss not mine. And I further stated that it was the opinion of some parties that if Mr. Power got the $15,000, it would go to pay the present indebtedness of the Dock, and after that being done he could say to the Corporation that they had either to give him more money to finish the dock or he will let it remain as it is; or he would be compelled to carry out Section 10 of the By-law, which reads that $10,000 of stock must be taken before the city grants the $15,000. After paying the loans they would see that it would take still a large amount to fnish the work, and they would finally get disgusted with the whole transaction and abandon it. Then in time the city with $1,500 and the $10,000 other stockholders would be willing to give it into the hands of responsible people to complete the work (sic). Then I thought people could be got in the city seeing it had got such a start as $15,000 Corporation stock, $10,000 private stock, and the street worth $5,000, making in all $30,000, by their spending an amount which would be considerable having a shipyard running in connection there might be some money in it. If the Dock did not make money both running together under one party it might be made to pay. The above may appear inconsistent, to some but I fail to see it.

Dec. 21st John Gaskin

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Dec. 22, 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. 22, 1876