The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Colborne Transcript (Colborne, ON), May 28, 1858

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Those of our readers who have never had the pleasure of visiting Oswego, and who propose treating themselves to the indulgence of traveling during the coming summer, can hardly pitch upon a more interesting locality than the thriving, bustling little city whose name heads this article. We were a few days since, called by business to spend a day or two in Oswego, and after the dull monotony of our ordinary village life, certainly enjoyed the change exceedingly.

There is no place within the circuit of Lake Ontario which can shew half the animation visible here. Approaching the harbor from the Lake, we see first among the novelties the little steam tugs shrieking, blowing and flying over the waves in every direction, rendering their timely aid in assisting vessels to their berths inside; next the eye ranges over the long rows of barrels of salt, with which the island and docks are usually covered, passing along we see immense heaps of coal of all kinds, canal boats by hundreds, loading with lumber, grain or flour, or unloading salt, coal or goods, vessels of every size and rig discharging their cargoes of lumber, wheat and corn, or receiving their return freights of salt, coal, water-lime or goods, seem to reveal themselves in endless numbers.

The elevators which front upon the upper and east side of the harbor are in themselves an interesting study for a day. The mills and elevators are the greatest boats of Oswego, we believe the mills turn out some 10,000 barrels of flour daily. The Starch Factory, however, is the "institution" of the place, which swamps any other one in extent and business; the space at our command does not allow us to do more than hint at this magnificent establishment.

We were fortunate enough, by the kindness of Mr. Kingsford, the manager, to obtain entrance where "no admittance" is posted over every door, and we are indebted to that gentleman for a minute description of the manufacture of corn into starch. We understand that about 1,600 bushels of corn were used daily, and that over 300 men were constantly employed; over 1,000 tons of coal and a large quantity of lime are also consumed yearly by the company. The stock is considered very valuable - it is said that $6.000 of Starch Factory Stock were taken lately in preference to $15,000 in cash.

We were much pleased with a visit to the Oswego Library, containing about 7,000 volumes of standard works, which were the gift to the city by the Hon. Gerritt Smith, who owns a large property in the place. Taking Oswego as a whole, we do not know where one can go to see so much variety, so much vivacity or half as much of the hum an stir of business as here. It is just the place for a young man to go for a lesson in activity, and if any one needs "walking up" or to have "the rust rubbed off" we prescribe a day or two in Oswego as the best medicine possibly to be had. We happened to be in Oswego on the day of the execution of Denis Sullivan, who was hung inside of the jail about 3 o'clock Friday afternoon last; an immense crowd was gathered near, in which, we regret to say, many females were visible.

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May 28, 1858
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Richard Palmer
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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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Colborne Transcript (Colborne, ON), May 28, 1858