The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Buffalo Whig & Journal (Buffalo, NY), 8 July 1835, page 2

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Celebration at Grand Island.--We had the pleasure, in company with a large number of our fellow citizens, of spending the late Anniversary of our Independence, at White-Haven. At ten o'clock, the elegant Steam-Boat General Porter left our wharf, with a large concourse of people on board, and proceeded on her way down the Niagara. At Black Rock she came to, and received on board General P. in proper person, and a numerous company from that village. We arrived at White-Haven shortly after 11 o'clock, and landed at the company's wharf. Hundreds now landed at this spot for the first time in their lives, although long acquainted with its locality, and the extensive improvements that have so rapidly been made upon it. The village has a neat and handsome appearance from the water, all the houses being white and built in regular order. One of the first objects that struck our attention after landing, next to the huge piles of ship plank that are stored on the wharf for transportation, was a neat white monument, built of brick, in a tasteful manner, in which is inserted the marble slab designed and executed by order of Major Noah, some years since as the corner stone for his Jewish City. This proprietors have, as we think, very properly preserved, as a memorial of the philanthropy and benevolence manifested by that individual towards his oppressed Jewish brethren in Europe, in providing an asylum for them in our free and happy country; but who, from their habits and vocations are but illy fitted to form a community of themselves. And altho' the plans of Major Noah have been ridiculed by those ignorant of his views, we believe that the time will come when the commercial advantages of the strait of Niagara will fully show that he was only too early in his project.

Soon after landing the company were shown to the mill and timber dock, in which last lay the huge oak trunks which for centuries had towered in the forest, and were now floating there lifeless victims to the energies and wants of man, to be shortly cut up, and transported hundreds of miles for the construction of vessels on the Atlantic.--The mill was in fine order. Several immense logs were drawn up the inclined planes, and sawed in presence of the spectators; and we saw upwards of 40 saws in motion by the single movement of one steam engine. We then visited the fine schooner Owanunhag, which lay on the stocks ready for launching, handsomely painted and dressed in the usual style for the occasion.--At one o'clock, every thing being prepared, and a numerous company of ladies and gentlemen on board, her blockings were knocked away, and she rode from her stayings into the water in most gallant and beautiful style. After gliding swiftly some distance into the stream, her anchor was let down, and she swung gallantly round with her head to the current, and breasted the strong Niagara bravely, as though she were "the barque of some tall admiral."

An oration was then delivered from a platform erected at the ship yard, by John L. Talcott, Esq. of this city, most appropriate to the occasion, replete with fine sentiment, elegant language and sound principles. It was received with great applause, and will long be remembered by his friends as highly creditable to his good taste as a scholar, and reputation as a man.

A procession, consisting of the residents of White-Haven, and invited guests, numbering upwards of two hundred, was then formed, and marched into the mill, where they sat down at a table upwards of a hundred and fifty feet long, to a cold collation provided for the occasion. Stephen White, Esq. of Boston, one of the principle [sic] proprietors and president of the company, presided, assisted by L.F. Allen, the agent of the establishment, and J.H. Lathrop, their superintendent, as vice-presidents. A blessing was asked by the Rev. Wm. Shelton of this city, and the intercourse and conversation during dinner unusually pleasant. The wine was good, and many patriotic and spirited toasts were drank by the guests. From among them we have selected the following:

[1/2 column of toasts]

About 4 o'clock the company left the table highly gratified with the entertainment, and their visit to this new and interesting workshop of our country. We were peculiarly pleased at the very correct and civil deportment of the mechanics and workmen who reside at White-Haven; and while ardent spirits, even on an occasion like the present, are banished from their village, a respectable, industrious, and intelligent class of inhabitants will always be found upon it.

At half past 4, the steam-boat with her crowd of passengers, left the wharf, and in an hour and a half after touching and landing a portion of her passengers at Black Rock, we safely arrived in our own City of the Lakes.

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Column 3-4
Date of Original:
8 July 1835
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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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Buffalo Whig & Journal (Buffalo, NY), 8 July 1835, page 2