The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Manitoba (Propeller), 4 May 1889

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      Successfully Launched At Owen Sound.
      Owen Sound, May 4. - The new C.P.R. steamer MANITOBA was launched here today. Immediately on arrival of the one o'clock train, which had two special cars of friends of the Polson Compony, all preparations for the launch were completed, thousands of spectators were on the cliff overlooking the works.
      The ceremony of naming the vessel was performed by Miss Manie Beatty. At 1:25 the first tap of the hammer was heard knocking away the blocks. In an instant the yelling of the ways could be heard, and in thirteen minutes a ringing cheer burst from the crowd as the enormous vessel began to move slowly and majestically towards the rippling water in the slip. Not a jar disturbed her course as she gathered speed in her onward career, and the crowd held their breath in silance as she rushed on. As she glided into the water an enormous wave rushed from each side and plenty people were almost immersed, amongst them an amature photographer, who lost all his much prized views. In sixteen minutes from the first tap of the hammer the ship was floating quietly on the waters, while cheer after cheer arose from the crowd and a hundred whistles saluted the beautiful ship.
      The dimensions of the MANITOBA are:- 305 feet overall, 292 feet keel, beam 38 feet. These figures give to the inexperienced minds but a faint idea of the great size of the vessel. If a person had thrown himself from the bow as she stood on the blocks ready to be launched he would have fallen about as far as stood on the blocks ready to be launched he would have fallen about as far as from of a large four storey building, or about 60 feet. As one stands and look down her saloon it appears like an enclosed street, with multitudes of doors on
either side. The masts spring upwards of 100 feet, and a tall man could walk upright through the enormous smoke-stack without dinging his hat. The hold of the vessel is fifteen feet deep, and when loaded will draw twelve feet of water forward and fourteen feet six inches aft. The engine room is a mass of machinery as intricate looking as clockwork, but all tested and proved. Not only the ships engines are here but the electric light engines, dynamos and
steam steering gear, for it is steam that turns the enormous rudder. The engines are of the modern compound type and of enormous power, calculated to give the vessel a speed of sixteen miles an hour.
      Just forward of the engine-room, and seperated from it by an iron bulkhead, is the boiler compartment. The boilers are two in number, 12 feet 6 inches from end to end and 14 feet high. These boilers are of steel nearly an inch thick and can stand enormous pressure, each one weighing 35 tons. Extending along the keel from the engine room is the tunnel in which the shaft revolves that turns the twelve and a half foot propeller. This propeller weigh six tons and has adjustable blades, four in number, bolted to the hugh square hub on the end of the shaft. As one stands aft he is struck with admiration of the beautiful lines presented by the vessel. All the curves are true and clear, unbroken by wave or crease in the steel plates, and she looks a perfect model of her class. The ship is built of steel plates 9/16 th. inch in thickness, these being bolted to angular steel frames, the sides of which are 4 1/2 inches by 3 inches, and the distance between these is two feet from center to center. The steel of the frames is 7/16th. inch thick. The hold is divided into compartments by water tight steel bulkheads, seven in number, thus adding greatly to the strength of the vessel.
      Both main and passenger decks are of steel, covered with Florida pine on the main deck and white pine on the upper deck. The deck beams are placed on every alternate frame, and there are three iron stanchions under each beam. The cabin saloon is 246 feet in length and has 46 staterooms. The cabin is furnished in white pine, beautifully ornamented, this department is under the supervision of Mr. W. Estrey. The MANITOBA offers great facilities for loading and unloading. The gangways are five in number and the same easy access is had for the elevator, so that 40,000 bushels of grain can be taken from her hold in an incredibly short space of time. The contract price of the MANITOBA is $200,000. She takes the place of the wrecked ALGOMA, of the C.P.R. Line, and is the largest of the line, her tonnage being 2,000 tons while that of the others is 1,400. Mr. Robert Logan is inspector of construction for the C.P.R., while Mr. Edmund Trist, of Milford, England, is the Company's foreman.
      Meaford Monitor
      Friday, May 10, 1889

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William R. McNeil
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Maritime History of the Great Lakes
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Manitoba (Propeller), 4 May 1889