The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Detroit Free Press (Detroit, MI), May 9, 1867

Full Text
The Proposal for the Construction of a Ship Canal

As ordered by the Engineer Department some time since, Gen. Cram advertised for bids for constructing a straight ship canal across the St. Clair Flats.The following communication from the General shows the result of the advertisement for proposals:

Detroit May 7, 1867

To the editor of the Detroit Free Press.

The bids for constructing a straight ship canal across the St. Clair Flats have been carefully examined, verified, and found as follows:

H. M. Mixer, Monroe, Mich $480,394.61
Ledlie & Corse, Chicago $497,187.40
Harvey J. Platt, Toledo, Ohio $551,118.02
Walton & Fuller, Detroit and Springfield, Mass $514,252.96
John Brown, Thorold, C. W. $409,214.85
Williams & Smith, Manlius, N.Y. $482,206. 87
R. A. Conolly, Chicago, Ill. $453,398.58
Hasbrouck & Couro, Milwaukee, Wis. $463,675.59
Burt & Glasby, East Saginaw, Mich. $466,574.14
Geo. P. Sanborn, Milwaukee, Wis. $420,894.58
Fox & Howard, Chicago, Ill. $476,063.33
The estimate of the probable cost was $428,754.00

It was upon this probable estimate that Congress directed this plan to be adopted. Two of the above bids, which are from highly responsible and experienced contractors, are below, while all others are above the estimate. Mr. Brown, being the lowest, and of well known responsibility as to means, capability, and experience, will of course be recommended to the Secretary of War as entitled under the law to the contract. He is the same contractor who constructed the Welland Canal.

There were some twenty five more bidders than the eleven above mentioned, but all others bid partially -- some for the piles, some or the timber, and others for the iron materials. All who desire can see an abstract of all the bids in detail by calling at the Engineer office, 111 Griswold street. My thanks are hereby tendered to the contractors for coming forward, and in laudable emulation offering to construct the work at reasonable prices.

F. J. Cram

Col. Corps Engineers, Bvt. Maj. Gen.,

In charge of the work.

Media Type:
Item Type:
The construction of the St. Clair Flats Canal in Lake St. Clair, at the mouth of the St. Clair River, had significant effects on Great Lakes shipping, allowing ships of greatly increased draft to be used in commerce between Lake Erie and the three western lakes. The shallow Flats and its web of natural channels had been a bottleneck for upper lakes shipping for almost two centuries. The canal has been an almost continuous construction project since the time of this article.
Date of Original:
May 9, 1867
Local identifier:
Language of Item:
Dave Swayze
Copyright Statement:
Public domain: Copyright has expired according to the applicable Canadian or American laws. No restrictions on use.
Maritime History of the Great Lakes
WWW address
Powered by / Alimenté par VITA Toolkit

My favourites lets you save items you like, tag them and group them into collections for your own personal use. Viewing "My favourites" will open in a new tab. Login here or start a My favourites account.

Detroit Free Press (Detroit, MI), May 9, 1867