The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
The Excursion to Toronto and Hamilton
Oswego Times & Journal (Oswego, NY), 26 Jul 1855

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The Excursion to Toronto and Hamilton

An excursion party left here on Monday evening, as previously announced, on the steamer America, Capt. Masson, The party was composed of over 300 Ladies and Gentlemen, mostly from Oswego, but with a fair representation from Fulton and Syracuse. The evening was fine and the lake smooth as a mirror, unruffled by scarcely a ripple save such as were produced by the movement of the steamer. With music and dancing the night passed into the "small hours" of morning "merry as a marriage bell." Owing tot he unexpected large company some inconvenience was experienced in providing satisfactory lodging apartments for such a party, and there may have been individual instances of disappointment in this respect, notwithstanding the most assiduous labors of Capt. Masson, his gentlemanly officers and the Oswego Committee of arrangements to make every body comfortable and happy.

As we approached Toronto, the morning opened thick with a heavy rain storm, which continued till after our arrival at Hamilton, and til mid day. When the rain abated, most of the Company left the steamer and went up to the city, and scattered in all directions. Some took the cars to the Falls, some went up to the summit of Burlington Heights which commands, a splendid view of the city of Hamilton, Burlington Bay and the lake, and many went shopping and looking after the "Lions" of the city. At half past on o’clock a select party partook of a splendid entertainment at Norton’s Hotel kept, by Mr. Chas. Norton a Prince among Hotel keepers. There are doubtless other good Houses kept in Hamilton, and without disparagement to them, we take pleasure in recommending the Norton House to our citizens and the public visiting Hamilton. A more liberal and attentive Hotel keeper does not live than Charles Norton.

At 6 o’clock p.m. a splendid entertainment was given on board the America by Capt. Masson, which brought together a large portion of the Oswego party with some citizens of Hamilton. At about 9 o’clock the Mayor and Council of the city appeared in the splendid saloon of the American and were cordially received and introduced to our citizens present. Mr Mayor McGill was called to preside, and on taking the chair made a very handsome and appropriate address, in which allusions were made to our growing and intimate international relations. Judge Wm. F. Allen, of the New York Supreme Court, being called on responded in a pertinent and eloquent address in behalf of Oswego. A most cordial and enthusiastic interchange of sentiment followed, a detailed account of which we shall defer till to-morrow, not being able to do any sort of justice to a subject of so much interest to-day.

This social and highly gratifying meeting in which many Ladies and Gentlemen of Hamilton participated, merged into a general dance, which was kept up to a late hour in the night. The entertainment ended with a brilliant display of fire-works on shore and rockets from the America with repeated and enthusiastic cheering. The America left Hamilton at about 4 o’clock a.m. and reached Toronto at 6 o’clock where a considerable portion of the Oswego company landed and spent the day most delightfully. The enterprising, and prosperous city of Toronto with its splendid buildings, its public grounds and numerous charitable and beneficent Institutions, merit a fuller and better notice than we have room for to-day. We shall take another occasion to notice them. Our Company stopped at Russel’s Hotel and were highly pleased with its accommodations, its assiduous attentions and elegant hospitalities. In commending this House to the notice of travelers visiting Toronto, we feel that we but express the unanimous sentiment of our citizens who have visited it.

At half past 9 o’clock, last evening our Toronto party embarked on the Canada, Capt. Willoughby for Oswego. The evening was delightful, the accommodations of the magnificent steamer all that could be desired, and the attentions and gentlemanly bearing of Capt. Willoughby, leave nothing to be imagined how he came by his wide-spread and well-earned popularity. We reached Oswego this morning after an excursion the incidents and influences of which will be likely to promote the social and commercial intercourse properly appertaining to all having a common interest in the destiny of the great continent as well as in our respective localities.

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Date of Publication:
26 Jul 1855
Richard Palmer Collection
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  • New York, United States
    Latitude: 43.565931158238 Longitude: -77.926025390625
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Maritime History of the Great Lakes
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The Excursion to Toronto and Hamilton