The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Advertiser (Owen Sound, ON), April 22, 1880

Full Text


Size and Capacity of the New Boat-

Facilities for Shipbuilding in Owen Sound - Benefits of the Dry Dock-

The Company - The Builder-The Officers- A Promising Industry- Collation in the Coulson House,

&c, &c.

On Thursday afternoon last , the propellor Manitoulin, of the "People's Line" built by the Owen Sound Dry Dock and Shipping Company, was launched according to announcement. A half-holiday for the occasion was proclaimed by the Mayor, and about one o'clock the shutters were closed and the town assumed its holiday appearance. About two o'clock the crowds began to wend their way towards the scene of the launch at the Dry Dock on the west side of the river. The first thing to strike one on arriving within sight of the new boat was the brilliant display of flags flying from nearly every part of her. A very large and handsome one, on which was in scribed the name MANITOULIN in conspicuous letters was flying from one of the masts, while a large number of smaller banners, on which were inscribed the names of some of the ports at which she is expected to sail, were flying from other parts of the vessel. Among these names we noticed those of Manitowaning, Killarney, Little Current, Mudge Bay, Spanish River, Gore Bay, Bruce Mines, St. Joseph Island, Thesselon River, Garden River and Sault Ste. Marie. Near the boat was a stand erected for the accommodation of the members of the company and their friends. The west bank of the river was densely lined with spectators, while every prominent point in the vicinity of the vessel was crowded. A large number took up their position on the Railway Dock as the east bank of the River. Among others there were on the stand the members of the Dry Dock Company; Capt. McNab; f. McRae, Warden of the County; Dr. C. E. Barnhart, Mayor; W. A. McClean, Reeve; Alderman Dickey, of Toronto; Thomas Long, M. P. P. Secretary of the Georgian Bay Transportation Company; D. Creighton, M. P. P. ; Col. Pollard and H. Chisholm, of Meaford; D. Miller, of the Merchants Bank; representative of the press, and a large number of ladies, among others Mrs Kough, to whom was assigned the honour of christening the new boat. The band was in attendance and together with a large number of others took up their position on the upper deck. During the whole afternoon workmen were engaged under the superintendence of Captain Simpson, in splitting the blocks from under the boat and letting her down on the ways. Finally at a few minutes past four the last block gave way, and , as a slight shudder ran through her structure, she commenced to glide rapidly down the well greased slides, and in a few moments plunged into her future element, amidst the deafening cheers from both sides of the river and from those on board. After admiring her graceful appearance in the water the crowd again wended their way homewards, satisfied that the launch was a success in every respect.

The cost of the Manitoulin is some-where in the neighbourhood of $34, 000. Her length is 152 feet, breath of beam 30 ft.4 in., and depth of hold 10 ft. 6 in. Her draught when light is 4 feet forward and 81/2 feet aft. The distance between her decks is 8ft. 4 in. She is calculated to carry 800 tons, about the weight of 10, 000 bushels of wheat. She is provided with 26 staterooms, eight of which are so arranged that by opening a sliding door between them, accommodation is provided for parties too large for the single ones. The cabin when fitted up will be one of the most handsome, commodious and tasteful on the lake steamers. It is 120 ft. long by 10 ft. 6 in. wide, wide and aft of the main stairway will be furnished with piano, etc., for ladies cabin. On each side of the smoke-stack, which passes up through the centre of the main cabin, will be two elegant reflecting mirrors. The cabin itself will be heated with steam radiators which can be so adjusted as to maintain any required degree of temperature he furnishings will be such as will combine luxuriousness and comfort with chasteness and elegance. On the main deck are rooms of the Steward, Engineer, Purser, Cook, etc., all very commodious and conveniently situated while on the upper deck, forward, there is the Captain's room, and a very large and comfortable smoking room and wash- rooms The Captain's room is larger than many of our boats, so that the inconvenience of being crowded, as is so often the case in this room, will be very little felt. The entire workmanship in connection with the cabin is of a high order and the material used is of the very best quality. Messrs Stoddart & Son superintended the joiner work, Mr. William Miller the painting and Mr. H. Stephens the plumbing.

The build of the Manitoulin is much stronger than the average. Her bottom is planked with 81/2 inch rock elm, while above the water line the planking is 8 inch oak. Her ceiling is of 4 inch plank, supported and braced in the strongest manner. The screw, which is a new pattern furnished by Captain Simpson is 9 ft. 2in. In diameter , with a pitch of 14 ft. 6 in. The length of the main shaft is 45 feet and its diameter 9 inches. The boiler is 8 feet in diameter and 22 feet long. The cylinder of the condensing engine which is to propel her is 30 inches in diameter, and has a stroke of 34 inches. The whole machinery has been put in her under the superintendence of Mr. T. W. Hags, Engineer of the City of Owen Sound, and is done in the most substantial and accurate manner, and on the most approved principle...

To Captain John Simpson, the builder of the Manitoulin, is due in a very large measure the success which has so far attended the efforts of the Owen Sound Dry Dock and Ship Building Company. His abilities and experience as a ship builder are so well known, and the thorough and reliable character of his work done under his supervision so generally recognized...

... Of the $84, 000 which the Manitoulin is expected to cost, at least $28, 000 have been already spent in the town...

The following are the officers of the new boat; Capt. Peter McNab, Master; N. Canpbell, 1st Mate; Peter Telfer, second Mate; William Bell, Chief Engineer; B. G. Campbell, Purser; and Geo. McDonald, Steward... Capt. McNab although a young man has had a very extensive experience on the lakes, and during the last season was Captain of the America, which ran over the same route that the new boat intends to take up....

Media Type:
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Date of Original:
April 22, 1880
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Language of Item:
Bill Hester
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
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Advertiser (Owen Sound, ON), April 22, 1880