p.3 Connecting the Sea & The Lakes - proposed canal at the Soo (3 full columns).
WOLFE ISLAND FERRY.
A Sketch Of It Given By M. Spoor.
A brief sketch or outline of the ferry between Wolfe Island and the city of Kingston from the first day of January, 1858, may be perused with interest by many readers, some of whom were not then born.
Previous to the year 1858 the ferry between Wolfe Island and the city of Kingston was quite irregular, being carried on principally by sailboat, and, at intervals, with such steam boat as could best be procured for that purpose, leaving a large proportion of the inhabitants dependent on their own resources for access to the city market. This state of thing continued up to the first day of January, 1858, when the corporation of the township of Wolfe Island, by contract, under 20 Vic., chap. 7, leased the ferry to the veteran mariner, C. Hinckley, sr., (then a resident of Wolfe Island) for a term of ten years to be completed on the 31st Dec., 1867. At the date of that lease the corporation had authority by the act 20th Vic., chap. 7, to lease said ferry for any term not exceeding fifty years, but for obvious reasons the term was reduced to ten years, and, during the interval, or term of said lease, the law, relating to ferries, was so amended as to reduce the term of leasing ferries to not more than seven years at any one time, hence the next and following leases were limited to a term not exceeding seven years.
The second term of lease was entered into between the corporation of Wolfe Island and the said Capt. C. Hinckley and Kinghorn on 1st Jan. 1868, for a term of seven years, to be completed on 31st Dec., 1874.
The third term was entered into between the corporation of Wolfe Island and the St. Lawrence steamboat company on the 1st January, 1875 , for a term of eight years, to be completed on 31st Dec., 1882. Here appears to be an error or oversight, as the term of this lease was one year in excess of the term allowed by statute.
The fourth term of lease was entered into between the corporation of Wolfe Island and the St. Lawrence steamboat company on 1st Jan., 1883, for a term of seven years to be completed on the 31st Dec., 1889.
The fifth term of lease was entered into between the corporation of Wolfe Island and the St. Lawrence steamboat company on the 1st Jan., 1890, for a term of seven years to be completed on 31st Dec., 1896, being five terms of lease extending over a period of thirty-nine years when the present lease expires on the 31st Dec., 1896.
The dates of commencing said ferry at the opening of navigation each year during said terms will be found to materially differ according to the season, and may be ascertained from the following statement:
1858, first trip by str. Raftsman, 3rd April; 1859, first Pierrepont, 16th March; 1860, do., 19th March; 1861, do., 8th April; 1862, do., 14th April; 1863, do., 16th April; 1864, Gazelle, 5th April; 1865, first Pierrepont, 24th March; 1866, Watertown, 10th April; 1867, do., 6th April; 1868, do., 31st March; 1869, do., 17th April; 1870, do., 12th April; 1871, do., 16th March; 1872, second Pierrepont, 22nd April; 1873, do., 12th April; 1874, do., 30th March; 1875, do., 13th April; 1876, do., 17th April; 1877, do., 9th April; 1878, do., 10th March; 1879, do., 16th April; 1880, do., 31st March; 1881, do., 12th April; 1882, do., ran every month in this year, 8th March; 1883, do., 16th April; 1884, do., 8th April; 1885, do., 24th April; 1886, do., 8th April; 1887, do., 12th April; 1888, do., 11th April; 1889, do., 27th March; 1890, do., 26th March; 1891, do., 31st March; 1892, do., 4th April; 1893, do., 10th April; 1894, do., 15th March. And 1895 bears every indication of being one month later than the previous year.
One more brief remark on this subject is worthy of note - that during all this period not one accident has occurred, or a loss been sustained by the travelling public - which may be accounted for by good management and the staunch boats employed on the route. - M. Spoor.
Marine Notes - The United States government will build a lighthouse on Carleton Island.
The steamer Varuna has been much improved during the winter. She has had a complete new hull built of white oak and iron. The boat will ply between Trenton and Picton.
Recent levels taken by the government engineers show a fall in the St. Lawrence river between Kingston and Coteau of eighty-nine feet; at Gananoque there is a fall of sixty-seven feet between the Grand Trunk station and the river.