The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
British Whig (Kingston, ON), 15 Sep 1896

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The mayor has called a meeting of the select committee of the city council in conjunction with a committee of the board of trade to meet tomorrow afternoon regarding the elevator scheme and the new drill shed. The reports of the deputations to Montreal and Ottawa will be heard. The mayor says it is very important that an elevator should be established in Kingston but he is not in favor of giving a bonus to a private company to build it. He is agreeable to the city taking an interest in the scheme if it is to be a public elevator, when Mr. Brown and Mr. Smith will be treated alike and given fifteen days' storage of grain. An elevator cannot be built on wind and the mayor cannot see any other way out of the question than to make it a public elevator. The meeting will probably be a private one as transportation men interested do not care to make themselves known unless the erection of an elevator is a certainty.

A citizen writes: "With reference to the action taken by the board of trade some days since and subsequently by the city council alluding to or concerning the erection of a storage elevator at Kingston, maybe it would be prudent to get educated on the subject before the city is called upon to assist the project and whether such assistance would mean a burden upon the taxpayers. With this object in view we would submit a few questions which we would like to have answered:

"What object have shippers and owners of grain in mind when consigning to Prescott and Ogdensburg instead of Kingston?

"Are the rates of river freight from the former ports to Montreal cheaper than from Kingston to Montreal; if not what reason can they have for paying storage in addition to river freights, while they could, by consigning to Kingston for transhipment into barges without storage charges, have the grain delivered at Montreal at a less cost than by storage at Prescott and Ogdensburg?

"Is there any scarcity of barges on the part of Kingston forwarders to provide for the whole trade?

"If detention is at any time caused by want of barges is it not occasioned by detention of barges at Montreal through consignors there making a convenience of barges to act as storage for the grain until they can get ocean tonnage to take care of the cargoes?

"If such is the case can any blame be attached to the Kingston forwarders for want of barges?

"Would it not seem to look like a necessity for storage elevators at Montreal instead of at Kingston? Now if river freight is as cheap from Kingston as from Prescott and Ogdensburg, and no want of barges on the part of Kingston forwarders to take care of the lake cargoes, there must be some other object in view for shippers consigning to the latter ports. May it not be that they can change destination to Boston or other eastern states' markets, or New York by rail, should prices favor such a course? If such is the inducement what chance would a storage elevator at Kingston have of competing if Prescott and Ogdensburg enjoy a distributing advantage not enjoyed by Kingston? Now to sum up the position: If river freight and storage charges combined via Prescott & Ogdensburg to Montreal, do not exceed the rate of river freight alone from Kingston to Montreal what chance would we have to obtain consignments which would entail an extra expense amounting to storage charges here if such charges are made? And if no such charges are made what or who is to pay for erecting the storage elevator and for the general management of it?"


The str. Passport has been laid up at the G.T.R. dock for the winter.

The tug Thomson, with seven light barges, arrived up this afternoon.

The sloop Two Brothers is discharging a cargo of barley at Clarke's malt house.

The tow barge Plymouth, Chicago, corn laden, is on her way down to this port.

The str. Bannockburn and consorts, bound up light, cleared the Welland canal yesterday.

The schr. Fabiola arrived in this morning from Oswego with a cargo of coal for the Folger Co.

The str. Nicaragua and consorts, Kingston, Kingston to Buffalo, light, passed through the Welland canal yesterday.

The prop. Saturn, just out of the government dry-dock, took her two barges to Collins Bay this morning.

The schr. Fabiola, from Oswego, is at the ferry wharf with a cargo of coal for the Thousand Island Steamboat Co.

As grain rates are very low at present it is probable that prop. Saturn will remain at Collins Bay for a few days.

The schrs. Fleetwing, Acacia and Falconer are all wind bound on the other side of the lake. All these vessels are loaded for Kingston.

The schr. Queen of the Lakes arrived over from Oswego with coal for the M.T. Co. and was obliged to run into Oswego on Saturday. She was en route from Charlotte to Kingston. It blew a living gale on Lake Ontario the past few days.

Prevailing east winds lowered the water in the St. Lawrence canals over two feet. In the Galops canal yesterday morning there was only 7 feet 6 in. of water covering the sill. As nearly all the barges carrying grain to the seaboard are laden to nine feet, it naturally followed that they would stick in the mud and cause a blockade. A change in the wind took place about noon, yesterday, and in a few hours the water had risen sufficiently to allow all the barges through, some twenty-five of them waiting for this turn of affairs.

p.4 The New Canal's Work - tonnages given for Sault Ste. Marie.

General Paragraphs - The schr. Collier arrived in, this afternoon, from Charlotte. The vessel started out from Charlotte, Saturday evening, and had to run back again because of the storm. Her cargo goes to the spile dock. Capt. D. Bates says there are five vessels at Oswego because of coal merchants delaying in furnishing them supplies.

On account of the low water in the Rideau canal the str. James Swift got stuck in the mud near Kingston Mills yesterday morning. The steamer was there a couple of hours before she worked herself free.

Capt. John Cornwall, newly appointed to the captaincy of the schr. Queen of the Lakes, went over on the vessel on her last trip. He had a good voyage.

Captain Dunlop of the str. Algerian has arrived home. His boat has laid up.

Thousand Island Park, Sept. 14th - ....The steamers Jessie Bain and Islander are still on the Alexandria Bay-Clayton route and the Nightingale on the Clayton-Fine View route.

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15 Sep 1896
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  • Ontario, Canada
    Latitude: 44.22976 Longitude: -76.48098
Rick Neilson
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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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British Whig (Kingston, ON), 15 Sep 1896