The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
British Whig (Kingston, ON), 11 May 1903

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p.2 Personal Mention - The Canadian Railway and Shipping World for May contains portraits of C.F. Gildersleeve, H.B. Rathbun and F. King, in connection with a full report on the organization of the Canadian Inland Marine Association.


At Garden Island Saturday Afternoon.

The Calvin company's new steambarge Simla was successfully launched at Garden Island on Saturday afternoon, under the eyes of many visitors and other spectators. No more graceful launch has taken place from Garden Island shipyard during the more than sixty years of its evidence.

The boat has been building the past winter and summer, and has reared itself from keel to frames, bulwarks and cabins with gracefully cut lines, under the able management of Mr. Brian. The boat is constructed of white oak and British Columbia fir, and under the artistic powers of William R. Martin with expert assistants, the boat has assumed a most finished appearance.

The bed-plate and shaft have been put in, and the ways prepared the last few days, and at one o'clock everything was ready to begin the launch. When the wedges were driven in, and the last block knocked out the Simla began to move at 2:49 o'clock, and in a few seconds slid gently into the water, stern on. The boat looked with its full set of colors flying, most handsome and graceful in the water. It was then towed into dock by tug Edmond and will shortly be towed to Toronto to receive its boiler and engine, which have been constructed by the Polson Iron works.

The engine is triple expansion, 900 horse-power and carries 175 lbs. of steam.

The officers of the boat will be: Capt. A.H. Malone, senior Captain of the Calvin company fleet; first mate, Robert Simmons; chief engineer, Robert Veech, all able and experienced men.

The Garden Island shipyard has been in existence since 1839. It was founded by D.D. Calvin, father of Hiram Calvin, M.P., senior member of the Calvin company (limited). Thomas Brian, manager of the shipyard, was born on Garden Island in 1850, has worked in the ship-yard for thirty-five years, launched his first boat the Valencia in 1888, has constructed more tonnage than has been built on the island before him, and has qualified himself to be a most reliable, energetic and able ship builder.

Barges In Trouble.

Early Wednesday morning, while the tug Jessie Hall, bound east with three grain-laden barges, was emerging from the river lock at Cardinal, says the Ogdensburg Journal, the current that bears across the channel from the outside pier swept the barges over toward the canal bank, where the two inside barges stranded on the dump shoal, the third barge and the tug escaping. The Jessie Hall did her best to pull them off, but could not budge either one. Luckily the tug Bronson was close behind, and between the two tugs the barges were released about noon. This is the second time in recent years that vessels have run aground at this point.

Fire In A Vessel.

The steamer Nicaragua, at the M.T. company elevator, narrowly escaped a bad scorching on Saturday night, in fact there was danger of her going up in flames. A candle in the hold overturned while the vessel was being unloaded, and a blaze resulted. The crew turned on the steamer's hose, and extinguished the fire after thirty-five bushels of grain had been well soaked.

Turret Cape In Dock.

The big steamer Turret Cape entered the government dry-dock Saturday evening to have her hull overhauled. It was found that she had not suffered as much as a scratch by reason of her mishap in running on a mud bank near Four Mile Point last week. However, there were two or three seams which needed caulking, and the captain took advantage of dry dock here to have these tightened. The steamer left the dock Sunday evening.

The Wahcondah Wrecked.

This morning the Donnelly Wrecking company was advised that the steamer Wahcondah, the new steamer which the Mackay's of Hamilton are bringing out from Glasgow, struck about daylight on a shoal at Farran's Point, a short distance west of Dickenson's Landing in the St. Lawrence river. The steamer later sank in nearly seventeen feet of water. The Donnelly Wrecking company equipment left shortly after eight o'clock to lift the steamer. The boat had a full cargo for Kingston and western points. The Wahcondah was reported in port on Saturday, but this was a mistake due to the intimation sent ahead that she would arrive that day, and so given the press by the Kingston wharfinger.

Marine Items.

Swift's wharf: steamer Rideau King cleared for Ottawa.

More of the big turret steamers are bringing grain to Kingston from upper lake ports.

Crawford's wharf: schooner Annandale from Charlotte; Falconer from Fairhaven; Collier cleared for Charlotte.

Captain Foote, Toronto, manager of the Great Lakes and Ocean Navigation company, was here to attend to the steamer Turret Cape.

The schooner Valencia is in the government dry-dock receiving a general overhauling to her hull. As soon as she is floated out, the schooner Neelon will enter for repairs.

M.T. company elevator: schooner Flora Carveth, bay ports, 11,000 bushels of barley; tug Hall up with three light barges, and cleared for Montreal with four grain laden.

So far this season the quantity of grain that has come to the M.T. company elevator is 1,356,000 bushels, 950,000 bushels more than at the same time last year. The elevator has been working continuously during the past three weeks.

J.T. Matthews, Toronto, one of the owners of the steamer Clinton, seized on Saturday, is here to try and secure the release of the vessel. Inspector Davis will not grant a certificate until the boat is thoroughly repaired. The matter is in the hands of the marine department at Ottawa, which will uphold the inspector.

Day's Episodes - All day yesterday a constant stream of people passed in and out of government dry dock, the attraction being the steamship Turret Cape. The officers of the steamer graciously allowed visitors to inspect the boat.

The boat yard adjoining Kingston Yacht Club is crowded with yachts undergoing repair and completion.

p.5 Incidents of the Day - At Garden Island: steamer Orion and consort Muskoka, from Toledo, with timber.

p.6 Still Under Seizure - J.W. Matthews, Toronto, one of the owners of the steamer Clinton, under government seizure, failed to secure the release of the vessel. The marine department upheld Inspector Davis, and refused to allow the Clinton to carry cargoes without getting the proper certificate. Mr. Matthews returned to Toronto this afternoon.

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11 May 1903
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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), 11 May 1903