The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Ogdensburg Journal (Ogdensburg, NY), 25 Dec 1889

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(newspaper and date not positively known)

The Armstrong Abandoned.

It has come at last. Wrecker Leslie has finally succumbed to the inevitable and that stage in the wrecking operations on the steamer Armstrong, which many predicted would arrive months ago, was staved off until last night. Then the announcement was made that in consequence of the large chain again breaking it had been deemed best to suspend operations. It appears that shortly after the Recorder was issued yesterday afternoon, and while the air compressors were working to their utmost, the huge chain upon which the whole weight of the Armstrong rested forward and aft, suddenly snapped, allowing one of the smaller pontoons to be released. This virtually put the operations back where they first started, and another item was added to the long list of disappointments which the energetic wrecker has been obliged to face since the work was started months ago.

In conversation with Mr. Leslie last night the first outward signs of disappointment, which have been shown through all the trouble, were apparent. He states that the large chain now twice broken, was brought from Quebec under the impression that it was the best to be found in the Dominion, and able to substain a dead weight of 150 tons. It broke, however, yesterday under a weight roughly estimated at 60 tons and was clearly not what he had expected. He accordingly decided to abandon the work, and this morning set his men to work taking up the other three pontoons, while the large one lying in the Tunnel Bay was sent to Kingston in tow of the tug Rival. When the pontoons are up he will pull the masts out of the vessel out of the wrecked barge Gaskin, now obstructing the channel and then leave for home.

As to resuming operations next season he was not in a position to say whether this would be done or not. If it is, a new contract will have to be made, as under the original, the time was limited until the formation of ice. At all events the Gaskin will be raised. [Brockville Recorder of Thursday]

Mr. Leslie's contract was to raise the contract in time for the winter's work, and he was to receive $10,000; no boat, no pay. The present abandonment therefore releases the owners of the Armstrong, and it is at their option whether a further contract be made. We are informed that Mr. Leslie has sunk at least $15,000 in the undertaking, and he may therefore be pardoned for showing "outward signs of disappointment." He has made a tenacious struggle, using every effort and every precaution in his power, but the forces with which he has had to contend have been stronger than he has tackled before. Some idea of the lifting power of his pontoons may be gathered from the statement that for twenty feet of the chain which broke Wednesday the iron stays in each link had been split by the lateral pressure. The lesson which is most forcibly manifest is said by close observers to be that the pontoons have been too large for use in so deep water. There should be more pontoons and more chains, and the pontoons should be arranged with valves so that they can be more manageable at such a great depth and in such swift water.

The electric light of which so much was expected, was a failure, and has not been in use for some time. The light worked all right, but the divers say that at the bottom of the river a fine dust fills the water, rendering it so dark that if they got twenty-five feet away from the light they were in danger of losing it entirely. It was more annoyance than assistance.

Globe, Nov. 29, 1902

The wreck of the steamer Rothesay which lay in about 25 feet of water, 500 feet from the shore, in the Bay between the uppper wharf at Prescott and the wharf at McCarthy's Brewery, has been blown up under the direction of Capt. C.D.O. Symons, R.E. acting for the Dept. of Marine & Fisheries and no portion of the wreckage now remains within 20 feet of the surface of the water.

Montreal Daily Star, Jan. 26, 1906


One of the oldest members of the transportation business in Canada passed away last evening, in the person of Mr. George Mathieson Kinghorn, president of the Williams Manufacturing Company, and a director of the Montreal Transportation Company.

The late Mr. Kinghorn was born at Lennoxville, Campsie (Campsle ?), Scotland, in the year 1825 and was in his 82nd year at the time of his death. He came to Montreal at the age of fifteen, when his uncle, Rev. Dr. Mathieson, was the pastor of St. Andrews church. He then entered upon the forwarding business. In 1847 he left Montreal and started the forwarding business in Kingston. In 1873 he returned to Montreal, where he has resided ever since. Mr. Kinghorn has been secretary of the Montreal Transportation Company since the company was formed.

The cause of his death was general debility brought on through old age. He leaves five children: Mrs. George McDougall, and four sons, David, R.S., James R. and Dr. H.M. Kinghorn, of Saranac Lake, N.Y.

Mrs. Kinghorn died last May 14th, the couple had celebrated their golden wedding in 1902.

The funeral will take place from St. Paul's Church, of which the deceased was an elder, on Saturday at 2:30.

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25 Dec 1889
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Rick Neilson
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Ogdensburg Journal (Ogdensburg, NY), 25 Dec 1889