The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Chronicle & Gazette (Kingston, ON), Feb. 20, 1836

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p.2 For the Chronicle & Gazette.

A Lamentable Fact.

Mr. Editor; - It is a fact, and a most lamentable fact too, that neither of the Canadas are possessed of one single mechanic, engineer, or man of talent or genius sufficiently capable of constructing a Marine Railway in Kingston, for the purpose of hauling up such crafts as navigate Lake Ontario, or our leading or enterprising men have got so opposed to encouraging British genius as to prefer that of Yankee Doodle's, for I understand that our wise-acres have already concluded upon sending to New York for a person of sufficient skill to construct this all but impossible piece of work, when there are men not so many yards from the spot, who are not only capable of making a railway to haul up schooners and Bay boats, but the St. George, Sir James Kempt, Commodore Barrie, and all the rest of our Kingston aquatic gentry piled in a heap on each other. But a British subject must not have the honor or the profit of such a job, - no, no, Yankee Doodle is the man who can and must do everything. He is the lad that can calculate and guess to a decimal. What have Britain done or her mechanics, compared with Yankee Doodle? They never made wooden nutmegs, and how could they make a Marine Railway. Oh! Kingston, Kingston, how long shall I weep over thy failings, thy blunders and thy partialities? Where is thy patriotism and where is your loyal spirit wandering? Where is your boasted pride of British or Canadian genius? If such examples of this sort as we have witnessed in this Province for some years back will be followed up, no British mechanics will remain among us who have any merit, and in case of another war we must have Yankees to build our forts and ships, etc. We had better follow up this example a little farther - with Yankee mechanics let us have Yankee magistrates, lawyers, justices of the peace, and members of Parliament, and we shall shortly shake the Executive Council and put an end to such titles as tories, patriots, constitutionalists, etc. If we want a spinning wheel of one mouse power more than ordinary, by and bye we must have a council of wise-acres assembled to find out if it is possible for a British mechanic to construct it, when of course it will be decided that none but a Yankee can do it. British mechanics are unquestionably insulted by their fellow citizens. The British genius which astonished the world is shamefully insulted, and let those who may think otherwise, but I think that such proceedings conduces as much as anything else to alienate the Canadian people of all grades, from the loyalty which they have so long evinced.

What does the Managers of the Marine Railway mean, or do they think that their job is such a difficult, complex and gigantic one as to be above the capacity of the mechanics of the Province? Bah! Let them go a month or two to study Ferguson or read Babbage, etc., and they will not, I hope, show to the world so much ignorance.

I am, yours truly,


p.S. If they are at a loss to know where these men alluded to are to be found in Kingston, a half dollar's worth of advertisement will bring them to light in fifteen minutes, with securities enough to back them. S.H.

p.3 Wanted - A Steady Active Man, as Wharfinger, who understands keeping accounts. Also, A middle aged person, as Warehouseman or porter. Certificates as to character will be required. Application to be made at the office of the Niagara Harbor & Dock Company; if by letter, post paid. By order, D.L. Cox, Secretary.

Niagara, 12th Feb., 1836.

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Feb. 20, 1836
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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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Chronicle & Gazette (Kingston, ON), Feb. 20, 1836