The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Argus (Kingston, ON), March 31, 1846

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p. 1 ad for Charles W. Jenkins, Importer of English and American hardware, dealer in pig and bar iron, plated goods, paints, oils, window glass, and marine stores...... Jan. 1, 1846.

p.3 Kingston harbour is clear of ice from the Market Shoal outwards.


Mr. Dear Argus, - In consequence of the command I received from you to make an exploring expedition around the wharves, Saturday morning found me on my mission.

The first place to which I proceeded was the Commercial Wharf. I had scarcely turned the corner at which stands the Bank of Upper Canada, when my olfactories were offended by the impingement upon them of certain particles of matter emanating, as I guessed, from an animal with a white body and a stripe of black running from the point of its nose to the tip of its tail. My suspicions relative to the cause of the offence given to my nostrils was soon realized, for I immediately perceived the animal alluded to, proceeding from the wharf, and wending its way in the direction in which I was. I allowed it to "slope" past me, keeping as much as I possibly could to windward of it. I then discovered that it had been picking up crumbs, its foot-marks being plainly perceived on the guano so abundant around the wharves of our noble city. I there had an opportunity of seeing the correctly printed lists for registering the names of the passengers of the Canada and Gildersleeve; and took the opportunity of stating that I thought you could print them nearly as well.

I then went towards the coffer-dam. There I found a crowd of persons congregated around one of the largest of the pumps. The crowd, with becoming respect, made way for me. On walking up to the pump, I learned that owing to an impossibility in working it, an examination had been made and that a large maskinonge had been found in it - explaining at once the difficulty in working the pump. I laid open the stomach of the fish, and, to the astonishment of myself and the crowd, found therein a Wellington boot, the identical one, I understand, which was snapped off the foot of a gentleman who not long ago incautiously placed his pedal extremity in one of the numerous air-holes in the ice in front of the town. The boot may be seen at the shop of Mr. Anglen; and the maskinonge, the finest I ever saw, was to have graced, yesterday, the table of Daley's Hotel, at the dinner given to that excellent caterer for the Kingston palate, on his departure for Montreal, where, we have little doubt, his success in gratifying the palates of the Montrealers, will be as great as his success in Kingston.

Casting my eyes around, I observed the ice in the harbour dotted with little hillocks, surmounted by objects having the appearance of flour barrels. On a nearer approach I ascertained that these hillocks were composed of rubbish and filth, carted there to sink to the bottom when the ice melted. I was lost in admiration of the wise policy which dictated the filling up of the harbour with rubbish, and the means taken to flavour the water used by the inhabitants for domestic purposes. My regret was extreme that a clause had not been inserted in the new corporation act, to continue the rearing these heaps of rubbish, instead, perhaps, of following the course pursued by sundry other towns in the Province, of making it imperative on the inhabitants to cast the filth and rubbish where the one could not affect the nostrils of the inhabitants, nor the other cause any impediment to vessels entering the harbour.

Not wishing to fatigue your organs of vision by compelling you to read too long a letter,

I subscribe myself

Your most obedient,


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March 31, 1846
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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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Argus (Kingston, ON), March 31, 1846