Port Hope harbour wasn't always ugly. In its working days it reflected the charm of the sailing ships, especially the schooners, that often crowded it. W Arnot Craick and Harold Reeve tell of its stumbling beginnings - '...Port Hope was constituted a port of entry as early as 1819' - to the unhappy time when 'The McKinley Tariff of 1890 [48.5% of the value of the goods] shut out our lumber and grain from the American market, and the hey-day of the schooner was over.'
It once seemed a logical place for the businesses that set up there, but little if anything is shipped out of the harbour now.
The waterfront has great potential as a place for people, which won't be realized as long as Cameco remains a goiter on its neck. The Town has abandoned a valuable resource to this huge corporation that need not be located there, but is determined for some reason to stay put, rather than rebuild a few miles to the west on property it bought for that purpose.
A health hazard and an eyesore -
Cameco delenda est.
from the Guide
Canoe tradition goes way back
If you think canoes are something new in Port Hope, get a load of this.
Earlier this week, longtime local historial Cal Clayton brought this excerpt from the Port Hope Times of about 1891 into the Evening Guide office:
'When the Port Hope boating club organized in 1869 and held its first regatta on Aug 19 of that year, the wharves were crowded with spectators of the various events.
'These included a sailing race for yachts. The pastime of boating reached its peak in 1887 with the formation of the Port Hope canoe club.
'There were reported to be 22 canoes owned in the town at that time. A commodore and vice-commodore were elected and a club flag devised to consist of a red burgee with white square in the centre containing the club 'totem' a dragonfly, with the letters PHCC in the corner of the square.'
Cal wonders if any of those old flags are still around in Port Hope cellars or attics. Does anyone have any clues?
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A yawl can be a sailboat,
or a ship's small boat, rowed by 4 or 6 oarsmen.

Boating in Port Hope harbour 1897

from the Port Hope Watchman August 22, 1851
It will be seen from the annexed Parliamentary report, which we copy from the Examiner, that the bill to increase the capital of the Port Hope Harbour Company, has been thrown out by the House.
Mr Cameron of Cornwall moved that the House go into committee of the whole on the bill to increase the capital stock of the Port Hope Harbour Company on Wednesday next.
Mr Smith of Durham went over the document recently published by the house on the subject of this harbour, and said as the government had refused to take the work in hand, they ought to leave the town council and harbour company to settle the legal dispute now pending between them, and not by this bill indirectly to recognize the existence of the company, which was believed to have forfeited all right to its charter. The proposal to allow the company to expend £5000 was a recognition of the legal existence of the company, and so it would be regarded by the hon member for Cornwall when he came to argue the case before a Jury.
And yet the company admit that they have not fulfilled the conditions of their charter. This was admitted in their petition to this house, wherein they state that they have expended their capital in building store houses and piers, and dredging; they had made no harbour to afford protection to vessels. Yet they charge higher tolls than any other harbour on the lake. In one week they received £100; and in the year £3000; yet according to the estimate of the engineer of the value of the works they had expended only £5000. He mentioned these facts to show that they receive sufficient tolls to enable them to make a good harbour. The greater part of the stock is held by one family; the thing has become a perfect monopoly; and for 15 years they have not divided a penny among the stockholders, for the reason that the stockholders out of the family hold but little stock, and they do not think it worth their while to go into Chancery. The bill proposed a piece of special private legislation. He then read the professional opinion of Mr Wilson, who is employed as counsel for the town of Port Hope, as to the effect the bill would have, which he (Mr W) regarded as treating the company as an existing corporation; and this in spite of all provisions, for a company allowed to expend money is vested with power which cannot be exercised by a defunct corporation. Mr Smith concluded by moving that the bill be read this day three months.
Mr Cameron of Cornwall said the object of the member for Durham was to enable the town of Port Hope to obtain the property without paying a farthing for it. The opinion of Mr Wilson that had been read, he (Mr C) entirely dissented from.
In answer to the member for the town of Sherbrooke, Mr Smith explained that the time for finishing the harbour expired in 1844; that it not having been so completed, a suit had been commenced by the town to test the legal existence of the Company; which existence the bill before the house recognized and therefore unjustly interfered with a question which was now a subject of adjudication before the legal tribunals. He denied that the town of Port Hope desired to obtain the harbour without paying for it: they were willing to pay the value that may be put on it by arbitration.
Mr Richards contended that the member for Cornwall had made out no case that should induce this house to legislate on a matter which was now a subject of adjudication before the courts. He thought under the circumstances the house ought not to recognize the existence of this company. It was absurd to say that the harbour would fall into hands of the town without its giving any compensation, if the Courts decided that the company had forfeited its charter.
The amendment was then put and carried - Yeas, 31; Nays, 21.

from the Guide  Saturday March 19, 1853
Launch of the New Schooner
On Tuesday last we witnessed the launch of the new schooner Admiral, owned by Messrs Bletcher, Wright & Harris. There were a great many persons assembled to see her go off, the more ambitious procuring for themselves places on the deck of the vessel. After some time spent in the necessary preparations, the supports were knocked away at about 5 o'clock, when she slid away into her destined element, with the grace and dignity of a young belle making her first entrance into a ball-room. The moment she began to move a tremendous cheer was raised, some of the most enthusiastic esconced behind a neighbouring shanty relieving their excited feeling by the simultaneous discharge of guns and hurrahs!
The schooner having been drawn close in shore, three times three were given by the persons on board in honour of the enterprising builders, and a supererogatory cheer just to show that their lungs were in no wise impaired by the previous exercise, after which there being nothing more to see, we turned our face towards home, breathing a wish that the gallant vessel whose debut we had just witnessed, might be as 'lucky' as if a good natured fairy had taken her under her especial care.

from the Guide  Saturday March 26, 1853
Our Harbour presents all the bustle of summer, last Sunday evening the large three masted Schooner, Indiana, from Oswego, with plaster, arrived here; and several Schooners are being loaded with pine lumber for Oswego. The fleet, which will be loaded, and ready for sea in a few days, will carry from fourteen to fifteen hundred thousand feet of Lumber. This is a pretty good beginning for the season's business. We understand that there will be between ten and twelve millions of feet sent from this Port the approaching season.
There is a new article of trade springing up this season, in the shape of Laths, which will soon be an item of considerable moment. We have noticed several waggons heavily loaded, pass down the street for the last fortnight, with sawed laths for the United States market. We shall be able at a future period, to give a fuller account of this new article of export.

from the Guide  June 3, 1854
The Launch of the New Vessel
On Saturday last, the 3rd inst, according to previous notice, the launch of this splendid vessel took place at the harbour in this town. A multitude of persons were assembled at each wharf, and as she glided off the stocks, the whoIe assemblage gave three hearty cheers for the Sarah Ann Marsh, (named after the third daughter of W S Marsh, Esq, of Hope, one of the owners). The 'colours' of the new vessel we understand were presented by Wm Bletcher, Esq, of this town.
Captain Jaynes, long and favourably known on the waters of Ontario, takes the command of the Sarah Ann.

from the Guide  July 8, 1854
We understand that it is the intention of Wm S Marsh, Esq, to commence the building of another schooner in a short time, and that he is now rafting Oak Lumber down the Lake for that purpose. The Lumber we observed is of the first quality, superior we think, to any we have ever seen. The new vessel is to be a three master and still larger than the Sarah Ann Marsh which was launched a few weeks ago, and at present is the largest vessel ever built in Port Hope. We hope the next enterprise Mr Marsh undertakes will be  the building of a first class steamer to ply between Port Hope and Rochester, no doubt considerable stock would be taken in it by parties in town, if requisite. Perhaps Mr Marsh could be induced to alter his present intention of building a schooner and instead erect a steamboat, or he might be induced to undertake both at the same time.

Port Hope  Thursday December 4, 1856
The bodies of the two unfortunate men who were drowned yesterday in trying to save the crew of the Niagara, have been discovered this morning. One was found about one mile and a half east of the town; the other near Cobourg. An inquest is to be held this afternoon.
The vessel is a total wreck, and her timbers are strewed along for several miles.
A public meeting is to be called for the purpose of aiding the widow and orphans of the unfortunate Campbell, and to present the gallant volunteers who rescued the crew with a suitable testimonial.

The D Freeman aground near Oswego, NY 1888

from the Toronto Globe  Tuesday December 9, 1856
Real Heroism - The Wreck of the Schooner Niagara at Port Hope
The wreck of this vessel, on Wednesday last [Dec 3rd] was attended with loss of life under singular painful circumstances.
In endeavouring to make the harbour, she struck on the shoal to the east of it, and immediately careened over. It was blowing a terrific gale at the time, and the frost was so severe that every rope glistened like so much crystal. The hands first took shelter under the bulwarks on the quarter-deck, but these were soon carried away, and they were obliged to take to the mainsail boom, which was literally covered with ice. Hundreds upon hundreds of people were looking from the shore at Port Hope, about two hundred yards distant, at the painful and desperate struggle of the brave tars clinging to a spar as it was swayed about by the storm, and washed by the surf. At length, a jolly boat, with Capt Woods, of the Annie Maude, of Port Hope, in command, put out to rescue the freezing and surf-beaten crew. A cheer rose from every voice as the boat gained the deep water, and was gallantly cresting the waves to reach the schooner. But, after repeated and almost superhuman efforts to bring the boat alongside, she was obliged to abandon the attempt, lest she should be swamped, or dashed to pieces against the vessel. Tears dimmed every eye as the brave boat, which had again and again, until she was nearly filled with water, and was literally covered with ice, endeavoured to 'make fast,' was seen making for land. The poor sailors, who were motionless during the struggle of the boat to reach them, again waved their hands from the boom, for one last effort to save them.
The feelings of the hundreds of spectators at this time are wholly indescribable. In a short time, however, another boat with a fresh crew put out, amid cheers which strangely mingled with the wild storm. Gloriously did they mount the swells, which now threatened to sweep the poor sailors off the boom. Wave after wave they crested, as hearts beat high that witnessed them, and as hopes sunk and rose us they disappeared between, and anon rose above, the swells. At length they reached the schooner, and one vast cheer was heard as they made fast to the davits. The crew of the boat, with the exception of two men, climbed into the schooner to help the half frozen sailors off the boom. One was hauled down, but ere a second could be lowered a fearful swell almost hid the boat; another came and she disappeared; and the poor sailor, who bad been just handed down to what was his last hope of safety, was the only one of the three that was ever seen. He rose, struggled with the breakers, caught a rope, was hauled on the deck of the schooner, and was in a few minutes afterwards frozen to death. A cry of despair now rose from every one. The brave crew of the boat was added to the crew of the schooner; and wilder and wilder still raged the storm.
From a point of land above the schooner a scow was set adrift, in the slender hope that it might float to her. It stranded in a few seconds afterwards. From the Grand Trunk Wharf, which was to the windward, their best boat was also floated off, but its fate was like their hopes - it soon sunk.
At last a brave old skipper - honour to his name and to his heart - said he would make one more effort to save them, or he would perish in the attempt. Daring, desperate as was the resolve, his boat was manned by sailors and fishermen in a few seconds; and literally amid cheers and prayers, they pushed her into the boiling surf. The previous boats having been too small to live in the sea near the schooner, this last was a large and heavy boat; and for a long time it was one dead struggle to keep their own with her. She rose nobly to the waves: but she made little or no headway. Every nerve of the brave crew was strained, but they could only defy the storm; they could not gain upon it. At last, as the cries of the friends of those who were on board the schooner were growing wilder on the beach, and the poor sailors were seen freezing to the boom, there appeared a lull of a few seconds, and one vast effort brought the boat under the stern of the schooner.
A cheer rose from her crew. Men, women and children, as if they had all but one heart, broke out into a wild scream of ecstacy and hope on shore. The poor frost-bitten crew were safely handed down into the boat; and as she crested the waves and bore them triumphantly to the shore, it seemed as if all human sympathies were absorbed in one intense feeling of admiration of those who had behaved with all the generosity of sailors, and more than the nobility of most men.
The name of the captain who commanded the last boat was Stephen Woods, of the Annie Maude. He and his crew deserve far more than this trifling tribute to their heroism.

newspaper article  1858
Canada can lay claim to being one of the largest ship owning towns in the Province. Situated on a natural harbour of great security and being the outlet of a large and fertile tract of agricultural country, and of a region abounding in the best oak, elm, pine and other valuable timber, the attention of her wealthy men was early turned to ship building. The place afforded every facility for the construction of vessels. There was a sheltered basin in which to launch and fit them up, and within easy distance the best of materials to be converted by the skill of the shipwright into craft that 'walk the waters like a thing of life.' William Marsh, Esq, rendered himself noted as a ship-owner. Some of the finest vessels that plough these inland seas are his property. Three schooners owned in part by him, the Caroline Marsh, the Jane Ann Marsh and the Sarah Ann Marsh, all of the largest tonnage were engaged last season in the western trade and went into winter quarters in Chicago.The crews of the different vessels composing the fleet that wintered in our harbour are actively engaged in preparations for the Spring trade. The 'Yo heave O!' of the sailors falls musically upon the ear, and the eye follows those who are 'aloft' bending top-sails, and top-gallant sails, and giving every inch of rigging a thorough overhaul.
Among the vessels we notice the Annie Craig, Capt Mearns, owned by Mr R McIntyre. She has just received several coats of black paint, and with her jet black booms and gaffs has about as piratical a look as the craft with 'laking masts' so often mentioned by novelists of the Ned Buntline or Sylvanus Cobb school, as hovering around the West India Islands and on the Spanish Main.
The Enterprize, Capt Butler, owned by the energetic firm of Edsall and Wilson, Timber Manufacturers, will soon be ready for sea. The Annie Maude, Capt Clark, owned by Mr D Ullyott is being painted and otherwise improved in appearance.
The Acorn, Capt Chisholm, owned by Mr R Mclntyre, has done a good deal of service, and from her appearance at present, will do much more.
The Trade Wind, Capt Wright, owned by Messrs T Turner, A Harris and Capt Wright, is a staunch vessel, and will soon be ready for business.
The Sarah, Capt J Braund, owned by T Turner and A Harris, is about ready for a cargo.
The John Wesley, Capt Alward, is now absent on her second voyage this season to Rochester. She took over lumber from Mr F Beamish, peas from Mr Rapalje, and sheep skins from Mr C Quinlan.
The Lindsay, Mr R Wallace, owner, left on Monday for Ogdensburgh with a full cargo of wheat.

newspaper article  1876
The following are the vessels belonging to this Port, and owned principally by our towns people - Barque Cavalier, Capt D Manson, owned by McArthur, Toronto; steam barge Lothair, Capt Casey, barge Corisande, Capt Yeo, schr Aurora, and scow J A Macdonald, all owned by Messrs Irwin & Boyd; steamer Norseman, Capt Crawford, owned by C F Gildersleeve, Kingston; schr Eliza Quinlan, Capt Braund, owned by Braund and E Philp; schr Great Western, Capt Henning, owned by G Strong & Hillyard; schr Caroline Marsh, Capt Caldwell, owned by E S Vindin; schr Mary Ann Lydon, Capt Casey, owned by John Lydon; schr Ariel, Capt Philips, owned by B Furguson; schr D Freeman, Capt Hadden, owned by the Wallace estate; schr Flora Carveth, Capt Fox, owned by J Carveth; schr Maria Annette, Capt Nixon, owned by R C Smith, Sr and R S Howell; schr Annie Minnes, Capt Clark, owned by R C Smith, Jr.; schr North Star, Capt J Alward, owned by the Alward estate; schr W T Greenwood, owned by S Lelean; schr Albatross, Capt Ham, owned by Hayden & Ham, schr Wanderer, owned by Capt Geo Wright; schr Lewis Ross, Capt J Philp, owned by G Wright and A Cochrane; schr Two Brothers, Capt Chisholm, owned by J Wright and A Cochrane; schr British Queen, Capt Wilson, owned by Philps; schr Eliza White, Capt Strickland, owned by Capt Janes and E Peplow; Tug Albert Wright, Capt Geo Wright, Jr, owned by Messrs Wright.
The following vessels are also owned in Port Hope, but have not wintered in the harbour - schr Flora Emma, traded this winter for the schr P Bennett, Capt Jos Braund, owned by Braund and Guy; schr Agnes Hope three-master traded for the Stevenson, Capt Clark, owned by Vindin and Clark; schr Garibaldi, for repairs at Oswego, Capt Uglow, owned by the Wallace estate.
The Eliza White, Capt Strickland, loaded by G B Salter with 7664 bushels of barley, left here yesterday for Oswego and is the first departure of the season. The following vessels are expected to leave this week - the Great Western loaded with wheat, the Ariel and the Mary Ann Lydon, loaded with barley.

Ariel of Port Hope in an unknown harbour

from the Port Hope Weekly Times  Thursday morning October 30, 1879
The following vessels arrived at this port on the 25th, and up to Tuesday morning:—
Passenger steamers, "Algerian" and "Norseman;" freight steamer "Lothair" and barge "Corisande;" schooners "Lewis Ross," "Maria Annette," "Eliza Quinlan," "Two Brothers," "Great Western," "Flora Carveth," "Mary Grover," "Caroline Marsh," "Rockaway," "Guelph," "Aurora" and "Agnes Hope."
On Saturday, the 24th, the following vessels cleared:—"Eureka," loaded with barley; ''Caledonia," loaded with rye, and "Ariel," loaded with wheat.
Oct. 28th.—Arrived—Schooner Octavia, and Steamer Norseman. Cleared—Great Western, Maria Annette and Caroline Marsh, all loaded with lumber.

from the Port Hope Weekly Times  Thursday morning February 12, 1880
The Board Reduces the Salaries $350.
The Harbour Board met on Monday afternoon.
Present—Mr. Lewis Ross, in the chair; Col. Williams, Messrs. Garnett, Vinden, Peplow, Robertson, Benson and the Mayor.
The chairman read the report of the executive committee, recommending the payment of these accounts: Dingwall & Ross, $4.55; Gas Company $51.80. On motion the report was adopted.
The special committee appointed to enquire into the alleged lumber overloading, reported as follows: Your committee appointed to investigate the matter of lumber being shipped over the harbour in excess of the quantity called for by the bills of lading and consequently not paying proper tolls, beg leave to report, That we met in the council chamber on the 29th Jan., 1880, and after receiving the statements of three witnesses, we adjourned till the following day, when three other witnesses made statements, all of which were taken in writing by the secretary.
From the statements made your committee feel satisfied that more lumber has been shipped over the wharf than bills of lading were given for, or bills collected on, and also that the shippers were aware of the fact. That the system of shipping more lumber on vessels than bills of lading called for has existed for some vears and your committee are of opinion that this system will be difficult to end, unless the lumber is measured in the interest of the harbour when loading on vessels. We regret very much the difficulty experienced by us in obtaining information on the subject, captains of vessels and others evidently having some motive in refusing to assist the committee, while they admitted the advantage they would receive if the practice was stopped of carrying more lumber than bills of loading called for.
WM. GARNETT, Chairman.
On motion of Mr. Peplow the report was received, it being understood that the chairman report at next meeting what action the Midland Railway Co. intend to take to prevent the overloading of cars.
The Mayor submitted a communication from the Bank of Commerce, relative to the interest overdue to the Bank of Commerce by the town on municipal loan fund account amounting to $64.92.
Mr. Garnett moved that the Harbour officials be re-engaged on the following salaries, and that the engagement shall continue during the pleasure of this board: Harbour Master, per annum, $1,000, he to furnish any assistance he $1,000, he to furnish any assistance he might require as hitherto; Deputy Harbour Master $450; Secretary, $200;—such scale of remuneration to take effect from the 1st Jan., 1880.
The Mayor seconded the motion.
Mr. Hagerman said that on former occasions, when proposals were made such as this, his salary was put at $300, now it was put at $200.
Col. Williams said Mr. Garnett should move the resolution proposed by him last June, which had been lost upon a tie.
Mr. Peplow moved in amendment, seconded by Mr. Vindin, that Mr. Cochrane's salary be $1200; Mr. Janes, $550; and Mr. Hagerman's, $300, and that they hold office during the pleasure of the Board.
Mr . Benson said if they wished to secure the services of competent and trustworthy officials they must pay fair salaries. Mr. Cochrane, who had been in the service of the Board for 20 years, had handled as much as $30,000 per year, and there had not been a single complaint against him or even a suspicion. $1300 a year, therefore, was not too much to pay such a trustworthy and competent official. He was not in favour of reducing any of the salaries, but if it was the will of the board he would not object to a reduction of $100 in the case of Capt. Janes, who was certainly a valuable officer. Neither was he in favour of reducing the salary of Mr. Hagerman, but if the majority wished it he would be willing that $100 be the utmost limit of reduction. He did not consider that they should attach much weight to the outside agitation, inasmuch as those who bore the burden of taxation were not in any measure identified in the movement. Until the Board had some real and proper expression of opinion from the outside, the members of the Board should rely on their own judgment. If a vote were taken he would support the amendment, although his opinion was that no reduction should take place.
The Mayor said he was sure that if a vote of the ratepayers were taken he had no doubt three-quarters of them would vote for the reduction proposed, for he was certain the general opinion was that they were paying too much for harbour management.
Mr. Garnett concluded that if the present officials would not accept the reduced salaries there were plenty as good and honest men in Port Hope who would.
The chairman said if any change was to be made he would rather see the services of Capt. Janes dispensed with, than the other officials should be cut down.
Mr. Garnett said Mr. Cochrane did a considerable amount of work that should be done by others.
The amendment was put and carried: Yeas—Col. Williams, Messrs. Vindin, Peplow, Robertson, and Benson. Nays —Messrs. Garnett, and Randall.
A communication from Mr. Cluxton was read. Its purport was the reduction of tolls on wheat, etc.
On motion of Messrs Peplow and Randall, it was ordered that all grain loaded by the last day in April be charged ½ cent a bushel instead of 1 cent.
Before this motion was put, the Mayor said the town was losing by the high tolls charged.
Board adjourned.

from the Port Hope Weekly Times  Thursday morning April 20, 1882
13th, schr. Garibaldi, lumber Oswego.
15th, Cuba, wheat for Prescott; steam barge D. R. Van Allen, lumber for Oswego; Caroline Marsh, wheat for Oswego; Aurora, Great Western, Fleetwing, Agnes Hope and Two Brothers, all lumber for Oswego.
18th, Erie Queen, lumber for Oswego; Plow Boy for Charlotte; Fred L. Wells, lumber for Oswego; Wave Crest, ties for Charlotte; Garibaldi, and Baltic, lumber for Oswego; Georgian, barley and lumber for Oswego.
13th, E. P. Young, D. R. Van Allen, Fleetwing, all light.
15th, Cuba, Toronto; Aurora, Two Brothers, Agnes Hope, M. A. Lydon, all light from Oswego; Great Western from Oswego.
16th, Wave Crest from Oswego; E. K. Hart from Charlotte; Caroline Marsh from Oswego; str. Norseman, Kingston: Garibaldi, Erie Queen, and Fred L. Wells, from Oswego; str. Georgian from Oswego; Plow Boy, Wilson, Baltic, Oswego.
18th, D. R. Van Allen from Oswego; str. Norseman, Charlotte.
19th, Caroline Marsh, Aurora, Two Brothers, Great Western, all from Oswego.
The Norseman took her first departure on Monday morning for Charlotte. She had on board some casks of liquor, 160 bags of peas, 3 horses, and 20 or 30 passengers. She arrives to-day again, with a load of trees from Charlotte.
Any quantity of lumber is coming in on the Midland, and being shipped.
A constable has been appointed at the docks by the Midland Railway.

from the Port Hope Weekly Times  Thursday morning April 27, 1882
Nothing new of importance has transpired at the docks since last issue. Loading and unloading lumber is the principal business. Boxes of trees are being shipped from Rochester, but nothing like the amount in former years.

from the Port Hope Weekly Times  Thursday morning June 29, 1882
The mail steamer Corsican when passing Gull Light, early on Sunday morning, had the misfortune to break part of her machinery and thus become disabled. She was towed into Port Hope by the tug Albert Wright, and the steamer Corinthian on her way to Toronto about 4 o'clock Monday a.m., took her in tow to that city for repairs.
—Capt. Clarke, who is sailing on the upper lakes, is in town this week.

from the Port Hope Weekly Times  Thursday morning July 13, 1882
Bathing, so far, has not been very extensively indulged in. The water is still very cold.
Boating, although not unusually lively, is kept up with a fair degree of activity. Conditions this season have been most favourable for the enjoyment of this favourite and healthful recreation.
A good deal of complaint is made concerning anchoring of small yachts in the centre of the stream just south of Mr. Cook's boat house. It gives a great deal of inconvenience in passing with boats and makes circumstances most favourable for frequent collisions.
Three or four vessels, owing to the present comparative slackness of the lumber trade, are unemployed. As soon as the green lumber begins to come in, they will enjoy their usual business activity.
The schooner with the load of stone necessary to sink the newly constructed portion of the west pier, came or was expected yesterday from Kingston. The rest of the stone needed will, we understand, be purchased in the vicinity of Port Hope, thus carrying out the policy all along pursued in the present work, of Port Hope for the Port Hopians.
In consequence of the stock of dry lumber in the north being, as is usual at this time of the year, about exhausted, there has been a considerable decrease in the amount exported. Still, comparatively speaking, the lumber trade is active, and will shortly be largely increased.

from the Port Hope Weekly Times  Thursday morning April 30, 1891
Business is stirring at the harbour this week. All the vessels are getting ready for the season's work, and most of them are resplendent with fresh paint.
The Eurydice will commence regular trips to Rochester on the 4th inst.
The schooner F. H. Burton, Captain James Hadden, is in from Port Hope with barley for Gaylord, Downey & Co.—Oswego Palladium.
Grasping irons have been placed all around the east pier. This is a much needed improvement, and may prevent serious accident. In case of persons falling into the water, these irons, which are placed close together, will give them something to hold on to until help arrives. The same precaution has been carried out along the steps on the east pier, and in case of a canoe overturning at this place will afford support to the occupants. The chairman of the Harbour Board, Mr. D. Chisholm, Q. C., recommended this to be done last season, and Mr. Evans has had the work well done.

The Norseman was renamed the North King

from the Port Hope Weekly Times  Thursday morning May 7, 1891
The residents of Port Hope were shocked Sunday morning to hear that Sam. Cornish, an old sailor, well-known here and along the Lake, had been drowned in the harbour.
About half-past ten o'clock, Mr. R. F. Davey, while walking along the wharf, noticed a short distance below the storehouses, on the west side of the east pier, a man's hat floating on the water, and on his looking more closely was astonished to see the body of a man floating upright in the water. Mr. Davey at once notified the men on the Steamer Eurydice, who put out a boat, and without difficulty hauled the body out of the water. In the meantime Chief Douglas had been informed of the circumstance, and soon appeared on the scene in company with undertaker George, who took the body to his establishment, where it remained during the afternoon and was then removed to the house of friends.
Those who remember Samuel Cornish in his more prosperous days will be surprised and grieved to learn of his tragic end. He was a widower with one son and one daughter, both being married. Since the death of his wife he abandoned himself to drink, and during the last few days of his existence had been on a continual spree. His last jamboree terminated on Friday night, and on Saturday he was tolerably sober.
He was in fairly comfortable circumstances, and had been staying at the Royal Hotel, but was not there on Saturday night, and the authorities have not been able to discover where he spent what has proved to be the last night of his life.
About six o'clock on Sunday morning he was met by Mr. Voice going to the wharf. He sat down on the pier near the schooner Maria Annette (which was moored immediately alongside Messrs. Brown and Henning's coal sheds, on Mill street,) and remained there for an hour at least, during which time he was spoken to by several of the crew on the Eurydice, Thos. Burt, Geo. Gamble and other persons, who say he was quite sober but apparently in a pre-occupied state of mind. Nothing more was heard of him until he was found drowned about ten o'clock. His pipe and coat were found at the spot where he had been sitting by the vessel.
Cornish was in the 70th year of his age, and had been in low spirits for some time of late, and threatened to several persons, among them Capt. Henning and Chief Douglas, that he would commit suicide.
Whether he carried his threat into execution or whether he accidentally fell into the water and was drowned is impossible to decide. Some contend that suicide is the most probable solution of the mystery, but on the other hand Capt. Henning and those who are familiar with the scene and details of the affair think his death was accidental. Their view of the case is that the old man was endeavouring to 'straighten up' after his spree, and being restless either walked the streets all night or slept in a barn. In the morning they think he went to the wharf to have a quiet smoke, and after sitting by the schooner for a while he got down in the yawl boat to have a wash and in stooping over towards the water fell in. There are bruises on his face and hands which would give strength to this theory. There is however not the slightest ground for the suspicion of foul play.
The coroner, Dr. Corbett, was notified and after hearing the particulars concluded it was unneccessay to hold an inquest.

from the Port Hope Weekly Times  Thursday morning May 7, 1891
The Estimates were brought down in the Dominion House of Commons on Monday, when a number of grants were made for public works, etc., throughout the Dominion, Port Hope being fortunate enough to be awarded $5,000 for repairs to the harbour. This shows Mr. Craig [T Dixon Craig] has not been idle while at Ottawa, and the valuable assistance given him by our late member, Mr. H. A. Ward, has no doubt aided in the procurement of so handsome a sum for the purpose named. Doubtless this is but a forerunner of other grants for new works, which the Government has in contemplation, with the view of making Port Hope harbour a thoroughly efficient harbour of refuge between Toronto and Kingston. As the sum has been given for the purpose of repairs it will likely go a long way towards putting the present docks in good order. We presume it is too early to ascertain if any further action has been taken by the Government in the direction of their assuming our harbour as a government work, but perhaps before the end of the session some definite conclusion may be arrived at. We are sure our citizens will join us in congratulating Mr. Craig on his first effort on behalf of his constituents.

from the Port Hope Weekly Times  Thursday morning June 18, 1891
The initial visit of the Steamer North King was welcomed by several hundred citizens who gathered on the wharf at 9:30 Friday morning.
So much has been said of the numerous alterations and additions which have been made to the steamer since last season, that curiosity was rife as to what the old boat would look like under her new name and under her altered circumstances.
On the boat being made fast to the wharf, the spectators went aboard and strolled about the deck and cabin, on a general inspection trip.
The improvements have not yet been completed, so that a description of the North King as at present constituted would not do the good ship justice. The cabin, however, presents a vast improvement. The forepart of it has been enlarged and there is now every facility for moving about with ease and comfort. The staterooms have been refurnished and although not yet completed, it is evident that the proprietors of the boat are making this department all that it should be. New compound engines have been put in and also two boilers, which afford plenty of power for fast travelliug. Outside, the steamer looks remarkably well. Nicely painted, with flags gaily flying, she presented a good appearance. The most noticeable improvements on the outside are two smoke-stacks instead of one, and the new wrinkle in paddle-wheels which has been adopted. The boat is a fast mover, having made 9 miles in 34 minutes on a trial spin Friday mornirg.
Capt. Nicholson may well feel proud of his charge. He was presented by Mrs N. Hockin with a beautiful bouquet of flowers, in view of the auspicious occasion.

from the Port Hope Weekly Times  Thursday morning August 6, 1891
A Magnificent Floating Palace.
The Weekly Trips To the Thousand Islands.
[The North King, owned by the Lake Ontario Steamship Co., was outfitted at the dry dock of Davis & Son, Kingston, Ont. 1890-91]
Now that the North King has all her outfit complete, she is by long odds the finest, fastest and safest steamer on Lake Ontario. She is, indeed, a "palatial steamer," and has all the latest improvements. Up to within a few days, a number of workmen have been steadily engaged working on her, to get her in the best possible shape. They have done everything requisite for the comfort and safety of passengers, so that their presence and services are no longer required.
The electric light apparatus is now in running order, and the steamer at night presents a most brilliant appearance, while the change is greatly appreciated by the patrons of the route.
Sometime ago we gave a full description of the North King, but as everything was not completed at that time, the following particulars, though partly a repetition will be read with interest by the readers of THE TIMES.
She is 176 feet in length, 44 feet wide over the guards, 10 feet depth of hold, 8 feet between decks, and 10 feet high in upper saloon. The leading features of her construction are the result of the experience of Mr. Gildersleeve, the manager of the company, as to the requirements of the route; and the best experts have contributed in the carrying out of the details. The hull lines are by Capt. J. W. Pearce, of Evansville, Ind., engine proportions by Frank E. Kirby, Detroit, and feathering wheels by Messrs. Logan & Rankin, Toronto. She is sharp and high forward, and the leading idea in the shape of the hull has been to secure a vessel that would make her time in all weathers, and with the greatest comfort to passengers.
The hold below the main deck not being required for freight, is mainly devoted to strengthening. In addition to the usual watertight bulkheads and side strengthening, she is screw bolted throughout, and iron strapped from forward to aft between the planking and frames. Trusses are built the full depth of the hold and full length forward and aft between the sister keelsons, with top stringer bolted to the deck beams and posts every six feet, four knees at the corners between the posts meeting in the centre, each truss thereby forming a succession of knee arches. Similar trusses are built over the centre keelson forward and aft of the sister keelsons.
To prevent side strain there are double braces from gunwale to bilge across the hull every twenty feet, kneed at both and bolted together where they cross. Half sponsons are built outside the hull to protect the guards forward of the wheels, which also give increased stability and strength. It is believed this is the largest amount of strengthening as yet introduced into a wooden steamer.
She has a skeleton beam engine with cylinder 36 inches in diameter, and 10 feet length of stroke, with Steven's valve gear and drop cut of latest design. The paddle wheels are of the feathering type, 18½ feet-in diameter. The small diameter of the wheels, as compared with the leverage of the crank, is designed to give great speed of engine and consequent power. She has two return tubular boilers, one in front of the other, to distribute the weight, and placed face to face with seperate smoke stack to each. The power is estimated at 750 indicated horse power, and the speed at not less than 15 miles.
The feathering side wheel type of steamer, although more expensive, was decided on the best for passenger lake service, after careful consideration and consultation with the best experts in New York and Detroit. The extra width of the guards gives greater space for passenger accommodation, and the tremour and rolling are less than with either single or double screws. These considerations have caused the latest of the Long Island Sound and Upper Lake passenger steamers to be built of this type. The passenger steamers crossing the channels of the English coast are also still built with feathering paddles on account of the lesser vibration and rolling, although they have no guards and but little upper works.
The North King has ample freight room on the main deck, on each side and forward of the engine. Between the after gangways is the main saloon with office, baggage rooms, stairways, etc., and aft of promenade deck, is the upper saloon 136 feet in length, 14 feet wide aft and 20 feet wide forward of the engine. The forward portion from its greater width, comfortable sofas and spacious glass front is the favourite resort of the passengers. Dining tables are laid in the whole of the after, and part of the forward portions. Ladies' and gentlemen's toilet rooms are also in the upper saloon. On each side of the upper saloon, as far as the forward end of the engine, are double rows of state-rooms and in front of this a single row on each side. The outside promenades are in front of the upper saloon and also on the forward portion of the third or hurricane deck in the vicinity of the pilot house and texas. She is heated by steam and lit with electricity, with reserve oil lamps. Her life saving apparatus of boats, life rafts and life preservers are over the legal requirements.
Quite a number of excursions have taken place on the North King this season, and all have been delighted with the way she behaves in all kinds of weather.
Of course the great attraction among these excursions is the weekly one on Saturday nights to the Thousand Islands, and the increased facilities and elegance afforded by the "North King" leaves nothing to be desired in this most delightful Lake and River Excursion, and added to all, the route this year includes the marvelous scenery of the Bay of Quinte, and the Murray Canal, both of which are well worth seeing. The North King is the only steamer which makes the grand tour of all the Thousand Islands, including the wonderful "Lost Channel," "Fiddler's Elbow," and gives several hours at Alexandria Bay. The beauty of this trip is not so well-known on this side as it is on the south shore, from which a large number avail themselves of the trip every Saturday, some taking it in three or four weeks in succession, as being one of the most beautiful and healthful cheap trips within easy reach, involving but little loss of time.
The North King leaves Port Hope about 9:30 on Saturday night, reaches Kingston about 8 Sunday morning, leaves at 9 for Alexandria Bay, which she reaches about noon, and leaves on the return trip at 3 p.m., arriving in Charlotte on Monday morning about 7 and in Port Hope about 1 p.m. There is more fresh air in this trip than can be got out of any other occupying double the time, and involving more than double the expense. The fare for the round trip is only $2.50, so that the excursion is fairly within the reach of all.
Capt. C. H. Nicholson has become very popular during the time he has been on this route, his courteous manner, and the interest he takes in the comfort and pleasure of his passengers, making him a general favourite, while he shows his competency for the important position he holds by the skill with which he handles his steamer. The other officers are also well qualified for their respective positions, having been carefully selected, with the view of having the best and most competent men in every department. Mr. J. G. Johnston, the purser, is a hustler and performs his duties in a very pleasing manner. He is all over at all times aiding the Captain in doing everything for the comfort of the passengers. The mate, Mr. J. Jerrolds, is an excellent sailor, and is one of the most capable navigators on the lake. Mr. Thos. Milne, the chief engineer, is a first-class machinist, as well as engineer and the brightness of every part of the machinery indicates the pride with which he regards and looks after it. The tables, too, are in good and capable hands, while Mr. A. W. Stevenson has charge of them. His many years' experience enables him to choose the best of everything, and the viands are put on the table in a tasteful and tempting manner, while their quality cannot be excelled. As a Steward, Mr. Stevenson has many imitators but no equal on Lake Ontario. The state-rooms are large, comfortable, and well-lighted, so that all the luxuries of travel can now be had on the "North King," and we trust the season may prove a very successful one financially, as well as otherwise, for Mr. Gildersleeve's enterprise is deserving of the most liberal patronage from the residents on both sides of the Lake.

The North King was overhauled in Kingston, Ontario 1890-91

from the Port Hope Weekly Times  Thursday morning October 22, 1891
Business is very quiet at the Harbour. The heavy gales of the last week have retarded somewhat the progress of navigation.
The Dredge and tug "Sir John" are busily engaged in dredging out the harbor, to have it in readiness for the fall trade.
The Maria Annette, Capt. Henning, is loading barley for Oswego.
The Garibaldi has been laid up for the season.
The Wave Crest is tied at the dock.
Mr. R. C. Smith's yacht the "Irene" is undergoing repairs at the dry dock.
A large quantity of lumber, shingles, and cedar posts are piled on the dock.
The Steamer North King is making her regular trips.

The dredge Nipissing, a yacht, a schooner and the steamer North King at Port Hope harbour. (Click image to enlarge)

from the Evening Guide  Friday April 27, 1928
Local Board of Harbour Commissioners Conferred Thursday and Resolution Passed Whereby Grant is Asked in Supplementary Estimates For Harbour Repairs.
At a meeting of the Port Hope Harbour Commissioners held at the Town Hall Thursday afternoon, a resolution was passed to ask the Department at Ottawa for a grant in the supplementary estimates for repairs to the Port Hope Harbour.
The lighthouse at the end of the eastern pier was recently washed away and the piers are in a very dilapidated condition. Those present at the meeting included: Chairman F. L. Curtis, Mayor R. J. Edmunds, Harbour Master Wm. Harvey, A. H. C. Long, W. J. B. Davison and J. H. Rosevear. The minutes of the last meeting were read and confirmed.
The following resolution was moved by A. H. C. Long and seconded by W. J. B. Davison and reads as follows:
WHEREAS during the recent storms on Lake Ontario the East Pier from the Lighthouse South, which constitutes the East side of the entrance to the Port Hope Harbour, has been completely demolished and washed away:
AND WHEREAS the remainder of the East Pier is in a dangerous condition and likely to be washed away by future storms, thereby completely wrecking the Harbour itself:
AND WHEREAS the Port Hope Harbour is administered by a Board of Harbour Commissioners, functioning without funds:
AND WHEREAS the Chairman of the Port Hope Harbour Board notified the District Engineer at Toronto of the destruction of the mouth of the Harbour, following which Engineers have been here to report to the Departments concerned:
THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Secretary of the Port Hope Harbour Commissioners be and is hereby requested to formally notify the Department of Public Works and the Department of Marine and Fisheries at Ottawa that if the Harbour is to be saved as a port of refuge for Northshore navigation, a recommendation from the said Departments be made to the Government for a special supplementary grant be made to cover the cost of the necessary repairs, which should be done at the earliest possible moment.
The Chairman announced that a representative of the Randolph McDonald Co. had asked him for the use of the vacant plant on the western side of the harbour. They were willing to pay a rental of $25 per month and asked for a ten year lease of the property.
It was moved by R. J. Edmunds, seconded by J. H. Rosevear that the secretary be instructed to acknowledge recipt of the letter from Randolph McDonald Co., dated April 20th, and to suggest that a conference be arranged between the Chairman of the Board and Mr. McDonald to discuss the matter of renting the harbour buildings on the east side of railway tracks on the Queen's wharf to said property.
Finance Report
J. H. Dehane, signs ...... $9.00
Thos. Garnett and Son ...... 22.00
Queen Insurance Co. ...... 12.53
Home Insurance Co. ...... 28.65
Port Hope Corporation, Debentures ...... 800.00
A. W. George, flowers ...... 10.00
Queen Insurance Co. ...... 12.53

Schooner Maria Annette in Port Hope harbour

from the Evening Guide  Tuesday July 17, 1928
Julia B Merrill Owned by W. H. Peacock & Co. of Port Hope Still Operating
Two schooners and two sloops comprise the only sailing vessels now operating on Lake Ontario, mariners state. All of them trade at Kingston. The schooner Lyman M Davis is owned by Captain Daryaw of Kingston and the schooner Julia B Merrill, formerly owned by Captain Daryaw, but now owned by W. H. Peacock and Company of Port Hope, and is used for the coal carrying trade. The two sloops are owned by Captain George and Arthur Sudds of Kingston.

from The Daily Times  Wednesday July 18, 1928
What today seems to be an abandoned harbour, save for occasional ripples in the wake of sleek-running launches which ply their trade between Port Hope and the United States, was once a bustling hive of activity with many sloops and schooners claiming Port Hope harbour as their home port.
Vessels from all points recognized Port Hope harbour as a haven from the fury of the waves, and often sought the shelter of its piers on stormy nights, when Lake Ontario was lashed into a raging turmoil by a forty or fifty-mile-an-hour gale. That was back in 1881. In those days, Port Hope harbour was prosperous, with fine ships from all parts frequently occupying it. Freight handled in those days consisted of lumber and a little other merchandise. The central pier, where the Port Hope Sanitary Company now stands, was a maze of railway tracks and switches, where freight cars bearing their loads of lumber from the north country were unloaded.
Hundreds of willing hands were employed at the docks unloading these cars and loading the vessels, in fact, the docks were the main source of employment for the men of Port Hope. The Port Hope Sanitary Company, McCarthy Lace or Mathews Gravity plants were unheard of in Port Hope in those days, and the Nicholson File was practically the only industry in town, then operating on a small scale. Thus, the youth of Port Hope looked to the docks for employment, and usually found it, as there was always lots of work to be done there.
Schooners and sloops of all shapes and sizes were tied up along all sides of the harbour and along that side of the harbour which runs along the east side of the Mathews Conveyor plant. The depth of water along that side of the harbour at the present time is not sufficient to float a toy boat, but back in the 'eighteen eighties' the pride of many a sailor's heart cast anchor along that shore. The sands on which the Mathews Conveyor factory now stands, was once washed by the waters of Lake Ontario, which extended as far back as the old Sculthorpe elevator.
Alma Wreck
Outstanding in the nautical history of the town is the wreck of the Alma, which foundered off the west beach over fifty years ago and went down with 250 tons of coal aboard. This ship is today buried beneath the sand underneath or in the adjacent vicinity of the Mathews Conveyor building. Efforts were made by local men some years ago to salvage the Alma, but being on a small scale, were fruitless.
The Nellie Theresa, one chilly November night, when Lake Ontario was lashed into a raging sea by the nocturnal gales, crashed against the extreme west pier and breakwater and was wrecked. The hulk is today also buried beneath the sands of the west beach.
Many old residents of Port Hope will remember such boats as the Marinette, Mary Ann Lydon, Oliver Mowat, sailed by Captain W H Peacock, of Port Hope; the Garibaldi, Three Brothers, Caroline Marsh, sailed by Captain W Colwill; the schooner Arthur, the Fisher, the Ottonabee, Arura, sailed by Captain W Strickland, of Port Hope; Great Western, Annie Miniss, Flora Emma, sailed by Captain Fox; Viana, Jesse Drummond, L D Bullock and the Mary Everett.
One of the best vessels that ever sailed into Port Hope harbour was the Emily B Maxwell, owned by Messrs W H Peacock and Ed Brown, Port Hope. Although not large vessels, the schooners carried an average load of 250,000 feet of lumber with 100,000 feet in the hold and 150,000 feet on deck.
Lumber Magnates
When the lumbering trade was at its zenith in Port Hope, three most prosperous lumber merchants were Irvin and Boyd, Vinden, and Alonzo Spooner.
Five years ago the Oliver Mowat formerly owned by Captain W H Peacock, foundered in Lake Ontario, when she was rammed by another vessel and practically cut in two. Several lives were lost, and a considerable quantity of merchandise which she was carrying, went down, thus ending the career of another great old lake vessel.
The Garibaldi and the Three Brothers, which were once two of the finest vessels on the lake, saw years of service and finally began to deteriorate. When these vessels got beyond repair, they were left in the harbour near the Mathews Conveyor Company, to rot, and have in the course of time, sunk deep down into the sands, but a few of their 'ribs' may still be seen today.
Four Ships Left
Two schooners and two sloops comprise the only sailing vessels now operating on Lake Ontario, mariners state. All of them trade at Kingston. The schooner Lyman M Davis, is owned by Captain Daryaw, of Kingston, and the schooner Julia B Merrill, owned by W H Peacock and Co, is still used in the coal-carrying trade. The two sloops are owned by Captains George and Arthur Sudds, of Simcoe Island, near Kingston.
Captain Peacock bought the Julia B Merrill in Napanee, eight years ago and has made many trips from Oswego to Port Hope, carrying cargoes of coal. However, in conversation with Captain Peacock yesterday, The Daily Times was informed that the Julia B Merrill no longer carries coal for W H Peacock and Company, as they find it cheaper to buy coal by rail. Captain Peacock stated that they could get coal here by boat all right, but they could not find men to unload it.
Speaking of the old days, the Captain remarked that back in 1881, men clamoured for the job of unloading the vessels and did not consider it unusually hard work, but today, he stated, it is a hard job to get men to do this work for $1.00 an hour, which is practically three times the wages paid in the eighties.
Since the Julia B Merrill stopped trading in Port Hope, she has been working down near Picton and Kingston, and is still in charge of Captain W Peacock, Jr.
Port Hope harbour, once the pride of Ontario, and a mecca for mariners, has fallen into a state of dilapidation. The beacon lighthouse, which guided hundreds of vessels to safety, has toppled over into the lake, the end of the east pier has crumpled away, and the west breakwater is entirely gone. The west pier is rapidly following suit.

Schooner Julia B Merrill in Port Hope Harbour

from the Evening Guide  Monday July 30, 1928
Port Hope Had Numerous Week-End Visitors Who Came by Water
Saturday night we had quite a fleet visiting Port Hope.
Unfortunately we were unable to meet all the visitors but had the opportunity of speaking to Mr. Herbert Flinch and Jack Cader of Rochester who came over in a little speed boat from Nine Mile Point and were unable to proceed to Toronto, as they had intended, and had to await calmer waters for returning across the lake. They had a boat capable of over forty miles an hour and some of the panels were of most beautiful fir.
The Idler of Toronto dropped in on its return voyage from the foot of the lake. They had planned to go beyond Montreal but circumstances forced an earlier return than anticipated. Mr. and Mrs. G. C. Cuff and Miss S. Butt were on board and had a fine time in this port.
The sailing yacht Acadia of the R.C.Y.C., Toronto, and the Athene, of the Ontario Game and Fisheries Department were also docked here.
The Golden Arrow of Toronto brought the owner, Mr. J. Fletcher Rawlinson and wife, his father, Mr. Geo. Rawlinson of Toronto, and Miss Winnie Hulse of Ottawa, to visit friends and relatives in town, over the week end.

from the Evening Guide  Wednesday September 12, 1928
Derrick Busy Pulling up Old, Rotted Timbers of East Pier
The work of repairing the east pier has been started and the crane is busily engaged in tearing up the planks and timbers so that the new material can be laid from the water line up. The timbers are so badly rotted that it is with the greatest ease the crane is able to tear the crib apart.
The "Wauketa" with the Government engineers who are supervising the work is now in port.

from the Evening Guide  Monday September 17, 1928
The Condor of the Mathews Steamship Lines To Be Stored Here
A great deal of interest centered around the harbour during the weekend when the beautiful yacht Condor of Toronto, sailed into port to be dismantled for the winter and several other crafts of less importance were about.
The Condor is a ship of lovely lines and wonderfully fitted and is the private yacht of the owner of the Mathews Steam Ship Company. It is 168 feet long and is said to be worth $250,000.
It is an oil burning steam ship capable of upwards of 25 miles an hour and carries a crew of sixteen in the fore part while the luxurious apartments in the after part comfortably accommodate a dozen.
The crew is today busy storing everything and when it is ready to be tied up for the winter the boat will be taken from the east harbour to the more sheltered western basin where the Julia B Merrill is now lying as well as several fast motor launches. It is expected that the Condor will be refitted for summer cruising next April and sail in May.
The Government yacht "Wauketa" which will be here for some time also stood out among our little fleet of ships with its graceful lines in the bright September sun.
Katherine Crane a forty-eight foot yacht owned by Major Bramfitt, of Toronto which had lain in port here three days proceeded toward Toronto Sunday, towing the thirty foot yacht Katie. Major Bramfitt brought both boats up from Gananoque where he put an engine formerly in No. 1 lifeboat Toronto into the larger craft. He had an adventurous times coming up alone first towing the larger boat but at Presqu'isle he got the engine of the big boat running as he found it difficult in the extreme running of the small boat and steering the larger as he is making the trip alone. After he had left the sheltered bay he ran into a storm and was forced to come into Port Hope harbour for three days.
During his brief visit he had to run into Toronto on business for one night and on returning found his locks pried and broken, his trunk entered, and several things stolen. Hence he has gathered a very bad impression of Port Hope. There have been some very annoying petty thefts in the water-front part of the town and apparently the recent warning to those apprehended and brought before the Magistrate has not had the desired effect. If the water-front boys continue to be pests they will perhaps be surprised to find themselves in the toils with stern punishment meeted out.
The Lark from Niagara Falls was also a week-end visitor in the local harbour.

from the Evening Guide  Monday September 20, 1928
Four Men Aboard Nayada Were Helpless After Main-Mast Snaps in Storm
When the main-mast of the Nayada, crack racing sloop of the Royal Canadian Yacht Club snapped as a result of a heavy gale and plunged into the lake with the huge main-sail shortly after 7 p.m., Saturday, Bingley Benson, the skipper, well known in Port Hope, and three gentlemen friends, drifted helplessly for more than an hour at the mercy of a fast-running sea, some ten miles south-west of the Eastern gap.
Sighted in their helpless condition by some men aboard a passing yacht, who notified the life-saving station, Mr. Benson and his friends were rescued by Superintendent H. Lang of the life-saving station and his crew in the Helcdena.
The Nayada was towed to its moorings.
The Nayada was in Port Hope Harbour on the 11th August, when Mr. Benson was returning to Toronto from the Regatta at Oswego, where he came in fourth in his class in the race from Cobourg there. Many admired the beautiful sloop as it lay in port here while Mr. Benson was visiting his sister, Miss C. E. Benson, Dorset Street. Mr. Benson's friends in Port Hope will be glad to learn of his happy escape and delighted that his boat was not lost.

from the Evening Guide  Friday November 23, 1928
Former Captain of "Norseman" Called on The Guide Today
Captain Robert Crawford who sailed the Steamer Norseman when that boat made daily trips to Charlotte (Rochester N.Y.) about a half century ago called on The Guide today. The editor and the Captain had a very pleasant, though brief chat recalling the old times in Port Hope - our then bustling harbour where the steamer had difficulty in securing a berth for over night owing to the crowd of schooners, unloading coal and taking on lumber. Mrs. Crawford, formerly Miss Hickey, daughter of Mr. Hickey G.T.R. agent at Port Hope, who was driving with the Captain reminded him that they were due home at Kingston in ten minutes, "All right we'll make it" the Captain absent mindedly responded while we continued our reminiscences.
There are comparatively few in Port Hope now who lived here when Capt. Crawford commanded the Norseman. It is a great pleasure to the editor of The Guide to meet these old friends.

from the Evening Guide  1931
Older Local Residents Recall Boat Races Here In 1881
Many of the older residents of the town will recall the boat races at the Port Hope harbour on Christmas Day, 1881. In that year, the weather was very open, up until Christmas, practically the same as prevailed in the final months of 1931.
In those days, the local port was the scene of great activity and the harbour was filled with boats of all descriptions, plying in the coal, grain and other trade.
The report of the races taken from the files of The Evening Guide of 1881 is as follows:
There must have been a thousand spectators present to witness the boat races which were all well contested. For the first four mile race, there were six entries.
The Caroline Marsh's yawl under the charge of Captain Walter Colwell, with Richard Edmunds, Jr, Richard Edmunds, Sr, George Hunter and Patrick Dunn as crew, took the first prize.
The second prize was taken by the yawl of the Ida Walker under charge of John Breen, Capt Thos Cribbin, Robert Craig, John Lavis and Wm Roice comprising the crew.
The third was carried off by the yawl of the M A Lydon, with D Early as Captain, Pat Connors, Ben Geyo, James Maxwell and James Gaffney as crew.
The yawl of the Maria Annette under charge of Wm Taff, Capt Charlie Nixon, James Edmunds, Wm Clemes and J Palmer took the fourth prize.
The fifth was taken by the Agnes Hope yawl, Fred Clarke, Capt Geo Robinson, Joseph Strickland, J Maxwell, Thomas McCauley.
The other prize was taken by the yawl of the steam barge D R Van Allan, James Edmunds, Sr as Captain, with W Johnston, Alex (Mc)Clemes, George Bennett and Noah Pethick.
Scull Race - 5 Entries:
1. Thos Connors  2. Alex (Mc)Clemes  3. Fred Clark  4. Mark Wright  5. Fred Wilson.
Consolation - 4 Entries:
1. Maria Annette  2. Agnes Hope  3. Mary Ann Lydon  4. Van Allan.
Sweep Stakes - 2 Entries:
This race was won by Agnes Hope's yawl.
Everything passed off pleasantly, all being well satisfied. Much credit is due to Capt R Henning and E J W Burton for the carrying out of the program.

newspaper article  1931
'Hook' From Julia B Merrill To Be Erected In Front Of Town Hall
As a memorial to a form of navigation that has fallen into the discard in the advance of more modern methods, the local chapter of the IODE have obtained the huge anchor from the Julia B Merrill, of Port Hope, last but one of the lake schooners, that will be burned as a crowd spectacle at Sunnyside on the night of June 30, and will place the anchor in a conspicuous spot on the lawn in front of the Town Hall
A suggestion has been made that a bronze plaque bearing the names of the different captains who at one time lived in Port Hope, be placed on the anchor. The IODE are not considering the placing of a plaque on the anchor at the moment however.
The chapter is sincerely grateful to Mr Fred Sculthorpe, local garage proprietor who is arranging without charge to have the anchor placed in position. The anchor is now being painted and made ready and will likely be placed close to the memorial to Col. Williams in front of the Town Hall.

Schooner Agnes Hope, with yawl, in Port Hope harbour 1878

from the Evening Guide  March 11, 1931
Julia B Merrill Springs Leak And Sinks - Deck Only A Foot Above Water
The Julia B Merrill, three masted schooner owned by Capt W H Peacock, Port Hope and Arnold Wade, Picton, which has been tied up in Port Hope Harbour for the last five or six year's, sprung a leak over the weekend and sank to the bottom on the south side of the west harbour.
The vessel is the last but one of the schooners that a half century ago made Port Hope one of the busiest ports on the north shore. The only other schooner still afloat is owned in Kingston.
The vessel was purchased some twelve years ago by the above mentioned owners and was used until about six years ago in carrying coal from Oswego to Picton and Port Hope. She was built at Manitowoc on Lake Michigan about fifty years ago. Captain J H Peacock, who is associated with his son Captain W H Peacock in the coal business here, sailed the Great Lakes for 52 years and was a Captain for 40 years. He was master of the Oliver Mowat, which was sunk in a collision off the lower Ducks some years ago, for a period of seventeen years. He retired from the lakes in 1918.
During his regime as caplain he commanded seven different vessels, his last command on a vessel named The Arthur.
Captain J H Peacock, when asked by The Evening Guide today if the boat would ever be used again, replied rather wistfully, "she has done her bit." It is intended to raise the boat in the spring, said the captain.
The reason for the sinking of the craft is stated to have been due to the heavy wind on Sunday and Monday which created an undercurrent at the point where the schooner is tied up. The current kept forcing the boat against the ice along the side of the dock and finally dislodged some of the caulking. Immediately she was opened the craft started filling up and it was not until she was almost filled that the leak was discovered. To-day she is riding on bottom in ten feet of water with the decks scarcely a foot above the water line.

Schooner Julia B Merrill in Port Hope harbour

from the Evening Guide  June 1931
Capt W H Peacock Will Sail Second To The Last Windjammer On The Great Lakes To Sunnyside Beach Where It Will Be Consumed By Fire
The Julia B Merrill, second to the last surviving 'windjammer' on the Great Lakes, which is at present riding at anchorage in the West Harbour, will make her last sail within the next few days. D M Goudy, manager of attractions at Sunnyside Beach, Toronto was in Port Hope on Tuesday and the schooner was purchased from Captain W H Peacock for the price of $350.00.
The historic craft will be taken to Sunnyside Beach and there will be laden with inflammable substances and on June 30th will be burned before the eyes of thousands of amusement seekers who throng the popular resort.
This spring the caulking of the boat became loosened by the constant hammering of the elements and sank on the south side of the harbour. She was raised and is now tied up near the coal sheds on the north side of the harbour.
The Julia B Merrill will leave its home port as soon as weather is favourable and must be delivered at Toronto on or before June 9th. In the interval which remains until her destruction, the boat will be shown at various points near Toronto, if present plans are carried out. Captain W H Peacock will be at the helm when the sails are unfurled for that last long voyage to Davy Jones' locker.
At the sound of the death knell of this famous old craft, an important link in navigation on the lakes will be severed. The schooner for over half a century has been identified with sailing and old timers will recall the time when Port Hope was one of the busiest shipping centres on the northern shore of Lake Ontario - the time when the harbour was thronged with boats shipping grain, coal and lumber.
The Julia B Merrill is the second to the last of the three-masted 'windjammers' in existence in these parts. The other boat is the Lyman Davis of Kingston. The local schooner is 130 feet in length and its spars are 120 feet in height. At the present time, there are only two masts on the schooner, the one at the stern having been dismantled some time ago.
Captain W H Peacock, together with his father, Captain J H Peacock, both of Port Hope, have long been connected with sailing, and are widely known amongst the nautical fraternity. The former is anxiously awaiting the day in the not too distant future, when the historic craft, with canvas flying, will sail out of the Port Hope harbour to disappear 'neath the western horizon, to meet her doom at Sunnyside.

from the Evening Guide  March 18, 1933
Ah Yes! But That Was Many Years Ago - Article Recalls Old-Timers
Recalling the busy days of the Port Hope harbour, R W Johnson, chartered accountant of St Thomas, writes to the Telegram's 'Schooner Days' and the article will be of interest to Port Hopers:
When I was a boy at Port Hope, all my people were in the vessel business, and many a cruise I had in the good old schooner, W J Suffel, which they owned from about 1886 to 1889. They sold her when business got bad and my recollection is that some skipper sailing her too short-handed piled her up on the rocks at Oswego a year or two afterwards. My father always said that she was an exceptionally fine schooner and handled like a yacht and that he could sail her into any port in any weather with a couple of good men.
Port Burwell, on Lake Erie, was, as you say, a great centre for shipbuilding in the seventies, and when I came to St Thomas 30 years ago, I was much interested to meet people with names such as Suffel, Wrong, Youell, Emery and others, for these were names of vessels with which I had always been familiar, owned and sailed out of Port Hope. There were the W J Suffel, George Suffel, Clara Youell, W Y Emery, Vienna and many others with Port Hope on their sterns that had been built at Port Burwell. In addition there were many vessels that had been built at Port Hope as well as hailing from there.
You would want to go back further than my day to the time when my father sailed in the North Star, the Agnes Hope, the Fellowcraft, the Acacia, the Lewis Ross, the Ariadne and others that are only names to me. In those days out of Port Hope there were Capts Richard Clark of the Agnes Hope, John Strickland of the Aurora, Joe Philps, Bob Colwell, with E S Vinden, Jim Leverich, James Quinlan, Charles Smith and others in the lumber and barley business, as owners.
Later on I recollect Capt Bob Henning, of the Maria Annette, Big Jimmie Haddon, Bob Fox, George Robinson, who had the Mary Ann Lydon towards the end, and several more. Among them, particularly, Capt Walter Colwell with the good old Caroline Marsh. Many a trip I had in her with Capt Colwell and my father. She was then owned, I think, by Capt Vinden or possibly Jim Leverich, but was sold and they then took over the S & J Collier, a smaller boat, but a snug one. When in Oswego one day on the Collier the Caroline Marsh came down and went on the rocks at the old fort. Rugged old Walt broke down and cried when he saw her pile up. They got aboard the wreck and saved certain souvenirs, such as the ship's bell off the forecastle and took these back to Port Hope.
But the names of the vessels are clearer in my mind than those of the men, although I can never forget that one bearded skipper was nick-named Lousy Whiskers. Many captains wore whiskers then as a protection against the weather, and sailors were far from polite. The nick-names they bestowed upon their 'Old Men', as the captains were called, were more picturesque than pretty. I suppose to us boys the ships themselves were of more interest and we could stand on the high banks overlooking the lake and call them all by name as we saw them coming up the lake past the Gull Light three or four miles away.
Painted white with red bottom, white with green bottom, black with red bottom, green like the Aurora - with clipper bow like the Suffel or straight stem like the bluff, old Lydon - with two or three masts, with three or four jibs, with a main top-mast staysail as the Albacore carried, with square rigged foremast like the Lewis Ross and Erie Belle, sailed by Capt Daniel Manson, with a new jib here or topsail there that would be stll gleaming white amid their weathered or coal-dusty canvas. All were different and easily recognized by our sharp and eager eyes,
I can well remember when 20 or 30 vessels would be loading lumber at the same time in Port Hope harbour, with several others lashed along side, unable to get wharfage, waiting to take their places as soon as the others were loaded.
In the fall three elevators spouted barley into their holds and in November the men took chances with the owners and sailed for the big wages of $20 and sometimes $25 for the trip to Oswego and return. With luck the round trip would take only about 48 hours, but with a bad blow it would be run back to South Bay, there to gather hickory nuts and steal apples for three or four days under the lee of the point. When you speak of orchard robbing at Port Burwell, I must admit hooking peaches at Big Sodus, gathering chestnuts and hickory nuts at Charlotte and other similar escapades elsewhere.
Out of the long list that I used to know there come to my mind such additional names as the Jane Ann Marsh, Ariel, Wave Crest, Two Brothers, Annie Minnes, Ella Murton, Speedwell, Trade Wind, Ocean Wave, Undine, Augusta, Eliza Quinlan, Eliza White, L D Bullock, Lady MacDonald, Oliver Mowat, Picton, S & J Collier and few 'propellers' such as Rathburn's Resolute and Reliance out of Deseronto; the Shickluna, the Ocean, Persia and others. Then there were the R & O boats, the Corsican, Corinthian, Algerian and others and the good old Norseman, afterwards North King, which made daily trips to Charlotte.

John Syme 'Jack' Laurie  reminiscence 2002
For some time, the Julia B Merrill, an old sailing ship, had been moored at the harbour, in somewhat derelict condition. Dick Woodcock had been hired as a watchman to safeguard the boat. At times we would visit him and he would regale us with old stories of his sailing days on the lake.
The Julia B Merrill was originally a three-masted vessel 120 feet in length. She spent her final commercial days in the 1920s under the command of Captain Peacock hauling anthracite coal from Oswego, New York, to coal dealers, primarily the Peacock and Patterson families. She was one of the last three-masted schooners on the Great Lakes, the others being the J T Wink, out of Goderich and the Lyman M Davis. While lying inactive at Port Hope's harbour, her stern-most mast had developed rot. For safety reasons it was removed.
At a later time, we learned that the Julia B Merrill, had been purchased by several Toronto entrepreneurs. These people were not interested in sailing the vessel but rather planned on creating a spectacle off Sunnyside Beach in Toronto by burning her. We thought our harbour friend, Dick Woodcock, the vessel watchman, would be devastated by this turn of events.
We proceeded to the inner basin to see Dick and were surprised to discover him alongside others preparing the schooner for the sail to her last resting place. As the Protestant Hill Gang watched the preparations, we witnessed a sad event. While the mainsail was being hoisted, an upper rope block broke away and released the mainsail. As it fell, it hit Dick a glancing blow in the head and knocked him unconscious. He was rushed to the hospital where he regained consciousness, but was told to remain in the hospital for several days for observation. Undeterred, Dick awoke before dawn the next day, got out of bed, donned his clothes and walked down to the Julia B Merrill's mooring spot. It was never his intention to miss the last sailing day of his beloved schooner.
Later we learned the details of the burning, on July 21, 1931, of the schooner Julia B Merrill. She was anchored off Sunnyside Beach in full sail and piled high with bales of straw, all of which were then doused with kerosene. She was then set afire. Sky rockets had been placed about the ship, and when ignited they flew off in all directions. The Julia B Merrill burned to the water line and ultimately sank. It was quite a spectacle to most who witnessed the scene. But to myself, Dick Woodcock, and the Protestant Hill Gang, the event marked the loss of an old friend. To us it seemed a sad ending to one of the last schooners to sail the Great Lakes. Three years later in June 1934, the Lyman M Davis met a similar fate. Presumably these two vessels lie near each other in their watery graves, laid there by ignominious fires.

John Syme 'Jack' Laurie  reminiscence 2002
Prohibition proved an interesting time around and upon the Great Lakes. It spawned many rum-running operations especially when the United States was legally 'dry' and Canada was legally 'wet.' US Prohibition commenced in 1919 and alcohol consumption there plummeted by fifty percent. Shortly thereafter, American 'speakeasies' appeared where illegal booze was sold. In the 1920s, road houses, flappers and jazz combined to make the decade the Roaring Twenties.
In Canada, during its flirtation with Prohibition, if you wanted a drink in Ontario in the Twenties, you had to obtain a doctor's prescription and then buy the booze at a government dispensary. The only other alternative was to visit a drug store and purchase a medicinal tonic. One of these tonics was named 'Dandy Bracer,' a liver and kidney cure. It was much sought after and was a good seller. Eventually the product was analyzed by a Government laboratory. It proved to be a mixture of sugar, molasses, bluestone (copper sulphate) along with a touch of tobacco juice. It was also 36% pure alcohol.
With Canada's 1927 legalization of distilleries and breweries, their products were sold to the public and to rum-runners. Port Hope's first provincial liquour store opened on May 16th. Lineups were a block long waiting for similar stores in Toronto to open. First day prices included three dollars for a quart of Seagram's VO rye whiskey, while the lowest priced sherry, Bright's Catawba, sold for forty-five cents a quart.
Port Hope was one destination for the products of these manufacturers in large quantities. Frequently cases of beer and liquour arrived in bonded railway box cars. These cars were unloaded at the harbour. Rum-runners hired youngsters on weekends to help transfer the beverages to the rum-running boats. This was a boon to the youngsters of Port Hope, including myself, who could earn as much as four or five dollars for the weekend. During the early Depression years this was a substantial payday. This new business was risky, but very profitable. It was also adventurous and dangerous.
Booze was smuggled via cars, airplanes, schooners and row boats. But mostly in this area, rum-runners used power boats for the illicit transportation business. It was rumoured that some US patrol boat operators were paid in cash or booze to look the other way while rum-runners were unloading their contraband cargo. Flouting the law was endemic on both sides of the border. Liquour and beer was often packed in gunny sacks with salt so that if the load had to be thrown overboard it would sink, whereas boxes and crates would float. After a time, the salt would dissolve and the gunny sack would rise to the surface of the water to be retrieved, and would then continue on its south-bound journey.
Local federal Customs Officers were always on hand during the unloading of the rum onto the rum-running vessels in order to check the count of the number of cases bound for export. Usually they gave export clearance to Cuba even though every- one knew the loaded contraband was destined for the south shore of Lake Ontario, some fifty-five to sixty miles distance. At this time Port Hope had a Harbour Master and one of his duties was to check each rum-running vessel leaving port and to assess a stipend of so much per case on behalf of the local harbour commission. These were always cash transactions and a receipt was issued to the rum-runners. The cash was then delivered to the proper municipal authority at the Town Hall.
The boat 'Mary H' was a rum-runner operating from Port Hope harbour during these years. She was equipped with three Liberty engines from World War 1 Martin bomber airplanes. Each engine had its own drive shaft and propeller. Two of the engines were side-by-side, with the third in a central position in front of the other two. The steering wheel was immediately behind the front engine so the three engines literally surrounded the helmsman. All three engines were V12s, each generating about 450 horsepower. The exhausts were designed to operate both above and beneath the water. If exhausted above the water, a smoke screen could be deployed to confuse any attempt by the US Coast Guard to capture the boat. If exhausted below the surface of the water, the boat proceeded in relative silence. Double rudders were used for steering and greater control, especially when the boat hit its top speed of 55 miles per hour. This speed was unusually fast at the time for such a large vessel, and it was a decided asset in outdistancing any enforcement personnel. The 'Mary H' was reputed to be the fastest rum-runner on the Great Lakes. Often my friends and I would sit at the end of Port Hope's east pier in the dark of the night while the rum-runners were moving out of the harbour, apparently destined for Cuba. With the Mary H's exhaust being expelled underwater, the only noise that was audible was the swish of water as she nosed out of the harbour. Later, I had a more involved contact with the 'Mary H' and other rum-runners.
The 'Mary H' was not the only rum-runner operating from Port Hope at this time. There were a half dozen others. One of these was a speedy vessel as well which had been converted during World War 1 into a submarine chaser. Others were smaller high speed pleasure-type boats and were employed transporting smaller quantities of alcoholic contraband. The 'Sandpan', a shallow-draught boat was a little-used boat which was always moored at Gull Island lighthouse located in Lake Ontario a little east of Port Hope. This boat was driven by a 490 cubic inch Chevrolet automobile engine. If a bad storm, or the US Coast Guard, prevented a cargo from being unloaded on the American side, it was brought back to Gull Island. There it was unloaded onto the moored 'Sandpan.' This was done so that the original vessel would not run afoul of Canadian laws which they would if they brought the booze back into Port Hope harbour. A retired Port Hope fisherman acted as a guard for the'Sandpan's' cargo.
With the repeal of the Prohibition Act in the United States in 1933, this interesting chapter in Port Hope's history ended, as did my peripheral, but legal, association with rum-runners!

W A Morris's steam yacht at the twine factory

from the Evening Guide  Tuesday January 10, 1928  Fifty Years Ago (1878)
Port Hope in the Early Days - A Glimpse into Town's Past
The Twine Factory
Consumers Cordage Co Ltd which has its head office at Montreal and factories at Montreal, Toronto, Brantford, LaChute, Quebec, St John and Halifax. The situation that this factory occupies is one of the most eligible and convenient in the town, being situated along side the harbour and having a siding of the Midland railway past its door, enables them to get in their supplies by boat and rail, and ship their manufactured goods with a minimum of labour. The machinery is designed exclusively for the manufacture of binder twine, and is of the latest, most improved pattern. Two boilers of 250 hp each supply steam to a 400 hp engine. The factory is equipped with an electric plant which is run by a high speed engine. This factory was specially built for the manufacture of binder twine and when run to its full capacity is capable of supplying nearly half the twine required for domestic use. It gives employment to over 100 hands. Besides the factory there are two large storehouses for holding the raw and finished goods.
Mr W H Brown is the manager of this branch.

Dredging the harbour

The steamer Argyle docked by the Standard Ideal factory in Port Hope


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