Sunday, May 10, 2009

Canal Item from the Lyons Advertiser - 1822

Submitted by Richard Palmer

July 19, 1822
From the Daily Advertiser (N.Y.)

Grand Canal
We are informed by a gentleman who has just returned from a visit to Buffalo and Niagara Falls,
that he traveled 160 miles in the new convenient passage boats, on the Erie canal viz:

From Little Falls to Utica - 22 mile
Utica to Montezuma, by Rome, Syracuse and Weed’s Basin - 96 miles
Crossing from Montezuma over the Seneca river and the Cayuga marshes - 6 miles
and up the river Clyde - 6 ½ miles ,
to Blockhouse he again takes the canal and passing the flourishing villages
of Lyons and Palmyra to Hartwell’s basin - 42 miles
160 miles

On this route are already seven passage-boats with good accommodations, and hundreds of other boats, transporting, immense quantities of produce, to Utica; and such is the stock in this state that there are now 100,000 barrels of flour alone on the banks of the canal, that cannot be transported for want of boats, many of which are now building, that cost from $100 to 400 each, and carry from 150 to 400 barrels. These boats have taken freight from Montezuma to Utica, a distance of nearly 100 miles, at the extremely low rate of 5 cents per cwt., or one dollar per ton, which is about one tenth of the former rate of transporting the same distance by wagons; in this case the owners of the goods paid the tolls, which, however, are very trifling.

The passage boats are drawn by three horses, tandem rigged; the other boats, by one or two horses according to the size of the boat - a boy rides the rear horse and travels from 3 to 4 miles per hour. Passengers leaving Utica at 8 o’clock, reach Weed’s Basin 87 miles the next morning at 7 o’clock traveling all night. The charge is only 4 cents per mile, which includes board and lodging both which are as good, if not better, than at the taverns on the road. This is ans rapid as the stages travel, much less expensive , no risk of life or limb and no fatigue on dust attending.

The Grand canal is nearly finished from Schenectady to Little Falls, 56 miles from Montezuma to Clyde, or Block House, 13 miles- and from Heartwell’s Basin to Genesee River, and from thence to Brockport 60 miles all of which, it is said, will be filled and boats allowed to pass, on or before the first day of October next making 260 to270 miles through one of the richest and most valuable parts, of the state of New York. Numerous emigrants from the hardy and industrious northern and eastern hive, are to be seen transporting themselves and their families, to settle on the lands bordering on the canal.

Merchants residing in Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, Lexington and Louisville, and in Michigan and Indiana, will soon get their goods transported for 1-4 the price that they now pay, and save as much or more in the breakage and damage now unavoidable in wagons, besides the saving of half or two thirds in time: which in fact, is extending the credit on their goods.

Emigrants and their families must prefer the canal to any other route, on every account, expense, time health, comfort &c.
The amount of toll already received at the office in Utica this spring exceeds the sum paid the whole of last year, and it is supposed it will amount to 50 to 60,000 dollars.

No comments: