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Niagara VII PG -52 - Geskiedenis

Niagara VII PG -52 - Geskiedenis

Niagara VII
(PG-52: dp. 1,922 (f.); 1,267 '; b. 35'4 "; dr. 17'; s. 16 k; cpl.139; a. 2 3")

Die sewende Niagara (PG-52), 'n seiljag wat in 1929 gebou is as Hi-Esmare deur Bath Iron Works, Bath, Maine, is deur die vloot 16 Oktober 1940 van mev. H. Edward Manville van New York City gekoop; omskep in 'n geweerboot deur die New York Navy Yard; herdoop tot Niagara 12 November 1940; en in opdrag van New York 20 Januarie 1941, luitenant Edwin W. Herron in bevel.

Niagara het op 4 Februarie 1941 uit New York begin om eenhede van Motor Torpedo Boat Squadron 2 te versorg wat tussen Miami en Key West, Fla., En Guantanamo Bay Kuba werk. Sy vertrek op 20 Maart 1941 uit Key West vir herstelwerk in New York en gedurende die somer by die Naval Torpedo Station, Newport, RI.

Niagara val uit New York op 30 Augustus 1941 onderweg na Hawaii, via Guantanamobaai, die Panamakanaal en San Diego, en arriveer op 9 Oktober in Pearl Harbor om op die Hawaiian Sea Frontier te patrolleer. Op 29 November vertrek sy as 'n eenheid van die begeleiding na 'n konvooi wat na die Fidji -eilande is. Sy was saam met die konvooi op see toe die Japannese Pearl Harbor aanval. Die geweerboot keer terug na daardie hawe op 15 Desember en dien tot 1 April 1942 as tender vir eenhede van Motor Torpedo Boat Squadron 1.

Daarna begelei sy 'n konvooi na San Diego onderweg Coco Solo, Panamakanaalsone, waar sy torpedobote versorg en help om die benaderings na die Panamakanaal te bewaak. Tydens die opknapping in die New York Navy Yard in die somer, het sy ingeskakel om in Newport, RI, as skoolskip te dien vir 'n opleidingseskader van torpedobote. Hierdie plig duur voort totdat sy op 27 November via die Panamakanaal en die Society Islands na die suidwestelike Stille Oseaan gegaan het. Onderweg, op 13 Januarie 1943, is Niagara herklassifiseer as die vloot se eerste motor-torpedoboot tender en herontwerp AGT'-I.

Niagara het op 17 Januarie in Noumea, Nieu -Caledonië aangekom en begin om motor Torpedo Boat Division 23, eskader 8. te versorg. Sy het op 27ste met die afdeling gevaar en op 17 Februarie haar basis by Tulagi, Salomonseilande, bereik. In die daaropvolgende maande het sy die motor -torpedobote versorg wat veiligheidspatrollies langs Guadalcanal uitgevoer het.

Op 7 April het die Japannese toegeslaan op die Guadalcanal-Tulagi-gebied met 177 vliegtuie, waarvan ongeveer 25 neergeskiet is. Twee bomme het die koraal Moa van Nieu -Seeland gesink. Niagara, in die dik

van die geveg, was noord van die hawe, vasgemaak aan die westelike oewer van die Malialirivier, stroomaf opwaarts met myneveërspoor (AM-26) wat buite aan die agterkant vasgebind was. Nege vyandelike vliegtuie loop by die rivier uit, nie een van hulle meer as 150 meter bo die water nie. Niagara en Rail het hulle almal onder skoot geneem.

Die eerste vliegtuig, wat reeds aan die brand gesteek is, het ongeveer 1 000 meter oos van Niagara in bome neergestort. Die volgende twee vliegtuie het ontsnap, maar die vierde het vinnig hoogte verloor in 'n stroom wit rook om agter die heuwels in die noorde te ontplof. Die volgende twee stropers het binne 150 meter verbygegaan en probeer om die skip vas te maak, maar hul skietery was wispelturig en hulle het onseker gewankel toe hulle deur die swaar vuur van Niagara gegaan het voordat hulle in die bos van haar hawekwartier neergestort het. Die volgende twee vliegtuie het opgeskiet en na regs wanneer dit onder skoot geneem word. Een ligbruin rook trek toe dit naby die heuwels agter Niagara se hawe -balk verdwyn. Die ander een het na stuurboord gegaan en neergestort in die heuwels op haar stuurboordkwartier.

Op 22 Mei vertrek Niagara, met Motor Torpedo Boat Division 23, uit Tulagi op pad na Nieu -Guinee. Die volgende oggend het 'n hoogvliegende Japannese tweemotorige eenvliegtuig met vier bomme aangeval. Die skip het 'n stywe ster aan boord gedraai teen die maksimum spoed totdat die bomme vrygelaat is, en die skip hard na die hawe geswaai het. Drie bykans aan stuurboord en een na bakboord het Niagara se klanktuig en die oefenmeganisme van 'n 3-duim-geweer beskadig en die stuurbeheer tydelik uitgeskakel. 'N Halfuur later, toe die stuur van die eontrol herwin is, het nog ses hoogvliegtuie met twee enjins 'n patroon van meer as 'n dosyn bomme laat val. Een tref direk op die voorspeler van Niagara en verskeie het naby miGses beskadig.

Water wat deur 'n gat van 14 duim 6 voet onder haar water stroom, vloei oor twee stoorkamers, 'n gang en haar enjinkamer. Alle krag en beligting het misluk, en haar hoofmotors het gestop. Die vuur onder die dekke vorentoe was buite beheer, en Niagara het vinnig na die hawe gelys. Haar hoofmotor en stuurbeheer is 7 minute na die aanval herstel. Maar haar toenemende lys en die dreigende ontploffingsgevaar van haar petrolopgaartenks het die bevel genoodsaak om 'skip te laat vaar'.

PT-146 en PT-147 kom langs haar agterstewe om 'n paar van die bemanning van Niagara af te neem. Ander het oor haar sy gegaan na vlotte en bote om deur ander motor -torpedobote opgetel te word. Niagara brand toe van boog tot brug. Vlamme het na agter versprei en ammunisie het op die dek ontplof. Tog, ondanks haar skade, is nie een van Niagara se 136 beamptes en mans dood of ernstig gewond nie.

PT-147 het 'n torpedo afgevuur wat Niagara in die petroltenks getref het. Sy ontplof met 'n vlam van 300 meter hoog en sak in minder as 'n minuut. Die motor -torpedobote het haar bemanning vroeg die volgende oggend by Tulagi laat beland.

Niagara het een strydster ontvang vir diens in die Tweede Wêreldoorlog.


RMS Niagara

RMS Niagara was 'n transparante stoom seevaart, Royal Mail Ship en 'n koel vragskip. Sy is in 1912 in Skotland gelanseer en in 1940 deur 'n myn aan die kus van Nieu -Seeland gesink.

Haar gewone roete was tussen Sydney en Vancouver via Auckland, Suva en Honolulu. In haar loopbaan van 27 jaar het sy 162 heen en weer reise tussen Australië, Nieu-Seeland en Kanada onderneem en byna 2 500 000 seemyl (4600 000 km) geseil.

Niagara was eers in besit van die Union Steam Ship Company van Nieu-Seeland (in die volksmond bekend as die "Union Company"), en later deur die Canadian-Australasian Line, wat gesamentlik in besit was van die Union Company en Canadian Pacific. Soos baie Union Company -skepe, was sy in Londen in die Verenigde Koninkryk geregistreer.

Niagara is gebou om steenkool of olie te verbrand. Sy was die eerste olie-brandende stoomskip wat deur die Raad van Handel gesertifiseer is om passasiers te vervoer. Wanneer nuut, Niagara was die grootste handelsskip wat nog deur 'n Nieu -Seelandse maatskappy besit is. In 1914 en 1915 het sy 'n aantal spoedrekords opgestel vir die oorsteek van die Tasmansee.

In 1918 Niagara was 'n belangrike rol in die verspreiding van die Spaanse griep na Nieu -Seeland.

Toe sy in 1940 gesink is, Niagara het ongeveer 8 1⁄2 ton goudstawe gedra. Duikers het 555 tralies in 1941 en nog 30 in 1953 teruggevind, maar vyf goudstawe bly onbekend.

Niagara is met olie gebonk toe sy sink. Swaar brandstofolie het sedertdien uit haar bunkertenks gelek en het omgewingskade in en om die Golf van Hauraki aangerig. Sommige olie bly in haar wrak, en die omvang van die omgewingsbedreiging wat dit kan inhou, word steeds bespreek.


Die rekord Artikel- en liggingindeks

Baie navorsers sal dit nuttig vind om deur die duisende artikels wat gevind word, te blaai, te soek en te filter Die rekord volgens titel en plek. Ons interaktiewe indeks van artikels op titel en belangrike plekke het in Julie 2020 begin, danksy die harde werk van die NYG & ampB -span, insluitend vrywilligers en stagiaires.

Hierdie indeks is veral nuttig om artikels oor die onderwerpe en liggings van u eie navorsing te ontdek - ongeag die name en gesinne wat behandel word, kan hierdie artikels u help om belangrike leidrade en bronne te ontdek wat u in u eie navorsing kan gebruik. Dit is ook veral handig om artikels wat in reekse gepubliseer word, te vind wat in reeks verskyn. Besoek Die NYG & ampB -rekordartikelindeks.


Skikking

Baie het by Loyalist -eenhede aangesluit en uiteindelik na Britse Noord -Amerika verhuis. Na die Amerikaanse Revolusie het 'n informele netwerk ontwikkel wat hierdie ontsnapte slawe gehelp het om noordwaarts te beweeg. Met verloop van tyd het hierdie netwerk bekend gestaan ​​as die Underground Railway. Amherstburg, aan die westelike punt van Bo -Kanada, het een van die belangrikste ingangspunte geword vir die deurgang van ontsnapte slawe na vryheid.

Hierdie uitsig op Amherstburg wys hoe die gemeenskap gelyk het in die laaste dae van die ondergrondse spoorlyn.


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Hoofstraat, Amherstburg, 1865
Alvin D. McCurdy fonds
Verwysingskode: F 2076-16-6-2-44
Argief van Ontario, I0024850


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Hoofkop van Voice of the Fugitive
Alvin D. McCurdy fonds
Verwysingskode: F 2076-16-9-35
Argief van Ontario

Dit is moeilik om dokumentasie oor die Underground Railway te vind. Dit werk in die geheim in die Verenigde State en moes rustig binne Kanada werk om grensvoorvalle te vermy. Die meeste van die beskikbare materiaal toon sommige van die betrokke persone en waar hulle moontlik gebly het of skuiling gesoek het.

Een van die min direkte inligtingsbronne oor die aktiwiteite van die lede van die Underground Railway was kontemporêre koerante, soos die Voice of the Fugitive, wat die eerste koerant in swart besit en bedryf is in Ontario. Dit is gestig en gepubliseer in Sandwich en Windsor deur Henry Bibb, wat ontsnap het, eers na Detroit en daarna na Kanada, na die aanvaarding van die Fugitive Slave Act. Die koerant verskyn die eerste keer op 1 Januarie 1851 en staak die publikasie in 1854.

Levi Veney was een van die voormalige slawe wat na Upper Canada gekom het. Hy het toevlug gevind in een van die huise wat gevestig is om skuiling en onmiddellike verligting te bied aan diegene wat die grens oorsteek. Die Park House in Colchester South was 'n belangrike wegstasie vir diegene wat die provinsie binnekom.


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Levi Veney, oud-slaaf wat in Amherstburg gewoon het,
geneem by J. D. Burkes ’ winkel, 1898
Alvin D. McCurdy fonds
Verwysingskode: F 2076-16-3-5
Argief van Ontario, I0024830


Park House, Colchester South, 'n slawe -toevlug gedurende die 1800's, [ca. 1950]
Alvin D. McCurdy fonds
Verwysingskode: F 2076-16-6-1
Argief van Ontario, I0024851

Die swart gemeenskap in Bo -Kanada ondersteun die kroon in krisistye. Tydens die oorlog van 1812 het swart militante in Queenston Heights gedien. Tydens die rebellie van 1837 versterk die vrees vir anneksasie aan die Verenigde State en 'n moontlike terugkeer na slawerny die reeds sterk lojaliteit van die swart gemeenskap en die bereidwilligheid om in die milisie te dien. 'N Gedeelte van Alvin McCurdy se belangstelling in die geskiedenis is die gevolg van die versuim van historici om die deelname van swart mense aan hierdie konflikte aan te teken.


Legende van Niagara: Maid of the Mist

Vroeë reise van die Amerikaanse kant na die Kanadese kant was nog altyd 'n gevaarlike onderneming en teen die middel van die 1800's was daar 'n besliste behoefte aan 'n volhoubare metode om die Niagara -kloof oor te steek. Reeds in 1825 het private veerdienste langs die oewer van die rivier ontstaan.

'N Vroeë foto van die Maid of the Mist

Gewoonlik was die kaptein van hierdie klein vaartuie die boer wat die grond besit het waar die dok geleë was. 'N Gidsboek van die Niagara -waterval uit 1941 verwys na hierdie klein roeibote wat oor die rivier gelê het, soms tot 40 of meer. Gewoonlik was hierdie reise van die Amerikaanse kant na die Kanadese kant sonder probleme, en daar is geen berigte oor ongelukke nie.

In Mei 1846 is die eerste stoom aangedrewe Maid of the Mist met groot fanfare gelanseer. Dit was 'n groot vaartuig soos 'n vaartuig met twee rokers, wat meer as 100 ton weeg. Dit het etlike jare goedere en mense oor die rivier vervoer, maar in 1848 is die eerste hangbrug oor die kloof gebou, en dit het 'n groot impak op die veerdiens gehad.

Goedere en dienste hoef nie meer oor die rivier vervoer te word nie. Daar was egter 'n nuwe ontluikende bedryf - die toeristebedryf, en terwyl die Maid of the Mist nie meer reisigers van die een kant na die ander vervoer het nie, het hulle nou 'n nuwe ras reisigers vervoer ... diegene wat die skoonheid van die waterval naby wou sien, en bereid was om daarvoor te betaal.

Maid of the Mist wat die landing aan die Kanadese kant nader, [ca. 1880]

In Mei 1854 is 'n nuwe groter Maid of the Mist gelanseer. Hierdie boot was 'n stoom -aangedrewe enkelpakvaartuig wat aangedryf word deur 'n 100 pk -enjin.

Een van sy vroegste beskermhere was koning Edward VII, prins van Wallis, wat op 15 September 1860 'n uitstappie op die Maid of the Mist na die basis van die American Falls gemaak het.

Hierdie tweede Maid of the Mist was in werking tot die herfs van 1860. In 1861 is die boot op 'n privaat veiling verkoop en deur 'n firma in Montreal gekoop op voorwaarde dat dit aan die Ontariomeer afgelewer word.

Dit sou beteken dat die Maid of the Mist deur die Niagara -rivier, deur die Whirlpool Rapids, die Whirlpool en die Lower Rapids, moes navigeer. Die meeste het geglo dat dit 'n onmoontlike prestasie was, maar Cpt. Robinson het saam met twee ander bemanningslede die reis onderneem.

Die boot vertrek van die beskuldigdebank in Bellevue, New York, en binne enkele minute word dit in die Whirlpool -stroomversnellings rondgeslinger. Later sou dit in Queenston aankom, effens beskadig, die eerste boot ooit wat daar uit die weste aangekom het. (Sien kaptein Joel Robinson)

'N Vroeë foto van die Maid of the Mist Landing

Byna nog vyf-en-twintig jaar sou daar geen veerdiens op die Niagarivier wees nie. Gedurende hierdie tyd is enige veerboot op die rivier uitsluitlik deur klein roeibote gedoen. Teen die laat 1870's en met die koms van die spoorweë stroom duisende toeriste na die Niagara -waterval.

In 1884 is 'n nuwe Maid of the Mist, die derde sodanige vaartuig, gebou deur R.F. Carter en Frank LeBlond. Hierdie derde Maid of the Mist was so suksesvol dat 'n tweede skip by die vloot gevoeg is. Hierdie twee nuwe skepe was sterker as ooit en het toeriste al hoe nader aan die voet van die waterval gebring.

Daar word berig dat kaptein Carter sestigduisend ritte gemaak het sonder om voorvalle van die basis van die waterval af te bring. In Augustus 1955 is 'n nuwe en groter Maid of the Mist in Owen Sound gebou en in vier stukke na die Niagara -waterval vervoer. Hierdie nuwe boot sou heeltemal van staal gebou wees.

Miskien was die mees heldhaftige oomblik van Maid of the Mist op 9 Junie 1960 toe 'n sewejarige seuntjie, Roger Woodward, oor die waterval gevee is terwyl hy saam met vriende was. 'N Kaptein wat vinnig dink, sien 'n oranje reddingsbaadjie in die wervelende stroomversnellings en by nadere ondersoek besef hy dat 'n jong seuntjie leef en sukkel teen die stroom onder die waterval.

As die Maid of the Mist nie op daardie spesifieke tyd op daardie plek was om die seuntjie te red nie, sou hy heel waarskynlik omgekom het.

Vandag neem die vier Maid of the Mists toeriste op 'n wonderlike reis na die voet van die waterval.


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Deel 175, hele nommer 698, lente 2021

Die ekskommunikasie van Mayflower-passasier William White en sy halfbroers Henry en Jacomine May, in Wisbech, Cambridgeshire
Sue Allan, Caleb Johnson en Simon Neal

Drie Franse dogters en hul mans: Drie onopgetekende huwelike uit vroeë Ipswich, Massachusetts: Amy (Frans) Gage, Susan (Frans) Kingsbury en Anne (Frans) Hardy
Melinde Lutz Byrne en John Edward Hardy

Richard en Hannah (Hewes?) Woods van Roxbury, Massachusetts, en 'n paar van hul afstammelinge
John D. Beatty

Opdatering van die afstammelinge van goewerneur John Endecott (ca. 1588–1664/5)
James Heffernan

Sorteer verskeie Daniel Lanphear -mans uit
Scott Andrew Bartley en Diane MacLean Boumenot

Die voorgeslag van Sarah Meakins, vrou van Thomas 3 Miller van Springfield, Massachusetts
Clifford L. Stott

Aantekeninge oor die Stiles -gesin van Millbrook, Bedfordshire en Windsor, Connecticut
B. Darrell Jackson

Die tweede vrou van Moses Gile van Hampstead, New Hampshire: Watter Mary Clark?
Derek Doran Wood

Identifiseer Grace 3 Fairbanks as die vrou van Ephraim Bullen
Letitia DeVillar Richardson

The New England Ancestry van Reuben Wolcott van Delaware en Virginia
Marian Bowers Natale

William Hills of the Great Migration: Probable Origins in Upminster, Essex
Perry Streeter

Robert 1 Harris van Roxbury en Muddy River, Massachusetts
Gale Ion Harris (afgesluit van 175: 56)

Die afstammeling van Colman en Cutler van John 1 Thorndike van Essex County, Massachusetts, met die Colman -afstammeling van John 1 Coggeshall, Muriel 1 (Gurdon) Saltonstall en Jemima 1 (Waldegrave) Pelham
Robert Battle (vervolg vanaf 175: 93)


2021 TEMA

2021- Die swart gesin: voorstelling, identiteit en diversiteit.

Die swart gesin was 'n onderwerp van studie in baie dissiplines - geskiedenis, letterkunde, beeldende kunste en filmstudies, sosiologie, antropologie en sosiale beleid. Sy r voorstelling, identiteit en diversiteit is eerbiedig, gestereotipeer en verneder vanaf die dae van slawerny tot ons eie tyd. Die swart gesin ken geen enkele plek nie, aangesien gesinsherenigings en soektogte met genetiese afkoms getuig van die verspreiding van familielede oor state, nasies en kontinente. Individuele swart gesinne is nie net diaspories nie, maar Afrika en die diaspora self word al lank as die swart gesin in die algemeen uitgebeeld. Alhoewel sommige die rol van die swart gesin as 'n mikrokosmos van die hele ras beskryf het, kan die kompleksiteit daarvan as die 'grondslag' van Afro -Amerikaanse lewe en geskiedenis in talle debatte gesien word oor hoe om die betekenis en tipiesheid daarvan uit 'n historiese geskiedenis voor te stel. perspektief-as slaaf of vry, as patriargaal of matriargaal/matrifokaal, as enkelkop of tweekoppige huishouding, as uitgebrei of kern, as fiktiewe familie of bloedlyn, as wetlike of gemenereg, en as swart of interras, ens. Variasie verskyn ook in besprekings oor die aard en impak van ouerskap, kinderjare, huwelike, geslagsnorme, seksualiteit en gevangenskap. Die gesin bied 'n ryk muurtafel van beelde om die Afro -Amerikaanse verlede en hede te ondersoek.

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2022- Swart Gesondheid en Welstand

"As wit mense verkoue kry, kry swart mense longontsteking." Hierdie ou gesegde, wat deur lede van die Afro-Amerikaanse gemeenskap uitgespreek word wanneer ekonomiese verskille erger word, onthul hoe verraderlik anti-swart rassisme is, selfs in die vorm van mediese metafore. Op hierdie spesifieke pandemie -oomblik veroorsaak die onproportionele impak van siektes op swart en bruin mense, sowel as ander groepe wat maatskaplike nadelige gevolge vir hulle in die gesig staar, verwoesting in hierdie land en in die breër ons groter wêreldsamelewing. Die Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) het berig dat die griep van 1918 bykans 500 miljoen mense wêreldwyd besmet het. Hierdie vroeëre pandemie het wêreldwyd 50 miljoen sterftes veroorsaak, waaronder 675,000 in Amerika. Alhoewel dit lyk asof swart Amerikaners nie dieselfde sterftesyfers gehad het tydens die grieppandemie van 1918 nie, onthul die volledige verhaal die redes waarom swart mense "na bewering" beter gevaar het. Daar was baie min statistiese navorsing wat swart slagoffers van die griep van 1918 insluit. Kenners meen nou dat daar baie meer sterftes in die swart gemeenskap gedurende hierdie tyd was, maar federale en staatsregerings het swart mense uit die datastelle verwyder. Tydens die griepepidemie van 1918 in die meeste stede in die Verenigde State, is swart en bruin mense wat besmet is, óf deur familielede versorg óf gedwing om rassegesegreerde en "swak gekleurde" hospitale te gebruik. Gedurende hierdie tydperk, die Jim Crow -era, het swart pasiënte dikwels onderstandige sorg ontvang as gevolg van die strukturele ongelykhede wat eeue gelede stewig ingestel is (byvoorbeeld onderfinansiering en onderbemande hospitale, rassistiese wit administrateurs en oorbevolking). Selfs tydens die dood was die slagoffers van die swart griep nie beskerm teen swartes tydens die epidemie nie. In Baltimore is Mount Auburn, die enigste begraafplaas van die stad vir swart inwoners, oorstroom met kadavers. Wit sanitasiewerkers het geweier om slote in begraafplase wat slegs blankes was, vir dooie swart lyke te grawe. Die sosiale determinante van rassisme, segregasie en armoede het 'n negatiewe uitwerking op Swartmense se reaksie op die dodelikste epidemie van die 20ste eeu gehad.

Vinnig vorentoe na 2020 en soortgelyke patrone bestaan ​​nog steeds tydens die era van Covid-19 in oorweldigende swart ruimtes. Weens 'n oorbevolking in woonruimtes en hospitale, onderbefondsing van hospitale en swart mense wat in lae-loon werk wat openbare betrokkenheid verg, ondervind ons byvoorbeeld 'n mediese ramp. In die gebiede wat die swaarste getref is in die Verenigde State, soos New York, het swart en bruin mense twee keer meer kans om te sterf as gevolg van COVID-19 as wit mense. Boonop is hierdie gevalle gekonsentreer in poskodes waar inwoners lae -loonverdieners is, waar mense in oorvol woonstelle woon en nie tuis kan werk nie, van ander kan isoleer en na hul vakansiehuise kan vlug. Verder, in Washington, DC, 'n stad met 'n groter bevolking van swart inwoners as selfs Mississippi, die 'swartste' staat, van 45% COVID-19-gevalle, het 79% van die syfer tot die dood van swart inwoners gelei. Nog meer ontstellende nuus toon sedert April 2020 dat swart Amerikaners meer as 80% van die gehospitaliseerde COVID-19-pasiënte in Georgië, 'n Blackbelt-staat, en byna alle sterftes in COVID-19 in St. Soortgelyke neigings is gesien vir swart en Suid -Asiatiese pasiënte in die Verenigde Koninkryk. Bruin en swart mense in die wêreldwye Suid is in byna identiese situasies, en net soos die Verenigde State, reageer regerings in Suid -Asië en die Verenigde Koninkryk nie op die spesifieke behoeftes van hierdie slagoffers nie. Ons is vasbeslote om 'n platform te skep wat hierdie verskille deur opvoeding en aktivisme aanspreek.

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2023- Anti-swart geweld en verset in die diaspora


Blondin, die held van Niagara

Op Donderdag 30 Junie 1859 was die atmosfeer by die Niagara -waterval belaai met opwinding. 'N Effens geboude Fransman, geklee in 'n panty en 'n lang balanseerpaal, was van plan om die onmoontlike te probeer doen - hy gaan oor die verskriklike kloof van die Niagara -rivier loop, ongeveer 'n kilometer onder die waterval op 'n skraal toukabel, 190 meter bo die vinnige en kokende vloed. Terwyl hulle verbaas toekyk hoe hulle hul oë met hul parasols in die oë kyk, dames in krinolines amper swem. Sterk manne in hoede en voorrade was gespanne, want baie het groot bedrae op die uitkoms gewag. Klein dogtertjies het aan die rokke van hul verpleegsters vasgeklou en klein seuntjies het in die wolke gestaan. Driehonderdduisend mense - of was dit tienduisend? - hou hul asem op toe Jean François Gravelet, beter bekend as Blondin, op die skuins kabel uitgaan.

Vir mense van mode, rykdom, skoonheid en kultuur, sowel die noordelike as die suidelike, was die waterval reeds 'n eeu gelede 'n groot trekpleister. Hele gesinne met hul bediendes het Niagara in die nuwe stoomwaens besoek. Hier het hulle die hele somers deurgebring in die sagte, stimulerende koelte wat nog steeds kenmerkend is van die gebied in die warm maande. Hulle het geregistreer by luukse hotelle soos die Clifton House of die Cataract House, met sy groot balsaal en uitstekende kristal kandelare. Hulle luister na die sagte musiek en dans deur die sagte aande. Hulle het op die lang stoepe gesit wat die rivierkloof omsingel en die lang middae weggeswaai, geluister na die gedreun van die watervalle en gekyk hoe die immer kakende miswolke oprol en reënboë maak terwyl die waters op die rotse daaronder neerstort.

Daar was baie lewendige stalle met waens van alle soorte getrek deur blink bedekte perde, want dit was gebruiklik om daagliks uit te ry en die watervalle vanuit verskillende uitkykpunte te bekyk. Daar was in daardie dae geen parke nie, maar die gebiede aan weerskante van die Niagara was deurmekaar met gratis ondernemingsaktiwiteite. Daar was restaurante en drinkplekke en Punch-and-Judy shows en tweekoppige kalwers en bebaarde dames. Dit was 'n plek wat op Blondin bestel is.

Fisies was Blondin 'n klein man, gekenmerk deur blou oë en die blonde hare wat hom sy bynaam gegee het. Hy het slegs vyf voet vyf gestaan ​​en weeg slegs 140 pond. Hy was flink en ywerig en het 'n uitstekende koördinasie op die draad gekry tydens jare se ervaring in teaters en sirkusse. Hy beskik oor verbeelding en moed en geweldige selfversekering-selfs genoeg moed en versekering om die fantastiese dade wat die vrug van sy verbeelding was, sonder 'n enkele glip uit te voer. Toe hy vyf jaar oud was, het hy op die tou begin eksperimenteer. Toe hy vroeg in Junie 1859 die eerste keer in Niagara verskyn, was dit met die doel om gedurende die somer 'n paar dollar op te tel terwyl hy wag om 'n verlowing aan die einde van Augustus met Franconi's Equestrian Troop te begin. Hy was toe 35 jaar oud en het agt jaar tevore na die Verenigde State gekom.

Terwyl hy hom voorberei op die groot gebeurtenis, toon Blondin sy genie vir publisiteit en sy begrip van die morbide nuuskierigheid van die menigte. Hy het sleg gereël dat 'n toukabel twee sentimeter in deursnee en 1300 voet lank is. Dit was 'n aansienlike probleem om hierdie tafel oor die brullende kloof te trek en dit aan beide kante veilig te veranker. 'N Ligte tou, sewe-agtste van 'n duim in deursnee, is aan die een kant van die tafel vasgemaak en dit oor die rivier vervoer. Aan die Amerikaanse kant was dit om 'n groot eikeboom in White's Pleasure Grounds gewikkel. Toe dit op ongeveer 200 voet van die Kanadese kant af getrek is, het sommige van Blondin se helpers die vrees uitgespreek dat die ligte tou nie sterk genoeg sou wees om dra die gewig van die swaar kabel soos dit uit die Niagara -kloof opgetrek is om in Kanada te veranker.

Blondin weet presies wat om te doen. Terwyl toeskouers staar, het hy nog 'n tou aan sy lyf vasgemaak, die 200 meter van die klein tou afgegaan, die tweede tou ook aan die einde van die kabel vasgemaak en dan rustig teruggeklim na Kanadese grond. Terwyl die twee lyne dit ondersteun, is die kabel aan wal getrek en aan 'n rots vasgemaak.

Eintlik was daar ongeveer 1,200 voet kabel oor die kloof. Ongeveer vyftig voet is opgeneem deur die onvermydelike sak in die middel, en 'n paar voet aan elke kant was nodig om styfheid en veilige verankering te verseker. Dit was halfpad tussen die hangbrug en die Clifton -huis gestrek. Om te verhoed dat dit wankel, het toue met ongeveer tussenposes van twintig voet daaruit gehardloop om poste aan albei oewers te veranker. Maar daar was 'n aansienlike deel in die middel, miskien tot vyftig voet, waar dit onprakties was om kerktoue vas te maak. Op die punte waar die kabel aan wal gekom het, was die grond ongeveer 240 voet bo die vlak van Niagara -water. Dit het beteken dat die sentrum eintlik ongeveer 190 meter bo die tuimelende waters van die kloof geleë was, met die oog op die versakking.

Op Donderdag, 30 Junie, was die dag geskeduleer vir Blondin se eerste kruising. Niagara het 'n karnavallug gehad. Aan die Amerikaanse kant was spesiale tribunes - waartoe toegang toegelaat is. Vroeg in die dag het Blondin voorlopige prestasies op 'n koord in White's Pleasure Grounds uitgevoer, terwyl bands "God Save the Queen", "Hail, Columbia" en ander gewilde uitsendings gespeel het. Aan albei kante van die tafel het Harry Colcord, die bestuurder van Blondin, vir klein verslaggewers 'elke kamer' voorsien. Dit was, het die Buffalo Morning Express gesê, "net die dag vir hierdie soort dinge."

Die geluid bedaar tegelykertyd tot 'n verwagte murmur toe Blondin aan die Amerikaanse kant van die kabel verskyn. Wat die toeskouers gesien het, is die volgende oggend in die Express: Mons. Blondin het pas die prestasie behaal om op 'n stywe tou oor die Nigerrivier te loop in die teenwoordigheid van 'n skare wat na raming van vyf tot tienduisend mense was, waarvan die eerste van die Amerikaanse kant gekruis het en halfpad gestop het om homself te verfris met water wat opgegooi is 'n bottel met 'n tou van die dek van die stoomboot Maid of the Mist. Die tyd wat in die eerste kruising beset is, was sewentien en 'n saal minute.

Toe Blondin by die Kanadese kant aankom, het hy die verslaggewers gegroet, 'n toast gedrink vir sy gesondheid en aangekondig dat hy 'n uur oor die kabel na die Amerikaanse kant sou terugkeer. 'N Versameling is vir hom opgeneem, en hy is in 'n wa vervoer wat deur vier vlagversierde baaie getrek is, vir 'n kort ruskans na die Clifton-huis. Toe hy terugkeer na die kabel vir die terugkeer, skryf die verslaggewer dat hy 'n paar "verversings wat deur mnr. Kavanagh van die Great Western Hotel voorsien is", geniet het. Die terugreis-vinnig en sonder voorval-was amper 'n anti-klimaks. 'Hy staan ​​beslis aan die hoof van stywe tougangers, en die besit van soveel koelte en 'n gebrek aan vrees moet 'n luukse wees', het 'n hoofartikel van Express gesê. “Vive Blondin.”

Blondin se planne vir die toekoms, veral vir 'n kruising op die vierde Julie, is wyd bekend gemaak. Die riviertoneel, toe daardie vakansie aanbreek, moes 'n vreemde tyd gewees het. Elke uitkykpunt - elke boom, elke rots, sowel as elke sitplek op die tribunes - was beset deur 'n groot menigte, morbide vol vertroue dat Blondin sy balans sou verloor en in die Niagara -kloof sou duik. Hulle het nooit hul oë van hom afgehaal nie, sodat hulle nie die aaklige oomblik mis nie. Die weddery op die uitkoms was groot.

Op die vasgestelde uur verskyn Blondin aan die Amerikaanse kant van die kabel sonder sy balanseerpaal van 38 voet. Halfpad daaroor lê hy op die kabel en lê die een voet bo die ander. Hy stap vinnig agteruit, balanseer aan die een voet, strek die ander en ook sy liggaam oor die 'kokende vloed', draai om hom asof hy 'op 'n draaibare stoel was, herhaal dit in die tenter van die kabel, neem 'n fles uit sy sak en drink, en dan sy reis voltooi.

Nadat hy ongeveer 'n uur gerus het, verskyn hy aan die Kanadese kant van die kabel en waai met 'n sak. Toe dit oor sy kop gesit word, sien toeskouers dat dit tot by sy knieë kom, wat hom van sy gesig en die gebruik van sy arms en hande ontneem. Met hierdie gestremdheid herhaal hy tydens sy terugreis die evolusies van die vroeëre kruising. 'Trouens, het die ekstatiese Express -verslaggewer geskryf,' 'n mens kan amper nie glo dat die prestasie werklik was nie, en staan ​​in 'n toestand van totale verwarring na die skraal koord en die ontsaglike kloof. ... ek kyk terug as 'n droom. ”

Op 15 Julie het die Express berig wat as Blondin se "afskeid" optrede beskou word. Na berig word, het hy sy eerste kruising gemaak wat agteruit gestap het van die Amerikaanse na die Kanadese kant. Met die terugreis het hy 'n kruiwa gestoot, 'in die middel stilgehou om verskeie toertjies te doen'. Op hierdie dag het hy die grootste menigte tot dusver bymekaargemaak.

Maar daar kom nog meer, Blondin was nie van plan om afskeid te neem terwyl die skare aanhou toeneem nie. Op Woensdag 3 Augustus het hy ongetwyfeld "op algemene versoek" 'n vierde kruising geadverteer. Die gemeenskappe aan weerskante van die Niagara -waterval was stampvol besoekers, wat die skare van alle vorige uitstallings oortref het. Menigtes het opgedaag, nie net uit Buffalo en Toronto nie, maar ook uit Rochester en vele ander stede. Spoorweë en stoomskiplyne het uitstappies uitgevoer.

Blondin verskyn ongeveer vier en dertig in die middag en stap vinnig van die Amerikaanse na die Kanadese kant oor wat 'n verslaggewer beskryf het as 'n 'struikelende pas'. Hy het ongeveer vyftien minute in Kanada gerus en met sy terugkeer begin. Ongeveer halfpad na die middel, het hy stilgehou en gaan sit, en toe uitgerek. After this, he proceeded to do “a number of daring antics” and finally stood on his head “a moment at least,” swinging and kicking his feet in “the most reckless and ludicrous manner.”

He then resumed his journey, but paused to repeat his antics with the addition of a backward somersault and one or two sudden swings around the cable. (Screams from the ladies.) He laid his balancing pole across the guy ropes, went to the middle distance of the cable, swung himself under it by his hands, and proceeded to work his way back and forth with his hands and feet, monkey-style. He varied this performance by clutching the cable with both hands, swinging his body clear of it, and then hanging for several seconds by both hands, and finally by one hand.

He repeatedly turned somersaults after the fashion of small boys, throwing his feet over his head and between his arms and hanging by his shoulder joints in “a most unnatural position.” He held his body in a horizontal position with his hands, then suspended himself by both legs and later by one leg, with nothing but air and his strength and skill between him and the raging waters below. He whirled around the cable, turned more somersaults, and stood on his head again. He repeated many of the stunts several times before he returned to the American side of the Niagara, completing a performance “exciting enough,” according to the Express reporter, “for the most greedy seeker after sensations.”

Then, on August 17, came a performance that in sheer excitement—and real danger—surpassed anything Blondin had attempted. He crossed from the American side, doing many of his usual stunts. But then, after a short rest, he appeared on the Canadian end of the cable with Harry Colcord clinging to his back.

Colcord weighed about the same as Blondin—140 pounds—so that the Frenchman was carrying a weight equal to his own, plus his 45-pound balancing pole.

Two looped cords hung from Blondin’s shoulders, and into these Colcord had thrust his legs so that he was riding pickaback, his arms about Blondin’s neck. The little wire-walker covered about one third of the distance swiftly, with no sign of fatigue. Then he stopped and asked Colcord to slip his legs out of the slings and stand on the cable, holding on to Blondin’s shoulders. After Blondin had rested a few minutes, Colcord mounted again—not an easy feat because of the slippery tights Blondin wore—and they went on.

It soon became evident to the spectators that the weight of Colcord and the length of the crossing were telling on Blondin. Halts for rest became more and more frequent. Colcord, for whom this was a new experience, became increasingly terrified. He had been warned not to look down, but his eyes were drawn irresistibly to the white-capped waters 190 feet below. He was fascinated by the illusion that he and Blondin were moving swiftly upstream.

They had now reached the center of the cable, and here, where there were no guy ropes, it swayed disconcertingly. Blondin seemed to stagger under his load. His balancing pole swung furiously up and down. Colcord had all he could do to heed the directions to “rest like a dead weight on my back.” Blondin had told him, “If I should sway or stumble, do not attempt to balance yourself.” Now, at the most dangerous stage of the crossing, Colcord simply had to obey orders.

On shore, the crowds were under an enormous emotional strain. Some shielded their eyes in fear of what they might see, and still they could not look away.

In a brave attempt to regain his balance, Blondin ran swiftly along thirty feet of the cable to the first guy rope strung to the American side. Here he paused to recover his strength and his breath and to rest his straining back. He placed one foot on a guy rope at the cable, and it promptly broke. He had to start regaining his balance all over again—a feat made more difficult by the fact that the sudden release of tension on one side made the cable jerk sideways. But, despite this surprise, Blondin regained his balance after a moment and rushed to the next pair of guy ropes.

Again he told Colcord to get off. Blondin’s body was rigid, every muscle tense. Beads of perspiration stood out on his face and body. When finally he could breathe more easily, he ordered Colcord back into position, began his slow climb up the slope of the cable, and finally reached the American shore.

There never had been such a crowd waiting for him. The strain suddenly relieved, people surged toward him. Blondin was dismayed. He began to fear that he and Colcord might be shoved over the bank by the pressure of those pushing up from the rear.

“What will I do?” he asked Colcord.

“Make a rush and drive right through them,” Colcord urged, and this is what Blondin did.

The wildly excited welcomers hoisted the two men to their shoulders and cheered themselves hoarse. (Blondin later told Colcord that the guy rope had snapped because someone had been tampering with it. There was enormous betting on Blondin, and he suspected some gambler had tried to weigh the scales against him slightly.)

On the last day of August, Blondin gave his first night performance. This was long before the days of massed floodlights at Niagara Falls, and in order to relieve the darkness of the crossing, a locomotive headlight had been placed at each end of the cable. Blondin carried colored lights at the tips of his balancing pole, so that the crowd could follow his progress.

It seemed to the watching thousands that the little Frenchman was pressing his skill and luck too far. They were certain of it when the lights on his pole suddenly went out just as he reached the mid-point of his journey. But those who were near enough to the cable to touch it could tell by the vibration that he was still on it, and he completed the journey safely.

In subsequent crossings Blondin the showman even further embellished the exploits of Blondin the tightrope walker. Once he crossed with baskets on his feet and shackles on his body. At another time he carried a table and chair and tried to seat himself on the chair with two of its legs balanced on the cable. The chair fell into the Niagara, and Blondin nearly tumbled after. He regained his balance, sat down on the cable, and ate a piece of cake, washed down with champagne.

Much to the delight of the businessmen on both sides of the Niagara, Blondin returned in 1860 and repeated some of his feats on a cable strung over the Whirlpool Rapids. Former President Millard Fillmore, who lived in Buffalo, is known to have watched one of the 1859 crossings, and in September, 1860, Blondin carried Colcord across on his back again before the Prince of Wales, who was to become King Edward VII.

When he left Niagara, Blondin still had a long career before him. He performed at Coney Island during the summer of 1888, and when he gave his last performance—in Belfast, Ireland, in 1896 at the age of 72—it is said that he walked his wire as nimbly as ever. For years he lived near London, in a home he called Niagara House, and there he died in 1897.

Meanwhile, at Niagara itself, Blondin had a number of imitators over the years, but though several of them performed feats of equal skill, it was Blondin who remained the hero of Niagara, and no one ever took his place in the public’s affection. Songs were written about him, and years afterward, on the long verandas facing the gorge, people who as children had witnessed his exploits still talked about the daring Frenchman with the blue eyes and the wavy blond hair who had made them gasp and look away and look again as he performed his incredible antics, supremely indifferent to the grisly death that was only a slight misstep away.


Niagara VII PG-52 - History

The Maid of the Mist dock facilities (Ontario)

The most famous legend in Niagara Falls is that of the Maid of the Mist, the Thunder God Hinum and the origin of the Falls of Niagara. This legend originated with the Neuter Indian Nation which occupied the Niagara District when the first French priests came to their villages to preach Christianity.

The story goes that Indian tribes were dying of an unknown cause. Each year the Indians were sending canoes filled with fruit over the Falls to appease the God Hinum and his two sons who the Indians believed lived behind the Falls. When the Indian luck did not improve, they felt that their God was not satisfied. Consequently they began sacrificing their most beautiful Indian maiden each year but still their luck did not improve.

One year, Lelawalo, the daughter of the Chief of the tribe was sacrificed to the spirit of the Falls. She was placed into a canoe filled with food and sent on her way over the mighty cataract. Legend says that this Indian maiden was caught in the arms of the God's sons. Recalling that she had been sent to her death, the Indian maiden agreed to take one of the sons as her husband with one condition.

One of the sons relented and told her that there was a poisonous snake that lived at the bottom of the river would get hungry once a year and crawl to the where the Indians were and poison their water. The Indians would drink the poisoned water and die. After burial, the snake would return to consume their bodies.

The Indian maiden convinced the youngest son of the God to allow her to go back to the tribe one more time to tell them what the snake was doing and how to kill them with spears. One night when the snake returned , the Indian braves were waiting and speared the snake. The snake crawled back to the edge of the Falls and died with its body shaped like a horseshoe.

Legend has it that the shape of the Falls became horseshoe shaped from the body of the snake. It is said that it remains to this day, showing that the Gods are still protecting the Indians against evil spirits.

The Maid of the Mist at the base of the Horseshoe Falls

To learn more about the early history of Niagara Falls,
please visit the Chronicles of our Early Settlers section
.

selection from the Chronicles of our Early Settlers section

The Front Cover of an Early Maid of the Mist brochure

In 1807, Christian Dow speculated about the possibility of man crossing the Niagara River below the Falls as he watched wild ducks swimming back and forth across the span of the river.

The location of Indian ladders down the gorge wall at the site of the current Maid of the Mist dock are seen in early guide pamphlets. Until 1795, when Mrs. Simcoe (Governor John Graves Simcoe's wife) visited, the ladders were the only way down the gorge embankment. In her diary, she wrote: "Mr. Pilkington was desired to place ladders to form a stairway down the bank".

Mr. Pilkington did arrange the ladders in a stairway fashion but it was still a very daring and dangerous undertaking.

In 1818, William Forsyth built a stairway at the former ladder site to facilitate access to his row boat ferry service which Forsyth was planning to operate.

In 1818, William Forsyth along with American hotel owner Parkhurst Whitney, began the first row boat ferry service crossing the Niagara River below the Falls. Forsyth did so without at first obtaining government permission.

Parkhurst Whitney built the first stairway down the bank of the Gorge on the American side.

When Forsyth finally asked for government permission, Thomas Clark strongly objected to Forsyth's aggressiveness, and used his influence to lobby politicians to prevent Forsyth from obtaining the ferry service lease.

With the support of Thomas Clark, Christopher Boughner was granted the government lease to operate the ferry service. The lease was to begin on December 25th 1820 for seven year period.

William Forsyth was outraged at the government decision to grant Boughner the ferry lease. To further infuriate Forsyth, Boughner built a stairway to the ferry dock adjacent to Forsyth's stairway.

Forsyth knew that Boughner had a number of debts. Forsyth went about buying up all of Boughner's debts until Forsyth became Boughner's sole creditor. Forsyth began applying pressure to have Boughner pay his debts knowing full well that Boughner could not.

Boughner finally caved into Forsyth's pressure and gave up his rights to the ferry service to Forsyth in exchange for Forsyth canceling Boughner's debts. After fourteen months, Boughner was out of the ferry business while William Forsyth was in business again.

Thomas Clark was very angry over how Forsyth had forced Boughner to give up his ferry service to Forsyth.

On December 21st 1821, Thomas Clark wrote a letter to the Government of Upper Canada outlining what Forsyth had done to Boughner in order to take over the ferry service. Clark recommended that the government revoke Forsyth's ferry lease and award it to someone else.

On January 23rd 1822, acting on the recommendation of the Lieutenant Governor of Upper Canada, the ferry service lease of William Forsyth was rescinded for non-payment of the quarterly fee that had not bee paid to the government.

On April 30th 1822, the government granted the ferry service lease to George Milmine. He was allowed to operate the service for a three year term.

The inside page of an Early Maid of the Mist brochure

On April 15th 1825, Thomas Clark and Samuel Street applied for and granted a twenty-one year lease. The granting of their lease hinged on their commitment to build a carriage road down the side of the gorge to the ferry landing. Their lease expired in 1846. The road to the ferry landing cost $5,000 and was paved with cobblestone. It had a hairpin turn during the descent. This turn was until several years ago, still as it was when built by Clark and Street. Modernization has now eliminated this turn.

In 1825, the stairway on the American side was replaced with a spiral stairway built by the Porter Brothers, who owned the American Falls at the time.

Augustus and Peter Porter applied for and were granted the rights to operate the American ferry service. The Porter brothers attempted to blast a road along the gorge wall approximately 100 feet north of the American Falls. The road was never completed because rock falls and washouts forced the Porter brothers to abandon their plans.

The Porter stairway remained in operation until 1844 when the stairway was augmented by an incline railway cut into the gorge wall. The new incline railway was water powered.

The crossing time with a large rowboat took eight minutes. Fares ranged from 18 in summer months and 25 in the winter months.

During the 1840's, more than forty rowboats were plying their trade on the lower Niagara River. Rowboats were now being employed in taking tourists upstream to the base of the American and Horseshoe Falls. Throughout the period of rowboat use, there are no records of any accidents.

On November 6th 1845, Adam Fralick was granted a ferry license. He was restricted to operating his ferry service 2.5 miles downstream of the Falls.

On January 11th 1850, management of the ferry service was given to the Customs Branch of the Inspector Generals Office.

On April 29th 1853, Gilbert Mickmicken was awarded the ferry lease.

In 1846, the Niagara Falls Ferry Association received its charter from the State of New York to operate a steamboat ferry service.

In May 1846, an awkward looking large steamship with two smoke stacks was launched. It was christened "Maid of the Mist". This 100 ton ferry was commanded by Captain Filkins and Captain George Synes. The ferry operated from a dock located just south of the Railway Bridge.

In 1848, the Falls View Suspension Bridge was completed. Ferry service across the Niagara River became obsolete overnight. It was now quicker, easier and cheaper to use the bridge to cross the Niagara Gorge.

In order to remain in business and to keep it profitable, the Niagara Falls Ferry Association began using the "Maid of the Mist" to take tourists on trips past the base of the American Falls and the Horseshoe Falls.

On January 9th 1851, the Maid of the Mist sank in twenty feet of water while moored at its Bellevue wharf. The cause was attributed to the build up of heavy snow. The Maid of the Mist was re-floated. It had sustained little damage. It remained in service until 1854.

On July 14th 1854, the new "Maid of the Mist" was launched. The new boat was a steam driven paddle wheel boat measuring 72 feet (22m) long and 17 feet (5.18m) breadth of beam. It had an eight foot (2.4m) draught and was powered by a 100 horsepower engine. This ferry was commanded by Captain Joel E. Robinson. Passengers were given oil skin coats and caps to keep them dry. This Maid of the Mist made its last trip in the Fall of 1860.

On June 6th 1861, after the Maid of the Mist had been sold, Captain Robinson and a crew of two, sailed the Maid of the Mist through the Great Gorge Rapids on route to Montreal. It was a perilous journey but successful. Captain Robinson retired after the trip through the rapids. (see Daredevils Section)

From 1860 to 1885, there were no steamboat ferries in the Niagara River below the Falls.

In 1883, a replica of the Maid of the Mist ferry boat was sent through the Great Gorge Rapids with no one on board as a publicity stunt.

By 1868, there were now two suspension bridges in operation across the Niagara Gorge.

In 1878, the railroads began bringing tourists back to the Falls in large numbers. This spurned the building of a new Maid of the Mist steamboat ferry.

In 1884, R.F. Carter and Frank Le Blond of the Village of Clifton invested $10,000 into the building of the new Maid of the Mist.

The third Maid of the Mist was built at the dock on the Canadian side. It was launched into service in 1885. A sister ship was built on the US side.

In 1894, the International Railway Company built a passenger incline railway down the embankment on the Canadian shore.

In 1906, the American incline railway was changed from being water powered to electrical power.

In 1938, the great ice jam that destroyed the Honeymoon Bridge threatened to destroy the two Maids of the Mist tour boats. Both survived, only to be destroyed by fire on April 22nd 1955. The fire was started when a spark from a welders torch ignited.

Niagara Falls Fire Chief Dies-Boats Damaged

Both Maids of the Mist are Razed - Chief Collapses Fighting Fires

Fire Chief John C. Shapton died in the Greater Niagara General Hospital at 12:35 pm following a heart seizure suffered 90 minutes earlier while he was directing firefighting operations at the Maid of the Mist landing where the fire almost completely destroyed the two Maids of the Mist mounted on their winter births.

Shapton, age 59, was rushed to the hospital by his son Thomas, also a city fireman after collapsing at the dock where the firemen were pumping water from the Niagara River.

Chief Shapton was the only full-time chief in the history of the fire department. He had heroically led the battle from the time the fire started at approximately 10:15 a.m.. Fire swept through the two vessels in 10 minutes time feeding on a tar canvas covering. Only the hulls were still intact. Frank Le Blond, president of the Maid of the Mist Steamship Company estimated the replacement value at $350,000. Inspectors from the Canadian Steamship Comapny after examining the damage stated that both maids may be able to operate in the summer. At first both boats were believed a total loss but inspectors found that only the upper sections of the boats burned in the flash fire. In event that both boats cannot be fixed, Mr. Le Blond will attempt to secure several launches to operate with.

The fire started in the starboard corner of the large boat when workmen were working with torches. It was first spotted by Thomas Masson, he's a carpenter who suffered cuts and a sprained arm fighting the fire. Wilford Storm another employee suffered bruised ribs. Twenty-eight men were working on the two vessels when the flames broke out. The fire spread rapidly and fed on the tar canvas on both boats.

No accidents or injuries have occurred on the Maid of the Mist except when one of the vessels was disabled when a drift log fouled it's propellers. Captain Malloy signalled Captain Carter for assistance and got a line aboard from the other Maid and towed the crippled boat back to the American side.

1916- Two other accidents were recorded. On September 21st, when the Maid of the Mist ran aground beside Goat Island. The captain ordered the passengers to put on life preservers and prepare to launch lifeboats but the boat pulled itself free from under its own power.

October 2nd 1916 on the last trip of the year when a propeller shaft broke near the foot of the Horseshoe Falls. The captain ordered the anchor cast. Passengers were taken to Goat Island but the crew remained on the boat all night until it was removed the next morning.

April 23rd 1955 - Maids of the Mist to sail again. The new looks Maid of the Mist to sail the summer. They will be launch type vessels without upper structures.

April 26nd 1955 - Steamship inspectors approve rebuilding of Maid's of the Mist. Le Blond estimates it will cost $150,000. They have abandoned the idea to operate without upper deck because it is not financially viable. With main deck large vessel can carry 140 people and the small boat can carry 100 people.

April 30th 1955 - New Maid of the Mist will sail in Niagara. A contract signed by Frank La Blond, president of the Maid of the Mist Company and the Russell-Hipwell Shipbuilding Company of Owen Sound for the construction of the new Maid. The single decker will cost approximately $100,000. It will be prefabricated and moved into the Niagara gorge in sections. Le Blond hopes to have the new vessel in operation in August.

May 11th 1955 - Maid operation will resume in a months time. A steel hull made in Holland and moored at Hamilton Harbour for two years was skidded down into the gorge Tuesday. The hull was moved and lowered into the gorge lasting ten hours. A deck and wheelhouse will be constructed immediately. Ship will have a 35 passenger capacity with two diesel engines and be 40 feet long and weighing eight tons.

June 1st 1955 - Operate new Maid by mid-June. Forty foot steamer nears completion powered by two - 100 horsepower diesel engines.

June 13th 1955 - Launch of the little Maid into the Niagara River.

July 11th 1955 - The first of big Maid's moving into the gorge. The first of four sections that will be welded together. The vessel will be 65 feet long and have a 100 person capacity. It will be the first of two ships to be built.

July 12th 1955 - Word has it that wood from the two burned out Maids of the Mist will be turned into wooden nickels. it is a promotional stunt by Niagara Falls Chamber of Commerce. Fifty thousand wooden nickels will be made.

July 29th 1955 - The new Maid of Mist was christened and is ready for service. Thousands of citzens witnessed the launching ceremonies of the Maid of the Mist 3.

August 4th 1955 - The new Maid of the Mist 3 begins regular sailings.

August 17th 1955 - The wooden nickels are on sale.

In less than one month after the fire, a forty foot yacht was brought down to the ferry dock along the service road on the Canadian shore. This boat was named the "Little Maid of the Mist".

The Maids of the Mist tour boats need to be taken out of the water before November 1st each year. Ontario Hydro reduces the water level on that date so that the boats would be not be able to reach their winter cradles

Since 1971, the Maid of the Mist Tour Boat Company has been owned by the Glynn family of Lewiston, New York. It is an American Company however the boats are registered from St. Catharines, Ontario, Canada.

The Maid of the Mist Tour Boat facilities at the base of the Prospect Point Tower (New York)

* the Maid of the Mist cannot be launched into the waters of the Niagara River until after April 1st of each year. The presence of ice in the river may delay the date of the launch.

The First Time
Lifting the Maid of the Mist VI and the Maid of the Mist VII onto Winter Dry Docks - Niagara Falls USA
October 31st 2013

Preparing to lift the Maid of the Mist boats onto winter dry-docks - Niagara Falls USA
October 29th 2013

The entire Liebherr Crane, weighing nearly 160 tons, will be used to lift the Maid of the Mist boats out of the Niagara River
for storage at its new docking site during the winter months. The crane is anchored 70 feet (21.3m) into the bedrock.

The Maid of the Mist, which has operated tour boats at the base of the Falls since 1846 and owned by the Glynn family since 1971, lost its Canadian contract in 2009 when the Niagara Parks Commission (Ontario) elected to reopened the Glynn's tour boat contract to open bidding as a result of lawsuits and public scrutiny of the company's no-bid contract.

The Maid was outbid by Hornblower Cruises and Entertainment, a California-based cruise operator, and lost its storage facilities located on the Canadian side of the gorge along with the right to operate in Ontario. Hornblower gained rights to the site at the beginning of 2014.

That process netted the deal with Hornblower, a 30-year contract Canadian officials estimate will generate more than $500 million in revenue to the parks governing body, or $300 million more than it received in its previous agreement with Maid of the Mist.

With no storage facilities on the American side of the gorge, the company was in danger of losing its ability to operate the attraction and it's ultimate extinction following a legendary and colourful history.

The Maid of the Mist had an existing lease with the State of New York signed in 2002, which allows the company to run boat tours from the American side of the lower Niagara Gorge. The Maid of the Mist lease on the American side of the Niagara River expires in 2043.

In 2012, New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo joined the Glynn's in announcing an amendment to the Maid of the Mist's existing 40-year contract that was signed in 2002. This amendment will add the State of New York take in an additional $105 million over the course of agreement and see the Maid of the Mist Tour Boat Company spend an additional $32 million to convert the historic Schoellkopf Power Station site into a dry dock facility for the boats and to enhance the historic aspects of the site to create another attraction for visitors.

In 2012 Maid of the Mist faced closure in the absence of storage space for its boats on the New York side of the river. Governor Cuomo struck a deal to keep the boats running and produce increased revenues for Niagara Falls State Park. The Maid of the Mist Corporation agreed to invest $32 million in the former Schoellkopf Power Station site near the falls to make it suitable for the winter storage and maintenance of its boats. Under the memorandum, the company agreed to increase its license payments to the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation, totalling $105 million over 30 years three times the revenues that were projected for the 30-year period when a contract was initially approved in 2002.

The Maid of the Mist Company will build two new electric catamaran-style vessels Maid of the Mist vessels. Both will be able to carry about 520 passengers each.The catamaran hull is welded 5086 H116 aluminum, and is 27.5 m (90 ft) long and 10.4 m (34 ft) wide, with a 1.7 m (5 ft 7 in) draft, and can carry 500 people. Each boat has 316 kWh batteries powering 400 kW motors.

Designed by Propulsion Data Systems, the new totally integrated vessels are currently under construction by Burger Boat Company in Manitowoc, Wisc. In mid-May, the modules will be transported to Niagara Falls and lowered onto the Maid of the Mist dry dock and maintenance facility for assembly. Following completion of construction, launch and certification, the new vessels will be placed into service.

ABB will supply a comprehensive integrated power and propulsion solution for the new-build vessels, including lithium-ion battery packs and an onshore charging system, enabling sustainable operation with maximum reliability.

Powered by ABB s zero-emission technology, the two fully-electric vessels will take tourists to the heart of the Niagara Falls, undisturbed by engine noise or exhaust fumes. Batteries will be recharged for seven minutes after each trip to 80% capacity, allowing for maximum efficiency and battery life. A ride is 20 minutes

Each of the vessels will be powered by a pair of battery packs with a total capacity of 316 kWh, split evenly between two catamaran hulls. Having two fully independent power systems on board will increase the resilience of operations by creating a redundancy.

The vessels will charge between every trip while passengers disembark and board. Shoreside charging will only take seven minutes, allowing the batteries to power the electric propulsion motors capable of a total 400 kW (563 HP) output. The power setup will be controlled by ABB s integrated Power and Energy Management System (PEMS), which will optimize the energy use on board.

The hull of the new vessels features an icon of the electricity symbol within a water droplet surrounded by a turbine with Niagara Falls in the background. The color scheme is environmentally-friendly green combined with the blue of the water.

The new vessels are named after Tesla, the genius inventor whose lifelong dream had been to harness the energy of the natural wonder of Niagara Falls.

the New Maid of the Mist Being Built

Maid of the Mist III built 1970 sold 1992 NLD 1998 Hike Metal Products, Wheatley ON
Maid of the Mist IV built 1974 scrapped 2013 Hike Metal Products, Wheatley ON
Maid of the Mist V built 1983 scrapped 2013 Hike Metal Products, Wheatley ON

Maid of the Mist VI (1990) - will be retired from service when the new vessels begin operating
Maid of the Mist VII (1997) - will be retired from service when the new vessels begin operating


26" Middleweights for Boys

26" Middleweights for Girls

Lightweights for Boys

Lightweights for Girls

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