Railway News Clippings 1841-1849

News clippings compiled by Art Clowes

Revised To: June 22, 2005

Saint John, The Telegraph Journal, The New Brunswick Reader, Page 5 – Saturday, August 7, 2004

August 12, 1842 – The first vessel in the world to be driven by a compound steam engine is launched at Nashwaaksis (near Fredericton). Navigated by its inventor, Benjamin F. Tibbetts, the Reindeer draws shouts of applause.


St. Andrews, The Standard, Page 1 – Wednesday, October 8, 1845COMMUNICATIONS

Saint Andrews, New Brunswick

1st October 1845

To the Editor of the Standard


I beg through the medium of your valuable Journal, to direct Public attention to the contemplated Rail Road from Halifax to Quebec.

Assuming that the British Government and Capitalists wish for the most economical, shortest and best route to open the Canadas with the Atlantic Ocean and England. I at once venture to propose the line already explored and surveyed from Saint Andrews to Quebec, by an order from the British Government, under Captain, now Major Yule, of the Royal Engineers, in 1836, at which time an Act of incorporation was obtained from the Government of New Brunswick and Lower Canada, which is still in force and may be acted upon. This survey and exploration, cost the British Government £10,000; plans and descriptions of the line, and report of the survey, are deposited at the Provincial Secretary’s office.

A glance at the accompanying map, will show the advantages St. Andrews possesses over the proposed line from Halifax; the distance by a direct course from St. Andrews to Quebec, being 195 miles and by the line surveyed for Rail Road about 275 miles, whilst the distance from Halifax to Quebec cannot be less than 550 miles. The survey from St. Andrews to Quebec was very favourably reported by Major Yule, in no instance exceeding 40 feet rise per mile from the level, well wooded, with fine groves of yellow, red Pine, and Cedar, materials required in the construction of Rail Roads, and the Lands in general excellent for the Farmer and Emigrant, added to these advantages the distance from Liverpool to St. Andrews, does not exceed 8 or 12 hours passage by Steam, over that to Halifax, whilst St. Andrews possesses a safe Harbour, accessible at all seasons of the year, contiguous to the American Frontier, (where a Rail Road is now projecting from Calais to Portland, and Boston), and is more favourably situated for direct intercourse with the British West Indies, than any other Port in the British Provinces; these facts once known, cannot fail to engage the attention of the British Government and Capitalists.

This contemplated Rail Road from St. Andrews to Quebec, would, in all probability, have now been in operation but for the interference of the American Minister at London, obtaining an order from our Government  to the St. Andrews Rail Road Association, directing them “to discontinue their operations, in consequence of a claim made by the American Government, to Lands through which the Rail Road would have then passed;” this difficulty can now be obviated by a small increase in the distance in order to confine the line within British Territory.

Our present projected line will pass the flourishing Town of Woodstock and the Grand Falls, on the River Saint John. It is worthy of observation that St. Andrews is only 65 miles from Woodstock, and that Fredericton is about the same distance from Woodstock; consequently bringing Woodstock nearer the sea board by over 75 or 85 miles, than Saint John.

The proposed line passes through a remarkable level country, few or no rivers to pass except the St. John, and it would appear nature had designed this line for a Railway, for the great out-pouring of Canada to the Atlantic Ocean.

I am,

Your Obedient Servant

John Wilson.


St. Andrews, The Standard, Page 2 – Wednesday, October 8, 1845THE ATLANTIC AND ST. LAWRENCE RAILROAD – We learn from Portland Advertiser that Thursday was a day of triumph and festival at Portland, it being the day appointed for the organization of the St. Lawrence Railroad Company. The British and American flags were flying over the City Hall and various parts of the city.

The meeting of the Stockholders was called to order by Judge Preble, and the Mayor chosen to preside John Neil was chosen clerk of the corporation, and took the oath of office. A code of Bye Laws was adopted, and the following board of Directors chosen: William P. Preble, John Mussey, John B. Brown, John Anderson, Eliphalet Greely, St. John Smith, Josian S. Little, James L. Farmer, Thomas Hammond, and George Turner, of Portland; John A. Poor, of Bangor; Exra F. Beal, of Norway, and James Deering, of Westbrook.


St. Andrews, The Standard, Page 2 – Wednesday, October 8, 1845STEAMCourier – A fine new steamer called the “Reindeer,” worked upon the high and low pressure principles combined, has just been placed upon the River. She made her first trip on Monday last, leaving Fredericton in the morning, and arriving at Indian Town in the evening. She started again on her return on Wednesday morning, and will run regularly three times a week for the remainder of the season.


St. Andrews, The Standard, Page 2 – Wednesday, October 29, 1845ALBERT COUNTY – We understand that his Excellency the Lieutenant-Governor is expected to arrive in the Steamer New Brunswick on Monday evening. It is his Excellency’s intention to visit the new County of Albert, to decide upon the site of the County Town, it being provided by law that his Excellency shall select the site in the Parish of Hopewell.


St. Andrews, The Standard, Page 2 – Wednesday, October 29, 1845HALIFAX AND QUEBEC RAILWAY AND LAND COMPANY – At a meeting of the Provisional Board held at No. 38 Moorgate Street, London on Wednesday, October 1, 1845 – Inter alia – It was moved by Sir Richard Broun, Barrister, seconded by G. R. Young, Esquire, of Halifax, Nova Scotia, and Resolved, That Alfred Lock Street, Esquire, be nominated the Solicitor to the Company for New Brunswick.


St. Andrews, The Standard, Page 2 – Wednesday, November 5, 1845THE NEW BRUNSWICK RAILWAYCourier – Since the publication of our last paper, influential local Committees have been formed both in Saint John and in Fredericton, for the promotion of this important undertaking, and we rejoice to observe that a powerful Committee has also been set in operation at Quebec, for the same purpose. The only local Committees requiring to be established now, are those on the line from Digby through Horton, Windsor, &c., to Halifax. From these fine districts, which are likely to receive so much benefit by the opening up of two large important markers, Saint John and Halifax, for their surplus agricultural produce, at only six hours’ drive from their respective districts at either end, and at comparatively trifling cost, no steps, that we are aware of, have yet been taken for the consummation of this important project. Surely the inhabitants are slumbering at a time when every energy should be put forth. The proceedings of the local Committees, already constituted, have been forwarded to the Provisional Board in London, and we doubt not their effect will be favourable to the establishment of the only practicably and really useful line, viz: From Halifax, across Nova Scotia, to Digby Strait, thence to Saint John, and thence, through Fredericton, Woodstock, and Grand Falls, to Quebec. The resolutions of the local Committees in New Brunswick and in Canada, and an excellent Report on the Prospectus of the New Brunswick Railway Company by John Grant, Esquire, a practical and scientific gentleman, engaged in the Surveyor-General’s Department in this Province, will be found in our columns.

We observe that the Quebec Committee have not expressed an opinion on either of the contemplated Lines, but we doubt not the advantages offered by that through the Valley of the Saint John, which was first advocated in this paper of the 10th August last, will be prominently kept in view. The diminished distance of transit, the large number of vessels constantly at the Port of Saint John, loading with timber and always requiring something with to complete their lading, and the low rate of freight, all point to Saint John as the terminus with which Quebec must connect, in order to save itself from the ill effects of the competition, now existing, from Montreal to various points in Canada and United States. The difference on one barrel, arriving at Saint John and Halifax by the Railway, for shipment, would be little less than Five Shillings in favour of Saint John.


Saint John, The Telegraph Journal, The New Brunswick Reader, Page 5 – Saturday, November 7, 2004November 6, 1845 – In Fredericton, Benjamin F. Tibbitts patents a practical Marine Compound Steam Engine. Considered one of the greatest mechanical achievements of the 19th century, this invention increases the speed of steamships worldwide.


St. Andrews, The Standard, Page 2 – Wednesday, December 3, 1845WOODSTOCK MEETING – A public meeting was held at Woodstock last week for the purpose of taking into consideration the subject of the Rail Road and passed a set of resolutions approving the undertaking.


St. Andrews, The Standard, Page 2 – Wednesday, January 21, 1846ST. ANDREWS AND QUEBEC RAIL ROAD – So long a time has elapsed since the original Prospectus of a Railway from Quebec to St. Andrews was issued, that a short statement of ulterior proceedings, may be due to the Public, as explanatory of their suspension.

In 1836, a deputation of the Association proceeded to London, and submitted the project to Government, with a Petition to the King for aid, which was most graciously received, and the prayer of it answered by a Grant of £10,000 for exploration and survey; about £9,000 of which was expended in prosecuting the objects for which it was made, principally under the superintendence of Major Yule of the Royal Engineers whose Report is extremely favourable to the undertaking. During the same year, a law passed the Legislature of New Brunswick authorising the construction of the Railway from St. Andrews to the Canada line, and still remains in force.

In consequence of the remonstrance of the United States Government in 1837, further proceedings were arrested, and the surrender of a part of the tract of country surveyed, influenced a continuance of their suspension, from a fear that the altered line necessary to keep within British territory might be considered too great an undertaking to induce capitalists to carry it through.

Recently however, other and longer lines have been proposed and advocated upon various grounds but the most important object to be secured, the preservation of Canada trade, has only been adverted to, not investigated, so as to show that those lines are equally capable of benefitting it with the one terminating at St. Andrews; indeed it may be assumed, that comparison in that respect is out of the question.

Among the many advantages which this line possesses over any others that can be devised, it its great superiority in point of distance, which alone holds out a fair prospect of competing with American lines and consequently of counteracting the control of a large portion of Canadian trade by foreigners.

The more this vitally important subject is investigated, the more necessary it must appear that the nearest and cheapest route to and from Canada, should be adopted, whatever other railways may be constructed for other purposes.

Whilst the line from Quebec to St. Andrews will best promote and secure this great commercial and political interest, it will at the same time pass through an extensive range of woodland, and convey lumber of different descriptions to a near market for exportation, which a longer route would not permit to the same extent, and on equal terms.

It is therefore contended that this line both in a commercial and political point of view is entitled to a preference over all others, and it is believed that it may also subserve all the other national purposes equally as well.

The principal objection raised against this line is its proximity to the American boundary, being thereby rendered in the event of war liable to be impeded by hostile invasions, &c. Although this state of events is not to be guarded against, it should be recollected that even the one from Halifax will be subject to the same peril, should it be a an object with the enemy as a large portion of it will be equally exposed and that at a point where it will be most vulnerable.

It should always be kept in mind that Rail Roads are best adapted to promote peace and civilization and therefore that the argument of contiguity is greatly in favour of the St. Andrews line instead of having any actual weight against it, as it would be met and intersected by one from the American side, which would materially increase its utility, and enhance the value of its stock, and at the same time add to its safety in the event of hostilities, by influencing restraint in self defence.


St. Andrews, The Standard, Page 2 – Wednesday, January 21, 1846RAIL ROAD MEETINGS – We learn that a Meeting was held at St. George. on Saturday last, at which some very spirited resolutions were passed approving of the course pursued by the Committee of the St. Andrews and Quebec Rail Road Association, and pledging themselves to support the views by every means in their power. A subscription paper for stock was opened at the Meeting, and several thousands pounds taken. We also learn, that a large amount of stock has been taken at St. Stephen. This meeting had taken place on January 6, 1846.


Toronto, The Globe, Page 1 – Wednesday, April 14, 1847QUEBEC AND HALIFAX RAILWAY – We take the following from Mr. S. R. Young’s pamphlet on the Halifax and Quebec Railway, expositive of the sources of income expected to contribute to its support.


Comparatione for the Legislatures

Capital Cost and Returns.

Cost of Railroad – 550 miles at £5,000 per miles, £2,750,000 Cy. – say 3 millions to include extras.

To be raised by a grant from Her Majesty’s Government, in return for the transit of troops, mails, military stores, &c., &c., £1,500,000. This grant could be favourably urged at the present time – in consequence of the disasters in Ireland. A part of the capital now about to be expended there, might be judiciously applied to the construction of this Railroad: – it would provide for the surplus population, and settle the forest lands of New Brunswick and Canada East; grants from the Colonial Legislature and by subscription of Block, on the pledge of land to be sold to the Company by the three Provinces of Canada, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, £1,500,000. Total £3,000,000.

Lands – Nova Scotia to sell say 100,000 acres, New Brunswick 3,000,000 acres, Canada 1,000,000. But these not to be paid for till the returns of the Railway, and the sales of the lands, yield a surplus, after payment of interest and the annual expenses of working; – Company to be bound to sell lands at a moderate price, and to promote an extensive and healthy scheme of emigration.

Cost of Working – By estimate in New England the annual cost of working a Railway has been found to be equal to $1,200 a mile, at 550 miles, equal to £165,000 a year.

Total Annual Expenses – Interest on £1,500,000 (the Government to give 13/4 millions as above, lieu of the transit of troops, etc.) at 3½ per cent, £52,500; cost of working £165,000. Total £217,500.

Inducement to Capitalists – 1. Grants of lands. 2. Pledge of payment of interest on capital by three Legislatures, say Canada, one half; New Brunswick, one-fourth; Nova Scotia, one-fourth; Capital to be expended in Nova Scotia, say 135 miles, £125,000; New Brunswick, 265 miles, £1,445,000; Canada 150 miles, £820,000. Total £3,000,000. In equity each Legislature should pledge their funds for the payment of the interest in proportion to the amount of capital expended, within the limits of their respective Provinces.

Action Required on the Part of the Legislatures – 1. Grant of lands on the terms above stated. 2. The right ceded to the company of the entering on public lands to take wood and materials required for construction. 3. Pledge for the payment of interest on the following terms:–  I. Conditional on the grant of one and a half by Her Majesty’s Government. II. That the capital be subscribed for the completion of the whole work. III. Security to be given that the line from Halifax to Quebec be laid in 5 years.

By this course the Legislatures, although entitled of its practicability, its importance, and its yielding an adequate return, still leave these questions to be decided by the Government and capitalists, here and in Great Britain. In considerations of this Railroad being laid, they secure the payment of 3½ per cent interest on the capital of 1½ millions for the period of ten years, in the following proportions, that is to say:–

Nova Scotia                          £12,125 per year.

New Brunswick                       12,125 per year.

Canada                                    25,250 per year.

Before any demand is made, all returns for the Railway and sales of lands to be credited. These large expenditures of capital would so increase the revenues of these Provinces. As to enable them to pay the sums required, independent of their present courses altogether – that is to say, the expenditure of the capital would of itself create a surplus revenue sufficient to justify, and provide for, the pledge made for the payment of interest.

So far as Nova Scotia is concerned, the Legislature and people would in fact derive a large profit, of First, the line would be laid at once from the Atlantic to the interior – say from Halifax to Truro – and thence to Amherst. By the time it reached Gay’s River the cars of course would be put in operation, and the benefit of a Railway began to be felt – and so for every mile of its further progress. The line may be completed in four years, – in two years it would be completed to the boundary line of New Brunswick; and while £734,000 of capital had been introduced and expended in the Province, all that the Legislature would be required to pay would be two year’s interest, or £12,125 per year, in all £25,250 for two years. The same results would follow to New Brunswick. She would derive an immediate and large profit for the expenditure of £1,445,000, from the sale and settlement of her eastern forests – from the increase to population and to her exports – the opening of her mines and the enlargement of her trade. To Canada East the same benefit would be extended.

Acts of incorporation passed by the Legislature not expedient. I. Because no Company with branches is yet organized. II. It is a project running through three Provinces – no act passed by one Legislature could give title or interest beyond the bounds of its own territory. III. The necessary grants of land are not yet obtained – all the terms to be settled – process, payments, conditions, &c. IV. British Government would not grant a million and a half, without the protection of an Act o Parliament. V. Capitalists in London and here to be cemented, system of emigration to be settled, and amount of stock, shares, management of Company, &c. The interest of the Provinces to be protected by delegates and agents limited by instructions. After the three Legislatures have passed on the project, their agents to meet, and the interests of each to be carefully guarded –

Considerations For Capitalists – The cost of Railway will be learned in those Provinces. 1st  By a free gift of wood and other materials obtained from the Crown Lands. 2nd  By the offer made by Proprietors to give the land required for the railway, free of charge. 3rd  By the Legislatures removing all fees required for its machine from any colonial imports, &c. 4th  By no parliamentary or legal expenses being incurred to any great extent.

Security For Interest – 1st  By a grant from Her Majesty’s Government of one million and a half to aid in the construction, for which no interest will be required to be paid. 2nd  By the pledge of four millions of acres of wilderness lands, which, if the railway did not pay at once, might be sold to afford an interest for the first ten years. 3rd  By the funds of the Legislature being pledges to pay interest for ten years on the capital expended.

Sources of Income – The three Provinces made the great highway between Europe and the Atlantic States of the West. From Valentia Bay to Boston – passage to Canseau from Valentia – 1650 geog. and 1800 statutory miles, at 200 geog. miles by steam a day, 5½ days. To Halifax, 6 days; from Halifax to Boston 606 miles by railway, at 25 miles an hour, 1 day; in all 7 days. Cost £3 2s 6d. Cy. By steamer, 38 to 45 hours; cost now £5.

To Quebec – To Halifax, as above 6 days. – Quebec, 550 miles by railway, 22 hours. Cost 46s 2d. sterling, £2 15s 6d. Cy. Now to Boston:- 38 to 45 hours. Boston to Quebec, 2 days. Passage about £4 10s. To Halifax, as above 6 days. – Boston, 24 hours, to New York, 7 days 10 hours. By steam direct from Valentia to Boston, 11 to 12 days. If the speed of 40 miles an hour were obtained on the railway, the time from Halifax to Saint John, New Brunswick, would be 6½ hours, Boston, 15 hours, Quebec 14 hours, New York 24 hours. Time thence from Valentia to New York, 7 days.

  1. Travellers from the West and Atlantic States to Europe. 2. Passengers and trade from province to province, on business or pleasure. 3. Emigrants from Great Britain to New Brunswick and Canada. 4. Passengers and way trade from Settlement to Settlement. 5. Passengers for pleasure from the Provinces to the States, and from the States to the Provinces. The travellers from the South now visiting Montreal and Quebec, would follow the route of the Lower Provinces and return by the way of Saint John and Halifax. 6. Light Goods from Europe landed at Halifax for consumption in New Brunswick and Canada. 7. West Indies produce, sugar, rum, and coffee, from the lower ports to Canada. 8. Fish, &c., from the lower ports to the interior. 9. Canada produce from Quebec for the supply of New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, flour, pork, beef, peas, &c. 10. Shipments of Canadian produce from Quebec via Halifax and Saint John, to Great Britain.

Returns to The Provinces1. Actual profit on expenditures of 5 millions. 2. Increase of population and of skilled mechanics. 3. Increased value of Real Estate in the cities and throughout the line. 4. Increase of trade, agricultural improvement and facilities of Mining operations. 5. Increase of exports to United States, cord wood – to West Indies, lumber, &c. – to Great Britain, deals, battens, &c. 6. Made the highway to Europe – and consequently the field of commercial speculation both in the West and Atlantic States. 7. Effect is expanding and vivifying the Colonial mind and intelligence, placing our population on an equality with that of the New England States. 8. Beneficial effect on the administration of our local affairs – by creating union, a general feeling, and a wider field for the exertions of public men. 9. Large establishments may be formed in Halifax and Saint John to supply the interior and Quebec with light goods from England and Europe, – as at New York and in the cities at the mouth of the Elbe and the Rhine. Bulk, will be broken in these, and goods pass into the interior to meet the demand. The supply being regular, the accumulation of large stocks, and the loss of interest thus saved.

Return to Nova Scotia – Of the annual cost of maintenance £247,500 – Nova Scotia would be required to yield say ¼th – £54,375 per annum. Passengers from Truro and Amherst now 20s. and 40s. by stage, would be reduced to Truro by 1st Class, 5s. 3d., by 3rd class, 2 s. 6d.;  from Amherst by 1st class, 11s. 3d., by 3rd class 5s. 3d. It would embrace all the travellers from the Eastern Counties, and from Prince Edward Island, – according to the present number of travellers, this would yield some £18,400 per annum.

The freight of a barrel of Flour, from Halifax to Truro now costs 5s. 3d., would be reduced to 6d. – a ton of Hay 30s. to 1s. 3d. – a Chaldron of Coal, from Onslow, more now than its value to 6s. 3d. – 1 M. feet of dry lumber now 70s. to 7 s., a tub of Butter 60 pounds, now 1s. 9d. to 5d. and other articles in proportion.

Consumption in Halifax of Agricultural produce alone, 25,000, at £12 10s. per head, £312,500. Say one-half from the East, £156,200. Say the freight of this – beef, pork, hay, oats and potatoes – 12½ per cent, value £19,525.

To these add – Freight of goods form Halifax to Amherst. Dido for West Indies produce. Dido for Materials for shipbuilding. Dido for Deals, lumber, battens, &c., to Halifax, this would grow into a valuable trade. Dido for Cordwood for shipment to Boston, &c. Dido for Coals from Onslow. Dido for Manures, marsh mud, limestone, &c., from the Bason of Mines (Basin of Minas?) to a circle of 10 or 12 miles round. Add to this the increase of trade and transit of passengers, in consequence of the facilities of the Railway.

Return to New Brunswick – Trade and passengers from Dorchester, Sussex Vale, &c., to Saint John, agricultural produce, British goods and West Indies produce. Dido for Petitcodiac and thence to the coasts of the Gulf of St. Lawrence. Coal trade from Grand Lake, Settlement of her Eastern territory. Timber, trade, lumber, deals, battens, shipbuilding timber, short and long distances, from the interior to the shipping ports. Trade, passengers, freight, &c., upwards to Grand Falls and Madawaska for population, and for lumbering parties. The minerals of New Brunswick are free for public enterprise and competition – those of Nova Scotia are held now by the General Mining Associations of London. The Westmorland coal fields is 70 miles in length – the great coal fields of New Brunswick extends over an area of 5,000 square miles. It is believed that if an easier access were afforded, American capitalists, would be induced to speculate in the coal fields and iron ores of this Province, and reduce the price of coals both there and in Nova Scotia. The railroad would facilitate operations.

Returns to Canada – Trade and passengers to Riviere Du Loup. Population on the line 125,000, 30,000 capable of travelling, 1 trip each year to and fro – 60,000 passages, at 10s., £30,000. Agricultural produce to Quebec, beef, pork, hay, butter, milk, fruit, poultry, &c. Cordwood, deals, battens, lumber, &c. £50,000 of British West Indies goods passed last year from Quebec across to Metis and Black River, to supply lumberers. By the Settlement of the forests to the South and East of Riviere du Loup – these sources of revenue would be largely increased. A large portion of the wealthy classes from Quebec, Montreal, as far west as Toronto, come to Riviere du Loup to enjoy sea bathing – this travelling would be a large source of income.


Toronto, The Globe, Page 2 – Wednesday, August 11, 1847THE SAINT ANDREWS AND QUEBEC RAILWAY – The London Railway Record of the 3rd instant says:  “We are glad to hear of the successful prosecution of this most important undertaking, than which we believe in its ultimate effects, no project of the day is more worthy of public and Government support.”

Some very important and influential names will probably be added to the London Board, before it is finally completed; at present the Board is thus made up:

The Right Honourable, The Earl Fitzwilliam, President.

Directors – Right Honourable, the Lord Ashburton, John Milligan Laws, the Honourable George Pemberton, (formerly of Quebec). Wm. D. Puget, George Burge, Esquire with power to add to their number.

Lord Ashburton being applied to take stock in the company, made the following reply:–

Piccadilly, 25th June, 1847.

Sir. – In reply to your note I beg to say that I will take with pleasure a small interest of £500, in the St. Andrews and Woodstock Railroad Company. I am getting too old for any extensive adventures of this or any other kind, but I feel so strongly interested in the settling of your fine colony, that I am tempted to take this trifling investment in a useful undertaking connected with it. I congratulate you on having Lord Fitzwilliam to place his name at the head of the London subscribers. You could not possibly appear before the public more advantageously than you do.

Your very obedient servant,


  1. Robinson, Esquire.


Toronto, The Globe, Page 3 – Saturday, September 11, 1847SAINT ANDREWS AND QUEBEC RAIL-ROADMorning Chronicle – Accounts by the last mail from England relative to the status of this Company, are of the most satisfactory character. Four thousand shares were offered in the London market, and more than that number had been applied for, and at the departures of the mail, the deposits had been made good at Messrs. Glyn & company, on 1240  shares. The share list in England comprises many most respectable names, as well as persons of wealth. Viscount Bury has taken 200 shares, a London Banker 100 shares, and there are many holders of five and ten shares including clerks and other persons in the public offices.

Captain Robinson, the joint delegate with M. H. Perley, having completed all the arrangements in England are to sail on the 13th August, in the new steamer Guardian Miner?, Captain Hosken, for New York. On his arrival immediate measures will be taken for the commencement of the work.


Saint John, The Telegraph Journal, The New Brunswick Reader, Page 5 – Saturday, December 26, 2004

December 31, 1847 – Saint John has seen almost 15,000 Irish immigrants arrive at its harbour over the past years, including 5,800 in 35 vessels during the month of June.


Saint John, The Telegraph Journal, The New Brunswick Reader, Page 5 – Saturday, May 8, 2004May 8, 1848 – The vessel Star out of Ireland, with 63 of 383 passengers sick with typhus, arrives at St. Andrews. The immigrants had hoped to find work constructing the new St. Andrews & Quebec Railway, but are quarantined on Hospital Island in Passamaquoddy Bay.


Saint John, The Telegraph Journal, The New Brunswick Reader, Page 5 – Saturday, December 26, 2004

December 27, 1848 – A telegraph line from Calais, Maine, to Saint John is completed, allowing for dispatches to be sent to Boston, New York, and other major North American centres.


Woodstock, Carleton Sentinel, Page 294 – Tuesday, March, 6, 1849RAILWAY MEETING – A public meeting respecting the Saint Andrews Railroad was held in this village on Wednesday last, and the interest manifested in this important undertaking shows that the community is quite alive on the subject of internal improvement. Two or three new suggestions were made which may have a decided bearing upon the matter; one of these was, that in the excavation and surveys connected with the Railway, there is some probability that new  deposits of mineral wealth may be brought to light, thus adding to the source of Provincial wealth. Another, suggested by Mr. English, was, that under the existing difficulty of raising the necessary funds, in addition to giving the Province a mortgage on the line of road and the lands belonging to it, the most prominent friends and stockholders should mortgage to the Province their private property or as large a portion of it as might be necessary to save the treasury from any future loss. This, it was stated, had been done in some other places where the projectors were very confident of the ultimate success; and certainly for projectors could be more sanguine than those who have taken a leading part in this enterprise. Should they take this further step, the Provincial Government cannot have a shadow of excuse for longer withholding the guarantee necessary for raising the money required. These two important enterprises which were the relative objects of these two public meetings, should not be regarded as distinct or disconnected, as they will in a great measure be mutually dependent – each adding to the resources of the other. We leave it for those who have given more attention to the subject to form statistics, but one thing we can say; there is no line of railway in the world where the necessary fuel is so cheap and abundant as it is on this. In many places, no further off than Massachusetts, as high a price as from five to seven dollars per cord is paid for the fire wood consumed in the locomotives.


Woodstock, Carleton Sentinel, Page 294 – Tuesday, March, 6, 1849RAILWAY MEETING – At a Public Meeting, holden at the Mechanics’ Institute, on Wednesday, February 28, 1849, in pursuance of a requisition to the High Sheriff from a number of the principal inhabitants of Woodstock and its vicinity, to take into consideration, matters connected with the proposed Saint Andrews and Woodstock Railway.

Present:- The High Sheriff, John Dibblee, John Bedell, R. S. Demill, James Ketchum, A. S. Carman, Esquires, and a large number of other persons.

On motion.- Resolved, That the High Sheriff do take the Chair.

On motion.- Resolved, That A. K. S. Wetmore, Esquire do act as Secretary.

The Chairman explained the object of the meeting.

Whereupon the following Resolutions were submitted and carried.

On the motion of John Dibble, Esquire, seconded by John Bedell, Esquire,–

Resolved, unanimously that the construction of a line of Rail Road, from Saint Andrews to Woodstock, is a matter of extreme importance to the County, calculated  to confer great lasting advantages upon the Province at large, as being part of a more extended line to Quebec. And that the improvement to the navigation of the River Saint John will tend very materially to increase the amount of travelling and traffic; and large quantities of the products of this extensive County, and eastern and upper parts of the State of Maine, will be diverted by the Railway to Saint Andrews, thereby giving a still stronger guarantee of re-numeration and profitable returns to the Proprietors of that Line.

On the motion of William Stevens, Esquire, seconded Joseph Harvey, Esquire,–

Resolved, unanimously that the Inhabitants of this Country are deeply impressed with the importance of the great benefits likely to accrue to the Public, from the completion of the said Railway, as being the means of extensively developing the resources of the country, – facilitating agricultural operations – increasing Commerce and affording a more extended market for the mineral productions and manufactures of the country.

On motion of A. K. S. Wetmore, Esquire, seconded by H. M. G. Garden, Esquire,–

Whereas in the deplorable depressed State of the Province large number of its inhabitants, as well as Immigrants arriving upon our shores, are continually emigrating to a foreign country to quest employment. And whereas at a time (like the present) of crisis and despondency, it is true patriotism, to provide employment for operatives, who are thrown out of work, by circumstances beyond their control, and without any fault of their own.

Whereupon, Resolved unanimously, That the construction of the said Railway, whilst opening out a most eligible and desirable tract of County for settlement, will at the same time, demonstrate the active principle of such patriotism, in affording employment for large portions of the people of this province; and thereby remove the necessity that creates such tide of emigration to a foreign country.

On motion of Richard English, Esquire, seconded by A. K. S. Wetmore, Esquire,–

Resolved, unanimously that the examples set by Massachusetts, and other States of the Union, in issuing Script on the faith and credit of the State, to raise funds for the promotion of public works, are well worthy of imitation; and that the adoption of that system by the Province so as to assure the introduction of British Capital, and by this means, the speedy construction of the said Railway – will confer upon the present generation a boom of great value; and upon posterity an inestimable blessing.

On motion of A. S. Carman, Esquire, seconded by R. S. Demill, Esquire, Resolved, unanimously, That the thanks of this County are due to John Wilson, Esquire, the President of the Saint Andrews and Quebec Rail-road Company, and the Honourable W. F. W. Owen, and other Gentlemen of Saint Andrews for their unremitted and untiring zeal, and exertions in the promotion of an undertaking, as important in its character and consequences, because it will prove the Harbinger of future advantage and prosperity to the Province at large.

On motion, Resolved, that a Committee be appointed,to prepare a petition to the Legislature, predicated upon he foregoing Resolutions; and that A. K. S. Wetmore, A. S. Carman & John Bedell, Esquires, do compose said Committee.

On motion, Resolved, That the Chairman do leave the chair; and that John Dibblee, Esquire, do take the same.

Whereupon, Resolved unanimously, That the thanks of this meeting are due the High Sheriff, for his able and efficient conduct while in the Chair.

  1. K. Smedes Wetmore, Secretary


Woodstock, Carleton Sentinel, Page 315 – Tuesday, March, 27, 1849REPORT OF COMMITTEE ON RAILWAYS – Presented to the House of Assembly on the 17th. Instant[Edited – JAC] – The select Committee to whom were referred all matters relating to Railways in the Province, beg leave to submit the following Report:–

In the consideration which we have given to the highly important subject referred to us, we have been deeply impressed with the force of His Excellency’s remarks in relations to Railways, in the Speech at the opening of the present Session that “The elements of great future prosperity in the North American Colonies, depend for their immediate development of Public Works of this description, and that no sacrifice which tends to secure their execution, will ultimately be found too great.”

Viewing the relative position of the North American Colonies, and the great importance in a national point of view of improving the facilities for mutual intercourse, we consider it a matter of the greatest moment for the permanency of the British interests on this Continent that a Railway should be laid down to connect the Lower Provinces with the interior of Canada.

It was under the influence of this conviction that we cheerfully united with the Legislatures of the adjoining Provinces in 1846, in making provision for a Survey between Halifax and Quebec.

That service has been ably performed, and the practicability of a great Trunk Line satisfactorily shown by a valuable Report of Major Robinson.

This Report we have laid before us, but from the estimated expense of the Line, we deem it altogether impossible for these Colonies to undertake of it, unless largely aided by the Imperial Government.

We believe that no other method can be devised which will so certainly consolidate the Colonies, and perpetuate our connection with Great Britain; while, without it we fear that our position as Colonies will be of short duration.

Entertaining these opinions, it might be expected that we should at once suggest some means for the construction of the Trunk Line; but if we were able to execute our portion, it would be comparatively useless, without the completion of those lines running through the adjoining Provinces. Co-operation, therefore, on this work is indispensable, and as we believe the financial condition of  the Sister Colonies is no better than our own, so do we feel satisfied that they cannot undertake their portions without Imperial aid.

It appears by the observations of the Commissioners of Railways, contained in the communication from Captain H. Merivale, Esquire that after giving this question the fullest consideration, so far as they possess the means to do so, the Commissioners are disposed to think that, although in a military and Political point of view, the completion of a Railway between Halifax and Quebec may be of great importance, yet as a Commercial undertaking, it is very doubtful whether it can, at least for a long time to come, prove profitable.


Woodstock, Carleton Sentinel, Page 122 – Tuesday, October 9, 1849THE QUEBEC AND HALIFAX RAILWAYTranscript – We have  much pleasure in being enabled to state, from the best authority, that this grand undertaking, is in a fair way of being commenced early next summer, the amount of share stock taken and proposed applications, including princely investments by the ladies of the nunneries and an ecclesiastic establishment being now nearly £200,000 sterling, and it is expected that £500,000 will be taken in this Province alone; for which the country at large are mainly indebted, to the energy and zealous co-operation of the venerable prelate, who presides, with anxious benevolence and vigilance, over the welfare of the Catholic Population of the Province; and whose offer to pay the whole of his subscription at once, for the sake of a good example, will entitle him to the lasting gratitude of the company, as well as every loyal subject in America. The company, incorporated for carrying out the measure, are making arrangements for appointing the Directors; and when that is done the Sterling aid of the Imperial Government may be relied upon. We would therefore strongly recommend all who have the means to make some investment with the company, and thereby promote their own, as well as the general benefit of British America. [How do religious bodies come to have such princely sums to invest in railways, over and above all their enormous investments in real estate? – Editor]


Woodstock, Carleton Sentinel, Page 126 – Tuesday, October 9, 1849ST. ANDREWS AND QUEBEC RAILWAYCharlotte Gazette – We understand, that in place of finally fixing upon Mr. Montague, as the Engineer, the London Board of Directors selected a Mr. Neale to come out and carry on the work of this important undertaking. Mr. Neale arrived at St. Andrews on Friday afternoon; and on Saturday, in conjunction with Messrs. Wightman and Mahood commenced his labours.

Considering everything, we are led to indulge in the warmest anticipation of the success of the Rail road; and in consequence, to look for a renewal of former good times.


Woodstock, Carleton Sentinel, Page 131 – Tuesday, October 16, 1849RAIL ROAD MEETING IN WOODSTOCK – At a Public Meeting of the Inhabitant of Woodstock and its vicinity, holden at the Hall of the Mechanics’ Institute, in Woodstock, on Saturday the 13th. October, 1849.

Present:- The High Sheriff of the County, John Dibblee, John Bedell, George W. Cleary, P. M. Bedell, A. S. Carman, Charles Perley, and Charles Connell, Esquires, Justices and upward of 300 other persons.

On the Motion of H. E. Dibblee, Esquire, seconded by  E. A. Cunliffe, Esquire.

Resolved, That the High Sheriff do take the Chair.

On the Motion of John Dibblee, Esquire, seconded by  J. R. Tupper, Esquire.

Resolved, That A. K. S. Wetmore, Esquire, do officiate as Secretary.

The Chairman briefly opens the object of the Meeting, and is followed by the Honourable Harris Hatch and John Wilson, Esquire, President of the St. Andrews and Quebec Rail Road Company severally setting forth, fully and in detail, various interesting matters, affording prospects the most cheering, and communicating intelligence deeply gratifying, from the Local Board in London relative to the St. Andrews and Quebec Rail Road, Whereupon,

Moved by Charles Perley, Esquire, seconded by H. E. Dibblee, Esquire, and

Unanimously, Resolved, That from the favourable state of the St. Andrews and Quebec Rail Road, achieved by the passing of the Facility Bill, giving the valuable Tract of land, upon conditions therein expressed, and the great zeal and confidence in the undertaking, evinced by the local Board in London, in placing certain funds at the disposal of the Directors here, and in sending out an Engineer of high scientific attainments. it is the opinion of the meeting, that the said Road should be proceeded in, with all convenient speed, in taking Levels and Sections, and cutting out the wood and brush, the whole distance preparatory to grading the same, to receive the Construction.

Moved by A. K. S. Wetmore, Esquire, seconded by H. M. Garden, Esquire, and

Unanimously, Resolved, That in order to ensure the completion of the Road embracing the first Section from Saint Andrews to Woodstock, it will be necessary for the County of Carleton to take Stock to the amount of          pounds; and that ten per cent be paid upon that sum, into the hands of the Committee, to be hereafter named, with as little delay as possible; and that this meeting pledge themselves to carry out the spirit of the foregoing Resolution:–

And on the Motion of Charles Perley, Esquire, seconded by John Dibblee, Esquire,

Further unanimously, Resolved, That the above Blank be filled with the sum of twenty-five thousand.

Moved by Dr. Wood and seconded by E. A. Cunliffe, Esquire, and

Unanimously, Resolved, That a Committee of three persons be appointed, with the power to add to their number, to obtain Subscribers to the said Rail Road Stock – and further Resolved that Charles Perley, Charles Connell and J. R. Tupper, Esquire, do constitute said Committee.

Moved by D. L. Dibblee, Esquire, seconded by J. R. Tupper, Esquire, and

Unanimously, Resolved, That this meeting pledge themselves to obtain Grants to the St. Andrews and Quebec Rail Road Company, of Right of way and free use of the lands, over which the projected Rail Road may pass, for the purpose of the said Road.

Moved by George W. Cleary, Esquire, seconded by W. T. Baird, Esquire, and

Unanimously, Resolved, As the opinion of this meeting that the principle adopted by the Cities and Towns in Canada of issuing bonds payable at a future day, for Stock, in several Rail roads, is one that might be safety and advantageously adopted in this Province.

Moved by A. K. S. Wetmore, Esquire, seconded by John Dibblee, Esquire, and by acclamation,

Unanimously, Resolved, That the thanks of this County most justly due to John Wilson, Esquire, Colonel the Honourable Harris Hatch and Admiral the Honourable W. F. W. Owen, and their associates in Charlotte County, for their untiring and unceasing perseverance in the cause of the projected Rail Way.

On Motion, Resolved, That the Chairman do leave the chair and that John Dibblee, Esquire, do take the same, and therefore, further Resolved that the thanks of this meeting be given to the High sheriff for his able and impartial conduct while in the Chair.

The Meeting adjourns without day,

  1. F. W. Winslow, Chairman
  2. K. S. Wetmore, Secretary


Woodstock, Carleton Sentinel, Page 158 – Tuesday, November 6, 1849ST. ANDREWS AND QUEBEC RAILROAD – We have hitherto said but little with respect to the above line of Railroad, for want of the necessary data to warrant our discussing the matter, but perceiving by one of the resolutions passed at the meeting held in this place on the 13th. ultimo, that the County has pledged itself to raise the sum of twenty-five thousand pounds toward building the first section of the Line, we have felt it to be our duty to procure as much information as possible with regard to the matter, and the result we now lay before our readers.–  Certain capitalists in England disposed to invest a portion of their means in the work, upon these conditions, they are ready to take Stock to the amount of £100,000 sterling upon the understanding that the inhabitants of the Province will also subscribe for Stock to the amount of £100,000, or furnish an equivalent towards the undertaking, and pay in ten per cent of the same; the County of Charlotte has pledged itself to take up £75,000 and by the Resolution above referred to, the County of Carleton has promised to take the remaining portion of stock necessary to make up the £100,000; and upon the faithful performance of this guarantee depends the making of the line. It is further understood that the Company does not require that those persons taking shares shall pay for the same in cash, but is willing to take a portion at least of the payments in labour performed upon the road. Upon the supposition that the people of this Province will gladly avail themselves of the opportunity this afforded them of making the Railroad with such a small investment of their own means, the English Stockholders have furnished the sum of £10,000 sterling, which is now in the country, and which is to be expended on the final location of the Line, and in commencing the work by cutting out the underbrush and wood the whole distance, and six surveyors and a number of labourers under the direction of Mr. Neal, and Engineer of some standing in England, are now employed in carrying out this part of the work. And here it may not be amiss to enquire what are the prospects of benefits likely to be conferred on the people of this County by the completion of the line. We are aware that there are some persons who do not believe that the opening of the line from St. Andrews to Woodstock would confer any benefit on the inhabitants of this section of the country. We entertain a different opinion, and we will examine the matter, and show upon what foundation our belief is based. In the first place, the great bar to our advancement is the want of a market; no one will pretend to dispute the fact that the County of Carleton is admirably qualified for Agricultural purposes, and yet our people are leaving the country for one in which they can get a market for their produce. At the present moment a barrel of Flour and be procured at Eastport for three barrels of potatoes, which in Woodstock are worth only nine shillings and four-pence half-penny. Let us suppose the Railroad is now in operation, add the value of the potatoes at our present rates, three shillings for freight, three shillings for barrels, and one shilling for freight of Flour, and the whole cost of a barrel of Flour, brought to our door, in exchange for our potatoes, of which we have raised more than we can consume, amounts to sixteen shillings and four pence half-penny! whereas we now have to give thirty-five shillings in cash for the same article, while, on the other hand we cannot get cash for our potatoes. Again, it is urged that there is not sufficient population to support the line; and here we might repeat the argument we have used above, that the inhabitants are leaving the country simply for want of an outlet for the disposal of the surplus produce of their farms; but once open up a channel by which they can get a fair remuneration for that produce, and our farming population instead of decreasing, will increase; new tracts of country will, moreover, be opened up, and we have no hesitation in saying that the line within thirty miles of Woodstock, runs through some of the most fertile land in the Province. new Brunswick must eventually become an agricultural country, or a Bankrupt Province, and with this fact staring the people in the face, and when they have the power to benefit themselves so completely in their own hands, we think it would be criminal indeed to let the opportunity slip. Nor is it in the transportation of agricultural produce alone that the line may be made beneficial to this part of the country, but small lumber such as clap boards, shingles, &c, manufactured on the St. John, could in a few hours and a trifling expense, be conveyed to the coast, and the modification of the Navigation Laws permitting vessels of all nations to come into our ports and take cargoes, will no doubt be the means of filling the harbour of St. Andrews with foreign vessels ready to purchase our manufactures and to give us in return the productions of countries to which they belong. we are aware that our anticipations of the benefits likely to result from the completion of the Railroad may seem too sanguine to those who are more sceptical, but from witnessing the effects of Railroads in other countries, and from our knowledge of their self-sustaining nature, we have the fullest belief that the result will prove our views of the matter to be sound. So much for the probable benefits derivable by the public from that portion of the line which is to extend only to Woodstock, let us now carry the idea, a little further, and consider what benefits would be likely to accrue to the Stockholders by carrying the line to Grand Falls, as, in our opinion, they must do, in order to make much profit on their investment, and here the line must not be confined to carrying light freight, but must also be employed in the transportation of heavy timber. At the first glance, it may seem rather visionary to assert that the Railroad would be preferred to the River St. John for the conveyance of timber; but an investigation of the facts will show that this, after all, is a reasonable assumption. The cost of getting timber to market, by the present mode of conveyance, added to the loss of one third of the value consequent on the passage of timber through the Falls, driving, &c, will be found to come very little short of fifteen shillings per ton; if the same timber were conveyed to St. Andrews by Railroad, instead of 15 or 20 days being consumed in its transportation to the coast, it would reach it in eight or nine hours, at a cost of not more  than seven shillings and six pence. Now let us suppose that 150,000 tons will pass over the Railroad in a year, this, at seven shillings and six pence per ton will give £56,000 of revenue to the line. Now if the making of the line to Grand Falls cost £200,000, and the annual expenditure amount to £30,000, which is certainly the maximum, the profit derived from this source of traffic alone will amount to £26,000 or 15 per cent upon the capital expended in making the road. It may be said that we have assumed that a greater quantity of timber will be carried by the line than will be realised, but it must also be borne in mind that there are many other articles to be conveyed besides those we have enumerated, so that there is a fair prospect that the line if completed will be beneficial to the Stockholders and to the public generally. We shall recur this subject at some future period.


Saint John, The Telegraph Journal, The New Brunswick Reader, Page 5 – Saturday, November 7, 2004November 9, 1849 – The first telegraph message is trans­mitted between Saint John and Halifax.


Woodstock, Carleton Sentinel, Page 166 – Tuesday, November 13, 1849ST. ANDREWS AND QUEBEC RAILROAD – In our last, we made some remarks on this project, and promised to resume the subject. In compliance with that pledge, we shall now make some further investigation into the matter, and in doing so, we are free to confess that the magnitude of the subject is such that we cannot afford time or space to render it that advocacy which its merits deserve; we shall, therefore, merely give a rough glance at some of its leading features, and state the facts in plain common sense, in order that our readers may have an opportunity of judging the feasibility of the undertaking and its importance to the inhabitants of this section of the country. In a former article, we showed the amount of traffic likely to pass over the line from the Grand Falls, we shall now take a glance at the return traffic. At present every barrel of Flour consumed on the upper portion of the St. John river, passes St. Andrews to saint John, a distance of 60 miles, it is then conveyed by steamboat to Fredericton, 84 miles, and thence to Woodstock, 70 miles, making a total of 214 miles of water carriage. If the Railroad were completed, the same barrel of Flour could be landed at St. Andrews, and for one-fourth the present cost of freight, it could be brought to Woodstock by 80 miles of land carriage. and it must be borne in mind that neither the cold of winter nor the drought of summer, would cause a stoppage in this mode of transportation, as it is the case with the water communication eight months out of the twelve. The American supplies for Houlton, Arestook (Aroostook), Fish River, &c, which are now brought from Bangor, on sleds, must inevitably pass over the line, and these added to the supplies for the British settlements on the River St. John, from Woodstock upwards, would amount to fully 300,000 barrels annually; this at one shilling and three pence per barrel will giver £25,000, add the passenger traffic, 100 per day, for 300 days, at ten shillings each, £15,000, making a total of £40,000, to which may be added the conveyance of mails. Another important feature, is the benefit which the merchant would receive from being able to obtain daily communication with the coast all the year round. At present, our merchants must lay in a sufficient stock of goods in the Fall to last them through the winter; but let the Railroad be built, and they need not keep a larger supply on hand than they could procure immediate sale for, and by this having an opportunity of making a quick return on their capital, they could afford to supply the public at lower rates than they can do under the present circumstances.

In a former article, we noticed some of the articles which this County could export if the means were afforded; to these may be added, Cordwood, Hemlock Bark, &c. In St. Andrews, Cordwood is selling at from thirteen shillings and nine pence to fifteen shillings per cord, and in Boston it sells for a much higher price; at present a large portion of the Cordwood, Bark, &c, used in Boston is obtained from Annapolis, and other parts of Nova Scotia, and it is but a reasonable inference that if this line is opened, Carleton will have a share of this trade. Livestock would also form a large item in our exports; and it is quite possible that the time is not far distant, when, instead of importing Pork from the United States, we shall export it by the Railroad. Taking all these matters into account, we feel justified in asserting that the line would be profitable to the shareholders and beneficial to the country; and of the probability of its speedy completion our readers may judge for themselves, from the fact that in addition to the £10,000 sterling of which we have already spoken as being in the country to commence the work, a further sum of £10,000 sterling is on the way from England. This shows that the English stockholders are in earnest about the matter, and it now behooves the people of this County to wake up and do something towards helping themselves. If those whose property will be benefited by the line, would even take one share each, this would go a great way towards redeeming the pledge given at the public meeting held on the 13th. ultimate, and on the faith of which the company are now going on with the work.


A. Clowes

– End of File –

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