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Immigration Report for 1849 and 1850 from British Parliamentary Papers 1851
80 vessels arrived with 9,135 passengers. "Among this number there died on the passage but 32, and 26 reported sick on arrival at Grosse Isle; proportions so small as scarcely to require notice.
These vessels have all been fortunate in having made most favourable passages; the average of the 54 ships of which particulars are given, being but 33½ days. The averages from the chief ports were as follows:
|London||1 vessel||27 days||Waterford||4 vessels||32 days|
|Liverpool||5 "||31 "||New Ross||5 "||34 "|
|Plymouth||4 "||35 "||Sligo||3 "||30 "|
|Limerick||10 "||33 "|
The quickest passage was that of the "Jessie" from Limerick, 22 days; and the longest was that of the "Caledonia," from the same port, 47 days.
The number who have been sent out by their landlords, or assisted from their respective parishes, is 1,003; of these there were from Ireland, 505; England, 487. Three hundred and twenty of those from Ireland received landing-money, and 185 were provided with only a free passage. From England, 460 persons received 20s. sterling each adult on landing here which was paid to them through this office; and 27 appear to have received only a free passage.
The amended Passenger Act, which came into operation this spring, has so far worked most satisfactorily; not a single complaint has been made to me by the passengers of any of these vessels; and the ine[?] eased scale of provisions has, no doubt, tended to the comfort and health of the passengers.
Under the increased facilities which the St. Lawrence route offers for the transport of emigrants whose destination may be Upper Canada or any of the Western States, arrangements were made last winter by the two principal London houses engaged in the emigration business, so that emigrants were enabled to secure their passage in London to any port in the west; by which means they saved themselves trouble, time and expense. On board the "Ava" and "Laurel," the following numbers were thus forwarded through:
|To Montreal||105||To Buffalo||2|
|" Kingston||4||" Cincinnatti||14|
|" Port Hope||18||" Detroit||3|
|" Toronto||27||" Milwaukie||11|
|" Hamilton||43||" Chicago||2|
and from the satisfactory report received from many of these parties it is anticipated that a large number will adopt this plan next year.
Unquestionably the route of the St. Lawrence offers many advantages over that of New York to all persons whose destination may be the west; as emigrants can, under present arrangements, be carried from this to Chicago, a distance of 1,650 miles, in from 8 to 10 days, with but two transhipments, for 40s. currency, or 32s. 9d. sterling.
"I have the honour to transmit herewith the Chief Emigrant Agent's Return of Immigrants arrived at Quebec during the month of August, and the Abstract Quarterly Return for the quarter ending the 31st July.
I beg to call your Lordship's attention to the remarks therein made with respect to the 12 boys sent out by the Ragged School, in West-street, Smithfield.
(Signed) Elgin & Kincardine
The foreign vessels which, under the operation of the amended Navigation Laws, have engaged in the passenger trade to Quebec in the past year, appear very generally to have given satisfaction. The ships have been of a good class, and well found, and the commanders men of intelligence and kindness. The passengers by these ships were, almost without exception, landed in excellent health; the consequence, perhaps, of a generally strict observance of cleanliness on board."
Forty-two vessels made two passages within the season; so that 270 vessels only were employed in the conveyance of emigrants to the port within the year."
I have inquired into the law of the state of New York on this matter, and find that a similar clause applies only to the case of parties afflicted with disease at the time of their embarkation at the foreign ports. I here insert the clause referred to as taken from the revised laws concerning passengers in vessels coming to the state of New York, published during the present year (1850):3. It shall be the duty of the commissioners of emigration hereinafter named to examine into the condition of passengers arriving at the port of New York in any ship or vessel, and for that purpose all or any of the said commissioners, or such other person or persons as they shall appoint, shall be authorized to go on board and through any such ship or vessel; and if, on such examination, there shall be found among such passengers any lunatic, idiot, deaf, dumb, blind or infirm persons, not members of emigrating families, or who from attending circumstances are likely to become permanently a public charge, or who have been paupers in any other country, or who from sickness or disease existing at the time of departing from the foreign port are or are likely soon to become a public charge, they shall report the same to the said mayor particularly, and thereupon, and unless a bond as required in the second section of this Act shall have been given, the said mayor, or the person discharging the duties of his office, shall require, in the indorsement to be made as aforesaid, or on any subsequent indorsement or indorsements thereon, and in addition to the commutation-money, that the owner or consignee of such ship or vessel, with one or more sufficient sureties, shall execute a joint and several bond to the people of the state, in a penalty of 500 dollars for every such passenger, conditioned to indemnify and save harmless the commissioners of emigration, and each and every city, town or county within this state from any further cost or charge which said commissioners or any such city, town or county shall incur for the maintenance or support of the person or persons named in such bond, or any of them, within ten years from the date of such bond. The sureties to the said bond shall be required to justify, before and to satisfaction of the officer making such indorsement, and by their oath or affirmation shall satisfy such officer that they are respectively residents of the state of New York, and worth double the amount of the penalty of such bond, over and above all debts, liabilities and all property exempt from execution. The subsequent indorsement authorized in this section may be made at any time within ten days after such examination or of the landing of any such person or passenger."
It is proposed in this Act to refund one-half the duty now levied on each emigrant who shall come into this province with the declared intention of passing directly through it to the United States, and who shall not have been chargeable upon the province since his arrival therein. This law has been acted upon in one instance this year, the case of a party of Norwegians (the first that have ever arrived at this port), per the ship "Lyna," from Drammen, who all proceeded direct to Chicago. One-half the tax levied on this vessel, amounting to 22£ 1s. 3d., was refunded to the master. There is every prospect that the advantages which this Act affords, in addition to the other inducements that the route of the St. Lawrence offers, will lead to a further increase in this portion of our emigration. This party from Drammen, owing to the competition which existed at the time of their arrival, were carried through, from this place to Chicago, for 25s. each adult, including luggage."
The number who have left the province is unusually large, and is to be accounted for from the fact that employment existed very generally throughout the northern and eastern states in the construction of railroads, affording the description of labour which most of the emigrants required."
On board the ship "Elspeth," there was a party of females, 18 in number, sent out under the auspices of the London Female Emigration Society. They were well provided with every necessary comfort during the passage, and forwarded, at the expense of the Society, to Toronto, where arrangements had been previously made, and a committee appointed to receive them. They were all placed in situations in the course of a few days. As this is the first party sent out by this Society to Canada, it is gratifying to find that the result has been satisfactory, and that, if proper selections be made, there is no doubt that a very considerable number can be annually provided for in Canada.
From Scotland were sent out by the Duke of Argyle, from Tyree and Mull; 50 from Thurso, from the estate of the Duke of Sutherland; and on board the "George," from Oban, there were 11 families, 82 persons, sent out by their landlord, Mr. M'Donald. This party, being very poor, were forwarded at the expense of the emigrant fund to their destination in Glengarry.
The number aided in their emigration from Ireland was 2,427, being a decrease of 1,865 of the same class sent out in 1849. There was an increase of 292 of those sent out by Poor Law Unions, the number being this year 1,573, against 1,261 in 1849. These last were well provided during the voyage, and received from 10s. to 20s. sterling each adult, to enable them to reach their destination; 705 were paid landing-money through this department, amounting to 458£ 2s. 6d. sterling; 366 received, on arrival here, from the masters of the vessels or other agents, the sum of 307£ 10s. sterling, and 502 were paid their money previous to embarkation.
The number of persons sent out from the several Unions, for whom funds were remitted to this department, was as follows:
|Cork Union||254||136£ 17s. 6d.|
|Londonderry Union||56||28£ 10s.|
|Waterford Union||90||67£ 10s.|
|Enniscorthy Union||23||19£ 19s.|
|Dunfanaghy Union||46||19£ 10s.|
Paid by the masters or through their agents:
|Inenderry and Lockington Unions||140||119£|
|Charleston Workhouse||11||No return|
|Rathdown Union||215||183£ 10s.|
Paid previous to embarkation:
|Athy and Abbeylease Unions||227|
Some delay occurred in the remittance of the funds for two of the parties, those from the Cootehill and Dungarvan Unions; but, although the parties had become scattered throughout the country, arrangements were made, through the agents of this department, by which each person received the amount due to him.
Of the emigrants sent out by the Unions, a large proportion consisted of single females, women and children. The proportions are as follows
The single females were chiefly from the Cork, Waterford and Dungarvan Unions. As female domestics were much required throughout the country, they were all without difficulty placed in situations in a satisfactory manner. The party from the Dungarvan Union, notwithstanding the length of time they were on the passage, and the late period of their arrival (9th October), landed here in good health, and were provided for most satisfactorily, as will be seen in the full particulars given of this party in the Appendix.
From this it appears, that of the year's emigration but 18,880 have settled in Canada, and that 13,723 have gone to the United States.The number who have left the province is unusually large, and is to be accounted for from the fact that employment existed very generally throughout northern and eastern states in the construction of railroads, affording the description of labour which most of the emigrants required.
The several railway companies and steam-boat proprietors interested in the routes from Montreal to the United States, viâ Lake Champlain, with a view to attract a portion of the emigrant travel from the St. Lawrence, advertised that they would convey emigrants from Montreal to Buffalo for four dollars each, which was one dollar less than by the St. Lawrence. They were to be forwarded, by steamer and railroad, to Schenectady, where they were to be transhipped to the Erie Canal packets. Being aware of the loss of time, and liability to imposition, to which the emigrants would be exposed on this route, I felt called upon publicly to caution them against it. The time occupied, under the most favourable circumstances, was 12 days; and instances have come to my knowledge of 22 days being taken to reach Buffalo, from Montreal, by this route. The time required by the St. Lawrence route is three-and-a-half days, and frequently no more than seventy hours, for the performance of the whole distance.
The steamers on the St. Lawrence are large and commodious, and afford complete protection to the deck passengers from the weather at all times.
A line of steamers from Montreal to Toronto and Hamilton, calling at all the intermediate ports on the route, and having a speed equal to that of the royal Mail steamers, came first into operation last season. By this line, emigrants were subjected to but one transhipment between Quebec and Hamilton, a distance of about 570 miles, and performed regularly in from three to three-and-a-half days.
In consequence of the advantages secured in this route, two extensive firms in London, largely connected with the passenger trade, established a correspondence with a leading firm engaged in the forwarding and inland transport business in this country, through which parties were enabled to secure, in London, their passages direct to any place in the Western States. A very considerable number of persons from London and Southampton availed themselves of this arrangement; and I have every reason to believe, from the satisfactory manner in which the engagements with those parties were fulfilled, and the now more generally diffused knowledge of the advantages of this route of the St. Lawrence, that it will be adopted by a large increase both of English and foreign emigration."
It has come to my knowledge, also, that the German and Norwegian emigrants, who came by this route last season, were fully satisfied with it, and the accommodation and protection they received upon their journey westwards. I anticipate that the favourable accounts they have sent to their friends will be the means of inducing others to follow their course.
The appointment which your Excellency was pleased to make of a German interpreter during the past season was found most beneficial. It was the means of conveying to the German people arriving here a great degree of confidence; and they were invariably much satisfied on finding a countryman of their own placed here to advise and protect them."
UWInfo | Young Immigrants | Genealogy | Local History | 19th Century Immigration
© Marjorie P. Kohli, Waterloo, Ontario, Canada, 1997-2007
Last updated: February 17, 2007 and maintained by Marj Kohli