Steamboat Ontario at Troupville

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Steamboat Ontario 2


Based on the info below, it appears that the first steamboat in regular service on the Great Lakes stopped in Sodus Point on its maiden voyage on April 25, 1817 commanded by Captain Malaby.


From Wikipedia:


Sources disagree as to which was the first steamboat on the Great Lakes. Some say it was the Canadian built Frontenac (170 feet), launched on September 7, 1816, at Ernestown, Ontario (about 18 miles from Kingston). Others say it was the U.S. built Ontario (110 feet), launched in the spring of 1817 at Sacketts Harbor, New York. It appears that while the Frontenac was launched first, the Ontario began active service first. The Ontario began its regular service in April, 1817, and the Frontenac made its first trip to the head of the lake on June 5.[1]




Geneva Gazette (Geneva, NY), 17 May 1817



Marine List

ARRIVED – April 24 – Sloop Geneva, May, from Kingston, 2 days, with passengers. Schr.  Sachem, Masters, 24 hours from Sacket’s Harbor, bound up the bay. Capt. Masters reports that the Ice left Sacket’s Harbor yesterday.
25 – Schooner Julia, Whitney, 1 day from Kingston, in ballast. The elegant new Steam Boat Ontario, Malaby, with 8 or 10 passengers, arrived at the wharf at 11 o.clock A.M. Left Sacket’s Harbor yesterday at 6 o’clock A.M. but did not clear the ice until 9 A.M. Arrived at Oswego at 3 P.M. Left Oswego early this morning. The Steam Boat will proceed to Genesee river this evening.
27 – New schooner Woolsey, Rounds, 1 day from Sacket’s Harbor, in ballast. Schooner Olive Branch, Johnson, from Kingston, bound to Yorkwith 56 passengers, which are part of a large number from New-York, who are proceeding to settle in Upper Canada, in consequence of grants of land from the British Government .
28 – Schr. Oswegatchie, Holmes, from Genesee river, in ballast. Capt. H.. reports the Steam Boat carried away one of her water wheels and put into   Genesee river. Schooner Laura, Fish, from Niagara, bound up the bay.
29 – Schooner Bull-Dog, Hollister, 12 hours from Sandy Creek, ballast.

CLEARED – April 26 – Schr. Julia, Whitney, for Kingston, cargo Flour and Pork.