1870


The Philadelphia and Reading Railroad buys out the Schuylkill Navigation. ** William Roberts presents his Ohio River plan to Colonel William E. Merrill's committee. ** 'Francis Folly' dam on the Merrimack River canal system is reconstructed. ** Despite the failure of the Duluth Harbor Bill in Congress, financier Jay Cooke founds the Minnesota Canal and Harbor Improvement Company and begins construction on a canal to sever Minnesota Point, opening the Port of Duluth directly to Lake Superior.

 

1871


June
Superior, Wisconsin, obtains an injunction against the completion of the Duluth, Michigan, harbor canal. Before the papers can arrive from Leavenworth, Kansas, the citizens of Duluth complete the construction.

The Seneca River Towing Path of the New York State Barge Canal, connecting Mud Lock on the Oswego Canal to the outlet of Onondaga Lake, is discontinued. ** The Pennsylvania Railroad buys out the Camden and Amboy Railroad, acquiring the Delaware and Raritan Canal. The D&R loses its use of the Schuylkill Navigation. ** Net earnings of the Delaware and Raritan Canal - $1,202,419. ** Chicago completes the deep cut necessary to convert the upper sections of the Illinois and Michigan Canal to a sanitary canal, reversing the flow of the Chicago River. ** Michigan's St. Clair Flats Ship Canal opens.

Canada

Chicago businessman George W. McMullen arrives in Ottawa as part of a delegation to confer on an enlargement of the Chicago and Huron Shipping Canal.

 

1872


Jul 8
Construction begins on the Sturgeon Bay Ship Canal, connecting Green Bay with Lake Michigan.

Maine's Cumberland-Oxford Canal ceases operations.

 

Erie Canal
17 boats sink on Section I this year. ** The steam-powered canal boat William Newman is built in Buffalo, New York.

 

1873


The William Newman makes a record run between Troy and Buffalo - four days and twenty-two hours.

 

Erie Canal
Navigation on the Erie Canal is held up at lock 6 in Watervliet for 72 hours when a weak foundation under the lock, gives way. ** 12 boats sink on Section I this year.

 

1874


12,424,705 barrels of wheat and corn are shipped on the Illinois and Michigan Canal. ** Once again work begins on Wisconsin's Portage Canal. The U. S. Government begins rebuilding the Fort Winnebago lock. ** Colonel Merrill recommends Congress authorize thirteen locks and movable dams on the Ohio, between Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and Wheeling, West Virginia.

 

1876


June
The Portage Canal is completed.

Jun 30
The Boscobel becomes the first boat to use the Portage Canal.

The need for the graving docks at Brooklyn's Erie Basin begins to slacken. ** The Chenango Canal has largely fallen into disuse.

 

1877


January
A state investigating commission recommends abandoning the Chemung Canal.

 

1878


May
U. S. canal engineer William Gooding dies.

Jun 28
The Sturgeon Bay Ship Canal opens; currently for small craft only.

France obtains a Columbian charter to build a canal across Panama. ** The Chenango Canal ceases operations.

 

1879


The Compagnie Universelle du Canal Interoceanique de Panama is formed.

 

 

© 2001 David Minor / Eagles Byte

 

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