Fur­ther ex­ploits of the Ann Sis­son

Ottawa Citizen - - LETTERS -

Re: On the hunt for a ship­wreck here in Ot­tawa, Oct. 6.

Ku­dos to An­drew King and friends, as well as Mike Kaulbars and (posthumously) two ear­lier Ot­tawa her­itage ad­vo­cates, Court­ney Bond and Harry Walker, who have kept alive the story of the 19th-cen­tury steamship aban­doned in Bri­tan­nia Bay, some of its skele­ton still vis­i­ble to­day.

In his ar­ti­cle about the Ann Sis­son, King de­scribes the ship’s 1860 voy­age up the Ot­tawa River car­ry­ing the young Prince of Wales (fu­ture King Ed­ward VII) from Aylmer to Pon­tiac, and writes: “That was it, re­ally, for the steamship’s mo­ment in the royal spot­light.” In fact, the same steamship would also carry the prince’s younger brother — Prince Arthur, the fu­ture Duke of Con­naught and Canada’s gover­nor gen­eral from 1911 to 1916 — dur­ing his royal visit to the Up­per Ot­tawa Val­ley in Oc­to­ber 1869.

Apart from the ves­sel’s vi­tal ser­vice to all peo­ple through­out the re­gion in the mid-1800s, the fact that the Ann Sis­son trans­ported two of Queen Vic­to­ria’s sons on note­wor­thy na­tion­build­ing trips dur­ing its rel­a­tively brief time ply­ing the wa­ters of the Ot­tawa River un­der­scores the sig­nif­i­cance of the re­dis­cov­ered hulk ly­ing off the Bri­tan­nia shore. Randy Boswell, Car­leton Uni­ver­sity, direc­tor, Ot­tawa His­tor­i­cal So­ci­ety

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