JewishGen Discussion Group #JewishGen Re: Ship sailing from Liverpool to Canada ca. 1901 #general

A. E. Jordan

Stephen Stein steinsteve0608@... wrote:
I am trying to find out more about the ship Lake Megantic of the Beaver Line

Some of you are aware that in addition to the genealogy work I am a maritime
historian. In response to Stephen's questions first off understand hat Beaver as
a shipping company was part of a larger British company called Elder Dempster. Any
records that would have survive would likely be with Elder Dempster's archives. I
would suggest starting with the maritime museum in Liverpool and doing some
searching on Elder Dempster.

I believe Halifax would have been the western terminus and the place where most
immigrants would have left the ship. They had a large an well established
immigration set up. There are museums in Halifax dedicated today both to the
immigration and another to Halifax's long maritime history.

During the winter months the St Lawrence River closed to shipping traffic so all
the winter crossings terminated in Halifax, During the summer some ships went on
the river to Quebec or even Montreal. However I believe Lake Megantic only ran to
Halifax year-round. She only operated on that route >from 1900 to 1903. Beaver
Line ceased operations in 1903 when Canadian Pacific starting its Atlantic service
on these same routes.

As for where an American bound immigrant would have crossed the border that sort of
depends on where they were going and what arrangements were made. There was train
service >from Halifax and they could have crossed in Vermont and that would put them
in the St. Albans records group. However it was also possible to travel west if
that was your final destination and then the most likely crossing point was near
Detroit. Less likely but possibly at some times was to take a steamer >from Halifax
down the coast to either Boston or New York primarily although it made stops up and
down and the coast line.

Someone might have some more specific experience with these questions but I think
that's a good start. Good luck with your research.

Allan Jordan

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