PS Accommodation

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The Canadian paddlewheeler Accommodation was the first successful steamboat built entirely in North America.[1][2]

Financed by brewer John Molson, she was constructed by John Jackson and John Bruce in Montréal in 1809, using engines built in Forges du Saint-Maurice, Trois-Rivières (long known for ironmongery).[1] At a cost of £2000 she had two open-faced paddle wheels and an optional sail.[1]

Her maiden voyage was a thirty-six-hour run from Montréal to Québec City[3] on November 3, 1809.[4]

She was not a commercial success; by 1810, Molson had lost £4000 on her, and she was broken up for scrap.[1] She nevertheless pioneered steam packets on the St. Lawrence River and Great Lakes;[2] by 1819, there were seven in regular service on the river,[1] while the lakes featured Frontenac on Lake Ontario, General Stacey Smyth on the Saint John River, and Royal William (famous for making the first transatlantic crossing under steam in 1831) on the Québec City-Halifax run.[5]



  1. ^ a b c d e Marsh, John. "Accommodation" in The Canadian Encyclopedia. Volume 1, p.10. Edmonton: Hurtig Publishers, 1988
  2. ^ a b Martin, Joseph E. (2017). "Titans". Canada's History. 97 (5): 47–53. ISSN 1920-9894.
  3. ^ "John Molson". Dictionary of Canadian Biography Online. University of Toronto. 2000. Retrieved 2008-06-23.
  4. ^ Fleming, Sandford (1893). "Note on Early Steamboats". Transactions of the Canadian Institute. 3 (1891–1892): 175. Retrieved 1 May 2013.
  5. ^ Barris, Ted. "Steamboats and Paddle Wheelers" in The Canadian Encyclopedia. Volume 4, p.2075. Edmonton: Hurtig Publishers, 1988


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