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Romeo and Annette /
Upper Canada

Hull #815 (Dick Warkentin newsclipping Jan. 10, 1997). Canadian List of Shipping 1956: Romeo and Annette [C.190421] registered at Owen Sound; built at Owen Sound in 1949. 86'4 x 36'1 x 10'3; 165 g.t.; 88 n.t.; 350 hp. Owned by Restigouche Ferries Ltd., Cross Point, Québec. Steel motor vessel [C.190421] passenger and automobile ferry built at Owen Sound in 1949 by Russel Brothers Ltd. and launched as a] Romeo and Annette 1949 - 1966; renamed b] Upper Canada in 1966.

"Originally launched as the Romeo and Annette, the Upper Canada was was the 822nd ship Russel Bros. built (Fred) Russel said. It was one of two ferries built for Capt. Romeo Allard, who ran a ferry service betweenBathurst, New Brunswick and Québec's Gaspé Peninsula, he and (Bob) Farley recalled. A similar vessel, the Ongiara, was built a few years later and still carries passengers and service vehicles to Toronto Island from the city on a daily basis..." - Owen Sound SunTimes, 1/04/97

Upper Canada on a 1997 return to her original port of Owen Sound.
Photo by Marjorie Couchman Black.

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Owen Sound SunTimes May 28, 1949

 


Photo Date: Aug. 19th, 1971
Photo and tables below courtesy Great Lakes Vessels Index, Historical Collections of the Great Lakes,
Bowling Green State University

 

 

OSMRM Collection

 

From Russel company brochure: BARGES - SCOWS - FERRIES.
Gerry Ouderkirk archive.

 

OSMRM Collection
courtesy Harold Woodruff 1988.
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OSMRM Collection
courtesy Harold Woodruff 1988.
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OSMRM Collection.

 

Can. Transportation, March 1950. Gerry Ouderkirk Collection.

 

Joe Fossey Collection.

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OSMRM Collection.

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Additional comments from Boatnerd: I worked aboard the 21-car ferry "Romeo & Juliette" built in 1953 and retired off the Millidgeville run, Kennebacasis River, NB in 2002. She had survived being replaced by a bridge on 2 previous runs - one at Campbellton, Bay of Chaleur and the other at Chatham, Miramichi River. She was operated by the Highways - NB Dept of Transportation. Her steering-gear bore Russel Bros. manufacturing plate & there was quite the commotion when it needed repairs ["we can't get parts - they're no longer in business!"]. And to her last days, she carried "Owen Sound, Ont" as her Port of Registry [Saint John, just down-river, is a deep-sea port] which totally bewildered the tourist traffic. Much-loved by the locals of the Kingston Peninsula, and a credit to her builders... Been on hundreds of trips to and from Pelee Island visiting relatives as a kid. Lots of memories riding
on that ferry especially during bad weather. It is quite wide for its length and has a relatively round bottom, rode like a cork in bad weather...
Upper Canada was tied up in the river just north of the Henderson Bridge, good shots from the bridge (the bridge is on Rt. 611. Looks down on
the Jonick Dock where Ryerson unloads). She hasn't moved since they towed her in years ago (2003?). The owner of the vessel also owns
the adjacent shore property. She's been listed for sale, & hasn't run in years... Mac MacKay notes (04.17.09): "Her Canadian registry was
suspended January 14, 2008. This usually happens when the owner can't be reached or fails to renew registration. She does not appear as
Upper Canada in US registry." PHOTO: Upper Canada at Lorain, Ohio, April 15, 2009. Mike Nicholls (boatnerd.com).

 

For more Russel exhibits visit Owen Sound Marine & Rail Museum 1165 1st Ave West, Owen Sound, ON N4K 4K8
(519) 371-3333     http://marinerail.com