Page images
PDF
EPUB

the canal was made) to several Atlantic ports. This part of his report demonstrates, as we think, pretty clearly, that “the trade on” this canal “could not be diverted into any channel injurious to the interests of the State.”

Mr. Mills has made a very full, and intelligent exhibit of information which he has collected in reference to the probable amount of revenue from this canal. The Commissioners have no doubt, that this statement has been made with fidelity, and they have no information in their possession, which would enable them to communicate any additional facts on this point.

WM. C. BOUCK,

In behalf of the Canal Commissioners. March 2d, 1835.

[ocr errors]

DOCUMENTS.

REPORT

Of Frederick C. Mills, Engineer,

"To the Honorable the Canal Commissioners of the State of

New-York.

GEN TLEMEN

In compliance with instructions received from your Board, also from Jonas Earll, jun., acting Commissioner, and in accordance with the “act, passed April 30th, 1834," I have made a survey and examination for a navigable canal “ from Rochester up the Genesee valley to Olean on the Allegany,” and also for “a side cut from the village of Dansville, down the Canascraga creek, to the aforesaid canal, at or near Mount Morris," and very respectfully submit the result of my examinations in the following re port, illustrated by the requisite maps, profiles and plans.

In examining the country, embracing all the routes possessing claims to consideration, (within the provisions of the act) I have been ably assisted by Henry Stanley Dexter and J. Clements Stocker, and feel bound to acknowledge my obligation, for the intelligent and assiduous performance of the several duties assigned them; I also received material aid from the result of former surveys, and from residents, who for sometime have been alive and thoughtful on the subject.

Having learned that the principal difficulties on the route, were south of Mount Morris, and that the most important were the slide banks on the Genesee river, above Portageville; the pass round the falls of the Genesee, in the town of Nunda; the summit and the amount of lockage thrown together at the village of Mount Morris; my attention was early directed to those points, and before making a permanent location of any portion of the main line, and with the hope that I might find a route, which would avoid the greatest part of these difficulties, I made my examinations upon an extended and liberal scale, and after traversing much of the country on the range of high grounds, forming the dividing ridge between the waters that flow into the Ohio on the south, and Lake [Assem. No. 42.]

2

Ontario on the north, I was fully persuaded that the Oil and Black creek summit presented the most favorable point of connexion with the Genesee and Allegany. In the atlas accompanying this report, to which relerence will be made, you will find, First, a general

map of the country froin Olean to Rochester, including the surveys of Lime, Beaver, Mud and Fish lakes, in the north part of Cattarraugus county.

Secondly, a map upon an enlarged scale, upon which I have delineated the profiles of all the different routes.

Thirdly, plans of locks, aqueducts, culverts, bridges, &c. In addition to which, I have executed in a condensed form and annexed to this report, a general map of the country in the vicinity of the canal route, on a scale of 21 miles to the inch.

The line which I have selected as the basis of my estimates, has been located with unusual care. It commences near the boathouse on the level of the Allegany river at Olean Point, thence, (to avoid high lands,) the line winds round the easterly side of the village of Hamilton, following up the Olean creek valley, upon the west side, over very favorable grounds for the construction of a canal, to the junction of the Ischua fceder with the summit level, and is 91 miles in length from Olean Point.

Estimated cost, $109,619.87.

Upon this portion of the route, I have located 10 levels, varying from 4.55 chains to 3 miles 46 chains in length, 9 locks of 8 feet and one of 7 feet, 1 culvert, 18 bridges, 3 waste-weirs, and one wooden aqueduct, 60 feet long on stone piers, in crossing the Ischua, about 50 chains north of Hinsdale. If necessary, a feeder from Olean creek may be added at a very

about one mile below Hinsdale. The Olean is a very sluggish stream, formed by the union of the Ischua with Oil creek at Hinsdale, flows through fertile alluvial flats, about : mile wide and 200 feet below the tops of the hills on either side. From the summit level, there is a descent to the Allegany river at the confluence of Olean creek, of 79 feet, and at the boat-house, (37 chains below,) of 804 feet.

small expense,

SUMMIT LEVEL. This level commences on E. Wood's land, and following up the Oil creek valley, through part of the towns of Hinsdale, Cuba and Haight, terminates on the head waters of Black creek, about 4 miles 51 chains from the village of Cuba. On this summit, between the Genesee and the Allegany, a little east of Cady & Baldwin's mills, there is a swamp of about 2 miles in length, principally covered with timber, the waters of which drain both ways, forming tributaries to Oil and Black creeks. (Deepest cut on the summit, 12 feet.) From Cady's mill, the line was carried down on the north side of Oil creek valley, to the first lock, descending south near Mr. Wood's, where, from a feeder of 21 miles in length, the whole of Ischua creek can be received into the summit; 3 wasteweirs, 11 farm and six road bridges will be requird.

Cost of summit level, 861,533.22.

1

[ocr errors]

The summit pond might be extended down either side of the creek with facility, obtaining generally a choice of cut without running much upon the face of the steep side hill, and on first travelling over the ground, (having in view the accommodation of villages on the line,) I thought most favorably of the south side; but on a more minute examination, found that the expense would be materially increased, owing to an additional aqueduct, and very high and long embankment necessary for conducting the Ischua feeder over Oil creek valley, at which point the surface of the croek is 32.65 feet below bottom.

On Oil and Ischua creeks, there are 5 saw-mills, 2 carding machines and 2 grist-mills, which will lose all their water by the canal in the dry season. Six saw-mills and one grist-mill on Olean creek will sustain a proportionable loss of water during the same season. It is supposed, however, that the damage, (if any,) will be small, inasmuch as the saw-mills are seldom run, except in the spring and fall, when there is an abundance of water. *

The summit will be eleven miles and a half in length, is 79 feet above the Allegany at Olean Point, 978 feet above the Erie canal at Rochester, and 1,484 feet above low tides.

A passage here from the Ohio valley to the Genesee valley is less elevated than any other passage that has been examined, except the route up the Conewango valley; via Lake Eric, Buffalo, and the Erie canal.

According to Mr. Whippo's survey, this summit is 724 feet above Lake Erie, and as Lake Erie is 568 feet above the ocean, it results that the said summit stands 1,292 feet above tides; 192 feet lower than that of Oil and Black creeks.

It is, however, observable that in all the examinations that have been made from the Ohio valley, either to the Potomac or the Susquehannah valley, no passage has been found so low as the one I have adopted, by some hundred fect.

That of Blair's gap summit on the Pennsylvania canal route, is 2,291 feet, and that of the Chesapeake and Ohio canal, 1,898 above the Atlantic. To pass the latter, a tunnel of 4 miles in length will be required. The former is effected by a rail-road 36,77 miles in length, (from Johnstown to Hollidaysburgh,) overcoming an aggregate ascent and descent of 2,570 feet; 1,398 of which is on the eastern and 1,179 on the western side of the mountain.

From the summit, the line takes a northeasterly direction down the valley of Black creek. For about 5 miles (except some few points where the high bank approaches the creek abruptly, which points may be avoided by turning the channel of the crcek at a very small expense,) a favourable route can be obtained over a regular surface gradually descending at the rate of 12 fect to the mile to Bruce's mill, where a rapid fall takes place. In 21 miles, which brings us to the point of leaving Black creek valley, there are 11 locks of 8 fcet cach.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

Smith's mills will sustain serious injury, and an appraisal of damages will be necessary.

« PreviousContinue »