This legal action is best understood with some background. For the Glynn family’s involvement with the Maid of the Mist boat ride in Niagara Falls, it began in the early 1971.
The Glynn family became involved in 1971, and according to the book Ontario’s Niagara Parks, 100 Years by George A. Seibel, published by The National Parks Commission in 1985, James Glynn bought the “assets” of Maid of the Mist Steamboat Company in 1971. If this was indeed an asset purchase rather than a stock purchase, his boat tour operation has also legally existed only since 1971. There was no tender for bids. In fact, over the history of the boat ride since the early 1800’s, the boat service was rarely (almost never) made available to bidders.
In the book, Ontario’s Niagara Parks, 100 Years by George A. Seibel, published by The National Parks Commission in 1985, it explains how one of the boats was built in Wheatley, Ontario and sailed on Lake Erie and the Niagara River where it was hauled out of the river, put on a flatbed truck, and driven through Queen Victoria Park in the middle of the day in a heavy tourist time, and lowered into the river on June 13, 1972. The book has a photo of the boat on the flatbed as it was hauled through the park.
In 1976, Maid of the Mist IV was launched. This boat could carry 200 passengers. The Maid of the Mist IV is 72 feet (22m) long and has a beam of 24 feet (7m).
On June 6, 1983, the Maid of the Mist V was launched into service. It was built of steel construction and could carry 300 passengers. This boat became the ninth boat launched during the history of the Maid of the Mist Company.
In 1990, the Maid of the Mist VI was launched into service. The all steel double deck boat is capable of carrying 600 passengers at a time.
On Friday May 30, 1997, the first section of the new Maid of the Mist VII arrived on a flatbed trailer to the Maid of the Mist docks. The first piece of the hull measuring 31 feet long by 12 feet wide by 13.3 feet high weighed 27,730 pounds. Over the following weeks the new boat was delivered in 14 separate pieces including 8 additional pieces of the hull. When assembled and welded together the new Maid of the Mist VII was 80 feet long, weighing 145 tons and was capable of carrying 582 passengers. The Maid of the Mist VII replaced the smaller Maid of the Mist III which is being used only on a standby basis.
The new Maid of the Mist VII was officially launched into service on Friday July 11, 1997. This vessel was originally built at Cartier Construction in Belleville, Ontario.
Some Freequently Asked Questions:
When did boat service begin at Niagara Falls? 1846. Rowboats carried passengers in earlier years.
Has boat service been offered continuously since 1846? There have been a few periods over the years that service was not available.
Who owns Niagara Falls? The Falls, one of the wonders of the world, are half in the United States (Niagara Falls, New York) and half in Canada (Niagara Falls, Ontario). The border is right down the middle of the Niagara River. The water of the Niagara River beneath the Falls where the boats operate is water that may be used jointly by Canada and the U.S. by agreement between the two countries.
What entity regulates the water between Canada and the U.S.? The International Joint Commission deals with all water issues. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/International_Joint_Commission. The International Boundary Commission deals with the location of the border. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/International_Boundary_Commission#International_Boundary_Commission
Who owns the land on either side of the Niagara River? The property bordering the Falls is owned by two governments â€“ Province of Ontario and State of New York. The land in Canada is part of Niagara Parks. The land in the United States is part of Niagara Falls State Park.
So this is government-owned land, is that correct? Yes.
Who manages the land on either side of the Niagara River at the Falls? The Province of Ontario granted management of the Niagara Parks to The Niagara Parks Commission. Their authority was granted by the Niagara Parks Act. In the U.S., the New York Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation (more commonly referred to as New York State Parks) controls park lands in the state of New York.
How does a boat operator obtain the rights to operate at Niagara Falls? The Niagara Parks Commission and the New York Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation independently enter into agreements to make the dock area available to a third party so that boat rides can be offered at Niagara Falls.
Who are the current boat operators? Maid of the Mist Steamboat Company, Limited is the operator in Canada. Maid of the Mist Corporation is the operator in the United States.
Have the current operators of the boat service owned it since 1846? No. The current operators took over in an asset purchase in 1971.
Did the current operators name the boat rides “Maid of the Mist?” No. The name comes from an Indian legend. The legend of the Maid of the Mist is that the Thunder God Hinum and the origin of the Falls of Niagara. This legend originated with the Neuter Indian Nation which occupied the Niagara District when the first French priests came to their villages to preach Christianity.
The story goes that Indian tribes were dying of an unknown cause. Each year the Indians were sending canoes filled with fruit over the Falls to appease the God Hinum and his two sons who the Indians believed lived behind the Falls. When the Indian luck did not improve, they felt that their God was not satisfied. Consequently they began sacrificing their most beautiful Indian maiden each year but still their luck did not improve.
One year, Lelawalo, the daughter of the Chief of the tribe was sacrificed to the spirit of the Falls. She was placed into a canoe filled with food and sent on her way over the mighty cataract. Legend says that this Indian maiden was caught in the arms of the God’s sons. Recalling that she had been sent to her death, the Indian maiden agreed to take one of the sons as her husband with one condition.
One of the sons relented and told her that there was a poisonous snake that lived at the bottom of the river would get hungry once a year and crawl to the where the Indians were and poison their water. The Indians would drink the poisoned water and die. After burial, the snake would return to consume their bodies.
The Indian maiden convinced the youngest son of the God to allow her to go back to the tribe one more time to tell them what the snake was doing and how to kill them with spears. One night when the snake returned, the Indian braves were waiting and speared the snake. The snake crawled back to the edge of the Falls and died with its body shaped like a horseshoe.
Legend has it that the shape of the Falls became horseshoe shaped from the body of the snake. It is said that it remains to this day, showing that the Gods are still protecting the Indians against evil spirits.