With Mr Snellgrove we had an unlooked for encounter. The master was on a visit to us at Toronto. On reading notices of a meeting to be held in favor of Protection and of the government issuing paper currency instead of gold, we decided to attend. The first speaker was Isaac Buchanan, who deluged us with figures about Bullionism and the balance of trade. We were relieved when he ended.
The master said it was proof to him God was with us; we thought we were lost when we grounded, yet that sandbank was what had saved us. Just then Mr Snellgrove came down the ladder. 'I have just bade the captain good night, he said, 'and I am authorized by him to inform you all danger is past.
How much more the speaker would have said I do not know, for Mr Snellgrove, who had come forward on his beginning to speak, here shouted 'Treason! The master to prevent a scene, for a young shepherd moved to catch hold of the offender, gave out the 100th psalm, and we closed in peace. The hold was so dark that Mr Kerr could not see to sew, so on fine days he worked on deck.
Mr Snellgrove was about to say more when a murmur of disapproval caused him to slink to his berth. My master came forward and taking Mr Kerr by the hand said, 'I respected you before; I honor you now, and all, men and women, pressed to shake his hand.
He had left Greenock in such haste that he had not time to go to his lodging for any of his belongings. Mr Snellgrove affected to despise him both for his trade and his political principles, and never missed an opportunity to sneer at him; Mr Kerr never replied. Day followed day without relieving the monotony.
The officer's visit was brief; the boat pushed off and we had our last look of Mr Snellgrove, transformed from a steerage-passenger into a dandy expecting to mix with the grandees of Quebec.
Before the captain could say a word to the customs-officer, Mr Snellgrove asked him whether the governor-general was at his residence, and on being told he was, said he would accompany his majesty's official on shore, and, so saying stepped on the boat and seated himself in silent dignity in the stern, turning his back to us who were looking on.
Two needlewomen were taken in at the lodgings in Wyndham Street; parcels from Swan and Edgar's, Marshall and Snellgrove were not then, or at least had not loomed to the grandeur of an entire block of houses, addressed to Lady Anna Lovel, were frequent at the door, somewhat to the disgust of the shopmen, who did not like to send goods to Lady Anna Lovel in Wyndham Street.
The only information he gave was, that he had been in the mercantile line, and that he was to be addressed as Mr Snellgrove. He waved his right hand in conversation and spoke in a lofty way, which to Allan and myself was funny.
Next day, in talking with the captain, he told the master Snellgrove had kept a draper's shop at Maybole, failed for a big sum, and had come to Canada expecting to get, with the letters of introduction he had from a number of noblemen, a government situation. The intention being to weigh anchor on the tide flowing, leave to go on shore was refused to the passengers.