1908 postcard ‘City of Chatham’ steamship leaving Chatham Ontario

$8.50 CAD

– Sold Out

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Nice image of the steamship leaving dock, on the Thames River at Chatham Ontario.

In background homes and General Hospital and nurses’ homes. On side of steamer ‘CHATHAM-DETROIT’.

“City of Chatham”       LEAVING CHATHAM , ONT

Dated on front ‘7/14/08’. Text says “Turn this card upside down and notice reflection”. He is right!

On front, 'Published for Powell & Davis, Chatham Ont. 4065' On back, postcard from 'Warwick Bros. & Rutter, Limited, Printers, Toronto'.

Mailed to Guysborough Nova Scotia, Chatham postmark. 

Ink smudge on UL corner front.


The City of Chatham made its first appearance on the Thames on May 24, 1889, and right from the beginning there developed a long-standing love affair between the citizens of Chatham and the new steamer. Owned by the Chatham Navigation Company, the craft was 125 feet long, had a 28-foot beam and a seven-foot draft. Costing $25,000 the City could travel 16 miles per hour and could transport 800 passengers to anywhere the Thames led.

It was said that during its span of more than 20 years transporting people between Chatham and Detroit that every person in the City of Chatham, no matter how old or how young, eventually made the trip to Detroit on this vessel.

By 1912, the directors of the Chatham Navigation Company felt that if they wanted to bring more people from Detroit to Chatham, they needed to have a larger steamer. Although emotionally difficult to do, the City of Chatham was sold and a new ship, the Ossifrage, was bought to replace it.


Warwick Brothers & Rutter, Ltd., a Toronto-based printing company, is known to have published in the vicinity of 7,500 picture postcards between 1903 and 1912. Warwick produced colour lithographed cards on its own presses in Canada rather than outsourcing that work to printers in Germany or England, as was then the prevailing practice among its Canadian competitors (and among postcard publishers in most other countries as well).

Warwick was the first Canadian firm to enter the field with Canadian-made coloured cards, leading the way in three-colour and four-colour printing processes and making available the highest class of color printing at a popular price.