Lower St. Lawrence Service Summer Excursions pamphlet, 1913
Quebec Steamship Co. Limited
Les Amis des Jardins de Métis Collection
The St. Lawrence was busy with ships and vessels of all sizes and descriptions. Travellers could disembark at Gaspé or sometimes at a wharf in one of the coastal villages. The Quebec Gulf Ports Steamship Company began bringing passengers to the region on a regular basis in 1872 after obtaining the lucrative contract from the Royal Mail to transport mail from Quebec City to New Brunswick and Nova Scotia. Even if their paddle wheelers were technologically obsolete, the vessels were reliable and fast-moving, surpassing 14 knots in speed.
The company was re-named the Quebec Steamship Company in 1880. It offered occasional service to Little Metis, where the absence of a wharf meant that passengers had to clamber onto small rowboats and sailboats and traverse a rocky shoreline before getting into a waiting calèche to be taken to one of three hotels in the village.