Saint John, the chief city and seaport of New Brunswick, Canada, capital of St. John co., on a harbor of the same name, at the mouth of the river St. John in the bay of Fundy, 84 m. by the course of the river or 54 m. in a straight line S. S. E. of Fredericton, and 130 m. W. N. W. of Halifax, N. S.; lat. 45° 14' 6" N., lon. 66° 3' 30" W.; pop. in 1861, 27,317; in 1871, 28,805; in 1875, including suburbs, about 50,000. The greater portion of the city stands on a rocky peninsula projecting into the harbor on the E. side of the river. The site rises gradually from the harbor. The streets are wide, and chiefly laid out at right angles; some of them are very steep and cut through the solid rock to a depth of 30 or 40 ft. The buildings are principally of brick and stone, and there are many fine public edifices, the chief of which are the Roman Catholic cathedral, the provincial lunatic asylum, the city hospital, the court house and jail, the market house, the Carleton city hall, the opera house, the post office, the Victoria hotel, the marine hospital, the almshouse, the academy of music, the dramatic lyceum, the mechanics' institute, the skating rink, and the barracks.
The Dominion penitentiary, a large granite building, is about a mile from the city, and about a mile and a half distant is the Rural cemetery, containing 110 acres. St. John is lighted with gas, and is supplied with water from Little river, 4 m. distant, by two iron pipes having a joint capacity of 5,500,000 gallons a day. Horse cars connect the city with Portland and Indian-town. On the W. side of the river is a portion of the city called Carleton. Adjoining the main portion of the city and practically part of it is the town of Portland (pop. in 1871, 12,520), which is well built, lighted with gas, and supplied with water, and contains the residences of many St. John merchants, six churches, and several ship yards, saw mills, and founderies. St. John has communication with Halifax by the Intercolonial railway, and with Fredericton and Bangor, Me., by the European and North American railroad. Steamers run regularly to Fredericton and other points on the river, to St. Andrews and St. Stephen, to Annapolis, Yarmouth, and other points in Nova Scotia, and to Portland, Me., and Boston. The harbor is one of the finest in America, and is never blocked with ice. The entrance, about 2 m.
S. of the city, is protected by Partridge island, on which are a quarantine hospital and a lighthouse with a light 166 ft. above the sea. The passage W. of the island has 10 ft. of water and that E. of it 16 ft., while abreast of the city there is from 8 to 22 fathoms. On the E. side of the channel below the city a breakwater has been constructed as a protection against southerly gales. There is a peculiar phenomenon at the entrance of the river into the harbor about 1 1/2 m. above the city; the stream, discharging an immense body of water, is forced through a rocky gorge, 160 yards wide and 400 long, and makes a fall of about 17 ft. The tide in the harbor rises ordinarily 21 ft., but at the vernal equinox 25 ft. At low water the waters of the river are about 12 ft. higher than those of the harbor, at high water 5 ft. lower, while for 15 or 20 minutes of each ebb and flow of the tide they are at the same level, during which vessels can pass the falls. Above the falls the tide seldom rises more than 4 ft. Spanning the gorge, about 100 ft. above low water, is a magnificent suspension bridge, 640 ft. long.
The value of foreign commerce for the three years ending June 30, 1875, was as follows:
The entrances during the last named year were 1,131, tonnage 377,614, of which 419, tonnage 122,567, were in ballast; clearances, 1,141, tonnage 443,981, of which 16, tonnage 6,535, were in ballast. The number of vessels belonging to the port on Jan. 1, 1875, was 807, with an aggregate tonnage of 263,401. The exports consist chiefly of lumber, which is shipped to Great Britain, the West Indies, and the United States. The manufactures of St. John are of considerable importance, the amount of capital invested, according to the census of 1871, being $1,225,942; number of hands employed, 4,103; value of products, $5,094,976. The number of ships built during the year ending Dec. 31, 1874, was 58, with an aggregate tonnage of 35,872. Among the other articles of manufacture are iron castings, nails, edge tools, lumber, leather, boots and shoes, soap and candles, paper, cotton goods, rolling mill products, rope, hats, and carriages. There are two banks with a joint capital of $2,000,-000, three branch banks, a savings institution, and three banking firms. St. John is divided into nine wards, and is governed by a mayor, nine aldermen, and nine councilmen. It has a police force and a good fire department, with a fire alarm telegraph.
There are several good hotels, three orphan asylums, an industrial school, a grammar and several common schools, several private or denominational schools and academies, a historical society, a natural history society, a young men's Christian association, four daily, one tri-weekly, and nine weekly newspapers, a bi-weekly periodical, and 31 churches, viz.: 5 Baptist, 1 Calvinistic Baptist, 1 Christian, 1 Congregational, 6 Episcopal, 2 Free Christian Baptist, 1 Methodist Episcopal, 6 Presbyterian, 1 Reformed Presbyterian, 2 Roman Catholic, and 5 Wesleyan Methodist. - St. John was founded by American loyalists who left the United States at the close of the revolution, and was created a city by royal charter in 1785.