The Francis Brown collection on the whaler 'Canada' contains correspondence, settlement claims and statements, as well as clippings documenting the dispute between the United States and Brazil over the loss, off the coast of Brazil, of the ship 'Canada'. Correspondents include Secretary of State Hamilton Fish, Bancroft Davis, Acting Secretary of State and Watson Webb. The material forms part of Francis Brown's research into the 'Canada' which resulted in the article "The Case of the 'Canada' - A Chapter of Whaling and Diplomacy," a photocopy of which is also included.
The 'Canada" was a 545-ton whaler built in 1823 in New Bedford, Massachusetts. It was refitted in 1856 for a four-year whaling voyage in the North Pacific. The 'Canada' left New Bedford on October 16, 1856, under the agency of Gideon Allen and Sons and with Barton Ricketson as captain. On November 27, 1856, the 'Canada' ran aground on the Garcas Reef off of the coast of Brazil, thus beginning a decade long diplomatic dispute over the settlement of its body and cargo.