I found this online and felt it needed to be out in the world.

Information submitted by Leona Kidd from a newspaper article out of the  Carleton Place Canadian. Beckwith Heritage Committee



Three courageous youths were credited with saving the life of a young swimmer, Robert Henderson, 9, of Carleton Place, last Wednesday afternoon. Robert Henderson, the son of Mr. and Mrs. Cecil Henderson, of George Street, was swimming in the Mississippi River, near Manney’s Pier with a young friend. They were both in shallow water but the current caught them and pulled them into a deeper spot. Robert’s friend who could swim a bit, was able to make his way back to the shore but Robert, a non-swimmer, was trapped. The three youths who saved him, Lloyd Brunton and Bert Leach of the Prospect district and Allan Salter of Montague Township were sitting on the shore at the time of the accident.

In an interview with this writer, last week, at the Carleton Place High School which the boys attend, the youths told this story of the incident: “We had taken part in the Carleton Place High School Cadet inspection and afterwards had gone down to the river to cool off in the water,” said one.

“We saw the two young boys jump into the water and splash around. Suddenly one of them, Robert Henderson yelled for help, while the other boy came back to the shore. We thought that maybe the fellow in the water was just pretending to be in trouble, so we asked his friend if he could swim. He said no, so we jumped into the water to help him.”

“Since I was standing in a shallow a part I was able to grab him and keep his head above the water, explained Allen Salter, “but the current was pulling me out of my depth and since I couldn’t swim I let go.” “That’s when I got hold of him,” Lloyd Brunton told the Canadian,” and I did the same thing but I was caught in the current too, and I couldn’t swim either, so I had to leave go of him.” “We rushed back to the shore and pulled out in a boat that was there”, said Bert Leach, “and rowed out to where the boy was going down. We pulled him into the boat before he could go down again. He was in a semi-concious state so when we got back to land we applied artificial respiration and brought him around in a few minutes. This was about five o’-clock.”

When the Canadian asked the principal of the High School, Mr. W.G. Motherwell, what he thought of the incident, he said that it was just luck that had saved the boy’s life. Apparently the river is out of bounds to the pupils, and if it hadn’t been for the cadet inspection and the hot weather the boys would never have been near the river to save the lad. Lloyd Brunton and his wife Joyce reside in Brockville. Bert Leach and his wife Jean live in Stittsville. Allen Salter is deceased.

While I was doing research I found this also. Some brave people in Carleton Place I tell you.

Perth Courier, Sept. 26, 1884

Some weeks ago Alexander Menzies having an office in Messrs. Bower Bros. Drug Store, saved the life of a young man named Robert Henry by jumping into the Mississippi Lake near Carleton Place and rescuing him from a watery grave.  We learn form the C. Canadian that a substantial testimonial is to be given Mr. Menzies in the shape of a $40 medal bearing the following inscription:  “Presented to Alexander Menzies by the young men of Carleton Place in reward of his bravery in saving the life of Robert Henry on the Mississippi.

With files from the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum

About lindaseccaspina

Before she laid her fingers to a keyboard, Linda was a fashion designer, and then owned the eclectic store Flash Cadilac and Savannah Devilles in Ottawa on Rideau Street from 1976-1996. She also did clothing for various media and worked on “You Can’t do that on Television”. After writing for years about things that she cared about or pissed her off on American media she finally found her calling. She is a weekly columnist for the Sherbrooke Record and documents history every single day and has over 6500 blogs about Lanark County and Ottawa and an enormous weekly readership. Linda has published six books and is in her 4th year as a town councillor for Carleton Place. She believes in community and promoting business owners because she believes she can, so she does.

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