To All the Snowmageddons I Have Loved Before




Campbell Street Carleton Place February 17 2016- Photo by Linda Seccaspina


Photo by Shelley Dunlop February 17 2016


Photo by Maxine Brown February 17 2016


Photo by Jenny Melindy February 16 2016


Photo by Shannon Michie-McDonald-February 16 2016


Brick Street Carleton Place February 16 2016-Photo by Linda Seccaspina



Second floor verandah-77 Lake Ave East Carleton Place February 17 2016-Photo by Linda Seccaspina


Second floor verandah-77 Lake Ave East Carleton Place February 17 2016-Photo by Linda Seccaspina (Can you hear the crack of a whip from inside? Poor guy!)


Yesterday the snow never stopped. Over 51 cm in less than 24 hours!! The previous record of 45.7 cm was set on Feb. 8, 1895. Here was the headline in 1895 from the Toronto Daily Mail.




Cyndy Courtland emailed me this morning with the following comments:

Hi Linda,

With all this snowfall in Ottawa and area, I was trying to find a history report about the day Carleton Place was shut down back in 1998…I thought we got 36 inches in 24 hours…my husband says 24…either way it was a TON of snow.  The schools closed at 10:30 that day…I think that would make an interesting article for you.


So I began to dig and dig and came up with these gems- but not 1998.



Ottawa Citizen 1931


Ottawa Citizen 1944


Ottawa Citizen  1960


Now, I searched everywhere and in 1998 I can only seem to find the the Ice Storm of 1998.

In January 1998, 2 separate storms dropped up to 70mm of freezing rain on a wide area stretching from Eastern Ontario to Quebec and New Brunswick. The City of Montreal was one of the hardest hit areas. The weather forecasters predicted both storms and people knew they would be bad. But there was nothing one could do to prevent the ice forming, or the trees falling as it was happening. The storm left hydro towers caked with 70mm of ice and tonnes of weight. Many of these towers crumpled to the ground as if they were made with sheet metal. The power lines exploded brilliantly as they short cirucited, sending only darkness to thousands of homes. Only one main major power line in Montreal remained intact. Most of the 2 million citizens were left in darkness.


Many businesses in Montreal lost customers when ice sheets fell from buildings, making a trip downtown an added danger, whether there was power or not. For more than a week at least 700 000 people were without power. People in rural areas, despite the best efforts of Hydro Crews from across Canada the USA, were without power for a month.- Rene Schimdt




Photo by the late Angelo Seccaspina of 50 Julian Street in Carleton Place 1998


Photo by the late Angelo Seccaspina of 50 Julian Street in Carleton Place 1998


Photo by the late Angelo Seccaspina of 77 Lake Ave East in Carleton Place 1998

Photo by the late Angelo Seccaspina of 77 Lake Ave East/ Campbell Street Kitchen Verandah in Carleton Place 1998

I don’t think anyone will ever forget the aftermath of that ice storm eighteen years ago. Bread rations, families sleeping on army cots in the local arena for weeks and farmers unable to milk their cows. Two deaths were reported in Ottawa, city neighbourhoods went dark, and states of emergency were declared everywhere.



J.G. Lancaster’s Grocery Store in 1947 – now the Eating Place in Carleton Place on Bridge Street.-Photo-Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum


But in all honesty, can anyone beat the weather? Eighteen years ago in January it beat us. But, it didn’t beat us yesterday!

So what do you remember about the snowstorm Cyndy talked about in 1998?

From Teri White’s Facebook page




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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