Photo of David Whitely with his “hand crafted decoration” he has made for the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum distillery display and also entertaining Carman Lalonde and me at the Carleton Place Hospital.
Years ago they had distilleries on the 7th and 11th line of Beckwith– but, on the 11th line it was said that it was used for only private consumption, whereas the 7th line was licensed. They also had a 60 gallon operation going on in the town of Carleton Place owned by Orrin Pierce
Today I read comments from an old newspaper column that a well known Beckwith resident known only as William G. used to say he used to take an occasional nip of “Whusky” to sharpen his wits I began to wonder how much consumption was prvate.
Caleb S. Bellows in 1827 built a distillery at Carleton Place, operated for a few years by Francis Jessop and later by others. James McArthur (1767-1836) was also was a licensed distiller in 1827. His Beckwith township distillery was located on the 7th concession at his farm near the Presbyterian church, where the same business was continued through the eighteen thirties and forties by Peter McArthur (1803-1884) who had a 33 gallon still.
So has anyone heard stories? We would LOVE to hear them!
Photo by Linda Seccaspina at the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum
All the hotels in Carleton Place had a sign above the main entrance which read:
“Licensed to sell spiritous or fermented liquors”