H B Montgomery Auctioneer

  Photo by Sherri Iona (Lashley) Carleton Place Canadian
Poppa, Burnett Montgomery. My cousin didn’t send entire article and unfortunately he wasn’t wearing his trademark Stetson. This was taken a couple years before he died I think.The Carlton Place Canadian June 1982-

Well-known Carleton Place Auc­tioneer Henry Burnett Montgomery died in Carleton Place and District Memorial Hospital following a short battle with cancer. He was 86. HB, as he was affectionately known throughout the Ottawa Valley, had a career which spanned 40 years in the auction sale business.


A former farmer and butcher he handled as many as three or four auc­tions a week for years and over his past years teamed with another well respected local auctioneer, Howard McNeely.

“I always said the auction sale was part of Burnett and he was part of the auction,” McNeely said Monday in reminiscing about his many years of working with Montgomery. “He was a good fellow to work with, a perfect gentleman with a great respect for everyone,” McNeely fondly recalled. “He worked hard for the per­son he was doing the sale for, but he was also fair with the person buying the item,” he noted. “In all the years together we never had a (bad) word,” McNeely stated. “We worked a system and he often said to me ‘Howard there aren’t two men in a million who get along as we do,’ and I’d tell him that it was because neither of us was power hungry and we worked for the betterment of all con­cerned.”


Despite his age Montgomery couldn’t completely quit the auction business. “He’d tell me many times he was going to quit, but he never really did,” McNeely mentioned. In a feature story with appeared in The Canadian in June of 1982 Mon­tgomery said he began auctioneering to help “make ends meet”. At that time he was operating a general store in Ashton.

The largest sale HB and Howard McNeely did was when they sold the Mississippi Hotel- They sold all the contents , including pine and oka bedroom sets the same day.
The biggest farm sale they did was Sinclair Turner’s farm in Appleton. According to Montgomery the sale lasted two days.
When HB fist began selling china cabinets they went for 35 bucks– 35 years later they climbed to $1500. Now the antique furniture business has declined with said cabinet going for less that 200 bucks.
Dairy cows used to go for 30 bucks a piece and Montgomery and McNeely earned two percent commission on farm sales and 7 percent on furniture sales. When he first began there was only auctionees Clayton Hands around and when this article was written he said there were so many it was hard for younger lads to begin a business.
To be an auctioneer you have to be pretty good to catch the bids, plus have the gift of gab and know just about everyone. That was HB.
With Stetson. Looks small. He had many over the years. Photo by Sherri Iona (Lashley)
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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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