Ya call that a Snowstorm? Linda’s Mailbag



Ottawa Citizen photo–

Workers attempt to clear a road near what is now Ottawa International Airport after a snowstorm

I got an email from Tim Findlay yesterday, and because I was so busy on Sunday I didn’t open my mail until this morning. Of course Monday was the day after the snowstorm. As the snow still falls I began to research his question about what year the train carrying the Riel rebellion troops were “marooned” by a big snow storm in Carleton Place.  Tim thought it might be sometime around 1885.


The Ottawa Sharpshooters returning from the North West Rebellion, July 1885. Photo taken at Smith’s Falls, ON. Source: LAC, Topley Series E, MIKAN No.


So I sent out a historical 911 to the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum and by the time I had finished typing out the note– I thought had found it. Feb. 26-27, 1887, when 56 cm of snow fell. It was considered such a piddling amount at the time — really — that the newspaper headline barely murmured the fact that: it was the worst storm in the history of railroading.

But Tim did have some basis to the year 1885 as I found another entry: in April of 1885  they received a squall that fully entombed Ottawa in 71 cm of snow. Okay all well and good but– did they have to deal with a plow leaving 3 ft mounds in front of our driveways?

Thank you Tim Findlay for inspiring yet another blog:)

Tim’s comment? 


please do not take this photo seriously.. this is just a parody


Special: Louis Riel Day 2013 Blizzard

Louis Riel Day was marked this year by a significant blizzard that brought much of the Red River Valley to a standstill. While snowfall was relatively light, with only 5–10cm reported in most localities (although a few pockets of 10–15cm did exist through the Southern portion of the Red River Valley), strong northerly winds that gusted as high as 70–80km/h produced blowing snow that gave whiteout conditions through most of the Valley.

Charles Mair and members of the Canadian Party (including fugitive Thomas Scott) at Portage la Prairie, enlist Major  Charles Arkoll Boulton to lead an attack against Upper Fort Garry. They march as far as Headingly, where they are stalled “3 or 4 days” by a blizzard that breaks out on the 11th of February 1901.

Come and visit the Lanark County Genealogical Society Facebook page– what’s there? Cool old photos–and lots of things interesting to read.

Information where you can buy all Linda Seccaspina’s books-You can also read Linda in Hometown News

Related reading:

From Carleton Place to Fish Creek –North West Rebellion

Here’s to You Mrs. Robinson– A Snapshot Back in Time

Debbie Dixon and The CPR Bridge Incident in Carleton Place–Linda’s Mailbag

Linda’s Mailbag- Blasts from the Past

So Who Got Shot? Linda’s Mailbag

So Who Got Shot? Linda’s Mailbag

Click to read.. Clipped from The Ottawa Citizen, 24 Dec 1926, Fri, Page 2 ‘A Bloodless Head on Collision in Snowstorm at Franktown 1880

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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