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

About lindaseccaspina

Linda Knight Seccaspina was born in Cowansville, Quebec about the same time as the wheel was invented and the first time she realized she could tell a tale was when she got caught passing her smutty stories around in Grade 7 at CHS by Mrs. Blinn. When Derek "Wheels" Wheeler from Degrassi Jr. High died in 2010, Linda wrote her own obituary. Some people said she should think about a career in writing obituaries. Before she laid her fingers to a keyboard, Linda owned the eclectic store Flash Cadilac and Savannah Devilles in Ottawa from 1976-1996. After writing for years about things that she cared about or pissed her off she finally found her calling. Is it sex drugs and rock n' roll you might ask? No, it is history. Seeing that her very first boyfriend in Grade 5 (who she won a Twist contest with in the 60s) is the head of the Brome Misissiquoi Historical Society and also specializes in local history back in Quebec, she finds that quite funny. She writes every single day and is also a columnist for Hometown News and Screamin's Mamas. She is a volunteer for the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum, an admin for the Lanark County Genealogical Society Facebook page, and a local guest speaker. She has been now labelled an historian by the locals which in her mind is wrong. You see she will never be like the iconic local Lanark County historian Howard Morton Brown, nor like famed local writer Mary Cook. She proudly calls herself The National Enquirer Historical writer of Lanark County, and that she can live with. Linda has been called the most stubborn woman in Lanark County, and has requested her ashes to be distributed in any Casino parking lot as close to any Wheel of Fortune machine as you can get. But since she wrote her obituary, most people assume she's already dead. Linda has published six books, "Menopausal Woman From the Corn," "Cowansville High Misremembered," "Naked Yoga, Twinkies and Celebrities," "Cancer Calls Collect," "The Tilted Kilt-Vintage Whispers of Carleton Place," and "Flashbacks of Little Miss Flash Cadilac." All are available at Amazon in paperback and Kindle. Linda's books are for sale on Amazon or at Wisteria · 62 Bridge Street · Carleton Place, Ottawa, Canada, and at the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum · 267 Edmund Street · Carleton Place, Ottawa, Canada--Appleton Museum-Mississippi Textile Mill and Mill Street Books and Heritage House Museum and The Artists Loft in Smith Falls.

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