Step Right Up- Here are Your Family Convictions-September, 1894

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Perth being the seat of Bathurst District the town was given a courthouse and jail. Opening in 1821, The original building was two storeys high with the courtroom on the second floor and five cells on the main floor along with the jailer’s two room apartment. The cells were often filled with brawling Irish loggers from the Ottawa River. The building was rebuilt in 1841 following a fire. A provincial inspection in 1862 counted 27 inmates including 16 women. Charges ranged from murder and assault, to vagrancy and concealing the birth of a child. The most common offence was found to be “breach of indentureship” by leaving one’s master. On may 23, 1851, Francis Beare, who was convicted of killing William Barry was hanged in front of a crowd that was assembled in front of the courthouse. Five executions were carried out here but few inmates in the Perth jail were there for criminal acts. Most were housed there for shelter for vagrancy until the House of Industry or Refuge (Perth Community Care Centre) was built in 1903. –Perth Remembered

A generation later a similar number of Lanark county occupants of the jail at Perth, mostly “tramps sent in from Smiths Falls and Carleton Place”, included such prisoners as a man charged with stealing a horse and buggy, and “a boy twelve years old, a boot-black and a very cunning youngster, awaiting trial for stealing a gold watch and fourteen dollars.” (July 1898).

Perth Courier, October 6, 1876

Death in Goal—Last Wednesday an old woman named Sela Klyne, confined in the Perth Gaol for vagrancy was found dead on the cell floor in a pool of blood.  Her death was caused by the rupture of some kind of abscess in the lungs or throat.

Return of Convictions for the quarter Ending 11th September, 1894

Nonpayment of Wages:

Patrick Burke, $14.50

Assault on Margaret and George Poole:  David Love, $5

Assault:

William Leclair, $1

John McEwen, $5

Joseph Waler, $1

Larry Byrnes, $2

Beach of the Liquor Act:

John Gemmell, $20

Selling Liquor During Prohibited Hours

David Dowlin, $20.00

Emma Hunter, $25.00

William J. Leach, $25.00

Peter P. Soulter(?), $25.00

James Lee, $25.00

Assault and Battery:

A.R.G. Peden, $5

Intimidation:

Nathaniel Brownlee, $1

Shouting at Insectivorous Birds:

  1. J. Scott, $1

Wantonly and Cruelly Beating and Abusing Two Calves

George Easton, Jr., $1

Drunkeness:

David Patton, $2.00

Allowing Sheep to Wander on the Street:

J.Jones, $2

Grossly Insulting Language:

A Shalt, $1

Drunk and Disorderly:

John Black and Patrick Hogan, $3 each

Vagrancy:

James Ayer, six months in gaol

Catharine Kelly, six months in gaol

Rosanna Jamieson, six months in gaol

Grace Martin, six months in gaol

Insane:

Thomas McMahon, Jr., committed to gaol

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Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum-Early version of our jail cell window by M.J. Lancaster… which is on the outer back wall of the museum

 

Related Reading

Breach of the Town Bylaws and Other Convictions.. Sept. 11 1888

Justice of the Peace Convictions for the County of Lanark–July 17, 1885

Assault Abusive Language and Bridget McNee

The Notorious Bridget McGee of Perth

Down at the Old Perth Gaol

Justice of the Peace Convictions for the County of Lanark–Dec. 13, 1898-Who Do You Know?

Auctionering Without a License and Pigs on the Loose

Going to the Chapel –Drummond Whalen and Johnson of Carleton Place

“One Bourbon, One Scotch, One Beer” in Lanark County

Jailhouse Rock in Lanark County Part 2

The Drunken Desperados of Carleton Place

The Young Offenders of Lanark County

 

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 and now in The Townships Sun

 

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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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