No More Wire Fences? John Drynan– 1908

No More Wire Fences? John Drynan– 1908



Frank Myke has farmed cattle, dairy and beef, all his adult life. He is known across Lanark County as a talented traditional fencer, and has built authentic cedar rail fences with and for  local farmers since 1976–Take his class –Heritage Fencing: Learn to Build a Heritage Fence in Perth–Click here–


Editor Almonte Gazette— January 1908


Dear Sir


I noticed at the last meeting of the Ramsay council a report was received from ex-Councillor Naismith regarding laying down fences on cross roads during the winter season; also recommending that since the ratepayers have decided that cows shall not be permitted to run at large on the public highways at any time during the year the council repeal the bylaw granting a bonus to farmers erecting wire fences along public highways.

Now, Mr. Editor, I think that very few farmers or citizens will approve of such a recommendation, as I am satisfied that the bylaw encouraging farmers to erect wire fences along public highways is one of the best bylaws on record. Many public thoroughfares throughout the county where no wire fences are erected have been rendered impassible during a large part of the winter by being completely filled with snow, and the only recourse has been to take down the farmers’ fences and make a public highway through their farms.

Many of our municipal councillors seem to think it quite proper and right, but if they look carefully into the municipal statutes they will find that they have no authority to use any property for public traffic other than the public highway, at any season Of the year, and that they are obliged to keep the same in good condition at all times. The insignificant sum paid as a bonus towards erection of wire fences is nothing compared to what it will cost to keep these roads in proper condition by shovelling snow.

Farmers are well aware of the fact that there is a large percentage of the farms polluted with various kinds of obnoxious weeds, such as sow thistle, blue weed, and in the winter season the produce from such farms is hauled through clean farms to be consumed in the town, almost invariably -leaving a streak of such obnoxious weeds for a good farmer to dispose of afterwards.

Besides, Mr. Editor, it is not always experts who lay down fences through farms, and they very frequently smash rails and tear down three or four times the amount of fence necessary, and in addition, many of these winter roads pass close to farmers’ buildings, in fact, very often through their barnyards.  Some cases would have some farmers prevent their stock from  trespassing on the public highway and becoming liable to be impounded.

Mr. Editor, the only remedy I see is to encourage the erection of wire fences and compel the municipality to keep the roads in proper condition, and that the farmers see that no public roads are made through their premises.

Yours truly,




John DRYNAN b: 16 March 1850 in Ramsay Township, Ontario d: 27 July 1929 in Fort William, Ontario, buried Auld Kirk Cemetery, Almonte, and married Agnes SYME b: 22 April 1845 in Ramsay Township, Ontario m: 24 May 1872 in St John’s Church, Almonte, Ontario d: December 1928 in Fort William, Ontario, buried Auld Kirk Cemetery, Almonte. (Note: John was Mayor of Almonte)




Cheryl said:
There is a saying around these here parts on the making of a good fence. It must be pig tight, horse high and bull strong. I guess sheep didn’t matter back then



Come and visit the Lanark County Genealogical Society Facebook page– what’s there? Cool old photos–and lots of things interesting to read. Also check out The Tales of Carleton Place.

Information where you can buy all Linda Seccaspina’s books-You can also read Linda in The Townships Sun and Screamin’ Mamas (USA)






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The Moir Family of Ramsay Township

The Glen Isle Bridge Case–Beckwith or Ramsay?

“Done no Good” in North Lanark– A Disgruntled Ramsay Voter

Ramsay Settlers 101

North Lanark District Women-Ramsay Women`s Institute Branch?

What Happened to the Gold on the Ramsay 7th line?

The Early Days of Working in the Ramsay Mine — Going Down Down Down

Taffy Party Comes to Blows and Infection on the Ramsay Line – What was in the Punch?

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.

2 responses »

  1. There is a saying around these here parts on the making of a good fence. It must be pig tight, horse high and bull strong. I guess sheep didn’t matter back then. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

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