Carleton Place Then and Now–Bridge Street Series– Volume 4- Leslie’s China Shop to Rubino’s/Giant Tiger

Carleton Place Then and Now–Bridge Street Series– Volume 4- Leslie’s China Shop to Rubino’s/Giant Tiger


Photo from the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum

Read in the series

Carleton Place Then and Now–Bridge Street Series– Volume 1– Canadian Tire to The Moose

Carleton Place Then and Now–Bridge Street Series– Volume 2- Milano Pizza to Milady Dress Shop

Carleton Place Then and Now–Bridge Street Series– Volume 3- St. Andrew’s to Central School

45 Bridge Street Carleton Place Ontario

Screenshot 2017-06-07 at 09.jpg

45 Bridge Street Carleton Place Ontario

This building started out as Leslie’s China Store operated by Mrs. Leslie circa 1890.  There was a fire in 1915 that I still cannot find but later R.R. Powell operated a grocery at this site. The first of two Powell Grocery locations opened and  chose the Leslie Building, next to Comba’s furniture store.


24 Sep 1913

Mr. Powell was the Sunday School Superintendent and he had three main interests in life: his business, his family, and the Methodist Church (Zion Memorial), which he attended regularly and was a lay preacher. It was a family run store and each helped in the store and he also employed Roy Whyte of Lake Ave East as a delivery boy. The oldest girl was Gladys. (Mrs. John Lashley and her sister Olive was a very popular CPHS teacher) Fern worked as a civil servant and Bert went to college and never returned to Carleton Place.


Olive Powell


This is a partial story from Mary Cook

“It was obvious that many of his customers from his Steven’s days like the young Powell, because his store flourished, and they moved their business to Powell’s Grocery without hesitation.  By this time, Robert was married and the father of four children.  Gladys Lashley, a daughter, remembers that her father bought some stock from an Almonte store when he first opened his doors.  “It was whale meat.  We have no idea why he would stock that, but I remember these cans of whale meat” she recalled.

The store was right across the street from Central School (the site of the present Post Office), and the young Powell children were expected to go to the store at recesses and noon hours to wait on customers. Robert and his young son Bert would go through the town early in the morning to pick up orders from the houses.  They would scurry back to the store to fill the orders, and then Bert would deliver them…free of charge, of course. Robert Powell believed in honest service, and would not sell as much as a banana if it had a bruise on it. 

Mrs. Powell helped augment the store’s profit by doing home baking.  Pies and cakes baked in the Sarah street kitchen of the Powell home ended up in the Bridge street store.  Cakes sold for 30 cents, and pies for a quarter. 

The store was closed on Wednesday afternoons.  That gave the staff a break and Robert time to fill shelves and do the countless other jobs necessary to keep the business running smoothly.  However, Saturday evenings often saw the workers at the store until after 11 o’clock. 

In 1941, after more than a half century in the grocery business, Robert Powell decided to call it quits.  He sold the business to his long time employee and good friend Gordon Lancaster, whom he knew would carry on in the honourable fashion which had become a tradition.

In 1941, after more than a half century in the grocery business, Robert Powell decided to call it quits.  He sold the business to his long time employee and good friend Gordon Lancaster, whom he knew would carry on in the honourable fashion which had become a tradition”.-MARY  COOK


Clipped from The Ottawa Journal27 Oct 1954, WedPage 15

Kiddytown also operated at 45 Bridge Street by Mrs. Dorothy Crawford then Ruby Griffith (James). After Kiddytown left Waugh’s Second Hand store was a this site and a karate school in the 80s. In 2006, 45 Bridge Street was a real estate company owned by Brenda McDonald Roe and is now for rent.


Clipped from The Ottawa Journal11 Apr 1956, WedPage 15

Ted Hurdis I think every kid in town shopped there with their parents. Kiddietown had a bit of a monopoly back then.

Marilyn White For sure. Mrs. Griffith ran it .

Jeremy Stinson I seem to remember Kiddytown where the Blossom Shop is now… Can anyone confirm?

Linda Gallipeau-Johnston There was a kiddy clothing store there in the 80’s ran by a Mrs. Baird but not Kiddytown.

Dale Costello As a new teen, I washed their windows weekly. 50 cents and Mrs. Crawfor ran the store.

Nancy Hudson
Mrs. Crawford opened the very first Kiddytown store in CP in the sunporch of her house on Beckwith St. next to the parking lot behind the Olympia Restaurant. My mother shopped for clothes for me there. It then moved up onto Bridge St. next to Comba’s I shopped there for my children’s clothes. Mrs. Townend and Mrs. Griffith worked there

Related reading

Update on Miss Powell from CPHS- John Edwards

Glory Days of Carleton Place- Dear Miss Powell by Terry Kirkpatrick

Glory Days in Carleton Place-Sherri Iona (Lashley)

49-51 Bridge Street Carleton Place Ontario

Screenshot 2017-06-08 at 13.jpg


Comic Book Day Photo Linda Seccaspina

49-51 Bridge Street Carleton Place Ontario

49 Bridge Street’s original building was destroyed in the great 1910 fire and the structure at that time was Mr. McEwen’s. Until 1946, this lot sat vacant and according to Marj Whyte, it was a vacant lot up until the middle of the 1940s when William Irwin built the bowling alley.


Clipped from The Ottawa Journal19 May 1910, ThuPage 1

The lot remained vacant with a foundation of the McEwen store that had burned in the fire of 1910. The fire had been discovered at the rear of the building at the corner of Bridge and Albert Streets in the heart of the town.  This building was occupied by Cameron Brothers and W. Singleton & Son and there is considerable doubt as to which side of the premises the fire originated.  However, it is generally believed that the fire started from a box stove at the back of the meat shop.


Clipped from The Ottawa Journal19 May 1910, ThuPage 8


This is a undated vintage picture of the back of Central Garage with the late Frank Robertson and late Ken Robertson of Carleton Place as children. The photo would have been taken in the late 1920’s. A view of the Masonic Lodge on can been seen in the background.

Up until the construction of the bowling alley there was a large billboard erected in the empty lot. In 1960, Laurie Melrose purchased the bowling alley from William Irwin and changed the façade on account of vandalism.  Current Visions Bowling Centre is a place for fun for the whole family, featuring a six-lane, five-pin bowling alley. They also serve food, snacks, and slushies.


Related reading:

When The Streets of Carleton Place Ran Thick With the Blood of Terror!

When The Streets of Carleton Place Ran Thick With the Blood of Terror!- Volume 1- Part 2

Vison’s Bowling is One of the Top Tag Words in Carleton Place

Who was One of the Million Dollar Bowler’s of Carleton Place?

53-57 Bridge Street Carleton Place Ontario


Wayback When–Photo-Masonic Lodge, St. John’s No. 63, located at 55 Bridge Street.
This newspaper clipping from 1979 shows the building in the 1920s- This is an interesting photograph of Johnson’s “Nickel Theatre”. (Admission was 5 cents.) “She Was His Mother – A Big Human Drama” seemed to be the main attraction of the day. The theatre was located in the Masonic Temple Building, later the Carleton Place Canadian newspaper offices, and most recently, the home of Apple Cheeks Consignment Store. Pop in to the store and gaze up at the black tin ceilings – the one remnant remaining of the theatre today…Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum

Screenshot 2017-06-09 at 11.jpg

candss (1).jpg

photo-carleton place and beckwith heritage museum


Screenshot 2017-06-09 at 12.jpg



53-57 Bridge Street Carleton Place Ontario

The Masonic Lodge building was built on Bridge Street in 1887 and rebuilt in 1911. This building has gone unchanged throughout its history except for minor repairs and renovations.

The first temple was built in 1887, but a fire in 1910 destroyed it and many other buildings in the area. The original location was on Albert Street between Bridge and Beckwith streets. There was an attempt to form a Masonic Lodge in Carleton Place in 1822, but it is not before December 20, 1842 that there is first record of the Lodge. The lodge was known as the Morning Star Lodge.

James Bell entered into the Lodge January 20th , 1843. The meetings would take place at Manny Nowlan’s tavern. At Manny’s tavern at the corner of Bridge and Bell Streets, the Charter was drafted in November 1842. W.M. David McNabb established in 1860 that when the Lodge moved to their new location that there would be no ale or intoxicating liquors were to be allowed in the new Masonic Hall (Hurd’s Hall). St. John’s Masonic Hall on Bridge Street 1865-70 was later the Town Fire Hall and used as a garage to house the hearse for Patterson’s funeral parlour.Meetings occurred at Dr. Cornell’s Hall from 1870-87.

In April 1872 the Lodge became St. John’s #63 under the Grand Registry of Canada. Some of the roles that the Masonic Lodge fulfilled included Masonic Funerals, laying cornerstones, and charitable deeds. Brother Dr. Preston laid the cornerstone of the ‘new’ Masonic Temple on September 14, 1887. Until the fire of 1910, the ‘new’ Hall was subject to many complaints, which included the outer walls of the building being wet so, the bricks crumbled because of the frost; there was a need for new ventilation, new cornices, and new eaves trough, and the new ventilation let rain in May 1895. The list of defects grew continually and was recorded each year.

By 1900, the Lodge purchased the Leach lot where the present Temple stands on Bridge Street facing College Street. The Temple had the first cornerstone placed April 20, 1911. In 1919,  location was the premises of a moving picture theatre and a grocers and prior to the 1930’s there was a Nickel Theatre and confectionery.

The right side where Apple Cheeks is now located was the Nickel Theatre, and according to Marg Whyte they got in for 5 cents and saw a news reel, a cartoon and a feature movie. Saturday’s feature was usually a Tom Mix or Keystone Cops which was really popular with the kids. After the movie some of the kids went to left side of the building where Caldwell  Bankers is now located to Ed Keys Ice Cream Parlor. They handed over their money to Bertha Rose and Marjorie (Douglas) Rintoul for either a large scoop ice cream cone for 5 cents or a 15 cents sundae with peanuts and maple syrup. Marj remembers the high ceilings, the wide bladed ceiling fans, and the glass topped tables.

There is nary a feather to be found on Bridge Street now where the Roxy Theatre once stood. But, once upon a time in your great grandfather’s days Jack Hoey ran a feather factory in part of the once theatre.

With a few eager employees and a ready supply of feathers from local farms it became one heck of a  feather heaven. It was said that the grounds of the  building was quite the site. Because the back doors were kept open in case a cool breeze might find its way into the hot factory, the huge fans inside blew tons of feathers around, and many found their way outside. It was considered feather heaven.

Some said there would be feathers sticking straight up in the grass surrounding the building. For a long time, some folks thought that feathers grew outside.

The Carleton Place Canadian took up residence in the Masonic building in the 1930’s after the Nickel Theatre closed down and the owner Mr. Cliff lived on the corner of Lake Ave East and Campbell Street where the McCanns, Nephins once lived (Sweet Family lives there now). After Mr. Cliff left Mr. F.A. J. Davis took over with Asa Roe as assistant editor.


When the ice cream shop vacated the building it became the office and repair shop of Beatty Washers and the manager was Dan Craig and his salesman was Gordon Bassett. That site later became the liquor store  in 1945 when they moved from their former location on Bridge Street in the old Munro Archery Shop with Leo McDiarmid as manager and Harold Robertson as the clerk paying a monthly rent of $45.

“I remember the liquor store being across from the Carleton Place Post Office- You had to go fill out a form to get your liquor”.-–Anonymous

Later Ed Larimer had a printing shop, and Gerald Coleman a real estate office. Now the Masonic Lodge still resides upstairs and Caldwell Bankers is on the left side and Apple Cheeks is on the right.

Related reading:

Investigating the Basement of the Carleton Place Canadian – If These Walls Could Talk

Oh Turkey Feathers!

Nothing But the Cooler Left in Carleton PlaceLarry Goldstein and The Roxy Theatre of Carleton Place

An Unpleasant Ride? Masonic Lodge– St. John’s No. 63,

Memories of the Carleton Place LCBO

Mysteries at the Carleton Place Masonic Lodge

61 Bridge Street Carleton Place



Screenshot 2017-06-10 at 13.jpg


Screenshot 2017-06-10 at 14.jpg


61 Bridge Street Carleton Place

At one time there was another open space with a billboard as the property was one of the casualties of the 1910 fire.  Then two separate buildings were built and the smaller part was at one time a dry cleaning establishment, and then a barbershop that was operated by Ab Leach and then after a salon by Adeline Valiquette.


Tony Rubino operated a fruit and vegetable business in this location and they lived over the store, and an outside staircase off of Albert Street granted the access to the apartment. They later had a large warehouse on the corner of Mill and Beckwith and it was called Rubino Bros Produce and had a business in Perth.


May be an image of outdoors

Photo Adin Daigle


This business changed hands many times, and some of the owners included: Dave McNeely, George Weir,  the Costellos, and the Roy Browns.  There was also a ladies dress shop that Vicki and George Fletcher operated before they moved next to the Olympia Restaurant and later again to the J.P. McLaren Drug Store.


Clipped from The Ottawa Journal07 Nov 1979, WedFinal EditionPage 19

Rubino’s still owned the building and remodelled it to bring Carleton Place Carleton Place’s first IGA store and managed by Maynard Argue and Winter Hicks was his assistant. Argue’s Grocer first ran their business in the 1950’s and 60’s selling everything from produce and eggs to canned goods and cleaning supplies in the old Granary location.

In 1979 the IGA moved to the Carleton Place Mews and the now empty store became a Giant Tiger then Scott’s Dollar store. In 2006 this Bridge Street location became the home of a video and game rental store and now  is a pet store.


related reading

Memories of Argue’s Food Market?

What’s in a Picture?- Mill Street– Ray Paquette


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)

Read in the series

Carleton Place Then and Now–Bridge Street Series– Volume 1– Canadian Tire to The Moose

Carleton Place Then and Now–Bridge Street Series– Volume 2- Milano Pizza to Milady Dress Shop

Carleton Place Then and Now–Bridge Street Series– Volume 3- St. Andrew’s to Central School


carletoncl1 (1).jpg



Carleton Place — A Valley Town at Confederation 

In Canada’s Year of Confederation, the busy sawmill village of Carleton Place had a population of about 700 people. Many citizens were sons and daughters of the Scottish emigrants who had settled the area in the 1820’s.Most of the town’s buildings stood on the north side of the Mississippi River, with only about 12 houses on the south.

Shops on Bell, Mill and Bridge Street were open from 6 am to 10 pm and the average work day for laborers was 11 hours! Want to know more about what Carleton Place (formerly Morphy’s Falls) looked like in 1867?

Read more in the Carleton Place Community Information Guide or stop by the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum and check out their summer exhibition.


Kristi LeMaistre

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.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s