The Ghosts of the Mill of Kintail






They say that the old Mill of Kintail next to the Indian River is haunted.  Dr. Robert Tait McKenzie, one of Canada’s best known doctors and artists, purchased the Baird property and converted the old mill into a summer home for himself and his wife Ethel in 1932. The mill had been abandoned for 100 years when Dr. McKenzie came back in 1930 to visit friends and family where he was born in Ramsay Township.

If you think you are alone in the mill when you visit the art exhibits and the Naismith Museum you would be wrong. It is said that the ghost of his wife Ethel McKenzie has been spotted several times within the mill. Her spirit became disturbed when her old bedroom closet and washroom were renovated and turned into a studio for local area artists.  Paranormal activity will suddenly appear when someone starts renovations on anything. Home renovations could awaken a ghost that has been dormant for years; in many cases the ghost will be that of a former owner who doesn’t want changes made to what they perceive to be their home. In other cases, the ghost will become very excited because the home is being taken care of.


Mill of Kintail– Linda Seccaspina


A renovation ghost that is unhappy with the work being done may hide and/or move tools and building supplies, knock over ladders, try to scare the workmen to prevent them from doing the work, etc. A ghost that is happy the work is being done may also move tools and supplies, and mistakenly scare the workers. Or, alternatively, they may try to help in some way with the renovations.

In some cases the renovation ghost may not bother the work site at all, but show its pleasure or displeasure in other ways by causing paranormal activity in another part of the house or building. They could be doing this to try to get your attention in order to express their feelings about the renovations.

It seems that there is double trouble at the Mill of Kintail as the surgeon sculptor Tait McKenzie is said to also return at night to guard his old domain. Many times previous owners will come back to the home after death. Normally when this happens a lot of paranormal activity will occur in a building. The ghost could be confused and, in some cases, frustrated because strangers are living in “their” home. This type of ghost may have come back to the house because that’s where they were the happiest– like the Tait McKenzies.

Pack a lunch and explore the mill and the area and fall in love with it all like they did–you will not regret it.

Mill of Kintail Conservation Area– click here




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Dr. Robert Tait McKenzie Click here



August 1931



Clipped from The Ottawa Journal,  07 Aug 1973, Tue,  Page 61






The Mill of Kintail’s first visitor Robyn Reid to the Mill of Kintail on the 1977 opening  day 1st of May

Photo Carleton Place Canadian files from The Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum


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 andScreamin’ Mamas (US


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I have been writing about downtown Carleton Place Bridge Street for months and this is something I really want to do. Come join me in the Domino’s Parking lot- corner Lake Ave and Bridge, Carleton Place at 11 am Saturday September 16 (rain date September 17) for a free walkabout of Bridge Street. It’s history is way more than just stores. This walkabout is FREE BUT I will be carrying a pouch for donations to the Carleton Place Hospital as they have been so good to me. I don’t know if I will ever do another walking tour so come join me on something that has been on my bucket list since I began writing about Bridge Street. It’s always a good time–trust me.


The Mill of Kintail–Running With Scissors From Bears – Again

The Seven Wonders of Lanark County


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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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