The Thomas Alfred Code Journal – Letters-Part 4c – Innisville — Henry York and Johnny Code

The Thomas Alfred Code Journal – Letters-Part 4c – Innisville — Henry York and Johnny Code


Photo Clarendon Miller Archives- Plevna

There are about 6 huge pages about Innisville written by Thomas Alfred Code so I will do this in parts. This is 4c— 

Innisville also had their village doctor- his name was York. His principal remedies were: bleeding and pills– or “pulls” as he called them. This together with pulling teeth was his chief practice. The forceps used were more like blacksmith’s tongs than the instrument used today, and the victim was lucky if more than one tooth did not come at a time. John Code claims he went through the ordeal and lived to tell. He was laid on the broad of his back on the floor with a third party to hold him down. This procedure could only apply to the male sex.

By the way, I may mention his wayward son–Henry–who was attending the village school in my time. He was not a bad character, but somewhat eccentric, and a rolling stone in his early years. He drifted away to the Great Lakes and was employed on the boats in some capacity, finally going to Detroit where he joined up– for a time– with the theatricals, which could not of been of a high order. He returned some years later with less gear than when he left, and tided over part of the winter with friends.

Having a dancing partner with him, his visit was entertaining to the people of the village. He then got a place as a school-teacher on the shores of Buckshot Lake near *Plevna in the county of Frontenac. As lumbering disappeared his pupils gradually decreased in numbers, until finally he was left high and dry in a small cabin on a rough piece of ground. He had a cow and some poultry and the snatches of work which he obtained in the district he eked out an existence.

Forty years after he was last seen at Innisville John Code  happened to be hunting in the district and heard the name of old Henry York mentioned in camp. This excited John’s curiosity and he resolved to investigate, which he did the following year when he made a visit to York’s humble ranch and discovered the missing Henry. Representing himself as a drover he inquired if Mr. York had any cattle to sell, but was received somewhat coldly.

The conversation turned into another channel– the flourishing condition of that district along the banks of the Mississippi and the village of Innisville in bygone years when the lumbering industry with all its attendant activity was at the zenith in its own production. Familiar references made by the visitor to the old timer of Innisville excited York’s curiosity.

Evidently the question in his mind was: “Who may you be? You seem to be familiar with Innisville.” John replied. “If from Innisville, who do you think I am, an Ennis, a Hughes, or a Code?” The reply came after a moment’s hesitation,“If one of those named you must be Johnny Code!” — the appellation by which he was known in the schoolboy days. This was followed by an exchange of mutual reminiscences and a pleasant meeting.

Later York was induced to visit Perth, and I (T.A. Code) engaged him as a night watchman for two periods, but he always wanted to go home for Christmas–he and his dog– but there was no one to greet him in his lonely cabin. When leaving the last time he had enough to pay off a mortgage of some one hundred and fifty dollars, and as he said, enough,  together with what he could earn in the district– to keep him for the balance of his days. He obtained his supplies in Plevna from a Mr. Osler with whom his credit was good.

York was an artist in handwriting; a reader, a man of strong individuality; fearless and honest in his dealings, but a recluse. When leaving at Christmas the last time, he threw back his arms and exclaimed:

“I long for the bracing air of Buckshot Lake, and the charms of solitude.”

This time he went without his dog. In 1927 he was found dead in his cabin, apparently he had dropped dead while engaged in daily chores.

Thomas Alfred Code 1929

Tomorrow– The Innisville School and Social Amusement.



Plevna Section School #4

– About/History

This, a log school, (located in the area of the current junction of Mountain and Grindstone Rds) was opened in 1863, possibly the first in the area, and originally numbered as No.2. Children from Buckshot/Plevna, in Clarendon, attended here with students from Miller Township. When it closed all students went to SS No.2 in Buckshot/Plevna.


Photo- Perth Remembered


The first industrial process on the site was operated by the Kilpatrick family beginning in 1842 and established as a tannery shortly thereafter.  In 1882 a new owner, Thomas Alfred Code, established Codes Custom Wool Mill with a range of processes, including: carding, spinning, fulling, shearing, pressing, and coloring of yarns. In 1896, its name was changed to the Tay Knitting Mill, and it produced yarn, hosiery, socks, gloves, sporting-goods, sweaters, and mitts. Another change came in 1899, when a felt-making process was introduced and the mill was renamed Code Felt. The company continued to operate until the closing of the factory in 1998.


51 Herriott – The Code Mill is actually a collage of five different buildings dating from 1842. T.A. Code moved to Perth in 1876, and bought this property by 1883. Code spent 60 years in business in Perth. The business started with a contract to supply the North West Mounted Police with socks, and continued for many years manufacturing felt for both industrial and commercial uses.

Code Felt Co today– Click here..


Screenshot 2018-03-08 at 14.jpg

In the 1883, Mr. T. A. Code established Codes Custom Wool Mill with a range of processes, including:  carding, spinning, fulling, shearing, pressing, and coloring of yarns. In 1896, its name was changed to the  Tay Knitting Mill, and it produced yarn, hosiery, socks, gloves, sporting-goods, sweaters, and mitts.  Another change came in 1899, when a felt-making process was introduced and the mill was renamed  Code Felt. The company continued to operate until the closing of the factory in 1998. The following year, John Stewart began a major restoration and introduced new uses for this landmark. This impressive limestone complex with its central atrium now has an interesting mix of commercial tenants.-Perth Remembered


How did I get this?

I purchased this journal online from a dealer in California. I made every attempt to make sure the journal came back to its rightful location. Every day I will be  putting up a new page so its contents are available to anyone. It is a well worn journal full of glued letters and newspaper clippings which I think belonged to Code’s son Allan at one point. Yes there is lots of genealogy in this journal. I am going to document it page by page. This journal was all handwritten and hand typed.

How did it get into the United States?  The book definitely belonged to Allan Code and he died in Ohio in 1969.

Allan Leslie Code

1896–1969 — BIRTH 27 MAR 1896  Ontario—DEATH JUN 1969  Mentor, Lake, Ohio, USA


Andrew Haydon.jpgAndrew Haydon- see bio below–He was the author of Pioneer Sketches of The District of Bathurst (Lanark and Renfrew Counties, Ontario) (The Ryerson Press, 1925) and Mackenzie King and the Liberal Party (Allen, 1930).


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 (USA)


The Original Thomas Alfred Code and Andrew Haydon Letters – —Part 1

The Thomas Alfred Code Journal – Letters-Part 2– Perth Mill

The Thomas Alfred Code Journal – Letters-Part 3– Genealogy Ennis

The Thomas Alfred Code Journal – Letters-Part 4a – Innisville the Beginning

The Thomas Alfred Code Journal – Letters-Part 4b – Innisville — Coopers and “Whipping the Cat” 1860-1870

When Newspapers Gossiped–David Kerr Innisville

Kerr or Ennis? More about the Innisville Scoundrel

What Went Wrong with the Code Mill Fire in Innisville?

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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