Carleton Place Library 110th Anniversary — Comments About the Old Library

Carleton Place Library 110th Anniversary — Comments About the Old Library



Clipped from

  1. The Ottawa Journal,
  2. 03 Nov 1956, Sat,
  3.  In January of 1969 The Carleton Place Library was seeking acquisition of Victoria School to establish a new library. The present location that they were using at the town hall was inadequate especially with the increased use of the library. What do you remember about the library at the town hall?


Ray Paquette I remember a smell, not necessarily foul, more musty and dusty. It was quite warm in the winter, When you entered, immediately to the left was a long table piled high with children’s books, including my personal favourite, “Paddle-to-the-Sea”. Periodicals and newspapers were kept on tables with chairs in front of the adult stacks, ahead and to the right. Miss Elliott, the librarian, sat at a desk behind a quarter wall and it was here you brought your books, a maximum of three, to be signed out, again for a maximum of three weeks. Every book was stamped with a due date and woe betide you if you were overdue! Behind the desk to the right was a small room which held a number of reference and historical books. In the late 40’s and early 50’s, like a number of my friends, I was fascinated by the recently ended war and, particularly, the Air Force part of it. When I was deemed old enough, perhaps eleven or twelve, Miss Elliott allowed me to borrow books from this area. I can remember a number of the titles, such as “Reach for the Sky” by Douglas Bader, the legless fighter pilot, “Cheshire, VC” by Group Captain Leonard Cheshire. Despite the totally unsuitable facility, a “make do” location, the Librarian, Miss Elliott, ably assisted by Mrs. Barbara Walsh did a a magnificent job and fostered a love of reading in me which I have retained to this day….

Lynne Johnson I loved the books, the windows, the smells, the wood, the walk up the stairs, getting the books stamped. There was a young woman who worked there who had limited use of one arm. She could open the book to the back and stamp the card with the due date with one arm. Very able and skilled. I still have very warm memories whenever I walk in to that building.

Ann Stearns Rawson Charlene Law’s dad would take us to the library. We took out as many books as possible every time. Loved having my library card stamped. Funny what one remembers fondly.

Sandra Rattray I practically lived there. As soon as I walked in Miss Elliott would put her finger to her lips.

Linda Gallipeau-Johnston You had to be a certain age to borrow more than 1 book at a time – I remember graduating to 3. I also remember the “evil eye” of Miss Elliot when you were late. Ray, funny that smell is the first thing that pops into my mind when I think of that place.

Ray Paquette I think it might have been the dust on the old radiators of the heating system…

Wendy LeBlanc Wonderful memories. Best friend Peggy Mace and I read all the Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys books, and we loved a series of kids’ craft books that used common household items like string and newspapers or shoeboxes. We visited the library weekly and were thrilled when we were old enough to go in the evening.

Joann Voyce I started borrowing books from there when I was 8 or 9 years old as my Grandmother Voyce gave me the book Heidi for my birthday. I read every book they had for young girls and have never stopped reading. Now I read daily from the Library on line.

Nancy Hudson One of my favourite haunts as a youngster. Miss Elliott ran a tight ship absolutely NO TALKING. Ray pretty much described it to a tee in his posting above. I developed a lifelong love of reading because of this place.

Norma Rotzal Spend many hours at the library. Reading, using the encyclopedias for school work. Still love having a book in my hand for reading.


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Did you know the library used to be in the town hall and Brice McNeely Jr was not only the superintendent for the St James Sunday School but also the town librarian. He picked out the books for you to read and you had no choice in the matter and had to take what was given to you.
Photo-Tom Edwards

 - girlhood. A whole sleigh-load of girls, the...

Clipped from

  1. Ottawa Daily Citizen,
  2. 16 Dec 1895, Mon,
  3. Page 8



Janice Tennant Campbell I went there all the time.

Donna Zeman I remember that! Thanks for bringing back that memory!

Sylvia Giles I went there every Thursday night when my Mom was getting her hair done at Marg and Don’s! Great memories!!!

Valerie Edwards I remember it well. Miss Elliot, at the big desk. the benches right under the shelves, or you could use them as steps to reach the top shelves. The Reading Room with the atlases &. There was or is a painting of part of it at the present Library right at the desk. It was a pleasant, peaceful & safe place.


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 and The Tales of Almonte

  1. relatedreading

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.

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