Spring 1909 Pakenham — James Lunny William David Story

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Spring 1909 Pakenham — James Lunny William David Story
high-water-in-spring.jpg
In 1909 there occurred a tragedy which shocked the district of Fitzroy and Pakenham, a tragedy in which a well known citizen lost his life, and a youth barely escaped with his. James Lunny was attending High School in the Pakenham village, to which he had been driven by his father Hugh Lunny, and it was understood that he would come home with Mr. Story.
William David Story went to the village later in the day and had been deep snow that winter, and the breakup was late. On April 7 came a warm south wind and the snow melted rapidly. Creeks tributary to the Big Creek which flows into the Mississippi, became raging torrents.
Mr. Story and James Lunny started home after school, and found out upon reaching Moreton Flats, that the water was quite high. It was flowing across the road, but they took a chance in crossing. The force of the current upset the buggy and they unhitched the horse, in which in the confusion broke loose and gained safety.
Story clung to a tree breast deep in water and Lunny clung to the buggy, which lodged on its side in a wire fence on a knoll. In the meantime, others had gathered. J. J. Groves, of Ottawa,  later attempted a rescue, but failed.
Night came on and the weather became colder and the creek continued to rise. The boatmen time and again came near the marooned men, but were unable to attempt a rescue, because of the swift current.
At last, after nightfall, as the great bonfires lighted the tragic scene Dr. E. W. Gemmill of Pakenham  and Joseph Gavan of Pakenham presently attempted a rescue, but not a complete one. Story had fallen into the stream and drowned before rescuers could get to him and Lunny lapsed into unconsciousness and was reached just in the nick of time.
William David Story was an uncle of John Story, former warden of Carleton county and  reeve of March township and the Lunny’s continued to farm in Pakenham.
historicalnotes
September 22, 1846 – At Pakenham Mills, George Parker, in company with three of his sons,
varying from six to eleven, went into the river to bathe; the second boy slipped off a rock into
deep water; the father immediately plunged after him and although a good swimmer he was
forced to let go the child after being sunk repeatedly. Several expert divers including Indians
used every exertion to recover the body but did not succeed until nearly 10:00 at night on
account of the depth of the water and uneven bottom of the river.
May 6, 1870 – A sad accident
happened on the Mississippi near
Pakenham. It appears that two
young women, Miss Dunfield and
Miss Connery had been visiting
some friends across the river and
were being taken home in a canoe
by a young man named McKibben.
On the way across the women
became frightened and the canoe
upset. The young man grasped at
the branch on a tree nearby but with
two young women clinging to him
unfortunately the branch gave way
and the three were borne away in
that position. They floated with the
current for some little distance and
then disappeared. Parties have
been busily engaged in dragging
the river for the bodies. One was found on Sunday and another on Monday but up to the time of
this writing the third body has not been found.
genea
Name: James Lunny
Gender: Male
Marital Status: Single
Age: 10
Birth Day & Month: 15 Jul
Birth Year: 1890
Birthplace: Ontario
Relation to Head of House: Son
Father’s name: Hugh A Lunny
Mother’s name: Margaret E Lunny
Racial or Tribal Origin: Irish
Nationality: Canadian
Religion: Roman Catholic
Province: Ontario
District: Lanark (north/nord)
District Number: 80
Sub-District: Fitzroy
Sub-District Number: D-1
Neighbors: View others on page
Household Members:
Name Age
Hugh A Lunny 54
Margaret E Lunny 45
Mary A Lunny 15
Thomas B Lunny 14
Hugh E Lunny 12
James Lunny 10
Margaret A Lunny 8
Peter A Lunny 4
Name: William David Story
Gender: Male
Marital Status: Single
Age: 28
Birth Year: abt 1863
Birthplace: Ontario
Relation to Head-of-house: Son
Religion: Church of England
French Canadian: No
Father’s name: James Story
Father’s Birth Place: Ireland
Mother’s name: Annetta Story
Mother’s Birth Place: Ireland
Province: Ontario
District Number: 83
District: Lanark North
Subdistrict: Fitzroy
Neighbors: View others on page
Household Members:
Name Age
James Story 74
Annetta Story 72
Margaret Story 30
William David Story 28
Thomas J Story 25
Emma Eliza Story 14

relatedreading

Joseph Wooldridge Phillip Low- Near Drowning 1963

Dr.Cram and Dr. Scott Drowning 1907 –Cram Genealogy

Robert Drader Bill Shail Saved from Drowning May 28 1957

Stories of the Mississippi River — Elk, Rice Beds, and Corduroy Roads

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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