In the early 1870s Ontario Canada had an international reputation for wild water fowl in the Inland lake regions, and particularly up at the head waters of the Mississippi where lies Massonaw Lake. It is in the heart of the old timber country where most of the virgin pine and black oak was taken for ship bottoms and exported to the ship yards in Dundee and Glasgow in Scotland, where the old wind-jammers were built for mostly every country in the old world.
Many vivid stories have been written about the large flocks of wild geese and duck that found to have rest on this body of water, where they found shelter and safety under the ledges of the famous Massonaw Rock on the north side of the lake. Interest in the subject is revived by the following contribution from the pen of Mr. J. Sid Annable:
“Duck hunters came from the United States and all over Ontario every fall for the kill. The flight would start south for the winter in the early autumn, coming out of the Prairie Provinces which were known in those days as the wide open spaces of North Western Canada. Wild geese came by the thousands in V-shape formation and there were so many they shut off the light and sun rays in Lanark County.”
Then came the wild duck in many species: Mallard. Blue Bills, Red Heads. Canvas Back and Teal, leaving their breeding places for the sunny south. They changed their route and gave this place a wide berth. They steered clear of this lake because of the many kills of their numbers.
So, in 1879 the hunters made their appearance on the Upper Mississippi Lake and many stones have been told by old Buckskin Tom Glover of the slaughter of both wild geese and duck. The name of Glovers around Carleton Place and vicinity was synonymous with duck hunting Tom, Bill. Bob, Sime and Charlie were all crack shots against feathered fowl. They killed them off by the thousand until the ducks changed their course again.
Now the Glovers are all dead and the old fear of the human enemy has been forgotten by the feathered gentry.
Clipped from Ottawa Daily Citizen, 19 Jun 1886, Sat, 6
Clipped from The Ottawa Journal, 21 Mar 1887, Mon, Page 1
Clipped from The Leader-Post, 05 Jan 1916, Wed, 8
Clipped from The Ottawa Citizen, 05 Mar 1938, Sat, 2
where you can buy all Linda Seccaspina’s books-You can also read Linda in The Townships Sun and theSherbrooke Record and and Screamin’ Mamas (USACome 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. Tales of Almonte and Arnprior Then and Now.
The Tale of a Teacher, a Duck, and the Mississippi River
“Lanark is my Native Land” -Master Clarence Whiticar 1930