Did Anyone Ever Collect this Bounty?

Did Anyone Ever Collect this Bounty?


Hunters! Stop shooting cows, cars and each other. Aim for something different: kangaroos! Of course I’m serious. Why, even the New Era, a weekly paper in Lanark, has an ad in its classified section proclaiming: “Attention hunters. We offer $25 for any kangaroo hide caught in the Watsons Corners area. Please call Jim Closs or Bobby Neilson.”

New Era publisher Dennis Schroeder is offering a bounty too. In a front page story the paper declares: “Apparently the famous kangaroo of Watsons Corners, which was believed to have been mercifully laid to rest several years ago, has again been seen hopping through the cow pastures and corn fields. ”

A sign posted on County Road 8 about three miles from Watsons Corners last week warned motorists to beware of kangaroo crossing. The sign has since mysteriously disappeared. Presumably someone was just one hop ahead of the law, realizing that, if apprehended, he could face charges in a kangaroo court. “To enter into the spirit of the thing, the New Era is willing to offer a reward to anyone who can bring absolute clear proof of a kangaroo in the Watsons Corners area.

The reward?

“A one way ticket to the Australian outback. Schroeder may pay dearly for such cynicism! In the meantime, it won’t shake faith in the existence of Lanark marsupials among the 16 members: – Geoff Johnson bears of an exclusive order called The Company of Gentlemen of the Kangaroo Court, who meet twice a year at a certain liquor store before adjourning, fully armed for the hunt, to Don Houston’s kangaroo-country cottage.

There were at one time 17 members, which was really a bunch of guys what one in Lanark County is called “telling tales.” So my question is. Did anyone ever get that bounty?

Wesley Parsons I spent a lot of time in Watsons Corners as a young lad – and this story was well known, I spent many car rides looking out the windows on those backwoods for any sign of a Roo. From what I recall – there were at least two farmers that had been known to bring in foreign animals without a clue how to keep them contained and the animals usually wandered off.

I remember one old guy wanted his own Buffalo so he bought one and had it delivered. The next day the Buffalo headed west and just walked through the fencing of every farm in it’s path for several miles – a buffalo will push a fence down and keep going – a cow will just turn and head another direction.

Things like that are not uncommon – just last week someones peacocks got loose in Almonte – they’re native to India but it’s not uncommon to see them on a farm in Ontario. Kangaroos have the ability to acclimatize as well – lots of places in Australia get snow – they develop a heavier coat and they graze eat like deer so it’s possible for them to survive through our winters…I never saw any in Watsons Corners myself but many claim that they did.

I say— “And Maybe the Dingo Ate Your Baby!”


Did They Ever Find the Kangaroo from Lanark County?

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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