Documenting the First Female Councillor in Carleton Place

Documenting the First Female Councillor in Carleton Place

In 1890 Dr. Preston of Bridge Street, was the first mayor of Carleton Place. I had someone ask me who the first female councillor was. So, who was the first female councillor?

Well, I had a list of women, and documented what Mary Cook said about women being in politics in Carleton Place. (read—It’s Hard for Women to get into Office in Carleton Place — 1974 –Mary Cook)

BUT, how many women have been in Carleton Place government? Thanks to Stacey Blair, Town of Carleton Place Clerk, and Jennifer Fenwick Irwin from the Carleton Place and Beckwith Museum for the help!!!

There were only 8 since 1919 when women were allowed to vote in Ontario and they are:

Linda Seccaspina

 Theresa Fritz

Wendy LeBlanc (mayor)

Linda Schmidt

Melba Baker (mayor)

Barbara Walsh

Trudie Dickie

Geneva Anne Tripp (1952)

That’s 103 years for anyone who is counting LOLOL. Thanks to Deputy Clerk Stacey Blair, she found a Mrs. Tripp who became Carleton Place’s first female councillor in 1952. She was known only as Mrs. Tripp at the Town Hall and Mrs. Homer L. Tripp to everyone else. This was 1952 after all. Doing more research I found out her first name was Geneva and her maiden last name was Wilson.

The Ottawa Journal
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
04 Dec 1951, Tue  •  Page 20

CLIPPED FROMThe Ottawa CitizenOttawa, Ontario, Canada31 Jul 1952, Thu  •  Page 17

The Ottawa Journal
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
17 Dec 1951, Mon  •  Page 12

Read- Chamber of Commerce Then and Now in Carleton Place

Thanks to Jennifer fenwick Irwin of the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum for the photo.. Carleton Place Council 1952. Councillor Geneva Anne Tripp on the left hand side.

Name:Geneva Anne Tripp
Birth Date:7 Jan 1911
Death Date:7 Oct 2008
Cemetery:United Cemeteries
Burial or Cremation Place:Beckwith, Lanark County, Ontario, Canada
Has Bio?:N
Spouse:Homer Leroy Tripp
Children:William Guy Tripp

TRIPP, Geneva Anne – Beloved mother of Leroy Tripp (Vija) and Brenda Weinberg (Dick), and dear grandmother of Cathryn Flick (Bill), Guy Tripp (Julia), Leslie McClure (Henry), Jacqueline Anderson (Mark), Eric Tripp (Lisa), and Abbie Weinberg (Grant MacPherson), Geneva died October 7, 2008, in Toronto, at the age of 97. ”Nanny” was a loving great-grandmother to Will, Ryan, and Meredith Flick, Michael (Laura) and Matthew Tripp, David Tripp, Freya and Rowyn Anderson, and Cydney and Kylia Tripp. Geneva will be lovingly remembered by her sister, Isabel Bradley (Bill), her brothers, Kenneth Wilson (Audrey) and Donald Wilson (Shirley), and her many nieces and nephews. She was predeceased by her beloved husband, Homer ”Hank” Tripp, her infant son, William, her sisters, Alean Prime, Margaret Davis, Pearl Reynolds, Doonie Richards, and Lola Brown, her brother, Bill Wilson (Connie), and her parents, Annie DeMarse and William Wilson. Geneva was a registered nurse who loved working as a school nurse for North York Public Health Department. A talented artist, she was also the first woman to be elected to the Town Council in Carleton Place, Ontario, where she was born. At Geneva’s request, cremation has taken place. A celebration of her life will take place in Carleton Place on May 30, 2009.

Published by Toronto Star on Oct. 11, 2008

The Ottawa Journal
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
03 Feb 1964, Mon  •  

The Lanark Era
Lanark, Ontario, Canada
15 Oct 1919, Wed  •  Page 1

Carleton Place Ladies Auxiliary — Chamber of Commerce 1987– Mary Cook Archives

Chamber of Commerce Then and Now in Carleton Place

It’s Hard for Women to get into Office in Carleton Place — 1974 –Mary Cook

Johnny J. McGregor — Still Buster and Mayor

Outstanding Personalities of Carleton Place – Dr. J.A. Johnston — Billy Nichols– William Barclay

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.

2 responses »

  1. Isn’t it a sign of the times that she was known by her relationship to her husband, i.e., Mrs Homer Tripp. No self respecting woman today would allow that to happen.


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