Category Archives: carleton place

Carleton Place Wins Prizes for their Wool!



Perth Courier, Sept. 17, 1880


Mr. W. H. Wylie, Carleton Place, received a special prize at the Toronto Exposition for the woolen shawls made at his factory. Messrs Boyd Caldwell and Son, Lanark, took first prize for Canadian Scotch tweed, and first prize for Cashmere at the Exposition.

Prizes for Woolen Goods—Among those manufacturers in Lanark County who carried off prizes at the Toronto Exposition now being held are:  Gold medal, for the Woolen Company at Almonte; and also Messrs Boyd Caldwell and Son, Lanark; and Mr. William H. Wylie of Carleton Place.


Historical Notes on Carleton Place Woolen Mills- from the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum and The Perth Courier–Read the Perth Courier at Archives Lanark

Perth Courier, November 19, 1880

Mr. James Gillies, purchaser of the Code Woolen Factory, Carleton Place, was in town on Monday.

Perth Courier, August 5, 1881

Retiring—We are sorry to learn that ill health has compelled Mr. James Gillies of the Carleton Place Woolen Mills (Code’s) and the Braeside Saw Mill, to retire from business until has system recuperates. He offers his woolen factory for sale.

1900 – To supply serge for British army uniforms the Canada Woollen Mills expanded its operations here at the Gillies and Hawthorne mills.

1903 – The Gillies and Hawthorne woollen mills – recently working on overtime hours with 192 employees, after six years of improvements under the ownership of Canada Woollen Mills Limited – were closed.  The reason was stated to be loss of Canadian markets to British exporters of tweeds and worsteds.  The company went into bankruptcy.

1907 – Bates and Innes Co. Limited bought and equipped the former Gillies Woollen Mill as a knitting mill.  A Quebec company, the Waterloo Knitting Co. Ltd., similarly re-opened the Hawthorne Woollen Mill.

1909 – Bates & Innes knitting mill, after making waterpower improvements, began running night and day with about 150 employees.  The Hawthorne knitting mill was closed by reason of financial difficulties, and its operating company was reorganized as the Carleton Knitting Co. Ltd.



Ring Those Bells in Carleton Place– Wylie’s Woolen Mill


“Carleton Place July 31, 1885 from the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum

W.H. Wylie’s steam yacht “The Ripple”

(43′ keel, 10′ beam)

at Hawthore Woolen Mill, then operated

by W.H. Wylie.


Possibly W.H. Wylie sitting on fore rail.

On Fore Rail – A.R.G. Peden (Town Clerk)

Left on upper deck: Jim Burnie


Read the Perth Courier at Archives Lanark

Buy Your Flowers from the Carleton Place Employees of the Month


I saw this picture this morning of Erica Zwicker from The Floral Shop and her husband and I had to laugh. People that own businesses have to be the employee of the month in my mind. There is no way anyone works harder than the self-employed. So who do you buy your Christmas flowers from in downtown Carleton Place? Well you buy them from your choice of  floral employees of the month.

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Employee of the Month-The Floral Boutique



Check out Erica’s displays in the alleyway beside her shop. Always something going on there.



Succulents and flowers. One dies the other does not-unless Linda is looking after them.


Unique Christmas Wreath



Flowers for small friends?

77 Bridge St.

Carleton Place, ON

(613) 253-2424


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Is Joyce from  Petals and Paint Florist and Home Decor employee of the month?


Now that is one beautiful Christmas log display


Lots of items to choose from


230 Bridge Street

Carleton Place, ON

(613) 257-2470

So it’s up to you which employee of the month you choose to buy from. Just remember they get along with everyone, they can show up to work in their pajamas and they will always be employee of the month to me. So give them all a hug for me and remember…

Shop Local!

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The Carleton Place Goddess of Greenery — Erica Zwicker

Remember Her? Still Living in a Bed of Roses!!

Who Caught the Big Shark in Carleton Place?


“It was the third week of June in 1898, and every single day for a week the townsfolk gathered on the Carleton Place bridge overlooking the Mississippi, to catch a glimpse of something big in the water. Some said a shark had migrated into the Mississippi, but no one could say how a shark could possibly do that. Each day the crowds assembled on the bridge to watch the movements of an extremely large fish that seemed to taunt all those that tried to capture it”.


In July I wrote a story about a mysterious fish that swam under the Central Bridge every day and yesterday I found the story of who caught it.

Joe Girouard trundled a twenty seven pike on a wheelbarrow down Bridge Street the day he caught the mysterious fish that had swam for weeks on a daily basis under the Central Bridge in Carleton Place. He had a picture taken holding the fish in the same pose as the picture on the bottles of Scott’s Emulsion. We believe that people were so in awe of his catch that Joe’s picture appeared on a Carleton Place Canoe Club regatta program on that of “Old Home Week”.


Historical Fact


Even the most steadfast proponents of cod-liver oil, such as de Jongh and Bennett, admitted that the highly disagreeable taste and smell presented a significant hurdle to its use. In 1873 Alfred B. Scott came to New York City and, along with partner Samuel W. Bowne, began experimenting to produce a less nauseating preparation of cod-liver oil. Three years later they established the firm of Scott and Bowne, and began marketing their product as Scott’s Emulsion. It is still sold today.

Is This Carleton Place Bylaw still in Effect?


Believe it or not these laws are still in effect..

Bingo games cannot last more than 5 hours (North Carolina)

If you cut down a cactus, you could be sentenced to 25 years in prison (Arizona)

It’s illegal to sell your eyeballs (Texas)

It’s against the law to sing off-key (North Carolina)

You may not sell toothpaste and a toothbrush to the same customer on a Sunday (Rhode Island)

You are not allowed to eat fried chicken any other way than using your hands (Gainesville, Georgia)

Red cars may not drive down Lake Street (Minneapolis, Minnesota)

You may not take a picture of a rabbit from January to April without an official permit (Wyoming)

It’s illegal to attend a public event or use public transport within 4 hours of eating an onions or garlic (Indiana)


View from the roof of a building on the north shore of the Mississippi River, c. 1920

The town of Carleton Place passed a bylaw prohibiting the trotting of horses across the Central Bridge in order that the vibration of the structure be lessened. In 1954, the Carleton Place Canadian believed the bylaw was still in effect, but not enforced. Does it still exist today?

Lock Up Your Children – Hyddie Hoe is Coming to Town


For hot cookies, drag queens, and the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence, I used to hang out in the Castro in San Francisco.  Drag and female impersonation is a long standing art, but it’s become popularized in recent years. The mainstream acceptance of drag has largely been welcomed, as the art and lifestyle becomes more widely understood and accepted. But what has Carleton Place got to offer?


Byron Wilson, aka Hyddie Hoe, for the past 15 years, has managed to be a part of our amazing and supportive local community!  At the age of 18, Byron was introduced to the drag world, and dreamed of being a drag queen, so he took  his very first show to Almonte. From that moment on Byron knew he wanted to be a part of something bigger then being just another local Valley Boy

There are some hugely popular and influential drag queens on the circuit today, all of whom excel in different fields and have their own particular brand of female alter ego, including high camp or low camp. Byron slowly started entering the towns night life as a proud Gay local, and it was rough at some point. However, he stood his ground and kept pushing through changing people minds one person at a time. He has volunteered and helped out with many local charities from the Carleton Place Kings to charity bingo.  In 2005 his first local Drag show was at our very own arena and he had amazing turn out like know other.

Byron has been performing with a local group personally representing Carleton Place for many years now called Gender Illusion. As they take their shows through the valley and larger cities, he is proud to announce to anyone who will listen that Carleton Place is a welcome community for LGBT people.

There are many lesser drag queens who aren’t even worthy of holding up their bra strap, let alone acquire the kind of fame and name recognition Byron has achieved in our local community. Now turning the big 30 this upcoming Saturday he will be appearing at the New Queens in Carleton Place. Come help him celebrate who he is, and thank him for all his community involvement.
cover charge$4
50% is going to the food bank!!!
Two Sets of Drag numbers Bye Her and Special Guest
DJ Whisper Playing all Night Long
Hyddie Hoe Favorite Kitchen Menu,

Saving Carleton Place’s Past — Thank You Brenda Mattey!


Together we all work together to save bits and piece of Carleton Place’s past. The Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum is always happy to receive donations, especially old photographs– because sometimes by examining the background of old photos we can always learn more about “what was what” in Carleton Place.


We would like to thank Brenda Mattey for her donation of the old Carleton Place theatre seats to the Carleton Place and Beckwith Museum. Thanks Brenda who is modelling one of my designs/ hats with her father.


“Sufferin” Sinders! What was Happening on Lake Ave West Today?


I am not a coin collector, but last year I was drawn to a ghost story about the Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel and actually purchased a coin from the Canadian Mint Haunted Canada Collection. I needed it like a hole in the head– but you know how that goes.


Here is the story from the Canadian Mint site:

Built in 1888, the iconic Fairmont Banff Springs hotel has long been a premier mountain getaway for nature lovers, travellers and even high society. Its architectural beauty and breathtaking vistas of the surrounding Rocky Mountain landscape have long cemented its reputation as an elegant, romantic setting for weddings and special events. 

And as legend has it, one bride has also made it her eternal home since the early 1930s.


The wedding day itself held nothing but promise for the young lovebirds. The groom stood in the library, waiting for his bride to arrive, before they made their way together to the glamorous Cascade Ballroom for the evening’s celebrations. As the newlyweds stepped onto the winding limestone staircase, the numerous lit candles that lined the steps cast a soft amber glow on the bride, who was resplendent in her white lace gown and veil.

Perhaps the bride caught her heel in the hem of her dress, or some movement caused her dress to brush up against a candle’s flame – something startled the bride, who suddenly stumbled then fell down the stairs ultimately meeting her demise. It was a truly tragic end to a love story, and a life that was cut all too short.


But this bride’s story doesn’t end with her death. For years, stories have circulated about an apparition in a white wedding dress that moves quietly up and down the aforementioned staircase in the hotel. Some claim to have seen this otherworldly bride dancing alone in the solitude. It is believed that this Dancing Bride is seeking to relive that fateful day, when death denied her and her beloved their first dance as husband and wife. “Till death do us part.”


It seemed quite fitting today that this photo shoot for Ottawa Wedding Magazine was happening in the midst of a few haunted homes on Lake Ave West. Most notably, at Sinder’s Bridal House in Carleton Place. If you have read any of my stories you now the manse just down the street has one heck of a story. I was just so happy to see this going on in Carleton Place. It made my day. It really did. Excitement!





Sinder’s Bridal House

10 Lake Avenue West Carleton Place K7C 1L2

Phone: (613) 253-0039

Business hours: Monday-Wednesday, Friday-Saturday 10:00-5:00; Thursday 1:00-9:00

Just a short drive west of Ottawa. Ottawa’s premiere wedding gown salon servicing brides for over 20 years


Ottawa Wedding Magazine

Facebook Page

RELATED READING… LAST WEDDING  I went to in Lake Tahoe in CA (lot of pictures takes a bit to load)



Lynne Johnson My friend Gabriella Stern and her mother started Sinders. They sold to the seamstress business across the street. I also knew the MacGregors who lived in the house. Ruth, one of the daughters, was learning to be a chef. She tried out many wonderful recipes on us in that kitchen. Her father had an auto body/mechanic business? near the other MacGregor auto body/mechanic business which became Slakonis.

The Man Who Received the Carleton Place Newspaper for Life


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Church Choir Picnic – 1885 just in front of the Hawthorne Mill Emily Street–A Chronicle of the people of the Methodist Church in Canada— Photo from  Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum

The Central Canadian was founded in January 1876, under the sponsorship of William Bredin of Carleton Place, with William W. Cliff as editor and publisher.  There were 1,800 persons living in Carleton Place at the time and one of them just outside the townlines in the late 1800s was devoted to the local newspaper.

There was a rather elderly farmer in Beckwith who had decided he had worked long enough, so he turned the farm over to his son. A few years later the son got *Western Fever, so the farmer sold his farm and decided to move out to Winnipeg, Manitoba with a lot of other Carleton Place residents. One last time he came into town to say goodbye to his friends, especially his best friend, William W. Cliff publisher of The Central Canadian.

The man still wanted to read his hometown paper for the rest of his life so he asked Mr. Cliff how much it would cost to send the paper to him to Winnipeg. To cheer up the farmer, W.W. said 10 dollars would cover the cost. The publisher figured a dollar a year, for what might be a ten-year life span for the farmer, would cover it. Every week the paper was dutifully mailed to him. The old Beckwith farmer finally passed on thirty years later. The deal of the century!

*Fact- The Western Fever was one would call the West Nile virus today

Straight Outta Carleton Place High –Teachers 1963


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Mrs. Lamb– “Why are you late for class?”

Edward Sonnenberg-:”Because you started before I got here!”

Mr. McAutcliffe to Jim Peden: “You played a terrible game on Friday. You’re out of condition. What have you been doing?  Studying?

Mr. Parliament: “Were you copying Gail Perry’s answers?”

Art Barr:” NO Sir,I was only checking to see if she had my answers right.”


Photo Courtesy of Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum

Related Reading:

Straight Outta Carleton Place High School — Wava McDaniel Baker

As the World Turns in Carleton Place — Soap and Ground Beef



When I was 16 my mom washed my mouth out with soap for swearing. After the first breath of a swear word, I was taken to the bathroom, and the hot water turned on. Then she lathered up that up the bar of soap like no tomorrow. She began to scrub my mouth out and forced the bar in and out while I screamed.  She ground that bar on my teeth and rubbed it all over my tongue. If that wasn’t enough she took my toothbrush out and rubbed it all over the bar.  Bunny Knight then proceeded to brush my teeth and tongue with soap until the suds were coming out. I then had to hold the bar of soap in my mouth for 10 more minutes. It was awful!!!! I tasted soap for a week– but somehow I still swear like a sailor. Oh well…


One day a long long time ago Soap Chips were introduced in Carleton Place and James Bennett had a dish of them on the counter of his store. One of his regular customers who liked to taste things spotted the dish. Without skipping a beat James told her it contained chipped cheese and to please try some. She did with a smile on her face. Soon she made an awful face and the language which followed could be expressed by a series of dots and dashes.

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Seems like they were quite the pranksters at Bennetts, and Joann Voyce told me small meatballs were once thrown at her from the “other side of the meat counter”. I read about the huge teapot that hung from between the two storeys in two different spots today. The teapot advertised Salada Tea, One day in the 1924 when the town was celebrating Old Home Week, Ted and Jack Voyce climbed a ladder and painted the massive tea pot red commemorating the event.  No one knows where the tea pot is today. We can’t blame Ebay can we?:)