Jenn Nolan As I was reminded by my mother this morning , ‘ a few years ago’ my wonderful mother brought me into this world before the doctor arrived and it was Trudi and another nurse who delivered me!
Ben MacRae It looks like she’s putting a weiner on a bun
1981 photos courtesy Carleton Place-Manager of Recreation & Culture -1981
Study the Reasons why Smith’s Falls will be a Railroad City. Agents Wanted in Every Town. Come in and Learn About It.
Why was our office crowded for hours last Saturday night and this week? Why did the police force in vain endeavour to keep back the. crowd, and why was the whole town talking “Rideau Heights”.
Simply because they realized we were offering bargains in Real Estate never before heard of in Smith’s Falls, and they had just been made aware of the true value of Real Estate in a town that every citizen of Smith’s Falls knows and tells everybody else, is the most progressive town between Peterboro and Montreal.
They wanted to secure some of these bargains in Smith’s Falls property for the inhabitants of Smith’s Falls, but they were not alone aware of these Real Estate bargains. The large orders from Ottawa and Montreal were evidence to the fact that “Rideau Heights” lots at $33.00, $44.00, $55.00, $66.00 and $77.00. Rideau Heights was after all only nine minutes’ walk to the property from the centre of the business district.
They offered brick houses in Rideau Heights in the price range of $900 to $1200. A new railway wonder of the 20th Century would be operating in a few months Smith’s Falls would have three great Railroads before long and the Kingston & Ottawa Electric Line and was just surveyed to operate between Ottawa and Kingston.
It was some of the nicest property you ever stood upon they said. Terms were easy and there was no interest. Quality and Nearness This property is high, dry and very desirable for building with sidewalks, sewers, electric light and water up to “the property now.
In the fall I wrote a small piece for my blog, but this has been revised and it’s new and improved as they say in the Cereal Box family.:)
The old saying is: “if you don’t know where you are going, any road will get you there”. That quote might not fit the bill if you had to endure our local roads in the 1800’s. Roads, for longer than people could remember, were nothing more than dirt tracks that turned into mud in the winter and baked rock hard in the summer. Either way, movement along these ‘roads’ was difficult, and at certain times of the year, practically impossible–especially in Montague Township. Farmers suffered terribly due to bad road conditions. They were forced to maintain the roads that were adjacent to their property, by crushing stones and grading the roadway. If you didn’t agree to do this, there could be serious fines imposed.
Port Elmsley’s official name in the very beginning was “Barbodies” and in 1843 referred to as Pike Falls. A crude road ran from their small military settlement to Perth, and part of it was made out of planks. It was kept up by forced labour and in extremely bad condition. Between Pike Falls and Perth there were two toll gates: one at Lester Polk’s side road, and one at Richardson’s side road near Perth.
The Perth Road was surveyed in 1852 in order to encourage settlement of the isolated areas lying between Kingston and Perth. Though passable over its 50-mile length as a winter road by early 1855, the road was still largely incomplete by 1859-60. Lawsuits resulted in the disposal of its property at sheriffs’ sales, and the maintenance of the road was taken over in 1874 by the provincial Crown Lands Department.
This is the “Toll Gate House” located just south of the Village of Lanark on Hwy # 511.
They say the road to success is always under construction. The local governments decided that implementing a toll was a way to raise money to achieve better road conditions. Toll gates were established in which people and carriages had to pass before continuing on their journey. The public was given the opportunity to invest in these road companies. Any group of men with a minimum of 5 people could form a joint company as long as they built a minimum of two miles of road. There could be a toll gate every five miles, and the charge was a penny per mile with a half penny extra for animals. Most of the roads were laid with pine blanks, with most of the planks coming from the John Gillies sawmill.
As you can well imagine people began to object having to pay tolls. Charges rose, and the costs for a team and wagon were now five cents; for a man and horse three cents; for anyone walking, there was no charge. But, if you went to church, or were a man of uniform, you could forgo all means of payment. Some braver souls would take a chance and jump over the toll gate to avoid paying fees. To lessen the chance of this happening, those managing the toll booths erected spikes at the top of the gates. In some parts of the area the toll gates were so unpopular, that they were destroyed by fire after dark.
As the public grew angrier throughout the counties The Lanark Era newspaper jumped into the fray, and informed the public in print where the secret non- paying roads were. By 1856 people had enough and refused to pay because the road planks were rotting away. Word up and down the line was that the roads had become so bad even the transportation of corpses couldn’t make it to their destinations. In 1904 tolls ceased to exist as the maintenance of the road was taken over by the county.
This morning as the snow gently came down from the sky; I anticipated a quieter day, where I could focus on some projects. At what seemed like the crack of dawn in my world, but probably not others, I got a text from our gal at Scott Reid’s office, Sandra Hurdis Finnigan:
Sandra–“If you are up and at them this morning they are taking the fire escape off my work building at 224 Bridge. I have a couple of photos but you might like to come and see yourself.” Linda–“Crap okay… I have Kevin coming to fix my closet… I will try, but do send photos if you can. (author’s note– you don’t want to know what I have in my closet)
Sandra–“I will see if I can get a photo of them dangling the top portion from the crane”.
Linda–“Sandra.. I raced out of here with no make up on. I have lost my shoes somewhere LOL, but I got a picture… I saw someones head in the office and was waving frantically, but no one saw me LOL”
Sandra–“Lol. I just got back from driving my son to school. And most of it is gone. They work quick”.
Linda—“Thanks for the “tip” Sandra!”
I had to catch myself with the word “tip”. I don’t know how many times I have sat on the desk chair at the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum and told Jennifer I am NOT a reporter–I am a writer. There is nothing wrong with being a reporter, but I do not have the chops or heart for it. I am honest—I would rather tell stories than report about fires etc., unless they happened years ago. Not to mention that I love writing about dead people– because they don’t complain.
So I texted Kevin, threw some clothes on, and went out where no man had gone before (those words are pretty funny, but remember, I am a writer not a reporter:) in the snow without makeup on and slippers as I still could not find my shoes.
Inside Scott Reid’s office–Photo by Sandra Hurdis Finnigan
I parked next to the GastroPuband began to take pictures. I saw someone in Scott Reid’s office and yes, I began to wave frantically. But, even though I had a coat on as yellow as a Yield sign and drive a pink car, no one batted an eye.
I prayed no one would see that my hair wasn’t brushed, nor my teeth, and my face was still glo in the dark white as I had no make up on. I knew in my heart that my tiny piece of gluten free toast was now sitting burnt in the toaster, but I was happy I had the picture.
Thanks to Sandra I began my day with a smile on my face and as I walked like an Egyptian back to the car dodging snow and slush with my slippers on I got this:
At 11:22 Sandra texted me–“Last piece down and they broke my front window”.
Photo by Sandra Hurdis Finnigan
Years ago a safe was lowered down from the Maguire building in Carleton Place and broke a window, and they dropped the safe. Today Thursday, January 28th,2015 a crane cracked the window of Scott Reid’s office and the air turned blue according to Sandra Hurdis Finnigan.
In years to come someone will be researching history and come across this story and shake their head like I do each day reading the newspaper archives wondering if that is all we had to say LOL.
After all, nothing dies on the internet. 🙂
Photo by Sandra Hurdis Finnigan
That’s the new one with the old one they are going to remove from the back still there. It will be nice to have something safe for the tenants. It has taken many years to get done. One guy said 9 years but I’m not sure on that.-Sandra Hurdis Finnigan