After 39 years of serving the community, Mr. and Mrs. D. W Snedden have retired from their pharmacy business at 24 Mill Street and have sold the Rexall Store to Mr. Darcy Farden, recently from Ottawa and formerly of Saskatchewan. Following his graduation from the Ontario College of Pharmacy in Toronto on June 6th, 1924, Wilf Snedden served his apprenticeship at the present location, then owned by Mr. M. R. MacFarlane.
He eventually sold the business to Mr. Snedden who took over January 1st, 1934 and later purchased Mr. MacFarlane’s home at 190 Church Street where he and Mrs. Snedden still reside. For many years one of the most popular spots in Almonte on a Saturday night was the soda fountain at Snedden’s Drug Store. On many occasions the ten stools would be filled and just as many or more people waiting to be served.
As time went on, however, and the fountain equipment wore out and a wider variety of frozen treats began to appear, the soda fountain lost its appeal and was finally removed when renovations were carried out in 1967. An avid sports fan, Mr. Snedden hopes to have some time to get in a little golf and follow the baseball teams more closely. Through the years Wilf Snedden has been a staunch supporter of sports in the Almonte area.
Several changes are planned for the store by its new owner, major one being a change in name to the Almonte Pharmacy, although the outlet will remain Rexall store. Mr. Farden, a 30 year old bachelor, was born and raised on a farm in Saskatchewan. He graduated in 1965 from the College of Pharmacy, University of Saskatchew an and moved to Ottawa in 1968. For the last four years he has been manager of an Ottawa Pharmacy. An avid curler and golfer, Mr. Farden is also an active pilot.
He will shortly be receiving his commercial pilot’s licence at Bradley Air Services at Carp. Staff at the Almonte Pharmacy will remain the same, with Elenor McPhail, Elizabeth Duncan Alice Landry remaining on and’ being joined by Miss Janet Smythe who has worked with Mr. Farden in Ottawa for three years. Miss Smythe has many years of pharmacy experience, especially in the field of cosmetics.
New hours of operation will be as follows; Mondays, 1 p.m. till 9 p.m.; Tuesday to Friday, 10 a.m. till 9 p.m.; Saturdays, 10 a.m. till 6 p.m. Commencing in May, Mr. Farden indicates that the pharmacy will be open Sundays from 12 noon until 3 p.m. A grand opening sale will be held from June 5-8th, 1973
Reads as long as it takes to glimpse the passing of the torch…….
The premises of Kerry’s Furniture & Appliances / Pharma Save Pharmacy, was owned by my father John Kerry from 1954 to 2019.
It was purchased from Mr. W.E. Scott in 1954. Ed Scott had rebuilt the furniture store in 1904 following a major fire. At that time he had two storefronts constructed, which has continued to exist thru these current times.
Mr. Wilf Snedden, Pharmacist and prominent resident of Almonte, rented the smaller portion of the divided building. Many will recall that he had a wonderful old fashioned soda fountain bar and stools to compliment the drug store and pharmacy services … it would be lovely to have that service reinstated somewhere for today’s lover of everything ice cream !
In my father’s era of ownership, there has been four pharmacy businesses, to be followed by the current Quilt Supply Store. What for many years housed the Furniture & Appliances side of the store, is currently an Antique Store.
Prior to being sold, my father saw the building thru an outer face lift and some internal upgrades leaving the premises with its best foot forward for the next generation of users.
With its sale completed in 2019, the history of the bricks and mortar, along with the businesses carried out within its walls by its proprietors, becomes another chapter in the continuing story of daily commercial life carried out on Mill Street.
I remember the Soda fountain too, great milkshakes and sundaes, and yes Wilf Snedden was a great gentleman.
Then it happened, even as he knew it would. It was Monday the last day in February, 1927. He had stopped at M. R. MacFarlane’s drug store (now Wilf Snedden’s) about 11:00 a.m. He spoke to a number of people between there and the Post Office (Don Campbell was one of them), and then he drove home with the horse and cutter. He stepped out of the cutter at the door, collapsed and died on the spot.
The word ran like grassfire along the pathways of Almonte.
“In the 1890s P.C. Dowdall’s drug store was on Bridge St. in Almonte, near the railway. (It’s pictured below, far right, “PC Dowdall” on the awning.) In the entrance, the weather forecasts were posted up daily, providing a point of interest each day for the children walking to & from Church Street school.
“Jimmy Morrow worked in the pharmacy for many years. He wanted to be a druggist, but this wasn’t possible for him. Yet Jimmy was ambitious, so he studied chemistry by mail. In the absence of Mr. Dowdall, he was able to read and fill the Latin prescriptions. Having no degree in pharmacy made this a bit out of the ordinary, but everybody knew about it and there were no objections or complaints.” #SmallTownLife#LocalLore#Almonte
Source: 365 “Fun facts about MM” were co-ordinated by Tiffany MacLaren, Community Economic and Cultural Coordinator for Mississippi Mills in 2017 & posted in weekly instalments at Millstone News. The “facts” wouldn’t have been possible without amazing volunteers and history buffs who contributed information. Special thanks went to Jeff Mills, Donna Lowry, Margie Argue, Rose Mary Sarsfield, Renate Seiler, Marilyn Snedden, The North Lanark Historic Society, The Naismith Basketball Foundation, The Mississippi Valley Textile Museum, Neil & Lucy Carleton, Fern Martin and others. “The Tales of Almonte”, Linda Seccaspina’s page, also posted this anecdote, earlier.
In the 1890s P.C. Dowdall’s Drug Store was on Bridge St. in Almonte near the railway. In the entrance, the weather forecasts were posted up daily, providing a point of interest each day for the children walking to and from the Church Street school. Jimmy Morrow worked in the drug store for many years. He wanted to be a druggist but this was not possible for him. But Jimmy was ambitious, so he studied chemistry by mail. In the absence of Mr. Dowdell, he was able to read and fill the Latin prescriptions. Having no degree in pharmacy made this a bit out of the ordinary, but everybody knew about it and there were no objections or complaints. ( Facts about MM- The millstone)
Son of James Patterson and Bresaya Jane Pounder Patterson
Manassah was born February 17, 1848 and married Mary E. Peddar, born September 26, 1852. They married July 22, 1875. The marriage was announced in the Perth Courier as follows: “PATTERSON – PEDDAR At the residence of the bride’s uncle, Andrew Elliott Esq., Almonte, on the 22nd inst. by the Rev. John Bennett, minister of St. Andrew’s Church, Mr. Manasseh Patterson, Druggist, to Mary Elliott Peddar.” The Ontario Archives Microfilm lists the marriage of Manassah Patterson as follows:” Manassah PATTERSON, 27, druggist, Canada, Almonte, son of James PATTERSON and Bresaya POUNDER, married Mary Elliott PEDDAR, 22, Canada, Almonte, daughter of Joshua PEDDAR and Fanny HENLEY, witness Andrew ELLIOTT of Almonte, 22 July 1875 at Almonte.”
Two sons were born; James F.( born 1877) and Francis E.(born April 19, 1880), who was known as Frank. Manassah was a druggist and owned Patterson’s Drug Store on Mill Street in Almonte. In the 1880’s, the first telephone exchange in Almonte operated from the rear of the drug store. As an agent of the Bell Telephone Company, Manassah used a primitive switchboard to manage the calls from among the original 29 subscribers to the new service.
Manassah Patterson was involved in and promoted horse racing. An article in the Renfrew Mercury July 4, 1884 reported that a proposition had been made whereby Almonte could secure an excellent and convenient driving park and public recreation grounds at a minimum cost. “Mr. M. Patterson proposes, at his own expense, to purchase 20 acres of the Robert McFarlane farm, adjoining the corporation, at to lease it, to an association to be formed for that purpose for a term of years to be agreed on and at a minimal cost. The association will gradually fit it up with a driving track and suitable grounds for athletic sports.” In the fall of 1886, Manassah travelled to the great Glenview horse sale in Kentucky with Dr. Preston, A. C. Burgess of Carleton Place, and Mr. Lawson of Almonte. The group was looking to purchase horses and was impressed by the beauty and strength of the horses in Kentucky. In July, 1889, Manassah was a judge at the Renfrew horse races.
An interesting article in the Perth Courier dated August 7, 1896 was reprinted from the Almonte Gazette as follows. “Mr. Mannaseh Patterson has patented a new disc-adjusting, oil-retaining, dust-proof ball-bearing for bicycles that he himself invented. It has features that strongly recommend it, and it will doubtless be secured by some of the leading manufacturers in the near future. We trust the inventor may find at least a few thousand in it.”
From the Carleton Place Herald July 3, 1900, regarding Almonte affairs: “Cadet Frank Patterson has arrived home from the Royal Military College at Kingston this week and is receiving the congratulations of his friends on having graduated from that institution; he and Cadet Boyd Caldwell of Lanark being equal in number of marks won and both being well up in the list of graduates.”
From the Almonte correspondent to the Carleton Place Herald, May 7, 1901: Frank E. Patterson, son of M. Patterson, of this town, who graduated from the Royal Military College a year ago, has graduated from McGill College last week as a Bachelor of Science. He took the Civil Engineering course. Mr. Patterson returned home on Tuesday and is busy receiving the congratulations of friends.
At the 1901 census, Mannasah, druggist, and his wife Mary lived at Almonte with their son Francis E., who was at that time a student aged 20.
James Patterson married Minnie McArthur, the daughter of William McArthur and Elizabeth Manson. From the Almonte Gazette, November 23, 1906. “On Tuesday evening, the home of Mr. and Mrs. William McArthur was the scene of a happy event when their second daughter Minnie Iolene was united in the holy bonds of matrimony with James F. Patterson, eldest son of Mr. and Mrs. M. Patterson, Rev. Orr Bennett officiating. The ceremony took place in the presence of only the immediate friends of the contracting parties. The bride’s dress was pointe d’esprit over white silk and she carried a bouquet of white roses. There were no attendants. After congratulations were extended, the party repaired to the dining room which was beautifully decorated with white and pink roses, carnations, ferns and smilax and where the wedding supper was served. Rev. Mr. Bennett, in a short congratulatory speech, conveyed the felicitations of the company to the bride, and those were responded to on her behalf by the bridegroom. The bride was the recipient of many beautiful and useful tokens of esteem from friends among them being several substantial checks. The groom’s gift to the bride was a very pretty gold watch and chain. At half past ten Mr. and Mrs. Patterson, the latter gowned in a traveling suit of dark grey with hat to match left for Carleton Place where they took the midnight train to Toronto and other places. Mr. and Mrs. Patterson enjoy the hearty good wishes of many friends for a life of pleasure and prosperity such as rarely falls to human kind.” From the Carleton Place Herald December 4, 1906.”James Patterson, son of M. Patterson of Almonte, married Minnie McArthur, daughter of William McArthur last Tuesday evening. The young couple drove up here and took the train to Toronto, for their home.
The death of Manassah was reported in the Perth Courier on Friday February 15, 1907 as follows. ” M. Patterson, the well known druggist of Almonte died at Cobalt on Saturday of pneumonia.” A more complete obituary was published in the Almonte Gazette on the same date. This obituary has been provided to me by Jason Gilmore whose family currently resides in the home once owned by Manassah Patterson and his family.
“Death. At Cobalt, Feb. 9, 1907, Mr. M Patterson, of Almonte, aged 59 years.”
Another Citizen Gone
Mr. M. Patterson Dies After a Few Days’ Illness of Pneumonia
Another death following a startlingly brief illness has deprived Almonte of one more prominent citizen. Mr. Manassah Patterson, who passed away at Cobalt on Friday evening last after just one week’s illness from pneumonia. Mrs. Patterson and her sons, Mssrs. James and Frank, went up to Cobalt on Tuesday morning of last week, but on Thursday the two latter returned home, with little thought that the end was so near, on the contrary, buoyed up with the news coming home of their father’s early recovery and it was hard to believe the sad news that came Saturday morning announcing his death. Mr. Patterson had been in the Cobalt district looking after some mining property, and caught cold which developed into pneumonia and ended fatally. The remains were brought home and interment took place on Monday afternoon to St. Paul’s Church and cemetery, Rev. Rural Dean Bliss conducting the services. The pall bearers were Mssrs W. Thoburn, J.M. Rosamond, J. W. Wylie, J. B. Wylie, A. Young and A.M. Greig. Notwithstanding the bitter cold there was a large and representative gathering of townspeople to pay the last tribute of respect to one who was respected and esteemed by his fellow citizens and businessmen.
The late Mr. Patterson was born in Perth, a son of the late James Patterson of that town, and was 59 years of age. About thirty-six years ago he came to Almonte and took a position with Mr. Shaw, a druggist, and shortly afterwards he bought the business and conducted it for a time in the building now occupied by Mr. Therien. In later years he built the brick store on Mill Street, which he occupied for nearly thirty years. Mr. Patterson took a deep interest in military matters and went to the front with the Perth company in 1866, and afterwards retained continuous connection with the militia, and held the position of Staff Sargeant in the 42nd Regiment. His inclination led him into agriculture and stock-raising and for quite a few years he occupied the Lt. Col. Gemmill farm within the corporation. He was of a progressive disposition and had from time to time been connected with enterprises outside his regular business as druggist, and at the time he was taken ill he was looking after some mining properties in which he was interested. He also took an intelligent though quiet interest in public matters, and was prevailed upon one or two occasions to accept a position at the council board, which he filled in a most creditable manner.
About thirty years ago he was married to Miss Mary Peddar, of Doon, and to them two sons were born. Of these James is a druggist, and has had charge of the drug store here for the past three or four years. Frank is a civil engineer and has a good position with the government in Ottawa in the engineering department. Mr. Patterson was a quiet, unostentatious man, a good citizen and one who will be missed from the business and social circles of town.”
The Perth Courier of Sept. 17, 1909 reported that fire swept through the town of Almonte on Sept. 10th, completely destroying the chief business block on the Main Street. Patterson’s Drug Store owned by M. Patterson estate, was one of the affected businesses. J. T. Patterson, druggist lived over the store and had to hurry his family out of the building. The front wall of Patterson’s building fell over onto the sidewalk, breaking the telegraph pole which struck Mr. Henshaw. Bank Manager Henshaw of the Bank of Montreal died from his injuries.
The 1911 census shows that James Patterson, aged 33, born July, 1877, was living at 74 Argyle Street, Toronto West. He lived with his wife Minnie Patterson, aged 32, born June, 1878. James was a blacksmith, an Anglican of Scotch origin. The 1911 census also shows that Francis Patterson was living on Slater St. in Ottawa, single, aged 30 and working as a civil servant for the Dominion of Canada government. His religion was Unitarian.
Manassah Patterson’s wife, Mary Peddar Patterson died 1940 and is buried in the family plot in Almonte, Ontario. Francis E. Patterson who lived from 1880 to 1942 is buried with his parents at St. Paul’s Anglican Cemetery. –Rootsweb
Historical Notes: Druggist P.C. Dowdall opened his Almonte store in 1880, and was was still serving those with constipation in 1935. Druggist Manassah Patterson (also known as John) Manassah was a druggist and owned Patterson’s Drug Store on Mill Street in Almonte. He initially came to Almonte and took a position with Mr. Shaw, a druggist, and shortly afterwards he bought the business and conducted it for a time in the building now occupied by Mr. Therien. Read-Constipation Guaranteed to be Cured in Almonte
34, 36, and 38 Mill Street: When Stafford’s Hotel was destroyed in an 1877 fire, it was replaced by three, three-storey brick buildings, which were later also destroyed in a 1909 fire
and replaced by the current two-storey buildings.45 The first telephone service in Almonte operated from Patterson’s Drug Store, located in one of these buildings, during the late 19th century.
Ephraim George Patterson was educated at Perth Grammar School in Perth before attending Toronto University. An article in the Perth Courier on September 11, 1863 shows his potential. “Toronto University. At the recent examinations at the University College, Toronto, for the admission of students, and the distribution of Scholarships, we are pleased to observe that Master Ephraim Patterson, son of Mr. James Patterson of this town, took a scholarship for general proficiency worth $120. per year. Young Patterson possesses more than ordinary talent, and his standing in the university, where he had to compete with the cleverest students in the province, must be a source of gratification to his parents; besides it shows that the Perth Grammar School in preparing students for college, is equal if not superior to any similar institution in Canada”
From the Perth Courier, June 30, 1871. “Our Perth Readers will learn with pleasure that E.G. Patterson, son of James Patterson of this town and an assistant teacher in the Hamilton High School will deliver a lecture in the town hall of Perth on “The Progress of Astronomical Science” in about three weeks time. The subject of the lecture is a grand one for the man of thought and learning and we are confident that Mr. Patterson will do it justice. The lecture will be accompanied by a reading from Tennyson. In the future, we shall be able to name the date more definitely. In the meantime we only copy the following notice of the lecture where it was previously delivered: “Mechanics Hall E.G. Patterson, M.A., lectured to a large and intelligent audience in the Mechanics Hall last night in aid of funds of that institution, taking for his subject ‘Astronomical Science’. The lecturer sketched the progress of the science from its infancy in the times when naught but the ideas of the heathen were promulgated. He gave many of the theories and discussions of scientists, men through the centuries to the present including those of Ptolemy, Galileo, Kepler, Newton, Laplane. He pointed out the sublimity and extent of this study and referred to the various phenomenon which now present themselves. The lecture was well received and exhibited great care in its preparation. It was delivered clearly, slowly, and with great taste and the display of facts, indicating an extensive acquaintance with the subject. Times.”
An article dated May 22, 1874 in the Perth Courier stated that, “our old friend, Mr. E. G. Patterson, at an examination held at the Law School, Toronto, passed for both an attorney and a barrister, without an oral. For barrister, he passed with unusual honours–beating all competitors, and obtaining 528 marks out of a possible 600–110 more than the next highest candidate.”
George Patterson started his law practice in Hamilton, as early ads indicated he and William Laidlaw formed the law firm of Laidlaw & Patterson. On the 1881 Canadian Census, George Patterson is 35 years old, a barrister living in Burlington, Halton, Ontario. His ethnicity is listed as Scottish. His wife is shown as Anna G. Patterson, age 29, background English. The children are: Harold, age 5, Anna, age 3 and Winford, 3 months. (Note, the names Anna and Winford are misspellings by the census taker of Amy and Winifred–see the children below.)George and his young family then moved to Winnipeg in 1882. At that time, he placed an ad in the Globe and Mail Saturday May 27, 1882 as follows: George Patterson, late of Hamilton, Barrister, has removed to Winnipeg to practise his profession. Offices No. 429 Main St., over Blue Store. George became a partner in a firm with his cousin-in-law, George William Baker, and they called themselves, Patterson & Baker. Barristers, Attorneys.
For more information on E. George Patterson’s law partner, George William Baker, see the Baker page of this website.
The 1901 census shows that George Patterson and his family were living in Winnipeg. George was a widowed barrister, aged 54, born April, 1847. His grown sons and daughters lived with him, along with a female servant. The family consisted of Amy, aged 22, born August 1878; Harold, aged 24, born May, 1976; Winifred, aged 19, born January 1891; and Gordon, aged 15, born May 1885. All but Gordon were born in Ontario. Gordon was born in Manitoba. Harold is listed as a clerk.
On August 24, 1908, George Patterson, a widowed barrister, aged 62, married Gertrude Viola Geddes, aged 31, at St Mark’s Church, Niagara-On-The-Lake. George is the son of James Patterson and Jane B. Pounder. Gertrude Viola is the daughter of Forbes Geddes, and Elizabeth Begue. Witnesses were Ambrose H. Beavin of Pittsburgh, PA, and Elsie H. Geddes of Niagara.
The 1911 census shows that George Patterson and his family were living in Winnipeg at the Dorchester Block. George was aged 64, born April, 1847. He is the Deputy Attorney General for Manitoba and his workplace is the Parliament Buildings. His wife Viola was aged 34, born February, 1877. Their son George G. Patterson was aged 2, born July 1909. A nurse named Mary Phillips also lived with the family. The family is listed as Scotch in origin and of the Anglican religion.
Obituary of Ephraim George Patterson
Taken from the Manitoba Free Press, Winnipeg, Monday, August 24, 1925
GEORGE PATTERSON, K.C. DIES SUNDAY, AGED 79
Was for Many Years Deputy Attorney-General of Manitoba
Was Active in His Duties Until Recently, Death Following Brief Illness
George Patterson, K.C., aged 79 years, 162 Lilac Street, died in the Winnipeg General Hospital at 1 p.m. Sunday. He was up to the time of his death, referee and master of the court of King’s bench, and for many years the deputy attorney-general of Manitoba. He had been ill but a short time.
He was born in Perth, Ontario, where his father, James Patterson, was a carpenter. His grandfather, George Patterson, was a veteran of Wellington’s armies in Spain and at Waterloo, came to Canada about 1820 and settled in Lanark County.
Mr. Patterson was educated at the public and high schools of Perth, Ontario. He was graduated from Toronto University, winning the gold medal in mathematics. He taught mathematics for some years in Hamilton, before studying law. For several years he was examiner in mathematics at Toronto University and later on, when coming to the west to the University of Manitoba.
He was a member of the university company of the Queen’s Own Rifles, and, having taken a lieutenant’s course at the Royal Military College, Kingston, he took part in the fight at Ridgeway with the Fenians in 1866, when he was wounded and for which he received the Fenian raid medal. He obtained a first class military school certificate in the same year.
When called to the bar of Ontario in 1876, Mr. Patterson was mathematical master in the Hamilton Collegiate Institute. He practised law in Hamilton until 1882, when he came to Manitoba, where he practised for a number of years. The first firm was Patterson and Baker, then Aikins, Culver and company, Aikins, Patterson and McClenigan, and finally, Patterson and Howard.
Appointed as deputy attorney-general in 1898, he held that position until his appointment as referee and master of the court of King’s bench. While deputy attorney-general, Mr. Patterson was for a time, law clerk for the government, and as deputy attorney-general, had been chief crown attorney for the province, conducting the prosecutions of all the chief criminal cases before the Winnipeg assizes for a number of years. He was made a K.C. in 1909 and had been editor of the Manitoba Law Reports since 1903.
Mr. Patterson was one of the original members of St. Luke’s Anglican Church and he had acted as both rector’s and people’s warden. He was an ardent golfer, a member of the Winnipeg Chess club and of the Winnipeg Lawn Bowling club.
He was twice married, his first wife being Annie Gertrude Baker, daughter of the late Hugh C. Baker of Hamilton, Ontario. She died in 1897. He married, some years later, Viola Geddes, daughter of the late Forbes Geddes, of Niagara-on-the-Lake. Three children of the first marriage and one of the second survive, with his widow. The surviving children are: Harold D. Patterson, Victoria, B.C.; Mrs. Amy Edwards, Winnipeg; Mrs. Leslie Ford, Perth, Australia; and George D. Patterson of Winnipeg.
Annie Gertrude Baker (October 18, 1851-1897) was the daughter of Hugh Cossart Baker (1818-1859) and Emma Wyatt (1824-1859). Hugh Cossart Baker, descended from Sir John Baker Kt of Sissinghurst, founded the Canada Life Assurance Company. Annie Gertrude’s brother, Hugh Cossart Baker started the first telephone exchange in the British Empire. George Patterson, Hugh’s brother in law, was an early stockholder and supporter. See the Baker page of this website.
MEMORANDA June 11, 1903. Made by George Patterson of Winnipeg, Barrister, for the information of his children and descendants.
I am the eldest son of James and Jane Patterson of Perth, Ontario and was born there on 20 April, 1846. My father, who died in October 1902 at Perth, was the last surviving son of George Patterson, a Scotch soldier in the Army of Wellington, who came to Canada about 1815 and settled near Perth. My grandmother Ann Patterson was English and came out with him. My mother was also born in Canada of Irish parents named Pounder. She was a most devoted and saintly mother and until the last few years of her long life had little rest from hard work except when laid up with severe illness. She literally gave herself wholly to the work of training up and caring for her large family without a thought of self. She was perhaps the meekest, most patient and most loving wife and mother that ever lived.–Rootsweb
Enjoyed seeing this article. Bresaya Jane Pounder was the sister of my gr gr gr grandmother Sarah Allan Pounder who married John Devlin in Perth, Ontario. The Pounder family emigrated from Enniscorthy, County Wexford to settle in Perth, Upper Canada.
Last week those two large poplar trees which have stood the breeze and sheltered the building occupied by Mr. Patrick C. Dowdall’s Medical Hall and Mr. R. J . Dowdall’s residence for “ years and years,” as Miss Ophelia in Uncle Tom’s Cabin would say, were removed from public view, as well as the smaller maple ones in front of Mr. Geo. Wilson’s new store.
They were, indeed, pop(u)lar trees, and although it seemed to those who claimed the right of ownership to them that their usefulness had become a thing of the past, they were nevertheless removed with a degree of sadness to more than the owners, which carried many back in thought to the good old school days when children used to rhyme in merry glee that beautiful piece entitled “ Woodman, spare that tree.”
But the woodman did not spare the trees. He, instead, applied his axe vigorously to their trunks, and a few hours sufficed to remove from the gaze of an admiring public half-a-dozen or more ornaments, which, in days past, were the pride of their owners. The change, however, is considered an improvement, more particularly as the street is one of the principal and most public ones in town
Almonte lost its oldest businessmen, Wednesday night, in the passing of Mr. Patrick Connor Dowdall, at the age of 80 years. “P. C.” as he was known, was one of the town’s finest citizens in every sense of the word. Through the long years that he conducted his drug business, here, he built up a reputation for fair dealing and good citizenship that is seldom equalled.
Born in Perth in 1856, a son of the late Edward Dowdall and his wife, Mary O’Connor, “P. C.” came to Almonte with his parents as a young child. His grandfather, Patrick Dowdall, was one of the original settlers of Lanark County, having come out from Westmeath, Ireland, in 1818 with his wife, Judith Keating settled on land granted by the Go; ernment near the military post, Perth-on-the-Tav.
The late Mr. Dowdall received his primary education in the schools of Almonte, after which he was apprenticed to a druggist in Pembroke. Upon graduating from the College of Pharmacy at Toronto he debated for a time whether he should take a position in Pembroke or start a business of his own in Almonte, then a thriving woollen town. He finally decided on the latter course and in March of 1880, he opened the store until the time of hfs death.
For the last six months Mr. Dowdall had been confined to his home through ill health and his daughter, Miss Dorothy, a graduate pharmacist who had assisted him for some years past, carried on in his absence. Mr. Dowdall’s death was not unexpected but nonetheless caused widespread regret in this town and district where he was so well and favorably known.
While never inclined to push himself forward Mr. Dowdall showed his good citizenship by shouldering a full measure of responsibility in connection with public service. He was for some years a member of the Board of Education; a town councillor, and, as deputy-reeve in the days when Almonte by virtue of its population was entitled to a deputy, he gave his best on the local body and on the county council at Perth.
He also served for a time on the Public Utility Commission of the town, and had for their objective the advancement of civic interests. In 1891 Mr. Dowdall married Miss Anne E. Boyle of Toronto, daughter of the late Mr. and Mrs. Patrick Boyle. Two sons and two daughters were born to this union, namely, Dr. Geoffrey Francis Dowdall, a graduate of McGill University, whose early death in 1929 was a great source of grief to- the father; Edward, a barrister in Kitchener, Ont.; Miss Eileen Dowdall, B.A. of the Imperial Bank staff, Toronto, and Miss Dorothy a t home, who was associated with her father in the business.
Of Mr. Dowdall’s immediate family only two members survive, a brother Frank at Port Dalhousle and a sister Mrs. Albert Dwyer (Teresa) of Almonte. Another sister, Mrs. William McGarry, mother of the late Bob. Thomas McGarry of Renfrew and four brothers, Richard, James, Edward ‘and John predeceased “P. C ” The funeral will be held on Saturday morning a t eight o’clock from the family home on Perth street, to St; Mary’s Roman Catholic Church, thence to St. Mary’s cemetery. Almonte Gazette 1933
The first storey storefronts of this building have been modified from the original glass windows for easier viewing of merchandise–hence the different colours of brick. 127-131 Bridge Street has housed a number of different businesses including pharmacies, clothing stores, grocery stores, and poolrooms.
The Hughes family bought the pharmacy from Dr. Preston in 1905.
W. J. Hughes Rexall Drug store was located on the corner and Thomas Lloyd Hughes born in 1897 along with his brother Harold until they each decided to run a smaller store at the opposite ends of town. Lloy’s store was on Moffatt Street and Harold on Lake Ave West. For 50 years they were in groceries together and then the store was sold to Thomas’s nephew and for 12 years Thomas drove a butcher wagon. There was a dark room at the rear of the store where Mr. Hughes tested your eyes for glasses. You could buy a roll of film #116 for a Brownie Box camera for 25 cents and for $1.25 he would send it away to be developed.
The folks in Carleton Place will always remember the Rexall Drug annual 1 cent sale and every local household stocked up on cough medicine, cough drops, peroxide and all sorts of liniment. Some of the clerks that worked there were: Olive Dick, Ruby Voyce, and John Briscoe and Wilbert Robertson.
Harvey Asselstine attended the Ontario College of Pharmacy in 1929. In 1944, he returned to Carleton Place and bought the drugstore at the corner of Bridge and Franklin, from W.J. Hughes who operated it for 38 years. Betty Findlay and Mary Cook both worked at Assestine’s Pharmacy. In the rear of Asselstine’s drug store the CPR Telegraph operated during the 1950s. Asselstine expanded his drug store and bought out Hughes Grocery. In 2006 the Athen’s Corners Restaurant was located there.
Taber and McCrae operated a Men’s and Boy’s clothing store within Struther’s Block, which later became a pool hall (next door) operated by Mel Barclay. Charlie Giroux, who only had one arm took over the pool hall then Ab Dowseth from Smiths Falls operated it for a short time but when McCann and Porter gained ownership they moved the pool hall to the old Bank of Commerce.
Jeremy Stinson— That corner was, for much of my childhood, the home of the Blossom Shop. Back before the one way street.
Son of William James Hughes and Mabel Vaughan (nee Strong) Hughes, of Carleton Place, Ontario. Brother of Freda, Morley and Cyril. The Town of Carleton Place remembered Pilot Officer Hughes by naming a street for him.
While going through a box full of old photograph plates in the stockroom at the rear of D. W. Snedden’s drug store, Mr. Kenneth Johnson, who is an ardent amateur photographer, unearthed a treasure trove. Apparently the late M. R. MacFarlane, or one of his staff, followed the same hobby as Mr. Johnson. Those were the days of large cameras with glass plates almost as big as a school slate. And they made good pictures, too, as can be seen by the samples Mr. Johnson developed and which are now on display in Mr. Snedden’s drug store window.
A reproduction of one of them appears on the top section of this page. The scenes developed from the old plates recall memories for the elder generation of this town and would be appreciated by out-of town readers of the Gazette who are no longer in the junior age group.
We see among them a picture of the late Dr. Hanley sitting in his buggy in front of M. R. MacFarlane’s residence on Church Street. He wears a hard-shell hat and the horse looks tired, like most doctors’ horses did in those days.
There are pictures of Dr, Oliver MacFarlane and Jack Taylor in the knee-length pants worn by children of that period; groups of women in long skirts and big hats of their time, few of them who can be identified; splendid scenes of the old stone bridge on Main Street, the churches of the town, the town hall, the Almonte Flour Mills with the railway bridge then supported by stone piers the old steel bridge with the arches, later to be replaced by the present one; up and down views of Elgin, Church and Country Streets, and, as the auction sale bills say, many others too numerous to mention.
One of the priceless pictures shows Mr. Porritt’s ancient automobile with young MacFarlane standing on the front seat. It is said to be the first horseless carriage to arrive in Almonte, and what it did to the horses can better be imagined than described. Maybe we’ll get around to printing a picture of it one of these days. The whole collection of pictures which Mr. Johnson has resurrected is most interesting and should be grouped, framed and placed in the public library or the council chamber.
In the street scene printed above can be seen the edge of the late H. H. Cole’s store, Kelly’s Hotel which had been sold to a Mr, Me-Donald, Shorty Young’s shoe store and shoe shine, Patterson’s Drug Store, the Riddell & McAdam Building, then occupied by Wesley West; J. McKinnon’s, Shaw’s Hardware, John O’Reilly’s general store, and on the left— J . L. Hamilton, photographer, in the brick building later moved back from the street and occupied at that time as an office for Baird’s Mill, later to be used as an office for the P.U.C,, arid demolished some ten years ago; and in the distance, the clockless post office. The clock came about 1913. Read—The Mystery of the Almonte Post Office Clock –Five Minutes Fast and other Things….
The Kickapoo Indian Medicine Company, founded in 1881 by John E. “Doc” Healy, “Texas Charlie” F. Bigelow, and “Nevada Ned” Oliver, took their cure-all pitch on the road. Based in New Haven, Connecticut, the company hired hundreds of Native Americans, said to be of the Kickapoo tribe, to tour America and Europe, teaching “Indian ways” and peddling its medicines. The names of their travelling salesmen can be seen on the registry of the Queen’s Hotel from the late 1800s which is at the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum
More and more remedy-makers began to put on their own elaborate medicine shows, like Big Sensation Medicine Company and Hamlin Wizard Oil of Chicago, which came to town with a circus-like ruckus—its caravan of wagons was led by a band.
In fact, medicine shows were major events in the towns they visited. With live skits, music, juggling, acrobatics, feats of magic, sword swallowing, and ventriloquism, it was the most excitement most places would see for months. Some shows even travelled with their own flea circus or sideshow-freak acts. Stores would close, children were allowed to skip school, and residents would don their Sunday best.
Of course, the main event was always the pitch for bottled treatments such as Professor Low’s Liniment & Worm Syrup, Dalley’s Magical Pain Extractor, Dr. Kilmer’s Swamproot, Hood’s Sarsaparilla, Wistar’s Balsam of Wild Cherry, Dr. King’s New Discovery, Edgar’s Cathartic Confection, and Schenck’s Mandrake Pills.
Many travelling “doctors” with dubious credentials knew how to create the illusion that such products worked. They would rub an arthritic’s afflicted arm or foot until the pain seemed to dull. They understood that washing out earwax improved anyone’s hearing. Some even distributed pills filled with long pieces of string so the taker would appear to expel tapeworms in their stool. Often, the medicine company would place a shill in the audience, who would pretend to be sick and claim the treatment had worked a miracle.
Toward the end of the century, the American public, fed up with being scammed by these peddlers, took to campaigning against what Collier’s magazine dubbed, in 1905, “The Great American Fraud.” Families were also concerned about the effects of alcohol and narcotics like opium on their children. Around the same time, the Germ Theory of Disease, validated by the 19th-century research of Louise Pasteur and Robert Koch, was becoming widely accepted in the practice of medicine. All of this eventually led to the Pure Food and Drug Act of 1907.
This ointment tin from the early 20th century was just added to our to the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum’s collection! The tin was manufactured by MacDonald MFG Ltd in Toronto and it contained a mixture of mercurial ointment and petroleum jelly.
We have little information on what year it was manufactured and what the ointment may have been used for specifically. If you recognize this design or have more information, please let us know!
On this date in 1927, Prime Minister Mackenzie King and British Prime Minister Baldwin inaugurated a transatlantic telephone service between Canada and Great Britain.