Tag Archives: Elizabeth Kelly

Elizabeth Kelly — Mary Cook News Archives

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Elizabeth Kelly — Mary Cook News Archives

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 - The Ottawa Citizen
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
24 Oct 1980, Fri  •  Page 3

historicalnotes

 - The Ottawa Citizen
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
10 Dec 1984, Mon  •  Page 4

 - The Ottawa Citizen
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
29 Feb 1988, Mon  •  Page 8

 - The Ottawa Journal
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
15 Jan 1938, Sat  •  Page 10

Elizabeth Kelly From the Millstone

Mrs. Marion Graham was friendly with Miss Elizabeth Kelly (who by no small coincidence is the namesake of our library). Once I was visited at my office at 77 Little Bridge Street by Mrs. Graham and Miss Kelly. Miss Kelly was born and raised in this building. Interestingly, I was able to obtain the autograph of Miss Elizabeth E. Kelly at the foot of my original diary entry of this event. I say “interestingly” because there was some question in my mind when I met Miss Kelly on July 4, 1983 (when I understand she was well into her eighties) whether in fact she knew her own name. As it turned out, she knew a lot more than that. For example, Mrs. Graham turned to her at one point during our conversation and asked Miss Kelly whether she (Miss Kelly) knew where she was (Mrs. Graham had asked her this because my own office, in which we all were sitting, had once been the bedroom of Miss Kelly’s parents). To this Miss Kelly simply replied, “Yes. My bedroom was upstairs. There are twenty-four steps going upstairs.” Well, I need not tell you that, upon their departure, I wasted no time in counting the number of steps leading to the top of the stairs, and she was right!

Speaking of Miss Kelly’s bedroom, I once heard a story, perhaps it was from Mrs. Marion Graham (Library Board Member May 1953 – December 1975 and Chairman for 20 years), who, with Miss Elizabeth Schoular (Almonte Public School Teacher) and Miss Elizabeth Kelly (Librarian) and other like-minded citizens (W.J. “Jim” Coady, farmer & Chairman, 1953- 1955; Mayor Alex “Sandy” McDonald, In Charge of Dy house & later Superintendent ; Dr. John F. Dunn – Medical Practitioner; Rev. Arthur Hirtle, Baptist Minister; George L. Comba, Director of Comba Funeral Home; Stewart Lee, Merchant – Lee’ s Hardware; Miss Jessie Mathews – High School teacher, Latin, Art & some history) that Miss Kelly was such an avid reader that practically nothing could keep her from her books. Even as a young child, when Miss Kelly was sent to bed by her parents, she would pull the bare lamp-bulb down from the ceiling on its cord, and hide herself, the bulb and the book under the covers so that she might continue to read. Not surprisingly, this heated relationship with a burning bulb proved disastrous one night as her bed sheets caught fire and sent her fleeing onto the little roof-cover over the front porch of her house screaming for help. Years after I had bought the building, when I was having some work done on an area near Miss Kelly’s former bedroom, the tradesman asked me whether the house had ever had a fire. It was then that I recollected the story I had heard about her reading mishap. Parts of the old brick wall are still charred from that night.

Miss Kelly’s father was Dr. John King Kelly. Mrs. Graham reported to me that he was a very compassionate doctor, but he died a poor man. His books disclosed that he got paid most often in specie (potatoes, cuts of beef, and other such farm products). But he would never let the manner or probability of payment get in the way of him attending to an ill patient, even if he or she were as far away as Clayton on a wintry night.