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What’s In a Name? Lanark County 101– Or What’s What in 1934

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What’s In a Name? Lanark County 101– Or What’s What in 1934

Lanark was a provincial riding in Ontario, Canada, that was created for the 1934 election. In 1987 there was a minor redistribution and the riding was renamed to Lanark-Renfrew. It was abolished prior to the 1999 election. It was merged into the riding of Renfrew—Nipissing—Pembroke.

In 1933, in an austerity measure to mark the depression times, the province passed an update to the Representation Act that reduced the number of seats in the legislature from 112 to 90. The riding of Lanark was created from parts of Lanark North and Lanark South and consisted of the townships of Beckwith, Bathurst, Burgess North, Dalhousie, Darling, Drummond, Elmsley North, Lanark, Lavant, Montague, Pakenham, Ramsay, Sherbrooke North and Sherbrooke South. It also included the towns of Almonte, Carleton Place, Perth, and Smith’s Falls and the village of Lanark

1934-

W H A T ’S in a Name? Sometimes very little. Scores of townships in On- ” tario are called after old-time members of the Provincial Legislature big frogs in the little political puddles of their day—whose names mean nothing to this generation. Sir John Graves Simcoe, first Lieutenant-Governor of Upper Canada, gave his own name to one of our counties. Lady Simcoe claimed a share in the work; and to this day three of the townships in that county bear the names of her pet spaniel puppies, Tiny, Tay and Flos. •

 But often in the place names of a community there are suggestions of its ” early history and the origin of its pioneers. The Highlanders who settled Glengarry county have left proof of their love for the old land in the names we find there—Lochiel, Dunvegan, Lochinvar, Dalkeith, Athol, Glen Roy and a dozen others. The Highland emigrant never forgot. 

Lowlanders who came to our own country in 1811-1822 for- or fail to renew in Canada the names of shires and streams and towns which they had known a t home. Lanark, county, township and village,—the Tay, the Clyde, Kilmarnock, Clyde Forks, Glen Tay, the Scotch Line, all remind us of the districts in Scotland from which thousands of our first settlers came. But now our townships, for the most part, preserve the names of the great or near-great men then concerned, in their colonial government or their friends. 

BURGESS, probably from the Bishop of Salisbury, school-mate and friend of Prime Minister Addington (Did you know that North Burgess is now part of Tay Valley?) read- McLaren’s Phosphate Mine — BurgessWood Housing– Anglo Canadian Phosphate Company

ELMSLEY, after Hon. John Elmsley, second Chief Justice of Upper Canada;  Read-A Town Called Barbodies–Port Elmsley 101

BECKWITH and MONTAGUE after Commander J. Beckwith and Admiral Sir George Montague who were friends and guests of Earl Dalhousie Quebec during his term as Governor; – Read-The Beckwith McGregors or readThe Barren Lands of Montague?

DARLING, after Col. H. C. Darling, Military Secretary to Lord Dalhousie for whom he made an inspection and report regarding the Perth and Rideau settlements in 1822. By the way, many years ago I was told by one of the ‘oldest inhabitants’ that this township was named in honour of Grace Darling, the heroic lighthouse girl who, alone in her frail skiff, rescued nine sailors from the wrecked schooner, “Forfarshire” in the storm swept North Sea. Every school reader fifty years ago contained the story of that braV’e deed. One would like to : believe that the township owed its name to her; but she was only eight years old when the survey and naming were completed, and the more commonplace explanation must be accepted.  Read-People are Afraid to Work– Jennie Majaury- Darling Township

DRUMMOND—Sir Gordon Drummond was born a t Quebec .where his father was paymaster of the military forces. Sir Gordon entered the army and served with distinction in Holland, Minorca, Egypt and Gibraltar before coming back to Canada in 1813 to take a gallant part in the war against the United States Read-Drummond Centre United Church — and The Ireton Brothers 38 Year Reunion–Names Names Names

SHERBROOKE—Sir John Cope Sherbrooke followed Drummond as Governor. Perhaps in Quebec he might have worked out some peaceful solution of the troubles and conflicts, even then becoming acute, between the French Canadians, and the British minority there. But the shuffling policy of the British Colonies office convinced him that the task was hard, and his failing health hastened his resignation.  Read-What’s Happening at Christie Lake June 23, 1899

LAVANT—Sherbrooke was succeeded as Governor by the Duke of Richmond. Richmond Village, the Goodwood river (commonly known as the “Jock”) and the townships of Fitzroy, March and Torbolton in Carleton county get their names from the Duke’s family or estates, and our township of Lavant recalls a village near the Goodwood racetrack on the Duke’s estate in Sussex, England. Read-The Lavant Station Fire 1939

Driving between Ottawa and Franktown one passes a cairn on the roadside in memory of the tragic death there of Charles Lennox, fourth Duke of Richmond. 

The story has been often published with varying details. But the account written by his son, Lord William Pitt Lennox, has not, I think, been reproduced in recent years. It may be of interest to read his own words:

That a far cry from the glitter and glamour of his vice-regal courts at Dublin and Quebec, from his sumptuous entertainments at Goodwood, from the gorgeous ball at Brussels where the Richmonds entertained Wellington and his officers on the eve of Quatre Bras and Waterloo, to this poor crazed Charles Lennox, running madly through a Canadian swamp, and dying at last on a pallet of straw in a back-woods cow byre. “He was born in a barn, and he has died in a barn” said the gossips, when the news reached England. Which was true. Read-The Haunted Canoe from the Jock River

Immigration/ settlers stories

Ramsay W.I. Tweedsmuir History Book 1—SOME EARLY RAMSAY HISTORY

Plans For the Lanark County Townships, 1827, with Names Names Names

How Did Settlers Make Their Lime?

Mothell Parish familes that are in the 1816-1822 1816 – 1824 Beckwith Settlers Names

The Old Settlers Weren’t so Old After All

Dear Lanark Era –Lanark Society Settlers Letter

Ramsay Settlers 101

Beckwith –Settlers — Sir Robert the Bruce— and Migrating Turtles

Come to Canada– the Weather is Fine — Immigration Links

Lanark Settlement Emigrants Leave Scotland

Sheppard’s Falls — Shipman’s Falls — Shipman’s Mills –Waterford — Ramsayville Victoriaville and Almonte — Senator Haydon

ROCKIN’ Cholera On the Trek to the New World — Part 4

Rock the Boat! Lanark County or Bust! Part 1

It Wasn’t the Sloop John B — Do’s and Don’t in an Immigrant Ship -Part 2

Riders on the Storm– Journey to Lanark County — Part 3