Tag Archives: highways

Highway 7 and 15 Notes from Karen Prytula

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Highway 7 and 15 Notes from Karen Prytula

 

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Map from Karen Prytula

Author’s note- When people send me interesting informative notes, especially someone like Karen, I like to make them available. Memories, notations, should be documented for future history.

 

From Karen Prytula– LCGS and Heritage Ottawa

The newspaper article you posted (When Things Come 360 –The First Automobile Fatality in Carleton Place– Torrance, Burgess, and Names Names) said the Torrance/Burgess family was headed to the Ashton Rd. This intrigued me somewhat, and so I pulled out my 1951 map, and the road to Ashton was Hwy 15!  Common knowledge to most, but what I did not realize was that 15 went right into Carleton Place (i.e. straight down the Franktown Rd., and straight down Bridge St. to the Town Line Rd, then veered left and went to Innisville, and then probably Perth).

You will also see there is no Hwy 7, going over the train tracks at the intersection of today’s 7 and Franktown Road.  If you stayed on the road it was probably dirt, and took you straight to the lake with no bridge to cross it like there is today if you were going to Perth.  i.e. if you were going to Perth back then, you would have to take the Townline route.

 If you were going the opposite way it took you straight to Ashton, then down what we called the 9th line, now known as Flewellyn Rd. I grew up on the 10th line (now Fernbank), one mile north of the 9th line.  We used to come to Carleton Place for gas on Sundays to gas up for the week.
Thanks Karen.
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Wendy LeBlanc- Hey, Linda, I always wondered why the (notice that we always used the word ‘the’ in front and never ‘road’ after) Town Line got changed to Townline Road. It was the Town Line when I left in ’66 and Townline Road when I moved back in ’88. Can’t think of why it would have changed. Did you know that it used to be Ontario’s shortest highway – #100?
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Crystal Jane sen this photo in. Thank you!
Hi Linda! I have an old photo of my grandpa when they were building Highway #7
His name is Ray Giles 🙂 thank you for posting it!! Such a great part of the heritage ! – considering every Carleton Place resident has driven that highway.

Come and visit the Lanark County Genealogical Society Facebook page– what’s there? Cool old photos–and lots of things interesting to read. Also check out The Tales of Carleton Place.

Information where you can buy all Linda Seccaspina’s books-You can also read Linda in The Townships Sun andScreamin’ Mamas (USA)

 

 

relatedreading

Rolling Down Highway 15

Weekend Driving- Smiths Falls Franktown and Carleton Place 1925

“If Wayne Robertson Jumped Off the Highway 7 Bridge Does that Mean You Do it?”

Something Really Spells Funny on Highway 7

The Lost Highway

Breathtaking Bargains and Jukebox Favourites at The Falcon on Highway 7

Sentimental Journey Through Carleton Place — Did You Know About Sigma 7?

Twin Oaks Motel Opens -1959 — Highway 7 Landmarks

An Explosive Highway 7 Tale

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For Whom the Toll Gates Tolled– Revised

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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.:)

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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.

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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.

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Photo– Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum

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.

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