Tag Archives: Kennedy house

An Update to the Kennedy House — Harold “Ozzie” McNeely

An Update to the Kennedy House — Harold “Ozzie” McNeely

The former Kennedy House on High Street

As you know Thomas Quinn of Ferguson’s Falls led the four teams required to move this house down the frozen Mississippi River and Lake to its present site. Tragically there was a devasting fire that consumed a lot of this house in August of 2021. It is said at present that it is a complete tear down.

Firefighters with Ocean Wave Fire Company and the Mississippi Mills and Beckwith fire departments battled a fire that destroyed a home on High Street in Carleton Place Aug. 22. The home sustained over $500,000 in damage due to the fire, which originated in the basement.–READ HERE

Today I talked to Harold “Ozzie” McNeely and he told me when he was growing up the move of this house was always in conversation. They used to go up to Ferguson Falls for business (live stock) and he remembers being shown as a child where the house once existed in that village. One of his teachers in High School was a Kennedy who owned the house as they too often spoke about this house. Ozzie said the house that was moved was very small and unlike the size it was at present. The home had an addition built on to the main small house in later years.

He said it took awhile, about a week, to move down the ice with teams of horses and the house’s port of entry to Carleton Place and High Street was Nichol’s wharf which is now Centennial Park. From there teams of horses and sleighs pulled the house to its present location through the snow.

I would like to correct some misinformation regarding the Kennedy house. My Dad, Douglas Kennedy , did teach at CPHS until 1955 when he went to Lisgar Collegiate in Ottawa to teach.
There had not been any previous Kennedys in the house as he bought it from a Miss Campbell in the early 50’s.
My siblings and l grew up in that house and were saddened to hear of the fire and the possible demise of our childhood home.
Evelyn Kennedy Julian

Corrected thanks Evelyn!

Nichol’s Wharf-Photo from the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum — read-Before and After at Centennial Park

Thanks Ozzie, and he also told me there used to me a small tunnel under the RBC bank was and where the safe was. Also, the Queen’s Hotel had/ has two basements and there was one tunnel to bring the beer out to the back parking lot.

The rollers that moved the house-Findlay recorded the event of his findings and this actual document is at the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum.


To read the stories click:

The Name of the Man that Moved the Kennedy House

The House that Skated to Carleton Place — Kennedy House

Back in 2015, Carleton Place Coun. Linda Seccaspina profiled the unique story behind the home on her blog.

Known as the Kennedy House, at the corner of Flora and High streets, the home wasn’t actually built in Carleton Place. It was moved down the frozen Mississippi River from Innisville to Carleton Place during winter around 1900 by a large group of horses and men.

“Thomas Quinn of Ferguson’s Falls led the four teams required to move this house down the frozen Mississippi River and lake to its present site,” she stated in her blog post.

Carleton Place was the home’s third location. It was originally built in 1845 on land in Ferguson’s Falls–.READ HERE

Putting Together Pieces About Historical Homes– John Moore’s House –Napoleon Street

The Derry Farm of Angus McDiarmid

The House on the Cliff and the Old Bridge

The Pakenham House—- Thomas Lowe House

The House that Skated to Carleton Place — Kennedy House


Doing the research for the Dunlop homes on Heritage Carleton Place yesterday I  saw another interesting tidbit that would be of interest to anyone that lives in Carleton Place. Did you know that we have a house in town that was literally moved down the Mississippi River from Innisville to Carleton Place in the dead of winter? That would be the Kennedy House on the corner of Flora and High Street.


This house was originally built in Ferguson Falls and then moved to Innisville, Ontario. Not content with its location, it was later moved to the town of Carleton Place where it still resides on the corner of High and Flora Street.

If you are to believe the tales, the home was placed on large wooden wheels and moved on the frozen ice of the Mississippi River and lake to Carleton Place. Similar to Moore House it was moved from the rivers edge to its present location. There are disputes as to how it actually moved. Was it in one or two pieces?

Was there a bridge there someone asked me? Highway 7 came down High Street, across Bridge Street and out to join Highway 15 which in turn ran from Smiths Falls to Almonte across Bridge Street to the Townline  Whatever it was I cannot even imagine a feat like this happening.

Still don’t believe it? Years ago David Findlay noticed a  set of large wooden wheels at the Innisville Museum. Could these be one and the same?


Findlay recorded the event of his findings and this actual document is at the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum. He wrote the following:

“Charles Hollinger of Ferguson’s Falls confirmed the story , and referred me to a photo of a needlework sampler in a publication “Primitive and Naïve Art in Canada” by Blake McKendry. The sampler, dated 1845, was done by Catherine Ferguson, and shows a structure in that community identical to that of 144 High St. We know nothing about the reason for moving the building, but it is interesting that it was built in the “plank on plank” manner, common in early houses built where sawn lumber was readily available”


The Kennedy house was built in 1845 and was moved approximately around the years around 1900. The distance was 18.3 km via the roadways and much longer by waterways. Doug Kennedy, a Kennedy descendant, had heard the story but said there never had really been any proof, so he didn’t know what to believe. Moving a home down the Mississippi down to High Street seemed like it was a lot of extra work.


But, he did mention 100 years ago something similar had happened in Calgary and the Maritimes. There had also a riverbank to negotiate, so who is to argue. It could be done. He also mentioned there was slab construction in the walls and it would be interesting to date a core from the walls or basement to determine the age.

Making a life change like moving is enough to scare anyone. Imagine physically moving your home.

Sadly this house will be no more as it had a fire in August 2021- read-

An Update to the Kennedy House — Harold “Ozzie” McNeely

The Name of the Man that Moved the Kennedy House