Tag Archives: lanark county

Why You Need to Vote for Carleton Place in the CHEZ 106 Contest– Reason number 1 #theytookerrjobs

Why You Need to Vote for Carleton Place in the CHEZ 106 Contest– Reason number 1 #theytookerrjobs

Photo- One of the Rosamond Almonte Mills on the left and the Peden Family in front of the Rosamond House on Bell Street in Carleton Place.–

Biggs & Barr March Madness of Small Towns

Which small town is the BEST small town?

🗓️ Tournament finishes on March 27th, 2023.


James Rosamond, the textile king in Almonte once owned the home on Bell Street.The home is located on a piece of land originally obtained by William Morphy who came in 1819 but he never received a deed for the land until way after 1824. Morphy sold a portion of the land to James Rosamond who built the stone home that sits next to Hurd’s Hall. He was also once once of the first industrialist developers in Carleton Place.

James Rosamond built mills in Carleton Place and Almonte in the 1840s and 1850s. His sons, Bennett and James, began the large Almonte mill in 1866, in partnership with George Stephen of Montréal. Rosamond operated a woolen factory across the street from his home in Carleton Place until a dispute began with the Carleton Place town council about the lease of the land. He left as fast as  you can say ” Jack is your uncle” when Amonte lured him with great promises and dreams and began the Rosamond Woolen Mill in Almonte. It became one of the most progressive mills in Canada. Bell Street was also known as a thriving street. The street had some twenty five buildings scattered along its present four blocks. Read the rest here..https://lindaseccaspina.wordpress.com/2015/10/16/rosamunds-the-one-carleton-place-let-get-away/

The first in  squabbles between Almonte and Carleton Place, but we do love our neighbour. BUT Please VOTE for us!!


for another history lesson why Carleton Place should win!!

Shop Local 1897 — A Warning for Small Villages and Towns

Shop Local 1897 — A Warning for Small Villages and Towns

There was a pointed article published in every local newspaper that small towns were in trouble. It was alarming to see this in the year 1897.

A very pointed and practicle article appeared in the Orangeville, Ont., Advertiser on the possible results of towns peopledoing all their shopping in the city. We quote it for intelligent peoplewho are reasonable enough to see that city buying, if carried out to its extrema limit can empty a town of both trade and prosperity.

Let us sssume that a town which lacks local pride and spirit and whose inhabitants spend much off their cash to departmental stores and buys everything aways from home. What follows? The merchants put up their shutter, and quit. Tha main street has gone out of business. The post office and express office are the local branches of the department store and are busy sending off orders and delivering packages.

The merchants with their families, and their clerks, scatter to tbe four comers of the earth. There are, perhaps two banks in the town and one closes at once, but the other waits to see how business will he. The editor of the local paper look over his fields and peers into tho future, and then moves away. Those who owned property along the main street find it almost valueless. One of the local lawyers moves away. One of the doctors sells out to the other.

The farmers of the surrounding county rise up at 3 a.m. and drive on through the village to the city to sell their produce and make their purchases. They consult a city doctor, or lawyer or dentist, if they need advice or treatment. Their farms, ones worth $100 per acre adjacent to a living town, decline in value until they are worth only $30 or $40 per acre, because there is no living town and market nearby.

The owner of the big mill or factory, which was bonused years ego, will now harken to the offers he gets to locate in other places, and the town having now no future, no prospect of better shipping facilities, the factory will go away. In short the town will have no excuse for existing.

If all this happens we might as well all move away and get into the city to which, maybe we really belong. Logically this whole province in which only rich cities can thrive are all retailing passing into the hands of retail men and companies strong enough to practice any triok or to resort, to any tyranny, and none being strong enough to resist them.

The Lanark Era

Lanark, Ontario, Canada21 Jul 1897, Wed  •  Page 1

What Would You Wear to the Carleton Place 1897 Inaugural Ball?

From January to June–The Year of Earthquakes 1897

The Fires of 1897

John Elliott Vanished 1897

The Ottawa City Directory 1897-98 —Simpson Book Collection

We Don’t Need the Almonte Fair 1897 – “Admission to the grounds is 25 cents, which is twice too much!”

Documenting Art Brown 1981

Documenting Art Brown 1981

This is Art Brown who retired from the Mississippi Mills fire Dept. Thank you to the MM Fire Dept for coming to help out with Carleton Place’s fire on Bridge Street last night.. #workingtogether#community

“Coming together is a beginning, staying together is progress, and working together is success.” – Henry Ford–

From Peter Harris mcgregor -//I can’t remember what year this was but that’s me and fire chief Art Brown rest in peace no more pain and suffering chief you will sadly be missed by many of the lives you touched and saved.

The Millstone

Heather Brown Fortington

Gazelle Reporter March 1981

Art Brown who operates the fire pumper, has been named firefighter of the year for 1980. Brown was named to the honour Thursday at the first annual firefighters appreciation night hosted by the Almonte Civitan Club. He was chosen by his peers, after fellow firefighters in the AlmonteRamsay department voted secretly for the man they thought had done outstanding service to the fire department in 1980. On the first occasion of what promises to be an annual event in Almonte, Civitan president Rick Eppich presented the award in the form of a plaque inscribed with the words, “in recognition of your outstanding and dedicated service to the community.” This was the first time the award has been presented, but the Almonte Civitan Club have planned to make the evening an annual celebration. The award was the idea of Civitan Gib Hodge, district east treasurer, and is based on similar awards night held each year in Smiths Falls. The awards presentation followed a banquet and speeches attended by members of the Almonte-Ramsay fired ep artm en t, their wives, and the hosts o f the evening, A lm onte C ivitan Club, After a roast beef dinner served by the ladies auxiliary of the Royal Canadian Legion, Civitan chairman L loyd C o n n o lly in tro d u ced the evening’s special guests. These included fire chief Bill Lowry and his wife Joyce, A lm onte m ayor Ron Pettem and his wife Jan.

Sid Oxenham , assistant fire marshal of O ntario, Civitan governor-elect of district east Ken Pilon and his wife Beverley, Almonte councillor Des Vaughan, and Ramsay councillor Jim Lowry and his wife Sandy, among others. Speakers throughout the evening paid tribute to the excellent record of the fire department since its creation more than 100 years ago on September 12, 1873. The department’s fine reputation today is due in great measure to the work of former fire chiefs and senior fire fighters such as Ross Stanley and Slip Washburn, said Bill Lowry, the current chief. Lowry said there was no doubt in his mind that Almonte has the best fire department in Lanark county. He pointed out that while the value of property destroyed in Almonte fires in Almonte and Ramsay in the last year totals about $7.5 million, the value of the property saved was at least $6.5 million. Lowry said he will be emphasizing fire prevention in the Almonte area this year, and captain Bob Drynan, in charge of fire prevention, will be making me any inspections.

photo from almonte.com

“Our idea is not to make life rough for you ,” said Lowry, “ but to save you money ,” A little history The Almonte fire department has come a long way since its foundation 100 years ago. Early firefighting equipment included horse drawn pumpers that required eight men to operate it by hand. Steam, then gas pumpers (one of these exploded) replaced these early models, Civitainess to make this community safe from fire,” he said. Under the Mutual Aid system, the Almonte department has fought fires in every municipality in the Lanark county, except in the distant ones of Lavant and Dalhousie.

Some of the great fires fought by the force were a 1939 fire that devastated the main street of Pakenham,

a 16- hour blaze in Lanark in 1959,

fires in Smiths Falls in 1971 and 75,

and a fire at the Arnprior high school in 1976.

The force was commended for its efforts in the rescue of passengers in the Christmas train wreck at the Almonte station in 1942. On the social side, the Almonte fire department for many years hosted great New Year’s Eve dances for the town. When that tradition waned, the department took up the idea of holding a giant pancake breakfast once a year for the entire community.


I miss the Air Raid Siren but it was fun to continue the tradition of the Annual Fire Department Pancake Breakfast in Almonte with my Dad and the girls #fairweekend #Almonte #thefriendlytown #hometowntraditions

The pancake event drew a record crowd of 1400 people. The department faces more changes in the future, with the reorganization of the force into an amalgamated Almonte-Ramsay department. The details of the amalgamation, which involves the purchase of several new pieces o f equipment by Ramsay township, are in the process of being worked out by fire officials and representatives of the two municipalities. While the force looks ahead to bigger and better things, it will con tinue to rely on the dedication and courage of the volunteers who have made it what it is today. Not the least of these volunteers, as Art Brown pointed out as he accepted his plaque Thursday, are the wives who support from behind the scenes all the efforts and achievements of their fire fighting husbands. “ We are nothing without them ,” said the generous Brown.

Two Ring Nozzles and Oil- Almonte Fire Dept 1874

Almonte Fire 1903

Collie Mill Fire Almonte October 1, 1965

The Fires in Almonte 1899

1906 — Business Block is a Smouldering Block of Ruins– More Fires of Almonte

The Almonte Fire– Bridge and Water Street 1903

The Almonte Fire of 1909

The Almonte Fire 1909– Bank Manager Badly Injured

lmonte Fire of Nolan’s and Wylie’s Stable

The Almonte Fire 1955– Almonte United Church

The Almonte Fire– Bridge and Water Street 1903

Miss Eva Denault- Almonte 1911 Fire Heroine

Remember The Almonte Fire Truck Company?

Things About Bill Lowry 1998

Nelson Fraser — White Lake Dam

Nelson Fraser — White Lake Dam

CLIPPED FROMThe Ottawa CitizenOttawa, Ontario, Canada13 Jun 1986, Fri  •  Page 3

Nelson Fraser is getting a real charge out of the creek in his back yard these days, and damming the flow of hydro bills into the bargain. A life-long native of White Lake village just south of Arnprior, Fraser and his son David, became electrically self-sufficient this year by rebuilding a “dam across Waba Creek. And Nelson, 68, appears to have recharged his own batteries and gained new zest for life in ” the process.

Frasers have lived in the heart of White Lake on the same property since 1906. Three generations have gazed out the same back window at a dam originally built by a local sawmill company to facilitate log traffic down the waterway. But Nelson had never been ‘ content with just looking at the ” dam. He always wanted to buy the badly deteriorated structure, ”a dream fulfilled about 10 years ago.”

The idea of adding a generator to the 30-foot-high dam the Frasers built to replace the old structure came from friends Laurier and Michael Dupuis. The Dupuis father-and-son team of engineers are owners of Galetta Power Ltd., a hydro substation in nearby Galetta. “Laurier came up with the idea of putting in a generator while we were working on rebuilding the dam,” Fraser recalls. “And Michael came up with the idea of building it so we could sell excess power to Hydro.”

Working on the project with their Galetta friends each fall , for three years, the Frasers, who operate a local trailer park and sawmill, rebuilt the dam with cribs made of squared timber and packed with rocks. More than six metres below the dam, and five metres above ‘ the creek bed, sits the tiny powerhouse. An almost century-old water- wheel turns 24 hours a day. The wheel, originally part of the Waba sawmill, drives a generator that spins silently under a new plank powerhouse floor. Shiny, grey metal boxes in the powerhouse monitor the power flow to the home of each of the Frasers, while a third records profits made by sending excess electricity to Ontario Hydro.

A network of underground wires lead to a nearby Ontario Hydro pole. “We will have the capacity to produce 700 kilowatts a day during April, May and June,” Nelson says. “And we wouldn’t use a fraction of that ourselves.” A spokesman for Arnprior Hydro says 700 kilowatts is enough to power 35 houses. Nelson is reluctant to reveal exactly how much Hydro is paying him. However, he estimates his initial costs to lay several hundred metres of wire, purchase other equipment, rebuild the dam and construct the powerhouse will take less than two years to recoup. In the meantime, Nelson has no Hydro bills to pay and the satisfaction of taking his family one step closer to energy self-sufficiency. “It’s a great feeling,” Nelson says. “I’m saving money and having fun. “I’ve been heating with wood for a long time,” he adds with a smile, “but I’m planning on switching to electric heat.”

The Ottawa Citizen

Ottawa, Ontario, Canada13 Jun 1986, Fri  •  Page 3

Read Waba CreekOne of aKind

The back forty: Farm life in the Ottawa Valley Perfect Paperback – Jan. 1 1990

White Lake: Myths and Maps — CLICK
Over the years we have heard cottagers and residents of White Lake bristle at the
suggestion that the lake is artificial, created when the first dam was built in 1845. In one
publication the author states that “when a dam on Waba Creek was constructed it
resulted in the water levels increasing in three previously small interconnected water
bodies”, and thus forming the lake as we see it now.

We do not have a picture of the dam as it was in 1845, however the photo below shows the
condition of the dam in 1919. This dam was rebuilt in 1948 and was changed to the
present-day concrete structure in 1968.

The Water Dragon of White Lake? 1936

The Doctor Dolittle of White Lake–Harry Brown

Whispers of Waba


The Cement Dam at High Falls 1919

Geddes Rapids Bridge 1903 — Dalhousie Lake

Have You Heard of Stump Lake?

The Old Playfair Dam 1909

Did You Know About the Crotch Lake Disaster?

The Clachan – William Smith– The Buchanan Scrapbook

Memories of the Lumber Era- The Buchanan Scrapbook Clippings and Local photos from-Nigel Klemencic-Puglisevich

  1. Sandy Caldwell King of the River Boys
  2. Your Mississippi River, Ontario Fact of the Day

People of Almonte —Clippings of Herb Pragnell

People of Almonte —Clippings of Herb Pragnell

From the collection of the late Lucy Connelly Poaps

CLIPPED FROMThe Ottawa CitizenOttawa, Ontario, Canada06 Dec 1983, Tue  •  Page 3

By Carol Doran

History may soon become the most important addition to the Almonte-area economy since locally-made woollen goods took the Canadian market by storm in 1820. An enthusiastic group of area residents hope to have a plan for a national textile museum here ready by 1984 and construction begun by 1985. Estimated to cost about $1 million, the project would be competed in phases over many years with the financial support of all levels of government and private donors.

The idea’s boosters say in the long run the textile museum could blend with the logging theme-park Timbertown now under construction in Renfrew County. That would help create an overall Ottawa Valley pioneer attraction. Now a tranquil town with stately tree-lined streets. Almonte was raucous industrial town during the 1860s and 1870s the hub of Canada’s woollen industry with 10 busy textile mills that employed 80 per cent of local workforce. Almonte’s reputation as a textile centre was established by Irish immigrant James Rosamond, who chose the area for its abundance of natural water power supplied by the rapids of the Mississippi River.

The rich became richer and poor mill workers gradually moved into the middle-income group until the heyday ended with the introduction of cottons and imported synthetics. Today, some of the old mill buildings and stately residential limestone houses have fallen to decay, with only the brilliant architecture remaining. Reluctant to let Almonte’s heritage slip away, council three years ago appointed a committee to look into creating a textile museum. But the idea of a textile museum first appeared 20 years ago when Deputy Reeve Herb Pragnell became involved with the North Lanark Historical Society and began to realize the region’s tourist potential.

Planners believe the town could attract as many as 10 per cent of visitors to the National Capital region. Headed by John Dunn, the museum committee envisions setting up a working textile mill dated about 1860, complete with costumes and demonstrations. Dunn and his committee foresee a “living-community” museum that wouldn’t be restricted to static displays in a building. They hope an actual mill building, complete with working vintage machinery, will be complemented by associated industrial and natural sites along the Mississippi River from Paken-ham to Carleton Place.

Gerry Wheatley, committe secretary, said he hopes the project will “instill a feeling of pride in history among the merchants” of the area. A $15,000 feasibility study, financed by Almonte, the National Capital Commission, National Museums of Canada and Ontario’s citizenship and culture ministry produced encouraging results. Now the Almonte group is using an additional $14,000 grant to examine old buildings that could be converted to a museum and to find antique textile machinery. An information centre would provide tourists with travel plans and brochures pointing to such attractions as the nearby Mill of Kintail, the five-span stone bridge at Pakenham and the Tcskey Mill ruins at Appleton.

The Almonte and Ramsay Township architectural conservation advisory committee recently prepared a map of the town’s heritage buildings. These aristocratic stone houses with fish-scale shingles, tall chimneys and quaint towers once owned by wealthy mill owners and workers are expected to be woven into the community museum idea. “We want to give tourists a community feeling they won’t get in the city,” said Dunn. “There’s a lot of history in the town we could capitalize on.” “The overall plan may sound grandiose, but in our eyes, it’s worth it,” said Pragnell. “We’ve waited so long . . . now we’re shooting for the works.”

CLIPPED FROMThe Ottawa CitizenOttawa, Ontario, Canada24 May 1978, Wed  •  Page 61

The Maples Andrew Bell, architect and engineer, built this large, mansard-roofed brick house for himself. Present owners are Mr. and Mrs. Herb Pragnell.

The Mississippi Valley Textile Museum Corporation ended the year on a high note by finalizing an agreement with the town for the ownership of the former Almonte mill annex to turn into textile museum former Rosamond Mill here. The town bought the property last summer with the aid of a $114,500 provincial grant The annex served as a warehouse for the former mill. The non-profit museum rounds plans to convert the building on Coleman’s Island into a museum highlighting this community’s textile heritage. Herb Pragnell, the group’s president, said a $30,000 study on how the museum’ should be developed to outline the cost of developing the museum and when it can be completed. The mill, the last of 14 to operate in this community, was built in 1886 and has been converted into a 50-unif condominium.

CLIPPED FROMThe Ottawa CitizenOttawa, Ontario, Canada04 Jan 1988, Mon  •  Page 7

Carleton Place resident tries to save 120-year-old building By Susan Fisher Citizen correspondent ALMONTE – A last-minute bid has emerged to save a 120-year-old downtown building that was to be demolished by the end of March. Carleton Place resident Judith Hughes, who has restored several homes in the area, has a plan to rescue the former farm store by turning it into apartments and a dining lounge. The building, which has been vacant since 1966 and is now for sale for $59,000, was to be demolished by its present owners by April 1.

Hughes is hoping to use a provincial grant to help restore the building, a project that may cost as much as $250,000. Her plans call for a dining lounge on the main floor and eight one-bedroom apartments on the second and third levels. Townspeople have been divided on plans to save the building, says Almonte Deputy Reeve Herb Pragnell. Many found it was an eyesore and a recommendation by the Local Architectural Conservation Advisory Committee that it be designated a heritage structure was rejected by council, he said.

“Council felt the building was beyond repair.” However, Pragnell said council might reconsider its decision if Hughes were to present an engineering report showing the building is structurally sound and a letter from the Ontario Heritage Foundation saying a grant is available. Built in the 1860s, the structure was once a glamorous hotel and later a seminary to train missionaries travelling to the Orient. It was last used as the North Lanark Co-Op farm store until 1966.

read-What is Heritage? — The Old Hotel in Almonte

Cool Burgess — Minstrel Shows at Reilly’s Hotel

St. Mary’s Convent: a John Dunn story

Old St. Mary’s Almonte — Clippings Photos and Memories

Dr. Avison of Almonte

People of Almonte —Mary Elizabeth Coddere 1940

People of Almonte -Patrick Hickey

There was Just Something About Gerald Poaps Photo — People of Almonte

People of Almonte–Rosemarie Van Dusen

People of Almonte —Dr. Guy Burton Halladay Dentist 1940

Postcard from Almonte –Landor’s Cat Studies 1900s

Postcard from Almonte –Landor’s Cat Studies 1900s

From: Almonte, Ontario

To: Ottawa, Ontario

Sender: Sam

Recipient: Mrs. Thas Hackett

Lovely vintage, unwritten English postcards featuring kittens named “Landor’s Cats Studies Company” by Raphael Tuck & Sons, which was the largest British postcard publishing company of the late 19th century and the first half of the 20th century.

CLIPPED FROMSevenoaks Chronicle and Kentish AdvertiserSevenoaks, Kent, England20 Feb 1903, Fri  •  Page 8

CLIPPED FROMThe North-Eastern Daily GazetteMiddlesbrough, Cleveland, England21 Dec 1899, Thu  •  Page 4

CLIPPED FROMThe Macclesfield Times and East Cheshire ObserverMacclesfield, Cheshire, England28 Nov 1924, Fri  •  Page 2

The Mysteries of Jones Falls — From my Postcard Collection

Photos and Postcards of Lanark Village –Laurie Yuill

A Postcard from Lanark –1905 — Don’t Call!

Photo Inquiry Postcards

Community Comments– Lanark Village Postcard

Small & McNeely Carleton Place and George Milton Argue — Story of Postcard

Story About A Postcard —– Baldy Welsh to Horace Merrill 1908

Postcard Family Stories 1906 — Mrs Thomas Hackett

The Postcard From Lanark 1913

Be Very Proud Carleton Place — Postcards and Booze

Debunking a Postcard 1913 — Strange Ephemera

A Postcard to Caldwell’s Mills

The Hidden Postcard Gallery in Carleton Place

Another Postcard Look at Carleton Place

Carleton Place 1912 Postcard

Carleton Place Postcard– What Year Was This Taken?

A Street With More than a Name–When Postcards Bring Back Memories

A Postcard to Caldwell’s Mills

Vintage Fashion History — The Exquisite Charm of Pepe Le Pew

Vintage Fashion History — The Exquisite Charm of  Pepe Le Pew

A three-quarter length coat by Bruyere in black wool with skunk fur sleeves. The model wears a hat with a wide up-turned brim which frames her face- Mary Evans Click

Seems one day on the 12th line of Ramsay became no joke for snow plower Mel Royce. Royce who once plowed the streets of Almonte and the 12th line of Ramsay encountered quite the stinky situation.

That snowy Wednesday day he was making progress up the line until he came across a skunk in the middle of the road that wasn’t too keen on moving. Well, Mel wasn’t going to move either with his snowplow and wondered why the skunk wasn’t hibernating with the rest of the skunks.

Well, as the standoff continued two young lads Alex Symington and Cecil McIntyre, decided they would do their good deed as it was also Boy Scout Week. They discussed a plan among themselves and then began to pelt the skunk with snowballs. The skunk still didn’t move from either defiance or stupidity. Minutes later with both sides trying to decide what to do, the skunk just decided to move and sit on the side of the road for a spell. I am pleased to also offer the news that Mel Royce finished clearing that road for everyone that lived on the 12th Line of Ramsay.


It seems that skunk furs — properly deodorised of course —were once very much in demand for ladies’ coats and fur places. Mind you nobody walks into tho furrier and asks for a skunk coat. It’s like a lot of other products: it’s thoroughly disguised under some less offensive sounding name. In the 1940s a full-length skunk coat with bishop sleeves, hanging straight from the shoulders, might worn over a black velveteen two-piece jacket dress, the jacket all edged in white braid, and the dress featuring a high cowl neck. A Krimmer coat illustrated the new rounder, softer shoulderline. With it might be worn a poudre blue wool dress bound in matching velveteen, and a raspberry wool shirtmaker frock featured tucks at the shoulders and brass buttons. 

Skunk fur is rather long, with coarse, glossy guard hairs of about one to two inches, which have the qualities of strength and longevity. Normally the under-fur is grayish underneath the black guard hairs and white underneath the white guard hairs. If the more valuable all-black pelts were not used or available, the entire pelt was dyed a uniform, glossy black.

Skunk fur has been used in the fur industry as early as the mid 1800’s, gradually increasing in popularity into the 1900’s when it exceeded production of the most traded fur – Muskrat. As the United States recovered from the Great Depression a strong market for fur trimmed cloth coats created a demand for skunk, with pelts doubling in price into the early 1940’s. Previous to the 1950’s it was sold under different names including Alaskan sable, and American Sable.

Photo-Click here

After the identity of the fur was known, Skunk took a dive in popularity. This continued into the early 1970’s at which time the offbeat, unconventionality of it seemed to restore its appeal for a brief time after which it went out of use again. An upsurge in the popularity of Skunk fur has taken place with fashion houses such as Prada and Fendi using the black or brown-and-white varieties in items from handbags to throws and long, sweeping coats.

The hop growers loved the skunk because they ate the hop grubs that damaged the hop vines. The hop growers of the state, centered in Madison County, petitioned the State Legislature to pass a law giving the skunk a closed season. Thus the skunk became the first New York State furbearer to have legal protection!” “Many times a farm boy could earn more in a season’s trapping than his father made in a year on the farm. Skunks saved some farms during the Depression by the income from their pelts.” Norman Evans, Stories From Old Georgetown

Written by Pauline Cameron & Katie Kemsley

February 23,2023–Wowsa. Just in, a 1930’s hand made skunk fur coat. Yup. Skunk fur. Possibly made by a trapper. Or Cruella Deville 🙂

We’re big fans of vintage fur here, which is finding a second “life”. And this is a really beautiful and interesting piece. Skunk fur is quite coarse, long and so striking.

In great shape except for one elbow, which could easily be repaired with a black fur patch. You won’t see another one of these soon! $325. Big Vintage– 95 Mill Street, Almonte, ON, Canada, Ontario-heybigvintage@gmail.com

CLIPPED FROMThe Windsor StarWindsor, Ontario, Canada22 Dec 1941, Mon  •  Page 11

CLIPPED FROMThe Windsor StarWindsor, Ontario, Canada07 Nov 1940, Thu  •  Page 31

Fleas, Skunks and Other Irritants — Linda Knight Seccaspina

RUMOURS -Raccoon or Skunk?? Fact or Fiction- Stanzel History

Skunk Street — Shane’s Field– Clayton – George Belton 1939

Dinny O’Brien of the Burnt Lands of Huntley

Dinny O’Brien of the Burnt Lands of Huntley

It was in Bedore’s interview that I first heard of Dinny O’Brien of the Burnt Lands of Huntley. My interest was piqued by this character but it was not until I decided to do the oral history collection of the humor of the Valley that I went in serious search of him throughout the Almonte area. Someone in Almonte — I can’t remember who — told me that I should go to Concession 14 of Huntley off Highway 44 and there I might find him That in itself was somewhat of a wry joke for when I talked to the Lynches Flynns Graces and O’Briens along the concession all descendants of Potato Famine Irish.

I discovered that although I was indeed in Dinny’s territory that leg-end-in-his-lifetime had been dead for 40 years. I tracked down the farms on which he had lived only to discover that all that then remained of the O’Brien buildings was a roothouse on the side of a hill. I went down a goodly number of dead ends fn the Almonte area visiting Vaughans Morrows and Flynns. Some of them were “beyond the pale” already and one of them at least said to me “I cannot speak of the dead” and closed the door. I was really despairing of ever truly fleshing out this incredible character when an Almonte lawyer a friend of mine sent me to the then 87-year-old Ray Jamieson a fourth-generation Ulster Irishman who had practised law in Almonte for over 50 years.

Jamieson immediately hung flesh on Dinny’s legendary bones “I wouldn’t say that Dinny drank a lot” said Jamieson “but he was addicted to alcohol. “Dinny was litigious He was a good talker -who could explain anything. He spoke pretty good grammar with a real lilt. Dinny was remarkable and unforgettable. If he had been educated he would have done something. He was full of brains.”

Greedy to have more about this amazing Valley entertainer I sent a letter to the editor of the Almonte Gazette and heard back from W J James of Carleton Place who when I visited him added more Dinny O’Brien stories to the collection. It was anally a Vaughan who sent me to Basil O’Keefe on Concession 11 at Almonte who for several generations had had his ancestral farm adjacent to land that belonged to Dinny.

Mr O’Keefe then aged 79 with genuine affection and caring further reclaimed for posterity the character of Dinny his friend and neighbor for so many years. Dinny always had a home for somebody but his only fault was that he used to like to drink a bit. He wasn’t an Irishman if he didn’t drink a little. But here at my place I could hear him coming away to hell out the road there singing in the dark. He’d go to town and he’d come home singing at the top of his voice in the black night. I can hear him coming singing yet along that road there in the pitch black.

The trail then led to Judge Newton of Almonte whom I taped in the Newton Room of Patterson’s restaurant in Perth. He not only told old and new Dinny O’Brien stories but he also told great stories of the other wonderfully funny characters of Carleton Place Perth and Almonte: George Comba the Carleton Place funeral practical joker. Straight-Back Maloney Paddy Moynhan “The Mayor of Dacre” Pat Murphy of Stanleyville. Tommy Hunt of Blakeney. Mrs O’Flaherty of Carleton Place who charged her lodger Lannigan with “indecent assault.” Con Mahoney who ran the hotel out on the Burnt Lands.

“When they were building the new Roman Catholic church in the Burnt Lands of Huntley at Corkery the priest came to collect from Dinny. He was collecting from each parishioner according to his means. “Now Mr O’Brien”, said the holy father ‘you have a fine farm here You should be able to give 50 dollars’ “ ‘Aha God!’ Dinny said (he always said ‘Aha God!’) Not from me! Sure I’d far rather Join the Protestants first and go to hell. They’re pretty near as good — and a damn sight cheaper?

He not only told old and new Dinny O’Brien stories but he also told great stories of some of the other wonderfully funny characters of Carleton Place Perth and Almonte: George Comba the Carleton Place practical Joker. Straight-Back Maloney Paddy Moynhan “The Mayor of Dacre” Pat Murphy of Stanleyville, Tommy Hunt of Blakeney, Mrs O’Flaherty of Carleton Place who charged her lodger Lannigan with “indecent assault”. Con Mahoney who ran the hotel out on the Burnt Lands. Judge Newton added treasures to the Dinny O’Brien collection:

Of course when I visited WT (Billy) James in Carleton Place to get his Dinny O’Brien stories I realized while I was there that Billy James was himself one of the great characters of the Valley ready to contribute not only to the humor collection but also to the lumbering saga and to the annals of farming lore through his experiences working in the bush for Gillies and from his many years at Appleton as one of the outstanding farmers in Canada. A breeder of prize Herefords and a pioneer in the fight for the elimination of the barberry bush it was so difficult to choose a story from the diversity of the James repertoire. llluminating the social history of every place he ever lived and every field he ever worked in.

Dinny O’Brien’s only fault was that he used to like to drink a bit. He wasn’t an Irishman, if he didn’t drink a little. But, here at my place I could hear him coming away to hell out the road there singing in the dark. He’d go to town and he’d come home singing at the top of his voice in the black night. I can hear him coming singing yet along that road there in the pitch black”

Joan Finnigan

The Kingston Whig-Standard

Kingston, Ontario, Canada05 Jan 1991, Sat  •  Page 47

Dennis O’Brien and Mary White
The eldest son of Timothy O’Brien and Mary Fitzgerald was Dennis (Dinny) O’Brien my Great-Grandfather. He married Mary Teressa White (my Great-Grandmother) at St. Michael’s Church, Huntley in 1888. Dennis O’Brien and Mary (White) are listed in the 1901 census of Huntley Township with children Honora b.1889, Hellan 1892, John (my Grandfather) 1894, Dennis M. (Milton) 1899, Norman T. 1901 and John Gibney, his widowed brother-in-law. They are living on the farm that Mary inherited (or would soon inherit) from her father James White. James had left the farm to his son John provided that he returned to claim it within 15 years (he never returned).Dennis was dibilitated in 1930 from an illness and after that collected a pension. He died about 1947 and Mary died about 1950.

When I asked my Dad about his Grandfather, he laughed but couldn’t explain why. I gather that my Great-Grandfather was a great wit and story-teller.Dinny O’Brien became somewhat of a mythic figure; he is one of the Ottawa Valley characters in Joan Finnigan’s book “Laughing All The Way Home” (apparentley many of the stories attributed to Dinny happened after he died!) He is also mentioned with fondness in Garfield T. Ogilvie’s whimsical book about West Huntley “Once Upon a Country Lane”. read- O’Brien Family Page click

CLIPPED FROMThe Ottawa CitizenOttawa, Ontario, Canada07 Sep 1929, Sat  •  Page 2

CLIPPED FROMThe Weekly British WhigKingston, Ontario, Canada25 Oct 1920, Mon  •  Page 3

CLIPPED FROMThe Daily StandardKingston, Ontario, Canada02 Nov 1920, Tue  •  Page 14

CLIPPED FROMThe Ottawa JournalOttawa, Ontario, Canada28 Jan 1887, Fri  •  Page 3

Today we celebrate Valentine’s Day– back to normal tomorrow. Tom Edwards Photo–

Here is quite a pair together. Steve Maynard and Joey Nichols. The date on the paper is March 15, 1978.

CLIPPED FROMThe Ottawa CitizenOttawa, Ontario, Canada11 Jul 1991, Thu  •  Page 19

The Burnt Lands Part 3 – The Great Fire of 1870

Lanark County Hand Typed Notes –Burnt Lands

What Do You Know About the Burnt Lands

The Drought of 1871 and the Mills on the Mississippi River

How Many Stitts of Stittsville Remain?

The Bush Fires of 1870 Perth Courier — Names Names and more Names of the Past

Ottawa Valley’s Great Fire of 1870


Part 1, Making Land

Did you Know General Almonte was Considered a Traitor?

Did you Know General Almonte was Considered a Traitor?

From the clippings of Lucy Connelly Poaps

What Happened When Agustin Barrios Gomez Came to Town?

The Founder of Our Town

By Hal Kirkland CLICK

Juan Nepomuceno Almonte 1803-1869 click

Diane Duncan Historian — Almonte

Diane Duncan Historian — Almonte

I found this article from the Sabourin Scrapbooks andI don’t think some peoplerealize how much Diane Duncan has done for our local history. So today I decided to[ut in just a FEW things she has done.

Thanks to Diane Duncan

by J. R. Ernest Miller

Ernest Miller describes life on a farm in the early 20th century and details some of the changes that have occurred in the village of Glen Tay, Ontario through this period. Tayside Farms was known internationally for its holstein breeding stock in the 1970-80’s. In retirement Ernie was a major contributor to the documentation of early Lanark County history.

You can get the book here..


So many stories that you can enjoy here CLICK

Diane Duncan · 

Resharing a photo of one of my first Caldwell Street classes. My copy is in storage at the moment!

read Diane Duncan;s blog.. Glen Tay Public School Photos

Posted by Diane on October 28, 2018 in Community & Family History, Featured Flag | 0 comments

I’ve been focusing on some personal memories for a class assignment the past few weeks and I am now trying to put together some information on the Glen Tay public school otherwise known as SS#3 Bathurst Township, Lanark County, Ontario. CLICK

Two years ago or more I thought I had taken research on this family as far as necessary. I recently revisited that work and two month later, with many additions and adjustments to my original work, I can now share the information I have gathered on the Robert Boyle and Janet Miller family – 3rd great grand aunt and uncle. This couple emigrated and started over twice, once as newcomers to Lanark County about 1821 and a second time in 1865-66 as seniors in their sixties and seventies. Both times they emigrated they began with ‘raw’ land. Can you envision doing this? This is a long one but I hope some of you will make it to the end.😊 CLICK

I am fortunate that my father was a genealogist. As I use digital sources I frequently find his work cited as a source. ( JR Ernest Miller).

So many stories that you can enjoy here CLICK

Blast from the past 2007 thanks to the scrapbook of Lucy Connelly Poaps A contributor to the LCGS and renowned local writer.. Diane Duncan and her husband Don receiving a copy of Dr. Tom Todd’s book — with Diane Duncan.

The last of my 2020 covid quilts. One of my favorites with Laura Ashley fabrics purchased on Liberty St (I think) London in 1976. My stash busting will continue in 2021!

William Millar, Farmer No. 14, 2nd Concession of Dalhousie 1820

The Invincible Margaret Baird of Lanark

“Lanark is my Native Land” -Master Clarence Whiticar 1930

The Faerie Gates of Lanark County

These are a few things she has provided information on….