Lloyd James who lives in Darling near Calabogie was convicted of keeping liquor for sale illegally in the District Magistrate’s court, here, this Thursday morning, and was sentenced to serve 60 days in the county jail.
Constable Legate of the Provincial Police laid the charge. James was defended by C. A. Mulvihill, K.C. of Arnprior. While there , was no evidence that money had changed hands the officer was able to prove that there was a great volume of traffic passing in to James’ home and that drinking was going on there.
The Magistrate decided that the rush of business was too great to be on a friendship basis and registered a conviction accordingly, A charge of supplying liquor to minors against a man who resided in Appleton was dismissed. This chap was accused of keeping the house where the long week-end party was held at which two Almonte girls and two Arnprior men working here temporarily, were “belles and beaux” of the ball.
The accused was able to show to the satisfaction of the court that he was not in charge of the house at the time of the lengthy festivities. C. J. Newton, Almonte lawyer, appeared for the accused. This was another provincial case.
M. A. McNairn, Almonte chief of police, had a couple of youths in court for traffic offences. One 16-year-old lad was fined $2 and $3 costs for hanging onto the back of the fire truck while it was returning from a fire. Another paid a like amount for riding two on a bicycle through heavy traffic returning from the fire. Another traffic case was adjourned.
Lloyd James was my grandmother’s cousin who owned the farm next door to hers on highway 511 in Darling Township. Though there was never a firm rule, I wasn’t encouraged to spend time at Lloyd’s place but did anyway. Until reading this excerpt I didn’t know about Lloyd’s ‘sideline’ nor his time as a guest in the county jail. This was never discusssed in front of me though I’m sure my grandmother must have known about it.. she was a tea-totaller and had very strong negative opinions about alcohol.
As a kid, hanging out at Lloyd’s was a lot of fun. A brook ran through his yard where we fished for speckled trout. He tried to teach me to play the fiddle, but my aptitude for that instrument was wanting as was my enthusiasm. One summer he needed to remove some huge rocks that were exposed up into his lane. We had great fun digging down and planting dynamite then seeking cover during the explosions. My parents would have grounded me for life if they had known.
That said, reading Lloyd James name, regardless of context, makes me smile
A Hart in ThaiA Hart in Thai –We searched the forest for Al Capone’s Secret Last Hide Out in Canada. After talking to a few locals of the where about, then to go here and there getting lost but after 2 hours driving in circles we found it! Its on Private Property and we did get caught. But after got permission to video and photograph the outside and interior. We didn’t venture into the basement as to dangerous. The cabin is huge many rooms and bedrooms and beautiful fireplace. Low escape windows and suppose to have secret tunnel in basement. Its in the forest no river and lakes near?
At 4:32 in the YouTube video the police show up so please realize that this is Private Property and it chould be respected.IT IS UNSAFE
At 4:32 in the YouTube video the police show up so please realize that this is Private Property and it should be respected.
There has always been a rumor that has been circulated around the Ottawa Valley that Al Capone may just have had a secret hideaway deep within the Madawaska Valley. I knew that Al Capone spent some time in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan, and heck, they even spotted him in Kemptville! The rum runners created a tunnel system in Moose Jaw so the bad folks could shuffle from one building to the other without their derrieres freezing off off in the dead of winter. Of course there was a rumour that he did that in Carleton Place, Ontario at the Queen’s Hotel too.
Mike ToporowskyThe Moose Jaw story is probably correct. The only difference is that the tunnels existed already. They were created during a time when Chinese immigrants were charged a head tax. The Chinese community laboured to create these tunnels to stay out of sight, decades before Al Capone and crew arrived
The legend (and even has been advertised) that some local Lanark County residents have claimed they saw Capone and Jack Demsey frequenting Lake Park Lodge and even the Queen’s Hotel. Seeing the man sold tons of illegal liquour from Canada, there is probably some slight truth to the rumour.
The tunnels were used for gambling, prostitution and warehousing illegal booze. Some tunnels went right under your local CPR stations and opened into a shed in the rail yards. That way it was possible to load and unload rail cars without any risk of being seen by the police. Rotgut whisky was made locally, but all the good stuff came from the Bronfman distillery in Montreal.
So one day I saw a 2016 posting and photo’s about Capone’s Hideway on What’s Up Renfrew, Ontario and decided to share it in my local history groups. It’s not every day that you see things like that right? Five years later (2021) I received quite an angry email from a woman who thought I took the photos. She proceeded to tell me that she was going to call the police because I had been trespassing. She also insisted the log cabin had nothing to do with Al Capone and that I had must have jumped the fence as I seemed to be very close to the building in the photo, and I was in big trouble with her lawyers.
Well the day she emailed me was my birthday and I had just turned 70. I have a weak right leg and use a cane. But don’t clock me out just yet, my cane is silver glitter but yes, my fence jumpin’ days are long over. I live through the rest of you, so keep those cards and letters coming as they say LOLOL. It took a couple of emails, but she finally realized I was just a writer, and not Nancy Drew. BUT, let this be a lesson in getting permission first please on unoccupied properties.
So yes, I believe that Capone was in Carleton Place and especially near Casey’s Hill (get this near Letterkenny Road) ( no, this not a typo). Even though these gangsters insisted they did not come to Canada, I am sure they did. Have you ever read about Billy the Boodler who showed up in Carleton Place? read-Billy the Boodler Comes to Carleton Place Or what about the cow shoes?? Read-Did The Bootleggers in Lanark County Wear Cow Shoes? I mean there has to be something there right?
For more than forty years, that reputation alone was enough to keep Capone’s Quadeville hideout a virtual secret from the rest of the world.
The secluded hideout was established in the 1930’s just north of Quadeville. Well hidden off Letterkenny Road, members of Capone’s gang sought sanctuary here from rival gangs and the police.
Quadeville is a short distance east of the small town of Combermere. This secret hideout has become a fascinating story over the years for many local residents and visitors to the area.
A long, sturdy, log building was built by local carpenters to the specifications laid down by Capone’s second-in-command; one of Capone’s star gunmen. The building no longer looks like the fortress it once was when Capone’s gang was there. It has since been converted and furnished as a summer home. At one time, it was owned by Harvey and Rene Mesdag of Toronto.
The building and property has since been sold several times. It is presently owned by someone of Pembroke. It’s windows and doors boarded up from the present day vandals. Carved initials can be seen on the log exterior. Anything of value left inside the building is now pretty much ruined.
According to the Mission House Museum, it is also rumored that a former property owner, who also provided the pine logs for the structure, became uneasy over non-payment. He decided to go to Toledo and presented himself at the gangsters’ headquarters. Unexpectedly, he was met by a ‘front’ man.
Once there, the Canadian was grilled by one of Capone’s lieutenants, who happened to be wearing a holstered handgun. “Now we can settle this matter between ourselves in the back office or you can come and take it up directly with the big boss at 10 o’clock sharp.” These were the two choices he was given. The words were loaded with menace. The Canadian replied that he would return and talk to the boss.
Next, he walked quickly to his waiting cab where the nervous driver warned him to get back to Canada as fast as he could. And so he did just that. That Canadian was August Quade and the amount of money owing to him was $1,500 which was a pile of money in the 30’s. It is interesting to note that no one ever saw Capone at the hideaway or in stores in the area. Read the rest here CLICK
Canada’s allure as safe haven made famous by Capone Roy MacGregor north of Quadeville, Ont. It’s not hard to see the attraction if you happen to be on the run. The fortress chalet sits on the side of a difficult hill, surrounded below by impossible swamp and beyond by impenetrable bush. The windows now either broken or partially covered by plywood afford a perfect view of the winding laneway and, beyond the Private Property sign, the narrow road that heads south toward the sleepy little village and north to nowhere. The basement windows are kicked in, and the hidden tunnel that some locals claim exits at a secret spot far back in the deep woods may be home now to a family of raccoons.
But once, so they claim, the legendary Chicago gangster Al Capone, hid out here in the deep Canadian forest 180 kilometres east of Ottawa, having fled America until it was safe to go home again. Many Americans honest, law-abiding Americans are said to be looking north once again for safe refuge from everything from hijacked airliners last month to anthrax this month to fears, even, from nuclear terrorism in an increasingly uncertain future. Last week, CBC Radio reported that there has been a significant rise in U.S. inquiries coming into Toronto-area real estate offices, most from large city dwellers looking for condominiums with low-risk addresses. Marinas in the New York City area are besieged by buyers looking for used boats in which they might, if necessary, escape north to the Maritimes.
The Ottawa Citizen reported this past weekend on a new “survival” trend: small-centre Americans making sure they have money and food cached in fully tanked cars, ready to flee for the Canadian border at the first sign of new trouble. “I feel very safe there,” Rhode Island banker Georgina Cormier told the newspaper. “There is a sense of safety and security when I go to Canada. If I had to go somewhere, that’s where I would want to be.” Al Capone may have felt the same even if Old Scarface did once tell a reporter, “I don’t even know what street Canada’s on.” Some Saskatchewan oldtimers have long maintained that, in fact, Capone knew River Street in downtown Moose Jaw as well as he knew the back alleys around Chicago’s infamous Lexington Hotel. According to Moose Jaw leg end, Ca pone’s gangsters moved into an underground maze of tun nels originally built by Chinese immigrants hiding out to avoid pay ing Canada’s notorious “head tax.” Capone is said to have liked Moose Jaw’s proximity to the U.S. border, and with prohibition ending there nine years earlier than it would in the States, the little Prairie city made an excellent centre out of which to run his expanding bootlegging operations.
Laurence Moon Mulhn, an el derly Moose Jaw resident, claimed several years ago that he used to earn 200 tips running errands for the gangsters, and another local said her barber father used to be called down into the tunnels to cut Capone’s hair. Those tunnels, excavated, cleaned up and lighted, are now called “Little Chicago,” and are Moose Jaw’s top tourism draw. There has, however, never been any documented proof that this happened, or even that the notori ous gangster ever visited any part of Canada. Capone, however, despite the best efforts of a 300-man special detective unit to find him, went missing for three months in the summer of 1926. Some said he was in Wisconsin. Others thought Michigan. A few even claimed he’d fled to Italy.
There are people around Quadeville who think he came here but not until the early 1940s when Capone was finally released from the prison where he’d been serving time for income tax invasion. According to local legend, the cabin on the side of the hill was built, to specifications, out of huge squared pine timber in 1942. The man who built it travelled to the States to collect on an outstanding construction bill for $1,500, only to be threatened by a gun-carrying henchman and told that “Da Boss” would deal directly with him later, in the day. The builder turned tail, ran back to Quadeville, and the outstanding account was never again mentioned.
Madawaska Valley historian Harry Walker wrote about the cabin and the Capone connection decades ago, but could quote no sources, since area oldtimers refused to speak on the record about what they’d seen and heard of the cabin. They did talk to him, however even when Walker showed up with a former county warden to serve as witness and he came to believe that there was indeed something to the Capone legend. “Even today,” Walker wrote in the early 1970s, “the memory of the event instills fear in those who came in contact with the gangsters.” But other investigations by the Eganville Leader and The Toronto Star not surprisingly produced no concrete evidence. After his release from prison, Capone was seriously debilitated by the effects of syphilis and was often hospitalized.
He died after a long illness in 1947. It is hard to imagine him roughing it in the Canadian bush during those years, far from the comforts of electricity and running water. But historical fact seems to matter little to those who say they remember big limousines heading out Letterkenny Road, beautiful women, big men in fancy suits and a particular man the local kids were told to call “Uncle Al.” A few kilometres down Highway 15 at Latchford Bridge, the nearest village to Quadeville, 79-year-old Leonard Moysey stops raking his leaves and offers a unique perspective on it all.
Moysey grew up in Moose Jaw and would have been a youngster there in the very years Capone was supposedly hiding out in the tunnels beneath River Street “When we were kids,” he says, “we never knew anything about that. Never heard a word about Al Capone. It was all talk that developed later, way after the war.” Moysey believes that the stories of Moose Jaw and Quadeville are both seriously flawed, made up by wishful thinkers and over-extended imaginations. The abandoned cabin may merely be a northern version of the infamous “Secret Vault” of Capone’s that was found during a Chicago excavation 15 years ago and ceremoniously opened by Geraldo Rivera on national television only to discover there was nothing inside.
Back in Quadeville, the men gathered over morning coffee at Kauffeldt’s little rural post office are more interested in talking about the current state of the world the news on television, the moose hunt than they are in going on the record about any possibility that Al Capone ever lived up the road. “We used to go up there when we were young lads,” says one coffee drinker, “but we never saw nothin’. “Once the rumours started about it being Al Capone’s place, people started breaking in. But I don’t know what they thought they might find there’s nothing there.” But that, of course, in fall of 2001, is precisely the attraction. National Post
Along the U.S.-Canadian and U.S.-Mexico borders, saloons and liquor stores and distilleries did business supplying thirsty Americans and Canadians, while those who could not reach a foreign country made home brew and bathtub gin or bought rotten booze from bootleggers.
Somebody is always thinking up schemes for getting ahead of the law and somebody thought up the “hole-in-the-wall.” That was Just after the provincial governments had begun to regulate the liquor trafflc and enforce the licensing of the retail sale of spirituous liquors. Somebody who didn’t feel like paying a stiff license fee invented the “hole-ln-the-wall.”
In the hole- In-the-wall system there was no bar. The liquor was kept in a closed room. High up In one wall there was a hole about a foot square. The man who wanted to quench his thirst tapped discreetly on the wall, having previously deposited the exact price of the drink. Change was given by the man inside the hole in the wall, for various reasons. Then the person who desired the drink would say quietly “beer,” or whiskey” or name whatever he desired to have. – A hand would reach up pull the money in the room, and in due time the beverage would he forthcoming.
The man inside the hole in the wall never spoke. That was the understood part of the game. Drinkers used to like holes In the walls as there was a flavour of mystery about them. The man who bought never saw the man who served. The reason for this precaution was that if the house was pulled, the Crown could never find a witness who could truthfully swear that the owner of the hotel or any of his employes (by name) had served him with liquor.
But the government soon found means to put the hole-in-the-wall out of business. They enacted that if liquor were found in any part of any hotel other than the bar, or in any unlicensed premises it could be seized and the vendor heavily fined. Power was given the officers of the law to search any unlicensed places. This power, together with the fact that It was illegal to have liquor on unlicensed premises, soon spelled the doom of the “holes-in-the-wall.”
Licensed dealers who paid the government fees and obeyed the law, more or less were apt to speak with contempt of the hole-ln-the-wall places. So the expression soon became applied as one of contempt to other than places where liquor was sold. For Instance, one man would say of another. “Oh, his places is only a hole-ln-the-wall.” Thus that is how the name got started.
“I never knew my great grandmother but her husband died in the first world war leaving her with many children to raise on her own. Apparently she made booze of some kind in her bathtub and because they lived close to the railroad tracks they did a brisk business. My mother told me this little bit about her grandmother and said she was a scary lady. A real battle axe apparently but I guess anyone might be who had such a tough life. That’s really all I know about her. Not even sure where she lived at the time but it would have been in the Toronto area somewhere”.-– Margo Hay Goodings– Almonte
Bathtub gin refers to any style of homemade spirit made in amateur conditions. The term first appeared in 1920, in the prohibition-era United States, in reference to the poor-quality alcohol that was being made.
The term bathtub gin often conjures up glamorous images of flapper girls, speakeasies and the Roaring Twenties. In reality, it was the end result of cheap grain alcohols and flavorings, such as juniper berries, allowed to steep in a tub for several hours or even days. Because the 18th Amendment specifically prohibited the sale or manufacture of distilled alcohol, many producers were forced to use denatured alcohol, which may or may not have been thoroughly processed. A number of party-goers died during the 1920s after drinking contaminated liquor.
Clipped from The Winnipeg Tribune, 30 Dec 1931, Wed, Page 9
“Helen from the village Lanark told the judge she hadn’t intended to start a large moonshine operation. She had just hoped to sell a few bottle for Christmas and then people liked it so they came back for more”. Ottawa Journal
By the 1960s the building had become known as the Rideau Ferry Inn and during this time became licensed for liquor sales. Up until that time people would smuggle in their own booze, particularly in the roaring twenties when rum-running along the Rideau had its hey-day.” From--Lake Life – A Rideau Ferry Love Story —by arlenestaffordwilson
Almonte Gazette 1918
January 1 1918 –Smiths Falls has another liquor mystery. Five barrels of booze— over a thousand pounds— shipped in by express disappeared without a trace being left of who took it or where it was taken. – The party whose name appears on the express company record declared in court on Monday that he knew absolutely nothing about it and certainly had not ordered it and the case had to be dropped for lack of evidence.
My friend Winston Smith on Twitter loves bugs– He does not have to tell me this I can see it plainly– but he also puts on some great links.
Yesterday he put on a photo from Rare Historical Photos. Cow shoes used by Moonshiners in the Prohibition days to disguise their footprints, 1922.
A 1922 article from a now-defunct St. Petersburg, Florida newspaper called the Evening Independent carried a story about moonshiners wearing “cow shoes” to trick revenuers – rather than leaving suspicious footprints leading up to their secret stills, they’d leave innocent-looking hoofprints in the dirt and grass.
A new method of evading prohibition agents was revealed here today by A.L. Allen, state prohibition enforcement director, who displayed what he called a “cow shoe” as the latest thing front the haunts of moonshiners.
The cow shoe is a strip of metal to which is tacked a wooden block carved to resemble the hoof of a cow, which may be strapped to the human foot. A man shod with a pair of them would leave a trail resembling that of a cow.
The shoe found was picked up near Port Tampa where a still was located some time ago. It will be sent to the prohibition department at Washington. Officers believe the inventor got his idea from a Sherlock Holmes story in which the villain shod his horse with shoes the imprint of which resembled those of a cow’s hoof.
The Sherlock Holmes’s story where this idea is taken was “The Adventure of the Priory School.” The villain in this story outfitted his horse with faux cow hooves in order to avoid detection. Vintage News
Photo of David Whitely with his “hand crafted decoration” he has made for the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum distillery display and also entertaining Carman Lalonde and me at the Carleton Place Hospital.
Years ago they had distilleries on the 7th and 11th line of Beckwith– but, on the 11th line it was said that it was used for only private consumption, whereas the 7th line was licensed. They also had a 60 gallon operation going on in the town of Carleton Place owned by Orrin Pierce
Today I read comments from an old newspaper column that a well known Beckwith resident known only as William G. used to say he used to take an occasional nip of “Whusky” to sharpen his wits I began to wonder how much consumption was prvate.
Caleb S. Bellows in 1827 built a distillery at Carleton Place, operated for a few years by Francis Jessop and later by others. James McArthur (1767-1836) was also was a licensed distiller in 1827. His Beckwith township distillery was located on the 7th concession at his farm near the Presbyterian church, where the same business was continued through the eighteen thirties and forties by Peter McArthur (1803-1884) who had a 33 gallon still.
So has anyone heard stories? We would LOVE to hear them!
Holy cow, I don’t want to get in trouble, so this blog is for information purposes only! What you choose to do with it– well, don’t tell me.Before you start, check the laws in your local area, some places you cant even own a still let alone use it to make a drinkable product.
Seems when Happy Valley off of Townline in our fair town of Carleton Place couldn’t provide the liquid jollies, it was mentioned in the newspaper that a few of our prominent citizens headed up to the French Line where they were introduced to Sweet Marie. No folks, Marie was not a lassie, but a liquid distilled from potatoes, and it was said to have a wallop or kick to it equal to that of a cantankerous mule.
This recipe is adjustable. If you would like to make 5 or 20 gallons, easily half or double recipe.
10gal. of Fermenter
20lbs. of White Sugar
2.5lbs. of Potatoes
1 Can (12oz) of Tomato Paste
1 Lemon (1 Large, or 3 Small)
2 Tablespoons of Baker’s Yeast (Ex. Fleischmann’s or Red Star)
For a great fermenter use Brute trashcans.
Two: Check your local donut shop free or cheap old filling buckets. Go for the five gallon size.
Three: You can also buy brand new five gallon paint buckets, making sure that they are plastic. Note: Later on while making 10 gallons of mash it is easier to mix in one bucket but the downside is that it becomes very hard to move a 10 gallon bucket after filling with mix. Splitting mix into two 5 gallon buckets makes it easier to move but harder to mix
There is today and has been since the mid 1830s a French settlement in Darling Township. It is still known as the French Line. The French from Lower Canada were among the first in the area as they made up part of the crew of the survey teams for the original surveys. The greater part, however, arrived here as a direct result of the political strife of 1837-38. The village of St. Benoit, Cte. Deux Montages, was burned to the ground in reprisal for the affair of St. Eustace. The families Majore, Cardinal and Lalonde all came from St. Benoit and even as I was growing up the story of “La Grande Brulee” was still being told. Others (the Rangers) came from Coteau du Lac. The economy was as chaotic then as now and they came because of the work commencing in the timber industry in Lanark. Some arrived by way of the Upper Ottawa and the rest came via Brockville and Perth.- Lanark County Genealogy Society