Abraham Lincoln Morphy was born in 1864 and married at age 23 to Rebbecca Conn. He had 6 children: Hugh Franklin Morphy, Norman A Morphy and 4 others. Abe was the son of Abraham Sr. Of Ramsay and a brakeman for the C.P.R. He passed away in 1899 at age 35, drowning in the Mississippi River below the Appleton Falls –read–The Day the Appleton Bridge Collapsed
April 9 1899 Carleton Place
In April of 1899 Coroner Burns of Almonte held an inquest into the death of the late Abraham Lincoln Morphy, the body being then at the house of deceased’s father, Abram Morphy, corner of William street and the 8th line of Ramsay.
The following Jury was impanelled : Alex. H. Edwards, foreman ; Richard McLaren, Samuel Tetlock, Lachlan, Mccallum, John Taylor, Hugh M. Williams. Frederick Strong, David Moffatt. Benjamin T. Williams. J. H. Greig. Henry Ferguson, Charles Glover, Frederick Hollingsworth, and John F. Halpenny.
Evidence was taken from Milton Teskey, J. A. Teskey and John Montgomery of Appleton ; John Morphy of Potsdam, N.Y. and John Morphy and John Lyons of Carleton Place, the latter witness being the man who so narrowly escaped the sad fate that befel his companion.
After reviewing the evidence the jury returned a verdict to the effect that the deceased Abraham Lincoln Morphy Came to his death by drowning, through the collapse of the bridge across the Mississippi river at the village of Appleton, and from the evidence the jury conclude that the said bridge has been unsafe for over a year, and moreover the Jury was of the opinion that the corporation of the township of Ramsay had been guilty of culpable negligence with regard to, the said bridge.
And that readers is why bridges need to be replaced when they come to that type of condition.
Poor Mrs. Morphy had a young family. What was she going to do for money, so she sued and asked for $20,000. What did she get? Mr. Justice Rose, the presiding judge, suggested that counsel make an effort to settle the matter, and this was done, $2,000 being paid to the widow and $500 to each child —- making a total costs of $4,500 and costs. Two other action arising out of the same accident were pending, being the action by, Mr. Lyons, of Carleton Place Place, who was with Mr.Morphy at the time, and was thrown into the water but escaped. He wanted $1000 and that of Mr. Campbell, whose horses and carriage were destroyed and asked for $550. My Lyons got $312 and $45 dollars cost and Mr. Campbell received $300 plus $45 cost. In December of 1899 the township of Ramsay alerted taxpayers that taxes were being raised to $11,500 to help with the building of the new Appleton Bridge and the costs of the trial.
Mary Ann Bobier Morphy passed away in 1918, at age 84..
The Appleton Bridge Goes Down and Carries Ab. Morphy, Jr. to a Watery Grave
Yesterday morning, a few minutes after o’clock, a carriage load, consisting of Mr. John Lyons, wife and child, Mr. John Morphy, and wife, and Mr. Ab. Morphy, jr., all of Carleton Place, drove down to Appleton with the object of attending the funeral of Mr. Morphy’s aunt, Mrs. Dulmage. As they approached the bridge at Appleton they were warned that the structure was none too safe, and that it would be better to divide the load before driving across. This they did, Mr. and Mrs. John Morphy and the little boy and Mrs. Lyons getting out, the other two, Ab. Morphy and Mr. Lyons starting across with the carriage. On reaching the middle of the bridge, the structure gave away and allowed carriage, horses and all to drop into the stream below, which at present is much swollen with the spring freshets and very swift. For a moment the carriage remained, stationary, as though on bottom, and Mr. Lyons throw off his great coat and unhitched one of the horses, by which time the animals became impatient and plunged which took them out of the eddy caused by the pier and threw them into the swift current. Morphy, who was a good swimmer, struck out for one of the small piers nearby and just about reached it when the timbers of the bridge struck him and he sank out of sight. He was seen a few minutes later below the falls by Miss Beckett, with a hand upraised, land then sank out of sight. Lyons was carried down the stream with the current and over the falls, where a piece of timber struck him which he caught and clung to until rescued nearly half an hour later away down in the bay by Mr. A.E Teskey.
Mr. Lyons was almost exhausted when taken out and was at once conveyed to the home of Mr. J.A. Teskey, where restoratives were applied and medical aid was summoned He was very much chilled and received a tremendous nervous shock, besides the bruising he must have sustained in his fall and his passage over the falls and through the rapids, but was able to sit up in the afternoon and is almost fully restored the morning.
THE SEARCH FOR THE BODY
A search was immediately instituted to recover the body of Morphy, but it was o’clock in the afternoon before the remains were brought to the surface. They were found about 150 yards below the falls. The body was taken home to Carleton Place. The deceased young man was a son of Mr. Ab. Morphy, sen., and was 35 years of age. He was a brakeman on the C.P.R., and leaves a wife and four children to mourn his sudden call He was a young man of good repute and highly esteemed among his fellows, and the sympathy of the whole community flows out to the bereaved family in their deep sorrow. He was a member of the A.O.U.W. and the Brotherhood of Railway Trainmen
The bridge was a wooden structure which has weathered the breeze for many spring freshets, being built over forty years ago, and has for a long time been considered anything but safe. Beneath the long spans, bents were placed, but in the spring these would usually be damaged or carried away with the ice. On Saturday evening last the bent beneath the fatal span was taken away with the ice, and the bridge was temporarily strengthened by the pathmaster placing a timber above the bridge and chaining this to the stringer below. On Monday another prop went with the ice. As an evidence of the dangerous condition of the structure, the Ramsay Council at its last meeting receive a petition signed by 75 ratepayers, praying, for a new bridge, and a deputation backed up the petition. The result was a motion to ask for tenders for a new structure, but the action seems unfortunately to have been a day too late.
The funeral has been fixed for tomorrow afternoon, at 3 o’clock, to Cram’s cemetery. It will be attended by the members of the A.O.U.W. and the Railway Trainmen
Both horses were drowned, and the carriage is a wreck. They belonged to Mr. John Campbell, liveryman of this town.
During the afternoon a number of the C.P.R. trainmen went down to Appleton to aid in the search for the body. Mr. J.R. Hamilton, in a conversation with Miss Mattie Beckett, ascertained about the spot where Mr. Morphy was last seen by her with his hand raised as he went down for the last time. He with Frank Towsley, took a boat and went directly to the spot, grappling the body at once on reaching it.
One of the horses was seen floating through Almonte late in the afternoon yesterday.
Has been demanded, and is in progress this afternoon as we go to press.
The Coroner’s Jury Bring a Verdict of Culpable Negligence
“That said Abraham L. Morphy came to his death by drowning on the 17th day of April, 1899, when crossing the bridge at Appleton, over the Mississippi River, the bridge having given way. From the evidence obtained, and after consideration, we find that the said bridge has been in an unsatisfactory condition for the last year or more, and that the corporation of the township of Ramsay is guilty of culpable negligence.”
Thomas Willis is shown by Beldon’s Lanark County Atlas of 1880 to have been an inhabitant of the new village of Morphy’s Falls in its first year, and to have given his daughter in marriage then to John Morphy. John (b.1794, d.1860), another of the family of six sons and two daughters of Edmond Morphy, built his home for his bride at the east end of Mill Street on the present Bates & Innes lands. It stood there for over fifty years after his death, and last served as the watchman’s house of the Bates & Innes mill. The large family of John Morphy and his wife Mary Willis, raised in that pioneer home, included Abraham Morphy of Ramsay, near Carleton Place; and Elizabeth, Mrs. Richard Dulmage of Ramsay, who was born in 1821 as the first child born to the first settlers in Morphy’s Falls.
Last week I reposted a story I wrote about quilts ( posted below) and how much they mean to me. One, I lost in a fire, another is hanging on by a thread and last year a Lanark County one made in 1902 was rescued at an auction. — The Lanark County Quilt and its Families
Friday morning, Julie Sadler called me up and said she had something for me. There was a precious quilt from her grandmother May Morphy. I did not know what to say as as I believe a bed without a quilt is like a sky without a star. Thank you so much Julie– it will be cherished. I asked her to send me a story about May and she did.
Mae Morphy by Julie Sadler
May Morphy ( Mrs. Warner Morphy) was my maternal grandmother. Born in Ottawa in 1895, she married Warner in 1922. He was Edmond Morphy’s great-grandson and grandpa worked at the train station. May was a very private lady. I know she is shaking her finger at me from above right now. However, her passion was quilting!
As long as I can remember, she was at the church every Wednesday afternoon quilting with the ladies. She would walk down rain or shine. They first lived on William Street and then bought my family home on Catherine Street .
My mother was born in that house and the front room always had a quilt set up. She made dozens over the years and not a sewing machine in sight! No long arms in those days! Every stitch was by hand with love and her quilts are my prized possessions!
When the Burgess house on Lake Avenue ( next to the hospital) had an auction (1940’s?) she bought their grand piano for $200.00. A lot of money for her. My grandfather knew nothing about it. She had it moved to Catherine Street, but it didn’t fit!
She herself took a sledgehammer and knocked out the plaster archway between the two front rooms. Voila, it fits ! As did the quilts. My mother played it every day. After the fire in February 1954 at the United Church, my grandparents donated the piano. It is still played there regularly. Quilts are a link to our past. They each have a story. Yours Linda was made in the mid 1920’s. Almost 100 years old! I do wish more people loved them as much as you and I do!
For the Love of Quilts- Linda Knight Seccaspina
Memories of quilts being made and given with love were the norm in my childhood, and each quilt in our family had a memory.
Seven days after my birth I was placed in a quilt my grandmother had made and brought immediately to her home as my mother was ill. I was tucked into my crib with the same quilt I came home from the hospital in.
One night my father gathered me up in that same quilt and smuggled me into the Royal Victoria Hospital hoping my mother might remember me as she had postpartum depression. I can still see her looking down at the cards she was playing solitaire with while I was holding on to the edge of that dear quilt in fear. To this day I will never forget that image – my father says I was barely two, but I still remember the grayness of the room. While my life was sterile and cold, the quilt held warmth and security. My grandmother always said that blankets wrap you in warmth but quilts wrap you in love.
At age 12 my mother died, and my grandmother sat with me on her veranda and wrapped that same quilt around me while I cried. Life was never the same after that, and the quilt was placed on my bed like an old friend when I stayed with her. I would stare at the painting on the wall while I tried to sleep and thought that a lot of people understood art but not quilts. If I had a lot of money I would own a quilt and not a piece of art, because in the end which gives you the most comfort?
When I got married at age 21, my Grandmother sat at the dining room table for weeks and worked on a quilt for my new home. As I traveled down the road of life the quilt was always there while people came and went. Although it was aging gracefully it was still heavy and secure anytime I needed it. Through death and sickness it held comfort, and the promise that it would never desert me. This quilt held my life with all the bits and pieces, joys and sorrows, that had been stitched into it with love.
At age 47 the quilt died peacefully in my arms. A terrible house fire had destroyed it, and as I looked at the charred edges I realized the thread that held it together had bound the both of us forever. Now it was time to go down the final road by myself, and remembering the words of Herman Hesse I began the journey.
“Some of us think holding on makes us strong; but sometimes it is letting go.” Linda Knight Seccaspina
Thank you to Rick’s wife Kathleen Finlayson for joining us together.
Text by Richard Finlayson
This all started with my 32 year old corporate attorney daughter visiting us this weekend. My 88 year-old mother, Gloria, had recently given me the Finlayson family portrait above which we believe was taken in 1917. That was a year that the Spanish flu was devastating North America and it allowed me to give my daughter a historical perspective and how it relates to Covid 19. She was to be married in Chicago in May but we have postponed the wedding to next year. I told her the stories of the people in the photo. Your home, Springside Hall in Carleton Place, was a prominent piece of May Raeburn’s (Finlayson) story.
(Editor’s note– there was a dry spell in 1913 only to have it finally rain on July 25, 1913 the day after the fire. On the 26th there was a hail storm but no damages recorded. “The dry spell has been broken”– Almonte Gazette July 1913 (see more in ‘history’) .
My grandfather, Charles Mitchell Finlayson was born in 1898 and grew up on a farm in Lanark. He was the oldest of six children. He left the Finlayson family farm and attended the University of Toronto graduating from the Ontario College of Pharmacy in 1922. At that time his goal was to be a doctor but he needed to study an extra year and did not have the funds to complete that extra year. He immigrated to the United States after marrying my grandmother, Gladys Rogers, who was working as a piano teacher and model in Toronto. I actually have some of her work from a Toronto newspaper. She really was quite beautiful.
They had one child, my father, Charles Albert Finlayson who was born in 1930. Gladys Finlayson passed away in 1952 and my grandfather was heartbroken. I have always felt a deep spiritual connection to my grandfather who passed away in 1961 from a heart attack after running his own pharmacy (with a soda fountain) in Detroit,Michigan.
I am one of three brothers and my memory of our grandfather was one of him being incredibly kind and he loved playing with us and sneaking chocolate Kit Kat bars when our parents weren’t looking. When he passed away, my parents learned from his customers that for years (especially during the depression) he would nurse patients in the back of his store who couldn’t afford to see a doctor. He had actually set some broken bones and in his own way was an urban country doctor.
As a child I remember visiting Carleton Place at least four times. My parents had a small travel trailer and we would camp on the shores of the Mississippi River. We would rent a boat and fish during the day. The fishing there was always phenomenal and my brothers and I were always in competition to catch the biggest and the most perch.
Your home Springside Hall on Lake Ave. East was one that leaves a lifelong impression. In my mind it was a mansion. The fine woodworking and huge porch with the large front yard was awe-inspiring! My Aunt May was a very prim and proper woman and she had dinners in the formal dining room. She would serve with fine china and silver and linen napkins (serviettes?) Our mother would give us instructions on how to be gentlemen, something we were definitely not used to! To be honest, it felt like we were visiting the Queen and King of England. I remember there being a secret stairway that was almost like a tunnel ( more on that tomorrow). For a child that house would be an amazing place.
I am a very recently retired Captain for American Airlines. My very first flight for American took me to Ottawa and I was amazed that there is an intersection on a primary airway named Lanark. I could feel the spiritual connection every time I flew over that intersection knowing that all of my Finlayson relatives are there. Every flight out of Chicago for the next 33 years on my way to London or somewhere else in Europe brought the memories of Carleton Place.
In 2007 you ( Linda Seccaspina) and I came very close to meeting in person. I had taken a motorcycle trip of Ontario with a group of friends. We overnighted in Ottawa and my friends stayed up late in the Casino there. I got up early by myself and rode highway 7 in an attempt to find the cemetery where my relatives are all buried. My wife and I attended a family reunion in 1981 in Carleton Place and had visited the church where the cemetery was located. I could not find it. I stopped in a Mom and Pop gas station on the edge of town and filled my motorcycle. I asked the man who took my money if he knew of a church that is close by that had an adjoining cemetery . He said, “Yes, you passed one on the way in and it sits off the road at the top of the curve. Are you looking for a grave there?” I said, ” Yes, all of my relatives are buried there.” “Whats the last name?” I said Finlayson. He smiled and said,” Oh yes we know of them. That’s the right one.”
I was amazed that he knew of my family. It made me feel instantly at home. I rode over to the Boyds cemetery and visited with all the members of my family buried there. I sat there on a beautiful sunny day watching the butterflies flying around the headstones and I could feel their spirits. My great Uncle Edgar (my grandfather’s youngest brother) had been buried there in 1991. I sat there for an hour contemplating. I then got on my motorcycle and rode in to Carleton Place. It had changed so much since 1981. I was determined to find your home if it still existed.
I knew that finding the railroad track was key to my finding Springside Hall. I found the track and parked my Harley and started walking. When I found your home I gasped. It was the home but it looked so different from my memory, the architecturally correct addition you had built was amazing. Of course the limestone fencing threw me for a loop. I walked slowly around the perimeter taking in the home. I stood at the front gate and admired your English garden and the front of Aunt May’s old home. I hadn’t noticed you gardening and when you stood up it startled me as I could tell I probably startled you. I uttered a quick hello and kept walking. An tall American standing and staring at a house in motorcycle garb could be disconcerting at the least. I went back to my bike and rode past your house once more. I told my wife I was a bit angry at myself for not asking the woman in the garden if you knew of my Aunt May and Uncle George. I am thankful to know that you do.
Tomorrow!!!–The Case of the Disappearing Back Staircase — Springside Hall — Finlayson Series
I hope to find the location of their farm and would like to know if the home still exists. _ Rick Finlayson
I found the original farm was lost in a fire in a 1913 fire. Clippings below
Thanks to Rosemary Sarsfield historian and author of Clayton history-Whispers From the Past-Clayton Store, Millstreet Books in Almonte and from email@example.com of we found the farm
The one in Bowland’s cemetery would be my uncle Tom Finlayson. He was married to my father’s sister Annie Richards… I should know where they lived but will have to look it up. It was on the Old Perth Road but we were down there a couple of weeks ago and I could not see the old house. I actually was never there when I was young because my aunt was dead before I was born and I think Uncle Tom lived with one of his nephews. They only had one child Meda and she died when she was five.
So here is the land info:Charles and James Finlayson had WLot 8 Con 2 Ramsay and All of Lot !0 Con 2 There may have been two Charles, I am not sure, but Lot 10 went from Charles to James and then to Edgar who was unmarried. My uncle Tom was a brother of Edgar and Tom owned WLot 10 Con 3 Ramsay.–Thanks to Rosemary Sarsfield historian and author of Clayton history-Whispers From the Past-Clayton Store, Millstreet Books in Almonte and from firstname.lastname@example.org of we found the farm.
Ramsay Township, Lanark County, Ont. 1918 Directory
Names are listed in the order published — most of them are in alphabetical order by first letter only, but some may be completely out of order. Please use the “Search” function of your browser to look for all occurrences of a name. Obvious errors have been noted at the end of the line [in square brackets], but numerals, especially “5” and “6”, are sometimes impossible to tell apart in the photocopies.
SCHEDULE OF POST OFFICES
6. Carleton Place
NAME No P.O. DES. CON. LOT
Aiken John 1 1 O 12 2
Aikenhead Matthew 2 1 O 9 10-11
Aitken James Jr. 3 1 O 12 2
Aitken James 4 2 O 11 1
Aitken Duncan 5 1 O 10 14
Allen William 6 1 O 8 15
Anderson Wm. 7 1 O 8 12
Andrews John 8 1 O 9 13
Armstrong Wm. 9 1 O 10 21
Armstrong John W. 10 1 T 6 24
Arthur Orel 11 4 O 11 26
Arthur Thos. S. 12 1 O 8 5
Arthur James M. 13 6 O 1 5
Arthur Wm. G. 14 1 O 10 24
Bain Daniel Jr. 15 1 O 3 16
Bain Daniel Sr. 16 1 O 4 16
Baird Robert M. 17 2 O 10 3
Barr Thomas 18 5 O 2 23
Barker James A. 19 4 O 10 25
Barker Robert 20 1 O 7 21
Barker Alex. 21 4 O 9 27
Bell Edgar 22 2 O 8 3
Bellamy John E. 23 5 O 2 23
Bickford W. H. 24 1 O 9 13
Bingham Oswald 25 4 O 10 26
Black John 26 2 O 10 3
Black Daniel J. 27 1 O 5 10
Blaney Walter 28 1 O 12 9
Boaz Charles 29 5 O 2 22 [name might be "Boes"]
Bowes John 30 1 O 8 22
Bowes James 31 1 O 7 15
Bowes Thomas 32 1 O 7 11
Bowland H. M. 33 5 O 1 17
Bowland Wm. J. 34 6 O 3 1
Brydges Charles 35 1 O 12 10
Brydges Wllbert 36 1 O 12 12
Buchanan John A. 37 4 O 10 25
Buchanan G. W. 38 2 O 10 2
Bulger Justis 39 5 O 1 22
Burke Charles 40 1 O 8 19
Burns Wm. J. [?] 41 6 T 6 5 [possibly a second blotted initial]
Camelon James 42 1 T 7 16
Camelon Arch 43 1 T 7 17
Camelon David 44 6 O 4 6
Camelon David 45 1 T 7 19
Camelon John 46 4 T 9 24
Cannon John 47 1 O 7 12
Carnochan Wm. 48 1 T 8 21
Carnohan Robert 49 6 O 3 7
Cavers Edgar 50 2 O 12 4
Chapman Joseph 51 1 O 8 6
Chapman George T. 52 6 O 8 4
Cochrane Alex. A. 53 1 T 7 22
Cochrane Peter 54 1 O 6 23
Cochrane Wm. L. 55 1 O 5 24
Code Matthew 56 6 O 2 7
Coleman Wm. 57 6 O 8 6
Colquhoun Arch 58 1 T 11 21
Corkery James 59 1 O 3 10
Coulter Charles 60 5 O 2 25
Cox Wm. 61 4 T 9 25
Cox W. H. 62 6 O 7 3
Craig Thos. Sr. 63 1 T 8 18
Craig Adams 64 1 O 10 11
Cunningham John 65 6 O 7 1
Curtis Thomas 66 6 T 1 6
Darling Fred A.C. 67 1 O 11 16
Devine Edward 68 6 O 9 2
Devine Hugh B. 69 6 O 7 7
Dezell James 70 6 O 1 1
Doherty Ernest 71 1 O 10 13
Donaldson David 72 6 T 7 4
Doucett Geo. H. 73 6 O 3 5
Dowdall Jas. E. 74 2 O 10 3
Dowdall Hiram 75 6 O 3 6
Dowdall Charles 76 6 O 2 3
Drummond Sam 77 1 O 12 9
Drynan James 78 1 O 9 7
Drynan John 79 1 O 10 15
Drynan Wm. J. 80 5 O 3 27
Drynan James 81 5 O 2 26
Duncan Edmund 82 1 O 11 10
Duncan Alex. S. 83 1 O 10 11
Duncan Wm. J. 84 1 O 11 9
Dunlop W. G. 85 1 O 1 16
Elliott Philip J. 86 1 O 1 13
Erskine John L. 87 5 O 1 23
Evans Richard 88 5 T 2 22
Evans Abraham 89 5 O 1 20
Fenlon John 90 4 O 10 25
Finlayson Thos. W. 91 1 O 2 8
Finlayson Chas. 92 1 O 2 10
James Finlayson was born on May 9 1866, in Ramsay Township, Lanark County, Ontario, Canada. Catherine was born on September 21 1867, in Drummond Township, Lanark County, Ontario, Canada.Charles had 5 siblings: Verna Agnes Finlayson, Thomas Albert Finlayson and 3 other siblings.
Charles married Gladys Irene Finlayson (born Rogers) on Wednesday January 14,1925, at age 26 in York, Ontario. Gladys was born in 1906, in Bristol, Somerset, England.They had one son: Charles A. Finlayson.
1087-25 Charles Mitchell FINLAYSON, 26, druggist, Ontario, 51 Harcourt Ave., s/o James FINLAYSON (b. Ont) & Catherine Agnes RUTTLE, married Gladys Irene ROGERS, 18, music teacher, England, 34 Wiley Ave., d/o Albert ROGERS (b. England) & Daisy Lydia TONKIN, witn: James R. GARVIN of 85 Boulton Ave & Evelyn UNDERWOOD of 20 Earlscourt Ave., 14 Jan 1925
8260-97 John M. FINLAYSON, 33, farmer, Ramsay twp., Drummond twp., s/o Charles FINLAYSON & Mary SMITH, married Maria A. RUTTLE, 33, Drummond, same, d/o Thomas RUTTLE & Lucinda MARTIN, witn: Charles FINLAYSON of Ramsay twp & Emma RUTTLE of Drummond, 28 April 1897 at Drummond twp
6638-95 (Lanark Co): James FINLAYSON, 29, farmer, Ramsay twp., same, s/o Charles & Mary, married Catherine RUTTLE, 28, Drummond, same, d/o Thomas & Lucinda, witn: John M. FINLAYSON of Almonte & Maria RUTTLE of Innisville, 23 Oct 1895 at Drummond twp
#006650-95 (Lanark Co): Thomas R. WATCHORN, 23, yeoman, Lanark twp., same, s/o Henry WATCHORN & Nancy TAYLOR, married Mary A. FINLAYSON, 16, Lanark twp., same, d/o William FINLAYSON & Amelia CUNNINGHAM, witn: Ethel CODE of Carleton Place & Charlie FINLAYSON of Ramsay twp., 13 Nov 1895 at Lanark twp
In 1826, a long builting was found on Rea’s lot. Early teachers, Mr. Huggart and Joseph Rea, lived in a house in Greig’s field. James Greig sold one quarter acre on the eighth line, Lot 10, Concession 7, Ramsay for $4.00 and a frame building was put up. Andrew Greig sold another quarter acre of land in 1878 to enlarge the school grounds. Mrs. Pearl McCann created history when she became the first married female teacher in 1942. When S.S. No. 5 only had 5 pupils, the Board decided to amalgamate the two schools from 1945-1947. In 1963, the school was destroyed by fire and students had to temporarily attend S.S. No. 2 Ramsay. On June 30, 1960, many former students and teachers celebrated the 100th anniversary of the school. In 1970, pupils from S.S. No. 14 moved to Naismith Memorial in Almonte and the school property was sold to Edgar Finlayson for $4,500.
Finlayson – Richards(10 September 1924)A charming wedding was solemnized at St. George’s church, Clayton, on Wednesday of this week, the ceremony taking place at 5 o’clock in the afternoon. At that hour, Mr. Thos. W. Finlayson, a prosperous young farmer of the 2nd line of Ramsay, led to the altar Miss Alice Annie Richards, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. E. A. Richards, who reside a couple of miles or so from the groom’s home. Mr. H. E. Goode, of Ottawa, was groomsman, while Miss Rath, a cousin of the bride, gracefully performed the duties of bridesmaid. Rev. Robt. Turley, incumbent of the church, tied the Gordian knot in the presence of relatives of both families and a number of personal friends. At the conclusion of the ceremony an adjournment was made to the home of the bride’s parents, where a sumptuous wedding dinner awaited them, which was done full justice to. At the conclusion a couple of hours or so were spent in pleasant social intercourse, and later the newly wedded couple repaired to their home, accompanied by the goof wishes of the company for a long and prosperous voyage o’er the matrimonial sea. The gifts to the bride, who is popular with a large circle of friends, were numerous, many of them costly, and all of them useful. Since the above was place in type a Clayton correspondent sends the following additional particulars; The bride, who was tastefully dressed in white silk with an over dress of point d’esprit and white hat to match and carrying a bouquet of cream roses, entered the church leaning on the arm of her father. She was followed by her bridesmaid, Miss Mildred Rath, who wore a pretty dress of white batiste trimmed with lace and insertion and large leghorn hat, and carried a bouquet of pink roses. The groomsman was Mr. Goode of Ottawa. After the ceremony the bridal party and guests, which numbered about fifty, drove to the home of the bride’s parents, where a sumptuous dinner was served. A toast was proposed by Rev. R. Turley to which the groom replied. The bride’s going away dress was brown eoline with hat to match.
On Saturday morning, Jan. 1st., the brittle thread of life which binds the soul and body were severed and death took from our midst dear little Anna Meda (Finlayson), only child of Mr. and Mrs. Thos. Finlayson of Ramsay. She was only 5 years and 9 months old, and her sudden passing away was a tremendous shock to both parents and community, as she was just three days ill. She was a very bright, cheerful and cunning child, and a great favorite with those who knew her. Just before death she repeated every word of a little prayer her mother had taught her. The funeral took place Monday, Jan. 3rd, from her father’s residence to St. George’s cemetery. The service at the house was conducted by Rev. Mr. Merrilees and at the grave by Rev. Mr. Brunet. In spite of the inclemency of the weather there was a very large funeral over seventy carriages being in the cortege. The floral tributes were: Wreaths, from Mr. and Mrs. Finlayson, parents of deceased; spray, from Mr. and Mrs. Mack Richards, spray from Mr. and Mrs. Jas. Finlayson and James and Mack Richards, uncles of deceased. The sympathy of the community goes out to Mr. and Mrs. Finlayson in their bereavement. Tender Shepherd thou hast stilled, Now Thy little lamb’s brief weeping, Oh, how peaceful, pure and mild, In Thy loving arms ’tis sleeping, And no sign of anguish sore, Heaves that little bosom more.
Linda, you asked me who the original owner of the lot that 119 Bell was constructed on. Here is some more history- Karen Prytula
The short answer is the Crown deeded the lot on Bell Street to John Murphy/Morphy in 1824 after completion of his settlement duties. This was originally an 80 acre lot. John was one of the 3 sons of Edmund Morphy. And I believe this lot to belong to son John because the other 2 sons of Edmund were James and William, and they owned land adjacent to this lot at the same time, and, their names were also spelled Murphy in the land records.
In 1839 John M sold 11 acres for 25 pounds. I would figure if he is selling off land, he probably is living on the land and so that log part of the house could be as early as 1824.
Balance: 69 acres
In 1841 JohnM sells 25 acres for 100 pounds to H. Baines. Balance: 44 acres
In 1841 JohnM also sells to H. Boulton, acreage not specified, for 63 pounds…
By 1861 JohnM is dead, and so probably left the remaining acreage to his son/brother William, whom I believe may have sold to H. Boulton.
The 1863 map shows an R. Bell owning the lot, and a Dr. Wilson owning the stone home (105 Bell) next to this one.
The 1879 map does not have names written on it like the earlier map does.
Because this house was on lot 15W, Concession XII – it’s a big lot and there are probably lots of houses that are made of log then covered with clapboard.
There were plenty of owners on this lot but not one of them was a McEwen. One of the walking tour pamphlets refers to this house as the Murphy/Morphy house – so I am confident this is probably where John Murphy/Morphy lived. Possibly Dr. McEwen rented it when he was living there.
The Legal Description is: LT 112 SEC B PL 276 LANARK N BECKWITH; PT LT 113 SEC B PL 276 LANARK N BECKWITH AS IN RN31707; TOWN OF CARLETON PLACE
The above legal description is of absolutely no help as it does not even mention the Concession #, which we know to be XII.
“Founded Upon A Rock” does not mention a Dr. McEwen at all. It mentions a John Morphy, but not in relation to the house.
If the house was built in the 1880s it could have been built by any number of the property owners listed on the land abstract, because, lots of families lived on lot 15. It’s impossible to know which family was on a certain acreage/sq.footage.
I think the log cabin was there for maybe close to 50 years and instead of tearing it down, a newer owner just clapboarded around it in the 1880s, and additions were added when necessary.
There is a technology out there called Dendrochronology (the science or technique of dating events, environmental change, and archaeological artifacts by using the characteristic patterns of annual growth rings in timber and tree trunks.) which can tell the year the log was taken down. I am reading up on it to see if maybe we can get the year the log was cut down which will tell us, if this was an original Morphy homestead. i.e. if it was cut down before 1861 (the year I know John was deceased by) it was probably the original John Morphy homestead. If the log was cut down after 1861 then it could not have been his home.
Photo- Adin Wesley Daigle
June 12, 2020 2:25 PM
After some of the siding was removed there stood a two storey log home. Yes the “McEwen home” was originally a two storey log home probably built in 1848 with the hard wood logs taken from the lot or the park across the street. Very unheard of to see a two storey log home and the people that built it must have been well off. I asked the developer to cut off part of one of the logs and thanks to Karen P and Mark Smith they carried it to her van for the museum so we would have part of the house.
As the home came down the smell of rot filled the air. The logs at the base of the house were basically all sawdust and apparently they had been trying to save the base logs patching for years. The house also had asbestos in it. Sadly there were little options for this home. Instead of being angry–don’t let other heritage houses get this far along so they can’t be saved.
Instead of discussion put your words into actions. JOIN and SUPPORT, DONATE to our Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum — (their website is http://www.cpbheritagemuseum.com. On the page you will see a tab called Join Us, all the information is there.) Instead of complaining..
William, second son of Edmond and Barbara, was born on or about 1797. He was about 22 years of age when the Morphys arrived at the wilderness lands in Beckwith. The first marriages here were those of Sarah, daughter of George Willis, to William Morphy, and Mary, daughter of Thomas Willis, to John Morphy. William married in 1821 and the land belonging to him was the whole East side of Bridge Street. He built his house on the present site of the town hall at Bridge and Mill Street and became a saddlemaker.
When the present Carleton Place Town Hall was built, the central building on its site, said to be the second dwelling built in the town, was the home of Mrs. William Morphy, where she had lived to 1888 and the age of 85, a widow for over fifty years. Her home there was said to have been destroyed twice by fire. The first was lost in September of 1851. It’s replacement was a two story log building was destroyed 25 years later by fire in June 1876.
Widow Sarah Morphy died in August 1888 at age 85. Of the six children she was survived by one son George of Carleton Place and two daughters: Mrs. Watchorn of Merrickville and Mrs. Fitzgerald of Duncanville. *(Russell)
So what happened to her husband William Morphy? In August of 1837 at age 40 he and a friend were racing their horses when returning from Perth to Carleton Place.
The Bathurst Courier at Perth, reporting her husband’s death in August, 1837, said in part:
“Fatal Accident: On Friday afternoon last, William Morphy of Carleton Place, whilst on his way home from this place on horseback, in company with several others, met with an accident from the effect of which he died on Sunday morning last, under the following circumstances. Between this and Joseph Sharp’s tavern the deceased and another of the party were trying the speed of their horses when, on approaching Sharp’s house at a very rough part of the road, his horse fell and threw him off, by which he was placed under the animal. Severe wounds causing a contusion of the brain led to his death. The deceased was a native of Ireland, and has left a wife and family to deplore his sudden death.”
\Grandchildren of William Morphy and his wife Sarah Willis included William, Duncan and Robert McDiarmid, prominent Carleton Place merchants, sons of James McDiarmid, Carleton Place merchant, and his wife Jane Morphy.
Duncanville/ Russell, Ontario
*The first postmaster was John Duncan, and in 1852 he managed to have the community’s name changed to Duncanville. The post office name did not change however, and in 1900 the community’s name was officially restored to Russell.
John Morphy 1994-1860, eldest son was married in 1821 to Mary Willis, daughter of Thomas Willis of Morphy’s Falls. As Jennifer from the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum said: “These were inhabitants of the new village, who were you going to marry? A Moore, Willis or Morphy– those were your choices”. So, Thomas and George Willis, gave their daughters in marriage to John and William Morphy.
John Morphy along with James Wallace and William Wilson of Ramsay township were the three intelligent farmers of the neighbourhood recommended by Robert Bell, Esquire, of Carleton Place in 1838 for appointment by the lieutenant commissioners to manage the semi-annual market fairs then being established by provincial charter to Carleton Place.
When the Carleton Place Mechanic’s associations and Library Association began in 1846 John Morphy was one of the original subscribing members. John’s farm house was located near the river at the east end of Mill Street. Its site was located between the present large stone textile mill building ( McArthur) and the CPR railroad line. (Right where the town yard is)
The last occupant of this home was the watchman of the Bates and Innes textile mill. Its timbers were still sound, when in the course of making a new road to the mill, it was dismantled.
At their farmhouse on the east end of Mill Street John and Mary Moore raised a family of six sons and six daughters. The eldest Elizabeth was said to be the first child born in the Morphy Falls settlement born May 5th 1822. John was a Baptist church member when he died in his home November 15,1860 at the age of 66.
Thanks to Doug Moffat for giving me these great notes by Howard Morton Brown.
With the Morphys and the Moores, the Willises long were among the widely known earliest owners of farm land coming within the present boundaries of the town. It is well recorded that the whole central section of the present town was first located to the Morphy and the Moore families in 1819 as Crown grants of farm land; the part extending north of Lake Avenue to four of the Morphys, and three hundred acres at the south side of Lake Avenue to three of the Moores. William Moore is said to have aided in the founding of the town by opening its first blacksmith shop in 1820, the first year of settlement as a community. About the same time the first marriages here were those of Sarah, daughter of George Willis, to William Morphy, and Mary, daughter of Thomas Willis, to John Morphy. Well known descendants of these families continue to live in the town and district.
What’s different? House was built in 3 parts. 1867 then 1910 and then 1990. Linda drives a SUV now and no longer has theme rooms except upstairs: Hat Room, Alice in Wonderland and Puppet Room. Still have the telephone booth.
This was 2014– it’s a mass of greenery now. Old phone booth in the back.
What’s Different? Pool is closed over, no more royalty room, nor dollhouse.. Still buy old photos.. no more theme rooms except 3 upstairs.. Hat room– Puppet room and Alice in Wonderland Room
That room is all changed and Angelo has passed away.
We now have the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum in the old Victoria School on Edmund Street. A fire in 1995 changed a great deal of the house. This article was in 1982 and we moved here in 1981 and I was a member of the Carleton Place Historical Society that met once a month at the library and average attendance was about 40. I am still friends with a lot of those people who were in that society. Memories of the late Bill Bagg, Norman Paul, Bill Brebner, and Brian Costello.
Edmond Morphy-Immigrated to Canada in 1819. Farmer. Founder of Carleton Place. Re-interred with spouse Barbara in St. Fillans (but this may be incorrect as other info says Barbara was buried in St. Marys Cemetery, Blanchard Twp.
Edmond was listed as dying as “following a surgical operation” in some information, or dying from cancer in 1843. But the long story was that he loved his clay pipe and used plug tobacco. Plug chewing tobacco is pressed tobacco leaves into a square, brick-like mass of tobacco called a plug. From this, pieces are bitten off or cut from the plug and then chewed.
However a crack in his lower lip became very sore and what was causing it was the aggravation from the stem of the clay pipe. Edmond did have surgery trying to improve the situation but things were not the same as they are today. Things got worse for poor Edmond and the condition of his lower face became revolting to him and he would not let anyone touch it. Edmond became afraid of spreading what he thought was a disease so he refused to let anyone come near him or touch it. Edmond looked after it himself and ended up dying from the infection.
Did you Know?
Edmond was married to Barbara Miller and had 8 children: two sons and six daughters. His house, the first within Morphy Falls was a log building near the river bank at present day 27 Allan Street. The ruins were removed in September 1912 and were supported by a large stone fireplace and chimney.
Grant Dolan —After Edmond’s death, Barbara moved to Blanshard, Ontario to her daughter, Elizabeth, Mrs William Sparrow in 1848. Barbara died in 1863 and is buried at Saint Mary’s Cemetery, St Mary’s, Perth County.
According to my records, which may not be fully accurate, There were 6 boys and 2 girls. John (Mary Willis), William (Sarah Willis), James (Mary McLaughlin), David (Elizabeth Stillman), my third great grandmother, Mary (James Smith), Edmond (Margaret Dulmage), Elizabeth (William Sparrow) and Thomas (Elizabeth Prettie). That should be in order of birth.
The first to arrive were the Moore and Morphy families, and the settlement became known as Morphy’s Falls. Edmond Morphy realized the potential of the thirty foot drop in the Mississippi River (Aboriginal for Great River) on a previous visit and exploited it by building a grist mill.
A town landmark adjoining the home of A. R. G. Peden on Allan Street was removed when the ruins of the large log house of Edmond Morphy, a first settler at Carleton Place, were torn down. It was said to have been built about 1820.
Another pioneer home dating from about 1820 was removed when the original farmhouse of John Morphy, son of Edmond, was torn down. It was the birthplace of the first child born to settlers at Carleton Place (Mrs. Richard Dulmage, 1821-1899). In later years the old building had accommodated the night watchman of the Gillies Woollen Mills.
The Moore and Morphy land grants of 1819 included the greater part of the present built up area of the town of Carleton Place. The Moore farmsteads (located to William and his sons William and John) extended on both sides of Moore Street and the Franktown Road from Lake Avenue south to Highway 15. In width they ran west from Park Avenue to about Caldwell Street. The Morphy area (granted to Edmond and his sons, William, John and James) occupied the central part of the town from Lake Avenue north to the Town Line Road, and extended along both sides of the river from about the downstream or eastern side of the town’s present limits to Hawthorne Avenue and Moffatt Street. Town streets which appear to be named for members of the Morphy family include William, George, Morphy, James, Edmund, Thomas and Franklin Streets. Other Beckwith settlers of 1819 to 1822 whose 100 acre farm grants extended within the town’s present limits were Robert Johnston, James Nash, Thomas Burns, Philip Bayne, Manny Nowlan and George Willis.
Edmond Morphy and His Family
In 1819 Edmond Morphy, his wife Barbara Miller and their eight children, the first residents on the site of Carleton Place, emigrated to Upper Canada from Ireland and settled here. Their land grant, Lots 14 and 15, Concession 12, Beckwith Township, was divided east and west of present-day Bridge Street. Comprising 400 acres was officially deeded to Morphy and his three eldest sons, John, William and James in 1824. By then a village, one of the earliest in the vicinity of the National Capital Region, had begun to develop at “Morphy’s Falls”. Although the first Morphy house, a small log shanty stood on Allan Street, an acre of land was reserved for a family burying ground at this site. Edmond, his wife and several descendants rested here until the 1960’s, when their remains were re-interred.
Erected in 1982 by the Corporation of Carleton Place in appreciation of the efforts of Inez McCoy to have the historic site marked and in co-operation with Bell Canada
Thanks to Doug Moffat for giving me these great notes by Howard Morton Brown.
Built in 1867 one of the sons of Edmond Morphy, founder of Carleton Place first known as Morphy’s Falls), the Lake Ave East house was later occupied by the Johnson family, the, Merricks and, for many years, the Cram descendants.
Everything that Bill Bagg collected and sold had a story, and chances are if you were fortunate you heard that very same story at least two or three times. I am one of the lucky ones to have one of his pieces in my home, and although not to the extent of Bill’s passion; I sometimes feel I run a rescue for all things Lanark County. They might not be priceless antiques, but like Bill, each one has a local story- and to me that is more important than owning a Faberge egg.
According to Gary Strike, Bill Bagg had a couple of deer heads hanging on the wall at his place,and if you didn’t know where Bill lived, well you missed a real treat. Home for Bill for the past 34 years was the Gillies and Beyer’s Canadian machine shop built in 1875 located right on the Mississippi Gorge. These were not any ordinary mounted deer that Bill had–in fact they would be about 111 years-old right now. He acquired them from Scott and Jennifer Wallace, and after hearing the story Bill realized their importance to the town of Carleton Place.
Edmund and the native quickly settled the matter justly for both and established a rule to govern in like cases. Later the Stagg’s head became the Town of Carleton Place’s logo as it represented fair play and sharing. Ironically, the artist just happened to use those two deer heads as his model for the logo.
So what is the origin of these deer? The story goes that Mr. Muirhead, Rosamond and Gillies went out hunting at Christmas in 1901. Arriving at the “Patterson Bush” where the Beer Store on Townline is located now, the men each shot one deer. Deciding to immortalize their kill, the deer went to the taxidermist and were soon hung in the dining room of the Rosamond House at 37 Bell Street.
Town clerk, Duncan Roger’s late mother purchased the Bell Street property from Ida and Ken Muirhead in October of 1957.The Muirheads had left several items in the house one being the three deer heads. Two hung in the Roger’s dining room, and one hung in the east exterior porch for many years.
Rogers remembers his mother telling him that Ken Muirhead had told her that a Mr. Muirhead ( Ken Muirhead’s father he believed ) and one of his sons had shot the deer and had them mounted and hung in the home. Bill became very good friends with Arnold Muirhead, the son of Ida and Ken Muirhead, (married to a Gillies) and they lived in Arnprior. Gary Strike’s father was the head supervisor of the Gillies Bros. Lumber Company in Braeside and ironically Mr. Muirhead was his boss, so this story was slowly coming 360.
When asked, Duncan didn’t know anything about the story of the Muirhead, Rosamond and Gillies hunting expedition. The deer heads remained at Duncan’s former home until he sold it in 2003 to Mr. and Mrs. Wallace. Like most women, Duncan’s wife did not express any interest in them and he left them as he felt that they were part of the history of the home. After all, they had hung in the house for 102 years.
I don’t think any collector knows his true motivation but Bill had the knack of sniffing out history. Bill called some of his things primitives, some called them junk, but everything he bought and collected was an experience. Good or bad they are priceless to anyone that loves history and hopefully these deer heads will get their proper historical homes.
With files from Gary Strike
Duncan Rogers still has a picture of the deer heads as they were originally hung in the dining room at the Bell Street home.
They are impressive, at least five point bucks and the biggest set of racks that I have seen-Gary Strike
Life Insurance—The late Mr. J. Chatterton of Carleton Place had taken out an endowment policy for $1,000, designating the payment of the sum should go to his little daughter Eva on his decease. An order has been issued by the High Court for the payment of the sum as soon as the guardian of the child has been appointed.
Why did Mr. Chatterton make such a demand? Why wasn’t Mrs. Chatterton, her mother, mentioned? If you have read my stories you will remember that Mrs. Chatterton was owner of the Queen’s Hotel in Carleton Place and also ran a ‘ladies of the night business’ on the side in the alleyway of the hotel. So it is no wonder that Mr. Chatteron found her an unfit mother.
The Victorian era was infamous for its prostitution. This may be due to the fact that some people believed that venereal diseases could be cured by sexual intercourse with children. This is why most prostitutes during this time were no other than children. A girl in the lower class, from ages 12 to 18, was paid 20 pounds; a girl in the middle class, of the same ages, was paid 100 pounds; and a girl of the upper class, 12 years old, was paid 400 pounds per job. This was way more money compared to a skilled worker of a normal job who only made about 62 pounds a year.
Since prostitutes made a large sum of money, it was the number one reason that women became prostitutes. Another reason women went into prostitution was because other jobs for women were limited and didn’t make nearly as much money. Prostitutes were more socially liberated than women in other classes. Prostitutes could also gather in pubs, meanwhile respected women could not.
Prostitution was not just good and lucrative, it was also very problematic. Although there were a number of prostitutes, there was still not enough to meet the demands. As a result, pimps, men who managed prostitutes, would go out and kidnap little girls to bring them into prostitution. Finally, there was the larger problem of venereal diseases.
A large majority of prostitutes had syphilis before they reached the age of 18. Soldiers and sailors in the army and navy were starting to get these diseases from the prostitutes which led to the Contagious Diseases Act. This law states as followed:
“Should a member of a special force or a registered doctor believe that a woman was a common prostitute (a term left undefined), then he might lay such information before a Justice of the Peace who was then to summon the woman to a certified hospital established under the act for medical examination. Should she refuse, then the magistrate could order her to be taken to the hospital and there forcibly examined and if found, in either case, to be suffering from venereal disease, then she could be detained in a hospital for a period of up to three months. Resistance to examination or refusal to obey the hospital rules could be visited with one month’s imprisonment for the first offence and two months for any subsequent offence. They might, however, submit voluntarily to examination without a magistrate’s order, but if infected became liable for detention”
After this Act was enforced, women of this time formed the Ladies National Association for the Repeal of the Contagious Diseases Act. They tried to get the Contagious Diseases Acts repealed. Finally in 1886, these acts were repealed and were replaced with a new legislation. This legislation entitled the Criminal Law Amendment Act. These acts gave more protection to children from becoming prostitutes, made homosexuality a crime, and made the basis for prostitution to eventually become illegal.
Chatterton House was located in what we now know as The Queen’s Hotel at 142 Bridge Street. Built in 1870 by Duncan McIntosh and operated as a hotel under the name of McIntosh House, it was bought in 1882 by the widow Mary J. Chatterton. By 1886 she has sold to Peter Salter, who ran it until about 1890. Photo-Carleton Place & Beckwith Heritage Museum
8413-98 (Lanark Co): Washington PARSONS, 54, widower, millwright, of Arnprior, s/o Elias S. PARSONS & blank HARRINGTON, married Margaret FLEMING, 41, of NY state, d/o William FLEMING & blank BEAT, witn: Howard SINCLAIR & Mary CHATTERTON, both of Carleton Place, 14 Nov 1898 at Carleton Place