I was born on August 17, 1905 at Halls Mills, the third daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Robert Munro. My sisters were older, and my brother was younger. Wilbert, who lives on the old farm at Halls Mills and my brother Earl, who used to deliver mail from the post office, drove for Eddie Munro for quite awhile.
My two sisters were both gone some years ago. Eva Fulton lived above Renfrew and Florence Watt at Galbraith. I started school at Halls Mills when I was six years old and had four teachers. There was Mary Gleeson, Aggie Lett, Luella Thompson and Mildred Royce. I tried my entrance exams in Lanark but failed, so I stayed at home and helped on the farm. Read-The Life and Times of Cora Yuill
Did you know that one of the landmarks for Scotch Corners used to be “to turn off Highway 7 at the lXL Cheese Factory”? It was a hopping corner with traffic jams consisting of farmers waiting to get their milk weighed in and upon leaving, a quick trip to the back to the whey vat pick up some whey to feed their pigs.
Local lad Alfie Poole had the answers to the local stories in those days and there was a reason as to why this particular cheese factory was called ‘the IXL’. Seems there was a couple of cheese factories down the road and no one wanted to mix them up. There was one past the St John’s Anglican Church on the Ferguson Falls Road called the “Fair Play” and another opposite the church called the “Grab All”. These were the actual names I kid you not.
Well the farmer’s around the McCreary settlement were having none of that, and wanted to have the best cheese factory in the area. So up the factory went and it became known as the IXL but was sadly destroyed by fire in 1969.
Birth of a Friendly Town-- Almonte Gazette July 30 , 1970 ( no author mentioned)
T ’was back in 1820 when the air was clear and bright, A brawny pioneer farmer stopped his wagon for the night. He kindled his cheery campfire to feed his hungry brood, And vowed he’d build a cabin on the very spot he stood. On the banks of the Mississippi, on a tract of government land, He built his homely hovel, with axe and sweat, so grand. He cleared his land for planting with mule and old grey mare, He plowed and tilled and worked it with tender loving care. His meagre supply of seedlings he spread upon the ground, He fished the brooks and rivers and hunted the woods around.
He sent word to friends and relations of the wonderful place he had, But with the lack of a woman’s company, his wife was very sad. As the years went by, his family grew, with neighbours all around, Where once there stood a lonely farm , had turned into a town. With neighbour lads they took the fish, both with line and spear, And all around this lonely place -was a friendly atmosphere.
The town it grew and friendliness was never left behind, The people in this little town, always seemed so kind. As homes sprang up with shops and stores, everything so grand, And all the people in the town to lend a helping hand. …. So from this campfire in the night, arose THE FRIENDLY TOWN, Our friendliness, it’s said, has spread for miles around. So why not come to ALMONTE and join in all the cheer. To have some fun and celebrate our 130th year.
We promise you our friendliness, has grown from year to year, The only thing we’re lacking is having you came here. So plan to come and visit us when summer rolls along. When we celebrate in ALMONTE, our friends can do no wrong
Mary Sterling Jarick The first thing I saw when we came from Ireland and landed in Almonte. My father told me he had it done especially for me. lol
Mary Anne Harrison My grandparents, Jim and Cecelia Carroll lived just in front of the tower on Ottawa street. My uncle Emmett too. I have no doubt 1 or all 5 of my brothers climbed that tower at one time or another.
Peggy Byrne Yes it was a sad day. Lived for many years beside that tower and saw a few people climb to the top whenever the opportunity arose. Ronald Ford, you will remember the water house at the base of the tank where many residents that didn’t yet have running water in their homes went to fill up their containers – oh wait, maybe you’re too young for that….🤭
Ronald Ford I remember Dad would point it out at the Corkery hill. It was all long time ago. Tree grow a lot 66 yrs
We posted the photo of the 1993 water tower today– Dawn Jones fund This from the Millstone article in 2013.
Water tower slogan: still friendly, but not a town?
The Town recently announced that as part of the current cleaning and restoration of the water tower on Paterson Street, “the tower will also be refinished with a new white and blue colour scheme along with a rebranded logo,” approved by Town Council at a meeting on April 16 2013.
A rendering of this logo is available on the Mississippi Mills website. It shows that the decades-old slogan “Almonte The Friendly Town” will be replaced with simply “Friendly Almonte.”
I can see this, I suppose. Strictly speaking we are no longer a “town” — in the purely legalistic sense of the word — but rather a ward of the amalgamated municipality of Mississippi Mills.
But it does seem a pity to lose the slogan that has been welcoming people to our community for generations. We may not be a town as far as the provincial government is concerned, but we surely are in every other sense.
Out of interest I decided to search the online Almonte Gazette archive to find out how long we’ve been “The Friendly Town.” It appears the slogan was chosen sometime prior to March 1953 by the Chamber of Commerce for use in a promotional booklet. Link (story at top-left)
I also found a reference on Google Books, from a 1952 issue of Civic Administration magazine: “As you near the town, the first thing you see is a big steel standpipe jutting skyward above the leafy trees. On it in six-foot letters are the words, WELCOME TO ALMONTE The Friendly Town.”
Linda…I hope this message finds you well! When we were sorting through my mom’s things we came across a few boxes of my grandmother’s (Gladie Dowdall) that my mom hadn’t touched. In there was the CPHS graduation program from 1936 & 1937!! I emailed them to the museum earlier today. But THE absolute best find is the attached Poem written about “The Commercial” students for their 1937 graduation. Enjoy
0, peaceful dreamy town That nestles in the vale, _ With streets and homes so pleasant, And her people fair and hale And grand the scene about her That lends her charm and grace Amid the fairest beauty town Fair Almonte takes the place. The winding waters of her stream Come on serene and slow Till o’er the falls they grandly leap, and boil in foam below.
The silvery moon at even, · A street of silver lays Across the wind toss Across the bends and bays From many a height in Ramsay The town is seen afar, And each light looks at evening, Just like the evening star, While in ‘the moon tide brightness It seems to nestledown.
In the Mississippi Valley, Almonte, fair Almonte town. From just outside its borders, Is seen a distant view, The grand chain of Laurentians, Lie in a haze of blue, And the bright autumn colors, Less than fifty miles-away, Upon the mountain side are seen Upon a cloudless day
Around her here and there, In valley and on hill, Are wondrous woods and plains And rippling brooks and the river About the town so dangerous fair, Nature with lavish hand, Has spread out beauty everywhere, Oh Almonte fairest Almonte What ails thee at this time With power and beauty around thee Thou shouldest be in thy prime Wake from the dreamy slumber Arouse and take thy place, Add to your wealth and number And strike a progress pace. Written and composed by Agnes Whitelaw Boyce