Tag Archives: strange story

Fire Caused Strange Scene Near Portland

Fire Caused Strange Scene Near Portland


Portland, Ontario


In the year 1870 fire caused consternation among the wild things which inhabited a strip of uncultivated land on the north side of the Rideau across from Portland. The land was in North Burgess and was partly rocky, partly stumpy (had been cut for timber) and partly beaver meadow.

The land in question had a frontage of about a mile on the lake. The year 1870, as most people know, was a very dry year and fires broke out everywhere. Something started a fire in this “bad land.” The fire came from the north and the denizens of the “bad lands” could not escape that way.

The fire drove them towards the Rideau River. One day the residents of the south side of the Rideau witnessed a strange scene. They saw red foxes, coons, ground hogs, squirrels and rabbits jump into the river and swim towards the south side. It was a scene never before witnessed.





 - The Wood Fikes is Canada. Many incidents,...

 - fright; hardy men wno, perhaps never before...

Clipped from

  1. The Burlington Free Press,
  2. 07 Sep 1870, Wed,
  3. Other Editions,
  4. Page 2

Information where you can buy all Linda Seccaspina’s books-You can also read Linda in The Townships Sun and theSherbrooke Record and and Screamin’ Mamas (USACome and visit the Lanark County Genealogical Society Facebook page– what’s there? Cool old photos–and lots of things interesting to read. Also check out The Tales of Carleton Place. Tales of Almonte and Arnprior Then and Now.


The Drought of 1871 and the Mills on the Mississippi River

What Do You Know About the Burnt Lands?

When Crops Failed — Lanark County Went Manitoba Dreamin’

Run Pig Run–Shake it Off! Convictions of 1870