Tag Archives: victorian times

The Ashton Funeral to end all Funerals



Local news items of the 1880’s and 1890’s, preserved in the late Victorian style of writing of William W. Cliff, first editor of the Canadian, include a record of minor events unlike any told in the personal columns of later day newspapers. An assorted selection of Editor Cliff’s writings has been gathered for second publication, purporting to picture the ordinary life of the town and the times as he saw it— Howard Morton Brown

The Funeral at Ashton

“In speaking of our article last week on delays at funerals, the undertaker enlarged upon it in the following illustration. A number of years ago there was a funeral at Ashton ; one Crozier had died. The day was of piercing strength noted at the Wilkie funeral ; the house small ; the attendance large ; the hour 11 a.m. The Minister who officiated considerately remarked that as the weather was so cold and the crowd outside so large he would say but a few words. His sermon lasted one solid hour.

A brother Minister who was present arose and, after expressing deep sympathy for the shivering masses without and guaranteeing but a few words, spun a sermon two and a half hours in length! During his delivery one by one the outside public left and sought the genial hostelry nearby. All got drunk and were soon in a glorious fight, and at 3 o’clock none were left to escort the remains to the grave save the mourners and pall bearers.”

Did Anyone Ever Have Fun in Ashton? Ashton 101

Did Anyone Have Fun in Ashton? Part 2- The Fleming House

Why Were These Folks Facing Backwards?



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See the original source of the photograph on the Luminous Lint, where you can also read more about tintypes.

Why would a Victorian photographer take a picture like this? Why was this group facing the wrong way?  I first thought it was a  symbol of mourning. This tintype from 1880 was taken because it was a photograph to illustrate ladies hairstyles.


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Photos from Vintage Everyday

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So what’s my personal story about hair?

In the 60s when the musical Hair came out I was obsessed. So taken was I that I entered a contest to win a trip to New York City to see the musical on Broadway. Seeing I was about 16 one would wonder if I was too young-but things like that never deterred me. So as per contest rules I sent in a piece of my hair in an envelope- yes an envelope- I guess no one  cared about health rules in those days.

Did I win?

Of course not — but I did win a runner up prize. What was it you ask? It was a box of Clairol blonde hair dye. Guess who sponsored the contest?

Seems like it happened yesterday– but my aching back this morning tells me it wasn’t. LOL



Hair Dressing Salon

The Hair Dressing Salon in Mr. McCaffrey’s building having fallen into his hands, William Chenett is prepared to execute hair dressing, hair dyeing, shaving, shampooing, the setting of razors, scissors, shears, etc.  Gentlemen’s and ladies’ curling particularly attended to.  He has spent a considerable park of the last 15 years in the leading establishments of New York, Montreal and Ottawa.  Hair restorative always on hand.

September 14, 1869.



Want to see more? Come and visit the Lanark County Genealogical Society Facebook page– what’s there? Cool old photos–and lots of things interesting to read.

Information where you can buy all Linda Seccaspina’s books-You can also read Linda in Hometown News


The Best Little Chin Hair Post on the Prairie

Lois Lyman–A Hair of a Blunder!

To Die Dying Your Hair




What Was Going On at The Carleton Place Herald Office With the Birds and the Bees?



Owning a bird as a pet has been popular since the Victorian era, when the parlor was not considered completely decorated unless it had a canary in a very small brass cage residing on a table in a corner. In Victorian times British finches were hugely popular as cage birds throughout the British Isles, often replacing canaries. Due to a lack of protection, thousands of birds were captured for the pet trade every year.

News Office Canaries

Canary Birds, warranted first class singers, for sale at the Herald Office.

June 9, 1880.

Lost. Some Tame Canary Birds. As they will fly into some house, their return to the Herald Office will be thankfully received and suitable rewarded.

June 28, 1880.


Newsman’s Bees

Bees! A few hives of bees for sale at the Herald Office. March 13th, 1865.