Tag Archives: water

The Old Water Pump

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The Old Water Pump

Ask kids today if they ever heard of a water pump and chances are it is just another reminder of the past on the rural farms. I remembered my grandparents having one when I was a child as they used it to water their large garden smack dab in the middle of downtown Cowansville, Quebec. I remember hot summer mornings where everything would be silent and you knew my Grandmother had begun her day with the sound of the water pump being cranked. I swear it was the coldest sweetest water ever tasted and I would put my hand under the flowing water as it came out and will never feel such a great experience in my life.

My grandmother used to tell me we children had it easy as in the olden days there were shallow wells dug on waterfront properties and then

pumps were always a keen interest any time we kids were able to visit them,’ Doug remembers. ‘We, of course, were only interested in playing in the water. As long as the arm pumped water, I was happy. I didn’t care how it worked, it just mattered that it pumped water.’

Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum photo

From as far back as anyone can remember (possibly back to the 1800’s), that old water well served as a public source of drinking water and thus as a public gathering place. People would come from miles around to fill their cans and containers with what is remembered as “the best tasting water you could drink.”

So far as I can find, no one knows just when the well came to be.

It just always was.

Wendy LeBlancMy Dad, Ken Robertson, often mentioned the water pump at Central School, but other than a poor-quality photo from the newspaper, he never found a good picture of it. He would have loved to see this. The pump certainly wasn’t there when I went to Central for Grade 5 in 1958.

Linda Gallipeau-JohnstonNo pump when I was there but lots of fence! What is the wooden path way down to the pump I wonder – is that the street sidewalk?

Doug B. McCartenAt least the Town will know where they can access fresh water 💧 when the Town intake becomes polluted and is of no further value lol!

One of my favourite photos from Aggie Yuill’s photo book by Laurie Yuill Middleville historian — sitting by the kitchen water pump

Many of you are old enough to remember the old manual water pumps. To get them going you had to pour some water in the top and pump, and pump, and pump until water started to finally come out the spout. As long as you kept pumping, the water kept coming. If you ever stopped pumping the water would go back down to the level of the well and you would have to repeat the process to get water to start flowing out the spout again.

If you grew up on a farm, you may have used it a thousand times. I still remember pumping the water, the feel of the iron handle, the resistance of the water being pulled up to the spout. I still remember hearing the churning beneath, echoing up the shaft as I pumped, then hearing the gurgle of water rising up the spout and finally pouring out. I loved pumping the water. I felt like a pioneer. I imagined I was one. And I drank out of it, too. The water tasted sweet.

Pumps were usually installed near the house or mid-point between the house and barn, so that water could be carried a minimum distance. Deluxe cabins and homes might even have the pump installed inside in the kitchen, so the family would have “running water” of sorts. The earliest pumps were hand-pumped only. For each stroke of the lever, a gush of water flowed from the spout.The earliest pumps were hand-pumped only. For each stroke of the lever, a gush of water flowed from the spout.

Pumps were usually installed near the house or mid-point between the house and barn, so that water could be carried a minimum distance. Deluxe cabins and homes might even have the pump installed inside in the kitchen, so the family would have “running water” of sorts.

Caroline AndersonI loved our old pump beside our house. Was sad when we did some renovations and redid the pipe to the well it was taken out. Our laneway loop was also taken out. As a kid, I use to go out and just see if I was strong enough to pump it till the water came out.

Karen LloydI remember getting my tongue stuck on ours……watch this lol

Stuart McIntoshWe had one at the well near the garden and a small cistern pump in the house.. finally got running water in the house in 1971.

Rose ParsonsThis is all we had to get our water when a young girl on the farm . It supplied a family of 8 people and all of the annimal as well. We also had a small pump on a stand in the kitchen that would bring the rain water collected up from our cistern which would be heated for doing dishes scrubbing and the likes as well

Barb DanisI remember having to use them we had one inside and one outside.

Barb LemayYes – at our public school. SS#15 Drummond.

Judy SalleyCarrying the full pails was worse than pumping the water

Barb LemayThis is a great picture! I attended this school from grade 1 to 8. Remember using the pump. We also had a baseball diamond close by. Many grades played together. We played anti-I-over in the summer (not sure of the correct spelling) and fox and goose in the winter.
I remember the chemical closets (boys and girls), the library (loved the Hardy Boys) and the wood furnace. We did have great Christmas concerts and special lunches when all the families would send sweet treats to share with everyone.
We had wooden desks with ink wells too!
Other special memories: the lilac bush with a hummingbird nest that we would carefully watch each day. The locus trees in one corner that would be a “safe” zone for games. The rock pile by the fence where there was only 1 good flat rock to sit on at lunch – it was a race to get to it. Tobogganing down the next door neighbours field after an ice rain – we could FLY!
Yes- I am feeling very nostalgic tonight. Thanks for allowing me to comment.

S.S. No. 15 Drummond – McIlquaham School2397 10th Concession, McIlquaham-Blair Side Rd., Lanark–Blair’s great grandfather, George McIlquham, donated the land for S.S. No. 15 Drummond in 1840. The first log building was eventually torn down and a rough lumber structure erected, but it was too small for the growing community and the site was wet and muddy, so a brick building was built across the road on Chas Campbell’s farm. The Maple Leaf Literary Society donated a 6-shelf library in 1915 and in 1925 chemical closets were installed inside the school. Various items were purchased over the years with money made at annual Christmas concerts, including a victrola, a teacher’s chair, a basketball, a water cooler, an aquarium with five goldfish, and a first aid kit. In 1948, electric lights were installed and a well was drilled. The school was finally closed in 1965 and is now a private residence owned by André Messie

before

after
VINTAGE AVON 1968 PUMP DECANTER WILD COUNTRY AFTER SHAVE 6oz.
In the days before water was piped to most houses and businesses, the public water pump supplied a very important service for many towns and villages.
There is a drinking cup on a chain attached to the pump, which was added in 1895 – a sort of early drinking fountain !
Later on people complained about the water coming out of the pump, which wasn’t quite as good as we expect these days !
The Springfield Press
Springfield, Missouri
15 Jul 1929, Mon  •  Page 11

Related reading

The Community Wells — Water Water Everywhere?

A Record of Drowning — River Falls and Cisterns

Tales of the Cistern —- Jan McCarten Sansom

Cisterns I Have Known

Do You have an Archaeological Find in Your Carleton Place Basement?

Do You have a Hidden Room in Your Home?

“The Tim Horton’s River” Under my House.. Is That the Way To Fraggle Rock?

The Community Wells — Water Water Everywhere?

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The Community Wells — Water Water Everywhere?

Before the waterworks system was introduced, it shows that the civic wells were a great source of trouble to the Councils of our areas. With the growth of the towns there were increasing demands from various parts of our towns for additional wells.

People began to tire of walking too far to draw their water and began to ask for wells closer to their homes. At first the civic wells were all “open” wells of the old oaken bucket type. When pumps came in people began to demand that the wells be covered over and pumps put in. There were good reasons why people wanted pumps instead of the buckets and chains.

The first was a sanitary reason. Mischievous people had a playful habit of dropping dead dogs and cats into the wells, and that wasn’t pleasant. The second reason was that a pump was much easier to operate than a bucket, and the people were beginning to get lazy. The third reason (and an important one) was that the open wells were dangerous. Now and again children fell into them. People were afraid to send their children alone to the wells. But, no child could fall into a pump, so pumps were preferred.

The Town Councils were also bothered by demands for wells to be cleaned out — and chains broke and the buckets were stolen. To cover an open well and put in a pump cost about fifty dollars. To dig a new well cost from $175 to $130 according to depth.

The towns were poor in the 1860s and 1870s and it was hard to find the money for the new wells or the covering of the existing ones. But then the towns had business places which required a considerable amount of water in connection with their businesses and they began to request that they be allowed to tap the wells and run pipes from the bottoms of the wells into their cellars.

One interesting thing was the wells was said to have fine water but the wells were never tested. They may have been, but there is no reference to the fact– nor complaints about the water. In those days, people were used to getting some dirt in their mouths from time to time. They drank out of delivery barrels from the hardware store which were seldom cleaned, and out of their own barrels which were frequently uncovered and subject to dust and contamination. But somehow or other they survived.

The days of the civic wells are gone, never to return, now that we have filtered water. But in the typhoid epidemic of the nineteen hundreds, the people were glad to use the new bored wells.

By the middle of the 1870’s, it was expected that a fashionable home in Carleton Place would have running water and an indoor bathroom.  This was generally accomplished by placing a large water tank in the attic which was usually lead lined — one reason the average life span was shorter back then.

One water pipe usually ran down to a boiler in the kitchen, where it could be heated.  Victorian bathrooms were virtually always located on the second floor and near the back of the house.  This served an esthetic purpose — Victorians definitely believed that bathrooms should be neither seen nor heard — and also placed the bathroom so that water pressure from the attic could conveniently supply the bathtub by pushing hot water up from the kitchen boiler.  The flush toilets of the era also worked off gravity, utilizing flush compartments that were placed as high as eight feet above the toilet, and activated by a long pull chain.

How did they fill the attic water tank in the first place?  Well, with a little luck, from rain water.  Gutters were used to funnel rainwater into the tank (which were built to hold as much as 600 gallons), and if the weather failed, the well-to-do could always depend upon wells and servants with buckets or hand pumps. Then there were the cisterns that are in our homes that I wrote about.

Carleton Place Waterworks
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The Ottawa Citizen
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
29 Mar 1911, Wed  •  Page 2

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The Ottawa Citizen
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
28 Jun 1912, Fri  •  Page 16

Did you know that when they laid the first water pipes in Carleton Place workers were brought in from Romania, Italy and the Baltic states? They all boarded at Leech’s School right next to Barker’s parking lot.

So it has been documented in a few places that there was a community well for years in Carleton Place on Queen Street. Jennifer Fenwick Irwin and I asked Duncan Rogers but he had no idea. So this week I went searching. I  initially thought it was at the bottom of Albert Street between Princess and Queen Street but then I drove up to the top by Coleman Street and I seriously think they were here as they were close to the C.P.R train station as mentioned in the newspapers.

There is also the fact that Mr McRae had his huge plof of Gladiolas in this space and if you look at the photo below this one the location is in the same spot and he the garden was so huge that he had water in a few locations probably from these old wells.

Where Have All the Flowers Gone? Benson McRae

2019

Photos from the McRae family.Where Have All the Flowers Gone? Benson McRae
Almonte Waterworks
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he Ottawa Citizen
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
16 Aug 1919, Sat  •  Page 3
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The Ottawa Citizen
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
14 Jul 1906, Sat  •  Page 3
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The Ottawa Journal
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
18 Sep 1906, Tue  •  Page 9
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The Ottawa Citizen
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
04 May 1907, Sat  •  Page 19

A Record of Drowning — River Falls and Cisterns

Tales of the Cistern —- Jan McCarten Sansom

Cisterns I Have Known

Do You have an Archaeological Find in Your Carleton Place Basement?

Do You have a Hidden Room in Your Home?

“The Tim Horton’s River” Under my House.. Is That the Way To Fraggle Rock?

William Pattie — Built More Homes Than Any Other Man

The Lakes of Lanark County

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The Lakes of Lanark County

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I always question where is where and people have to help me out. Thanks to the school books from Doris Blackburn we have this great map of  reference where we know which lake or body of water is where in Lanark County.

 

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historicalnotes

 - Daring rescue brings reward ALMONTE (Special)...

Clipped from

  1. The Ottawa Journal,
  2. 10 May 1978, Wed,
  3. [First] REVISION,
  4. Page 3 - Mississippi canoe event set for May 22 CARLETON...

    Clipped from

    1. The Ottawa Journal,
    2. 10 May 1978, Wed,
    3. [First] REVISION,
    4. Page 3

     - a poa- for PRIEST CHASED LIKE A THIEF Exporteoe...

  5. Clipped from

    1. The Ottawa Journal,
    2. 14 Feb 1906, Wed - a teen-aged WINTER OR SUMMER, they pull some...

      Clipped from

      1. The Ottawa Journal,
      2. 21 Feb 1959, Sat,
      3. Page 14 - , . FROM PERTH, we have received a brief...

        Clipped from

        1. The Ottawa Journal,
        2. 07 Feb 1959, Sat,
        3. Page 11

        Come 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 and The Tales of Almonte

        relatedreading.jpg

        Tales from Lake Park– A Disabled Motor and Manslaughter

      4. Adventures at Dalhousie Lake at the Duncan’s Cottages —- From the Pen of Noreen Tyers

      5. Family Photos– Mississippi Lake– Darlene Page

Water so Low in Almonte Will Prosecute “Hosers”

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Water so Low in Almonte Will Prosecute “Hosers”

 - f 1- r-i Water So Low, Will Prosecute Almonte...

Clipped from The Ottawa Journal,  14 Aug 1948, Sat,  Page 8

 

Okay, had to use the hosers word.:)

 

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Almonte fire brigade 1948 Almonte Ontario

 

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Almonte fire brigade 1948 Almonte Ontario

Come 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.

Information where you can buy all Linda Seccaspina’s books-You can also read Linda in The Townships Sun andScreamin’ Mamas (USA)

 

 

relatedreading

The Drought of 1871 and the Mills on the Mississippi River

What Do You Know About the Burnt Lands?

The Cholera Epidemic of 1911

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The Cholera Epidemic of 1911

 

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Life before bottled water???? 
This ad for bottled water from the pure spring water at Hunt Club was in the Ottawa Journal in May of 1911.Now known as the Ottawa Hunt and Golf Club, this is the golf course by the airport at Hunt Club and Riverside. (Linda Seccaspina on Lost Ottawa)

Did you know there was also a spring near the Borthwick Ridge (South of Hawthorne).The water was collected and pumped from a bricked well located on land belonging to the Borthwick family, north of the ridge, on lot 20 in the fourth concession. William, son of settler Thomas Borthwick, bottled the water and sold it in Ottawa in his own grocery store, and other locations, in the 1870s and subsequent years. The waters had a salty taste.

It seems people were always prepared for a zombie apocalypse all through local history. Bottled water, strong abs and plenty of canned food.

 

Thanks to my favourite Ottawa historian Jaan Kolk, information about a cholera outbreak in 1911 in the Ottawa area was posted on Lost Ottawa as this was a reason why bottled water was being advertised to heavily in the newspapers.

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Jaan Kolk– 1911 saw a serious typhoid outbreak in Ottawa that was blamed (correctly) on the city water supply – so lots of ads for spring water could be found that year. The major selling point for artificially-made ice in Ottawa was that it was made with guaranteed pure water. Here is a Journal ad from Dec. 27, 1912.

 

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Jaan Kolk–Here is part of an April 17, 1911 Journal report on the typhoid epidemic caused by problems with the city water supply

 

 

historicalnotes

The gap was capable of closing sharply. In the typhoid year of 1911, the Ottawa death rate was reported as 20 per 1,000 (about the same as a good year in the 1880s) and the birth rate as 23.6 per 1,000.

Registrar General, “Annual Report, 1911,” Sessional Papers, 1912, p. 18.
Figures vary from those of the MHO of Ottawa because of a different reporting
period. In 1911, Ottawa had the second highest death rate among Ontario
cities; Carleton County (at 21.1/1,000) had the highest county rate .

 

 

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Jeff Legault–I seem to remember we had an old water bottle (carboy) in a wooden cradle like holder at our old cottage near Low, Quebec that we used to fill and bring with us on weekends. We had no running water or electricity back in the early 60s up there. It may have had Tally Ho written on it somewhere. Looked something like this.

cholera-beacon_tp

Perth Courier, June 6, 1966

History of the Rideau Ferry Road

Empire strategists gave the village an unsuspected boast in 1826 when the government dug a canal linking Kingston to Bytown (now Ottawa), the purpose being to protect supply lines from a possible “Yankee” invasion.

This event brought 1,300 workers to the village front door.  More than 500 men died of malaria.  Upon completion in 1832, Archie Campbell erected a wharf and warehouse to handle canal produce.  Side wheelers plowed the river and wagon trains brought goods to the Campbell wharf.  In 1834 Campbell died of cholera.–Tales from Oliver’s Ferry

Cave Creek: the “scourge” of early Kitchissippi

 

 

Clipped from The Ottawa Journal,  09 Sep 1911, Sat,  Page 14

 

Information where you can buy all Linda Seccaspina’s books-You can also read Linda in The Townships Sun andScreamin’ Mamas (USA)

Come 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.

 

relatedreading

 

 

ROCKIN’ Cholera On the Trek to the New World — Part 4

1,200 Died of Plague Which Hit City in 1847

 

The Cholera Epidemic of 1832

Think the Smallpox issue on Outlander was far fetched?

Tales from Oliver’s Ferry

Smallpox in Carleton Place — Did You Know?

The Great White Plague

 

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I have been writing about downtown Carleton Place Bridge Street for months and this is something I really want to do. Come join me in the Domino’s Parking lot- corner Lake Ave and Bridge, Carleton Place at 11 am Saturday September 16 (rain date September 17) for a free walkabout of Bridge Street. It’s history is way more than just stores. This walkabout is FREE BUT I will be carrying a pouch for donations to the Carleton Place Hospital as they have been so good to me. I don’t know if I will ever do another walking tour so come join me on something that has been on my bucket list since I began writing about Bridge Street. It’s always a good time–trust me.

Are You Ready to Visit the Open Doors?

 

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Cisterns I Have Known

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Cisterns I Have Known

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Photo of the once cistern of Springside Hall by Linda Seccaspina-Do You have an Archaeological Find in Your Carleton Place Basement?

Earl Monro from Almonte once said:  “Half a century ago there was no pasteurized or homogenized milk, no waterworks in town, except some private systems operated from their own wells or cisterns, no television, no ploughed road for automobiles, no snow tires, no school buses, no gas or electrically heated homes. However, in the humble opinion of the writer, the majority of the people were happier and more contented than they are now, even with all the comforts and luxuries of this fast moving day and age”.

After the fire in 1995 our whole basement had to be gutted and we noticed that there was a two inch open gap at the ceiling level on the far side of the wall and open space behind it. Ange and his father removed the stone wall, and low and behold there was a small room. The walls were also 3 ft thick and we figure it was once a root cellar. The dead space now joined part of the house as an official room. It became a wine cellar – but it has not been used in a decade. We found out later that it was a former cistern.

 

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Most older homes have them hidden away somewhere- and what they actually were were “subterranean” reservoirs built to store rainwater. Some people had cisterns outside their homes, and then there were those under trap doors. Before the fire there was a trap door in our living room which was right over the cistern- but I had no idea what it was then. After the fire of course the floor was redone– and now I regret I did not tell the restoration company to put another one in.

There are stories that some fathers brought home live fish and dumped them in the cisterns. Those fish grew and multiplied and a cistern full of fish had to be great pride in a small town- “but I am wondering how fresh that water tasted “.( please note that this is just a humorous comment:). Stories were told not to fool around with the trap door and sometimes tragedy happened in cisterns as noted below. There were stories of a local big brother falling in the  cistern and so disliked were they by their younger brothers that  flat irons were put on top of the trap doors to make sure they didn’t come out. I know some should have thought about the fact that it had been a dry summer  that year the brother was locked in there —and there was only 3 feet of water in that thing. Heck would reign once the older brother got out.

Spring used to be a time when you got the ladders up high and cleaned the gutters and then put the ladders down low and cleaned the cisterns. Having the biggest and deepest cistern  in town with barrels full of rainwater from the roof of the house for housework was nothing prestige. It not only provided water with a few strokes of a sink pump, but the water was also very soft for all the housewives needs.

If a cistern was beyond the financial ability of the household, a rain barrel at the eavestrough  of the house was a must. When the rain barrel and the cistern fell out of mode- that was when the soaps and water softeners came into play with the hard water that came from the taps. Some said they missed hearing the water dripping into the cistern after a rainfall and the girls never waited for rain anymore as there was always water in the cistern.

 

historicalnotes

almonteg

January 2 1880 Almonte Gazette

On Sunday last Miss Sarah Green, daughter of Mr. Samuel Green, of Landsdowne, who lives three miles from the station, was drowned in the cistern in her father’s house. The parents had gone to church and did not return until after the accident occurred.

The only member of the family about the house besides Miss Green was her brother and he was engaged looking after horses for a short time previous. This work he finished at 2 p.m and started for a neighbour’s house, but had to pass his father’s in order to reach it. As he passed be saw his sister standing at an upper window looking out They exchanged words and he went on.

When the parents reached home they found the door of the cistern open and at once shut it. The mother supposing Sarah to be upstairs called her a number of times and receiving no answer, began a search for her. It was not until the house had been thoroughly searched that she thought of the cistern. On looking into it they discovered Sarah lying on her face quite dead. The supposition is that she had let go the rope attached to the pail, with which the water was usually taken up, and in reaching for it- lost her balance and fell in. As there was a braise on her head, there is no doubt but she fell heavily against the bottom of the cistern, which contained only two feet of water, and being rendered insensible by the fall, was unable to help herself and drowned without a motion. Miss Green was an estimable lady twenty-three years of age.

comments

Sandy Iwaniw–
The first house we owned in Carleton Place had a cistern in the basement. I had never seen a cistern in the basement before as the ones we had in south western Ontario were usually outside the basement but very close to the house so they could collect rainwater.
Rose ParsonsWe had one on the farm and used it all of the time. We also had a pump on the wash stand for getting the water from it to the basin for washing. Thanks for the memories!!
Arlee Barr–ours is walled up–we’ve often wondered if there are any bodies in it!
Alice GilchristI grew up in a farmhouse in Dalhousie Twp and our cistern was in the basement and was cement with walls about one foot thick with just enough space for a man to crawl in for cleaning. It was connected to a hand pump in the kitchen so there was “soft” water readily available for washing and cleaning or to put in the reservoir in the wood stove to heat. Our drinking water had to be hand carried from the outside well. The cistern was still in use when the farm was sold in 1976.

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 and now in The Townships Sun

Do You have an Archaeological Find in Your Carleton Place Basement?

Do You have a Hidden Room in Your Home?

“The Tim Horton’s River” Under my House.. Is That the Way To Fraggle Rock?

It’s Your Decision– Roy Brown Park

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Janet sent me this letter and I was going to post it tonight.. but you can read it also in the Carleton Place Almonte Canadian Gazette— stay tuned for more!!

Reader: Taxpayers should be properly consulted on decisions involving Roy Brown Park

 

Carleton Place Almonte Canadian Gazette

DEAR EDITOR:

Our municipal politicians are elected to office to serve town residents and act in our best interest. It is expected that they will put their interests aside as they work for the people of Carleton Place.

I expect council members to act with integrity, thoughtful consideration and good judgement as they make decisions that affect our community.

Being a member of a municipal council is often a difficult, thankless job and there can be many powerful influences that can cause a council to stray from its mandate to serve town residents.

Regrettably, on Aug. 16 our council will be put in the position of choosing to act in the interest of town residents or bowing to the strong influence of a developer.

On June 28, council voted 5-2 against a developer’s proposal to dump contaminated storm water into Roy Brown Park instead of the developer managing the storm water on its own property. Council voted down the original proposal because it is an inappropriate use of public parkland.

The issue should have died on June 28 with the defeated motion and the developer should have respected the decision of council.

However, there was no respect for council, its authority or its decision.

With no direction from council to do so, this proposal has been put back onto the Aug. 16 agenda. Why is council being forced to deal with this issue again? Because the developer wants it. The situation puts me in mind of a persistent teenager trying to wear down parents in order to get what it wants.

However, a flip-flop should be something that you wear on your feet. It should not describe the actions of your council.

As background, in 2004, $385,000 of taxpayers’ money bought land for a park and dedicated it to the memory of First World War flying Ace, Roy Brown.

The park is to have a dog park, tennis courts, playing field and a large recreation building as well as trails and picnic pavilions. A grant from Canada 150 will be used to place signs in the park with information provided by the Roy Brown Society and historical society.

On Aug. 16, council will once again have to review a plan from a developer to dump its contaminated storm water into the park. The people of Carleton Place have not been consulted, no part of the park has been declared surplus to the town’s parkland needs and the area needed to contain the water would be the part of the park that was to be used for the dog park, tennis courts and parking lot for the recreation building.

Why would council even consider removing public uses from public parkland and replace them with a holding area for polluted water and contaminated sediment from an adjacent development? After all, it is the duty of elected representatives to manage public lands in the public interest.

Town council voted against it once already. It is imperative that they vote against it again on Aug. 16.

Our tax dollars bought Roy Brown Park for parkland. We own it.

To use a popular Lanark County phrase “Back Off Government! This is our Land!”

Janet McGinnis

Carleton Place

Is it Just Me? Where are the Words “Drinking Water”? – Opinion

A History of Crisis in Our Drinking Water?

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Photo from the files of the Carleton Place Canadian-Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum

In July of 1975 a public works committee warned that the Carleton Place water supply was threatened by over consumption. The town’s water supply and distribution system had also deteriorated to the point where only major replacements would correct the problem and a price tag of an estimated 3.5 million.

Then in February of 1985 a University of Ottawa scientist warned that our water could be unsafe if there was any increase in virus levels in the Mississippi River. At that time there were 6,000 local residents and Health and Welfare Canada found virus counts in 37% of untreated water.

In 1995 Carleton Place mayor Brian Costello had another water issue on his hands and local residents were boiling water because of low water once again and high consumption.

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Photo from the files of the Carleton Place Canadian-Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum

 

Last night 100 people crowded into the legion in Carleton Place for an informal community meeting. The residents of a Mississippi Mills neighbourhood recently found out their drinking water has been contaminated with chemicals found in firefighting foam. They want the neighbouring National Research Council facility shut down until the problem is resolved.

 

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Photo from the files of the Carleton Place Canadian-Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum

 

The “long-term risk mitigation action plan that includes regular, ongoing testing of residents’ water” after chemicals were found in the drinking water. It has been said someone, presumably the NRC, has known since 2013 that there was a problem. If this had been any of us with a heating oil spill, the department of the environment would descend on us immediately and subject us to hundreds of thousands of dollars in cost to clean up the spill. The same should happen at this research facility. Chemicals are not our friends, and this is too close for comfort.

Joanne McCoy was at that meeting last night and will have a report for me later.

RELATED READING:

Possibly toxic chemicals found in drinking water near fire lab -The  Millstone

historicalnotes

Kenneth Jackson— I remember years ago my aunt on Moffat St.got a blood-sucker in a glass of water.

Norma Ford– My Mother got a bloodsucker out of the kitchen tap at least once a year while I was growing up. She would phone the town hall and never heard anything more. It became a ritual of living on Sarah Street. She was cute, she would put it in a glass jar for the town hall to see, they always showed up to verify it and yep, it was a bloodsucker.

Where was the Community Well in Carleton Place?

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By the middle of the 1870’s, it was expected that a fashionable home in Carleton Place would have running water and an indoor bathroom.  This was generally accomplished by placing a large water tank in the attic which was usually lead lined — one reason the average life span was shorter back then. One water pipe usually ran down to a boiler in the kitchen, where it could be heated.  Victorian bathrooms were virtually always located on the second floor and near the back of the house.  This served an esthetic purpose — Victorians definitely believed that bathrooms should be neither seen nor heard — and also placed the bathroom so that water pressure from the attic could conveniently supply the bathtub by pushing hot water up from the kitchen boiler.  The flush toilets of the era also worked off gravity, utilizing flush compartments that were placed as high as eight feet above the toilet, and activated by a long pull chain.

How did they fill the attic water tank in the first place?  Well, with a little luck, from rain water.  Gutters were used to funnel rain water into the tank (which were built to hold as much as 600 gallons), and if the weather failed, the well-to-do could always depend upon wells and servants with buckets or hand pumps. Then there were the cisterns that are in our homes that I wrote about.

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So it has been documented in a few places that there was a community well for years in Carleton Place on Queen Street. Jennifer Fenwick Irwin and I asked Duncan Rogers but he had no idea. So this week I went searching. I  initially thought it was at the bottom of Albert Street between Princess and Queen Street but then I drove up to the top by Coleman Street and I seriously think they were here as they were close to the C.P.R train station. Or are they something else? Thoughts?

well3Buy Linda Secaspina’s Books— Flashbacks of Little Miss Flash Cadilac– Tilting the Kilt-Vintage Whispers of Carleton Place and 4 others on Amazon or Amazon Canada or Wisteria at 62 Bridge Street in Carleton Place

Taking Sexy Back with Brothel Bertie aka Edward the VII

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On my way to the Mill of Kintail in Ontario last summer I knew I needed to take a picture of a sign that was erected in the middle of nowhere years ago. It has always fascinated me, and I often wonder who made the sign. Was it the neighbours, or might it have been the families of former British Loyalists that had hand crafted it? The sign says that in 1860, King Edward the VII knocked on the Metcalfe family’s door in Bennie’s Corners, Ontario. He was then was offered a cool drink from their spring “among the cedars”.  What do you do, or say, when the son of Queen Victoria knocks on your door?

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Knowing me, I would have first asked the King about his mistress, Alice Keppel, great grandmother to Prince Charles wife Camilla Parker Bowles. Rumour has it Camilla’s grandmother, Sonia Keppel, was actually the illegitimate daughter of King Edward VII. The apple does not fall from the tree does it?  Should I have asked him about his documented love chair? I swear I would have given him all the water and smiles he wanted to know about little piece of history.

The Queen and her ladies however, used to do charity things during the day like sewing shirts for the poor or working on their beloved tapestries. Much time was spent in prayer reading the Bible in the garden, banquets, dancing or anything that would keep the King happy. Some of the Kings routines however were not to be divulged to his or adoring female followers.
As I researched more about Edward I had many questions about his secret sexual habits and the well known love chair.

Unknown to a lot of history books after that trip to Bennie’s Corners Edward was secretly called “The Prince of Pleasure”. His royal highness routinely gave his mother Queen Victoria, a royal headache with his frequent trips to the Parisian brothels. They say he literally killed his father when dear old Dad found out what a “luster buster” he was.

Because, Bertie, as he was called in private, was quite overweight, he needed a little help with his routine daily love making. The love chair was especially made for him so he could have multiple encounters at the same time.

Apparently the chair is still in use somewhere in France by the family of the creator, and a copy of it is at the Prague Sex Museum. Word on the internet highway is, that you can also purchase your very own copy if you would like. Somewhere in the corner of the darkened seedy part of the web lies someone that wants to offer you this chair for your routine sex habits.

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I have seen a lot of erotic things in my life but this chair boggles my mind.
Who did what, where, and how? Ideas, anyone? Was it caused by the water at Bennie’s Corners?

Edward also had private bathtub in the brothel called Le Chabanais in France. It was a huge copper bath usually filled with champagne in the design of a half woman and half swan. King Edward bubble bathed his life away daily with his “lovelies” including Winston Churchill’s mother. Dirty Bertie’s tub was eventually purchased by Salvador Dali in 1951 for his daily wash ups from all that painting.

20121211-191236Seeing my great great grandmother Louise Knight was a lady in waiting for Queen Victoria, I shudder to think if she was involved in any of these routine court-side extravaganzas.

Louise was eventually kicked out for having “loose skirts” around the court. But, how “loose” were they? My grandparents had a good idea and never shared; but I am the first to admit that her skirts probably were routinely up around her neck. Or maybe she was just” let go” for bad technical support on certain furniture for her daily “mopping” and “royal welcomes”.

God save the King and someone needs to bottle that water at Bennie’s Corners!

From my friend John Morrow with great thanks

Meow! Check your facts on this. King Edward apparently didn’t meet Alice Keppel until almost 40 years after his trip to Canada according to Wikipedia. Another apocryphal story connected with this concerns the Metcalfe family’s son, Dr. Archibald Albert Metcalfe, later Mayor of Almonte and the man responsible for Almonte’s hydro-electric generating plant. Dr. Metcalfe was actually born 3 Nov 1869, but in his later years claimed he was born within a few days of the prince’s visit and was given the middle name Albert in honour of the occasion. Dr. Metcalfe died in 1962, claiming to be 101, but was actually 92 at the time.