Tag Archives: yarns

Tales of the Mississippi Lake- Believe it or Not!





Years ago two of three well known brothers which once resided on the 9th line of Beckwith started out from the town of Carleton Place in their gasoline powered dory to their camp at the upper end of the second lake.

It was a little foggy at the time, but when they passed *Rocky Point a very heavy fog settled in and made navigation tough. Shortly after the two finally realized they were lost, but decided to go ahead until they struck some shore. Finally they hit something which they figured was a swamp. Not knowing exactly what location they had bumped into the lads decided to wait until  morning when the fog lifted.

When it became clear they were shocked to find out they were down in the bottom of McGibbons’s Bay. Did they really drift that far? Some say they forgot to shut off the engine and it still kept turning until the gas tank was emptied.

Believe it or not!


Boating on Mississippi Lake–Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum


Read The Mississippi Belle





*Rocky Point is a point in Ontario and is nearby to Dixon Point,Allans Point and Lake Park. Brown’s Point, the upper end of Lake Park, formerly was called Round Rocky Point, after the long favoured duck hunting Rocky Point beside it across the Hotel Bay.

N.B.Farther down the Middle Lake, Morris’ Island is named for the family of Joseph Morris who settled on the lakeshore there opposite Squaw Point in 1821. The next lakeshore farm, at McGibbon’s Point, was John McGibbon’s home for sixty years, and was owned by three generations of the family.

McGibbon’s Creek is notable as having given the lower Mississippi a passing chance of being part of the Rideau Canal. One of the routes considered for the canal would have carried it from the lower end of the Rideau Lake across the low land drained by Cockburn Creek into the Rideau and by McGibbon’s Creek into the Mississippi. The canal would have continued down the Mississippi and the Ottawa by a series of locks like those built on the route selected. In 1824 the Mississippi route was rejected, and two years later construction started down the Rideau.-Howard Morton Brown


Related reading:

The Phantom Light on Mississippi Lake

CPHS Students Declare War on Mississippi Lake – 1973

The Cottages of Mississippi Lake — Carleton Place Ontario

Lake Park Lodge – Queen’s Royal Hotel- Mississippi Lake Carleton Place Ontario

The Rosamond Woolen Company’s Constipation Blues



In the Rosamond Woolen Company’s offices, (now the home of the Mississippi Valley Textile Museum) there is an original office and managers washroom dating back to 1904. In 1900 a washroom called for the fixtures to be placed a dignified distance from each other. Undignified, were the many liquor bottles workers constantly found under the woolen mill’s plumbing renovations. Was the non-celebratory consuming of spirits caused from excessive office work?


Sigfried Gideon once said that the central space of the bathroom should be ample enough for moving around freely, or even exercising. However, the condensed size of that particular Almonte office bathroom became a fatality because of a certain plant manager’s girth. The gentleman was said to be a rather obese man and sadly died while contemplating his constitution on that very same commode. Were the stories from the voices of the Lanark wilderness true? Was there a great challenge to remove the man out of the washroom after his passing? One might say the poor man fatally spun his life away while the rest of the mill quietly wove wool tweed.

Am I trying to pull the wool over your eyes? You are just going to have to come and visit the Museum to see for yourself.


Mississippi Valley Textile Museum

3, Rosamond St. E.
Almonte, Ontario
K0A 1A0

October to March
Tuesday to Saturday: 10 am to 4 pm.

April to September
Tuesday to Saturday: 10 am to 4 pm.
Sunday: 1 pm to 4 pm.

Children under 12 are always free

Admission $5.00
Members admitted without charge

The Phantom Light on Mississippi Lake



Years ago J. Sid Annable wrote a yarn about a mysterious red light that was seen moving high over the lower Mississippi Lake one summer. Had he and his friend caused any of the shenanigans?

For a week Sid and his friend ‘Peck” Wilkie constructed a huge box kite in an old shack. They built the frame of old cedar rail material from the line fence of Bill Duff’s farm.  The kite was three feet wide and six feet long, covered with cheesecloth with glue sizing brushed on.  The tail was six feet long.  A wire was fastened to the nose to attach our twine and to make a perfect balance.  To fly the kite as high as possible they bought five pounds of binder twine.They made a windlass with a crank on each side, placing a leather brake on to control it.  A rack was made on the seat of their rowboat, they fastened the twine, rowed out on the lake and hoisted their kite in a successful test.

One night they attached a railroad lantern to the tail of the kite and sent her up.  The red light showing brightly in the sky caused quite a sensation.  After people were all in their beds they brought our kite down and tucked it away for another night’s fun.  Next day everyone in Carleton Place was talking about the mysterious light in the sky over the lake.  The Carleton Place papers had a front page story, and the next night people came from Almonte and nearby villages to investigate the strange phenomenon.

After a week of this, old Charlie Glover, crack rifle shot of the village, rowed up to Nagle’s Bay to take a pot shot at their mysterious light.  They kept the kite moving and Glover wasted many shots before he made a lucky hit.  Down came the kite into Mississippi Lake. The next morning Sid and his friend retrieved it in a rice bed, some distance in from the edge.  Apparently, someone spoke out of turn and let the cat out of the bag.

The frame of this kite was in the attic of William Wilkie’s home for a long time.  W. W. Cliff, editor of the Central Canadian, published the story in 1884, picturing ‘Peck’ Wilkie as the Peck’s bad boy of the village.  Some years later Peck Wilkie was drowned in the pond on the Boston Common.

Originally written by : By James Sidney Annable

Phantom Light on Lakes Once Talk of the Town

Carleton Place Canadian, 07 March, 1963