Small Industries Numerous in Town 100 Years Ago, by Howard Morton Brown, Carleton Place Canadian, 24 October, 1957

Six hundred adults and children lived in Carleton Place an even one hundred years ago, as estimated for a Canada business directory of November, 1857. Among its business and professional listings of some forty names, the village’s small industrial plants were the sawmill of Bell and Rosamond, Hugh Bolton’s grist mill, Sam Fuller’s foundry and machine shop, and Allan McDonald’s carding mill.

In the woodworking trades were Wm. Bell’s cabinet shop, John Graham’s and George McPherson’s carriage shops, the cooperage works of Edmund Burke and of Francis Lavallee, and carpenters including James Dunlop, Robert McLaren, John McLauchlin and George McLean. Representing the leather trades here in 1857 were the shoemaking businesses of Joseph Bond, Horatio Nelson Dorcherty, Wm. Moore, James Morphy, Wm. Neelin, the saddlery of A. R. Cameron and a tannery.

Fellow tradesmen carrying on metalworking businesses were blacksmiths James Duncan, Richard Gilhully, Duncan McGregor, Nathanial McNeely and tinsmith David Ward. The general retail stores were those of Campbell & Morphy (in which the post office located, at the corner of Bridge and Bell Streets), John Dewar, Archibald McArthur (corner of Bridge and Mill Streets), Wm. Peden and Tennant & Struthers.

Carleton Place’s merchant tailors of a century ago were Patrick Galvin, Colin Sinclair and Walter Scott ; innkeepers were Napoleon Lavallee and Robert Metcalf, and James McDiarmid was an auctioneer. Robert Bell, M.P.P., among his other business interests, had agencies for fire and life insurance and for marriage licences. Editor of the weekly Herald, James Poole, also was Clerk of the Division Court. Clergymen of the local churches were the Revs. R. Gregory Cox, Church of England ; W. Denion, Baptist ; Peter Gray, Presbyterian Free Church ; and John Howes, Wesleyan Methodist. The physician and surgeon was Dr. Wm. Wilson.

Neighbouring Towns

The larger centres near Carleton Place and their populations of ten decades ago as estimated for Lovell’s Canada Directory of 1857, were Mirickville 1000, Smiths Falls 1,500 and Perth 2.500. Neighbouring villages with populations as estimated at the same centennial date included Appleton 75, Clayton 130, Franktown 150, Ashton 200, Ennisville 200, Arnprior 250, Pakenham 300, Lanarak 350 and Almonte 500.

In Almonte were three sawmills, Shipman’s and Wylie’s grist mills, and McIntosh’s and Rosamond’s Woollen Mills, the latter newly moved from Carleton Place.

At and near Lanark were the Caldwell sawmills, the grist, saw and carding mills of John Gillies and of W. Drummond, and the Dobbie foundry. At Ennisville the growth of factory operations was centred on the Code cloth factory and James Ennis’ saw and grist mill.

Ashton had two sawmills, Franktown two medical doctors. The grist and saw mills at Clayton were owned by Edward Bellamy and the carding mill by Timothy Blair. Appleton had Peter and John F. Cram’s tannery, Joseph Teskey’s grist mill and Robert Teskey’s sawmill.

 In 1857 and continuing for many later decades, the manufacturing trades best represented in practically all centres of population in Lanark County, as elsewhere in the province, included also the blacksmiths, and the wagon makers, the tailors and shoemakers, the coopers and the cabinet makers. Payment for their goods and services might be made in produce or in cash. These classes of tradesmen and others all helped to provide locally for a great share of the average family needs.

Dollar and Cent Currency Adopted 100 Years Ago, by Howard Morton Brown, Carleton Place Canadian, 17 October, 1957

Early days in Carleton Place 100 years ago, prepared by Howard M. Brown

DECIMAL CURRENCY

We publish in our advertising columns a notice from the banks of Canadaviz.

Bank of Montreal, Bank of North America, Bank of Upper Canada, City Bank, Quebec Bank, Gore Bank, La Banque du Peuple, Molson’s Bank, Bank of Toronto, Niagara District Bank. They announce their intention of adopting, after January 1st next, a decimal system of currency or dollars and cents in their accounts. The course is rendered necessary by the Act of the last session which makes it incumbent on the Government to use that currency in their books. The banks require their customers to draw their notes for discount, which are to fall due on and after January 1st, 1858, in dollars and cents and to have their cheque books, etc., for use after that date prepared conformably to the new regulations.

We publish the following letter on the need for this development. Sir: Canada with her 2 ½ or 3 million people presents the curious anomaly of a nation without a currency, the only approach to which are the coppers issued by the banks. One gets a handful of silver and on looking it over presents the appearance of the plunder of numismatic collection. I once found the following assortment in a handful so received – a Prussian Thaler, a Roman Paulo, a French Franc and half Franc, some Spanish, Mexican, Portugese and Sardinian pieces, one Swedish coin, a few English shillings, and various United States fractions of a dollar. The Province stands committed to the decimal system and sooner or later all commercial accounts will be so kept. I would suggest the postage stamps should carry their value marked in cents instead of pence. The banks might also be authorized to issue silver tokens representing 5, 10 and 25 cents. The disintegration of the British empire would not be hastened by granting the Canadians a decimal coinage.

 AGRICULTURAL PICNIC

In consequence of the inclemency of the weather the Pic Nic or Outdoor Soiree in connection with the United Counties of Lanark and Renfrew Agricultural Society is postponed to Tuesday, July 7th, when it will take place in Mrs. Thomas Morphy’s woods, Carleton Place, on the banks of the Mississippi River. Tickets 1s.3d each. Robert Bell, Secretary and Treasurer.

THE ORANGE WALK

So long back as we can remember it has been usual to make a fuss, kick up a dust and drink a little whiskey to wash it down, on the 12th of July, in commemoration of the battle of the Boyne. That memorable day happening on Sunday this year, the 13th was duly ushered in by the discharge of musketry and the roll of the Protestant drum. It was a scorching hot day but the Orange men, Orange women, Orange boys and Orange girls from all parts of the country met in our village and had a general parade. Upwards of 2,000 persons were present. All seemed to enjoy themselves most admirably until evening, when the assembly quietly broke up and several lodges returned to their respective homes.

LATE REV. WM. BELL

Died at Perth, on Sabbath morning, August 16th, 1857, the Rev. William Bell, A.M., the Minister of the first Presbyterian Church, in the 78th year of his age and the 41st of his ministry. He arrived at Perth as the minister of the first Presbyterian settlers in June 1817. He had the honor of being the first to preach the gospel in Lanark, Ramsay, Beckwith, Smiths Falls, and other places, besides Perth, at all of which there are now flourishing congregations.

BUILDING A TOWN HALL

A special meeting of the Municipal Council of the Township of Beckwith was held at Mr. Lavallee’s Hotel, Carleton Place, on Tuesday July 28th at 11 o’clock a.m., for the purpose of receiving tenders for the building of a Town Hall for the said township. Mr. Brice McNeely moved, seconded by John Roberts, that the Council do purchase a site or certain piece of ground for the purpose of erecting a Town Hall for the benefit of the Township of Beckwith said parcel of land being part of the east half of lot 14 in the 8th concession of Beckwith on the Franktown and Carleton Place road. The five tenders were opened as received from Neil Stewart, Robert Metcalfe, Robert McLaren, Peter Campbell and Wm. Rorrison. A contract was then entered into by the Council with the lowest tenderer, Neil Stewart and securities, for the building of a Town Hall for the sum of 119 pounds, 10 shillings, the job to be finished by January 1st, 1858.

INNISVILLE CHURCH

Proposals will be received until October 10th for plastering and shingling the Church of St. John, in the 12th concession of Lanark, and for building a small vestry room thereto. A. Code, James Cooke, George Crampton, church-wardens, committee. Carleton Place September 30th, 1857.

GRAND SQUIRREL HUNT

A grand squirrel hunt will take place at Carleton Place on Monday, October 19th, 1857. Parties wishing to attend the same can do so by leaving their names at the Post Office and paying the fee. Wm. Morphy, Secretary.

SCHOOL ON SATURDAYS

From the (Ottawa) Citizen. That hardly a half of the usual number of pupils attend on Saturdays is a powerful reason why the schools should be closed on that day. All Grammer Schools are closed on Saturdays. The children attending the Common Schools are certainly as much and even more in need of recreation than those attending the former, since they are generally younger. There are some who argue that since the parents toil six days so the child ought.

FINANCIAL CRASH

The financial panic in the States which has increased week after week since the first of September has culminated. It commenced by the breaking down of the Ohio Life Insurance Company in August. Then came the crash in the South and the West, the suspension of all the Pennsylvania, the Baltimore and the Washington Banks. Rhode Island followed next, and all over New England the doors were closed. New York City and State stood out to the last, but the failure of some of the heaviest mercantile houses has been followed by a total suspension of specie payments by the entire fifty-one banks of the City, and a solid column of leading merchants, manufacturers and publishers has been driven to the wall.

BECKWITH TOWN HALL

In going to Franktown yesterday we noticed that the Town Hall which was lately erected for this township is about completed. It is a good sized frame building situated in a fine airy place on the hill opposite the Free Church. We understand Mr. John Roberts was so liberal as to make the township a present of the site for the building.

 

 

 

 

Candidates Once Watched How Voters Polled Votes, by Howard M. Brown, Carleton Place Canadian, 10 October, 1957

World news features of the day, as read one hundred years by the subscribers of the Carleton Place weekly Herald of 1857, were the onset of a severe business depression, the massacres and rescues of India’s Mutiny and the laying of the first Atlantic telegraph cable. The Province of Canada was preparing to introduce its first decimal currency. Editor James Poole predicted Ottawa soon would be chosen as its seat of government in preference to Kingston, Toronto, Quebec or Montreal while confessing he would have no objection to Carleton Place being selected for the purpose.

In Lanark County the district’s first efficient transportation system was arriving. Construction work on the railway from Brockville toward the upper Ottawa River was continuing at points including Carleton Place, with scanty funds and the aid of county grants and guarantees. At the end of the year the annual Printer’s Boys New Year’s Address to the Patrons of the Herald pictured the local results of the financial crash :

 “Hard Times” has trod with crushing heel,

On many a fertile vale;

His blighting breath we all must feel,

As borne on every gale.

For this community the first town hall of the municipal corporation of Beckwith was built at its present site at Black’s Corners as the centre of administration of the township’s public affairs, including those of Carleton Place. A few of the district events and local scenes of 1857, recorded by James Poole in the Herald have been selected on their one hundredth anniversary year for comparison with the news of 1957.

Municipal Elections

The Municipal elections, so far as we have yet learned, have passed off very quietly. We object to the practice of candidates hovering around the polling table, watching intently how every vote is recorded and in some instances threatening, either by looks or words, those who may not vote in their favor. Were the ballot system adopted we think it would work well in these townships.

In Beckwith the old Councillors have been returned, viz. Messrs. Archibald McArthur, Brice McNeely, John Roberts, John Hughton and James Burrows.

The following is the result in Ramsay – Councillors : Daniel Galbraith, 251 ; Wm. Houston 195 ; John Scott, 174 ; Andrew Wilson 172 ; and Thomas Coutler, 162.

Regimental Orders

The 5th Battalion Lanark Militia will parade for muster on Monday, May 25th, at McArthur’s, the usual place. Captain Rosamond’s company, consisting of the men of Carleton Place and the 12th Concession of Beckwith will parade at this village under their respective officers. Alex Fraser, Lieut. Col., commanding.

In consequence of Her Majesty’s birthday falling on Sunday, the servicemen of the 6 Batt. Lanark Militia, consisting of all the male inhabitants of the Township of Ramsay between the ages of 18 and 40, will assemble for muster at the Village of Almonte on Monday, May 25th at 11 o’clock forenoon. The Commanding Officer requests that officers and non-commissioned officers will give that assistance which the law requires, for the enrolment of their respective companies. Officers or men absenting themselves shall be strictly dealt with as the law directs. Alex Snedden, Lieut. Col. Commanding. J. B. Wylie, Capt. & Adjt.

Mowing and Reaping Machines

The subscriber being appointed agent for H. A. Massey, manufacturer of Mowing and Reaping machines, all of which took prizes at the last Provincial Exhibition, can with confidence recommend them to the public, having used one of them. For references apply to Wm. Smith, 10th line Ramsay or Duncan Cram, Beckwith. (signed) Andrew Wilson, Ramsay, March 2, 1857.

Rifles Stolen

Loaned or Taken! From the subscriber’s Shop on the night of May 7th, two rifles. One of them a bell muzzle, barrel 2 ½ feet, nipple and block out of repair. The other a common French rifle. A reward of $5 to any person who will return the same or inform the subscriber where they may be found. (signed) Michael Sullivan, 11 Con. Ramsay, (Appleton blacksmith).

New Almonte Factory

James Rosamond Esqr., who for many years past resided at Carleton Place and carried on an extensive business in the manufacture of woolen goods, has removed to the village of Almonte.

We had the pleasure on Friday last of visiting friend Rosamond’s establishmnet, which is now in complete working order. We were agreeably surprised to find his large four storey building so well filled with machinery, and so many shafts and spindles in rapid motion. While we regret the loss our village has sustained and feel disposed to envy the Almonters, we have no doubt the enterprising proprietor of the Victoria Wollen Mills will receive that support and encouragement his enterprise deserves.

Queen’s College

The fifteenth session of the above institution terminated yesterday. On Tuesday and Wednesday a public examination of the students in the Faculty of Arts was held. The whole number of students in Arts was 47, in Divinity 10, while we believe the number in the Medical Department exceeded 60. One degree of Master of Arts was awarded, that of Bachelor of Arts to nine gentlemen including John May of Beckwith. The degree of Doctor of Medicine was conferred upon ten candidates.