J. Smyth Carter.

The story of Dundas, being a history of the County of Dundas from 1784 to 1904 online

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Mansfield, born 1727, buried in Westminister Abbey 1798. The indomitable
perseverance of the U. E. Loyalists and others who settled in the county form
the groundwork of the present prosperous conditions. Agriculture, the prime
industry, is supplemented by excellent marketing and shipping facilities, the
St. Lawrence and four railway lines being available. Within the borders of
Stormont several thriving villages are found. Of these Finch, situated at the
crossing of the C. P. R. and N. Y & O. R'y, is especially promising.

Four townships constitute this county. Osnabruck, lying east of and ad-
joining Williamsburg, was named in 1787 in honor of Osnabruck, a town and
province in Hanover. Cornwall township, also fronting the St Lawrence,
takes its name from Cornwall, the most westerly county in Britain.
Finch township was named in honor of Lady Elizabeth Finch, the aunt
of George Finch-Hatton, the son-in-law of Viscount Stormont; while
Roxborough takes its name from Roxboroughshire, a border county of Scot-

Educational and intellectual advantages are appreciated in every section
of Stormont. From the report of A. McNaughton, I. P. S., we learn that for
the year 1903 the number of schools and additional departments in the county
(including the town of Cornwall) was 102; the number of rural school houses
76. At Cornwall ia located the Model school for the training of Stormont and
Glengarry student teachers. The Cornwall High school, the only institution


of its kind in the county, was opened in 1803 under the name of Cornwall
Grammar school. Its founder was Rev. John Strachan, an Episcopal minis
ter. This Eastern District school was well and widely known, sheltered with-
in its walls and nurtured by its intellectual influences were scores of men from
both Canadas who later became prominent, many gaining national repute.


The site of this town was early selected (see McNifFs map, 1786), the town
plot marked, and named New Johnstown, We can well imagine the place
in early days, a primitive collection of rude buildings, but nevertheless
the neucleus of a larger commercial activity to follow. From here the
supplies furnished by the government for the settlers were distributed,and a
little later as grain and potash became marketable products, trade centred
here. In 1825 among the most notable buildings were the English church,
the old District school house.and the goal and Court House. Smith's Canada,
1850, describes Cornwall as "a neat, quiet, pleasant, old fashioned looking
place. The streets are regularly laid outrunning upward from the river with
others crossing them at right angles, and there are several good houses scatter-
ed through the town. Cornwall is not a place of any great business, but it is
in fact most noted as being the birthplace of that alliance (real or imagined)
called the Family Compact, and is usually considered the old Sarum of Can-

While Ontario and Quebec are somewhat handicapped in the absence ot great
coal beds, an equivalent is found in the many water powers along the St. Law-
rence. In this Cornwall is to the front.the encouragement given to industrial
concerns auguring well for the growth of the place. Again, the system of
waterworks here would do credit to some of the larger Canadian cities.
The intake pipe receives the water which has just tumbled through the
Long Sault, thus guaranteeing an assurance of its purity. The trees along
many of the streets of the town are beautiful.the elms especially are surpass-
ingly grand, for example the treeon First street, fronting the Colquhoun
property, formerly owned by Chief Justice McLean. Other landmarks also
lead interest. At Stone House Point are yet standing the walls of the first
stone house erected in Upper Canada,

The Cornwall manufactories now include two large cotton mills, a small
woolen mill, a furniture factory, a pottery, a factory manufacturing lacrosse
sticks, two sash and door factories and planing mills, and two foundries.
Just west of the town is a paper mill, while a similar industry is now locating
at Mille Roches. Other advantages include excellent communication by rail
(GK T, B.,N. Y. & O. B.) and by water, street railway service; efficient schools,
High, Public and Separate; several churches, embracing the Presbyterian,


Episcopal, Roman Catholic, Methodist, Baptist and Salvation Array ; two
newspapers, The Freeholder and The Standard; up-to-date stores and ware-
rooms, good financial institutions, two parks, a Carnegie Public Library, fire
company, etc. The town is lighted by electricity and gas, while the canal is
lighted from the electric plant of The Davis Co.,Mille Roches. The several pro-
Cessions are well represented, the lawyers number about twenty, while skilled
doctors and dentists have lucrative practices in the town. Here are the
Hotel Dieu and St. Paul's Home, under R.C. auspices and the General Hospital,
The county buildings bring to Cornwall the regular sessions >f the
Counties' Council, the Superior Court, the County Court, etc. With these
and other advantages directed by a progressive population we have reason to
hope our county town may in the near future merit a proud place among the
cities of the Dominion.


This county, the most easterly in Ontario, takes its name from the famous glen
in Inverness, Scotland, on the little River Garry, The coming of the first
settlers to Glengarry has furnished many incidents of a highly interesting
and romantic nature. An instance is related of a mother carrying her two
little children on her back. After a time, thinking her burden had become
lighter, she discovered that she had dropped one of them. Retracing her
steps for some distance she found the child quietly sleeping beside a decayed
log, his hands begrimmed with earth. The little fellow lived to be an old
man, well known by the name of "Spogan Dubh" (black paws), the exclama-
tion used by his mother on finding him. The coming of the U. E, Loyalists
was supplemented by later immigrations. Through the efforts Rev, Alexan-
der McDonell a compact and prosperous colony was formed in the centre of
Glengarry. In the census returns of 1852 the following clans are mentioned ;
McDonell, McDonald, McMillan, McDougall, McRae, McLeod, Grant, Camer-
1 on, McGillis, Kennedy, McLennan, Campbell, Mclntosh, McGillivray, McKin*
non, McPherson, Fraser, McPhee, Mclntyre, Ross, Chisholm, McGregor,
Ferguson, McLaurin, McKenzjie, Morrison, McCormick, McMartin, McKay,
McArthur, McLauchlin, Cattanaeh, At an early date the county was divided
into four townships, Lancaster, the lake township, was named in 1787 after
the maritime county of Lancaster, England. We are not certain whether
Charlottenburg was named in honor of Charlotte Matilda, daughter of
George III, or after the town of Charlottenburg in the Prussian province of
Brandenburg. Kenyon takes its name from Lloyd, Lord Kenyon, born at
Gredjngton, Flintshire, in 1732, and died in 1802. The township of Lochiel was
cut off from the northern part of Lancaster and erected into a separate town^
ship in 1816 ; "Achnacarry," in Scotland, the mansion of Lochiel, chief of the
olan Cameron, is delightfully situated, While Glengarry can boast of no


large centres of population, the thriving town of Alexandria and the villages of
Maxville and Lancaster are prominent. The village of Williams-
town, the neucleus of a very early settlement, was named in honor of Sir
William Johnson. From every standpoint the county is progressive. It is
rich with story and romance, made richer by the researches and writings of
Rev. C. W. Gordon (Ralph Connor), the author of "The Man from Glen-
garry," in which popular fiction much of the past and present history of this
unique settlement has been interwoven with graphic fidelity and
skill. Hundreds of admirers have visited St. Elmo Presbyterian church (Gor-
don's church, Indian Lands), the log Congregational church, the old manse,
etc. Among the many other interesting landmarks is the famous Glengarry
cairn, situated on an island about half a mile from the village of South Lan-

Speaking of Glengarry and its people, Alexander Praser, Provincial Arch-
ivist, says: "It were unnecessary to recall the part the Scot played in the
British arms employed on this continent, resulting in the incorporation of
Canada into the British Empire; so also his service to the state, when danger
and difficulties were to be faced on the tented field and the homes to be de-
fended from the. invader Giengarry could claim with just pride that her sons
were to the front whenever the bugle sounded, and a chapter could be written
as thrilling as could be furnished by the annals of war describing the contri-
bution our county made in the past in Canada's defence. The Macs and
other clans of Glengarry had not Highland blood in their veins for nothing,
and to the present day the latent sentiment can be fanned into a flame of no
Uncertain power. Remarkable as the military history of Glengarry is, deep
seated as her traditions are, tender as the associations with the far past still
remain, perhaps the strongest feelings can be stirred by a contemplation of
the county itself, for it is a most striking evidence of what the clans accomp-
lished; in making of Glengarry from a dense, untrodden forest to the fair
broad meads is a far cry, but Glengarry men untutored in the use of axe or
hammer felled the forests, built the dwellings, tilled the fields, and gave to
their sons and daughters a land as fair as any in Canada."


When the first survey of Upper Canada was made and the province divided
into districts the county of Grenville and part of Leeds county were included
in the District of Lunenburg, which later became the Eastern District. In 1798
the Johnstown District was formed of that portion of the Eastern District
lying west of Matilda township. The first settlers in these historic counties
were U. E. Loyalists, among whom were many of Jessup's corps. The sever-
al townships of Leeds and Grenvlle show evidences of untiring perseverance,
a tribute to the pioneers and their worthy successors.


As the story of Gordon's church, Indian Lands, has made Glengarry famous,
so likewise have Paul and Barbara Heck and the old Blue church cemetery
added lustre to the annals of Grenville county. Barbara Heck, the founder of
Methodism in Canada, whose maiden name was Buttle, was born in Ireland
in 1734. In 1760 she married Paul Heck, and shortly afterwards they emi-
grated to America and made their home in New York city. In 1785 they
came to Augusta and established Methodism in what is known as the Heck
settlement, nine miles east of Broekville, and about seven miles west of Pres-
cott, near the site of the present Blue church (Anglican), In this locality tbe
good woman spread the Gospel, the fruits of which are imperishable, In 1793
Paul Heck died, and nine years later Barbara also closed her eyes to this
world. In the old Blue church cemetery, on the banks of the St. Lawrence,
their remains lie side by side. In the beautiful grove nearby an appropriate
service marking the centennial of Barbara Heck's death was held on Aug. 17,
1904, a memorable event in the history of Canadian Methodism,

The village of Johnstown, situated a few miles east of Prescott, was in early
days a centre of enterprise. The place consisted of a large collection of wood-
en houses, a few shops, several hotels, etc. One of these hotels, the Whit-
marsh House, was the stopping place for the High Court judges when they
came to hold the regular assizes in the old Court House here. In fact the
military, commercial and judicial affluence of Johnstown combined to render
it no unlikely site for the then future capital of Canada, On more than one
occasion Governor Simcoe visited the place,

Cardinal village was for many years designated Edwardsburg, In 1857-8,
according to the Canada Directory, it had a population of 150, From this
small beginning the place has developed into a thriving village of 1.200 people,
which in 1880 secured incorporation, and was re-christened Cardinal. Since
the enlargement of the St. Lawrence canals, necessitating a new channel
north of the village, Cardinal has assumed the aspect of an island, dividing
with Brockville its claim to the pleasing sobriquet, the "Island City."As a ship-
ping point it possesses excellent facilities, and can lay claim as a manufact-
uring centre of considerable importance. The chief Industry is the Edwards-
burg Starch Go's (Limited) works, established in 1858, and employing 150
hands, probably the largest industry of the kind in Canada. Corn starch,
glucose and syrup are among its chief products. The officers of this Company
are : Geo. F. Benson, President and Managing Director, Cardinal 5 Vice-
President, Wra. Strachan, Montreal ; Hugh McArthur, Treasurer, Cardinal j
Bobt. Cunningham, Secretary, Montreal Directors, Hon, Bobt. Maokay, C,
B. Hosmer, Wm. B. Miller, Geo, Hide, Alfred P. Murray, all of Montreal,
where the head office of the Company is located. Other industries, good
stores, bank, two hotels, etc., serve to make up the complement of ft progress-


Ive industrial community. The professions and education are represented by
two medical doctors, two notaries, a Public school of six departments, four
churches, Presbyterian, Roman Catholic, Methodist and Anglican.

The town of Prescott, incorporated in 1834, has a population of over 3,000,
and is a town of considerable commercial importance, largely by the fact
of its situation at the head of the St. Lawrence rapids, rendering it the ter-
minus of a large carrying trade. By reason of its proximity to the American
shore and early settlement and convenience as a base for military operations,
Prescott fortunately or unfortunately has been mixed up with almost every
.scrap in which Canada has been engaged with its big neighbor over the river.
The town for a number of years like many other Ontario towns made little or
no progress, but of late it has given evidence of renewed commercial activity
which bids fair to increase and expand with the development of the country
generally. The town is prettily situated, and by nature highly favored,
and there is no reason why it should not forge ahead. There is a
sash, door and planing mill, starch factory, distillery, etc., while a grain
elevator and the Government marine works are located here. Prescott'a
shipping facilities by rail (G. T. B and C. P. B.) and by the St. Lawrence are
excellent. The several professions are represented by six medical practition-
ers, two dentists, four lawyers, two civil engineers, several clergymen, teach-
ers, seven in the Public school, three in the High school,and four in the Separ-
ate school. The town churches include Boman Catholic, Anglican, Methodist
and Presbyterian. There are two newspaper offices, The Journal and The
Messenger; a Board of Trade, good financial institutions, six hotels, excellent
water and sewer system and electric light plant, The civic board (1904) con-
sists of Mayor W. H. Stephenson ; Councillors J. C. Carruthers D. McCartin,
Geo. H. OrBange, W. J. Bovaird, Chester Fell, Abraham Lane; Treasurer, F.
Bowe; Clerk, Geo. Book.

In his reference to the village of Kemptville, now so thriving, Historian
Leavitt says : "The first settlers of Kemptville were : Thomas McCargar, Asa
Clothier, Truman Hurd and David Beach. Beachburg, on the Ottawa, is nam-
ed after the latter gentleman . Lyman Clothier and his son Asa built the first
mill at Kemptville, the spot upon which the village noV stands being then a
wilderness. This was in the spring of 1814. and at that time there was not a
house between Burritt's Bapids and Kemptville."

Merrickville was so named after the Merrick family, who early owned the
land where the village now stands. Other pioneer settlers in the vicinity
were: H. D. Smith, E. H. Whitmarsh, George A. Montgomery, William Pear-
son, Thomas and W. H. Magee. In I860 the place was incorporated. Indus-
tries located here are stove and plow works, roller mills, planing mill, wool-
en mills, malleable iron foundry, cabinet factory. There are two Public


1. An Early Morrisburg Store kept by Wm. Kyle. 2. Hilliard House, east of Morris-
burg. 3. Historic Munro House (see page 41). 4. Sugar-camp scene, 1850. 5. Iron cooler
brought from Montreal by hand-sleigh more than a century ago (see Miscellaneous Chap-
ter). 6. Home of Benjamin Bates, headquarters of Methodis./i in Winchester in 1838
(see page 179). 7. U. E. L. hoe. 8. Barn almost a century old. 9. Typical scene. 10.
Famous Blue House (see page 41).


schools, four churches, Methodist, Anglican, Presbyterian, R. Catholic; a pub'
lishing office, The Merrickville Star; three medical doctors, one dentist and one
lawyer. The municipal officers (1901) are: Reeve, G. R. Putnam; Councillors,
S. J. Wilson, P. McCabe, J. Keir, B. Knapp; Clerk, J. Johnston; Treasurer, J.

Athens village was formerly known as Farmersville. The schools here
have long enjoyed more than local reputation. About five miles from Athens
is located Charleston Lake, a charming summer resort, widely known, and sur-
passing those of any of the other pretty inland lakes so numerous in Leeds

The prosperous town of Gananoque is favorably situated for manufacturing
purposes. More than a century ago the water privileges here were coveted,
Colonel Joel Stone and Sir John Johnston being among those interested. In
1824 the settlement was surveyed as a village.

Newboro' owes its birth to the construction of the Rideau canal, at the
commencement of which it was necessary to make a short cut from Mud Lake
to the Rideau. In 1876 the village was incorporated.

Brockville, the municipal capital of Leeds and Grenville, was for many years
known as El-izabethtowu,the present name being conferred upon it by Sir Isaac
Brock. The history of the town has been one of quiet but steady progress.
Its ideal situation along one of the finest sections of the great St. Lawrence
and its proximity to the Thousand Islands render it attractive as a summer re-
sort. From an industrial standpoint it is prominent; some of the manufactor-
ies are: The Cossit Company, Ltd., The Canada Carriage Co., The Union Hat
Co., the Brockville brewery, mineral water factories, two saw and planing
mills, The James Smart M'f g Co., Ltd., the Cold Storage Co. Brockville
enjoys unexcelled shipping facilities both by rail and water; it is a great
dairying centre, doing the largest exporting trade in Canada, sending
out over a million and a half dollars worth annually. The gas and
electric light plants, the waterworks and splendid sewerage system are
all owned by the corporation . The two hospitals, the General and the
St. Vincent de Paul, are doing much to alleviate the sufferings of the poor and
sick. Brockville has good educational facilities, including five Public schools,
Separate school, School of Manual Training, Art school, a Collegiate Institute,
a Business College, and a Carnegie Public Library. The churches number one
Roman Catholic, three Anglican, two Methodist, one Baptist, two Presbyterian.
The mercantile interests include banks (Montreal, Molsons, Toronto, Met-
ropolitan, Crown), fourteen physicians, twelve lawyers, six dentists, one civil
engineer, two veterinary surgeons, two artists, two photographers, eight
hotels, two printing offices, The Daily Eecorder and The Daily Times, many
fine up-to-date stores, hardware, dry goods, etc. It is also is a modern town,
and as a place of residence it is considered one of the most desirable in eastern



THIS municipality was named in 1787 in honor of Prince William Henry,
who in 1830 succeeded his brother George IV on the throne as William IV. In
the conquest of the forest the early settlers of Williamsburg displayed a perse-
verance hard to be realized at the present day. But fruitful were their efforts.
Prom an unbroken solitude the township has been transformed into an agri-
cultural district among the best. With the advent of local municipal
government in 1850, Williamsburg assumed the full responsibilities required
of it. Subjoined is a consecutive list of reeves and clerks: Beeves: 1850-52,
Water Bell ; 1853, A. Macdonell; 1854, Water Bell ; 1855-6, John Sar-
geant; 1857, James Holden; 1858, John M. Oasselman; 1859-67, A, B. Sherman;
1868-73, Isaac N. Rose; 1874-5, Adam Oasselman; 1876, M. D. Willard; 1877, Alex.
Farlinger; 1878-83, James Dickey; 1884, B. H. Hayunga; 1885-6, J. J. Colquhoun;
1887, G. S. Casselman; 1888, George H. Whitteker, James Dickey; 1889-90,
James Dickey; 1891-2, C. D. Casselman ; 1893-4, R. M. Becksted ; 1895-6, C. T.
Whitteker; 1897, R. M. Becksted; 1898-1900, William H. Lane; 1901, J. J. Colqu-
houn; 1902-3, Edward Walsh; 1904, Malcolm S. Becksted. Clerks ; 1850-52, Adam
Carlyle; 1853, John Wingard; 1854, Peter Dickey ;l855-58, Tobias Myers; 1859-67,
W. Whitteker ; 1868-71, Peter Dickey ; 1872-74, Joseph Merkley ; 1875-80, A. A.
Whitteker ; 1881, Alex. McPherson ; 1882-91, Geo. C. Tracy; 1892-1904, George
Lane. The benefits enjoyed by the people of Williamsburg are such as prevail,
throughout the county and are truly typical of this progressive age. Well
tilled, well fenced, and well drained farms with comfortable homes and pleas-
ant environments are everywhere present. Again, the development of the
great dairying industry has stimulated improvements in the methods of
agriculture. Following is a list of cheese factories in the township, with respect-
ive owners: Edwards No. 2, Edwards No. 3 (Archer), W, A. Edwards ; Bow-
man No. 13, A. Mclntosh; Caughnawaga, Riverside, Morrisburg, Wm. Eager;
Colquhoun, G.Fuzee, Fairview (Froatburn),Tbomas McDonald ;North Williams-
burg, C. W. Norval; Elma, W. Dawson ; Tidbits No. I (Dunbar), Tidbits No. 2
(East Williamsburg), A. A. Logan : Hess No. 1, Alex. Hess; Bouck's Hill, Glen
Becker, Grantley, Cedar Grove, Carlyle's, joint stock.

Walter Fetterly (Councillor). H. B. Ford (Treasurer).

John Wilson (Councillor).

Malcolm Becksted (Reeve). Chas. Whitteker (Councillor).

Geo. Lane (Clerk).


Archer post-office was opened in 1883 and was so named in honor of Thomas
Archey, the first mail-carrier, at whose house the office was located ; the
first postmaster was Robert Weagant. Besides Mr. Archey some of the
early settlers were: James Fay, John Cunningham, Geo. W. Cook, S. Tracy,
Jacob Froats, Samuel Weagant. Some years ago Archer could boast of a
small store. The place now contains the blacksmith shop of R. Cunningham,
a cheese factory, and a school house. The postmaster is John Warren.

Beckstead postoffice was opened in 1882, the postmaster being G. Beck-

Bouck's Hill was named in commemoration of the Bouck family, who early
settled here. The pioneer merchant was David E. Bouck. In 1874 the post-
office was established, and the present postmaster, H. W. Ford, was then
appointed. Many years ago Mr. Ford also conducted an hotel. David Gillard
was an early blacksmith here. Being on the line of the Morrisburg-Chester-
ville stage route the hamlet has a daily mail service. The village is also
favored with a joint stock cheese factory, sawmill, Bell telephone station, black-
smith shop (Thos. Hill's), Public school, store (H. W. Ford's), a doctor (H. B.

Colquhoun obtained postal service in 1882, when J. J. Colquhoun, the pres-
ent postmaster, was appointed. Among the very early settlers in the vicinity
were Jacob Empey, Jacob Myers, Samuel Kyle, John Colquhoun. The settle-
ment can now boast of a Public school and cheese factory.

Dunbar, long ago known as Sebastapool, is situated in con. 8. Among the
pioneer residents appear the names of Dillabough, Barkley, McMillan and
Marselis. Early merchants were : John Bosenberger, David English and
Wm. Casselman. East of the corner a blacksmith shop was conducted by
Hiram Hay, while John G. Svverdfeger was an early inn -keeper. In 1856
Wm. Beckstedt, the first postmaster, received his appointment. The pres-
ent postmaster is A. Carlyle. Many years ago court Was held at Sebastopool.
Dunbar may now be regarded as a quiet country hamlet, with the store of
Patrick Devaney, the blacksmith shop and gristmill of David Webster, two
churches, cheese factory, and a Public school . The telephone office, formerly

Online LibraryJ. Smyth CarterThe story of Dundas, being a history of the County of Dundas from 1784 to 1904 → online text (page 27 of 40)