J. Smyth Carter.

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

. (page 28 of 40)
Online LibraryJ. Smyth CarterThe story of Dundas, being a history of the County of Dundas from 1784 to 1904 → online text (page 28 of 40)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook


in the village, is now located at "Orchard Side," the home of (Squire) George
McMillan.

East Williamsburg postoffice was opened in 1835, with George Cook post-
master. The present incumbent is Wm. Prunner. Referring to tnis office
the following information is furnished by the Department: "A postoffice
called Williamsburg was opened in 1822 with John Crysler postmaster. It
disappeared from the lists in 1833, but whether replaced by East Williamsburg,
which was opened this year, I am unable to say."

Elma postoffice was opened in 1884, Thomas Sargeant being postmaster ;
the present incumbent is George Durant. The early history of this place re-



312 THE STORY OF DUNDA8

veals among others the names of P. L. Becker, merchant; James Dawson and
H. Hays, blacksmiths; Edward Sullivan, shoemaker; W. McHaffie, tailor.
For some time pumps were manufactured here by the Messrs. Durant. Elma
can to-day boast of a store, conducted by Mackenzie Thorn, the wheelwright
and blacksmith shop of Edwin Beach, a Methodist church, a Public school,
and a cheese factory.

Froatburn: This postoffice was established in 1889, with Guy Casselman
postmaster; the present official is Luther Froats. The Froats families
were among the early residents of the vicinity, and the choice of the name
"Froatburn" is therefore evident. The little hamlet at present includes the
store of P. D. Schell, the blacksmith shop of L. Froats, Fairview cheese fac-
tory, and the Public school.

Glen Becker received postal service in 1883, the first postmaster being L. 8,
Becker. In early days the place was commonly known as the "Red Tavern,"
the name of a hostelry of notoriety situated here. An early tavern-keeper
was Joseph Becksted. Potash works were operated by Tobias Myers and
others. At present there is a joint stock cheese factory, a Public school, the
blacksmith shop of J. Hall, and a postoffice, conducted by Mrs. B. Barkley.

Grantley is situated in the northeast part of the township. Quite early
we find John Munro, merchant and first postmaster; Angus Shaver, black-
smith; James Sears, shoemaker. The postoffice was opened in 1887. The
hamlet now includes a Methodist church, a cheese factory, a Public school,
the blacksmith shop of James Robinson, and the store of W. L. Hart, who
is also postmaster.

Hoasic postoffice was opened in 1870, with John J. Baker in charge; the
postmaster at present is Chas. W. Weagant. Quite early a small store was
located here, and likewise a hotel, kept by James Baker. There is now a
Presbyterian church, a Public school, and a chef se factory.

Mariatown, a populous hamlet located west of Morrisburg, attained early
distinction. It was founded by Captain Duncan and by him named in honor
of his daughter Maria. From here the law, both civil and military, was dis-
pensed by the captain, who was the officer in charge of the district subsequent-
ly known as Dundas county. Very early the place obtained industrial
prominence by the erection of a gristmill by Martin Casselman. This mill
projected into the current; boats often sti'uck the pier, two men were drowned,
and finally the mill was removed, Mr. Casselman also built a carding mill at
Mariatown. Among the tradesmen and storekeepers were: Peter Shav-
er and Henry Stearns, merchants; Henry Stata, blacksmith; Michael Hick-
ey, shoemaker ; Michael Heagle, tanner ; Messrs. Pierce and Jacob Hanes, tav-
ern-keepers. Where now stands the residence of A. H. Becksted was a foun-
dry, conducted by Henry Bowen. Previous to the days of canal and railway



WILLIAMSBUBO TOWNSHIP 315

communication Mariatown was surveyed as a village, a map of whic!h may be
seen at the County Registry office. Between the river and the King's high-
way were streets Julia and Church, while those running north and south were
Cherry, Duncan, and Mill. Here the chief business of the county was trans-
acted, public meetings of every character were held, amon^ others the agri-
cultural society. But the construction of the canal and the subsequent birth
of Morrisburg caused Mariatown to decline.

North Williamsburg : The birth of this village carries us back to the 30's,
during which period John Ccok and Geo. Hoople carried on a mercantile bus-
iness ; (Squire) Walter Bell opened a store, carried on pearl ash works, built
several residences, and was the first postmaster. Other merchants were Wm,
Swayne'(tavern-keeper), R. Helmer, Coyne and Carlyle; Chas. Gale, H.
Stata and E. Wilson were among the sons of Vulcan. At one time a mill was
constructed by John Cook, but was never operated. Several names have
been applied to this village, viz.: "The Pour Corners," "Cookville,"and "Bell's
Corners," but in 1841 a postoffice was established and named North Williams-
burg. The early growth of the village was attributable to the thrift and
perseverance of the settlers rather than to any natural advantages it possess-
ed, the soil being low and wet. The settlement continued to grow notwith-
standing the natural drawbacks. Lovell's Directory (1857) mentions among
others the following as identified with the business interests of the village at
that early period : James Buchan, mason and bricklayer ; Ira Casselman,
proprietor of steam sawmill ; E. T. Cleney, physician ; James Cumraings, cab-
inetmaker ; Simon Deeks, blacksmith ; Henry Eastwood, wheelwright; Abner
Empey, shoemaker; C. P. Empey, general dealer ; Christopher Ford, hotel
and stage house ; T. Gillespie, stone cutter; Wm. Gordon, general dealer;
Daniel Hilliard, tailor ; Chesley Hollister, inn-keeper ; Robt. Lowery, carpen-
ter, etc. ; J. J. Merkley, bailiff ; Geo. Smyth, tanner; Geo. Sutherland, cooper;
Isaac Utman, carpenter ; George Stuart, J. Hanes, H. Utman and John
B. Whitteker, shoemakers. During the early 70's the little village was
still making progress. About 1873 a cheese factory was built, and in
1874 were erected the steam mills of Joseph McGee. On several occasions
the devouring element has retarded the growth of North Williamsburg,
but the fire of April, 1891, was very damaging, destroying in all about
forty buildings, including a number of residences. A feeling of discourage-
ment followed, but in time new buildings were erected and the village con-
tinued to grow. The following are among the more recent additions to the
business community : G. E. Bradley and L. Flora, merchants ; W. King, har-
nessmaker ; J. Doran, baker ; W. C. Morton, tailor ; Laing & Rutley, paint-
ers ; Thos. Eastwood, carriage manufacturer ; H. W. Merkley, furniture
dealer ; E. C. Merkley, baker. Following is a directory of the village for 1904 5



316 THE STORY OF DITNDAS

Physician, Dr. I. J. Lane ; general merchants, W. C. Strader, R. P. Ford ;
grocer and postmaster, Mrs. M. A. Casselman ; blacksmiths, Ira W. Cassel-
man, Ed. Becksted, Geo. H. Oasselman ; tinsmith, S. E. Barkley ; Dominion
House (temperance), Albert Hanson, proprietor ; baker and confectioner, L.
Brown ; milliner, Mrs. S. E. Barkley ; shoemaker, H. J. Whitteker ; butch-
er, O. P. Beoker ; carriage manufacturer, Ed. Becksted ; livery, A. Hanson,
proprietor ; cheese and butter factory, C. W. Norval, proprietor ; saddlers, E.
M. Casselman, Jas. Crobar ; grist mill, M. G. Oasselman, proprietor ; dealers
in live stock, Casselman & Pharoh ; barber, H. Perault ; dressmakers, Miss
Ella Shenette, Mrs. H. Ouderkirk ; furniture dealer and undertaker, G. W .
Boyce. North Williamsburg is a thriving inland village surrounded by an
excellent farming community. The Morrisburg-Chesterville and Morrisburg-
Winchester stage lines pass here, furnishing a daily mail service, which with
a telephone service keep the village in touch with the outside world. There
is also an excellent graded school and four churches. The following quotation
referring to North Williamsburg is taken from "The Rainbow," composed one
evening after a June shower. In "the churchyard beside" the author now

rests:

"Beneath the broad arch, in the valley below,

Lay the home of the rich, lay the cot of the lovr;
There in beauty secluded the hamlet arose,
And the churchyard beside lay in quiet repose."

Nudell Bush postofflce, located in con. 2, not far from the eastern boundary
of the township, was established June 1, 1904, the postmaster being Henry L.
Casselman. A tri- weekly mail service from Aultsvilleis in operation.

Winchester Springs : This village, located near the centre of Dundas county,
owes its origin to the springs discovered many years ago on lot 5, con. 1,
Winchester township. The older settlers also speak of a "salt lick" near at
hand to which deer came, furnishing game for hunters. Among the
early settlers in the vicinity were: Jacob Barrigar, John Bell, Joseph Mcln-
tosh, Wm. Henderson, Wm. Bailey, Wm Jeffrey, Jas. Grier, Samuel Morrow,
Thos. Nesbitt, Samuel Hill and Wm. Coons. As a health resort the place gain-
ed early distinction, and finally a brick sanitarium was erected by Jas. West.
A boom followed, which, in a measure, was short lived owing to the excessive
prices placed on building lots. Crowds of visitors however attended, and in sum-
mer scores of tents were scattered about. The next act in the history of "The
Springs" was the purchase of the sanitarium property by the late Dr. W. G.
Anderson, who equipped and conducted a large hospital and hotel for the ac-
commodation of invalids and guests. The Dr. also spent a great deal of money
and energy in planting groves and arranging the grounds, rendering "The
Springs" one of the most popular and deserving health resorts in the country.
In mercantile circles Hugh Nesbitt enjoyed prominence. Other early mer-



WILLIAMSBUBG TOWNSHIP 317

chants were John Allison and John Taylor. About 1883 Solomon Coons open,
ed a store. The first hotel here was kept by William Connor, and later by
Thomas Connor. William Foster was an early mail-carrier between North
Williamsburg ind Winchester Springs; the office at the latter place being
opened in 1864, with William Connor postmaster. About 1850 a log school
house was erected ; Solomon Coons who wrote the document introducing the
project was also instrumental in establishing a Sabbath school. The early
trustees were William Henderson, William Shaver and William Coons.
James Gallagher was a pioneer carriagemaker at "The Springe;" John Price, a
blacksmith, worked in a building owned by Samuel Hill. Travelling physic-
ians Dr. Wylie and others attended the bodily ills of the residents before doc-
tors located here. The public, industrial and commercial interests of the place
are now looked after by postmaster Solomon Coons; merchants, Clarence Coons,
James A. Mclntosh, J. E. Hughes; blacksmith, Mathias Bailey; pump manu-
facturers, Merkley & Son. There is also a graded Public school ; a sanitar^
ium, three churches, a cheese and butter factory, a sawmill, and other modern
conveniences.



CHAPTER XVIII



MATILDA TOWNSHIP



THIS fertile, progressive township was named in 1787 in honor of the Prin-
t-ess Royal, Charlotte Augusta Matilda, eldest daughter of George III. Among
the items of interest connected with its development we might mention
that in the settlement of the counties of Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry the
first two patents issued were for lands in this township. The early growth of
Matilda was in keeping with the neighboring townships and counties referred
to in this volume. In 1850 the first township Council was elected, and the
first meeting was held on Jan. 21st of that year. From the minute hooks and
other records we are assured that Matilda's career as an independent munici-
pality has not been unfruitful in progressive legislation. Temperance enact-
ments early claimed attention. In 1851 a by-law was enacted limiting the
number of public houses to six. In 1867 there was not to be more than
twenty such inns, the license fee being $35, including the government grant.
The number of hotels decreased to seven in 1872, and the fee was $20 to the
township and $10 to the government, but in 1878 the fee was increased to $70. In
most places the country inn of those days proved a rendezvous for rowdies.
In Matilda many of these were located along the plank or gravel road in touch
with the general traffic. Among others were Fisher's hotel, on the St. Law-
rence ; Stuart's hotel, where now stands the residence of Wrn. Crobar ; the
'Balsam," at rear of con. 2 ; Dixon's ana Higgins' hotel, at Dixon's Corners ;
Brinston's and Beattie's hotels, at Brinston's Corners; Farrel's inn, at the rear
of the township. And then after patronizing these the traveller who in-
dulged might stop at Boyd's bridge where his thirst could again be slak-
ed. It was obvious that the low license was having an ill effect, and in 1879
the fee was raised to $200.00. The council at that time was composed of: Reeve,
Robert Toye; Councillors, R. M. Buuck, Carmi Locke, J. W. Gilson and Win.
Locke. Their action, although vigorously opposed, was indeed praise-
worthy; applications for licenses soon diminished and finally ceased, and for a
number of years no hotels have existed within the municipality.

The municipal officers who have figured in the life of Matilda are many.



MATILDA TOWNSHIP 321

Subjoined is a partial list : Beeves: 1850, Jacob Brouse ; 1851, Wm. Casselman;
1852, Robert Lowery; 1853, Jacob Brouse ; 1854, W. W. Casselman ; 1855, Alex.
McDonell ; 1856, J. S. Ross ; 1857, John Laing; 1858, Alex. McDonell ; 1859, G.
1. Brouse; 1860-1, Alex. McDonald; 1862-6, Robt. Toye; 1867-70, Alex. McDon-
nell ; 1871, E. H. Mclnt'jsh; 1872, W. Binion; 1873-4, D. Wallace; 1875-6, A.
Harkness; 1877, D. Wallace; 1879, Robt. Toye (part year); 1879-1890, A. Hark-
ness; 1891-4, James Collison; 1895, Wm. Banford; 1896-1900, Carmi Locke;
1901-2, E. P. Foster; 1903, Eli Merkley; 1904, E. P. Foster.

Clerks : 1350, Philip Carman ; 1851, Wm. Hessiu; 1852, Solomon Duran; 1853,
John Laing; 1851-6, Philip Carman; 1857-8, Robt. Harkness; 1859-71, A. Hark-
ness; 1872, Robert Harkness; 1873-4, J. H. Dixon; 1875-6, J. F. Graham; 1877,
Thos. McNulty; 1878-9, Geo. Gilson; 1880-7, G. D. Dixon; 1888, R. B. Abbott;
1889-1904, G. D. Dixon.

Pioneer effort triumphed over all obstacles and made way for a more pros-
perous era. On every hand are evidences of general prosperity. Fine, cul-
tivated farms, well constructed, comfortable baiidings, modern rural conven-
iences of every character, and behind all this a soil noted for its fertilty, have
made this historic tuwnship a desirable place of residence, and caused a mark-
ed stability in the values of farm property. The manufacture of dairy
products is extensive, most of which are sold on the Iroquois Board of Trade,
established in 1894, with Thos. Scott president, and R. A. McLelland secre-
tary. Wm. Banford succeeded Mr. Scott as president, and in 1896 James
Collison was elected to that position. Since then Mr. Collison has served
continuously and has contributed much to the success of the institution. Since
Mr. McLelland's resignation, those serving as secretary have been: A. G.
Smith, W. A. Whitney, W. Hare, W. F. Stott, and R. S. Pelton. The Board
meets every Friday, from May 1st to Nov. 1st. Several of the best Montreal
houses and others are represented by buyers Thos. Johnston, George Smyth, l
James Ault, James Weir, James Logan, R. H. Ashton. During 1903 the sale of
cheese on the Iroquois Board of Trade exceeded a quarter of million dollars.
A list of cheese factories with names of owners is here given: Model No. 1
(Hulbert), E. A. Roode; Model No. 2 (Hainsville), W. W. Reynolds; Model No.
3 (Dundela), Johnston & Roode; Matilda Centre (Dixon's Corners), Thos. Mc-
Intyre; East Matilda (con. 3), joint stock; Pleasant Valley, Gilmour Bros.;
McGregor's, Thorpe & Ellis; Glen Stewart, Wm. Irvine; Brinston's Corners,
Payne & Ellis ; Maple Grove (con. 6), Joseph Payne; Strathcona (Irena), Acil
Barclay ; Haddo, W. D. Rutherford; Minto No. 1 (con. 2), James Miller ;
Matilda, W. D. Rutherord; Matilda West, James McGowan; South Matilda
(con. 2), joint stock; St. Lawrence (Iroquois), J. L. Cook; Robertson's (west
of Alorrisburg), joint stock; Eager's (east of Iroquois), Wm. Eager; Mountain
View and Toye's Hill, J. Henderson.



322 THE STORY OF DUNDAS

Brinston's Corners, a small inland village, owes its birth to the construction
of the Matilda plank road, when a sawmill was built here by Messrs. McDon-
ell and Brouse to obtain plank for the new highway. Soon a few shops, resi-
dences, etc., were erected and the"Corners"became a sort of commercial centre
for northern Matilda. George Barton was a pioneer merchant here. He al-
so kept an hotel. He was succeeded by Thomas Brinston, in honor of whom
the postofflce (opened in 1873) was named. The first postmaster,
Charles Locke, still serves in that capacity. Long ago a carriage shop was
opened by B. Whoolery, while the Knights of St. Crispin were represented
by J. Beattie, G. Beat tie and P. Utman. Chas. Locke built the first blacksmith
shop, anc 1 disposed of it to J, W. Gilson. The village at present includes
medical practitioner George Collison; merchants J. Jackson, T. Hamilton
and A. Redmond; blacksmiths C. I. Gilson and R. Cooper; barber C. I. Gilson;
gristmill, operated by Michael Ault; carriage maker, P. Bush; two public halls;
ft cheese factory, Methodist church, and a telegraph office. Being situated on
the Iroquois-South Mountain stage line, Brinston's has a daily mail service.

Dixon's Corners: Perhaps no place in Dundas county furnishes a more inter-
esting story of the old days than Dixon's, Passing the quiet little corner of
to-day it is not easy to imagine the scenes of life and strife that characterized
"the Corners" in its earlier history, It,wa a favorite meeting-place for the
gay spirits of the countryside, and there was no lack of spirits to make them
gay, especially on election occasions, barn raisings, etc. The first house
was built by William Stevens, while an hotel, conducted by George
Htrader and later by Neil Shaver, soon followed, J. A, Dixon opened a store
and later built a large brick building which served as hotel and store, while
the early blacksmiths were Noble Graham and Abram Paylon. Wm. Wood,
merchant, potash and pearl ash manufacturer, was the first postmaster, the
office being opened in 1852. Other merchants have been Thos. McNulty.Alex.
Brown, Philip Keeler, Robt. Lowery, Geo. Brouse, John Redmond, Robt.
Hftrknese, Wm. Dillon and Richard Anderson. In the early fifties court was
held at Dixon's Corners by Judge Jarvis, Many other changes have taken
place which we have not space to enumerate here. The present wants of the
community are catered to by Jas. Steinburg and W, J, Fisher, merchants ; J.
B. McNiih and A. Jackson, implement dealers ; J, Barkley, blacksmith ; a
public hall, Matilda Centre cheese factory, three churches, Public school
(graded), Bud the office of G. D. Dixon, municipal clerk and postmaster. The
village has a daily mail service.

Dundela : The pioneer merchant of this place was Everet Barclay. An-
other early store was conducted by Martin Armstrong, while Thos. Wharton
kept a store and hotel. Subsequent merchants were Wm, Dillon, Stirling
Wood, Thos, Jilei, Jas, Lapier, Jas. Tnttle and Thos, Hamilton. The first




Res. Rich. Gibbons.
Res. Lucius Flagg

Res. P. P. Everetts
Res. Wm. Merkley



GROUP OF MATILDA RESIDENCES.

Res. Allen McCaslin. Res. Allen Deeks.

Res. John Doran Estate. Res. Geo. Thompson.

Res. John Brouse. Res. D. Robertson.

Res. John Parlow. Res. R. Peterson.



MAT1LJDA TOWNSHIP 225

blacksmith was Horace Powell, the next Jeremiah Robinson, and the third
Geo. Morris. The manufacture of potash was carried on by John English.
At the corner, on the site of the present residence of Thos. Hamilton, was thu
old log school house. Later a school was built farther north. For many years
Dundela was known as Mclntosh's Corners. The Morrisburg Courier of 1863
makes this reference : "We have been requested to intimate that a tea-meet-
ing will be held at the Munroe church, Mclntosh's Corners, in the township oC
Matilda, on Tuesday, Dec. 29th." In 1865 a postofflce was opened here, with
Thos. Wharton postmaster. The name Duudela was selected in honor of
Miss Delia Dillabough, daughter of James Dillabough, a resident of the vicin-
ity. Besides a number of farm and private residences, there is located a
Methodist church, Public school, cheese factory, telephone station, the black-
smith shop of A. H. Hunter, and the general stores of E. H. Mclntosh and J.
E. Mclntosh, the former being postmaster. The postal service is tri-weekly
via Dixon's Corners. The importance of this community really entitles it to
a daily mail service.

Glen Stewart, a small hamlet in the western part of Matilda, contains the
general store of G. Timlick, the cheese factory of William Irvine, and the
blacksmith shop of William Adams. The first merchant was R. Ander-
son; the first postmaster William Stewart. The postoffice, opened in 1874, is
now in charge of R. P. Anderson.

Haddo postoffice was opened in 1894, with G. E. McKnight postmaster; the
present official is Miss Nancy Banford. At an early date Martin Arm-
strong kept a small store here; the present merchant is James Miller. The
appearance of the neighborhood with its neatly constructed residences, etc.,
places it among the finest in the township.

Hainsville first received postal service in 1887, with postmaster W. Dillon, a
resident merchant. Quite early a grist and sawmill were erected here. The
property was finally bought by Richard Hanes, who conducted a brick
yard, erected a steam sawmill, a carriage and blacksmith shop, and in fact
was so prominent in the life of the place that it was named Hainsville.
Gordon Fader was a blacksmith here some years ago. The hamlet includes a
store, conducted by Robert Hare, postmaster; the blacksmith shop of Wm.
Barkley, a cheese factory, Methodist church, and a Public school.

Hulbert postoffice was opened in 1888 as Lockville, the first postmaster be-
ing Isaac Dillabough. The present incumbent is Henry Ellis. The records
of early days note the presence of a store and tavern kept by Albert Farrell,
an hotel by Richard Locke, a blacksmith shop by Wm. Knight, and a grocery
and ashery by I. Dillabough. A Public school, a Methodist church and a
cheese factory are now located here.



826 THE STORY OF DUN DAS

Irena postoffice was established in 1877, the postmaster being Charles
Munro. George Barton was a merchant and also postmaster for many
years. The present postmaster, James Cooper, conducts a store and black-
smith shop ; Another merchant is Ormond Locke. These, with the fine
Public school and Strathcona cheese factory, comprise the chief places of
public interest.

New Boss was opened as a postoffice in 1867, Thomas Currie being the
first postal official. The present postmaster is William Johnston.

Pleasant Valley began its postal existence in 1877. John Kennedy, an early
store-keeeper, was the first postmaster ; the present incumbent is W. J.
Gilmer. A church, a Public school and a cheese factory are also here. From
a very early date it appears that the place was designated by its present name.
Perhaps the nationality of the settlers influenced to some extent the choice
of the name, in accord with the following quotation : "Go where you will,
see what you can, for hospitality give me an Irishman."

Bowena : Why this name was selected we cannot say, as it was chosen by
the Postoffice Department in preference to East Matilda, the name suggested
by the people of the vicinity when petitioning for the office, which was open-
ed in 1880. The first postmaster was Thos. S. Carter; the present official is
Wm. J. Mullen, who also conducts a grocery. J. B. Smyth and G. Strader
were merchants of a previous period. James Cooper and Gabriel Turner were
early blacksmiths, who are succeeded by Isaac Markell,J.Markell and A. Bark-
ley. A Public school and Methodist church are also located here.

Toye's Hill receiyed its name in memory of the Toye family, resident here.
J. Toye was postmaster when the office was opened, in 1882. The present
official is George Carter. Some years ago B. J. Toye conducted a store here,
while Thomas Haggerfcy now caters to the wants of the public. The place
also boasts of a cheese factory and a Public school.



CHAPTER XIX



MOUNAIN TOWNSHIP

LIKE her sister townships, Mountain holds an advanced place in the realm
of agriculture. The township was named in 1798 in honor of the Rt. Rev.
Jacob Mountain, D D., first Protestant Bishop of Quebec. Many of the early
settlers came in by way of Kemptville, and according to the assessment re-



Online LibraryJ. Smyth CarterThe story of Dundas, being a history of the County of Dundas from 1784 to 1904 → online text (page 28 of 40)