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Full text of "Port Hope : historical sketches. --"





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Port Hope 
Historical Sketches 

(ILLUSTRATED.) 




c. 



BY 

W. ARNOT CRAICK. 



PORT HOPE, ONT. 
1901 



Entered according to Act of the Parliament of Canada, in the year igoi, 
by W. ARNOT CRAICK, at the Department of Agriculture. 



THE WILLIAMSON PR&SS, 
PORT HOPE. 



TABLE OF CONTENTS. 



CHAPTER. 
I. 
II. 
III. 

IV. 

V. 
VI. 

VII. 

VIII. 

IX. 

X. 

XL 

XII. 

XIII. 

XIV. 

XV. 

XVI. 

XVII. 

XVIII. 

XIX. 

XX. 

XXL 

XXII. 

XXIII. 

XXIV. 

XXV. 

XXVI. 

XXVII. 

XXVIII. 

XXIX. 



The Founding of the Town 

Primitive Port Hope . 

Gradual Development 

Tales of the Early Days 

Port Hope in 1813 and 1826 

Municipal Life . 

Political Connections 

The Harbour 

Steam Navigation . 

Early Modes of Transport . 

The Advent of the Railroads 

A Chapter of Tragedies. 

The Earliest Church 

Presbyterianism . 

The Methodist Church . 

St. Mary s Church 

The Baptist Church 

Public Schools . 

Port Hope High School . 

Trinity College School . 

The Press 

Regal and Vice-Regal . 

Concerning Things Military 

Some Other Institutions 

Industrial History. 

Fires and Firemen 

Some Pioneer Families . 

Biographical 

The Old Boys Celebration of 



1901 



PAGE. 
I 

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8 

12 

16 

22 
28 

33 
38 
43 
49 

55 
60 

66 
70 
76 
80 

83 
89 

93 
98 

102 

106 
"5 

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127 
I 3 2 

134 



44538 



PREFACE. 

IN presenting this brief work for public consideration, 
the author desires to make some explanatory statements, 
which may perhaps modify any critical judgment, that may 
be placed upon it. In the first instance he desires that no 
one should be deluded by the impression that the volume 
contains a complete history of the Town. The more he has 
investigated and the more material he has collected the 
more fully is he convinced that to write an exhaustive history 
of Port Hope would require many years for its fulfilment. 
Then again he desires to disclaim all originality in his treat 
ment of the subject The material from which the book 
has been compiled, has been collected from numerous 
sources, many of which are not of convenient access to the 
reader of this work. All that the author can therefore lay 
claim to, is the service he has rendered in however imperfect 
a way, of placing the mass of material, furnished by others, 
in a form in which it may be of some use. 

This has been one of the main objects in view. Others 
have been to assist in a slight measure in the important 
work of collecting the material from which the future histor 
ian of Canada may mould his national work, to attempt to 



PREFACE. 

inspire some confidence in the future of the town in the 
minds of its present-day citizens, by portraying something of 
its bye-gone enterprise, and to afford if possible a small de 
gree of pleasure to those interested in the antiquities of the 
Town. 

Before concluding the author would desire to return his 
thanks to the many individuals who have assisted him in 
his task. This assistance has been rendered in many ways. 
Old citizens of the Town have recounted many interesting 
matters by word of mouth. Others have placed documents 
at the disposal of the author. Still others have allowed him 
access to valuable files of papers and old manuscripts. To 
all of these he expresses herewith his best thanks. 

W. A. C. 

PORT HOPE, Sept., 1901. 



ERRATA. 



Page 2, line i : for coureur de bois read coureur des bois. 

Page 9, line 20 : read, For threshing the primitive flail 
and for winnowing, what the settlers termed a fan were 
used. 

Page 75, line 13 : for C. B. Lanceley read E. B. Lanceley. 

Page 86, line 27 : for entrance read entrances. 

Page 122, line 29 : for Dominion read Canada. 



PORT HOPE HISTORICAL SKETCHES 

CHAPTER I. 

THE FOUNDING CF THE TOWN. 

This is the forest primeval. The murmuring pines and the hemlocks, 
Bearded with mess and in garments green, indistinct in the twilight, 
Star.d like Druids of eld, with voices jsd and prophetic, 
Siand Jike harpers hoar, with beards that rest on their bosoms. 

LONGFELLOW. 

O a person of reflective mind stationed on one of 
Port Hope s many weeded hills, all the surround 
ings of upland and valley and lake are full of 
suggestions of bye-gone times. The tall whisper 
ing pines confide strange tales of other days and the moss- 
grown stones of the hill-side are rich in the memories of 
the past. Under their magic influence centuries are rolled 
back and the primeval forest emerges from the dark oblivion 
of unrecorded days. Then once again the panorama of 
Time unfolds itself and in a twinkling the days and years of 
the past flash by and all that has been is seen once more. 
Into the peaceful and secluded valley of the Ganaraska 
come the red men. They hunt in the woods, they fish in 
the stream and they build their wigwams on the grassy 
banks. For a season they remain and then vanish like the 
snow and new tribes take their place. Now a stern, rugged 




2 PORT HOPE 

i 

coureur de bois appears and camps by night beside the 
stream and then a patient Jesuit father toils by to his 
mission-field in the West. At length a strange sail looms 
up on the horizon and coasts along the shore. Perchance 
it is La Salle and his daring adventurers pushing ever west 
ward to the " Father of Waters." Other sails come and go 
and meanwhile the Mississauga braves build their romantic 
village of Gochingomink beside the Ganaraska. There 
they remain till long after the white man has come to claim 
the land as his own and till " Cut Nose," the thief and the 
murderer, whose name and reputation alone survive the 
disappearance of this tribe from the valley, has fled far to 
the west from the scene of his evil deeds. 

From the mythical past to the more assured realm of 
history is but a step and on the arrival of the white man the 
imagination ceases its conjectures and turns to the pages of 
recorded fact. Here it is found that in 1778, Peter Smith, 
a fur trader, landed at the mouth of the creek and took up 
his abode in a substantial log-house, which he constructed 
on the bank of the stream about where Helm s Foundry 
now stands*. Here he began business, and presently the 
Indians flocked to him from far and near bearing with them 
the fruits of the chase and the trap. His fairness in all his 
dealings with them gave him a good name and a monopoly 
of the fur-trade, and his skill as a hunter and trapper won 
for him the deepest respect. To the scattered settlers of 



* The site of Peter Smith s trading post has been put by many historians of the 
town, "on the lake shore, a few hundred yards east of the creek." The author 
believes that these writers are confusing this house with the building erected on that 
spot by Peter Smith, the son of Elias Smith, in 1797. 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 3 

Upper Canada the trading-post became well-known, receiv 
ing the name of Smith s Creek an appellation which the 
future settlement was to bear for many years. The trader 
himself for many years occupied the important position of 
judge or arbiter among the Indian tribes. 

Smith had no intention of being a permanent settler. 
His object was to acquire a measure of wealth and then to 
return to civilization for its enjoyment. His purpose was 
doubtless accomplished by 1790, for in that year he dis 
appears forever from our history. His log-house now 
passed into the hands of another trader, named Herchimere, 
who continued his dealings with the Indians, and assumed 
his position as their benefactor. 

On the 8th of June 1793 the "Pilgrim Fathers of 
Port Hope, landed through the surf on the stony beach of 
their " New World." The little company comprised four 
families,* those of Myndert Harris, L. Johnson, Nathaniel 
Ashford and James Stevens and a number of surveyors 
from New Hampshire. A subsequent chapter will relate 
the tale of the " pilgrimage " of these early pioneers, but at 
present the actual founding of the settlement is the subject 
to be treated of. The landing of such a goodly company of 
white men must have been an event of no little surprise to 
the two hundred Indians of Gochingomink, as well as to the 
worthy Herchimere. The red men evinced immediate 
hostility and were on the point of preventing the landing of 

* There is some diversity of opinion on this point. Mr. Dodds, in his account 
of the Town, asserts that Messrs. Ashford and Stevens arrived on the 3rd of June 
and had no connection with Harris and Johnson, who came on the 8th, but as the 
above is the story told by Myndert Harris, Jr. it has been accepted. 



4 PORT HOPE 

the new-comers, maintaining that they were Yankee i-p. 
truders, when Herchimere, recognizing Captain Bouchette.*s 
gunboat, in which the settlers had been conveyed 
from Newark, hurried about among the savages and finally 
persuaded them that they had nothing to fear from the new 
arrivals, who were good subjects of the Great Father, King 
George of England. Thus appeased, the Indians allowed 
the debarkation to continue. 

By sunset a little group of white tents was to be seen 
on the "Flats,"- the level stretch of land across the creek 
from the trading-post. With the morning light the work of 
constructing log houses was begun. These were long low 
houses with huge Dutch fireplaces at one end and were 
thatched with bark. In due time they were completed 
and occupied. 

Meanwhile the New Hampshire surveyors ir ? not 
been idle, and about half the township had bee laia out 
when they were attacked by a fever, then and jveral 

years after very prevalent hereabouts in the kie -mmer. 
This necessitated a cessation of work and, \v; v ^ v ng near 
at hand, they departed for Newark. 

Thus left alone the four families mentioned spent the 
winter at Smith s Creek and for the first time the snows 
covered the roofs of the embryo town ot Port Hope. Since 
that by-gone time many a gloomy snow-cloud has drifted 
over the valley and laid its white burden on the frozerfv^ 
ground but never since have the snows of winter fallen on a,^. 
pathless solitude. , S. c 




CHAPTER II. 

PRIMITIVE PORT HOPE. 

A noble race ! But they are gone, 

With their old forests wide and deep, 
And we have built our homes upon 

Fields where their generations sleep. 

BRYANT. 

>T is possibly safe to say that a large proportion of the 
interest of travellers tales centres in the description 
of lands visited and people encountered, rather than 
in the actual adventures of the narrator. Recogniz 
ing this principle it would seem appropriate at this juncture 
to assume the view-point of the pioneer and look on the 
valley of the Ganaraska and its inhabitants, as they appeared 
to Myndert Harris and his comrades in the summer of 1793. 

At that early date the valley was covered with a mag 
nificent growth of cedars, through which the rushing 
Ganaraska came pouring down over the rocks. The hill 
sides on either hand supported a dense undergrowth, 
providing ample covert for both rabbits and partridges. 
Deer and bears roamed through the woods in large numbers 
and skilful huntsmen like the early settlers needed never to 
be at a loss for food. The stream itself emptied into a 
large marshy area, covering what is now the harbor and the 
.-4ow-lying land to the northward. Where the new harbor- 

(5) 



6 PORT HOPE 

basin now stands rose the island on which Mr. Harris CL 
the grass for his winter fodder that first year. One arm 
the creek skirted round this island by way of the present sit r 
of the elevators and then passed along eastward parallel tc 
the Lake and separated from it by a gravelly bank, 
uniting with the other arm of the creek, the waters of ,.,e 
two branches passed into the Lake through a narrow gap 
about where the old harbor intersects the shore-line. 

The harbor-works have partially concealed the nature )f 
the shore-line. To gain a correct conception of its forrr ,r 
outline it is but necessary to stand on the beach at the east 
side of the harbor and run a line across to the high ground 
south of the Grand Trunk Station. This line forms ap 
proximately the old shore and cuts off all that level tract 
known as Sandy Beach, which is a comparatively mode i 
acquisition to the Town. To the east again the Lake h 
carved out huge pieces from the land and is gradually wor 
ing its way inland. 

Herchimere s trading-post occupied a site northward from 
the point where the creek divided and on its western bank 
All about it rose the village of Indian wigwams. The pres 
ence of the trading-post here for more than a dozen years 
had attracted large numbers of the red men and there was 
always a constant coming and going amongst them, which 
added a liveliness to the place. The only other point of 
interest at that early date was the Indian burying-ground, 
situated in the woods near the present railway-station. 

Such was the primitive appearance of the Town. As for 
its red inhabitants, it would seem that they were a peaceable 
lot, extremely loyal to the British Crown, and kindly disposed 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 7 

towards the white men. They spent their time chiefly in 
hunting and fishing and it was not an unusual sight to see 
the bosom of Lake Ontario covered with their canoes, as 
they fished for the mammoth sturgeon. Not a little won 
derment did it occasion the settlers as they beheld the ease 
with which the Indians landed the fish in their frail vessels. 
The personal deeds of but one Indian have been recorded 
and, as usual, it is by the evil he did that he is remembered. 
Cut Nose was a Chippewa from the vicinity of Lake Huron. 
He received his strange cognomen from the fact that in his 
early days part of his nose had been cut off. Coming to 
sojourn at Smith s Creek, he soon began to display his evil 
propensities. Mr. Trull, who settled some distance up the 
lake shore, lost a straw hat one day. Soon after he chanced 
to be paddling down the Lake with two men and approach 
ing Smith s Creek, saw some Indians out fishing in a canoe. 
He made towards them to see what luck they were enjoying, 
when to his ill-concealed disgust, he beheld Cut Nose, who 
was in the canoe, brandish the lost hat aloft, with a devilish 
grin playing on his ugly face. It was impossible to take it 
from him. Shortly after Cut Nose took his departure for Rice 
Lake, where he presently entered into a bitter feud with some 
Crow Indians. The Crows conspired to murder him by en 
ticing him into the trader s house to drink, but Cut Nose 
was too sharp for them and, getting the treacherous Crow 
who had invited him behind a wood-pile, he soon put an 
end to him with a knife and started in to annihilate the 
others. Fortunately the trader secured the knife before 
much harm was done and Cut Nose took to his heels and 
made for his own country. 




CHAPTER III. 

I 

GRADUAL DEVELOPMENT. 

All in the village was peace ; the men v.-ere intent on their labours, 
Busy with hewing and building, with garden-plot and with mere-stead, 
Busy with breaking the glebe, and mowing the grass in the meadows, 
Searching the sea for the fish, and hunting the deer in the forest. 

LONGFELLOW. 

HE trader Herchimere moved off to Rice Lake in 
the Fall of 1793, carrying his goods thither 
on horseback. Before leaving he presented his 
log-cabin to Mr. Harris, who accepted it with 
much gratitude. A difficulty meanwhile confronted the 
settlers. Their supply of flour was very meagre and ob 
viously was not sufficient to last out the rigours of a 
Canadian winter. The nearest point where this commodity 
could be procured was Kingston and the only available 
means of reaching there was to coast down the lake shore in 
the solitary skiff, which had been brought from Newark. 
Nothing daunted by the prospect of such a voyage a small 
party was organized, which performed the journey to Kings 
ton and return before winter set in. In the Fall, Harris cut 
a supply of grass on the marshy island near the mouth of 
the creek to serve as fodder for the cattle. Man and beast 
being thus provided for, the winter-season could be faced 
with more confidence. 

When the cold weather at length set in and wood-cutting 
could be more comfortably engaged in, the pioneers set to 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. g 

work to carve out clearings in the woods. Any spare 
moments were usually employed in the construction of 
* household utensils and other implements and Harris, among 
c other things, constructed a cart for Herchimere. This 
1 vehicle was necessarily but a very primitive specimen ; the 
wheels were made entirely of wood, there being no iron at 
hand wherewith to bind them. 

With the advent of spring the clearing of the land was 
continued with renewed zeal and the smoke of bush fires 
floated far over the heavens. Surveyor Iredell* and his men 
arrived early on the scene and completed the survey which 
had been left unfinished in the preceding summer. Myn- 
dert Harris had meanwhile taken possession of Lot 3 and 
Ashford of Lot i of the ist Concession, while Stevens took 
Lot 2 and Johnson Lot i of the 2nd Concession. 

The next winter it is related that Harris built a second 
cart for Herchimere, this time having wheels bound with 
iron. In the spring of 1794 the cultivation of the cleared 
land was begun. In place of a plough, an instrument called 
a drag was employed. This was composed of a crotch d 
stick with wooden teeth. For threshing either the primitive 
flail or what the settlers termed a * fan was used. This 
was an instrument made of ash-boards in shape of a half- 
circle of radius two feet, with a rim about six inches wide 
bent round the circle and having holes cut at each side for 
handles the whole resembling a large grain scoop. This 
was held in front of a person and shaken when filled with 

f The following are the principal surveys of Hope Township as found in the Sur 
vey Department of the Ontario Government. Augustus Jones 1791, Iredell 1793, 
Hambly 1795, McDonnell 1797, Stegmann 1800, Wilmot 1817, J. K. Roche 1845. 



io PORT HOPE 

grain. The chaff was separated by the wind and the 
fell to the ground. With these crude implement 
pioneers succeeded in producing some wheat. The 
problem was to get it ground. This necessitated a jour 
Belleville, where a grist-mill had just been erected b> . 
Myers. This expedition was undertaken in winter, the 
grain being dragged through the pathless woods on rough 
sleds. 

The same year the Government offered Elias Smith, Esq. 
six hundred acres of land, being Lots 5, 6, and 7, with all 
the water privileges for a mile up the creek and a chain of 
land on each side thereof, on condition that he speedily 
build a saw-mill and a grist-mill. Elias Smith was at that 
time in Montreal. In the spring of 1795 he sent his son, 
Peter, and some mill-wrights to commence work on the 
mills. In order to preserve the salmon with which the 
creek abounded, a mill-race was carried from about the 
position of the Ontario Street Bridge, along the side of the 
eastern hill to where the end of the viaduct now stands.* 
Sickness put a stop to the work on the mill-race but the 
construction of the flour-mill was carried to completion. 
Captain John Burns was the master mill-wright and, with 
the assistance of Mr. Joseph Keeler of Colborne and a party 
of men who came up from there in a boat, the mill was 
finally erected. Next spring work on the mill-race was re 
sumed but frost caused the banks to give and the whole 
enterprise proved a failure. 



* Traces of this mill-race are remembered by several old residents of th L 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. n 

Meanwhile the Government had agreed to give Captain 
Walton and Elias Smith two hundred acres of land each and 
the remaining unoccupied land in the township by way of 
compensation, provided they brought in forty settlers from 
the United States. Failing to secure the requisite number 
within the time appointed, this agreement became null, but, 
by a Crown Patent issued August 26th, 1797, the land on 
which the present Town stands was granted to the same two 
subject to the condition that they should with all 
diligence erect a grist and saw mill on the site, 
that had to be done to fulfil the condition was to move 
old mill down to the creek. This was done in 1798 by an 
American mill-wright for the sum of one thousand dollars- 
A dam and slide for salmon was constructed where Helm s 
dam is now built and the two mills were presently in opera 
tion on the east side of the stream. 

The following year the Hon. D. W. Smythe, Surveyor 
General, writing on Canada, remarks on the excellence of 
these mills at Smith s Creek, which were patronized by 
settlers from far and near. 




CHAPTER IV. 

TALES OF THE EARLY DAYS. 

Now let us talk about the ancient days, 
And things which happened long before our birth. 

JEAN INGELOW. 

HE abundance of game and fish in those early days 
can only be conjectured from the tales of the 
pioneers. Myndert Harris was the great hero 
of the chase and to him are attributed the 
two following feats. Coming up the shore 
from Gage s Creek one day, he came upon a fine buck, 
standing out in the surf. It had evidently been chased, for 
its eyes glared and it was practically at bay. Harris, nothing 
daunted, waded out to it and seizing it by the horns forced 
its head under water. It was a fierce struggle but the sturdy 
pioneer was a match for the buck and eventually it succumb 
ed. On another occasion while out maple-sugaring in the 
woods, he came across a bear which threatened to attack 
him. He was unarmed at the time but, picking up a syrup- 
trough, he rushed at it and after some heavy blows, succeed 
ed in killing it. 

The presence of sturgeon in the Lake has already been 
noted. It is only necessary to remark something concerning 
the abundance of salmon in the creek. James Sculthorpe 
who came here in 1801 to live with his grandfather, Elias 
Smith, was the famous fisherman of the settlement. In one 

(*) 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 13 

night in company with an uncle he caught three hundred 
salmon for which the pair refused fifty dollars next morning. 
On another occasion, setting out in a boat with a youth 
named Taylor, he entered a cove near the mouth of the 
creek. Hardly had the evening s sport begun than Taylor 
was seized with convulsions and fell overboard. The boat 
was upset and Sculthorpe had much difficulty in gaining the 
shore. He immediately gave the alarm and search was 
made for Taylor, who was eventually found on the hill-side, 
whither he had crawled. Meanwhile the commotion in the 
cove had alarmed a huge shoal of salmon and in their haste 
to escape the frightened fish carried the boat along with 
them. Next morning the fishermen returned for the boat 
and found it lying bottom-up on the shore. Judge of their 
astonishment when, on turning it over, thirty-two fine 
salmon were found wedged into it. 

The presence of the dense woods and the swamp at the 
mouth of the creek led to the prevalence of malaria in 
September of each year. As there was no doctor in the 
settlement, the pioneers suffered greatly from the accompany 
ing ague and fever. A few years however witnessed the 
clearing away of the damp woods and with their removal the 
malaria soon vanished. 

Prior to the outbreak of the War of 1812 the little settle 
ment was subjected to the ravages of the " spotted plague." 
This malady could not be attributed to climatic conditions 
for it attacked the colony in March and April immediately 
after a cold winter. Little is known of its nature. All that 
is recorded is that decomposition of blood and tissue follow 
ed death rapidly. To illustrate the extent and rapidity of 



14 PORT HOPE 

its ravages, it is but necessary to refer to the following 
examples. Mrs. Soper, residing at Smith s Creek was 
struck down with it and her brother, Samuel Marsh, the 
first settler of Port Britain, was summoned to her death-bed. 
On his return home, he too became a victim to the plague, 
dying only a week after his sister. Meanwhile Mr. Sexton, 
his brother-in-law, had been called in to make his will. He, 
too, was attacked and before another week had elapsed, he 
succumbed. It was thus that the dread plague ravaged the 
whole settlement and deprived the community of many of 
its best members. 

In the summer of 1794 the surveyors discovered the 
Cranberry Marsh to the north-west of the new settlement. 
At the present day when food in great variety is so readily 
obtainable, such a discovery could scarcely be of any 
moment but to the hard-wrought settlers it was indeed . 
boon. The young people of the community were thereafter 
wont to make annual excursions to the Marsh to procure 
the red berries. Another find of a less pleasant nature was 
subsequently made when the " Haunted Meadow " was first 
encountered.* This swamp, for such it was, had been 
originally formed by a beaver-dam. When first seen it was 
covered with a dense undergrowth and encircling it were 
plum-trees in great profusion. The presence of will-o -the- 
wisps unfortunately gave it an uncanny reputation and 
settlers kept away from its vicinity. Its evil fame was 
enhanced by the mysterious disappearance of an orphan-boy, 

* The tale of the " Haunted Meadow " is purely legendary. Its exact locality is 
not known at the present day but it must have been somewhere in the neighborhood 
of Port Hope. 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES, 15 

who was said to have been ill-treated and ultimately murder 
ed by a surly old settler, living within a few miles of the 
meadow. The story further explained that he had been 
buried in the meadow and that his ghost was accustomed to 
wander round at night. This theory was supported by the 
adventure of two bold young men, who, throwing fears to 
the wind, went to pick plums one evening within the charm 
ed circle. They had scarcely climbed into the trees when 
weird, guttural noises were heard and presently a ghostly 
figure began to flit around. Thoroughly frightened the 
pair beat a hasty retreat, not understanding that the sounds 
were due to harmless frogs and the strange light to the ex 
plosions of marsh gas. 




CHAPTER V. 

PORT HOPE IN 1813 AND IN 1826. 

One age moves onward, and the next builds up 

Cities and gorgeous palaces, where stood 

The rude log-huts of those who tamed the wild. 

LOWELL. 

ESCRIPTIONS of Port Hope as it appeared in 1813 
and in 1826 have been handed down to the pre 
sent day and, in placing them before the readers of 
this book, it was considered as probably the best 
mode of tracing the growth of the Town, if 
its aspect at various dates were portrayed consecu 
tively. Already a glimpse of the primitive town has been 
afforded and now its appearance at two subsequent dates 
will be detailed. 



To a traveller approaching Smith s Creek from the Lake 
in the year 1813, the most prominent structure to attract his 
eye would be the Smith Homestead on the Point. The 
Point, it may be explained, is the piece of land abutting on 
the Lake at the foot of King Street and the Homestead 
stood about where the last house on the east side of the 
street now stands. The house, which was the first frame 
structure to be erected between Belleville and Toronto, was 
built by Peter Smith, the son of Elias Smith, in 1797. The 
building faced the west and, if all accounts are true, it was 
completely partitioned off into two portions. Its dimensions 

(16) 




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31 

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en 



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S*i 
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- 
- 








HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 17 

were about twenty-five feet by thirty feet and it possessed an 
upper story. Prior to its occupation by Elias Smith and his 
family in 1798 it was used as a store and school-house. 
Mr. Smith had sent up from Montreal a young man named 
Collins with a supply of goods and this same young man 
kept the first store and taught the first school in Port Hope. 
Besides being the earliest school-house and store in the 
Town, the old place may be said to have been the first 
farm-house in the Township of Hope. 

The next buildings to meet the traveller s gaze would be 
the grist and saw-mills, already mentioned as being built on 
the east side of the creek at the end of what is now Helm s 
dam. Between these mills and the Smith house, on the 
Flats, was an ashery. On the west side of the dam were 
Paul Hayward s clothing-works and a little to the north 
James Hawkin s blacksmith shop. " Uncle Jim," as he was 
familiarly called, was the genius of the place, of whom more 
will be written later on. Suffice it to note that his shop 
contained the first trip-hammer in the province and was also 
supplied with bellows and grinding stone, enabling the 
clever mechanic to turn out everything from a needle to an 
anchor. 

Herchimere s trading-post still occupied its old site, though 
no longer used for commercial purposes. On what is now 
Mill Street, Jeremiah Britton had a store and residence and, 
on top of the hill, in the neighborhood of Mr. Hoffman s 
residence, stood " Uncle Nick s " log-cabin. On the side of 
the hill at the foot of Walton Street rose the old timber 
malt-house, in the upper story of which dwelt Mr. Rufus 
Burr. 



1 8 PORT HOPE 

A rude bridge spanned the creek where now stands the 
Walton Street Bridge. A freshet had recently cut out a 
new channel to the eastward and another bridge had been 
thrown over it. A little to the south a verdant island divid 
ed the waters of the stream. 

On the north side of Walton Street were two buildings, 
one of which was the Town Hall and the other the old log 
school-house opposite what is now the Queen s Hotel. On 
the south side of the road at a point about the rear of the 
same hotel, stood the most aristocratic mansion of the place. 
This was a building eighteen feet by thirty-five and a story 
and a half in height, built by Mr. Joseph Caldwell in 1802 
and subsequently kept by him as the first hotel in Smith s 
Creek. In the rear of what is now Curtis grocery store, 
"Uncle Jim had built the famous Red Tavern in 1803. 
He manufactured all the nails, door-hinges and latches re 
quired in its construction, erected the chimneys, plastered 
the walls and finally became the landlord. 

These scattered buildings comprised the Village of Smith s 
Creek in 1813. It is probable that there were other build 
ings but those enumerated, as being the most important, 
were probably all that the historian could recall.* To -them 
must be added the homes of the settlers in the neighbor 
hood, who for all practical purposes formed a portion of the 
population. 



* This description of the Town has been derived from anonymous papers pub 
lished in the " Guide" in 1871. Some mistakes are obvious. For instance, Britton s 
store was not opened until 1815. Again other places have been omitted Smith s 
Distillery erected in 1802, and Caldwell s tannery started in 1800. Otherwise the 
description gives a general view of the Town at that date. 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 19 

During the period from 1813 to 1826, there was a marked 
growth in the Town and the number of buildings comprising 
the corporation was largely increased. While none of the 
structures of the earlier date are still in existence, several of 
those standing in 1826, yet remain to testify to the skill of 
their builders. 

Commencing at the Point and passing up King Street, 
four important buildings were to be found on the east side 
of the road. The Smith Homestead still occupied its old 
site at the foot of the street. On the vacant lot to the south 
of Mr. Thomas Neeland s house, stood " the most beauti 
fully picturesque residence " of the place* that of M. F. 
Whitehead, Esq., Collector of Customs. Higher up the hill 
rose the most prominent structure in Port Hope, St. John s 
Church (now St. Mark s), which had been erected within the 
preceding four years. Lastly where H. A. Ward, Esq., M.P. 
now resides, stood the village School House. 

The only other residences on Protestant Hill f were the 
homes of Messrs. Henderson, Hatton, Riordan and 
Mitchell, while a portion of the house now occupied by 
James Craick, Esq., formed the residence of Postmaster 
David Smart. 

Passing down to Mill Street and about on the site of Mill 
Street Presbyterian Church stood the store and post-office of 
Mr. Smart. South from this and on the slope of the hill 
the old log malt-house still remained. To the south again 

This old building was removed a few years since to a lot opposite the residence 
of Thos. Long, Esq, on King Street and there bricked over. 

t So called by Thomas Henderson who was the life of the village in 1826. 



20 PORT HOPE 

stood the present Royal Hotel, the first brick structure in 
Port Hope, erected in 1823* by J. Brown and occupied in 
1826 by " Uncle Mark ;: Hewson. South again were the 
stores of Jacobs, watchmaker, Orton, auctioneer and Stevens, 
hatter. J, D. Smith s red store and residence occupied the 
site of Record s pump factory. Across the way were the 
grist and saw-mills and a little farther down towards the 
Lake were two small houses. 

Queen Street was the manufacturers thoroughfare. At 
the Toronto Bank Corner, Thum had a blacksmith shop. 
Along the east side of the street at the dam were Hawkin s 
blacksmith shop, Hayward s wool-carding factory, Metcalf s 
chair-bottom factory and Downey s cut-nail works. On the 
west side of the street were Robertson s residence and 
tannery, Smith s distillery on the site of Helm s Foundry, 
the residence store and distillery of John Brown, Esq., south 
of the present British Hotel and the Sculthorpe homestead 
just east of the Drill Shed. 

On the south side of Walton Street between the Creek 
and the railway-crossing were Sawyer & Phelp s store, a 
tailor shop, Robertson s wooden stores, Wm. Brogdin s 
residence and Wm. Rosebury s tavern. Between the rail 
way and John Street were a store and Walker s Tavern. On 
the site of the Opera House Block was the fanning-mill of 
Thomas Harper and where the St. Lawrence Hall now rises 
stood the residence and store of John Cundle, the first 
butcher. Then came a small house with the Red Tavern in 
its rear. To the east of Dr. Power s residence stood a little 

* This date is still visible on a stone over the door-way. 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 21 

house known as the " Sparrow s Nest." Where Peter 
Robertson Esq. now resides the home of T. T. Orton was 
built and on the site of James Robertson s house lived Old 
Shoemaker Smith. 

The north side of Walton Street was taken up by the 
houses of Messrs. Mark Burnham, John Hewson and John 
Saxon, the latter s residence being erected on the site now 
occupied by B. P. Ross, Esq. s house. Where the Tempest 
Block now stands a group of wooden houses were being 
erected by Wm. Brogdin. 

The first building on Cavan Street was Fowke s distillery. 
Where Craig s tannery now stands, Smart s distillery was in 
operation and on the site of the File Factory rose Brown s 
Mills. 

On John Street Mr. Lee lived in a house in the vicinity 
of Oke s present store. Across the street were the residence 
and tannery of William Sisson. Farther south and on the 
east side lived Mr. Thum, the blacksmith. Where Charles 
Smith, Esq. now lives stood the Haywards house and 
"Aunt Betsy, widow of Elias Smith, Jun. , lived on the 
site of the Grand Trunk Station. 

This completes the enumeration of Port Hope s build 
ings in 1826. The general outline is doubtless correct but 
it could scarcely be expected that anyone writing of a place 
forty-five years after the date in question, could recall ac 
curately all the details of the scene. * 



This description of Port Hope in 1826, is that of the late Wm. Furby, Esq. 
written in 1871. 



CHAPTER VI. 

MUNICIPAL LIFE. 

" Why is my District death-rate low? 

Said Binks of Hezabad. 
" Wells, drains and sewage-outfalls are 

My own peculiar fad." 

KIPLING. 

Hope first became a definite corporation 
in 1797, when Messrs. Smith and Walton laid 
out a village plot beside the creek. Its name 
then and for several years subsequent thereto, 
was Smith s Creek and under that designation a 
post office was established in 1817. But meantime the use 
of the name Toronto had begun to creep in, especially in 
legal documents * and there was considerable confusion 
over the dual nomenclature. The difficulty was settled at a 
public meeting held in 1819, whereat Mr. G. S. Boulton s 
suggestion of the name " Port Hope " was unanimously 
accepted. All these years the village figured as part of the 
Township of Hope and was governed by means of " town 
ship meetings " held every New Year. One assessor looked 
after both village and township and valued each village lot 
the same as one-fourth of an acre of cleared land. 



* For example, " Deed, bargain and sale dated i8th Sept. 1817 from Thomas 
Ward to John D. Smith of i acre, 30 perches in the Town of Toronto, County of 
Durham, etc. 

(22) 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 23 

In 1834 Port Hope was duly incorporated as a town by 
an Act of Parliament of the 6th of March, which defined the 
limits of the corporation and provided for the establishment 
of a police and a public market therein. The form of gov 
ernment was to be by means of a President and Board of 
Police. For electoral purposes, the town was divided into 
four wards each of which returned one member. (Ward I. 
included all land south of Walton Street and west of the 
Creek : Ward II. all south of a line drawn east from the 
foot of Walton Street and east of the Creek : Ward III. all 
north of the afore-mentioned line and east of the Creek : 
and Ward IV. all north of Walton Street and west of the 
Creek.) The four members so elected chose a fifth colleague 
and the five appointed a President from among their own 
number. 

The first Board which met in May, 1834, was composed 
of President M. F. Whitehead and Members John D. Smith, 
Wm. Henderson, John Brown and Erasmus Fowke. For 
four years Mr. Whitehead ably filled the President s chair 
and was then succeeded by Mr. John Brown. 

The Municipal Institutions Act of 1849 did away with 
the Police Board and established a Mayor and Town Coun 
cil in its room. The present ward system was introduced 
and each ward was required to elect three councillors. The 
assembled councillors appointed their own Mayor and that 
was the mode of selection of the chief magistrate until 1859 
when he was appointed by popular suffrage as now. 

On January 2ist, 1850 the first Town Council met at 
Strong s Hotel. Its members were J. W. Barrett, F. W. 
Metcalfe, W. B. Butterfield, W. M. Smith, W. Mitchell, 



24 PORT HOPE 

J. Hatton, J. Lynn, A. Porter and J. T. Williams. The last- 
named gentleman became the first Mayor. 

Until 1860 when Port Hope withdrew from the United 
Counties, a Reeve and Deputy- Reeve were also selected 
from among the councillors to represent the Town in the 
Counties Council. After 1860 the separation continued 
until the end of the year 1893 when it was considered ad 
visable to again join the Town to the Counties. From the 
year 1894 to 1898 inclusive a Reeve and two Deputy 
Reeves were annually chosen by the people. These with 
nine aldermen made such a very large and unwieldy body 
that in 1896 the number of councillors was reduced to six. 
Two years later a new County representation was introduc 
ed doing away with the old double system by means of 
Reeves. The election of 1899 was run on new lines. Five 
town councillors were appointed without any reference to 
wards but, as might have been expected, a deadlock oc 
curred in 1900 which necessitated a change to six aldermen 
in the present year. 

Prior to the occupancy of the Town Hall in 1853, Port 
Hope s legislators had no permanent meeting-place. The 
Board of Police seem to have had a partiality for the 
Exchange Coffee House, situated where the Queen s Hotel 
now stands and latterly known as Thomson s Hotel. The 
first Town Council secured a room in Gillett s building on 
the south-east corner of Queen and Walton Streets, where 
they met until the Town Hall was ready for them. The 
contract for the Town Hall was let in the year 1851 to Mr. 
Philip Fox for ten thousand dollars and the structure 
was completed two years later. Its outward appearance 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 25 

was almost identical with the present edifice and it only dif 
fered in internal arrangements. By the time it was alto 
gether completed it cost double the amount anticipated in 
the contract and completely ruined Mr. Fox. A fine cloc k 
and bell were added in 1855, the clock being put in by H. 
S. Perry & Co. of New York for .144. 

After witnessing many historic events transpire within its 
walls, the old building was gutted by fire early on the morn 
ing of February 3rd, 1893. The Town Council immediate 
ly set about its restoration. The plans of Architect Curry 
of Toronto, a worthy son of the Town, were accepted and 
building-contracts let to several local firms. The result of 
an expenditure of very little over ten thousand dollars is a 
most compact and serviceable Town Hall, reflecting much 
credit on architect and builders. The new building was re- 
occupied by the Town Council on February 26th, 1894. A 
new Town Bell and Clock were subsequently put in, the 
former costing $207 and the latter $785. 

Up to November 5th, 1883, Port Hope had its own 
standard of time which was about thirty minutes slower than 
Montreal time. It is true an attempt had been made in 
1857 to put the Town Clock ahead half an hour but so 
violent were the resulting protests that it was hurriedly put 
back and so remained until standard time was everywhere 
introduced. 

One important public work on which Port Hope is to be 
congratulated is her splendid water-works system, the result of 
many years of experience and effort. The earliest account of 
any movement in the direction of water-supply for the Town is 
an order of the Town Council of December 26th., 1854, 



44538 



26 PORT HOPE 

authorizing the Committee on Sewers and Water, " to pro 
cure an accurate survey and estimate of the costs of estab 
lishing water-works for the use of the town upon the pre 
liminary examination and report made by T. A. Stewart, 
Esq. , C. E. " Evidently nothing came of this attempt nor 
for many years did the Committee on Sewers and Water 
bestir itself. About 1869, however, an ingenious proposal 
was presented, to convey water from a dam on the west side 
of Cavan Street near the Brewery, along Cavan Street to 
Walton Street, to be used for fire purposes. Difficulties 
with the owners of the water-supply prevented this scheme 
from ever being carried out. 

Two years later a special committee was appointed which 
advocated a system very similar to the present one but again 
without avail. Next year a new committee was appointed 
and the services of Engineer Keefer were secured. The 
result of this agitation was t lat in May 1873 tne Committee 
reported in favor of a rotary pump system, to be built and 
operated by John Helm, Esq. at his dam on Queen Street. 

This plan was matured during the ensuing winter and 
next year Port Hope s first water-works were installed, under 
the supervision of Messrs. McLenann, Hayden and Garnett. 
The system was a fourteen-hydrant affair, for fire purposes 
only, and cost about $16,500, though much more was spent 
in extensions in later years. The whole was leased to the 
corporation for twenty years from its completion in Novem 
ber 1874. 

After the destruction by fire of Trinity College School in 
1895, the absolute necessity for better fire protection was 
keenly felt and the inadequacy of the existing system real- 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 27 

ized. With very little waste of time it was decided to secure 
water from a filtering basin situated on the beach west of 
the harbour, to pump this to a tank at the top of Dorset 
Street and from thence to fill extended mains through-out 
the Town. McQuillan & Co. of Toronto were given the 
contract and about $30,000 were expended in 1895. The 
completed works were then vested in a Board of Commiss 
ioners, elected by the people and appointed for the first time 
in 1896. Since 1896 the Commissioners have expended in 
the neighborhood of $25,000, providing two new filtering- 
basins, new pump, new boiler and a splendid steel water- 
tower, seventy-seven feet in height and capable of holding 
230,000 gallons of water. With this improved plant both 
domestic and fire purposes are efficiently served. The 
Board of Commissioners consists of three members and the 
mayor, ex-ofrjcio. R. Deyell, Esq. has presided over its 
deliberations since its inauguration and R. Gray, Esq. has 
been the efficient Secretary-Treasurer. 

One other public possession of the Town, which should 
be mentioned in this connection is the large Park to the 
east of the Town. The greater part of this property was 
purchased in 1871 from the College authorities in Toronto 
for $3,000 and the remainder was secured from the Smith 
Family. An attempt had been made to buy the land in 
1856 and some arrangement had been come to but for some 
reason the bargain was cancelled by the Council of 1861. 




CHAPTER VII. 

POLITICAL CONNECTIONS. 

Whom will you send to London town, 

To Parliament and a that ? 
Or wha in a the country round 

The best deserves to fa that ? 

BURNS. 

O history of Port Hope would be complete without 
some account of its connection with the political 
institutions of the country and so, while this 
chapter may scarcely be considered as dealing 
directly with the life of the Town, it is rendered 
necessary by the foregoing consideration. 

Port Hope was originally situated in the District of 
Nassau one of the four divisions into which Governor 
Dorchester divided Western Canada in 1788. The other 
three districts were denominated Lunenburg, Mecklenburg, 
and Hesse. These German names applied until 1792 when, 
by a proclamation of October i5th, Governor Simcoe 
changed them. The Nassau District became the Home 
District and it extended from the Midland District on the 
Bay of Quinte to a line drawn north from Long Point in 
Lake Erie. Meanwhile on the i6th of January the same 
Governor had divided Upper Canada into nineteen counties 
for electoral purposes. Of these Durham was the thirteenth 
and it, together with York and Lincoln, was required to send 
one of the sixteen members to the First Parliament of 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 29 

Upper Canada. This original county of Durham was more 
particularly defined in 1798 when it was proclaimed as con 
sisting of the Townships of Hope, Clarke and Darlington,* to 
gether with all the land northward to the chain of small lakes 
back of Peterboro . These townships had been created in 
1 792, the first in response toapetition presented to Government 
by Jonathan Walton, Elias Smith and Abraham Walton, 
dated October 6th, 1792. It was so named in honor of 
Colonel Henry Hope, a member of the Legislative Council, 
to whom Governor Hamilton transferred the Government in 
1787, pending the return of Governor Carleton from Eng 
land. (Hope Gate at Quebec was also named in his honor.) 

The counties of Northumberland, Durham, York and 
Simcoe by the same legislation composed the Home District 
with the District Town at York. The same Act also provid 
ed that when the population of Northumberland and Dur 
ham combined had reached one thousand and when six 
townships therein held regular meetings that the two coun 
ties should be formed into the Newcastle District. This 
result was attained by the first day of January, 1800, and the 
Newcastle District was duly constituted with its capital at 
the village of Newcastle near Presqu ile Point. The same 
year the representation in Parliament was altered slightly and 
Durham, the East Riding of York and Simcoe formed one 
constituency. 

By an Act of 1802 it was provided that a Jail and Court 
House should be erected at Newcastle but, such a situation 
proving most inconvenient, the Act was repealed in 1805. 

* Clarke is named after Major-General Alured Clarke, Lieut.-Governor in 1792 
and Darlington after Darlington in England. 



I 



30 PORT HOPE 

As a consequence the Magistrates of the District were au 
thorized to select a suitable site, and Amherst, a small village 
where Cobourg Jail now stands, was chosen and next year 
a frame Court House and jail was erected there. 

In 1808 another change gave the Newcastle District a 
member in the Legislature and this representation continued 
until 1825 when, owing to the result of the first census re 
turns of Canada, taken during the preceding year, each 
county was allowed two members. 

Meanwhile for many years there had been much conten 
tion among various sections in regard to the situation of the 
Court House and numerous law-suits were entered into dis 
puting the legality of the magistrates action in building at 
Amherst. The result was that in 1830 the highest legal tri 
bunal declared that the Court House was no Court House at 
all, as the magistrates had not been authorized to erect such 
a building. To settle the difficulty the next session of the 
Legislature legalized the Court House and granted indem 
nity to the magistrates for "the illegal expenditure of money 
applied in its erection." Two years later the present Co 
bourg Jail was erected to serve as Court House and Jail 
combined. 

The Counties had all this time been growing rapidly and 
by 1821 Durham had taken in the new townships of Cavan, 
Manvers, Cartwright*, Emily, Ops and Mariposa. It con 
tinued to comprise portions of Peterborough and Victoria 
Counties, until by the " Municipal Institutions Act ; of 

These three townships were formed in 1816 ; Manvers named after Charles 
Pierrepont, Earl Manvers ; Cartwright after Hon. Richard Cartwright, grandfather 
of the present Sir Richard, and Cavan after County Cavan in Ireland. 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 31 

1849 these two new divisions were definitely set apart and 
the modern County of Durham with its six townships was 
left. (These northern townships had formed part of the Col- 
borne District since 1838.) 

From 1825 to the time of the Act of Union Durham 
and Northumberland were each entitled to two members 
and for Durham sat Messrs. Smith, Fothergill, Brown, 
Boulton and Elliot. Since the Act of Union East Durham 
has been Port Hope s constituency. Up to Confederation 
it was represented by John Tucker Williams, James Smith, 
Francis H. Burton and John Shuter Smith consecutively. 

Since Confederation two sets of representatives are re 
quired by law, one for the Dominion Parliament and one 
for the Provincial Parliament. For the former the Town of 
Port Hope has supplied all the members, viz. F. H. Burton, 
Lewis Ross, Colonel A. T. H. Williams, H. A. Ward, 
T. Dixon Craig and H. A. Ward for a second term (1900.) 
For the latter the representation has been as follows,- 
Colonel Williams, John Rosevear, Dr. Brereton, T. D. 
Craig, George Campbell and W. A. Fallis. 

When the Newcastle District was constituted, its first 
courts of justice were held at .Newcastle (Presqu ile.) The 
earliest one recorded was presided over by Justice Thomp 
son of Kingston and so small were the quarters provided 
that when the jury retired, they were compelled to deliberate 
in the open air seated on a log. The Amherst Court House 
was but a slight improvement as there was still insufficient 
accommodation for the Jurymen, who in this case were wont 
to withdraw to a neighboring tavern. It was not until the 
erection of the present commodious Court House in Cobourg 



32 PORT HOPE 

that the course of justice has succeeded in running smoothly. 
The earliest form of County Government was by means 
of Quarter Sessions, presided over by the District Magistrates 
and this continued until 1841, the Newcastle District Judge 
being D. M. Rogers of Grafton. The Union Act of 1841 
established District Councils, similar to the County Councils 
of the present day, with the exception that the Warden was 
a Crown appointee. He became an elective officer in 1847 
and has since remained so. The Town of Port Hope with 
drew from the Counties in 1860 and remained independent 
until 1894. Efforts have been made at various times to 
separate the counties but hitherto without result. 





CHAPTER VIII. 



THE HARBOUR. 



And the ships sail outward and return, 
Bending and bowing o er the billowy swells. 

LONGFEL LOW. 



HOUGH Port Hope was constituted a port of entry 
as early as i8j9, no effort was made to secure 
harbour or wharf accommodation until 1829. In 
that year was incorporated the Poit Hope Harbour 
and Wharf Company. According to the terms of 
its Charter the Company was bound " to construct a harbour 
which should be accessible to and fit, safe and commodious 
for the reception and shelter of the ordinary description of 
vessels navigating Lake Ontario and to complete the same 
by May ist, 1844," under penalty of loss of their Charter. 

While the Company was in process of formation, John 
D. Smith, Esq. offered ten acres of land for harbour pur 
poses, with the understanding that all the villagers should be 
come shareholders, but unfortunately a difficulty arose at the 
first election of officers, which disfranchised a majority of the 
shareholders. Much ill-feeling was thereby aroused and the 
prospects of the Company were seriously impaired. Mr. 
Smith withdrew his offer and the property was subsequently 
purchased from him in 1835. 

(33) 



34 PORT HOPE 

Notwithstanding steps were at once taken to construct a 
steamboat wharf and a harbour. The wharf was run out 
where the eastern pier now stands and at the close of the 
Company s regime in 1851 it extended as far as the present 
store-house. To form a harbour, another pier was run out 
a corresponding distance on the west side of the creek s 
mouth. At this point, progress ceased and by the date 
fixed in the Charter, the harbour was far from being in a 
satisfactory state. In stormy weather and occasionally even 
in moderate weather, it was impossible for steamers to ap 
proach the land, so that much loss was occasioned to 
merchants and travellers. Commodore Hodcler of the 
Royal Canadian Yacht Club described it in such terms as 
these, " During a south or south-west gale this port cannot be 
made by large vessels drawing over nine feet of water, with 
safety, owing to the tremendous swell rolling in from the 
Lake ; besides which the piers being only one hundred and 
twenty-five feet apart at the mouth and the basin very small, 
there is not room to check the speed of a vessel or to snub 
her without danger to herself or others." 

The matter came to a head in 1851, when the Company 
applied for permission to increase their capital. The Town 
viewed such a step on the part of Messrs. Meredith and 
Andrews, the principal officers of the Company, with dis 
favour and commenced legal proceedings against them, to 
have the Charter declared forfeit. A compromise however 
was arrived at and the harbour was purchased from the 
Company for ^1 1,500, being thereupon vested in a Board 
of Harbour Commissioners, which has ever since managed 
its affairs. 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 35 

The first Board was composed of Chairman E. P. Smith 
and Messrs. R. Armstrong, John Ross, W. M. Smith, J. S. 
Smith, F. Beamish, Peter Robertson and T. G. Ridout. The 
new authorities, having as an incentive the near prospect of 
a railroad to the North, set actively to work to enlarge the 
harbour. The services of a competent engineer were sec 
ured and plans perfected so that when the Town raised 
^15,000 for harbour purposes in 1855, everything was in 
readiness to proceed with the enlargement. To acquire a 
safe and commodious basin, the marshy island already re 
ferred to was to be removed. The completed harbour was 
to extend over five acres and to project over twelve hundred 
feet into the Lake and eight hundred feet within the shore 
line. A depth of fourteen feet outside and eleven feet inside 
the beach was to be provided and a wharf accommodition 
of nearly five thousand feet. The contract for this impor 
tant work was let to George Weir and the sub-contractors 
were Morton & Jones for earthwork and French & Shevar 
for timberwork. Mr. Simms was the contractor s engineer 
and Mr. T. C. Clark, the Board s adviser. For the land 
on which the new harbour stands, the Commissioners paid 
at the rate of $11,000 per acre, while by 1867 the Contractor 
had received no less than $244,000. Since that date the 
Dominion Government has expended large sums on the 
harbour to keep it in a state of repair. 

On the whole the most important use to which Port 
Hope s harbour has been put has been the lumber trade. 
In the thirties and fourties a group of shanties on the site of 
Helm s Foundry were annually occupied by a rough gang 
of French-Canadian lumbermen, who every spring construct- 



36 PORT HOPE 

ed rafts in the old harbour. When the new harbour and 
Midland Railway were completed, the new basin became 
the scene of the raftsmen s labours. As a rule the lumber 
men of the fifties were a much better behaved set than the 
whiskey-drinking Frenchmen who preceded them. As the 
country opened up, the lumber was shipped through without 
being rafted. 

At present, though in excellent repair and offering many 
inducements to prospective manufacturers, the harbour is 
but little utilized. It seems but to be awaiting the opening 
up of a canal to Rice Lake, thereby connecting it with the 
Trent Valley Canal System, to make it a hive of industry. 
There now seems to be a very fair prospect that this 
route for the outlet of the Canal will be adopted 
as being the most direct, most feasible of construc 
tion and cheapest. The scheme is by no means a 
new one. The "patriot" Gouriay, whose opinions have 
been shown to be valuable, wrote about 1820 that "in the 
course of time it may become an object of importance to 
connect Rice Lake by a canal with Lake Ontario direct, in 
stead of following the present canoe route by its natural 
outlet into the Bay of Quinte." * 

As early as 1833 the Government of Upper Canada took 
into consideration a canal from Lake Simcoe to Lake Ont 
ario and in December of that year sent Robert A. Maingy, 
C. E. to report on the practicability of the Port Hope Rice 
Lake route. His report, which it would be impossible in a 
work of this kind to quote at any length, showed the route 



* Statistical account of Upper Canada, 1822. 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 37 

to be perfectly feasible and much preferable to the Trent 
River route, since "the communication from Lake Ontario 
to Rice Lake up to Lake Simcoe can by this route be com 
pleted for a sum not greater than is necessary merely to 
open the navigation from the mouth of the Trent to the 
Rice Lake." 

At the next session of the Legislature the Port Hope and 
Rice Lake Canal Company was incorporated and work on 
the canal begun at the Rice Lake end, but, like many of the 
early efforts in this Province, it was abandoned before it was 
well begun. 

Since then the Trent Valley Canal System has been 
gradually evolved. Port Hope apparently took no interest 
in the concern until 1880 when Colonel Williams M. P. 
secured the services of Government Engineer Stark to go 
over the route. The matter has again been brought vitally 
before the people by the prospect of the completion of the 
Canal. Committees of citizens have been appointed during 
the last three years, who are employing every possible means 
to secure the selection of the Port Hope route. Of these 
Dr. Powers, Dr. Corbett and J. F. Clark have been the 
most active members. 




CHAPTER IX. 

STEAM NAVIGATION. 

Man s latest ally upon land or sea, - 
He owns indeed a glorious gift in thee. 

MACCOLL. 

HE maritime flavor contained in the name, "Port 
Hope," obviously demands that some attention 
should be paid to the shipping interests of the Town. 
Already in the preceding chapter, the development 
of the Harbour from its diminutive beginnings to its 
present goodly proportions has been traced out and it ac 
cordingly becomes the aim of this chapter to set down some 
record of those vessels, especially steamboats, which have 
frequented this Port from the days when the first steamship 
ploughed the waters of Lake Ontario. This momentous 
event in lake-shipping occurred in 1816, when the Frontenac, 
a vessel of seven hundred tons, was launched at Ernesttown 
on the Bay of Quinte. This steamer immediately started to 
run from Prescott to Niagara calling at Newcastle (near 
Presqu ile Point), York and Burlington, the fare from Pres 
cott to York being placed at 4. 

The Frontenac was followed in a few years by other 
steamships so that the "York Loyalist" of August 1 2th, 1826 
has this to say of the new departure in marine life, "On 
noticing the first trip of another steamboat, we cannot help 

(38) 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 39 

contrasting the present means of conveyance with those ten 
years ago. At that time only a few schooners navigated the 
Lake and the passage was attended with many delays and 
much inconvenience. Now there are five steamboats, all 
affording excellent accommodation and the means of exped 
itious travelling. The routes of each are so arranged that 
almost every day of the week the traveller may find oppor 
tunity of being conveyed from one extremity of the Lake 
to the other in a few hours." 

The first steamer to call regularly at Port Hope 
was the Niagara which appeared in 1827. There was at 
that date not even the semblance of a wharf at Port Hope 
and passengers and goods were landed by means of small 
boats, which plied between the anchored vessel and the shore. 
This inconvenience was removed by the construction of a 
small pier in 1832. About this same period the steamer 
Constitution, later known as the Transit, began to ply across 
the Lake between Genesee County and the northern ports 
and continued to do so until 1837. She was then succeed 
ed by the Traveller and it again by the Hamilton in 1839. 

Meanwhile the Canada, Niagara, Queenston, Alciope, 
William the Fourth, St. George and other vessels had been 
performing trips up and down the Lake, calling regularly at 
Port Hope. These vessels left Toronto at 9 a. m. and 
rounding Gibraltar Point at the west end of Toronto Island 
stood down the Lake for Port Hope, which was reached at 
4 p. m. 

Up to 1840 there was little organization and little perman 
ency in lake navigation. Vessels were owned separately as a rule 
and from year to year were changed from one route to another. 



40 FORT HOPE 

But in 1840 the Niagara Harbour and Dock Company in 
augurated the Royal Mail Line of steamers with the St. 
George, Niagara and City of Toronto on Lake Ontario and 
three others on the St. Lawrence River. The three named 
sailed from Toronto to Kingston, calling at intermediate 
points and ever since there has been a regular daily service 
on the Lake during the summer months by the steamers of 
this Line. 

From 1840 to 1857 the following additional steamers 
were accustomed to call at Port Hope Princess Royal, 
Sovereign, Magnet, Passport, Arabian, Maple Leaf and 
Kingston. Of these three continue to traverse the Lake. 
The Passport (Caspian) and the Magnet ( Hamilton) joined 
the R. M. Fleet in 1847, being new steel steamers and the 
fastest on the Lake. The Magnet was modelled on the 
Clyde and was put together at Niagara by James and Neil 
Currie. The British Government took a large proportion of 
the stock with the view of using her in the event of war with 
the United States. The Passport was built the same year at 
Kingston. A few years after these two vessels began to run, 
it was deemed expedient to plank over their steel hulls, it 
being believed that with steel bottoms there was more 
danger of holes being stove in by the rocks in descending 
the rapids. The Kingston* was added to the line in 1855. 
After many years service, it was much altered becoming the 
Algerian. 

In 1857 the Canadian Navigation Company bought up 
the Line Boats and controlled them for the following 



* This steamer was used by King Edward VII when he visited Canada in 1860 
as Prince of Wales. 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 41 

eighteen years. Instead of running river and lake boats 
they despatched their steamers direct from Toronto to 
Montreal. The initial through fleet consisted of the Kings 
ton, Banshee, Passport, New Era, Champion and Magnet. 
Two famous boats were built curing these eighteen years 
the Spartan in 1864 and the Corsican in 1870. 

In 1875 the Richelieu Navigation Company amalgamated 
with the Canadian Company and the present R. &. O. Line 
was formed. This has now become one of the most famous 
shipping corporations of the world. Many new vessels have 
been added to its fleet and several of the older ones have 
disappeared. With the completion of the magnificent 
steamer Kingston in the present year, which, with its sister 
ship the Toronto, makes daily trips down the south shore, 
the famous old evening boats, that for so many years have 
called at Port Hope, have become memories of the past. 
The Spartan was the last of the old line to visit this Port, 
calling on September i4th, 1900. 

Meanwhile the Rochester Line has witnessed many 
changes. In 1840 a new vessel appeared on the route the 
Gore, commanded by Captain Dick. Two years later she 
was joined by the America and the two vessels ran conjointly 
until 1846, when the America took the trip alone for six 
years. The Admiral, its successor, only ran for one season, 
it being burned at Toronto, early in 1853. From 1855 to 
1863 the Maple Leaf* and the Highlander were on this 



*The Maple Leaf was the first vessel to run direct from Port Hope to Charlotte. 
It was purchased in 1863 by the American Government for $25,000, to be used as a 
transport in the war with the South. 



42 PORT HOPE 

route and after them the Rochester crossed the Lake for 
three seasons. 

The immediate predecessor of the Norseman (North 
King) was the Corinthian which began to run on June 24th, 
1865. She was built for the Line Boat Company but was 
used for several years on the Rochester Line. (During the 
first season there was great rivalry between her and the 
Rochester^] The Norseman, a name quite familiar to the 
people of Port Hope, was built in 1868 and for many years 
was on the route across the Lake. In 1891 it was entirely 
remodelled and overhauled, its name being changed to 
North King, 





CHAPTER X. 

EARLY MODES OF TRANSPORT, 

Then sing the praise of old coaching days 

When guards and fares were jolly-O, 
And a pleasant sound in the winding ways 

Was the sound of the coachman s tally-O. 

ANON. 

HE century which has just closed has witnessed 
many and wonderful changes in all departments of 
human life but perhaps the greatest achievement 
in its annals has been the marvellous development 
of the facilities of transportation. Everywhere this 
revolution in travel is manifest and nowhere can its course 
be better traced than in its connection with this town and its 
surrounding country. 

The founders of Port Hope, as has been seen, reached 
their future homes by water and on the water they preferred 
to travel for many years afterwards. Thus it came about 
that the earliest improvements were made in the field of navi 
gation. Flat-bottomed Durham boats in which many early 
settlers arrived were soon superseded by comfortable sailing 
packets and they in turn by steam-vessels about the year 
1820. By 1850 these steamboats had become not only large 
and luxurious but swift and trustworthy. Sailing vessels in 
large numbers were employed to convey lumber, coal and 
grain to and from the south shore and from about the middle 

(43) 



44 PORT HOPE 

of last century until recent years Port Hope possessed a 
large fleet of these schooners, many of which had been con 
structed in the town itself. However it is not the purpose 
of this chapter to relate more concerning lake navigation, a 
subject which has been partially dealt with in a previous 
section. 

On land the earliest communication was made with 
Rice Lake by means of the Indian carrying road. It is 
not known at what date this road was made but it is 
not unlikely that it was of very remote construction. The 
Indian name " Gochingomink " means " the commencement 
of the carrying-place so that it naturally follows that the 
road and the Indian village date back to the same dim 
antiquity. However this may be, the ancient path through 
the woods, marked by blazed trees, was in constant use when 
the first settlers arrived at Smith s Creek. The trail formed 
a direct and most convenient route from Smith s Creek to 
Sackville s Creek, at which point the Indians were accustom 
ed to launch their canoes. Its course lay to the eastward 
of the present gravel road, sometimes running as far as a 
mile away. As the woods have been gradually cleared away 
all traces of this old road have been obliterated 

It is a difficult matter to state anything definite about the 
early roads through Port Hope. All that can be done is to 
deduce certain conclusions from the facts at hand. During 
the war of 1812 the British soldiers were accustomed to put 
up at Marsh s Inn at Port Britain, on their way to and from 
York. From this it is evident that the main road at that 
day ran along near the Lake shore. At the same period it 
is known that Cavan Street was the thoroughfare to the 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 45 

north country and the building farthest west on Walton 
Street was at the Cavan Street corner. This points to the 
conclusion that Walton Street was not yet opened up above 
Cavan Street. Again certain old residents can recall a wind 
ing road which zig-zagged up the hill in the neighborhood 
of the Base Line and then ran westward, so that it is not 
improbable that this was the first road into Port Hope from 
the west. 

The main York Road (Danforth Road) running through 
Welcome and Dale must have been constructed shortly after 
the War of 1812, as it may be inferred that the Government 
recognized from experience the necessity of having a better 
means of communication between east and west. It may be 
concluded also that Walton Street* and the road to Welcome 
were opened up soon after this Danforth road was built. 
To the east of the Town the old post road ran up over 
Ward s hill and joined the present Cobourg Road near the 
blacksmith shop, half way to Cobourg. The Rice Lake 
road was another early line of communication. At first it 
ran directly north from Rossmount to Peterboro, without 
going near the Lake but soon after it circled around to 
Bewdley. Cavan Street formed its first connection into 
Town. 

These roads were presumably of corduroy construction, at 
least in swampy localities and the discomfort of travelling 
over them can best be expressed from actual experience. 
Captain Basil Hall, R.N. in July 1827 was travelling east 
from York. He wrote : u The horrible corduroy roads 



Walton Street was originally a winding cow-path. 



46 PORT HOPE 

again made their appearance in a more formidable shape by 
the addition of deep inky holes, which almost swallowed up 
the fore wheels of the wagon and bathed its hinder axle-tree. 
The jogging and plunging to which we were now exposed 
and the occasional bang when the vehicle reached the bot 
tom of one of these abysses were so new and remarkable in 
the history of our travels that we tried to make a good joke 
of them."* 

Even after the Cobourg Road Company had been formed 
in 1847 and had built the new connection into Port Hope 
complaints were rife, as witness the following broadside 
which appeared in the Guide of March i5th, 1859. 

TENDERS WANTED. 

f I "VENDERS will be received until the 2oth inst. for the 
JL construction of 100 Mud Scows to run between Co 
bourg and Port Hope on the Macadamized (?) Road 
connecting the two places, which is owned by Cobourg Cap 
italists. The Company feel that the new mode of convey 
ance is necessary as the loss of horses, waggons and valuable 
lives in the fathomless abyss of mud during court week was 
fearfully alarming. Until the completion of the said Mud 
Scows the Company will continue to exact toll from those 
who may be so fortunate as to escape alive through the gates. 
Though the legality of such exaction may be open to ques 
tion, they confidently expect that in view of the public spirit 
of the Company in providing the Scows aforesaid, the 
public will submit to be victimized. Dated at Cobourg this 
i5th day of March, 1859. 

SIMON GRUMPY 

Sec. Road Co. 

Since that time great improvements have been made and 
the majority of the roads into Port Hope, while not quite 
what could be desired are still very serviceable. 

Much difficulty was experienced by the first settlers both 
in working their farms and in drawing grain from the lack of 

*" Travels in North America in the Years 1827-1828" by Captain Basil 
Hall, R.N. 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 47 

horses. Mr. John Brown of Port Hope proved himself 
quite a benefactor when he made large purchases of French 
horses in Lower Canada and disposed of them on credit to 
the farmers. Owing to the bad condition of the roads the 
farmers of the back country were wont to wait for winter to 
provide good sleighing before venturing to Town. Ox-sleds 
were employed and after a good snow-fall the road to Town 
was lined with these vehicles, of which a person might pass 
fifty within a single mile. Those coming from a long dis 
tance travelled night and day. The road took them through 
Graham s Tavern (Baillieboro), Village Inn (Millbrook) and 
Bletcher s Corners. At the latter point there was always a 
warm welcome to all and huge fires burned in the Inn all 
day long. 

The first regular mail stage began to run through Port 
Hope about 1826. Prior to that date travellers either pass 
ed through in private carriages or on their own horses. 
The hardships of these early horsemen may best be told by 
quoting an amusing incident, which occurred to a traveller, 
who once put up at the " Red Tavern." He tied his steed 
carefully in a shed, inhabited by some cows, and betook him 
self into the Inn for some refreshment. On his return 
imagine his chagrin to discover saddle, bridle and stirrups 
completely vanished. The truth was that being made of straw 
the hungry cows had naturally enough devoured them. 

With the advent of the stage-coach, travel seemed to re 
ceive a new impetus so that by 1831 five trips a week were 
made. The coaches usually stopped at the Old Inn on the 
site of the present Queen s Hotel. This tavern, in the early 
days, stood in from the street and the stage drove up to the 



48 PORT HOPE 

door through a little avenue, quite in the style of the famous 
stage-coaches of Old England. In their palmy days these 
stages were fine large vehicles drawn by four horses and they 
presented quite an imposing picture as they dashed down 
Walton Street to the sound of the guard s horn. 

In summer good time was made by these stages but at 
many seasons of the year travellers were badly delayed by 
the lamentable state of the roads. A traveller in 1831 re 
ports that he left Port Hope at 2 A. M. and did not reach 
York until the following midnight. During this time he had 
to walk a considerable distance, owing to break downs and 
other delays. 

Mr. Hicks controlled the first stage coaches. After him 
came Mr. Jonathan Ogden, who had previously carried the 
mail weekly from Trenton to York on horseback. The last 
stage magnate was Mr. Weller and under him coaching saw 
its best days. Besides the regular mail coaches, Mr. Weller 
for some time ran a daily line of accommodation stages ex 
pressly for passengers from Cobourg to Toronto, leaving 
Port Hope at 9 A. M. and arriving at Toronto early in the 
evening. Horses were changed at Cobourg and at Marsh s, 
west of the Guideboard (Welcome). Another line of stages, 
run by the Bletchers, connected Port Hope with Lindsay 
and Peterboro . However no sooner was the whistle of the 
locomotive heard in the land, than stage-coaches became 
things of the past, at least in this neighborhood. 




CHAPTER XL 

THE ADVENT OF THE RAILROADS. 

Lo! dashing on through forest, glen and glade 
O er rushing rivers gorges deep and dread- 
Now lost, now seen, far o er the landscape face 
Yon fiery steed, so peerless in his pace. 

MACCOLL. 

HE earliest railroad scheme in which Port Hope took 
an interest was a proposed tram-line to Bewdley at 
the head of Rice Lake. This undertaking was 
agitated in 1832 and on the gth of January, 
1833 Postmaster David Smart made application to the 
Legislature for authority to construct such a line. Per 
mission was granted but with that the scheme seems to 
have dropped. 

By 1845 th e Toronto and Kingston Junction Railway had 
begun to be pushed and in October a public meeting of the 
inhabitants of Port Hope was held to consider the project. 
Nothing definite was accomplished during the ensuing six 
years but in 1851 a deputation was sent to a railroad meeting 
at Kingston and the same year a grant of 20 was voted by 
the Council to aid in making a survey of the proposed route. 
In 1852 the Grand Trunk Company absorbed this lesser 
road along with many similar ones and began the construct 
ion of its through line from Portland to Sarnia. Its original 
capital was ^9,500,000 which was soon increased to 12, 
000,000. By January of 1856 its road was complete with 

(49) 



50 PORT HOPE 

the exception of gaps between Brcckville and Toronto and 
Guelph and Sarnia. Contracts were let during the spring 
to Mr. John Fowler for the section from Grafton to Port 
Hope, to Mr. Betts for the viaduct and to Messrs. Humphrey 
and Harris for the section from Port Hope to the western 
limit of Hope Township. 

The latter gentlemen had their contract completed first 
and on Sept. ist, 1856 they invited several prominent citi 
zens of the Town to an excursion over their line. " A 
goodly number were at the depot grounds to see the Iron 
Horse harnessed for the first time in the history of the town 
to cars freighted with regular live Canadians."* Arrived 
at the Clarke line the excursionists watched the completion 
of Messrs. Spence and McKenzie s section, which joined 
them to Toronto. On their return to town supper and 
complimentary speeches closed the proceedings. 

A week later Mr. Fowler opened his section with an ex 
cursion party from Cobourg, who were also taken over the 
Hope section. Several Port Hope citizens accompanied 
the party on their return to Cobourg, where a banquet was 
served according to the usual custom. 

Meanwhile the Albert Bridget across the valley was in a 
fair way toward completion. Contractor Betts began work 
in May and by the end of August all his supporters were in 
place. They were built of white brick with stone founda 
tions, averaged thirty feet in height and were fifty-six in 

* " Guide," Sept. 6th, 1856. 

t An odd coincidence in connection with this old bridge was that it was built in 
1856, it measured 1856 feet in length and it rested on 56 piers. It was named in 
honour of the Prince Consort. 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 51 

number. With extra work the heavy task of completing 
the bridge was accomplished by October i3th. The fol 
lowing graphic account of its opening is taken from the 
Port Hope Standard of the i4th inst : 

" Yesterday at half past twelve the cry of all ready was 
announced by some one on the great Viaduct in front of 
the town, and in a few seconds a shrill whistle and the 
sound of a bell was heard from near the depot. Presently 
a rumbling noise and puffing of the iron horse approached 
us, when with a few others we were asked to take a ride on 
the rail across the Albert Viaduct. We of course availed 
ourselves of the pleasure and off we set at a rapid rate 
about 40 feet above the locality where the dismal 
swamp and the Canadian Nightingale existed but a 
few months back. As soon as we cleared the curve 
on the west end of the viaduct steam was put on and 
the locomotive went over the rest at the rate of at least 45 
miles per hour. It then returned 

On Monday, October 2yth, 1856, the first, through train 
from Toronto to Montreal stopped at Port Hope. There 
was no ceremonial and no crowd. Its stay was but of ten 
minutes duration. It consisted of three first and three 
second class cars and among its passengers were Chief Justice 
Sir John B. Robinson and Mr. Ross, Chief Engineer of the 
Company. 

There have been many changes in the Grand Trunk since 
that first through train crossed the viaduct. Four passenger 
trains a day were then deemed sufficient to accommodate 
the travelling public, while now twelve are none too many. 
The engines and cars of the present day tower far above the 



52 PORT HOPE 

odd old vehicles of the early railroad and travel at double 
the speed. The road-bed both east and west has been 
moved, owing to the inroads of the Lake. But chief of all 
the old Albert Bridge has been replaced by a magnificent 
double-track structure on huge stone piers the finest piece 
of engineering work in Town. The Grand Trunk Company 
built this bridge themselves and spent seven summers in its 
construction. (1887-1893.) The foreman of the work and 
the man on whom the greater part of the responsibility lay 
was Mr. Thomas White of Port Hope, who may look with 
pride on the result of his work. The bridge was at first in 
tended to be single-track and several piers had been erected 
before the order was countermanded. The stone used in 
these piers was quarried at Foxboro, back of Belleville. The 
foundations were laid on rock bottom at an average depth 
of fifteen feet in many cases a depth of twenty feet being 
required. There were thirty-two piers erected with spans of 
various lengths, the longest being about seventy feet. Not 
the least interesting part of the construction lay in the fact 
that the bridge was built on a curve. While work on the 
bridge was in progress, traffic was not at all delayed and 
at the same time the line was being double-tracked to 
the east. 

All the frontier towns seem at one date to have had am 
bitions towards securing railroad communication to the 
north and to Cobourg belongs the honour of completing the 
first such line, for on Friday, December 3oth, 1854, the Co 
bourg and Peterboro Railroad was officially opened. 
Meanwhile Port Hope had decided to build to the same 
point and a charter had been secured in 1846 for that pur- 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 53 

pose. The line was surveyed in 1852 by Messrs. Keefer 
and Tate and ^50,000 stock was subscribed to by the 
municipality in December of that year. The plans of the 
projectors of the road now suffered a change and for some rea 
son it was decided to build first to Lindsay. The contract for 
the Port Hope and Lindsay Railway was let- in May 1853 to 
Messrs. Zimmerman and Balch, who were to complete the 
road by the end of 1854. Unfortunately construction 
dragged for lack of funds and by the end of the contract 
time only the grading had been done. The Town thereupon 
increased its subsidies by ^50,000 in 1854 and ^70,000 in 
1855. It was not until September of 1856 that track-laying 
was started. On the 6th of that month the rails were put 
down across Walton Street. A month later ten miles had 
been covered and on the 5th of November the official open 
ing excursion was run to Millbrook in a box car. Early the 
following year the road was pushed through to Lindsay. 
The same year Messrs. Tate and Fowler leased the road 
and contracted to build the Peterboro Branch for ^50,000, 
Port Hope providing ^"30,000. The work was rapidly done 
and the road opened May 3ist, 1858. 

In 1869 the name Midland Railway was applied to the 
system and two years later it had reached Beaverton. By 
1873 Orillia was connected with Beaverton and in 1878 the 
terminus was at Midland. The road was finally consolidat 
ed with the Grand Trunk Railway by an Act of Parliament 
of 1893. 

The early lessees of the road from all accounts had much 
difficulty in keeping out of the sheriff s clutches and for 
days at a time not a train could run on the road. One 



54 PORT HOPE 

amusing incident typical of this is told concerning Mr. 
Fowler who leased the Port Hope and Peterboro Railway in 
1859. To quote the Guide of July 5th: "Mr. John 
Fowler announced last week that he would run an excursion 
train to Peterboro on the Fourth and that the charge per 
head for the trip to and fro would be the moderate sum of 
50 cents. The train from Peterboro arrived at the usual 
hour, the band which accompanied it playing c Yankee 
Doodle. 9.30 A. M. was the time fixed to leave for Peter 
boro but alas for the pleasure-seekers who had assembled at 
the station, when the fingers of the Town Clock pointed in 
that direction, Mr. Deputy Sheriff Benson by virtue of an 
execution against the goods and chattels of the lessee took 
possession of the Queen (engine.) About eleven o clock 
the locomotive Clifton was procured from Mr. Superin 
tendent Williams of the Lindsay Line and being harnessed 
to the Peterboro train, those who had hung about the 
station for two mortal hours were soon speeding rapidly 
northward." 




CHAPTER XII. 

A CHAPTER OF TRAGEDIES. 

Let s talk of graves, of worms, and epitaphs ; 
Make dust our paper, and with rainy eyes 
Write sorrow on the bosom of the earth. 

SHAKSPEARE. 

I THIN its century of existence Port Hope has 
witnessed many tragic occurrences, the relation 
of which with their attendant circumstances 
might fill a volume of much larger proportions 
than this. It is scarcely possible to do more 
than note down a few of the more important tragedies which 
have taken place in this locality. 

Very early in the century an Englishman and his son 
settled a few miles to the west of Smith s Creek and for 
some years prospered very well. Their farm was mortgaged 
heavily and every year either father or son journeyed to York 
bearing the interest on the mortgage to the money-lender. 
One year the son left the homestead with a good sum of 
money on him and started for York and this was the last 
seen of him. Shortly after a girl on a neighbouring farm 
went to a spring in the woods for water. As she approach 
ed the spot she heard men s voices and coming still nearer 
she was able to make out a small party of men dividing up 
some booty. From their conversation she learned enough 
to assure her that these men had been guilty of the murder 

(55) 



56 PORT HOPE 

of the young Englishman. She communicated her story to 
the authorities but when the culprits were to be tried she 
refused to give evidence, having been successfully intimidat 
ed in the meantime. Years after when the Grand Trunk 
contractors were making a cutting with a steam shovel near 
Port Britain, their operations were constantly watched by an 
old man. One day the shovel threw up the skeleton of a 
man and after that the old watcher ceased to frequent the 
works. He had been one of the accused at the time of the 
murder. 

A second murder of deplorable circumstances occurred in 
1810. A Scotchman by name of Donaldson had just ar 
rived from Scotland with a good sized family. One bright 
son, thirteen years of age, secured a position at Smith s red 
store on Mill Street. It chanced one day that the boy was 
unpacking crockery from a crate at the door, when an 
Indian, for some unaccountable reason, suddenly appeared 
on the scene, tomahawked him and successfully made his 
escape. 

On Wednesday evening, "November Qth, 1836, young 
M. C. O Neil, a clerk in the employ of John Crawford, a 
distiller and shopkeeper, went down to the wharf to look 
after the shipment of some whiskey on the evening boat. 
It was quite dark and as he leaned over a cask to decipher 
some words, on it, he was knocked down from behind with 
a whiffletree. He was badly stunned by the blow but was 
able to walk to his lodgings, where he died during the night. 
Robert Brown and Samuel McKenna were accused of the 
murder under the clearest evidence. The deed was the out 
come of a feud between the employes of Crawford and John 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 57 

Brown, who were both engaged in the same business. On 
September 22nd, 1837, Brown was tried before Justice 
Macaulay; G. M. Boswell and W. S. Bidwell defended 
Brown and Attorney-General Hagerman prosecuted. The 
evidence of Sheriff, mate of the Commodore Barrie, was 
most conclusive and everybody believed Brown a doomed 
man. Still he had two friends on the jury, Mitchell and 
Campbell, who belonged to the same secret society and 
these men stood out for six days for his release, during the 
first two days of which no food was allowed the jury. The 
result was the jury was dismissed and a new trial called for 
It took place at the next assizes and, because Attorney- 
General Hagerman refused to call Sheriff, Brown was 
acquitted. 

A fourth murder of a still more tragic nature occurred in 
October 1856, when Mr. George Brogdin shot Mr. Tom 
Henderson at the wharf. This fearful deed, involving two 
young and well-known citizens of the town, was the result 
of domestic inconstancy and possessed many extenuating 
circumstances. Henderson was passing through on the 
Arabian at the time and Brogdin chanced to be at the 
wharf. He was at all times prepared for such a meeting 
and the moment Henderson showed himself he was a dead 
man. Brogdin immediately gave himself over to the po 
lice and he was put on his trial on October 3ist. Immense 
crowds from town attended the court and it is said had the 
prisoner not been acquitted, the populace would have put 
the law at defiance and secured his release. Brogdin was 
defended in a masterly manner by Sir Thomas Gait and 



58 PORT HOPE 

prosecuted by Solicitor General Smith. He was declared 
" not guilty," to the great joy of his numerous supporters. 

A very sad accident of rather a remarkable nature occurred 
on May gth 1838. James McSpadden, aged fourteen, the 
eldest son of Dr. McSpadden, left his home on Walton street 
in order to get something he had left the preceding Sunday 
in the Presbyterian Church. Though he did not return im 
mediately, his parents experienced no alarm. However a 
companion of James happened to pass the rear of the 
Church about that time. He saw a ladder up at one of the 
windows and at the top of it the form of his friend. He 
shouted to him but received no reply. He therefore made 
an examination and to his horror found that his friend was 
hanging by the neck from the window which had evidently 
fallen upon him as he was in the act of passing through. 

Around the piers of Port Hope Harbour there are still to 
be seen the hulks of several old schooners which have at 
one time or another been wrecked during storms. A sad 
tale surrounds an old hulk which lies near the shore to the 
east of the east pier. It is all that remains of the schooner 
Niagara, which was driven aground there by a fierce storm 
on December 3rd, 1856. The Niagara was bound from 
Bond Head Harbour to Port Hope, laden with coal. It 
attempted to make the harbour but, striking the eastern 
pier, it was carried around and driven ashore. Its crew con 
sisted of captain and five men, who were compelled to climb 
into the rigging to escape the dashing waves. The inhabi 
tants of Port Hope assembled in large numbers on the 
shore prepared to render all possible assistance. A rescue 
party under command of Captain Alward started out in a 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES, 59 

boat but failed to reach the wreck. Shortly after Captain 
Paddock and five men made a second attempt. His boat 
reached the ship but immediately thereupon it foundered. 
The brave Captain was drowned and also one of his compan 
ions named Campbell. The others succeeded in boarding the 
wreck, making now ten men to be rescued. Captain Al- 
ward led the third rescue party and to the relief of the 
anxious watchers, succeeded in bringing off the ship-wrecked 
crew. For his brave act he was presented with a gold 
watch by his admiring fellow-townsmen. 

Space forbids the recounting of further tales of sorrow. 
There have been many others. The lake has claimed sev 
eral precious lives, the railroad has mangled many useful 
bodies, suicides have oft-times sought relief from their cares 
and accidents of various kinds have deprived the community 
of its citizens. But let the memory of these departed souls 
rest with those who loved them. 




CHAPTER XIII. 

THE EARLIEST CHURCH. 

The sacred edifice that crowns the Hill 
Still to its heavenly mission true, 
Reminds of death points on to life 
Repeats the welcome, " Come who will." 

ANON. 

HE history of Port Hope lies inscribed in its oldest 
Church as in some ancient book. Within the 
portals and among the gray old tombstones of 
St. Mark s, the modern citizen stands on common 
ground with the Fathers of the settlement. Here 
worshipped the Waltons, the Smiths, the Wards, the White- 
heads and many other old and honoured families. Here 
were baptized children who grew to useful manhood and 
womanhood and who have long since passed away. Here 
were performed with much pomp and ceremonial the mar 
riage rites of the long ago. Here were buried the remains 
of many of the brave founders of the Town. Their names 
are still decipherable on the moss-grown gravestones. Their 
memory is still perpetuated by the marble tablets on the 
walls of the sacred edifice and up in the belfry the name of 
Captain Jonathan Walton still stands out clear-cut on the 
old bell. 

The construction of St. Mark s Church (known at its 
erection and until the building of the present St. John s 

(60) 




-. 






HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 61 

Church, as the Church of St. John the Evangelist) was he- 
gun in the year 1822 and was completed two years later. 
It was virtually a gift to the Anglicans of Port Hope from 
John D. Smith, Esq., who erected it at his own expense. 
The bell, to which quite an historical interest attaches, was 
added to the edifice in 1826. It bears the names ASPINWALL 
and ALBANY and near the lower edge 1826 PRESENTED BY 
J. WALTON. 

Until 1830 there was no regular incumbent in the new 
Church. The Rev. A. N. Bethune of St. Peter s in Cobourg 
conducted services every Sunday afternoon at three o clock 
and attended as best he could to the needs of the parish. 
In 1830, however, the Lord Bishop of Montreal appointed 
the Rev. James Coghlan to the church in Port Hope. Mr. 
Coghlan held the charge for six years and during that period 
was instrumental for much good in the Town. He con 
ducted a boys school on the property until recently occu 
pied by Mr. James Kerr, near the Toronto Road. 

On the 1 8th of January 1836, letters patent were issued 
by Sir John Colborne, K.C.B., Lieutenant-Governor of 
Upper Canada, constituting the Rectory of St. John the 
Evangelist at Port Hope, designating it as " the first Rectory 
within the Township of Hope." In the same year Mr. 
Coghlan was succeeded by the Rev. Jonathan Shortt, D.D., 
who for thirty-one years continued as Rector. Dr. Shortt 
was during those many years a prominent and useful mem 
ber of the community and interested himself largely in muni 
cipal and educational affairs. He belonged to the 
evangelical school of thought and for many years edited the 
Echo newspaper, the organ of that branch of the Church. 



62 PORT HOPE 

In recognition of his services the Archbishop of Canterbury 
conferred on him the honorary degree of D.D. 

Dr, Shortt died on August 24th, 1867 but before he 
passed away, a movement had been set on foot towards the 
erection of a new Church. A subscription list, to which the 
Hon. Benjamin Seymour, Colonel Williams, J. S. Smith and 
H. H. Meredith were the chief donators, secured over eight 
thousand dollars. Gundry and Langley of Toronto were 
appointed architects and the superintendence of the building 
operations was entrusted to J. G. Williams, Esq. 

Work on the present St. John s Church was begun on 
the 1 8th July, 1867 and by Feb. 6th, 1869 the structure 
was completed. The total cost entailed amounted to well 
over $18,300 but by the careful management of Mr. 
Williams, the product was well worth the money expended. 
The handsome Gothic structure is considered by many as 
the most beautiful architectural production in the Town. 

Meanwhile on the 9th Sept. 1867 the Rev. Frederick 
Augustus O Meara, LL.D., who had been Dr. Shortt s 
assistant during the last few months of his life, was appoint 
ed his successor. Dr. O Meara, who was a Canon of St. 
James Cathedral at Toronto and later of St. Alban s 
Cathedral, was like Dr. Shortt a large-hearted and broad- 
minded man. He had spent over twenty of his earlier 
years as a missionary to the Ojibway Indians on Manitoulin 
Island and whilst there had translated a great part of the 
Bible and the Prayer Book into their language. 

In 1875 tne School House was erected at a cost of seven 
thousand five hundred dollars. Its exterior harmonizes 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 63 

well with the general effect of the Church and its equipment 
is all that could be desired. 

The official consecration of St. John s Church by the 
Bishop of Toronto took place on April 5th, 1882. The 
ceremonial was most impressive, being carried out according 
to the approved forms of the Provincial Synod. Five years 
later on Sept. 2yth, 1887, Dr. O Meara s Jubilee was 
celebrated. Many leading clergymen, including the Bishop 
of the Diocese, assembled to do honour to the man, who 
for fifty years had fought the battles of the Church. Ad 
dresses were presented from various bodies, all testifying to 
the esteem in which the Rector was held and the value laid 
on his work. Scarcely, however, had this time of rejoicing 
passed away than the sudden death of Dr. O Meara cast a 
cloud over the community. His end came very unexpect 
edly whilst he was awaiting a train at the Grand Trunk 
Depot on the morning of December lyth, 1888. 

Short occupancies of the Church by the former Curate, 
Mr. Hamilton and by the Rev. E. C. Saunders followed, 
until the appointment of the present Rector, the Rev. 
Edwin Daniel, B.A., who was inducted on the i6th of 
January 1890 by Rural Dean Allen. 

Since the erection of the Church its beauty has been much 
enhanced by the installation of many fine memorial 
windows, so that the interior of the building now possesses 
a most appropriate and sacred aspect. The large central 
chancel window representing St. John, and its two accom 
panying and smaller windows, were placed there by the 
parishioners in memory of Dr. Shortt. Over the main 
entrance two large windows commemorate John Tucker 



64 PORT HOPE 

Williams and Thomas Benson respectively. The side 
windows are all filled with memorials as well as the small 
windows on the left of the Chancel. Of these probably the 
most beautiful are those with the large figures the one 
filled with a group of angels erected to the memory of 
Lilian Holland, the other portraying Christ with Mary and 
Martha, in memory of Margaret O Meara, wife of Dr. 
O Meara. 

In addition to these impressive colored windows, the 
stone font and the carved oak lectern are objects of interest. 
The former resting on four marble pillars each with a carved 
capital, was presented in memory of Mrs. Shortt, while the 
lectern bears as its inscription, " In loving memory of 
Frederick Augustus O Meara and Margaret Johnston 
(Dallas) his wife." 

A new organ was placed in the Church during 1896 by 
Warren & Son of Toronto at a cost of over sixteen hundred 
dollars and was opened on Nov. 2oth of that year by Mr. 
Wm. Reed of Montreal. 

Some attention must now be paid to the subsequent career 
of the old Church on Protestant Hill. About the period when 
the new Church was in course of construction it was believed 
by several of the members, that there was room for two 
churches in the town, and that the old church being in a 
convenient position for them, it might profitably be re 
opened. They accordingly petitioned the Bishop with the 
result that in 1873 tne church was repaired and re-dedicat 
ed to St. Mark. The first incumbent was the Rev. Charles 
Patterson. He was succeeded by the Rev. J. S. Baker in 
1878 and he by the Rev. Mr. Hibbard in 1891. The Rev. 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 65 

C. B. Kenrick the next Rector came in 1895 and shortly 
after through his instrumentality the church building was 
greatly improved in convenience and appearance. The Rev. 
Mr. Kenrick left recently for the maritime provinces and has 
been succeeded by the Rev. E. G. Dymond, who was 
inducted in November 1900. 

St. Mark s Church is a substantial old wooden structure in 
form of a cross. Its interior, though it lacks the impressive 
attributes of St. John s Church, yet possesses the air of 
sacredness associated with a long past. Besides the marble 
slabs on the walls erected to the memory of departed mem 
bers, there is a massive oak altar, which is the most impos 
ing object in the building. The church is hung with 
exquisite cloth hangings of various colours and delicate 
embroidery, the work of Mrs. Baker, widow of a preceding 
incumbent. A gallery occupies one end of the structure, 
being all that remains of the old gallery which encircled three 
sides of the church. 




CHAPTER XIV. 



PRESBYTERIANISM. 



Old Church, old Church, symbol of solid worth thou art, 

No outward grace adorns thee, 

No spire hast thou to crown thee, 

Yet do thy walls and tower, 

Speak out in words of power 
Of strength, and hope, and peace to every human heart. 

ANON. 



the members of many early religious bodies 
the adherents of the Presbyterian Church in Port 
Hope were compelled by circumstances to meet 
for many years in private residences or in school- 
houses and to be ministered to, either by wander 
ing missionaries or holders of neighboring charges. As 
their numbers increased they naturally turned their atten 
tion towards securing a suitable place for worship. Accord 
ingly a meeting was held in 1828 at the residence of Mr. 
John Wallace. There was a large attendance of settlers 
from both Hope and Hamilton Townships present, who 
were strongly in favour of erecting a church. It was defi 
nitely decided to build and a Board of Trustees was ap 
pointed to superintend the work of construction. This 
Board was composed of Messrs. Wm. McElroy, George 
Gillespie, Samuel Todd, William Cochrane, and George 

Kinder. (The elders at this period were John Lindsay, 

(66) 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 67 

John Lyall, Thomas Quay, John Wallace and Andrew 
Jeffrey.) 

The Church, which was completed in 1831, was a frame 
structure standing on the site of the present First Presbyter 
ian Church. Its dimensions were small but yet it contain 
ed a gallery around three of its sides. The pulpit rose high 
above the straight-backed pews and was surmounted by a 

inding board of huge proportions. Below it was the pre- 
antor s desk. The builders of the early church were Messrs. 
Brogdin & Lee. When first erected it stood in a pathless 
wood, separated from the main road by a deep gully, which 
necessitated a long detour to the west in order that the wor 
shippers might reach it in comfort. After a time a bridge was 
built across the ravine which was subsequently filled in to 
form the present road. 

The first minister to preach in the new building was the 
Rev. Peter Gordon, who was an eloquent young man and, 
besides ministering to the spiritual wants of the congrega 
tion, he also attended to the instruction of the children during 
the week. His residence here was unfortunately short. He 
was succeeded by several ministers whose sojourns were 
equally brief. Among them were Dr. Thornton, Mr. Lawrence 
and Dr. Ormiston. In March 1835 was inducted the Rev. 
John Cassie, whose memory is revered among the Presbyter 
ians as is that of Dr. Shortt among the Episcopalians. Mr. 
Cassie was a native of Aberdeenshire and a distinguished 
graduate of both Aberdeen and Glasgow Universities. He 
came to Canada as a missionary from the United Secession 
Church, and almost immediately settled in Port Hope, where 
he remained until his death in 1861. At his coming the 



68 PORT HOPE 

membership roll of the Church was but thirty, whereas at 
the conclusion of his ministry, it had reached two hundred, 
and a new church had had to be erected to contain the 
large numbers who came to his services. His death, which 
occurred on the rgth of June, 1861, was lamented not only 
by his own people but by his fellow-townsmen at large. His 
funeral service was conducted by the Rev. Dr. Thornton. 

The present brick Church was opened October ist, 1854. 
Eight thousand dollars were expended in its erection, and it 
was calculated at the time to be capable of accommodating 
nearly one thousand persons. Its interior fittings were 
in perfect keeping with the quaint old style of kirk arrange 
ment high pulpit, led up to by flights of stairs, large 
gallery almost encircling the walls, closed pews and sconces 
for the candles. In time all these old contrivances have 
vanished. In place of the old-time precentor, there is now 
an organ and choir, the pulpit has become a modest desk 
on a broad platform, the gallery has dwindled down to a 
small affair at the rear, and electric light takes the place of 
tallow candles. Much opposition was made to the purchase 
of the organ, which was bought about 1870 for $1,600. Up 
to the present year it was stationed in the gallery but a 
recent change has placed it to the minister s left hand on 
the ground floor. 

Since Mr. Cassie s death the Church has been occupied 
by Dr. Waters until 1868, Rev. Wm. Donald, 1869-78, Rev. 
R. J. Beattie, 1878-1883, Rev. J. W. Mitchell, 1884-1889, 
Rev. B. C. Jones, D.D., 1890-1892, and Rev. J. K. Smith, 
D.D., 1892-1898. The present pastor, the Rev. A. G. 
Sinclair, was inducted into the charge in September 1899. 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 69 

There have been two secessions from the present church 
during its long history. The first took place about 1858 
and was indirectly owing to the famous Disruption in Scot 
land. The Church here supported this famous movement 
and became connected with the United Presbyterian Church 
of Scotland. However there were many among its mem 
bers who favoured the Old Kirk and in time they left the 
U, P. Church and formed a church of their own. Their 
first minister was the Rev. Mr. Camelon, who preached in 
the Town Hall, until the church on Brown street was com 
pleted. This edifice, later occupied as the High School 
was erected in 1860 at a cost of $2,800. Here ministered 
Mr. Camelon, and after him Mr. Cochrane, until the con 
gregation sold the church in 1872 and united with Mill 
Street Church. 

Mill Street Church was the outcome of the second seces 
sion, which occurred after Mr. Cassie s death. The diffi 
culty arose between the Scotch and Irish elements in the 
congregation over the choice of a new minister and the 
Irish members left. Next year they built the present Mill 
Street Church, at a cost of $3,000. Their first pastor was 
the Rev. John Hogg, who has been succeeded by the Rev. 
Mr. Smith, the Rev. Mr. McLean, Rev. James Cleland, 
Rev. William McWilliam. Rev. Alex. Laird and the present 
minister Rev. William W. McCuaig. When first formed 
this Church connected itself with the United Presbyterian 
Church of North America and remained an adherent of that 
body until the general union of 1870, out of which arose 
the Canada Presbyterian Church. 



CHAPTER XV. 



THE METHODIST CHURCH. 



Spire whose silent finger points to Heaven. 

WORDSWORTH. 




EFORE the auspicious day when the little congrega 
tion of Methodists in Port Hope entered their first 
church-home, their life as a religious body was 
necessarily an arduous one. To keep together and 
alive all the scattered interests of such a commun 
ity was no easy task for those devoted ministers, who in the 
early days endured all manner of hardships in ministering 
to the spiritual wants of extensive circuits. But the fruits of 
their labours are being reaped at the present day and the 
Methodist denomination in Port Hope occupies a stronger 
and more extensive position than that of any other religious 
body in the Town. 

The earliest record of a Methodist communion in Port 
Hope dates back to the year 1813 when Smith s Creek wai 
the name applied to a circuit embracing all the country from 
Belleville to Whitby and when the Rev. Thomas Whitehead 
labored therein as its minister. Occasionally other 
ministers had visited the village, among them being Ezra 
Adams, Thomas Madden and John Rhodes. The Rev. 
Nathaniel Reeder succeeded to the circuit in 1815 and 

(7) 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 71 

meetings were then held either in Mrs. Britton s parlor on 
Mill Street or in the log school-house opposite the present 
Queen s Hotel or in Mr. Jacob Choate s building on the 
site of that hotel. Two years later the Revs. James Puffer 
and Elijah Boardman divided the work of the Circuit. 

Meanwhile classes were being formed in the country 
surrounding Port Hope and in 1824 one was formed in 
Town, with Mr. Alexander Davidson as leader. The class 
consisted of Mr. and Mrs. Wm. Hall, Mrs. Healy, Allen 
Harris and W. Baker and meetings were held at either the 
residence of Mr. Hall or of Mr. Baker. The minister visit 
ing Port Hope in that year was the Rev. Anson Green and 
the Circuit was now denominated the " Cobourg Circuit." 
The stations were as follows during the succeeding years :- 
1825, D. Breckenridge, John Black; 1826, W. Slater, 
R. Phelps, J. C. Davidson; 1827, W. Slater, Egerton Ryer- 
son ; 1828, J. Norris, Ephraim Evans; 1829, D. Wright. 
John Carrol. 

To give some idea of how the congregation was brought 
together in those early days, it is only necessary to tell how 
Mr. Aaron Choate of Perrytown was wont to harness his team 
to a large wagon or sleigh, drive to Mr. Hawkin s home and 
next to Mr. Gifford s where the Rev. Mr. Evans resided and 
then, with a load of people, come into town, where a service 
would be held in the school-house on the site of the present 
residence of H. A. Ward, Esq. 

In 1829 Port Hope was attached to the Whitby Circuit, 
the Revs. R. Corson and C. Vandusen being the preachers, 
though a few years later it was restored to the Cobourg 
Circuit. 



72 PORT HOPE 

By 1833 the want of a church-building began to be felt. 
The Rev. Richard Jones, who preached here in that year, 
told how in rainy weather he had been obliged to move 
about in the old school-house to keep from getting wet 
whilst he preached his sermon. To Mr. Alexander David 
son a clerk in David Smart s store, belonged the credit for 
setting on foot an agitation to build a church. He com 
municated with influential persons in the Province and 
wrote letters to newspapers, showing how necessary it was 
that a church should be erected in this part of the country. 
Finally it was decided to build. Application was made to 
John D. Smith, Esq. for a suitable site and that gentleman 
presented to the applicants the lot on Brown Street opposite 
the present Church. The deed bore date Dec. 2ist, 1833 
and the Trustees named were Wm. Barrett, Sr., Richard 
Howell, John Might, Thomas Benson, Robert Mitchell, 
Richard Barrett and Alex. Davidson. Arrangements were 
at once made for building. The contract was awarded to 
Messrs. R. Mitchell and P. Fox and on the nth August 
1835 the new church was dedicated. 

It was a wooden structure with a steeple at the middle of 
the south front. The latter appendage was quite unusual in 
Methodist churches in those days and was put up at the 
suggestion of Alexander Davidson. There was a gallery 
around three sides of the Church, in the south end of which 
sat the choir. The minister occupied an old-fashioned 
" candle-stick " pulpit at the north end. 

From 1832 to 1840 the following ministers of the Cobourg 
Circuit officiated at Port Hope, viz. Revs. R. Jones, 
Davidson, Bevitt, Davis and Bigger. In 1840 Port Hope s 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 73 

independent circuit existence began and until 1860 these 
were the incumbents. 1840, Wm. Haw; 1841-42, Asheal 
Hurlburt ; 1843-44, Wm. McFadden ; 1845-46, J. Gemley ; 
1847, C. Lavelle and S. S. Nelles ; 1848, J. Scott and 
S. C. Slater; 1849-50, G. Goodson ; 1851-52, W. McCul- 
lough ; 1853, W. McCullogh and E. H. Dewart ; 1854-55; 
J. McCallum, W. Tomblin, W. Bryers ; 1856-57, R. Whit 
ing, S. Tucker, A. E. Russ, W. C. Henderson ; 1858-59, 
L. Warner. W. Andrews ; 1860, J. Hunt and A. T. Green. 

The Church had been growing all these years and minor 
additions had been made from time to time. By 1859 it 
was deemed necessary to make a decided enlargement. 
Eighteen feet were added to the east side of the Church and 
the interior was completely overhauled. The old pulpit 
was removed and a modern one substituted ; the organ and 
choir were shifted to an alcove at the rear of the pulpit ; 
the woodwork was tastefully done over in white, and gas 
and hot air heating were introduced. These improvements 
cost the Church $1600 but were more than compensated for 
by the increased accommodation. The Church could now 
hold loco persons comfortably and 1200 at a pinch. 

This famous old church, with its odd additions stood 
until 1874, when on the morning of August 26th it was 
completely destroyed by fire. Meanwhile the growing re 
quirements of the congregation had led to negotiations for 
the purchase of a new lot and the erection thereon of a new- 
Church. The lot across Brown Street, where the present 
edifice stands was purchased from J. Shuter Smith, Esq. in 
1870 for $1600. Early in 1874 plans were obtained for a 
new building from Smith & Gemmell of Toronto and the 



74 PORT HOPE 

contract was awarded to Mr. J. W. Wallace on June gth. 
The ceremony of laying the corner-stone took place on 
September 2nd and the completed structure was opened on 
March 2nd, 1876 by the Rev. Dr. Ives of Auburn, N.Y. 

The building is large and imposing and quite the equal 
in all respects of many city churches. Nearly $35,000 were 
expended in its erection. It has a frontage of 85 feet on 
South Street, and, with the Sunday School at its rear, it ex 
tends 137 feet along Brown Street. This Sunday School 
portion was erected at the same time as the main church 
and in it is accommodated a school, which always regards 
its numbers and work with justifiable pride. The roll at 
the present day numbers nearly 600, though during previous 
years the attendance has been even larger. Immediately at 
the corner of the street towers up the lofty steeple, whose 
apex reaches a height of 180 feet. Within, the Church 
presents a subdued and restful appearance. Tall, narrow 
stained windows supply the light. A circular gallery extends 
about three sides and the seats on the ground floor are ar 
ranged in a corresponding manner. The seating capacity is 
1 200. The pulpit is raised to a considerable height and be 
hind it rises the fine large organ, while the organist and 
choir occupy seats between. The organ, it may be noted, 
cost $2,500 and was bought from Warren & Co. In the 
tower hangs the bell, whose clear-sounding notes are so 
familiar to the people of the Town. It was purchased at 
the erection of the Church for $560 and has ever since done 
good service. 

This fine edifice had a narrow escape from destruction by 
fire on July 3ist, 1893. Early in the morning fire was dis- 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 75 

covered in the basement under the tower, which for a time 
threatened to be serious. Thanks to the efficient service of 
the Fire Brigade, however, the fire was got under way and 
the damage of $2500 was chiefly owing to the havoc play 
ed by the smoke. 

Since 1862 the list of Methodist ministers stationed in 
Port Hope consists of the Revs. G. R. Sanderson 1862-4, 
W. S. Griffin 1865-6, John A. Williams 1867-69, I. B. \ 
Howard 1870-2, E. B. Harper 1873-5, John Shaw 1876-8, 
W. H. Laird 1879-81, J. B. Jeffery 1882, J. Learoyd 1883-5, 
J. B. Clarkson 1 886-8, E. N. Baker 1889-91, W. J. 
Crothers, D.D. 1892-6, W. R. Young, D.D. 1897-1900. 
The Rev. C. B. Lanceley is now pastor of this church. 







CHAPTER XVI. 

ST. MARY S CHURCH. 



Through the doors and the great high windows 

I heard the murmur of prayer, 
And the sound of their solemn singing 

Streamed out on the sunlit air. 

LAMPMAN. 



WING to the unfortunate destruction by fire of the 
first Roman Catholic Church in Port Hope, all the 
records which could throw any light on the early 
history of this congregation have been lost. It 
has therefore only been possible to secure from 
some of the older residents of the Town a few facts con 
cerning the first church erected by the Roman Catholics. 
Though the exact date of the erection of this Church is un 
known, it was very probably built about the same period as 
the Presbyterian and Methodist Churches. It was a narrow 

> 

and lofty frame structure standing on the same site as the 
present Church and possessing a steeple of medium height. 
During all the years of its existence it was not supplied with 
a resident priest but the priest at Cobourg, the Rev. Father 
Timlin, attended to both parishes. 

This early edifice was not destined to stand for long. It 
was fired by incendiaries one evening in August 1851 and 
completely destroyed. The Town Council offered a 

(76) 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 77 

reward of ^50 for the apprehension of the perpetrators of 
the outrage, but the guilty parties were never brought to 
justice. 

On the destruction of their Church, the Catholic com 
munity secured the use of McDermoc & Walsh s store-house, 
situated near the present site of the Brewery, but, before 
they had held a single service in it, incendiaries had again 
burned it about their ears. Services were thereafter held in 
Porter s building to the rear of Curtis Grocery, in the Town 
Hall and in a hall where Mr. Skitch now keeps his grocery 
store, until the present Church was erected in 1854. 
Meantime a resident priest had been sent to Port Hope to 
in some way compensate for the loss of the old Church. 
This was the Rev. Father O Keefe who resided in Port 
Hope until June 1858 and who was instrumental in build 
ing the present edifice. 

The Church of St. Mary, Star of the Sea, was dedicated 
by his Lordship Bishop Phelan of Kingston on October 
7th, 1855. It comprised the present Church, minus the 
steeple, though the interior has since been greatly altered 
also. The cost of the building was about $10,000 and in 
addition a further expense of $3,000 was incurred in secur 
ing the organ from Boston. This instrument is of exquisite 
tone and workmanship and adds greatly to the effect of the 
choral service. 

In 1858 the Rev. Father Madden became parish priest in 
succession to Father O Keefe and for eight years he remain 
ed in charge of the parish. Then came Father O Keane in 
December of 1866 and after living here but a very short 
time, the Very Rev. Father Brown succeeded to the parish 



78 PORT HOPE 

on July ist, 1869. Father Brown during his twenty-one 
years stay in Port Hope won for himself the deepest respect 
among all classes of the community and his departure in 
1890 was much regretted by all who knew him. He pos 
sessed artistic capabilities which were early devoted to 
rendering the interior of the church more beautiful and ap 
propriate. He left the building practically as it is to-day. 

On entering the Church the words of the angels anthem, 
GLORIA IN EXCELSIS DEO ET IN TERRA PAX HOMINIBUS BON^: 
VOLUNTATIS, high up above the chancel immediately attract 
the eye. There are three stained-glass windows one large 
one above the altar and two smaller ones at the sides of the 
chancel. The two latter were presented by Miss Foran 
and have since become memorials by reason of her untimely 
death.* The three represent the chalice, grapes and wheat. 
Over the tabernacle are three statues St. Joseph, the Sacred 
Heart and the Blessed Virgin, while paintings in relief of 
angels and saints surround the altar. Between the windows 
of the Church are fourteen colored pictures representing 
various steps in the crucifixion of Christ and high on the 
walls are small paintings bearing Latin inscriptions. An 
organ loft stretches across the building over the entrance. 
In addition to these internal improvements, Father Brown 
was also instrumental in having the steeple added. The 
building was re-opened by his Grace Archbishop Clery of 
Kingston. 

In May, 1890, the present priest, Father Lynch, succeed 
ed to the parish. His residence here has been marked by 

* She was killed by a fall from a window. 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 79 

the improvements which have been made to the grounds 
surrounding the Church. 

St. Mary s Church was at first in the Diocese of Toronto 
but was subsequently changed to that of Peterboro when 
that Diocese was formed. The Bishop of Peterboro at 
present is Bishop O Connor. It is also in the Archbishopric 
of Kingston, -having been formerly in that of Toronto. 

In concluding this necessarily brief sketch, it may be 
noted that the steeple has been twice struck by lightning 
and the cross at the top has been twice blown down, all 
four accidents entailing considerable expense in restoration. 




CHAPTER XVII. 

THE BAPTIST CHURCH. 



Ah ! this building which we see 
Is a type a prophecy, 
Living church of God, of thee ! 

L. K. 

N treating the histories of the various religious bodies 
in Port Hope, the order taken has been that suggest 
ed by a consideration of the dates at which their first 
churches were erected. Beginning with the oldest 
church St. John s the series has now been followed 
down to the youngest, and this chapter will contain a brief 
account of the progress of the Baptist denomination. 

The history of the Baptist Church begins about the year 
1850, when the Rev. J. Baird formed a small congregation 
and held meetings in the old chapel north of the present 
Church (now utilized as a storehouse by Mr. Hume.) The 
little company did not consider themselves a church nor 
were they in any way connected with the Baptist denomina 
tion. They merely held the beliefs of that body and waited 
until they should be in such a condition as would enable 
them to form a definite church. This result was attained in 
1855 under the pastorate of the Rev. Hoyes Lloyd and on 
June 2ist public recognition services were held, officiated 
at by the Rev. James Pyper, D.D. of Toronto, Moderator of 

the Baptist Association. On the gth of December of the 

(80) 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 81 

same year Messrs. Wm. Craig, Sr., Morice Hay rnd \Vm. 
Barnett were appointed deacons. For many years there 
after during the summer months baptisms took place in the 
Lake, while a baptistry was added to the chapel in 1856 for 
use during the remainder of the year. 

In June 1859 Mr. Lloyd resigned his charge and left Port 
Hope. The Rev. Charles Elliott succeeded him during the 
following spring but only remained one year. The next 
pastor was the Rev. W. H. Jones, who in turn was followed 
by the Rev. John Dempsey in 1864. During the ministry 
of Mr. Dempsey the Church passed through an eventful 
period, for it was in his time that the congregation moved 
from the old chapel to the present Church. The initial 
step in this movement was the purchase and donation to 
the members of the Church of the lot on the corner of John 
and Augusta Streets by Wm. Craig, Sr. Then followed a 
period when subscription lists were to the fore, to which the 
same loyal gentleman contributed largely. The result of the 
effort was that during the next few years the present white 
brick edifice was erected at a cost of $9,000. On June 3rd 
1868, the last annual meeting was held in the old Church ; 
April 25th 1869 witnessed the first baptism in the new 
building, and on June 6th of the same year the new Church 
was definitely opened. The old property had meantime 
been disposed of to Mr. R. Hume for $900. 

Mr. Dempsey resigned from the charge in May of 1870 
and two months later the Rev. Joseph King succeeded him. 
The sojourn of this pastor was as brief as that of his 
predecessors and in November of 1873 the Church was 
again extending a call, this time to the Rev. George 



82 PORT HOPE 

Richardson. Mr. Richardson accepted and remained in 
Port Hope until 1879. During his ministry the present 
pipe organ, costing $1,000, was purchased and placed in the 
Church. 

Since 1879 tne pastorate of the Baptist Church has been 
filled by the Rev. A. P. McDiarmid, M.A., D.D., 1880-2 ; 
Rev. A. Murdock, M. A., LL. D., 1883-5 ; Rev. John 
Trotter, 1885-7 ; Rev. D. Reddick, B.A., 1887-92 and Rev. 
G. M. Leehy, 1893-94. The Rev. P. K. Dayfoot, M.A. 
has been pastor since 1894. Of these ministers Mr. 
Richardson is now in Hamilton, Dr. McDiarmid is Principal 
of Brandon College, Manitoba, Mr. Murdock is in Otter- 
ville, Ontario, Mr. Trotter in St. Catherines, Mr. Reddick 
is pastor in Denver, Colorado and Mr. Leehy is pastor in 
Grand Rapids, Michigan. 

In 1894 a considerable addition was made to the east 
end of the Church providing additional class-rooms in the 
basement and vestries above and rendering the building 
most convenient and modern. A tablet in memory of the 
late William Craig is the only work of a commemorative 
nature within the Church. 




CHAPTER XVIII. 

PUBLIC SCHOOLS. 

Don t you hear the children coming, 

Coming into school ? 
Don t you hear the master drumming 

On the window with his rule ? 
Master drumming, children coming 

Into school ? 

TAYLOR. 

Chapter V it was mentioned casually that the first 
school in Port Hope was kept in 1797 in the Smith 
Homestead by Mr. Collins of Montreal. From that 
date until 1812 nothing definite is known of any educa 
tional institution in the village but it is not unlikely 
that there were private schools similar to the above, where 
the children of the village received instruction. 

In 1812 it would seem that there was a plank school- 
house situated on Walton street opposite John street and, 
though a private institution, it may yet be considered as the 
parent school of the present public school system of the 
Town. It was taught in that year by Mr. John Farley, 
whom history records as a man of good education and a 
successful teacher. He was succeeded during the next few 
years by Mr. John Taylor and later by Miss Hannah Burn- 
ham, who was school mistress there from 1815 to 1817. 
Then followed Mr. Gardiner Clifford and Mr. Page during 
brief intervals. 

(33) 



84 PORT HOPE 

At this juncture the school was taken down and removed 
to the corner of King and William Streets, where it stood for 
many years. In it in its new position taught Mr. Hobbs, 
Mr. Valentine Tupper, Mr. Alexander Davidson, Mr. Patrick 
Lee, Mr. John Bengel, Mr. Rattery, Mr George Hughes and 
Mr. Maxwell in succession, bringing the school down to 

1833- 

Meanwhile as might have been expected there were num 
erous other schools started in various parts of the Town- 
Mr. John Taylor opened a school on Cavan street in 1819. 
Chief Justice Draper, then a law student, taught here about 
the same time. The Rev. Mr. Coghlan in 1832 built the 
house until recently occupied by Mr. James Kerr, and took 
advanced pupils. Mr. Millard and Dr. Shortt continued his 
labours there. About 1832 Mr. Murdoch McDonnell taught 
in J. D. Smith s old store on Mill street for a short time and 
then built a school on the south-east corner of Pine and 
South streets, which was later rented by the School Trustees. 
These are but a few of the educational institutions that the 
Town possessed. 

The first government aid granted to the schools of Port 
Hope was received in 1842 and amounted to the sum of 
^45 i2S. 6^d. From this it may be concluded that there had 
begun some public supervision of the schools, though prob 
ably it only amounted to the annual appointment of a Super 
intendent. The Rev. John Cassie was the first such. In 
1844 the Town was divided into three school sections, of 
which Section I comprised the present Ward 2, Section II 
the present Ward i, and Section III the present Ward 3. 
For each of these sections Trustees were appointed. Both 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES, 85 

Sections II and III had school-houses already but, though 
tenders were asked for the erection of a brick school in 
Section I it does not appear that there was ever a school- 
house there. 

In 1848 the first Board of Trustees for Schools was ap 
pointed. It consisted of Revs. J. Cassie and J. Baird, and 
Messrs. John Reid, Wm. Mitchell, Wm. Barrett and Wm. 
Sisson. Mr. Mitchell was Chairman and Mr. Baird Super 
intendent for several years. 

In 1851 the plank school was moved some distance back 
on William street and repaired. Mr. Thomas Watson was 
placed in charge of it, while Mr. Spotton occupied the rent 
ed school on Pine street. Another small school was kept at 
the same period by Mrs. Grierson in the kitchen of her 
house, just south of Holmes establishment on John street. 
The fees of the pupils at these schools were about $1.25 
per quarter. 

Two years later the Board of Trustees decided to erect 
two new schools, according to a plan strongly favoured by 
Mr. Wm. Barrett and some others. These schools were to 
be octagonal in shape and lighted from the top. Lots were 
secured, one where the present East Primary stands and 
the other on the corner of Little Hope and Sullivan streets 
and the schools were erected. Mr. Spotton was removed to 
the western school and Mr. Watson to the eastern school, 
while Mr. Wright was placed in charge of the old plank 
school on William street. Meanwhile, as will be seen later, 
a regular Grammar School had been established which ab 
sorbed the older pupils of these schools and made it scarcely 
possible to keep so many institutions going. The result was 



86 PORT HOPE 

that a union was consummated in the fall of 1856 and a 
United Grammar and Common School was opened on Oc 
tober i4th, 1856 in the upper flats of Knowlson s Building, 
corner of Walton and Cavan Streets, with Mr. John Gordon 
as Principal. Thomas Benson, Esq., Chairman of the Unit 
ed Board, was the man to whom the most credit was due in 
bringing about this important move in the educational his 
tory of the To-.vn, without which at that time neither Public 
nor Grammar Schools could have properly filled their mission. 
In an announcement of the opening of the new school, ad 
dressed to parents and guardians of children in the Town of 
Port Hope, Mr. Benson explains that " the hours of attend 
ance will be from 9 o clock until 12 in the forenoon, and 
from i to 4 o clock in the afternoon, on every week day 
excepting Saturday. The fees are fixed at 35. pd. per quarter 
for the pupils in the Primary Schools ; 55. for those in the 
elementary English branches in the Union School ; 153. for 
higher English, including geography, astronomy, history, 
physiology, chemistry and natural philosophy ; 203. for the 
foregoing studies with algebra and mathematics and 253. in 
cluding the classics." 

To give a proper idea of this old school, it will be neces 
sary to borrow from Dr. Purslow s concise description, 
written during the last few years. " You entered at the 
back of the building by a door on Cavan Street, now the 
side entrance of Mr. McLennan s store. There were no 
separate entrance for the sexes. You mounted two flights 
of stairs about three feet wide and came to an enlarged 
passage, which served as a waiting-room for the girls ; an 
other flight of stairs and you came to a similar waiting-room 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 87 

for the boys : up another flight, narrower if anything, and 
you arrived at the top loft vhich had been partitioned off 
into five school-rooms." 

Meanwhile the octagon and plank schoolhouses were still 
kept open as primary schools. Mr. Watson was brought 
into the Union School, Mr. Wright took his place in the 
east octagon and the services of Mr. Erskine, a scapegrace 
son of Lord Erskine of the Court of Session in Edinburgh, 
were secured for the plank school. The latter building was 
shortly after consumed by fire and thus perished an historic 
land-mark of the Town. A new shifting of teachers ensued. 
Mr. Spotton came down to the Union School and his place 
was taken by Mr. Wright, while Mr. Erskine undertook to 
teach in the east octagon. Tracked by ill-luck Mr. Erskine s 
second school was almost immediately after consumed and 
the unfortunate master dismissed from the service of the 
Board. This school was then opened in a small wooden 
building near the corner of Ward and Elgin Streets and re 
mained there until the present East Primary School was 
built in 1868. The career of the west octagon was of a 
somewhat longer duration. It continued to be used un 
interruptedly until the time the new West Primary was built 
in 1873 and it was then torn down. Among its later 
teachers was Mr. J. R. McNellie, who subsequently taught 
in the East Primary for many years. The Union School, 
notwithstanding its uncomfortable position, continued to 
prosper, so that in 1861, a move to more commodious 
quarters was deemed necessary. In that year it was trans 
ferred to the old Meredith Building on Mill Street, until 
recently occupied by the Carpet Factory. Mr. Gordon 



88 PORT HOPE 

severed his connection with the School in 1865 and was 
succeeded by Dr. Purslow. Meantime the Board of Trus 
tees felt that the time had come to erect a regular school 
building and negotiations were set on foot whereby the 
present site of the Public School was acquired and aid 
promised from the Town Council. The present building 
with the exception of the north-east wing was built during 
1866 and opened in 1867. During the process of construc 
tion the Town passed two by-laws authorizing the raising of 
$10,380 to meet the expenses incurred. Here the Union 
School was housed for five years, when, owing to the mak 
ing attendance at the Common (Public) School free the 
accommodation was rendered too small. The Grammar 
(High) School accordingly left the building for new head 
quarters on Brown Street. Upon the separation Mr. 
Thomas Watson became Principal of the Public School for 
one year. Then the services of Mr. Goggin were secured 
and he continued as Principal until 1885 when the present 
Head of the school, Mr. F. Wood, was appointed. 

A new wing containing three commodious class-rooms 
was added to the school in 1883 so that now there is room 
for eleven large classes. A Model School for the County of 
Durham was established in 1877 and has had a prosperous 
career. Two years ago by the extinction of the Cobourg 
Model School, it has virtually become the Model School of 
the United Counties. 




CHAPTER XIX. 

PORT HOPE HIGH SCHOOL. 

Long live the good School ! giving out year by year 
Recruits to true manhood and womanhood dear ; 
Brave boys, modest maidens, in beauty sent forth, 
The living epistles and proof of its worth ! 

WHITTIER. 

is to be regretted that a more befitting tribute than 
the present necessarily imperfect sketch could not 
be paid in a work of this nature to an institution, 
which cherishes within its environs the memory of so 
many sons and daughters of the Town, there brought 
together, now separated far and wide over the face of the 
earth. The task of keeping alive the hallowed memories of 
the Old High School is of a far more extensive nature than 
that it could be accomplished in the few pages at the dis 
posal of the writer. Such a work could only be competent 
ly fulfilled by the organization of some permanent 
association, which, keeping alumni and students in touch, 
would perpetuate the old traditions and cherish the general 
devotion to the Old School. 

The history of Port Hope High School as a teaching 
institution is identical with the history of secondary educa 
tion in Port Hope. Until the establishment of a Grammar 
School in 1853, such instruction was given in private 
schools, of which there were several in existence from time 



90 PORT HOPE 

to time. The real progenitor of the Grammar School, 
however, was the Seminary founded by the Rev. James 
Coghlan in 1831 in the house near the Toronto Road until 
recently occupied by Mr. James Kerr. Mr. Millard and 
Dr. Shortt continued the academic labours of Mr. Coghlan 

w 

irj the same building. Conjointly other teachers were giving 
instruction in the classics and mathematics, notable among 
whom were the Rev. Mr. Baird, Mr. Thomas Spotton and 
Mr. Thomas Watson. 

In 1851 the Government of Upper Canada passed an 
Act enabling towns like Port Hope to open Grammar 
Schools and to secure financial aid for their maintenance. 
Two years later Port Hope decided to take advantage of 
this legislation and to establish a Grammar School. Trus 
tees were accordingly appointed, who immediately petitioned 
the Town Council for the use of a room in the newly- 

j 

completed Town Hall. The Council readily complied and 
titled up for school purposes a room in the south-east 
corner of the first floor of the Hall. Here the school was 
opened with Mr. Oliver T. Miller, a Dublin scholar of fine 
attainments, as master. Mr. Miller remained in charge of 
the school until May, 1855, during which time the 
Trustees removed the classes to a separate building standing 
on the south-east corner of Dorset and Smith Streets. It 
may be of interest to note here a few- of the scholars of that 
day who are still residents of the Town. Among them were 
H. H. Burnham, S. S. and J. D. Smith, F. Benson and 
G. M. Furby. 

After the summer vacation of 1855 the school was re 
opened in a room above the store on Walton Street at 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 91 

present occupied by John Smith. Here Mr. Brooks P. 
Lister from Christ Church, Oxford, taught for a year. 
History records that as a teacher he was a distinct failure. 

The Fall of 1866 witnessed the union of the Grammar 
and High Schools in Knowlson s Building, under the 
headinastership of Mr. John Gordon. The career of the 
united schools has been set forth in the preceding chapter, 
to which reference may be made. 

Mr. Gordon continued to hold the post of Head Master 
until 1865, when he was appointed one of Her Majesty s 
Inspectors of Schools in Ireland and left for that country. 
He came to Port Hope in middle-life a cultured gentleman, 
who secured the universal favor of the Town by his 
disinterested and genuine devotion to his work. He was 
succeeded in the control of the Union School by Dr. Adam 
Purslow, who had been associated with him on the staff 
since 1859. 

Legislation of 1871 changed Grammar to High and Com 
mon to Public Schools and rendered the latter free. The 
result was a great influx of pupils and the Union School 
Building was found to be much too small. Faced with 
this predicament, the Joint Board of Trustees purchased the 
"Old Kirk" on Brown Street in the fall of 1872 and in 
January, 1873, opened it as a separate High School under 
the principalship of Dr. Purslow. 

In those days there were four forms and three teachers in 
the school and the registered attendance was fifty boys and 
thirty-two girls. In 1878 representations were made of the 
necessity for a fourth teacher and at length in 1881 the 



92 PORT HOPE 

Board appointed a Science Master. Since then a fifth 
assistant teacher has been added. 

In July of 1894 Dr. Purslow resigned the Principalship 
and severed his connection with the teaching staff of the 
school. After thirty-six years of active service, during which 
the Doctor had successfully superintended the up-bringing 
of two generations, the time had come for him to seek a 
well-earned rest and the event of his retirement was made 
the opportunity by both pupils and ex-pupils of giving ex 
pression to the high esteem in which he had been held. 
He was succeeded as Head Master by Mr. T. A. Kirk- 
connel, who for several years had been Mathematical 
Master and Dr. Purslow s assistant. 

In 1896 the new High School Building on the north-west 
corner of Brown and Bedford Streets was erected and in 
January of 1897 the old quarters were abandoned and the 
School moved up the hill to its new home. The closing of 
the Old School which was so impregnated with the mem 
ories of the past, could only be lamented on the ground of 
sentiment. The new building with its modern equipment, 
commodious and pleasing appearance (all of which was 
acquired at an expense of little over $12,000) far surpassed 
its antiquated, cramped and unimposing predecessor. 

The new building was officially opened on January nth, 
1897, by the Hon. G. W. Ross, Minister of Education for 
the Province of Ontario. During the afternoon a reception 
was held in the building and in the evening Judge Benson, 
Chairman of the High School Board, presided at a crowded 
meeting in the Opera House, where the Hon. Minister de 
livered an appropriate address. 




CHAPTER XX. 

TRINITY COLLEGE SCHOOL. 

Floreat per saecula 

Schola Trinitaria, 
Macta sit virtutibus 

Gloria primaria. 

HuNTINfiFORD. 

VEN at this comparatively early date in its history, 
Trinity College School has become an institution 
of note all over the world, whilst its renown has 
been reflected in some measure on the Town in 
which its imposing building stands. Known to 
fame as the " Eton of Canada," it possesses school-boy tra 
ditions and associations which render this name most appro 
priate. During its thirty-three years presence in Port Hope 
it has provided Canada and the Empire with a fair propor 
tion of their leading men, and it is with an enviable pride 
that this Town can regard these graduates of the college, as 
in some degree her own sons. 

The School had its origin in the village of Weston in the 
year 1865 but, owing to the liberal offers of assistance ten 
dered by the citizens of Port Hope, it was removed thither 
in 1868, where buildings were provided free of rent for three 
years. The Rev. C. H. Badgley, B.A., Oxon. was then 
Head Master and was assisted by a staff of nine instructors, 

(93) 



94 PORT HOPE 

three being resident. The dormitories were situated in the 
old Ward Homestead, on the site of the present School 
building and were capable of accommodating sixty boys, 
whilst the tuitional portion of the work was carried on in the 
Meredith Block, from which the Union School had recently 
moved. 

Such was the condition of the infant institution when the 
man who was destined to raise it to its present high level 
was appointed Head Master in 1870. This was the Rev. 
Charles J. S. Bethune, D.C.L., third son of that Rev. A. N. 
Bethune* who years before had officiated in St. John s 
Church. Dr. Bethune was born at West Flamboro, August 
nth, 1838, and received his education at Upper Canada 
College and Trinity "University. He was ordained a priest 
in 1862 and for the following eight years remained in the 
service of the Church. Then came his appointment to the 
School in Port Hope. He immediately set himself to the 
task of building up a permanent institution there, having as 
a nucleus the thirty boys who attended the School at his 
coming. The first step was the purchase in 1871 of ten 
acres of land, where the School now stands. Then followed 
the erection of the central portion of the old building. This 
was designed by H. McDougall, Esq., was of the Elizabeth 
an style of architecture and was first used in January 1872. 
The almost insuperable difficulty before this undertaking lay 
in the fact that all the requisite funds had to be raised by 
subscription, there being no endowment. Still Dr. Bethune 
accomplished the task satisfactorily. 

f He succeeded Bishop Strachan as Bishop of Toronto. 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 95 

By an act of the Legislature of Ontario, passed during the 
session of 1871-72, Trinity College School was constituted a 
corporate body and then began its days of rapid progress. 
An attendance of seventy boys in 1872 was increased to 
ninety-six in 1873, an( ^ to one hundred and fourteen in 1874. 
Meanwhile work on the Chapel and Dining Hall had been in 
progress during 1873. These were contained in an addition 
built of red brick with white brick facings to the east of the 
School. The Dining Hall was opened on Nov. 5th, 1873 
by the Most Reverend A. Oxenden, Lord Bishop of Mont 
real and Metropolitan. It consisted of the hall proper, 
63x21 feet, and a recess for the high table 19x15 feet. On 
March 29th, 1874 the Chapel was dedicated by the Lord 
Bishop of Toronto. It consisted of a nave 75x21 feet and a 
chancel terminating in an apse 25x19 feet, and was capable 
of containing two hundred persons. During the following 
three years the chancel was richly adorned and beautified 
with exquisite carved work and the completed Chapel was 
re-opened on October i8th, 1877. 

In 1874 the western portion of the old School was com 
pleted and the building assumed the imposing appearance 
which it was to bear for many years. The finished struc 
ture had a frontage of three hundred feet to the south and 
eighty feet to the west, and sixty-two thousand dollars had 
been expended in its erection. A further addition of ten 
acres was made to the School property the following year, 
supplying ample room for sports of all kinds. 

The progress of the School was now uninterrupted and 
by the session of 1878-79 there were one hundred and forty 
pupils in attendance. The decade from 1880 to 1890 was 



96 PORT HOPE 

not marked by any eventful happenings, but the School was 
quietly building up that reputation on the athletic field and 
in the academic hall which it still maintains. In the year 
1891 the gymnasium to the north of the present building 
was erected. It was built after the plans of Messrs. Darling 
and Curry of Toronto and formed a novel and striking ad 
dition to the College buildings. Its dimensions are about 
eighty feet by fifty, and it consists of two stories, being well 
equipped with all the necessary adjuncts of a gymnasium. 

About this time the School entered upon a period of de 
cline. For two years Dr. Bethune ceased to be Head 
Master, and, though still known as Warden, he had little to 
do with the life of the School. His place was taken by the 
Rev. Arthur Lloyd. 

On April 27th, 1893, a fire of a most threatening nature 
was discovered about noon on the upper flat. After most 
heroic efforts on the part of firemen, school-boys and towns 
men the building was saved. However scarcely a week had 
passed before another blaze of still more alarming propor 
tions again threatened the building but fortunately without 
serious results. The final destruction of the old School oc 
curred on Sunday morning, Feb. i6th, 1895. The whole 
building with all its treasured associations was consumed 
in one of the worst conflagrations known in Port Hope s 
history. The loss occasioned was fully $80,000. Notwith 
standing this calamity, the School did not become extinct. 
For a short period the boys were quartered on the towns 
people until the St. Lawrence Hall was fitted up for their 
accommodation. At the same time a new School, larger 
and better equipped than its predecessor, was got under way. 



2 

M 

H 



O 

o 



H 

01 
Q 

K 
o 

o 




HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 97 

Messrs. Darling, Sproat & Pearson of Toronto supplied the 
plans for a $90,000 building. This structure to-day occu 
pies the site of the old School. It is of the same length as 
the former building but in breadth and height it far exceeds 
it. It is almost perfectly fire-proof, being divided into five 
fire-proof sections. The Chapel yet remains in an incom 
plete condition but fortunately it contains the beautiful carved 
choir seats and the lectern rescued from its predecessor. A 
new pipe organ was erected in the Chapel in 1899 in mem 
ory of R. H. Bethune, late General Manager of the Domin- 
*on Bank, of his wife and of Harriet Alice Mary Bethune, 
wife of the Head Master, who was accidentally killed in 
1898. 

At the close of the School-year 1898-9, Dr. Bethune again 
resigned from the School and retired to live in London, 
Ontario. He has been succeeded in turn by the Rev. R. 
Edmonds Jones, M.A. and by the Rev. Herbert Symonds, 
D.D., appointed Head Master in the present year. 

To attempt to enumerate all the Old Boys who have 
risen to prominence would be beyond the scope of this 
work but they are so numerous and well-known, that such a 
task would be rendered useless. The brilliant record of 
those Old Boys who have devoted themselves, as so many 
Trinity Boys have done, to the military profession, is also 
known to fame. In the late South African Campaign, over 
forty served in the British lines against the Boers, nineteen 
of whom held commissions. Two of this brave company 
Lieut. Osborne and Sergt. Evatt have died in that far-away 
country. 




CHAPTER XXL 

THE PRESS. 

Here shall the Press the People s right maintain, 
Unawed by influence and unbribed by gain ; 
Here patriot Truth her glorious precepts draw, 
Pledged to Religion, Liberty and Law. 

STORY. 

SERIOUS drawback with which the author of this 
book has had to contend in making researches 
into the past history of the Town, has been the 
non-existence of files of the old newspapers 
published in Port Hope since 1830. With the 
exception of files of the Guide for the years 1856, 1857 and 
1859 and occasional single copies of it and other papers, 
there exists no series of journals providing a contempor 
aneous history of the Town farther back than 1875, when 
Mr. George Wilson took over the Guide. Since then Mr. 
Wilson has kept complete and well-bound files of his paper, 
for which service he deserves the best thanks of the com 
munity. (It seems that some files of the Times are also in 
existence but the author has been unable to see them.) 

While Port Hope is thus deficient in her journalistic 
history, the neighboring town of Cobourg may be compli 
mented on having a complete series of the Cobourg Star 
from its inception in 1831. The author is indebted to this 
journal for many items which have thrown light on Port 

(98) 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 99 

Hope s history and, while it could not be expected to detail 
events occurring in Port Hope, it still treated this Town to 
a fair share of its attention. 

The father of journalism in Port Hope was the late 
William Furby, Esq., who was born in Yorkshire, England, 
on September 5th, 1799. As a youth he acquired the 
printer s and cabinet-maker s trades and then crossed the 
Atlantic in 1819. He settled in Port Hope in 1826 and for 
many years engaged in the furniture business in a building 
to the west of the present Guide office. In 1831 Mr. Furby 
in partnership with a Mr. Woodhouse purchased the printing 
plant of Mr. John Vail, who had established the Port Hope 
Telegraph a few months previously, and continued the 
publication of this, the first newspaper in Port Hope. Mr. 
Vail s press was one of the old wooden variety, which Mr. 
Furby soon after superseded with one of the first iron presses 
ever brought into Canada. His partner, Mr. Woodhouse, 
died in the summer of 1831 and Mr. Furby continued the 
publication of the Telegraph alone. Its name was altered to 
the Warder in June 1833 and to the Gazette in April 1836- 
The latter newspaper, which professed neutrality in politics 
became extinct in 1838 but was probably followed by 
another paper. In 1844 Mr. Furby began the publication 
of the Port Hope Gazette and Durham Advertiser and in 
1851 altered its name to the Guide. It was about this 
period that Mr. Charles Lindsey, now an old and respected 
citizen of Toronto, rendered Mr. Furby s paper famous by 
means of the brilliant articles, which secured him a dis 
tinguished place among Toronto journalists. 

In 1856 George M. Furby, Esq., elder son of William 



too PORT HOPE 

Furby took over the Guide and entered into partnership 
with Mr. Crea. Under their management the Guide became 
a tri-weekly publication. Two years later Mr. Fuby sold 
out his interest to Mr. Crea and the latter continued to 
issue the paper until 1861 when it ceased publication for 
a few months. Until 1875, when Mr. George Wilson 
secured the paper, it passed through several hands, among 
them being those of Mr. C. Blackett Robinson, but during 
this period its publication could not be said to be contin 
uous. Mr. Wilson bought the Guide from Mr. Moody and 
began to issue a daily paper in July 1878. 

Until about 1850 there was no opposition paper in Port 
Hope. The first such was the Watchman published by Mr. 
Steel. In reality this paper had its origin in Mr. Furby s 
office, for during its first two or three years existence it was 
issued from Mr. Furby s press. Then Mr. Steel set up a 
plant of his own and until 1855 the Watchman was regularly 
published. The following year a professedly Conservative 
paper, the British Standard, appeared under the editorship 
of Mr. James, while in November, 1857, it was succeeded 
by the Port Hope Atlas. This paper was edited by the 
distinguished writer, Mr. Charles Roger, known by his 
journalistic contemporaries as the " Carlyle of the Canadian 
press " and now better known as the author of a History of 
Canada. He came to Port Hope from Quebec and resided 
here but a few years. 

The immediate progenitor of the Times, the British 
Canadian, was established in Port Hope by Mr. Hugh 
Cameron, of Montreal, in 1862. From Mr. Cameron this 
paper passed into the hands of Mr. Delamere and later into 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 101 

those of the late J. B. Trayes, whilst its name was changed 
to the one it now bears. Mr. Trayes was an able and suc 
cessful publisher and editor and under him the Times saw 
its best days. He trained up several successful journalists 
among whom Mr. Atkinson, the talented editor of the 
Toronto Star, is prominent. Prior to the purchase of the 
Times by the present proprietor, Mr. Swaisland, it was 
managed for several years by Mr. W. F. Trayes and Mr. 
F. T. Harris. 

Several other papers have been in existence in Port Hope 
from time to time. Among these might be noted, the Echo, 
a Church paper, edited and published by the late Dr. 
Shortt, the Messenger issued from 1860 to 1863 by Mr. 
Hayter and the latter year removed to Millbrook, the 
Valuator, published in the sixties by the late Thomas 
Galbraith, and Mr. W. T. R. Preston s News bought by 
Mr. Wilson in 1883 after a life of three years. 




CHAPTER XXII. 

REGAL AND VICE-REGAL, 

Her court was pure ; her life serene ; 

God gave her peace ; her land reposed ; 

A thousand claims to reverence closed 
In her as Mother, Wife, and Queen. 

TENNYSON. 

early colonial days, it was no uncommon sight to 
behold government dignitaries passing through the 
village of Port Hope on their way to and from the 
seat of Government and doubtless Governors of 
Upper Canada have stopped over night at local inns.* 
However no details of any such visits remain and all that 
may yet be recounted is the episode of Sir Peregrine Mait- 
land and Shoemaker Smith. One day in 1828 the Gover 
nor was travelling eastward in his official coach, attended by 
a numerous retinue. As he drove in state down Walton 
Street, he expressed a desire to see the old shoemaker, who 
was famed far and wide as a red-hot radical. His coach 
was accordingly stopped before the humble abode of the 
cobbler. The latter immediately took in the situation. 
Coming to the door without removing his leathern apron or 
his cap, the old " rebel " shook his fist at the amused throng 

* e. g. " Sir John Colborne, Lieutenant-Governor of Upper Canada, and family, 
slept at Port Hope last night." Cobourg Star, Jan. 27th, 1836. 

(102) 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 103 

and thundered, " Ah, ye know not what yere doing ! Ye 
wud sell yer birthright for a mess of pottage ! " He there 
upon retired into his shop and the gratified onlookers 
resumed their journey. 

King William the Fourth died on the 2oth of June, 1837, 
but it was not until the 2nd of August that Port Hope heard 
the news of his death. The proclamation of his successor, 
Queen Victoria, took place on the yth. Late in the after 
noon Sheriff Ruttan of the Newcastle District arrived from 
Cobourg where he had proclaimed the Queen at noon. Sta 
tioned at the foot of Walton Street and surrounded by the 
local militia, he repeated the ceremonial and read the pre 
scribed proclamation. 

" Whereas it hath pleased Almighty God to call to His mercy our late 
Sovereign Lord, King William the Fourth, of blessed memory, by whose 
decease the Imperial Crown of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and 
Ireland, and all other of his late Majesty s dominions, is solely and rightfully 
come to the High and Mighty Princess Alexandrina Victoria, saving the 
rights of any issue of his late Majesty King William the Fourth, which may 

be born of his late Majesty s consort, We, Henry Ruttan, Esq., Sheriff 

of the Newcastle District ; the Hon. Zaccheus Burnham ; the Hon. Walter 
Boswell ; the Hon. Thomas A. Stewart, Legislative Councillors of the 
Province of Upper Canada ; William Falkner, Esq., Judge of the District 
Court ; and Richard Hare Lovekin, Alexander Fletcher, Richard Hare, 
Esquires, Justices of the Peace for the said District of Newcastle, and all in 
habitants of this District, therefore do hereby, with one full voice and consent 
of tongue and heart, publish and proclaim, that the High and Mighty 
Princess Alexandrina Victoria is now by the death of our late Sovereign of 
happy and glorious memory, become our only and lawful and rightful liege 
Lady Victoria, by the Grace of God, Queen of the United Kingdom of Great 
Britain and Ireland, Defender of the Faith, saving as aforesaid, Supreme 
Lady, &c., of this Her Majesty s Province of Upper Canada, to whom, saving 
as aforesaid, we acknowledge all faith and constant obedience, with all 
hearty and humble affection ; beseeching God, by whom Kings and Queens 
do reign, to bless the Royal Princess Victoria with long and happy years to 
reign over us." 

Thus was the glorious reign of Queen Victoria ushered in, 



io 4 PORT HOPE 

in Port Hope, with feelings of much loyalty and solemnity. 

Twenty three years afterwards the young Prince of Wales 
visited the Town. He arrived in Cobourg on the 6th of 
September, 1860, en board the Steamer Kingston (Algerian.) 
Next morning he took a hasty trip to Peterboro and then 
came on to Port Hope about noon. Several arches had 
been erected in his honour and residences were profusely 
decorated. A well-organized procession escorted H. R. 
Highness and suite through the principal streets to the Town 
Hall, where Mayor Scott presented the Corporation Address, 
amidst the greatest cheering from the immense concourse of 
people assembled. The Prince was thereupon escorted into 
the Hall where he was entertained at luncheon by the lead 
ing citizens of the Town. When the Mayor had duly pro 
posed the toast of the Queen and Royal Family, H. Royal 
Highness left by rail for Whitby. 

The town participated in two events during the next three 
years the first an occasion of mourning and the second of 
rejoicing. On the death of the Prince Consort, an address 
of condolence was despatched to the Queen, which was 
responded to by the Duke of Newcastle and on the occasion 
of the Prince of Wales wedding the Mayor proclaimed a 
whole holiday as a mark of gratitude to the Prince for his 
attentions to Port Hope. 

Two royal visitors have since honored the Town, Prince 
Arthur of Connaught in 1868 and Princess Louise in 1879. 
The latter passed through the Town in company with her 
husband, the Marquis of Lome, Governor-General of 
Canada, on September 2oth. They merely visited the 
Town Hall, where they received the usual formality of an 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 105 

address to which the Marquis very fittingly replied, referring 
gracefully to the happy significance of the name " Port Hope." 

The only other visit of any importance was that of the 
Earl of Dufferin in his official capacity on Sept. 3rd, 
1874. 

On July ist, 1887, the Queen s Jubilee was celebrated. 
The usual Dominion Day programme was entered into with 
increased spirit and in addition the decorations and illum 
inations eclipsed all previous attempts. 

But the Diamond Jubilee of 1897, as being a more 
solemn occasion, will outlive the memory of the earlier 
celebration. On Sunday afternoon, June 2oth, a most 
memorable service was held in the Methodist church, at 
tended by all the local organizations. Its most inspiring 
moment was at 4.13 when in company with British subjects 
all the world around the National Anthem was sung. The 
following Tuesday was the official day of rejoicing. An 
other service was held in the morning and in the afternoon 
a procession marched to the Park where speeches were de 
livered by local orators. At night illuminations and a prom 
enade concert in the Drill Shed closed the proceedings. 

The news of her Majesty s death, January 22nd, 1901 was 
received with general sorrow by the inhabitants of Port Hope 
as well as by many millions of the departed Queen s subjects 
far and wide. Such a recent event requires but little des 
cription. On the day of the State Funeral, the 2nd of Feb 
ruary, an imposing service was conducted in the Methodist 
Church, attended by all the religious denominations of the 
Town, which fittingly concluded a long and memorable 
reign. 




CHAPTER XXIII. 

CONCERNING THINGS MILITARY. 

Well may fair Canada be proud of such a bold array, 
Her honor in their trust is safe, let come whatever may . 
That they will do or die for her she owns with hearty cheers 
Hurrah then, thrice hurrah for them ! Ontario s Volunteers ! 

MACCOLL. 

HE part played by Port Hope in the several wars in 
which Canada has been involved has been by no 
means a minor one and the name, of at least one 
of her officers will live in the history of the country 
along with the names of her bravest military 
leaders. For, from that far-away day in a bye-gone century 
when the forefathers of Port Hope shed their blood and 
gave up all their possessions for the sake of the British flag, 
until but yesterday, when her bravest sons went forth to a 
distant land to uphold the honor of that same royal stand 
ard, Port Hope has been ever ready to serve her country at 
its time of need. 

At the time of the War of 1812 the settlement at Smith s 
Creek was much too diminutive to provide a complete 
volunteer company. But in the various regiments of militia 
centred along the frontier there were to be found many 
soldiers, who owned Smith s Creek as home, whilst Captain 
Thomas Ward was in charge of a company doing patrol duty 

between York and Presqu ile, in which he had doubtless 

(106) 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 107 

enrolled several fellow-townsmen. To show how these early 
volunteers served their country, one example should suffice 
in the person of James Sculthorpe. At the outbreak 
of hostilities he enlisted in a volunteer company stationed 
at Kingston. Here he spent six months on duty and then 
returned to Smith s Creek with the rank of sergeant. There 
after until the conclusion of the war he was entrusted by the 
military authorities with the conveyance of soldiers and 
ammunition to York and this was no light task, as it 
involved the impressing of farmers horses and vehicles in 
the transport service. 

In connection with this War, there is extant in the 
the Toronto Public Library a most interesting document 
containing the minutes of a Regimental Court Martial held 
at York on August 27th, 1814. This Court Martial was 
held on John Montgomery, the Sergeant of a detachment of 
Militia, ordered to Kingston as a guard to nine convicted 
prisoners. Four of the nine had made their escape at 
Smith s Creek and the Sergeant was charged with neglect of 
duty. The evidence elicited the facts that when the party 
reached Smith s Creek on the evening of July 3ist, by 
direction of J. D. Smith the prisoners were confined for the 
night in a shed overhanging the mill-dam and flume. Dur 
ing the night four of the prisoners, aided by the noise of the 
falling water, escaped through an opening made in the 

rear of the shed by the removal of some boards. The wit 
nesses believed that some of the inhabitants of the place 
had assisted the escape but it seems more probable that this 
statement was only a device on the part of his comrades to 
secure the acquittal of the Sergeant in which effort they 
were highly successful. 



io8 PORT HOPE 

The attitude of the inhabitants of the Newcastle District 
during the period of political turmoil which culminated in 
the rebellion of 1837, seems to have been distinctly in 
favor of the governing party. This was shown by the 
reception accorded Robert Gourlay when he visited this 
part of the country in 1818. Instead of endorsing his views 
the meeting, led by Charles Fothergill, passed resolutions of 
disapproval, which were largely signed and later were pub 
lished in pamphlet form along with Fothergill s speech on 
that occasion. * 

About this period the custom of holding annual musters 
of the yeomanry began. These gatherings were held on 
George IV s birthday (June ^th) and all the men of the 
township capable of holding arms were required to be pre 
sent at the drill-ground, to the east of the present Cemetery. 
Until the prospect of a rebellion became serious, this was 
the extent of the military training of the people. Then, in 
the summer of 1837, John Tucker Williams organized a 
Town company, which drilled regularly on the " Flats " and 
became somewhat proficient. 

The first news of the actual outbreak of the rebellion ar 
rived on December 4th, 1837. A special messenger dashed 
through the Town late at night, bearing orders to all 
Colonels of militia to muster their forces immediately and 
march to Toronto, as a body of rebels was rapidly advancing 
on that place. Two days later over one thousand men had 
assembled at Port Hope under Colonel J. T. Williams and 
had made a start for Toronto. But twenty-four men, fit to 

* A copy of this pamphlet, which has heen pronounced unique of its kind, is in 
the Toronto P ublic Library. 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 109 

mount guard, were left behind and these were supplied with 
only four muskets, not in firing condition. Scon after a 
horde of about one thousand half-armed men passed through 
from Cavan and Peterboro and for many months after the 
Town was constantly filled with trcops coming and going. 
Of these the 93rd Highlanders were the only regulars and 
for one night they were quartered on the residents of the 
Town. 

During the second week the majority of the Hope 
volunteers returned without having discharged their guns, 
their only feat being the capture of some prisoners whilst on 
the road up. On Jan. yth, 1838 a second muster was held 
and 125 picked men were despatched to the seat of war. 
It is difficult to gather from these data just what share Port 
Hope took in these events but it is known that many of her 
sons served for some time both at Toronto and in the 
Niagara District. 

Annual musters (now held on May 24th) continued until 
well on in the fifties and then they began to give place to the 
present system of volunteer companies. True there had 
been military districts and battalions for some time back but 
these were based on the annual drill plan. The first volun 
teer company in Port Hope was organized in 1857 by Captain 
Augustus Roche and was known as the Port Hope Rifle 
Company. Soon after Captain R. W. Smart started a cavalry 
corps, which figured in the Prince of Wales visit. On the 
disbanding of Roche s Company the Victoria Rifles, a fire 
men s organization, was formed. This in turn was supersed 
ed in February 1862 by the " Company of Foot Artillery of 
Port Hope " under Captain D. Bethune and Lieut. T. M. 



no PORT HOPE 

Benson. In August of the same year Captain A. T. H. 
Williams took command, and in December the company 
became the " Volunteer Militia Company of Infantry," 
better known as the Port Hope Infantry Company. A 
Rifle Company under Captain William Fraser was shortly 
after formed, as was also an Engineer Corps under Captain 
G. A. Stewart. This was Port Hope s fighting strength when 
a Fenian Invasion was threatened in 1865. The first order 
came to the Infantry Company in the Fall to repair to 
Sandwich for garrison duty. There Captain Williams and 
his sixty-five men remained until April 1866. On their de 
parture home the Town Council of Sandwich, through the 
Mayor, presented a most flattering address to them, which 
speaks volumes for the kind of men Port Hope then pro 
duced. Both the Infantry Company and the Rifle Comp 
any later served at Kingston, where equally valuable testi 
monials were presented on their departure. At home a 
Home Guard had been formed in June 1866 under Captain 
Kirchhoffer, with sixty Enfield Rifles. This Company pa 
trolled the Town during the troubled times. 

The result of this little war was the complete reorganiza 
tion of the Militia of the country. In the Fall of 1866 the 

j 

Canada Gazette announced the formation of the 46th East 
Durham Battalion and other similar regiments all over the 
Province. Lieutenant Colonel Williams was placed in com 
mand of the new local organization, which comprised two 
companies from Port Hope, and one each from Millbrook, 
Bethany, Springville and Janetville. 

From 1862 until 1867 the town had rented a storehouse 
on Ontario street from Mr. P. Robertson for use as a Drill 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. in 

Shed. In the latter year the present Drill Shed was erected 
by Samuel Wilson at a cost of $3,000, and ever since it has 
been the headquarters for the troops for a large district 
around Port Hope. 

The North West Rebellion of 1885 forms the next event 
in Military annals. As part of the general plan for quelling 
the revolt, Colonel Williams was entrusted with the task of 
forming a provisional battalion from the midland counties. In 
this famous Midland Battalion, the 46th had two companies, 
one from Millbrook under Captain Winslow and the other 
from Port Hope under Major Dingwall. The Battalion left 
Kingston for the front on April yth, where a portion of it 
participated in the Battle of Batoche, May Qth, and all the 
men did good service. The return to Port Hope on July 
1 9th was in many respects a sad one. Though all had es 
caped death in the field the gallant Colonel had been carried 
off by brain fever on the return journey. His lamentable 
death occurred at Battleford on July 4th, and when he 
breathed his last this Town experienced one of the direst 
losses it has yet been destined to sustain. The funeral ob 
sequies which took place on Tuesday July 2ist, were of the 
most impressive character, being conducted with the fullest 
military ceremonial and in presence of vast throngs of sor 
rowing people. 

The 46th Regiment now came under the command of 
Lieut. Col. Benson, who held sway over its fortunes until 
1896 when a change occurred. The 45th \Vest Durham 
Regiment was transferred to Lindsay, becoming the Victoria 
Battalion, whilst the 46th Battalion, increased to seven com 
panies became the Durham Battalion and the command of the 



ii2 PORT HOPE 

latter devolved upon Colonel John Hughes. Captains W. 
J. Robertson and F. H. Coombs are now in charge of the 
Port Hope companies and H. A. Ward. M. P., is Major. 

In connection with the history of the 46th Regiment, the 
career of the Band which has been associated with it ever 
since its formation, is deserving of some notice. At the 
time of the Fenian Invasion there was in Port Hope a 
Citizens Band under the leadership of Mr. Wm. Philp. It 
happened that several members of this Band enrolled with 
the Port Hope Light Infantry Company and went to Sand 
wich with them and while at that point organized a company 
band of eight pieces. It was from this small beginning that 
the 46th Band developed. The bandmasters since the for 
mation of the band have been Mr. Wm. Philp, Mr. R. 
Warner, Mr. A. H. Rackett, Mr. D. Carson and lastly Mr. 
J. R. Smith, who was appointed August ist, 1886. The 
46th Band has had considerable opposition at various times 
from other non-military bands but has out-lived them all. 
At present it is in a disbanded state, except at the periods 
of regimental drill, when players are specially engaged by 
the Bandmaster. 

In addition to being the headquarters for the 46th Regi 
ment of Infantry, Port Hope is also the home of the i4th 
Field Battery, until recently known as the Durham Field 
Battery. This Battery originated in 1872 under Captain 
Charles Seymour. Its guns were of the smooth-bore type 
and were six in number, with six horses to each gun. 
Captain Graham succeeded Captain Seymour in command 
until in 1880 William McLean, who had been Lieutenant 
at the formation of the Battery, was given the Captain s 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 113 

rank and placed in charge. Shortly before his appointment 
four rifle guns had superseded the old smooth-bores. In 1 883 
Captain McLean received the Major s rank and in 1893 
that of Lieutenant-Colonel. The Battery, which has been 
composed of six guns since 1898, was this year (1901) 
placed under the command of Major N. F. McNachtan, of 
Cobourg, owing to the retirement of Colonel McLean. 

In its drills and target practices the Battery has always 
maintained a high standard of efficiency. In 1894 it won 
the first general proficiency prize over all the Dominion 
artillery companies and it also possesses the Gwoszki 
Challenge Cup, having won it for two years in succession 
(1890-1891.) 

Last on the list of wars in which Port Hope has taken a 
share, stands the recent long and stubborn contest with the 
Boers in South Africa. Port Hope s sons did not have an 
opportunity to enlist until a second Canadian contingent 
was in process of formation. Then on January 5th, 1900, 
a gallant little company left for Ottawa to join " D " Batteiy 
R.C.A. The party consisted of Hector Read, Ernest Evatt, 
Thomas Kerr, William Welsh, Thomas Taylor, Robert 
Gamble, Victor Hall, Thomas Sandercock, Frederick 
Davey, Frederick Outram and Charles Ough. 

" D ;: Battery sailed from Halifax on board the Lauren- 
tian on Jan 2ist and arrived in Cape Town on the iyth of 
February. After a brief period of rest and training, active 
service began with a march through the Karoo Desert in 
pursuit of a party of rebels when the Battery formed a portion 
of a column of 2,000 Yeomanry and Australians. This 
march ended at De Aar on April 1/j.th. The following six 



ii4 PORT HOPE 

weeks were spent on guard duty at the Orange River Bridge. 
After a brief service at and near Bloemfontein under General 
Kelly-Kenny, " D " Battery reached Pretoria on July i4th 
and joined General Ian Hamilton s force. This column 
was employed for the next three weeks in clearing the 
Delagoa Bay Railroad and during that time saw much 
active service. Garrison duty at various points ensued until 
Sept. 2nd, when the Battery took part in General Buller s 
movement to the relief of Leidenburg. This point was 
reached on Sept. yth and next day the men of " D " Battery 
participated in the Battle of Paardeplat. After this taste of 
severe fighting, garrison duty for two months at Krokodil 
Poort and Godwan Rivier again became the lot of the Port 
Hope contingent and their fellow-soldiers. On November 
2oth, the Battery was once more at Pretoria and shortly 
after the journey home began. The capital of the Trans 
vaal was left on December 3rd, a brief stop was made at 
Worcester for further garrison duty and on the i3th of 
December, the men embarked on the Rosslyn Castle at 
Capetown for the long voyage to Halifax. A royal reception 
at Port Hope concluded this campaign of one year, on 
January i3th, 1901. Of the brave little company but one 
was absent at the home-coming Sergt. Evatt, who fell a 
victim to enteric fever. 




CHAPTER XXIV. 

SOME OTHER INSTITUTIONS. 

On man and his works has passed the change 
Which needs must be in a century s range. 

WHITTIER. 

HILE scarcely of such importance as to require 
separate chapters for their description, yet there 
are several other institutions in Port Hope 
deserving attention and these may conveniently 
be grouped in a single chapter. 

The Post Office, established in 1817 with Charles Fother- 
gill as Post Master, has suffered several changes of location. 
Rumour has it that Mr. Fothergill for several years handled 
the mail in his own residence where Mr. James Craick now 
resides. From there the office moved down to D. Smart s 
store on Mill street, when that gentleman became Post 
Master. Then it was transferred to the store at present oc 
cupied by John Wickett & Son ; from there to Gould s 
present site ; next to the old Hatton block on Mill street ; 
from there to the Smith Block on Walton street and in 1877 
to the Riordan Block. All these years David Smart and his 
son R. W. Smart had been Post Masters. In 1877 tne Rev.- 
J. Baird received the appointment and on Oct. 5th, 1878, 
the present Post Master E. J. Baird succeeded him. The 
present building was erected in 1883, the corner stone being 

("5) 



n6 PORT HOPE 

laid with much ceremonial on August 3oth by Sir Hector 
Langevin, Minister of Public Works. 

The Customs Department has been in existence in Port 
Hope since 1819 and with it the name of Mr. M. F. White- 
head was associated for many years. It was located for 
some time in the Hatton Block and later in the block south 
of the old Oil Clothing Factory Building. From there it 
went to the new Post Office in 1883. The present Collect 
or E. J. Burton, Esq. succeeded Mr. Whitehead on Sept. 
i5th, 1872. 

Offenders against the law and order of the Town were 
tried by the early Board of Police and later by the Mayor 
and Justices of the Peace. In 1871 R. H. Holland Esq. 
was appointed Police Magistrate, which office he has ever 
since filled. For several years the lockup was situated in a 
house on the corner of Walton aud Brown streets and then 
was moved to Norman Strong s house on Mill Street prior to 
a place being fitted up in the Town Hall. The Chief Con 
stables have been Dennis Riordan, D. Gillespie, John Lynn, 
James North, David Marshall and Charles Gilchrist. 
John Douglas, the present Chief, was appointed in April, 
1883. 

In the year 1821 John Hutchinson was granted the privi 
lege of holding a semi-annual fair or mart in Port Hope. 
This was probably the first step towards making Port Hope 
a market town. The Board of Police were also allowed to 
establish a market but it was not until the Town Hall was 
built and suitable accommodation provided that the market, 
as it is now known, was held regularly. 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 117 

The Port Hope Gas Company was organized in 1857 
with John Smart as President. The present building was 
erected by Mr. Donovan and the works put in by Mr. Perry 
of Montreal. The Town took ^2,500 stock on March 2nd, 
1857. The Company has had its periods of depression, 
first when coal oil was introduced and latterly when the use 
of electric light became prevalent. At present the Com 
pany s stock amounts to $34,860, its last dividend was 4%, 
and its mains extend eight miles. J. Mulligan Esq. is 
President. 

Electric lighting came in in 1886 and Mr. J. W. Quinlan 
was its introducer. By-law 533 dated Jan nth, 1886 con 
tains the agreement between the Town and that gentleman. 
Mr. Quinlan supplied the light for a portion of that year 
until in November the Town contracted with Dr. Corbett to 
carry out the lighting arrangements. This gentleman has 
extended and improved the system very largely and still 
operates it. 

The earliest burying-ground in Port Hope was on the east 
side of the Park Hill. Then the St. John s Church Ceme 
tery around the present St. Mark s Church became the 
burial ground of the settlement. Afterwards the Presby 
terians and Methodists each made cemeteries, the former at 
the rear of their church, the latter west of the High School. 
The Catholics also buried their dead around their church. 
The present St. John s Cemetery was opened in 1862, and 
the Union Cemetery in 1873. A Union Cemetery Com 
pany was formed on April i3th of that year with Col. Wil 
liams as President. Its present stock is $3,000 and W. 



n8 PORT HOPE 

Craig is President. Up to the present time 1126 interments 
have been made. 

The Port Hope Board of Trade has had a checkered 
history. There was a Board in existence in 1865 with John 
Helm as President, but it must have soon disappeared for 
on August 1 8th, 1874 a new organization was registered at 
Ottawa with the late Wm. Craig as President. After a few 
years this too became defunct and until the Twine Factory 
was established, no Board of Trade existed. In 1889 a 
large Board with one hundred members was formed and G. 
M. Furby appointed President. It is still alive though lat 
terly its office has been rendered useless by the appointment 
of a Manufacturers Committee of the Town Council. 

An institution which has been of much benefit to the 
Town is the Mechanics Institute established in 1874 under 
the presidency of Mr. G. A. Stewart, now of Calgary. A 
previous Institute had been established in 1852 and incorp 
orated in 1854, and for several years had maintained a 
library and reading room over Mr. DeyelPs present store ; 
but it became defunct and sold its library to the Y. M. C.A. 
During its early years it provided courses of lectures every 
winter. The present Institute started over the old Times 
office and soon after moved to its present location. J. H. 
Helm Esq. is President and Miss M. C. Budge, Secretary, 
while the library now contains 5000 volumes. 

Prior to 1870 all concerts, theatricals, lectures etc. were 
held in the Town Hall. In that year the O Neill Brothers 
built the old Opera House. It was merely a music hall, 
without gallery, boxes or adequate stage accommodation. 
These accessories were added in 1886 when a Peterboro 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 119 



Company secured the property, and until 1897 tne 
Opera House witnessed many gatherings of most varied 
nature. It was destroyed by fire Feb. i4th and restored to 
its present well-equipped condition in 1899. Mr. E. J. Far- 
quharson is the lessee. 

Since 1862 the charity of the Town has been dispensed 
through the Benevolent Society, which was formed in that 
year by the late Wm. Craig. Over one thousand dollars 
pass through the hands of the society annually, of which 
more than half is donated by private subscription. Mr. W. 
Quay is now President and for over twenty years Mr. J. H. 
Helm has been Treasurer. 




CHAPTER XXV. 

INDUSTRIAL HISTORY. 

But the monument of glory, Industry must ever claim. 

TYLER. 

HE capabilities of the Ganaraska River as a power- 
stream were early recognized by the settlers of the 
Newcastle District, and Smith s mills erected on 
its banks in 1797 were the first of their kind in a 
large section of the country. Supplied with its 
waters from perennial springs, the stream possesses the 
uncommon characteristic of maintaining an almost uniform 
flow of water all the year around, with the exception of brief 
periods when floods are prevalent. In addition it has a fall 
of some sixty-four feet within the Town limits which at 
present develops six hundred and fifty horse-power. 

Viewed from the industrial standpoint Port Hope s life 
divides itself into three periods ; the first when the Town 
was rendered famous by the output of its numerous dis 
tilleries ; the second when it became equally important as a 
railway terminus and port and the third and present period 
when it is striving to maintain itself at its former level, 
though suffering from severe losses over which it has had no 
control. 

It was in 1802 that Elias Smith built the first distillery 

near the site of the skating rink and began the manufacture 

(120) 




O 

a 

i; 

O 
tk 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 121 

of the famous Port Hope brand of whiskey. Within a few 
years other distilleries started operations and by 1826 no 
fewer than eight were in existence in the Town, while during 
the thirties even a larger number were kept busy supply 
ing the world with its favorite beverage. A large proportion 
of this production was shipped to Montreal, where it was 
transformed into brandy, rum and gin and returned to its 
native town under the guise of a genune foreign article. 

Port Hope s busiest years were from about 1850 to 
1880 when many important public works were in the 
course of construction. The building of the harbor, viaduct 
and railroads employed hundreds of men ; the Railroad 
Shops and Car Works were kept at full blast supplying and 
repairing rolling-stock Helm s Foundry and Hayden s 
Foundry turned out all manner of machinery; Robertson s 
Tannery (est. 1820) and Craig s Tannery (est. 1852) both did 
large businesses and Molson s, Barrett s and Peplow s Mills 
manufactured flour for shipment. Besides these there were 
carriage-works, saw mills, carding mills and numerous other 
industries in operation, supplying the needs of the newly 
opened-up country to the North. 

In 1873 P rt Hope s greatest manufacturing enterprise- 
the Car Works was set on foot by Messrs. N. Kirchhoffer, 
G. M. Furby, J. G. Williams, R. O Neill, L. Ross, J. Hayden, 
and A. T. H. Williams, with a capital stock of $50,000. 
Hardly had the Company s Charter been obtained than an 
order for 400 cars came in from the Intercolonial Railway, 
and other orders followed in rapid succession. For about 
three years the Company flourished. Extensive shops on 
both sides of the railway were erected on Ontario street, 



122 PORT HOPE 

long sidings were put in and two hundred mechanics were 
kept busy day and night. But unfortunately financial diffi 
culties set in, followed by a suit in Chancery, which termi 
nated in the sale of the plant to Mr. Helm. For some years 
the buildings stood idle and finally they were destroyed by 
fire in August 1880. 

Since the Car Works were closed down several manufac 
tories of some note have served to maintain a small industri 
al population in Port Hope, though other industries of long 
standing have dwindled down to very small proportions. 
The white stone mill at Helm s dam, erected in 1853, was 
used for many years as a flour mill and store-house. In 
1887 Mr. J. Dyer opened it as a woollen mill and continued 
to manufacture there till the building was destroyed by fire 
in April 1889. 

In 1888 Mr. F. Outram established the File Works at 
Beamish s dam. At first twenty-six men were employed. 
Now much larger buildings and three times the number of 
hands render this Factory of much importance to the Town. 
(A recent deal has placed it in the hands of the Nicholson 
File Company of New Jersey.) At the same time that this 
Factory came to Port Hope, a Twine Factory was also es 
tablished near the Harbor by VV. A. Morris & Company of 
Montreal. Shortly after it became the property of the Con 
sumers Cordage Company of the same place. For several 
years the works were operated but after having been closed 
down for lengthy periods they were finally removed in 1898. 
Its former building was reoccupied in the present year by 
the Dominion Radiator Company, which bids fair to become 
a flourishing institution. 




CHAPTER XXVI. 

FIRES AND FIREMEN. 

Dong dong -the bells rang out 
Over the house-tops ; and then a shout 
Of " Fire ! " came echoing up the street, 
With the sound of eager, hurrying feet. 

CATLIN. 

NTIL the incorporation of Port Hope with a 
Board of Police, there was no organization of any 
sort for the prevention of fires. But one of the 
the first acts of the new body was the appointment 
of three fire wardens Wm. Lee, Wm. Mitchell 
and Wm. Furby whose duties were to inspect all buildings 
liable to take fire easily, to compel people to place such 
buildings in safe condition and to see that every householder 
was provided with buckets and ladders. These fire wardens 
also directed the efforts of the people at fires. For many- 
years they were appointed annually, and were the sole au 
thorities in connection with conflagrations. 

Though a Hook and Ladder Company was formed by 
William Lee in 1842, its existence was so brief that it could 
not be called the originator of the present Fire Brigade. 
The date of the latter s formation was Jan. 2oth, 1846, when 
a public meeting was held and a Brigade of over sixty mem 
bers was formed. Fifty buckets and three small engines, 
purchased from M. F. Whitehead, comprised the apparatus 



i2 4 PORT HOPE 

of these early firemen. In February 1849 Rescue engine 
was purchased from T. Snook of Rochester for $750 and 
Rescue Fire Company was formed with N. Kirchhoffer as 
Captain. This engine pumped water from any convenient 
stream or well in the neighborhood of a fire and was oper 
ated by hand-power. Union engine was acquired in 1853, 
and Victoria engine in 1856 and corresponding companies 
were formed for them. Hook and Ladder and Bucket com 
panies worked in conjunction with these engine companies. 

When the waterworks were introduced, the old apparatus 
disappeared. Extinguisher Hose Company was formed with 
a strength of about twenty men, and soon after two Chemi 
cal engines were placed at the east and west ends of the 
Town and companies formed to operate them. These latter 
companies continued in existence until about 1891 when 
they were disbanded and five men from each added to the 
Hose company. On Jan. ist, 1901, the strength of the 
Hose Company was reduced to fifteen men, and a well- 
trained team of horses added to the equipment. 

About the year 1850 the main street of Port Hope was 
occupied with two-storey wooden blocks. By a series of 
disastrous fires all these old buildings were completely des 
troyed. The first fire started in the Meredith Block on the 
south side of Walton street, about 9 p. m. on Jan. 2nd, 
1850, and before it was out, the street had been cleared from 
Queen street up to the future site of the railway track. 
Shortly after a second fire started in a hotel on the site of 
the present American hotel and burned up to the Brogdin 
Block (Tempest Block). Hardly were new structures com 
pleted on these sites than a third conflagration cleared out 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 125 

the Brogdin Block, and devastated up to Cavan street. The 
old wooden Durham House on the corner of John and 
Walton streets stood through all this destruction until it too 
went up March yth, 1859. Within the next few years a 
number of fine brick blocks north of the Royal Hotel in 
which the Post Office and Customs House were domiciled, 
were also destroyed by fire, which originated in the Hatton 
Block. Then in the year 1865 a serious fire swept away a 
number of buildings expending from the Opera House to 
the Y. M. C. A. on John street. The following February a 
fire originated in Hagerman s grocery in Quinlan s Block 
and owing to the intense cold and the freezing of the en 
gines, destroyed the whole block. Last of the big down 
town fires was one which started in Brent s Drug Store in 
the new Brogdin Block in July, 1867, and cleared out the 
whole block and the adjoining Smith Block though both 
were of brick construction. 

Next came a period when incendiaries were at work and mills 
and factories suffered. Woods Brothers Fanning Mill west 
of the Drill Shed was burned in 1872 ; Butterfield s Carriage 
works on Cavan street were destroyed in 1873; Molson s 
huge flour mill at the Electric Light Pond was consumed in 
the Fall of 1874 ; and on Sunday morning August 8th, 1880 
the famous Car Works on Ontario street were totally des 
troyed, entailing a loss of $48,000. 

Since then several large fires have occurred, notably 
Barrett s Mills, Beamish s Mills and Wallace s Store House 
at the wharf in 1885: the old stone mill, occupied by J. 
Dyer & Sons, April 2ist, 1889; the Town Hall, Feb. 3rd, 



126 PORT HOPE 

1893; Trinity College School Feb. i6th, 1895; and the 
Opera House, Feb. i3th, 1897. 

The Fire Hall was erected in the year 1871 by Messrs. 
Wallace, Carveth and Fogarty, contractors, for $3,200. 
Prior to its occupancy the central fire station was situated 
on the west side of Ontario street near Walton street. The 
present Fire Chief is Mr. L. G. Misson. 





CHAPTER XXVII. 

SOME PIONEER FAMILIES. 

" Old faces look upon me 
Old forms go trooping past." 

O many famous old families are connected with the 
early history of Port Hope that it will be 
impossible to bestow attention on all of them. The 
plan will therefore be followed of considering only 
a few of those whose descendants still maintain a 
living interest in the Town. 

The HARRIS FAMILY were originally of Dutch extraction 
but had settled in America long before the Revolution. In 
1776 the family were at Poughkeepsie and with the excep 
tion of Myndert, they all decided to support the revolution 
ists. Myndert however stood by King George, served during 
the War in the quarter-master department at New York and 
at the close of the War retired with his family to Digby, N.S. 
Dissatisfied with that country, Mr. Harris journeyed to 
Newark, Upper Canada, by way of New York and the 
Hudson and, through the representations of Captain Walton, 
settled at Smith s Creek in 1793. He resided in this 
neighborhood until his death in 1823 at the age of 75 years. 
His family consisted of four sons and six daughters. Of 
these MYNDERT, JUN. died at Port Hope in 1878, aged 92 

years. He was the father of Thomas Harris of Wesleyville 

(127) 



128 PORT HOPE 

and of the late Joseph Harris of Port Hope. HANNAH 
married first Seth Soper and had two daughters. One of 
these was the mother of J. D. and S. S. Smith. She after 
wards married John Burnham. SARAH married Elisha 
Jones and had three daughters, one of whom was the mother 
of Dr. L. B. Powers. 

Elias Smith, the founder of the SMITH FAMILY, owned 
large property in New York and Harland at the time of the 
Revolution. He succeeded in selling the Harland property 
for ^7,000 but lost his New York property by his adhesion 
to King George. This city property was in 1830 valued at 
a million dollars. He came to Port Hope in 1797 and with 
Captain Walton received a Crown Patent of the Town site. 
Of his large family JOHN DAVID is of most interest to Port 
Hope citizens. He was born in New York in 1786 and 
came to Port Hope with his father. Until his death in 
1849 ne was a prominent citizen of the Town and held 
the offices of Magistrate and member of the Legislative 
Assembly for some time. Of his nine sons and three 
daughters, ELIAS P. was for many years Manager of the 
Bank of Upper Canada. He was the father of J. D. 
and S. S. Smith and the late Mrs. John Smart. DAVID was 
a lumberman at Consecon ; JOHN S. was a lawyer in To 
ronto, Cobourg and Port Hope ; JAMES became Judge of 
the County of Victoria ; WM. M. was a doctor in Port 
Hope ; MRS. J. B. HALL ; ROBERT CHARLES, father of 
R. C. Smith, was a lumberman ; SIDNEY was a lawyer in 
Cobourg and for a time Post Master General of Canada ; 
JOSEPH S. ; WALLACE W. ; MRS. T. C. CLARK ; MRS. 
WELLINGTON. 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 129 

The WARD FAMILY are of English descent. Their 
founder, Captain Thomas Ward, was born in London in 
1770 and came to Canada with Governor Simcoe in 1791. 
He was one of the first statute lawyers of Upper Canada 
and one of the first benchers of the Law Society of the 
Province. Until 1808 he was Registrar of Northumberland 
County, residing at Brighton. In that year he became 
Registrar for Durham and removed to Port Hope. In later 
life he also held the offices of Judge of the County Court 
and Clerk of the Peace for the Newcastle District. In 1847 
he resigned from the Registrars office in favor of his son 
George C. and his death took place in 1861. All his family 
of eight children are now dead. Among them were Mrs. 
J. T. Williams, George C. and Ely W., all three well-known 
in Port Hope. H. A. Ward, Esq., M.P. is the only 
surviving son of the late George Ward. 

John Tucker Williams, the founder of the WILLIAMS 
FAMILY, came to Canada during the War of 1812-15 and 
commanded a vessel on the Lake during that war. He 
finally settled at Port Hope. During the Rebellion of 1837 
he commanded the Durham Regiment ; later represented the 
County in Parliament and was the first Mayor of Port Hope. 
His death took place in 1854. Of his family of seven 
children Mrs. Wm. Fraser, Mrs. Charles Seymour and 
Charles Williams still survive. His eldest son Arthur 
Trefusis Heneage was born June i3th, 1837 and was 
educated at Upper Canada College and Edinburgh Univer 
sity. He was a most public-spirited man and held many 
responsible positions in the Town and the country. He 
was Colonel of the 4 6th Regiment and saw service during 



130 PORT HOPE 

the Fenian Invasion and the North-West Rebellion. He 
also served in both the Local and Dominion Houses. His 
lamentable death to which reference has already been made 
occurred July 4th, 1885. In 1859 he married Emily, daugh 
ter of Hon. Benjamin Seymour and by her had five children. 
On Wednesday, Sept. 4th, 1889, Sir John A. MacDonald 
unveiled a statue, erected in his honor on the Market 
Square, and by this means the memory of this worthy 
citizen and soldier is perpetuated. 

The BURNHAM FAMILY whose names are familiar in a 
large section of Ontario are the descendants of four brothers, 
Asa, John, Zaccheus and Mark, who came to Ontario from 
New Hampshire. Mark, whose name is more particularly 
associated with Port Hope, was born in 1791 and came to 
Canada in 1812, settling first at Cobourg. In 1830 he 
removed to Port Hope and continued the mercantile busi 
ness there for ten years. Besides being a successful mer 
chant he was a musician and composer of some talent. He 
died in 1864. His third and only surviving son is H. H. 
Burnham, Esq., a prominent and respected citizen of Port 
Hope. 

The CHOATE FAMILY comprising a father and two sons 
left Enfield, New Hampshire about the year 1798 and set 
tled near Hamilton, Ontario. A few years later, Jacob, one of 
the sons, bought a farm near Cobourg. There he resided a 
short time and then came on to Smith s Creek, where he en 
gaged in the hotel business until 1816, his tavern being the 
progenitor of the present Queen s. During this time he 
purchased the lands at Belmont and finally removed 
there. He was the father of four sons and two daughters. 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 131 

Of these Nathan, the eldest son, born in March 1805, be 
came the proprietor of Belmont and a prominent agricultur 
ist of the district. For more than fifteen years he was 
President of the Durham Agricultural Society. On his death, 
July loth, 1891, the Belmont Estate descended to his son 
Asa, whose lamentable death, August 28th, 1901, has so 
recently occurred. Of this family there still survives Nathan 
B. Choate of Iowa, Miss Elizabeth Choate of Port Hope, 
Mrs. Herriman of Lindsay, and Mrs. Meeking of Hope 
Township. 




CHAPTER XXVIII. 

BIOGRAPHICAL. 

Great men have been among us 

And tongues that uttered wisdom, better none. 

WORDSWORTH. 

MONG the numerous gentlemen who have taken a 
prominent share in the public affairs of the Town, 
there are two in particular, distinguished by 
especial virtues, whose names should not be 
omitted in this volume. These are the late 
Thomas Benson and the late William Craig. The former 
gentleman was born at Fintona, Ireland, Jan. nth, 1804, 
whence his family crossed to America in 1816. About 
1819 they settled at Kingston where the father, James 
Benson died in 1828. Thomas Benson entered upon the 
mercantile life, remaining in Kingston until 1832, when he 
removed to Port Hope, where he resided for five years. 
During the rebellion of 1837 and subsequent years he 
served as Captain. In" 1845 ne settled at Peterborough but 
returned to Port Hope in 1853 to assume the duties of 
Secretary-Treasurer of the Port Hope and Peterborough 
Railway, which he fulfilled in the most able manner until 
his premature death in the Desjardins Canal catastrophe, 
March i2th, 1857. Of a family of twelve children, the 
eldest surviving son is Thomas Moore Benson, of Port 






HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 133 

Hope, Senior Judge of the United Counties and a man 
who ably fills his father s place in the community. Richard 
Lowe Benson, for some years Deputy Sheriff of the 
Counties of Northumberland and Durham ; Lieut.-Col. 
Frederick Albert Benson and four daughters are still living. 
The late William Craig was born in Yorkshire, England, 
Feb. 2 yth, 1819, but did not come to Port Hope until 1852. 
In that year he started the Tannery which still bears his 
name. Until his death on Friday, 2gth May, 1891, he was 
actively connected with the philanthropic and benevolent in 
stitutions of the Town, was for many years the main-stay of 
the Baptist Church and for four years was Mayor of the Town. 
He was the father of four sons and two daughters who 
occupy most honorable positions in the various places where 
destiny has placed them. Of the daughters, one is the wife 
of Judge Chisholm, of Berlin, for many years a well- 
known citizen of Port Hope and the other is the wife 
of Dr. J. W. Clemesha, a foremost physician of the Town. 
Of the sons T. Dixon sat for two terms as member for East 
Durham ; John is a missionary in India ; Joseph resides in 
Minneapolis and William succeeded to his father s business 
in Port Hope. 




CHAPTER XXIX. 

THE OLD HOYS* CELEBRATION OF 1 90 1. 

Mid pleasures and palaces though we may roam, 
Be it ever so humble, there s no place like home. 

HE idea of entertaining " old boys and girls " in the 
home of their youth can scarcely be considered a 
novelty, but yet it may be justly claimed that no 
Canadian town has before entered into the project 
to such an extent and with such a measure of suc 
cess as Port Hope. The opportunity of revisiting scenes of 
their youth and meeting old friends was embraced by Port 
Hope s sons and daughters from far and wide. For three 
days the town was crowded with the returned natives, and 
for many days before and after the special days of the cele 
bration, the " old boys " were largely in evidence. This 
period of reunion at the beginning of a new century will 
doubtless live long in the memory of those who participated 
in it and it will accordingly be unnecessary here to relate in 
detail all that occurred. Suffice it to give a general outline 
of the celebration which may serve at some future date to 
recall more clearly the events of the various days. 

The first morning was occupied with the arrival and offi 
cial welcome of the visitors. The Rochester Old Boys with 
the Knights of St. George and the 54th Regiment Band 



HISTORICAL SKETCHES. 135 

were the most conspicuous figures in the constantly moving 
stream of humanity. These Americans with their character 
istic enthusiasm had provided themselves with a uniform 
outfit consisting of long grey dust-coats, yachting caps and 
red. white and blue sunshades. On the arrival of the To 
ronto contingent, a procession was formed which marched 
to the Town Hall where Mayor White in his best style gave 
the corporation welcome to the visitors. Speeches followed 
from Dr. Forbes of Chicopee Falls, organizer Joseph Hoop 
er, of Port Hope, Messrs. T. O. Monaghan of Rochester, 
W. J. Colvin of Omaha, J. W. Curry, K. C. of Toronto, 
Robert Clarke of San Francisco, Samuel Lelean of Redlands, 
California and President Andros of the Organization Com 
mittee. 

The afternoon witnessed horse race_s, athletic sports and 
a baseball match in the Park, while the day was wound up 
with a band concert, in which participated the Queen s Own 
Band of Toronto and the 54th Regiment Band of 
Rochester. 

The second day of the celebration was ushered in with 
continued fine weather. A large contingent from Peterboro 
with the 57th Regiment Band of that city arrived betimes, 
much to the gratification of the people of Port Hope. An 
excellent Kalithumpian procession amused the crowds until 
noon. More horse races and a lacrosse match (Peterboro 
vs Port Hope in which the home team were the easy win 
ners) succeeded by a magnificent display of fire-works at 
night, comprised the second day s programme. 

Wednesday and Thursday, the remaining days of the 
celebration, were spent in a quieter manner and were accord- 



136 PORT HOPE 

ingly enjoyed by all who desired to visit friends. The suc 
cess of the undertaking was undoubtedly due in a large 
measure to the indefatigable efforts of Mr. Joseph Hooper, 
who spent many months previous to the affair in making 
preparations and working up enthusiasm. The townspeople 
expressed their welcome in many ways, especially by the 
lavish decorations, which everywhere graced the town. 
Prominent among these was a large turreted white arch on 
Walton street, which was much admired by all who 
viewed it. 




INDEX. 

(Merely supplementary to Table of Contents. ) 






Anecdotes . 



A. 



B 



, 15. 47, 102 



Band, 4 6th II2 

Benevolent Society . . . .119 

I \ * T" C7 J^ T- T^l-v 



Benson, Thomas . . 
Bethune, Rev. C. I. S . 

T~* i f -!. , * 



F. 

Fenian Invasion 

File Factory I32 

Furby, William . . . . . . 99 



. 132 

94 



** Mtt 

Board of Police . . 

Board of Trade . . . . n8 

Burnham Family . . . .130 

Burying-grounds . . . . 6, 117 

C. 

Carrying-road. ... 44 

Car Works I2 7 

Cassie, Rev. ]. ... . . 67 

Cemeteries 6, 117 

Choate Family .... 130 

Cobourg Star . ^g 

County, connection with Town 

; 24, 32 

rormed 29, government 32 

Craig, William . . 81, 82, 133 

Customs House T i6 

D. 

District, Newcastle .... 2 Q 
Districts of Upper Canada . 28 
Durham Field Battery . . . II2 

E. 

Electric Light ... II7 

In niTMt-irt/-. \7*.I _ 



129 

117 



Engines, Fire 



124 



G. 

Ganaraska River 

Gas Company .... 

Gochingomink, meaning of . .44 

H. 

Harris, Myndert 
Haunted Meadow . 
Henderson murder . 

I. 

Implements, primitive . . 
Incorporation of Town 

Ir ^ians i, j, v,, / 

Island 6, 8, 18 

M. 

Market 

McSpadden accident ... 58 
Mechanics Institute ... 118 

Mills 10, ii, 17, 121 

Murders 55, 56, 57 



127 
14 
57 



9 
23 



N. 



Nomenclature 
North-West Rebellion . 



22, 29, 30 

. . Ill 



133 



INDEX. 



O. 

O Meara, Rev. F. A. ... 62 

O Neill murder 56 

Opera House 118 

P. 

Park, Town 27 

Plague, Spotted 13 

Police 116 

Post Office 19, "5 

Prince of Wales visit . . . 104 

Q. 

Queen Victoria, proclaimed . 103 

Jubilees . . 105 

Death, . . 105 
R. 

Rebellion of 1837 108 

Representation, Parlia 
mentary, . 28, 29, 31 
Roads, early .... 44, 45, 46 

S. 

Sculthorpe, James ... 12, 107 

Settler, first 2 



Shorlt, Rev. J 61 

Smith, Elias 10, 128 

Smith, J. D 31, 33, 128 

South African War . . . . 113 

Stages 47. 48 

Surveys 9 

T. 

Town Hall 24, 25 

Town, incorporated .... 33 
Town and County connection. 24 
Trent Valley Canal ... 36, 37 

V. 

Volunteers 109 

Viaduct 50, 51, 52 

W. 

War of 1812 106, 107 

Ward, H. A 129 

Ward, Thomas 129 

Wards, Town 23 

Waterworks .... 25, 26, 27 
Whiskey, Port Hope ... 12 1 
Williams, A. T. H. .31, 129, 130 
Williams, J. T. . . . 31, 129 
Wreck of Niagara .... 58 








J