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Comment from: Brian MacDonald [Visitor]  
Brian MacDonald

A. B. Perry, a Deputy Surveyor of Upper Canada, prepared a survey of the northwest portion of Wolfe Island in Frontenac County in 1828.

Great bit of information, thanks Brian! Jody

02/27/10 @ 16:43
Comment from: Marg Kitchen [Visitor]  
Marg Kitchen

Thanks for the great info on older towns and settlements in the area. My husband’s ancestors, including Perry, Bloxsom, came from the areas mentioned.

Thank you, Marg, for your comment. I’d be pleased to hear of any stories you might have about the area.


08/28/10 @ 19:37
Comment from: [Member]

Loved this. Great reading! Wished I lived closer to my favorite area anywhere. Too far from KW for weekend visits though. Thanks.


Hi Steve,
It’s surprising how many people do make the trek from the KW area. Happy to hear that you enjoyed the blog entry.

08/31/10 @ 14:07
Comment from: R.J. Doyle [Visitor]  
R.J. Doyle

I’m 74 years old. My great grandfather was Michael Doyle asa M.P. Doyle. He founded Doyle’s Corners in Maynooth. The info on the Ghost Towns in the area are very interesting.

Thanks, R.J. Doyle

Hi R.J.,

Wonderful to hear from you! I would love to hear more about your family!


10/16/10 @ 10:09
Comment from: Ron O'Shea [Visitor]  
Ron O'Shea

Love your site and the information it provides about one of the most beautiful areas in Canada.Our most recent trip to Petawawa was in early October and the weather,fall colours and natual beauty of the Ottawa Valley made for a wonderful trip.Our trip up the Opeongo line gave us the opportunity to see first hand the many 19th century farm houses and out buildings in the area and we wondered why many of the buildings are clustered,or in some cases are laid out to form a circle.Is there a particular reason and name for the layout?
Ron O’Shea ret.RCAF

01/22/11 @ 23:11
Comment from: [Member]

Hi Ron,

I think you will find that having the buildings grouped together made it easier for the farmers to get from one building to the other… and to maintain the yard etc… also, easier to keep an eye on things!


02/04/11 @ 18:23
Comment from: Ron O\'Shea [Visitor]  
Ron O\'Shea

Hi Jody
Thanks for answering my earlier question about the placement of the main house and outbuildings on farm sites back in the 19th century.

I would like to know if there is a land form (Hill)in Renfrew county higher than Foymount,and if so where it is,and if it can be viewed from a road or highway?

P.S.Having Touchpad/mouse issues at the moment.

Hey Ron: Foymount is pretty much it! You can visit the town and enjoy the view!

03/10/11 @ 00:03
Comment from: Elisabeth Cumin [Visitor]  
Elisabeth Cumin

Do you know the location of The O’Brien Settlement, O’Brien Road, Hastings County ??

Sincerely, Elisabeth Cumin

Hey Elisabeth,

The O’BRIEN settlement was on the Old Town Line near Bancroft, Ont- about 80 miles north of Belleville, between Apsley & Coe Hill. It is considered by some to be in North Kawartha. There is an O’Brien Rd there.

I hope this is of some help.


09/30/11 @ 14:48
Comment from: Jackie M [Visitor]  
Jackie M

Hello there,
Can you tell me if you are aware of any occurrences at 28 woods road in Madoc Ontario? My 3 year old son has been very troubled by someone he refers to as “naughty Momma". He has even told me that she wears a blue hat, and genuinely seems afraid of her. Do you have any history on this property that might connect with my sons behavior? I myself have felt not alone in the house, and one night when I was sleeping I am sure I saw a bright white vertically elongated light in front of me, and then it disappeared. Can you help explain any of this?

Jackie: I’m going to pass this on to my friends at PSICan.

06/12/12 @ 09:11
Comment from: Jeff Mills [Visitor]  
Jeff Mills

I could really use your help a relative of my wife’s is looking for pictures of the Brinklow train station that was just off highway 62 on Limerick Lake road

Hi Jeff: I’ll let you know if I come across any!

07/09/12 @ 11:34
Comment from: Lee Jasper [Visitor]  
Lee Jasper

Enjoyed your site Jody:

I frequently explore the Hastings Heritage Trail from Bancroft. I wonder why you’ve made no reference to the Gilmour Inn east of #62 and north of Millbridge Sta. It fronts on the HHT. I think it could be accessed from #62 via the Stone Settlement Rd. It appears to be a functioning enterprise as it is also signed ‘rooms for rent’ and is adorned with numerous sat. dishes. I can find no website for the hotel nor info on Canada 411. (I should have knocked on the door). Can you assist. (I also found Peter Snell’s Vishwawalks site filled with helpful info).

Hi Lee: I will look into that!

08/05/12 @ 20:42
Comment from: John Richard Ward [Visitor]  
John Richard Ward

I have lived and worked in Algonquin Park now for the last 7 years it now being 2013,I found your knowledge of this area most interesting to me as I have travelled to most of these old towns just to imagine what life was back then. Could you do another issue on Whitney, Dwight, and the surrounding area .
A book on life in Algonquin Park 1930-50 would be nice .

Hi John: Thank you for the suggestion, I will see what I can do!!

06/23/13 @ 09:30
Comment from: Janet Long [Visitor]  
Janet Long

My 4 x great grandfather William Gladney and his second wife Eliz. Hampton left the Castleboro estate in Wexford, Ireland to run a mill at Marmora in 1842. I wonder if any reference to him is found in Marmora history?

Hi Janet: he is listed in the County of Hastings Directory for 1879 : William Gladney (Marmora Village; merchant; Forsyth St)

05/06/14 @ 20:34
Comment from: rosemeri zajac [Visitor]  
rosemeri zajac

thanks for your information about this absolutely lovely area(s)….Wilno/Shrine Hill has a very small population, but, it’s really a spectacular area….

Hi Rosemeri, you’re right it is spectacular! Jody

06/24/14 @ 20:43
Comment from: Catharine [Visitor]  

1. to Lee Jasper Gilmour Inn rentals- 613-474-2114 also in area on Steenburg Lake a lakeside suite rental 613-474-0653, now available.
2. to Jeff Mills have photo. History book being published called Limerick Township and area History Bits editor Catharine Vallieres, included history of Ormsby Junction Station, Brinklow, Gilmour Inn, etc.

Thanks, Catharine!

07/03/14 @ 16:19
Comment from: Vivian Bloom [Visitor]
Vivian Bloom

Warren Godfrey, mentioned under the Frontenac Rd, was my Mom’s Great-grandfather. His father started the settlement of Godfrey, Ontario and donated the land for the village when the railway came through.. Chester Godfrey was the first Reeve, and there is a historical plaque for Warren in Mountain Grove, just off Hwy 7.. I have letters from an elderly aunt written in late ’60’s telling of how Warren Godfrey had to befriend the local natives in order to be allowed to build sections north on the road, and was given back lovely beaded jackets, gloves, boots, etc.

Hi Vivian: Thank you for sharing the information about the historical plaque!

07/04/14 @ 23:23
Comment from: Marla [Visitor]

Very interesting . I would like to know if you have any information on the ghost town of Hermon east of Bancroft.

Keep tuned, Marla… I’m researching!

12/16/14 @ 19:22
Comment from: Ellen Fisher [Visitor]  
Ellen Fisher

My sister-in-law use to live at a place called Hazards Corners. It was on the Cooper Road running north east out of Madoc.(not south of Madoc) Now she lives in the old Shannick school house north of marmora, off Centre Line Rd., on the left over Beaver Creek. This school house was a hunting camp before my brother renovated it.

Hi Ellen, Hazards Corners is well-signed on the highway and you’re absolutely right- it is a charming hamlet. Thank you for your comment!! Jody

12/16/14 @ 21:12
Comment from: Joe Perry [Visitor]  
Joe Perry

This was a great read, and I love to see the stories I grew up with in print. It was good to see some towns I knew little or nothing about. Good job.

12/16/14 @ 21:40
Comment from: Carol [Visitor]  

I would really like to know more about the Mississippi(snow rd) could you tell me where to research anything on the Bancroft end of it.
this was a wonderful article and thoroughly enjoyed reading it, thank you for the time you put into it.

Thanks Carol, I’ve made note about your request and will look into that!


12/17/14 @ 08:40
Comment from: [Member]

Hi Marla,

The hamlet of Hermon Ontario, as we know it today, is actually called “New Hermon". It runs off the Old Hermon Road which runs along Stringer’s Creek. Old Hermon was located on the Bessemer Road, just north of the Childs Iron Mine, on the crest of a steep hill.

The community congregated around the Adams Store which was located near the intersection of Bessemer and Adams Roads. When fire destroyed the store, it was rebuilt and the little community moved with the new location- hence we have New Hermon.

It’s likely the community received its name from one of the early settlers’ families.

Henry Hermon was born about 1770 in Pennsylvania to Dutch immigrants. The family came to Canada around 1776 and settled at the Bay of Quinte. Henry married Mary Redner, whose family were U.E. Loyalist Settlers. Their son, William Hermon (1802-1891), married Sarah Roblin (1809-1888).

The couple had 9 children.

i) William Jr. born 1828 married Martha Jane Delong in 1852 and Sarah Ann Hanna in 1862.

Sarah and William had a son, Royal Percy Hermon (1863-1953, a lumberman, who married Gertrude Emma Dafoe (1869-1925, daughter of Anson Smith Dafoe and Elizabeth Perry.

The Dafoe name is familiar to the area. Renowned journalist John Wesley Dafoe (1866-1944) was the son of Calvin Wesley Dafoe (1842-1916) and Mary Anne Elcome (1840-1913). He was born at the famiy farm, lot 19, Concession 9 of Bangor Township, on what is now known as Whiteduck Lake Road, although he always referred to Combermere as his birthplace and hometown.

ii) Royal Wilkinson Hermon (1830-1907) was educated at Queen’s University. A school teacher, he eventually became a land surveyor, working with his uncle, a Mr. Peterson.

He married Anne Louise Bolton, of Bolton Village in 1860 and they had a son, Ernest Bolton Hermon. She passed away in 1867. The following year he married Olive Jeffs of Bondhead and had three sons, Edward William, Royal Ridley and Roblin Compton. Olive died at Listowel in 1875. In 1877 her married widow Mary Doan Hawkins of Listowel with whom he had a daughter, Mary Gertrude.

In 1876, he was residing in Rednersville, Prince Edward County and had clients in both Prince Edward and Hastings Counties. He was held in very high esteem. Considered an expert in his field, RW was frequently called up to testify in court.

iii) Sarah Jane who married Ira Samuel Allen

iv) Ridley Hermon who married Elizabeth Fairman

v) Robinson Frederick who married Isabelle Kirkpatrick

vi) Lenorah who married William Dale

vii) Theresa Saphronia who married William Brickman

viii) Walter Scott who married Louisa McIntosh

ix) Alexina Alicia who married Peter Dale

It’s interesting to note that a search for Adams’ of the Adams Store, brought me to the first to the May 30 1888 marriage of William Adams to Mary Scobie Allison at Carlow Township. The 1891 Carlow census shows Mary Adams as a widow of 26, with her two year old son, David and a daughter aged 8 months. They were living with William and Margaret Allison and their children: Alexander aged 29, Mary aged 20, William aged 17, Janet aged 14 and John aged 10.

12/17/14 @ 13:18
Comment from: [Member]

Hi Carol:

The history of colonization roads is interesting. It all goes back to the democratic processes of Upper Canada.

In 1793, an act of the First Parliament of Upper Canada placed all roads under the supervision of overseers called pathmasters.

It has been suggested that a series of major “pathways” were cut into the central Ontario Wildnerness, linking Kingston with Niagara, in the late 1700s, for military purposes. These may have been the beginnings of what would later be called the Monck, Peterson and Mississippi Roads.

It wasn’t until 1853 that the Government of Canada West initiated actual colonization roads, by way of the Public Lands Act. between 1853 and 1860, there were about 775K of roads opened by virtue of the Act. The purposes of these roads was to ease travel and increase settlement to the plots of granted lands that the government was offering settlers- many from England, Scotland and Ireland.

Snow Road in Bancroft is the name of a road that runs off Hastings Road (the main street). It is south of the Peterson Rd, which runs west from Hastings Road (called Highway 62N) just south of Maynooth and was another major colonization route.

Snow Road’s connection to the Mississippi Colonization Road is a little convoluted. The settlement of Snow Road Station which is over towards Perth, east of Plevna and near what was called McLaren’s Depot is commonly called the Snow Road, after John A Snow (a builder and surveyor.

Surveying for the Mississippi Colonization road began in 1857. The route goes in a northwesterly direction through Frontenac, Lennox and Addington Counties. It begins at Balfour’s Bridge over the Mississippi River, to the east of the community of Snow Road. It crosses the Addington Road at Vennacher Junction, below Eagle Hill. While it’s difficult to tell, today’s county and township roads in that region are part of the old Snow Road.

Part of the road passed between hamlets known as Playfair and Johnston Corner, which are long gone. It passed along Vennacher Junction and just north of Weslemkoon Lake, near Hartsmere, where parts of the old route criss-cross over Highway 28E, approaching the town of Bancroft. It goes from Bancroft in the northwest, to Maberly in the southeast. Part of the original road is now Highway 62 between Bronson and Bowen Corner. East of Bowen Corner, Highway 62 goes north where an existing part of the old road goes south. Fuerther sections of this old road are called Tower Road, Cemetery Road and the Hartsmere Road.

Snow Rd, located in the town of Bancroft, would have been part of that route as it proceeds south at the edge of Monteagle Township.

From where the Snow Road ends, at main street in Bancroft, one could travel to either the Monck or Peterson Colonization Roads which connect over toward Haliburton and continues all the way over to Lake Couchiching.

It’s important to remember that many of Canada’s leading citizens and politicians spent time in the Muskokas in the mid-1800s… which is why it is felt that the construction of these roads was strategic both for settlement AND for military reasons.

It has been suggested that the roads coming west from Kingston (which was the capital of Canada at the time) and the roads coming east from north Toronto (Muskoka) were instituted at the same time and were to have met in Bancroft, but a slight miscalculation resulting in Peterson Road which ends at Hastings Street about 10 miles north of Snow Road, where it begins at Hastings Street.

That’s not really too bad, considering the swamps and forests and rocky outcroppings that would have factored into road construction back then!

12/17/14 @ 15:38
Comment from: [Member]

Hi Ellen:

Thank you for sharing that tidbit of history about Hazzards Corners and the old Shannick School House!

12/17/14 @ 15:40
Comment from: Diane [Visitor]  

Hi, Ellen
My grandpa Phillip Edward Scott, was born in Renfew, Ontario. Iam not sure if he was raised there. When he married my grandma Rosetta Flannery from Sandy Point, it was around Brechin, Ontario where they married and lived.
Thank you, for your help.
Diane Lynch

12/17/14 @ 21:14
Comment from: Hope Huffman [Visitor]  
Hope Huffman

Hi there, what can you tell us about the Moscow settlement, if anything!??

Hi Hope, do you mean the Musclow Settlement?

12/18/14 @ 01:08
Comment from: Christine [Visitor]

My Great-grandparents were among some of the first settlers in the Wilno - Barry’s Bay area.My great-uncle, Vincent Borutskie owned the general store in Wilno and was also postmaster for many years. I’m not sure when he first opened the store but I remember going there as a child in the 70’s. My mother grew up in Barry’s Bay but moved to Ottawa in her 20’s where I grew up.

Hi Christine, we know lots of Borutskies!

12/18/14 @ 02:55
Comment from: Pauline [Visitor]

My maternal grandparents came from Marlbank. I remember my grandmother talking about the railroad and the railroad station and how it would connect to Tweed, Napanee and maybe Tamworth. Her children would ride this train and would be picked up at the station. Are you aware of an area called Farrell’s corner, just outside of the village of Marlbank along the railroad line to Tweed? There was a school there at one time. I have a photo of my grandmother and her sister as children taken at the school.

12/18/14 @ 08:32
Comment from: Elizabeth [Visitor]

Thanks for sharing. I had an uncle who worked at the Craigmont mine and when it closed there was no money to pay the workers so they were given one of the homes there. My uncle had the home moved to a site not far from there and then began farming. The house in the picture looks quite similar.
My family and my husbands family go way back in this area.

12/18/14 @ 10:46
Comment from: Darlene Pardy [Visitor]
Darlene Pardy

I lived in Maple Leaf on the New Carlow Rd and then in Maynooth on highway 62

12/18/14 @ 12:45
Comment from: Milo [Visitor]

I’m surprised by how many of these places I have been.

Whenever I see Cordova listed as a ghost town I scratch my head. I think Deloro is much closer to the image I conjure in my head when i think of “Ghost Towns:.

12/18/14 @ 15:24
Comment from: [Member]

Hi Hope,

You asked about Moscow….

All I know is that Moscow was originally known as Huffman Settlement, the hamlet of Moscow Ontario is a crossroad that has a gas station, general store and a busy ball diamond. In 1854 the Huffman Settlement took the name Springfield but later changed it to Moscow, commemorating Napoleon’s retreat from the like-named Russian city, in 1812.

Located in the Greater Napanee Area of Lennox and Addington County, the hamlet is part of the township of Stone Hills, which also includes the villages of Centerville, Camden East, Croydon, Newburgh, Tamworth, Yarker and Erinsville. Other small settlements in the area include Ballahack, Clareview, Curie Station, Chippewa, Desmond, Hinch, Ingle, Gull Creek, the McGuire Settlement, Petwork, Milsap, Varty Lake and Wesley.

The area was once a thriving with agriculture and home to a number of mills, and some other business enterprises- many of which are still standing but have been converted to homes.

12/18/14 @ 20:18
Comment from: [Member]

Hi Pauline:

There are so many historic areas of interest around Tweed and Madoc and the Northern areas of Prince Edward, Frontenac and Hastings Counties. One can’t help but think of how busy the area was when mining was at its peak in the region.

Places like Queensborough, Actinolite, Stoco, Sulphide, Marlbank and Thomasburg, and the former townships of Hungerford, Elzevir and Grimsthorpe still have an active population, although most commerce now takes place in the larger centres.

The Land O’Lakes tourism region has designed a motorcycle tour that takes in the scenery of Yarker, Enterprise, Kaladar, Tamworth and Mountain Grove. The route includes Farrell Corners. I thought I’d share that here, for those that might be interested:

Start your Land o’ Lakes excursion at Kingston’s City Hall - Head north on Ontario Street turning left onto Brock Street to Division Street. Turn right (north) on Division Street, then left (west) onto Princess Street/Highway 2. Continue along Highway 2 until you reach Odessa. For a little heritage break, take a left on Bridge Street to visit the historic Babcock Mill.

Odessa through Yarker & Enterprise – In Odessa, head north on County Road 6 towards Wilton. Consider a detour to the right (east) on Simmons Road to check out the Wilton Cheese Factory. Continue through Yarker along County Road 6, then left onto County Road 14. Take another detour left on Highway 41 then left on Centreville Road and left again on Barrett Road to visit Hell’s Holes Nature Trails & Caves. Head north on Highway 41 to Enterprise and take a right onto Highway 41 (north). Take a left onto County Road 3/32 towards Marlbank.

Marlbank to Tweed then Flinton – In Marlbank, turn left onto County Road 13 (Marlbank Road). Continue through Farrell Corners, Larkins, and Stoco. Take a right onto Highway 37 (Victoria Street) going into Tweed. Continue on Highway 37 (Moira Street) through Actinolite. Turn right onto Highway 7 then left on County Road 2/25 (Flinton Road) into Flinton.

Flinton to Tamworth then Mountain Grove – Continue through Flinton on County Road 2/25 (Flinton Road) and take a right onto Highway 41 (South). Pass through Kaladar and Erinsville, taking a left onto County Road 4 towards Tamworth. In Tamworth, take a small detour south on County Road 4 (Wheeler Street) to Spindletree Gardens. Then go north on County Road 15 north through Arden. Turn right on Highway 7 then right again on Mountain Grove Road, heading into Mountain Grove.

End your adventure in Kingston – Stay on Mountain Grove Road (it becomes Long Lake Road) and continue south through Long Lake. Turn left on Wagarville Road going into Parham, then right on County Road 38. Follow County Road 38 through Cole Lake, Godfrey, Piccadilly and Verona. In Verona, stop in at the Rivendell Golf Club for a challenging round of golf, or grab a bite at the Local Family Farms Store.

End at Kingston City Hall - Continue south on County Road 38 through Hartington, Harrowsmith, Murvale, Glenvale, and into Kingston on Gardiners Road. Follow Gardiners Road then turn left on Princess Street/Highway 2 continuing to Ontario Street, where you will turn right and end at City Hall.

12/18/14 @ 20:37
Comment from: [Member]

Hi Milo…

I think people have varying definitions of “ghost town"… I agree, when I think of a ghost town, it’s something more of a once-flourishing town that is wholly or nearly deserted…

however, there are a lot of smaller settlements in rural areas that were once “going concerns” and are now just a ghost of their previous vitality. I think of Hybla, where there are old buildings now becoming part of the forest. Also, there are tiny communities that have been known by various names… and the interest in these places is as much a part of genealogy in some cases, as it is history.

There’s something reverent in giving a nod to these communities.

12/18/14 @ 20:53
Comment from: Lynda Rickard (Jeffrey) [Visitor]
Lynda Rickard (Jeffrey)

My Dad’s family ran the Cheddar Post Office, had a mink farm and tended the forest ranger tower. They lived in the old homestead that is still standing. I recall my Dad taking me to the mine site and to the Old Cheddar School. I have the brass bell from the Cheddar school, and recall stories of baseball at recess and arriving early to light the fire etc.

Hi Lynda,

The old stories are treasures!

12/18/14 @ 21:12
Comment from: Brian [Visitor]

Fascinating article. Missing though, is Cooper, Ontario, which was located somewhere north of Madoc. Cooper is where my paternal Granfather was born. There may still be some scattered houses there, but you won’t find the place on any map. A couple of months back, however, I stumbled on a site where I found pictures of the Cooper Road Cemetery, which included a picture of my Great Grandfather’s tombstone. My parents, who were cheesemakers in Prince Edward County, used to purchase handmade cheeseboxes in Cooper up until the end of the 1960s, so apparently there was still a cooperage in existence in the village up until then.

Thanks for the information, Brian!

12/19/14 @ 17:37
Comment from: [Member]

Hi Brian:

Cooper is a hamlet that is just east of Bannockburn. There is a Cooper Cemetery located on Cooper Rd near Bannockburn at the north west corner of Island Road where it meets Bannockburn Rd, before it becomes Lingham Lake Rd.

12/20/14 @ 11:12
Comment from: Jim [Visitor]

There is more to Umpraville than just the cemetery. If you walk beyond the cemetery to the south, following the trail then to the left a short distance you will see remnants of a few log buildings in varying stages of decay.

Hi Jim, It is a great place to explore!

12/20/14 @ 12:26
Comment from: Diane Fuller [Visitor]
Diane Fuller

Just wondered if you have any info on L’Amable Ontario Canada. I’m sure there is a lot of fascinating info Thanks

Hi Dianne, I have some information on L’Amable… and I’m doing research all the time. I believe that there is some interesting history attached to the area, particularly involving the native peoples.

12/27/14 @ 18:45
Comment from: Paul [Visitor]

Great info. Our family has vacationed in the Madawaska area and have spent many exciting days travelling these roads. The history of this area neverceases to amaze and surprise us. This blog has given even more background to what occurred during the colonisation and settlement of Eastern Ontario. We look forward to many more road trips assisted by the info provided.

01/03/15 @ 18:21
Comment from: Jennifer [Visitor]  

Great article! Please provide info of McCrea on Weslemkoon lake road and Elzevir. Thanks!

Hi Jennifer… I’ll work on that!

06/18/15 @ 22:23
Comment from: Cindy McClung [Visitor]  
Cindy McClung

My dad, James Lawrence Childerhose, was born in Maynooth on July 29, 1914 (son of James Childerhose and Mary Burlanyette..grandfather Stephen Childerhose and Agness Davis…the Jenny Howell after Agnes Davis passed away). My name is Cindy Childerhose, and I have two sisters Janice Anna and Judy Karen. My dad was married to Colleen Derby and had a child with her, then married Connie Hansen of Caistor Centre, Ontario…not sure how,where they met. Deep secrets keep getting leaked to us, but no one in the family with tell my sister Judy or me (Cindy), anything in full detail. The Turrill Family (Frank Turrill …married(?) Elsie Hansen, had 4 kids, son David, apparently died at birth, Elinor, Greta and Linda Connie (Little). All three born in 1940’s when something seems to have happened around 1945 when my grandfather Lars Hansen passed away. We were recently told that my father would have been better off going to jail rather than putting up with the wrath of Connie (his 2nd wife) and Anna Hansen (connies mother who lived with them). Also 1946 a death notice for a baby “Hansen” . The story was initially leaked to us by our sister Janice about 25 years ago, but we have not been able to confirm anything and it has haunted us for over 30 years. I am 57 now and would love to know who my real mother is and what it was about my father that was apparently so bad, so I can have a portion of my life not always wondering about the past and being able to live in the present.
Thank you.

Hi Cindy… I understand how difficult it is when there are family secrets and sometimes information is impossible to obtain. Perhaps someone will see this post and offer some insight. I wish you the best of luck, finding out your real story.

07/10/15 @ 20:48
Comment from: Ricky M [Visitor]  
Ricky M

Hey all just looking for some info about some events that had happened on my property ….I’m on hwy 28 east east of the Mapleton House, formally hwy 500. I have been told about the Bihnki story in the early 70s but as of late I’ve been told of a double murder in the original house was burnt down with the victims in the basement, and our new house was built on the very same spot…… The wife & I are just curous because before we found out about any of these stories we have had a few events happen around our place, no biggy there are atleast 2 different entaties roaming around and messing around with thing & when asked to stop it they do stop…. so it’s all good with us 😉 we just would like to have more info so we can know whom they are.
Thanks in advance 😉

Ricky: take a look at this site: http://www.bryanhendry.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/ConspiracyOfSilence.pdf

09/08/15 @ 08:02
Comment from: Ricky M [Visitor]  
Ricky M

And I now found our it was a murder suicide of a husband & wife and his name was Eugene ??? The person really didn’t want to elaborate much more…… eerrrr anybody have any other details on this

09/08/15 @ 17:32
Comment from: Shari [Visitor]  

You didn’t mention sulphide in your list. It’s actually listed as a ghost town! Although I did see you mention in a reply.

07/25/16 @ 20:32
Comment from: Brenda Gray [Visitor]  
Brenda Gray

Do you have any information about the Monaghan family that lived in Coe hill in the 1800’s-early 1900’s?

Hi Brenda,

I don’t have much but here’s what I do have:

Elizabeth Conlin was born 1843, and died May 14, 1897.She married (1) Mr. Waudby. She married (2) Michael Monaghan on September 1855.
Michael Monaghan was born in 1837 in County Cork, Ireland and died March 20, 1873.

Children of Elizabeth Conlin and Waudby are:
i. Elizabeth Waudby, b. September 03, 1875, Wollaston Township, near Coe Hill Ontario Canada, d. February 21, 1937.
ii. Robert Bartlet Waudby, b. 1878, Wollaston Township, near Coe Hill Ontario Canada.

Children of Elizabeth Conlin and Michael Monaghan are:
i. Peter Monaghan, b. March 01, 1862, Wollaston Township, near Coe Hill Ontario Canada, d. April 22, 1951. (see below for his family information)
ii. Annie Monaghan, b. February 16, 1857 d. July 03, 1945. She married James Fitzgibbon.
iii. Catharine Monaghan, b. July 18, 1859, Wollaston Township, near Coe Hill Ontario Canada, d. March 06, 1884. She married Patrick Finnegan.
iv. John Monaghan, b. May 16, 1865, Wollaston Township, near Coe Hill Ontario Canada, d. July 09, 1883. John never married.
v. Mary Jane Monaghan, b. August 31, 1867, Wollaston Township, near Coe Hill Ontario Canada, d. December 12, 1884. She never married.
vi. George Earl Monaghan, b. March 06, 1871, Wollaston Township, near Coe Hill Ontario Canada, d. November 06, 1958. George married Sarah Ellen Drumm. (see below for their family information)

i. Peter Monaghan (son of Michael Monaghan and Elizabeth Conlin) was born March 01, 1862 in Wollaston Township, near Coe Hill Ontario Canada, and died April 22, 1951.

He married Matilda (Tillie) Drumm one May, in Pete Conlin’s house at Ormsby Ontario. Matilda (Tillie) was the daughter of Edward Drumm and Elizabeth Nobes of Kinmount, Ontario.

Matilda Drumm was deaf and attended the Ontario Institution for the deaf and dumb for a year, having been admitted there on December 6, 1877. At the age of 2, Matilda lost her hearing as a result of a fever that the doctors called spinal fever. She was otherwise very healthy and a bright child. Her father handled section sales for the Railway.

Matilda was a resident of Coe Hill for most of her life.She died on a Friday at the home of her daughter, Mrs Jack Keating, 496 Brioux Ave. after a short illness.She was born in the town of Kinmount and was a devout Roman Catholic and member of the Ormsby Catholic Church. She rested at the Duffus funeral home with mass being said at St. John the Baptist church at 9am with burial at Our Lady of Mercy cemetery, Bancroft.

Their friends, Mr and Mrs Mike Kelly were witnesses.

Peter and Matilda were married by Father Thomas Murtagh at the home of Pete Conlin in Ormsby Ontario Canada.The witnesses were Mr. and Mrs Michael Kelly.

Old Records from Tudor Cashel show that Peter Monaghan, yeoman lived on the 8th con lot 6 in Ormsby. An Elizabeth Monaghan lived on the 8th con lot 5 in Ormsby.

Peter was a fiddler who sang folk songs.

Children of Peter Monaghan and Matilda Drumm are:
i. Mary Elizabeth Monaghan, b. May 06, 1897, d. November 19, 1980. She was married to William Gray.
ii. Michael Edward Monaghan, b. May 29, 1895, d. October 20, 1980. He was a farmer. In 1923 he married Margaret Jane McAvoy (listed as a “farmerette") at Stirling.
iii. William John Monaghan, b. July 13, 1898, d. February 04, 1964.
iv. Peter Monaghan, b. February 23, 1900. Peter worked for the railroad in Coe Hill. In 1926 he married Gladys Lillian Baker at Campbellford, she was a shoe factory worker from England.
v. Annie Matilda Monaghan, b. April 14, 1902, d. November 10, 1940. She was married to Jim Stewart.
vi. Catharine Monaghan, b. December 19, 1903, d. November 07, 1941. She was married to Frank Tracey.
vii. Thomas Patrick Monaghan, b. October 01, 1905.
viii. Florence Ellen Monaghan, b. June 18, 1908, d. July 21, 1910.
ix. Rose Cecelia Monaghan, b. March 03, 1912. She was married to Edward Leveque.
x. Vera Ellen Monaghan, b. April 01, 1914, d. July 15, 2012 in Peterborough. She was married to Jack Keating. She was well known for the Keating Family Orchestra in the Kawartha Lakes Area. She was a member of the Otonabee Old Time Fiddlers.
xi. Richard James Monaghan, b. February 16, 1918, died June 7, 2003 at the Hastings Manor in Belleville. He was known to have a great love of music.
vi. George Earl Monaghan (son of Michael Monaghan and Elizabeth Conlin) was born 06 Mar 1871 in Coe Hill, Wollaston Township, Ontario, Canada, and died 06 Nov 1958.He married Sarah Ellen Drumm in Wollaston Township, Ontario, Canada, daughter of Edward Drumm and Elizabeth Nobes.
More About George Earl Monaghan and Sarah Ellen Drumm:
Marriage: Wollaston Township, Ontario, Canada.
Children of George Earl Monaghan and Sarah Ellen Drumm are:
i. Marry Ellen Monaghan, b. 22 May 1892, d. 19 Dec 1969.
ii. George Edward Monaghan, b. 16 Feb 1894, d. 30 Mar 1985.
iii. Ida Mary Monaghan, b. 04 May 1896, d. 1905.
iv. George Earl Monaghan, b. 14 Mar 1897.
v. John Walter Monaghan, b. 19 May 1900.
vi. Sadie Elizabeth Monaghan, b. 21 Mar 1901, d. 30 Dec 1950.
vii. Joseph Earl Monaghan, b. 16 Mar 1902.
viii. Don Sylvester Monaghan, b. 15 Sep 1903, d. 17 Oct 1971.
ix. Gerald James Monaghan, b. 22 Dec 1905.
x. Alice Anne Monaghan, b. 07 Jul 1907.
xi. Leo Bartlet Monaghan, b. 07 Aug 1909, d. 12 May 1981.
xii. Florence Agnes Monaghan, b. 19 Sep 1911, d. 1912.
xiii. Amelia Evelyn Monaghan, b. 17 Apr 1913.
xiv. Charles Louis Monaghan, b. 24 Dec 1914.
xv. Dennis William Monaghan, b. 19 Mar 1916, d. Aug 1989.

08/11/16 @ 17:27
Comment from: Christine Hanna Frank [Visitor]  
Christine Hanna Frank

I have very fond memories of visiting my grandparents in Monteagle Valley near the intersection of the Hybla Road and the Musclow Road. They lived in a schoolhouse there..There was an entrance that you had to go up a set of stairs with two cloak rooms on either side (they used as bedrooms) and into a large “great room” with a bank of windows on the left and stage on the right. The kitchen was at the back, long and narrow. There was a family with lots of kids at the corner and beside was an old church. I painted it in the late 60’s. They sold the school much to our disappointment because of the upkeep and care needed and moved down to L’Amable for several more years before coming to Cambridge. I am still so curious as to the outcome of the school. I have so many fond memories of Christmas there and sledding down the back roads because they had no sand put on them. Any info would be most appreciated…I just can’t find anything about this.

08/16/16 @ 13:34
Comment from: Christine Hanna Frank [Visitor]  
Christine Hanna Frank

To follow up on a note I left earlier, my grandparents names were Thomas and Ethel Hanna.
I still have the old bookcase that came from the school that my grandmother used as a china cabinet. I now use it for a food pantry but it has been used as a bookcase a,d china cabinet.
I hope I can find my first “painted on site” picture of the church just around the corner.

The research on this site is so interesting and should not be lost…the pioneers there were so courageous.

Hi Christine:

I just got this info from Marie Hennessy Parks, I was born and raised on the Hybla Rd and still live here on a part of my families farm. The only schoolhouse that I can remember in that location is still there. When I was younger Sheldon and Luella Reeves lived in it. Doug Dewry {who was a High school teacher here} lived in it after they sold it. I am not sure who is it it now. I worked there as a P.S.W when Doug was living there. What you discribe still sounds pretty much the same as what I remember while I was there. I am thinking the family on the corner with lots of kids may have been the Young family. My mom was a Young and she lived in a large house up on the hill off the corner.

08/16/16 @ 14:03
Comment from: John D. Stroud [Visitor]
John D. Stroud

You don,t mention Gooderham or Irondale:: Irondale maybe tiny but it has quite a history of the mines>> At one time it was a busy place:
I went to school there from 1943 to 1948 then moved back to Torontn>>

Hi John,

I didn’t mean my article to be totally inclusive of every ghost town… but over the years, it’s gotten a lot of attention. Like you, many people mention communities that didn’t appear in the 2009 blog and every time I get an email from someone, I’m reminded how important it is to share our history.

The following article from the Toronto Globe & Mail mentions Irondale and some of the other communities that were once going concerns, largely due to the IB & O railway:

Many Fished From Windows Of the Train
Special to The Globe and Mail

Bancroft, March 10, 1960—This is not Bancroft’s year. The Canadian national Railways is closing the 53.7 mile Irondale, Bancroft and Ottawa branch line from York River crossing to Howland Junction at the end of March. This news followed an announcement in January by officials of Canadian Dyno Mines that its property would be closed at the end of June. It is one of the three producers in the Bancroft uranium camp. Both the mine and railway decisions are the results of retrenching economies.

The mine’s closing will tighten the belts and crimp the pocket books of the come-lately mining people. But the end of the railway service touches the hearts of four generations of Haliburton district residents.

Not many old timers are left who recall the building of the IB & O in 1880. Their tales of early days on the Pike, however, and
its subsequent operation are folklore stuff that dim the derring-do of Casey Jones.

What Ontario railway, Haliburtonians ask, has a built-in 10 per cent grade with a two-mile terraced slope? Where else could passengers fish for bass from the colonial-style coach windows in the brawling Burnt River that coils close to the tracks in a dozen places? The counting of deer and moose by train crews is too commonplace to mention.

The east-west I B & O joins a north-south railway extension line at either end: the Howland Junction to Haliburton village line;
the York River to Wallace line. Lumbering and mining produced enough early revenue on the I B & O without extending the
line to Ottawa, as the original charter title suggests. During its busiest 60 years the I B & O helped spawn 11 settlements along
the line, all with unusual names: Furnace Falls, Irondale, Maxwells, Gooderham, Tory Hill, Ward, Wilberforce, Mumford, Highland Grove, Baptiste and Hughes. The terminal stations at York River and Howland are but small single buildings.

Mines along the line were opened and closed. Lumbering bared the forest and in recent years trucking has eaten in the rail haulage of pulpwood until there is little or no reason for the line being continued. A suggestion in the CNR Trainman News that the line could be used for weekend sightseeing trips is unlikely to be put into practice. The I B & O railway will make its last
trip on March 31.

Gooderham is built along Gooderham Lake, bordered on the south by the Irondale River and Pine Lake to the north, located on a now defunct railway line, the IB&O Railroad, which has been since converted into a trail network. Settled in 1873, its main industry has been logging. Today, M. W. Hunter Lumber Ltd. is the only major sawmill left operating in the County. In the 1950’s Gooderham had 3 General Stores, a Barber Shop/Confectionary Store and Mountain View Lodge. It was also home to the famous Skyline Dance Pavilion, where, on a Saturday night, people came from all over to enjoy dancing to a live band.

Tory Hill is so named because, it is written, when Alexander Niven, Liberal Candidate, came electioneering to the settlement, it did him little good as he received only one vote. In exasperation, he said to John Anderson, “Jack, you get the Post Office you have wanted for a long time and you had better name it Tory Hill!” John was appointed the first postmaster, and subsequently named the village Tory Hill.

Wilberforce was once a much larger town. It was established as “Pusey,” a station on the Irondale, Bancroft and Ottawa Railway (IB&O), and named for railway president Charles J. Pusey. This little railway had initially been built to carry iron ore from open pit mines in Irondale. With or without the railroad, Wilberforce was destined to become a settlement and is home to Ontario’s first Red Cross Outpost.

In the 20s and 30s Brown’s Mill operated in the area, using the IB&O to transport product via Ward’s Siding.

Highland Grove was once a thriving community that supported three stores, a cheese factory, a blacksmith shop, two schools and two churches. Beginning in 1890 the IB&O railway served the transportation, supply and communication needs of Highland Grove’s residents and businesses (the hamlet’s first telephone was installed at the railway station). A Post Office first opened in 1897. Elmer Hughey, one of the earlier postmasters explained that Highland Grove was so named because it boasted the highest point of elevation in the County. On one side of a nearby hill, water flows in the direction of Haliburton and on the other toward Bancroft’s York River.


Hughes Mill or Hughes Siding was where logs were processed and shipped via the rail depot once located on Baptiste Lake’s south shore. It is currently the location of Baptiste Lake Marina. When the IB & O Railway reached Baptiste Station, the William Hughes Mill opened on the lower basin of the lake, it became the Jennings and Kin Mill in 1914… the Jennings & Bailey Mill in 1914 and in 1921, Whitney Martin joined the firm. Bailey bought out Jennings and Bailey moved to Haliburton to start a mill. Martin and his brother, Garfield purchased the company and formed Martin Brothers Lumber Company, in 1930.


William Mulcahey was the first non-aboriginal resident on Baptiste Lake. He owned much of the property that is currently known as the village. His beautiful home is now the main lodge at Birch Cliff Lodge.

By 1900 the IB&O railway had a stop at the shoreline on the south shore of Baptiste Lake, on his property. By 1904, tourists were coming to see the village. Mulcahey built a general store on the hill overlooking the train station. He provided a dining room for loggers, trainmen and travelers and boarding rooms above the store. He built boxcar cabins nearby for overflow guests. He sold the store in 1917, to Hiram and Elizabeth Grant. The Grants, and their daughter Mabel ran the store and post office for years before selling it to Bruce Montgomery in 1984. Bruce and his wife, Roberta, operated Grants Inn until 2001. The store was demolished by the new owners George and Susan Poulton, who constructed a new building in its place. It has changed hands, again, since.

The first church was built in 1920 on property donated by Mr. Neil Bowen on the hill but it was too large with a very high ceiling and difficult to heat in the winter. The yard was okay for horse and buggy but not suitable for cars. In 1942, St Matthew’s was constructed on property donated by Mrs. Hiram Grant. The windows, floors, pulpit and chairs, wainscoting, pulpit railings, box-stove, furnace and bell were taken from the first engine (the Old Mary Anne) to run on the IB & O Railroad.

In 1961, a church hall was added, connected to the main building.

The lake was originally known to the pioneers as Long Lake and renamed Loon Lake. It was known to the native people at Kaijick Manitou meaning Cedar Spirit). It was renamed in honour of Algonquin Chief Jean Baptiste, who is believed to have been the first permanent resident, arriving from Lake of Two Mountains (near Montreal) in the early 1800s.

Howland Junction

Once a whistle stop on the Irondale, Bancroft and Ottawa Railway, this small village also housed a roundhouse to transfer train cars from the main CNR line to the I.B.&O. line.

Howland Junction was a flag stop on the Victoria Railway, the first stop north of Kinmount and originally called Kendricks- so named for an English remittance man (Sterne Kentdrick) who was an early settler along the creek that empties into the Burnt River at this locale.

Here, the Great IB&O met its terminus where it joined the Victoria Railway. Apparently, the remnants of the roundtable can still be found in the woods, near what is left of the old station.

The station burned in 1917 and was replaced with a small waiting room.

Howland Junction never had any stores, churches or schools… but rumour has it that Sterne Kendrick may have buried a hoard of gold somewhere along the creek.

Mumford (Harcourt) also known as Kennaway

Kennaway created its farms out of the piney soil of the Canadian Shield. Surrounded by forest and lakes, the village was relatively isolated in the area, approximately 10 km away from Wilberforce, a larger town to the southeast.

Irondale est. 1870

When iron was discovered in 1870, Irondale was actually known as Devil’s Creek. The community consisted of just a post office and a few residents.

The prospect of iron in the district was attractive to a Toronto lawyer by the name of Short, who opened the Victoria Iron Mine in 1875. He ran out of money in short order, pardon the pun.

In 1878, a second Toronto investor, M Miles, an Irishman, too over. He formed the Snowdon Iron Mine Company, building six and three-quarter miles of single track which ran from Howland (north of Kinmount) to Irondale, on the south shore of the Burnt River. He spent $60,000 and was able to ship several cars of ore before he went bankrupt.

Chicago business men, Parry & Mills spent $200,000 on a smelting furnace in what is now known as “Furnace Falls” and sold it to Charles Pusey before it burned down.

Irondale, may be considered a ghost town by some today, but was once the site of a large iron-mining operation and the focus of various roads and railroads. Charles Pusey built the Irondale Church ( in 1887 or 1889 depending on which account you read) for his wife, at 1019 Elm Rd, just off Salerno Lake Rd . In 1901 it was donated to the community by railway president Charles Pusey. It was sold to the St John’s Anglican diocese for $50 in 1901.

Henry Stark Howland was an American who arrived in Canada around 1840. He was a founding director of Canadian Bank of Commerce then 1875 first president of Imperial Bank of Commerce —ironic twist, both banks later merged as the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce in 1960. Henry
partnered with Charles Pusey on some mining sites and the railroad promotion and construction.

HAND CAR BEAT TRAIN BY HOURS TO STATION Impatient Passenger Preferred Travel By Man-Power
Toronto Star Tuesday, April 16, 1935—

The Irondale, Bancroft and Ottawa railway, which runs from here through Haliburton county to Bancroft, met with the crowning indignity of its career on a recent trip. West of Howland Junction a coach jumped the track and was put back on with the aid of passengers. Reaching Tory Hill,
the engine developed a bad cough and finally a cylinder gave out. The drew started to coax it on. This was too much for one passenger. He sighted an assistant road foreman on his hand-car a short distance up the track and reportedly jumped from the train and hopped on the car. The train was five hours later; the hand-car arrived two hours earlier.

08/28/16 @ 18:39
Comment from: Paule Deneau [Visitor]  
Paule Deneau

Speaking of old roads, my Polish fraternal family established a homestead in the 1870’s atop the winding Old Siberia Road. It’s last inhabitant was my great uncle Jack Biernaski, who had a brother named Monsignor Biernaski /Father Pete) to us children. This priest also built the church, school, nuns and priests residences near the edge of Lake Kameniski in Barry’s Bay and was a founding father of the community. I spent most of my youth in this community visiting my grandmother in the village during the ’40’s all the way to the 90’s. While a young girl and living in Toronto, visits to this area were like a visit to a pioneer village. The land being not arable never afforded much income so most people lived very simply. Uncle Jack would drive a horse and buggy into town, or sleighs in winter even in the ’70’s. I knew the village kept to itself and was very closemouthed , insular and of course deeply religious in an old world way. For me this lent an air of being in an old fashioned movie and fed my imagination. I distanced myself from all the religious trappings, but loved the craggy hills, blackened barns and many crumbling old homesteads. The old farm up on Siberia Road was still there as late as the ’80’s and may be there still. It was abandoned intact with my uncles breakfast dishes still on the old pine table in front of the kitchen window and all furniture, horse brasses, harnesses, trundle beds, blankets , spinning wheels, stone jars china and glassware etc . It also stayed in this museum condition for years and occasionally in the early ’70’s I would go up to look around and ask my Dad if I could just take a little souvenir, like an old stone crock…and the idea was unthinkable to him, tantamount to theft! So years later I heard that American tourists drove up and completely cleaned out the farm, incl outbuildings with many buggies, sleighs, farm implements, and hundreds of stoneware, milk pails, scythes, rakes and cow bells. The village is now a tourist hub of sorts. I just wanted to mention the Siberia road because it was an intrinsic part of my family history. My husband & I had a publishing firm at one point and we published an oral history by Joan Finnigan, the noted Ottawa Valley historian where she attempted to include some of the old Polish stories among the predominantly Irish ones and she is the one where I first heard how difficult it was get them to open up. I am now nearly 80, but I want to go for one last look around. I have a photograph of the farmhouse with 3 of my great aunts in Sunday best standing at the entrance @ 1910 or earlier. I will post it if you are interested.

Hi Paule,

Very pleased to receive your communication. Your story is so very interesting! I’m sure regular readers would be pleased to see your photos and hear other stories that you would share.

Best regards,


10/01/16 @ 10:49
Comment from: Kevin [Visitor]  


Thanks for the great info. My dad grew up near Cheddar. He and my grandparents lived there from early ’30’s to late 40’s. It was the old Fraser place, as he called it. There are two or three unmarked graves on the property. Sadly, after much unnecessary neglect by the last owner, the roof caved in and the old log house was torn down a few years ago. He went to school down the road. I think it was SS No 7. We used to go back up there a few times a year but after he passed 4 years ago I haven’t been.

Thanks again,

Kevin Nicoll

12/02/16 @ 14:26
Comment from: Laine [Visitor]

Very informative!

Would you happen to have any information about a small settlement north of Apsley, called Clanricarde?
Or, possibly any information about a family that lived near there? I believe they bought, or rented a plot of land from my family, the Rickles. I am unsure about the exact spelling of their name, but I believe it was Ellie (or possibly Ellies, Elly, or Ellys). The road they lived off of is now Eels Lake Road.

Hi Laine:

I don’t know much about Clanricarde… except that there is a small lake, a creek, a post office and a school so named and it was located in Burleigh, Anstruther, Chandos Municipality.

Eels Lake derives it’s name from “Eels” meaning a subordinate chief of the Chippewas. The Eels for whom the lake is named was a brother of Handsome Jack, after whom nearby Jacks Lake is named.

Clanricarde School was located about a kilometer north of the Trotter’s home. I’m sure you know that Robert Harrison (Bert) Trotter was married to Pearl Rickles and they had 13 children. Nine boys and four girls (Earl, Frank, Sally, Robbie, Ruby, Albert, Max, George, Harriet, Amy, Ward, Sanford and Ernie). Albert was born in 1923 at the family’s home on Trotters Rd, just north of Apsley. Albert drove a tank in WWII. While he was away, his family moved off the homestead, to Smith Township.

A quick look at Births in Peterborough 1911 (Burleigh and Anstruther) shows Gladys Gertrude Elley born on the 17th day of July at Lot 36, Conc 12 Anstruther. Her father is listed as farmer Henry Elly (so obviously one of these surnames is mis-recorded) and her mother as Margret Bullied. The 1911 Census shows that Henry was born in Dec 1876 in Ireland but that he was naturalized in 1886 (so another error somewhere). It also shows children: Alice born 1902, Richard born 1904, Eva born 1907 and Margaret born 1909. The family of John Rickles (of German descent born in Canada) family (wife Lilly who is shown as English, daughters Pearl and Ruby who are shown as German born in Canada ) is the very next entry on the Census which would indicate that they were neighbours. It is interesting to note that Teacher Millie McKenna (Irish) is shown as living with the Rickles family.


12/18/16 @ 22:32
Comment from: Laine [Visitor]  


Thank you so much, thats so interesting! Yes, Ruby Rickles was my great grandmother, Pearl was my great, great Aunt.
The teacher you mentioned, Millie McKenna taught at the school, which was located on the Rickles property (knows as the Rickles School). She actually boarded with the Rickles family while she was the teacher, and was a big part of the family.

If you don’t mind me asking, how do our get your information? Through a website, or local censuses? I’m just curious, it’s so informative!

Hi Laine,

I use a variety of sources… I love to research!


12/19/16 @ 10:08
Comment from: Pauline [Visitor]

I grew up in the area of Centerview, Bell Rapids later moving to Purdue. My dad farmed and worked at the mines in Bancroft. My family names are Pritchard/Rose, Cowan/ Dupuis. I think our New Immigrants coming to our country should realize how hard our settlers had it. It is a great article many thanks

02/28/17 @ 09:01
Comment from: Joanne Hughey & Wayne Hughey [Visitor]  
Joanne Hughey & Wayne Hughey

This is a great read, I really enjoyed it, thank you.
I am looking forward to more.

02/28/17 @ 10:26
Comment from: john snowdon [Visitor]  
john snowdon

I was about 14 years old living on a farm just a short walk from the Craigmont mine.I would take my rifle and hunt partridge and hares on the way,I would collect mineral samples from the tailings and built quite a collection.My grandfather William Tracey worked there ,he lost an eye and wore a patch for life after the accident.It was there that my mother Bridget Elaine Tracey was born on oct8 1920.she passed away last week at 96 years of age.I can still picture the beauty of the surrounding area I enjoyed so much in my youth.

Hi John,

Thank you for sharing your story with us. I love to hear reminiscences and would welcome any other anecdotes you might have about life or the people in the area!


03/03/17 @ 12:50
Comment from: Marg Thornington [Visitor]  
Marg Thornington

Thank you for this delightful article. Loved reading the history of the area. I have been looking for Margaret Gahan Wilson family and her daughter in law was Jennie Hancock.

03/04/17 @ 09:56
Comment from: martin byrnes [Visitor]
martin byrnes

Great history lesson.I was born and raised in the area near barrys bay area. enjoyed reading about the ottawa valley and north to algonquin

03/04/17 @ 12:53
Comment from: Jane [Visitor]  

Great read but you left out Madawaska JRBooths headqwarters is still there said to be haunted by his payroll cleark who hanged himself of off one of the timbers in the basement as a young girl I seen an aparition there.The round house where the trains turned around is now long gone to the ages my Mother Katie said she watched the decline of the white Pine as it passed her house forty flatcars as it made its way to Montreal to make the masts for the ships during the Napolean war.There is a map of the town made by Katie Chartrand who remembers the village as three communities we lived in Bonyiville then there was Madawaska and then Dawson .hydro can me in flooded the land we have lots more to ssy about this time Katie isnow ninty five years old she still is a wealth of knowledge and Madawaska has returned to a sleepy town of memories,I raised my chilren Sandy and Angie there in thier early years and they always return many times to take a walk back in time.

Thanks for the great information, Jane!

03/05/17 @ 09:39
Comment from: Michelle [Visitor]

I’m not sure where or when you got your info on Murphy’s Corners. I did notice a date of 2009 at the top of the article. Any how, the original Murphy Homestead burned to the ground in 1981.

Thank you for the information, Michelle! Jody

03/05/17 @ 21:35
Comment from: Amanda [Visitor]  

Someone may have already mentioned this, but the location information, or how to get there if you will for both Bannockburn and Eldorado is incorrect. Eldorado is actually the closest of the two to Madoc. Still along highway 62 heading north of Madoc, it actually sits about 13 mins, or 11km north of the village. Bannockburn sits about 18 mins, approx 18kms north of the village of Madoc, and has two roads that lead off towards Cooper and Wolf Lake. The first being Bannockburn Road leading towards Cooper Road, and the other being Wolf Lake Road. Centre Millbridge road, mentioned in relation to Bannockburn actually sits another 5 km or so north of the hamlet in Millbridge, opposite Stoney Settlement Road. Now you can get to Bannockburn Via Wolf Lake Road by heading south of the Cleveland Road and Stoney Settlement intersection. And you can also reach Millbridge by heading up Old Hastings Road North. I’ve lived in this area my whole life and actually grew up on Old Hastings road, where I learned to ride my bike, drive, hunt and fish. Such great history compiled here, keep it up!

Thank you for the correction, Amanda- I have edited the information on the blog entry! Jody

03/05/17 @ 22:14
Comment from: Chris Tedford [Visitor]  
Chris Tedford

Hi there,

The town of Nephton was not “demolished” as you described. In fact, most of the homes were moved out of town by Tedford House Movers, Pollard the Mover and possibly a couple of other structural movers. I remember as an early teenager working with my father getting some of those homes ready to move. Either way, most of those homes were successfully moved to various locations in the surrounding area and still stand today!

03/06/17 @ 20:29
Comment from: Lori Beavis [Visitor]
Lori Beavis

An interesting blog on all the towns and villages through parts of Ontario that I have travelled through or heard of throughout my life. I have to say that I find it disturbing that the only “mention” of the Anishinaabeg who were the First Peoples through the territory is in identifying Colonization Road. It would be of value for you to write an acknowledgement statement of the original inhabitants of the land at the beginning of your posting. This can be a simple statement as Acknowledging territory shows recognition of and respect for Aboriginal Peoples. It is recognition of their presence both in the past and the present. Recognition and respect are essential elements of establishing healthy, reciprocal relations and part of the reconciliation process as suggested by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission Report. There are a number of sites on the internet that would be of interest to you and help with crafting a statement - for example: http://apihtawikosisan.com/2016/09/beyond-territorial-acknowledgments/ - this is a particularly interesting site as it discusses the move towards acknowledging the original inhabitants of the land in terms of rural and non-rural situations. An important discussion to be having. Please feel free to contact me if you want any help in crafting your statement. thanks

Hi Lori,

Thank you for your comment on my blog entry. I understand your concerns but hope you understand that it was in no way meant to be a definitive list of towns and villages and I would not wish to have anyone believe that I would overlook our first nations people. If you look at some of my other entries, you will see that I have a fondness for our aboriginal culture, as well as personal, genealogical connections.

I would be pleased to feature a guest blog if you would be kind enough to write one for me.

Many thanks,


03/07/17 @ 09:08
Comment from: betty brennan [Visitor]  
betty brennan

this is very interesting and would like to know more

03/07/17 @ 20:02
Comment from: Christine [Visitor]  


Thank-you for your research, very cool. Looking forward to your next articles. (ie L’amable) :).
Now I know what we can do when we go visit my Family next time…Road trip.
Keep up the great informative work! (Note: Anyone have any real ghost stories of these areas?)

06/25/17 @ 12:39
Comment from: jenny-lynn robichaud [Visitor]
jenny-lynn robichaud

I am a lifetime resident of Haliburton county.. The church in Gelert was torn down this year (2017) it’s now just an empty lot.. there is also a small area in Maple Lake with a lot of history that people have long forgot. It’s on Hwy 118 between Stanhope and Carnarvon.. there is the old schoolhouse barn and the old post office.. Also the township of Algonquin Highlands (Stanhope) offers a lot of history an the museum is a stones throw away..

07/06/17 @ 12:26
Comment from: Richard [Visitor]  

A friend of mine (now deceased) was from Queenboro and often spoke about the Orange Lodge and what good times they would have travelling around to other lodges in the area. I just drove through Queenboro this past week and the Orange Hall still stands (now a House). Is there any info on the number of members they would have had and the different ghost towns. Perhaps there was a masonic hall as well?

Hi Richard,

Originally Queensboro was a First Nations village known as Cooksokie… the name was changed when they requested a post office and the government wanted an English name… but I digress… Apparently, Queensborough’s Loyal Orange Lodge (number 437) was built in 1862 and was used regularly until the 1980s. There is a bit of information on the Canadianorangehistoralsite.com that has some of the reports (for various years) of annual meetings. Some of the members from Queensboro are listed in these reports. For instance in 1883, Donald McKinnon, Arch Thompson, John Nichol, F.J. Thompson, John Wiggens, J.G. McCaw, James Moore, Charles Thompson, Isaac Trotter and John Moore are named. I’ve not been able to find any information about a Masonic Temple in Queensboro.

Best regards, Jody

07/14/17 @ 22:31
Comment from: Dana [Visitor]  


We use to visit on weekends at Dalton Welsh’s house. His wife’s names was Luella Emma WELSH (Musclow). What can tell me about the house they lived in together and the settlement. It was in Hastings county/Maynooth area. It was good times. I still remember the outhouse and pumping water from the well. Curious whether that old house is still there. Thank you

Hi Dana,

The house is still there and it has been nicely maintained. I will email you a photo.


01/10/18 @ 17:07
Comment from: Diana Duncan-Fletcher [Visitor]  
Diana Duncan-Fletcher

Jody, this information is fascinating! Thank you. I am interested especially in the Hermon hamlet. Do you know where the closest cemetery to there might be? I am searching for the graves of the three Royal Hermon individuals mentioned.

Thanks Diana,
I don’t know exactly where the Royal Hermons are buried. Here’s a great website with information that might help:https://roadsidethoughts.com/on/hermon-xx-hastings-cemeteries.htm

06/01/18 @ 14:43
Comment from: Crystal [Visitor]

Is there any info on Baylake rd in Bancroft. When the basement was dug in one of our homes in the 80’s (the home was built in 1902) there where 5 graves dug up… 1 infant and 4 children. They are still there just burried deeper. I wonder why? I find it odd that there where 5 graves and all belonged to children.
There’s a lot of negative energy on the property, people swear it’s cursed.

06/05/18 @ 00:08
Comment from: Matty Bourgoin [Visitor]  
Matty Bourgoin

This is a great read! I. Always in the north country looking for towns and such. Love reading about the history in the northern ghost towns as my Mothers side of the family came from Bancroft/Maynooth area. William McCormack landed in Bancroft area to settle when he came from Scotland in 1806. We know nothing of the family before he arrived in Canada. But some of these towns came up in the family tree. And since I read the family tree at around the age of 22, I’ve loved reading the history of these towns.

Thanks for the great read.


09/10/18 @ 19:08
Comment from: Matty [Visitor]  

Thanks for the read. I’ve been into reading up on these ghost towns in Ontario since my early 20’s. After reading the family tree,I found my Moms side came from the bancroft/maynooth areas. William McCormack landed there from Scottland in 1806. We know nothing of the family before he settled in Canada. Love reading about northern towns and ghost towns, as we camp in the St. Ola area, and hunt in the Gunter area.

Thanks again for the read. Was very interesting, and I will be looking for some of the towns I haven’t found yet in this list.



09/10/18 @ 19:16
Comment from: Barb [Visitor]

So interesting, history is so alive, so important.
Have you ever come across any info on an old settlement called Harburn in Haliburton County, abandoned in 1930’s or so (I think). All trace is gone now, but as a kid we explored this area off the Harburn Road and some homes were still standing. It is all grown over now. We heard something happened and people left quickly leaving everything behind. A mystery?

10/02/18 @ 18:31

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