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Title: Moffat, Charles to , 1854-1902
CollectionNew Brunswick Letters
SenderMoffat, Charles
Sender Gendermale
Sender Occupationcarpenter
Sender Religionunknown
Recipient Genderunknown
Doc. No.
Partial Date
Doc. Type
Word Count6236
Genreexcerpts from diary

In a paper dealing with the life of Lemuel Allen Wilmot I have already quoted
considerably from the diary of Mr. Charles Moffatt. The present paper is composed of items of
news which have become history and incidents and happenings in the daily life of the city which
may be of interest to the general public, especially to those whose ancestors have lived here for
several generations.
Mr. Moffatt was a carpenter by trade, a gardener by nature and desire and a
voluminous reader. His reading in his spare time took him all over the world in imagination,
from Polar expeditions to the islands of the southern seas and he read history from Jewish
Antiquities by Flavius Josephus down through the years and all the standard authors of his day.
He obtained many of his books from a man or store called “The Bookman” who seems to have
carried on a lending library as well as dealing in new and second hand books. Occasionally he
records paying ‘The Bookman” several shillings. He also bought books from Francis Beverly, the
proprietor of the “Olive Branch Book Store.” Francis Beverly was I believe, the father of the late
Misses Beverly. His store was several doors above the corner of Queen and St. John streets. I
have an old photograph of the lower end of Queen street which shows his sign quite plainly.
Mrs. Medley and Mrs. Alexander also lent Mr. Moffatt many books which judging by the titles
must have had a strong ecclesiastical flavour.
Some of the facts which Mr. Moffatt records will have to be very much condensed, some of
them quoted verbatim and in some place information from other sources many be added.

Many Buildings

For over thirty years Mr. Moffatt worked for James Agneau, a Boss Carpenter who took
contracts and built many substantial buildings around the town, many of them of brick. He built
the McMurray building on the corner of Wilmot’s Alley, the Rutter building on the corner of
Queen Hotel Alley, the McPherson building in the middle of the block above York street, the
Wilmot Parsonage and a house on Carleton street with a bake-oven in it for Alexander Burchill.
The changes of ownership during the intervening years make it difficult to identify many of his
Boss Agneau lived at the lower end of Charlotte street next above the Babbitt
homestead. He had a workshop near his house large enough for his crew of men to work in
during the winter. A workshop was a necessity in the days before there were woodworking
factories for so much of the work had to be done by hand.
Boss Agneau’s crew of men worked all one summer on the Shives cottage. Shives was an
earlier owner of Morrison’s Mill and the Shives cottage must have been the Morrison house or
another one on the same site as Mr. Moffatt tells about John Ryan and his sons building a stone
fence all along in front of the buildings. It was in the year 1854. Agneau was also building a
house for Mr. Whelpley the same summer.

Much Shop-Work

One gets a very good idea of the job it was to build a house. In the earlier years of the
diary there were no factories. When Mr. Agneau got a big contract his crew of men had to work
sometimes two months in the shop before the actual work of putting up the frame began.
Doors and window sashes had to be made by hand, boards had to be planed for the doors and the door and window frames, for floors and for casings, planks had to be ripped up with a ripping saw for moldings, stair rails and elbows had to be worked our by hand and the balusters and newel posts had to be turned on a foot-lathe and it was all slow work. The sills for the house and in the earlier days all the rest of the frame had to be hewed with a broad axe. In one
place Mr. Moffatt tells of John Fowler hewing a frame on Charlotte street in front of Agneau’s
house. Some men were very clever with a broad axe and could hew to a line and others made a
bad job of the work. He wrote very disgustedly of one man’s hewing. He said that Fleming
hewed “like a Honson from Kiseway, they lined the sill out with a logging chain and hewed it
with a thunder-bolt.” Anyone who has examined a tree that has been struck by lightening
would know how smooth that would be. Contract at


Mr. Moffatt gives a very detailed account of the building of one house in 1855 for a man
named Gilbert, at Grimross Neck near Gagetown. Grimross was the old name for Gagetown.
The crew worked in the shop a couple of months beforehand. Agneau took two of the men and
went down on the steamboat Anna Augusta to look over the place build a camp for the men to
live in and to see if he could find someone to move an old house that stood on the site where
the new house was to be erected. Mr. Moffatt does not say where the frame was hewed but it
was probably on the spot for they built a coach house, made over one barn and built one new
one as well as the house.

2- From the Diary “June 5th. 1855. The Boss, McIntosh, Williams, Fannen and Lincoln
were taking boards out of the river a little above the Tank House all the morning. This
afternoon they were at Shives Mill rafting deals and boards for Gilbert’s. I took my tool chest
down to the shop on a wheel-barrow and put some of my tools in it, then I was fixing a snowcanoe
belonging to Enoch Bradley. I went up to Joseph Gaynor’s store and got some tar and
pitch and calked the leaks, launched the craft and put abroad forty-two bunches of

“June 9th. Fowler and Williams are making a raft of scantlings at Carman’s Mill below the
Nashwaak. Boss got a scow from Jewett at the mouth of the Nashwaak and he, Tom Fowler,
Williams and myself took the said scow from the lower Tank House up to R.R. Winter’s wharf
and took on twenty casks of lime and brought it down to the Tank House.”

By Raft to Grimross

“June 13th. We got the raft under way from Shives Mill with all our luggage on board by
six o’clock and after we had drifted half way down to Carman’s Mill the Boss Ordered three of
us to take Enoch Bradley’s dugout across to the mill and get the raft of scantling which was to
go down. McIntosh, Fannane and myself started in the dugout to get the raft and meet the large
raft as it passed. The scantling was stuck in the mud and bushes along the shore and after
tugging and pulling and pushing we were too late, for the big raft passed. At last we got started
but neither McIntosh nor I could scull. We paddled for dear life but the raft did just as it pleased
and we were fast drifting into the boom. But the men on a tug belonging to the Boom Co. took
pity on us and hooked on and in a short time tugged us clear of the boom. The big raft hung up
along shore waiting for us, so we caught up and tailed on about dark and we proceeded on our
voyage during the night. Next day we passed Peet’s Hole about eleven P.M. and anchored to a
raft below the mouth of Gagetown Creek. We had something to eat and then pulled up anchor
and were away and the 3000 brick and the 3 casks of lime and the woodboat went on its way.
Some of the men took Bradley’s scow out to meet the steamboat St. John from Fredericton on
which the Boss was bringing the doors, sashes and provisions. We got everything safely landed at the King’s Head Tavern, but the provisions which we took back to camp with us in the scow. Next day we took the large scow and the small one down to the tavern and loaded them up with bricks, lime, sashes and doors and got them safe back to the Neck without any more accidents than one man falling overboard and two broken panes of glass.”

Lease for a Cottage

And so the story goes on and on. Mr. Moffatt calls the house a cottage but there were
ten windows in the kitchen ell and he tells of dormer windows, two verandas, glass doors, brick
hearths, a brick oven, three chimneys and stained glass lights in the back hall door so I guess it
was quite a house.
Mr. Moffatt left Gagetown on Sat. Sept. 22nd for home with Mr. Block. On Monday
morning he got up early and bought two kegs of Nails, 10 dwt and 12 dwt from S.A. Akerly and
put them aboard the Anna Augusta and paid one shilling freight then he got a barrel of biscuit,
fifteen pounds of sugar and half a quintal of codfish from Spafford Barker and put them aboard
the boat for Boss Agneau. A.N. Block out on board some barrels of plaster, an oven face and a
valise containing John Maxwell’s cricket regimentals so he could play in a return match with the
St. John cricket club.
Mr. Moffatt was beginning to build his own house. The frame had evidently been put up
while he had been away and he hired a man and went to work boarding in and shingling. He
had bought the land from Mrs. Twining, formerly Miss Isabella Odell. He paid sixty pounds for a
lot 56 feet wide by 166 feet deep near the corner of George and Church streets. It seems a
pretty big price to pay for a piece of pasture land that size in 1855.

(To Be Continued)

“Sept. 27th.1855. By telegraph this day arrived the news of the fall of Sebastopol. There
was a torch-light procession, firing of guns and pistols and all kinds of fire-works from sky
rockets to squibs. Swizeltown Band was out. Such a night as few in Fredericton have witnessed.
What was laughed at to-night had it happened a few days ago would have been a job for Mr.
Brannen the gaoler. There would have been more fun had the night been fine, as it was there
was plenty of deviltry cut up.”

Official Celebration

“Tuesday Oct. 2nd was the official celebration of the fall of Sebastopol. Mr. Moffatt
writes “This morning was ushered in by the firing of cannon, small arms and everything that
could make a noise. At eleven o’clock a procession moved off headed by a boat on wheels
called the Sweborg. In the stern sat old Wm Morgan as Commodore, Charles Brannen as
midshipman, Job Aikins, shoemaker, was coxswain and the crew consisted of Chas. Stewart,
Alex Brown, Dick Payne and several others. Next came a troop of horsemen as the British and
their Allies also a specimen of all the troops engaged in the reduction of Sabastopol. Robert
Atherton turned out as a Russian foot soldier, then came a lot of Cossacks in any kind of rig the
fancy of each individual could suggest, with artilery of horse. Next came the Polymorphians, a
ragged regiment for sure. The Free Masons followed by the boys of the National and Grammer
Schools finished the procession. After marching through the principal streets they dispersed
and formed up again after dinner and went the rounds again and then broke up except the boat
crew. They had a woodboat anchored off the House of Assembly to represent the Russian fleet.
They got the boat into the water and it pulled around the woodboat several times but got beat
off. At length they boarded her in the smoke, His Worship Mayor Needham acted as
Commodore for the time. He looked like a great green frog as he sweltered in his Fagabalaugh
Fire Dress. John Neill was one of the crew and I never will forget how he jumped and capered around like a Comanche Indian. It all passed off well considering the lot of killed and wounded but Needham took them up to Issac Brown’s and bought them all to life again by the
application of a little brandy. After this there were the usual sports, races for men and boys,
hurdle and sack races, hop, skip and jump, wheel-barrow race for boys, canoe races for Indians
and squaws, a tug of war, a horse race and last of all climbing a greased pole for hat and pants.
In the evening was a torch-light procession headed by the Sweborg. It marched to Government
House and down around Gas Alley to Waterloo Row to His Worship’s. Then the bonfire was lit
and a few rockets were sent up but the balloon was a failure. This is the first time I walked with
old No. 3 (evidently a hose company belonging to the fire station on Sunbury Street) having
joined it about three weeks before.” (Sebastopol fell on Sept. 8th and the word got here on
Spet. 27th, and that was before the Atlantic Cable.)

“May 9th. 1856, Steamer J.D. Pearce blew up on her way to Grand
Falls. Two or three hands are missing.”

Central Bank Robbery

“July 1st, 1857. The Central Bank was robbed of a large amount of gold and silver. No
clue to the robbers. July 12th. Three men were brought here from St, John on suspician. They
were put in prison to await the sitting of the court.”
“Sept. 2nd. i1857. As I came up from work tonight the smell of rotten potatoes was very
strong. The rot has been visible on the leaves and stems for some time back but as yet the root
has escaped except for an odd plant here and there.”
“Jan. 7th. 1858. Went down to No.3 Engine House to-night to put the engine on runners.
Team, Captain Burke, Vice Capt. Richey, James and Alex Burchill, Tom Essington, Lemuel Weeks,
Enoch O. Bradley Engineer and Charles Moffatt.”
“April 27th. 1860. The new wheelbarrow steamboat Tobique arrived tonight.”

Prince of Wales Visit

“August 4th. 1860. We dressed up a little after dinner and went down to the steamboat
landing and took our station at the end of the wharf where the steps lead up over the bank and
stood there until six o’clock. Then the steamboat Forest Queen arrived at the wharf amidst the
din of cannon, bells and cheers and there stepped on shore His Royal Highness Albert Edward
Prince of Wales and party. The prince bowed to the people as he crossed the wharf and walked
up the steps covered with an old carpet brought from the House of Assembly. He then got into
a coach prepared for him and drove under the arches, the first one at Chipman and Gaynor’s
corner, one at Fisher’s corner (York Street) and one near Government House and no more was
seen of him that day. All three arches were surmounted by crowns and on the curve of the first
and largest was the word ‘Welcome’ and two words on the curve of each small one The words
were ‘Ich Dien’ or ‘I Serve’.”

at the Cathedral

“August 5th. We went to the vestry door of the Cathedral at ten o’clock as given out by
the Bishop. A crowd of people were waiting and when the clock struck ten they rushed at the
entrance so that scarcely any one could get in, although there were several constables in
attendance, Then came Major Carter with some soldiers. He asked Mr. Charles Medley if he
could be of any service. I could not hear the answer but Major Carter gave the word ‘Forward’
to his men. They formed up face to face a few feet apart forming a passage. The crowd soon
filled this up by surging forward. Such a scene I never beheld at the door of a house of worship.
I got into my usual seat and still they flocked in through the vestry door so that many had to sit
in the aisles on benches. After sitting for an hour the Prince and his suite came in by the large
entrance followed by a large crowd of all denominations. They all stood up in and on the pews
to get a look at his Royal Highness. The Bishop preached a beautiful sermon on the
responsibility of every man for the deeds done in the body whether King or clown. Lord forgive
me if thought more of the Prince of Wales than I did of the Prince of Peace

more At Odell Park 2 – From Diaries of

“Monday, August 6th. 1860. After dinner we went up to the Park about two o’clock.
Thousands were gathered at that early hour for half past three was the hour appointed for His
Royal Highness to make his appearance on the grounds. We got a seat under the trees and
boiled even in the shade. I had to get a drink of water from the fountain in a broken bottle and
it was a hard job to get it bad and all as it was. At last came the Prince Escorted by volunteers
and cavalry, With Major Wilmot at their head and the different squads of rifles from
Woodstock, Richmond, Douglas, Gagetown, Sheffield and Fredericton with the St. John and
Fredericton Artillery The fountain began to play, and the children on the stage to sing, the
people to shout and to push for a sight of the heir apparent who after a few minutes returned
to Government House amid the yells of the people for there was no unanimous cheer. Thus
ended the program in the park. We got to bed about twelve o’clock when the ball was about to
“August 8th. I was awakened by the firing of cannon as a farewell to the prince. It was
too late to see him again but I got up and dressed.” (According to hearsay the fountain was
rather a fizzle. The water was brought from a spring out on the hill through bored wooden logs.
Before the important day arrived to turn on the water one of the logs cracked and began

Morrison’s Mill Fire

“Aug. 19th. 1860. Between Eleven and twelve o’clock an alarm of fire was given. It was
the mill formerly owned by Shives but had been sold to Morrison. By the time I got down the
rafters were falling in and the trimming shed was nearly gone. All the engines in town were on
the ground as soon as they could get there but all they could do was to keep the lumber and
other buildings from burning for the mill was a heap of ashes in a short time. We of No. 3
company got no dinner till after four o’clock and then we left the engine with the mill crew all


“Sept. 4th. 60. Dr Toldervey killed today but his horse taking fright. He was thrown
against a fence post in Mrs. Phair’s fence.”

“Sept. 17th. ’60. Dr. Ward began practicing in Fredericton today. Boss Agneau’s youngest
child was very sick today with convulsions and he sent for Dr. Dow, the Yankee horse doctor.” (I
have heard a good deal about Dr. Dow but never heard him called that before.)

Prince Alfred’s Visit

“May 31st. ’61. Went down to the steamboat landing to see Prince Alfred land. Saw the
little great man. Some of the Rifles and part of the Mason’s Band turned out in his honour.
There was a torch-light procession in the evening with Mayor Beek in front on a large grey

“June 6th. ’61. Only John Allen was elected of our four Tory candidates, the other three,
Dow, Hatheway and Fisher were defeated. Robert Rossborough lost five pounds to Marvin
Hartt on the election

Governor Gordon

“Oct. 20th. ’61. Got to the wharf in time to see the new Governor’s coach drive away and
that is all the crowd of people saw who had lingered there all the afternoon. The Rifles, Cavalry and Artillery in attendance.” (This was Governor Gordon.)

“Dec. 2nd. ’61. The Central Bank refused payment for the second time to-day.”

Another Big Fire

“August 9th. ’62. Another big fire, corner of King and Regent sts. Broderick’s brick house
on the corner, a blacksmith shop on Kings street, the ball and skittle alley and billiard saloon in
Barker House Alley, owned by the widow Whelpley and a barn torn down.Put our hose up in
the tower to drip, helped by Tracy, Neville and Bradley.”

“July 5th. ’63. Hauled five wheelbarrow laods of clay from the frog-pond to fill up a hole
in my garden.” (The frog-pond was probably connected with the first brook which ran just back
of Charlotte street and of which Mr. Moffatt often writes.)

New Surface Sewers

In the summer of 1863 the surface sewers had to be dug up over most of the town to be
repaired. They were made of pine deal and from Mr. Moffatt’s a description they were in a bad
condition, rotten planks had to be taken out and replaced by new ones. A contractor threw up
the job. Robert Baxter was road-master and Mr. Moffatt worked under him examining the
planks and replacing them and a dozen men did the digging. It was very dangerous work for the
sand caved in on the men and nearly buried them occasionally. He has a time getting deal the
right dimentions. He finally got some from Bradbury’s pile at Scott’s Mill and some from Boss
Agneau. Scott’s Mill was on the river bank between Westmorland and Northumberland streets.
He started on June 15th. Making what he call vertical trunks for the street corners. They were
three feet four inches long and one foot five inches square with a grating on the top end. The
men who did the digging quit work often for they were afraid they would be buried alive.

Working on Drains

“July 22nd. ’63. Eleven hands working, sides caving in as bad as ever. The contractor got
caught so they had to dig him out, the sand came over his hips. Nearly got my own legs broken.
Got the pipe covered to the armourer’s and the drain filled to the guard house. Got 1500 feet of
pine plank and Virtue hauled and piled them under the big willow at the Barracks gate.”
(Carleton street) By August 1st. they had got out Carleton street as far as Johnston’s corner and
connected with the Brunswick street sewer at the Graveyard gate, by Aug. 7th. The trunks were
put down at each corner. “Fixed a new gate at Ed Wilmot’s corner and one at St. Ann’s”, these
two are familiar and so is Dibblee’s but where are Doran’s corner, Carman’s corner, Witham’s,
Richard’s, Kirby’s, Essington’s, Connely’s and the corner of John A. Street’s garden.

On Saint John Street

“Aug. 19th. ’63. Got another big load of plank and had them hauled to Chipman’s corner and
had them piled under the big willow. (Boat Club) Started at St. John street at the river and had
to put in new sides as far as we went. At the King street crossing the Woodstock stage came
nearer being swamped in the new clay on top of the sewer. So did the St. Stephen stage. By Sat.
Sept. 5th he was as far as the bridge in Fannan’s Settlement. It sounded as far away as Flanagan
Road or Doaks Settlement but it was on St. John street back of Charlotte. They worked the rest
of the summer and fall at the job and had some to finish the next year.

To Be Continued

“Sept. 15th’ 63. There was a row last night up at the cattle-show grounds between
circus-men and citizens. They ran one of the Circus waggons out Westmorland street and over
the wharf at Thomas Pickard’s landing.”

“Oct. 4th. 1864. Exhibition opened today, people coming in from Woodstock and St. John
in carriages and omnibuses and everything is bustle and confusion.

Deforest the Pedestrain

“Oct. 6th. 64. Deforest the Pedestrain began his match against time at 1 P.M. today to
walk one hundred miles from the head to the foot of Charlotte street in twenty-four hours. I
saw him at 11:30 P.M. apparently still going strong. Oct. 7th. Deforest finished his hundred miles
at a quarter to twelve. A.M. He shuffled a good deal in his walk the last heat or length of the
street. He also put his cane to the ground this morning for support instead of flourishing it as he did yesterday. He is said to be a mill-man from St. John.”

“Jan. 3rd. 1865. After tea took out No. 3 engine to fill a skating rink on the green
between Block’s and Cadwalader’s. Company, A.N. Block Marshall Richey, Ed. Lincoln, George
Babbitt, John Dougherty, Hugh Block, W. Murrey and Chas. Moffatt.”


“Feb. 24th. ’65. Have done little or nothing this day but run after the politicians and hear
their speeches. Nomination was in front of the Court House and the speeches were in
Exhibition Buildiing. Fisher spoke first, Hatheway next, then Allen and Dow fourth. Street came
next but did not speak long as it was getting dark. Needham and Fraser will speak before
election day.”

Burial of “Heather Bell”

“June 8th. ’65. Steamer Heather Bell caught fire at 4 A.M. at the wharf. Her bow and
stern warps burned, so she drifted from the wharf at Regent Street across the river and rather
up stream. She was owned by Lunt and Weston and said not to be insured.”

Against Confederation

“March, 2nd. ’65. I was at the election. Four against Confederation elected, Fraser,
Hatheway, Allen and Needham. Fisher and Dow defeated.”

Another Election

“Nov, 6th. ’65. I went up town to another election. Chief Justice Carter resigned his office
and John C. Allen was elevated to the bench which left a vacancy in the House of Assembly. The
candidates were John Pickard against Confederation and the Hon. Charles Fisher for it. The
returns surprised everybody for Fisher was returned with a majority of 780 votes. Bribery was
practiced on both sides. A barrel of flour was no price for a vote. Both sides were flush with
money. The Orangemen stuck together for once.”

Brayley House Stables Burned

“April 15th. ’66. Fire to-night. Caught in the Brayley House stables. Nine horses were
burned to death. Five were owned by George Atherton and four by Dr. Hiram Dow. Clark’s
shoe-factory and several sheds were burned before it could be got under control.”

Still another Election

In consequences of difficulties with the Governor, In April 1866 the Government
resigned and on June 1st. went back to the people. Fisher, Thompson, Dow and Beckwith for
Confederation and Fraser, Needham and Brown against. The candidates for confederation were

Opening of Railway

“Nov. 6th. ’67. Tom Fowler and I went out to see the first sod of the Fredericton Junction
Railway lifted in Rose Valley. Sheriff Temple cut the sod, Mrs. W.H. Needham put it on the
barrow and Colonel Harding wheeled it over the run, to use a navy expression. There was a
universal titter which swelled to laughter when the gallant solider started like a beefeater or
Walker the two-penny postman. It was really a treat. Then the cannon roared, boys cheered
and threw their caps, horses pranced and the crowd broke up. Those who had to go to work at
one o’clock startled for home regardless of the speeches by Mayor Needham and some of the
notables. The Proceedings opened with a prayer by the Rev. John M. Brook but though I was
near enough I could not understand much of what he said.”

“July 23rd. 1868. Judge Wilmot sworn in Governor of New Brunswick.”

“Sept. 24th. ’68 Cricket Match between Fredericton and Halifax.”

Prince Arthur Patrick

“Sept. 8th. 1869. Prince Arthur Patrick visited Fredericton. Came up river in the
steamboat Rothesay and landed at Sherman’s or Gaynor’s wharf amid the booming of guns and the cheering of the crowd. He was taken to Government House in Governor Wilmot’s carriage. There was a torch-light procession in the evening.”

The Saxby Gale

“Oct. 4th. ’69. I just got home in time to escape the gale. Rain began to fall and the wind
to blow hard and it soon reached hurricane proportions. Our old pine fell with a great crash but
did not hit the house, only the fence. The storm was very bad in some spots. As we went out to
Cameron’s on Maryland Road the next morning trees were down in all directions, some were
broken off and some were torn up by the roots. It is said the gale was foretold by a man named
Saxby. In some places great swathes of trees were blown down for long distances.”


He also mentions the earthquake which came shortly after the Saxby Gale. “Oct. 22nd. It
came about a quarter to six in the morning and lasted about fifteen seconds. It sounded like
one of those peals of thunder which resemble the firing of cannon and small arms mingled
together but it passed under ground instead of over head. Its effects were shown on the
Cathedral and Methodist Church with chipped plaster and tumbled brick. Some of the brick
cased houses were cracked from the top to the bottom. A crack was opened in a road on the
Nashwaak wide enough for a wagon wheel to go down to the hub

Loyalist Graveyard

“July 19th. ’71. Working at Elmcroft today. Robert Winter painting on the second floor.
After we had eaten lunch we went down to the old Loyalist Graveyard to see holes dug in the
ground by persons looking for money, so it is supposed. There were some holes outside the
fence beside ‘The Sister Elms’ on the flats, twice in twelve years. We looked at an old
gravestone set at the head of a grave and could read the date plainly, 1785 but the rest of the
inscription we could not read.”

More 2 – From the Diary

“June 9th. ’73. Volunteers left tonight for Fort Garry.” Great preparation for the
reception of the Governor General.

“August 22nd. ’73. The Governor General (Lord Dufferin) and Lady attended church at
the Cathedral on Sunday and on Monday an excursion was arranged by the Government on the
New Brunswick Railway and a dinner was held for the visitors.”

“Oct. 7th ’73. Exhibitions opened today. Strangers can scarcely find shelter. The hotels are all

New Fire Engine

“Nov. 25th ’74. The new fire engine Fredericton, was tested this afternoon. Some say she
will throw water over the spire of the Wesleyan Meeting House but that’s all bosh. At all events
the fuss she kicked up was enough for two locomotives and the smoke was dismal

Wood’s Stable Burned

“Mar. 18th. ’75. Capt. Wood’s Stable burned. The stable was in the rear of Treadwell
Smith’s dwelling on Queen St. (House Harvey’s Studio is in) Five horses were burned. Three
belonged to Capt Wood, one to Chas.Davis and one was owned by Isaac McCausland. Two fireengines and three hand-engines were at it.”

Work at Elmcroft

Starting on April 10th ’75. Boss Agneau’s crew of men worked all summer and on into
the winter at Elmcroft, the residence of Mr. H.G.C. Ketchum. They remodeled the house, built
fences, sheds, a greenhouse, a forcing-house and other works too numerous to mention and
did not finish till January. I remember seeing Mr. Ketchum demonstrating his ship-railway with
a model at an exhibition. It worked well in minature but whether it would have carried large
ships across the Isthmus of Chignecto no one will ever know.

“Aug 4th, ’75. A batch of Volunteers started today for Manitoba.

Great Calico Ball

“Feb 23rd. /76. The Great Calico Ball in the Exhibition Building for the benefit of the poor
comes off tonight. They will suffer for tonight bids fair to be a rasper.”

“Feb. 24th. 11 P.M. A very cold night. Many house-plants got nipped last night but this
night will try them still further. The Calico Ball was not a success. The ladies danced in their furs
and the gents in their beavers. The refreshments were rather cold for comfort. Capt. Lee was
acting as master of ceremonies and he was so drunk that he could not see through a ladder and several other gents were a little elevated.

Phoenix Square Fire

“March 8th. Pretty bad fire last night. McCausland’s brick building on the corner of
Phoenix Square destroyed.”

“Sept. 23rd. /76. Old Mrs. Bailey was buried today, aged 107 years. Mrs. Medley and
Mrs. Judge Weldon walked as chief morners and six other females two and two next. This is the
first time I have seen females on foot at a funeral in this country.”

Great Saint John Fire

“June 21st/77. Great fire in St. John. Relief sent to them this evening in the shape of
food. All the neighbours gave with a few exceptions.”

Aug. 10th./77. Great doings tonight at Mayor Fenety’s. He is entertaining the Members
of the Canadian Press. The band is thumping and all of my people are out to see and hear what
is going on.”

D. Banks McKenzie

“Dec. 15th./77. Great torch light procession of temperance men tonight led on and
marshaled by D. Banks McKenzie. He was an officer in the United States Navy in the war
between North and South and comes from Maine.” (There has been a great temperance
upheaval in the province. Temperance Lodges had been started all over, Divisions of the Sons of
Temperance, Royal Templars and Orange Temperance Lodges
The Soldiers Barracks was converted into a Reform Club and that name was painted in large
letters clear across the front. A window in the middle of the front was made into a door, with a
double set of steps up to it. The Temperance orginizations had committee rooms and club
rooms in it. Public opinion demanded and passed temperance legislation in the form of the
Scott Act. The license system which had existed, was abolished in any county which had a
majority vote against it. Liquor sellers were fined and put in jail gaol which made them very

Vote for water-works

“Feb. 28th./82 It is said the vote for water-works carried very well. If they give us better
water or as good as we have in the back of town it will be all right. They talk about Heron’s la
Lake over the river as a supply, others say in Gornish or Garden Creek. The last two places
would give pretty good water. The first place is a bog hole, it does not look much like a lake or
at least that was my impression when I saw it thirty odd years ago. At one time there was talk
of bring water from Mill Creek or Tower Lake, another bog hole which the wise man discovered
and named it after its great discoverer, Wm. Tower City Counciller. I suppose Oromocto Lake
will be the next place.”

Baptist Church Burned
“March 9th./82. The Calvinist Baptist Church burned between eight and nine o’clock this
evening. It was a good thing for the people living near that there was a coat of snow over

Other Fires

“Mar. 29th./82. Worked some making a narrow how out of an old one I found down at
the Payne place, occupied when burned by Jim Blizzard, alias Corncake. H.G.C. Ketchum bought the land and added it to Elmcro