Stories From Our Past — Week of Jan. 24, 2019

Each week, the Gazette looks back on stories from the past. Here is what happened this week, by year…


– A double drowning occurred about 400 metres from shore in Ameliasburgh. Farmers Gilbert Brooks and David Frederick were driving across the ice from Trenton when a horse stepped into a hole. Brooks, the younger man, rescued both men’s wives, who were sisters, but he lost his strength diving for Frederick.

– A “slick young man” from Trenton convinced three local ministers to give him $3 after sharing a story that he’d been in an accident and needed money to fix his vehicle. A fourth minister didn’t believe his story and reported him to the police.

– Mayor J.H. Porte urged council to do everything in its power to curb drunkenness and disorderly behaviour within Picton.


– Eight families were driven from their apartments after fire gutted a Main Street block owned by Mayor Nesbitt McKibbon. The blaze started with an exploded torch t Robinson’s Tire and Vulcanizing Shop, which caused about $30,000 in damages. Firemen battled the blaze in frozen clothing, but no injuries were reported.

– A bill was introduced in the House of Commons to legalize sweepstakes in Canada with proceeds to go to hospitals and universities. Previous bills attempting to legalize sweepstakes had been defeated.

– Canada’s Department of National Defence put forward a $60-million arms budget, which requested funding for 83 new war planes and a new destroyer warship.


– Some 360 delegates at an Ontario conference on agriculture favoured the formation of a single organization to represent the sector, rather than the Ontario Federation of Agriculture, Ontario Farmers’ Union and a number of industry groups.

– Two young boys were fortunate that a pistol they found at a RR2 Picton home was defective. A missing part kept the chamber from lining up correctly with the bullet. A boy shot his friend in the chest, but only a small fragment of the bullet fired. The second boy required stitches.

– Prince Edward County dairy farmers inspected a new machine in Kingston that automatically bagged milk and sterilized it with an ultra-violet lighting system.


– Prince Edward County Memorial Hospital received a four-and-a-half per cent boost in funding, with an additional $90,172 from its 1978 totals. Administrator Bruce Scott offered little comment on the bump, besides noting it was lower than the inflation rate.

– The Canadian Federation of University Women announced they’d try to find other ways to fund and house a children’s toy lending library in Picton after the local library board turned down the idea. One advocate suggested the library might be operated from within a private home.

– Lake Ontario Cement was expecting to have a good year in 1979 after its Picton plant operated near capacity in 1978. Staff were looking to further increase production.