Friday 2 March 2012

March 3,, 1876

“There have been few pleasanter or more interesting entertainments in Hamilton during the present winter than the private reception given by the pupils of Mrs. Salmond, at her gymnasium in the “Spectator” building last evening.”
                             Hamilton Spectator   March 3, 1876
At the start of 1876, a new business began operations in a portion of the building occupied by the Hamilton Spectator at the corner of MacNab street and Market Square.
On March 2, the owner of the company, Miss Salmond hosted an open house:
“It is only about three months since this lady began to teach callisthenics and gymnastics in this city and the reception last evening was the second she has given here, and certainly the superior character of the performance speaks volumes in praise of Mrs. Salmond’s effort in the past and augurs well for her success in the future. The parents and friends of the pupils were present to the number of about two hundred to witness the exercises, and the deep interest they showed in the proceedings, and the frequent outburst of applause made it very evident that they spent a most enjoyable evening. The pupils, about forty in all, composed of an equal number of boys and girls, were dressed in various picturesque and at the same time appropriate costumes, and we have rarely seen a prettier scene than they presented as they went through the different exercises, keeping time with the music of the piano. The movements consisted of exercises with the chest expander, the wand, the dumb bells, foils, etc. all of which were performed with a grace and precision which gave ample evidence of assiduous application and careful training. Some of the exercises were particularly attractive, such as those with the flying rings, the swing and trapeze, and perhaps the finest of all, the stirrup scene. Want of space forbids us from giving a description of these movements; suffice it to say, they are all more or less difficult and require diligent practise before they can be successfully performed. The programme was a lengthy one, lasting about two hours, but, during its continuance, the young performers, though apparently severely taxed, exhibited no signs of fatigue, and at the close, seemed almost as fresh and animated as at the commencement. One could not help thinking as he watched the general ease and regularity with which everything was done, and the powers of endurance displayed, that a course of training such as Mrs. Salmond gives, must be of very great benefit to the pupils, both mentally and physically. We have purposely abstained from giving the names of any of the pupils who performed at last night’s reception, all did so well that it would be unfair to particularise. It is of course well known that gymnastic exercises, if properly studied, are of great utility in developing the form, and contributing to the health of the mind as well as of the body, but oo often they are entirely neglected. We are glad to see so many of our citizens taking such an interest in a manner of so much importance. Mrs. Salmond is a careful and well-informed instructor, and it is to be hoped that she may meet with the success which she deserves in her avocation. “
          Down along the Beach Strip, a police charge was laid against a citizen for the theft of hay :
“On Tuesday, Henry Wilson was charged with stealing a quantity of hay, the property of Sydney S. Curtis, from the edge of the Burlington Bay in Barton. The hay was tracked to the stable attached to Frederick Carey’s hotel, Burlington Beach, now kept by Wilson. Wilson demanded a trial by jury, and was committed for trial at the next Assizes. There has been great complaint of stealing hay from the broken front of Barton this winter, and it is hoped this prosecution will put a stop to such a nefarious practice.”
          Out in the rural townships of Beverly and West Flamboro, the imposition of a tax on dogs owned by residents provoked an illegal reaction by one dog owner:
:The Assessors for the Townships of Beverly and West Flamboro’ for the current year have been provided with schedules to be filled up and signed by every householder as required by Section 4 of the Act to impose a tax on dogs, which requires them to state the number of dogs owned or kept by them, and about ten days ago, a party living in the south-west part of the Township of Beverly thought fit to try to “bluff” Mr. Henderson, the Assessor, by signing one of these schedules stating therein that he had no dogs or bitches. Mr. H. saw two dogs about the house, and the property of the party in the house, he entered a complaint before W. McDonald, J. P. of Rockton, against the party who so signed the schedule for making a false statement, and a summons was served on the delinquent on Saturday last. When the defaulter received the summons, he thought it would be better to settle the matter as soon as possible, so on Monday he went to Rockton and paid a fine of five dollars and three dollars costs and then started for home fully determined not to commit the same blunder again. Owners and harbourers of dogs in Beverly and West Flamboro’ will do well to “read, mark and inwardly digest” the above.”
In a heartfelt tribute to one of Hamilton’s most influential citizens, who had fallen on hard times, a testimonial was organized to support him. At the age of 65, the Hon. Issac Buchanan had suffered from business reverses in recent years, and even his political opponents, such as the management of the Hamilton Times, were more than willing to subscribe to an event to assist him:
 “The Times has had very often, during past years, to take issue with the Hon. Isaac Buchanan on political matters, and fight him in political contests. Even then he was always an opponent, who commanded respect for his unselfish devotion to Canadian interests, as he understood them, and the freedom from political partisanship with which, at times, he stepped outside of party lines in order to work for what he considered the general good. Even had he been a more violent partisan than he then was, the days of those battles are over, and outside of politics altogether, we are able to see in Mr. Buchanan a citizen of whom Hamilton has reason to be proud, and to whom its gratitude is due. If Canada had the first place in his heart over all over countries, Hamilton was there first over all other cities of Canada. His labours in its behalf have been abundant, self-sacrificing and fruitful of good. On this ground alone, we can join heartily in the movement to raise for him such a testimonial as shall substantially express the high esteem in which he is held; and on the ground of his valuable services of Canada at large and the countries with which it has had commercial dealings (largely advanced by his own efforts), we can commend to them a generous recognition of those services.
Mr. Buchanan, as pioneer of the trade of Western Canada, has had opportunities that no one can ever have again of personally benefiting the public and assisting, by advice and otherwise, those who were the early settlers and business men. He can, therefore, honestly indulge in a feeling of gratification of that high nature which arises from having done a kind of good which no one arriving in a comparatively advanced state of a country can have. All know that he was a prominent actor in all the early reforms in Canada, such as responsible government, the clergy reserves, the establishment of our excellent municipal system, and of our still more excellent educational system, etc. No party now grudges him this great vantage ground, and both political parties feel under obligations to Mr. Buchanan and those who with him did successful battle some thirty years ago for these reforms. He carried Toronto in 1841; this election having notably helped to secure that thorough but peaceful revolution which altered the system of Canadian Government from an irresponsible oligarchy to the British responsible system. And we may say with truth that if all Isaac Buchanan’s writings and speeches were eliminated from the Industrial literature of the last nearly half century, the public opinion of Canada on these subjects would be many years farther from the coming industrial reforms than it is.
We need say little of Mr. Buchanan’s services to the city of Hamilton, for it would be an impertinence to remind the citizens in detail of what they cannot possibly have forgotten – his hearty earnestness in every scheme that seemed for its interest; how he ever tried to magnify our city in the eyes of the world, by every mans in his power. None of us forget the city debt and his exertions in helping to lessen that intolerable burden – a service, which up till now, although acknowledges, has never yet been noted by the city in any tangible form. This, perhaps, as been Mr. Buchanan’s own fault, in a measure, for he has always held that in working for Hamilton, he was working for that from which he could not disassociate himself, and has always, we believe, nipped in the bud the very first indication of any public demonstration of thanks.
We are sure that in Hamilton especially, and in Canada at large, the movement to reward in a substantial way the man who has, for nearly have a century, fought in the battles for free and responsible government, for education, for municipal reform, and for own industrial interests, with such unselfish devotion as to have sacrificed his very own personal interests in so doing, will be warmly aided. The chief labour in getting up the testimonial will fall on Mr. J. R. Goldie, who has, with praiseworthy generosity, offered his gratuitous services to the committee, and will visit the chief cities and towns of the Dominion and some of the larger cities in Great Britain for that purpose. Hamilton as the place where Mr. Buchanan is best known, and where he is consequently the most highly appreciated, will, we are confident, give a splendid start to the subscription.”

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