Tuesday 21 February 2012

February 22, 1876.

At a Special Meeting of Hamilton City Council on February 22, 1876, the foresighted alderman passed a motion concerning the ecologically important and beautiful coastal marsh on the western outskirts of the city:
       “Moved by Ald. Waddell, seconded by Ald. Lockman, and
Resolved – This Council is of opinion that it is not desirable that the marsh lands known as Cootes’  Paradise  should pass into the possession of private parties, and that the Park Committee be instructed to apply to the Crown Lands Department for the purchase of the same.
The resolution was carried unanimously.”
It would take another 50 years for this initiative to succeed, but thankfully it did.
The area of Coote’s Paradise was referred in another Spectator column in that issue.
Interests in the Valley Town of Dundas were trying very hard to have that community connected to the railway, the final route of which was being planned to connect Hamilton with Collingwood :
“A large number of influential men of Dundas intend holding a meeting as soon as the proper arrangements can be made, for the purpose of discussing the advisability of petitioning the Company to have the H. & N. W. R. run over the Heights. They contend that the course will be more direct and much cheaper in the end, and that it will be of greater benefit to Hamilton, as although the principal buildings and freights are to be erected in Hamilton, still lumbermen and grain merchants will make Wellington Square their shipping place. More than that the erection of a railway bridge over the Desjardins Canal will ever be a source of annoyance, as in the case of a heavy swell from the east and a vessel coming in, she would have to forge ahead, and should a train be coming or the bridge closed, a terrible disaster might be the consequence. The approach to the canal from the lake is not the best, and a heavy vessel beating outside with the high wind and the swell heavy, the annoyance at the station would be extreme in holding trains in check for the craft to pass through. The idea of the Dundas people is to run the track out of Main street, Dundas, across Binkley’s Hollow and through Dundas at the head of Desjardin’s Canal.
(First canal reference is meant to Burlington Bay Canal, not Desjardins Canal.)”

On the morning of February 22, 1876, a rather usually appearing prisoner was brought before the police magistrate. 
According to the Spectator account of the case, she was unusual in that compared to most of the prisoners who were brought into Hamilton police court were seedy characters:
“This morning, at half past ten o’clock, Elizabeth Moore, a rather respectable and prepossessing married woman, was placed in the dock at the police court, charged with stealing a lady’s gold watch from the Goldsmith’s Hall. The prisoner was defended by Mr. D. B. Chisholm, and elected to be tried by jury.
Henry Howles, sworn : Live in this city; have been employed in Goldsmith’s Hall three years and a half; yesterday a young man came into Goldsmith’s Hall and asked me the value of a watch; I recognised it as the property of the place; I recognised it by the case, and on taking it into the workroom, I found that the number on it corresponded with the number in the stockbook; the watch was missed by Mr. Stewart about a year ago last Christmas, and he said he had not sold it; the selling price of the watch was one hundred and twenty-five dollars; there was a person of suspicious character seen in the shop about that time; that person was the prisoner; she had been examining the watches a good deal, and had taken a particular fancy to that particular watch.
Cross-examined by Mr. Chisholm : The selling price of the watch was $125, the cost price $63; I know the prisoner by sight; she has been in the store since; she has bought jewellery often; the watch was not missed till tow or three days after it was taken; the watch has been very badly used’
William F. Mackay, sworn : Have seen the watch before; first in stock and again in the store, in Dec. 1874; T.B. Stewart nominally then was the owner, but the property was really Robert Wilkes’: I have shown the watch to Mrs. Moore; this was two or three weeks before the watch was stolen; I did not suspect any particular person.
Thomas Burrows, sworn : Prisoner left the watch with me last summer to sell for her; she said she did not require it, and wanted me to let her have some money; I let her have some furniture and money on te watch; she said it was bought in Toronto, and cost about $70; I advertised the watch all summer and showed it to over a hundred persons and could not get the money I advanced on it.
Chief Logan, sworn – Saw this watch on the 3rd of May last in the possession of Mrs. Moore; I valued it then at about $10; it was broken then; a boy named Quirk was tried in this court on the charge of stealing this watch and other property from Mrs. Moore; I retuned the watch to Mrs. Moore and asked her where she had got it, and she said an uncle of hers has made her a present of it when he was married; Quirk was sent to Penetanguishene for stealing it from her.
This closed the evidence for the Crown. The prisoner was fully committed for trial. His Worship accepted bail.
          (It is due to Mrs. Moore to say that her defence could not be heard at the preliminary examination, and that her friends say that she will be completely exonerated at the trial.)

After the lunch hour, another unusual case came up at the Police Court, a case garnering extensive Spectator coverage :
“One of those painful sheep killing cases that cause so much annoyance and are so hard to prove, came up at the Police Court this afternoon at 3 o’clock, and is being investigated as we go to press.
The circumstances of the case are, that on the evening of Friday last, Jacob Terryberry, a resident of Glanford, had six valuable sheep killed by dogs. Suspicion pointed to a Coley dog, the property of John Kemp, a farmer in the neighbourhood. Teryberry complained to Kemp, and demanded that the dog be killed, and asked Kemp to pay for the sheep. Kemp replied that he dog had been tied up all night, and for five days before the sheep were killed, and refused to kill the dog or pay for the sheep. Terryberry, who was positive that the dog had killed his sheep, placed the case in the hands of Mr. R. R. Waddell, and the case came up for trial this morning, but was postponed for other witnesses.
Mr. Sadlier appeared for the defence. Which is, that Kemp’s dog is a thoroughbred Coley, and therefore, as a matter of natural history, would not kill sheep; and secondly, that the dog was tied up at the time the sheep were killed.
Charles Terryberry, sworn : My father had some sheep wounded and killed on the 11th of February; this was the first occasion; three were killed and three wounded. There were two Leicesters and a Merino killed; the latter was worth $15, the others $6 each; there were two Leicesters and a Merino wounded; they were the same value, the value of the lot killed would be $27; we were at a party on that night and heard the dogs, and on going up, saw one of the dogs leaving the barn; Edward Dickinson was with me; I followed the dogs home to Mr. Kemp’s barns about thirty yards from the house; the dog went up to the house; the other dog crossed the field; I have no doubt but that the dog belonged to Mr. Kemp.
Edward Dickinson, sworn. – Was with Terryberry on the night the sheep were worried; saw the dogs and thought that one of them was owned by defendant; I saw one of the dogs go up to Kemp’s house.
(As the issue of February 22, 1876 went to press, the case was still being heard.)

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