Saturday 16 June 2012

June 17, 1876

“Yesterday afternoon a party of gentlemen from this city had an excursion to the Beach by the yacht, Mary Jane, for the purpose of testing Paine’s long range shot cartridge.”
                                                Hamilton Spectator           June 17, 1876

It was a new kind of cartridge for shot guns, and it had just arrived in the city of Hamilton. Anxious to test the Paine’s Long Range Cartridge, a group of prominent Hamilton sportsmen got together and made a day of camaraderie and sport.
“To make the affair more interesting, a match had been arranged and valuable prizes offered for competition. The match took place at John Dynes’ hotel. And the result of the shooting was such as to prove that Paine’s invention is quite as valuable as it is claimed to be. The target used was a piece of inch board, 13 inches by 23 inches in size, and from the record of the shooting at the different ranges the great advantage there is in the use of the shot cartridge will be apparent to all sportsmen.
          The invention consists principally in combining the two halves of a longitudinally shot case of zinc, a confining cord wound round the same. Upon leaving the gun, the cord will be unwound by the current of air caused by the rapid motion of the case, after which it will burst and its separate parts fall to the ground, leaving the charge of shot free to perform their office. The cord being wound around the case in short sections so as to come off at equal intervals, it will be seen that, upon the number of pieces will depend the length of time consumed in unwinding the same and liberating the charge of shot; and in correspondence therewith will be the distance traversed by the Case before bursting, so that by increasing or diminishing the number of cords a longer or short range will be obtained. As it is intended that Case should not burst until within some 25 feet of the target, it is, of course, necessary to be the best success of the sportsman that he exercise good judgment in calculating distance; for if he shot a cartridge marked 75 yards at an object only 50 yards away, it would be nearly equivalent to a rifle shot. But if he calculate his range will tolerable accuracy, he may rely upon success , mas the Case will not fail to burst at its appointed time and place.
The arrangements made for the shooting yesterday were such that each marksman should fire two shots at each range.
The party enjoyed their trip very highly. After the shooting all partook of supper at “The Poplars,” which, it is scarcely necessary to say, was served in first-class style. The party arrived in the city about 11 p.m., well pleased with their trip, and thoroughly convinced that Paine’s long range shot cartridge is one of the greatest sporting inventions of the day.”
          Also in the Spectator of June 17, 1876 was the first of a series of articles newsworthy in terms of announcing an upcoming event that many Hamiltonians would want to know all about. But the articled were also shameless promotion for the event:         
“Every decade brings prominent to the surface genius of the human family. Blood will tell where true genius lies, no matter what the calling. The most wonderful caterer in the amusement line that has shown up in the last few years is W. W. Cole, manager and sole proprietor of the late successful New York and New Orleans Circus and Menagerie, now proprietor of the largest show establishment ever conceived of, known as “W. W. Cole’s Great Concorporation” – a brand new outfit, that has been quietly in course of construction the past three years – getting a good ready for the Centennial season. Mr. Cole, although quite young in years, has already a veteran’s head on his shoulders, having secured capital sufficient to enable him to carry out his ideas of magnitude and magnificence in show business. The Great Concorporation embraces every kind of exhibition curiosity, novelty etc. ever seen under canvas. A very important feature is a well-graded race track, 30 feet wide, eight times round making a full mile, so constructed that thorough can race, with safety, make their best time. There will be trotting and walking matches and racing of every conceivable kind. The enormous tent not only covers a race track, but also accommodations for a double circus troupe and an immense menagerie, aviary, museum, etc., etc. We advise our readers to “not stand on the order of going, but go at once.” It will exhibit here on the 27th June.
          Similarly, an article appeared concerning a rivalry between two local horse owners wishing to race their          horses, but it was also the beginning of a built up the event.
“It seems that matters are in such a shape now that the much-talked of race between Owen Nowlan’s gelding St. Patrick, and R. Wilson’s chesnut mare, is really going to take place. The date set for the race is Thursday next, June 22nd. There has been considerable discussion as to the distance to be trotted, but there is every prospect that this will be settled satisfactorily to both parties. The $1000 a side stake money is in the hands of Simon James the stake holder. Great interest attaches to this race among the sporting fraternity, as both horses are known to be animals of good speed and a close and interesting race may be expected.
          (Since the above was written we have learned that the race will positively eventuate on Thursday next, good track and good day permitting, mile heats, best three in five. The trot is exciting much attention among the sports of the city and promises to be every keen and exciting.)”
          Judge Sinclair, who had very recently been appointed to the Bench at the Wentworth County Court House, was honoured in a very special way on June 16, 1876 :
          “The members of the Bar of Hamilton and Wentworth entertained His Honor Judge Sinclair at a dinner at the Royal Hotel last evening. Mine host of the Royal catered to the company in a most acceptable manner, and a very pleasant evening was spent in consuming choice viands, which were garnished with all the exchange of courtesy and good feeling characteristic of such occasions.”
Some more very positive news appeared concerning the start of construction of the northern branch of the Hamilton and North Western Railway:
          “Mr. Thomas McDowell, contractor for Division No. 1 of the Hamilton & North Western Railway, started work yesterday at the east end of his section near the waterworks, with a large force. They will have 1,000 feet ready for the ties this evening. We are pleased to hear that Mr. McDowell is pushing forward the work so rapidly”
A very interesting encounter on the Market Square earlier in the day received some detailed coverage in the late afternoon edition of the Spectator:
          “This morning shortly before nine o’clock there was considerable excitement and amusement near the corner of MacNab and Market street, occasioned by the efforts of several policemen to arrest Tom Brick. It appears that Brick was up before the Police Magistrate for some offense and a fine of $3 imposed. This occurred some time ago, but up to this morning Brick had not troubled himself any about paying the fine. He was in his cart attending to a job on MacNab street, when two police officers approached him and asked him about paying the fine. Brick was pugnacious and would give satisfaction. Seeing this, this policemen mounted the the cart, when the driver, believing himself to be master of the situation drove off up Market street, amid the cheers of a large crowd that had collected. Before the cart had proceeded far another policeman appeared on the scene, and jumping into the back of the cart and seizing Brick’s arms from behind, succeeded in getting the reins out of his hands. He was then conveyed to the police station, and on paying the old fine he was allowed to depart in peace.”

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