1882

From The Story of Dartmouth, by John P. Martin:

In the winter of 1882 the dreaded smallpox made its appearance in the home of ex-Councillor Maurice Downey. One of his sons and a maid named Catherine O’Neil unexpectedly contracted the disease. Both died.

Despite the fact that the Federal Government was now extending railway tracks from North Street to Cornwallis Street, and buying up Halifax waterfront property for a grain elevator and piers at Deep Water, Dartmouth people persisted in their efforts to obtain railway connection. At an expense of $101.24 they sent Warden John Y. Payzant and Councillor Benjamin Russell to Ottawa for another attempt. Upon their return these delegates reported that there was no prospect whatever of any government assistance in the matter.

Backward weather that April recalled to old residents the hard winter of 1816-1817 when Bedford Basin froze so solidly that the ice was passable for heavy sleighs until the 15th of that month. Traffic over the Eastern Passage continued until the 25th, they said.

Other items in newspapers of 1882 record the destruction by fire in April of Mumford’s Machine Shop, north of the “Barracks”. About the same time a monster whale made its appearance near Dartmouth ferry wharf. Some 20 feet of the mammal showed above water.

Early in 1882 a number of local artisans, mostly shipwrights, left here for Honolulu to work at building a marine railway. They were engaged for a year by Horace Crandall (page 51), who formerly lived in Dartmouth at 37 King Street. The men were Edward Whebby (diver), James Durant, Allan McDonald, Dougald Walsh, Matthew Brennan, Joseph Williams, Alfred Kuhn, Harry Pheener, George Black, John Debaie. Wages were $50 a month and $1 a day for board.

James G. Foster resigned as Town Magistrate and was succeeded by Benjamin Russell. Salary $400. There was a noticeable improvement evident in the order and peace of the town, which condition was attributed to the fact that there were only nine tavern licenses issued in 1882 compared with a high of 19 in the year 1879. The number of court cases tried in 1882 was 99, compared with 234 cases in 1878.

John P. Mott petitioned the Council to grade the sidewalk fronting his “Hazelhurst,, property on Eastern Passage Road where he intended to lay a plank sidewalk.

Contractor John T. Walker built a four-room addition to Central School that year at a cost of $1,200. He also constructed the Peter Douglass’ house on Windmill Road, and Christ Church rectory in the shelter of the cliff on Wentworth Street.

A granite street-crossing was laid from Jennett’s crockery-ware store on Portland Street to the Post Office corner directly opposite. School teacher C. E. McKenzie resigned his position, and was succeeded by Harris S. Congdon of Port Williams. The school enrolment was now 745. Dartmouth Agricultural Society held their second annual Exhibition at the Reform Club Hall in September. John E. Leadley advertised for sale the stock and plant of Dartmouth Foundry in Mill Cove, known as Leadley and Cobb’s.