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

The year 1905 ushered in the winter of the big snow when drifts around the streets and on the sidewalks accumulated to a height of over ten feet. Traffic was either at a standstill or was so tied-up that milkmen from rural Dartmouth had to use two horses tandem to haul light sleigh-loads. On a dozen different nights that winter, the thermometer went below zero, reaching a minimum of 22 below on February 6th.

In those years there was a specific part of Dartmouth from which the law required that snow be shovelled from sidewalks. This was called the “snow district.” Roughly it comprised the old town-plot streets, with the addition of the whole of Ochterloney and that part of Pine Street northward to Dahlia. Occasionally residents were summoned for violation. By mid-February of 1905, it was physically impossible to comply with the law because storm after storm followed in such a succession that the best householders could do was to break a rabbit-path to the street.

The Board of Trade urged that the regulation requiring sidewalk snow-shovelling be abolished, and that the Town perform the work with a plough and its own horses. The Board also agitated for an extra telephone cable to Halifax, and for the installation of the metallic system. At the time there was one telephone subscriber in Dartmouth to every 33 of its inhabitants.

Beresford Avenue (Hawthorne Street) was extended westerly to Crichton Avenue in 1905. Henry Street and Hester Street were taken over by the Town. Mayor Frederick Scarfe resigned office in mid-term owing to ill-health. His beautiful new residence “Edge-mere”, which engaged much of his attention, was then being constructed by F. C. Bauld. (The latter lost money on the contract.) On Dundas Street, Christ Church Parish Hall was built by Frederick Walker. A generous donation towards its erection, came from Mr. Scarfe, and tax exemption came from Town Council.

That summer the Ferry held a series of band concerts at the Park and at the Lake. In fine weather the venture proved profitable, for a goodly crowd would cross from Halifax. The Banook Club again handled the Natal Day celebration which took place on Thursday August 17th. The North Star crew of three Sawler brothers and William Chapman won the senior 4-oared shell race. They also captured first place in the same event at the Sydney regatta, Lorne Club regatta, and North West Arm Club regatta, but in the final contest of the season they lost the Maritime Championship to St. Mary’s crew of Halifax.

At the Ferry, the first turnstile was installed in the low waiting-room on the south side of the main dock in Dartmouth, and the first monthly passes (small cardboard tickets) had to be shown every trip. For the next month, the air was blue with protests. Hitherto commuters simply barged through the gates as they swung open.

This is the intersection of the two highways at Graham’s Corner as it looked about 1905. Creelman’s present residence at right was built in the 1880s by Contractor John Myrer for John R. Graham, Dartmouth butcher. His expansive fields, barns, sheepfold, piggery and slaughter-house stood at the left of this picture. A wide area of this vicinity was long used as a camping ground of the Mi’kmaq. The small house seen at the forks was constructed from two old shacks formerly occupied by Mi’kmaq families on the location of the large residence in the photo.

dundas queen

This picture was taken by Thomas G. Stevens at the intersection of Quarrell (Queen) and Dundas Streets on Wednesday afternoon, March 8th, 1905. The heavy snowfall that winter had piled drifts over 10 feet high, and a period of continued cold had frozen-up several catchpits. With the approach of milder weather Superintendent Bishop (standing near horse-drawn sleigh) is commencing to thaw out catchpits by injecting steam through a hose leading from the portable boiler, as shown above.