From The Story of Dartmouth, by John P. Martin: The decade of the 1870s commenced with a boom in real estate which petered out after a few years of prosperity. One project attempted was the subdividing of about 100 acres of the virgin land of Mount Amelia where streets were laid out, and building lots surveyed. The promoters were Hon. James W. Johnston, Dr. Parker, John Esdaile, B. H. Hornsby, and others who became a corporate body in 1870 known as the proprietors of Prince Arthur Park. In that year, Mr. Esdaile built the first house. Except for the Harvey house at “Locust Knoll” and the France house at “Mapledene” (“Fairmont”), there was little or no development there for the next thirty years. As the 50-year charter of the Steam Boat Company had expired in 1867, there was no longer any legal obstacle in the way of a competitive ferry. …

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From The Story of Dartmouth, by John P. Martin: New Year’s Day of 1861 must have been crisp and clear, for a Halifax newspaper reported next evening that, “thousand of males and females were skating on Dartmouth Lakes.” The Steam Boat Company were now issuing tickets with the price printed in cents instead of sterling, indicating that our present system of exchange was coming into vogue. The first dog taxes were issued in Dartmouth district that year, on the recommendation of the Grand Jury. Dogs were becoming too vicious and too numerous. Sheep were being destroyed The inclined planes of the Shubenacadie Canal were completed, and the small steamer “Avery” commenced towing scow-loads over the route. Gold was discovered on Charles P. Allen’s “Waverley” estate in 1861, and another lead was located by James Skerry on Laidlaw’s farm at the junction of the present No. 2 and No. 18 highways, …

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