Transcribed for the LCGS website by Eileen Bashak.
The Ottawa Citizen
Tuesday, March 25 1879
Page 4 For The North-West
A Large Party of Well-To-Do
An Affecting Scene at the Railway Station
Perhaps there is nothing more painful in this life of trials and troubles than to be separated from those we have loved and with whom we have spent many happy and eventful days. When the parting comes it indeed gives that pain the poet pictures. All the tender chords within our nature are touched, all the sweet memories of the past are reached, and all the happy influences of home and friends flash upon us. In the three hundred who assembled at the St. Lawrence and Ottawa depot yesterday bound for the great “Lone Land” there were those who had reached the period of the “sere and yellow leaf”, men who were stout of heart and strong of arm; and burly lads and buxom lasses. And among the whole throng there was hardly one who was not visibly affected as the cheers of a sympathetic crowd rent the air and the strains of Auld Lang Syne were wafted on the breeze. Throughout the day the station presented a scene of chaos and confusion and resembled more a country fair than anything else. Farm implements were scattered around indiscriminately; horses, cattle and sheep were stationed in every quarter, and they kicked up a lively noise for a time. One o’clock was the hour fixed for the departure of the train, but things were not in readiness for several hours later. Nearly two thousand persons were present, many of them attracted from curiosity and from the fact that the City Band was in attendance but the majority of them friends of the departing ones.
The train, composed of 14 freight and four passenger coaches left the station at 3:30 o’clock amid the cheers of several thousand persons who had gathered to bid their friends “farewell” whilst the band played Auld Lang Syne and the Girl I Left Behind Me. The hour of departure was fixed for one o’clock, but owing to the time required for getting things in order; the train did not leave until the time above stated. With few exceptions, which are noted below, the party were bound for Manitoba, most of them being farmers from Carleton and Russell and adjoining counties- and the general intention of the emigrants, upon reaching their destination is to secure land and commence farming operations at once. The freight cars were loaded principally with household and farming implements, although several were freighted with horses, cattle, sheep, etc. The passenger cars were clean, comfortable cars; each one of which would probably hold sixty passengers. The larger number of the emigrants were women and children, and they were all of very respectable appearance. They all carried provisions to last them through the trip which will occupy five or six days. At Prescott, they will be joined by others, and at Brockville, Kingston, Belleville and Napanee it is expected at least 200 more will assist in making the largest exodus that has ever taken place at one time from this section of the country.
Names Of The EMIGRANTS
The following is a list as complete as could be made, of the names of the male members of the party.
For Manitoba — Messrs. J.W. Hughes, Joseph Baskerville, Thomas Baskerville, Osgoode; Thomas Archer, Moses Cayley, Nepean; Samuel Craig, North Gower; J.F. Shillington, Goulbourn; Geo. Smiley, Duncan Wilson, Cumberland; Jno. Logan, J. Sparks, J. MacColson, Wm. Graham, Andrew Johnston, Bell’s Corners; Wm. McClutchy, Templeton; Adam Acres, Huntley; J. Johnston, Wm. Hubbs, D. McLaren, Fitzroy; James Lindsay, Wm. Binks, Mrs. Keely, Napoleon Harshee, Alphonse Leger, W. McCullogh, S.E. Clark, A. C. Clark, W. Banwarden, M. Wanless, St. Andrews Quebec; Charles Kentler, Wm. Kettle, A. Johnston, W. Hughes, W.M. Ewan, C.A. Wilson, Thomas Cousins, Wm. Hay, James Hay, Lachute; James Muir, J.A. Shillington, Goulbourn; Thomas Acres, D.H. McLean, George McLean, John Good, W. York, James Hodgins, Stephen Bower, G.W. Wright and J.C. Simpson.
For Dakotah — Messrs. Wm. Hubbs, John Johnston, M. Copps, E. Copps, Moses Abbott, M. Pepper, T. Moran, R. Cockburn, L. Kennedy of the Richmond Rd.
The names of city residents are:
Messrs Rody MacDonald, Benjamin Edwards, Alex S. Peacock, John Kenna and George Haggarty, James Haggarty for Manitoba and J.W. Enright for St. Paul Minn. The last three mentioned were employees of the Russell House.
The Cause of the Exodus
Mr. J.W. Hughes, a prominent agriculturalist for Gloucester township, who was a passenger with his family states that the cause of the exodus is to be found in the fact that the farming lands in this section are often worn out and that Manitoba and Dakotah Territory offer the best inducements to the farmer. He has bought 320 acres of land about 7 miles from Pembina, the result of a trip to that section of country last summer where the crops were about being gathered and a better yield of different kinds of grain he never saw. With such land to be had, and so cheaply, he thought a farmer is foolish to remain here longer. He takes with him seven mules, four horses, three cows, a thoroughbred bull, and a large quantity of farming and household implements, the freight on which amounts to $1.000 in cash and $500. Worth of goods. Mr. Hughes was a former resident of this city, but has resided for the past ten years in the township of Gloucester, where he took an active part in politics, being Vice-President of the Liberal-Conservative association.
Mr. Joseph Baskerville and family also residents of Gloucester were among the passengers. That gentleman said his principal reasons for emigrating was that his farm was too small for his large family. He intends purchasing a section of land near Emerson and carries with him a large stock of household goods, several horses, cows, s heep etc. There were three car loads of stock which was owned by Messrs. Joseph Baskerville, Thomas Archer, Thomas Cousens, Geo. Smiley, L. Kennedy, J.W. Hughes and David McLaren.
A telegram was received last evening at the Grand Trunk office to the effect that the passengers would be carried through to Winnipeg as the line was now in running order from that city to St. Vincent.