Notes by the Way

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Notes by the Way
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THROUGH CARDIGAN, TAY CREEK, AND STANLEY, AND DOWN THE NASHWAAK. In my last trip through this country I took a notion to go through the Parishes of Douglas, Stanley, and St. Mary’s, visiting some of the thriving Settlements they contain with which I am more or less acquainted. I accordingly took the Royal Road on Saturday, the 6th inst., stopping over Sunday at the hospitable home of Mr. Geo. Seymour, on McLeod hill. Mr. Seymour is a typical Bluenose Farmer, one of the bone and sinew of out country, who claims no decent from the Loyalists and makes no pretensions to aristocratic connexions, and is contended to labor for his living and pay his honest debts, and who has not outlived the old time virtue of hospitality to strangers. On such the future greatness and goodness of our country will depend. Passing by Estey’s Mill, I stop with Mr. Jerry Anderson, where I was very kindly treated. The next place is Cardigan, a Welsh Settlement. The first settlers came over from Wales somewhere about 1830. The old people have nearly all passed away, but their posterity retain all the Sterling qualities of their race, with the exception of language. They are a plain, open-hearted set of people, with a great love of freedom, and intensely democratic. The land in Cardigan is higher and more stony than most of the other Settlements, but by untiring labor and perseverance the people have made some excellent farms, chief among which is that of David Richards. All are in comfortable circumstances. Going over a steep hill, we come upon Tay Creek, or at least that portion of it known as South Tay. There are some nice farms, notably among which are those of Calvin Boone and David Armstrong. Further on is the North Tay, a flourishing settlement. Here I stopped with my friend Joseph Hawkes, who treated me with the kindness characteristics of his race; and I must say that there is nothing that can equal an Irish welcome unless perhaps it is an Irish wedding. Mr. Hawkes keeps a large store, and is in quite affluent circumstances. Tay Creek has one mill, owned and run by Mr. McNutt. Mr. McNutt has also a large store. We were sorry to find him sick when we called, but hope he will soon be restored to his usual health. In the matter of churches, Tay Creek has an Episcopalian, a Catholic and a Methodist, and I forgot to mention the excellent new Methodist Church that has lately been put up in Cardigan, which does credit to the public spirit of the congregation. At night-fall, I came to the residence of Mr. Blair, at the mouth of the road going to Stanley, and secured lodgings. The next day I went through Lime Kiln, another thriving settlement, and stopped and had a long conversation with Mr. Kerr, one of the pioneers of the place, who told me many interesting incidents connected with the settlement of the place. Mr. Kerr is a son of Scotia’s Isle, and retains the old mother tongue. After taking dinner at Mr. Harvey’s, an Englishman from London, I proceeded to Stanley in a pouring rain, and was glad when I reached hospitable establishment of Mr. Bernard McMenniman, where I was happy and safe from harm. I remained with my kind host and hostess over Sunday, and had an opportunity of looking over the village and seeing the sights. Stanley has four stores, Mr. Bernard McMenniman, Mrs. Logan’s, C.A. Miles’, and Mr. A. Douglas two hotels, Mr. McMenniman’s, and the “Stanley Arms” kept by Mrs. Logan, which is the oldest hostelry in the place, and reminds me of Longfellow’s “Wayside Inn,” and would make just as pretty a subject for a poem. There are four Churches; Catholic, Episcopalian, Kirk, and Methodist. The Episcopalian Church is the prettiest and it also has a beautiful Manse; but the Kirk Manse which has lately been finished, and costs $3,000, takes the cake. There are two mills – Scarr & Boyd’s Shingle and Grist Mill, and Sanson’s Carding and Grist Mill. The Shingle Mill turns out 12 M. per diem. He also saws logs. One thing that struck me particularly was the queer shaped cottage now occupied by Mr. Malone, and built by the N.B. and N.S. Land and Lumber Co. (who once carried on a large business here), and it is consequently the oldest house in Stanley. It was built of hewn timber a foot through, with a four sided roof, and presents quite a picturesque appearance. On Monday, I took leave with regret of my amiable host and hostess who had treated me with such exceptional kindness, for which they would accept no remuneration, but before I leave let me remark upon the people of Stanley as a neighbourhood. They are chiefly descendants of Irishmen – warm hearted and true, and very kind to a friend in misfortune. They vie with each other in works of charity, and although of different creeds there is no such thing as rivalry or religious bigotry. If the Protestants and Catholics of Ireland had been so ready to sink their differences for the common wealth, their country might, instead of being chained down by her hereditary foe, hold the proud place among the nations that her virtues and bravery entitle her to. And now I finish up my circuit by coming down the Nashwaak, among whose good people I have long been a welcome guest, and from whom I have received such kindness and encouragement as to make me almost think that my life was worth living for in this hard, heartless world. The people of Nashwaak are true Christians, - not those namby-pamby nickel-plated Christians, that will fill your pockets with bibles and tracts, but who would not pick you up if they saw you lying in the road. They delight in doing good and they live up to their religion. After stopping over night at my friend Gregory’s, I went up to the mouth of the Peuniac. I attended a Tea meeting, and enjoyed myself immensely. Mr. Gregory, in excavating for a well, has struck some of the finest blue clay in the Province. It peels off in layers and has a dark, rich, color. It abounds there in large quantities, and we would think it profitable to use for the manufacture of pottery, marbles, etc. Some scientific man should investigate it and ascertain its properties. It would be worth while. I passed again through Marysville and got a ride to the ferry, bringing a rainstorm with me, as I usually do. Oct. 29, 1883.