Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Here is our fifth excerpt from the Meadow Bank W.I. Tweedsmuir History published in 1951.

Cornwall Hall – (photo from Arthur Howard – appeared in Cornwall History)

Cornwall Hall

The public hall at Cornwall was incorporated by an Act of Parliament in May 1897. Directors at that time were Clarence Brown, William Leonard, Pope Crosby, W.W. Crosby and Allan MacLean. The last three named were residents of Meadow Bank. The hall was first built on the North side of the Ferry Road just west of the mill stream and alongside of the cheese factory. In 1915, it was moved to its present site. (as of 1951)

The Women’s Institute of Cornwall-York Point and Meadow Bank keep this hall in repair and equip it with necessary facilities. In 1950, with a view to adding a kitchen, we catered for four days at the Provincial Exhibition grounds during Old Home Week and made a net profit of over $1700.

Libraries

As early as 1898 we have records of a Sunday School Library at Cornwall with George H. Boyle as librarian. On May 5th of that year, Russell Hyde attended Sunday school and obtained a book.

A library was placed in Meadow Bank School in 1930, largely through the efforts of Miss Vera Hyde who was then the teacher and presented a school concert in Cornwall Hall to raise funds for a suitable book case. The selection and presentation of books was made by the Carnegie Library Foundation. Books have been added from time to time by the Women’s Institute and others.

Editor’s Notes:

  • To learn more about Cornwall Hall and other civic buildings, refer to the Cornwall History here.
  • On the Hall photo that you see featured, that property later became the site of the post office and later a dental clinic. The new post office is now located in the open field that you see in the foreground of the photo.
  • Cornwall now has a library in their new Town Hall, more information here.

Stay tuned for the next excerpt where we will read about Meadow Bank pioneers.

Here is our fourth excerpt from The Meadow Bank W.I. Tweedsmuir History in 1951 written by Mrs. Charles Hyde.

Cornwall Methodist Church 1855-1902 – Photo from Lawson Drake

The people of early Meadow Bank were for the most part Protestants and divine worship was held in some of the houses in winter and barns in summer. At a quarterly meeting held in the Mission House in the city of Charlottetown August 1818, the following question was asked, “What measures shall we adopt for the prosperity of the work of God?” to which was given the following answer to which dates the beginning of Methodistism in this part of the country. “That there be preaching, exhortation or prayer meeting at Little York and West River services held in the house of William Crosby in the winter and in the summer his barn be used.” The first preacher was Mr. Chappelle. Services were continued until some years later a lot was secured at Cornwall and a log building erected which served the people until 1955 when a large frame building was built. This stood until April 1902 when it was torn down to give place to the present church (as of 1951).

img_5558-2

Church built in 1901

The land where the Cornwall Church now stands was obtained through a Government Grant for a Church of England. As there were no English church people here the Methodists obtained it. Smith Bros. built the first church. The first minister there was Rev. Robert Strong with first sexton, Mrs. John Corbin. Mr. Zachariah Mayhew presented the tunes as in those days there was no organ or choir.

In the present church is a panel window on the south side in memory of Mary Ellen Crosby (January 7, 1824 – August 2, 1901) wife of Mr. Theophilus Crosby.

John Crosby was one of the first residents of Meadow Bank to use a driving wagon to convey his family to church. This was in the year 1878.

The first Meadow Bank resident to use an automobile to travel to church at Cornwall was Mr. Frederick Hyde.

The nearest buying ground was one in Charlottetown belonging to the Church of England. It is supposed that the earliest settlers were buried there for we know that upon one occasion when a death occurred during a stormy time in winter the trip to Charlottetown could not be made for over a week. Due to this inconvenient state of affairs, land for a burying ground was donated by Messrs. Hyde and Crosby. Although a cemetery was later started at Cornwall, this plot continues to be the burial place of Hydes and Crosbys.

Editor’s notes:

  • To view photos and read more history on the church in Cornwall, click here.
  • To view current photos and learn more about the West River United Church website, click here.

Here is our third excerpt from Meadow Bank Women’s Institute Tweedsmuir History – published in 1951.

School instruction started around at houses in about the same way as church services were held. The principal courses on the curriculum being the three “R’s”. Tradition says that upon one occasion when a barn then on the property now owned by J.W. Crosby was used for a school, disobedient pupils were made to kneel and do penance on the cobble stones beside the barn.

img_5410-2

Meadow Bank School – received “Honourable Mention” in the School Beautification Contest in 1950

As far as we know, the first schoolhouse was built about 1830, for we find in the Campbell’s History that in that year there were on the Island three grammar school teachers, seventy-one district teachers and six Acadian teachers. The first school inspector received appointment in 1837.

The first teacher we know of in Meadow Bank was a Mr. McCarval. It was then customary for each family to take a turn at keeping the teacher who got their board in return for extra help given to pupils at home. The present school was built in 1877. The last teacher in the old school (which is now Mr. Fred Hyde’s workshop) was Miss Furness. The first teacher in the new school was Miss Bessie Gill.

IMG_5413 2.jpg

Meadow Bank School District – Meacham’s 1880 Atlas (Click on the map to enlarge)

Serving as school secretaries have been Mr. Hammond Crosby, Mr. Samuel Drake, Mr. George Boyle. The present secretary is Mr. Stanley Hyde with Mr. Robert Jewell, Mr. Stewart Drake and Mr. Victor MacPhail on the Trustee Board (1950-51).

In the minutes of the school meeting of 1897 with William Boyle as chairman and Samuel Drake, secretary, we find the sum of $30 voted for expenses and $25 for teacher’s supplement. The janitor’s pay was $6.75. Compared with this, in 1951, the teacher’s supplement is $275 and the janitor’s pay is $80.

Wood was used for fuel until 1905 when the first coal stove was purchased.

In conversation with the oldest living residents, we find that at one time, mid-week prayer meetings were held in the school, led by Mr. William Boyle. For a time, a singing school was conducted by a blind teacher, Miss Porter, who boarded at the residence of Samuel Hyde.

Since 1947, the Meadow Bank branch of Cornwall Mission Band began meeting monthly in the school with Mrs. Colin Murray. Mrs. Charles Hyde and Mrs. Sterling Clow in turn serving as leaders assisted by different women of the district.

School Organ

When Jessie MacKay was teaching in Meadow Bank, she and her pupils staged a concert in Cornwall Hall. The money earned ($25) was used to buy an organ which was originally owned by Harriet (Hyde) Howard. The organ was used for Christmas concerts, Mission Band and Sunday school meetings. The organ and other articles from the school may still be seen at Jewell’s Country Gardens.

Class of 1913: 

img_5570-2

Teacher: Jack Heartz  Students: Charlie Hyde, Hazel MacLean, Lottie Crosby, Charlotte Drake, Winnie MacLean, Myrtle Crosby, Marie Crosby, Lillian Hyde, Dan MacLean, Dick Drake, Cora MacLean, Helen Crosby, Ethel & Tillie Boyle, Anita Hyde, Vera Hyde, Laura Crosby.

Class of 1917: (no listing of names)

img_5569-2

screen-shot-2017-01-29-at-6-08-07-pm

Class of 1927 (click on photo to enlarge)

Class of 1927 (Our contribution to this story: photo gathered during Clyde River Capturing Collective Memories Project – McLean collection)

Back row: Ethel (Ling) MacPhail (teacher), Percy Boyle, Jack Crosby

Centre row: Elmer Hyde, Stewart Drake, Reigh, Ruby, Helen Scott, Freddie Scott, Hazel Boyle, Hazel MacLean, Jean MacLean, Louis MacLean (standing on own to right)

Front Row: Vernon Drake, Lulu Scott, Lloyd Scott, Louise S., Jean Boyle, Harvey MacLean, Dorothy Mac L.

img_5408-2

Class of 1950 (click on photo to enlarge)

Class of 1950:

Back Row: Teacher Doris (Miller) Clow Students: David MacPhail, Ruth MacPhail, Miriam yde, Blois MacPhail, Douglas Hyde, Heath MacPhail, Garth Scott

Front Row: Jean MacPhail, Vivian Drake, Eleanor Hyde, Verna MacPhail, Avard Clow, Beverley Jewell, Russel Drake, Wendall Hyde, Byron Clow.

screen-shot-2017-01-29-at-6-41-25-pm

Class of 1952 or 53 (click on photo to enlarge)

Class of 1952 or 53: photo gathered during Clyde River Capturing Collective Memories Project – McLean collection

Back row: David MacPhail, Garth Scott, Ernest Mutch (Teacher), Miriam Hyde (Lank), Ruth MacPhail (Roggeveen), Beverley Jewell (Gillespie)

Centre Row: Eleanor Hyde (Morrison), Verna MacPhail (Clow), Wendell Hyde, Byron Clow, Jean MacPhail

Front Row: Wilma Hyde (Newson), Sharon MacLean, Doris Hyde, David Yeo

Editor’s notes:

If a family owned property in a community, they had the option to send their children to that community’s school. My mother (Hazel MacLean) Beer lived on a farm where the border of Clyde River and Meadow Bank crossed through their farm. She, her older sister Jean and their younger brother Louis went to school in Meadow Bank in the early years, as you see in the 1927 photo above. They would walk through the forest as a short cut to Meadow Bank School, but then they found there were more car rides heading to Clyde River and their close cousins lived there, so they began going to Clyde River School. The bonus in winter was crossing the ice at Clyde River which made it a short trip to school. They would go down through the fields where Lorne and Sadie MacLean live now, cross the ice and head up Murray’s field. A sled made it an even faster trip.

Watch out for our next excerpt on Meadow Bank’s History.

Here is our second excerpt from Meadow Bank W.I. Tweedsmuir History from 1951 which talks about the establishment of the Women’s Institute in 1913 and re-establishment again in 1938. 

Meadow Bank was one of the pioneer Institutes organized on Prince Edward Island. In The Guardian of March 17th, 1913, we find the following item:

On March 14th, 1913, despite the inclemency of the weather, Mrs. A.E. Dunbrack (the organizer) had a large number of residents of Cornwall and vicinity to listen to her interesting talk on the Women’s Institute movement, after which she gave an illustrated lecture on the principles underlying the cooking of meat. Mrs. Dunbrack was given authority to announce to the government that forty-five women were anxious to organize themselves into an Institute in that section and would guarantee that the movement would have their untiring support.

Also, in The Guardian of April 8th, 1913 appeared:

Women’s Institutes were organized yesterday afternoon at Cornwall and Meadow Bank. The objective of the Institute is the improvement of the conditions of home life in our Province, and it is hoped by means of the meeting of the practical and enterprising women of each community to discuss the improvement of homes and surroundings; the condition of schoolhouses; public health, in short, anything that goes to the wellbeing of the district as well as the interchange of thought and information will bring the desired result.

img_5411-2

Mrs. W.W. Crosby, first president of the Meadow Bank Women’s Institute

img_5412-2

Mrs. Mary E. Roper, first secretary of the Meadow Bank Women’s Institute

Mrs. W.W. Crosby and Mrs. Mary E. Roper who had both attended the March 1st meeting at Cornwall were on April 7th (our official birthday) made president and secretary, respectively, of the Meadow Bank Branch and continued as such for the next six years during which time the women of the district met monthly, sometimes in the school and sometimes in the different homes.

It was the time of World War I and sewing and knitting and the packing of boxes for the boys overseas was a major project. One of the first improvements to the school was a hardwood floor which served until the year 1950 when it was overlaid with plywood and battleship linoleum.

 

With the cessation of hostilities in 1919, interest on the part of some waned and it was decided to disband. For a number of years, a few of the women joined the Cornwall-York Point Branch and this branch was gradually joined by others.

The care and management of the Cornwall Hall was given over by the shareholders to the Institutes who have made many improvements to it. Among these might be mentioned, redecorating, installing of electric lights, stage properties and a piano.

On December 7th, 1938, the Cornwall-York Point Institutes, having grown inconveniently large, members of Meadow Bank reorganized their own branch but continue to contribute one-third of the maintenance cost of the hall.

Officers since 1938 have been:

Presidents:

  • Mrs. Frank Boyle
  • Mrs. Victor MacPhail
  • Mrs. Colin MacPhail
  • Miss Laura Crosby
  • Mrs. Charles Hyde
  • Mrs. Stirling Clow
  • Mrs. Pearl Scott
  • Mrs. Victor MacPhail (2 years)
  • Mrs. Elmer Clow
  • Miss Laura Crosby (2 years)
  • Mrs. L.H. Drake
  • Mrs. Victor MacPhail (2 years)
  • Mrs. Harvey MacLean

Secretaries:

  • Mrs. Norman MacFadyen
  • Mrs. Stanley Hyde (2 years)
  • Mrs. L.H. Drake
  • Mrs. Stirling Clow
  • Mrs. Norman MacFadyen
  • Miss Laura Crosby (3 years)
  • Mrs. Harvey MacLean
  • Mrs. Charles Hyde (2 years)
  • Mrs. Sterling Clow
  • Mrs. Stanley Hyde (2 years)
  • Mrs. James Yeo

Notes:

  • On July 10th, 1950, Mrs. W.W. Crosby was honoured with a Life Membership in the Prince Edward Island Women’s Institute because of her pioneer Institute work in this Province.
  • The Meadow Bank W.I. prepared the community history from which this series of featured excerpts is taken.
  • If you have any photos of the Meadow Bank W.I., please send them to vivian@eastlink.ca and we will add them to this story.

Stay tuned for our third excerpt that talks about the establishment of a school in Meadow Bank.

img_5403

Copy of history book

Joanne (MacFadyen) Turner presented us with a copy of a brief history of Meadow Bank that was completed in 1951, given to her by her Uncle Lennis MacFadyen. The history was prepared by the Meadow Bank Women’s Institute and handwritten in beautiful penmanship by Laura Crosby. It features photos and individual histories of Meadow Bank farms and descriptions of early community life. For many years, there was only one copy of this history that passed around the community for reading. Later, there were a few photocopies produced, so we thought we would give it a broader audience on our website and feature excerpts of the history 66 years later. We invite those with further historical information to add notes in the comments’ section below or to email vivian@eastlink.ca. We will make sure that our friends in Meadow Bank receive any information or photos that you send.

They entitled the document The Meadow Bank W.I. Tweedsmuir History, as it was inspired by Lady Tweedsmuir, the wife of the former Governor General of Canada (1935-40) who promoted literacy in Canada, established the first public library at Rideau Hall and was delighted to see Women’s Institutes of Canada compiling community history books. More about Lord and Lady Tweedsmuir here. The first of our featured excerpts follows:

Introduction to Meadow Bank
(written by Lawson Drake at 20 years old before he left to attend Cambridge University in England)

Some five miles upstream from Charlottetown, on the north bank of the river Elliot, lies the rural community of Meadow Bank. To its inhabitants and to its visitors, this country settlement presents the finest scenery of which Prince Edward Island is capable. Let us look for a moment at Meadow Bank as it is today.

There are 21 farms homes with a total population of some 80 men, women and children. Of the 2,089 acres of land, a portion is under actual cultivation. The remainder is largely in the form of farm woodlots. Good quality and fine fields distinguish the farm produce in the district.

Meadow Bank is bound by Hyde Creek on the East, the Elliot River on the South, the Clyde River on the West and the districts of Cornwall and Clyde River on the North. The community is reached by a side road from Highway 2A at Cornwall. The road follows the perimeter of an imperfect square to regain the Highway 1/2 mile east of the Clyde River Bridge, the highway itself forming the fourth side of the square. The land rises in gently rolling hills to an elevation not exceeding 150 feet above sea level. The road in many places follows the height of land and from here the observer is met by a pastoral panorama unparalleled in the serenity of its beauty. Dominating all and providing a fitting backdrop for the pleasing mosaic of the lush green pastures and rich red fields is the calm blue width of the river, the sunlight gleaming and dancing on the crests of the tiny wavelets. All about one is the evidence of the husbandry of man, the well-kept fences which enclose the fields, the stacks of hay and the fields of potatoes with their long straight rows.

How different it must have been 200 years ago. The river was there with its laughing water, the Minnehaha of Mi’kmaq. But the land had yet to be cleared, the soil yet to be tilled, the homesteads yet to be built. The forest covered all.

Stay tuned for the next excerpt: History of the Meadow Bank Women’s Institute – established in 1913

The meeting to discuss changes to the Planning Act will take place tomorrow evening: Wednesday, February 22nd, 7:00 p.m.

Late last year, the provincial government amended the Planning Act Subdivision and Development Special Regulations for existing golf course developments inside the Special Planning Areas. In general, the amendments allow for the subdivision of residential lots associated with an existing golf course and/or adjoining lands under the same ownership. The change allows for the development of no more than five lots per parcel, exclusively for single family dwelling use. This change affects the Clyde River Golf Course.

All are welcome.

We followed up with Cornwall Curling Club’s – PEI Junior Women’s Curling Champions to find out about their experience at the National Championship in Victoria, B.C., January 21-29. The team includes Second: Breanne Burgoyne (Clyde River), Lead: Rachel O’Connor (Charlottetown), Third: Kristie Rogers (New Haven) and Skip: Lauren Lenentine (New Dominion). Lauren Lenentine gave us the following update on behalf of the team.

After competing at Nationals, one word that could describe our emotions would be “proud”. We went to B.C. without any expectations but with a goal to make the Championship Pool. Once we achieved our goal, it was an incredible feeling. We were the first women’s team from PEI to make the championship round since 2012. That year, Sarah Fullerton finished 8th. This year, we finished 7th. We received many messages from home saying how proud everyone was, and those emotions transferred over to us.

The final result in the championship game was Alberta defeating Ontario 5-3.

Our biggest highlight on the ice would be beating B.C. and the reigning World Champions, Nova Scotia. It was a surreal moment. We all realized that we can compete at this level and we are not out of place.

Off ice, interacting with fellow athletes and sightseeing were our two favourite things. Victoria is a beautiful city, and it was nice to feel warm air for a change. We visited a coastal town called Sooke and it was breathtaking. As for meeting curlers, we made friends from across the country. In the evenings, we would all meet in the Player’s Lounge and play board games and ping pong. Some of our favourite memories were made off-ice!!

During the eight days of competition, we played 10 games together as a team. Most days we played two games, but some days we only played one. After the tournament concluded, we all took part in a mixed doubles tournament. We were paired with a male player and coach from another province/territory and we competed for top. I was paired with the lead from Northwest Territories. Unfortunately, all four of us were eliminated in the first round, but it was still an amazing experience.

Staying in “the zone” wasn’t a difficult task. As soon as you walk into the arena/club, you have a feeling that is indescribable. No matter how sore or tired you were, it all disappeared once we were on the ice.

We already knew most of the teams from the Atlantic provinces, but we met lots of new people from western provinces.

One thing that I gained personally from this experience is patience. We saw various strategies that differed from our own and by times it was frustrating. But I learned that if you wait, the right opportunities will come. Another thing we learned was how to preserve ourselves. We learned the importance of proper nutrition, hydration, and rest. These three things were crucial during the long week.

After what we just experienced, our goal next season is to win Junior Provincials and return to Canadian Juniors. We plan on travelling and competing in a few more events throughout the season to prepare for this.

Having our family and friends there as support made the experience even more special. No matter where you were, you could always hear the PEI chants! Being able to look into the stands and see all the familiar faces is a really great feeling. And without a doubt, we had the best fans!! I know their experience was just as amazing as ours.

Pat Quilty, our coach, won the Asham Coaching Award. This award is voted on by fellow coaches, and it is based on sportsmanship. Although I may be biased, I believe Pat was the best choice for this award because of all the hard work and dedication he has put into our team in the past eight years. He always shows respect for other curlers and coaches. It is very well deserved.

“I think it is an exceptional experience for our team because of our age. For such a young team to have such a good result is truly incredible. The way they handled the pressure was awesome. Having this experience can lead to many other great things.” – Coach Pat Quilty

Editors note: Thanks, Lauren, for the great follow-up story and thank you, Pat, for your input and all your efforts with the team. We extend our congratulations to you all. We will be cheering just as loudly next year. We enjoyed following reports from John Cullen @cullenthecurler especially when he tweeted: