from the Guelph Mercury newspaper for Friday June 26th 1959.
Old Photograph Recalls Council “Peace Mission”
The greatest “peace mission” ever seen in Guelph is shown in this photograph of the early days showing members of city council, city officials, and some citizens embarking on a tallyho trip to Puslinch Lake.
The picture was taken in 1907 and the trip was made, as it is recalled, so that members of council could “bury the hatchet”, in old Indian custom. The event was in the form of a truce to end bickering and quibbling among council members that many people thought did little to ensure the best government for the community.
Along about July or August of that year was Guelph’s 80th anniversary of the city’s founding by John Galt. The tallyho, designed to seat 25 passengers, belonged to Edward Palmer of Palmer Brothers. The other brother was George, and together, the two brothers operated a stable at Eramosa Road and Woolwich Street on the property where Muller garage now stands.
After the hatchet burying ceremony, which apparently actually took place, the group enjoyed refreshments and even participated in a softball game, the result of which is lost in history, if ever actually disclosed. Ralph Humphries was master of ceremonies for the day’s activities and all members assisted in digging the grave for the hatchet, which was carried out near a barn that then existed near the Puslinch Lake Marriott’s Hotel.
Standing at the rear of the vehicle is Jack Loudon, Guelph barber, who supplied this old picture and who was official trumpeter for Palmer Brothers at that time. He is seen sounding the horn that heralded the departure of the vehicle drawn by the two teams of handsome horses.
It will be noticed that the imposing stone steps that now adorn City Hall were not constructed when this picture was taken.
The balcony above the main entrance to the City Hall remains the same today and at that time window boxes of flowers were used on this balcony to add some colour to the stone building.
Members of city council in 1907, many of whom can be recognized in the picture, were, Mayor John Newstead, popularly known as “Honest John”, and aldermen D. E. Rudd, G. J. Thorp, John Kennedy, J. W. Lyon, James Hewer, R. E. Nelson, J. H. Hamilton, G. L. Higgins, J. Denyes, Robert Simpson, J. A. McCrea, D. Messenger, W. F. Barber, R. McMillan, J. M. Struthers, John Cunningham, John McAteer, J. E. Carter, H. B. Callander, and R. W. Humphries.
At that time, Richard Mitchell was city clerk and David Scroggie was treasurer.
Also identified in the picture are C. L. Nelles, Ralph Humphries, O. E. Rowen, and B. Skinner, steward and medical dispenser at the General Hospital.