Once Upon a Time
'Pinkerton ... Glimpses Past and Present'
by Bob Johnston

December 16, 2016


Once Upon a Time

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The following poem was quoted by Elwood Pinkerton in an article he wrote for Bruce County Historical Society’s 1972 yearbook. It evokes nostalgic memories of small town life years ago.

 I Remember Pinkerton

by Melville Johnson

 I remember Pinkerton when I was a little boy, where every season was filled with a local joy:

Bob-sledding on the miller’s big hill; skating on the pond behind the mill;

Exploring the bush on homemade skis, returning home with very sore knees;

Driving horses and carts, cutters and sleighs, going barefoot on the Queen’s birthdays;

Picking mushrooms and sweet wild berries, grapes, haws and puckery chokecherries;

Spotting the first robin on the hill, from the top of the Town’s old windmill;

Tasting maple syrup and taffy pulls, picking wildflowers by the armfulls;

Fishing and wishing with every strike, for the biggest bass, mullet or pike;

Swimming and punting behind the dam, competing in Scotch sports in tartan tam;

Finding lily pads and frogs galore, shopping in the one general store;

Watching the Calithumpians’ parade, drinking apple cider in the cool shade;

Attending barn-raising bee events, auction sales with their special contents;

Election returns that brought together, neighbours and friends in any weather;

Cheering our football team’s every whim, refreshing with a dip at “men’s swim”;

Supporting “Harvest Homes“ and fall fairs, joining in earnest Thanksgiving prayers;

Playing our Hallowe’en pranks each year, exciting events for boys to cheer;

Hearing the crows caw amidst Autumn leaves, and sleighbells soon after threshing the sheaves.

 I remember Pinkerton, I remember Pinkerton now that I am old and gray,

As the wondrous place where I used to dream and play.

[Melville Johnson of California, who spent his boyhood in the village and along the river.]

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Friday, December 16, 2016