Gipsies visit Prince County with their horses and wagons

Jim Hornby
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The Islander, August 12

TOUR TO PRINCE COUNTY. The Gipsies in considerable numbers visit Prince County every year, with their horses and waggons, and drive from one part to the other. The men are tall, strong and swarthy, and dressed in loose, gray frocks and slouch hats, and the women seem to be fat and good looking, dark glistening eyes, and wear wide brim black straw hats. Their children’s black eyes you can just see looking out above the waggons. They neither marry, go to mass, baptize their infants, nor keep lent; and live by fortune telling, curing the sick, mending teapots, and stealing chickens and children. How carefully dear Mamma watches her darlings, “for fear the Gipsies would take them away.” Nothing is more wild and picturesque than a Gipsy encampment at night amongst the trees; their fires boiling their kettles, their lamps lit, the men talking and strolling around, and their horses grazing close by; and the Gipsy dance at night surpasses all; and the Gipsy music; then their songs at night, oh! may we be enabled to sing “songs in the night.”

The Islander, August 12

DIED. At Hammond General Hospital, Point Lookout, Maryland, U.S., Daniel McKinnon, aged 21 years, a native of Goose River, Lot 42, P.E. Island, the son of Mr. Angus B. McKinnon. The deceased left home about twelve months ago, enlisted in the Federal army in March last, was wounded at Chesterfield on the 14th May, and was sent to the Hospital on the 17th. His wounds were doing well until he was attacked by Diarrhea, when he failed rapidly, and died on the 16th July last.

Jim Hornby: Few of the wounded in the American Civil War seem to have survived their hospitals.

The Islander, August 12

The statement in the last [Ross’s] Weekly that there had been “a Race” between the Steamer Princess of Wales and the Quebec steamer Acadia, for $150, is incorrect. The Acadia and the Princess of Wales were both in Shediac, the former bound up the Strait towards Miramichi, and the latter to Summerside, and as both were about to leave Port at the same hour, the Acadia got underway first and ran down the harbour a short distance, and waited a few minutes for the Princess to come up; and when the latter came abreast of the Acadia, both ran down the Harbour together, the Princess gaining on the Acadia. We are requested to state that “no race” took place, and that the Princess was not propelled beyond her ordinary speed.

The Examiner, August 15

LAUNCHED. On Tuesday last, the 9th instant, from the shipyard of Alexander Hayden, Esq., Hillsborough River, a juniper-built, copper-fastened Barque of about 600 tons, called the DAVID CANNON. This fine vessel was built for Messrs. W.W. Lord & Co. of this City, and is intended as a regular trader between this Port and Liverpool. The steamer ‘Heather Bell’ took her in tow immediately after she was launched, and brought her down to this City.

The Vindicator, August 17

EXCURSION TRIP ON THE “FRANCONIA”. On Monday morning last, pursuant to invitations kindly extended by F. Snow, Esq., to the members of the Press and many of the most influential citizens of Charlottetown, (clergy men, Government officials, doctors, lawyers, &c., with their families), a large party, numbering about three hundred, proceeded on board the screw steamer Franconia, for the purpose of enjoying a sail in Hillsborough Bay.

The day was most delightful, and as the splendid steamer cut through the blue and placid waters of Hillsborough River and Bay, the scenery presented on each side of the Harbor was beautiful beyond description; nor could it be witnessed under more favorable circumstances. The eye rested with pleasure on the many well cultivated farms spread on either side, which, with their fields rich with the promise of an abundant harvest, their ornamental groves and picturequely-located farm-houses, formed a panorama not often surpassed. The trip down to Point Prim and then across to and beyond St. Peter’s Island, was enjoyed with the keenest zest by all on board; and music, wit and laughter were borne on the gentle breeze towards the distant shore, and caused the moments to steal imperceptibly away.

The Franconia arrived here on Saturday morning last from Halifax and Boston, and is intended to ply between Charlottetown and Boston, and intermediate Ports--forming, in connection with the Commerce, a weekly line of communication between this Province, Nova Scotia, and the United States.

J.H.: Another lyrical flourish from Edward Reilly.

The Vindicator, August 17

To-day is being observed by the citizens, at the request of the mayor [Thomas Heath Haviland], as a general holiday in honor of the “Scottish Gathering” at Government House grounds.

J.H.: The newly-formed Caledonian Club held its first Highland Gathering on this date.

The Monitor, August 18

MELANCHOLY DEATH. We regret to learn that Thomas McEwen, a lad about 3 years of age, the son of Mr. Arthur McEwen, Campbellton, New London, came to an untimely death on Sabbath morning last, the 7th inst., from the effects of nibbling and swallowing the combustible matter of the ends of lucifer matches some time during the previous evening. We sympathize with the bereaved parents, and hope others will take warning from this unfortunate occurrence, and carefully keep lucifer matches beyond the reach of their children.

Jim Hornby’s column, “1864: The Way We Were: gleanings from Charlottetown’s newspapers,” will be presented in The Guardian every Monday throughout 2014 (on holiday Mondays when

there is no paper, it will appear on Tuesdays). It contains excerpts from various newspapers of that era, as well as Hornby’s comments on what he has found. To give feedback on this feature, which is presented in celebration of the sesquicentennial of the Charlottetown Conference, contact the author at

Organizations: Hammond General Hospital, Federal army, Government House Caledonian Club New London

Geographic location: Prince, Acadia, Charlottetown Wales FRANCONIA Point Lookout Maryland U.S. Goose River Hillsborough River Quebec Shediac Miramichi Summerside Boston Liverpool Halifax Nova Scotia Campbellton

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