12 THE PIONEERS OF OLD ONTARIO
acter. To Adolphustown, the front township of Lennox, belongs the honour of having formed the first municipal government in Ontario. "The record of that government still exists," said Mr. Casey. "Although written by men engaged in the rough work inseparable from pioneer life, it is a model of neatness. Indeed, I question if there is in the province to-day a better kept record of the kind."
Some of the fiercest political battles Ontario has ever known were also staged in the historic county of Lennox. In one of these contests Sir Henry Smith and James Morton, a rich distiller, were the principals, with Sir .John A. Macdonald backing Morton. The latter won and the whole county, at least the Morton part of it, assembled to celebrate the victory. "There were," in the picturesque language of one who heard the story from his father, "ten acres of teams; oxen were roasted whole, and feasting was kept up for two days and two nights."
The story of Ontario begins with the pioneers of Lennox and Frontenac. It was along the front of these counties that the first settlement was formed by the advance refugees who came to this province after the American Revolution. Here the system of municipal government which we have in Ontario had its origin. In fact the first township government in Lennox, mentioned above, was formed in advance of provincial sanction and was taken as a model for the system afterwards created by provincial authority. Here, too, were first founded the Ontario branches of families whose deeds have since been written into the history of the prov-