162 THE PIONEERS OF OLD ONTARIO
market and continued over two days. During that time both candidates kept open house. No strong liquor was supplied, but beer was as free as water. Still, notwithstanding the abundance of liquor and the excitement of the election, I did not see a single fight during the contest."
Telling of an incident of another kind, Mr. St. John said: "Indians were numerous all over the Lake Simcoe district, and in early spring eight or ten camps were formed by these on my father's farm while the squaws engaged in basket-making. The Indians were all ardent `Queen's Men' and would not hear a word spoken derogatory of \ ietoria the Good, who had then recently ascended the throne. One of the settlers, McMaster by name, for a joke, made some slighting remarks about royalty in the presence of a group of these Indians, and they threatened to kill him. Taking refuge in our house, he got me to hide him under a pile of straw in the sleigh and drive him past the Indian camp to his home. When driving past the camp an Indian jumped on the sleigh for a ride and sat down on the straw, not knowing McMaster was underneath. When McMaster at last got out near his own door, after the Indian had disappeared, he said he had been almost smothered under the straw. But he was cured; he never tried another joke with the Indians."
When Mr. St. John entered Brock with his father, in 1821, there were only three other settlers in the township. Mr. St. John was then twelve years of age, and from that time until his ninetieth year he worked almost continuously.