WHEN OAKVILLE RIVALLED TORONTO 175
that a blow given during the night's carousal had killed him, but the body was quietly buried and there was no inquiry.
"Another tragedy was connected with a survey party. A stranger joined the party one day, and next evening when the cook was cutting wood to prepare supper the axe glanced and sheared the stranger's head clear from his body. As no one knew anything about the man, the body was buried in the woods and thus the incident closed.
"Another tragedy of early days in Halton was connected with a one-time thriving village of which nothing remains to-day. The village was located where Dundas Road crosses the sixteenth. At one time the village contained a distillery, brewery, saw-mill, store, and tannery. The decline of the place began when the principal owner, a man named Chalmers, while under the influence of liquor, signed a cheque for ten thousand dollars, and, in remorse for his act, committed suicide.
"Oakville was an Indian reserve until 1827. Although the place got its start from the stave trade, the boom came when the Russian war raised the price of wheat. Farmers from as far off as Garafraxa brought their grain here then, and I have seen fifty or sixty teams waiting at one time to unload.
"During that period new barns were erected everywhere, and, as saw-mills would not pay over twenty-five cents for the two first logs from a pine tree, the best of timber went into these. Barn-raisings were community events and whiskey was in abundant supply. I have