Photographing the Past by Dave Hanes

Photographing the Past
by Dave Hanes

Pictoral memories of the homes and farms of pioneer era in the Bancroft vicinity. In Dave's own words: "The homes, the farms, they stand, they crumble, and implements turn to rust." Captivated by the story behind the remaining artifacts, Dave Hanes takes us on a pictorial tour of the Hastings Road and area in the vicinity of Bancroft, Ontario.

Long ago immigrants came to this country from the British Isles and Europe to find a new better life in an unknown land. Parts of Lower and Upper Canada were surveyed into counties and townships. The best lands were distributed to Officers of the British Army and Royal Navy for their service to Great Britain. Most of the best lots lay along the mighty St. Lawrence River and Lake Ontario and contained 100 acres, more or less. Author and photographer Dave Hanes

Colonization roads were surveyed and roads hacked out of the thick forests and swamps. One such road was the Hastings Road, a meandering rutted swamp and rock-covered terrain. Very few sections of this road were deemed straight, as it was skirting deep swamps, lakes and impassible rocky hills. Along this road lots of 100 acres were surveyed east and west of the Hastings Road. Terms for settlement were quite rigid.

Few pioneers met their obligation due to poor soil, rocky fields and massive sections of swamp. Besides the land they faced unimaginable obstacles such as hordes of mosquitoes, black flies and harsh winters, something unknown to them in their homeland. In the vicinity of Bancroft, some decent farmland was found, some to this day is still farmed with success. These better lots flourished, producing crops and livelihoods for the pioneer willing to endure the hardships of a new land. More successful land in this region was in the townships of Faraday, Mayo, Dungannon, Carlow and Monteagle up to the small village of Maynooth.

In my book, Sample inside pagesIron Mining at Bessemer, many photos appear of the farms and log homes in their prime. In the 1970s, I had the pleasure of running a series of old farms, homes and implements in the Bancroft Times for some 38 weeks, called Photographing The Past. It was well received and enjoyed by many readers. At that time most of the buildings had fallen into disrepair and decay had set in. Farm implements, mostly horse drawn were left abandoned in fields and now lie amongst tall weeds and grass.

Reproduced here in book form, in colour on fine gloss paper, this book is a simple treasure.

Go here for a list of the photographs included

ISBN: 9781894747400 | WMPub#1062 | 8" x 8"
108 pages, colour on gloss paper trade paperback | $24.95

Table of Contents

3 Foreword

5 Where Does This Old Road Go To

6 Spread Across The Rolling Hills

7 The Old Bancroft Train Station

8 Old Log Homestead on the Musclow Greenview Road

9 Once A Sturdy Log Barn

10 Wagons, Buggys And Wheels, Essentials Of Pioneer Life

11 Haunted House Way Up On The Hill, Steenburg Lake Road

12 With The Passing Of Time

13 Narrow And Wide Boards & Cedar Shingles

14 Neat Log Barn And Cedar Shingled Roof

15 Setting Sun On Snow Covered Rail Fence

16 The Old Homestead Nestled In A Low Valley Gaebel Road

18 Log Homestead, Old Snow Road, Fall and Winter.

19 Bridges

21 Surviving The Unforgiving Wilderness

22 Tiny Cabin In The Forest

23 Overlooking Papineau River New Carlow

24 The Old Farm Implements

25 Old Farm Implements

26 Beauty in this winter scene

27 Barns, Big And Small, A Neccessity On All Farms, Then And Now

28 More Old Barns

29 A Picture To Frame

30 Roughly Built Stable In An Overgrown Field

31 The Serenity And Pureness Of Mother Nature

32 Outbuildings

32 Old Armstrong Farm

32 New Carlow

33 Beneath the high hill, under new-fallen snow

34 The Stone Sentinel

35 Standing Silent In Pure White Snow

36 Once a thriving farm, nature closes in

36 Colonization Road to the northern part of Hastings County

37 Small Log Barn Armstrong Place New Carlow

38 For Lack Of A Window, Some Boards Were Used

39 Pastel shades on a dreary fall day

40 Diamond set in narrow boards

41 View fro inside on an early morning sunrise

42 The many uses of the native trees

43 Log barns and out buildings Fraser Lake

44 The hidden sanctuary in the forest

44 If you were lost...

45 Mother Nature versus Father Time

46 A Scene Worth Photographing A Thousand Times Over

47 Large Family Home, Sitting Empty, All Alone.

48 Just A Simple Large Home.

49 Picturesque Home In A World Of Silence

50 Every Angle Gives A Different Photo

51 An Abstract View Of The Old Rutledge Farm, Musclow Greenview Road

52 Empty Home In Snow So Deep

53 Where Have All The Children Gone?

54 Perched Atop A Grassy Knoll

55 The Stone Root Cellar

55 Cut Field Stone And Limestone Used

55 For The Sturdy Walls Of This Storeroom

56 Alone They Sit On A Snowy Knoll& Abandoned

56 But Now Preserved In A Timeless Image

57 Like A Fly In A Spiders Web, The Cabin Is Engulfed

58 A Tree In The Living Room

59 Just Roofs---no Walls

60 The Trees Are Keeping It From Crumbling To The Ground

61 Boards And Sticks Upon A Knoll

62 Simple Door Frame Set In Simple Round Logs

62 One Still Stands While Two Have Outlived Their Purpose

63 Decaying Buildings, Dying And Neglected Apple Trees

64 The Countryside Once Full Of These,

64 The Sad Demise Of Ancient Trees

65 The Good Old Fashioned Farm Auction Sale

65 Going Once!...Going Twice!....Sold!!!!

66 From School Bells And Church Bells To Beds And Bedding, Everything You Could Possibly Hope To Find Is Hiding Somewhere At The Old Farm Auction

67 The Old Root Cellar& A Must On The Early Farm And Homestead

68 The Old Root Cellar At Bessemer

69 Old Barn L'amable

70 The Democrat Buggy - For The Aristocrat

71 Sometimes Simple Things Work The Best

73 Slowly But Surely It Fell To The Ravages Of Time And The ElementsHighway 500 East

74 Decay And Death In A Wintery Wonderland

75 Pictures Worthy Of A Place On The Wall

76 Let Your Mind Wander Back In Time To When These Buildings Were Full Of Life

77 The Sun Sinks Low In The Western Sky Long Fingers Cast Shadows On The Cold White Snow

78 Like A Giant Tombstone The Tall Pine Stands,

78 Over The Few Remaining Logs

79 Winter Beauty

79 Glory Of Fall

80 Old Barn... Outbuildings And Implements... Left To The Ravages Of Time

81 Neat Cluster Of Old Farm Buildings

82 Storm Clouds Passing On A Cold Winter Afternoon

83 Sun Shines Brightly On Pure White Snow

83 Animal Tracks And Trails Lead Up The Hill To A Tiny Fallen Down Cabin Of A Few Old Boards

84 Just A Smple Log Stable, New Hermon

85 Small Sawmill Horse and master still work as a team

86 Twelve Ton Limit

87 The Gate Is Open But No One Enters

88 Sad Demise For A Once Proud Barn

89 The Door Is Open But No One Cares

90 Nestled In A Small Clearing

91 A Calamity Of Fences

92 In The Early Days Of Settlement, Along The Colonization Roads, Even A Simple Single Furrow, Plow Such As This Was A Luxury.

94 The Old Wooden Handled Narrow Tyned Plough Left At The Edge Of The Bush

95 Left In A Heap A Jumble Of Old Single Furrow Ploughs

96 The Work Horse

97 Built For Very Heavy Work In Tough Soil Conditions

98 The Steel Dinosaurv

99 Old Steel Wheeled Wagon Hay Rake And Single Furrow Plow

100 To Make The Soil Ready For Seeding

101 The Old Style Corn Planter

102 Mechanical Marvel

103 Different Machine, Different Local, Similar But Some Minor Changes

104 The Mower

105 The Old Steel Wheel

106 One Of My Favourite Photos

107 The Weather Vane, Once Commonplace On Barns And Homes, Now Seldom Seen

108 A Final Note