Voter Lists & Westmeath Township Council

The Right to Vote

These early lists of eligible voters are mostly made up of male names; with the few exceptions of listed eligible women who were property owners – often because the woman was widowed.  The right to vote was tied to the ownership of land.

The history of the Women’s Suffragette Movement in Canada, women’s property rights and the right to vote in the various provinces, is best reviewed by scrolling through the appropriate years on this comprehensive listing done by the “Nellie McClung Foundation”:  http://www.ournellie.com/womens-suffrage/history-of-womens-rights.

Early Westmeath Township Voter Lists by Year

1837 Township of Westmeath Voter List –  all spellings left as found in the original. (Note:  This list does not contain all residents in the Township at that time; only the males property owners that were enumerated.) This was the first vote held in the new Township.1837 Voter List

Pembroke Observer & Upper Ottawa Advertiser, January 15, 1886

Pembroke Observer & Upper Ottawa Advertiser, January 15, 1886

 Westmeath Council Newspaper Clippings

Pembroke Oberver & Upper Ottawa Advertiser. January 29, 1886

Pembroke Observer & Upper Ottawa Advertiser. January 29, 1886

  • Pembroke Observer & Upper Ottawa Advertiser, February 5, 1886

    Pembroke Observer & Upper Ottawa Advertiser, February 5, 1886

The Pembroke Observer & Upper Ottawa Advertiser. Friday, December 28, 1888

The Pembroke Observer & Upper Ottawa Advertiser. Friday, December 28, 1888

The Pembroke Observer & Upper Ottawa Advertiser, Dec. 28, 1888.

The Pembroke Observer & Upper Ottawa Advertiser, Dec. 28, 1888.

 

1899 Renfrew County Township Election Results. Pembroke Standard, January 3, 1899.

1899 Renfrew County Township Election Results. Pembroke Standard, January 3, 1899.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Law Enforcement:

In the early years of settlement, law enforcement was hit and miss until an organized system was put in place at the county level. Before Renfrew County matured to the point of putting that structure in place,  culprits and their accusers  came to their own settlements, stood before travelling Justices of the Peace or used the court at Perth, Lanark County.

The constables who assisted the sheriffs of the judicial district of Bathurst and of the later counties of Lanark and Renfrew in maintaining the law were once part time officers.  Sheriff of the two united counties from 1852 to 1866 and of Lanark County from 1866 to 1903 was James Thompson.  His predecessor for ten years had been Andrew Dickson of Pakenham.  Sheriff Thompson, first editor and one-time owner of the Perth Courier and county sheriff for over fifty years, lived until 1912 and the age of 100.

Local magistrates of the district at the middle period of Andrew Dickson’s regime numbered forty-three, three at present Renfrew county points and forty in the Lanark area.  Constables appointed for Lanark and Renfrew counties for the depression year of 1858 at the spring General Quarter Sessions of the Peace numbered one hundred and thirty-two.  Taken from carletonplacelocalhistory.

Westmeath County Constables were: Baird, William Beaupry, John Buchannan, James Hazelton, John Keyes, William Sharp, William Tucker, George A. Pembroke Observer & Upper Valley Advertiser, Friday December 28, 1888.

Westmeath County Constables were:
Baird, William
Beaupry, John
Buchannan, James
Hazelton, John
Keyes, William
Sharp, William
Tucker, George A.
Pembroke Observer & Upper Valley Advertiser, Friday December 28, 1888.

 

In 1940 the local electoral registrar for LaPasse was Edouard Gervais. The national federal election of 1940 would prove an important one because the world was at war and the conscription crisis was on the horizon.

1950 Voter Registration Card. Courtesy of Keith Bromley.

1940 Voter Registration Card. Courtesy of  Jessie Bromley’s son Keith Bromley.

With the Second World War raging in Europe, the Canadians at home were also seeing changes. Everyday shopping for family necessities now required the use of stamps from Ration Books issued to every man, woman and child. To the housewife this meant juggling how best to use the stamps strategically to feed everyone well. These ration books  are from the Garnet and Jessie Bromley household on the Bromley Line of Westmeath Township, submitted by their son Keith Bromley.

Front cover, inside front and back cover of a Bromley family ration book.

Front cover, inside front and back cover of a Bromley family Canadian Ration Book.

Ration stamps used for shopping rationed foods.

Canadian Ration Stamps used for shopping for rationed foods.