An Evening on the Tay Canal – an Introduction to its 175 Years and 2009 Anniversary

The Perth Historical Society on April 15th will help launch the 175th Anniversary of the Tay Canal with three speakers providing different aspects of the Canal’s history – and a preview of the festivities planned for the anniversary.
Ken Watson, well-known expert, historian and author on the Rideau Canal system will provide a visual presentation, “The Pre-Tay Canal, A Cartographic Tour,” with early map representations of the Tay River leading up to 1831 when the construction of the Tay Canal was started.  Mr. Watson’s research and writings have been a major source of documentation on the canal system through his books and publications, including the recent “The Rideau Route – Exploring the Pre-Canal Waterway” and his website.
Perth historian and author Susan Code will take up the Canal’s history from its first conception, by early Perth entrepreneurs, farmers and politicians, of a safe, reliable and expeditious transportation link to outside markets.  Ms. Code has been for many years the foremost historian on Perth and area- and its presenter through a range of media from books to walking tours and public presentations.
The Perth Historical Society member on the Tay Canal 175th Anniversary Steering Committee will complete the evening with an announcement of the events planned for this summer-long celebration.  The ‘Tay 175 Steering Committee’ has been active since March 2008, assembling a program of anniversary activities appropriate to such an important element of this community.  While the celebration will bring in visitors from out side this area, the events are aimed particularly at local residents – to provide the opportunity to enjoy and take part in the canal first-hand and to increase awareness of this little-known gem in our community. 

PS: There will also be a showing, for the first time, of some fascinating, recently located, and never shown before, photographs of the Canal and Perth from the late 1800s-early 1900s. 
Historical Society meetings are open to the public, at 7:30 pm in the gallery of Matheson House, home of the Perth Museum at 11 Gore Street E. in Perth.  A “Toonie Fee” applies for each meeting.  For more information call 613-267 1947.

David Taylor                               
on behalf of the Perth Historical Society