Early wagon traveller praised road
As pioneer roads go, the route from Brockville to Perth which split at the hamlet of Forthton (Unionville) was ‘excellent’ in the opinion of a wagon traveller of 1816.
Lt.Col. William Cockburn made a long journey in March of that year from Kingston to Brockville via the “King’s Highway” which followed the route of old No. 2 Highway, and from Brockville travelled north to Stone Mills now Delta.
He wrote: “From Brockville to Stone Mills a distance of 26 miles, the road is excellent. From thence to Lindsay’s House, which stands on the edge of the Rideau (apparently near the modern village of Newboro) the road is not so good, but even this part of it is practicable for a wagon [sic] during the summer”. (Recorder & Times Feb 9, 1978)
Highway No 2
The 1000 Island Parkway from Brockville to Long Beach was built in 1936-37 by the Standard Paving Co. of Ottawa. George Fulford was responsible for pushing legislation to get this road constructed all the way to Gananoque. In 1937 Campbell Construction of Lansdowne won the contract to complete the Long Beach to Gananoque portion of the parkway. Fulford lost his seat in parliament and due to the high costs of construction only the south lanes were completed. (Darling scrapbook no 4 pg 89)
Brockville to North Augusta Road
The original trail from Brockville to North Augusta was a mere path through the woods. Later this path developed into a stage road and stage coaches appeared running from Brockville to North Augusta. The stage driver had a loud horn beside him, and as he passed every farmhouse, he would blow a long blast on the horn. His passengers would come running and climb aboard. North Augusta Road was once a toll road. A toll gate was set up at the “Long Swamp” south of the community and the fees were one cent per single horse and two cents for a team. The toll house once operated by Charlie Fox was destroyed by fire and never rebuilt. Tolls passed out of existence before the outbreak of the First Great War.
Early in its history this was a toll road, with toll gates spotted at strategic points. The road became the Victoria Macadamized (1) highway in 1852. Work was started in 1837, but ten years later only a couple of miles at the Brockville end had been completed. The United Counties Council of 1847 pushed through a bill under which the road was built, and the road was completed to Smiths Falls in 1852. The tolls were collected for a number of years after, finally passing out of existence in the 1880’s. (R&T, Darling Scrapbook 3 pg 91)
(1) Macadamized: to construct or finish (a road) by compacting into a solid mass a layer of small broken stone on a convex well-drained roadbed and using a binder (as cement or asphalt) for the mass
The Lyn Road was a major artery during the War of 1812, goods and people would move west to Kingston along the Lyn Road to Young Mills and then on to Kingston.
Lowell Plank Road
The road from Lyn to Brockville was known as the Lowell Plank Road. A Plank Road is a dirt path or road covered with a series of wooden planks.
There were toll gates on this road, one being located at Burnbrae Farms.
Stagecoaches were a popular, if uncomfortable, means of early transportation between towns. Along each route there were rest stops where horses were changed and passengers could eat, drink and even spend the night if they so desired. The Hamlet of Manhard was one such stop on the road between Brockville and North Augusta.