HOTELS| B&Bs| ATTRACTIONS| RESTAURANTS| CASINOS| THEME PARKS| TOURS| WINERIES| SHOPPING| GOLF| WEDDINGS| RECREATION| TICKETS| EVENTS  
  HOTELS| B&Bs| ATTRACTIONS| RESTAURANTS| CASINOS| THEME PARKS| TOURS 
WINERIES| SHOPPING| GOLF| WEDDINGS| RECREATION| TICKETS| EVENTS  
  HOTELS| B&Bs| ATTRACTIONS| RESTAURANTS| WINERIES 
THEME PARKS| TOURS| CASINOS| GOLF| SHOPPING 
WEDDINGS| RECREATION| TICKETS| EVENTS  
  HOTELS| B&Bs| ATTRACTIONS| RESTAURANTS 
WINERIES| THEME PARKS| TOURS 
CASINOS| SHOPPING| GOLF| EVENTS  
WEDDINGS| RECREATION| TICKETS 

Attractions


History of Medieval & Old Taverns

An Overview of Taverns in the 1850

Medieval Taverns The Inn Keeper

Local Taverns, Hotels and Inns were landmarks in their community, and their owners, therefore became well known citizens.

An inn keeper fulfilled many roles in budding communities, including keeper of the peace and local magistrate, pawn broker, postman, walking newspaper, banker, political pundit, and of course his prime function was to preside over the workings of the Tavern - that oasis for weary travelers longing for the next tavern to appear, with the possibility of a brief respite from their punishing journey.

Within the walls of the tavern: bills were paid and deals were made, it served as a public place where men could meet in comfort, news of the world arrived at the door, local theatricals might be enacted here, some early church services occurred here, politics were discussed and debated, and of course food was served and drink flowed.

Tavern Fare

Food served in the Taverns of early Upper Canada was generally considered less than appetizing. To give the cook her due, however, there were great difficulties in cooking for unknown numbers of diners. A housekeeper would have no idea how many patrons would arrive on any given night.

Tavern food, in spite of the fact that it was most often floating in grease, could look particularly appealing after a hard night in a coach. A glass of gin and bitters helped to whet the appetite.

John Howison of Edinburgh wrote the following in Sketches of Upper Canada regarding tavern fare:

This tavern ... had a sign swinging before the door, so covered with gilt and emblematic paintings, that it probably cost more than the house itself ... there we found a table amply furnished with tea, beef-steaks, cucumbers, potatoes, honey, onions, eggs, etc. During this delectable repast, we were attended by the hostess, who poured out the tea as often as we required it, and having done so, seated herself in the door-way, and read a book (which I afterwards found to be Miss Edgeworth's Tales of Fashionable Life)

Temperance Societies

The ills of alcohol consumption were well known to the 19th century settlers in Canada. Many instances of the consequences of too much drink can be found in the writings of the day. Liquor consumption, however, was so much a part of life in the Backwoods of Canada and on the frontier of the United States, that some groups began to merely advocate cutting back on the consumption of alcohol, rather than quitting altogether.

In 1828 the first Temperance Society in Upper Canada was formed in Bastard Township.

There were a variety of approaches to the problem:
      - total abstinence: these societies demanded that liquor only be used for medicinal purposes, in cases of bodily infirmity.
      - partial abstinence: these groups allowed wine and beer only, while prohibiting hard liquor.

Temperance meetings were widely advertised to the public through sympathetic newspapers and the atmosphere at these meetings was usually very intense. The program usually consisted of a volatile sermon followed by either a heated debate on temperance -vs- abstinence or rousing song singing.

To prevent their members from backsliding from their pledge, some societies - The Royal Canadian Rifle Regiment Temperance Society of Niagara for example - urged members to be their brother's policemen and communicate infringement of the rules to a committee. The committee would then advise and admonish the offending member and report all the circumstances to the Society at the next meeting for final decision.

To provide the same services as the local inns, temperance or abstinence taverns opened up all over the province. These attracted patrons who knew that within their walls, a traveler could avoid the noise and rowdyism that was often a part of the regular tavern scene and hear only the clink of ice in a pitcher filled with pure water.

In 1868 the Dunkin Act was enacted which gave counties the local option to become dry or not.

In 1878, the Canada Temperance Act, which was also referred to as the Scott Act, prohibited the sale of liquor in any county whose residents voted it into law. The Act, however proved to be ineffective because if lacked restrictions regarding where or by whom any liquor from another county could be consumed. In effect a person could drink a keg of rum in the town square so long as it wasn't bought in the county.

Licences for Selling Spirits

The government of Upper Canada (in the same manner as our present government) looked upon people's desire for drink as an excellent source of revenue. When the First Parliament of Upper Canada met in 1793, they amended the Act of the British Parliament dealing with the licensing for "keeping a house ... or retailing wine, brandy, rum or other spirituous liquor" by adding 20 shillings to the existing levy of 1/16/-, partially to fund the salaries of the Legislative Council an House of Assembly. Further legislation, and increases, followed through the years.

Basically there were three types of licences: one for distillers, another for shopkeepers and a third for innkeepers. To secure a licence, the applicant completed a "recognizance" asking for a licence and naming two people who would vouch for the applicant. If the application was approved, a licence was issued and usually, the list of licensees entered into a ledger. The approval often appeared in the record of the Court of Quarter Sessions for the District. Usually on an annual basis, a list was prepared and sent to the "treasurer". Sporadically, the lists were printed in the Journals of the Legislative Assembly.

The Restoration
      - Towers on Lundy's Lane
      - Early Tourism
      - Drummondville in the 1850's

Niagara Helicopters