Stories From Our Past — Week of July 19, 2018

Each week, the Gazette looks back on stories from the past. Here is what happened this week, by year…


– Sylvester Hartnagel, an angler visiting from Cleveland, Ohio, pulled a 31-lb muskie into his boat after an hour-long struggle on West Lake. Hartnagel actually snapped his bamboo fishing pole in the process, but did not break his line.

– “King” Arthur Taylor, known for driving a team of four semi-huskie dogs 6,000 miles across the Arctic, brought his dogs and his sled — on wheels for the summer — to Picton. The northern guide and trapper was selling his story and photographs from the excursion to interested parties.

– Unemployed women aged 18-30 were invited to enroll in a three-month domestic course at the Home Service Training School in an effort to find suitable employment.


– County council decided to build three new structures on the fairgrounds. Two new horse barns, measuring 90 feet by 32 feet and a shed, measuring 150 feet by 32 feet, would be constructed of sheet aluminum on prefabricated frames. The shed would be used for roads equipment.

– A 23-year-old Toronto man was pronounced dead of heat exhaustion at the Picton hospital. He helped a yacht owner install a deck on his vessel, then sailed to Picton before being stricken with illness.

– Local restaurateur Vincent Gentile was held up at gunpoint by a masked man while driving to a Glenora Road cottage in the early morning. Learning he only had $3, the gunman let him go, then ran off.


– Two years of severe winter weather followed by drought conditions left county fruit farmers fearing for the future. Bloomfield farmer Kent Douglas lost nearly one-third of his cherry trees and was expecting 30 per cent of his anticipated crop. His melons weren’t doing any better as he forecast just 10 per cent of his normal crop.

– County council supported a provincial pilot project to link the Prince Edward and Hastings Children’s Aid Societies for three years despite objections from the local Children’s Aid Society.

– Picton’s deputy fire chief, Gerry Girard, was killed in a head-on motorcycle accident in Ville Marie, Que. Girard had been with the fire department since 1966.


– A couple walking along the shores of Wellers Bay found human remains. Local OPP responders sent the body to Toronto for forensic examination and it was suggested the bones were historical in nature. An anthropologist was called in to determine the age and origins of the bones.

– Thieves removed an entire wall to gain entry into a Waupoos cottage before taking three motorcycles, motorcycle parts and some furniture with an estimated value of about $20,000.

– Police were seeking information after a man in his 40s accosted three teenage girls swimming near Lake Shore Lodge, asking them if they new of any nude beaches. The girls became frightened and fled the area.