Which come around me link by link,
While of the vanished past I think.
John Frost, too, rises up before
My vision of the time that’s o’er;
He built upon foundation damp,
In Lower Town’s great cedar swamp,
Which stretched from Sussex Street to where
That engineering structure fair—
The fond-admiring eye doth greet,
Spanning the stream at Ottawa Street.
And “Sandy” Graham, strange it is,
That I thus far his name should miss,
While tracing from the scenes gone by
Each unforgotten memory
Sandy was, aye, a joyous blade,
And many a good stroke of trade
He with commercial wisdom made,
In other times when he was young,
And Yankee silver round was flung
With lavish hand by low and high
In the good days of Colonel By.
And William Hunton, who came late,
If I am right, in ’28,
And many a good quart of whiskey,
To make the old Bytonians frisky—
And many a pound of Twankay tea
And Muscovado vended he,
For Howard and Thompson in the time
When cash was plenty and trade prime.
Friend Tom a little later came,
A youth then of quite slender frame.
In form he’s something still the same—
Though time has taken from his heel
The spring it used of old to feel.
And streaked his locks with silver, too,
Which long withstood all time could do,
Yet in the dream that’s passed away
I see Tom Hunton of to-day.
And John McGraves, the chandler, why
Could I so long have passed him by?
By accident I’ve turned a leaf
Which brings him out in bold relief
A plain and unassuming man
Was John; his candles never ran.
And many in this ancient place
Owed him a debt for a clean face.
William Kipp, too, doth memory greet,
In a small shop on Rideau Street,
A man of gentlemanly kind,
With a well-cultivated mind;
And Commissary Strachan, too,
And Oriel, who had much to do
Paying the debts of Waterloo,
And many another battle field
Where Britons fought and did not yield.
And old John Ring, “good gracious me!”
I had almost forgotten thee—
Thou “Silky” John of other years,
Gone from this dreary vale of tears,
A passing shade, and more’s the pity,
For thou wert ever gay and witty.
And Charles Baines, an old time lawyer,
Stood here professional top sawyer;
He owned a bull dog, arrant thief!
Who plundered Agar Yielding’s beef;
And when friend Yielding sought for law,
To deal with canine of such maw,
“Why, there is just one simple way,”
Said Charley, “Make the owner pay;”
“I thank you for your judgment brief,”
Said Agar, “pay me for the beef.”
“Seven and sixpence worth of prog,
Was bolted by your big bull dog.”
“All right,” said Charley, like a flash,
And quickly handed o’er the cash;