What a world is ours. What a problem is life. Is there any word in the English language more suggestive? Life—its surroundings, aspects, all its outward associations. Is this the limit? Would to Heaven in some instances it were so, that the end be thus. What a hollow mockery does it impart to the heart of Lady Rosamond, whose cause of misery remains as yet half told. Life—a troubled dream, a waking reality, yet we cling to it with fond delusive hopes. What astute reasoner will solve, the intricacies of this problem? Can one who has suffered? The muffled throes of crushed hearts are the only response. God pity them!
FREDERICTON: ITS BUILDINGS, PUBLIC HOUSES, AMUSEMENTS, ETC
The year following the great fire was marked by great progress throughout the Province. Farmers were again in homes which they had built upon the site of those destroyed by the devouring element. Fields once more showed signs of cultivation. With Sir Howard Douglas to stimulate the prosperity of his people, progress was the watchword—the general impulse.
Fredericton, like the phoenix, had arisen from its ashes; buildings arose in rapid succession. Wooden houses of moderate pretensions lined Queen and King streets, from Westmorland to Carleton street, the limit of the burnt district.
Business was carried on by a few upright and enterprising merchants, foremost of whom stood Rankine & Co., the leading firm of the city. This establishment was situated on Queen street, between Northumberland and Westmorland streets, in which was constantly pouring an unlimited source of supplies for conducting the immense lumber trade established by this firm, whose name shall be remembered while New Brunswick shall continue to produce one stick of timber. Many farmers of that time yet have occasion to refer to the generosity which characterized this long established firm. Many yet bless the name of Rankine & Co.
The public buildings of our city were in keeping with the private residences. No Barker House or Queen Hotel adorned our principal street as now; no City Hall, Normal School, or Court House. On the present site of the Barker House was a long two-story wooden building, designated as Hooper’s Hotel under the proprietorship of Mr. Hooper. This was the only accommodation for public dinners, large parties, balls, etc In this hotel the St. George Society annually celebrated their anniversary by a grand dinner party where heart-stirring speeches, toasts and patriotic songs, were the general order of programme, of which the following verses are an example. They were composed in April 1828, and sung by one of the members of this society at a public dinner that year, after the toast of “Lord Aylmer and the Colonies.” The idea was suggested to the young law student by looking upon a map showing the territory explored by the Cabots and called Cabotia. The writer will be readily recognized as one of New Brunswick’s most eloquent, gifted, and favored statesmen, recently holding the highest position in the Province:—