A collection of published and unpublished work



Having arrived at this site would suggest that you have some interest in history, and specifically in the history of Perth, Ontario, and its Lanark County environs.

We live in the present and plan for (or worry about) the future; but we can do neither without an understanding of the past. History is where we learn about how peoples and societies preceding us coped and behaved. From history we learn about change, how we came to be, and how the past shaped our present and thus informs our future. History helps us to understand change, how change comes about, what changes and what does not. History is also vital to our identity; personal, social, cultural, local and national. Its about how families, groups, institutions, communities and countries form and how they evolve while maintaining cohesion.

These are big themes, far beyond the aspirations of this website except to the extent that they define context. History is not all about Kings, Prime Ministers and Presidents, great battles won and lost, or political triumph and failure. It is also about how those (usually far away) events impacted, engaged and often involved people in very ‘local’ ways.

‘Local’, here, means the community centered on Perth, Ontario. ‘History’, here, means events over the short span of about two centuries beginning with the first European settlement in 1816. The ‘big’ events of history sometimes led ‘Perthites’ to play out their role far from home, but even those stories begin in and around Perth.

Today, Perth is a very different place than it was 200 years ago. Many local families still trace their roots to the original settlers, but many others are, relatively, newcomers. Perth, like Canada and the world, has changed and evolved enormously over time. Never-the-less, understanding something of ‘What We Were When’ further enriches an already vibrant community. Even for those with no connection to Perth, or interest in the community in some other way, it is hoped that many of the stories offered here will still prove informative, interesting and entertaining.

Many of the stories and documents posted here also appear on the website of the Perth & District Historical Society http://www.perthhs.org, where you will find a wealth of additional historical material related to the ‘Perth on the Tay’.


Contact Ron Shaw's History Blog regarding their published work, course offerings or any other inquires.


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