The Prescott Journal - November 26, 2003
By Astrid Strader, Project Supervisor, Horticulturist, and Garden Designer
For whom the bell tolls that is the question? A historic bell was resurrected over a week ago at the Prescott fire hall. It bears the inscription: "St. Lawrence International Peace Centennial, Canada, United States, Prescott. Ont. 1838 - July 1, 1938. Presented by the International Nickel Co. of Canada Ltd."
This bell, which is mounted especially so that it can be rung (one must wear ear protection it sends out very high decibels maybe you heard it the night of the Santa Claus parade) is made of solid nickel weighing 235 lbs. I know, because we weighed it. Knowing the precise weight, Ed Yandeau, of the Prescott Public Works Department, could figure out the exact materials which were needed for mounting it.
A story is going around that it came from a ship, the HMCS Miss Prescott. Now, this could be quite an interesting research project for someone perhaps a school project even, to find out the origins of the bell and the story behind the International Peace Centennial.
We were able to purchase some prized shagbark hickory trees (carya ovata) through our Dream Green for Prescott fundraising campaign. These were planted at Fairways Park where they will have lots of room to show off their beauty; they grow up to 75 feet (25 m) high and live up to 200 years.
"They are a strange breed, because their range in this area can almost be drawn with a pencil. We are devoid of them in Brockville/Prescott area. They seem to start being part of the forest ecosystem near Ivy Lea, and I believe they also can be found past Cornwall," explains Chris Bellemore of the Grenville Land Stewardship Council.
Even though they are not pure natives, they seem to be a favourite of all the forestry "guys" (aka tree huggers). Their nuts taste the best - you just have to fight off the squirrels. The bark is noticeably loose and 'shaggy' giving the tree its distinctive look.