First page of Trenton minute book of 1853 to 1860

The official opening of the Community Archives in April 2016 also celebrated the transfer of some records of Hastings County from the Archives of Ontario. These records had originally been collected by the Hastings County Historical Society, but were transferred to the provincial archives in 1972 for want of a suitable storage location in Belleville. One of the volumes which found its way back to Belleville in 2016 was the first minute book of the Town of Trenton, which covers activities in the town from its incorporation in 1853 to 1860.

This volume has now been photographed and it can be read at Early entries in the book describe the new Town Council’s efforts at establishing a school, a town hall, a pound for stray animals, and licenses for taverns.

Evidently the taverns of Trenton were well-patronized, as in February 18th, 1853 the Council felt obliged to record the following motion:

Detail of minutes relating to intoxicated people attending Council meetings.

31. Moved by Mr. Francis seconded by Mr. Weaver: That any person or persons coming into the Council Room while the Council are in Session having by appearance taken intoxicating liquor and by improper conduct in making noise or otherwise disturbing the public service, shall be ordered by the Reeve or chairman then presiding to depart from the Room, that if such person or persons shall persist in remaining in said Council Room after such verbal notice from the Chair, it shall be the duty of the High Constable or any one of the Sub Constables to take such person or persons into custody and to bring them before the Reeve or any one of Her Majesty’s Justices of the Peace for correction as soon after the adjournment of the said Council as convenient.