Interview with Mrs. E. H. Buck and her daughter Lorna conducted on 24 July 1978.
Mrs. Buck lives on a farm just outside of Paris in the old Keg Lane School Section. She was formerly a Barker, which is an old family in this area of the township. She and her daughter recounted their school days and other activities. The late Mr. S. Buck was a very active member of this community.
INTERVIEWER: Have you always lived in this area?
Yes, I can answer that easily enough.. You see, I v/as a Barker. Our homestead was the one over there on Keg Lane. It burned just a while ago- you know, where the Hutchins lived. That was our home.
INTERVIEWER: When did the Barkers arrive in this area?
Mrs. Buck: Well, we got it from the Crown. I remember my grandmother telling me that when they came you couldn't see the sun for the pines. They had an old house first, then they built the bit house. My dad's father, my grandfather, built it. We never knew him, he died pretty young. I think there was some argument about buying the old house that McCorkingdale’s are in now. – Scotts lived there at the time.
INTERVIEWER: What school did you go to?
Mrs. Buck: Keg lane.
INTERVIEWER: Do you remember anything in particular about the teachers you had there?
Mrs. Buck: Yes, we had a Miss McCarther at first. She was only there about a year. Then we had a Miss Simons for most of the rest of the time. I liked her- I had a good time in Public School. You can have your high school, but I don't care for it.
INTERVIEWER: It was a one room school?
Mrs. Buck: Oh, yes. We had all of the grades in the same room. I used to sit there and try to do grammar-guess at it you know-while the other grades carried on.
INTERVIEWER: We were reading about the school fairs that Keg Lane used to have. Were they held at the school?
Mrs. Buck: Well, it was there sometimes, when I went most were there. But I remember one at Johny Barkers. Later on, they held one at Maus School, over there. I was older then.
INTERVIEWER: What sort of competitions did they have?
Mrs. Buck: Oh, baking and things. Writing contests. And they used to give then eggs to hatch for prizes- hens and chickens. I got some and I was quite thrilled. I remember one hen she was a long time growing up. Anyway, they didn't amount to much. My dad thought they were good because they came to O. A. C.
INTERVIEWER: Where did you go to school, Lorna?
Lorna: I went to Keg Lane, too.
INTERVIEWER: Were there any competitions between all of the schools in this area?
Mrs. Buck: Not that I remember.
Lorna: We used to play baseball against the Maus School kids once in a while.
Mrs. Buck: Well, they didn't when I was young, well, I never got to Canning until I was older.
INTERVIEWER: Where did you go to high school?
Mrs. Buck: In Paris, I went to the old one up on the hill, my dad did too.
INTERVIEWER: What about West Dumfries School? Is the old one still standing?
Mrs. Buck: Yes, up on the Ayr Road – the white school they called it. But it's all shut up there now. They tried to shut up Keg Lane.
Lorna: Yes, when I was going to school there. There were only eight or nine kids at school some days.
Mrs. Buck: Mr. Webster, he tried to close it up. I don't think he gave some of those teachers enough credit, they did a good job.
INTERVIEWER: I imagine it would be pretty hard teaching in a one-room school.
Lorna: Oh, I don't know. I had-good teachers like Miriam Green, well Miriam Milbourne now, she taught me. Verna Skilar was there before and she was good too. She had some of the bigger kids there that would give her trouble once in a while and she'd give them the strap that was really something.
Mrs. Buck: Albert Catten got it when I was there, but that was the only one.
INTERVIEWER: When were you married, Mrs. Buck?
Mrs. Buck: 1927, down at home.
INTERVIEWER: Did you move right to this farm?
Mrs. Buck: No, we lived down there with the family first, the whole family. Later we decided that we would start our own farm and we came up here. Worst part was that the depression had just started. We did quite for the first few months until that happened. We really had to skimp then, we have all our lives. Later on, we got some off the farm.
INTERVIEWER: What kind of crops do you have?
Mrs. Buck: Oh, a bit of wheat and come corn, and some oats.
INTERVIEWER: How many acres are there?
Mrs. Buck: About 100 worked, and fourteen of bush.
Lorna: Dad always used to do mixed farming, but now we don't have as many animals there aren’t any more pigs or sheep.
INTERVIEWER: Where were all the crops shipped?
Mrs. Buck: Well, in my time they drove the cattle to township.
INTERVIEWER: Did you shear the sheep right here?
Mrs. Buck: Oh, I remember once when Ernie tried to do it himself. What a mess. And Jim would walk around and poke the sheep in the eye. He was only about two years old then. After that, we had a man come from town to sheer them.
INTERVIEWER: 'Where did the wool go?
Mrs. Buck: Oh, I guess to the woollen mills here. You never got anything for the wool though.
INTERVIEWER: Mr. Buck was always very active in the Paris Fair board wasn’t he?
Mrs. Buck: Oh, yes, there’s a story to that too. My dad used, to always show his cows down at the Fair, he was always active at the Fair. So before one annual meeting, he said that he’d give Ernie and my brother each a dollar if they’d go down and join lip. So Ernie eventually got on the Board, I guess Jack did too, they must have been hard up for a couple.
INTERVIEWER: Where did Mr. Buck go to school?
Mrs. Buck: Keglane, although he started up around Drumbo, they moved down from there.
Lorna: Didn't he used to talk about showers corners up that way?
Mrs. Buck; But it was up near Drumbo that he went to school. Shaver’s Corners was where he took me out first.
INTERVIEWER: Is there a Buck homestead?
Mrs. Buck: Well it’s up around that area by Drumbo or Princeton. In there, there are a lot of Bucks.
INTERVIEWER: Well, there are a lot around this area took aren't there?
Mrs. Buck: Oh, yes. There are my sons, Jim, Bill and Harley. But there are no farmers. Jim lives on the old Vincent farm up by Ayr. He’s secretary of the fair now. He works on the Highway. Bill, he teaches school at Paris. He keeps a cow and a couple of horses.
Lorna: He’s the only one you could really term a farmer now.
Mrs. Buck: Harley bought this farm and that farm, but I think he rents it all now.
INTERVIEWER: One more thing we wanted to ask you about v/ere the or¬ganizations in this area. I read about a Community Club, what was that?
Mrs. Buck: It started out as the Home and School. We’ve have a speaker or we’d play cards…
Lorna: And have lunch. I remember that part more than anything. We also used to have a group sort of like a Women’s Institute.
INTERVIEWER: Like a Ladies' Aid?
Mrs. Buck: Well, we used to quilt. We all went and quilted. Mainly while the war was on.
INTERVIEWER: Where did you meet?
Mrs. Buck: Oh, different places. But the Community Club was usually at the school.
INTERVIEWER: What else did you do for recreation?
Lorna: We used to have dances down at the school. I think they were sponsored by the Community Club. We also had work parties down there to clean up the school year. I can remember Grandma and Grandpa Buck down there working away at the flower beds.
Mrs. Buck: Oh, yes, before the Junior Farmers they used to have the UFYPO. Ernie was mixed up in that top. It was the United Farmers Young People’s Organization. Ernie was President of that once.
INTERVIEWER: How long ago was that?
Mrs. Buck: Well, he was president shortly after we v/ere married so that would be I guess it must have been over 50 years ago.
INTERVIEWER: Was it like a 4-H club?
Mrs. Buck: Well, yes.
INTERVIEWER: What other families would be included in these act¬ivities?
Lorna: Well, people with kids in the school, but everybody pitched in- like Grandpa and Grandma Buck, really the whole community.
INTERVIEWER: Who are some of the older families?
Mrs. Buck: The Leischman’s have been around quite a while. And the Webers, and Scotts, and Wells.
Lorna: The MeCrows, too…
Mrs. Buck: Oh, no, they came a little later. They lived where Marg McCorkindale lives now. The Deans are a very old family too.
Lorna: What about the O’Neills?
Mrs. Buck: Oh yea, they’ve been here a long time.
INTERVIEWER: How did Keg Lane get its name?
Mrs. Buck: Oh, that's a good question. I don't know if they really know.
Lorna: Well, they said that people in the district used to drink. According to the story there used to be a toll bridge.
Mrs. Buck: Oh, yes, I remember that. Right down by the school. I "can remember being asleep coming home from town- of course my dad had a year's ticket. Then they said they burned it down.
Lorna: Sure, somebody didn't want to pay their money.
INTERVIEWER: How long ago was that?
Mrs. Buck: Oh, about seventy years ago, I guess.
INTERVIEWER: What else did you do for recreation?
Mrs. Buck: Oh, play cards and go to dances, although my father never really approved. We used to go Saturday nights to town even in your time, Lorna.
Lorna: Oh, yes, I remember the ice cream cones. The things like best though were the chivaries we used to go to. They were just super.
INTERVIEWER: What happened?
Lorna: Well, a young couple gets married. Usually you wait for a few days after the marriage. Then the neighbours get together real sneakily. They wait until the couple have gone to bed and then they start making a lot of noise outside. Then they’s come down and provide some food. I remember the one we had for the neighbour across the road — that was the first time I’s had a really big amount of ice cream. I think I had about a whole brick of ice cream.
INTERVIEWER: What noise makers did you use?
Lorna: Oh, anything to make a noise — pans, old cowbells. Oh, we’d just diw laughing out there, because you had to be so quiet at first.
Mrs. Buck: Oh, lady used to have a big: shell. It had a whole in one end of it and she could blow through it and make a noise just like a cow.... She was the only one who could blow it though, I think.
INTERVIEWER: Thank you Mrs. Buck and Lorna.