To market, to market

Market Place runs between Wellington and Downie streets to form the third side of the triangle known as City Hall Square.

The area between Market Place and the back of the city hall is still called Market Square because it was for many years the site of the farmers' market, an integral part of the first Stratford Town Hall, built in 1857. Market Place was named for the bustling market which once occupied the square and was an important part of the town's early business and community life.

The market was also at the social and political hub of the town, a natural outgrowth of the new town hall, which was hailed as one of the finest buildings of its kind in Canada. Donald McDonald, who, with his cousin John, was one of the original Canada Company surveyors. He sold an acre of land at the apex of the triangle to the town as a town hall site. In 1834, John McDonald had laid out the original village square on Ontario Street. It became known as Shakespeare Square, then Post Office Square, and now it is known as Memorial Park. It was the coming of the railway in 1856 that drew the focus of the town away from the Avon River.

Donald McDonald was a surveyor, but also skilled in land transactions, and he became a man of wealth. Shrewd enough to foresee the value of the land which would become the core of Stratford, he and his wife Frances acquired it from Dr. Morris Lee Wolf of New York City in 1853. They sold the apex of the triangle to the Village of Stratford in 1855.

The market, 1906 postcard. A view behind the city hall, looking west, towards Wellington Street. The back of the city hall is to the right, not visible. Stratford-Perth Archives

Like all the land on which Stratford is now situated, it had originally been owned by the Canada Company. When surveyor John McDonald laid out the street plan in 1834 he included the city hall triangle as it is today except the street known as Market Place was then occupied by an open stream called the Romeo Creek.

Romeo Creek mill

It was Romeo Creek which led to the appeal of this site. German settler William Rischmiller (or Rueschmiller) bought the property and on it established a sawmill in the 1840s. Adelaide Leitch described the scene in the book Floodtides of Fortune: "In the heart of the growing village, Rischmiller's steam-powered sawmill worked away, strewing the area with logs, slabs, stripped bark and brush, until the village council began complaining much to the distress of the schoolboys from the nearby grammar School who used the marvelous, primitive jungle for their games. The mill turned little Romeo Creek into a moving belt of sawdust that went sluggishly downstream into Erie Creek and, eventually into the Avon."

Shortly, the growing prosperity of the commercial centre of the fledgling community was no longer compatible with the operation of a sawmill. The mill property changed hands, and its ownership went to New York City. In 1855, when Donald McDonald (1816-1879) and his wife sold one acre of their property to the village (for 200 pounds), they stipulated the buyer was "to have and to hold the said land and premises and appurtenances in trust to use the same for the purpose of erecting and maintaining thereon a market house and buildings incident thereto as aforesaid forever."

The text of that stipulation made no mention of a town hall, and that omission led to many legal wrangles over the years. But Donald McDonald was shrewd. His reason for stipulating "a market house and buildings" was probably because he believed a market would best guarantee continued prosperity and commercial activity for the site. McDonald and his wife had a vested interest in the new town hall site; they owned considerable additional property around the triangle of Town Hall Square. Stratford separated from Perth County in 1853, became a village in 1854, and a town in 1859. A bonus of 50 pounds was offered for the best "town hall plan," and work was underway in 1857 on the new "market building."

To satisfy McDonald's stipulation, the town fathers were careful to incorporate both the town market and town offices in one building, supplemented by the weekly outdoor market in Market Square. Perth County historian William Johnston described the new building as follows:

                                  The Market Square : 

                                                    Comprehensive articles on the history of Market Square are listed below.

Meat market by-laws in Market Square 

On May 18, 1908, Stratford City Council passed By-law #1513, which established that a section of Market Square be “hereby set apart as a meat market.” 

See Meat market By-Law in market Square for the humourous By-Laws.

Market House and First Town Hall, 1858

The Market House " a handsome brick structure" in the centre of Market Square, contained the Town Hall and the various offices of the town government. Source: Stratford City Directory, 1876. 

Note:  Bob Toleff summarized the building's importance this way: Built in 1858, it was multiuse, doubling as a market building. It also housed a music club, debating club, and concert hall. The police and fire departments were also accommodated there, as was the town's first library. There were stores and butcher stalls on the bottom floor. The building was destroyed by fire on November 24,1897. The town hall building on Wellington Street is built on the same spot. Source: If you grew up in Stratford FB. (See Wellington Street)

"With its cupola and extended flag staff, it was for years the pride of the citizens, exciting wonder and admiration in backwoods youths who came from the northern townships with their oxen, to trade in this great metropolis. After four homeless years since separation from the country, the first Town Council meeting was finally held in the news building on May 10, 1858. There were stores and market stalls on the main floor, with the council chamber and concert hall above. 

By 1876, Stratford town council wanted to extend Market Square and approached McDonald to buy more land. By now he was a Canadian senator (Liberal), and got about $50,000 for two acres of land. In 1887, Frances McDonald, by then a widow living in Los Angeles, conveyed a 30-foot strip of land between Wellington and Downie streets on Market Square, for the sum of $1, again contingent on its being used only as a market place. She also required the city to replace the wooden sidewalk fronting the business places on Market Place and to remove the wooden railing that she considered an eyesore.

On or about 1 a.m. on Nov. 24, 1897, Stratford's handsome town hall, which had become a city hall in 1885, was destroyed by fire. A Scottish concert had been held in the second-floor hall in the evening before. The only people in the building when the fire was discovered were three tramps sleeping in the jail cells, and they were told to "get the hell out of town as fast as possible!" 

Donald McDonald's stipulation about a Market House was further ignored when the present city hall was built in 1898. There were no market stalls included. However, the McDonald stipulation plagued the city fathers for years. After the turn of the century, when the parks board wanted to plant grass and flower beds in Market Square, permission was denied.

A proper market building was eventually built behind the first fire hall, near Waterloo Street, and when that building was torn down, the Stratford Farmers Market was shuffled off to the city fairgrounds. With notes from Stanford Dingman

Curfew Bell silenced by fire.

Stratford passed a curfew law in 1897 which became effective April 21 . The law set out that the bell a top City Hall be rung each night at 9 o’clock by the janitor at which time children under 14 were supposed to be off the streets. Ringing of the bell was short lived as it was destroyed in the fire that consumed the City Hall jon November 24, 1897. A report published by the Stratford Heraldk stated as follows " the silver tongue bell, which did the duty in the City Hall Belfrey, for nearly 40 years, and was generally recognized as one of the best bells in Western Ontario met with the worst faith that many people anticipated The workmen engage in cleaning up the debris, have not yet reached the bottom, but melted chunks of brass have been found, and it is pretty generally suppose that the fierce flames which found vent from the interior, by way of the Belfrey, melted the bell. Although there is a clock in Bell Tower on the present, City Hall, neither of the clock or the bell wherever installed, the curfew continued to ring for many years on the fire hall on Albert Street but that practice eventually came to an end, according to city clerk, Lawrence Graham, the curfew law is still on the books, but it hasn’t been enforced for many years

Unveiling of the cornerstone at city hall, 1898, Stratford-Perth Archives, Street Photograph Collection-Market Square 

In 1967, Mayor Dutch Meier announced his proposal for revitalizing the city centre.  Stratford Perth-Archives

Save the city hall

Save the city hall was the rallying cry in Stratford during the 1960s and 1970s and saved it was. Seven women started the battle and over the next decade (from 1964 into the 1970s) they were joined by many others. But it's the women we salute here: Mary Brothers, Madeline Ferguson, Jo Ann Hayes, Winnifred Kneitl, Evelyn Melodysta, Ellen Stafford and Dolores Whiteman. They were the charter members of the Save the City Hall committee. The group name changed, as did its leaders and voices, but eventually the monarch of Market Place continued her reign in proudly refurbished one-of-a-kind regal splendor. Click here to see presentation by Betty Jo Belton “Stratford’s Save the City Hall League”.

In 1964, letters to the Stratford Beacon-Herald supported the "save” position, but it was not an easy battle and the outcome was far from assured. In 1967, Mayor Clarence (Dutch) Meier presented a proposal to revitalize the city that called for replacing the city hall (at 1 Wellington St.) with a high-rise tower that included a hotel and rental outlets. The fight to save the city hall stretched across the reigns of six mayors and city councils before a win was declared. Renovation work on the building began in 1974.  

Information taken from  Dean Robinson's book, Not the Last Waltz and other Stratford Stories, which includes the famous interview of the city hall itself by Lotta Gibson of the Beacon Herald in June 1969.

*   Watch  video below by Stratford District Historical Society 

Director: Andrew C. Brown,  Producer: Nancy Musselman   SDHS

21 Market Place  Photo: Fred Gonder.  Detail of Decorative roof line from Herald Building below. 

Stratford newspapers, among them, the Beacon (1854) and the Herald (1863) 

Many newspapers have appeared on the streets of Stratford over the years. The first, the Perth County News, appeared in 1849. It was printed by William Rowland in a small building near the Shakespeare Inn (see Sargint Street) and then at other locations. Thomas M. Daly and Edwin Dent bought the paper in about 1853, and  changed its name to the Stratford Examiner. But it folded in 1870, the victim of stiff competition.

The three photos which follow immediately focus on the Herald newspaper and building. The paper first started in 1863 but moved to market Square in 1890.  

The Herald newsroom in 1921 on Market Square.  Ross Keane has been identified but not the woman in the photo. 

For a full history of the Dingman Family's involvement in the Herald and later The Beacon Herald newspaper business in Stratford, see Dingman Place. 

On the left is The Herald Building at 21 Market Place dating from 1890. The photo dates from c. 1900. The building to the right of the photo is the Y. M. C. A. built in 1898 at 25 Market Place.  Photos: Stratford-Perth Archives courtesy of Nancy Musselman. 

Stratford's longest-lasting paper was born in December 1854 on Mill Street(name later changed to Douglas Street) by Peter Eby. Called the Stratford Beacon, its ownership soon passed to William Mowat, a true reformer who had worked at the Toronto Globe. In 1863, Mowat sold the Beacon to banker William Buckingham, late private secretary to the Hon. Alexander Mackenzie. Buckingham controlled the paper for about a decade (1863-1873) and made life difficult for Thomas Daly, an ex-member of Parliament who for a year enjoyed a newspaper monopoly until the Beacon arrived on the scene in December 1854. Still later, Samuel Lloyd Roberts (1831-April 5, 1883), previous editor of the Examiner, became its proprietor and published it for years.


Two enterprising men in 1863, Samuel Vivian and Thomas Maddocks started The Stratford Herald in the Gordon Block (Fire Proof Block), now listed as 10 Downie St. The paper has passed through several hands, always retaining its character as a strong Conservative journal, and its reputation as a good newspaper. For a time it was owned and edited by J. M. Moran. An instant rival of the Beacon, it became property of the Dingman family (see Dingman Place), in 1886, and stayed in that family's hands until 1999, when it was sold to Sun Media Corp.

William Buckingham wrote a bio on Hon.  Alexander Mackenzie, His Life and Times (Toronto 1892) 

The first Stratford Times was started in 1874 by Henry T. Butler. He was succeeded  by Edward Kneitl. In 1887, after the Beacon and the Herald became dailies, the Times languished and was annexed to the Herald that year. 

Another victim of competition from the introduction of dailies was The Stratford Advertiser, run by Frank Pratt and Cornelius Tracey. That paper has been in publication for about 10 years. In 1878, John Henry Schmidt (1835-1912) started a German- language weekly called Der Canadisches Kolonist in partnership with Michael Scherer. Shortly, Scherer left the partnership to print his own paper, Der Perth Volksfreund, which he eventually moved to Listowel. The Kolonist ran for many years.

A paper with a short run was The Stratford Sun, also started by Henry T. Butler, in 1890, but it was moved to Wiarton, where it perished. The Stratford Mirror was launched in 1923 by Fletcher Johnston and continued under David Rae Sr. until 1948.

More recently, there was the second Stratford Times, a weekly that appeared in 1964 and closed ended in 1976, at which time a series of "shoppers" (advertising

sheets) shopping sheets followed in its place. One of those became a paper known as The Weekly News that shone briefly and faded in 1980. 

Note: Stratford papers on microfilm begin in 1855 with gaps in the 1860s and 1870s. Primarily, the reels contain the Beacon and the Herald to 1923 and the Beacon-Herald after that. They may be read at the Stratford Public Library and at the Stratford-Perth Archives. The Mirror, Times and Weekly News have not been microfilmed but back files are kept in the stack room at the archives. Source: Stratford-Perth Archives

Elijah Kitchen Barnsdale, 1902 Stratford-Perth Archives.  

E. K. Barnsdale's "The Hub," on Market Place

Elijah Kitchen Barnsdale (1850-1916) owned and operated Barnsdale's Trading Post, at 21-27 Market Pl. It was known as The Hub, and was one of the city's biggest and busiest stores. It employed as many as three delivery wagons and sold everything from hardware to prescription drugs and groceries. 

The Hub was especially famous for its fine baked goods and cream puffs "that you'd lie down and die for. Barnsdale was described as a short man who enjoyed good cigars and had a way with the ladies. He and his wife Sarah Eliza (Sprowl), 1846-1934, had eight children. Their home was at 62 Church Street. 

E. K. was a city alderman from 1900 through 1903, and 1906 before leaving the council to head the water commission. He reclaimed an aldermanic seat in 1913 and 1914, was then was the city's mayor in 1915 and in 1916 until his death in August of that year. 

(see photo with Mayor Stamp in 1902 on Hibernia Street

The Hub on Market Place was like a department store.  Photo taken in about 1910: Stratford-Perth Archives 

* Carolynn Bart-Riedstra in her book Stratford says Cecil Cook is the man with the full white apron. Behind the counter are Ellen Schmidt and Jean Griffin. The others are not identified. 

A Barnsdale tea ad                Stratford-Perth Archives.

The picture above shows the gracious interior of the store with its curved central counter and elegant side cases. There was an ornate tin ceiling and a glass cashier's booth.  Money was transported to and from the cash in tin capsules propelled overhead on singing wires.  

On some market days, in the square right outside, you could find special days for hay or wood, depending on the time of year. Saturdays would feature farm produce, and there were always bargains for the consumer. Vendors were licensed and subject to inspection, so they often gave the customer a bit more rather than risk being fined for selling short.  

Sometimes, there was special entertainment. Medicine shows might be set up, where magic tricks were performed and "snake oil" sold. There was always someone trying to sell someone else a cure-all for whatever ailed you. 

At night, the wagons were lit with flares. Sources: Mary Jane Lennon: A Stratford Album and Carolynn Bart-Riedstra, Stratford

In the photo below on Market Day, Barnsdale's "The Hub" can be seen at the left of the picture. The Stratford Beacon reported that the store boasted 4,650 feet of floor space. They advertised across their front that they sold patent medicines, confectionary, tin ware, granite ware, china ware,  foreign fruits, wedding cakes, fine candies. 

The Ubelacker butcher shop, Market Place, now Cora Couture, 53 Market Pl.

A photo from the Ubelacker glass plate photo negative collection at the Stratford-Perth Archives.(Stratford-Perth Archives) 

The  Ubelackers' dynasty   

The Ubelackers were a well-known and respected family that lived in Stratford since 1855. They originally came from Saxony in Germany. Christian (1815-1864), a butcher, and his wife Johanna (1817-1875) and family arrived in Canada in between 1848 and 1852. They settled in the area around Seebach’s Hill. In 1855, they moved to Stratford and Christian established a meat business with partner George Larkworthy. It was the beginning of four generations of Ubelackers owning this business.

Christian’s son Henry (1838-1926) joined his father in the business and, when Christian died in 1864, took over its operation. In 1888, Henry bought the property at the corner of Market Place and Wellington Street, where Cora Couture is today, and put up a new building for the meat market. The name of the business remains visible on the building's southwest wall.

Henry married Jane Glendinning (1837-1917) of Streetsville, Ont., in 1865. They had three children, all born in Stratford: Ada Marie, Frederick and Lillian May. In addition to being in the meat business, Henry was chief of the volunteer fire brigade in the early years of Stratford. 

In 1909, Henry’s son Fred (1844-1863), took over the business after being a partner for 18 years. He was the third generation of Ubelackers to run the business. After him, his two sons, Gordon and Eldon, carried on until 1954. At that time, they sold the name, abattoir and equipment to Gerhard Weidman. It was the first time in 100 years that a Ubelacker was not at the helm of that meat business. 

As of 2023 a street named Ubelacker has been nominated for the Ubelackers. 

Frederick Ubelacker, was an avid photographer and the founder of the Stratford Camera Club in 1900. His collection of negatives was donated to the Stratford-Perth Archives by his grandson in 1975 and is a rare early record of candid shots of daily life.  

In 2006, the archives, in conjunction with Gallery Stratford and photographer Terry Manzo, who printed the black and white photos from the 300-plus original glass-plate negatives, showcased the images in an exhibit at the gallery called The Archives Project: The Photographs of Fred Ubelacker. The photographs depict a wonderful playful quality of not just the photographer but of his subjects. Some of the photos shown were children tobogganing, a small child in a buggy pulled by a dog, and the family’s pet monkey and chickens, too. Fred liked to do trick or experimental photography. He would expose two or three images of the same person in one photograph. Source: Reflections: Stratford-Perth Archives

Victorian Gothic at 33 and 37 Market Pl., built 1899 Stratford and District Historical Society. 

E. G. Budd, a Stratford institution

The E. G. Budd store served Stratford from 1922 to 1988, and many are the memories of kind words, fresh produce, large bags of feed and seed, different grains for animals and birds and, various kinds of bulbs for gardens, grass seeds and clover for the field or lawn, and all the gardening needs one might ever  want.  

There was careful measuring and weighing -- even of kids and dogs -- on the big floor scale built into the floor and another that moved (see below). And paper bags and string from a twine roll that ran along the ceiling. 

There was even home delivery for items such as carrots or tomatoes by the bushel, things too heavy to carry. There were seed drawers and and bins for flour and sugar and porridge mixtures, and wonderful aromas that reminded everyone of yesteryear. And let's not forget the aroma of Dustbane on the creaky floors.  

Some youngsters will remember that at the Budd store you could buy a bag of peas that would become the ammo for the 36-inch straws (a.k.a. peashooters) available at Ted's Sporting Goods on Ontario Street, which became Ted's Hobby Shop on Wellington Street. And apples. You could buy an apple at Budd's as a treat. Or candy. And bamboo poles for fishing, or for the home-made high jump bar in the back yard. 

The building at 33 -37 Market Pl., considered Victorian Gothic in style, was built in 1899 for William Robison Marshall. George Larkworthy (see Ontario Street), ran his butcher shop at 33 Market Pl. from 1903 to 1912 and later from 1919-1937. Edward Tout, a butcher but also a grocer, who lived at 8 Ballantyne Ave., occupied the premises from 1913 to 1915, and after the Second World War. McDermid and Kyle Hardware served customers there from 1948 to 1963, at that location by the Canadian Red Cross from 1967 into the late 1980s. (see photo to the left).

Before Elmer George Budd (1887-1952) was at 35 Market Pl., there was another flour, feed and seed store at that address from 1913 to 1915. Its proprietor was Oliver Henry Killer, who lived at 370 Huron St. Elmer Budd and his wife Lillian lived at 100 Brunswick St. in 1930. By 1940 their son Keith, still living at home, was working for his father and the store had become E. G Budd and Son. Many remember Keith Budd in his fedora, serving customers; there were no ball caps worn to work in those days. 

In 1988,the  Stratford Historical Society noted the building originally had a flat roof line. The wall dormers and cornices were added later. The building has unusual semi-elliptical windows and retains its original double doors. Budd's retained the original storefront details including the signboard and the end piers, plus the original hardwood floors. Sources: Stratford and District Historical Society;  If You Grew up in Stratford . . . FB; Vernon's Stratford city directories. Compiled by Gord Conroy

Budd's weigh scale

Budd's storefront, 37 Market Pl.  Photos: Stratford and District Historical Society

Photos of E.G. Budd history by Mirjam Shut. 

Hand-operated elevator, electric coil for driving the belts, hand-painted scene on the front window just before the sale of the building in 2012 to show what the back of the building was like in the early days.  Source: If you grew up in Stratford . . . FB

Black Swan Coffee House

"Black Swan" aka the Dirty Duck  380 Ontario St. now an empty lot.

In 1961, under the banner “JAZZ – ESPRESSO– PEACE”, The Black Swan Coffee-House (Harry W. Finlay, proprietor) brought to Stratford its first espresso machine and regular after-theatre music, poetry, dramatic readings and untrammeled discussion of issues of the day. Migrating from 380 Ontario Street (1961) through 32 Downie Street (1962-63), and 42 Wellington Street (1964-65), the swan finally settled at 31 Market Place for a decade, and around it there grew a community of sorts.

It was the place to be for folk music, poetry, and dramatic readings during the 60s and 70s. The Coffee House featured Canadian Legends, including: Perth County Conspiracy (does not exist), featuring Cedric Smith, Terry Jones, and David Woodhead; Brent Titcomb; John Jackson; Valdy; and Joe Hall. Performances usually began after the evening performances at the Stratford Festival and often lasted until 4 in the morning.

Harry Finlay 1964

Harry Finlay  and locations of the Black Swan

It was on April fools' day in 1961 that Harry Finlay and his friend John Cohen hitch-hiked from Hamilton to Stratford, bent on establishing an after theatre entertainment place in the Festival city. He and Cohen had their heart set on something known in those days as a coffee house. In the previous summer they had been to Stafford where they were surprised to learn there was not such a place. In April 1961, they trapsed through the city until they found a deserted house at 380 Ontario St. The landlord was willing to rent it for $200 a month  to Finley and with that, in came a third partner, Chris Thompson, who had a 1951 monarch and $600 to put towards the plumbing problems. The trio plowed their way through a mass of bureaucratic red tape. They also talked to Tom Patterson, founder of The Stratford Shakespearean Festival, who liked their idea and encouraged them to create a one page information sheet and distribut it to as many people as possible.  

On a warm Friday night in July 1961 the Black Swan opened to the public and stayed open until the student matinees at the festival ended about three months later. Some nights, there were as few as 10 to 20 patrons but other nights the place was jammed. They drank espresso or a variety of teas or cider and munched and sandwiches and bagels  

However, by the following spring in 1961, the Swan's rented house on Ontario Street was gone, demolished after it was declared unsafe . Finley was without official partners now and after some scrambling, he found what he needed at 32 Downie St., on the second floor of the building.

Cedric Smith (see below) was one of the first artists at the Swan. He played a guitar and sang mostly Clancy Brothers, and Kingston Trio songs. He was so popular that he became the Swan's resident troubadour before the first Swan season had ended.

It was in the Black Swan's new home that Smith, who had a keen interest in theatre, worked some Shakespeare material into his performances. It was a vital place, remembers Finley, but it had to be because by then there were two other coffee houses operating the city, the Cats Eye on Market Place and the Three Ravens in the Optimist  Club hall near the arena. After two years, in 1963, the Swan's time at 32 Donnie Downie St. came to an end as a result of competition.

Next, in 1964, Finley found around the corner and down the street, a larger second floor space that included a state of the art commercial grade kitchen . What he found was the Worth Block and the former Blacksmith Shop restaurant at 42 Wellington. He rented the location for the summer for $200 a month.

As the Swan's 1965 season wound down, Finley was thinking about another locale, which came to be the second floor hall at 31 Market Place formally the Fiesta Dine and Dance Hall. It was not as polished or grand as 42 Wellington St., but it had more space.  Seating capacity at the new address was about doubled from 100 to 200 for Harry Findlay and the Black Swan and for performers and patrons they had another decade of mostly good times. The Swan's last season was in 1975. Source: 42 Wellington, the music and the memories by Dean Robinson. Robinson tells a comprehensive story that talks about the performers (with pictures) at the Black Swan.                       

Perth County Conspiracy

Cedric Alan Smith 

Cedric Alan Smith, actor, writer, musician was born at Bournemouth, England 21 Sept 1943.  Smith is well known in Canada as the decent and good-hearted farmer, Alec King, in the long-running TV series Road to Avonlea, and is also a successful stage performer and prolific television and film actor.

He emigrated to Waterloo, Ont, in 1953 and as a teenager became a folksinger, touring coffee houses such as the Black Swan and universities in Canada and the US before founding the iconic Stratford-based folk group Perth County Conspiracy (1969-1977).    Source: 42 Wellington, the music and the memories by Dean Robinson. 

Richard Keeland

The Perth County Conspiracy is forever associated with the Black Swan Coffee House where the band would play shows following performances at the nearby Shakespeare Festival, often playing to 4:00 AM. The two main co-conspirators were Cedric Smith and Richard Keelan along with a roving cast of musicians, friends and family members.

Richard Keelan was part of the Detroit scene in the mid-60s - he was a member of the Spike Drivers and The Misty Wizards (both with Ted Lucas) before coming up to Canada. The Spike Drivers and Misty Wizards put out some fantastic stuff - for example It's Love by the latter:

This mural of the Black Swan is in Allen's Alley 

Cedic Smith , Richard Keelan

Richard Keelan moved to Canada and settled near Stratford and met Cedric Smith. In 1969 they named themselves the Perth County Conspiracy. In 1970 they recorded their first album (Does Not Exist) for Columbia. They were also invited to record an album in the CBC studios; their self-titled LP which immediately followed their first. They then put out a double live album (Alive) on Columbia and recorded several more (live) albums under their own label.Source :

See Allen's Alley to hear their music