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Run, Rum, Run


Run, Rum, RunRum Running in the County. The words stir up your imagination. They suggest adventure, danger --- even tragedy. Was it some or any of these? And if it was --- well, just how dangerous? Are there people still around who can tell us how it all worked and knew about it first-hand? George Miller was a rum runner and his nephew John Miller remembers him well.

Stories about liquor use go back as far as the earliest settlers – the United Empire Loyalists, who started arriving in the county in the early 1800s. Whiskey was part of life and was always readily available. In the earliest times peddlers who arrived by boats to sell pots and pans, also carried whiskey. Settlers used it for comfort at funerals, gaiety at parties and weddings, and blessings at christenings. Some even hoped it could inoculate them from their feelings of isolation and fear.

Later, shopkeepers stocked it either on shelves, behind the counter, or between the walls. You paid cash, received credit, or you bartered. And when you couldn’t afford that, you just made it yourself using the bounty of County apples. Few in the county didn’t know about rum running in the early 1900s and for many it offered a way of making money when hard currency was scarce.

In this episode you hear the voices of John Miller, Murray Head, Albert Copp, Everett Pringle, Betty Cronk, Bart Cunningham, Janet Lunn, Floral Minaker and the late Quentin Minaker.



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