WORKING INTO THE FLAT COUNTRY 207
in that section, supplemented what Mr. Henry had said. "In the very early days," he said, "a bushel of potatoes was considered h, fair price for a fine walnut tree. Even at a comparatively late date, from two and a half to three and a half dollars per thousand was considered a reasonable price for elm logs. When the figure went up to four dollars people thought that they were making lots of money. If I had on my home hundred acres all the elm timber that has been cut from it, the growing trees would be worth over fifteen thousand dollars. There must have been a million feet cut from the place before I secured it."
Not many years ago Morpeth was and Ridge-town was not. To-day Ridgetown is a thriving town and Morpeth is almost unknown. The changed conditions are in this case wholly due to the influence of that most powerful of all factors in regulating commercial conditions—the railway. The Burys and Springsteins, whose homes are near Morpeth, can tell you of a time when that thriving little village formed one of the great market centres for wheat in Western Ontario. At that time there was no Ridgetown and very little of Chatham. In fact, farmers then teamed grain from the immediate vicinity of where the Maple City now stands to sell it in Morpeth. It was a common thing to see three or four vessels lying at the dock on the lake front taking on grain, while a stretch of teams a mile and a half long, waiting for delivery, extended back along the road. And, even as Naples in a day far back had its Pompeii, so had Morpeth its suburbs. One of