Susannah Kemp: a pioneer of historic significance to Stittsville

(The architectural beauty of the former Kemp Tavern owned by Susannah Kemp and her son John. The home was built in 1868 by Mr. Scott of Richmond. The ‘essence of a time that once was’ is captured in this Perpetua Quigley watercolour sketch and Haiku. The former tavern is now the home of Cabotto’s Restaurant on Hazeldean Road in Stittsville, Ontario.)

woman of substance
mother, farmer, innkeeper
pioneer’s legend

Susanna Kemp, born in 1807, was an immigrant from Tipperary, Ireland. She and her husband, William, were early farming pioneers in the village of Stittsville, of the former Goulbourn Township.

Upon William’s death when she was 34 years old and with seven children, Susanna established a thriving business serving travellers as an innkeeper and operating a tavern.

After the Great Fire of 1870, a new railway line was built south of her homestead. There was a change in travel patterns which affected the flow of guests to the inn and tavern. The business was no longer viable. 

Susanna stayed in the homestead and continued on the farm until her death in 1890. The house stands as one of the finest architectural beauties in the village of Stittsville. 

Suzanna is an excellent example of a woman who contributed significantly and to the development of Goulbourn Township.


4 thoughts on “Susannah Kemp: a pioneer of historic significance to Stittsville”

    1. The source was from the Goulbourn Township Historical Society records. That is all that was mentioned as to the builder/construction of the stone home.

  1. We should name a park/road/building after Susannah Kemp, there needs to be more women recognized in our Village.

    1. There is in fact a park named after Susannah Kemp. It will be located in the 3rd phase of the Abbottsville Crossing Development between Laburnum Walk and Ponderosa Street. In 2017, Barbara Bottriell and Lesley McKay submitted an application to commemorate Susanna Kemp in honour of her historical significance to our community of Stittsville. At the same time, Barb and I jointly submitted 4 other historical names to be recognized with official naming rights. One of which was Mrs. Grace Thompson, for whom the meeting room at the Stittsville Library is named. Mrs. Thompson was instrumental in bringing a library to Stittsville. The other names submitted were also accepted by the City and have been or will be recognized and incorporated into Stittsville through the naming of roads, parks and amenities.

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