1934 Robbery, Police Chase, Shooting Story

Just for the record, if you haven’t seen the private Facebook post or public Tweet

Local historian Dave Allston has dug up a 1934 story about some kids who idealised John Dillinger way too much, leading to a robbery and a dramatic chase across town with the young robbers shooting at the police from a stolen car, that ended up in our neighbourhood (at Pontiac and Cowley) with the thieves escaping into the forest. You can read about it on his web site at:


Neighbour Debra e-mailed Dave and wondered if Pontiac Street connected directly to Island Park Drive (there are remnants of the road with manholes in the woods, and the related old sewer line caused backflow in the 2019 flood and has since been plugged up). Dave replied back, with this 1926 map:

[Map of Champlain Park area roads in 1926]

There’s also a 1950’s map in our Roads in the Woods – Pontiac and Other Street Expansion Plans post.

It’s interesting to see how First Street became Premier Avenue, and now it’s Amanda (name of a neighbour’s child) to avoid duplicate names across the amalgamated Ottawa.

Later on Dave commented that it became Carlou Avenue briefly, from 1947 to the early 1950s. Here’s the fire insurance map he mentioned:

[1948 Fire Insurance Map where First Street becomes Carlou in 1947]

Calling all community history buffs! For a fascinating read

Captain Dan & Mary CowleyThe 400th anniversary last year of Samuel de Champlain’s voyage up the Ottawa River and its focus on the natural and human history of Champlain Park inspired one of our area residents to research a pioneering Canadian family with deep roots in England—the Cowley family, after whom Cowley Avenue is named.

Christine Jackson described the Cowley family’s Canadian beginnings and their significant and sometimes colourful role in the development of the Ottawa Valley in an article published last fall in her local family history society’s journal entitled The Cowley Family Saga: From Sherwood Forest to the NHL

During the last year Christine has been researching the Cowley family’s origins in England and the second part of the story, Cowley Family Saga has just been published.

Both these articles these can now be accessed on the Champlain Park website’s on the Home page under Our History drop-down tab.