Brant County History







Brant’s Ford situated below Lome Bridge and nearer to the T. H. & B. Bridge.
The arrow indicates the point of emergence on the west side. It is located be-
tween properties on Gilkison Street, owned by William Daniels and
Jemima Jones. The city owns this lot and some suitable indication
should certainly be placed there.
Aeroplane view of the present section of the city including Brant’s Ford.














I. The Attiwandaron, or “Neutral” Indians, who are first mention-
ed aa occupying the region now known as Brant County
Chief village located where Brantford now stands Habits
and Customs of the Tribe 15

II. Brant, the Indian Chief, after whom City and County are
named Splendid services rendered by him and Six Nations
Indians to British cause Visit to Mohawk Village, formerly
situated near Mohawk Church Haldimand Deed giving Six
Nations six miles of land on each side of the Grand River 21

III. The Brant Monument and Unveiling Ceremonies Mohawk
Church, the Oldest Protestant Edifice in Upper Canada-
Brant’s Tomb . 53


IV. Early Beginnings of Brantford Some of First Settlers Surren-
der of Town Site by Six Nations Indians BurwelPs Map
and Original Purchasers of Lots fl&

V. Coming of the Whites Turbulent Times when Place was a
Frontier Village Oldest Native Born Brantfordite Tells of
Conditions in 1845 Incorporation as Town and First Assess-
ment Roll 97

VI. Brantford in 1850 Dr. Kelly’s Reminiscences of 1855 Brantford
in 1870 Incorporation as City, Mayors and Aldermen
The Market Square Market Fees Brant’s Ford and
Bridges : 118

VII. The Press Medical Profession Bench and Bar 140

VIII. Brantford’s Fire Fighters Great Fire of 1860 The Story of
the Hospitals Hostelries and Taverns Amusement Places
and Coming of the Movies Parks 155

IX. Trade and Transportation Highways Stage Coaches Grand
River Navigation Company Passenger and Freight Boats
ran from Brantford to Buffalo Steam Railways Brantford
Street Railway 177

X. Visits of Members of the Royal Family and Executive Heads
Three Direct heirs to the Throne Guests of Brantford Earl
Dufferin Makes the Longest Stay Opening of Provincial
Exhibition and Dedication of Lome Bridge _. 194

XI. Coming of Electric Power First Development at Canal Locks
Western Counties Company The Hydro System Brantford
and Hamilton and Lake Erie and Northern lines Story of
the Grand River Brantford Waterworks 213

XII. Educational Brantford Public Schools The First Grammar
School Collegiate Institute Industrial Classes School for
the Blind Young Ladies’ College Free Library 227

XIII. Crimean Celebration Fenian Raid Regular Troops Located
Here Poet Office Customs and Inland Revenue Brant-
ford Police Department Gas Works 240

1 1 Q





XIV. Pioneer Life in the County and Homes of the Earliest Settlers
Clearing the Land Family Bible Often the one Source of
Instruction Means of Cooking No Saturday Bargains in
Clothe* 25

XV. Brant County Reminiscences by an Old Time Resident Some
of the People and Incidents of Early Days Visit of an
Observing Scotch Advocate in 1831 Prices of Live Stock,
Farm Labor, Implements, etc. The Early Hotels 262

XVI. Commencement of Brant County Settlement Once United with
two Other Counties Attainment of Individual Existence
Proceedings of First Meeting of Separate Council Coiat of
Arms List of Wardens and County Councillors 273

XVII. The Court House and Deed of the Square Sheriffs and other
Officials of Brant County Soil and General Agriculture
Development of Education in the County Mohawk Insti-
tute Laycock Home Brant Sanitarium 285

XVIII. Incidents of the War of 1812-14 The Engagement at Malcolm’s
Mills Some Brant County Pensioners Rebellion of 1837
Story of Dr. Duncombe’s Leadership of the Uprising in
this Section and Details of his Thrilling Escape 300

XIX. The Invention of the Telephone Graham Bell the Son of a
Distinguished Father Coming of the Family to Tutela
Heights Early Experiments Inception here of Great Dis-
covery is Fully Established Distinguished Inventor Takes
Part in Memorial Unveiling 308

XX. Early Incidents of the Townships Burford Very Nearly Became
the Home of a Peculiar Sect First Settlers for the Most
Part Consisted of Sturdy and Capable Men 324

XXI. Political History of the Two Brants Names of the Men who
Have Occupied Seats in the Dominion House and Provincial
Legislature One Premier, a Speaker of the Senate and other
Ministers 351


Facing Page

Brant’s Ford Frontispiece

Joseph Brant (from the painting by George Romney) 22

Interior ancient Six Nations House 28

Haldimand Deed Containing Grant to Six Nations 34

Perspective View Mohawk Church 36

First Six Nations Council House 40

Present Six Nations Council House 44

Joseph Brant in Later Life 48

Brant Monument 56

Mohawk Church 62

Scriptures in Mohawk 64

Queen Anne Communion Service 68

An Early Brantford Home and Old View of Market Street 74

Prominent Village Residents 80

Elora, Founded by a Brantford Citizen 82

Old View of One of Present Manufacturing Areas 88

Market St. 18751920 96

Corner of Colborne and Market Streets in the Sixties 104

Corner of Colborne and Market Streets, 1920 112

First Mayors of Town and City * 126

First Owners of Courier and Expositor 144

Early Medical Men 148

Members of Bench and Bar 152

Hospital and Donors 162

Prince of Wales Sleeping Car (1860) 194

Prince of Wales at Mohawk Church (1919) 200

Grand River Near Elora and at Dunnville 220

Old Central School 228

Royal Fusiliers Parading on Market Square 1867 242

The Original Gas Works 248

The First Two Wardens of Brant 276

Court House in 1875 282

Sheriffs of Brant 288

Dr. Charles Duncombe 304

Dr. Alexander Graham Bell, Inventor of the Telephone 308

Bell Monument 316

Bell Homestead, Tutela Heights 320

Six Nations Council in Session 346

. Onondaga Long House 348

Members of Early Parliament and Dominion House 352

Members of Ontario Legislature 370

(Photographs and reproductions by E. P. Park & Co., Brantford.)


This volume deals more with events than with persons, and in-
dividuals have only been mentioned in so far as they have been identified
with the early development period, or have held positions of more or
less public prominence.

The plan pursued in some other such productions of compiling an
illustrated biographical record of subscribers, has not in any sense been
followed in this instance and the selection of the material has rested
entirely with the author.

As far as Brantford is concerned, its growth, while never of the
boom order, has always been steady. The progress which has been
achieved must be mainly attributed to the fortuitous circumstance that
from the earliest days the municipality has always contained residents
possessed of enterprise and vision. The inauguration of the Grand River
Navigation Co., was one of the first manifestations in this regard, followed
by the reaching after railways, and still later by the attracting of indus-
tries. When there is added to these things the fact that Brantfordites
have always had supreme confidence in the future of the community, and
have ever most heartily co-operated in anything tending to this end, the
explanation is readily found as to why the little settlement located on
Indian land in 1830, should to-day be a thriving city of well over 30,000
people, the fourth industrial city of all Canada in the matter of manu-
factured exports, the hub of many railroad and radial lines, a place of
well kept homes, with not the slightest sign of any slum district within
its entire borders, and possessed of municipally owned waterworks, a
municipally owned street railway, and a municipally owned Hydro Elec-
tric System, while electric power and light are supplied from Niagara
and DeCew Falls and natural gas is also available.

The frame structures of the earlier days have given place to miles
upon miles of fine residential streets mainly working men’s homes and
to the splendid class of men engaged in the local industries and the
absence of trade disputes, must also be attributed much of what we
have become. As for the future, it is full of a promise commensurate
with the past and nothing more than this need be said.

Of the County it may also be claimed that there are few agricultural
areas anywhere which can surpass the fine farms and the sterling qualities
of their occupants.

From the first arrival of Thayendanegea and his warriors of the Six
Nations, to the successful completion of one of the greatest of modern
inventions the telephone Brantford and Branty County possess much
material of historic interest, which it has been the endeavor of this
volume to preserve.

In the matter of the life of Brant, the principal authority is the
two volume history with reference to that Chief published by Stone in


1838, but many other sources of information have also been used in
the compilation of the chapter devoted to that notable man.

Thanks are due and hereby tendered to McClelland & Stewart, Pub-
lishers, Toronto, for permission to quote from “The Pioneers of the
Cross in Canada,” by Dean Harris, and from the “Reminiscences, Politi-
cal and Personal,” of Sir John Willison; to the Publishers’ Association,
Toronto, for use of quotation from “Canada and Its Provinces ;” to Judge
Ermatinger of St. Thomas, for permission to use an extract from “The
Talbot Regime,” with reference to the Brant County uprising led by Dr.
Duncombe; and to Major R. C. Muir of Burford, author of that excellent
work, “The Early Political and Military History of Burford.”

Acknowledgment is also made of courtesies extended by Mr. A. W.
Burt, Miss Gilkison, Lieut-Col. Leonard, City Clerk; E. Kenwood, Public
Librarian; Major Smith, Superintendent of Six Nations Indians; Mrs.
J. Y. Brown, Mr. J. Hewitt, of the Smithsonian Institute, Washington; Mr.
E. Roberts, Hydrometic Engineer, Hydro-Electric Commission; Mr. S. F.
Passmore, from whom the early Brantford views were obtained; Rev. Mr.
Woodside, Dr. R. B. Orr of the Ontario Provincial Museum; Senator
Fisher, Judge Hardy, Mr. W. B. Race, Mr. A. E. Watts, K.C., County
Clerk; J. Fair, Mr. C. Whitney, Mr. W. W. Ellis of the Ontario Division
Court Department, Torontp; Mr. L. Pratt, Hamilton; Miss F. M. Staton,
Reference Department, Toronto Public Library. The files of the Courier
and of the Expositor proved of much use and thanks are returned to
Mr. T. H. Preston for access to the last named.

This volume is a local production throughout, the printing having
been done by the Hurley Printing Co., Ltd., of this city, and the cuts,
almost in their entirety, having been prepared by the engraving depart-
ment of the Walker Press, Paris.

One well known writer, in his preface to a production involving
laborious detail, said:

“In this work, when it shall be found that much is omitted, let it
not be forgotten that much likewise is performed.”

It is hoped that to a modified extent a similar claim can be made
in this instance and in any event there has been an earnest endeavor to
do justice to a most interesting record.





The first residents of this section of the country of whom there is
any authentic record, consisted of a tribe of Indians who called them-
selves the Attiwandarons. They were not confined to the small area
of this County by any means, for as a matter of course there were no
delimitations in those early days, and their hunting grounds ranged
from the Genesee Falls to Sarnia, and South of a line drawn from Tor-
onto to Goderich.

After the first settlement of Europeans in Canada made by the French
navigator, Jacques Carrier, in 1535 and the naming of the territory as
“New France,” there came other French expeditions, that of Samuel
De Champlain in 1615, having in his entourage friars of the Recollets
one of the three branches of which the Franciscan Brotherhood consisted.
Their object was that of missionary effort among the Indians. One of
the first areas of their operations was among the populous Huron tribes
of what is now called Simcoe County. From their frontier village ex-
tended a maze of forest to the Niagara River and beyond, and the region
was regarded as more or less of a desolate nature. The occupants of this
vast territory were the Attiwandarons, afterwards named the “Neutrals”
by the French because they remained neutral in the fierce ‘and continuous
warfare between the Six Nations, then residing in what is now New York
State; and the Hurons, residing along the shores of Georgian Bay and
about what is now Barrie.

In 1626 Father La Roche Daillon, a Recollet missionary,
Head Village undertook to visit these people, and he found them to be
on Brantford a powerful tr&Cm Dean Harris m his “Pioneers of the

Cross in Canada” has translated the record given by
Father Daillon of his travels. He found twenty-eight villages in the
Neutral country. The name of the principal village, occupied by the
head chief, Souharissen, was Kandoucho, and Dr. Coyne, author of “The
Country of the Neutrals,” and Adam Hunter, Secretary of the Ontario
Historical Society, have both located Kandoucho as being at Brantford.


Sanson’s Map of 1656 also shows the site. In 1640 Fathers Breboeuf and
Chaumonot also visited the Neutrals. (Father Breboeuf is the celebrated
Jesuit martyr who was killed by the Iroquois in 1649 at the time of the
destruction of the Huron Mission). The head chief, whom Dai 11 on had
met in 1626 was still living in the head village, to which they gave the
name, “Notre Dame des Anges” (Our Lady of the Angels.) Other
Neutral villages were also named after various Saints “St. Francis”
near Sarnia, “St. Joseph” near Chatham, “St. Michael” near Sandwich
and “St. Alexis” near St. Thomas. The whole mission was known as
“The Mission of the Angels to the Neutral Nation” and the fact that
the title of said mission wlas bestowed on the village where Brantford
now stands demonstrates that by red men, and early missionaries alike,
it was regarded as the most beautiful spot in a beautiful region, a verdict
fully sustained by present day estimate.

A. According to the records left by Father Daillon, as trans-

Luxuriant lated by Dean Harris, no part of the American continent
A** 68 ” furnished a more healthy or luxuriant growth of staple

timbers than the entire Attiwandaron area. The great American pine,
reaching to the height of sixty or seventy feet yielded large quantities
of gum that served the Indian for seaming his canoe, and dressing his
wounds and sores. Cedars, firs and spruce grew side by side with the
tamarack and hemlock. All over were to be found magnificent growths
of maple, birch, beech and linden, or basswood. The oak, ash and elm
with the walnut tree and swamp maple furnished a safe retreat for a var-
iety of wild animals which have long since disappeared.

Aspens of all sorts on which the beavers fed, basswood that furnished
valuable wood for preserving the Indian grain, and a species of hemlock
out of which he made his rope, grew at convenient distances from each
village. Chestnuts, mulberry and hazel trees grew side by side with
the elder, hawthorne and plum. Willows and alders drooped over the
winding streams. Wild fruit trees of vast variety, gooseberry, currant
and other fruit producing bushes, covered the sides of the sloping hills.
The raspberry, strawberry and blackberry plants, and wild vines rich in
their wealth of grapes, furnished to the Indians in season, abundance
and variety of savage luxuries. Through this rank and luxurious growth
of timber, vine, bush and plant, there roamed countless numbers of ani-
mals of great variety and many species. Here in their native forest
roamed the elk, caribou and black bear; deer, wolves, foxes, martens and
wild cats filled the woods, the porcupine, ground hog, hares of different
species, squirrels of great variety, including the almost extinct flying
squirrel, were everywhere. Every stream gave hospitable shelter to the


beaver, the otter and the muskrat, while weasels, moles and field mice
burrowed under almost every tree. Snakes of various kinds, lizards of
differing hues, frogs innumerable, added to the life of this wondrous
land. The lakes, ponds, and rivers were alive with swans, brant geese,
wild geese, cranes, ducks, teal, divers of innumerable kinds, ernes, bit-
terns, herons, white pelicans and trumpeter swans.

Birds of varied plumage, the eagle, the wild turkey and different
kinds of partridge filled the woods. Enormous flocks of wild pigeons,
starlings, thrushes, robins and ortolans darkened the heavens when in
flight; swallows, martins, jays and magpies, owls of many species, hum-
ming birds innumerable and myriads of plover and snipe added variety
‘ and life to a land already rich in everything that could tempt the covet-
ousness of man. The streams, rivers and lakes furnished vast varieties
of fish, on which the cormorant, and gull feasted with the indigenous
savage. Such was the land and such the opulence of animal and
vegetable life that lay in the possession of the great Neutral tribe.

They numbered in the neighborhood of twenty thousand
Appearance to thirty thousand souls and as late as 1640, notwithstand-
And Habits, ing that for three years they had suffered severely from

war, famine and sickness, they were able to send into
the field four thousand fighting men. They were a sedentary people,
living for the most part in villages, which were constructed with con-
siderable skill. The men cut down the trees and cleared the land for
sowing while the women did the seeding, weeding, the reaping and
harvesting. They were great tobacco raisers and users. They were
physically the finest class of Indians on the American continent, tall,
straight and well built, remarkable for their endurance and activity, and
as a body so free of any deformity that Daillon states that during his
stay among them, he did not notice a single lame, hunchbacked or
deformed person. They were inveterate gamesters, often gambling for
days and nights. In summer the men wore only moccasins, and the
loin cloth or brayer; they tattooed their bodies with powdered charcoal.
Many of their chiefs and leading warriors underwent the trying ordeal of
tattooing with fixed pigments from head to foot; snakes, worms, animals,
monstrosities of every conceivable nature ornamented, or disfigured their
persons. In winter they clothed themselves in the skins of beasts, but
winter or summer, they wore no covering on their heads. They dressed
their hair each according to his own peculiar whim, but they never
attempted to curl it and held in contempt the man, who even by the
accident of nature, had curled hair.

The women always wore their hair drooping, full upon the back,


and the men and women frequently smeared their heads and bodies with
oil. They were a ferocious people, given over to every form of licentious-
ness, but while polygamy was not condemned among them, it was not
customary to have more than one wife. Yet in the gratification of their
brutal passions and desires they were shameless. Ferocious and valorous,
they were continually at war with the Mascoutins or “Nation of Fire”,
whom they eventually destroyed as a people.

Each warrior carried a small bag around his neck which was known
as the “medicine bag,” and contained one or two objects, or charms,
which he treated with superstitious reverence. When suffering from
colds or kindred ailments they had recourse to vapor baths. Six or seven
at a time would shut themselves up, back to back, in a sweat house, hav-
ing already built the fire and placed the vessels of water at a convenient
distance; large stones were then heated in the fire, water poured on them
and the steam arising produced copious perspiration.

Their principal food was meat and Indian corn, out of
Fond of which they made a palatable dish called sagamite.

ating ana Bread, wine, salt, vegetables and spices were unknown to
them. They were a gluttonous people, who, when not
on the war trail, or hunting, were continually feasting. A feast was
given on the slightest excuse, and one of these of a superstitious nature,
demanded that every man should eat all that was put before him, and it
was frequently a very large amount. As a result, the digestive organs
of many of them were seriously and permanently impaired. It is a sing-
ular fact that among them, as among most of the tribes of North America,
parents were held in great respect by their children.

They were exceedingly fiond of dancing, which partook more of the
nature of a rhythmic stamping than a studied movement. In their war
and scalp dances their fiendish passions found expression in violent
gestures, loud shouting, triumphant song and barbarous feastings, which
were prolonged for many days. Their senses reached a development of
acuteness, and sharpness truly wonderful. They could see objects,
and perceive the smoke of an enemy’s camp when there was nothing to
be discerned by a white man. Their touch was peculiarly sensitive, and
their organs of smell developed to a perfection second only to that of
animals. Such was their intuitive knowledge of locality and places that
it might be said they possessed a sixth sense, for if a Neutral was five
hundred miles from his home, surrounded by a dense wilderness of
forest, lake and stream, he would make straight for his village through
the pathless woods. Their power of endurance almost surpasses belief
and they frequently bore fire, heat or cold without complaint. It was


not exceptional for a Neutral to abstain from food for twelve or fourteen
days to propitiate some Oki or spirit, and such was their contempt for
suffering that even a woman would be despised who complained of pain.

Eloquence was held in high repute and their orators had developed
powers of memory and expression that excited at times the astonishment
of the missionaries. Woman held the same position of gross inferiority
among them as among all the tribes of the American continent. She
molded the earthen pots, spun twine from hemp, wove the rush mats,
and made fishing nets. She extracted oil from fish and the sunflower,
embroidered moccasins with quills of hedgehog, tilled the fields, and bore
burdens of the chase. She became old very early in life. The women
were decently clothed, except that in summer they went with bare breasts
and naked arms, wearing necklaces of wampum, and bead work orna-

In winter the Neutrals lived in dark cabins with a fire in the centre
and an opening in the roof for the smoke to escape. One or two deer
or bear skins sewn together, served for a door. Here every night during
the winter months whole families almost stifled, huddled together from
the bitter cold.

They possessed a rude knowledge of surgery, and util-
Rude ized herbs, sassafras roots and barks of certain trees for

K J l W ^ 6 ^ ffe medicinal purposes. If in the depths of the forest a
of Surgery.

Neutral broke his leg or arm, splints of softest material

were at once improvised; branches of uniform length and thickness were
cut which were lined with down like moss, or soft material gathered in a
neighboring marsh. If the accident occurred in winter, cedar or hem-
lock shavings, interlaid with fine twigs, were used for padding and if
near a marsh or cedar swale, wild hay was gathered and a cushion made
for the wounded limb. Withes of willow osier, or young birch, bound
the splints to the limb. The patient was then placed upon a stretcher
of four young saplings, interwoven with cordings of basswood, and car-
ried to his lodge. Here the splints were taken off and the bone examined
and reset by some member skilled in bone setting, and the patient made
as comfortable as the circumstances permitted. Fractured bones soon
united, for the recuperative powers of the Neutrals were remarkable.
They amputated limbs with stone knives, checking the hemorrhages with
heated stones. Abscesses were cut into with pointed flints, and medicated
decoctions were made from plants and herbs found in the forests. They
were familiar with the use of emetics and laxatives, astringents, and emol-
lients. The so-called Medicine Man, or Shaman, who practised incan-
tations, and was supposed to be in familiar intercourse with the Okies,


was only called in when natural remedies failed.

For a warrior to put his hand to any kind of work was demeaning,
and to assist the women in their daily labor a degradation.

They had no knowledge of God, as we understand the word, but recog-
nized supernatural beings known as Manitous or Okies, to which they
offered propitiatory sacrifices. They held sorcerers and witches in detes-
tation, and when a sorcerer was accused of practising his malign arts, any
member of the tribe was free to kill him. They put great faith in dreams,
for they believed that their tutelary Manitous took this method of giving
warnings, and directions to them.

When one of their number died, the corpse if that of a man, was
dressed in his best garments, his face painted, and the body exposed at
the door of his wigwam. Around him were placed his weapons, his
totem drawn upon his naked breast, his medicine bag suspended from his
neck, and the distinctive symbols which he bore during life attached to
his jerkin. After three days the body was brought into the wigwam and
then retained for weeks or months until the odor of putrefaction became
unbearable. His wife and daughters while the body remained in the
cabin, blackened their faces and gave themselves over to grief and
lamentation, uttering cries and groans, and weeping excessively. When
at length compelled to dispose of the body, they bore it sorrowfully to
a scaffold, placed a tobacco pipe in the mouth, and laid his war club
and bow and arrows by his side. In a few months they buried the
bones, then closed the grave and covered it with large stones to protect
the remains from profanation by wild beasts.

About 1650 the Iroquois found cause to quarrel with the Neutrals and
by 1653 had practically annihilated them. The Attiwandaron villages
were all wiped out, including Kandoucho, and the Grand River Valley
was among the scenes of massacre. The most attractive girls and prob-
ably some of the children were saved, but as a people the Neutrals dis-
appeared, and they are mentioned for the last time as a separate race
in Le Journal des Jesuits July, 1653.

The Iroquois did not occupy this country but simply used it as a
hunting ground. In the old maps after 1658 the former Neutral area is
marked the “Beaver Hunting of the Iroquois.” In later years the Mississ-
auga’s had acquired occupation of the Brant County region, and by them
it was sold to the British Government in connection with the settlement
of the Six Nations here.





At some period during the fifteenth century the league of the Iroquois
was founded, according to tradition. It anticipated by five cen-
turies the recent “League of Nations” and had the same object in view, a
combination to insure peace. The Indian tribes participating were the
Mohawk, Oneida, Onondaga, Cayuga, and Seneca known as the “Five
Nations.” Later the Tuscaroras were admitted, a circumstance which
led to the well known designation “Six Nations.”

The government of this league was placed in the hands of fifty
sachems, divided among the tribes as follows: Mohawks, nine; Oneidas,
nine; Onondagas, fourteen; Cayugas ten and Senecas eight. The Onon-
dagas were at first loath to join and only did so upon the basis of extra
representation. They were also given the right, which exists to this day,
to call and dismiss Council meetings. To each sachemship there was
given an appropriate name, and said name was assumed by each sachem
upon his appointment, and borne until his death, resignation, or deposi-
tion. The same names have been used by successive generations until the
present day and are hereditary in the several tribes to which they be-
long, passing through the female line. The mother of Brant was certainly
not of this Indian aristocracy. Each sachem was entitled to an assistant
chief, or messenger. There were also war chiefs, a title given for mar-
tial ardor, and “Pine Tree” Chiefs, a title bestowed for ability, zeal for
public good and high standing.

This brief outline is necessary in connection with any sketch of Brant,
and it is also appropriate to make some initial reference to the patron
who proved such a determining factor in his early life.

William Johnson afterwards Sir William Johnson was

fL the eldest son of Christopher Johnson, of Warrentown

County Down, Ireland, a family ancient in its descent,

and honorable in its alliances. His mother’s brother, Peter Warren,

afterwards Sir Peter Warren, rendered distinguished service to the British



Navy. He married the sister of James De Lancey then the Chief Justice
of the County of New York, and also for several years Lieutenant Gover-
nor. William Johnson was called to America by his uncle, Sir Peter, in
1738 to superintend a large estate which the latter shortly after his
marriage had purchased in Mohawk Valley. He was then twenty-three
years of age, and was employed in the arduous task of forming a settle-
ment upon the lands of his uncle, and bringing lands into cultivation
for himself. He also kept, although upon a small scale, a country store,
in which his uncle was a partner. All the evidence goes to show that
the means of both uncle and nephew at this period were small. However
William showed himself a man of great enterprise from the first, clear-
ing a large farm for himself, erecting a store house and immediately
opening up trade with both the xvhite inhabitants arid the Indians.
His style of living was plain and his industry great. His figure was robust
and his deportment manly, and commanding. Yet he made himself very
friendly and familiar among the people, with whom he mingled in their
rustic sports, and speedily became popular.

Young Johnson likewise succeeded, beyond all other men, in winning
the confidence and affection of the Mohawk Indians, whose most con-
siderable town, Dyiondarogon, was but a few miles distant. His trade
with them speedily became considerable and the spirit of enterprise which
was to rapidly raise him to fortune, was manifested in a letter which he
sent to his uncle in 1739, and in which he spoke of opening a trading
house in the settlement of the Six Nations on the Susquehanna river some
two hundred miles south. William Stone in writing of him in 1865 says:

“Coming to America at the instance of a relative when he was a very
young man, he threw himself bodily into the wilderness, and with but
little assistance, became the architect of his own fortune and fame.
From the subordinate station of an agent in charge of the landed prop-
erty of his relative, he became successively a farmer, a dealer in peltries,
a merchant, a government contractor, a general in the armies of his
adopted country, and a baronet of the British realm possessed of an
estate of great value, and transcending in extent the broadest domains of
the nobles of his parent land. The hero alike of veritable history and
romance, his actual career being withal more romantic by far than any
of the tales which the writers of fiction have succeeded in inventing for

The Mohawks in 1746 adopted him as a member of their nation and
invested him with the rank of a war chief, with the name “War-raghi-ya-
gey,” (which means “One who unites two peoples together.”) It was em-
inently characteristic of Johnson that in the same year, when the Mo-
Joseph Brant, from the painting of the celebrated artist,

George Romney. Brant posed for this picture when

he visited England as a comparatively young man.


hawks paid a visit to Albany he marched at the head of them “dressed,
painted, and plumed as required by the dignity of his rank.”

It was in 1748, then a widower, that he employed as his housekeeper
Mary Brant, or “Miss Molly” as she was called, a sister of Thayendan-
egea, with whom he lived until his demise, and by whom he had several
children. She always regarded herself as married to the Baronet after
the Indian fashion.

The traditions of the Mohawk Valley state that the acquaintance of
Johnson^vith Molly had a rather wild and romantic commencement. The
story current at the time, was that she was a very sprightly and beautiful
Indian girl of about sixteen, when he first saw her at a regimental muster.
One of the field officers coming near Molly on a prancing steed, by way
of banter she asked permission to mount behind him. Not supposing she
could perform the exploit he said she might. At the word she
leaped upon the crupper with the agility of a gazelle. The horse sprang
off at full speed, and, clinging to the officer, her blanket flying, and her
dark tresses streaming in the wind, she flew about the parade ground to
the infinite merriment of the collected multitude. Johnson was a witness
of the entire spectacle and was much impressed.

The testimony is that they lived in great “union and affection all his
life” and that he always treated her with respect and courtesy. The
alliance was a still further help to Johnson in his influence with the red

He died suddenly in June of 1774, and was succeeded in his title and
estate, by his son John, but the reins of authority, as General Superintend-
ent of the Indian Department, fell into the hands of his son-in-law, Col.
Guy Johnson. Brant for a while, acted as Secretary to the latter. The
Johnsons maintained great style in their living, and Brant was quite an
intimate participant.

Brant or Many have been the writers who have treated of the event-

‘ ‘ Thayendan- f u l lif e f that chief amongst Indians, Brant or “Thayen-
egea. ” danegea” (Two sticks of wood bound firmly together.)

The birth and parentage of the celebrated Indian leader, whose car-
eer had a part in the general history of two great civilized nations, as
well as constituting an important factor in the local history of the par-
ticular County which bears his name, is involved in uncertainty.

Stone, the historian, writing in 1865 said in touching upon this

“The Indians have no heralds college in which the lineage of their
great men can be traced, or parish registers of marriages, and births by
which a son can ascertain his paternity. By some writers Brant, whose


Indian name is Thayendanegea, has been called a half breed; by others
he has been pronounced a Shawanese by parentage, and only a Mohawk
by adoption.”

He was also mentioned as a son of Sir William Johnson, but there is
not a tittle of evidence to support this assertion.

In 1819 the Kingston Christian Record edited by Bishop Strachan,
contained a brief account of Joseph Brant, stating that he was born in
1742 on the banks of the Ohio, whither his parents had migrated from
the valley of the Mohawk. The memo goes on to say that the mother
returned after a lapse of some years with two children, Mary and
Joseph. Her first husband, a full blooded Mohawk had then been dead
a short time, and after her return she married a respectable Indian by the
name of Carrihogo, a news carrier, whose name was Burnet or Bernard,
but by way of contraction he went by the name of Brant. Hence it is
argued that the lad, who was to become the future war chief, was first
known by the distinctive cognomen of Brant’s Joseph, and in process of
time, by inversion, Joseph Brant.

This argument, weak as it may seem, is the only plausible one
advanced to explain the otherwise unexplainable appellation.

While on this subject of birth, it may be mentioned that practically all
histories of Brant have contained the assertion that “The London Mag-
azine of July 1776 contained a sketch of him affirming as a fact, without
question, that he was the grandson of one of the five sachems who visited
England in 1710 during the reign of Queen Anne.”

Boswell the famous biographer of Dr. Johnson, became intimate
with Brant on his first London visit and, as the probable author of the
article spoken of, it has been assumed that he obtained such information
at first hand from the Chief. By the courtesy of the curator of the
British Museum, the writer has been furnished with a copy of the sketch,
and in so far from having any authority on the point under discussion,
it speaks of a single Chief visiting England in the reign of Queen Anne,
and Brant as his grandson.

As already related there were five sachems and they were introduced
at Court by the Duke of Shrewsbury, their visit to the Old Land
exciting considerable attention.

All the evidences which count point to the fact that Brant was not an
hereditary chief. Nevertheless, whatever his origin, he stands acknow-
ledged as one of the big men of his time and the greatest of all Indians.
Of the boyhood of young Brant history is a little more satisfactory in its
details. That he early showed sagacity, and intelligence is evident from
the fact that he came under the favorable notice of Sir William John-


son, then the representative of the Royal Authority among the Indians,
and this statesman and soldier had him, with two other boys, sent to the
Moor Charity School at Lebanon, Connecticut. How long Joseph
remained at this seat of learning, and the proficiency he showed in his
studies, are matters of contention. It is known however that in 1762
he was taken by the Rev. Jeffrey Smith, a missionary, as an interpreter,
so that it is fair to assume that he had made good scholastic progress.
In fact, Weld, the English historian who travelled through the States
in 1795, goes so far as to state that he had made considerable advance
in the Greek and Latin tongues. This is to be doubted, because at a later
period he announced that he had it in mind to commence the study of

The first mention of Brant in the role of a warrior is
r^ a . when he was but thirteen years of age. A mere boy, he

took the warpath at the battle of Lake George in 1755,
when Johnson laid the foundation of his future fame and secured recog-
nition from the King in the shape of a baronetcy and 5,000 by defeating
the French.

In relating the particulars of this engagement to Rev. Dr. Stuart some
years after, the youthful warrior acknowledged. “This being the first
action at which I was present, I was seized with such a tremor when the
firing began that I was obliged to take hold of a small sapling to steady
myself; but after the discharge of a few volleys I recovered the use of
my limbs, and the composure of my mind, so as to support the
character of a brave man, of which I was especially ambitious.” Brant
was no doubt a warrior by nature. “I like,” he said in later days, “the
harpsichord well, the organ better, but the drum and the trumpet best
of all, for they make my heart beat quick.”

His next experience appears to have been with the expedition against
Niagara in 1759. Gen. Prideaux left Oswego on September 1st, with
about 2,000 men and Sir William Johnson joined the expedition with
1,000 warriors of the Six Nations. Brant, then only seventeen, accom-
panied Sir William, who, after Prideaux had been killed, took command
of the expedition. In the attack which followed, the French were
utterly routed.

The Pontiac war next followed, 1763-4. Brant was in the several
campaigns connected therewith, and the brave, and courageous spirit of
himself and fellow warriors helped in the discomfiture of the foe.

Peace then nestled upon the much vexed land and Brant was free
to follow a life of comparative ease.

In the year 1765 he married the daughter of an Oneida Chief, and


settled in his own home in the Mohawk Valley. Here, for some years
he spent a quiet life, acting as interpreter between his people, and the
whites, and lending his aid to missionaries in teaching the Indians,
whose conversion and civilization was commencing to engage much
attention. Sir William Johnson and the Rev. Mr. Inglis drew the atten-
tion of the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel to the necessity of
a Church of England missionary among the Mohawks, and in 1770 they
sent out Rev. Mr. Stuart. Brant assisted him in the translation of a
portion of the New Testament and the Reverend Gentleman wrote con-
cerning this labor as follows:

“During the winter of 1771, I first became acquainted
Helps w jth Brant. He lived at the Mohawk Village, Canajo-

Translate baric, about thirty miles distant from Fort Hunter. On

my first visit to the village where he lived, I found him
comfortably settled in a good house, with everything necessary for the
use of his family, which consisted of two children, a son and a
daughter with a wife in the last stage of consumption. His wife died
soon after, on which he came to Fort Hunter and resided with me for a
considerable time, in order to assist me in adding additional translations,
to the Indian prayer book.” Dr. Stuart further stated that the work
accomplished, in the way of translation, consisted of the Gospel of St.
Mark, part of the Acts of the Apostles, and a short history of the Bible,
with a concise explanation of the Church Catechism.

The son referred to in the above letter was Isaac, who died at Bur-
lington Heights near the City of Hamilton in 1795; the daughter,
Christina, married Aaron Hill, a Catechist in the English Church. She
died at the Mohawk Village, Brantford. In 1772 Brant married a half
sister of his deceased wife.

There is considerable doubt, as to the date on which
Principal Brant was made p r i nc i pa i War Chief of the Confederacy.

War Chief. v . , . , , , , , , , . … , . ,

King Hendnck who had held the position, was killed at

Lake George, and he had been succeeded by Little Abraham. The latter
however refused to fall in with Johnson, and a majority of the tribes,
and he was superseded by Thayendanegea. Without doubt the latter
owed this preferment in large part to war achievements, always
potent with the red men. Brant, by this elevation, now became a
prominent personage not alone among the Indians, but also with the
English speaking people of America.

In 1775 the ominous muttefings upon the part of the Colonists broke
forth into a regular upheaval, and when Col. Guy Johnson evacuated the
Mohawk Valley Captain Brant, he then held that commission in the


regular army and most of the Mohawk warriors accompanied him.
Col. Johnson arrived in Montreal July 14th, expecting soon to organize
a sufficient force to return, and take possession of the Mohawk Valley
homes. At Montreal . Brant appears to have met Generals Carleton and
Haldimand, who courted the services of himself and his followers, and
strengthened them in their allegiance to the King. For the prosecution
of a border warfare, the officers of the Crown could not have obtained
a more valuable ally than Brant.

On November llth 1775 Colonel Johnson sailed from

J? irst Visit to Quebec on a visit to England. He was accompanied by

Brant and the latter was much noticed and courted in

London. One of his exploits was to make a speech in English, setting
forth Mohawk grievances. It was during this visit that the famous Chief
procured a gold finger ring, with his name engraved thereon, stating that
he intended the same should provide evidence of his identity in case
he fell in any of the battles he anticipated. This ring he wore until his
death. After his demise it was kept as a precious relic for years, but
finally became lost. Later it was found by a little girl, in a ploughed
field, near Wellington Square, (Burlington) where Brant passed the
later years of his life.

Brant did not remain long in the Old Land, but his visit served to
still more firmly weld the links that bound him to the English cause.
When he threw in his lot with the British at the commencement of the
trouble, it was purely on account of the engagements which his fore-
fathers had made with the King, but the royal reception he received in
London made the cause in which he afterwards fought so valiantly, a
personal one.

The London Magazine (1776) article, already spoken of,

. ., contains this further reference to the Chief: “The

Visit. . .,

present unhappy civil war in America occasioned his

coming over to England. He was solicited by both sides to give his as-
sistance and found himself perplexed amidst a contrariety of arguments
upon a great subject, which he could not well understand. Before
coming to a decisive resolution he resolved to go himself into the
presence of the Great King, as the British Sovereign is styled amongst
the American Indians. He accordingly came to London, accompanied by
Captain Tice, an officer of English extraction, born in America and who
has a settlement just in the neighborhood of the Mohawk Nation. By
what mode of reasoning this chief was convinced of the justice of the
demands of Great Britain upon her colonies, and the propriety of
enforcing them, we have not been informed, but it is said he has


promised to give his assistance to the government by bringing three
thousand men into the field. This chief had not the ferocious dignity of
a savage leader.

“We have procured for the satisfaction of our readers a print of him
in the dress of his nation which gives him a more striking appearance.
Upon his tomahawk is carved the first letter of his Christian name Joseph
and his Mohawk appellation thus Thayendanegea. His manners are
gentle, and quiet, and to those who study human nature he affords a very
convincing proof of the tameness which education can produce upon the
wildest race. He speaks English very well and is so much master of the
language that he is engaged in a translation of the New Testament into the
Mohawk tongue. Upon his arrival in London he was conducted to the
Inn called “The Swan with two Necks” in Lad Lane. Proper lodgings
were to be provided for him, but he said the good people of the Inn
were so civil that he would not leave them, and accordingly he continued
there all the time he was in London. He was struck with the appearance
of England in general but he said he chiefly admired the ladies and the

In company with Captain Tice he sailed for America in
the spring of 1776, and was landed cautiously and
privately in the neighborhood of New York harbor, about
the beginning of April. The journey to Canada was a very hazardous
one, he having to steal his way through an enemy’s country, until he
could hide himself in the woods beyond Albany. The trackless forests
were skirted in safety, and Brant arrived in Montreal a short time previous
to the battle of the Cedars. This engagement was the result of a
movement by General Carleton to dislodge the Americans from a point
of land extending out into the St. Lawrence River, about forty miles
above Montreal. The British commander had a force of some six,
or seven hundred men, the greater part of whom were Indians, under
Thayendanegea. The engagement ended most successfully Major
Sherbourne surrendering on May 20th 1776. Brant took a very active
part in this affair.

It was in the commencement of the year 1777 that the

v^ An’ VIA* ^ ma ^ extm g u i snment f tne great council fire of the Six
Nations at Onondaga, New York, took place. Since
time immemorial this fire had been kept burning, and was the assembly
spot for all general councils. The why or the wherefore of this aban-
donment is shrouded in mystery; nor is it of present moment
except as marking an epoch in the life of Brant, amd final exit of the Six
Nations, as a national body, from the Council grounds of their ancestors.

Interior of ancient Iroquois (Six Nations) house


The spring of 1777 brought Brant very prominently
Greater forward. The great Chief at that time had separated

from Col. Guy Johnson over some little difference, and
later appeared among the Indians as far south as the Susquehanna River
in Pennsylvania, in an energetic endeavor to unite the various tribes in
favor of the Royal cause. In May he made several raids on the New
York settlements, and in June he appeared at Unadilla. His forces
continuing to increase, General Herkimer, the American Commander,
sought to dissuade him from further demonstrations against the Colonists.
The interview took place in the summer. One story is that the General
contemplated the capture of Brant on this occasion, but if so, he was
too wary, and upon an aide-de-camp speaking to him in an insulting man-
ner it was with the greatest difficulty that Brant prevented his warriors
from attacking the party. Next day the Chief told Herkimer that he had
joined the cause of the King, and both leaders then separated amicably,
the General presenting Brant with some fat cattle. Thayendanegea soon
afterwards drew off his forces from the Susquehanna, and united them
with the forces of Col. John Butler and Sir John Johnson. About this
time the British Indian Department asked for a grand Council of the Six
Nations, which was notable in that it brought about a complete alliance
of the greater portion of the Six Nations with the British forces.

Brant is next heard of in connection with General St.
UnsKany Legers expedition against Fort Stanwix. The great Chief

and his warriors met with a severe loss in an engagement, and on their
way home rataliated by committing some depredations upon the Oneidas
who had refused to join the expedition. The Oneidas in their turn
plundered “Molly Brant” and other Mohawks. Molly fled to the Onon-
dagas, and it was through her instrumentality that Gen. St. Leger was
apprised of the approach of an American force under Herkimer. The
latter were ambuscaded, and nearly annihilated by Brant and his men
at Oriskany. This was one of the most bloody of all the frontier fights,
the losses all round proving very heavy. Both sides claimed the
victory. Brant in after years was always wont to refer to his “poor
Mohawks” at Oriskany.

Early in 1778 the American Congress made another
Back to the effort to win over the Six Nations, but without success
Susquehanna. and they never again attempted conciliatory measures.

Brant and his associates reappeared in their former
haunts on the Susquehanna. Whenever a blow could be struck, Brant
was there to deliver it. Silently, and in the dead of night generally after
the Indian fashion, he, and his dusky warriors bore down upon settle-


ments, and in the morning heaps of smouldering ruins told the tale.
The first movement was upon the settlement of Springfield, about ten
miles west of Cherry Valley. Those of the men who did not flee were
taken prisoners, and the horses and stock then destroyed. One dwelling
only was left standing, in and about which the Chief had all the women,
and children collected, and left them uninjured.

Wyoming, a beautiful Susquehanna valley, had in 1778
y &’ settlements which totalled some five thousand souls. It
was in June that Col. Johnson suggested the employment of Indians in a
“petit guerre” in their own way. The first expedition under this mode of
warfare was organized by Col. John Butler. He entered the Wyoming
valley about July 1st. through a mountainous gap, and captured two forts.
The commander of the Wyoming forces assumed the aggressive and giving
Butler battle was defeated. Then followed the carnage among the
settlers and wholesale slaughter and many atrocities occurred. As Brant
was the most widely known Indian in America, it was natural that
he should be put down as the leader of this rapine. His alleged identifi-
cation with it spread to England, and Campbell, the poet, in later years
when he wrote “Gertrude of Wyoming” made the Oneida speak of
Thayendanegea as follows:

“The mammoth comes the foe the monster Brant,

With all his howling, desolating band;

These eyes have seen their blade, and burning pine

Awake at once, and silence half your land.

Red is the cup they drink, but not with wine;

Awake, and watch to-night; or see no morning shine.

Scorning to wield the hatchet for his tribe

“Gainst Brant himself I went to battle forth:

Accursed Brant! he left of all my tribe

Nor man, nor child, nor thing of living birth.

No! not the dog that watched my household hearth

Escaped that night of blood upon our plains;

All perished I alone am left on earth

To whom nor relative, nor blood remains.”

As a matter of fact all the testimony goes to show that Brant was not
at the scene at all. Campbell’s effusion was not published until after
Brant’s death, and it gave great offence to his family and friends.
Brant’s son, John, visited England in 1821, and called on the poet to
whom he submitted the necessary proofs of his father’s innocence. Camp-
bell issued a statement that the documents submitted had completely
“satisfied” him of his error.



Brant’s next authentic exploit was at Andrustown, which

place he destroyed, as also the town of German Flats, a
short time after. In November of 1778 the battle of
Cherry Valley occurred, in which the Chief distinguished himself for his
kindness to the vanquished foe, and efforts to save life. On July 19th,
1779 Minisink was laid low by Thayendanegea, and on August 2nd a
settlement on the Mohawk river. During that summer the severe engage-
ment of the Chemung also took place when the Royal forces were
defeated. The Indians were under Brant who handled them with great
skill and bravery; against Gen. Sullivan in the fall of the year he also
distinguished himself. During 1780 he destroyed Harpersfield in April,
and in May devastated the Saugerties settlement. On August 2nd, he
and his fighting men, made their appearance in the Mohawk Valley, and
for miles all property was destroyed including the Town of Canojoharie.
On October 16th, the invasion of Schoharie County took place, the
British proving eminently successful. Brant was the leader of the
Indians. In the Spring of 1781 the latter also kept up various incursions
until the news was received of the cessation of hostilities between the
United States and Great Britain.

In any estimate of Brant, and his methods as a fighter,
Humane it must be borne in mind that his was the Indian con-

ception, a heritage of countless generations, and that for
the period in which he lived the tolerance and consider-
ation shown by him at times were little short of remarkable. The
American writer Brownell says in this regard. “There is many an
instance recorded of Brant’s interference, even in the heat of conflict,
to stay the hand uplifted against the feeble and the helpless.”

He once sent an Indian runner a long distance to restore a baby that
had become separated from its mother.

During the Cherry Valley attack it is recorded that he entered a house,
and found a woman engaged in her usual avocations. He asked her if
she did not know of her neighbors being slain all around her. She made
answer “There is one Joseph Brant, if he is with the Indians he will save
us.” He disclosed his identity, but said he was not in command, and did
not know what he could do to save her. While they were talking several
Senecas were seen to be approaching the house. “Get into bed and feign
yourself sick” said Brant hastily. When the Senecas came he told them
no one was there except a sick woman, and her children, and he besought
them to leave the house. This, after a short consultation, they con-
sented to do, and as soon as they were gone, Brant uttered a long, shrill,
yell. In response a small band of Mohawks appeared. As they came


up he addressed them. “Where is your paint? Here, put my mark on
this woman.” As soon as this was done he said to her, “You are now
probably safe.”

That devastation methods were not alone practised by
Both Sides the Indians, is exemplified by this instruction sent by

used Washington to Gen. Sullivan.

Devastation. ttfr . * ,. t . , . t , ,. ,

Ihe expedition you are to command is to be directed

against the hostile tribes of the Six Nations, their associates and adherents.
The immediate objects are the total destruction, and devastation of their
settlements, and the capture of as many prisoners of every age and sex
as possible. It will be essential to ruin their crops now in the ground,
and prevent them planting more … . Parties should be detached
to lay waste all the settlements around, with the instructions to do it in
the most effective manner, that the country may not be merely overrun
but destroyed.

“After you have very thoroughly completed the destruction of their
settlements, if the Indians should show a disposition for peace, I would
have you encourage it, on the condition that they will give you some
decisive evidence of their sincerity by delivering up some of the principal
instigators of their past hostility.” *’

Brant was especially named in the last mentioned respect.

In 1785 Brant paid his second, and last visit to England
Second for the purpose of adjusting the claims of the Mohawks,

PI A anc ^ ur S m indemnification for their losses during the

war. On both his visits he met with a cordial reception
and became a favorite of the King and Royal family. He was a guest of
honor in one great house after another, his portrait was painted by the
noted Romney whose brush limned all the notables of the day. Fox, the
political leader, presented him with a snuffbox, on which his initials were
engraved, and other attentions were showered upon him which would
have turned the head of a less stolid individual.

When informed of the course he should pursue upon his presentation
at Court, he objected to dropping on one knee, and kissing the hand of
the King, saying that he would gladly do that in the case of a lady, for
it would be a pleasant and proper thing, but such conduct would be
servile towards a man.

During his stay in London an amusing incident occurred. Having
been invited to a grand masquerade ball he went richly dressed, in the
costume of his nation, wearing no mask, but painting one side of his
face. “His plumes nodded as proudly in his cap as though the blood
of a hundred Percy’s coursed through his veins, and a tomahawk


glittered in his girdle like burnished silver.” Among the guests was
a Turk of rank, whose attention was particularly attracted by the gro-
tesque appearance of Brant’s singular, and as he supposed, fantastic attire.
He scrutinized the Chief very closely, and mistaking his complexion
for a painted visor took the liberty of attempting to handle his nose.
Brant, who had noticed the observation he excited, was in the humor for
a little sport. No sooner therefore, did the fingers of the Turk touch his
nasal organ, than he raised a war whoop, and snatching his tomahawk
from his girdle, whirled it around the head of the astonished Islamite.
Such a piercing and blood curdling cry had never before rung through
the halls of fashion, and breaking suddenly, and with startling wildness
upon the ears of the merry throng, produced a strange sensation. The
Turk trembled with terror, while the lady guests screamed, and scattered
in every direction. The jest, however, was soon explained, and all
became normal once more, although it is doubtful if the Turk sufficiently
recovered his mental equilibrium to enjoy the latter part of the evening
as much as he had the commencement.

Thayendanegea on the second occasion remained in the Old Country
for quite a lengthy period, but amid the more frivolous demands made
upon his time, he also paid serious attention to the matters he had in
hand, on behalf of his people, with fairly satisfactory results from his
standpoint. After his visit Lord Sidney wrote:

“His Majesty, in consideration of the zealous, and hearty exertions of
his Indian Allies in support of his cause, and as a proof of his most
friendly disposition towards them, has been graciously pleased to consent
that the losses already certified by his Superintendent general shall be
made good: that a favorable attention shall be shown to the claims of
others who have pursued the same line of conduct.”

It was Sir Guy Carleton, afterwards Lord Dorchester, who
The Settling had promised the Indians, when they joined the British

Standard, that at the close of hostilities, they would be
Grand River. , , . ~ – , . f

restored at the expense ot the Government, to their for-
mer positions with regard to lands, and so forth. When the war ended
the Six Nations who had thrown in their lot with the cause of the King,
had no settled place of habitation, although many of them had tempor-
arily located near the Niagara River at “The Landing” now known as
Lewiston. The Senecas offered a portion of their lands on the
Genesee river, but Brant made answer that the Moliawks, for their part
were determined to “sink or swim with the English.” Thayendanegea
then journeyed to Quebec where he met Sir Frederick Haldimand and
other leaders, with the outcome that the Bay of Quinte region was named


as the land to be granted. Some of the Six Nations Indians did in fact go
there, and the place to-day contains quite a good sized Mohawk settlement.
However, when Brant returned to report the result of the negotiations to
his confreres, there was loud outcry from those Senecas, who were
still residing in the States and who, in case of further trouble, did not
want the rest of the Six Nations to be so far away. As the outcome Brant
again journeyed to Quebec, and the result of the second conference with
Haldimand was the grant of “A tract of land, six miles in depth, on each
side of the Grand River” from its mouth to its source. The instrument to
this effect was given under the hand and seal of Haldimand on October
25th 1784, and was as follows:

“Frederick Haldimand, Captain General and Governor in Chief of the
Province of Quebec and Territories depending thereon, etc., etc., etc.,
General and Commander in Chief of His Majesty’s Forces in said
Province and the Frontiers thereof, etc., etc., etc.,

Whereas, His Majesty having been pleased to direct that in considera-
tion of the early attachment to His cause manifested by the Mohawk In-
dians and of the loss of their settlement which they thereby sustained, that
a convenient tract of land under His protection should be chosen as a
safe and comfortable retreat for them and others of the Six Nations who
have either lost their settlements within the Territory of the American
States or wish to retire from them to the British I have, at the earnest
desire of many of these His Majesty’s faithful allies, purchased a tract of
land from the Indians situated between the Lakes Ontario, Erie and
Huron, and I do hereby in His Majesty’s name authorize and permit the
said Mohawk Nation, and such others of the Six Nations Indians as wish
to settle in that quarter, to take possession of and settle upon the banks
of the river commonly called Ouse or Grand River, running into Lake
Erie, allotting them for that purpose six miles deep from each side of
the river, beginning at Lake Erie and extending in that proportion to the
head of the said river which them and their posterity are to enjoy forever.

Given under my hand and seal at arms at the Castle of St. Lewis, at
Quebec, this twenty-fifth day of October, one thousand seven hundred
and eighty-four, and in the twenty-fifth year of the reign of our Sovereign
Lord George the Third by the Grace of God of Great Britain, France and
Ireland, King, Defender of the Faith and so forth.

By His Excellency’s Command


* \S S’ r EUt’xC: ^> V *
I H : N ” V \>

&*-‘ &*&&>. -^ 5F ,V”

The document it will be noticed gave the Six Nations only the right
of possession and not a fee simple. To remedy this a second deed was
obtained from Governor Simcoe on January 14th 1793 wherein it was
provided that the Six Nations might surrender at any time any portion
of the territory at some public meeting or assembly of the Chiefs, War-
riors and People convened for the purpose and the Crown should purchase
same. The latter proviso was made so that His Majesty, thus holding
those portions of their lands relieved from the pledge which had been
given for their exclusive possession, might make a clear and free grant
in fee simple, by letters patent, to such persons as the Indians might
agree to sell to.

It was shortly after the Haldimand deed, that Brant decided to make
another visit to the Mother Land, although Sir John Johnson, then
Superintendent General of Indian Affairs, strongly objected. In fact
the latter had just returned from a visit to England without accomplishing
much as far as the Indians could see. However Thayendanegea was a
very determined man, once he had made up his mind, and thus the
journey took place to which reference has already been made.

The end of the Revolutionary War did not witness the
More entire withdrawal of Brant from military matters. In

addition to the Six Nations, other Indians across the
border had been friendly to the British, and all of them
were very resentful when in the treaty between Great Britain and the
States, it was found that conveyance of a large portion of the lands of
the red men had been made to the United States authorities. There was
likewise no mention of any provision for the Indians in the deal with
the new Republic. As the upshot there was talk of asking Thayendanegea
to become leader of a confederacy of all the Indian tribes, and there
seems to be reason to believe that, for a period, he was quite inclined to
entertain a plan which naturally appealed to a man of his ambitious
temperament. In November of 1786 the hand of Brant was seen in an
address sent to the United States Congress as the outcome of a Council of
Indian tribes held at Huron village. Meanwhile the white man continued
to encroach on what the Indians regarded as their territory, and they look-
ed with jealous eyes upon the occupany of choice lands by the Saxon.

As the outcome, many tribes went on the war path in a despairing
effort to prevent the western advance of those whom they regarded as
invaders. Brant does not appear to have been in any of the conflicts,
but many Mohawk warriors were, and his advice was in all likelihood
constantly sought. Finally in 1792 the United States Secretary of State
wrote him from Philadelphia, then the seat of government, stating that


the President wished to see him with regard to the best means of
composing the difficulties and adding the assurance, “The President of
the United States will be highly gratified by receiving, and conversing
with a chief of such eminence as you are, on a subject so interesting and
important to the human race.” Brant accepted, and first went to New
York, one of the newspapers there making the announcement “On Monday
last arrived in this city from his settlement on the Grand River, on a
visit to some of his friends in this quarter, Captain Joseph Brant, of the
British Army, the famous Mohawk Chief, who so eminently distinguished
himself during the late war, as the military leader of the Six Nations.
We are informed that he intends to visit the city of Philadelphia.”

Upon reaching the latter place he was received very heartily by the
President/ He related afterwards that the United States authorities
offered him one thousand guineas down, and the doubling of his half pay
and pension from the British Government, if he would take active steps to
check the warring red skins. Upon refusal he stated he was then offered
rights over land worth twenty thousand pounds, and a yearly allowance
of fifteen hundred dollars. His rejection of both offers he based upon the
ground that he might be asked to act against the interests of the King
and the honor of the Six Nations. He promised however to use his
influence with the Miamis, then prominent as revolt leaders. His stay
was made very pleasant for him, and after his departure the Secretary
of war wrote to General Chapin, U. S. Superintendent of Indian Affairs,
“Captain Brant’s visit will, I flatter myself, be productive of great satis-
faction to himself by being made acquainted with the humane views of
the President of the United States.” and in another letter to General
Clinton he said, “Captain Brant appears to be a judicious and sensible
man.” Whether or no Brant made any move does not appear, but the
warring continued until August 1794, when the Indians signed a treaty
with General Wayne on terms dictated by the latter.

About this period an old chronicler, in writing of Brant,
Brant In sa id-

. . i * caltl .^^

“In his person he is graceful and dignified. He is
easy and affable in conversation. His stature is five feet eleven inches
of finest form, possessing great muscular power. His countenance is
open, placid and inviting. His eyes are brilliant and expressive.
Everything relating to his person is engaging and prepossessing.”

In the year 1779 one of the prisoners at Fort Niagara thus described
him: “He was a likely fellow, rather spare; well spoken. He wore
moccasins, elegantly trimmed, with beads, leggings, and breech-cloth of
superfine blue; a short green coat with silver epaulets, and a small,


laced round hat. By his side hung an elegant silver-mounted cutlass, and
his blanket of blue cloth dropped in the chair on which he sat, was
gorgeously decorated with a border of red.”

His war experiences having come to an end, Thayendanegea devoted
himself most assiduously to the interests of the Six Nations. He had
many difficulties to solve, but met all of them in a comprehensive
manner, and with the ultimate approval of his compatriots.

Writing in November of 1784, to a Dr. Peyster who seems to have
had matters in hand, Haldimand said:

“A promise has been made that every assistance will be given to the
new settlement at the Grand River; a saw, and grist mill, also a church,
and school are to be erected, and twenty five pounds to be allowed to a
school teacher, whom they are to choose for themselves. Lieut. Tinling is
to accompany Brant in the spring to lay out a town, and divide the farms.
A proper person should be sent to undertake the construction of the mills,
church and school and he (Dr. Peyster) is to make the best possible

In accordance with the above, the church and other
jyionawK buildings were constructed at a bend in the Grand River

a short distance east of the present city, and Mohawk
village became established. Brant lived close to the edifice in a very
well constructed frame house and there was also a cluster of fifteen or
twenty other residences built of log and frame. A very old Indian
woman many years ago made the statement that there was also a large
two story building near the church and that it was used as a Council
House, for the accommodation of visitors to the village and for dances. A
saw and grist mill and also a school were likewise included. As for the
rest of it the settlement was of a very straggling nature, the Indians
occupying primitive structures at quite widely separated distances. In
the winter of 1792-3, Col. J. G. Simcoe who had been appointed Lieut.-
Governor of Upper Canada, and who had letters of introduction to the
Mohawk Chief, visited the village during the course of a trip from the
then capital of the Province, the little town of Newark, (Niagara) to
Detroit, then a British Garrison. His secretary, Major E. B. Littlehales,
afterwards Sir E. B. Littlehales, for some time Secretary of War for
Ireland, kept a diary from which the following extracts are taken:

“Feb. 7, 1793 About twelve o’clock we arrived at Capt. Brant’s
at the Mohawk Village, going along the ice on the Grand River with great
rapidity, for a considerable way. On our arrival at the Mohawk Village
the Indians hoisted their flags, and trophies of war and fired a feu de
joie in compliment to His Excellency, the representative of the King,


their father. This place is peculiarly striking when seen from the high
ground above it; extensive meadows are spread around it, and the Grand
River rolls near it, with a termination of forest. Here is a well built
wooden church with a steeple; a school, and an excellent house of Joseph
Brant’s. The source of the Grand River is not accurately ascertained, but
it is supposed to be adjoining the waters which communicate with Lake
Huron. It empties itself into Lake Erie, and for fifty or sixty miles is
as broad as the Thames at Richmond, in England. Villages of
Onondaga, Delaware, and Cayuga Indians are dispersed on its banks.
While we were at the Mohawk Village we heard divine service performed
in the church by an Indian. The devout behaviour of the women, the
melody of their voices, and the exact tune they kept in singing their hymns,
is worthy of observation. “Feb. 10th We did not quit the Mohawk
Village until noon when we set out with Captain Brant and about twelve
Indians. Came to an encampment of Mississaugas, and slept at a trader’s
house. Feb. llth Passed over some fine open plains, said to be fre-
quented by immense herds of deer; but, as very little snow had fallen
this winter, we did not see them. We crossed two or three rivulets
through a thick wood, and over a salt lick, and stopped at four o’clock
to give the Indians time to make a small wigwam. The dexterity, and
the alacrity of these people, habituated to the hardships incidental to the
woods, is remarkable. Small parties will, with the utmost facility, cut
down large trees with their tomahawks, bark them and in a few minutes
construct a most comfortable hut, capable of resisting any inclemency of
weather, covering it with the bark of elm.”

Major Littlehales in his diary records that the Governor and party left
Detroit on February 23rd. on the return trip, and at noon on March 3rd.
they arrived at their encampment of the 14th. February, where they were
agreeably surprised by meeting Captain Brant, and a numerous retinue.
A buck and doe, killed by one of the Indians, furnished a savory
breakfast next morning. Proceeding eastward, the party were much
amused during their journey by the chase of lynx by Brant and his
Indians with dogs and guns. At the Mohawk Village there were more
Indian dances and most of the Governor’s suite were persuaded to dress
themselves in Indian garb and, according to Littlehales, were adopted as
Chiefs. Altogether a very merry time was manifestly spent.

Before Simcoe left England the Duke of Northumberland,
r >m Colonial Minister, and who had himself been given the

title of an Indian Chief, handed the new Governor a
letter to Brant which was undoubtedly presented on the occasion of the
above visit. It was as follows:


Northumberland House,

September 3rd. 1791.
My Dear Joseph:

Col. Simcoe, who is going out as Governor of Upper Canada, is
kind enough to promise to deliver this to you with a brace of pistols,
which I desire you will keep for my sake. I must particularly recommend
the Colonel to you and the nation. He is a most intimate friend of mine
and is possessed of every good quality which can recommend him to
your friendship. He is brave, humane, sensible and honest. You may
safely rely upon whatever he says, for he will not deceive you.

He loves and honors the Indians, whose noble sentiments so perfectly
correspond with his own. He wishes to live upon the best terms with
them, and as Governor will have it in his power to be of much service
to them. In short, he is worthy to be a Mohawk. Love him at first for
my sake, and you will soon come to love him for his own.

I was very glad to hear that you had received the rifle safe which I
sent you and hope it has proved useful to you. I preserve with great
care your picture, which is hung up in the Duchess’ own room.

Continue to me your friendship and esteem, and believe me ever to
be, with the greatest truth,

Your affectionate friend and brother,


( Thorigh wegeri )
“Captain Joseph Brant”
( Thayendanegea )

It was always significant that men of prominence took every oppor-
tunity to do honor to Brant. In addition to the Duke of Northumberland,
Lord Dorchester, Earl Moira, General Stuart, the Earl of Warwick, the
Bishop of London and many others were on a most friendly basis with
him, while at the table of the Prince of Wales he met Fox, Burke,
Sheridan and other notables with whom it would seem he was quite
at his ease after the imperturbable Indian fashion.

In the year 1791-2 Alexander Campbell, Captain 42nd
An Earlier Regiment issued a book entitled “Travels in the Interior
Visitor To of ^ uninhabited parts of North America.” The
Mohawk . . , , .

Village following are extracts from his work:

“On the 9th of February I set out with a party of
gentlemen in two sleds on an excursion to the Grand River. Put up for
the first night at Squire McNab’s and next day dined at the house of one
Henry, who had only been here for six years; put up at night at the
house of one Smith, who came from the colonies two years ago.


“February llth We set out from Mr. Paisley’s. For several miles on
the way to the Grand River the lands are so open as to have scarce a
sufficiency of wood for enclosures and the necessary purposes of
farming; but towards the mountain the wood becomes thick and lofty, as
is common in that country, for several milds along the mountain.
Towards evening we fell down on a gentleman’s farm, where we stopped
to warm ourselves and bait our horses. No sooner was our repast over
than we bade adieu to the family, mounted our sleds and drove down to
the Indian village; alighted about nightfall at the house of the celebrated
Indian Chief and warrior Captain Joseph Brant. The renowned warrior
is not of any royal or conspicuous blood, but by his ability in war and
political conduct in peace has raised himself to the highest dignity in
his nation, and his alliance is now courted by sovereign and foreign
states. Of this there are recent instances, as he has had within the last
three weeks several private letters and public despatches from Congress
soliciting his attendance at Philadelphia on matters of high importance;
but after consulting Col. Gordon, commandant of all the British troops in
Upper Canada, he excused himself and declined to accept the invitation.
He just now enjoys a pension and captain’s half pay from the British

“Captain Brant, who is well acquainted with European manners,
received us with much politeness and hospitality. Here we found two
young married ladies with their husbands on a visit to the family, both
of them very fair complexioned and well looking women. But when Mrs.
Brant appeared, superbly dressed, in the Indian fashion, the elegance of
her person, grandeur of her looks and deportment, her large mild black
eyes, symmetry and harmony of her expressive features, though much
darker in complexion, so far surpassed them as not to admit of the
smallest comparison between the Indian and the fair European ladies. I
could not in her presence so much as look at them without marking the
difference. Her blanket was made of silk and the finest English cloth,
bordered with a narrow stripe of embroidered lace, her sort of jacket and
scanty petticoat of the same stuff, which came down only to her knees;
her garters or leggings of the finest scarlet, fitted close as a stocking,
which showed to advantage her stout but remarkably fine formed limbs,
her moccasins (Indian shoes) ornamented with silk ribbons and beads.
Her person is about five feet nine or ten inches high, as straight and
proportionable as can be, but inclined to be jolly or lusty. She under-
stands but does not speak English. I have often addressed her in that
language, but she always answered in the Indian tongue. They have a
fine family of children. I remarked of one fine looking boy, about eight






years old, that he was like his mother. His father said he was so, and
that he was glad of it; that he was a good scholar and a good hunter; that
he has already shot several pheasants and other birds; that he and two
other boys of the same age had been lately in the woods with their guns;
that they supposed they had found the track of a deer, which they followed
too far, got wet, and became cold; that, however, young as they were,
they put up a fire and warmed themselves and returned home; that before
they arrived their toes were frost-bitten, of which he was then not quite
recovered. Tea was on the table when we dame in served up on the
handsomest china plate, and every other furniture in proportion. After
tea was over we were entertained with music of an elegant hand organ on
which a young Indian gentleman and Mr. Clinch played alternately.
Supper was served up in the same genteel style. Our beverages were
brandy, port and Madeira wines. Capt. Brant made several apologies
for his not being able to sit up with us so long as we wished, being a
little out of order; and we, being fatigued after out journey went
timeously to rest; our beds, sheets and English blankets were fine and

“Next day being Sunday, we, the visitors, went to church. The ser-
vice was given out by an Indian, and I never saw more decorum or at-
tention paid in any Church in all my life. The Indian women sung
most charmingly with a musical voice, I think peculiar to themselves.
Dinner was just going on the table in the same elegant style as the
preceding night when I returned to Capt. Brant’s house, the servants
dressed in their best apparel. Two slaves attended the table, the one in
scarlet, the other in coloured clothes, with silver buckles in their shoes,
and ruffles, and every other part of their apparel in proportion. After
dinner, Capt. Brant, that he might not be wanting in doing me the
honours of his nation, directed all the young warriors to assemble in a
certain large house, to show me the war dance, to which we all ad-
journed about nightfall. Such as were at home of the Indians appeared,
superbly dressed in their most showy apparel, glittering with silver in
all the variety of shapes and forms of their fancies which made a dazzling
appearance. The pipe of peace, with long white feathers and that for
war, with red feathers equally long, were exhibited in their first war
dance, with shouts and war-whoops resounding to the skies.

“The Chief himself held the drum, beat time, and often joined in
the song with a certain cadence to which they kept time. The variety
of forms into which they put their bodies, and the agility with which
they changed from one strange position to another, was really curious
to a European eye not accustomed to such a sight.


“Several warlike dances were performed which the chief was at parti-
cular pains to explain to me, but still I could not understand, or see any
affinity excepting the ‘eagle attack,’ which indeed had some resemblance.
After the war dance was over which took up about two hours, as the
whole exhibition was performed in honour of me, being the only stranger,
who they were told by my fellow travellers meant to publish my travels
on my return home, which they judged by the notes I took of everything
I saw, though in reality I had no such thing in view at the time I was
desired by Mr. Clinch to make a speech, and thank them for their hand-
some performance. As this could not be declined without giving offence,
I was obliged to get up, and told them I would address them in the
Indian language of my own country, and said 1 in Gaelic, “That I had
fought in many parts of Europe, killed many men, and now being in
America, I did not doubt that I would fight with them yet, particularly
if the Yankees attacked us.’ My worthy friend, Capt. McNab, explained
in English my speech, as also did Capt. Clinch, in the Indian tongue,
at which they laughed very heartily. No sooner was the war dance
over than they began their own native and civil ones, in which Capt.
Brant and I joined. He placed me between two handsome young women,
and himself between another two. In this way we continued for two
hours or more, without coming off the floor, dancing and singing, he him-
self keeping time all along, which all the rest followed in the same
cadence. The serpentine dance is admirably curious; one takes lead
representing the head, and others follow one after the other joined hand
in hand, and before the close of the dance we were put in all the folds
and forms a serpent can be in. After this and every other dance peculiar
to their nation was over, we began Scotch reels, and I was much surprised
to see how neatly they danced them. Their persons are perfectly formed
for such exercise. The men, from the severity of their hunting excursions,
are rather thin, but tall and straight and well proportioned, extremely
agile and supple. The women are much fairer in their complexion;
plump and inclined to be lusty.

“Here we continued until near daylight. I told Capt. Brant that in
my country at all country weddings, and frolics it was customary to kiss
both before and after every dance. He said it was a strange though
agreeable custom, but that it would never do here, I suppose owing to
the jealousy of the men.

“On the whole, I do not remember I ever passed a night in my life
I enjoyed more. Everything was new to me and striking in its manner;
the older chiefs entered into all the frolics of the young people, in which
I was obliged to join. After passing the night in this agreeable manner,
and I being a good deal fatigued, we retired to rest.


“Captain Brant showed me a brace of double-barrelled pistols, a
curious gun, and a silver-hilled dagger he had got as presents from
noblemen and gentlemen in England, when he was in that country on an
embassy from his own and other Indian nations. Each of the double-
barrelled pistols had but one lock, the hammer of which was so broad
as to cover the two pans and two touch-holes, so that both shots would
go off at once; and when he had a mind to fire but one barrel at a time,
there was a slip of iron which by a slight touch covered one of the pans
so as that only which was uncovered would go off. The gun being
sufficiently charged, would fire fifteen shots in the space of half a

“The construction of this curious piece was, as near as I can describe
it, as follows: There was a powder chamber or magazine adjoining to
the lock which would hold fifteen charges, another cavity for as many
balls and a third for the priming, and by giving one twist round to a
sort of handle on the left hand side opposite the lock, the gun would be
loaded from these magazines, primed and cocked, so that the fifteen
charges could be fired, one after another, in the space of half a minute,
at the same time he might fire but one or two shots, less or more of
them as he chose. He said there was something of the works within
wrong, so that he could not get it to fire more than eight shots without
stopping. He tried it at a mark and said it shot very well. Of the
dagger, he said it was the most useful weapon in action he knew that
it was far better than a tomahawk; that he was once obliged to strike a
man four or five times with a tomahawk before he killed him, owing to
hurry and not striking him with the fair edge, whereas he never missed
with the dagger. Another instance he said, was that he had seen two
Indians with spears or lances attack a man, one on each side; that just as
they pushed to pierce him through the body, he seized on the spears,
one in each hand; they tugged and pulled to no purpose, until a third
person came up and dispatched him. This could not be done to a
dagger, and of course it was by odds the better weapon.

“Before I take leave of this charming country and the honour done
me by the renowned chief and his warlike tribe of handsome young
warriors, all of the Mohawk nation, I must not omit to say that it appears
to me to be the finest country I have as yet seen; and by every informa-
tion I have had, none are more so in all America. The plains are very
extensive, with few trees here and there, interspersed and so thinly scat-
tered as not to require any clearing, and hardly sufficient for the neces-
saries of the farmer. The soil is rich, and a deep clay mould. The river
is about 100 yards broad, and navigable for large bateaux to Lake Erie,


a space of sixty miles, excepting for about two miles, of what are
here called rapids, but in Scotland would be called ‘fords,’ and in which
the bateaux are easily poled up against any little stream there may be.
Abundance of fish are caught here in certain seasons, particularly in the
spring, such as sturgeon, pike, pickerel, maskinonge and others peculiar
to this country; and the woods abound with game. The habitations of
the Indians are pretty close together on each side of the river, as far as
I could see, with a very few white people interspersed among them
married to Indian women, and others of half-blood, their offspring. The
church in the village is elegant, the schoolhouse commodious, both built
by the British Government, which annually orders a great many presents
to be distributed among the natives; ammunition and warlike stores, of all
the necessary kinds, saddles, bridles, kettles, cloth, blankets, tomahawks
with tobacco-pipes in the end of them, other things and trinkets innum-
erable, provisions and stores, so that they may live, and really be, as
the saying is ‘happy as the day is long.’

“February 13th. When Capt. Brant found that we would be away,
he ordered his sled to be got ready, and after breakfast he and Mrs.
Brant accompanied us the length of ten or twelve miles to the house of
an Indian who had a kitchen and store room, clean floors and glass
windows, crops and cattle in proportion, where we put up to warm our-
selves. Capt. Brant brought some wine, rum and cold meat, for the
company. After refreshing ourselves, we bade adieu to our hospitable
and renowned host and his elegant spouse, and bounded on our journey
along the banks of the Grand River. The land seemed extremely good
as we came along. The first village of Indians, the next of white people,
and so on alternately as far as I have been, and for all I know, to the
side of the Lake. The Indians in this part of the country seem to be of
different nations, Mohawks, Cherokees, Tuscaroras and Mississaugas.
I called at different villages or castles as they are called here, and saw
the inhabitants had large quantities of Indian corn drying in every house,
suspended in the roof, and in every corner of them. We put up at the
house of Mr. Ellis, who treated us very hospitably.

“February 14th. We went a-visiting for several miles down the river
side, and dined at the house of a half -pay officer, a Mr. Young, who
had served in the! last war as a lieutenant in the Indian Department,
married to a sister of one of the chiefs of the Mohawk nation. This
gentleman used me with marked attention and hospitality. Next morn-
ing he conducted us in his own sled the length of Mr. Ellis’. He told us
that a few days ago a wolf killed a deer on the ice near his house, and
showed us the remains of a tree which, before it was burnt, measured
twenty-eight feet in circumference.”


It was not long before the beautiful Grand

rarting River area commenced to attract the attention of

With Lands. D c , . , . c

settlers. Brant, for his part was desirous oi

leasing, or selling certain sections for the avowed purpose of causing
the Indians, by the example of white men, to adopt agricultural pursuits,
as he realized that the hunting was becoming more and more precarious.
The monies thus obtained he proposed to have placed in a general fund
for the payment of annuities. The British authorities did not readily
coincide with this plan. They declared that the Indians could hold, and
use said lands, but could not deed them away or grant leases without the
Royal consent. The matter led to a good deal of acrimony which it is
not necessary to dilate upon. After a proclamation forbidding sale, or
lease, a meeting of Chiefs and warriors took place at Niagara, in the
presence of Government representatives, when Brant made an impassioned
speech during which he said:

“We were promised our lands for our services, and those lands we
were to hold on the same footing as those we fled from at the commence-
ment of the American war, when we joined, fought, and bled in your
cause. Now is published a proclamation forbidding us leasing those
very lands that were positively given us in lieu of those of which we were
the sovereigns of the soil, of those lands we have forsaken, we sold, we
leased, and gave away, when, and as often as we saw fit, without hind-
rance on the part of your Government, for your Government well knew
we were the lawful sovereigns of the soil, and they had no right to inter-
fere with us as independent nations.”

On November 2nd, 1796, Brant, by an act of the Six Nations Council,
was appointed agent, or attorney, to negotiate with the government for
the disposal of portions of their large tracts of land “to such person or
persons as their brother, and agent, Capt. Brant, might think meet, and
proper.” He was further empowered to do this “in his own name,” or in
the names of others nominated by him. The object was “to raise funds
by which an annuity for their (Indians) comfort could be formed.”

Brant sent a record of the matter to the then Administrator of the
Province of Upper Canada, in part as follows:

“And Whereas, by the settling of the lands near to and around about
the said river (Grand) by His Majesty’s subjects, the hunting grounds
now scarcely afford the said Nations the means of support, and are
likely to be more contracted by an increase of people; and whereas, the
said Mohawks and others of the Six Nations being well assured of His
Majesty’s benevolent intentions towards them and their posterity, and
having all opportunity of obtaining by way of annuity a more certain


and permanent means of support by a sale of such parts of the said lands
as are now, as hunting grounds, entirely useless” therefore, that he
(Brant) had been given “full power and absolute authority to sell lands
up to the extent of three hundred and eighty-one thousand, four hundred
and eighty acres.”

Under this plan six blocks were quickly sold comprising what are
now townships, and totalling 352,707 acres with average sale price of a
little over 70 cents per acre. In the above lot, Block No. 1 (now forming
Township of Dumfries) and then estimated to contain 94,305 acres was
secured by P. Stedman for $44,000, or less than fifty cents an acre. In
other cases 999 year leases were given. Correspondence shows that when
the Dominion authorities sent advices of such transfers, the Secretary
of State for the Colonies, then the Duke of Portland, gave his consent
with very great reluctance. This was merely the beginning of a whole-
sale disposal of lands until the present area of land owned by the Six
Nations is as follows:


i Township Tuscarora 35,439.37

Township Onondaga 1,620.00

Township Oneida (County of Haldimand)…. 7,202.25

Leased to Mississaugas:

Township Tuscarora 4,800.00

Township Oneida 1,200.00


Representing the sales there is a capital account lodged with the
Government as on March 31st, 1918 of $823,401.57. The income of the
last recorded year was $48,615 and of this sum $11,200 was spent in
maintenance of schools; $4,084 for medical officer and drugs; $1,505
for hospital and asylum cases; $1,452 in relief and funeral benefits;
$1,312 Secretary, Pension List, etc.; $1,174 Roads and Bridges. The
interest to be distributed over and above expenses amounted in 1919 to
$30,523.50, enabling payment per head of $3.00 in the Spring and $3.50
in the Fall. Land of course in the early days was held in cheap estimate,
but even so, much of that belonging to the Indians went for a mere song,
and quite often there was not even that effort on the part of the bene-
ficiary. As far as Brant is concerned, there was never any evidence
that he failed to perform his part with due fidelity, although in easy
moments he was not apt to make much of a bargain.


Doubt having arisen in later years as to the validity of the banding
over of such lands by Brant, a meeting of the Chiefs and principal men
of the Six Nations took place in Mohawk village, near Brantford, on
January 29th, 1835 and it was decided to petition His Majesty that the
said lands sold, leased or intended to be leased, by the said Captain
Joseph Brant should have the titles confirmed.

The services of Thayendanegea were at all times
In Much m mucn demand. Not alone was he greatly con-

cerned in the administration of Six Nations affairs
including the teachings of the tenets of the Christian religion,
but in addition, he had many laborious journeys to perform on matters
of business, or friendship, both in Canada and the States, and he main-
tained a continued correspondence with many noted people. In the
latter respect he had a private secretary, Epaphras L. Phelps by name.
One of his trips in 1797 was to Albany and Philadelphia, returning by
way of New York. While in the Quaker City he was the honored guest
of Aaron Burr, American statesman. The latter, upon Brant’s departure
for New York, gave him a letter to his gifted daughter, Theodosia, in
which he adjured her to receive with “respect and hospitality” one “so
much renowned.” He added: “He is a man of education, speaks and
writes English perfectly, and has seen much of Europe and America.
Quite a gentleman; not one who will make fine bows, but who under-
stands and practises what belongs to propriety and good breeding.”

Brant was very particular with regard to the education of his child-
ren, and in sending two of his boys, Jacob and Joseph, to school in the
States, he wrote Mr. James Wheelock, head of the seminary, and son
of his own former teacher at the Moor school: “I could wish them to
be studiously attended to, not only as to their education, but likewise
to their morals in particular.” In another letter to Mr. Wheelock when
Jacob was returning to his studies, he said: “The horse that Jacob rides
out I wish to be got in good order, after he arrives, and sold, as an at-
tentive scholar has no time to ride about.”

Brant as part of his reward for services in the Revolu-
tionary War was given by thq Crown, a fine tract of

land (3 ‘ 45 acres) at Ae head f Lake Ontario ‘ after ‘
wards called Wellington Square, and now known as

Burlington. Here he built a fine residence, on an eminence overlooking
the lake and removed there with his family. A sad incident occurred
some twelve years before his death. His eldest son, Isaac, became a
dissolute character, despite every effort of the father to reclaim him, and
when he had been drinking, was a dangerous man, having on one such


occasion killed a harness maker, named Lowell, in Mohawk Village.
During one of these frenzies in 1795 he attacked his father with a dirk,
and the latter defended himself with a similar weapon. Both were
wounded, the son in the scalp. The hurt was not at all severe, but in
his crazed condition, Isaac kept tearing off the bandages, with fatal
results. Brant immediately surrendered himself, and resigned his Com-
mission in the British service. The latter was not accepted, and no
charge was ever pressed. At an Indian Council, including warriors,
all the facts were considered, and a certificate sent to Brant expressing
sympathy and pointing out that the son had raised “his parricidal hand
against the kindest of fathers. His death was occasioned by his own
crime. With one voice we acquit you of all blame. We tender you our
hearty condolence and may the Great Spirit above bestow upon you
consolation, and comfort under your affliction.”

The noted Chief died on November 24th, 1807, when in his sixty-
fifth year. During his remarkable and romantic career his exceed-
ingly valuable allegiance to the British Crown had always been un-
swerving, the truest interests of the Six Nations had ever been near his
heart, and in peace as well as in war he displayed capability of a very
high order. The friendship of Sir William Johnson, and access to the
well ordered home of that gentleman, doubtless did much for him during
the impressionable years of early life, but apart from these things he
proved himself to be a man of exceptional ability and power. In very
many respects he was ahead of the standards of his day, and he can be
legitimately classed as ‘one of the great men of the period. His career
was not flawless, but it was notably sincere, and efficient in many big
things, and without doubt the warriors of the Six Nations, under his
leadership, did much to help Great Britain retain a foothold on this

Subjoined is the commencement of his will, dated Octo-
Will Declares ber 18th, 1805:

Christian j n tne name of God Amen. I, Joseph Brant, principal

Chief of the Six Nations of Indians on the Grand River,
in the Province of Upper Canada, resident in the vicinity of Flamborough
East in the County of York and Home District of the said Province,
being in good health of body and of sound and disposing mind (praised
be God for the same) and being desirous to settle my worldly affairs
whilst I have strength and capacity so to do, do make and publish this,
my last will and testament, hereby revoking and making void all former
wills by me at any time heretofore made, and first and principally I
commit my soul into the hands of my great Creator who gave it, and my
Thayendanegea Joseph Brant. (From a picture taken in later life)


body to the Earth to be interred at the discretion of my Executors here-
inafter named, and as to such worldly Estate wherewith it hath pleased
God to intrust me, I dispose of the same as followeth:”

Brant was three times married and had nine children:
Domestic IsaaC) died ngs-had issue.

Relations. .->, . .. . , A TJ.,, , j .

Christina, married Aaron mil had issue.

Joseph, died 1830 had issue.

Jacob, died 1846 had issue.

John, died 1832 had no issue.

Margaret, married Powless Powless had issue.

Catharine, married Peter John had issue.

Mary, married Seth Hill had issue.

Elizabeth, married William Johnson

had issue.

His first wife, Margaret, had two children; his second wife, Susanna,
half sister to Margaret, passed away without issue, and his third wife,
Catherine, had seven children. She returned to Mohawk Village after
her husband’s death, and died there.

None of the sons attained any position of prominence
tionn rsrant. W j t j 1 ^ e exce pti on of John, the youngest. He was born
at Mohawk Village and well educated, “having the manners of an ac-
complished gentleman.” He took a creditable part in the war of 1812,
along with other members of the Six Nations, and after peace had been
declared settled at Wellington Square, in his father’s old house, where
his youthful sister, Elizabeth, helped in the administration of a home
which became famous for hospitality. In 1821-2 he visited England in
connection with Indian troubles over land titles, and made a good im-
pression there. It was then that he called on the poet Campbell, as
already related. On one occasion when some articles, derogatory to the
memory of his father, appeared in the Christian Recorder (Kingston) he
combated the assertions with an able pen, and submitted complete
proofs in refutation. He also took an alert interest in the missionary
and educational efforts of the New England Company among the Six
Nations, and in this regard the Company in 1829 presented him with a
silver cup bearing the inscription that the gift was “in acknowledgement
of his eminent services in promoting the objects of the Corporation.”
In the year 1832 he was returned as member of the Provincial Parliament
for the County of Haldimand. As a number of those who voted for him
only held long leases of former Indian land, and voters had to be free-
holders, his election was contested by his opponent, Colonel Warren,
and set aside, the Colonel receiving the award of the seat. However,
both shortly after fell victims to an epidemic of Asiatic cholera.


There are many descendents of Brant residing on the Six
First To Fall ]\f at i ons Reserve, and more than one of them took part
in the recent great war. Of these, the late Lieutenant Cameron D. Brant,
a great grand-son, was the first Brant County officer to fall. He was
killed in action at Ypres, and thus died gloriously for the British
cause, on behalf of which his illustrious great grandfather had, time after
time, also risked his own life.

Brant was always most zealous on behalf of his com-
A patriots and his last words are stated to have been : “Have

unaractens- pj tv on ^ e poor Indians. If you can get any influence

with the great, endeavor to do them all the good you
can.” In defence of the Six Nations and their methods, he sent the
following letter to Mr. Thomas Eddy, then Indian Commissioner:

“My Dear Sir:

“Your letter came safe to hand. To give you entire satisfaction,
I must, I perceive, enter into the discussion of a subject on which I have
often thought. My thoughts were my own, and being so different from
the ideas entertained among your people, I should certainly have carried
them with me to the grave, had I not received your obliging favor.

“You ask me, then, whether, in my opinion, civilization is favorable
to human happiness. In answer to the question, it may be answered, that
there are degrees of civilization, from Cannibals to the most polite of
European nations. The question is not, then, whether a degree of re-
finement is not conducive to happiness: but whether you or the natives
of this land, have obtained this happy medium ….. I was, sir,
born of Indian parents and lived while a child among those whom you
are pleased to call savages; I was afterwards sent to live among the white
people, and educated at one of your schools; since which period I have
been honored. much beyond my deserts, by an acquaintance with a number
of principal characters both in Europe and America. After all this ex-
perience, and after every exertion to divest myself of prejudice, I am
obliged to give my opinion in favor of mine own people. In the govern-
ment you call civilized, the happiness of the people is constantly sacri-
ficed to the splendor of empires. Hence your codes of criminal and
civil laws have their origin; hence your dungeons and prisons. I will
not enlarge on an idea so singular in civilized life. Among us we have
no prisons; we have no pompous parade of courts; we have no written
laws; and yet judges are as highly revered amongst us as they are with
you, and their decisions are as much regarded.

“Property, to say the least, is as well guarded and crimes are as
impartially punished. We have among us no special villains above the
control of our laws. Daring wickedness is here never suffered to triumph
over helpless innocence. The estates of widows and orphans are never
devoured by enterprising sharpers. In a word we have no robbery under
the color of law. No person among us desires any other reward for
performing a brave and worthy action, but the consciousness of having


served his nation. Our wise men are called Fathers; they truly sustain
that character. They are always accessible, I will not say to the meanest
of our people, for we have none mean, but such as render themselves so
by their vices.

*The palaces and prisons among you form a most dreadful contrast.
Go to the former places and you will see, perhaps a deformed piece of
earth assuming airs that become none but the Great Spirit above. Go to
one of your prisons; here description utterly fails. Kill them if you
please; kill them, too, by torture, but let the torture last no longer than
a day. Those you call savages relent; the most furious of our tormentors
exhausts his rage in a few hours, and dispatches his unhappy victim with
a sudden stroke. Perhaps it is eligible that incorrigible offenders should
be cut off. Let it be done in a way that is not degrading to human nature.
Let such unhappy men have an opportunity by their fortitude, of making
an atonement in some measure for the crimes they have committed during
their lives.

“But for what are many of your prisoners confined? for debt!
astonishing! and will you ever again call the Indian natives cruel?
Liberty, to a rational creature, as much exceeds property as the light
of the sun does that of the most twinkling star. But you put them on a
level, to the everlasting disgrace of civilization. Among the white people,
many of the most amiable contract debts, and I dare say with the best of
intentions. Both parties at the time of the contract expect to find their
advantage. The debtor, we will suppose, by a train of unavoidable
misfortunes, fails; here is no crime, nor even a fault; and yet your laws
put it in the power of the creditor to throw the debtor into prison and
confine him there for life a punishment infinitely worse than death to
a brave man! I seriously declare I had rather die by the most severe
tortures ever inflicted on this continent than languish in one of your
prisons for a single year. Great Spirit of the Universe! and do you
call yourselves Christians? Does then the religion of Him whom you
call your Saviour inspire this spirit and lead to these practices. Surely
no. It is recorded of Him, that a bruised reed he never broke. Cease,
then, to call yourselves Christians, lest you publish to the world your
hypocrisy. Cease, too, to call other nations savage when you are tenfold
more the children of cruelty than they.” Thayandenegea.

Stone was not the only historian to eulogise Brant. F.
Other Tri- w. Halsey, in his book on “The Old New York Fron-
butes by tier ^> ca j lg nim the most interesting” of all Indians.

William C. Bryant of Buffalo placed it upon record that,
in his opinion, the evidence was incontestable that he was a great man
in many respects the most extraordinary his race has produced since the
advent of the white man on this continent; and John Fiske, in one of his
later books, declares that he was the most remarkable Indian known to
history. Schoolcraft calls him the Jephtha of his tribe and lauds his
firmness and energy of purpose as qualities, which few among the


American aborigines have ever equalled. “But the best evidence of the
man’s personal worth lies in the high respect and friendship which he
inspired among educated and titled Englishmen, as shown in many ways
and notably in his correspondence.” “Brant,” says Halsey,” has deserved
no large part of the load of obloquy which for many years has rested
upon his name. There was much in the man that was kindly and
humane. If he loved war, this was because he loved his friends and his
home still more. He fought in battle with the vigor and skill of a savage,
but we are to remember that he fought where honor called him. To the
story of his life peculiar fascination must long be attached, a large part
of which springs from the potent charm of an open personality. In
Brant’s character were joined strength and humanity, genius for war and
that unfamiliar quality in the Mohawk savage, bonhomie.” Mr. H. F.
Gardiner, M. A. “As a warrior, Brant was cautious, sagacious and
brave, watching with sleepless vigilance for opportunities of
action, and allowing neither dangers nor difficulties to divert him from
his well settled purposes. His constitution was hardy, his capacity of
endurance great; his energy untiring, and his firmness indomitable. He
was at once affable and dignified, avoiding frivolity on the one hand and
stiffness on the other. His temperament was decidedly amiable ; he had a
keen perception of the ludicrous, and was both humorous and witty him-
self. In his dealings and business relations he was prompt, honorable
and expert, and a pattern of integrity. The purity of his private morals
has never been questioned, and his house was the abode of kindness and




The first suggestion of a memorial came in August 1874,
^T 8 ” . when His Royal Highness, Prince Arthur, Duke of Con-

naught, had a portrait of Brant sent to him by the Chiefs
and Warriors, and they, at the same time, asked him to become patron of
such a movement. In an accompanying address, the following reference
was made to the subject:

“They would also respectfully represent to your Royal Highness their
anxious desire to see performed their too long delayed duty of worthily
perpetuating the memory of their great Chief, Captain Joseph Brant,
(Thayendanegea) who during the great struggle which resulted in the
creation of two supreme authorities on this continent where only one
existed, loyally and gallantly led their fathers, as Allies of the Crown
in the defence of it and the Empire, and when all was lost, with them
maintained his allegiance, sacrificing and giving up all and finding his
way to the then wilds of Canada, where he remained to the end of his
eventful career, animating and inspiring them with the same loyalty and
attachment to the Crown, and its institutions, which always characterized
him and them whenever their services were required. They would fur-
ther respectfully refer your Royal Highness to the important part which
the said Six Nations performed in the ever memorable War of 1812
when it was sought to destroy the last vestige of British authority on this
Continent, and ever since that time when similar attempts have been
made, and express the hope that Your Royal Highness in view of past
services to their Country may be graciously pleased to aid them in their
contemplated efforts to raise a fitting monument to, and worthy of, the
memory of the distinguished Chief of whom they have been speaking, by
permitting yourself to become associated with the undertaking, as it
would be greatly promoted thereby and it is one in which they would
assure Your Royal Highness they feel a profound and lively interest.”

In reply the Duke gladly assumed the patronage and the project
commenced to take tangible shape, so much so that on April 14th, 1876
at a meeting of Brantford and County residents, the following executive
Committee was appointed to forward the proposal

Honourable David Christie, Speaker of Senate, Chairman; A. Cleg-
horn, Vice-Chairman: C. A. Jones, Secretary; A. Robertson, Treasurer;
W. Paterson, M. P., Hon. A. S. Hardy, Judge Jones, W. Thompson,


(Warden of Brant) Dr. J. W. Digby, (Mayor of Brantford), G. H. Wilkes,
(Deputy Reeve) Supt. Gilkison, Dr. Kenwood, H. Yates, R. Henry, H.
Lemmon, W. C. Trimble, W. Watt, Jr., A. J. Wilkes, A. B. G. Tisdale, G.
Lindley, and J. Turner, and the following Chiefs nominated by the Six
Nations Council:

Mohawks: John Carpenter, David Thomas

Oneidas: John General, Nicodemus Porter.

Onondagas: John Buck, Levi Johnson.

Cayugas: Joseph Henry, William Wedge.

Senecas: John Hill, John Gibson Jr.

Tuscaroras: Moses Hill, Richard Hill.

Chief Johnson, Interpreter, P. E. Jones, M. D., Head Chief represent-
ing Mississaugas, New Credit.

Later owing to the death of Hon. Mr. Christie, Mr. A. Cleghorn be-
came President. Other changes were Mr. I. Cockshutt, Vice President,
Mr. G. H. Muirhead, Secretary and Mr. Robert Henry, Treasurer.

On August 2nd. 1877 the Six Nations Indians while in Council voted
$5,000.00 towards a memorial, and at a public meeting in Brantford on
September 3rd, the City Council were asked to donate $2,500.00 which was
done. Another $5,000.00 was promised from outside sources and the
enterprise seemed to be well under way. However before anything defin-
ite was accomplished popular enthusiasm cooled down and for years the
project appeared to have lapsed. Finally at a mass meeting in Brantford
Opera House March 6th, 1883, a revival was recorded and the enterprise
went ahead to a definite completion. In addition to the Six Nations and
City grants already recorded, the Dominion Government voted $5,000.00
the Ontario Government $2,500.00, the County of Brant $500.00, the New
Credit Indians $250.00, and private subscriptions brought the total to
the sum of $17,000.00.

In the month of July 1883, invitations were issued for the submission
of models and a premium of $1,000.00 was offered for the best work.
Seven artists entered the contest and the various models were placed
on public view. As generally anticipated, the design of Mr. Percy Wood
of London England proved to be the unanimous choice of the Judges and
the stipulated cost was $16,000.00 including the $1,000.00 premium. He
made two lengthy visits to Brantford, and spent much time on the Reserve
studying Indian types, tokens, and characteristics, so that his work should
be absolutely correct in every detail. He entrusted Messrs. F. H. Francis,
well known architects of London, England, with the design of the pedestal
of grey granite which they produced at a cost of $2,000.00 and the
casting was performed by Macefield and Company at a further outlay of


$6,000.00. These two items together with other expenses and the time he
devoted to the work left Mr. Wood scarcely any reward, save that of the
artistic triumph which he undoubtedly achieved.

The monument is chiefly noticeable for its group-
A Notable ^ n ^ an( j f or tne dignified simplicity with which

the figure of Brant has been treated. Mr. Wood
gives an insight into the character of the Indian as he was before
civilization exercised its effect upon him. He has portrayed the red man
in his primitiveness. The work is not trammelled with a mass of detail,
calculated to confuse the eye and it must be studied as a whole for the
full beauty of the ideas expressed to be thoroughly comprehended. The
artist has represented each of the Six Nations Mohawks, Oneidas,
Onondagas, Cayugas, Senecas, and Tuscaroras by a figure, and these six
figures are arranged in two groups which flank each side of the pedestal.
The centre figure of each group is standing, and the two supporting fig-
ures seated in graceful positions. From whatever point the work is
examined the effects serve to show how the subtleties of art can be so
arranged as to bring about a thoroughly well poised result.

The statue of Brant, which surmounts the monument, differs greatly
from the others in the fact that there is an utter absence of special
adornment. The great Chief is pictured as standing in the act of speak-
ing, with his robe thrown lightly back from his shoulders. The likeness
is taken from one of the most reliable of old pictures and as far as this
could guide, the artist has secured a remarkably faithful representation.
The figure is nine feet in height, and the others life size. The types of
Indian faces introduced are exceedingly good, while the postures through-
out are characterized by an ease and naturalness which it would be
impossible to improve upon. There are no hard lines or forced attitudes.
The whole pose of the several figures carries out the prevailing idea in
every gesture and the outcome is a work of living force. From the
easy grace with which Brant with upraised hand and flowing robes, is
depicted as addressing his warriors, to the minutest detail, the memorial
is throughout marked by the same characteristics, and it can be affirmed
without question that Mr. Wood has succeeded in effecting a work of
consummate breadth and power.

The four has reliefs depict a war dance with sixteen figures, a council
with thirteen figures, a bear, and wolf.

The reliefs and figures are all of bronze, formed from guns donated
by the Home Authorities in the Imperial realization that the Memorial
is to a Chief, and people, who helped to save Canada for the Empire.
Many of these guns saw service at Waterloo, and others throughout the


Crimea, truly befitting stuff out of which to mould the commemorative
figure of the leading Chief, and the tribal figures of the Six Nations,
whose whole hearted allegiance at a critical period on this Continent
proved of such value to the British Crown and Empire.

The laying of the corner stone took place on Wednesday
The Corner August llth, 1886. There was a procession with suit-
able band music, and other accessories. Chief Josiah
Hill occupied the post of Chairman, and Mr. Allen Cleghorn made the
opening speech. He pointed out that the monument was destined to tell
to the world at large the good faith which had existed in the observance
of the treaties between the Six Nations Indians, and the British Crown.
He referred to the great ruling power for good which Brant had exercised,
and the laying of that foundation stone was a befitting act in commemora-
tion of his greatness, and the greatness of the Six Nations confederacy.

Chief Clench, deputed by the Six Nations to act in that capacity, laid
the corner stone which included the usual records. He spoke in Indian.

Chief John Buck, fire keeper, told how their forefathers had left peace,
quietness, and happy homes in their preference for the cause of Great

Chief John Smoke Johnson (grandfather of Pauline Johnson) ninety-
four years old, who was through the war of 1812-15; gave an address in
a voice remarkable for its clearness. He had known Brant very well and
had also heard of the works he had done in times of war. When the
Mohawks lived in New York State with great privileges and advantages
the revolution had suddenly broken out. Brant immediately allied him-
self with the British troops and when after continuous fighting the British
were forced to retire, Brarit and his warriors guided the British soldiers
safely from the Mohawk river to Niagara, and then returned and brought
their wives and children also safely to them.

Mr. W. Paterson, M. P., and Mr. R. Henry, made suitable speeches, and
the gathering dispersed with war whoops and cheers for the Queen.

October 13th. 1886 was selected as the date of the un-
__ … veiling by His Honour Lieut.-Governor Robinson of

Ontario. There were many distinguished guests, includ-
ing Major General Sir Frederick Middleton, who had been in command of
the Canadian troops during the Riel Rebellion, and a notable and pictur-
esque feature was the attendance of a delegation of leading North-West
Chiefs, whom the Dominion Government had deemed it advisable to
impress with the cordial local Indian relations. The Northwest Red Men
were all attired in fanciful garb, and in every respect proved the beau
ideal of the Fenimore Cooper Indian. The contrast between their prim-
The Brant Monument, Victoria Square.


itive appearance, and that of the members of the Six Nations was most

Shortly after twelve o’clock the clanging of the bells, and shrieking of
whistles heralded the day’s proceedings, and constituted a signal for the
assembling at the Indian Office of the Chiefs and warriors of the Six
Nations, accompanied by the Northwest Chiefs, and members of other
visiting tribes. Headed by the Holmedale Band, a procession took place to
Victoria Park in the following order:

Members of the Brant Memorial Association

Distinguished guests
Lieut.-Governor Robinson

Escort of Burford Cavalry
General Sir Frederick Middleton

President Memorial Association, Mayor and Corporation, Warden
and County Council.

The route of procession was along Dalhousie Street to George, thence
to Colborne, along Colborne to King, thence to Nelson to George and to
Victoria Square.

All the streets named were gaily decorated, and the sidewalks crowd-
ed with masses of people.

On arrival at a raised platform in front of the monument, a guard of
one hundred members of the Dufferin Rifles under command of Captain
T. Harry Jones, saluted the Lieut-Governor and party, and Major Gen-
eral Middleton and party.

The platform was occupied by Lieut-Governor Robinson and Mrs.
Robinson, Major Gen. Sir Frederick and Lady Middleton, Mr. Cleghorn,
President Memorial Association, Honorable A. S. and Mrs. Hardy, Mrs.
J. H. Stratford, Mrs. P. Wood, Mayor Heyd, W. Paterson, M. P., Judge
Jones, Captain Wyse, A. D. C., Captain Geddes, A. D. C., Lieut.-Col. Jones
Rev. G. C. Mackenzie, Rev. Dr. Cochrane, Chief Buck, (Six Nations Fire
Keeper,) Chief Wage, Chief A. G. Smith, Senator Plumb, Northwest
Chiefs and Interpreters, Hon. James and Mrs. Young, of Gait, W. Buck,
Dr. Digby, J. Somerville, M. P., R. Henry, F. Cockshutt, Aid. A. K. Bun-
nell, W. Watt, Aid. B. H. Rothwell, Police Magistrate Denison, of Tor-
onto, G. R. Pattullo, Woodstock, H. McK. Wilson, A. Watts.

There was an attendance of many thousands, and proceedings opened
with a rendering of two verses of the One hundredth Psalm, the singing
led by members of the Mendelssohn Choir under direction of Professor
Garrett, then organist of Grace Church.

Rev. Dr. Cochrane offered an appropriate prayer and Mr. Cleghorn
read an address to the Lieut-Governor, in which he tendered him a cordial
welcome and gave a brief outline of the notable career of Brant.


The cord commanding the covering of the figure of Brant was then
handed to Hon. Mr. Robinson and the drapery (Union Jack) fell off,
disclosing the bronze to view amid the vociferous plaudits of the assem-
bled host. Mr. Percy Wood next gave six other cords to the Six Nations
Chiefs previously mentioned. Another pull and amidst the renewed
plaudits of the huge multitude the Union Jacks covering the remainder of
the monument fell away, and the memorial became exposed in all its
beauty to the admiring thousands. This event was followed by an im-
promptu war dance by a number of Indians in full war paint and at the
close the Lieut-Governor and distinguished visitors walked around the
statue and appraised it from every angle. His Honor then gave his
address, during which he said that “He was glad and proud to be with
them upon so memorable and important a Dominion and Provincial oc-
casion; glad on behalf of the people of this whole Province to pay his
homage and that of the Government to the memory of the notable Chief,
Captain Joseph Brant, for his great and noble services to the Country.
(Applause.) Had it not been for Brant and his men there would not,
perhaps, have been a Canada on the map of this continent today.” (Loud

The Mendelssohn Choir next rendered a memorial song composed by
Mr. M. A. Mackenzie, son of Archdeacon Mackenzie, now a professor at
Toronto University.

“Raise to the War Chief, the record of Victory,
Lay at his feet all the trophies of might
Forced from his foes as mementos of conquering,
Tokens of strength in defending the right.

“Joy ye Red Men, rejoice to remember,
Days when your fathers have followed the call.
Children of warriors he proudly commanded
Shout o’er his foemen, exult in their fall.

Ye, pale faces, rejoice in their gladness,
Think on the debt that ye owe to the dead,
Brant and his braves have defended the Country,
Life blood for you and your fathers have shed.”

Professor Garrett had written most appropriate music for the words.

Memorial Th en followed this memorial ode composed by E. Paul-

Ode, ine Johnson and read by Mr. W. F. Cockshutt.

“Young Canada” with mighty force sweeps on,
To gain in power and strength before the dawn
That brings another era, when the sun
Shall rise again, but only shine upon


Her Indian graves and Indian memories.

For as the carmine in the twilight skies

Will fade as night conies on, so fades the race
That unto Might and therefore Right gives place.

And as white clouds float hurriedly and high
Across the crimson of a sunset sky
Altho’ their depths are foamy as the snow
Their beauty lies in their vermillion glow.
So, Canada, thy plumes were hardly won
Without allegiance from thy Indian son.
Thy glories, like the cloud, enhance their charm
With red reflections from the Mohawk’s arm.

Then meet we as one common brotherhood
In peace and love, with purpose understood
To lift a lasting tribute to the name
Of Brant who linked his own with Britain’s fame.
Who bade his people leave their Valley Home
Where nature in her fairest aspects shone,
Where rolls the Mohawk River and the land
Is blest with every good from Heaven’s hand,
To sweep the tide of home affections back
And love the land where waves the Union Jack.
What tho that home no longer ours? Today
The Six red nations have their Canada.
And rest we here, no cause for us to rise
To seek protection under other skies.
Encircling us an arm both true and brave
Extends from far across the great salt wave.
Tho but a woman’s hand ’tis firm, and strong
Enough to guard us from all fear of wrong,
A hand on which all British subjects lean
The loving hand of England’s noble Queen.”
October 8, 1886. E. Pauline Johnson


Miss Johnson was conducted to a place on the platform before the
recital of the piece, and at the close presented the first copy to Mrs.
Robinson, who warmly congratulated her upon the work. Miss Johnson,
then in her early twenties, was just commencing to take her first steps
towards the fame which later became so secure.

Chief John Buck, Fire Keeper, of the Six Nations Council, spoke in
Indian, Chief A. G. Smith, acting as interpreter. He returned hearty
thanks on behalf of the Indians for the signal honour paid to their great
leader Brant, and said ‘The monument would prove a still further incen-
tive to the Six Nations to be ever loyal to the British Crown.” He did
not know as much about art probably as his white brethren, but he felt


that it was a glorious work, and he had been deputed to hand to Mr. Wood
a string of wampum as an evidence of the thanks of himself and people.
Proceedings closed by Mr. Cleghorn formally handing the memorial
into the charge of the City and Mayor Heyd accepting the trust in an
appropriate speech.

The ceremonies were concluded at about two o’clock and the crowd
then proceeded to Agricultural Park headed by a procession made up as

38th Dufferin Rifle Band

Carriage with Lieut. -Governor, Mrs. Robinson, Mrs. J. H.
Stratford and A. Cleghorn
Escort of Burford Cavalry

Carriage with Sir F. Middleton, Lady Middleton, Mrs.

Hardy and Mayor Heyd.

Holmedale Band

Lacrosse Teams

Six Nations Band

Twenty warriors in costume

New Credit Band
Mr. Percy Wood, Mr. J. H. Stratford, City and County

Councils in carriages
Guests and Indian Delegates in carriages.

A lacrosse match between two Indian teams and other sports constitut-
ed the programme. One of the special features was the roasting of an ox
and another consisted of an Indian dance in full war paint. All the
factories and shops closed for the afternoon and people were present
from far and wide. The total attendance was estimated at nearly twenty

At night Stratford’s Opera House was crowded when Indians pro-
vided the programme, and the Roller Rink was also well filled for an
entertainment given under the auspices of the Knights of Sherwood
Forest, and Brant Hose Company

The second day’s celebration was spoiled by a continuous rain, al-
though there was a notable trades procession.

A brilliant banquet was also held on Wednesday night at the Kerby
House, and the guests included many from the States as well as Canadian

Grace was offered by Rev. Mr. Mackenzie and the usual loyal toasts
observed. In responding to “His Honour, Lieut. Governor of Ontario,”
Hon. Mr. Robinson replied in a very happy mood, paying tribute to
Brantford as most worthily named in commemoration of a great man and
loyal British ally. Sir Frederick Middleton replied to “The Army, Navy
and Volunteers,” and spoke most highly of the Canadian troops in the


North West rebellion of the previous year. “The Memory of Brant” was
championed by Senator Plumb in a very able speech.

The Vice-Chair (Chief Hill) gave “The Dominion and Provincial
Governments,” eloquently responded to by Hon. A. S. Hardy and Mr. W.
Paterson, M. P.

The second Vice-chair, (Mayor Heyd), proposed “The Six Nations
and other Indian Tribes.” Chief A. G. Smith, speaking in English, made
one of the best addresses of the evening. Among other things he claimed
that “Canada was living under a form of Government copied from the
Confederation of the Six Nations. Uncle Sam had been first to follow
the example and then the Dominion wheeled into line.”

“Our visitors from the United States” brought replies from Uncle
Sam’s representatives, and “The Sculptor of the Monument” was not for-
gotten. The Lieut. Governor proposed the health of Mr. Cleghorn, and
“God Save the Queen,” closed a memorable event.

The inscription on the Memorial reads:
Inscription. 44r _ . . , , . . _ _

Ihis national monument erected by the Brant Memorial

Association incorporated 41 Vic. Chap. 62 to

Born 1742, died 1807, interred at the Mohawk Church

and to

the Six Nations Indians for their long and faithful services on behalf of
the British Crown and their strict observance of treaties.”

Contributed to by the Six Nations Indians, the Chippewas, the Domin-
ion of Canada, Province of Ontario, the City of Brantford, the Counties of
Brant and Bruce, and private subscriptions.

The British Government provided the bronze cannons for the statue.

Patrons: H. R. H. Duke of Connaught, the Marquis of Lome, the Earl
of Dufferin, the Marquis of Lansdowne.

Directors: Allen Cleghorn, President; I. Cockshutt, Vice President;
Robt. Henry, Treasurer; G. H. Muirhead, Secretary; Alex. Robertson, Col.
Gilkison, W. Paterson, M. P.; Wm. Buck, Daniel Burt, (Warden County
Brant) H. McK. Wilson, Q. C.; A. J. Wilkes, L. L. B.; C. B. Heyd, (Mayor
of Brantford) ; R. Kenwood, M. D.; J. W. Digby, M. D.; J. H. Stratford,
Wm. Watt.

Chiefs: Ska-na-wa-dih; Ah-wem-in-neh ; Ska-ko-ka-nyes ; Kenehdageh ;
Ka-non-kwe-yo-teh ; A. G. Smith Interpreter.

Sculptor: Percy Wood, (gained by international competition.)

Corner Stone laid August 11, 1886,by Chief Ka-non-kwe-yo-teh.

Unveiled October 13th by the Hon. J. B. Robinson, Lieutenant Gov-
ernor of Ontario.”

Mr. Wood was a comparatively young man when he
, . achieved this work of art. His father was the celebrated

English sculptor, Mr. Marshall Wood, whose genius re-
ceived extensive recognition. The son in early life turned his attention


to painting, and the Brant Monument was his first effort in the sister art.
So far as known he never achieved any other success of like nature.

For a considerable period the statement was accepted
PI? T tnat * n i s > tne fi rst Episcopal Church erected in Upper

Canada, .was built by Brant from funds collected by him
on his second visit to England. In reality the edifice was the result of
the pledge of Haldimand: “A church shall be built wherever the Mohawks
shall settle and a clergyman be established for them,” although Brant
most likely had a hand in that stipulation, as it is recorded that in 1772-3
he became subject to serious religious impressions and was a regular
communicant. As the outcome a commencement was made on the
structure in the year 1785 and it must have been nearing completion
when the Chief sailed for home in November. However it is more than
probable that Brant had a part in the greater liberality of King George
III. in the equipment of the building and the printing of the Mohawk
prayer book. The contract was let to John Smith, a U. E. Loyalist who,
together with his son-in-law John Thomas, another loyalist, had been
persuaded by Brant to come with the Six Nations to their new home.

It was to this John Thomas that the first “Brant Lease” was issued.
The document bears date May 2nd, 1801 and disposes of 200 acres for
“eighty pounds, New York Currency,” paid to Brant. The land is
described as beginning at a stake “on the Northerly part of the great bend
below the village, or church on said river” (Grand) and the term is for
999 years. In addition to the signatures, Jos. Brant and John Thomas,
the names of the witnesses are “William Mclnistry” and Wm. Hambly.”

The timber for the church was cut in the neighborhood of Paris and
floated down the Grand river to the existing site where it was sawn
and the clap boards beaded by hand, as may easily be seen by examining
any of the original boards still remaining. When the church was built
the entrance was at the east end, and the pulpit at the centre of the south
wall facing north; on the west side of that was a large pew for the Brant
family and at either side, facing the altar, were two pews reserved for the
white members of the congregation. The remainder of the space was oc-
cupied by seats for the Indians and the pews were of the old fashioned
high box type.

In 1788, upon the invitation of Brant, Dr. Stuart visited Mohawk Vil-
lage and he thus describes the trip:

“I embarked in a bateau with six Indians, commanded by Captain
Brant. We coasted along the north side of Lake Ontario about 200
miles, and from the Head of the Lake (Hamilton) we went 25 miles by
land, to the Mohawk village on the Grand River, which empties into
Mohawk Church, the oldest edifice of public worship in Ontario.


Lake Erie. These people were my former charge, and the society still
calls me their missionary. I found them conveniently situated on a
beautiful river, where the soil is equal in fertility to any I ever saw.
Their village contains about 700 souls and consists of a great number of
good houses with an elegant church in the centre. It has a handsome
steeple and bell, and is well finished within. You will be surprised when
I tell you that they have a complete pulpit, with the Creed, Command-
ments, Society’s and King’s Coat of Arms, all very large and elegant, and
that the Psalmody was accompanied by an organ. The place is 90 miles
from Niagara and was uninhabited four years ago.”

In 1816 Lieut. Hall (“Halls Travels”) visited the church and tells of
“Aaron, a grey haired Mohawk, who would touch his cheeks and forehead
with a few spots of vermillion in honor of Sunday. He wore a surplice
and preached.”

When the Six Nations came here they brought with them the Bible
and a silver communion plate, bearing the Royal arms, which had been a
gift to them in their old home by Queen Anne. These precious possessions
had been buried during the war and emerged in a good state of preserva-
tion as indeed they still remain.

The inscription on the bible cover reads “For Her Majesty’s Church
of the Mohawks, 1712.” The signatures on the fly leaf now include
“Albert Edward (King Edward) Prince of Wales, September 14th 1860.”
“Arthur (Duke of Connaught) October 1st, 1869,” “George (King George
V.) October 14th 1901,” “Victoria Mary (Queen Mary) October 14th,
1901,” “Patricia (Lady Ramsay, then Princess Patricia) May 9th, 1914,”
“Edward P. (Prince of Wales) October 20th, 1919,” “John Young (Gov-
ernor General) October 1st, 1869,” “Dufferin (Earl Dufferin Governor
General) August 25th, 1874,” “John A. Macdonald (Sir John Macdonald)
1874,” “Lansdowne (Marquis of Lansdowne, Governor General) August
10, 1885,” “Stanley of Preston (Lord Stanley, Governor General) Janu-
ary 14, 1893,” “Minto (Earl Minto Governor General) May 24, 1903,”
“Grey (Earl Grey, Governor General) May 25, 1905,” “Devonshire (Duke
of Devonshire, Governor General) October 24th, 1917.”

The Communion service has the inscription “The Gift of Her Majesty
Anne, by the Grace of God of Great Britain and Ireland and her plan-
tations in North America, Queen, to Her Indian Chapel of the Mohawks

The first bell was also supposed to have been among the gifts of
Queen Anne, but the inscription, “John Warner, Fleet Street, London,
1786” leads to the belief that Brant secured it while overseas. In 1873


this bell, the first to sound the call to worship in Upper Canada became
cracked, and it was disposed of for old metal. While it was lying ready
for shipment public interest became aroused to prevent its destruction
and it was saved to occupy its present position under a wooden canopy
at the left of the entrance.

There was no regular minister in charge, during the first forty years
of the existence of the edifice. Brant made every effort to secure a resi-
dent missionary but without result, and the supply depended on itiner-
ant ministers, or the Indians themselves such as old Aaron. In 1823
the New England Company became interested. This organization, the
oldest for the propagation of the gospel, was founded in the time of
Cromwell and established by the Long Parliament in 1649. At that
period a general collection was directed to be made through all the
Counties, cities, town and parishes of “England and Wales” for the
purpose of raising funds and the sum of twelve thousand pounds was thus
collected. The amount was invested in landed property in Suffolk and
Kent and some houses in London. In the time of Charles II a new
charter (1661) was obtained. The company, having decided to include
the Six Nations in the scope of their work, sent the Rev. John West to
report on the condition of affairs, Capt. John Brant acting as lay agent.
They built two schools near the Mohawk village and also the parsonage
on the Canal bank. The brick for the latter structure, which is still in
a good state of preservation, was bought in Kingston and from the latter
place carried by water to Welland and thence teamed here. Rev. Mr.
Hough, the first missionary, did not remain long, and in October of 1827
Rev. Robert Lugger arrived to take his place and continued in the work
for many years.

In 1829 under his direction the church was thoroughly repaired and
altered. The spire was taken down and rebuilt, with the lower portion
so enlarged as to permit of an entrance through the centre. The original
door at the east was then boarded up. The communion table, and tablets
in Mohawk containing the Lord’s Prayer, Ten Commandments and
Apostle’s creed were also transferred to the east end and other improve-
ments carried out. The following year, (1830) the consecration took
place with the Bishop of Quebec officiating, he then having jurisdiction
over this region.

As the Indians withdrew from Mohawk Village and vicinity they
transferred their attendance to the Kanyengeh Church and the “Old
Mohawk” fell into a condition of decay during the sixties but was later
fully restored and has been kept in excellent condition ever since .


SMS’l Jc-liS.

1 lie
C.OM 1.1.


Fly Leaf of St. John, Mohawk and English.
Open page of St. John in Mohawk and English ( 1804. 1

Reproduced by the kindness of the Upper Canada

Bible Society.


An inscription tablet on the right hand side of the entrance reads:

“Saint Pauls

His Majesty’s Chapel

of the Mohawks

erected by
King George III.


The first Church
built in Ontario.”

After Mr. Lugger’s time, Archdeacon Nelles was associated with the
work for some fifty years. He was a son of Robert Nelles, a U. E.
Loyalist, who gave up his farm and mill in order to attach himself to
the Six Nations during the Revolutionary War. He afterwards became
Colonel of Militia and member of Parliament. The Archdeacon who was
one of nineteen children was born at Grimsby in 1805. The family
name still continues here through his descendants.

Rev. Robert Ashton during the later years of his Principalship of
the Mohawk Institute also took charge of the services.

As the result of public agitation it was decided to bring
‘T >> K S * ne remams f Brant here from Wellington Square and to

reinter them, together with those of his son John Brant
in a stone tomb, the original vault of the Brant family, constructed of
wood having become considerably out of repair. Local tradition has it
that Brant’s coffin was carried by relays of Indians from Wellington
Square but there is no record of that incident in the following reference to
the event in the Brantford Herald of November 27th, 1850. (The Herald
passed out of existence in 1861.)

“On Monday last the remains of Thayendanegea, which had been
previously exhumed were placed in the tomb at the Mohawk Church that
had been recently prepared for their reception. This was done with no
small degree of pageantry. The vast multitude of people who had
assembled from different quarters went in procession from the town of
Brantford to the Mohawk Village. Addresses were delivered by Rev. A.
Nelles, Rev. P. Jones, Sir Allan McNab, D. Thorburn, Esq., and others,
among whom was an American gentleman whose father had many years
ago been most generously treated by Brant. After the speaking was
concluded the interment took place, when three volleys were fired over the
grave of the brave and faithful Indian soldier, Captain Joseph Brant.

“In his address on that occasion Rev. Peter Jones said that Brant’s
adherence to Great Britain was strong, and sincere; and in consequence of
that attachment the Six Nations lost their extensive fertile country, now
the garden of the State of New York. No one can dispute his bravery.


In Indian language it may be said of him : “His eye was like the eagle’s,
his motions like arrows from the bow, his enemies fell before him as
the trees before the blast of the Great Spirit.” Brant was the principal
means of the erection of the church, now the oldest in Canada, and pro-
cured the bell which has so often summoned the people of God together
to worship in his holy courts; and has tolled for hundreds of those whose
bones now lie in that sacred yard. I am informed that it tolled when
Brant died, 24 hours. I am happy to learn that our white friends have
it in their hearts to erect a monument to the memory of the Indian brave,
that succeeding generations may see and know the hero after whom the
town of Brantford is named.”

Rev. Peter Jones (Chief Kahkewaquonay) was the son of a Govern-
ment land Surveyor and Indian mother and was born at Burlington
Heights. His father, a man of Welsh extraction, lived in America pre-
vious to the revolution and when he came to Canada and presented a
letter of recommendation to General Simcoe, was made Deputy Provin-
cial Surveyor. He married Tuhbenahneequay, a daughter of Chief Wah-
banosay of the Mississauga tribe of the Ojibway Nation. The son Peter,
was a man of great missionary zeal, and upon his death in 1856 at the
age of fifty-four, he was buried at Brantford with befitting ceremonies
and later a handsome marble monument was erected to his memory. On
this occasion, many Indians and whites were present and laudatory ad-
dresses were made by Rev. T. B. Howard, Rev. J. C. Usher, Chief G. H. M.
Johnson, Lewis Burwell, Dr. Digby, Mr. Matthews and a Chief of the
Mississauga tribe.

Supplementing the report from the Herald it may be added that
Brantford Masons took part in the ceremony, Brant having been a
member of Barton Lodge No. 10, Hamilton, and No. 11 the lodge at
Mohawk village. The first clue to the origin of the last named lodge
was discovered in January 1899. The warrant was issued February 12th,
1798 with these names of first officers: Capt. Joseph Brant, Master,
Thomas Homer, S. W., W. K. Smith, J. W. While in England the Chief
was presented with a Masonic Apron by King George III. Miss Carey in
a pamphlet published in 1873 says:

“The late Jonathan Maynard, Esq., formerly a member of the Senate
of Massachusetts, was saved by Brant who discovered the symbols of
free-masonry upon the prisoner’s arms after the Indians had partially
stripped him to put him to death. Mr. Maynard lived to an advanced
old age, an upright and faithful magistrate.” It may be that the “Amer-
ican gentleman” referred to in the Herald report was a descendant of
Maynard. ,


In order to guard against relic hunters the slab is protected by an
iron railing. It bears this inscription:

This Tomb

Is erected to the Memory of

Thayendanegea, or

Capt. Joseph Brant,

Principal Chief and Warrior of

The Six Nations Indians,

By his Fellow Subjects,

Admirers of his fidelity and

Attachment to the British Crown.

Born on the banks of the

Ohio River, 1742, died at

Wellington Square, U. C., 1807.

It also contains the remains

of his Son, Ahyouwaighs, or

Capt. John Brant,
Who succeeded his father as

Tekarihogea, and

distinguished himself in

The War of 1812-15.

Born at the

Mohawk Village, U. C., 1794,

Died at the same place, 1832,

Erected 1850.

Reference has already been made to the collaboration
ocnpturi Q g rant an( j j) r Stuart in scripture translation. The

Translation. …. c . j A- i i.

Missionary Society encouraged their joint labors and

they produced the Gospel of St. Mark and the book of Common Prayer.
Both were published at the expense of the British Government and print-
ed in good type with appropriate engravings. In 1804, John Norton, by
birth a Cherokee, but who from infancy had lived among the Mohawks
and became a Chief, gave his people the Gospel of St. John in their own
tongue. The British and Foreign Bible Society was just then in course
of establishment, and the first Scripture the then young organization
published was the Gospel of St. John, in Mohawk and English, for the
red men of Canada. A copy of this original is preserved in the Canada
Bible Society museum, Toronto.

Dr. Stuart because of his friendliness to the Indians and the British
throne, suffered many indignities. His house was attacked and church
desecrated by use as a tavern. He later came to Canada and under his
inspiration there was built at Kingston, what was probably the first
church for Loyalists in the Province old St. Georges.


Dr. Stuart has left it on record that the family of Brant did not
occupy a pre-eminent position in their village on the Mohawk River and
says that Joseph’s influence was acquired by his uncommon talents. “Dis-
tinguished alike for his address, his activity and his courage possessing
in point of stature and symmetry of person the advantage of most men
even among his own well formed race, tall, erect and majestic, with the
air and mien of one born to command having as it were, been a man of
war since his boyhood his name was a tower of strength among the
warriors of the wilderness.”

The notable Chief, warrior and administrator, sleeps under a stone
tomb placed by appreciative hands in the little church yard not far from
this city, but his loyalty to the British Crown and achievements on behalf
of the Empire and of his people will forever constitute his greatest




Few places in Canada have a more ideal setting than Brantford, and
certainly no other inland City can compare with it for location. The
fact has already been related that the Attiwandarons had their chief
village here, and that Father Daillon described the Grand River Valley
as the most beautiful he had seen in all his wanderings.

The indications are that the whole of the City area was once a lake
of which the surrounding low hills were the banks. This theory is
emphasized by the sand and gravel components of the soil. The river
sweep, and the hills, serve to intercept the view at every turn with fea-
tures of interest while the level area is sufficiently large to accommodate a
business and manufacturing centre of great size.

In the natural course of the development of the Country such a loca-
tion was bound, sooner or later, to attract settlement, but the arrival of
the Six Nations Indians undoubtedly hastened the event. The possibili-
ties of barter with several hundred red men naturally tended to an early
focus of trade at the ford. Said ford, it may be remarked, was not
situated at the site of Lome Bridge as generally supposed, but a little
lower down, not far from the T. H. & B. span. It should be remem-
bered that at the commencement of the place the land was still Indian
territory and so remained for many years.

Apparently the first inhabitant was a man named John Stalls, and it
is quite probable that he was a half breed. In 1805 he erected a log
hut, where the memorial now stands to the fallen heroes of the South
African War, at the front of the Armouries property facing Colborne
Street. In later years J. P. Excell had a tavern there, over the door of
which swung a sign bearing the words:

“This sign hangs high
And hinders none.
Refresh and pay
Then travel on.”

Stalls was probably one of those wandering characters of early days who


did a little fishing and shooting, and he had apparently been attracted
to this spot by the presence of Brant and his braves.

Thirteen years later, 1818, the population consisted of
Commencing 1 twe ] ve people, and then somewhat of an impetus occur-
red; for in 1823 there were nearly one hundred souls. The
completion of the Hamilton and London road was one main cause. Three
small trading stores were then owned by John A. Wilkes, S. V. R. Doug-
las and Nathan Gage. The principal customers were Indians and whiskey
was one of the chief articles of trade. There were also two shoe shops,
one kept by William D. Dutton and the other by Arunah Huntington. A
blacksmith shop was also established by William Qua.

John Aston Wilkes came to Canada from Birmingham in 1820 and
settled in “Little York,” now Toronto, where he was engaged in business
as a merchant. He sent his two sons John A. Wilkes and James Wilkes
to this place to open a branch establishment. Mr. Wilkes Sr., soon
followed his sons here and purchased considerable property by such title
as he could get. James from 1872 to 1888 was Municipal Treasurer.

Arunah Huntington was a character. He came here from the State
of Vermont and in addition to running a shoe shop he sold tea and
other commodities. He was of a very penurious nature, also possessing
keen business instincts, and as the years rolled on he amassed a large es-
tate, which he greatly increased by loans at high interest. At the time of
the American Civil War he bought Northern securities and Northern
money at a cheap rate, adding a vast sum to his fortune by this fore-
sight. In appearance he was a typical Yankee with a spare figure, and
keen eye. He used to make his boys work at the cobblers bench during
school holidays, and after school hours. It is related of him that he
was once called upon by a deputation seeking funds for the erection of
one of the local churches. A good deal to their surprise he promised
something if they would return at a certain hour the following day.
Speculation was rife as to the probable amount, and members of the
delegation were promptly on hand. Huntington handed them some out-
lawed notes, and in response to the crestfallen looks of his callers re-
marked. “Surely they are perfectly good, gentlemen, for they were issued
by a member of your own congregation.” He was twice married, the
second time late in life, but left all his large means to the State from
whence he came. His house, a low frame building, was situated in the
rear of the present Y. M. C. A. and was used by the Heather bowlers as
a Club House, when they acquired the property. It was moved to their
present grounds for the same purpose.


James Wilkes was fifteen years of age when he reached
Fewer Than t ne village and in an interview which he gave in 1899,

T 11 ^ ^ IU1 “-i when in his ninety-second year, he said:
dred People. ,., -n

When I came to Brantford the place did not amount

to very much; in fact there were less than 100 people. At the corner
where the Turnbull-Howard store (now Turnbull-Cutcliffe) stands,
there was a small log building used as a tavern, and about where the
Brethour (Crompton) property stands there was a frame tavern. There
were no buildings on that side of Colborne Street between these two.
On the opposite side I remember a blacksmith shop on the brow of the
hill, just about where Simmons’ feed store now stands. Near the ford
there was a small house at the West Brantford side of the ferry. Opposite
the second tavern there was a small frame store and a deserted log hut,
(evidently Stalls) about the site of the Excell property.

“My brother and myself came to Brantford to establish a general
store as a branch of my father’s business, which was then located in Little
York, now Toronto. On the bluff of the hill, on Colborne Street, near
the spot where Paterson’s Confectionery Works now stand, there was a
frame building which was then not quite finished. We secured the lower
part and opened a stock of goods. Later my father came here and we
secured a lot about where Mr. Whitney’s store now stands, putting up a
building. After that we built again on the site of the H. W. Brethour
property. Another store was run by two men named Willson. The
principal trade was done with the Indians, but there was some through
travel on the way to Detroit. This section was known as the Grand
River Swamp, and twenty to thirty miles a day was big travel, so that
taverns were, of necessity, numerous.

“The village did not go ahead very fast at first, although
aming in* j t never S t 00 d still, the place by the Grand River ferry

being regarded as having some enterprising people.
“It must have been in 1826 or 1827, when there were two or three
hundred people, that the question of naming the place arose. There was
a grist mill then, run by a man named Lewis, and a carpenter and build-
ing shop had been started by another man named Crandon. A Mr.
Biggar, of Mount Pleasant, owned a lot of land around the ferry, and when
a bridge at the ferry was carried away he was instrumental in getting
another structure erected, which was called Biggar’s bridge. He was
anxious to have the place called after himself.

“A meeting was called, when Mr. Biggar proposed that the name
should be Biggar’s Town. Mr. Lewis, the mill owner, suggested Lewis-
ville, and my father, (who came from that city in the Old Land), stood


out for Birmingham. It looked as if there might be a dead-lock when
some one suggested that as the place was at Brant’s ford this title would
prove the most suitable and the suggestion took unanimously. In the
natural order of things the “s” speedily became dropped, and thus we
have the “Brantford” of to-day.

“The place then consisted of a thin scattering of frame and log houses
along Colborne Street. The Indians at that time used to dress more in
their original garb and our store was often filled with them. All round,
with the exception of a few acres, there was nothing but scrub oak, and
to the east where the residence of my son G. H. Wilkes, (Clarence Street,)
now stands, there was a swamp filled with thick cedar trees. These
woods did not contain animals of any kind. The original site of the
City of Brantford was the farm of Chief John Hill, my father purchasing
that part of the farm which ran from the present Market Square to the
Water- Works Creek and including Colborne, Darling and Dalhousie
Streets. Part of this land is still known as the Wilkes Tract.

“There was very little ready cash in circulation in Brantford’s early
days, principally American and Spanish currency. The stores also used
to give due bills. Clark & Street, of Niagara Falls, and Smith Griffin,
(grandfather of Dr. Griffin) of Smith ville, were the big merchants of
the district, and a lot of their due bills were in circulation here.

“In reference to the surrounding places, Toronto, when I first knew it
had 1,600 people, and Hamilton at that period was scarcely on the map
at all. Dundas and Ancaster amounted to more than either Hamilton or

“The nearest post offices to us were Burford on the one side and
Ancaster on the other, although we soon got a post office of our own.
Brantfordites,” concluded Mr. Wilkes, “were always great people to take
a pride in their settlement, and it is this spirit throughout which to my
mind has led to her present proud development.”

Mr. Dutton, who was then running a tavern, purchased the
Other Old other half of the Hill farm Most of the holding


acquired by Mr. Wilkes consisted of swamp and there

was a pond, a sort of appanage to the old creek on the bank of which,
Wilkes, in 1830, erected a distillery. Next year William Kerby built
another distillery, where the Kerby mill later stood; and in 1832, at a cost
of $8,000 William Spencer constructed a brewery on the site of the old
Y. M. C. A. building on Colborne Street. The plant ran successfully for
twenty years. All the indications go to show that “Drys” in those days
were practically unknown.

The Wilkes family have always been prominently identified with the


place. Mr. James Wilkes, 97 years old at the time of his demise, was
married three times. Two of his sons still reside here, George H. Wilkes,
who during an active life has been connected with many public enter-
prises, and Alfred J. Wilkes, also a leading citizen and lawyer and Crown
Attorney for some years past. Another son was the late Major W. A.
Wilkes, who distinguished himself as a Captain of the 90th regiment, in
the North West Rebellion of 1885. He also was a member of the legal
profession, and at the time of his death, Prothonotary, in connection with
the Winnipeg Courts. Miss Annie Wilkes also resident here, is a daughter.

The Lewis, spoken of by Mr. James Wilkes, in his interview, was
Captain Marshal Lewis, who came from New York State in 1821. Lewis
built the first bridge over the Grand River as well as the mill mentioned.
The latter was situated in rear of the upper end of Colborne Street, South
side, and about five years later it passed into the hands of Jedediah
Jackson. He was the first man hereabouts to pay cash for wheat, the
system of “trade” having been previously in vogue. Jackson was an
ambitious and active man, but his career was cut short in 1840, when he
was killed by a tree, the felling of which he was superintending.

The two men Willson mentioned by Mr. Wilkes, comprised Benjamin
and Matthias Willson, who were among the first villagers. Matthias after-
wards owned the McNaught farm on the Burford road, and sold it to Mr.
McNaught. R. M. Willson, a son, was for many years clerk of Brantford

Crandon was Consider H. Crandon. He was born in New Bedford,
Mass., in 1797, land came here, when a young man, to do carpentry work
for the New England Company, in connection with buildings erected
near Mohawk Church. He later had the carpenter contract for the first
English Church erected on Grace Church site, the Kerby House, and so on.
He and his wife had a family of eight children, of whom only one sur-
vives, a daughter residing in Simcoe. Mrs. C. Crandon and Miss Crandon
residing on Chatham Street are respectively daughter-in-law and grand-

In 1831, Mr. Crandon purchased lots 27 and 28 on the South side of
Colborne Street and the house which he then erected still stands. It is
situated opposite the Kerby House, the roof covered with moss, but the
building quite habitable, in fact his descendants only removed from there
some six years ago. It is now in use as a second hand furniture place.
Without any doubt it is in the best state of preservation of any of the
original residences and as it is typical of the early abodes a description
will prove of interest. Below there is a main parlor and back parlor, each
having fireplaces built to take logs. A kitchen, with a little bed room


opening off, leads to a summer kitchen and wood house. There are two
cellars in one of which there are the remains of a large bake oven, and in
the other a large fire place, and inside cistern. Upstairs there are three
bedrooms and a side room. There is not a brick in the entire structure,
tree bodies, thickly placed supporting beams, and stringers resting on
wooden posts, served to evolve a most substantial home which for eighty
nine years has withstood the ravages of time and bids fair to do so for
many years yet to come.

Three other well known families whose progenitors located here when
the site on which Brantford stands, was still Indian land, comprise the
Cockshutts, Muirheads and Leonards.

Reuben Leonard, born at Springfield, Mass., 1791, and Julia Anne
Wells, born at Athens, N. Y. in 1801, were married in Montreal April
16th, 1822, and came to Cobourg where their oldest and only son Francis
Henry Leonard was born, July 6, 1823. Early in 1830, the family came
to Brantford, and the father, among other things, became interested in
church affairs, becoming first warden of Grace Church, and having
been on the committee which received on behalf of the congregation, the
grant of land for the erection of the original edifice. He passed away on
December 26th, 1833, leaving in addition to the widow and son, four
daughters. F. H. Leonard spent most of his life in Brantford filling
many important positions in Council and on School Boards. In 1869
he had the honor of holding the Wardenship of the County of Brant and
the Reeveship of the Town at the same time. The first of his many
business activities was the forwarding of produce on the Grand River
water route between here and Buffalo. In 1855, Mr. Leonard was
married to Elizabeth the youngest daughter of the late Captain Richard and
Mary Catton, of London, England, and died in 1907, leaving a family of
seven children, of whom the majority still reside in the City. Henry
Francis, City Clerk of Brantford for the last twenty-five years, Clara A.,
widow of the late Lt.-Col. Cameron, Superintendent of the Six Nations
Indians, Edith M., wife of Mr. F. J. Bishop, and Gertrude, living at the
old homestead, Mary E., wife of the late F. Lally, resides at Troy, N. Y.,
and Richard in Manitoba. The second son, Col. W. R. Leonard, of St. Cath-
arines, first of all taught school in Brant County and then graduated at the
Royal Military College Kingston. During the North West rebellion he
served on the staff of General Strange, and then joined the C. P. R.
Later he was identified with many prominent engineering and power
projects and was chosen by the Borden Government to be Chairman of
the National Transcontinental Board in connection with the construction
of the Grand Trunk Pacific. He is the President and main owner of the
The Crandon homestead on Colborne St. The

building is typical of the structures which

used to be scattered along what is now

Brantford’s main business thoroughfare
A view of Market Street near Dalhousie Street, taken from an
old photograph


“Coniagas” silver mine, and has been very liberal in a philanthropic way.
In this regard he twice gave $10,000 to the Brant ford Patriotic fund dur-
ing the war providing a certain objective was reached, a feat accom-
plished in each case, and the handsome tower of Grace Church with its
peal of bells was a contribution from him.

The Muirhead family, in the persons of two brothers James and
William, came from Niagara about 1828, and settled at “Brant’s Ford.”
About 1835, as the town plot began to take shape, James bought half an
acre of land at the North West corner of Queen and Wellington Streets and
built the rough-cast house still standing there, in which he resided until
his death in 1868. It is said that his friends rather made fun of his locat-
ing so far out of town, and this may have been one reason why his
brother William was less venturesome and chose as his place of abode the
north west corner of Queen and Darling Streets. Later on William set up
to be a landed proprietor on a large scale, and bought the farm and
built the fine house known as “Oakwood,” facing the Mount Pleasant
road in West Brantford with a long river frontage. This for many years
was one of the most attractive places in the county. It was subsequently
acquired by John C. Palmer of the Kerby House and used as a summer
annex to the hotel, special stress being laid upon the efficacy of the
sulphur springs on the property. James Muirhead married Mary Heron
of Niagara, whose father Andrew Heron published the first newspaper
there, (called “The Gleaner”) and was a man of much enterprise and
public spirit as shown by the records of old Niagara. Their family con-
sisted of five sons and one daughter, the latter becoming the wife of
Charles Edwin Smith, for a long period Deputy Sheriff. The last sur-
vivor of them was Andrew Douglas Muirhead who for many years resided
at 156 Brant Avenue and died there in 1910. William Muirhead married
Miss Buckwell of the English family of that name, who early settled in
Port Dover, and of whose descendants some still live there. They also
had a large family of sons and daughters the survivors of whom reside
in the West. The only representative of either family now associated with
Brantford is Mr. George Heron Muirhead, B. C. L., son of A. D. Muir-
head, his mother having been a daughter of Rev. George Goodson, a
Minister of the Methodist Church once stationed at Mount Pleasant. Mr.
G. Muirhead was for many years a member of the law firm of Brewster,
Muirhead & Heyd, and later located in Toronto, as Deputy Master of Titles
for Ontario. While in the Queen City he always maintained a loyal con-
nection with the old home enterprises and institutions and has lately
returned here.


In so far as one individual can be singled out in a gen-

‘ j_yT era l community as having proved the biggest factor,

among many workers, in the early upbuilding of the
place, such recognition, in the case of Brantford, must undoubtedly be
given to Mr. Ignatius Cockshutt. By keen business insight and habits of
thrift, he was able to accumulate means at a period when few were so
circumstanced, and it is to his credit and the advantage of Brantford that
he should have spent freely of his time and money in private and public
enterprises, besides devoting much to philanthropic purposes.

Mr. Cockshutt was born in Bradford, Yorkshire, on the 24th of August
1812 His father, Mr. James Cockshutt, was at that time engaged in the
manufacturing business in partnership with Joshua Cockshutt, a cousin,
but the firm, in common with so many others, succumbed in 1816 to the
commercial depression of the time in the Old Land. After other activ-
ities Mr. Cockshutt determined in 1827 to migrate to the new world,
and in that year he and his family took passage on the barque “Lady
Digby” and sailed from Liverpool to Quebec. In the year 1810 he had
married Mary Nightingale, the daughter of a large tenant farmer in
Yorkshire, and there were two children, Jane, afterwards Mrs. Laycock,
who helped to found the Laycock School, and Ignatius, the subject of this
sketch, who was fifteen years of age when the voyage was made. The
original intention had been to settle in Pittsburg, Pa., but James Laycock
a friend also on board bringing with him a stock of merchandise, induced
the Cockshutts to locate with him in Toronto, then a place of 1,700
people. Here they opened a general store, Mr. Laycock in 1828 selling
out to Mr. Cockshutt. The latter prospered and in 1829 he decided to
open a branch in Brantford. To this end he entered into partnership
with Christopher Batty and the Brantford project was started in the fall
of 1829 under the title of “Batty & Co.” Ignatius, then seventeen years
old, was sent along to the village to help in the business. The enterprise
had a very short existence and the son returned to the Queen city where
he again assisted the father. The young man however, with a tenacity
of purpose which always characterized him, still thought that this settle-
ment held opportunities, and thus it was that in 1832 it was decided to
again open a business in Brantford, this time with Ignatius as manager.
Under his guidance the branch grew to such an extent, that in 1834 the
Toronto project was abandoned and the little Indian village on the
Grand River became the residential and business head quarters of the
Cockshutt family. The son continued as the manager while the father
devoted part of his time to other interests in Cayuga, and outlying dis-
tricts. It was a typical enterprise of the country at the time a general


store in the broadest sense of the term and very flexible in its methods,
so as to meet the needs and conditions of its patrons. Every kind of
merchandise was sold, and everything was legal tender for the same.
Money was scarce and barter was the medium of business. Baskets and
straw work, wood, hay, grain, dairy produce, or labor were taken in
exchange for merchandise, and to this system may be traced the name of
“Merchants Exchange,” which was given to the block of brick buildings
on the corner of Colborne and South Market Street, which in time re-
placed the frame structure of the early period.

Recurring cycles of business depression brought down many mer-
cantile establishments in these early days, but the Cockshutt business
continued to hold its own and advance, even during the crucial year of
1837. In 1840 the father sold the entire business to his son and daugh-
ter, and for many years thereafter the firm traded under the name of
“I. & J. Cockshutt.” James Cockshutt died January 10th, 1866. He
was a man of pronounced theological views views which would be
regarded as narrow in these days but his sympathies were broad, and
his kindly actions many. His house was always open to those who
came from Lancashire to seek their fortunes in the new world, and he
willingly extended his advice, assistance and encouragement. It was
characteristic of him that in 1840 he went to England and paid in full
the Bradford creditors with whom his firm had previously compromised
by paying so much in the pound.

In 1846 Jane Cockshutt withdrew from the business and
it became the sole property of the brother. He continued
to evolve the village store into a mercantile establish-
ment, which he carried on for over fifty years, residing over his place
of business and at all times giving every detail his close personal at-
tention. In addition he added many other activities. He took part in
the inauguration of the Grand River Navigation Company, and for a
number of years was a member of the Board of Directors of the Buffalo,
Goderich and Lake Huron Railroad, the first railway to run through
Brantford. In each case the promoters lost their entire investment, but
the enterprises served their purpose in giving initial impetus to the
settlement. When the Brantford Gas Company was threatened with
collapse, he and others came to its aid, evolving an efficient lighting
system. Of this concern he was the President for a great number of
years. His aid was continuous with regard to fire fighting appliances,
and a hand engine purchased by him was largely manned by his own
employees. Later he was the prime mover in the establishment of a


Waterworks Company, in order to provide more adequate fire protec-
tion. Of this Company he was the President and Mr. T. S. Shenstone
the energetic Secretary. The works were constructed in 1874 and helped
to successfully check the constant fire menace. The City finally took
over the system. Another notable enterprise undertaken by him was the
construction of the Brantford and Oakland Toll Road (commonly known
as the Cockshutt Road.) Commenced in 1856, it was completed in 1859
and served to open up a valuable area. The project was entirely fin-
anced by Mr. Cockshutt, and although the year 1857 was one of marked
depression, he held grimly to his purpose, and despite difficulties, which
would have abashed almost any other man, completed the task. At
least two of Brantford’s present large manufacturing establishments
owed much to his co-operation. Although not an active member of the
Waterous Engine Works Company, he watched with deep interest the
progress of this well known enterprise and gave much help and encour-
agement to the firm in early years. A portrait of him holds a place
of honour alongside that of Mr. C. H. Waterous, Sr., in the Board
room. When the Cockshutt Plow Company was first started by his son
James, in a very modest way, the struggling business was nurtured and
cherished by the father, who retained the position of Vice-President until
the end of his life. He was also President of the Craven Cotton Com-
pany during the short and stormy existence which ended in the sale of
the mill to a cotton syndicate.

His philanthropies were many and continuous; a large
Philan- number of them of necessity became known; it would be

tnropic impossible to compute others of which he never made

Deeds. r . , c , . , ., .

mention, even to members ot his own family. As a

matter of fact he did not recognize the phrase “philanthropist” as applied
to himself, for in all such directions he considered himself simply as
steward of the large means which he had accumulated. In the early days
of settlement, when educational privileges were inferior, he established,
managed, and maintained for years, secular schools, in order to give
country children the advantages of a common education free of charge.
Together with his sister, Mrs. Laycock, he also founded the Laycock
School for orphans and destitute children. He also built an orphan’s
home in Brantford for the accommodation of a like class of children.
Another of his acts was to purchase and deed to trustees a large house on
Sheridan Street for a Widows’ Home, which has always been under the
control of a Board of Management composed of ladies. In company
with Mr. Humphrey Davis, he donated to the County and City, the House
of Refuge where the aged poor of both sexes, can find a haven of rest


when, owing to misfortune or poverty, they are unable to support them-
selves. When Brantford was still a small town he was the leader of
an earnest body of men who subscribed for the erection and equipment
of the first Y.M.C.A. building, and he was for long years Treasurer and
Manager of the depository of the Brantford Branch Bible Society, dis-
charging these dual duties until he was called Home. Weary and per-
plexed souls were continually looking for him, just as he was looking
for them. He earnestly sought every opportunity for helping the needy.
His services to such included advice on material, moral and religious
subjects; to very many occasionally reproof, when deemed necessary;
financial aid whenever that seemed most useful. His benefactions to
single individuals must have reached a very large sum. Quite often he
was brusque, but aid was generally forthcoming. Nor was it Brantford
or Canada alone which appealed to him, as his assistance was extended
to any movement, however remote, which attracted his interest. For
instance, in the Island of Jamaica, he established and maintained at his
own expense, a Mission for work among the blacks, and when he paid
occasional visits to the island, he preached to these poor people the gospel
of Christ, and encouraged them in their struggle to reach a higher and
better life.

At the time of the big Wesley an movement in the old land, Benjamin
Ingham was a co-worker with the Wesleys, but separated from them with
reference to the great controversial doctrine: “The Election.” He
founded a sect whose members became known as Inghamites, and to this
society of lay workers, the Cockshutts belonged. On his arrival in
Toronto, James Cockshutt founded a small church which did not flourish,
and later when he removed to Brantford he became one of the founders
of what is now known as Farringdon Church, situated in the Township
of Brantford, a short distance from the city. Ignatius became an elder,
and always fulfilled the duties of that office in a most earnest and faith-
ful manner. He was not naturally a fluent speaker, nor did he make any
pretence to scholarship, but as he warmed to his subject, his utterances
were characterized by force and clearness. It can be said of him that
he was a just, and not infrequently, austere man. In his business deal-
ings he expected all obligations to be met on the date named, and did
not regard with tolerance any excuse for lack of prompt fulfillment.
Albeit if he ascertained that actual hardship had been occasioned with
regard to payment, he was quite apt to quietly extend a helping hand
after the undertaking had been first met. His judgment of men was
quickly formed and generally correct, while monetary success did not
affect his simple manner of living. His fondness for dogs was pro-


verbial, and he was not particular as to pedigrees; any kind of mongrel
of companionable disposition was good enough for him. He was ever
fond of an argument, and if he came out second best, always lost his
temper, but not his convictions. Idleness he abhorred, and one of his
axioms was that absorbing work constituted the best antidote for sorrow
and depression. He passed away on March 1st, 1901, in his eighty-ninth
year, and was active up to within a few days of his demise. In fact,
notwithstanding a severe cold, he persisted in going his usual rounds,
and a drive in the country, when a bitter wind was blowing, served to
bring on his last illness.

Mr. Cockshutt was twice married. On September 22nd, 1846, he
espoused Margaret Gemmel, who died the following year, leaving an
infant daughter, who afterwards became Mrs. George Kippax. In 1850
he married Elizabeth, the eldest daughter of Francis Foster, Mount
Pleasant, a native of Lancashire, who came to this country in 1844. The
honeymoon trip began at the Landing, Newport Village, where they took
a steamer down the Grand River en route to Buffalo. His strong, un-
bending nature, at times almost harsh, was softened by her pliable and
loveable disposition, and the union thus formed continued happily for
a period of almost forty-two years. There were eleven children, of whom
four now survive: W. F. Cockshutt, M.P., Frank Cockshutt, E. L. Cock-
shutt and Harry Cockshutt, all of this city.

There were many resolutions of regret on the part of the City
Council and other bodies when he was called Home, but at the simple
funeral, which took place to Farringdon Cemetery, the most sincere
manifestations of public sorrow came from the poor, the afflicted, and
neglected, whom he had so constantly befriended.

A man of liberal education, in the person of Captain
L/aptain William Gilkison, came to Brantford in the early days.

GllklSOn. , A L- C 1 J H/T L r! 1-,

He was born in Ayrshire, Scotland, on March 9, 1777,
of notable parentage, and after leaving school, took service on a mer-
chant vessel. At that period, Great Britain and France were at war and
the merchantman, on which he was serving, fell into the hands of the
enemy. Young Gilkison was a prisoner in the land of the fleur de lys
for about a year when he escaped in a small rowboat, but three months
later was again taken. Once more making his way from the land of his
enforced adoption, he arrived in New York in 1796, and at the hands of
John Jacob Astor, to whom he had a letter of introduction, secured the
command of a schooner on Lake Erie, run by the North-West Fur Co.
Commodore Grant was then in command of the British fleet on Lake
Erie and Captain Gilkison married Isabella, the sixth daughter of the
1, I. Cockshutt; 2, R. Leonard; 3, Capt. Gilkison; 4, C. H. Crandon; 5, J. Wilkes;
6, L. Burwell. who laid out the village of Brantford ; 7, A. Huntingdon;

8, A. K. Smith.


Commodore, After the marriage, he helped his father-in-law with his
large estate and in 1815 left for Scotland with his family, in order to
obtain a better education for them than could be secured in the Dominion
during those early days. There had been a family of eleven sons and
of these seven survived. Canada always held a warm place in the heart
of the Captain, and in 1832 he returned to the Dominion, five of his
sons having preceded him and settled in what is now a part of the city
of Brantford, as will be seen by the following extracts taken from his

“Tuesday, Aug. 21, 1831. Bought the farm the other side of the
Grand River (West Brantford,) known as the Woods Farm, for 500
pounds; 200 pounds must be spent on it at once. Mr. Lewis Burwell
will survey it.”

“Brantford, U.C., Sept. 20, 1832. I have been here since the llth
and am quite engaged in property improvement on my farm of Oak
Bank, (called it after my home in Glasgow, Scotland) on the Grand
River. I have been ploughing these excellent lands and intend to sow
this month. Have bought seed wheat from Westbrooks, upland, 50
bushels at one dollar a bushel. Have bought 94 thousand brick from
Silverthorne, fifteen shillings a thousand, in cash. Friend Richardson
(his brother-in-law) has bought me a pair of four-year-old silver grey
horses for 225 dollars and are first rate animals, for beauty and strength.
He also got me a wagon, harness, and plough, all of the best. The farm
is a beautiful piece of land and will be a good farm for me and mine.
Have chosen a spot on the height for my own house, and the farm build-
ings a little lower down. The situation of Oak Bank House is as pretty
as one can imagine, overlooks the village of Brantford of 350 souls, and
the church of the Mohawk Indians. I am exceedingly pleased with all
this. The view up and down the Grand River is beautiful.”

It was this same Captain Gilkison who founded the town
Pounded of lora In 1832? while v i sit i ng f r i en ds in Niagara,

he learned that the South West half of the Township of
Nichol could be purchased for seven shillings and six pence an acre and
on September 4th, he made the purchase. Subjoined are some more
extracts from his diary:

“Brantford, Sept. 20th, 1832. Tomorrow, having at last got Burwell,
the surveyor, to accompany me, I propose to start for Nichol, to see my
purchase and have the north end of it surveyed and laid out in 100 acre
lots more or less. At the Falls, which is on my hajf of the township,
I propose to survey a place for a town and to sell to all new comers.”

“Brantford, Friday, October 12th, 1832. Yesterday I returned from
Nichol absent five and one-half days. Left Burwell at work, surveying
the North West part of my purchase and laying out a village plot at
the Falls of the Grand River.”


A little later he announced the name decided upon for the place in
a letter sent to his son, Jasper, on November 3rd.

“I am thinking of sending a few goods, under the direction of an
intelligent man, to pay for work I must have done in the Village of
Elora look for that word in the encyclopaedia, or some other dictionary.
At a future period Elora may become a place for you to manage, mills,
etc., etc., etc.”

“No doubt the son made the suggested reference and found the
name “Ellora” to be that of a decayed town in the Dominions of the
Nizam, India, celebrated for its wonderful rock cut temples, partly
Hindu and partly of Buddhist origin.

A brother, Captain John Gilkison, used to sail from Port Glasgow
to Bombay, and in 1831, he transferred to a new ship, which he christened
“Elora,” in celebration of these caves which he was thought to have visited
hence the suggestion of this name for the projected town.

Miss Gilkison, a granddaughter, is in possession of several letters
which Captain Gilkison sent to his son, Jasper (Miss Gilkison’s father)
when he was a young man in the employ of the wholesale house of
Ferric & Co., Hamilton. Some extracts will prove of interest in illus-
tration of the standards of this early Brantford citizen.

“August 12, 1832. I pray you to exercise your talent in composi-
tion; few of the powers of the mind which man possesses serve to give
him more pleasure, or are more useful to him, than writing thoughts
clearly and distinctly. Spend your leisure in acquiring knowledge
time never returns; always recollect to employ it faithfully and well in
youth, then in old age the reflection will cheer you friends will visit and
learn your tales of other years; of days and events long gone bye.”

“November 3, 1832. I know your time is fully employed and
am glad of it, but still there are moments of your own which can be
privately and usefully employed. You will not resemble the young
fellows whom I have so often and so lately seen, wasting their precious
time in the destructive vices of gambling and folly. Such an exhibition
to me would distract me.”

“March 13, 1833. Last night I returned from Elora; everything
is going on well there, as well as a new country will permit. I believe
I shall erect my first bridge over the Grand River exactly at the Falls
of Elora; it is a remarkable and beautiful spot. In a year or two I
hope for your assistance to manage the operations and the various plans
I have in contemplation at that new city.”

“In this country it is absolutely necessary one should be acquainted
with everything going on in it, and therefore it is right you should at-
tentively read the essential parts of every law which may be made for
the government of the people; do this when you have leisure. Those
laws which relate to money, and the duties we have to perform to the
public should be studied with attention.”


Elora, founded by a Brantford citizen. View shows the Grand River
as it passes through the place.


“You must do your work as well as you can do it; never be careless
in doing the most trifling thing.”

His last letter, written shortly before his death, closed:
“Adieu, it is dark.”

A few hours afterwards he had entered the dark valley. Having
taken a trip to Hamilton to attend Sessions, then held there for this
district, and to purchase supplies for Elora, he stopped on his return
journey at the Tuscarora Parsonage, occupied by Rev. Abraham Nelles.
Next day he had issued orders to the coachman to bring out the horses
and carriage, when he was seized with a stroke of paralysis, and he died
April 23rd, 1833, at the age of 56. His remains were buried in the old
Mohawk Church graveyard. Capt. Gilkison fought in the war of 1812.

The son, Jasper, remained in Hamilton, for many years, and was
prominently identified with important enterprises, including the Great
Western Railway, the first telegraph line in Canada, etc. He joined the
Volunteer Militia in 1832 and finally attained the rank of Lieutenant
Colonel. In 1862 he was appointed Superintendent of the Six Nations
Indians, with head office at Brantford, and he occupied that position with
dignity and success, until 1891, when owing to advancing years he was
then 77 he retired. He passed away in this city on Friday, November
16, 1906, at the age of ninety-two and one-half years. He was the worthy
son of a worthy sire, courtly, considerate and well informed. His
daughter, Miss Gilkison, true to the family tradition, was most active in
her work throughout the period of the Great War, and upon the occasion
of the visit of the Prince of Wales to the City in 1919 was handed by him
a personal letter of thanks from the Queen.



“THIS INDENTURE, made the nineteenth day of April, in the year
of our Lord, one thousand eight hundred and thirty, between Jacob
Ayonghwahtha, Henry Brant Dekanagwasen, Jacob Shoriahowane, Law-
rence Tharon-tenh-tha, leak Teghennakarine, Moses Shohsgoarowane,
Joseph Dwaserage, Petter Kanongwaheye, Otatseghte, Waderieyos, Awen-
noxsonton, Teghatkahthos, Skanawatigh, Onesehaen, Skayentaken,
Oghnawara, Oghrenhregowa, Kahnehdage, Kanouhgeritawi, Kanayegh,
Dekenyough, Dewatiron, Deyotoreghgon, Skawenatigh, Kahwisdanoro,
Dekarahgwen, Dayekawehe, Kayonanoron, Teatup, and Henry A. Hill,
the Sachems and Chiefs of the Six Nations of Indians, done at our Coun-
cil fire, of the one part, and our Sovereign Lord, George the Fourth, by
the Grace of God, of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland,
King, Defender of the Faith, of the other part, Witnesseth that in con-


sideration of the sum of five shillings of lawful money of Upper Canada
by Our said Sovereign Lord the King, well and truly paid to the said
Jacob Ayonghwahtha, Henry Brant Dekanagwasen, Jacob Shoriahowane,
Lawrence Tharon-tenh-tha, leak Teghennakarine, Mose Shohsgoarowane,
Joseph Dwaserage, Fetter Kanongwaheye, Otatseghte, Waderieyos, Awen-
noxsonton, Teghatkahthos, Skanawatigh, Onesehaen, Skayentaken.
Oghnawara, Oghronhregowa, Kahnehdage, Kanowhgeritawi, Kanayegh,
Dekenyough, Dewatiron, Deyotoreghgon, Skawenatigh, Kahwisdanoro,
Dekarahgwen, Dayekawehe, Kayonanon, Teatup and Henry A. Hill,
at or before the sealing and delivery of these presents, the receipt whereof
is hereby acknowledged, they, the said Jacob Ayonghwahtha, Henry
Brant Dekanagwasen, Jacob Shoriahowane, Lawrence Tharon-tenh-tha,
leak Teghennakarine, Moses Shohsgoarowane, Joseph Dwaserage, Fetter
Kanangwaheye, Oteitseghte, Waderieyos, Awennoxsonton, Teghatkahthos,
Skanawatigh, Onesehaen, Skayentaken, Oghnawara, Oghronhregowa,
Kahnehdage, Kanouhgeritawi, Kanayegh, Dekenyough, Dewatiron,
Deyotoreghgon, Skawenatigh, Kahwisdanoro, Dekarahgwen, Dayekawehe,
Kayonanoron, Teatup and Henry A. Hill have and each of diem hath
granted, bargained, sold, released, surrendered and yielded up, and by
these presents do and each of them doth grant, bargain, sell release,
surrender and yield up unto Our Said Sovereign Lord, the King, His
heirs and successors, all that certain parcel or tract of land situate, lying
and being in the County of Wentworth, in the District of Gore, containing
by estimation, eight hundred and seven acres, be the same more or less,
and which said parcel or tract of land is butted and bounded, or may be
otherwise known as follows, that is to say: Commencing where a stake
has been planted on the north side of the road leading from the Grand Riv-
er bridge, through the Village of Brantford towards Ancaster, now called
Colborne Street, and fifty links on a line bearing north five degrees
thirty minutes west magnetically from the north-west angle of the Mohawk
Parsonage ground; thence north eighteen degrees thirty minutes east
magnetically, seventy-nine chains forty-five links, more or less, to a
white oak tree; thence south eighty-four degrees thirty minutes west
magnetically eighty-two chains twenty-eight links, more or less, to where
a stake has been planted on the eastern boundary line of William Kennedy
Smith’s land; thence south twenty-seven degrees thirty minutes west
magnetically along the said boundary line fifty-nine chains twenty-six
links, more or less, to a certain stone, and northern extremity of Robert
Biggar’s land; thence south fifteen degrees west magnetically along the
eastern boundary line of the said Robert Biggar’s land twenty-eight
chains fifty links, more or less, to where a stake has been planted at
high water mark on the north side of the Grand River, or Ouse; thence
along the northern bank of the said river with the stream to a certain
white oak tree standing at high water mark, sixty-four links below the
outlet of Nathan Gage’s saw-mill race; thence north twenty-five degrees
fifteen minutes east magnetically twenty-four chains thirty links, more
or less, to where a stake has been planted at high water mark on the
south bank of a certain cove; thence along the south bank of the said


cove with the stream fourteen chains eight links, more or less, to a cluster
of soft maple trees; thence north thirty -four degrees forty minutes east
magnetically eight chains, more or less, to a certain white oak tree, stand-
ing on the summit of the main bank on the north side of the said cove;
then north five degrees thirty minutes west magnetically seven chains
fifty-five links, more or less, to within four chains of the south side of
the aforesaid road, or Colborne Street; thence north eighty-four degrees
thirty minutes east magnetically, and parallel to the said road or street
forty-five chains four links, more or less, to the eastern limit of the said
Mohawk Parsonage ground; thence north five degrees thirty minutes
west magnetically five chains, more or less, to the place of beginning.
Together with all the woods and waters thereon, standing or being, and
all the estate, right, title, interest, trust, property, claim and demand
whatsoever, either at law or in equity, of them the said Jacob Ayongh-
wahtha, Henry Brant Dekanagwasen, Jacob Shoriahowane, Lawrence
Tharon-tenh-tha, leak Teghennakarine, Moses Shohsgoarowane, Joseph
Dwaserage, Fetter Kanongwaheye, Otatseghte, Waderieyos, Awennoxon-
ton, Teghatkahthos, Skanawatigh, Onesehaen, Skayentaken, Oghnawara,
Oghronhregowa, Kahnehdage, Kanoughgeritawi, Kanayegh, Dekenyough,
Dewatiron, Deyotoreghgon, Skawenatigh, Kahwisdanoro, Dekarahgwen.
Dayekawehe, Kayonanoron, Teatup and Henry A. Hill, of, in, to or out
of the same, to have and to hold the said parcel or tract of land and
premises hereby granted, surrendered and yielded up unto Our said
Sovereign Lord, the King, His heirs, successors and assigns, to the only
proper use, benefit and behoof of our said Lord, the King, His heirs,
successors and assigns forever.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, we, the said grantors, have to these pre-
sents, set our hands and seals, the day and year above written.

J. BRANT, Supt. Six Nations.

(Owing to many extensions of boundaries the area of the City in
1920 stands at 3,304 acres.)

It is popularly supposed that Lewis Burwell prepared
first Survey the first survey O f Brantford, but as a matter of fact,
of Brantf ord. / , . 100/1 , .

there was a plan drawn up in 1824, and Burwell in a

preliminary sketch, dated October 22nd, 1829, thus refers to it:

“First sketch of the Town of Brantford, made for the purpose of
obtaining the survey of the Grand River Lands, made up from observa-
tions taken at certain points and partly from the plan made by Joseph
Read in 1824.”

The identity of Read is unknown.


Mr. BurwelPs initial plan, which he himself says, was taken partly
from Read’s, is very neatly sketched.

There is one main street, now Colborne, connecting with the great
road leading from the westward (the Burford Road) and also with the
great road leading to Ancaster. What is now Dalhousie Street is marked
on the plan as a proposed second street.

Below, where Lome Bridge now is, were two dams, one supplying a
race on which was a grist mill, and another a race on which was situated
Asabul Hulbert’s saw mill. This part of the town back of Colborne,
used originally to be known as Hulbert’s Flats. On the Holmedale side
of the bridge a distillery is marked as having existed. Right at the bridge
a brewery site appears on the plan.

On the north side of Colborne, starting at the bridge, the following
appear as owners of the lots under Brant leases: 60 ft. frontage, Dutton;
70 ft. frontage, C. Austin; 120 ft. frontage, W. Richardson; 30 ft. front-
age, S. V. Douglas; 157 ft. frontage, Dutton; 102 ft. frontage, Dutton;
70 ft. frontage, J. Muirhead; 180 ft. frontage, John A. Wilkes; 177 ft.
frontage, J. Lovejoy; 220 ft. frontage, Asabul Hulbert; 180 ft. front-
age, J. Lovejoy; Public Square, 60 ft. frontage, John Lovejoy.

Then comes a large tract of land running down to the old Water-
Works Creek, which is mapped out in Mr. John A. Wilkes’ name. On
the Creek is Wilkes’ distillery.

The south side of Colborne Street seems to have been more popular
in the early days than the north. The following had lots on the south
side, starting at the bridge:

349 ft. frontage, A. Sharpe; 30 ft. frontage, Anderson; 30 ft. front-
age, Tompkins; 30 ft. frontage, Houghton; 30 ft. frontage, Griffin; 40
ft. frontage, S. Kurd; 72 ft. frontage, Dutton; 30 ft. frontage, Markwen;
100 ft. frontage, Emerson; 99 ft. frontage, J. A. Wilkes; 70 ft. frontage,
M. Willson; 50 ft. frontage, N. Gage; 60 ft. frontage, Morgan; 100 ft.
frontage, Grist Mill Lot; 60 ft. frontage, M. Lewis; 90 ft. frontage, N.
Gage; 300 ft. frontage, J. Jackson; 120 ft. frontage, J. Reade; 120 ft.
frontage, J. Reade.

After this lot, on which now stands the Merchants Exchange Building,
at the corner of market and Colborne, Jedediah Jackson owned the bal-
ance of the land as far as the old Water-Works Creek, where Houghton
Messecar and Doctor Thomas had property. These names are the last
to appear on the plan.

It will be noticed from the foregoing that nine men owned all the
Colborne Street frontage on the north side, from Lome Bridge to the
old Great Western Station, whilst there were nineteen owners on the
south side.


The only other owners of Brantford property in 1829 were Robert
Biggar, W. K. Smith and Wm. Kennedy, who seemed to have divided the
North Ward and Holmedale between them. The information that this
old map gives of Brantford of ninety-one years ago is all the more
interesting because it seems to have been previously overlooked.

The final map drawn by Mr. Burwell is inscribed:
Burwell 8 “Brantford in the Gore District, Upper Canada, surveyed
Map * by Lewis Burwell, Esq., August 13th, 1830.”

On it are six blocks, designated as follows: “Market” (present mar-
ket) ; “Public Square” (now Victoria Park) ; “County Court House”
(present site) ; “Market” (now Alexandra Park) ; “Kirk of Scotland,”
the latter constituting the block fronting, and immediately north of the
last named park; “Burying Ground” (site of Central School.) The
circumstances under which the “Kirk of Scotland” secured such a grant
do not appear. The record at the local Registry Office shows that it
was not until 1861 that a patent was issued from “The Crown to George
Smith, (one of the oldest Brantford Township settlers, James A. Smith,
Township Clerk, is a son), Allen Cleghorn, Duncan McKay, Trustees
Presbyterian Church, Town of Brantford.” At one time a small frame
building stood on the land the Kirk. It was later sold to the colored
folks and bricked in for their church. The balance of the property was
disposed of at a small figure, as property values were not for many
years very high in that district.

There are six church properties indicated “Episcopal” on the present
site of Grace Church; “Methodist” fronting Victoria Park, where the
Bodega Hotel now stands; “Presbyterian” on the existing location of
the Y. W. C. A. building; “Congregational” on Dalhousie Street, second
lot from the corner of Charlotte Street; “Baptist” on West, (now Bridge
Street) ; and “African” corner Peel and Dalhousie Streets.

In the Northern section lots are marked out on Dumfries Street (Brant
Avenue) on the left side as far as the corner fronting Richmond Street.
Beyond, and back of that, it is all clear country through the present
Holmedale to the Grand River. A big swamp is indicated on the low
ground in rear of the present Collegiate Institute property. On the op-
posite side of Brant Avenue lots are carried to as far as Bedford Street
and the streets lying East of Brant Avenue are William, Albion and Pearl,
all located on the Smith and Kerby Tract, and with open country sur-

West Brantford is almost entirely marked “Lands of the Kerr family”
and “Gilkison farm.” Between these two parcels of land, three streets
are shown, Oxford, Winniett and Brant, with Burford Street as a con-


tinuation of Oxford. Lots are laid out only on one side of Oxford and
Brant Streets and partly on one side in the case of Burford. The map
for this district shows a double channel of the Grand River with the main
body of water flowing at the site of the present Lome Bridge and a
much smaller channel at about the present Corporation Yard.

The Terrace Hill region is an absolute blank, except for indications
of trees and the same thing is true of the Eagle Place District. The
canal is outlined and the present Mohawk road bears the title, “Road to
the Mohawk Village.” The Mohawk parsonage and Glebe also appear
with marshy land much in evidence over the entire region.

Northumberland Street is the southerly boundary in the eastern section
with nothing back if it. Streets running north are Colborne, Dalhousie,
Darling, Wellington, Nelson, Ghatham, Seridan, and Marlborough (one
side) as the extreme boundary. The last named thoroughfare ended at
the “Burying Ground” (Central School) and there was swamp land
beyond. Sheridan, Chatham, Nelson and Wellington also, only had a
short existence before they got into swamp trouble, and no lots are
marked out on these thoroughfares beyond Charlotte Street.

In the rear of Colborne there is a street marked partly “Water” and
partly “Wharf,” then Simcoe Street (this ran through the site of the
present Massey Harris building,) “Canal Street” and a trifling number
of lots on “South Park St.” and East Park St.,” In the region of “Canal”
a saw mill is indicated. Such then were the bounds of Brantford ninety
years ago.

Circling the North and North-westerly portion of the Burwell map
are large tracts of land marked “Margaret Kerby” and “Abraham K.
Smith;” other smaller properties are designated “William Holmedale”
(after whom Holmedale takes its name) “J. C. (Dr.) Digby,” (the School
for the Blind is on a portion of this property) “T. C. Patrick”; “Hart”
and “J. Winniett.”

Mr. Philip D’Acres Hart owned the property of that name. He was
in the East India Company service and about 1830 retired on a pension.
He then came to Canada with quite a large family and bought land
where the hospital now stands and erected a home. The place was called
“Steep Hill” and was the rendezvous for the retired army officers who
in those days resided in Brant County. Not far from “Steep Hill” stood
a large frame bungalow on what afterwards became the Woods Lyons
property. This was the residence of Major Winniett of the British ser-
vice and after whom Winniett Street is named. About where Langley
Park now stands, Colonel Dickson, another retired officer, located with
his two nieces, the Misses Perkins. One of them, Caroline, married
Photo taken in the sixties from the roof of a building on the south side of Colborne

Street. The canal is in the foreground and the area depicted includes that now

occupied by the Waterous Engine Works and a portion of the Massey-Harris

works; also the T. H. & B. Depot. The grounds of a cricket club,

established in 1856, used to be located here. The road indicated in

distance is the present Erie Avenue of the populous

Eagle Place district.


Henry Hart, who became a barrister. She is still alive at the age of
nearly one hundred years and resides with a son in Portland Oregon.
The other sister, Elizabeth, became the wife of Mr. Burton of Hamilton,
afterwards Sir George Burton, and Chief Justice of Ontario. Next to
Hazel Bank farm, later purchased by the Harts, and now owned by Judge
Hardy, lived Major Burroughs also a retired officer. There used to be
quite an interchange of visits between the little ex-officer colony here, and
that at Woodstock with “Steep Hill” as headquarters. The nearest direct
descendant of Mr. D’Acres Hart is Mrs. Burnham, of Port Perry.

In the Crown Lands office there appears the following

Lots Held in mem orandum under date of May 4th, 1830, of the lots

then claimed by the several individuals enumerated. It

will be noticed that there are already many changes from the names

appearing on the previously quoted Read-Burwell plan.

Memorandum of Town Lots in Brantford as occupied and claimed by
the several individuals, Dated, May 4th, 1830.

South side of Colborne Street: No. 1, 2, 3 Andrew Sharp, (No. 1, 2,

W. hf . 4 George W. Whitehead.

E. hf. 4 Nathan Gage.

W. hf. 5 Arunah Huntington.

E. hf. 5 E. C. Griffin.

6 Seth Herd.

7 Wm. D. Button.

W. pt. 8 Joseph Markwell.

E. pt. and N. end 8 John Emerson.

E. pt. and S. end 8 Matthias Willson.

N. pt. 9 John Emerson.

S. pt. 9 Matthias Willson.

N. pt. 10 John A. Wilkes.

S. pt. 10 Matthias Willson.

11 Benjamin Willson.

12, 13 N. Gage, (No. 12 Garden.)

14 Jedidiah Jackson.

15, 16 N. Gage, (Not occupied.)

17,18 Jedidiah Jackson.

19, 20 Elizabeth Reade.

26 Henry Presson.

37 and S. pt. of 38, following the creek Rufus Houghton, the tanner.

East of the Creek Dr. Thomas, (John S. Thomas.)

39, 40 along the creek, Nicholas Nossum.

No. 1 John Anderson.
2 Calvin Austin.
3, 4 Wm. Richardson.


W. pt. 5 Stephen V. R. Douglas.
E. pt. 5. Wm. D. Button.
6, 7 Wm. D. Button.
& James Muirhead, Jr.

9, 10, 11 John Aston Wilkes.
12, 13 John Lovejoy.

14 and W. hf. 15 Nathan Gage.
E. hf. 15 Jedidiah Jackson.

17, 18, 19 John Lovejoy and William Case, (Not occupied.)
J. A. Wilkes’ distillery.

9 lots each side of the cross street on the hill John Wilkes and

Nos. 4, 5 William D. Dutton.

10, 11 John A. Wilkes, (Vacant.)
12 John Lovejoy. Stabling.

13 and W. hf. 14 N. Gage, Garden.

E. hf. 14 and 15 Jedidiah Jackson, Garden.

16, 17 John Lovejoy and Wm. Case (Not occupied.)

18 Jedidiah Jackson.

No. 4 Wm. D. Dutton, Barn.

From the First to the Third day of June, 1830, Brant
Sale of Lots. gold these lots at the f n owmg prices:

No. Lot Situation Price Purchaser Occupation

15 S. S. Colborne 41, 17s, 6d. John Benjamin. Saddler.

16 S. S. Colborne 36 Nathan Gage, Merchant.

21 S. S. Colborne 30 Jas. Cockshutt (York) Merchant.

22 S. S. Colborne 30 John Wright, Laborer.

23 S. S. Colborne 30 Alonzo Anson, Laborer.

24 S. S. Colborne 30 Gilbert Coats, Painter.

25 S. S. Colborne 30 Josiah T. Allen, Carpenter.
27 S. S. Colborne 30 Christopher Hughe?, Pedlar.

1 S. S. Dalhousie 9, 5 Calvin Austin, Watchmaker.

. 2,3 S. S. Dalhousie 30, 15 Wm. Richardson, Merchant.

4 S. S. Dalhousie 22 Wm. D. Dutton, Inn Keeper.

6 S. S. Dalhousie 20, 7, 6 John Whitfield, Laborer.

7 S. S. Dalhousie 17, 8, 9 Wm. C. Clark, Laborer.

1,2 N. S. Dalhousie 30, 15 John Boylston (colored) Blacksmith.
3 N. S. Dalhousie 20, 12, 6 T. Whitehead Douglass, Merchant.
9,10 N. S. Dalhousie 39 Seth Kurd, Tailor.

Brantford, 3rd June, 1830.


Supt. Six Nations

Some of the above sales subsequently lapsed because the purchase
money was not forthcoming.


Lots 15 and 16, S. Colborne Street, constituted the present Butterworth
Property lots 21 to 27, from the Cockshutt corner to Crandons. Lots 1
to 4, S. Dalhousie from the garage to the Dell corner, 6 and 7, the George
Watt property and next building. Lots 1, 2 and 3, N. Dalhousie, the
Burnley Property, occupied by McPhail Bros., the G.W.V.A. headquarters
and G. H. Wilkes’ property, lots 9 and 10, the present site of the Post
Office building.

The first sale by public auction took place May 14th,
A /*! 1831, at an upset price of 10 resulting as follows:

On South side Colborne Street: 21, 22, James Cock-
shutt; 23, William Spencer; 24, James Durand; 29, 30, James Cockshutt;
31, Abraham Cook; 32, James Durand; 33, John Benjamin; 34, 35, James

On North side of Colborne Street: 20, 21, 22, Nathaniel Ives; 23,
James Durand; 24, John Ryckman; 25, Alex. Young; 26, Henry Foot; 27,
Thos. Grantham; 28, Jedidiah Jackson; 29, William Walker; 30, John
Tupper; 31, Thomas Heeney; 35, John A Wilkes.

On South side of Dalhousie Street: 19, 20, James Gilpin; 21, John

On North side of Dalhousie Street: 16, Henry Pearsons; 17, Jed Jack-
son; 18, Warner Nelles, Jr.; 19, Henry Fay, 20, 21, Marcus F. White-
head; 22, Calvin Austin; 23, Pat. O’Donohue.

On South side Darling Street: 15, Philo Hawley; 16, Miles Shaw.

On North side of Dalhousie Street: 15, Alex. Richardson; 14, John
Cunningham; 13, John Vanorman; 11, 12, James Cockshutt; 10, John
Emerson; 9, Jonathan Wood.

On South side Darling Street: 8, William Qua; 9, John Hopkins; 10,
James Cockshutt; 11, John Reynolds; 12, 13, Thomas Storm; 14, Wil-
liam Lines; 7, Russell S. Stevens; 6, Reuben Leonard; 5, Jonathan Wood.

On South side Colborne Street: 46, 47, W. D. Dutton.

The following were sold at the upset price of 10 by order of John
Brant, Esq.

South side Colborne Street: 49, Joseph Howey; 25, 26, Hy. William
Presson; 50, Sam Carpenter; 45, John Hainstock; 27, 28, Consider H.

North side Colborne Street: 41, Pat. O’Riley .

South side Dalhousie Street: 1, Calvin Austin; 23, Wm. Richardson.

North side Dalhousie Street: 1, 2, Elias B. Smith.

On South side Darling Street: 1, 2, Edward Law; 3, 4, James Racey.

On North side Dalhousie Street: 3, Thomas W. Douglas; 5, 6, Ed. C.
Griffin; 7, Reuben Leonard; 8, Russell S. Stevens.


On South side Dalhousie Street: 7, William Muirhead.
Of the last mentioned lots there is the following report made by Mr.
Burwell, four years later:

Sold at the upset price by the late John Brant, Esq., the day succeed-
ing the first sale of lots on the 14th, May, 1831, the occupiers of which
are confirmed in their purchase, so far as their possession and improve-
ments entitle them to it.

49, S. Colborne, Joseph Howey, given up and sold by auction.

25, S. Colborne, Henry W. Presson, transferred to A. Huntington.

26, S. Colborne, Henry W. Presson, transferred to T. W. Douglas.

50, S. Colborne, Samuel Carpenter, given up and sold by auction.
45, S. Colborne, John Hainstock, now applying for deed.

41, N. Colborne, Patrick O’Riley, given up and sold by auction.

27, 28, S. Colborne, C. H. Crandon, confirmed.
1, S. Dalhousie, Calvin Austin, confirmed.

23, S. Dalhousie, William Richardson, confirmed.

1, 2, N. Dalhousie, Elias B. Smith, given up by Mr. Smith, who has gone
to U. S. On No. 1, a negro has built a house and blacksmith
shop. On No. 2, John Kipp has built a good frame house and
chairmaker’s shop.

1, 2, S. Darling Edmund Law, given up by Mr. Law. On No. 1 a negro
by the name of A. Ross, has a house built about three years
since. On No. 2, William D. Dutton has a good frame house
built. This was part of Mr. Dutton’s first occupation.

3, 4, S. Darling James Racey, Esq. Mr. Racey never took possession.
No. 3, forms part of Mr. Dutton’s original occupation, and also
No. 4, which by consent of Mr. Dutton went to Jonathan Wood’s
possession who has erected a two story frame house, occupied
as a rifle factory.

5, 6, S. Darling Edward C. Griffin, never came into possession. John
M. Tupper and Thomas Heeney went into possession of No. 5,
and built a large two-storey frame wagonmaker’s shop and black-
smith shop. No. 6, went into possession of Mr. Tupper, who has
built a good frame house, besides other improvements.

Lewis Burwell.

Brantford, July 31, 1835.


1, N S. Darling, Augustus Jones, where Yardington’s hotel formerly stood.

2, N. S. Darling, Augustus Jones, where Yardington’s hotel formerly stood.

3, N. S. Darling, Sherman Wright, (corner King.)

4, N. S. Darling, Thomas Douglas.

5, N. S. Darling, Ira Bates.

6, N. S. Darling, Calvin Austin.


7, N. S. Darling, Rebin Wilbur, (Corner Queen.)

8, N. S. Darling, George Babcock, (Babcock’s old homestead.)

9, N. S. Darling, Sherman Wright.

10, N. S. Darling, James Durand, Jr.
1, 2, S. S. Wellington, John C. Race.

3, 4, S. S. Wellington, Lewis Burwell, (Corner King.)

5, 6, 7, S. S. Wellington, Joseph T. Barritt, (Corner Queen.)

8, S. S. Wellington, Jonathan Wood.

9, S. S. Wellington, Sherman Wright.

10, S. S. Wellington, G. A. Clark.

17, S. S. Darling, Joseph T. Barritt, (Zion Church.)

18, S. S. Darling, Willard Cleveland, (B. B. N. A.)

1, N. Wellington, Jedidiah Jackson, (The Gore.)

2, 3, N. Wellington, John dealer, (Corner King.)

4, 5, N. Wellington, Augustus Jones, (Corner Queen.)

6, N. Wellington, Robert Sergeant, (Corner Queen.)

7, N. Wellington, Robert Porter.

8, 9, N. Wellington, James Durand, Jr.

10, N. Wellington, Miles Shaw.

11, 12, N. Wellington, James Gilpin, (Dr. Digby’s.)
10, 11, S. Nelson, Joseph Gilpin, (Dr. Secord’s.)

5, 6, S. Northumberland, Andrew Sharp, (Corner Alfred.)

6, N. Northumberland, James MacKenzie, (Corner Alfred.)
2, 3, 4, N. Northumberland, James Mackenzie.

7, 8, N. Northumberland, R. S. Stevens, (Corner Alfred.)
40, 41, N. Colborne, James Durand, (40 old waterworks.)

48, S. Colborne, J. and A. Benjamin.

49, S. Colborne, J. A. Clark, (Corner Park Avenue.)

50, S. Colborne, Ira Bates, (Corner Park Avenue.)

51, S. Colborne, Edy Ennis.

52, S. Colborne, Lamber Cowell.

52, S. Colborne, James Durand, (Corner Peel.)

53, 55, S. Colborne, Boardman Randall, (Corner Peel.)

56, S. Colborne, John Jones.

57, S. Colborne, William Walker, (Corner Murray.)
42, 43 N. Colborne, Augustus Jones, (Corner Peel.)
44, 45, N. Colborne, (Corner Murray.)

The first twenty or thirty of these lots sold from $60. to $100. a piece
the last lots between $40. and $50.

It is timely to conclude these extracts with a report made a year later
by Lewis Burwell, in reference to the lots sold by Capt. Brant. It is
worthy of re-print as describing the improvements upon a large number of
lots of the then village.


Brantford, March 14, 1833.

Sir: Agreeably to your request I have the honor to transmit to you a
statement of the lots occupied in this town at the instance of the late


John Brant, Esq., as far as circumstances respecting each lot is within my

1. Lot No. 1, south side of Dalhousie Street is occupied by Calvin
Austin. He was put in possession of the lot by Captain Brant, some
time previous to the first sale, with a promise that he should have it at the
upset price. He has occupied the lot since that time as a garden. His
buildings are on Lot No. 2, north of Colborne, immediately adjoining this

2. William Richardson occupies lot No. 2, and 3, south side Dalhousie
Street. After the first sale, Capt. Brant sold them to him at the upset
price. The first instalment was paid on each of the lots, but the money
was returned.

3. William D. Button occupies lot 4, south side of Dalhousie Street,
(Lots 4 and 5 were those later owned by Mr. Joseph Stratford, corner of
King Street.) It is a necessary appendage to his tavern stand. He has it
planted with fruit trees. Mr. Dutton also occupies Nos. 3 and 4, north
side Dalhousie and Nos. 2 and 3, south side Darling. He was in the
occupancy of these lots when you were first in Brantford, and says that in
making out his memorandum for you he incautiously omitted these lots
also. He has a large frame barn on No. 4, North Dalhousie, which has
been erected for several years. I am aware that Mr. Dutton has uniformly
submitted to the arrangements made for settling Brantford, and about
the time the town was surveyed he with some others signed a memorial to
His Excellency the Lieutenant-Governor, in which it was stated that he
gave up all his possessions to the arrangements of the Government, and
only asked to be confirmed in the possession of village lots, and he
now desires me to say to you that these several lots form part of what he
then considered his village possessions.

4. John Whitfield, occupies No. 6, south side Dalhousie, (where
stands Watt & Sons warehouse.) He was put in possession of this
lot by Capt. Brant, at the time the town was surveyed, but had no building
erected on it till after you took an account of the occupied lots. But be-
fore the first sale, his house was erected, and at the instance of Capt.
Brant, his lot was reserved for sale. Capt. Brant has frequently assured
him that he should have it at the upset price.

5. James Anderson, a man of color and blacksmith, occupies Lot 1,
north side Dalhousie. He took possession a year ago at the suggestion
of Capt. Brant, and at the time of the last sale had a house erected in
which he still resides. It being a small lot he was told by Capt. Brant
that he would not be charged more than 5 for it .

6. John Kipp, occupies No. 2, North Dalhousie. (Site of Soldier’s
Home. ) He had it enclosed and planted with a garden at the time of the
last sale. He has his brick and some other materials on it for building,
and in the expectation that he may be allowed to keep it, he is about to
erect his building. He took possession of the lot of his own accord, but
having made considerable improvement on it, desires that he may be
allowed to keep it without his improvements being exposed for sale.

7. Adam Akin, a man of color, and common laborer, occupies No. 1,
south side Darling, took possession under Captain Brant, and at the


time of the last sale had a house erected on the lot. He has a large
family of children, and the most of his means has been expended in
erecting his house.

8. William Muirhead occupies lot No. 7, south side of Dalhousie.
After the last sale, Capt. Brant sold it to him at the upset price. He has
occupied it as a garden and lumber-yard ever since. It lies immediately
adjoining the lot he owns on Colborne Street.

9. Jonathan Wood occupies No. 4, south side Darling. Finding he
could not get possession of the lot he purchased on Colborne Street, he
applied to Capt. Brant, who gave him liberty to take possession of the
lot. He has it enclosed, and is erecting a gunsmith’s shop thereon. Capt.
Brant said he should have it at the upset price.

10. Thomas Heeny occupies lot 5, North Dalhousie. This lot was
sold by Capt. Brant, after the first sale, to E. C. Griffin, who abandoned
it, and Heeny took possession in the expectation that it would be con-
firmed to him. He has a large building partly finished on it. The frame
of the building was standing at the time of the last sale. He says he
would not have taken possession of this lot had not Mr. Wilkes kept him
from the possession of the lot he purchased on Colborne Street. He has
paid 3, the first installment, on the lot he purchased on Colborne Street.
Not getting the possession of that lot necessity obliged him to build some-
where, and chance seems to have led him to this lot.

11. John M. Tupper occupies No. 6, north side Dalhousie. This lot is
in the same position as the last.

12. Reuben Leonard occupies No. 7, north side Dalhousie, sold to him
by Capt. Brant, at upset price. He has the lot well enclosed and occu-
pies it as a garden.

13. Russell S. Stevens occupies No. 8, North side Dalhousie. (Now
fire-hall and police station). Sold to him by Capt. Brant, at upset price.
He has a good frame house built on the lot, and is living in the house.
He has a large family.

14. Arunah Huntington occupies No. 25, south side Colborne. He
has a good house on this lot. It was occupied by Henry Presson, but by
mistake Presson gave the wrong number. He was then returned for No.
26. After discovering his mistake he built also on No. 26, and applied
to Capt. Brant, who sold him No. 25 at the upset price. Presson has left
the country but before he left, transferred No. 25 to Huntington, and No.
26 to Thomas W. Douglas.

15. Consider H. Crandon, occupies Nos. 27 and 28, south Colborne.
Both of these lots have good frame buildings on them. He was put in
possession by Capt. Brant previous to sale, and after sale, Capt. Brant
confirmed them to him at the upset price.

16. Samuel Wright, a man of color and a barber, occupied lot 36,
south side of Colborne. At time of sale had a log house erected, and
living on the lot with his family. He conveyed the lot to William Muir-
head, who desires the title.

17. John Hainstock occupies No. 45, S. Colborne, (S. W. corner of
Alfred and Colborne.) Put in possession by Capt. Brant, and at the
time of the last sale, his house was erected on the lot. After the sale Capt.


Brant confirmed the lot to him at the upset price.

The above is a fair statement of the particulars of each settler referred
to agreeably to your request. Nearly all of them had pledges from Capt.
Brant, to the full extent which those had, whose names were returned to

I beg leave to suggest that it is important that these cases should be
decided upon soon. In the meantime your communication will be a just
guide to me in transacting any business relative to the town, which you
may please to entrust me with.

I have the honor to be, Sir,

Your most obedient humble servant.
(Signed) Lewis Burwell,

D. L. Surveyor.
The Honorable Peter Robinson,

Commissioner Crown Lands, etc., York.

Dr. Alfred Digby, (the first Dr. Digby,) 14 S. Darling,
Other Pur- (Corner Market) December 24th, 1833.
cnasers iin John Bradley, 33 S. Colborne, site of Bradley’s inn,

and where the first meetings of the Town council used
to be held, March 26th, 1834.

George W. Whitehead, (of Burford), Wy 2 4, S. Colborne, April 15th

John Lovejoy, 12 N. Colborne, (Bank of Toronto corner) , March 10,

James Cockshutt, 11, 12, N. Dalhousie and 10, S. Darling, June 25,

Henry Lyman, (Scotland), 4 N. Darling, November 5, 1835.

Reuben Leonard, 6, S. Darling, December 31, 1835.

John A Wilkes, 10 S. Colborne, 9, 10, 11, 20, 32, 33, 34, N. Colborne,
8, 9, 10, 31, 32, 33, S. Dalhousie, February 3, 1836.

Amos G. Batson, 6 and 7, S. Wellington, February 3, 1836.

James McMichael, 54, S. Colborne, April 7, 1836.

John W. Tupper and Thomas Heeny, 5, N. Dalhousie. A wagon shop
on corner King, (Burns block) June 1st, 1836.

Joseph Pilsworth, 3, N. Wellington, June 27, 1836.

Henry Wade, 8, N. Nelson, October 13, 1836.

Thos. Lemmon, (father of Henry), 1, N. Wellington, September 6th,

John Turner, (late architect) 7, S. Nelson, March 9, 1839.
View of Market Street, 1875.
View of Market Street, 1920.




With the exception of the excitement of the 1837 rebellion and the
visitation of a cholera plague, Brantford inhabitants pursued the even
tenor of their way, making steady, if small progress, until 1840, when a
boom took place, as a result of the opening of the canal.

During earlier years this region was known as the “Grand River
Swamp” and a chronicler of seventy years ago, thus refers to the cause
of that appellation:

“The country on the Grand River was formerly considered very un-
healthy, and as it would appear, for some time, justly so fevers pre-
vailing in the hot season to a considerable extent. The cause of this,
seems to have been the damming of the river, which, raising the water
over a great extent of low land, some, indeed most, of which was covered
with decaying wood, stumps of trees and other vegetable matter, caused
from the action of the sun, an exhalation of malarious vapour, which
proved exceedingly injurious to the health, particularly of those unaccus-
tomed to it. In the course of time, however, the cause has subsided; the
mSalaria has evaporated, and the country bordering on the Grand River
is said now to be quite as healthy as other portions of the province.”

The late Mr. J. J. Hawkins, in a paper read before the
Coming local Historical Society, some years ago on “Early Days

in Brantford,” said:

“The Six Nations Indians had been about twenty
years settled upon their grant of land along the Grand River, when the
first few white traders came amongst them. Mohawk village was the
chief seat, and being near the main highway from east to west, gave the
first start to the village of Brant’s Ford. When the survey of the village
of Brantford, as it was laid out in 1830, was made, a considerable number
of settlers began to arrive. The whites were English, Irish and Scotch,
chiefly, with quite a sprinkling of native Canadians, United Empire Loy-
alists and Americans. There was also a large inflow of escaped colored
slaves from the United States, who fraternized with the Indians, and the
village became a very turbulent and disorderly place. A meeting of all


the whites was held, and an urgent request unanimously signed, addressed
to the Government, requesting that the negroes he sent to the Queen’s Bush,
and settled upon the land. Good grounds for such action must have been
shown by the white settlers, for a large majority of the escaped slaves
were removed and settled in different parts of western Canada. Shortly
afterwards the Indians surrendered all their lands at Mohaiwk, and retired
to their present location, and a considerable inflow of whites began to
arrive, and the village to prosper.

“At this time, about 1832, a large number of families, known as the
Kingston settlers, began to arrive. Among many others the writer re-
members the following: McDonalds, Mairs, Matthews, Hawkins, Weyms,
Downs, Kendals, Gardhams, Girvings, Sproules and McDougalls. Most
of these settlers bought land, and built houses of their own, and at the
time of the rebellion of 1837, Brantford had become a flourishing place.
From the earliest days the village of Brantford, and all
Turbulent the surrounding district was a hotbed of political excite- ^ or ment, and at the time of the rebellion, all were known
either as Loyalists, or Rebels. Many were the bitter en-
mities which arose, and existed, long after the days of political troubles.

“We have stated that the population was very mixed, consisting of
Indians, whites and a large number of colored people, escaped from
slavery, all of whom, could procure whiskey and other spirits at trifling
cost, for example, common Canadian whiskey at one York shilling per
gallon (12% cents) . Then, came the digging of the canal, and other work
by the Grand River Navigation Company, and it may readily be conceived
that the law abiding whites, few in number, and helpless, had many trials
to bear, in what was really a turbulent and at times, lawless frontier vil-
lage. To make matters almost desperate, the real white settlers were
ranked as sworn enemies, either as Tories of the extremist type, or Re-
formers, who had been goaded by the officials of the Family Compact
to open an unsuccessful rebellion, while the stipendiary magistrates of the
district, were themselves, the keenest partizans of all.

“Take any time, from the laying out of the Village of Brantford in
1830, to well on in the 40’s, and it can be truthfully stated that the fore-
going conditions, and the added fact that an organization known as the
“Swampers” east of Brantford, chiefly along the Hamilton Road, and
another desperate gang, well known to the old timers, met on public
and market days, and had it out with clubs and axe handles, often joining
forces to club quiet citizens right and left, Brantford surely had its trials
in early days. The writer has on many occasions witnessed just such
scenes, on the market square, and at election and race meetings. After


the first settlers in 1832-4, had built houses for their families, the fathers
finding nothing to do, would, especially in the winter, have to leave their
homes and go back east to Toronto, Kingston or elsewhere. But, there
came brighter and better days. The county of Brant was set apart, and
Brantford was made the County Town, both becoming as orderly and law-
abiding, as any in the province.

“This brief description of Brantf ord’s early days would be
ft i vfioiera incomplete, without a few words, descriptive of everyday

life, among the early settlers. As a class the men were
of superior physique, strong and healthy and in the prime of life; indeed,
the majority of the new arrivals might truthfully be termed youthful.
There were quite a number among them of advanced education, whom the
majority regarded as leaders, in all popular movements, and, outside of
political lines, were friendly and good neighbors, one to another. Their
goodness of heart was fully tried, and proved during the outbreak of
cholera, which reached Brantford by means of the streams of Irish
immigrants, arriving and departing. Strange to say, the deaths in
Brantford amongst the residents, were confined to the officers of the
health department, of whom Dr. Keist was the head, and a man named
Gardiner, health inspector for the village of Brantford; also three mem-
bers of a family named Start, who fled from the East Ward to the North
Ward, for safety. Many of the immigrants died of cholera, also, but
no record exists. It was in 1847-8 that the terrible scourge of ship fever
was spread over the whole route to London, and westward. Large num-
bers of Irish immigrants fell victims to the dread scourge, and were
buried in Toronto, Hamilton and Brantford along the route in many
cases. Temporary hospitals were established in Brantford, one in the
East Ward, and one in what is now known as Brant Avenue Valley, on
West Mill Street. How many died in Brantford, is not known, but the
long lines of graves in the rear of Greenwood cemetery, together with
those in the Catholic cemetery, and the Central School grounds, then a
cemetery, must have amounted to scores.

“The writer’s father, John Hawkins, and the late Joseph Dalton, were
appointed to supervise the hospital in the North Ward, and their sons, of
whom the writer was one, small boys, went along, and carried pails of
milk to the sick, of evenings. To them, the scenes to be witnessed,
were truly appalling, whole families being prostrated in rude board
shanties, helpless as infants. At the time it was stated that many wagon
loads arrived from day to day, with all sick, except the driver. Along
the fence, to the rear of Greenwood Cemetery, for years the mounds of the
long lines of graves could be plainly traced.”


In connection with the scourge of “Ship Fever,” spoken

Passed. O f jjy ]^ r Hawkins, it is worthy of note that the follow-

Resolution. . , . , , ‘ – , -, n .,

mg resolution was passed by nranttord lown Council on

March 16th, 1848. “Moved by Mr. Wilkes, seconded by Mr. Clement.

Resolved: That as it is within the knowledge of this Council a malig-
nant disease has made its appearance in the Town, the Board of Health
be instructed to look out for a suitable building for a hospital and report
as soon as possible to the Council, and that the Committee on By-laws
prepare a By-law for the preservation of the public health.-Carried.”

It is quite likely that the so called “Ship Fever” was another name for
the Grippe, and Spanish Influenza forms of visitation.


Mr. George H. Wilkes can make claim to the title of the
T ra iftd^ oldest native Brantfordite. He was born on June 8th,

1836, and first saw the light of day, in his grandfather’s
house, a large frame structure which still stands in the jear of some
stores, on Colborne Street, on the left hand side towards the old Great
Western Station. At that time it was the only building on the block, and
was reached by a semi-circular drive-way, which made a wide sweep from
the street around the front of the house. It was a most ambitious resi-
dence, for those days, and one which Mayor Matthews, in one of his
speeches dubbed a “Baronial Hall.” As Mr. Wilkes first remembers the
town, about 1845, it extended from Colborne Street on the south to
beyond Marlboro Street, on the north; to Clarence Street, or Vinegar
Hill, on the east and to the first Baptist Church site on the west. The
streets were pretty well laid out, Colborne being the principal thorough-
fare. There were a number of business houses in addition to that of
John A. Wilkes & Sons, the tendency being towards general lines, in which
several branches of trade were combined. Along the creek, running east
of Clarence Street the Wilkes’ Company also had a large grist mill, the
mill pond of which was located near Chatham St. the water being drawn
from the creek and raised by a dam, which was constructed near Nelson
Street for that purpose. On the present market square there was a
school and a tower bell, the bell being utilized among other purposes for
the calling out of volunteer firemen in the event of a fire.

The main business section was on Colborne, in the vic-
jSusiness j n j tv O f t jj e bridge over the river. There was nothing on

the Kerby House block but a log cabin, in which a
negro lived in a sort of swale, and Mr. Wilkes relates how the boys
in customary boyish fashion, used to delight in tormenting the occupant


of the little shanty. The churches too, at this time, seem to have been
few in number, including Grace Church, the First Baptist, the First
Presbyterian and the First Methodist. Mr. Wilkes remembers having at-
tended the First Presbyterian Church, at an early date in his career, the
edifice being situated where the Young Women’s Christian Association
now stands. In this church, the seating arrangement was somewhat
unique. All of the women sat on one side and the men on the other. Mr.
Wilkes was just big enough to run from one division to another, much to
the consternation of some of the old attendants, who were pretty strict
on etiquette. When he got home he received specific instructions, suit-
ably emphasized. Even in these early days the torrents of the noble
Grand were well known, and both spring and summer the river was a
constant source of danger to the inhabitants. The portion of property
west of the river bridge, suffered most, at times being almost completely
wiped out. The present Lome bridge is the fourth which Mr. Wilkes
has known, the first having been a wooden cover, the second a wooden
span, the third an iron bridge and the fourth the present structure. The
iron bridge as many will recall, was carried away by the collapse of a
pier. The others owed their downfall to the freshets of the Grand. The
river, however, was an important factor in navigation, and in this way
aided in the upbuilding of the town, particularly as a grain centre.
__ _ Mr. Wilkes relates that he has seen a line of teams ex-

tending from the centre of the town to FarrelPs tavern,
which was situated at the Mount Pleasant Road junction. Four different
warehouses and a flat boat were busy taking in the grain, which was
paid for on the spot. Some of the grain was brought from within
twenty miles of London in order to get navigation. Before the day of
the Public Schools, there were a number of private schools in the town, a
leading one being located where the Brantford Conservatory of Music
now stands. As showing the extent of the town at that time, it may be
of interest to note that when Greenwood Cemetery was established there
were many who considered the location too distant from the main part of
the place. A more central site was desired, but the supporters of the
Greenwood property won the day.

What is now the flourishing Eastern end of the City, possessed hardly
any settlers, and there was one house at each side of Vinegar Hill. On
the south side of Colborne Street there were very few buildings, and a
brewery stood on the location of the old Y. M. C. A. building. There
was nothing on Terrace Hill but scrub trees, and at the foot where the
Pratt & Letchworth buildings now stand, there was a swamp. Across
the canal, there was no settlement whatever.


At this time, Brantford was growing as a trading centre, mainly be-
cause of its location and the outlet which the river offered. The town
was on the main line of travel, between Hamilton, Ancaster, London and
Detroit. The roads, at first merely a blazed trail, had become passable.
The stage coach was the medium of travel. Mr. Wilkes has witnessed as
many as four trains of coaches pass through here in a day the so-called
trains consisting of from one coach to three in number, each holding as
many as sixteen passengers. The drivers of the coaches, says Mr. Wilkes,
“were quite swell.” The mails were carried on these stages.

In the course of his interview Mr. Wilkes also related a
Two couple of early railway experiences, which, while they

itailway concern a somewhat later period than that which has

been under consideration, are nevertheless interesting, as
illustrative of the primitive struggles in this section for railway connec-

The Buffalo and Lake Huron road was constructed in 1854, running
from Buffalo to Brantford and Goderich. Mr. Wilkes is authority for
the statement that while it has never been made clear, he always under-
stood that Buffalo put $400,000 into the road. This is a point of some
importance, in that it throws an interesting side-light on the abiding faith
which the Bison City must have had, in railway connections as a means to
creating trade. Later the road was sold to the Grand Trunk. Mr. Wilkes
was one of the committee which got through connections with the latter
road to Harrisburg.

Another road with which Mr. Wilkes was identified, was the Tillson-
burg line, of which he was president. In this connection he relates an
interesting incident, regarding the turning of the first sod on the road,
when Lord Dufferin visited the city. The distinguished visitor was
brought here by Hon. George Brown for the purpose of inspecting Bow
Park, which the latter owned at the time. The people of Brantford felt
that the visit should be suitably marked in some way, and so devised
plans of entertainment. It was arranged that Lady Dufferin, who accom-
panied the Governor-General should preside at the dedication of the
Young Ladies’ College building, while Lord Dufferin should turn the
first sod of the projected line to Tillsonburg. The road was pretty much
in the air, but the ceremonies were gone through with, in all solemnity,
Mr. Wilkes, as president of the company, reading the customary address,
and the gathering being held around temporary stands which had been
erected in the vicinity of the present site of Massey-Harris Company. Mr.
Wilkes was not very enthusiastic. “All the time I was reading the
address,” he observed, “I was inwardly thinking the road would


never be built, and wondering what sort of a joke the people would
have on me in the future. “Some time later it took exactly $21 for re-
newal stamps on the charter for the road.” However, the scheme resulted
much more favorably than expected, and the incident of the turning of
the first sod is recalled with no small satisfaction on the part of those in-
timately associated with the venture.”


Brantford became incorporated as a Town by a special
Incorpora- Act passed on July 28th, 1847, whose preamble was as


“Whereas from the increase of the population in
Brantford, in the District of Gore, it is necessary to make provision for
the internal regulations thereof, be it therefore enacted by the Queen’s

Most Excellent Majesty that the said town of Brantford,

shall be composed of the lands situate in the Township of Brantford,
within the following limits, or boundaries.” Then succeeded a lengthy
list of degrees, and chains. ,

The Act further provided “that the internal management, and govern-
ment of the said Town shall be under the control, and authority of a
Town Council, to be denominated. “The Mayor and Council of the Town
of Brantford, to be elected from among the male inhabitants of the said
Town in the manner hereinafter provided,” etc., etc.


Seven was the original number of the Wards as follows:

West Ward, lying South of the Grand River.

North Ward, lying North of the Grand River (including two large
islands in the river) and West of Cedar and West Streets from its inter-
section with Cedar Street.

South Ward, lying south of Colborne Street, and West of Alfred
Street to the river.

Kings Ward, lying north of Colborne, and between Cedar Street and
West Street, from its intersection with Cedar and Queen Streets.

Queens Ward, lying between Queen and Market Streets to their inter-
section with West Street.

Brant Ward, lying North of Colborne Street, between Market and
Alfred Streets.

East Ward, lying east of Alfred Street.

One member to be elected for each Ward.

In 1849 the number was reduced to five Wards, Kings, Queens, Brant,


East and North, three members to be elected from each Ward, and fin-
ally the numerical system was adopted.

The first election took place on Monday September 6th, 1847, and
resulted as follows:

Dr. Digby, John W. Downs, Wm. Muirhead, James Wilkes, William
Walker, Joseph Gardner, Daniel M. Gilkison.

On September 9th, the inaugural meeting was held in “Bradley’s Inn,”
situated on the corner of King and Colborne Streets, for the purpose of
electing a Mayor; the early method was for Councillors to elect one of
their number and the honor fell to William Muirhead.

. . j ” Subjoined is a complete list until the place became a
cillors And r J . 1Q __
Officials: City m 1877:

Mayors: 1847, Wm. Muirhead; 1848-9, Dr. Digby; 1850, P. C. Van-
Brocklin; 1851, John H. Moore; 1852, A. Huntington; 1853, George S.
Wilkes; 1854, James Kerby; 1855-56, Wm. Matthews; 1857, Thomas
Botham; 1858, M. W. Pruyn; 1859, Thomas Botham; 1860 to 1864, J. D.
Clement; 1864-5, James Weyms, 1866-7-8, John Elliott; 1869-70-71,
Wm. Matthews; 1872, Wm. Paterson; 1873-4, Wm. Matthews; 1875-6-7,
Dr. James W. Digby.

The Town became a City in 1877.

Reeves: None , until 1850, Wm. Matthews; 1851, John Downs; 1852,
Joseph D. Clement; 1853, James Woodyatt; 1854, D. McKerlie; 1855-6,
John McNaught; 1857-8, J. D. Clement; 1859-60, Thomas Broughton;
1861-2, James Wallace; 1863, James Weyms; 1864, Joseph Quinlan;
1865, John Elliott; 1866-7, George Watt; 1868, Alfred Watts; 1869, F.
H. Leonard; 1870-71, Alfred Watts; 1872-3, W. J. Imlach; 1874, G. H.
Wilkes; 1875, Alfred Watts; 1876, Robert Phair, who was succeeded in
March by John Elliott, who served until the city charter was obtained.

Deputy Reeves: None until 1850, John H. Moore; 1851, Chas.
Merigold; 1852, P. C. VanBrocklin; 1853, James McMichael; 1854, W.
Matthews; 1855, John Elliott; 1856, A. Girvin; 1857-8, Henry Racey;
1859, John Comerford; 1860, James Wallace; 1861-2, Ebenezer Roy;
1863, Wm. B. Hurst, 1864, John Montgomery; 1865, Geo. Watt; 1866,
John Montgomery; 1867, Jno. Humburch, H. B. Leeming; 1868, F. H.
Leonard, John Comerford; 1869-70, W. Paterson, W. J. Imlach; 1871,
W. Paterson; 1872, R. Phair, G. H. Wilkes, W. Watt; 1873, J. J. Hawkins,
R. Phair, B. Hunn; 1874, J. W. Digby, B. Hunn, Geo. Watt; 1875, W.
J. Scarf e, B. Hunn, E. Brophey; 1876, E. Brophey, G. H. Wilkes, Thos.
Palmer; 1877, Jno. Ormerod, W. J. Scarf e, J. J. Hawkins.


1847 Dr. Digby, John W. Downs, Wm. Muirhead, James Wilkes,
William Walker, Joseph Gardner, Daniel M. Gilkison.

1848 J. Wilkes, W. Walker, J. W. Downs, Dr. Digby, J. Gardner,
J. D. Clement, H. Yardington.


1849 D. M. Gilkison, Dr. Alfred Digby, John Steele, Duncan Mc-
Kay, John Turner, James Wilkes, Joseph Gardiner,

1850 Wm. Walker, Chas. Watts, H. Yardington, P. C. VanBrocklin,
A. Kirkland, John H. Moore, James Wilkes, James McMichael, James
Woodyatt, Jos. Dalton, Alex. Girvin, John Maxwell, Alfred Reid, C. R.
Wilkes, William Matthews.

1851 C. Merrigold, T. Lemmon, G. S. Wilkes, J. D. Clement, R.
Sproule, F. S. Wilkes, James Woodyatt, J. W. Downs, Rowe, Keeley, G.
Balfour, D. M. Gilkison, A. Cleghorn, J. Moore, C. Watts.

1852 A. Huntington, J. D. Clement, R. Sproule, J. Woodyatt, A.
Girvin, Rowe, E. Montgomery, P. C. VanBrocklin, J. Dalton, J. Mc-
Michael, H. Spencer, D. M. Gilkison, W. Sinon, G. S. Wilkes, E. P. Goold

1853 W. Matthews,’ G. S. Wilkes, F. P. Goold, D. McKay, J. H.
Kerby, W. Sinon, A. Wilson, M. Frazer, B. G. Tisdale, J. McMichael, H.
Spencer, J. Woodyatt, R. Sproule, D. M. Gilkison, E. Montgomery.

1854 D. McKay, G. S. Wilkes, Jos. Quinlan, P. C. VanBrocklin, H.
Peatman, James Kerby, D. M. Gilkison, W. Sinon, J. Turner, M. Frazer,
D. McKerlie, F. P. Goold, A. Watts, W. Matthews, H. Racey.

1855 M. W. Pruyn, E. Roy, Alex. Girvin, John Ormerod, H. Racey,
W. Matthews, John Elliott, A. J. McKenzie, James Bellhouse, Wm. Sinon,
D. M. Gilkison, J. McNaught, John Turner, Jos. Quinlan, C. R. Wilkes.

1856 Wm. Matthews, C. P. Cartan, Wm. Hocking, John Turner, H.
Racey, John McNaught, Alex. Girvin, John Comerford, Abraham Kerby,
Wm. Sinon, W. B. Hurst, D. M. Gilkison, John Elliott, Jos. Quinlan.
Peter B. Long.

1857 J. D. Clement, M. W. Pruyn, Abraham Kerby, Wm. B. Hurst,
Henry Racey, Robert Fair, Wm. Matthews, Joseph Quinlan, Edward
Montgomery, Thomas Botham, William Young, Henry Yardington, Thos.
Spencer, George S. Wilkes, D. M. Gilkison.

1858 Wm. Sinon, J. Orr, Alfred Watts, M. W. Pruyn, Henry Yard-
ington, T Broughton, A. D. Clement, Henry Racey, Wm. Young, J.
Elliott, Jos. Quinlan, F. W. Popplewell, E. Bunnell, J. Lines, Abraham

1859 F. W. Popplewell, Wm. B. Hurst, Henry Racey, Henry Yates,
John Elliott, James Wallace, Alfred Watts, John Turner, John Taylor,
Joseph Quinlan, Wm. Winter, James Creyk, Thomas Broughton, John
Comerford, D. M. Gilkison.

1860 Henry Yates, Thomas Hall, Irwin Pepper, Chris. Wilson,
Andrew Morton, Alf. Watts, Thomas Broughton, John Taylor, Thomas
Glassco, W. H. Morgan, John Turner, James Wallace, Joseph Quinlan,
Joseph Potts, John Elliott.

1861 Chris. Wilson, Alfred Watts, John Humburch, John Madden,
Thomas Pickering, F. H. Leonard, Geo. Foster, Ebenezer Roy, James
Wallace, Thomas McLean, J. J. Inglis, George Watt, Joseph Quinlan,
Joseph Potts, Henry Yates.

1862 Wm. B. Hurst, Andrew Morton, Alfred Watts, Joseph Quinlan,
Daniel Brooke, F. H. Leonard, E. Roy, James Weyms, James Wallace,
Thomas McLean, J. J. Inglis, Geo. Watt, Andrew McMeans, J. P. Sutton,
Henry Yates.


1863 Joseph Quinlan, Angus Murray, James Weyms, Christopher
Wilson, Wm. B. Hurst, Joseph Potts, Andrew McMeans, Alf. Watts,
F. H. Leonard, John Turner, Henry Wade, George Watt, John Ormerod,
Thomas McLean, Matthew Butler.

1864 Joseph Quinlan, John Comerford, John Ormerod, Christopher
Wilson, John Humburch, Joseph Craig, John Montgomery, John Elliott
John Turner, Thomas McLean, Joseph Potts, Andrew McMeans, George
Watt, Ebenezer Roy, Wm. Dalrymple.

1865 Robert Peel, John Brethour, Joseph Quinlan, Hugh Spencer,
Wm. B. Hurst, John Humburch, Thomas Patterson, Thomas Glassco,
John Montgomery, John Elliott, James Wallace, Thomas McLean, George
Watt, Jonathan Hale, James Tutt.

1866 Joseph Quinlan, Robert Peel, John Comerford, Wm. B. Hurst,
John Hurmburch, Alfred Watts, Ebenezer Roy, John Montgomery, Thomas
Patterson, James Wallace, David Curtis, James Smith, Robert Phair,
George Watt, Adam Spence.

1867 John Edgar, John Brethour, John Minore, Wm. B. Hurst,
Andrew McMeans, E. Roy, James Smith, Daniel Brooke, Robt. Phair,
Adam Spence.

1868 -John Edgar, John Ormerod, Wm. B. Hurst, Wm. Paterson, E.
Roy, Wm. Watt, Daniel Brooke, Andrew Morton, Robert Phair, James

1869 George H. Wilkes, James Ker, John Comerford, John Ott,
Joseph Quinlan, John Minore, John Taylor, Wm. Watt, David Plewes,
Andrew Morton, Thomas Cowherd, Thomas Whittaker, Robt. Phair,
James Tutt, James Spence.

1870 John Comerford, John Minore, David Plewes, William W.
Belding, Andrew McMeans, W. Watt, J. Taylor, J. Kerr, J. Tutt, A.
Morton, R. Phair, J. Quinlan, T. Cowherd, J. Ott, G. H. Wilkes.

1871 John Comerford, George H. Wilkes, John Ormerod, Robt.
Gray, Wm. Whitaker, Joseph Quinlan, David Plewes, Wm. Watt, John
Taylor, Edward Brophey, Benjamin Hunn, James Tutt, Robt. Phair,
Andrew McMeans, J. W. Bowlby.

1872 W. D. Cantillon, J. J. Hawkins, Wm. Whitaker, Robt. Gray,
W. J. Scarf e, Jackson Forde, Benjamin Hunn, W. W. Belding, Andrew
McMeans, Adam Spence.

1873 Joseph Quinlan, Thomas Palmer, Wm. Whitaker, Thomas
Large, Jas. W. Digby, M.D., W. J. Scarfe, Wm. W. Shackell, W. W.
Belding, Andrew McMeans, H. Sutton.

1874 Joseph Quinlan, Thos. Palmer, Patrick Dunn, Wm. Whitaker,
George Hardy, Ben. F. Fitch, Fred VanNorman, Daniel Costello, R. C.
Smyth, J. W. Bowlby.

1875 Joseph Quinlan, Wm. Whitaker, Thomas Large, Robert Shan-
non, George Hardy, Daniel Costello, George King, J. W. Bowlby, Thomas
Palmer, John Henry.

1876 Robt. Henry, Dennis Hawkins, Wm. Stubbs, Thomas Large,
George Hardy, Robt. J. Forde, Daniel Costello, George Lindley, John
Henry, Thomas Webster.

1877 Dennis Hawkins, Peter M. Keogh, Matthew A. Burns, Thomas

Looking up Colborne Street from Market Street in the sixties. The building
on the left, with crinolines in the window, is the present site of the Bank of Hamilton,
and the higher building on the right hand side is Ker’s music hall, afterwards Strat-
ford’s Opera House. The verandah coverings of the store walks existed for many
years. Premises became darkened, but the plan was considered an advantage in
stormy seasons. On the extreme right can be seen the old Waterous Engine Works
on Dalhousie Street, now the Post Office site, and also the present fire hall.



Large, George Hardy, George H. Wilkes, George Lindley, Daniel Costello,
Edward Fisher, George Watt.

In the years where ten names appear, two Aldermen were elected
from each Ward.

TOWN CLERKS: 1847-50, J. R. McDonald; 1850, Charles Robin-
son; 1851-57. G. Varey, Jr.,1857-8, Gabriel Balfour; 1859-1877, Jas.

TOWN TREASURERS: 1847, W. Walker; 1848-51, D. McKay;
1851, G. Varey; 1852-57, J. Laughrey; 1857 to 1872, D. McKay; 1872-77
Jas Wilkes.

The first assessment roll from which was compiled a
First Voters. Voters’ List for the Town of Brantford, contained the
following preface:

“I certify that the within is a correct copy of the assessment roll for
the Town of Brantford, to the best of my knowledge.


Township Clerk.”
Brantford, 4th day of September, 1847.

Babcock, George
Bailey, Robert
Baker, Thomas
Balfour, Gabriel
Ball, Charles
Ballantyne, William
Bamberger, Mrs.
Bannister, John
.Bannister, Chambers
Barker, William
Barnes, Miss
Bell, Francis
Bellhouse, James
Bentliffe, James
Berry, James
Bown, R. R.
Brazier, John
Brook, Thomas
Broughton, Thomas
Brown, Charles
Brown, James
Brown, James M.
Brown, Michael
Brown, William
Brumage, John
Bryans, John
Buchanan, J. K.
Buckley, Jeremiah

Burch, Titus S.
Burk, Richard K.
Burley, Luther
Burrell, William
Burton, Edward
Burwell, Lewis
Callis, Thomas
Carl’and, John
Champion,- William
Chatfield, Joseph
Christie, James
Clark, Alex.
Cleghorn, Allen
Clement, Joseph D.
Cochran, John
Cockshutt, I.
Collar, Orin
Cole, Southworth
Colligher, John
Collins, Jesse
Colmer, William
Comerford, John
Cook, Strobridge & Co.
Coon, Peter
Cowherd, William
Cowherd, Thomas
Cox, John F.
Coy, Thomas

Craig, Joseph
Crandon, C. H.
Cripps, Miss
Crop, William
Culbert, John
Currie, John
Dalton, John
Dalton, Joseph
Dalrymple, Thomas
Dalrymple, Robert
Davis, Evan
Davis, Isaac
Davis, William
Delaney, Michael
Deverill, James
Digby, Alfred
Dickson, Edward
Dodds, Francis
Downs, John W.
Dove, George
Dunbar, John
Dunkin, F.
Ede, William
Edwards, Charles
El wick, George
Fair, James
Fair, Thomas
Farrell, Charles



Fawcett, Thomas
Finnessy, Michael
Flanagan, Patrick
Follis, James
Foulds, Daniel
Frydenn, Henry
Fuller, Robert
Gage, Nathan
Gardner, Joseph
Gardner, Thomas
Gilbert, James
Gilkison, Daniel
Girvin, Alexander
Goodale, George
Goold, F. P.
Grace, Patrick
Graham, Joseph
Green, Charles
Green, William
Grenny, Abram
Grey, William
Hall, Lewis
Halpin, John
Hamlin, Elizabeth
Hammill, John
Hawkins, John
Hawkins, William
Head, Nicholas
Heather, Thomas
Heaton, John
Henry, Thomas
Hicks, Belden
Higinbotham, A.
Hill, Benjamin C.
Hill, Charles
Hindman, David
Houghton, Calvin
Houghton, Sarah
Houlding, Josiah J.
Hull, T. B.
Huntington, A.
Hyde, Henry
Iden, Hezekiah
Irish, William R.
Jackson, John
Jackson, Robert G.
Jackson, William
Jakes, William
James, Thomas

Jilks, John
Johnson, Abram
Johnson, Robert
Johnstone, William
Jones, John
Jones, Mrs.
Jordan, Edward
Judson, E. A.
Keist, F. W.
Kelly, Michael
Kerr, George H.
Keys, Mrs. F. L.
King, Amanda
Kipp, John
Kerby, Andrew J.
Kerby, William K.
Kirkland, Alex.
Lacey, John
Lafferty, John W.
Lally, Stephen
Lang, M.
Lee, William B.
Lemmon, Thomas
Leonard, F. H.
Lewis, Samuel
Lines, John
Lines, William
Locke, William
Loftas, Henry
Long, William
Lord, James
Lunn, John
Madigan, John
Mair, James
Mair, William
Marter, Peter
Martin, James
Mason, Dr.
Matthews, Henry
Matthews, Henry J.
Matthews, William
Mawbey, Joseph
Maxwell, John
Meiklejohn, Robert
Mellish, William
Merigold, Charles
Mills, George
Mitchell, Thomas
Mitchell, William

Mixer, Horace
Montgomery, Edward
Montgomery, John D.
Montgomery, Noble
Montgomery, Robert
Montrose, James
Moore, James
Moore, J. and J. H.
Morris, Hugh
Muirhead, William
McCabe, John
McDonald, J. R.
McDonald, Michael
McDougall, Miss
McGuire, widow
McKay, Duncan
McLaughlin, Patrick
McMichael, James
McMullen, A.
McMullen, James B.
McSherry, Bernard
McTurk, Alex.
Nolan, Nicholas
O’Banyon, Peter
Olwell, Thomas
Ormerod, John
Oliver, Jeremiah
Park, Robert
Parsons, Thomas
Parsons, James
Patrick, Mrs.
Peatman, Henry
Penfold, Thomas
Perry, James E.
Perry, William
Pickering, Thomas
Pilsworth, Thomas
Poland, George
Potts, Joseph
Pratt, Elias N.
Prior, S. E.
Quinlan, Joseph
Racey & Soules
Rackham, John
Reed, William
Renshaw, William
Richards, Daniel H.
Richardson, William
Riece, Alfred



Ryley, Patrick
Roberts, Jeremiah
Roberts, Robert
Robinson, Orpheus
Robson, Thomas
Ross, Richard
Roy, E. & Co.
Saulsbury, William
Schultz, John C.
Scott, Robert
Sergent, Robert
Shellard, Henry
Shelton, Joseph
Shuttleworth, Joseph
Simpson, M.
Skimming, George
Smith, A. K.
Smith, Benjamin
Southwold, Richard
Spencer, Hugh
Spencer, James
Spencer, William
Sproule, Robert
Squire, Joseph
Stamp, Arthur
Steele, John
Steele, Matthew
Steele, William
Stephens, George
Stephens, Mrs.
Stewart, Charles
Stockwell, Lewis
Stow, H. M.

Stratford, W. H.
Strobridge, R. R.
Stubbs, Thomas
Summerill, James
Swan, Thomas
Swift, Obediah
Tennant, John
Thompson, James
Thome, Thomas
Todd, Mrs.
Tunstead, John
Tupper, John M.
Turner, Charles
Turner, John
Turner, Henry L.
Turner, Robert
Turney, Thomas
Tyler, William
Usher, James C.
Vanbrockin, P. C.
Vanderlip, Fred
Vanpatter, John
Vansickle, E.
Varey, George
Veal, Onesimus
Vincent, William
Wade, Henry
Wade, John
Wagstaff, James
Walker, William
Walker, William J. P.
Walkinshaw, James

Wallace, James
Wallace, ITiomas
Waterhouse, John
Watt, William
Webb, Laurence
Webster, William
Weber, Chauncey
Welch, Nixon
Welsh, James
West, A. B.
Weyms, James
Whet on, James F.
Whitham, Matthew
Wit well, Benjamin
Wickens, Stephen
Wilkes, Bros.
Wilkes, F. T.
Wilkes, John A.
Wilkins, Mrs.
Wilson, A. & C.
Wilson, James
Winterbottom, J.
Woodyatt, James
Woodyatt, William
Wollett, Charles
Workman, Hugh
Wright, Joseph
Wright, William
Yardington, Edward
Yardington, Henry
Young, Edward
Young, Mrs.


Here we have a total of 328 names as compared with over 10,000
names in the 1920 Municipal contest.

It would be impossible to identify all of those enumer-
Who Some a ted in this earlv record of seventy three years ago, but
^ place in the community of many of them can still
be recalled.

George Babcock, was the well known stage owner and used to have
a large number of horses stabled here.
Robert Bailey was a carriage maker.
Thomas Baker was the Congregational Church minister.
Gabriel Balfour first of all occupied the position of Clerk of the
Township and then of the Town.
Charles Ball was a carpenter.


William Ballantyne was a carpenter, and his descendants are well
known citizens.

James Bellhouse was a builder and for some time Chairman of the
School Board.

James Bentliffe followed the occupation of a carpenter.

R. R. Bown was the stepfather of Drs. John Y. and Theodore Bown,
and for many years resided at Bow Park Farm.

John Brazier ran a hotel and so did Thomas Brook, hut the latter fin-
ally went into the grocery business.

Thomas Broughton was the manager of the Grand River Navigation
Works when they were owned by the Town.

John Bryans was a butcher and father of Mr. F. Bryans, West Brant-

J. K. Buchanan, a Scotchman, was a land and real estate agent, prob-
ably the first here to make a regular business of that calling.

Jeremiah Buckley was a laborer.

Luther Burley ran “Burley’s Hotel” on Dalhousie Street opposite the

Lewis Burwell was the land surveyor, and used to reside in a frame
house on Darling Street, for many years afterwards occupied by Dr.
Nichol. Mr. Burwell prepared the first plan of Brantford ninety years
ago and when asked with regard to the existence of the gore irregularities
is reported to have replied, that the place would never be much more
than a village in any event. He was a man of quiet habits, and did
much surveying with considerable skill.

Thomas Callis was a carpenter and his son is still here in the same
line of business.

William Champion was a live stock dealer, and Iden Champion is a

James Christie was the first manager here of the Bank of British North

Allen Cleghorn a native of Scotland was a wholesale hardware mer-
chant and for six years a director of the Old Buffalo and Lake Huron
Railway. He was a Councillor, School Trustee and License Commissioner
and principal promoter of the Brant monument. During the late years
of his life he was Secretary of the hospital. His wholesale establishment
was located on the corner of King and Dalhousie Streets. Mr. Cleghorn
wore a wig and when he was made a chief, in long ago days, it was related
that during the ceremony a Six Nations Chief, who had taken hold of the
forelock was amazed to find the entire covering in his hand. For a
moment or two the red man thought he had done some scalping in earnest.


Joseph D. Clement was for many year a leading public figure. He
settled here in 1844 as proprietor of “Doyles Inn,” and in 1847 acquired
another hotel, the “Mansion House,” situated at the corner of Market and
Colborne Streets, a property, which still remains in the family. He was
Councillor, Mayor, during a term of years, and the first Warden when
Brant County became a separate entity. Then he became postmaster in
1850, and discharged the duties in that position until 1866, when he
resigned to contest North Brant with Dr. John Y. Bown, and was de-
feated by one vote. A son Mr. A. D. Clement, afterwards took over the
post office and held the position until his death. One of the children,
of the latter survives, Mrs. Bruce Gordon, who is still a resident of

I. Cockshutt and Southworth Cole, are referred to elsewhere.

John Comerford was a well known merchant and Councillor, and his
descendants are still here.

Cook Strobridge & Co., refers to a firm composed of Abraham Cook,
of Mt. Pleasant, R. R. Strobridge and Thomas Botham. They did a good
general business. Mr. Botham was Mayor for a time, and in later life
received an Ontario Government appointment in Toronto, as Inspector of
License Accounts. Both he and Mr. Strobridge, built two of the hand-
somest residences of those days, the former, the Buck house on Brant
Avenue, and the latter the house on Charlotte Street, afterwards acquired
by Ignatius Cockshutt.

Thomas Cowherd ran a tin and sheet iron shop opposite the Kerby
House, and his descendants are still here.

Thomas Coy was a carpenter.

Joseph Craig ran a fruit store. Mrs. Wellington Hunt was a daughter.

C. H. Crandon is referred to elsewhere.

William Crop was a sexton, and John Currie a shoemaker.

Joseph Dalton had a butcher shop and later became Market Inspector.

The Dalrymples were cabinet makers and undertakers.

William Davis was a painter.

Michael Delaney and Michael Finnessy both kept grocery stores.

Dr. A. Digby is referred to elsewhere.

John W. Downs was a real estate owner and member of the first
Council. The old homestead was on the site of the present residence of
Mr. R. Ryerson.

George Dove was a hotel keeper.

John Dunbar followed the occupation of carpenter, and William Ede,
that of a laborer.

James Fair and Thomas Fair were members of the well known Fair


Charles Farrell kept a hotel across the bridge.

Thomas Fawcett was a Methodist Minister, who met death in a railway
accident at Copetown in 1859.

Daniel Foulds owned ‘a farm on Tutela Heights, and sons are still

James Fallis was a teamster.

The Gardeners were in the harness business.

Daniel Gilkison was a lawyer.

Alexander Girvin was a builder who later went to California, and did
exceedingly well there.

F. P. Goold is referred to elsewhere.

Joseph Graham was engaged in the building trade, and William Green
was a mechanic. Two of Mr. Graham’s sons are still on the homestead,
corner of Alfred and Dalhousie Streets.

John Hawkins kept a grocery store.

John Heaton was a merchant who later went to Burf ord.

A. Higinbotham kept a drug store and B. C. Hill was a painter.

Calvin Houghton was in partnership with James Wallace, and they
owned a tannery.

T. B. Hull was a carpenter, and A. Huntington is referred to elsewhere.

Hezekiah Iden was for a lengthy period sidewalk repairer for the

W. R. Irish kept a hotel, and John Jackson was a pattern maker. The
latter built what has for many years been the Widows’ Home.

Robert G. Jackson for many years had a wagon shop on the corner of
Chatham and Market Streets.

Thomas James is referred to elsewhere.

John Jones was a laborer, and Edward Jordan kept hotel.

George H. Kerr was a blacksmith and Andrew and William Kerby,
sons of Abraham Kerby.

Alexander Kirkland was a merchant and relative of Hon. A. S. Hardy.
He later removed to Chicago.

John W. Lafferty was the owner of the Lafferty tract in Ward Five,
then a waste, but now covered with streets.

Thomas Lemmon is referred to elsewhere.

F. H. Leonard is referred to elsewhere.

The Lines kept a grocery store, William Long was a shoemaker and
John Madigan a laborer.

Peter Marter was an early physician who built the Duncan Home on
West Street. His son Fred became a prominent member of the Ontario







Dr. Mason was a physician who resided at the corner of Queen and
Nelson Streets.

William Matthews is referred to elsewhere.

John Maxwell was a builder and overseer of streets and walks.

William Mellish was the senior member of the contracting firm of
Mellish and Russell. Mr. Russell and his wife were killed in the Des-
jardins canal accident, 1857, while returning from Toronto, where they
had been purchasing furniture for a new residence, on Darling Street,
later occupied by Dr. Philip.

Charles Merigold was a grocer, John D. Montgomery kept a tailor and
draper shop and Noble Montgomery was a blacksmith.

The Moores were merchants, and William Muirhead is referred to

John McCabe was a cooper.

J. R. McDonald was a lawyer, and the first Clerk of the Town.

Duncan McKay ran a saddlery business and was once Treasurer of the

Bernard McSherry was a bailiff.

Nicholas Nolan was a tailor and the father of Miss Nolan, so well
known in muscial circles.

Peter O’Banyon was a patriarchal colored teamster.

John Ormerod was a grocer and frequent member of the Council, rep-
resenting the old North Ward.

Robert Park was a boot and shoemaker.

Henry Peatman was auctioneer, bailiff and Court Crier, and Thomas
Padfield was a carpenter.

Thos. Penfold followed the occupation of a carpenter.

Thomas Pilsworth was a builder and Joseph Potts was a manufacturer
of stoves. His son Thomas, is still in like business.

Joseph Quinlan kept a grocery store, and enjoyed the distinction of
occupying a longer continuous term as Town Councillor than any other
man. He was so honored from 1854 to 1866, or thirteen years in all.
Mr. Thomas Quinlan is a son.

Henry Racey, (Racey and Soules), is referred to elsewhere.

William Richardson, the first postmaster of the village built a frame
residence at the corner of Market and Darling Streets. It has for many
years been in use as a butcher shop. He was the father-in-law of H.

Robert Roberts was an engineer, Orpheus Robinson, a land surveyor,
and Thomas Robson a miller.

E. Roy & Company refers to Ebenezer Roy, who had a dry goods store
on the corner of Queen and Colborne Streets.


John C. Schultz was a book keeper for Strobridge and Botham, and
was born in Demerara, South America, coming to Brantford about 1837.
He was noted for his fine penmanship and was always asked to prepare
the addresses of the period. His sons have constituted the well known
Schultz firm.

Henry Shellard and Joseph Shuttleworth, both owned farms, the
latter also dealing in cattle. Mr. Joseph Shuttleworth is a son and two
other sons George and James reside in London, England, and London,
Ontario, respectively.

A. K. Smith was the principal owner of the Smith and Kerby tract,
which had an area of some 1,000 acres and included a large part of the
present northern section of the city. Mr. Smith was quite a character.

The Spencers were brewers and Robt. Sproule kept a dry goods store.
He built the large house on Terrace Hill, which is now used as a Greek
Roman Catholic Church.

Arthur Stamp was sexton of Grace Church for many years, and John
Steele is referred to elsewhere.

Charles Stewart was a cabinet maker.

W. H. Stratford was a manufacturing druggist, and occupied the build-
ing on the corner across from George Watt & Sons, Dalhousie Street. John
H. Stratford and Joseph Stratford were sons.

Joseph Squire kept a hotel to the east of the villlage, opposite what is
now known as Alexandra Park.

Thomas Stubbs for years had a blacksmith shop next to the City
Hotel, on Market Street now the site of the Royal Loan and Savings
Company building. His oldest son, Joseph, had a notable career in the
United States and was on the staff of the Chicago Herald. He lost his
life in the big fire, while performing his journalistic duties.

Obediah Swift was a joiner, John Tunstead a carter, and John M. Tup-
per, a carriage maker.

John Turner was a builder, and afterwards became the architect who
did most of that work in the early days.

James C. Usher and P. C. Vanbrocklin are referred to elsewhere.

Fred Vanderlip kept a hotel on the site of the present Belmont, and
afterwards went to Cathcart.

John Vanpatter was a colored citizen. His father was a slave of
Brant’s, a fine, intelligent negro who went by the nickname of “Prince.”

E. Vansickle was a shoemaker, George Varey a tailor, and Onesimus
Veal, a carpenter.

Henry Wade is referred to elsewhere, and also William Walt.

Of the two William Walkers one, an old bachelor, was a grain buyer,


and distiller, and the other postmaster and Justice of the Peace. He was
a brother-in-law of Mr. Wilkes.

James Walkinshaw was a tailor who once owned what afterwards be-
came the Goold property corner of George and Darling Streets.

James Wallace was a grocer the family afterwards going to Toronto.

Lawrence Webb was a carpenter and William Webster a cabinet maker.

Nixon Welch was a carpenter, and James Welsh, a mason.

James Weyms and Mathew Whitham, are referred to elsewhere.

Stephen Wickens was an Englishman, who looked after Mr. Cockshutt’s
lumber interests. He met death, by drowning on the Flats. A son Mr.
W. Wickens was for many years teacher at the School for the Blind.

F. T. Wilkes was a lawyer, and John A. Wilkes head of the family of
that name.

A. and C. Wilson were shoemakers and J. Winterbottom was the
Baptist minister.

James Woodyatt, a native of England, came with his parents to
Brantford, in 1835, and as a young man started a tailoring establish-
ment. In 1842, on acount of ill health he spent two years on a whaling
vessel and had many interesting yarns to tell of his sea experience. Upon
his return, he spent two years in boating, on the Grand River, in the em-
ploy of the Navigation Co., and then resumed business, but in 1856, in
partnership with John Russell, he engaged in pottery manufacture. He
was active in municipal affairs, and a councillor and member of the
school board. In 1859, he was appointed Clerk, of the Council, and was
also, for many years, Police Court Clerk, occupying the positions jointly.
He was a very prominent Oddfellow. The late Police Magistrate Wood-
yatt was a son, and Miss Woodyatt, Assistant City Clerk, is a daughter.

Hugh Workman was a brick manufacturer, father of John and James

Joseph Wright was a shoemaker, and William Wright a watch repairer.

Henry Yardington was a well known hotel keeper. His hostelry was
located not far from the present site of the First Baptist Church and there
was a race track in the neighborhood.

Resolution passed March 6th, 1848.

“Moved by John W. Downs,
Town Notes. “Seconded by Wm. Watkins.

“Resolved that John R. McDonald, Esq., having accepted the offer
made by the council, (viz fifty pounds) , to perform the duties of Clerk,
to the Council for the current year, that he be retained as Clerk also
that Gabriel Balfour, having accepted the offer of seven pounds and ten


shillings made to him by the Council, to assess the town for the current
year, that he be the assessor accordingly Carried.”

At a meeting of the Town Council held on March 28th, 1848, this res-
olution was passed:

“Moved by J. W. Downs,

“Seconded by Mr. Walker.

“That the petition of Robert Gillen and others praying that cows may
be allowed to run at large after the first day of April next be granted,
and that so much of the by-law, now in force, restricting their running at
large until the first day of May, in each year, be repealed, and that the
first day of April be adopted, instead, and that the Bailiff be instructed
to notify the pound keepers thereof. Carried.”

Citizens used to be allowed to put down sidewalks and crossings at
their own expense. For instance on April 4, 1853, P. 0. Carr had his
petition granted to construct a timber walk, from the north west corner
of Colborne and Market Streets to the walk already laid down from the
Town Hall to Market Street. On March 13, 1854, J. Brooke was allowed
to put down a crossing across Colborne Street, opposite the store of Mr.
J. Brethour.

On January 7, 1854, the Town Council granted the following petition
from P. McKay and others:

“The petition of the undersigned Freeholders and Householders,
humbly sheweth that they, feeling an interest in the welfare and pros-
perity of the East Ward, therefore do humbly pray that your Honorable
body will grant them the privilege of fencing the Market Square in the
East Ward, with a good fence, at their own expense, and to plant a row of
ornamental trees all around the said square and your petitioners as in
duty bound will ever pray.”

The above apparently did not result in anything of a permanent

Brantford, June 12th 1854.

I certify that a public meeting of the qualified municipal electors of
the Town of Brantford was held at the Town Hall on Thursday the 8th
day of June, 1854, for the purpose of approving or disapproving of the
by-law raising the sum of one hundred thousand pounds on the credit
of the Consolidated Municipal Loan Fund of Upper Canada to aid in the
completion of the Buffalo, Brantford and Goderich Railway.

The said by-law having been read to the meeting and a vote taken
thereupon, it was decided by His Worship, the Mayor, (Chairman), that
said by-law was approved of by said electors.

G. VAREY Secretary”


A return of Henry Cawley for six days tolls on the “new bridge” to
Saturday June 17th, 1854, showed total receipts of “seven pounds.” This
was the covered structure which used to occupy the present location of
Lome Bridge.

On February 26, 1835, the Committee on Public Buildings, reported
the procuring of plans for engine house, in Market Building, and placing
butcher and other stalls in the basement, at a cost of 800, and recom-
mended that the same be done, providing money could be obtained at 10
per cent. The report, which was adopted, bore the signatures of John
Elliott, M. W. Pruyn, Henry Racey, Charles Wilkes, John Turner.




W. H. Smith, an early Canadian chronicler, thus refers
to Brantford in his work, “Canada Past, Present and
Future,” written in 1850:
“Brantford now contains about three thousand two hundred inhabi-
tants, has a large town hall and market house, built of brick, which cost
nearly twenty -two hundred pounds; a large public school, also of brick,
with about three hundred scholars attending; six churches, Episcopal,
Presbyterian, Methodist, Congregationalist, Baptist and Catholic. There
are four grist mills, one of which is a large brick building; two foundries,
doing a. large business; a stone-ware manufactory, the only one yet in
operation in the west of Canada, (the clay used is imported from Amboy,
in the State of New Jersey) ; two tanneries, two breweries, four distiller-
ies, a planing machine and sash factory.

“The Bank of British North America, an4 the Montreal Bank, have
agents here, and the Gore District Mutual Fire Insurance Company has
an office in the town. A substantial bridge has been constructed across
the river, and a block of land, containing about eight acres has been laid
out in the outskirts of the town as a Necropolis, and planted with orna-
mental trees.

“In addition to being situated in the centre of a fine section of country,
Brantford has the great advantage, (greater still from its being an in-
land town,) of water communication through the Welland canal, with
both lakes, Erie and Ontario. A canal, about a mile and a half in length,
has been made from the town, which cuts off a considerable bend in the

“The Grand River Navigation Company was chartered by Act of
Parliament in the reign of William the Fourth. The capital stock of the
company is fifty thousand pounds, and the Six Nations Indians are the
principal stockholders, (holding stock to the amount of thirty-eight
thousand two hundred and fifty-six pounds.) They are represented at
the board of directors by two gentlemen appointed by the Government.
The Indians have made complaints of their money being so invested, as


it was done without asking their consent, and the dividends as yet have
been but small. The amount of toll, however, is considerably on the

In writing in 1891, his reminiscences with reference to

communit 5 r ‘ DT ‘ Kell y said:
“I first saw Brantford some time in the autumn of

1855. From Paris, the journey was made by stage.

“I had received the appointment of principal of the Central School
for the town. I was, I suppose, the youngest principal the school had
ever had, and spent a very pleasant, if a busy time, within the walls of the
old building. The teachers then under me were, Mr. E. Nugent, Miss
Morrison, now Mrs. Cummings, of Hamilton; Miss Jennings, later, Mrs.
(Dr.) Stowe, of Toronto; Miss Coady, who became afterwards, Mrs. Pro-
fessor Wright, of the Ladies’ College Hamilton; Miss Foster, now Mrs.
Ellis, and Miss Poole, now Mrs. (Dr.) Cole. In the North Ward, Miss
McNath was principal, in the East Ward, Mr. Gouinlock, grandfather of
the Toronto architect of the same name, and in the King’s Ward, Mr.
John McLean, Sr. Mr. James Wilkes was chairman of the board of
trustees, and an excellent chairman he made. Mr. James Woodyatt, now
city clerk, and Mr. McKay, the late city treasurer, were successively sec-
retaries. Among my pupils in the school, of all of whom I have very
pleasant recollections, were Sheriff William Watt, Jr.; Police Magistrate,
Mr. Thomas Woodyatt, Mr. Robert Henry, of A. Watts & Company, ex-
mayor; Mr. Jos. Stubbs, who lost his life in the Chicago fire, Mr. Ichabod
Baker, one of the auditors of the Grand Trunk, living at Stratford, Mel-
ville and Richard Strobridge, twin sons of R. R. Strobridge, of Strobridge
and Botham; George Coulon, son of the Kerby House manager, who had
never attended school before, the late R. C. Smyth, Q. C., who died, just
as he was beginning to make a distinguished name for himself at the
bar, Dr. Holme, who died recently in the Canadian Northwest, his
brother William, Mr. Henry Stroud, ex-mayor of Paris, Mr. John Agnew,
the brothers Alex, and William Ellis. The last named, served in the
100th regiment, afterwards secured a commission in the Northern Army,
and died of wounds received in the battle of Virginia, with the rank of
major. He was a chivalrous young fellow, and an excellent officer. Of
the young ladies, there was a goodly array, and most of them have been
long married and settled in life.

“Mr. E. Nugent, who was my assistant, was a gentleman of many
accomplishments was a civil engineer, a first rate draughtsman, and
wrote a hand like copperplate. He came to Brantford from Cleveland,
where he had been the principal of a commercial college.


“The late Mr. William Matthews was then, and also subsequently,
for several years, the mayor of the town, and a lively mayor he made.
He had much of the dash, energy and eloquence which mark the Irish
race. Gabriel Balfour, was the town clerk, and John McNaught, whose
sons Robert and William I omitted to include in the list of names above
recorded, was the reeve. One of the best known councillors at that time,
was the late Mr. Daniel Gilkison, who, instead of addressing the chair,
was wont to turn round and address the crowd, which was always at
every meeting large and enthusiastic. The late John Elliott, afterwards
mayor, was also a prominent member of the corporation. Since those
days many of Brantford’s chief magistrates have “crossed the bourne,
whence no traveller returns.” William Muirhead, the first of the Mayors
lived on Darling Street. Dr. A. Digby, who succeeded him in the chair,
was then one of the most notable of Brantford’s citizens. He was a
man of fine presence, six feet four or five inches high, with urbane man-
ners, and much geniality and ready wit. He kept for years an open
house and no one of any prominence ever visited Brantford, without
calling on Dr. Digby. P. C. Van Brocklin, another of the mayors, owned
and lived at Cedar Glen The late Mr. James Weyms, police magistrate,
a friend of Mr. Matthews, subsequently filled the chair, as did the late
Mr. J. D. Clement, who was a prominent figure in municipal matters as
well as in party politics. Mr. Thomas Botham immediately followed Mr.
Matthews, and was himself succeeded by Mr. M. W. Pruyn, now in Nap-
anee, and ex-M. P. for Lennox.

“The prominent lawyers of that day were Messrs Wood & Long, Messrs
McKerlie & Tyner, the late H. A. Hardy, afterwards county attorney for
Norfolk, the late Mr. Archibald Gilkison, Mr. Daniel Brooke, Messrs.
Cameron & Wilson and the late Charles McGivern. Judge Jones and his
family, then, and for many years after, resided at what is now called
Glenhyrst, the property of Mr. Jos. Stratford. Mr. Long and Mr. Wood,
the latter afterwards treasurer of Ontario and Chief Justice of Manitoba,
Daniel McKerlie, for a short time, member of the north riding of the
county, H. A. Hardy, Charles McGivern, A. Gilkison, who had been for
a time, judge of Prince Edward County, Christopher Tyner, who develop-
ed into an editor and edited the Hamilton Times, the Toronto Telegraph,
and the short lived, but brilliant Liberal, and was one of the most accom-
plished writers on the Canadian press, have all passed over to the “silent
majority.” Mr. John (Cameron was then clerk of the peace, master in
chancery, clerk of the County Council and clerk of the Township of
Brantford, and was in every capacity a model official. No one was
better known or better liked, or more free-handed and free-hearted in


Brantford in those days than Mr. Cameron. His brother Duncan, who
was the younger and a tall, active fine looking fellow, was then clerk of
the crown, the position now held by Mr. Rubidge. Mr. Graeme Wilson,
Mr. Cameron’s partner died some years ago in Bay City.

“Among the prominent doctors of the day were, Dr. Digby already
mentioned, Dr. Kenwood, his son-in-law, then a young man, Dr. Mason,
Dr. Skinner, who was prominent in municipal and school affairs, Dr. J.
Y. Bown, who lived in a brick cottage on King Street. Dr. Theodore
Bown, whose residence was that in which his brother’s family now dwell,
Dr. Marter who during a portion of the period was abroad though his
family was here, Dr. Stratford, who was engaged in the drug business,
Dr. Cook of Mt. Pleasant, who had a drug store on the corner of King
and Colborne, Dr. Griffin, son-in-law of Mr. A. K. Smith, and the two
Drs. Bacon (homeopathic) , the younger of whom was drowned, below
Hamilton. Dr. Henwood has occupied the mayor’s chair for two years,
and his fame as a doctor, (especially as a surgeon) is not confined to
the County of Brant. The late Dr. J. Y. Bown studied law for some time
in Toronto before he commenced medicine. His medical education he
received in Guy’s and St. Thomas’s hospitals, London, when the two were
close together, near the Surrey side of London bridge, where he disting-
uished himself, having won several prizes during his career. He became
a member of the Royal College of Surgeons and took his M. D. degree at
the University of St. Andrew’s. He was a rich man in those days and de-
voted very little of his time to practise. As a botanist and microscopist
he had few equals. He sat for two terms in parliament at Ottawa, one
before and one after Confederation, but took no prominent part in the
debates there. Dr. Theodore was one of the most successful practitioners
in the county. Dr. Mason did a family practice and the others, I sup-
pose, did their share.

“The ministers of religion, not one of whom is now in Brantford,
were the Rev. J. C. Usher, rector of Grace Church for forty years; the
Rev. A. A. Drummond, of the United Presbyterian Church, (Y. W. C. A.),
the Rev. John Alexander, of Zion Church; the Rev. John Wood, pastor of
the Congregational church, then on Dalhousie Street; the Rev. Mr. David-
son, pastor of what is now called the First Baptist Church, and the Rev.
I. B. Howard, minister of the Wellington Street Methodist Church.

“The bank managers at that time were Mr. James Coffin Geddes, of
the British North America; Archibald Greer, manager of the Bank of
Montreal ; Mr. Shortt, manager of the Bank of Upper Canada. The pres-
ent manger of the Bank of British North America, Mr. Alex. Robertson,
who has become in the interval one of the best known and most highly


respected bankers in the province, was then first teller, and afterwards,
accountant. Mr. Greer, who afterwards became a General Manager,
and who was a very able and sagacious banker, has been many years
dead. Mr. Geddes retired from banking circles and Mr. Shortt, whose
brother was then rector of Port Hope is, I believe dead.

“The Expositor at that time was owned by Messrs. Racey & Stewart,
Mr. Stewart having most to do with the management. They afterwards
got control of the Hamilton Times, which, in their hands, became a
valuable property. The Courier, the oldest of our local papers, was
then the property of Major Lemmon. and had for its chief editorial
writer Mr. Wellesley Johnson, who had been a school master in the town.
The Tri-weekly Herald was owned by Messrs. Oliver and Connor, and was
edited by various parties. The Snapping Turtle, projected by the Poet
Wanless, was started immediately after I left Brantford. It was after
the kind of the Toronto Grumbler.

“Other notable personages that one was sure to meet with, and not
before mentioned, were Sheriff Smith, who lived at the Kerby House, with
his family, and whose official career was marked by the greatest care,
courtesy, diligence and integrity. Mr. William Kerby, the father of all
the Kerby’s here, was a fine-looking old gentleman, with very pleasant
manners, and lived in the old homestead, where Scarfe Avenue now is.
Mr. A. K. Smith, brother-in-law of Mr. Kerby was also a wealthy and im-
portant citizen, who lived on the corner of Church Street and Brant
Avenue. Mr. William Walker, a fine-looking old gentleman, always well
dressed, was to be seen every day on the streets. Mr. Henry Yardington,
was a member of the Council, and an Englishman, with some sense of
humor. Of the last mentioned a little incident which came under the
writer’s observation may not be out of place here. Mr. Yardington was
a candidate for municipal honors in the Queen’s Ward, and was present in
the polling booth, held in what had been Orr’s saloon on Colborne Street.
The Rev. Mr. Winterbottom entered, and approached the table to have
his vote recorded. “I can’t vote for you, Mr. Yardington,” said the ven-
erable clergyman, “for you sell whiskey,” “True, Mr. Winterbottom, re-
plied Henry, with a pleasant smile and a twinkle in his eye. “True, sir, I
sells whiskey, but I always waters it well.” Mr. James Wallace, whose
family we have still with us, was well and favorably known. Mr. John
Taylor had his store and residence in the Kerby House, and was some-
thing of a Shakesperean scholar. With him was Mr. William Grant.
Messrs Cox & McLean, were well-known dry goods merchants, as were
Messrs. Crawford and Brethour. Mr. Allan Cleghorn was in the whole-
sale hardware line in Mr. Jos. Stratford’s building, corner of King and


Dalhousie, and was a man of consequence, both in mercantile and rail-
way circles. Mr. T. S. Shenstone was then the careful and painstaking
registrar, and acted as magistrate in a case which, at the time, caused
much excitement in the town, the Jennings trial. Mr. Alexander Bunnell,
who owned Watts’ mill at that time, lived in the house now occupied by
Mr. Chas. Duncan, and Mr. Enos Bunnell lived on Darling Street. Mr.
Chas. Watts and his son, Alfred, were doing a large trade as wholesale
and retail grocers and wine merchants near the iron bridge. They were
also manufacturers of soap and candles and had been, if they were not
then, distillers. A. and J. Y. Morton were in the hardware trade on
Colborne Street. Messrs. Ganson & Waterous and Mr. Goold were then
engaged in manufacturing machinery, and the firm with important changes
still exists under the name of Waterous Engine Works Co., which has a
world-wide reputation. Messrs Goold & Bennett and Landon & Buck
were in the foundry business, and Mr. Goold was also connected with
the stoneware works, with which Mr. Welding was then connected. Mr.
Cockshutt was then, as he has been ever since, the foremost capitalist of
the place, dispensing charity then, as now, to the deserving poor. Mr.
George Watt was then in the grocery line, in a small way, but by thrift,
diligence, energy and business ability he and his sons have built up a
fine wholesale business. Mr. William Watt, Sr., was then building
up the business, which, by good management, has enabled him to retire
before extreme old age has overtaken him. Gaptain Barlow of the Royal
Engineers, a fine soldierly-looking man, was the managing director of
the Buffalo and Lake Huron Railway which had just been taken over
from the old company, and his chief architect and engineer was Mr.
Sherwood, who had spent some years in Australia. Mr. Henry Wade,
Sr., was the proprietor of a general store and was then, or before, a
member of the School Board. Mr. Frank Leonard, was also in business
and attained to the dignity of Warden of the County. Among the pro-
minent men in the neighborhood, and who frequented Brantford, were
the late Hon. David Christie, then in the Lower House of Parliament,
representing the North Riding, and afterwards Senator and Speaker of
the Senate; Mr. R. R. Bown, proprietor of Bow Park Farm, and who
resided there a considerable portion of his time: Mr. Allen Good, who
came out to Canada from the city of Cork, as the general manager of the
Bank of British North America (I believe the first general manager of
that Bank in Canada). Mr. Good, however, did not remain long in tfie
service of the bank. The directorate at home declined to take his advice
touching certain matters, and he immediately resigned. He lived on a
farm of about 400 acres on the Paris road, took an active interest in


politics, both municipal and provincial; he became Warden of the County
and had parliamentary aspirations. He was an Irish gentleman of the
old school, quick-tempered, but hospitable and a friend to his friends.
He died about twenty years ago. Another Irish gentleman of good
family and also of Mr. Good’s native city was Mr. William Murphy, who
was then collector of customs at Paris. Mr. Murphy was a typical Irish-
man after the O’Connell style. He was sure to be an invited guest at
every important public dinner, and he was also sure to make a speech,
usually the speech of the evening. In fact, he was the orator par ex-
cellence of this part of the province. He prepared his speeches with
great care, and delivered them with remarkable effect. He evidently
imitated Charles Phillips, of whose school of oratory he was an excellent
representative. He died a few years ago, postmaster at Sarnia. Mr.
Herbert Biggar, of Mt. Pleasant, then represented in parliament, the
South, or as it was then called the West Riding of the County. Other
active politicians from the little township of Oakland were Messrs.
William Thompson, Eliakim Malcolm and Wellington McAllister. From
South Dumfries, Messrs. Daniel Anderson and William Mullen, who be-
came Wardens of the County.

“In these random recollections, I dare say, I have passed over many
I should have mentioned, but my plea in extenuation is: (1) lubricity of
memory, and (2) want of space. It seems to me, looking backward, that
there was more cheerfulness, more fun (sometimes of a rather rough
kind), freer social intercourse, more honesty and less humbug then than
now. However, as people grow older, they are apt to underrate the
present and magnify the merits of the past. Nestor in the Homeric story
is a case in point; he considered Agamemnon, Achilles and other Trojan
heroes much inferior in every way to the friends and companions of
his youth.”

After incorporation as a town, there was a steady influx
Sixty Years Q f res id en ts ? whose own citizenship, and that of their
descendants, has contributed to the upbuilding of the
city as it exists to-day. In 1862 a business directory included the follow-

Agricultural Implements Butler & Jackson, J. & W. Potts, Wisner
& Wilcox.

Bakers John Douglass, Alexander Glass, J. & G. Grierson, Samuel
Weatherall, Matthew Whitham.

Booksellers John Sutherland, William De Lisle, Thomas Evans.

Boot and Shoe Stores Francis Adams, Robert Gorman, Thomas
Gorman, John Hardie, Robert Hearnden, William Long, John Stapleton,
Charles Stewart, James Weyms.


Butchers William Armitage, W. Dealtry, John Dunne, John Kendall,
H. Mintern, Robert Shackell, William Watson, John Weinaugh.

Cabinet Makers Adam Bargy, W. Dalrymple, W. Pierce, C. Stewart,
R. B. Webster.

Carpenters and Builders Alexander Allen, W. Beemer, Bellhouse &
Large, C. H. Crandon, John Henry, M. W. Hoyt, John Maxwell, Thos.
Pelsworth, J. .Turner, R. Ward, R. Watt, W. Watt.

China J. G. Hay den, Sunter & Edgar.
‘ Cigars and Tobacco C. Doeringer.

Civil Engineers L. Burwell, Q. Johnstone, P. Robinson.

Clothiers H. Gawler, J. J. Inglis, T. McLean, J. Montgomery, R.
Sproule, A. Strass, Strobridge & Botham.

Coach Maker R. G. Jackson,

Commission Merchants H. Racey, Peatman & Webster.

Confectioners H. Heather, W. Florence, M. Whitham, W. Winter.

Copper Smiths T. Cowherd, C. & T. Glassco.

Cricketing Goods W. H. De Lisle.

Dentists J. B. Meacham, J. P. Sutton.

Dry Goods H. Biggar, H. W. Brethour, R. P. Cartan, W. Cleland.
I. Cockshutt, F. 0. Dee, C. Duncan, H. Gawler, T. McLean, Duncan
McPherson, John Montgomery, J. S. Rogerson, Taylor & Grant.

Druggists Frederick Brendon, F. Ellis, W. Stratford.

Farriers Johnson Jex, W. Stubbs.

Fish Monger William Powell.

Flour and Feed David Spence.

Game J. Craig, E. Pye.

Gardeners Matthew Tyler, A. Peachey.

Grocers Mary Adam, E. Ashworth, Batty & Co., N. G. Beers, W.
Boyd, John Brown, Thomas Brown, J. Bucklen, Isabella Christie, R.
Clench, I. Cockshutt, John Comerford, W. Cox, F. 0. Dee, N. Devereux,
P. Dunn, M. Finnessy, J. Forde & Bro., G. Foster, J. R. Gate, A. Gibson,
H. Griffith, J. G. Hawkins, J. G. Hayden, H. Heather, J. Heaton, B.
Heyd, W. Hurst, Mary Kennedy, Joseph Loney, J. Lowes, J. McGivern,
Sam McLean, Sarah McLean, A. McMeans, D. McPherson, J. Morrow,
O. Myers, John Nelson, W. Nicol, John O’Grady, John Ormerod, Joseph
Quinlan, Margaret Quinlan, Ritchie & Russell, John Robinson, M. Robson,
W. Ryan, W. C. Scott, John Smith, Strobridge & Botham, Margaret
Smyth, Henry Wade, James Walburton, G. Watt, C. Watts, E. Webling.
John Worthington.

Gunsmith George Welshofe’r.

Hardware A. Cleghorn & Co., I Cockshutt, A. Morton & Co.


Hats Silas Butters, T. Glassco.

Livery Stables John Baxter, A. Bradley, B. Jones.

Millers Enos Bunnell, A. Ker, James Spence.

Painters Alfred Barber, A. Bax, W. F. Chave, E. Downs, Caleb
Hughson, J. Noble, H. Sterne, J. Tainsh.

Photographs S. Park, Smith & Son, J. Stephens.

Produce Dealers E. Bunnell, T. Cook, John Humburch, A. Ker.

Restaurants Joseph James, R. Jarrett, G. Lauterbach, M. Fyle.

Tailors W. Bell, John Jenkins, J. Lewis, Andrew McCann, J. D.
Montgomery, N. Nolan, Caleb Poole, D. Starkey, L. Watson.

Undertakers W. Dalrymple, W. Pierce, R. B. Webster.

Waggon Maker George Ingleby, J. M. Tupper.

Watches, etc. R. Barrett, J. Creyk, A. H. King, S. Morphy, J. Wil-
kinson, A. Cox.

Private Schools Mrs. Grace Birnie, Alexander Channer, Miss Har-
grave and Margaret and Elizabeth Maxwell.

From “The Province of Ontario Gazeteer and Direc-

t0ry ‘” P ublished in 1870:

“The County Town of Brant, is situated on the Grand

River, at the head of navigation, and is a station of the Buffalo and Lake
Huron Railway. Its name is derived from the celebrated Mohawk Chief,
Joseph Brant. The site of the town, 807 acres, was surrendered by the
Indians to the Crown, 19th April, 1830, and was surveyed the same year.
The Grand River Navigation Canal, commenced in 1840, added materially
to the early prosperity of the town; its object was to remove the ob-
struction caused by the falls on the Grand River. Its length is about
three miles and it is capable of admitting vessels of three and half feet
draught to the town. Brantford is situated in the centre of one of the
best agricultural sections of the Province and possesses first-class manu-
facturing facilities, and having direct railway and water communication
with all parts of the Province and the United States, must, at no distant
date, become one of the most important towns in the Western Province.
Stages to Hamilton and Simcoe. Population 7,000. The following
are principal manufacturing establishments: Brantford Engine Works,
C. H. Waterous & Co., established 1844, employing 100 hands; steam
engines, saw and grist mills, shingle, lath and stave machines. Steam
power, 40 horse. Victoria Foundry, William Buck, established 1856,
employing 80 hands; stoves, ploughs, castings, tin and copper ware,
machinery, etc. Brittania Foundry, B. & G. Tisdale, established 1851,
employs 25 hands; steam power, stoves, etc. A. Spence, carriage maker,
employs 12 hands. James Tutt, planing mill and sash factory, steam
Mr. Muirhead, the first Mayor
of the Town of Brantford.
Dr. J. W. Digby. Mayor of Brantford
when the place became incor-
porated as a city.



power, 10 horse, employing 35 hands. Money order office and Savings

ation as


The Town of Brantford became a City by virtue of a
Special Act of the Provincial Parliament, assented to
March 2, 1877, and taking effect May 31, 1877, (40
Vic. Chap. 34). Dr. J. W. Digby was Mayor at the
time. The preamble of the Act recites that “the Town of Brantford, by
petition, represents that the assent of the electors of the town having been
obtained, the town has finally passed a By-law (No. 285) to withdraw
the Town of Brantford from the jurisdiction of the Council of the County
of Brant, and also represents that the said town contains a population of
10,000 souls, and that its population is rapidly increasing, and that the
said town, by reason of its increased and extensive railway facilities, its
large manufacturing and mercantile trade, and its situation in the midst
of a rich agricultural district, is now and will continue to be an impor-
tant commercial centre; and whereas the said corporation by their peti-
tion have prayed that the said town might be erected into a city, to be
called the City of Brantford, and whereby it is expedient to grant said
petition,” etc., etc. The Act goes on to provide for the incorporation
of the city, and for the Mayor and Council of the town to hold power.
Section two provides that the Council shall consist of a Mayor and fif-
teen Aldermen, three of the latter to be elected from each ward.


1877 J. W. Digby, M. D.

1878-9 Robert Henry

1880-l….Reginald Henwood, M.D.

1882-3 William Watt

1884-5 W. J. Scarfe

1886 C. B. Heyd

1887 R. Henry

1888-9 C. B. Heyd

1890-1 S. G. Read

1892-3 Levi Secord, M.D.

1894-5 George Watt

1896-7 Thcs. Elliott

*1898-9 W. G. Raymond

1899-1900 H. Cockshutt

1901-2 D. B. Wood

1903-4 ;.M. K. Halloran

1905-6 C. H. Waterous

1907-8 J. W. Bowlby

1909-10 W. B. Wood

1911 R. A. Rastall

1912-13 C. H. Hartman

1914-15 J. H. Spence

1916-17 J. W. Bowlby

1918-19-20 M. M. MacBride

* Mr. Raymond was Mayor one and one-half years, resigning to be-
come Postmaster, and H. Cockshutt succeeded, holding office for the
next eighteen months.



1878: Benjamin Hunn, J. J. Hawkins, Dennis Hawkins, Thomas
Large, William Whitaker, August Barche, William Watt, Charles B.
Heyd, George Hardy, George JLindley, Joshua S. Hamilton, Thomas
Elliott, Edward Fisher, Robert Phair, George Watt.

1879: Benjamin Hunn, Dennis Hawkins, Andrew McMeans, William
Whitaker, Thomas Large, John Ott, Charles B. Heyd, William Watt,
Reginald Kenwood, M.D., Edward Brophey, Thomas Elliott, Daniel Cos-
tello, Thomas Webster, George Watt, Edward Fisher.

1880: Thomas Large, Dennis Hawkins, James Ker, William Whitaker,
John Ott, Thomas Potts, Charles B. Heyd, George Watt, George Hardy,
M. W. Hoyt, George Lindley, John Mann, R. C. Smyth, Thomas Webster,
John Whalen.

1881 : Thomas Large, Jeremiah Wells, W. H. C. Kerr, Wm. Whitaker,
Joseph Elliott, Thomas Potts, Chas. B. Heyd, George Watt, George Hardy,
J. G. Cockshutt, John Harris, George Lindley, R. C. Smyth, Adam Spence,

E. C. Passmore.

1882 Thomas Large, W. J. Scarfe, Dennis Hawkins, Wm. Whitaker,
Joseph Elliott, Thomas Potts, Chas. B. Heyd, Geo. Watt, Robt. Turner,
George Lindley, John Harris, M. W. Hoyt, Wm. Armitage, Wm. H.
Hudson, E. C. Passmore.

1883: W. J. Scarfe, Thomas Large, Dennis Hawkins, Wm. Whitaker,
Thos. Potts, John Ott, George Watt, Robert Turner, Samuel G. Read, W.
S. Wisner, John Harris, George Lindley, Wm. Armitage, W. H. Hudson,
Adam Spence. June 18. George Lindley resigned as Alderman and
was succeeded by M. W. Hoyt.

1884: W. Sloan, T. Large, Joseph Bowes, Thos. Potts, W. Whitaker,
Robt. McGill, S. G. Read, B. H. Rothwell, Robert Turner, John Harris,
W. S. Wisner, M. W. Hoyt, W. T. Harris, M.D., George W. Williams,
Adam Spence.

1885: J. Brown, H J. Jones, W. Sloan, T. Potts, J. P. Excell, A. K.
Bunnell, S. G. Read, L. F. Heyd, G. Watt, W. T. Wickham, S. Hewitt, J.
R. Vanfleet, W. T. Harris, M.D., G. H. Williams, A. Spence.

1886: J. Brown, W. Sloan, A. Harrington, A. K. Bunnell, T. Potts,
W. Whitaker, S. G. Read, S. Whitaker, B. H. Rothwell, W. T. Wickham,
J. R. Vanfleet, S. Hewitt, W. T. Harris, M.D., G. H. Williams, A. Spence.

1887: J. Brown, H. A. Penfold, W. Sloan, A. K. Bunnell, J. P. Excell,
J. Elliott, S. G. Read, L. Benedict, B. H. Rothwell, R. R. Harris, J. N.
Shenstone, S. Hewitt, J. Harley, C. S. Bunnell, G. H. Williams.

1888: J. Brown, T. Large, D. Plewes, W. Whitaker, J. Ott, J. P.
Excell, S. G. Read, L. Secord, M.D., G. Hardy, J. G. Stewart, J. N. Shen-
stone, F. C. Heath, J. Harley, G. Williams, J. W. Bowlby.

1889: B. Hunn, J. Brown, Clayton Slater, J. P. Excell, J. Ott, W.
Armitage, S. G. Read, L. Secord, John McCann, J. G. Stewart, J. B. Holt,

F. C. Heath, J. Harley, G. Williams, A. K. Bunnell.

1890: W. Watt, Jr., C. H. Waterous, George Winter, J. Ott, J. P.
Excell, W. Armitage, W. G. Raymond, L. Secord, M.D., J. McCann, James
F. Smith, F: C. Heath, J. G. Stewart, James Kerr, A. K. Bunnell, G. W.


1891: C. H. Waterous, H. J. McGlashan, W. Watt, Jr., James Sud-
daby, C. Farrell, J. P. Excell, W. G. Raymond, C. Duncan, R. W. Robert-
son, J. A. Graham, C. Whitney, J. A. Wallace, A. K. Bunnell, A. Spence,
J. W. Bowlby. May 4. W. Watt, Jr., resigned and J. Brown elected.
June 1. H. J. McGlashan resigned and S. Hartley was elected.

1892: T. Elliott, Maurice Quinlan, S. Suddaby, J. Brown, S. Hart-
ley, C. H. Waterous, W. G. Raymond, C. Duncan, C. Whitney, J. W.
Bowlby, J. A. Graham, G. Williams, W. S. Harrison, M.D., A. K. Bunnell,
J. E. Waterous.

1893: C. K. McGregor, Jno. Slingsby, M. K. Halloran, S. Hartley,
Perry Handy, J. Bowes, W. G. Raymond, C. Duncan, C. Whitney, J. A.
Graham, J. W. Bowlby, H. McAlister, J. E. Waterous, A. K. Bunnell. D.
B. Wallace.

1894: C. K. McGregor, J. W. Pattison, M. K. Halloran, W. R.
Turnbull, R. Hall, S. Hartley, C. Whitney, J. Strickland, W. G. Raymond,
G. M. Williams, P. A. Whitney, J. T. Storey, W. S. Harrison, M.D., E.
Hopkins, R. C. Robson.

1895: M. K. Halloran, A. G. Montgomery, T. Elliott, S. Hartley,
J. Brown, T. Large, W. G. Raymond, C. Duncan, C. Whitney, G. Elliott,
W. Glover, J. W. Bowlby, W. T. Wickham, James Crocker, J. Harley.

1896: A. G. Montgomery, M. K. Halloran, W. Whitaker, S. Hartley,
J. Brown, T. Large, H. A. Foulds, C. Duncan, C. Whitney, G. Elliott, W.
Glover, E. B. Eddy, D. B. Wood, S. Adams, J. H. Cocker.

1897: A. G. Montgomery, W. Whitaker, W. Hartwell, H. Hunter, R.
Hall, T. Large, R. Waddington, H. A. Foulds, C. Duncan, D. B. Wood,
F. Wilson, R. Robson, E. B. Eddy, F. Boulton, J. Loney.

1898: J. N. Peel, D. McEwen, T. Potts, S. G. Read, R. Hall, A.
Stewart, R. Waddington, C. Duncan, C. Whitney, W. T. Pearce, F. S.
Whitham, J. W. Bowlby, D. B. Wood, R. Robson, F. Wilson.

1899: R.E. Ryerson, S. Suddaby, F. Leeming, C. F. Jackson, R.
Hall, S. G. Read, R. Waddington, B. J. Wade, U. M. Stanley, M.D., G.
Elliott, S. F. Whitham, W. T. Pearce, H. Cockshutt, D. B. Wood, R. F.

1900: R. E. Ryerson, S. Suddaby, A. G. Montgomery, R. Hall, J.
Kerr, R. Middlemiss, R. Waddington, A. L. Baird, B. J. Wade, S. F. Whit-
ham, W. Glover, J. Muir, D. B. Wood, J. A. Leitch, A. Weir.

1901: R. E. Ryerson, W. C. Livingston, W. Berry, R. Middlemiss,
R. Hall, W. E. Dunne, W. S. Brewster, M. K. Halloran, B. J. Wade, J.
H. Ham, F. J. Bullock, J. W. Bowlby, J. A. Leitch, A. Weir, C. M.

1902: M. Quinlan, W. R. Turnbull, W. J. Westwood, W. E. Dunne,
R. Hall, A. E. Harley, W. S. Brewster, J. J. Inglis, B. J. Wade, F. Corey,
S. F. Whitham, J. H. Ham, C. M. Durward, M. E. Harris, J. A. Leitch.

1903: W. R. Turnbull, W. J. Westwood, M. Quinlan, R. C. Middle-
miss, A. E. Harley, W. Cutmore, W. S. Brewster, M. H. Robertson, B. J.
Wade, C. H. Hartman, F. Corey, F. S. Whitham, G. Pickles, J. A. Leitch,
W. Almas.

1904: A. G. Montgomery, W. J. Westwood, W. M. Charlton, R. C.
Middlemiss, A. Stewart, A. Scruton, W. S. Brewster, W. N. Andrews,


R. Waddington, C. H. Hartman, S. F. Whitham, F. Corey, J. A. Leitch,
W. Almas, G. Pickles.

1905: Lloyd Harris, A. G. Montgomery, S. Suddaby, W. D. Schultz,
J. P. Pitcher, S. Hartley, R. W. Robertson, W. N. Andrews, R. Wadding-
ton, T. L. Lyle, J. Muir, F. Corey, J. C. Watt, L. Fisher, J. A. Leitch.

1906: S. Suddaby, W. H. Turnbull, Lloyd Harris, W. D. Schultz,
A. Scruton, Dr. E. Hart, Dr. E. Ashton, R. W. Robertson, S. F. Whitham,
F. Corey, J. J. Fisher, J. W. Bowlby, J. A. Sanderson, W. E. Long, L.
M. Clows.

1907: W. B. Wood, S. Suddaby, W. R. Turnbull, A. Hawley, B. T.
Leggett, J. P. Pitcher, Dr. Ashton, W. N. Andrews, S. R. Stewart, C. H.
Hartman, J. W. Blakney, T. Lyle, J. A. Leitch, R. A. Rastall, R. Draper,

1908: W. B. Wood, J. Wright, S. Suddaby, W. Pierce, J. M. Minshall,
R. Hall, J. Burns, J. Moffatt, W. N. Andrews, J. W. Blakney, C. Hart-
man, T. Lyle, R. A. Rastall, R. Draper, L. Fisher.

1909: A. G. Montgomery, J. Ruddy, M. Harris, W. Pierce, J. H.
Minshall, W. Miller, P. E. Verity, J. Shepperson, J. Moffatt, T. Lyle,
J. Ham, A. L. Baird, R. A. Rastall, L. Fisher, G. Ward.

1910: A. G. Montgomery, M. Harris, J. Ruddy, J. H. Minshall, W.
Miller, W. J. Pierce, P. E. Verity, J. Shepperson, R. Waddington, C. H.
Hartman, J. Ham, T. Lyle, R. A. Rastall, G. Ward, L. Fisher.

1911: M. Harris, M. McEwen, J. Ruddy, F. Chalcraft, J. H. Min-
shall, J. W. Pierce, T. Ryerson, W. A. Hollinrake, R. Waddington, C .H.
Hartman, J. H. Blakney, T. Lyle, A. McFarland, F. W. Billo, C. Gress,

1912: M. Harris, M. McEwen, S. Suddaby, G. Woolams, F. Chal-
craft, J. H. Minshall, T. E. Ryerson, W. A. Hollinrake, C. Cook, W. J.
Bragg, G. McDonald, C. H. Emerson, J. H. Spence, A. McFarland, G. A.

1913: S. Suddaby, M. McEwen, T. Quinlan, S. P. Pitcher, G. Wool-
ams, J. H. Minshall, T. Ryerson, A. Hollinrake, W. M. Charlton, J. Broad-
bent, W. Sutch, P. R. Gillingwater, J. H. Spence, A. McFarland, G. Ward.

1914 : _F. J. Calbeck, T. Quinlan, G. A. Sigman, S. P. Pitcher, J. W.
English, G. A. Woolams, W. M. Charlton, A. Hollinrake, T. Ryerson, J.
Broadbent, W. J. Bragg, W. Sutch, G. A. Ward, T. L. Wood, W. A. Rob-

1915: R. Welsh, S. Suddaby, F. J. Calbeck, J. H. Minshall, S. P.
Pitcher, G. Woolams, A. 0. Secord, T. Ryerson, J. S. Dowling, W. H. Free-
born, W. J. Mellen, W. J. Bragg, C. Gress, G. L. Jennings, H. C. Cuff.

1916: F. Harp, P. H. Secord, R. Walsh, J. E. Hess, J. H. Minshall, S.
P. Pitcher, A. Ballantyne, J. S. Dowling, A. 0. Secord, W. J. Bragg, H.
Freeborn, W. J. Mellen, G. W. Jennings, G. Ward, Dr. Wiley.

1917: S. A. Jones, A. Varey, P. H. Secord, J. J. Kelly, J. W. English,
J. E. Hess, W. A. Hollinrake, J. M. Tulloch, J. S. Dowling, W. J. Bragg,
M. MacBride, W. J. Mellen, H. J. Symons, Dr. Wiley, G. L. Jennings.

March 26, 1917, Aid. Hollinrake resigned and F. C. Harp was elected
in his stead.

1918: J Hill, A G. Montgomery, F. Chalcraft, J. J. Kelly, J. T. Bur-
rows, J. W. English, A. H. Boddy, F. C. Harp, J. J. Hurley, Sr., W. J. Bragg,
W. J. Mellen, A. L. Baird, H. J. Symons, H. Simpson, J. H. Clement



1919: J Hill, T. Bremner, W. H. Ballantyne, J. W. English, J. J.
Kelly, J. T. Burrows, F. C. Harp, T. Ryerson, W. N. Andrews, W. H. Free-
born, W. J. Bragg, J. Allen, H. J. Symons, H. Simpson, J. H. Clement.

1920: W. Ballantyne, J. Hill, Arthur Harp, J. J. Kelly, A. A. Lister,
J. T. Burrows, T. Ryerson, F. C. Harp, S. Stedman, W. H. Freeborn, J
Allen, C. Trumper, R. M. Wedlake, H. Simpson, F. Billo.

City Clerks 1878-94 James Woodyatt; 1894 (still holds office),
Harry F. Leonard.

City Treasurers 1878-88 James Wilkes; 1888 (still holds office)
A. K. Bunnell.







Real Property

$ 2,796,480



Total Value
Real and Per-
sonal property
and taxable

$ 3,358,610





Total Value

Total Real and Per-

Year Value Taxable gona i property Population

Real Property Income an( j taxable


1909 9,884,935 315,530 11,558,130 20,633

1910 10,215,490 329,740 11,911,410 20,711

1911 10,769,040 320,205 12,546,025 21,964

1912 11,495,815 363,835 13,402,005 24,084

1913 13,410,125 432,345 15,698,345 25,337

1914 15,257,563 445,500 17,679,153 26,454

1915 15,805,485 475,280 18,361,060 26,389

1916 15,322,475 444,610 17,839,395 25,420

1917 15,595,770 472,390 18,193,080 26,601

1918 15,768,050 665,885 18,613,645 27,664

1919 16,804,430 995,165 20,352,105 28,725

1920 17,287,120 1,040,660 20,962,475 30,549

Bellview has since been added to the municipality making the total of
the third table $21,435,350 and population 32,159.

The latter figure is exclusive of suburbs still existing in the Township
an overflow from the city proper.


For very many years the impression prevailed that at the
ar time of the surrender of the village site by the Indians,

they very generously made a gift of the above square for
market purposes. However the deed to the Crown published elsewhere
conclusively shows that there was no such stipulation. The assumption
is that the Six Nations Indians, shortly after their arrival here in about
1784, naturally selected the existing square for trading purposes as it
was situated at the crossing of the north and south trails with the east and
west trails running through what is now Brantford. In 1848 a move was
inaugurated to turn the square to practical account, the proceeds to be de-
voted to the subsequent erection of a Town Hall. The story is told in
these two reports which were submitted to the Council during the year

“The committee to whom was referred the petition of Robert Sproule
and others praying that the Market Square on which stands the Bell
Tower, be laid out into lots and leased, beg leave to report:

That having taken the subject into careful consideration they are of
opinion that a revenue of from 200 to 250 might be obtained from the
plot in question in the manner proposed, without interfering with any
Market buildings which the Corporation may on a future occasion deter-
mine to erect, and leaving sufficient space for all market purposes. On
the petition of A. Bradley praying that he may be allowed to take earth


from the square your committee recommend that he may be allowed to do
so, as there is a large surplus of earth on the plot.

Brantford, April 17, 1848. J. D. CLEMENT


“The Committee on Market buildings beg leave to report that they
have procured the necessary plans for a market building which they
highly approve of and submit them to the Council with this report. Your
Committee are aware that to attempt to erect such a building and pay for
it, by a direct tax upon the town, would be injurious to the interests of
the Corporation, at the same time if it can be erected and paid for from
the proceeds of the Market plot . and House, when erected, it will be
highly beneficial to the inhabitants. They therefore beg to recommend
that notice be given in the usual manner that tenders will be received up
to the 20th day of August next from persons willing to contract for the
erection of a building agreeable to the plans and specifications, and give
the Corporation credit for the same until the proceeds of that part of the
square, which is to be leased, and of the Market building itself, will pay
for it and the interest payment, to be made annually as the rents are

In accordance with the above reports, Lewis Burwell, in
June 1848 prepared a plan whereby lots of twenty-four
feet, by sixty feet, were laid out on the Colborne Street
and Dalhousie Street sides of the Square, with two small alleyways lead-
ing to the centre.

The lots on the Colborne Street frontage were speedily leased at $60,00
per annum, and frame stores soon made their appearance.

Commencing with the corner, opposite the “Merchants’ Exchange”
building, Mr. Brendon had a drug store, and back of it Ben Hazelhurst a
furniture store. He, and Henry Peatman were among Brantford’s first
auctioneers. The last named however, devoted most of his time to selling
farm stock. He resided in a frame house on Darling Street which still

Next to Brendon’s, Henry Wade had a drygoods store. Mr. Wade,
who was a native of Ireland, studied for a while with a view to entering
the medical profession, but came to Canada as a young man in 1833, and
finally located in Brantford in 1835, entering upon a mercantile career
with such success that he was able to retire in 1860. He was all his life
an ardent prohibitionist and the first worthy patriarch of the Sons of
Temperance, in Brantford. Two of his sons still live here. J. H. Wade
and T. S. Wade, Barrister.

Alongside the Wade store, George Fleming kept a saloon, and then
came the lane.


Across from the latter a Frenchman, named Danellete, had a fur store
and next to him George Watt had a grocery, an enterprise which subse-
quently developed into the present well known wholesale firm of “George
Watt and Sons.”

Next to Watt’s there was another saloon, with W. Hunter’s grocery for
a neighbor.

On the corner confronting the Kerby House Wilkes Bros., had a gen-
eral store.

Lots on the Dalhousie Street frontage were leased at about $30,00 and
did not attract so much attention.

On the corner, there was a large story and a half frame hotel, with
verandahs surrounding it. The place was under the sheltering wings of
Mr. Dove. Behind the hostelry was situated the Town pump.

There was quite a space between this structure and the next building,
also a hotel, kept by a man named Morris. The only other building on
this side was T. Webster’s furniture store at the George Street corner. Mr.
Webster also did auctioneering.

For the most part the tenants lived over the stores, and a fire in
Danellete’s premises in 1856, nearly led to the suffocation of his im-
mediate neighbors.

A description of the other buildings around the square
Buildings a t this period may prove of interest.

oun Where the Heyd Block now stands, there was a frame

house occupied by the Misses McDougall. The structure
was surrounded by quite a large garden.

Next came a frame hotel, (Riley’s) on the land afterwards occupied
by the Commercial hotel, and now by the Commercial Chambers.

On the corner Mr. Steele owned a frame building which was occupied
by a tailor, named Walkinshaw.

Crossing to the Market Street corner the building there was occupied
by Thomas James, as a grocery, Tie also manufactured pop in another
building, back of the store. He was an Englishman who in 1836, together
with his young wife, migrated to Upper Canada. He was a teacher in
many places, and finally came to Brantford in 1846 to take charge of a
school in the East Ward. In 1850 he decided to enter a mercantile life,
and acquired the property where the Royal Bank now stands. He was
also Assessor for a while. Dr. W. T. James is a son.

There was a vacant lot next to the James property, and then came a
confectionery and soda fountain establishment owned by Mr. Whitham,
who also at the time ran a candy plant, on the present site of the Paterson


Alongside of Whithams, George Hardy had a fruit store. He was
born in England, but came to Canada, when very young, and finally locat-
ed at Brantford in 1847. He was a member of the Town and City
Councils for some years. The late Mrs. J. Montgomery was a daughter.

Adjoining Hardy’s one Thompson kept a jewelry store and next to
him J. Heaton had a grocery.

A lane intervened and on the spot where the Imperial Bank now stands
Jackson and R. J. Forde, had another grocery. Next to them Sam Mc-
Lean the son of a local school teacher, had a cigar and toy store, with
Griffith’s jewelry shop, and Hudson’s book store, succeeding in that

Next came the small Market Street frontage of an L shaped building,
fronting on Colborne Street, occupied by Thos. McLean (Dry Goods), and
Cartan & Dee, also Dry Goods merchants, had a large building on the

Ignatius Cockshutt had his store on the corner opposite Brendons,
and next came Spencer’s Brewery. A row of one story frame houses
succeeded until T. Cowherd’s tinsmith shop was reached, just this side
of the Crandon property.

The George Street frontage of the Market Square was occupied almost
entirely by the Kerby House, which used to extend nearly the full length.
The building on the corner, now occupied by an Express Company, was
then the post office.

James Kerby of the Kerby House strenuously objected
to the buildings upon the Square and he finally decided
to take legal action. After argument the Chancellor before whom the
case was heard decided that either the selling or leasing of any portion
of said square was illegal, using the following language in the course of
his finding:

“The property in question was dedicated to the public as a market
place, as far back as the year 1830, and it was used by the inhabitants of
Brantford, for that purpose for more than twenty years before the erec-
tion of the buildings complained of. Under such circumstances, the
Municipality of the Town of Brantford had no authority to deal with this
as ordinary property of the corporation They had not the power to
lease it for building purposes, thereby diverting it from the use to
which it had been dedicated and to which the inhabitants of the town of
Brantford had a right to insist that it should be applied.”

Accordingly all the frame structures were ordered off the square,
and taken to other portions of the city.


The levying of fees upon those making use of the Brant-
r^ ford Market for sale purposes has been a very old cus-

tom, although at one period County residents protested
that the Corporation had no right to make any such charges. For many
years the method was to sell the right to collect to the highest bidder,
who made what he could out of the bargain, while meat stalls in the
Market building were also auctioned each year. Following are the figures
for 1854.

Market fees sold to John Bingham 142.10

Wood fees sold to John Bingham 14.00

Stall No. 1. John Sowden 37.00

Stall No. 2, Wm. Watson 27.10

Stall No. 3, Edward Young 31.00

Stall No. 4, Jno. Kendall 29.10

Stall No. 5, Jno. Dickie 12.10

Stall No. 6, Wm. Brown 19.05

Stall No. 7, Sjamuel Baley 8.00

Stall No. 8, Wm. Dealtry 10.10

Stall No. 9, Peter Diamond 9.00

Stall No. 10, W. Dealtry 9.00

Stall No. 11, Jas. Fair 9.00

Stall No. 12, Jas. Beel 9.00


The sum of over $1,800 sixty-years ago when the place had fewer
than four thousand inhabitants certainly makes a very favorable showing
with $5,787 for 1919, with over thirty thousland residents. In addition
Mr. Bingham made his own profit so that the entire revenue story for
1854 does not appear.


There was a time when the Grand River at certain per-
Brant’s Ford i ds of the year cut off West Brantford from the rest of

A -1

~ the city by two channels. After the ford period, this

necessitated a pair of bridges, the second one of small

calibre, but in time the westerly channel became dried up and finally

filled in.

In the very early days, as before related, what was known

Remembers as Brant’s ford constituted the point of crossing. In

Brant’s ^ est Brantford, at the corner of Oak and Balfour Streets

there resides at this writing 7 , a very old lady, named Miss

Annie Thompson. She was ninety six years of age in August of 1919 and


came to the village as a girl. The family were from Forfarshire, Scot-
land, and her father had a letter of introduction to Mr. James Cockshutt.
When called upon recently she exhibited remarkable physical and men-
tal activity, despite her great age. In response to queries she described
Brantford, when she first saw it, as a “very small affair, with little wood-
en houses for the most part. However,” she added in a tone of remin-
iscent regret. “I liked it much better then, than now the folks were
much more neighborly. “The old lady said that there was a “stiff hill,”
leading up from where Lome bridge is now located. She also made the
statement that there was a blacksmith shop in the neighborhood of where
the Bank of Hamilton now stands, and that she well remembered the spot
known as Brant’s ford. The location she described as not far from where
the T. H. & B. bridge now stands, and made the further comment that a
frame tavern used to be located near by and an old well rounded with
stones. (It is probable that a piece of ground now appearing as an un-
numbered lot on the east side of Gilkison Street was the approach of the
ford. ) Continuing, Miss Thompson said that the Indians during the time
of her girlhood were to be frequently seen in the village, dressed Indian
fashion, and she used some Indian words to show that she had not for-
gotten the small phrases which used to pass between the red men and
the earlier settlers. “I never heard of anyone receiving insult from one
of them,” she added. The parting complaint of this nearly century old
inhabitant, was that she had been taken out to vote in a recent election
and on arrival at the polling booth it was found that her name had been
left off the list In this regard she expressed the hope that such a thing
would not occur again.

There is a legend that the first bridge to be thrown across

The First the river was in 1812 at a point below the existing struc-

/T ture. It was of wood and collapsed after the first team

had crossed. Other structures, of a like nature, which
followed, could not stand the freshets. Some time previous to 1841 a
covered toll bridge was erected at the foot of Colborne Street and on
July 1st, 1854 it took a plunge into the river Also in 1854 there was a
“Free” bridge constructed across the Grand to the Gilkison estate, but
this went the way of all the others. A local paper of July 4th, 1854, had
this to say of these two structures:

“The old bridge spanning the Grand River at the head of Colborne
Street suddenly took to the water on Saturday last. To the heavy toll col-
lected on it for some time back, some assign the cause of its downfall.
Fortunately no one was on the bridge at the time it gave way. The ob-
struction to travel will be slight, as the new Free Bridge crossing the river


near the residence of Mr. Gilkison is now completed. The inhabitants of
Brantford are mainly indebted to a few enterprising individuals for this
much required convenience, and it would be only an act of justice in our
townspeople and the farmers of this part of the County to relieve the debt
still owing by the Company on the same.”

Another bridge, further up the river, at Holmedale, was carried away,
February 17th, 1857 It was rebuilt, but went down again in March of
1861. After the free bridge went down, a temporary foot bridge and a
ferry looked after the needs of foot passengers until 1854, when the in-
habitants decided to try something of a more permanent nature, and what
was known as the “Iron Bridge” was erected in 1857 by Jordan & Acret,
contractors. It had all the appearance of permanency but only lasted
for a few months. Very heavy rains resulted in a memorable flood on
September 14th, 1878, and the structure was seen to be in such danger that
it was roped across at each end and guards placed on duty. However a
retired merchant, named Tyrell, insisted on crossing and eluding all
obstacles he had just about reached the centre of the structure when it
was swept away and he along with it, without any chance of rescue.

Thanks to the activity of Mayor Henry and the Councillors, a tem-
porary bridge, just below the scene of the wreck, was in place within
eight days, and Mr. Samuel Keefer, engineer of Ottawa, was entrusted with
the task of drawing plans for a bridge, which would be likely to stay in
place. How well he succeeded is to be found in the fact that it has been
continually in use for forty years and is still intact, notwithstanding
many criticisms as to a “Flimsy Device,” to which both the architect and
Mayor Henry were subjected at the time. John Hickler, secured the
contract. The abutments of finest cut grey limestone from the quarries
at Queenston and Beamsville, were commenced by the contractors, Hickey
and Clarke of Buffalo, on October, 24th, 1878, and completed in time for
the superstructure on January 22nd, 1879. The iron work was completed
by the Phoenix Works of Philadelphia not very long after, and the entire
bridge opened for traffic early in March. The superstructure is of
wrought iron and built on the triangular system, known as the “double
cancelled whipple trues.” The entire cost was some $40,000, and a slab
.of white marble bears the inscription:

Erected 1879
Robert Henry, Mayor, Samuel Keefer, Engineer,

John Hickler, Contractor.

The formal opening and dedication is described elsewhere in the
record of the visit to this city of the Marquis of Lome.


In 1908-9 the westerly abutment was taken down and a pier built in
its place constructed to the rock, the old abutment having rested on piles.
A new abutment was also erected affording an additional channel of one
hundred feet. The total cost was $60,000.

In the municipal election of 1920, the ratepayers, by a substantial ma-
jority, carried a by-law for a new and larger bridge at an estimated cost
of $210,000.




The first paper to be published in Brantford was a small

c f< sheet called ” The SentineL ” / II was launched b r

Mr. David Keeler, in 1833, when the place had
only a very small number of inhabitants. At that period old
Squire Nathan Gage occupied a house and a large garden on Col-
borne Street, and it was he who persuaded Mr. Keeler to come from
Rochester, New York State, and start the venture. In the following year
Mr. Thomas Lemmon, and family, arrived in the village from the old
Cove of Cork, now Kingston, and Keeler, who was impetuous in every-
thing, courted, and within a few weeks married the eldest daughter, Miss
Alice Lemmon. This pioneer newspaper man had no liking for the
“Family Compact,” spoken of elsewhere in this work, and he proceeded
to do his best to smash it into infinitesimal fragments. He was a prac-
tical printer, very well educated, and it was his custom to set his articles
from the old time case, without a word of manuscript to guide him. He
was an ardent follower of Lyon Mackenzie, and became so involved in
the rebellion stirred up by the latter that he found it vitally necessary to
make himself scarce. Warrants were issued for his arrest and also
that of Squire Matthews, but his father-in-law, Thomas Lemmon, was
then acting as Deputy Sheriff. The papers were put in his hands to
execute, and it is probably owing to this circumstance that the pair es-
caped. Both fled to Rochester. Matthews later returned, but Keeler
remained in the place named and died in 1849. Mrs. Keeler retained
possession of the newspaper property, and Mr. Thorpe Holmes, a young
printer from Little York, rented the plant from the widow. He did not
make a success of the venture, and in 1839 Mr. Lemmon took over the
business under the title of “Thomas Lemmon & Son.” He also changed
the name of the publication to “The Brantford Courier and Grand River
Commercial Advertiser.” It was a weekly edition, pulled off on a hand
press every Saturday, and the place of publication was in a white frame
house, the old Lemmon homestead, situated on the exact spot where the
Bell Memorial now stands. The next location was in the old one storey
building at the corner of King and Dalhousie Streets which still exists,
and there were also various other locations until the erection of the


“Courier Building,” on Dalhousie Street. Mr. Lemmon’s daughter, who
first became Mrs. Keeler, and afterwards Mrs. D’ Acres Hart, was un-
doubtedly the first woman journalist of Canada. She wrote for her
husband’s paper, “The Sentinel,” and subsequently did a lot of the lead-
ing editorial work for “The Courier,” besides contributing articles to the
London, (Ont.) Times and St. Thomas Despatch, both papers long since
defunct. She lived to a great age.

Thomas Lemmon died in January 1855, but for some time previously
he had ceased to take any active interest in the business, which was
carried on by his son, Henry, better known as Major Lemmon. He
was assisted by many prominent outside writers. Somewhat late in life
he married Mrs. (Harriet) Martin, a widow, who came to Brantford from
England, and she also was a competent writer and contributed to the
paper. In 1890, her two nephews, who had come over from the Old
Land some years previously to enter on a journalistic career, assumed
control, under the firm name of “Reville Bros.” The partnership
lasted for twenty-three years, when in 1913 R. H. Reville sold out his
interest, while F. D. Reville retained his, and continued as editor. “The
Courier Printing Company, Limited,” was the new title, with W. S.
Brewster, President, A. E. Watts, Vice-President, and W. F. Cockshutt,
J. W. Watkins and F. D. Reville as directors. In the latter part of 1918,
Mr. W. J. Southam, of Hamilton, acquired the paper, and within a few
weeks sold the subscription list and good will to the Expositor; the
plant was dispersed, for the most part by sale to outside printers. Thus
ended the oldest continuous business in Brantford a concern, which dur-
ing its long career in the Conservative interests was always able to
make the boast of every obligation fully met. It was in 1870 that the
momentous step was taken of issuing a daily, as well as a weekly news-
paper. Major Lemmon found time from his fourtih estate duties to
serve on various bodies and the School Board, and to take an active in-
terest in military matters. He was also twice Dominion Census Com-
missioner, in 1871 and 1881. Personal Journalism was quite the vogue
in his early days and it was an unusual year, in the forties and fifties,
when an editor escaped the necessity of defending himself from personal
assault. On one occasion he had just emerged from having a shave in
Gilbert’s Barber Shop, then located on Colborne Street, when a well
planted blow knocked him back in again through the window. However,
he was a husky specimen of humanity, and usually gave as good as he
got. He was an accomplished musician, at one time playing the slide
trombone in Grace Church, in order to help out a somewhat wheezy little
organ; he could also finger the guitar in adept style. He was not a


public speaker, and when called on at banquets, used to respond with
song, in a rich baritone voice. “The Days When We Went Gypsying”
was a favorite selection of himself and his hearers. He was a typical rep-
resentative of the old newspaper man, very extreme in his political likes
and dislikes, yet when he passd away in his eighty-fourth year, there
were many who sincerely felt his loss.

Mr. Wellesley Johnson, who had taught school in Ancas-
ter, and then removed to Brantford in pursuit of the
same avocation, reached the conclusion that another paper would
“fill a long felt want” that is the way in which they usually
start. Accordingly in 1840 he launched “The Brantford Herald,”
as an ardent Reform sheet. He was an apt writer, but not
much of a business man. Later, Mr. M. H. Foley, a lawyer,
became editor. This gentleman in subsequent years, was a
member of the Cabinet of Hon. John Sandfield Macdonald. In 1853
the paper passed into the hands of Peter Long and William Piggott, and
Mr. Gray son and Dr. Kelly contributed articles. In 1855, Mr. George
S. Wilkes became the proprietor and the editor was a Mr. Moon, who
had been proofreader on the Toronto Globe. Mr. Moon was an English-
man and had a penchant for unadulterated warm water, taking every
morning about a gallon of the hot liquid. At this period, Dr. Robbins,
principal of the Old Central and later principal of the McGill College
Normal School, contributed a series of clever and spicy letters directed
against the education system. These aroused provincial attention. The
Herald next became the property of Messrs. Oliver and Humphreys, who
then owned the Paris Star, and they sold to Mr. James Kerby, the founder
and proprietor of the Kerby House. In the year 1861 the paper went
out of business, having at the time only fourteen subscribers to mourn
its loss.

While the Courier and the Herald were fighting matters
ITiDUne. out a third paper made its appearance under the title of
“The Tribune.” There had been a breach in the local Reform ranks and
the seceders became known as the “Clear Grits.” They felt that they must
have a mouthpiece of their own and thus it was that the venture was
launched with Mr. J. Steele as owner. Mr. Steele came here from Glasgow,
Scotland, in 1836 and was very progressive. Besides his Brantford gen-
eral store on Colborne Street, between King and Queen Streets, he had
branch stores in Hamilton, St. Marys, Norwich and Burford, and a Dis-
tillery in the Holmedale. Shortly after his arrival in the town he started
a St. Andrews Society, and was elected first President. Many Scottish
immigrants received the benefits of this organization. He died shortly


after founding the paper and the publication then ceased to exist. Two
years after his arrival here he married Margaret Crichton, also from
Scotland, and two of his family still surviving are John C. Steele, of
Brantford arid James Steele, of Brockville.

In 1852, Henry Racey, Auctioneer and Commission
i; Merchant, and Clerk of the Division Court had a

dispute with Major Lemmon over some small account,
and ended by telling the Major in language more forceful than consider-
ate, that he would show him that there were others who could run a Con-
servative paper as well as himself. The outcome of this trivial difference
was that on October 12th, 1852, “The Conservative Expositor” this Was
the title it bore for some time across the front page made its appearance.
The first writer was Mr. John Douglas, who had come from Kingston to
Hamilton to take a position on the Spectator, then just started, and was
persuaded to come to Brantford. He held the post in an able manner for
two years and then started a paper in Woodstock on his own account, but
died suddenly after a year’s residence there. Mr. Stewart, Division Court
Assistant and afterwards son-in-law of Mr. Racey, secured control, and in
1855 the title “Conservative Expositor” was dropped and a change made
in the politics of the publication. Mr. Stewart later acquired the Hamilton
Times. Among other editors in succeeding years, was Dr. Kelly, who re-
signed as School Principal and occupied the post for two years, when he
resigned to pursue further studies. In March 1867, Mr. Robert Mathison
took charge and showed all the executive tact which has since character-
ized him in other walks of life. The first issue of the Daily was in
1873 and Mr. H. F. Gardiner was then editor. Finally Messrs. W. Watt,
Jr. and R. S. Shenstone became the proprietors. Mr. Watt, while a mem-
ber of the law firm of Brooke and Watt, had published many articles
and became editor. He was a very careful and pellucid writer, and
always had full command of his subject. Mr. Shenstone was
business manager. In 1890 they sold out to Mr. T. H. Preston, who
came here from Winnipeg, and who still retains control, under the firm
name of “T. H. Preston and Sons.” At this writing it is the sole re-
maining newspaper of the many started in Brantford.

In 1857, Brantford boasted a comic paper called “The Snapping
Turtle,” otherwise known as the “Grand River Roarer.” It was a lively
sheet, not lacking in wit, or devoid of humor. The proprietors and
conductors were Mr. Wanless, bookseller and bookbinder, and some-
thing of a poet, especially in the Scottish dialect; Mr. Christopher Tyner,
Dr. John Y. Bown and others. It ceased to snap within a few months.

In 1857, the publication of the “Baptist Messenger” was also started


in Brantford by Deacon White. It was printed from the Herald office
and the editorial work was mainly in the hands of Dr. Davidson, for a
time the pastor of the First Baptist Church. The leading articles were
scholarly in tone and the whole attitude of the publication was most
tolerant to other denominations. Within a short period Toronto became
the place of publication.

In 1869, Mr. William Trimble opened a printing office,
* . but in about a year, owing to ill health, he disposed of

the plant to Mr. E. G. Hart. The latter had newspaper
ambitions and in 1872 he commenced the publication of the “Brant
Union.” It was a Conservative paper, planned to oust the Courier. It was
subsequently purchased by Mr. Van Norm&n, who after a year’s experience
leased the plant to Mr. J. T. Johnson, a journalist who came to this city
from Petrolea. He in turn sold out to Jaffray Brothers, who changed the
name to that of “The Telegram,” and started a daily issue in 1878. It
was a toss up for a long while as to whether the Telegram, or the Cour-
ier would survive, as both, towards the end of a bitter fight, were in a very
feeble condition. It was during this struggle that the Telegram bestowed
upon the Courier the title of the “Daily Ancient.” The Courier came back
with the appellation for the Telegram of the “Daily Hard Up.” The Tel-
egram editor sent word to the Courier office that such a term was liable to
damage his sheet commercially. The answer was that for one reference
to “Daily Ancient” there would be two to “Daily Hard Up,” and thus
a truce was called regarding these designations. Finally, the bills an-
nouncing the sale of the Telegram were on a Courier job press, when
some local Conservatives, as the result of differences with Major Lemmon,
came to the rescue, and the “Telegram Printing Company” was formed.
Mr. Grayson, one time editor of the Expositor, came back to fill a like
position on the Telegram, and he was succeeded by Fred Squire, a bril-
liant Irishman. The Company, after a hard time of it, finally disposed
of the sheet to Miller and Bangs, who at the end of few years, gave up
the fight.

The strangest chapter in connection with the fourth es-
The News. tete jj ere j g com p r j se d in the history of the “Daily News.”
Mr. Joseph T. Kerby, brother of the founder of the Kerby House, com-
menced the venture, and the office was situated at the corner of the hotel
building. He was a capable writer, but matters did not prosper from a fin-
ancial standpoint and he sold out to an American, Edward A. Percy. The
latter’s appearance constituted a sartorial innovation as far as Brantford
editors had been previously concerned. He was a regular Beau Brummel
in his attire, wearing suits of the latest pattern and cut, and disporting ties
Major Lemmon, for 51 years pro-
prietor of the Courier.
Henry Racey, the founder of the


and hats, which were the envy of all the young bloods of the day. In
like manner his “den” was fitted up in the most luxuriant manner.
Brantfordites, however, very quickly realized that in his case the apparel
most emphatically did not proclaim the man, for he speedily demonstrated
himself to be a most unscrupulous rascal. He had talent, plenty of it,
but was not willing to let his influence become felt by any slow process.
The motto at the head of his paper was: “Hew to the line; let the chips
fall where they may.” The chips indeed fell plentifully, but in most
cases the aixe went a very great distance beyond the line. Sensationalism
he evidently regarded as the shortest cut to circulation, and he first of
all commenced to publish paragraphs which broadly aspersed the char-
acters, of well known citizens; that a certain married lady on such a

street, entertained for Mr. an attachment of warmer niature than that

required by the golden rule and so on. From this sort of thing, it was an
easy transition to articles of a more direct nature. The plan followed
by Percy was to write a grossly personal screed with regard to some
prominent member of the community and then to invite the victim to his
office for a perusal of the same. Publication was withheld on payment
of whatever sum he thought the individual in question could afford. In
many instances, citizens refused to be blackmailed, the article would ap-
pear and Percy came in for a long series of thrashings. As the result
of one of these, he was hurt so badly that he had to take to his bed, and
was in the care of a doctor for a considerable period. He was also once
placed in the cells, but still continued to ply his nefarious game. His
constant prying into the affairs of other people naturally led some of
them to make enquiries with regard to his own previous career, and the
result was beyond expectations. The fact was adduced that he had two
wives living, and steps were taken to have them enter a joint charge of
bigamy. Percy got wind of the matter and made a precipitate flight
to the unconcealed joy of the respectable public, and the great grief of
many creditors.

The latest of the many Brantford publications is the “Canadian
Golfer,” issued and edited by R. H. Reville. The first number appeared
in May, 1915, and it has enjoyed a prosperous career from the commence-
ment. It is the only magazine in the Dominion devoted to the interests
of the “Royal and Ancient” game and takes high rank with the few pub-
lications of the kind in England and the States.

It will thus be seen that Brantford, in the matter of publications, has
had a more varied experience than almost any other small centre in
Ontario. In the earlier times it did not require much capital to start
such ventures. Foreign news was clipped from English and United


States papers, issues were pulled off on hand presses, and wages were
low. In illustration of the latter fact, the following quotation from the
Sentinel’s (afterwards Courier) first day book, proves illuminating:

“Patrick Duffey commenced work on Thursday, June 12, 1834, at
$6.00 per week, he boarding himself.”

Patrick, of course, long ago passed hence, together with the current
rates of pay of his period.

The business methods were also very different from the
TW th!wl present period. Mr. R. Mathison, publisher of the Ex-

positor, 1867, thus tells of them:

“There was a great deal of truck and trade, and we often had sub-
scribers pay in cordwood that the devil himself could not split. It
seemed as though our friends who liquidated their indebtedness in wood,
thought anything was good enough for us, and many crooked sticks were
piled up in our back yard. One subscriber out in Burford paid for his
paper by a turkey at Christmas time. On many Saturday nights, after
paying our workmen’s wages, partly in cash and part in orders on mer-
chants, I have gone home with nothing in my pocket but some due bills
for drygoods, drugs, chemicals and house furnishings. There was no
possibility of getting them to jingle in the pocket, for there was nothing
there for them to jingle against. I remember one^ advertisement that was
paid for in Hair Restorer, but as there were no bald heads about our of-
fice, we gave it to our friends in The Courier office, in appreciation of
their journalistic courtesy, and who, even in the heat of an election
contest, never designated me by any worse name than the “smiling youth
of The Expositor.” As a means of increasing our circulation, items
from various points in the country were a distinct feature; the mention
of people’s names seemed to have a talismanic influence, and their ap-
preciation of the paper was in ratio to the number of times their names
appeared. One circumstance occurred in connection with some corres-
pondence from, say Harley, although that was not the village. Our
agent at that point sent in a number of very interesting items, the first
one being: “The Harley House has a new sign.” As I thought the fact
of the Harley House having a new sign did not interest people generally,
I struck it out, but upon reconsideration, allowed it to appear. The next
week a man came in, and said he wanted to subscribe for the paper, as
it was “getting to be a great deal better paper than it used to be.” He
paid his $1.50 in advance, like all good subscribers, and then gave his
address as the Harley House, whereupon I said: “You have been getting
up a new sign.” He said yes, that he had been in business for a long
time, and was a good Conservative, but The Courier had never taken
notice of anything about his place, and he just wanted our paper sent to
him regularly. Moreover, he would get his friends to subscribe, which
he did, for during the next four or five months, I could trace directly to
his influence, eight good cash-in-advance subscribers. In the fall follow-
ing, he had a sale of farm stock and implements, for which he got a


hundred half -sheet bills, and a notice in the paper, at a cost of $4.00;
a stray cow came into his premises, which he advertised and paid $1.00
for three insertions; during the winter he had a ball and supper at his
place, and we printed the tickets and programmes, for which he paid
$4.00 more. Altogether, for inserting the one line: ‘The Harley House
has a new sign,” I counted $22.50, besides having made many friends
through his exertions some of whom are likely taking the paper yet.”

Such were the early methods. Now the advent of modern presses,
linotype machines, telegraph tolls, high wages and so forth, has served
to make the publication of a newspaper a most expensive business. This
is mainly why Brantford had three daily papers serving a population of
ten thousand people, and at this writing has only one paper for thirty
two thousand inhabitants.


A Dr. Thomas was the first medical man to arrive in the
The First village of Brantford. He built a small log house, but
finding the calls on his services none too numerous, he
remained only for a short while.

Dr. Gilpin was the next disciple of Aesculapius to try his fortunes in
the settlement. He built a house on the lot where the Digby residence
now stands, and was in fact succeeded in 1835 by Dr. Alfred Digby, who
until the time of his death in 1866, was the most prominent physician in
the town and one of the leading citizens. He was born in County Meath,
and in 1829 was a member of the Royal College of Surgeons of
Ireland, when he decided to migrate to Canada. He first of all located in
Montreal, where he married Catharine Busby. Later he moved to Hamil-
ton and from there came to this place. He was a man of powerful build
and pronounced personality, and in addition to looking after a large
practice was active in municipal affairs. Of a family of four boys and
two girls, only one now survives, Mr. Joseph Digby. It was the Doctor
who in 1847 introduced the following suggestive resolution at the town

“Moved by Dr. Digby, seconded by Mr. Downs. Resolved

That any member of this Council who comes here drunk and acts like a
fool, be not listened to. Carried.”

Dr. Martyr arrived shortly after Dr. Digby, locating in a house on
Dalhousie Street. He also was a well known practitioner for many years.
One of his daughters married E. B. Wood, and another Walter Rubidge,
who afterwards became Local Registrar.

Dr. Keist, was another of the early medicos. He died of cholera in
1850, contracting the complaint in the course of his medical duties.


Dr. Theodore Down came here about the year 1855, and resided where
the Brantford Club now stands. He had an active career up until the time
of his death in 1873.

Dr. Reginald Kenwood was not only the leading Surgeon of his day
in Brantford, but he also possessed a Provincial wide reputation. The
son of a medical man, he was born in Cornwall, England, and, together
with his brother Dr. Edwin Kenwood, came to Canada in 1847. They
were young men at the time and their services were first secured in the
taking charge of a hospital, established in Toronto, in connection with
the “ship fever” epidemic which raged in 1847-8, both doing notable work.
Dr. Edwin finally located in Hamilton while Dr. Reginald came to this
city. Not long afterwards he married a daughter of Dr. A. Digby and
two sons still survive, Dr. A. J. Kenwood, and E. Kenwood, both resi-
dents of Brantford. The doctor passed away May 22nd 1904. He was a
fine type of man, both mentally and physically, and enjoyed the deep
respect of all classes. Mayor of the city for two years, and a generous
supporter of all worthy objects, he rightly took rank as a leading citizen
and exemplar of the highest traditions of his profession.

Dr. Egerton Griffin, arrived in 1854. He was the fourth son of E.
C. Griffin of Waterdown, and came from U. E. Loyalist stock. He was a
man of many diverse activities, Justice of the Peace, Coroner, Surgeon of
the 2nd Battalion, Brant Militia; member of the Public School Board and
Medical Health officer. In the latter capacity he did much valuable work.
When he took hold of the Department, Brantford had no sanitary provis-
ions whatever, and wells and cesspools were the order of the day. The
consequent result was an outbreak of typhoid fever each year, which
proved appalling. Dr. Griffin never rested until he had seen sewer and
waterworks systems established. To him the place indeed owed a deep
debt in the respects named. His only daughter is the wife of Lt.-Col.
Leonard, City Clerk.

Another early physician, Dr. Kelly, only practised for a few months,
as his bent was altogether towards scholastic and literary work.

Other old time practitioners in the County included Charles Dun-
combe, Burford; Elam Stimson, St. George; Lawrence, McCosh, Christie,
Paris; Witcher. Middleport; Ross, Burford.

As the town and County commenced to develop the number of prac-
titioners became increasingly large, and just fifty years ago it was de-
cided to form the “Brant County Medical Association.” The inaugural
meeting was held on August 23rd, 1870, and a committee composed of
Drs. Kenwood, Griffin, Corson, and Kelly was appointed to draft a con-
stitution and by-laws. Dr. Lawrence became the first president occupying
the position 1870-71. His successor was Dr. Reginald Kenwood.

1. Dr. R. Hen wood; 2. Dr. E. Griffin; 3. Dr. A. Digby: 4. Dr. M. J. Kelly;

5, Dr. D. Marquis.


The first complete list of the medical men of City and County was col-
lected some forty years ago and those in practice at that time were:

BRANTFORD: John Y. Bown, Henry J. Cole, William C. Corson,
James W. Digby, Egerton Griffin, Wm. T. Harris, Reginald Kenwood,
David Lowrey, John J. Mason, Wm. Nichol, David L. Philip, Robert
Thompson, Wm. E. Winskel.

PARIS: Wm. Burt, William Clarke, Silas W. Cooke, Jas. W. R.
Dickson, Miles O’Reilly, Arch. J. Sinclair.

BURFORD: Charles A. Aikman, Wm. M. Chrysler, George W. Clen-
denon, Robert Harbottle.

MOUNT PLEASANT: Duncan Marquis.

TUSCARORA: Robert Hill Dee.

ST. GEORGE: Edward E. Kitchen, Edward C. Kitchen, H. E.
Mainwarning, Franklin J. Patton.

SCOTLAND: Wm. C. Freeman, J. R. Malcolm, Jas. W. Renwick,
Edwin W. Tegart.

The only one of these men to remain on the active list is Dr. H. J.
Cole, who is still in harness after fifty nine years of service. Dr. William
Nichol, recently deceased, surpassed the record by a couple of years. The
latter, in addition to his professional duties, was very active in Church
and philanthropic work. With one or two exceptions, the others have
passed to “The undiscovered country from whose bourne, no traveler

Dr. James W. Digby, son of Dr. Alfred Digby, was born in Brantford
in the year 1842. A man of dominating presence and personality, he
filled a most prominent place in the community all his life, and was
Mayor for three years and member of the Collegiate Board for a lengthy
period. He matriculated at Toronto University and after leaving that in-
stitution entered McGill College, Montreal, from which he graduated in
1862. He next walked the New York hospitals and during the American
civil war received the appointment of Acting Assistant Surgeon in the
hospital stationed at Point Lookout, Md. After the battle of Stone
River he participated in the campaign through the western States as Hos-
pital Surgeon until the battle of Chickamauga, when he was stationed in
the field hospital at Chattanooga in charge of several wards. Some
months later he received the appointment of Regimental Surgeon of the
16th U. S. Infantry, and with that regiment took part in the campaign
through the South via Nashville, Tenn., and Augusta, Ga. He returned
to Brantford in 1866 and up until the time of his demise, had the largest
practice here. His hospitable home was always the centre of entertain-
ment for distinguished Brantford visitors, and his generosity in the


matter of patients, unable to pay, was proverbial. His wife, one son, and
two daughters, still reside at the old homestead. The son, Dr. Reginald
Digby, has like his father, also seen much war service, having participated
in a medical capacity in the recent great world struggle. He still con-
tinues the practise of his father and grandfather.

Dr. Leslie Philip was the son of Anthony Philip a native of Scotland
and a graduate of the University of Aberdeen. The father came to Can-
ada and Leslie was born at Richmond in 1839. His career at McGill was
brilliant he having obtained the Holmes prize for Thesis, the highest
award then conferred by the University, and also first prize in the class
of clinical medicine. He first of all practised in Plattsville and Wood-
stock, coming to Brantford in 1872. He enjoyed the respect of everyone,
and his services were often sought in consultation.

Dr. W. T. Harris, was the oldest son of A. Harris, of Onondaga. He
was born January 7th 1852. After studying at Upper Canada College he
graduated as Bachelor of Medicine from Trinity College in 1874, and in
the following year received the degree of Doctor of Medicine. During
1873 he attended clinical lectures in New York City and in 1879 was as-
sociate gynecologist at Mount Sinai hospital New York. He commenced
practice at Langford, Brant County, in 1874 and in 1875 removed to
Brantford where his skill attained speedy recognition. He was active
in many directions and was a prominent member of the Dufferin Rifles
holding the office of Surgeon His mother was the granddaughter of
Colonel John Butler, His Majesty’s Commissioner for Indian affairs, also
Commander of Butler’s Rangers, distinguishing himself at the battles of
Lake George, 1753 and the capitulation of Fort Niagara, 1759

Dr. Levi Secord commenced practice in Brantford in 1884. He came
here when a child with his parents the father perished in the Desjardins
Canal accident and after securing his degree decided to locate in his
home city. The Doctor found time from his professional duties to be-
come actively interested in public affairs; was Alderman for many years,
and Mayor in 1893-4. For some time he had supervisory charge of the
medical work on the Six Nations Reserve, and he was also High Court
Physician, of the A. 0. F. He passed away on May 8, 1914, leaving a
widow and three sons, Dr. E. R. Secord and A. O. Secord, this city and
Dr. W. H. Secord, Winnipeg.

Dr. Harry Frank, who died January 31st 1916, was one of the most
prominent of the younger medical men. He had a very brilliant career
at Trinity College and passed all his medical examinations at so early an
age that he had to wait six months before the Medical Council could
grant him a certificate. When still a young man he was made one of


their examiners by the Ontario Medical Council, and examiner in Obstet-
rics, by his alma mater. He had been a member and chairman of the
Public School Board, and was one of the main workers in the establish-
ment of the Brantford sanitarium. In addition to practitioner work his
services were often in request as medical adviser.

Dr. Herb. Minchin, a native Brantfordite, was the son of Captain
Charles Minchin, an officer in the 1st Royals, now Royal Scots. The
father was one of the many military men who came to Canada in the
early fifties, and he finally made Brantford his home. After graduating
from Port Hope school and Trinity Medical College, Dr. Minchin first of
all practised in Brantford then went to Jerseyville, and finally Petrolea
where he died in May of 1909. His mother and sisters still reside here.

Dr. Marquis of Mount Pleasant was one of the prominent County
medicos of the earlier days. His parents were both Scotch, and he was
born in Argylshire Scotland, December 6th, 1842. The father died in
1850 and the widow and five children came to Caledonia, N. Y., and one
year later to Brant County, where she married Francis Fairchilds, son of
Isaac Fairchilds, a pioneer. The Doctor was first of all educated at the
Grammar School in Mount Pleasant and in 1865 graduated from Vic-
toria College, Toronto and immediately located in Mount Pleasant, where
he soon built up a large practice. In later years he removed to the City
His wife was Eliza, daughter of George Bryce of Mount Pleasant, and
sister of Professor George Bryce, Winnipeg and Dr. Bryce, Secretary of
the Board of Health of Ontario. Dr. J. Marquis, of Brantford, is a son.

The following is the list of City and County doctors at the present

BRANTFORD: C. C. Alexander, G. W. Barber, B. C. Bell, T. H.
Bier, N. N. Blanchard, N. M. Bragg, C. D. Chapin, L. H. Coates, H. J.
Cole, R. W. Digby, M. N. Faris, C. C. Fissette, Frank Hanna, G. Hanna,
A. J. Kenwood, E. S. Hicks, R. Hutton, W. L. Hutton, M. J. Keene, J. A.
Marquis, W. H. Nichol, R. H. Palmer, J. A. Phillips, J. W. Robinson, D.
S. Sager, E. R. Secord, E. Smith, U. N. Stanley, S. B. Stinson, G. Thom-
son, G. M. Watts, W. D. Wiley.

ST. GEORGE: J. L. Addison, W. H. Reid, H. C. Nash.
LYNDEN: J. L. Gibson.

PARIS: D. Dunton, W. J. H. Gould, F. H. Jeffrey, W. J. Logic, F.

SCOTLAND Anderson.
BURFORD: Johnston, Rutherford.



When Brant County became organized as a separ-
isencn ana ate coun t v m 1852, Stephen James Jones was appointed
County Judge. He was born at Stony Creek, Wentworth
County in 1821, and was descended from United Empire Loyalist stock.
Having decided to enter upon the profession of law, he was called to the
bar in 1846, and was practising with Mr. Freeman in the Ambitious City
when the opportunity came for preferment to the bench. He was also
made Master of Chancery in August of 1875. The military always ap-
pealed to him, and while residing in Hamilton he held the position of
Adjutant in the Third Gore Militia. Not long after moving to Brantford
he built the handsome residence on the outskirts of the city known as
“Glenhyrst.” Judge Jones possessed the judicial temperament to a marked
extent and few successful appeals were ever made from his decisions. In
1847 he married Miss Margaret Williamson of Stony Creek and Lt.-Col.
Jones, Toronto, and Alfred S. Jones, K.C., of this City, are two of the sur-
viving sons. The late City Engineer Jones was also a son.

Judge Jones, after a long and honorable career of forty five years
in that capacity, retired in 1897, and was succeeded on April 23rd of that
year by Alexander D. Hardy, the present occupant of the post.

Judge Hardy was born in Mt. Pleasant, the youngest son of Russell
Hardy, and brother of Hon. A. S. Hardy. After concluding his law
course, he practised for <a while in London, and then in Brantford as
a member of the firm of Hardy, Wilkes and Hardy, until his appointment.

In 1911 he was selected by the Ontario Government as a member of
a Board of County Judges for the revision of practice and tariffs in the
County, Surrogate and Division Courts of the Province, and in 1918 was
appointed member of the Ontario Library Commission to investigate
Technical Education in United States libraries. He was likewise Presi-
dent of the Ontario Library Association in 1909, and appointed Judge of
the Juvenile Court in 1915. Judge Hardy always takes a prominent
part in matters of public moment. In 1894 he married Mary E. Curtis
and has one son and one daughter.

It is said that Alexander Stewart was the first resident Attorney of
the County, but he was so soon followed by Messrs. Cameron, Bethune and
McDonald, that these four gentlemen can be practically placed in that
category. They all located in the place over seventy years ago, and
others very soon followed.

On November 13th, 1853, at a meeting held in the office of a barris-
ter named Daniel McKerlie, “The Brant County Law Library Association”
was formed, with a capital stock of 500, in shares of two pounds eacK.
The list of those in attendance at that gathering was as follows: Stephen
1, Judge Jones; 2, John Cameron; 3, G. R. Van Norman, first Crown Attorney
for the County; 4, H. McK. Wilson; 5, Judge Hardy.


J. Jones, John Cameron, Daniel McKerlie, W. Rubidge, Daniel Brooke,
M. H. Toby, Archibald Gilkison, Thomas B. McMahon, G. R. VanNor-
man, Henry A. Hardy, E B. Wood, Peter B. Long, George W. Wattock and
F. T. Wilkes. The first officers elected, were S. J. Jones, Chairman, and
P. B. Long, Secretary.

Ten years later, viz, in 1863, this was the list of legal gentlemen do-
ing business here. J. W. Bowlby, Market Street; Daniel Brooke, Col-
borne Street; Cameron & Wilson, Court House; Foley & Evans, Market
Street; Hardy & Hardy, Colborne Street; Peter B. Long, Colborne Street;
T. B. McMahon, Colborne Street; James Muirhead, Wellington Street;
Van Norman & Griffin, Market Street; F. T. Wilkes, Colborne St.; E. B.
Wood, Colborne Street. Quite a lengthy list for fifty seven years ago,
when the inhabitants numbered some four thousand, but it is generally
agreed that there was much more litigation in earlier days.

Of those above mentioned, the noted career of E B Wood has teen
dealt with elsewhere. F. T. Wilkes, became Judge of the County of Grey
and a son was for many years prominently associated with the Waterous
Engine Works. Hardy & Hardy included A. S. Hardy, afterwards Pre-
mier of Ontario. David McKerlie occupied a seat in the old Parliament
of Canada, and became a man of considerable political power. T. B.
McMahon became appointed Judge of Norfolk County. Mr. J. W.
Bowlby, K. C., is the only one still alive and in active practice.

During the intervening years many other lawyers and law firms have
come and gone. In 1865, B. F. Fitch, started practice here, the firm
afterwards becoming Fitch and Lees, and enjoying a large connection.
Both have been long since dead.

Valentine Mackenzie was another old timer who used to have a law
office in an old fashioned building on Queen Street.

Mr. Hugh McKenzie Wilson, K. C., commenced practice in 1866 in
partnership with John Cameron, and until the time of his demise held the
high respect not only of the profession, but of citizens generally. He
was a son of Scotch parents, and came to Canada, when a child, the family
locating in Burford Township. Upon the death of Mr. Cameron he
formed a partnership in 1875 with Mr. R. C. Smyth, a most promising
member of the bar, who was cut off in early life. Later the firm became
Wilson, Smyth & Muirhead; finally, Wilson & Watts. Mr. Wilson, more
than once acted as Deputy Judge and in 1874 and 1875, served as Master
in Chancery during the illness of the late John Cameron. In 1879 he was
Conservative candidate in this Riding for the Ontario House. Mr. Wilson
was married in 1872 to Miss Mary Nelles of Brantford Township and the
widow and three children survive.


Mr. G. R. VanNorman, Q. C., was born in New York State in 1821,
but his parents came to Canada in the same year, and he was called to
the bar of Ontario in 1847. He and the late Hon. Mr. Foley formed a
partnership in Simcoe, but Mr. Van Norman came to Brantford in 1858,
and was appointed Crown Attorney the following year, a position which
he held until his death. During an active legal career he on one occasion
successfully held a brief before the Privy Council in England. He was
twice married, and the surviving children by the first wife are Mrs. J. E.
Waterous, Brantford, Mrs. Etches, Ottawa; Dr. H. Van Norman, Colorado.

Mr. L. F. Heyd, K. C., now of Toronto, was also located here for a
considerable period, and in addition to his legal tasks was, in the earlier
days of his practice, organist at Zion Church.

Mr. W. H. C. Kerr a man of scholarly attainments, likewise removed
from here to the Queen City, and the late Mr. Mahlon Cowan, who rose
high in the profession, attended the Collegiate Institute and spent his
student law days here.

Mr. Justice McMahon, of the High Court of Justice, also commenced
his law practice in Brantford.

No reference to the legal fraternity of Brantford would be complete
without mention of Mr. Peter Purves. He was first of all associated with
Mr. VanNorman, finally with Wilson & Watts. As an office man he was
unequalled and his knowledge of law was profound. In addition he was
exceedingly skilful in the preparation of a brief. To him is accredited
the most successful short speech ever made at a Brantford banquet. He
was a confirmed bachelor, and it was for this reason that on the occa-
sion in question he was asked to respond to the toast of “The Ladies.”
Slowly he raised his ponderous form and solemnly pleaded “Not guilty”
Other members of the bar are referred to elsewhere in connection
with different capacities.

The present legal list in the city is as follows:

A. L. Baird, K. C.; J. W. Bowlby, K. C.; Brewster, K. C., and Heyd;
W. M. Charlton; Harley & Sweet, (James Harley, K. C., Edmund Sweet,
A. M. Harley) ; Henderson, K. C., and Boddy; Jones, K. C., and Hewitt;
M. F. Muir, K.C.; E. R. Read; J. A. D. Slemin; C. S. Tapscott; M. W.
McEwen, T. S. Wade, A. E. Watts, K.C.; A. J. Wilkes, K.C.




In 1836, the first Brantford Fire Company was organized. It con-
sisted of some forty or fifty citizens and was generally called the “Goose
Neck Company,” from the principal apparatus used at fires. The “en-
gine” consisted of a water tight box and a set of brakes. Water was
carried in buckets and poured into this box, whence it was ejected by
means of the brakes. No hose was used on this curious piece of mech-
anism, the operator standing on the top and holding an arrangement
similar to a branch. To change the direction of the stream, it was neces-
sary to move the engine. The engine house was then situated on the
South West corner of the market square in a small frame shanty. This
was surmounted by a small bell, which was used on the occasion of fires
and tolled for funerals. The latter practice was abandoned, when old
Arunah Huntington declared it must cease, or he would withdraw his an-
nual contribution of one pound towards the salary of the bell ringer.
Whether Huntington objected on the score of getting too often excited
with regard to his own property, or because he hated to be reminded of
his own inevitable end, history deponeth not. The bell ringer, was one
Williams, commonly known as “Old Williams,” and he received sixteen
pounds a year for his services. The old “Goose Neck,” ceased to be used
about 1850. The following is a list of the officers and members of this
first fire company:

Captain Henry Yardington.
1st Lieutenant James Wagstaff
2nd Lieutenant Frederick Brown.
Engineer P. C. Van Brocklin.
Secretary Ignatius Cockshutt.
Treasurer Duncan McKay.

John Turner Joseph Squires John Shepherd

James Martin Arch McMullin Andrew Lees

Abram Bradley Ed. Yardington James McMichael

Ed. Montgomery James Woodyatt Hugh Spencer

Matthew Whitham George Bushman George S. Wilkes

P. McLaughlin Robert Meiklejohn Nicholas Doyle


Calvin Houghton John Jackson Joseph Shuttleworth

Samuel Hudson William Leeming William Champion

William Matthews William Watson William Locke

James Walkinshaw J. D. Montgomery Joseph Mawbey
John Maxwell

The first constitution was printed in 1842. The company imposed
fines upon themselves, as follows:

s. d.

For interrupting any person while speaking in order

For non-attendance on roll call, 013

For non-attendance on cleaning committee, 026

For not wearing uniform, 013

For smoking during meetings, 7^

For wearing dirty uniform, ^; i 013

For non-attendance at fires, 050

For disobedience at fires, 050

For disobedience while on duty, except at fires, 020

For ringing the bell (false alarm) 020

Shortly after the incorporation of the town in 1847, an engine called
“The Rescue” was purchased at Boston and another company composed
largely of the “Goose Neck” roster, was formed. This company was re-
organized in 1867, and continued in active work until the introduction of
a system of waterworks. Victoria Hook and Ladder Company was start-
ed soon after the arrival of the Rescue engine and these two companies
continued to form the Fire Department of the town. All the fire ap-
pliances were kept in the town hall until the present engine house was
built in 1862.

The following taken from the Council minute book, shows that some
apathy with regard to the fire fighters had developed.

“Brantford, 6th November, 1852 To His Worship, the Mayor and
Council of the Town of Brantford:
Gentlemen :

I was requested to have the following resolution published, and I con-
sider it my duty to make the same known to you for your consideration
and action.

Moved and carried unanimously:

“That unless the householders of Brantford will unite with the fire
company to increase its strength and add to the funds of the said com-
pany, the public are hereby notified that the first Tuesday night in Jan-
uary next is the last meeting of this company.


Captain Fire Co. No. 1”


The apparent outcome of this was that in 1853, the Exchange Com-
pany was organized as a Hook and Ladder Company, with William Pat-
erson, as Captain, and Thomas Webster, Secretary. This company sub-
sequently obtained the use of the Exchange engine, which was owned by
Mr. I. Cockshutt, and formed themselves into an engine company.

It was on Monday, December 28th, 1857, that a meeting of all the
firemen was held to form a “United Fire Brigade.” The Council voted
an appropriation and uniforms were provided. However, three years
later, March 12, 1860, the Council minutes record that “The Special Com-
mittee, to whom was referred the petition of I. Cockshutt and one hundred
and thirteen others, respecting aid in the establishment of an independent
fire company, report in favor of granting $500 to said company.”

A Washington engine was purchased and the attendant organization
consisted of:

President I. Cockshutt.
Vice-President James Wallace
Foreman Geo. Hardy.

J. D. McKay J. J. Inglis T. Wilkinson

A. D. Clement J. W. Wilkinson T. Foster

C. H. Clement Jno. Minore L. A. Gage

P. B. Hatch J. W. Lethbridge Jas. Montgomery

R. Rnssell Wm. Potts G. H. Wilkes

Jas. Smith Thos. Morgan John Noble

John Campbell John Balfour Geo. Varey

Wm. Grant F. G. Gardiner Wm. Gibson

John Jenkins A. L. Usher W. E. Welding

L. R. Smith Geo. Winter Geo. Roy

Geo. Lauterbach Henry Babcock Thos. Truesdale

C. B. Nimmo J. Y. Morton J. W. Buck

W. B. McMillan Geo. Welshofer Jos. Craig

Frank Ott John Meiklejohn Jas. Ker
John Ott

The uniform consisted of a white shirt, black pants, leather waist belt
with the name of the company, and white Panama hats with black bands.

Members of the Washington Fire Company, when on duty, wore large
sole leather helmets, very heavily ribbed.

Finally matters settled down to a Department of which John McCann
was Chief and there were two companies, each consisting of thirty-five
men, the Brant Hose, with George D. Calder as Captain, and Victoria
Hook & Ladder, Captained by James Duncan. The apparatus was drawn
by ropes and the moment the fire alarm was sounded the volunteer mem-
bers of the two companies would drop whatever work they might be en-
gaged upon, and make a wild rush to the Fire Hall. For some years one


self appointed member was a dog named “Cully,” owned by Mr. W. E.
Walsh, who then had a tobacco shop on Market Street. At the first tap
of the bell, Cully would helter-skelter to headquarters and make frantic
efforts to pull on the ropes.

At the time of disbandment the Brant Hose Company consisted of:
C. H. Clement, Hon. President; Geo. D. Calder, Captain; Geo. Ward, 1st
Lieutenant; N. Cross, 2nd Lieutenant; J. C. Montgomery, Secretary; W.
Masterson, Treasurer; A. Bremner and S. Reeves, buglers; 0. White, Cur-
ator; Thos. Bremner, W. Wilson, Geo. Batson, Alf. Brown, Chas. Clark,
John J. Quinlan, Wm. Dalton, Dennis Burns, W. Mattingley, T. Gardner,
Jas. Daley, Wm. Gillespie, Wm. Gardner, Wm. Maxwell, John Taylor,
Charles Green, D. Lee, Fred Lang, Charles Wiles, D. J. Lewis, M. Wells,
Robt. Pierce, John Powers, Patrick Powers, Jas. Lake, Geo. Bremner,
Jas. Lowes, Alf. Fleming, Alex McKinnon.

Victoria Hook & Ladder: Jas.. Duncan, Foreman; Wm. Minnes, 1st
Assistant; Geo. Miles, 2nd Assistant; Geo. M. Crooks, Secy.; Wm. Syrie,
Treasurer; C. H. Hartman, Drill Instructor; Frank Calbeck and Wm.
Davidson, Torch Boys; W. Blayborough, John Muirhead, Chas. Warner,
H. P. S. Crooks, Jno. Fisher, O. Meyers, Jno. Summerhays, Hugh Henry,
J. Davidson, Geo. Rushton. Jos. Syrie, G. Henderson, R. Feeley, T. Martin,
A. Martin, J. Kingswell, G. Linster, W. Roantree, H. Gaffney, J. Beemer,
J. Kendrie, Geo. Hall, Philip Secord, W. Strowger, Geo. Prows, Fred Ryer-
son, W. Sigman, W. White, Thos Carruthers.

Under the direction of Mr. Hartman many fancy drill prizes were won.

In February, 1889, it was decided to introduce a paid Department. The
appointment of Chief was first offered to Alderman John McCann, but at
a figure which he could not accept. Geo. Calder was then named, and he
occupied the post until December, 1898, when upon his demise, Dan Lewis
was selected as his successor. The present chief started in 1888, as a
driver, then became assistant foreman, and finally foreman, which post
he held at the time of his preferment. During his regime many advances
have taken place, including the establishment of a general electric alarm
system and the substitution of motor power for horses. The East Ward
Branch Station was opened in 1908. On December 25th, 1919, the
platoon system came in force, with the employment of thirty-six men
in place of eighteen. George Kingswell is assistant chief at the main
hall with F. Howarth and J. Townsen, as captains. At the East End
Hall, A. Crocker and D. O’Hanley are the captains.

As can very well be imagined with the wooden buildings

.Destructive Q f ^ ear ij er d a y S? primitive volunteer equipment and

lack of water mains, many destructive fires occurred.


The most damaging was one that broke out on Friday morning, February
17th, 1860. The flames were first noticed between three and four o’clock
a. m. and it was never definitely settled whether the blaze originated in
Thomas McLean’s dry goods store or in Brendon’s drug establishment, as
the flames had made much progress before the general alarm was sound-
ed. So rapidly did the conflagration spread that two young men who
were sleeping over McLean’s store, barely escaped with their lives and
the business section suffered very severely. The following is a list of
the losses and insurance compiled at the time:

Costello & Young, brick block, estimated loss, $4,500; covered by in-
surance in Phoenix Insurance Co., of London. Cartan & Dee, brick
block, estimated damage, $8,000; insured in Equitable Fire Insurance
Co., for $5,000; groceries and dry goods, estimated damage $2,000, in-
sured in the Gore Mutual for $4,000. Bank of British North America, the
Emporium Building, estimated damage, $4,000; insured in the Royal
for $4,800. Lovejoy’s Buildings, estimated damage, $13,000; insured in
the Western for $4,000; Liverpool & London for $2,000; Royal, $2,600.
Judge Jones, brick buildings, estimated damage $2,500; insured in the
Royal for $2,400. Mrs. Colmer, frame building and furniture, estim-
ated damage $500, no insurance; Mrs. Smith, frame building and stock of
groceries, estimated damage $800; insured for $600 in Great Western of
Philadelphia. Mr. Brendon, stock of drugs, chemicals, etc., estimated dam-
age, $4,000, no insurance; S. Morphy, building, furniture and stock of
jewellery, estimated damage $4,000; insured in the State Insurance Co. for
$2,000. Forde & Brother, stock of groceries and store fixtures, estimated
damage, $1,000; insured in Phoenix Co., of London, for $1,600. Odd-
fellows’ Lodge, fixtures, etc., estimated damage, $1,000; insured in the
Equitable Co., of London, for $800. R. Shackell, fixtures and stock of
groceries, no insurance; loss unknown. N. Devereux, removing stock;
damages, $182. T. McLean & Co., fixtures, stock of drygoods and books
of the firm, estimated damage, $12,000; insured in Phoenix London and
Equitable for $4,000 each; State, $2,000; total $10,000. Expositor of-
fice, removing stock, estimated damage $300; insured in Western and
Provincial. Nimmo & Co., stock of wines, liquors and groceries, es-
timated damage $10,000; insured in the Phoenix, London for $4,000. Dr.
Preston, office fixtures, about $200; G. Malloch, law books etc., estimated
damage $400; covered by insurance. G. R. Van Norman’s law office fix-
tures, books (papers saved), estimated damage $800; no insurance. W. H.
Morgan, Indian Commissioner, office fixtures and papers, loss not estim-
ated. P. B. Long’s law office, fixtures, etc., loss about $50. Division
Court office fixtures, (papers saved), loss $100, no insurance. J. Wilk-


inson’s jewellery stock partial loss, $300, no insurance. Mr. Gorman’s
shoe store, loss trifling. Mr. W. Long’s shoe store, loss trifling, no in-
surance. Donald McKay’s harness-shop, damage to stock $800. covered
by insurance. Mr. George Newton, innkeeper, furniture, damage $200.
G. Stewart’s cabinet shop and furniture, damage, $400, covered by in-
surance. Bank of Montreal, frame buildings, damage $400, no insurance.
Johnson, barber, loss trifling. Norwood, barber, loss trifling. Mr. P.
L. Allen’s grocery store, nothing saved damages $1,400; no insurance.
E. B. Wood’s law office fixtures, loss trifling. Dr. Sutton, dentist, fix-
tures and stock, damage $200; no insurance. A. Wanless, bookbinder,
shop fixtures, books and tools all lost damage, $500; no insurance.
Courier office, type, presses etc., damage $3,000; insurance $2,400, in
Gore Mutual Insurance Co., James Smith, saddler, damage removing stock
$240. covered by insurance. Ritchie & Russell, grocery stock destroyed
and damaged, estimated loss $1,400 insured. R. McLean, grocery, loss

Some nine years later, there was another severe visitation, known as
the “Burgee Fire.” Mr Burgee kept a shop on Colborne Street, at the
foot of King Street. One evening he was making varnish and there was
an explosion which caused his death from burns, and set fire to the
wooden building in which the varnish was being made. The confla-
gration spread with great rapidity. There was a good deal of varnish
in the building and the wooden frame was soaked with oil. The fire
crossed Colborne Street and spread right through to Dalhousie Street;
the whole block bounded by Colborne, King, Dalhousie, Market and
Queen Streets was practically destroyed, while there was great destruc-
tion on the South side of Colborne Street where the trouble originally

Perhaps the fire which most tried the mettle of the towns-

~~ e people was that which took place on May 9th, 1854,

Brantford , ., , , r a. i i

Spirit a was described by one of the local papers:

“Between the hours of 1 and 2 o’clock, the alarm of
fire called forth many of our townspeople from their peaceful slumbers,
to witness the destruction of the magnificent new buildings erected by
the Buffalo, Brantford and Goderich Railway Co. The buildings were
constructed of the very best material and in the most permanent manner,
(considered almost fire proof.) For permanency and architectural
beauty they were looked upon as an ornament to our flourishing town
and could not be equalled by any other buildings of a similar kind in
the Province. . . But the people of Brantford did not stand all the
day idle, nor waste their time in useless repining. Twelve hours had
scarcely elapsed when a public meeting was called by the Mayor to
which a large number of ratepayers crowded, and with a degree of


liberality and unanimity, which could scarcely be equalled, loaned the
credit of the town to the amount of 100,000 to assist the company to
complete the road through to Goderich, as well as to rebuild the depot
and other necessary buildings, so that ere long we will have the satisfac-
tion of seeing all put to right again and 200 to 300 mechanics again at

This instance constitutes one more illustration of the “never say die”
qualities of Brantfordites.


A frame building, situated on the south-west corner of
Tne First Market and Darling Streets, just across from the site
of the Bank of Montreal, was the first structure to be
used in Brantford for hospital purposes and then only for members of the
73rd Regiment who were here in 1837-38. In 1866 and following years,
when British Regiments were quartered in the Town, the former Wilkes
dwelling house was also converted into a hospital for the troops. The struc-
ture, when first erected, was the handsomest house in the village and
was approached by a sweeping driveway. Mayor Matthews always used
to refer to it as a “Baronial Hall.” Portions of the building still
remain in the rear of stores on the North side of Colborne St. just beyond
the Ker and Goodwin factory. In times of smallpox and other epidemics
temporary frame buildings used to be constructed, but the place re-
mained without permanent accommodation of the kind for a longer
period than the size of the community warranted. Enterprising in
other respects, early Brantfordites were certainly lacking in this and it
was not until 1884 that a meeting was called in the old Y.M.C.A. to launch
a public subscription campaign. The gathering was well attended and
the items included the reading of a letter from the late Mr. John H.
Stratford, in which he stated that he might have something of importance
to communicate within a few days. On this basis an adjournment took
place and later the City Council received the splendid offer on the part
of Mr. Stratford to present a hospital and some seven acres of ground
to the City upon certain conditions, which included the stipulation of a
Board of five Governors, of whom Mr. Stratford and his nominee should
form two, and the Mayor, and two members of the City Council the other
three. Mr. Stratford also offered to grant $400 per annum towards
maintenance during his pleasure. The location selected by the donor
admittedly constitutes one of the finest sites in Ontario, situated as it is
upon the brow of Terrace Hill, with a wide and uninterrupted view of
the plateau beneath. The original structure consisted of a building
three stories high with frontage of one hundred feet and forty-two feet
deep, exclusive of a rear wing thirty by forty. The capacity was forty-


five beds and the original number of nurses five, as the institution for a
considerable period was seldom more than half occupied. The cost of
furnishing was undertaken by Mrs. Stratford and with Mrs. Ignatius
Cockshutt and Mrs. A. S. Hardy as associates, the necessary $5,000 was
speedily raised.

Wednesday, February 10th, 1885, was the date of the formal opening
by His Honor John Beverly Robinson, Lieut. Governor of Ontario, and
the event was characterized by much public interest. The gubernatorial
party were met at the Grand Trunk depot by Mayor Scarfe, Mr. Strat-
ford and Dr. Digby, while a guard of honor of one hundred men of the
Dufferin Rifles, stood at attention, under command of Capt. Glenny and
Lieuts. S. Alf. Jones and H. J. McGlashan. Luncheon was partaken at
the home of Mr. Stratford (now the Conservatory of Music) and there
was a house guard of twelve men, under Lieut. Sweet. At the opening
proceedings in the afternoon, the Mayor read an address of civic welcome
to His Honor, and Mr. Stratford also delivered, an address to the Mayor
and Aldermen, at the close of which he handed to Mayor Scarfe “These
title papers which forever make the hospital and grounds surrounding
it the property of Brantford.” The Lieut. Governor, who had been
handed a silver key of the main entrance, finally declared the structure
open, amid loud cheers.

To be used as a Hospital only upon the following con-
Clauses ditions:-

5^ f ! That tne management of the Hospital shall be

strictly non-sectarian in its character and the Institution
be open to all citizens of the City of Brantford, subject of course, to the
rules that may be laid down hereafter for its conduct. That no clergy-
man, priest or member of any religious sect, secret or other society, shall
hold religious or other services within the walls or grounds, except in
the case of a patient who shall request the attendance of such, and
then only for that patient’s personal benefit.

2. That the said lands, tenements and hereditaments, buildings or
grounds, shall never be encumbered or mortgaged by any lien whatever,
and if so encumbered or mortgaged, shall be forfeited at the option of
the said John H. Stratford or his heirs, and shall then become the
property of the said John H. Stratford, or of his heirs, devisees or ap-
pointees, if dead.

3. That the supervision of the affairs of the Hospital shall be in
the hands of Five Governors, the said John H. Stratford being one for
life, he having the right to nominate yearly another, the Mayor of the
day of the City of Brantford, being the third and the Council to elect
yearly from their own body, the other two. At the decease of the said
John H. Stratford, should his brother Joseph survive him, he is to take
his place on the Board of Governors. And the survivor of either of
The Brantford Hospital originally a gift to the city by Mr. and Mrs. John H. Stratford.

The building to the left was the first structure: the building to the extreme right

is the nurses’ residence, built and equipped by the Woman’s Hospital Aid


Mr. John H. Stratford

Mrs. John H. Stratford


them, the said John H. Stratford and Joseph Stratford to have the privi-
lege of nominating by Will, one Life Governor only, to act with four
others, selected by the City Council, and at the death of the survivor’s
appointee, or in default of such appointment under the Will of the
Survivor, the appointment of all the Governors shall rest forever with
the Mayor and Aldermen of the City.

4. That no emolument of any kind shall attach to the office of

5. That the buildings shall always be insured for a sufficient sum
to replace them in case of their destruction by fire.

6. The County of Brant to have the privileges of the Institution,
if the County Council see fit to contribute towards its maintenance a
sum sufficient yearly, as shall, in the opinion of the Governors warrant
the enjoyment by the said County of such privileges.

7. The Hospital to be called for all time the John H. Stratford

8. That the said John H. Stratford may contribute towards the
maintenance of the said Hospital, a yearly sum of Four hundred dollars,
payable quarterly in advance, such payments to commence at its open-
ing and to continue for so long a time as he may elect. The said party
of the second part, Sara Stratford, wife of the said party of the first part,
hereby bars her Dower in said lands.

There being five Governors provided by deed of conveyance, (see
clause 3 of Conditions) and the Warden of the County of Brant to have
a seat at the Board, but without vote.

In the main hall there are the following tablets:


City of Brantford.




John Turner, Architect Schultz Bros., Contractors.








Blessed is he that considereth the poor and needy,
The Lord shall deliver him in the time of trouble.


Mrs. Stratford, having passed away in November, 1919, the Board
of Governors ordered an addition to be placed to this tablet chronicling
her demise and recording the fact of her active part in the inception of
die benefaction.


John H. Stratford, President Dr. J. W. Digby, Vice-President
Alderman L. F. Heyd, Treasurer, Allen Cleghorn, Secretary


John H. Stratford, James W. Digby, M. D. W. J. Scarfe, Mayor

William T Harris, M.D., Alderman, Louis F. Heyd, Alderman

Thos. Lloyd-Jones, Warden County of Brant


Reginald Kenwood, M. D. Egerton Griffin, M.D.C.M.

James W. Digby, M.D.C.M. William C. Corson, M. D.

D. Leslie Philip, M.D. H. J. Cole, M.D.

William T. Harris, M.D.C.M. W. E. Winskell, M.D.

A. J. Kenwood, M.D.C.M. R. Thompson, M.D.

L. Secord, M.D.

In June of 1900, the ratepayers voted the sum of $12,000 for an addi-
tion to the original building and in 1910 Mr. Joseph Stratford consented
to have the name, “John H. Stratford Hospital” changed to “General
Hospital,” and also to have the composition of the Board of Governors
changed to twelve members, as follows:

The Mayor and one other citizen, to be named by the City Council,
but not a member of the latter body.

The Warden and one other to be named by the County Council, but
not a member of the latter body.

One representative from the Brant Medical Association.
One representative from the Woman’s Hospital Aid.
One representative from the Trades and Labor Council.
One representative from the Board of Trade.

Two representatives to be named by the Ontario Government, either
residents of the City of Brantford, or County of Brant.
Joseph Stratford and C. H. Waterous, Life Governors.
In 1912, the new Board asked the ratepayers to vote $85,000 and
the by-law was carried by a substantial majority. The County Council
added $15,000 and with this $100,000 a large new wing was built and
other improvements made. In January of 1920, another vote of $185,000
was asked for the purpose of erecting a new Isolation building and
making extensions to permit the establishment of Maternity and Child-
ren’s Wards. The measure was carried by eleven majority, and the
improvements when completed, will enable the institution to contain two
hundred beds.


The Superintendents from the inception have been Miss Goldie,
Miss Graham, Miss Tolmie (14 years) Miss Carson and Miss Forde,
who still holds office.

The Secretaries Allen Cleghorn, W. G. Killmaster, G. Muirhead,
Miss E. Foster (now Mrs. Dr. Fans,) Miss E. Shaver and Miss E. Pat-
terson, who still holds office.

The first Board under the new order of things established in 1910,
consisted of: Joseph Stratford, (President,) C. H. Waterous, A. K. Bun-
nell, George Watt, Dr. Bell, F. D. Reville, H. Cockshutt, T. H. Preston,
R. Sanderson, W. W. Woods, J. A. Messecar, (Warden,) D. B. Wood,

Present Board C. H. Waterous, (President,) A. K. Bunnell, George
Watt, F. D. Reville, Dr. Secord, H. J. Symons, G. Kippax, Graham
Stratford, E. Pitts, M. MacBride, (Mayor,) F. Rosebrugh, (Warden,) W.
J. Verity.

The Presidents since the inception have been Mr. J. H. Stratford,
Mr. Joseph Stratford, Mr. A. G. Montgomery, (two years), Mr. Joseph
Stratford again and Mr. C. H. Waterous.

In addition to the Superintendent, the staff consists of Miss J. A.
Gibson, Assistant Superintendent; Miss M. Hall, Night Supervisor; Miss
E. Hewitt, Head Nurse, Operating Room; Miss A. Augustus, Public Ward
Supervisor; Miss K. Haycock, Dietician, and a House Doctor.

Mr. John H. Stratford, the original donor, came to Brantford as a
child with his parents in 1844. When a young man he became a partner
of his father in the wholesale drug business and then branched into other
pursuits, finally forming a partnership with Mr. Henry Yates. He was
interested in railway and other contracts and amassed a large estate.
He died on Sunday, February 12, 1888. Mrs. Stratford and the other
members of the household had gone to church and upon their return
found that he had passed ‘away, having presumably burst a blood vessel
during a fit of coughing. He was in his forty-seventh year.


On September 16th, 1916, as a war measure, the edict
Hotels, came into effect in Ontario, which abolished the sale

lave > ana ^g^ an< ] spirituous drinks in the hotel bars and long

before that time the saloons, which did not pretend to
give any accommodation except to the thirsty, had disappeared. In the
early days, drinking of intoxicants was the recognized custom; taverns
were to be found at a distance of every few miles along the main country
roads; almost every village had two or three licensed places, and in the


more populous centres, hostelries were not only exceedingly numerous,
but in addition, many grocery stores had a grog shop department. This
condition of affairs existed in Brantford and Brant County, as well as
everywhere else.

With respect to this matter, the following document
Si used to jj e f oun( j j n tne c j t y ai . c hives, proves of interest:

“William Murphy, Revenue Inspector for the Town of
Brantford, in account current for the Town Council of Brantford, for the
year 1854.

“To gross amount of duties on 53 Inn and Saloon Licenses and Shops
397.10. Ditto on Temperance Licenses 2.10.”

Large as this number of licenses proved, it appears that the town
was quite willing to issue more, for the return of Mr. Murphy contains
the following table in regard to blank licenses received from the Clerk.

Inns 58 Issued 43

Shops 20 Issued . 10

Ale and Beer .. 10 Issued .,

88 53

However, this plan of issuing licenses to anybody, shortly afterwards
came to an end, and on February 25th, 1856, By-law Number 110 was
passed, which provided:

“Every Saloon, or Recess Keeper taking out such license, shall be
required to have one parlour, bar-room (in front) and at least three
oyster stalls sufficiently large to accommodate six persons each and shall
pay for said license the sum of 10 currency and no more.”

This By-law, manifestly was not to the liking of some of the wet souls
for on May 17th, 1856, this petition was forwarded to the Town Fathers
by Mr. Henry Lemmon and two hundred ‘and sixty-one others:
“To the Mayor and Council of the Town of Brantford:

The petition of the undersigned inhabitants of the Town of Brantford
Sheweth :

That your Petitioners have heard with regret that it is the intention
of some members of the Council to introduce a By-law to repeal By-law
110 of this Town, and grant licenses to sell spirituous liquors by the
glass to any person who may apply for the same.

Your petitioners are of the opinion that such a law would have a
very injurious effect upon our town and facilitate the great evil of
drunkenness, which your petitioners had supposed it was the intention of
your Council to suppress, or at least mitigate, by passage of said By-law

Your petitioners therefore pray that you will be pleased to consider
the effects that such a law would produce and not pass any act for the
extension of the great evil of drunkenness.”


The petition had its effect and in 1856 the record shows that only
nine tavern and nine saloon licenses were issued. As the place grew so
did permits and in 1875 not to “exceed sixty” was the record, but the growth
of temperance sentiment finally brought about a gradual deduction until
at the time of abolition in 1916 the licenses issued totalled nine for
hotels: Kerby, American, Belmont, Prince Edward, O’Rdleys’, Ben-
well’s, Bodega, Imperial and Grand Valley, and three shop licenses, on
which premises sale by the glass was prohibited. Fifty-three licenses
in 1854, when the place contained fewer than four thousand people, and
twelve in 1916, with a population of 25,420, was certainly some change
and now the record stands at none.

Early inhabitants used to mention as the first tavern a
Early frame building on the west side of the river, kept by a

Hostelries. man name( j Holly, probably the place near the ford
mentioned by Miss Thompson. Prior to 1838 the first hotel of any pre-
tensions was erected on the corner of Market and Colborne Streets and
bore the name of the “British American.” It was here that later the
stage coaches used to stop. The landlords were successively: Pearson,
W. R. Irish, J. D. Clement, Jonathan Hale and Burley. During the
tenancy of the latter, it was burned down in 1852. A frame tavern in
existence before 1837 stood on the site of the present Belmont Hotel,
Colborne Street. Fire also ultimately wiped out this structure. Some
time before the town was laid out John Lovejoy had a tavern on what is
now the corner of King and Colborne Streets, and the “Brant Hotel,”
located on the south side of Colborne Street, was kept from 1841 until
1844 by J. D. Clement. From the last named date until 1853 “Joe”
James was the landlord, but another of the old time fires also put this
place out of business. A. Huntington had erected a building on the
opposite side of the street, for use as three stores,- and James moved into
this structure, which after occupancy by many landlords, later became the
“Bingham House” and is now the Prince Edward Apartments. Mr.
Bingham was a typical landlord of the English type and his place boasted
patronage among prominent citizens of his period. He was a well read
man and scrupulously careful in the matter of checking excessive drinking
upon his premises. In 1841 two taverns were established in West Brant-
ford by J. Montrass and W. Wilson. Both places existed for many
years and C. Farrell and H. Doyle were among the landlords. The
East Ward also had two hostelries started about the same time, one of
them kept by E. J. Montgomery. In 1859, George Fleming, genial
Englishman, opened a hotel in the large building, corner Dalhousie and
King Streets, once the wholesale hardware establishment of A. Cleghorn


and now occupied by A. F. Dell and other tenants. It was called the
“Brant House” and closed as a hotel in 1871. In 1859 the frame hotel
on Dalhousie Street opposite the Market Square, was burned down while
Job Tripp was landlord. In 1861, a new structure known as the “Pepper
House” took its place and in 1869, J. C. Palmer, who had come here
from Belleville, became the purchaser and changed the name to the
“Commercial Hotel.” In 1872, Mr. Palmer sold out to H. T. Westbrook,
and after many years as a hotel, the property was purchiased by Mr.
F. Cockshutt, who turned it into stores and apartment suites. Where the
American Hotel existed on Dalhousie Street, although on a much
smaller site, Albert G. Hatch first started a hostelry about 1858. In
1862 the “Montreal House,” corner of Market and Marlborough Streets,
was kept by Benjamin Hunn, afterwards Relief Officer, and where the
“Bodega” stands there was a small church.

There was at one time a hotel on the corner of Dalhousie and Market
Streets, where the Bank of Commerce and Royal Loan Buildings now
stand. The building was previously used as a chapel at a rental of
$150 per annum. On October 6th, 1847, the town council moved into
the structure and it then had the high sounding title of “Town Hall.” It
was also used as a fire hall and became a hostelry when the Councillors
transferred to the present building on the Market Square. In later years
Ben Foster had a fruit and confectionery store where the bank stands and
the “City Hotel” occupied the Loan Company site. When railways came,
there were hostelries at the depots.

It is the Kerby House which has had the most notable history. For
considerably over half a century, prominent visitors have been guests
within its walls; there have been many notable banquets and gay dances
in the large dining room, regular troops have been quartered there,
and Sir John Macdonald, Sir Wilfrid Laurier, Graham Bell and other
celebrities have held citizens’ receptions in the large drawing room. It
was built by James Kerby and opened on August 24th, 1854, with a man
named Pope as lessee. The property on which it is located at the corner
of George and Colborne Streets, was at the time a swale and there had to
be a lot of filling before a foundation could be secured. It was a most
ambitious structure, far larger than the present extensive premises for the
building extended a considerable distance up George Street; in fact it
was then the largest hotel in Upper Canada. In an advertisement of
the time it boasted of “accommodation for 500 guests,” and stated:

“The Grand River flows through the town affording to the Sportsman
and Tourist ample means of gratifying their respective tastes, for the
scenery on this noble stream is grand and beautiful, while fish of all
kinds are found in its waters, and its banks abound with game.”


In 1856, J. R. Coulson followed Pope in the management, but Kerby
had been too ambitious in his designs and in 1858 the hostelry was
closed. In 1865 it was offered for sale by the Trust and Loan Com-
pany without finding a purchaser. Finally, the place became used as
headquarters for regular soldiers stationed here and ultimately J. C.
Palmer became the successful proprietor, and for many summers he
succeeded in making it headquarters for Southern visitors from across the
border. Mr. Palmer left for Toronto to open the Palmer House there.
He was succeeded by Mr. R. Sibbitt and finally by Mr. W. H. Littlefield,
the present proprietor.

The hostel ries named prove only a tithe of the many in existence.


The first record of any licensed public entertainment

Amusement in ^ Town is contained in this resolution, passed by

the Council, in March, of 1848:

“Moved by Mr. Downs and seconded by Mr. Clement. Resolved that
Mr. Samuel Thrift be allowed to perform, for gain, in this town, his
recitations, dances, etc., for two nights only, viz. on the 27th and 28th
instant, upon payment of ten shillings by way of license.”

The building in which this entertainer of seventy-two years ago sought
to cajole the nimble shillings and sixpences from the inhabitants is not
recorded, but his performance probably took place in the small structure
then upon the Market Square.

However, even prior to this, in 1837-8, the officers and soldiers of
portions of the 73rd regular regiment, sent here during the rebellion
period, improvised a place of entertainment in the upstairs portion of a
frame building which used to stand on about the site of the present Heyd

In 1850, the Town Hall became available and on March 12th, 1855,
the “Kerby House” Hall was licensed. In later years, when Mr. J. C.
Palmer became proprietor, he introduced a stage, drop curtain, and
scenery and the place became known as the “Palmer Hall.” Very many
years ago it was converted into bedrooms.

In 1866, the most ambitious move hitherto chronicled in the way of
an amusement place was inaugurated by Mr. James Ker, when at a cost
of $15,000, he built “Ker’s Hall,” on the present site of McFarland’s
store, Colborne Street. Attractions in those days were hard to get and
those which did come were not as a rule overwhelmed with patronage, so
that at the end of two years, Mr. Ker was glad to sell the place, at a
sacrifice price, to the Baptists of the Town, for use as a tabernacle. The


record of the committee appointed to negotiate for the congregation in
the matter was that his price was $6,000, but that he was “willing to give
off $1,500.” Some ten years later the property was .acquired by Mr.
Joseph Stratford, and at large expense, he turned it into an Opera House.
All up-to-date theatres in those days had bars for the convenience of
thirsty ones, between the acts, and one was established at the end of the
entrance way. The opening took place in November, of 1881, and the
first play presented was “Only a Farmer’s Daughter.” There was a
crowded house and formal speeches. The place continued under the
control of Mr. Stratford until 1902, when on account of other business
interests he transferred the management to Mr. Frank C. Johnson. Asso-
ciated with the latter were his three sons, Frank C. Johnson, Jr., Secretary-
Treasurer, Walter Johnson, Musical Director, and Harry Johnson.

This theatre was destroyed by an early morning fire in 1907 and Mr.
Johnson then made arrangements to transfer the Thespian art to the
present building on West Street. The structure in earlier days was
erected by local enthusiasts as a curling and skating rink and many a
time have the pleading cries to “Bring her on” been uttered by anxious
skips, in what is now the auditorium. A large and substantial building,
it lent itself readily to the necessary transformation and the place was
launched on its new career under the auspices of the “Brantford Opera
House Company,” with Mr. A. J. Wilkes, as President. Mr. Johnson
withdrew in 1915 and was succeeded as Lessee and Manager by Mr.
James T. Whitaker. Under his auspices still further improvements have
been made. The seating capacity is 1,400.

The first moving picture show to be launched in Brant-
ford was inaugurated by Mr. B. Allen and his two sons,
The Movies. T , , T f , . . , .. .

Jule and Jay J. Ihey opened to the public in a store on

the south side of Colborne St., nearly opposite King on November 10th,
1906, and named the place “The Theatorium.” The so called auditorium,
like just about all of them everywhere else, contained a few chairs, a pro-
jection machine that sometimes worked and often did not, and a few
hundred feet of film equipment. The truth of the matter was that in
the early days the vast majority of those who went into the business
did so with the idea of securing the ready money while the rage pre-
vailed, and few of them at that time sensed the probable growth and
permanency of this new amusement device. The Allen’s evidently had
broader views, and subsequent events have abundantly justified their
faith in this new form of diversion. They suffered an early set back in
the matter of the “Theatorium,” for one afternoon when the place was
opened it was found that the building was full of an accumulation of


natural gas and an explosion followed which wrecked the building,
causing the death of one man and shattering the windows across the
road, of the Paterson Biscuit factory. Nothing daunted, the Allen’s
opened “Wonderland,” located on George Street, across from the Market
and subsequently “The Gem,” opposite Cromptons, as a vaudeville and
picture house. Later they sold out their interests and became concerned
in film distribution. Deciding that the West presented a good field for
movie theatres, they located in Calgary and soon established a chain of
houses. Their all round interests reaching large dimensions, headquar-
ters were removed to Toronto and in that city they now own, or have
building at this writing, ten theatres, with some forty others in various
cities. They have also invaded the States with houses in Cleveland and
Detroit involving a four million dollar investment. Such, in brief, is
the story of a moving picture romance, which commenced in Brantford,
and has in it as many elements of surprising achievement as any film ever
handled by the Allen’s. It is worthy of note that Mr. J. B. Cronk, super-
visor of their theatre interests is a Brantford boy, who started as an
operator in one of their early branches here.

In December, 1908, Mr. Ernest Moule came to Brantford from London
and opened a “Movie” in a store on Colborne Street, owned by Mr. J. Y.
Morton. The venture went under the name of “The Lyric.” Later he
moved across the road and opened “The Apollo,” next to the Belmont

For many years there stood on Dalhousie Street, a large building
next to the American Hotel, known as the “Hext Carriage Factory.” Mr.
J. O’Reilly, then the landlord of the hostelry named, conceived the idea
of turning the place into a moving picture habitation and commenced
the work of making the necessary changes. The outlay proving too large
for him to negotiate, Mr. VanDusen of the village of Scotland became
interested. The outcome was “The Brant,” and Mr. Moule was offered
the management which he accepted, the opening taking place in 1913.
The following year Mr. Moule assumed entire control, and the subse-
quent record was most successful.

“The Gem” had become the property of a local company composed
of Messrs. E. Symons, T. Hendry, F. Gott, N. Andrews and Hunter. They
also started an open air theatre on King Street which ran for one season,
and then in 1911 was roofed in and became “The Colonial.” In 1917
the company in question sold out to Mr. Moule who made many struc-
tural improvements and rechristened the place “The Rex.”

In 1919, the growth of the city, together with the greater facilities
afforded outside residents to reach here by radial lines and autos, com-


menced to make Brantford more and more of an amusement centre and
thus the scheme took shape for a much larger movie and vaudeville es-
tablishment than had yet been. A company was formed with this
executive: P. H. Secord, Roy Secord, (President), Claude Secord (Vice
President), W. T. Henderson, and E. Moule, Secretary-Treasurer and
Managing Director.

The theatre, erected at an outlay of a quarter of a million dollars, is
admittedly one of the finest amusement places in Canada. The main en-
trance way from Dalhousie Street leads to foyer, offices and lobbies,
which occupy an area of 132 by 45 feet and the auditorium is 156 feet
by 96 feet, with accommodation for sixteen hundred people, all seats
on one floor. The ceiling is suspended from the roof by a steel girder
system, so that there are no intervening pillars to mar the view of the
stage. The rest and lounge rooms for the public and the qularters for
performers are of a most adequate description and the entire design of
the place is one of dignity, and charm. Notable opening ceremonies took
place on Monday evening, December 22nd, 1919.

“The Brant,” which had been secured by the Allen’s was remodeled
and decorated, the opening under the new auspices taking place Monday
night, February 2nd, 1920. Thus in the plenitude of their success, they
are again represented in the city where their first humble efforts com-

In addition to its picturesque setting and tree lined
Parks, Play- streets, Brantford is also richly endowed in these es-
grounds and sent i a i s a f act f or w hi c h the Parks Board deserve much
Breathing ,.

Spots. credlt ‘

VICTORIA PARK. Not so very long ago, Victoria Square

was the only “show place” possessed by Brantford, and for many previous
years it was an open and neglected spot. Very old residents can re-
member when Dan Rice’s circus exhibited there not in any sense the
elaborate three ringed performance, demanded by the youth of the pres-
ent time ‘and the small boys of that day used it as a play ground, just
as small boys in all ages have appropriated all open spaces for a sim-
ilar purpose. It was at about this period that the first Dr. Digby was
using the present Court House square as la potato patch and for the
growth of other vegetables. In 1864 the city erected a fence, with an iron
railing, around the property and there were gates at the four corners.
Intersecting paths were laid out by Quentin Johnson and a number of
forest trees were planted and left to live or die, as chance might decide.
This condition for ia lengthy period characterized what has now become
the chief beauty “spot of the city, with the Brant memorial as the central


attraction. The fountain was the gift of Mr. J. K. Osborne, for
many years identified with the Massey Harris Company.

ALEXANDRA PARK, received even less attention than Victoria. In early
days it was known as the “East Brantford Market Square,” and there was
an effort to make it revenue producing in the same manner as the other
market. In this respect, there is the following record on file at the City
Hall under date of June 25th, 1849:

“Lots leased in East Brantford Market Square, Colborne Street from
West corner:

T. Jackson, 30 ft. 5, 9s, 9d. per annum.
B. C. Heasley, 30 ft. 3, 10s, 9d. per annum.
Thos. Friend, 30 ft. 3, 18s, 9d. per annum.

During the sixties the Government appropriated the north side for the
erection of a large frame Drill Hall. About the year 1880, the roof
was blown off during a violent windstorm and the building entered on a
stage of collapse. Finally the square was suitably laid out.

Later there came an awakening throughout Ontario for the improve-
ment of towns and cities by the acquisition of park properties, and public
playgrounds, and Brantford was one of the first cities to organize for that
purpose. In this regard the City Council of 1900 passed a by-law creat-
ing a Parks Board to consist of six members and the Mayor for the time
being, commissioners to be on a three year term and two retiring annually,

The first board consisted of Frank Cockshutt, Edward L. Goold, Wil-
liam Glover, Franklin Grobb, the late John J. Hawkins, the late Huron
Nelles and Mayor D. B. Wood. It is worthy of note that Messrs. Cock-
shutt, Glover and Grobb, have since served continuously. The newly ap-
pointed Board at once set vigorously to work and the splendid result is
manifested in all portions of the City.

MOHAWK PARK is admittedly, one of the finest natural parks in the
Province. Heavily timbered, but with fine open spaces, it has the addi-
tional advantage of location upon a small lake from the high bank of
which a magnificent view is afforded of a fine agricultural district with
the historic Mohawk Church included in the range of vision. The Street
Railway Company at one time had a theatre and other amusements there
together with a large bicycle track and sports ground with grand stand, but
the venture was allowed to lapse and in 1915, the property was pur-
chased on behalf of the city, from the Lovejoy estate, for $25,000. There
have been entrances and many other improvements, at the cost of some
thousands more, but the money outlay does not begin to represent the
asset to the city, for all time to come. At present plans are under con-
sideration for still further enhancing the attributes of this great popular


resort. The formal opening under civic auspices took place on Labor
Day, September, 1915, and over four thousand people were in attendance.

AGRICULTURAL PARK, formerly the site of the Southern Fair with the
track surrounded by stables, for horse training purposes, and the arena,
the scene of many fierce lacrosse contests; now the mecca of baseball and
football enthusiasts, was deeded to the City of Brantford in 1901, as a gift
to the people from the members of the Cockshutt family, in memory of
their father, the late Ignatius Cockshutt. A donation was also added for
necessary improvements. The original area was nineteen acres, but the
Parks Board, have added to the same by purchase.

JUBILEE TERRACE, constitutes one of the best illustrations of what
civic improvement can accomplish. Where the Drill Hall now stands,
there used to be a long wooden warehouse abutting on Brant Avenue,
with a small broom factory in one portion of it. In the rear, along the
river bank, there existed some ramshackle frame dwelling places, and
on the corner where the memorial stands to the heroes of the Boer War,
there was the brick hotel and umbrella shop of J. P. Excell. There had
been a partial attempt to remedy matters and the construction of the Arm-
ouries helped, but it is to the Parks Board that the credit belongs
for taking full advantage of the opportunity offered. In 1901, for $1,000
they purchased the Biggar property and in 1902, for $4,000 the Excell
building. The many citizens who in the hot summer days take ad-
vantage of the breeze from the river in the open space thus created and
along the terraces, and the countless other residents who take just pride
in the unobstructed view at the foot of Colborne Street, with the mem-
orial to Boer War heroes silhouetted against the sky line, can abundantly
realize what is owing to the commissioners in this one instance alone.
The statue by Mr. McCarthy, of Ottawa, is of impressive design.

SCHOOL FOR BLIND GROUNDS. Brantford is particularly fortunate in
having the magnificent School for the Blind Grounds in the Northern
section, to add to her notable open spaces. The Ontario Government
has allowed four acres, fronting on St. Paul’s Avenue to be used for a
bowling green and tennis courts, while the cricketers also have a crease
within the property. The outlook from all portions of the well laid
out grounds is most charming. To the west, the view of the Grand
River, lies unobstructed; to the north are the rolling hills and on the
South is the beautiful residential district of St. Pauls Avenue, Dufferin
Avenue and the surrounding area.

TUTELA PARK AND PLAYGROUND consists of four acres of land, almost
a square, enclosing two level plateaus with a hill rising to a height of
about thirty feet, crossing the land diagonally. The grounds adjoin one


of the largest public schools in the city. This and the fact that it is
adjacent to several of the largest industrial plants, has made the place
very popular as a playground.

WATERWORKS PARK AND PLAYGROUND. This area of five acres was
donated by the Water Commissioners and is of great value in the rapidly
growing manufacturing district of the Holmedale.

IROQUOIS PLAYGROUND. This is a two acre area which supplies the
needs of the youngsters in the far eastern section of the city.

WEST STREET PLAYGROUND. This consists of a property over two acres
in extent, just beyond Greenwood Cemetery, and serves a large area.

NORTH OXFORD STREET PARK. This is a property of two acres adjac-
ent to the Grand River, filled in by the Park Commissioners. A bathing
place is located here.

CONNAUGHT PLAYGROUND. This has an area of six acres and has
just recently been opened on Terrace Hill.

THE BELL PARK, is referred to elsewhere, and with regard to other
breathing spots there is no need to enlarge. Herewith is a list of proper-
ties now under the supervising care of the Commissioners, who are also
planning very carefully for the future.


Mohawk Park 55.

Victoria Park 1.60

Alexandra Park 2.00

Agricultural Park 27.50

Jubilee Park and Parade Ground 2.25

Gore Park, bounded by King, Nelson and West Streets 03

St. Andrews Park, Brant Ave., and Palmerston Ave 20

Iroquois Playground Chatham Street 2.00

Tutela Park and Playground 4.00

South Oxford Street Park 67

West Street Playground 2.75

Waterworks Park and Playground 5.00

Bell Homestead 14.00

Greenwood Park, West Street 10

North Oxford Street Park 2.00

O. S. B. Playground 4.00

Lake Erie & Northern West Mill Street 50

Connaught Playground, Grand Street 6.00

Bell Gardens, West Street 1.00

Total 130.60


In all instances present value has far exceeded purchase price. For
instance, Tutela playground of four acres was purchased for $3,750; West
Street playground two and a half acres for $1,200 and so on. In all,
the various properties are easily worth a quarter of a million dollars.
This is the material aspect; of their value to this and future generations
there can he no computation.

The present Parks Board consists of F. W. Ryerson, (Chairman),
Frank Cockshutt, William Glover, Franklin Grobb, T. Quinlan, John
Kerr, and the Mayor.

Mr. J. J. Hawkins was Secretary for many years and upon his death
was succeeded in that capacity by Mr. W. Glover. Mr. J. C. Waller is the




Long before Champlain’s era a large trade was undoubtedly con-
ducted between the Indians who exchanged, by way of barter, products
and devices peculiar to various tribes and regions. For instance, some
could produce better arrow heads and spear tips, than others; animal
skins could be more readily secured in one area than another, and so on
with regard to copper, shells and a variety of items. As far as the Atti-
wandarons were concerned, they were noted for the growing of the
tobacco plant, which they carefully dried and kept as free from moisture
<as possible. To this end, bags were used of deer skin or birch bark, and
also baskets neatly woven of roots and grasses. The trade routes con-
sisted of well defined trails and many traversed the Brant County region ;
in fact it may be taken for granted that some of the existing main roads
here are simply successors to those routes.

When Ontario first commenced to be settled much use
Introduction was made of the great natural highways to be found in
01 Stag tne magnificent lakes and rivers. Many drawbacks,

however, attended these ready-made avenues, and portages
were both frequent and laborious. It was the custom of Governor Simcoe,
for example, to travel from Kingston to Detroit, in a large bark canoe,
manned by twelve chasseurs of his own regiment, and followed by another
boat, in which the tents and provisions were carried. The rule was to
halt for dinner and in the evening to pitch the tent. The water routes,
however, convenient as they were for communication between distant
regions, had to be supplemented by wagon roads, as fast as the inland
regions became at all settled. Where swampy places existed, and there
were many, round trunks of trees were laid side by side across them, to
prevent the wagon wheels from sinking in the mire. The earth roads
were passably good, only when covered with the snows of winter, or dried
by the summer sun; and even then, a thaw or a rain made them all but
impassable. In the autumn and spring they were converted into a mass
of liquid mud. It was practically a misnomer to say that they had any


upkeep. In 1831, every male inhabitant not rated on the assessment
roll was liable to two days labour on the road; a person rated at not
more than 25, to three days labour; if over 50 and less than 75, four
days; 100 five days; 200 seven days; 300 nine days;
400 eleven days; 500 twelve days. This labor was languidly perform-
ed and when possible, evaded altogether. For quite a period, the modes
of travel were by horse back and ox cart. Finally there came the stage
coaches and they were characterized by lack of comfort, and often times
very slow progress. In 1837, a writer of the period described the Can-
adian stage coach as being “A heavy lumbering vehicle, well calculated to
live in roads where any decent carriage must needs founder.” These were
the better sort on the few main roads which then existed. Another kind
used on cross country thoroughfares were “Large oblong wooden boxes,
formed of a few planks nailed together, and placed on wheels, in which
you enter by the window, there being no door to open or shut, and no
springs.” On two or three wooden seats, suspended on leather straps, the
passengers were perched. The behaviour of the better sort of coach
is described by this writer as consisting of “A reeling (and tumbling along
the detestable road, pitching like a scow among the breakers of a lake
storm.” The road was knee deep in mud, “the forests on either side
dark, grim, and impenetrable.”

“Bad as this was, there were men who, contrasting it with their rec-
ollections and experience might be excused for thinking it a very accept-
able mode of travelling. They could remember the time when it was
impossible to thread their way among the stumps of trees and fallen tim-
ber that encumbered the roads, with a rude cart and a yoke of oxen.
Some were passable only on horseback, and, but for the finding now and
then of trunks of trees in swampy places, the riders would have been
unable to get across many a morass.”

The rate at which it was possible to travel in
.expensive stage coaches depended on the elements. In

Spring, when the roads were water choked and
rut galled, progress might be reduced to two miles an hour, for several
miles on the worst sections. The coaches were liable to become embedded
in the mud and the passengers had to dismount and assist in prying them
out, by means of rails, obtained from the fences. Various forms of
accidents occurred, probably more per cent than on the present rail-
roads. The cost of travelling, in fares, to say nothing of time and ex-
penses on the way, where the driver was often in league with the tavern
keepers, was nearly three times what it is on railways. Stories of in-
credible speed are on record in the matter of sleighing. For instance, it
is related that Lord Sydenham by means of successive relays of horses,


travelled from Toronto to Montreal in twenty-six hours. Another story
consists of a race between Boston and Portland drivers as to which could
carry the English mail most rapidly to Montreal. The Portland driver
made the distance, which is nearly three hundred miles, in twenty hours.
The result of this contest is said to have been one of the causes that led
to the adoption of Portland as the terminus of the Railway from Mon-
treal instead of Boston.

As far as Brantford was concerned the main coach line was between
Hamilton and London, via Burford. Mr. J. Y. Morton, who came here
in 1851 from Montreal, relates that he took passage by the paddle wheel
steamer “Passport” and by canal and lake, reached Hamilton, after a
lengthy voyage. At the last named place the stage was taken for Brant-
ford, and there were relays of four horses every ten miles, with a tavern
at each stopping place. It was midnight before the coach drew up at
Brantford headquarters, a frame hotel, then located on the corner of
Market and Colborne Streets, where a drug store has for the past half
century been situated. The landlord of the hostelry at that period was
Mr. Jonathan Hale, who in later life became Express Agent here.


During the period that Brantford was emerging from
Grand River the village state, water became the main channel for

Navigation freight and passenger transportation, in and out of the
Co. i

place. .

This sounds like a phantasmal assertion to residents of the present
time, but some seventy years ago “The Grand River Navigation Co.” was
a very real and important factor in the daily life, and growing impor-
tance of the community.

When the Welland Canal, that notable undertaking for connecting the
waters of Lakes Erie and Ontario, was in course of construction, much
difficulty was experienced in the building of an entrance lock from Lake
Erie to the main channel of the canal. The excavation work kept filling
in and to overcome the difficulty a dam was thrown across the Grand
River. This served to raise the waters of that stream to a sufficient
height for a lateral feeder to the main canal and also allowed shipping
to pass through, via Port Maitland, into the canal proper. The success
of the scheme appealed to the wide-awake Brantfordites of that day,
and the possibility of making use of the Grand for local purposes com-
menced to be talked of. At that period, the river constituted quite a large
and steadily flowing stream, navigable the year round. There had not
then been much of a clearance of woodland in the upper reaches, and


systematic drainage methods were non-existent. A waterway to Lake Erie
and Buffalo certainly presented great possibilities, and a project to this
end commenced” to take tangible shape. A company was finally formed
and appears to have been composed of the following shareholders.

Geo. Washington Whitehead, 20 shares; Absalom Shade, 30 shares;
John A. Wilkes, 20 shares; Wm. Richardson, 20 shares; Wm. Muirhead,
10 shares; Thomas Butler, 2 shares; Allen N. Macnab, 120 shares;
Thomas M. Jones, 20 shares; Hon. Wm. Allen, 10 shares; G. A. Clarke,
20 shares; Lewis Burwell, 8 shares; A. Huntington, 12 shares; Reuben
Leonard, 2 shares; Henry Liston, 1 share; Florentine Mayhills, 2 shares;
James Gilpin, 12 shares; Jedediah Jackson, 20 shares; B. Fair, 4 shares;
David Thompson, 2,000 shares; Andrew Thompson, 24 shares; Benjamin
Canty, 50 shares; Thomas Merritt, Jr. 100 shares; Wm. Fish, 25 shares;
S. R. Squires, 20 shares; James Black, 10 shares; Wm. Forde, 20 shares;
Wm. Hamilton Merritt, 2,000 shares; Samuel Street, 20 shares; Seth
Hurd, 4 shares; Andrew A. Benjamin, 2 shares; Marcus Blair, 20 shares;
Jacob Turner, 25 shares; Samuel H. Farnsworth, 100 shares; C. Alexan-
der Foster, 8 shares; Nathan Gage, 5 shares; Andrew Sharp, 4 shares;
Hezekiah Davis, 20 shares; Six Nation Indians, 1,760 shares; Jos. Mon-
tague, 4 shares; Henry Yates, 200 shares; Wm. K. Ewing, 16 shares;
W. C. Chase, 50 shares; Robt. E. Burns, 100 shares; Geo. Rykert, 20
shares; Jas. Little, 80 shares; Capt. A. Drew, 100 shares; Richard Martin
20 shares; Hon. Peter Robinson, 25 shares; Atty-General Damson, 25
shares; A. Brown, 10 shares; J. H. McKenzie, 50 shares; John P. Mat-
thews, 2 shares; Francis Webster, 20 shares; James Matthew Whyte, 160
shares; Wm. Brooks King, 135 shares; Sarah B. Parton, 25 shares; Leslie
Battersby, 15 shares; Thomas Blakney, 10 shares; Calvin Martin, 4
shares; George Kafer, 20 shares; M. MacKenzie, 50 shares.

It was decided to improve the river channel by a suc-
Slack Water cess i on O f l eve ls, calculated to permit of “slack water”

navigation, but when this work was completed, the dis-
concerting fact was discovered that the upper level did not afford enough
depth for the passage of boats nearer than the best part of two miles
from the settlement. Not to be thwarted, the projectors decided upon
the digging of the canal from the town to the point on the river where
the locks still exist. Then the stream was dammed at the canal entrance,
near the present Lome Bridge, the water turned in and the job was
complete. That was a red letter day, when the head gates were first open-
ed, and the rejoicing was carried on until the early morning hours.

Wheel steamers and barges, plied between Buffalo and Brantford and
some of the wheat, shipped from here, went to large mills situated at St.
Catharines, via the Welland Canal feeder at Dunnville. The offices and
the landing wharf were on the spot at the Market St. Bridge where the
Wood Mill now stands, and there were other wharfs on the canal back of


the Colborne Street stores, in connection with four or five big warehouses
Wheat used to be teamed here from nearly as far as London, and for
a radius of a very large number of miles around. Sometimes, at the fall
of the year, there would be over a mile of such teams waiting their
turn for unloading. In connection with the towing of the barges down
the canal by horses, the official deeds with regard to all adjacent lands
read, “One chain reserved for a tow path on both banks.”
Freight Th e following table serves to show the freight operations

Carried. of the company in 1849 and 1850.

Flour 31228 barrels 25284 barrels

Pork 90 barrels 221 barrels

Whiskey, beer etc 246 barrels 155 barrels

Ashes, (pot and pearl) 75 barrels 91 barrels

Wheat 175174 bushels 223651 bushels

Potatoes 450 bushels 196 bushels

Stone 126 toise

Castings 15 tons 1^4 tons.

Bricks 19000 No.

Horses 3 No. 8 No.

Sheep 11 No.

Square pine timber 58280 cubic feet 3140 cub. ft.

Square oak timber 77827 cubic feet 236789 cub. ft.

Saw logs 29033 No. 19361 No.

Sawn lumber 12624659 feet 13043031 feet

Staves 5500 No. 31000 No.

Lime 100 bushels 6 bushels

Firewood 366 cords 517^ cords

Shingles 144 M. 224y 2 M.

Oats 13378 bushels

Malt 1016 bushels

Barley 3000 tons

Bran and Shorts 132 tons 6y 2 tons

Number of Steamboats arrived

and departed 56 111

Scows, do 598 824

A large portion of the lumber, square timber and saw logs, was ship-
ped below Brantford.

Revenue from tolls, 1849 1843 9 9

Revenue from tolls, 1850 1959 12 3

Rent of hydraulic privileges under lease 1156 10

Rent of warehouse and other sites 137 7

The annual report of 1854-5, shows the conveyance of

Sold For 19,369,236 feet of lumber, 421,191 bushels of wheat, etc.,

One Dollar. . . , .. ..

as items in a lengthy list. However, railway competition

had started and the returns commenced to fall away. The company


began to borrow money, and becoming more and more involved, appealed
to the town for assistance. The citizens had already lent their help
to the Buffalo and Goderich Railway, but they still held loyally to the
need of water competition and agreed to advance $600,000 to improve
the works. The By-law had passed and was actually ready for signature
when fire destroyed the Buffalo & Goderich Railway shops and the
Council withdrew the Navigation grant in order to give a bonus for the
rebuilding of the railway works. Later the Council loaned the enter-
prise $200,000, taking a first mortgage on all the works. The town fin-
ally foreclosed the mortgage and in June, 1861, became possessors.
The works were then very much out of repair and the tolls had dwindled
to almost nothing, in fact the main source of the small revenue came
from water rents. The Corporation soon concluded that it had secured
a white elephant of large variety. Spring freshets used to make dam,
and other repairs a frequent necessity, and the upshot was that under a
deed of conveyance dated July 9, 1875, Mr. Alfred Watts entered into
possession of the entire outfit for “the sum of One Dollar to the said Cor-
poration, well and truly paid by the said party of the second part, the
receipt whereof is hereby acknowledged.” Brantford had previously sold
the upper portion of the works to the Haldimand Navigation Company
for $10,000. Mr. Watts, for his part, agreed to keep in good repair, the
dam, locks, and canal banks and also to allow the canal basin to be used
for waste water, etc., and to afford access over Grand River Navigation
lands for sewers and drains. Thus for one dollar and many liabilities,
works were handed over which had cost hundreds of thousands, but they
had served an undoubted and valuable purpose in giving Brantford its
first commercial impetus. Mr. Watts, whose chief interest at the period
of purchase was vested in what was known as the “White Mill,” situated
just across the canal from the foot of Alfred Street bridge, found that the
upkeep entailed a vast amount of his time and money. Subsequently the
water power at the upper lock gates was used by a local power and light-
ing company, and in later years, the right of way along the canal bank
was sold for a goodly sum to the Brantford & Hamilton Radial Co., for in-
gress to the city. Mohawk Lake is also a legacy of the canal scheme.

One of the passenger steamers bore the name of “The
Used to be Red j acket? ” an d the other that of “The Queen.” A cit-
izen who was at one time purser on the latter is still a
resident here Mr. George H. Wilkes, who, despite the fact that he is
in his eighty-fifth year, still retains an alert mind and much bodily
activity. He was seventeen years old, when he assumed the position, and
in relating his navigation experiences, said.


“The Queen was a paddle wheel steamer with the wheels on the in-
side at the stern. On her main deck was situated the boiler and engine,
and the passenger capacity was about forty souls. The crew consisted
of a Master, mate, one engineer, two firemen, two deck hands, two wheel-
men, steward, stewardess, clerk or purser, and cook. We used to leave
Brantford at 7 a.m. and if we had good luck, would be in Buffalo next
morning. However, we often got stuck. The Queen was top heavy and
in a high wind it was difficult to hold her head, as she only drew three
feet of water. The consequence was that under such conditions, she would
frequently get on shallows and have to be poled off. There were two
good staterooms and capital cabins, while the meals were excellent. The
wharf, at which passengers embarked, and disembarked, was back of Col-
borne Street, and the approach was down the alley way next the prem-
ises now occupied by a Chinese restaurant. There were, of course, other
landing places at Newport and different villages en route.”

Mr. Wilkes still possesses the “Queen” ledger. One item reads,
“George H. Wilkes, shipped as Clerk 27th April 1853, at $30 per month.”
Other items are as follows:

“J. C. Haywood, shipped as Master, August 14, 1852, at $50 per

“A. B. Sutherland, shipped as Mate, at $26 per month.”
“William Magraw, shipped as steward, at $10 per month.”
“N. B. Sutherland, shipped as Engineer, at $20 per month.”
“Al. Green, shipped as deck hand, at $18 per month.”
“James Newstadt, shipped as wheelman, at $18 per month.”
“John Magraw, shipped as wheelman, at $16 per month.”
“W. Lambier, shipped as fireman, at $16 per month.”
“Robert Weyms, shipped as fireman, at $16 per month.”
“D. Carrol, shipped as cook, at $15 per month.”
“Thos. Smithers, shipped as Master, 26 April, 1853.”
“Sarah Green, shipped as lady’s maid.”

The record does not show that the latter received any stipulated salary,
so that the ubiquitous tip was evidently not an unknown quantity in those
early days.

There was great interest and excitement at the passenger wharf when
the paddle wheelers arrived and departed the most notable events of the
day in the then small community.


Beaching for Although Brantfordites possessed the Grand River Nav-
Railways. igation Company, they were not slow to recognize the


potential value of the railways which were commencing to be projected in
Canada. Thus it was that in the early fifties the same enterprising spirit
which had encompassed a waterway, also led to the planning of a line to
Buffalo, with a terminus at Goderich, a route at the period which was ex-
pected to develp into a great through way. With this end in view, the
citizens borrowed $400,000 from the Provincial Government, taking stock
to that amount, and also interested Buffalo capitalists. In addition
$100,000 was voted for the shops. The financial difficulties were great
and at one time, construction gangs, who were short of pay and actual
provisions in their camps, came to town in an excited body. A special
Council meeting was summoned, and when one member suggested the
calling out of the militia, Mayor Matthews, in characteristic fashion, ex-

“We’ll shoot those men with barrels of flour; that’s the ammunition
they need.”

This sensible plan was followed, and matters tided over. As the rails
commenced to near the settlement, there was great interest, and the late
Sheriff Watt, during the course of some reminiscences which he wrote
twenty years ago, said:

“‘We wonder how many of the pupils remain who attended the little
school, which then occupied the west wing of the old Central, or who re-
member the occasion, when the first whistle of a locomotive was heard in
Brantford? The construction train had come up during school hourfe,
through what was then the “swamp” below the cemetery, to where the
“Y” now is. That whistle, you may be sure, aroused the curiosity and
exercised the soul of the small boy, who, as well as many of his
elders, had never before heard the toot of an engine The old City bell,
or the Waterous foundry triangle, were the only calls which had hitherto
disturbed his youthful mind. No wonder the pedagogue, Robinson by
name, a genuine knight of the birch, could not keep the attention of the
boys, and when recess came there was a veritable stampede down to the
swamp to view the wonderful new arrival. Of course recess did not af-
ford enough time to fully inspect its many wonders, and take in its toot
at short range, so a small regiment of boys were greeted with a dose of
birch when they returned to the care of the dominie. However, if memory
serves, the small boy sentiment was that the view was worth the punish-

I’riday January 13th, 1854. witnessed the final opening

^L **? of the “Buffalo and Brantford Railway,” and it was made

Celebration. , , T . , ,.

a gala day. Notwithstanding very inclement weather,

twelve thousand people assembled at the little depot to await the arrival
of trains conveying the invited guests from Buffalo and intermediate
points. Previously there had been a procession headed by the Philhar-


monic Band, and marshalled by George Babcock, and assistants. Short-
ly after two o’clock the trains arrived, and were received with loud cheers,
firing of cannon and other demonstrations of rejoicing. The delegation
from the Bison city consisted of some five hundred people, including
the Mayor and Councillors, and Buffalo firemen, in splendid uniform.
In the Round House there was a vast concourse, and congratulatory
speeches were made, including addresses by the Mayors of Buffalo and
Brantford, (G. S. Wilkes). At the close the procession re-formed, and
was finally dispersed at the Market Square. The Buffalo firemen were
entertained by the local fire companies and the Oddfellows, at a dinner
in a large new building, which had been erected on the corner of Market
and Colborne Streets, and the Mayor, and Corporation did the honors at
another banquet in the old Town Hall. At eight o’clock in the evening,
there was a display of fireworks in front of the Court House, and at night
a grand ball was held in the second story of the machine shops. The dec-
orations were elaborate and two bands supplied die music the Philhar-
monic, and -a Cotillion band from Buffalo. There were fifteen hundred
participants, and festivities were prolonged until the early morning.
Only a short time elapsed before the shops were destroyed by fire and
the municipality borrowed another $100,000 from the Government in
order to rebuild them.

The road was a losing proposition from the start and matters went
from bad to worse until in 1857-8 the trains stopped running altogether,
and the rails commenced to rust. Brantfordites, who desired to travel
by the Great Western, then had to take stage vehicles run between this
place and Paris. Finally about 1860 an English Company got hold of the
road, and matters were well run under Mr. Carter, with the late Mr.
Arthur Savage as road-master. The late Mr. John Elliott, and the late
Mr. Henry Yates were prominent in connection with the construction of
this railway, and the reconstruction. In the early seventies, a broker
who was afterwards found to represent the G. T. R. obtained the city
stock at sixty-five cents, and the road went to that company.

Meanwhile those earlier citizens, with a shortsightedness
Missing the not usually characteristic of them, let another opportun-
z? e ^ ity escape, which cost the community a large sum of

money to partially rectify and for years occasioned
much public inconvenience. The ambitious scheme had been proposed
of the “Great Western Railway,” with head offices at Hamilton. Thd
line was projected to run from Niagara Falls, via Hamilton to London,
and Windsor, and Brantfordites expected that their thriving burgh would
be on the route as a matter of course. In fact so strongly did they feel


this that the idea of giving any bonus was roundly scouted, and, as the
result, this place was left out in the cold.

The road was built via Harrisburg and Paris, and the former village
was regarded as so certain to become a place of importance that a plan
was actually prepared showing a market square and many streets.

The lack of easier access to the Great Western main line
*-” e _ was continually felt and the ultimate outcome was that

arris Durg ^ corporation carried a bonus of $75,000 for the con-
Brancn. . . , , TT . , . , ,

struction of a branch to Harrisburg, together with another

bonus of $32,000 to have the Grand Trunk maintain shops at this point.
The Harrisburg arrangement was a thorn in the flesh to Brantfordites for
a great many years. Local trains would leave here on time to accord with
the main line schedule but, especially in winter, there was often a wait
of two, and sometimes three hours, in quarters which were the reverse of
palatial. However there was the compensation that Brantfordites, real-
izing their sidetracked condition, hustled for industries, while other main
line places were content to wait for those that didn’t come.

Another line was next projected by enterprising citizens
Brantfprd which was afterwards known as the “Brantford, Tillson-
And Till- b and Lake Erie Road Mr G H Wilkes was the


President of that project, and elsewhere in this volume

is related the circumstance that during the proceedings
attending the turning of the first sod, he was inwardly thinking that the
road would never be built. The town offered a grant of $70,000, but the
line got into trouble after reaching Tillsonburg and the Corporation
withheld payment of $40,000. Ultimately negotiations were made for
die Great Western to take hold of the enterprise. The late Mr. J. J.
Hawkins, who was then chairman of the City Council finance Committee,
put through an agreement with Sir Hugh Childers under which by pay-
ment of the aforementioned forty thousand his Company assumed posses-
sion, and matters were soon placed in good order. This line also at a
later period fell into the hands of the Grand Trunk, and the next move for
competition was to connect with the Michigan Central at Waterford.

The citizens who entered upon the project were A. Watts,
Commence- R. Henry, J. J. Hawkins, T. Elliott, G. H. Wilkes, H. McK.

TMI &B** Wilson ‘ Sheriff Scarfe and S – W ‘ McMichael (Toronto).
j’ ‘ The original name was “The Brantford, Waterford and

Lake Erie Railway Company,” and the directors worked
hard, and successfully, in securing a Dominion Government grant of so
much a mile, together with $50,000, ($25,000 in stock) from Brantford
and other bonuses. The road for a considerable time started from a ter-


minal situated in the outskirts of West Brantford and Mr. A. J. Nelles was
the general manager. Messrs. Nihan, George Elliott and Battle were the
contractors. The directors carried on for a year and then sold out, on
certain conditions, to Mr. J. N. Young of Chicago. The latter for a
bonus of $75,000 offered to bridge the Grand River, and to carry the line
on as far as Hamilton. The money was voted, but Young failed to get
through in the time specified and never received a cent, although many
citizens felt that the obligation should have been met. At the Hamilton
end, by superhuman effort, he just earned $240,000 by getting the first
train through on the last hour of the last day of grace. This was in the
year 1895 and the only bonus secured by the Company, as there had been
no Government grant.

Mr. Young, who later acquired the $25,000 of city stock, is understood
to have lost not only his own money, but that also of several other Chi-
cago people. He was always a most difficult man to interview with regard
to his plans and the despair of local reporters, for when he was asked
any questions he would at once impart a vast amount of information with
regard to the weather, past, present and future. Upon completion of the
line, it was acquired by the New York Central R. R., Michigan Central
Ry. and the Canadian Pacific Ry. interests, thus forming a connecting
link between the Canadian Pacific and the New York Central lines. For
the first year after construction it was operated by the Michigan Central
Railway, but in December 1897 it was taken over by the present company
and has been operated independently ever since. For nearly twenty years
the surplus earnings were devoted to improvements of the property and
it was the first railway in the world to install the electric block signal
system for single track operation, the line between Brantford and Ham-
ilton, and Hamilton and Welland, being under electric block signal pro-
tection, one mile apart. This system not only provides the maximum of
safety, but enables the Company to handle a very much heavier tonnage
over its line than it otherwise would have been able to do, and was of
great assistance during the strenuous five year war period. The T. H. &
B., certainly helped Brantford in the matter of competitive freight rates
and service and many large factories have established themselves in
proximity to the line. In 1915, the Company completed a branch to
Port Maitland, at the mouth of the Grand River, and in 1916 commenced
a ferry service with Ashtabula Harbor, Ohio. The company operates 104
miles of main line and many miles of terminal track, owns 36 locomotives,
24 passenger coaches, besides its pool interests in through line coaches;
1,400 freight cars, 11 caboose cars and 50 road service cars, forming the
heaviest equipped line, per mile of track in Canada. Mr. J. N. Beckley,


of Rochester, N. Y., is the President, and Mr. F. F. Backus, Hamilton,
General Manager.

Still the hankering was for the Grand Trunk Main Line,

Grand that road having long since absorbed the Great Wes-

run am tern an( j man y e f f Or tg 5 destined to be futile, were made

in this regard. Towards the close of 1900 the matter
again came up before the Board of Trade, when Major Hamilton was
President, in the form of a resolution moved by Robert Henry, and sec-
onded by C. H. Waterous. A good deal of correspondence ensued, the
City Council co-operating. Main lines are not changed in a day espec-.
ially when an alteration of a route means added distance, but the upshot
was that at a Board of Trade banquet, held January 18th, 1902, Mr.
Morse, third Vice President of the G. T. R., who came as the guest of
honor in place of General Manager Hays, made the announcement that the
railway was willing to co-operate with the city in the matter. Finally a
by-law was sent to the people authorizing a grant of $57,000, the railway
to return $50,000, if it defaulted in stopping all the main line trains at
Brantford; a new depot was another stipulation. On April 27th, 1902,
the grant was carried, 1565 to 196. Mr. D. B. Wood was then the Mayor.
Work was commenced almost immediately, and at a very heavy cost to the
railway, the necessary change was completed in September of 1905.

Saturday, September 30th was chosen as the date for the
g nay. ma j n i me celebration, and the event was marked by
cheering crowds, playing bands, factory whistles, gorgeous banners, ap-
propriate speeches and auspicious weather. At two o’clock in the after-
noon the reception committee and other prominent Brantfordites, left
for Harrisburg, where they awaited the arrival of the train from Toronto,
bearing many distinguished guests, from as far as Montreal. The local
crowd extended a hearty welcome to the visitors and before “all aboard”
was sounded took the opportunity of singing “Auld Lang Syne,” in part-
ing with the Harrisburg depot. On arrival at Paris other guests, from
the West, boarded the train, which was timed to arrive in Brantford sim-
ultaneously with a special train from Buffalo with C. M. Hays, and other
railway officials on board. A tremendous crowd had assembled at the
new depot and speaking took place from a stand tastily decorated with
flags and bunting. Mayor C. H. Waterous presided, and Mr. Hays, in
making the formal opening declaration on behalf of the Company aptly
put the case from a Brantford standpoint, when he quoted the lines:

‘This is the way we oft have sought,
And mourned because we found it not.”


Hon. Mr. Hanna spoke on behalf of the Provincial Government and
Mayor Urquhart of Toronto for “Sister Cities.”

The visitors were driven to Mohawk Church, Bell Homestead and
points of interest about the city, and afterwards a luncheon took place
in the old Y. M. C. A. hall. Here other speeches were made of a con-
gratulatory nature, and at night there was a display of fireworks.

The Grand Trunk, with the smaller branch lines controlled by it, has
always been the greatest carrying agent for freight and passengers. The
advent of the double tracked main line in 1905 not only proved a great
boon in the further upbuilding of Brantford, but also added to the already
large volume of business carried by the company which last year, (1919),
conveyed 200,000 passengers in and out, while the incoming and out-
going freight business totalled 400,000 tons.

After Mr. Young had taken over the B. W. & L. E. Rail-

rwo unusual w there was a hitch with regard to the fulfilment of his

Incidents, , ‘ , , , ,

obligations, and the consequence was that an exceptional

event took place at the little Brantford depot. Some time before the
only train running between here and Waterford was due to leave on its
early morning schedule, the Sheriff, most of the former directors, and
some county constables arrived on the scene. The ticket clerk was re-
moved from the office and another man was established in his stead, while
the train crew were also supplanted by another crew which had been
brought along. Thus manned the locomotive headed for the M. C. R.
terminal, the passenger list including the directors, but in the meantime
the wires had been quickly used, and word was received at the Waterford
station that the Brantford train was to be held. The switch was accord-
ingly locked against it. How it became opened is a secret which was
never discovered, but opened it was, and the run back to this city was
duly accomplished. Later Mr. Young arrived on the scene and matters
were duly straightened out.

The strangest happening in connection with the railway

Reginald history of Brantford occurred in 1898. During the sum-

Middleton. ‘ . . ,. ., . , , . &

mer 01 that year an individual, who gave his name as

Reginald Middleton, arrived in the city and started surveys on a line
to run between Brantford and Woodstock. The rumor commenced to
circulate that the Canadian Pacific Railway was back of the move, and
Middleton took care to never forward any denial. He opened offices
on Colborne Street and had quite a large staff employed there, together
with others negotiating for right of way, taking levels and so forth. He
placed several orders with local concerns, and in an announcement on
July 26th, made the statement.


“Work will commence upon the road from both Woodstock and Bur-
ford, September 15th, and the whole line must be completed by November

At the same time he announced the purchase of 4,500 tons of ninety
pound steel rails, two miles of cast iron ornamental fencings, many
thousands of tons of steel for bridge work and so forth. Another asser-
tion was that all crossings along the road would be protected by patent
gates, which would drop when any train was within half a mile because of
“an electric appliance set in motion by the train itself.” Later he an-
nounced that surveyors would soon map out a connecting line from
Brantford to Niagara Falls.

Thus did Middleton beguile City and County residents, until public
interest reached a very high point. In fact there were garden parties
in his honor along the proposed route and on August 22nd, Middle-
ton and his engineers gave an entertainment, to the people of Burford,
at their camp on the flats of J. Y. Mclntee’s farm. One of the features
was a speech by the promoter. After the party, Middleton was sitting
in the Barnea House when he was arrested, on a charge laid by a Wood-
stock grocer, for obtaining goods under false pretences. He was taken
to Woodstock, and then events began to crowd thick and fast. Among
other things, he was denounced by the C. P. R. and the fact developed
that he had been a bigamist on a large scale. One of his wives had
been with him here, and in Burford and in all it was believed that he
had espoused about half a dozen, going to the altar with one of them
as Alexander Lawrence McDonald. At the trial in Woodstock on Sep-
tember 28, 1898, two of his spouses gave evidence, and he was sentenced
to seven years hard labor, in Kingston Penitentiary. At the time he
was thirty-seven years of age and his personality was of the magnetic
order. There are creditors yet for goods and wages in Brantford,
Woodstock, Burford, and in short, wherever he sojourned.

In 1879 some enterprising citizens considered that a
Brantford Street Railway should be established in keeping with
Street ^ new i v secured status of the place as a City. Accord-

ingly the necessary steps were taken to form a company,
the names of the following gentlemen appearing on the original char-
ter: Alfred Watts, Humphrey Davis, H. McKenzie Wilson, Robert Twiss
Sutton, R. Henry, Alexander D. Clement, Edward Brophey, Joseph Rob-
inson, Alexander Fair, W. Buck, C. Jarvis.

For various reasons, no active work was commenced, but the charter
was kept in a state of renewal and on March 20th, 1886, Mr. C. H. Flack
of Cornwall, Ont., made an offer for it which was accepted. The new


company consisted of the following directorate: C. W. Bowtell, Presi-
dent; D. A. Flack, Vice-President; Chas. H. Flack, Secy.-Treas. ; A. W.
Flack, R, A. Pringle, J. H. VanArsdale, A. P. Ross, all outsiders.

The right to construct a line on streets designated, was granted by the
City Council although there was quite a fight over the using of Colborne
Street. Ground was broken on July 17th, and the tracks were laid
along Colborne Street from the eastern city limits to Lome Bridge, cross-
ing same to West Brantford; up Market Street as far as the Grand
Trunk tracks; upon King Street to Darling, to William, to Richmond,
and Brant Avenue, as far as the school for the Blind entrance.

The stables and sheds were located in West Brantford, with an
equipment of six cars, four closed and two open, and fourteen horses.
Eight of the latter were of the heavy weight class in order to successfully
negotiate the grades on Colborne Street.

The agreement was to give a half hourly service at 5 cents
Half Hourly a t – ^ a ^^^^ O f IQ cents was allowed after 10


p.m. The formal opening of the service took place on

Saturday evening September 9th, 1886, when there was a free ride for
everybody. The proceedings were somewhat marred by the cars quite
frequently running off the track. However, they were of exceedingly
light build, and no trouble was experienced in lifting them on again.
The closed cars had been christened the R. Henry, C. B. Heyd, S. G. Read
and A. Harris and these names were painted on the side. A final halt
took place before the Kerby House where a band played and Messrs.
Henry, Brophey and Hawkins made congratulatory speeches from the
balcony. Mayor C. B. Heyd was also to have spoken but had to leave
earlier. Such great interest was taken in the event that the streets be-
came at times absolutely impassable for other traffic along the route.
The rate for tickets sold in bulk was twenty-two for one dollar. For
a considerable period there was much operating difficulty and one of
the local papers, after the system had been running for some time, made
the satisfied comment. “Yesterday not one of the street cars left the
tracks.” The Flacks, who were in chief charge, made every effort to make
the enterprise successful, but without compensating result and the sys-
tem gradually became more or less of a farce. Between the narrow and
light rails, the horses had hollowed out lengthy trenches, which consti-
tuted not only an inconvenience, but menaced vehicles, and after a snow
storm the system would remain buried sometimes for weeks, before it
was entirely dug out again.


In 1893, Mr. F. Nichol (now Senator), of the Toronto
T t nA* AA General Electric, became interested, and changed the

system from horse car to electric. He also greatly im-
proved the tracks and altered the original route somewhat, having the
line turn direct from Colborne Street to Brant Avenue and so forth.
Mr. Nichol, still holds a $125,000 mortgage on the property. Later, Dr.
Ickes came here from Pittsburg and assumed control, under the name of
the “Von Echa Company.” He interested Mr. Walter Turnbull in the
enterprise and it was decided to extend the line to Paris. Ickes at the
time was thought to be a dreamer, in establishing what has since been
one of the best paying portions of the system. Mr. A. J. Pattison, and
associates, of Toronto, were the next to assume control, about 1905, and
by them the line was completed to Gait. Their original scheme em-
braced proprietorship of the Grand Valley, the Woodstock and Thames
Valley and Brantford railways. M. A. Verner, of Pittsburg, was the
final private ownership man to arrive on the scene and matters ended
in the appointment of a receivership. It was in 1914, when Mr. J. H.
Spence was Mayor, that an agitation for Municipal ownership commenced
to take definite shape. In this regard the Corporation took the necessary
legal steps to show that the undertaking was not being operated accord-
ing to franchise and the receiver was ordered to make a sale. The City
of Brantford made the successful bid on the basis of assuming the prev-
iously mentioned mortgage of $125,000 to Mr. Nichol, together with
certain liabilities to the Corporation, and making payment of about
$100,000 to clear up some other matters.

On August 5th 1914, a simple notice appeared in the
Mimicipality j oca j p apers stat i ng that on the date in question the

Brantford Street Railway and Grand Valley Railway
had been taken over, without frivolities, by the Municipal Street Rail-
way Commission composed of C. H. Hartman, (Chairman,) W. R. Turn-
bull and A. K. Bunnell. These gentlemen lost no time in the matter of
improving the equipment and service, while Eagle Place and other ex-
tensions were planned. The Board has remained unchanged with the
exception of Mr. F. J. Calbeck taking the place of Mr. Bunnell. In 1919
Terrace Hill was comprised in the service and lines laid in West Brant-
ford in readiness for a resumption there when the proposed new struc-
ture to replace Lorne Bridge is completed. At the present time the num-
ber of miles of road is twenty four including Paris and double track
sections. The following table of passengers and receipts during the last
four years will prove of interest:



Grand Valley City Lines

1916 180,011 1,421,298

1917 190,538 1,667,860

1918 158,959 1,811,419

1919 189,292 2,150,621

Grand Valley City Lines

1916 $28,802.09 $63,916.38

1917 29,522.29 77,157.29

1918 26,488.60 83,115.42

1919 34,450.28 109,453.60

The falling off in connection with the Grand Valley figures for 1918
was caused by the selling of the line from Paris to Gait for $30,000, with
the Lake Erie and Northern Railway Company as the purchasers. As the
latter road had paralleled the Grand Valley the sale was considered a
desirable move.

The total number of permanent employees is seventy-four while for
the summer months the figure reaches ninety.

The following scale of wages per hour for conductors and motor
men indicates the improved remuneration since the advent of Municipal

1st. year 2nd. year 3rd year

1913 15c 16V 2 c 17y 2 c

1920 46c 48 c 50 c

J. P. Verner was the first manager under Municipal control with the
late J. Creasser as secretary. After Mr. Verner’s retirement J. Ireland
became joint manager of the Street Railway and Hydro Electric. Upon
his resignation Mr. C. H. Hartman held a supervisory position for two
years and in April 1919, Mr. A. H. Foster, B. A. Sc., was selected man-
ager. He had previously been actively employed in railway and street
car work and at the time of his appointment was Manager of the Guelph
Radial Railway and Waterworks department. Mr. F. J. Calbeck is at
present chairman of the Board.




Members of the Royal family have at different periods visited Brant-
ford, and also many of the Executive heads of the Dominion. In the
last named regard, it should be remembered that the title “Governor Gen-
eral of Canada,” first commenced with Viscount Monck in 1867 and that
before that date the Governors were known as Governors in Chief of
the B. N. A. provinces, each of the latter, ‘as now, having Lieutenant
Governors of their own.

The Late Brantford has upon three occasions welcomed a direct

King* heir to the British throne.

Edward. The late King Edward, when Prince of Wales, spent

a brief period here on Friday September 14th, 1860. The official notifi-
cation was to the effect that he would make a stay of one and a half
hours, that period to include luncheon. Despite the short time allotted
the loyal residents of the town and county united in the determination
to make his visit a memorable one. Cannon were placed on Terrace Hill
to fire a timely salute when the royal train should appear in sight,
arches of evergreen, bearing appropriate devices, were erected at the
depot, and across streets, while flags and bunting were in evidence upon
all sides. It was a clear, cool day, and the local papers recorded a
welcoming crowd of “ten thousand people,” at the station. In addition
to the town folk, a multitude of people from miles around poured into
the place by carriages, buggies, and the old family spring waggons, and
Brantford up to that period had never witnessed so vast an assemblage.
At one o’clock His Royal Highness, and party, arrived under a beau-
tiful quintuple railway arch, the cannon boomed, the assembled multitude
cheered, and school children sang the National Anthem. The following
procession was then formed:

Henry Riacey, Marshal.
The Buffalo and Lake Huron Band.

St. Andrew’s Society.

St. George’s Society.
Chief G. H. M. Johnson, Marshal.

1. A Box: 2, S. Gill; 3, R. Holmes; 4, W. Rowan; 5, G. Clifford; 6, F. Lundy;
7, J. Nickelson; 8, G. Gouch; 9, J. Hasell ; 10, J. Gibson; 11, Chas. Penfold; 12, G.
Lowes, the man who carved the feathers; 13. Thos. Burnley. The men who built
the car which carried the Prince of Wal^s throughout Canada. This car was built
by the Buffalo and Lake Huron Railway Co., at their Brantford Shops, in 1859, for
the Prince of Wales, (afterwards King Edward) to travel in when he visited Canada
in 1850. The car was painted Royal Blue on the outside, and fitted inside with
lounges, chairs and marble slab tables, silk straw-colored blinds, with spring rollers,
and carpets. The car was forty feet long and had brass hand railings. It had bunks
for sleeping purposes and was the first “sleeper”‘ ever constructed. George M. Pull-
man, then engaged in moving and raising small frame railway depots in this section
of Canada, was an interested visitor of the shops at the time. It was in the same
year that he also evolved his first sleeping car. When the Brantford car was dis-
mounted Mr. T. Burnley secured the Royal Coat of Arms and presented them to
Brant Masonic Lodge.


Indian Band.

The Old Warriors of the Six Nations

The Mohawks, Oneidas, Onondagas, Cayugas, Senecas, Tuscaroras,

in full Indian War Costumes.

H. Yardington, Marshal.

The Keller Band
Clergymen of different denominations.

Veterans of 1812.

The Reeve and Council of Simcoe

Warden and Council of Brant, with the County Officers and Members

of Parliament
F. P. Goold, Marshal.

H. R. H. The Prince of Wales, and Suite in carriages.
Officers of Militia, mounted.

W. N. Alger, Marshal.

The Prince of Wales’ Young Canada Guard.
Washington Fire Company
Indian Warriors.


Arrived at the reception canopy, the heads of corporations and soc-
ieties having addresses to present were introduced by His Excellency
The Governor-General. Addresses were presented by J. D. Clement,
Mayor of the Corporation, in behalf of the citizens; T. Conboy, Warden,
of the County of Brant, in behalf of the County; S. J. Jones, County
Judge, in behalf of the Quarter Sessions; W. W. Simcoe, Esq., Reeve of
the Town of Simcoe; Thomas Botham, President of St. George’s Ben-
evolent Society; Allan Cleghorn, President St. Andrew’s Benevolent
Society; C. A. Jones, son of the late Rev. Peter Jones, Missionary and
Chief, in behalf of the Mississauga Indians; and lastly, an address was
presented by the Six Nations Indians. To all of these the Prince returned
a reply, thanking the people in his own and in his mother’s behalf for
their cordial welcome, and their loyalty.

Brantfordites, always noted in those times for their pro-

A XT 4- V.1

A o ao e uge b an q ue t s surpassed even themselves at the luncheon
Lunch. . , v ^ , u _ j

in the Kerby House. Ihe menu card upon the occasion

was as follows:


Kerby House


in honor of

His Royal Highness

Albert Edward, Prince of Wales

Given September 14, 1860, by the

Inhabitants of Brantford
On the occasion of his Gracious visit to our Town.






Boiled Trout, Lobster Sauce, White Fish, broiled; Lobster, plain.


Round of Beef, English style.

Roast Turkey, stuffed with Italian Chestnuts.

Roast Ham, Champagne Sauce.

Roast Beef, Madeira Sauce.

Boiled Turkey with oysters, Boiled Ham

Boiled Leg of Mutton, English style

Boiled Tongue, ornamented.


Boiled Turkey, with Jelly on Pedestal Lobster Salad,

Parisian style
Bastion of Veal, ornamented.

Small Mutton chops with fried potatoes larded sweet-breads

Tomato Sauce
Blanquettes of Veal with Rice larded spring chickens

Gardeners Sauce

Timbal of Macaroni, Milanese style Croquettes of Chicken
with fried Parsley


Boiled plain Potatoes Baked mashed Potatoes Turnips, with cream
baked sweet Potatoes beets


Roast Grouse, larded. Roast Red Head Ducks. Roast Partridges.
Broiled Woodcock. Broiled Plover on toast.


Macaroon Pyramids. Hand Boquettes. Nugent Baskets.
Kiss Pyramids. Flower Vases


Charlotte Russe Champagne Jelly

French Cream Cake Swiss Meringues

Claret Jelly Bavarian Cheese

Macedonian Jelly Blanc Mange


Boston Cream Cake Macaroons

Punch Cakes Frosted Cakes

Burnt Almonds Ladies Fingers

Kisses Jelly Tarts


Peaches, Pears, Apples, Melons, Plums, Grapes.
Ice Cream. Coffee.


Certainly a gargantuan feast and it is not surprising to learn from a
chronicler of the day, that members of the Prince’s entourage declared it
to have surpassed anything of the kind they had seen since H. R. H. first
landed on Canadian soil. It is also recorded that the Prince charmed
everyone with his delightful and informal manner.

On October 14th, 1901, the Duke and Duchess of York
King George (now King George V. and Queen Mary) paid a visit to

Brantford. Their stay was only a short one, and all of
Queen Mary. . . , , , ~ , , ,

the ceremonies took place at the Grand Irunk depot.

However in the brief space designated, the people of the City and County
gave them a right royal welcome. Long before the hour of arrival, the
station property and the surrounding streets were packed with many
thousands of people and the school children, each little one waving a
tiny flag, were massed in front of a handsomely decorated platform. A
few minutes before the time scheduled for the arrival a whistle was heard
in the distance and everyone was upon tiptoe, but only an unattached
locomotive whizzed by. It was the pilot engine used to ensure a clear
route. The first indication of an approach of the special was an outburst
of applause from the large number who occupied highly elevated posi-
tions. A few moments later the ten handsome coaches constituting the
Royal train glided in, and the future King and Queen were seen bowing,
and smiling from the rear platform. Mayor D. B. Wood, was first pre-
sented and the Duke and Duchess were escorted by him to the stand,
the people cheering again and again, and the school children under the
conductorship of Mr. Jordan, singing “The Maple Leaf Forever.” The
party passed from the cars, through files of militia, two deep,
composed of soldiers of the Dufferin Rifles under command of Captain
Ashton. On their left were the B. C. I. cadets under the command of
Capt. Schmidlin and the Mohawk Institute cadets. As the party reached
the platform, the representative men of the city, who occupied seats,
arose and cheered lustily; then the school children caught their first
glimpse and shrill shouts went up from three thousand juvenile throats.
It could easily be seen that the Duke and Duchess, although fatigued
after their long tour, thoroughly appreciated the ovation and the
Duchess especially smiled sweetly on the youngsters. After the read-
ing of the customary address, Prof. Melville Bell, father of the noted in-
ventor, presented their Royal Highnesses with a silver telephone, suitably
inscribed, as a souvenir from the city, and Misses Pelling and Conboy,
the most successful pupils of the year in the Public and Separate schools,
handed the Duchess a bouquet of beautiful white roses, tied with purple
ribbon. Rev. Mr. Ashton, of the Mohawk Institute, presented the Queen


Anne Bible for signature and Superintendent Cameron, and Six Nations
Chiefs were introduced together with the Aldermen and several citizens.
After the children had led in the singing of the National Anthem, the
Royal visitors once more entrained and departed amid more cheers. The
Duke’s affability and courtesy impressed everyone, while the sweet woman-
liness of the Duchess won her a permanent place in the hearts of Brant-

On Monday, October 20th, 1919, Prince Edward, grand-
ce OI gon Q ^ fj rst Kingly visitor, devoted half a day to

Brantford and captured all hearts, as indeed he had done
throughout his Canadian tour. Almost boyish in appearance, he never-
theless comported himself with infinite tact, and his cordiality was as un-
affected as it proved pronounced. The date happened to be that of an
Ontario election contest and some feared that in the heat of the political
fight the people would not find time to give the heir apparent an
adequate reception. The outcome did not in the smallest degree warrant
any such apprehension. The electors cast their ballots in the morning
and then devoted the rest of the day to the acclaim of their distinguished
visitor. The City was in gala attire and the weather constituted a glor-
ious autumnal day. The pilot engine, always a safeguard for Royalty,
foretold the prompt arrival of the special train at 1.30 and as it steamed
slowly in, cheers were raised by the crowd, and the Great War Veterans
Band struck up the National Anthem. As the Prince emerged from the
rear of his coach, those present saw a well-groomed young man of dis-
tinguished appearance, his face illumined with a smile of welcome, and
his fair hair making him seem even more juvenile than his years. The
reception committee consisted of Mayor MacBride, Senator J. H. Fisher,
W. F. Cockshutt, M. P., Judge Hardy, Major Gordon J. Smith, Warden
McCann, City Clerk Leonard, U. 0. Kendrick, John Harold, M. P., Alder-
men J. Hill, W. H. Ballantyne, J. J. Kelly, J. T. Burrows, J. W. English,
T. Ryerson, F. C. Harp, W. N. Andrews, W. H. Freeborn, W. J. Bragg, J.
Allan, J. H. Clement, H. Simpson, T. Bremner and H. J. Symons. To
them, and all others during the day, the Prince extended his left hand
when introduced as the right had been placed out of commission during
the infinity of clasps to which it had previously been subjected. He first
of all inspected the guard furnished by the G. W. V. A. and also reviewed
other veterans.

Quite a number of introductions took place and autos
At ine wefe tnen ta k en f or the Armouries along streets lined

with thousands of citizens and visitors. The Drill Hall
had been very handsomely decorated for the occasion and pretty flowers,


and palms, ornamented the platform. The civic address was read by City
Clerk Leonard. It commenced in terms of hearty welcome and referred
to the fact of five thousand men having enlisted from the city and
county as participants in the great war. Reference was also made to the
progressiveness of the City, its fine public parks and playgrounds, its
monuments and historical associations, and origin of the term “Telephone

The Prince in a clear voice, heard throughout the large auditorium,
made the following reply:

“Mr. Mayor:

I am most grateful for your hearty welcome, and I beg you to thank
all the citizens of Brantford on my behalf for the kind reception which
they have given me. I shall be proud to convey to my father, the King,
your warm assurance of loyalty to his throne.

I regret that my stay is too short to enable me to visit all the features
of historic and modern interest in this city to which you have referred.
I can assure you, however, that my main interest in every city is in its
citizens, and I am delighted to have even this very fleeting opportunity
of making acquaintance with the people of Brantford and of seeing
some, at least, of the veterans from this district, who fought in the great
war. I also wish to offer my sincere sympathy to all those who have
suffered disablement or loss.

I hope that the city may now count on a long period of prosperous
development, and I wish it all happiness and success.”

The presentation of a few of the later war decorations won by local
men next took place as follows:

Military Cross: Lieut, C. D. Smith, Lieut. Morley Verity, Lieut. V.
Curtis, Lieut. H. K. Wood.

Distinguished Flying Cross: Capt. H. A. White.

Military Medal: Lt. Corp. W. J. Davey, Pte. W. Brechen, Gunner
W. .G. Chinnery, Pte. F. H. McDougald, Pt. E. B. P. Davies, (deceased,)
Pte. Wm. Bowden, Sergt. W. G. Couch, Sergt. Robert Little,

The Prince shook hands with each recipient and enquired regarding
their services. Mrs. Davies, who was handed the medal won by her late
husband, was the recipient of much solicitous attention and so was
Mrs. Harold B. Preston, whose husband had won the military cross and
later been killed in action.

After other veterans had been received, the way was

mm 1 taken to the Bell Memorial, the chimes of Grace Church,

near by, sounding a peal of welcome and school children

waving myriads of flags. In the presence of a vast concourse the

Prince inspected the members of the Brantford branch of the Army and


Navy veterans, shaking each by the hand and making many friendly com-
ments. By invitation of the Local Council of Women, the Presidents of
each of the affiliated societies had assembled on the memorial steps, and
they represented organizations which had done noble work throughout the
war period. Mrs. W. Churchill Livingston presented to the Royal visitor
a handsome photo gift book planned by Miss Ethel Raymond, and Miss
Gilkison handed him a collection of historical notes. The road to
Mohawk church was marked by waiting throngs, including a large
group of school children and each side of the entrance way to that his-
toric edifice was lined by Indian cadets and Indian girls of the Mohawk
Institute. In the Queen Anne bible the Royal visitor placed his signa-
ture “Edward P.” and was much interested in the list of other Royal
names including those of his grandfather and father. The silver com-
munion service, also the gift of Queen Anne; Brant’s Tomb, and the
ten commandments written in the Indian language, were objects which
particularly aroused the attention of England’s future King. The Indian
children sang a hymn in their own language and the Prince planted a
fir tree near the resting place of the great Indian Chief.

On the return to the City a lengthy stop was made at
JNiaae a Victoria Park which contained the densest mass of hu-

manity of the day. Here the Six Nations Indians were
the hosts. A platform had been erected under the very shadow of the
monument to the great “Thayendanegea,” and six Indian girls represent-
ing the Nations, stood on each side of the entrance way; attired in white
they had sashes of maple, oak and pine, emblems of Canada, England,
and their own people, while each carried baskets of roses decorated with
streamers of Autumn leaves. The Chiefs, in full array, remained standing
until the Prince had taken his place under a canopy of royal purple.
Then the red men proceeded to hold a Council, Major Gordon Smith,
Superintendent, having first introduced the guest of the day in appro-
priate terms. The order of business was the discussion of the Indian
name to be bestowed upon the Prince in his creation as a Chief and he
was finally asked to select from three titles. The one chosen was Da-
yon -hem-se-ia, (Dawn of Day) and when that was conferred he signed
the council roll, the only white man who had previously done so with
the exception of his uncle, the Duke of Connaught. Secretary Asa Hill
read an address, and then the Prince, his hand in that of David John, was
marched up and down the platform, while the old chief uttered invoca-
tions to the Great Spirit on behalf of the young man newly honored.
Chief “Dawn of Day,” next drew a silk Union Jack from the face of a
bronze tablet containing the names of the Six Nations soldiers who


made the supreme sacrifice in France, and the members of whose fam-
ilies had a place of honor. The Prince made a happy speech and
before proceedings closed was handed an address from the Six Nations
Indian women to Queen Mary asking her to accept an ancient Indian
name Ga-no-ron-gwa, signifying “She Loves.”

Another large crowd was present when the special train pulled out,
the Royal visitor waving his hat in farewell as the final scene in a
visit during which he abundantly demonstrated his right to the title
of “Prince Charming.”

The first visit of Prince Arthur, the present Duke of Con-
Other Royal naug ht, was made to Brantford on Friday, October 1st.

1869. He had been duck shooting at Long Point, and at
10 o’clock in the morning, Mayor Matthews and members of the Council,
together with Hon. E. B. Wood and others drove out to the Newport turn
on the Cockshutt Road to await his coming. A detachment of the Bur-
ford cavalry, under command of Capt. Bingham, was also on hand as an
escort. At the toll gate a number of children were assembled, and on
arrival at Mohawk church, many thousands had gathered. At the door of
the venerable edifice a number of painted Indians were ranged on
either side, and Simcoe Ker, grandson of Brant, received the Prince. On
reaching Mohawk Institute, Chief John Buck, Fire keeper, addressed His
Royal Highness in the Mohawk tongue, Chief Johnson acting as inter-
preter and the ceremony of making him a Chief was performed with the
bestowal of the name Kar-a-kow-dye, (The sun flying). There was a
large attendance of the Six Nations Indians for the ceremony. On
arrival at the town outskirts the party were met by the firemen, under
Capt. Gardner, on Alfred Street hill and the 38th Battalion band, under
Prof. Crooks. A procession was formed with B. G. Tisdale as Chief
Marshal and E. Bunnell and E. Goold, assistant marshals. On arrival
at Victoria park addresses were read and the school children sang
several choruses, accompanied by the Grand Trunk band. “Volunteer
Companies under Captain Lemmon, Captain Curtis, and Captain Inglis,
kept the crowd back.” Later, lunch was served at the Commercial hotel
and there were many speeches. The Prince presented an ox to the
Indians and they held a big barbecue on the Reserve.

The records of the day show that the people of Brant-
Visit of ^ f or( J and Brant County were profoundly interested when
n \\^ S * l was announce d that the Marquis of Lome and H. R. H.

the Princess Louise, would pay a visit to the city. The
chance to see, and welcome, a daughter of the beloved Queen Victoria
doubtless had much to do with the exceptional manifestation of pleasure,


and on the auspicious day a constant stream of visitors poured into the
city by every train and highway. On the morning of Wednesday Sept.
16th, 1879, the Vice-Regal train steamed into the Great Western station
amid tumultuous cheers. The distinguished visitors were welcomed by
Mayor Henry, Warden Whiting, members of the City and County Coun-
cils and leading citizens. There was a guard of honor from the Dufferin
Rifles under command of Capt. Ballachey and Lieuts. Burnley and
Wilkes; the Burford Cavalry also added much to the military aspect,
under command of Capt. Marshall and Lieuts. Lloyd-Jones and Weir. A
carpeted passage way, passing under a beautiful arch, led to the carriages
in waiting and the following procession was formed.

Firemen, with Chief McCann as Marshal, assisted by
Capt. Batson, Hose Coy. and Capt. Hall
Hook and Ladder Co.
Band of 38th Battalion
Mayor and Clerk, Warden and Clerk

Suite of the Vice Royal Party

Senator Christie and County Members,

Sheriff, Judge, Crown Attorney and Registrar,


Members of the Press
Collegiate Institute Board

Public School Board
Members of the Reception Committee.

Cheering citizens lined the route and at one point a number of lovely
bouquets were showered upon the Vice Regal carriage. The march
ended at a pavilion erected on Victoria Square, where school children
were massed tier upon tier and rendered songs under the leadership of
Mr. Sims, Miss Nolan, and Mr. Kimpton. The “welcome song” specially
written for the occasion was a notable feature and copies printed on
satin, in blue and gold, were presented to their Excellencies by two little
girls, Ella Kerr and Reba Hossie. A joint address from City and County
was read by Mayor Henry and the Marquis made suitable acknowledg-
ment. Along gaily decorated streets the way was then taken to the
Young Ladies College where President Robertson and Principal Mclntyre
headed a reception committee. Misses Mackenzie, Lillie Cockshutt, Bown
and McMillen presented souvenirs including bouquets. There was also
an address.

The newly erected Lome Bridge was next visited, and the
Dedicating Marquis crossed, and recrossed the structure, before be-
ll ? stowing the name. In doing so, he made a brief but

exceedingly apt speech as follows:


“Gentlemen :

I thank you most heartily for the honor you have done me in
naming this noble and beautiful structure after me. When a person
has a good intention towards another, he generally hopes that his bur-
dens may become lighter as years advance; but at the present time I
have a different wish to express regarding this bridge, and trust that
its burdens may become heavier, and increase from the constant growth in
traffic to your young and rising city. Again, I thank you gentlemen,
for the honor done me.”

Colborne Street was a blaze of color, and at the depot there was
a handsome arch surmounted by a model engine. At the corner of
Darling and George Streets a neat stand was occupied by the Mohawk
pupils and Registrar Shenstone had also a sight-seeing platform erected
in front of the Registry Office. Another feature which pleased the
visitors was the circumstance that as they passed Thos. McLean’s store
Capt. Inglis and a piper, both in full highland costume, occupied a prom-
inent place, the piper giving the Marquis a stirring rendition of his
native music. Messrs, N. B. Peatman, E. L. Goold, A. K. Bunnell and
C. Bunnell were the marshals. Both the Marquis and the Princess won
golden opinions by their urbane manner and interested appreciation of
the events of the day.

On Saturday, February 15th, 1913, H.RH., the Duke
A r Jrorty c onnau gnt paid his second visit to Brantford. Over
forty-years had elapsed since, as a young man, he had
made his former call under the title of “Prince Arthur”; now as
Governor General, he found that during the intervening period the small
town had become a thriving city. A large crowd had assembled at the
Grand Trunk depot when at 10.30 the Royal train arrived. The dis-
tinguished visitor was greeted on behalf of the city by Mayor Hartman,
and in the station rotunda an address was read by City Clerk Leonard.
In it appreciative reference was made to the fact that he was doubly
welcome, not only as official head of the Dominion, but also as the son of
“Queen Victoria, the beloved.” His Royal Highness made a suitable
reply. After the introduction of members of the City Council and other
citizens, His Excellency inspected boy scouts under command of Scout-
master McFarlane, and invested Scout Lloyd Colquhoun with the much
prized Wolf medal. An invitation from the Six Nations Indians to pay
them a visit, was the cause of the alighting at Brantford, and after the
brief local ceremonies were over, the Duke was at once driven to the
Reserve. On arrival at Ohsweken, five Indians in war costume, carrying
tomahawks, and mounted on grey chargers, saluted the ducal party. The
Six Nations Band played the National anthem while the Mohawk cadets


saluted. Cheers and war whoops followed. The Council house was
found to be crowded, and many hundreds could not gain admission. Chief
A. G. Smith read and interpreted the first and principal address, and
then approached His Royal Highness with the request from the Chiefs,
that he would sit with them in Council. The distinguished guest, in his
truly democratic way, at once complied and, leaving the dais, sat with
his brother chiefs, while they deliberated over certain matters.

During the course of his speech the Duke said:

“I am indeed happy, as one of the senior Chiefs of the Six Nations
Indians to sit once more in our Council chamber, where I sat with your
fathers forty-three years ago, and I join in your thanks to the Great
Spirit that I am spared to visit you again after so many years. I am
happy to know that there are still among you some who remembered my
former visit.”

Other interesting ceremonies followed, and then His Royal Highness
held : a reception, shaking hands with a large number. A notable lun-
cheon was served at the home of Dr. Davis, Medical Superintendent and
a departure afterwards made for the city, with a call en route at Mohawk
Church and Mohawk Institute.

When the Royal train pulled out of the T. H. & B. depot at 2.20 for
Toronto, there was another big and hearty demonstration.

The Duke of Connaught paid his third visit to Brant-
ine rlincess or( j an( j j^ – rst O ffj c j a l visit as Governor General, on

P fL 1*1*1 Cl 1

Saturday, May 9th, 1914, and this time he was accom-
panied by his daughter, the Princess Patricia. So great was the density
of the crowd at the depot that police and soldiers had great difficulty in
keeping the way clear. The Dufferin Rifles supplied a guard of honor
under command of Capt. Colquhoun, the B. C. I. cadets were also on hand
officered by Capt. Cliff Slemin and Lieuts. Buckborough and Sweet,
while Brantford and Paris Patrols of Boy Scouts, under command of
Commissioner Macfarlan, also made a good showing. Amid the sounds
of band music and hearty cheering, the Duke and his daughter alighted
from their car and were greeted by Mayor Spence. Introductions follow-
ed and the inspection of the guard of honor succeeded, His Excellency
speaking individually to the many men of the Dufferin Rifles whom he
noticed to be wearing medals. He also manifested keen interest in the
Boy Scouts, frequently stopping to pat some little fellow on the head,
or to spdak a word of encouragement, or praise, to the older boys. In
the general waiting room an address of welcome was read from the
Municipality to which the Duke, on behalf of himself and daughter,
made a hearty reply. During the course of his remarks, he said in


“The fact that nearly forty-five years ago, I paid a visit to what was
then the small town of Brantford, enables me to realize the vast amount
of energy and effort that must have been expended in order to transform
what was little more than a village, into your present flourishing, and im-
portant city.”

On behalf of the citizens, Mrs. Spence presented a beautiful bouquet
of American beauty roses to Princess Patricia, while a similar tribute
from the Boy Scouts, was handed to her by little Scout Bob Goodwin,
mascot of the Headquarters patrol.

A motor tour was inaugurated by a visit to the Bell Homestead, the
children of the Laycock Home along the roadside, waving flags and giving
cheers as the Royal cavalcade passed the neighborhood of the school.
An address w’as presented to His Excellency by Mr. E. L. Goold, Chair-
man of the Parks Board, and the route back to the city was via the Mohawk
Church and Institute. At the School for the Blind, the pupils were
drawn up in front of the building, and although they could not see the
distinguished visitors, their cheers were none the less hearty. The final
event was afternoon tea at the Golf and Country Club, and as His
Excellency and the Princess crossed the threshold they were cordially
received by Mrs. Herbert R. Yates, ladies President, her officers and
executive. There was a very large attendance and the floral and other
decorations were beautiful. From the links a return was made to the
Grand Trunk station and the Royal pair departed amid the plaudits of a
large gathering. Both the Duke and Princess manifested a deep interest
in the events of the day and so expressed themselves.


In the chapter devoted to Brant, reference has already
Notable been made to the presence in this region of Simcoe in

Event at Mt. 1793? long before Brantford had a place on the map.

In the early fifties, Lord Elgin, as Governor -in-Chief,

made a journey through this portion of the province. While here he was the
guest of the first Dr. Digby who entertained him in royal fashion, and
the residents presented him with a loyal address. However the principal
function in which he participated was at Mount Pleasant. Abraham Cook,
one of the merchant princes of his day, had erected in the village what
was then a palatial house, and is still a most handsome residence, now
owned and occupied by Mr. Morgan Harris. It was known as a great
social centre, and here Mr. Cook and his wife, Eleanor Hardy, were
host and hostess of many notable festivities. Lord Elgin and suite stayed
at this handsome home and a ball was given there in His Excellency’s


honor. It was a most elaborate affair. Officers in the British garrison,
then at London, rode down for the festivities and other distinguished
guests were present from Toronto, London and surrounding country.
Tents were erected on the lawn and in the orchard, as auxiliary accom-
modation, and the function was prolonged into a large house party of
some days, with picnics, drives and rides, and evening dances. Lord
Elgin, was so pleased with his reception that he asked permission to
name the house, and thereupon bestowed the title “Brucefield,” after his
own family name of Bruce, a title which it bears to this day. The late
Chief Justice Armour on one of his last visits to Brantford, recalled this
ball, which he attended as a young man, travelling from Cobourg a
great part of the way on horseback. It was there that he met Miss
Clench, who afterwards became his wife. Mr. and Mrs. Cook had three
children, Alexander Hardy Cook, who became one of the prominent
physicians of Chicago, Charles Cook, who married Miss Biggar of Mount
Pleasant and practised medicine in Toronto; their only daughter married
Sir John Beverley Robinson, and Abraham, a successful High School

Sir Edward Head, came here on October 19th, 1855
Prophetic wlien M w p ruyn was Mayor. A local chronicler of

the time wrote, “the horizon was of a hazel hue, in beau-
tiful contrast with the russet, yellow leaves of autumn.” Flags were
floated from buildings, and streamers of various colors were suspended
across Colborne Street, together with triumphal arches. A procession
was formed from the square now called Victoria Park and proceeded
to the Buffalo, Brantford and Goderich Railway depot in order to greet
His Excellency. As the train arrived, several volleys were fired from
cannon, and another procession took place headed by several carriages,
one of which contained the Governor General, Lady Head, the Mayor
and Sheriff Smith. The members of the Corporation, different com-
panies of firemen and the school children and many citizens followed
on foot, flags waving and music playing. The final place of assemblage
was on the Square in front of the Court House, where three addresses
were presented. That from the Corporation was read by Mayor Matthews
and contained the prophetic utterance:

“With the prospect of soon seeing our railway and Grand River
Navigation thoroughly completed, we think we can perceive at no dis-
tant day our youthful and progressing town take its proper position
among the cities of Canada.”

Mr. Allen Good, Warden, read the second address from the County
and Mr. James Woodyatt the third, from the Mechanics Institute.


His Excellency made a felicitous reply and an adjournment took
place to the Town Hall where an excellent lunch was served, and
speeches delivered. Lady Head was entertained at Dr. Digby’s and the
entrainment took place at 4 o’clock in the afternoon.

On October 1st. 1857, His Excellency Sir William Eyre,
arrived in the town to attend the Provincial Exhibition,
a four day event to which the Town of Brantford con-
tributed $5.000 and the County $2.500. There were also other con-
tributions and the prize list totalled $12,500 or $1,000 more than on
any preceding occasion. A report of the day says:

“The ground chosen was an elevated piece of dry, sandy land, im-
mediately in rear of the Brantford station of the Buffalo and Brantford
Railway, overlooking the town, and commanding an extensive and plea-
sant view of the surrounding country.”

The above refers to Terrace Hill, now a thickly populated district,
but then to all intents and purposes uninhabited. The grounds were
carefully laid out to the extent of twenty acres, and nearly opposite the
entry gate stood a large building in the shape of a Greek cross, one
hundred and fifty feet long and forty feet wide, with an octagon tower
rising in the centre. This hall was devoted to floriculture, horticulture,
educational work, ladies’ work and fine arts. A similar structure sit-
uated further back, contained agricultural, dairy and other products,
while there were pens for cattle, sheep and hogs, and large spaces for
the exhibition of horses and refreshment booths. Altogether it was a
most ambitious undertaking, on the part of both the Town and the
County, and poor weathec during the entire period scarcely served to
lessen the expected receipts, as the event attracted people from far and
near. The visitors comprised many notable men, including the Gover-
nor of the State of New York and William Lyon Mackenzie. Sir Wil-
liam Eyre came by special train and was received at the railway station
by Mayor Botham, the Town Councillors and leading citizens. He was
taken to the Town Hall where addresses were presented from the Muni-
cipality, the Mechanics’ Institute and the directors of the Provincial
Agricultural Association. After making a reply, His Excellency was
suitably entertained, and visited the Exhibition. Entries of all kinds
reached a total of 4,400 or 600 in excess of the previous best occasion
and cash taken totalled $40,000, also a record up to that date.

The Earl and Countess of Dufferin paid a longer visit

Sojourn of to Brantford than any other Vice regal representatives.

:r e ff . They spent two days here, arriving at two o’clock by

special train at the Great Western Station, Colborne St.,


on August 24th, 1874, and were met by a reception committee. A pro-
cession was at once formed, headed by the Grand Trunk band, with the
Burford Cavalry and Grand Trunk Brigade, forming a guard of honor.
Their Excellencies occupied Mayor Matthews’ carriage and were followed
by members of the Corporation and County officials. Next succeeded
the Fire Brigade in full uniform, with the Hook and Ladder cart gor-
geously decorated. An immense number of vehicles followed of every
style, for the County people commenced flocking into the town from an
early hour in the morning. The decorations were exceedingly notable,
especially on Colborne Street and there was a corporation arch at the
intersection of George and Colborne Streets. At the foot of Dumfries
St., (Brant Ave.) the St. George Society had another fine arch, supported
upon two granite pillars and surmounted by their beautiful banner.
Beneath said banner was the word “John” in Capital letters and a pair of
bull’s horns near by. This conundrum freely interpreted meant “John
Bull.” On reaching Victoria Square the procession halted and the
Mayor read an address to which Lord Dufferin made a characteristic re-
sponse. After numerous introductions the procession re-formed and
went to ‘the Central School where the children of the town, ranged on
raised platforms on either side of the entrance, sang in chorus, “God
Save the Queen,” and the “Red, White and Blue.” As their Excellencies
arrived bouquets of every shape, size and color were thrown. Miss
Gillen, on behalf of the children, read an address and an adjournment
was made to the Kerby for luncheon.

At three o’clock Earl Dufferin proceeded to the Cock-
New Rail- shutt flats, which had been chosen for the turning of
way and the fifst sod on the firantford, Norfolk and Port Bur-

well railway. At this function Mr. G. H. Wilkes read an
address. The next function was the laying of the inscription stone of the
Ladies’ College on Brant Ave, by Lady Dufferin, Mr. Roberston, Presi-
dent, reading an address to her ladyship and Lord Dufferin making the
reply. The day ended with a visit to the Institution for the Blind. On
Tuesday morning the Vice regal party, accompanied by a large number
of citizens, journeyed to the Six Nations Reserve. A stop was made
at Mohawk church, where Rev. Abraham Nelles read an address and on
the Reserve, where arches had been erected, and great preparations made
for the notable day, three more addresses were presented, from the
Chiefs, the Agricultural Society and the Chippewas. Formalities con-
cluded, there was an Indian sham fight and war dance outside the Council
House. After a luncheon at Styres Hall, the party crossed over to Bow
Park where they remained the rest of the day as the guests of Hon. George


Brown, returning to Brantford at 8.30 to hold a public reception in the
Town Hall. After the Governor General and the Countess had withdrawn
the Grand Trunk hand supplied music for dancing. The distinguished
visitors drove to Paris next morning in order to board their train, sent
there to await them. In all, Lord Dufferin made nine speeches during his
sojourn and they were all couched, in the happiest vein.

Lady Dufferin subsequently published “My Canadian
Tells of Journal 1872-1878,” and in it made quite a reference

to the visit to this County. Here are some extracts:

Monday 24th. “At Brantford we were met by guards of honor, both
foot and horse, a band and a very great crowd. We drove to a square
where the addresses were presented, and then to a school, where hundreds
of children were arranged around the lawn. Half an hour was given us
for lunch at the hotel. Our rooms are most comfortable. Lunch over,
we started on our duties. “D.” turned the first sod of a railway, and I
laid a stone for a young ladies’ college. The weather to-day is lovely,
and the whole of Brantford and the surrounding country had turned out
in their best clothes; the houses were gayly decorated and there was an
indefatigible band, which played the whole day and evening; some
arches were up and everything went off successfully.

Tuesday 25th. We were in our carriages by nine o’clock, and, fol-
lowed by forty six other vehicles started to visit the Indian Reserve, on
which the Six Nations live. At the entrance to the Reserve we found an
arch. “The Six Nations’ Welcome” on one side, and on the other, “The
Six Nations are Gratified; come again.” We sat on a dais and listened
to an Indian speech, which was translated to His Ex., who replied in
English. When this was over, the old Chiefs shook hands with us and
there was a great rush of women, many of whom presented me with
things. The next ceremony was a war dance. After leaving the Indians
we drove on to the farm of Mr. George Brown, editor of the Globe,
senator, great champion of the Grit Party and amateur farmer. His
place, “Bow Park,” is so called because .the river forms a bend there.
He goes in for Shorthorns, and has 300 of them. I was amused to find
that with this number of cows, he had not sufficient milk to make butter
for his own house, so exigent are the calves, who expect to have a wet
nurse as well as a mother and who, being very precious, have to be
humored and pampered in this way. The drive to Brantford brought us
there at eight o’clock, and I had at once to dress for a reception at the
Town Hall, which went off very well.

Wednesday 26th. Off at 9 a. m. as usual. We drove to Paris where
we were received by the Mayor and the people, and drove a mile and a
half at a foot’s pace to the railway station. The Town is prettily sit-
uated, and the station was most beautifully decorated; at one end of a
square was the platform, raised, carpeted, covered in with flags and
hung with green garlands, and bird cages, and all the telegraph posts
down the railway sides twined with green and joined with garlands.


Addresses, of course, were read and then we shook hands with numbers
of people; among others with a woman who came from Clandeboye
(Dufferin Estate) a year ago and who seemed almost mad with excite-
ment at seeing us. She asked to kiss “D’s” hand but he said. “I could
not allow a lady to kiss my hand,” “Then may I kiss your face?”. D.
got out of this embarrassing position by saying “Lady Dufferin does not
allow that.”

On August 10th, 1885, Lord Lansdowne arrived here
Other on a v i s jt to Bow Park Farm, driving from Wood-

Bxec ve stock via Burford. On arrival there he was met by Mr.

J. Y. Read of the farm, Mayor Scarfe, Ex-Mayor Henry,
H. McK. Wilson and J. S. Hamilton. After a bounteous luncheon, His
Excellency spent the remainder of the afternoon in an inspection of the
stock and he left here by special Grand Trunk car at 5. 20 p.m. A
number of citizens assembled at the depot and he was introduced to

Lord Stanley of Preston paid quite a lengthy visit to the City in 1893.
He arrived at the Grand Trunk station at 7 o’clock on the evening of
January 13th, and was met by a reception committee, composed of the
Mayor, (Dr. Secord,) the Honorable Arthur S. Hardy, W. Paterson, M.P.,
Aid. Bunnell, Aid. C. H. Waterous, Aid. Elliott and Aid. Raymond. His
Excellency was escorted to the Central School, where Mr. Graham’s
division had been converted into a reception room with banks of flowers,
handsome portieres and mellow toned lamps. He was met at the front
entrance by Chairman Sweet, Principal Wilkinson and other members of
the School Board and conducted to the scene of the general gathering
where the Mayor extended a formal greeting. Lord Stanley made an
eloquent response and then for two hours he met and conversed with
hundreds of citizens, who had come to pay respect to the representative
of the Queen. Later he made a tour of the building.

On Saturday morning the various manufacturing industries were in-
spected and a recherche lunch served at noon in the Kerby House. The
afternoon was devoted to visiting the Hospital, School for the Blind,
Young Ladies College and historical places.

On Thursday Sept. 24th, 1896, Lord and Lady Aberdeen arrived in
the city in their special Oar “Victoria” attached to the 10.25 train from
Stratford. Their Excellencies were met by acting Mayor Duncan, Mrs.
A. S. Hardy, Judge Jones, Sheriff Watt and City Aldermen and intro-
duced to several citizens. The distinguished visitors were then driven to
Agricultural Park, where the Southern Fair was in progress. The
Mohawk cadets acted as a guard of honor and escorted the party,
amid cheers, to an elevated platform, on which a number of the repre-


sentative men and women of the City and County were seated. As Lord
and Lady Aberdeen ascended the steps, hundreds of school children, under
direction of Mr. Hoye, sang the National Anthem. Aid. Duncan, on
behalf of Mayor T. Elliott, unavoidably absent in Toronto, read the
civic address and President Foulds another on behalf of the Fair Board.
A third address was read to Lady Aberdeen by Mrs. Brophey, President
of the W. C. T. U., not alone on behalf of that institution, but also
for the Women’s Auxiliary of the Y. M. C. A., and the Young Womens’
Christian Association. Appropriate reference was made to the well
known efforts of Her Excellency to “exalt woman and woman’s work in
every sphere of life.” Lord Aberdeen made a suitable reply, and the vice
regal visitors were then taken through the exhibition. The ladies boiard,
(Mrs. J. Cummings Nelles, President, and Mrs. F. Cockshutt, and Mrs. H.
McK. Wilson, Vice Presidents), entertained ‘Her Ladyship to a tasty
dejeuner in a special tent, and she later gave an address on the “National
Council of Women.” Lord Aberdeen was lunched at the Kerby House,
Hon. A. S. Hardy, taking a leading part. The afternoon was spent in
sight seeing and the Governor General and Lady Aberdeen were given a
notable send off upon their departure.

On May 14th, 1903, the Earl of Minto, Lady Minto and their daughter
Lady Eileen were guests of the City. When the special train glided into
the depot at 1.30, there were loud cheers and as His Excellency, wife and
daughter, stepped on the platform the members of the Dufferin Rifles
guard of honor, under command of Captain Howard, gave the royal
salute and the Dufferin Rifles band played the National Anthem. The
distinguished visitors were received by Mayor Halloran and Judge and
Mrs. Hardy, and a procession took place to the Central School, mounted
dragoons riding on each side of the leading vehicles. At the School B.
C. I. Cadets acted as guards of honor, and the school children led in
the singing of “God Save The King.” City Clerk Leonard read the
civic address and Lord Minto made an affable reply and a tour of the
city then took place. Lady Minto and Lady Eileen were guests at the
Y. W. C. A., where another reception occurred. The visitors left here at

Lord Grey visited the city on May 25th, 1905. His trip was quite in-
formal, and at a special meeting of the City Council, called hurriedly
in the morning, Mayor Waterous explained that it was only late in the
previous afternoon that he received word that the Governor General
would be here. Under the circumstances an impromptu program was
decided upon, and any idea of presenting an address was eliminated. The
representative of His Majesty arrived on a special T. H. & B. train at


11.35, when a rapid visit was made to points of interest, and luncheon
served at the Kerby House. In the afternoon he attended a successful
horse show at Agricultural Park, and this was in reality the main object
he had in view.

The Duke of Devonshire visited the city on October 24th. 1917, for
the purpose of unveiling the Bell Memorial. Rain shortened the pro-
gram at the station where His Excellency was met by Mayor Bowlby,
Dr. Alexander Graham Bell, Aldermen and representative citizens. A
Company of the 38th Rifles and returned soldiers formed a guard of
honor and the usual civic address was presented. After the memorial
ceremonies, which are described elsewhere, there was a civic luncheon at
the Kerby House, and points of interest were visited. The Duke also
opened the new soldiers’ home.




As before related the industrial growth and prosperity of Brantford
was for many years dependent to a considerable extent on the Brantford
Grand River Level, known locally as the canal. This waterway, about
three miles in length, runs East from a point near the Lome Bridge to the
“Locks” just West of Cainsville. When, under foreclosure, the city
acquired the property, the cost of maintenance was such that in 1875 the
Municipality was glad to convey the entire property, together with a cash
bonus of $800.00, to Mr. Watts on condition that he repair the breaks in
the embankment, adjacent to the Canal and that he maintain the Level in
suitable condition for navigation, hydraulic and mill purposes, and keep
the Canal in a sanitary condition.

The Grand River, in the course of its windings from the
First Lome Bridge to a point adjacent to the Locks, travels a

JiilectriC distance of twelve miles and drops thirty three feet, per-

Lisrhting’. . .

mitting a considerable development of power at the latter

point. Mr. Watts took advantage of this and about the middle Eighty’s
installed an electric dynamo for the supply of electric light. The only
form of electric lamp available at that time was the arc lamp and a num-
ber of these were installed on the streets, and in the principal business
places of the city. In the late Eighty’s Mr. Watts organized the Brantford
Electric Light Co., associating with him Mr. Geo. H. Wilkes, the late
Mr. Robert Henry, and two of his sons, Charles B. Watts, now of Toronto
and Mr. A. E. Watts. In 1890, or 1891, in order to keep up with the
times, the Company installed a 1,000 light dynamo for the purpose of
distributing incandescent electric light, apparatus for this purpose having
but recently been placed on the market. The system adopted was what
was then known as the Thomson Houston, the dynamo being made in
Lynn, Mass. The demand for electric light increased to such an extent
that the original Company found difficulty in financing the improvements
necessary and in 1892 the Brantford Electric and Power Company was
organized with the late Mr. Wm. Buck as President, and on the first


of December in that year they purchased the Brantf ord Grand River Level
from Mr. Alfred Watts for $40,000.00. A large amount of money was
spent on a new dam, repairs to the Canal banks and the installation of
another 2,000 light alternating dynamo, and about the year 1894, a direct
current generator was installed, for furnishing direct current power
for motive power purposes to their customers. This represented the
initial development here of electrical energy for power purposes on a
commercial basis.

During the four years of the existence of the Brantford
our .tiara Electric and Power Company a series of disastrous ac-
cidents to the Canal level occasioned by the unusually
heavy floods on the Grand River, coupled with the necessity for con-
stantly increasing expenditure to keep pace with the business, resulted
in the Company going into liquidation and in February 1896 the assets
of the Company passed into the hands of the Brantford Electric & Operat-
ing Company Limited, whose directorate was composed of Mr. Geo. H.
Wilkes, President, Mr. A. J. Wilkes, Secretary Treasurer, and the late Dr.
H. B. Yates, Mr. B. W. Yates and Mr. H. R. Yates. This Company was
in existence for nearly ten years during which period it constantly strove
to give the citizens of Brantford the benefit of the latest developments in
the industry. Shortly after it commenced business the lighting capacity
was increased from 3,000 lights to 9,000 lights capacity, and early in
the year 1897 the Company commenced delivering alternating current
power for motive power purposes. The character of the service was two
phase, five hundred and fifty volts, one hundred and thirty-three cycles.
In 1897 the capacity of the Water Power Station was doubled, but with
the ever increasing demand for light and power, in 1899 it was found
necess’ary to install another Water Wheel, bringing the capacity up to
1,200 H. P. Improvements to the plant were constantly being made and
in 1905, the Company deciding to bring the system up-to-date, scrapped
its entire electrical equipment and installed a modern three phase, sixty
cycle system, which is the standard to-day throughout the United States
and Canada. In order to insure continuity of service an 800 H. P. Steam
Plant was installed.

Then history began to repeat itself, the Company corn-
Coming of menced to find great difficulty in financing the ever
Western increasing demands for extensions and in October 1905 it

sold out to the late Mr. John Knox, Hamilton, an enter-
prising business man and who ‘as a director of the Hamilton Cataract
Power Company of Hamilton, and President of the Lincoln Electric Light
& Power Company of St. Catharines, had considerable experience in the


electric light and power business. Mr. Knox appreciated the possibili-
ties of Brantford as an industrial centre and consequently ‘as a large
consumer of power, and inasmuch as the Brantford & Hamilton Electric
Railway was at that time projected, he secured an option on a large block
of power and by utilizing the railway transmission line the scheme
of transmitting power to Brantford from the Cataract Power Company’s
Plant at DeCew Falls became commercially practicable. In March 1906
the City of Brantford gave a franchise to the Western Counties Electric
Company with John Knox as President, securing to the citizens of Brant-
ford the low rates for both power and light which have played a very
prominent part in the rapid strides in growth, and commercial impor-
tance which the city has made in the last ten or twelve years. On the
14th. of March, 1908, power was turned on to the homes, stores and
factories of Brantford from DeCew Falls, a distance of fifty-two miles.

The Hydro Electric scheme affords a striking illustra-
Hydro ticm of the growth of public sentiment in Brantford,

JMectric vrith regard to Municipal ownership. It was as far back

as 1906 that the plans of the Provincial Hydro System
were first presented to a Brantford audience in Victoria Hall, but at that
time the great Hydro System which to-day embraces every important point
in Western Ontario, was in its infancy, so that while die speakers on
that occasion were accorded a sympathetic hearing, the by-law which
was shortly afterwards submitted to the people was defeated. Subse-
quently, the Western Counties Electric Company was granted a 10 year
franchise. However, during the next few years the citizens of Brantford
had the opportunity of studying the operations of the Hydro Electric
System in other cities. In October 1912, the City Council judged that
the growth of sentiment favourable to Hydro warranted another appeal to
the citizens of Brantford and on this occasion the by-law to provide the
installation of a Municipal System was carried by a very large majority.
In March, 1913, the operations were commenced under the supervision
of Engineer L. G. Ireland, and in December of that year Brantford’s Great
White Way made its initial appearance. The first Brantford Hydro
Electric Commission was formed consisting of three members, Mr.
Andrew McFarland, Mr. George Wedlake and Mayor John H. Spence,
and arrangements for securing customers for the new municipal depart-
ment were soon completed. City Clerk, Mr. Leonard, signed the first
application for lighting service, but the residences of Mayor John H.
Spence and Mr. T. G. Boles, druggist, on Park Avenue, were the first
to be actually connected in February 1914. Ryerson Bros., wholesalers,
were the first applicants for power. The first year’s business exceeded



Plant and

all expectations of the Commission and indeed since its inception the
local system has shown a wonderful development as the following fig-
ures will demonstrate.

Including lands and buildings, sub station equipment,
distribution system overhead, line transformers, meters,
street lighting equipment, ornamental street lighting and
miscellaneous equipment the value of the plant has been as follows:

1914 $216,029.51

1915 .. 257,995.72

1916 274,678.49

1917 304,661.82

1918 318,431.60

Earnings ….


Purchased .
Customers ..
Customers .
Customers ..


1914 1915 1916 1917 1918

$35,496.54 $66,296.31 $80,042.51 $107,354.97 $114,362.39

2,174.10 6,854.22 15,441.03 18,488.65 46,096.62

. 12,999.13 24,661.13 33,566.59 47,842,34 47,860.14
















Service at

The basic principle underlying Hydro operations is ser-
vice to the people at cost.

A large increase in general business means a re-sale
of power and consequently profits: therefore, when a municipality shows
a large increase in general business and a corresponding surplus the
Ontario Hydro Commission orders a suitable reduction of rates so that
the principle of service at cost may be maintained.

During six years of operation the Brantford Domestic consumers have
received three reductions of rates. The Commercial consumers three,
and the Power consumers two. At the present time the lighting bills of
the citizens of Brantford are as low as any point on the Provincial Sys-
tem, or indeed for that matter, anywhere on the continent.

Prior to 1916, cooking by electricity was a luxury only within the
reach of the more affluent citizens and at that time there were probably
not more than a score of electric stoves in Brantford, but the local


Commission were able to strike a rate which placed electric cooking
well within the means of any householder in moderate circumstances.

During the period 1916-19, over 400 electric ranges have been in-
stalled in Brantford and there is an ever increasing demand for this
modern convenience. There has also been a great demand for the smal-
ler electric appliances such as irons, toasters, plates, washers, etc. ,

Brantford is considered by many experts to be one of the

best lighted cities in America. The Residential District

is illuminated with 2900 hundred watt tungsten lamps,

each 90 feet apart and in the business section there are 147 arc lamps

each of 1,000 watts.

Any profit made on civic business is refunded, at the end of the
current year.

In 1916, Engineer L. G. Ireland resigned his position as manager,
to take charge of the Severn District for the Ontario Commission. He was
succeeded by a Brantford boy in the person of Mr. William R. Catton.
The local commission have always endeavored to keep pace with modern
electrical engineering efficiency and have from time to time installed
apparatus for the betterment of the system.

The Hydro Board is composed of the Mayor and two elected members.
Since the inception of the system the latter; have consisted of Mr. A.
McFarland, (Chairman), and Mr. Geo. Wedlake.


The extension of the Grand Valley Road to Paris and
Brantford then to Gait, constituted the first electric arm stretched

to d R^ 1 Ut f r m this City * O* May 24th ‘ 1908 ‘ the Brantf ord
and Hamilton Radial was opened for traffic, between

the two cities, and the twenty four miles are covered in as direct a manner
as it was possible to negotiate. At the Brantford end, easy access to the
heart of the city was provided, by following the canal level. The road
bed is of the most substantial nature and the tracks are built to the
specifications of the ordinary steam railway, with the exception that the
grades are somewhat heavier in places than steam railway engineering
will permit. The rails are of eighty pound weight, and the cars are of
the best inter-urban type and weigh 70,000 pounds each. They are
equipped with air and hand brakes and carry 300 horse power of motive
machinery, geared to a speed of fifty miles an hour. At Hamilton con-
nections are made with the Hamilton Radial, the Hamilton, Grimsby and
Beamsville, and the Dundas Railway, while during the period of nav-
igation excellent connections are made with lake steamers for Toronto.


The cost of construction was $1,250,000 and the passengers carried in
1919 totaled thousands. The road, like the Western Counties, is under
control of the Dominion Power and Transmission Company.

For many years Brantfordites were desirous of an elec-

ilr~?. Jarie trie line through the Waterf ord and Simcoe district to Port
Northern. ~ ,.

Dover, not alone because more direct connection was

desirable with that rich region, but also because the Port proves the
natural lake, resort for citizens, many of whom have summer residences
there. The late Mr. Thomas Elliott once succeeded in securing a char-
ter, but failed to get enough financial men interested. In 1911, Mr. W.
P. Kellett, an engineer of much experience, who was then a compara-
tively new comer to the city, commenced to figure matters in a practical
way, and with the co-operation of Mr. John Muir the following, in ad-
dition to the two gentlemen named, became interested enough to advance
preliminary expenses H. Cockshutt, Lloyd Harris, W. D. Schultz, W. S.
Brewster, R. Ryerson, J. Spence, F. D. Reville, E. Kenwood, W. D.
Schultz, J. A. Sanderson, B. Forsayeth, Senator McCall, (Simcoe,) A. C.
Pratt, then M. P. P., for Norfolk, R. Thompson, (Paris,) and Mr. Ansley,
Port Dover. Mr. Muir was made President.

On May 19th 1911, incorporation was secured at Ottawa, the charter,
bearing the following names J. Muir, R. Ryerson, W. S. Brewster, W. P.
Kellett, W. D. Schultz, J. A. Sanderson.

The original project was to construct to Port Dover only, but event-
ually the larger scheme was evolved of extending to the north as far
as Gait, in order to obtain C. P. R. connection there. After the prep-
aration of plans, successful meetings were held in the various Municipali-
ties interested in order to get them to guarantee bonds. The by-laws
carried in each instance, but as a matter of fact not one cent was ever
called for. The next move was the visit of a deputation to Ottawa, in or-
der to secure a Dominion subsidy of $6,400 a mile, which was obtained
without any challenge in the House. Senator Fisher was a great help at
the Capital and Mr. W. F. Cockshutt, M. P., was one of the leading
speakers when the Brantford delegation waited on Hon. Frank Cochrane,
then Minister of Railways.

Finally work was commenced on the road in 1913, with

C. P. E. Mr. Kellett as Chief Engineer and General Manager, and

^^ ” e no expense was spared, either in the selection of a route

or construction. Between here and Gait, the line follows

the river very closely, and the scenery is of the most picturesque nature.

There were times during the building when the resources of those who

remained to back the enterprise (some had dropped out) were very


heavily strained, but the project finally reached successful completion
and then passed into the hands of the C. P. R. The line is 51% miles
in length and, with its splendidly equipped cars and electric engines,
represents an outlay of some $3,750,000. Another hope of the projec-
tors was that with the dredging of Port Dover Harbor, a ferry system to
Conneaut would become established, enabling a cheaper transport of coal
to the section served by the L. E. & N. However beyond some slight Gov-
ernment recognition, nothing of a tangible nature has yet resulted.

Later the Brantford and Hamilton, and Lake Erie & Northern Com-
panies erected a handsome combined depot, adjacent to the easterly ap-
proach of Lome Bridge.

The Grand River, before the forests had been cleared
The Story an( J l an( J drained, was a noble stream of wide dimen-
p * _. sions, the whole year round. Mr. Charles Durand many

years ago recalled the fact that when he first knew the
stream about 1818, “the beautiful river meandered in lovely majesty
along its wooded slopes, flowing in majestic beauty and silence, under
the bending trees.” The only black mark against it in those days was
that it overflowed its banks at certain seasons to such an extent as to earn
for this region the soubriquet of the “Grand River Swamp,” and in later
years when West Brantford and “the flats” became inhabited, similar
overflows, principally in the spring, led to much damage and incon-
venience. Before the construction of adequate dykes, it was no uncom-
mon experience, at certain periods of the year, for residents in the
regions named to be rescued from their homes in boats, and for the
streets to have water pouring down them with almost the velocity of a
mill race. Many present citizens can remember such scenes.

However the balance in favor of the Grand is most
P. , 0,-j emphatically on the right side of the ledger. In the

pioneer days of this place, Paris and County, it fur-
nished the motive power for flour and feed mills and in 1840 afforded
great impetus to Brantford in connection with the Grand River Nav-
igation Company. In addition, it has for many years proved the basic
source of the water supply of this Municipality, besides, below the city
serving as a drainage carrier, while in the Holmedale its waters are
still harnessed to quite an extent for industrial power, and the winter
ice crop is no mean item. Added to these things, there is the further
fact that its offspring, the Canal, furnished power for many years to
more than one milling concern and factory; at the locks turned the
machinery which gave Brantford its first electric lighting system; inci-
dently created the beautiful Mohawk Lake, and furnished a facile


entrance way to this community for an important radial line. Thus al-
though the waters of the Grand have been strongly anathematized at
rarying intervals, they can also be credited with much advantage.

The river rises in the Township of Melancthon, Dufferin

Kise 01 County, within a distance of almost twenty-five miles

The Grand. f J ‘ . D . ‘. ,

from Georgian Bay. Its source at an elevation ot ap-
proximately 1,700 feet above Sea Level may be said to mark the highlands
of the Southwestern plateau. This plateau comprises an area of approx-
imately 1,100 square miles, and from or near it, rise practically all the
principal rivers of Southwestern Ontario.

Originally, half or more of this headwater area was apparently a
dense swamp forming excellent natural reservoirs for the maintenance
of stream flow, the Grand River at one time supplying all the water
used for power and navigation purposes on the Welland Canal.

During the last thirty or forty years, most of this swamp land has
been cleared, and drained, resulting in the present disastrous spring
floods. From its source to its outlet into Lake Erie, at Port Maitland,
by the river is a distance of 175 miles, the drainage area being approx-
imately 2,500 square miles. The drainage basin is wide at the head-
water area, and narrower in the lower flat country, where most of the
rivers flow directly into the Lake.

In topographical characteristics the river may be divided into two
parts Upper and Lower. The upper part extends well into Waterloo
County and includes the Conestogo tributary. Here on the flat head-
water table lands the declivity is small, then for a distance it becomes
quite steep. At Elora, for example, there is a single drop of over 40
feet where the river enters a limestone gorge. The declivity of the lower
river is gradual and uniform generally becoming flat towards Lake Erie.
The following table will show the approximate fall of the river:

Approximate Approximate Lake Erie

Locality Mileage Sea Level Level

Port Maitland 573.94 0.00

Dunnville (foot of dam) 7 573.94 0.00

Water above dam 7 581.00 7.00

York 29 594.00 20.00

Caledonia (foot of dam) 34 610.00 36.00

Caledonia (top of dam) 34 618.00 44.00

15 miles above dam 49 618.00 44.00

At mouth of Fairchild’s 50 619.00 45.00

Brantford (Cockshutt bridge) 60 639.00 65.00

Bfantford, foot of lower dam 64 644.00 70.00
The Grand Itiver near Elora.
The Grand Uiver at Dunnville.





Brantford, above lower dam 64 658.00 84.00

Brantford, above Wilkes dam 67 675.00 101.00

Paris, below dam 76 720.00 146.00

Paris, above dam 76 730.00 156.00

Glenmorris at Bridge 83 802.00 228.00

Gait, at foot of dam 90 853.00 279.00

Gait, above dam 90 862.00 288.00

Conestogo, at Bridge 120 1018.00 444.00

Belwood, at Bridge 147 1367.00 793.00

In the upper stretches of the river including its tributaries, extend-
ing roughly to the vicinity of Paris, the stream bed is rocks and coarse
gravel almost throughout, flowing in places over exposed limestones for
considerable distances.

The river bed consists chiefly of:

Paris to Brantford, gravel, sand.

Western Counties Canal, gravel, sand, silt and clay.

Brantford to 12 miles below, gravel, sand and clay.

To Caledonia from above point, fine gravel, sand and silt.

Caledonia to York, gravel, exposed limestone.

York to Dunnville, fine gravel, sand, silt.

This section of the province, in common with all South western On-
tario, is occupied throughout by comparatively undisturbed limestone
and other Silurian and Devonian strata with overlaying drift, clays,
sands and more recent superficial deposits. The deep deposit of drift
material naturally lends itself to erosion and consequently the river
carries considerable quantities of sand and gravel during heavy floods,
scouring from headwaters to below Brantford.

Below this point the immense area of the river channel with a small
declivity produces a condition that light deposits may take place rather
than scour to any extent. All the tributaries however bring down large
quantities of material. Below is a table showing approximate flow in
cubic feet per second. Period 1914, 1915, 1916.


Locality Maximum Minimum Mean Drainage flow 1912

Area sq. M.

Belwood 4,600 3 190 280 10,000

Conestogo 9,300 15 375 550 20,000

Gait 19,000 55 810 1,360 50,000

Glenmorris 23,000 70 900 1,390

Brantford 26,000 100 1,400 2,000 100,000

York 27,000 200 1,550 2,280 115,000



With the growth of the place the need for a better water supply for
fighting fires, than was afforded by the river and cistern method, was
keenly felt, especially as there was great difficulty in winter with these
two sources.

In 1849 the Council gave permission to I. Cockshutt and Duncan
McKay to dig a well and put in a pump on the north side of Colborne
Street for protection against fire and in 1861 the Council provided for
the construction of six cisterns, twelve feet in diameter, and the same to
continually contain not less than ten feet of water. These were located as
follows: corner of Queen and Wellington; corner of Sheridan and Mar-
ket; corner of Cedar and Nelson; Corner Palace and Crown; corner Mill
and Colborne and on Dalhousie, near where the original Congregational
Church stood. Agitation for an adequate system finally resulted in the
passing of the following resolution at a City Council meeting on Febru-
ary 7th., 1870:

“That this Council, having approved of the Holly System of Water-
Works, but not feeling at present in a position to incur the expense of
erecting said works, deem it advisable that such works be erected by a
company formed for that purpose, and that this Council is prepared to
offer any such company eight per cent upon the amount expended for
fire purposes, adding $250 for working expenses, providing the company
expend not less than $20,000, erect buildings, pumps, machinery, lay not
less than 6,575 feet of four and six inch pipe and eighteen hydrants, and
furnish water at any fire that would be satisfactory to this council; and
that the Committee on Fire, Water and Gas be empowered to have drafts
and specifications got up, also draft of agreement for the inspection of
the said Waterworks Company.”

At a later meeting of the Council on February 14th, the amount was
reduced to $18,500.

As the outcome a company was almost immediately
Company formed with a capital stock of $25,000, later increased

to $50,000 and the original directors consisted of I Cock-
shutt, President; T. S. Shenstone, Secretary-Treasurer; Wm. Buck, H. W.
Brethour, and H. B. Leeming. During the same year a small pumping
station was erected on Colborne Street at the Clarence Street intersection,
and the necessary machinery was purchased and pipe laying commenced.
Two rotary pumps were at first employed, but in later years a Worth-
ington was established with a capacity of 750,000 gallons per day of
twenty four hours. Any pipe laying for other than fire purposes was not
paid for by the City. The community was content to go without water
for drinking and table purposes until 1886, when an agitation came to a


head for the establishment of a general plant. One faction in the City
Council favored a municipally owned plant and another faction thought
that some private concern had better take the risk, and in this respect
espoused the proposals of a U. S. firm, Moffatt, Hodgins & Clarke. The
controversy over the matter reached extreme proportions and there were
many heated Council meetings. This was towards the end of the year
and one of the Aldermen, who was against Municipal ownership, finding
it necessary to resign for business reasons, the vacancy at the Council
board enabled those in favor of City control to at any moment destroy
a quorum. The Council would meet and transact regular business, but
the moment the Water-Works matter was introduced enough Aldermen
would withdraw from the meeting to break up the gathering. It was
these tactics which prevented a privately owned system, and resulted
later in the civic works.

The old company was finally taken over by the Municipality at a
price of $64,700 and the deal included about nine miles of mains.

In looking for a suitable source of water-supply the pres-
p .. ent location in the Holmedale was considered the most

feasible and a series of test wells were driven, and ob-
servations as to the depth and variations of the water level were made.
It was found that over this district was a very porous soil, much of
it a gravel bed, beneath which was a stratum of clay impervious to water.
The average depth of soil overlaying the clay was about sixteen feet.
The data collected showed that by laying a line of pipe on the surface of
the clay a large quantity of water would be intercepted and collected for

The collecting gallery was constructed by laying tile pipe 15 inches
in diameter in a trench excavated to the clay, the pipe being laid in two
rows side by side, two feet from centre to centre. The pipes were per-
forated for about two thirds of their circumference and were covered
with screened gravel to a depth of two feet before filling up the trench
with the excavated gravel and earth. The gallery first constructed was
laid in a south-westerly direction from the power station for a distance
of 750 feet. The fall in this distance is about 4 feet. The bottom of
the pump well is about 24 feet below the station floor. Underground
water collected in this manner, when the watershed is such as to guaran-
tee freedom from dangerous contamination, is an excellent means of
procuring a public water supply. Observations made in Brantford
would indicate that the supply is largely fed from the Grand River, the
porous soil being a means of natural filtration.


As time went on the first collecting gallery became in-
x en ng adequate to supply the needs of the city, and in 1889
another gallery, this time of 24 inch tile, was laid. This
gallery ran parallel to a hydraulic canal which supplies power to fac-
tories, and about fifty feet from it to a point in the river flats. Part of
the pipe is laid with closed joints and the remainder at the river flats with
open joints. The system proved inadequate, and the pipe line which
runs to the river flats was extended into the river at a point opposite
Dickie’s Cove. This pipe was used to carry water to the gravel bed and
an infiltration gallery was constructed 300 feet long to take the water
to the pumping station.

Later it was found that the sediment from the river was choking the
filter bed and a screen house was installed with stationary screens and a
sedimentation basin. A 10 inch pump is also installed at the inlet at
present and pumps the water into the pipe line supplying the natural
filter bed. This pump is of the single stage type, and is driven by a
fifty h. p. motor. One intake extends into the river. At the present
time about 1,000,000 gallons of natural ground water are obtained, the
rest having to be drawn from the river, and filtered through the natural
gravel. During the period 1911-14, additional filtration galleries, of a
total length of 6,000 feet were added.

All the water pumped is drawn from two pump wells. The older one
15 feet in diameter and 20 feet deep, supplies the steam pumps, and
the other, 25 feet in diameter by 29 feet deep, supplies the electrically
operated centrifugal pumps, and the steam turbine operated centrifugal-
pumps. An emergency source of supply exists in the hydraulic canal
adjacent to the station, and in this connection it may be stated that all
water, both from the emergency supply and filter beds, is chlorinated.
During efforts to increase supply, three artesian wells were sunk, but
the water obtained was either salt, or sulphur laden, and so not suitable.

The pumps consist of seven units, as follows:

Statistical Capacity in Gallons Operated

Information. \

24 Hours by

Compound Duplex, Double Acting 5,000,000 Steam

Compound Duplex, Double Acting 1,600,000 Steam

Compound Duplex, Gaskill Type 1,500,000 Steam

3-Stage, Centrifugal 4,000,000 Electric

3-Stage, Centrifugal 4,000,000 Electric

Twin, single stage, Centrifugal 4,000,000 Steam

Twin, single stage, Centrifugal 4,000,000 Steam



Each of the electric pumps is operated by a Canadian Westinghouse,
Synchronous meter, 250 h.p., and each of the De Laval steam pumps by
a 145 h.p. steam turbine.

The total pumping capacity for fire service is 13,000,000 gallons,
while for obtaining fire pressure in the hill section of the city, there are
two booster pumps.

In addition to the electric equipment there are four boilers and the
lengths and various sizes of the mains are as follows:

20-inch 7,012 feet

14-inch 13,926 feet

12-inch 6,132 feet

10-inch 10,974 feet

8-inch 31,950 feet

6-inch 146,995 feet

4-inch 104,855 feet

Total 321,844 feet or 61 miles

The total number of hydrants is 331, in addition to which there are
a number of privately owned hydrants in the various factory yards.

The domestic consumption, as taken from the pump house records
of the last recorded year, was 1,031,002,975 gallons, giving a daily aver-
age of 2,824,666 gallons, or a per capita consumption of 98 gallons.
The maximum consumption for any one day was 4,849,525 gallons.

The first year after the city owned the works, the number of gallons
pumped, was 82,000,000 and the revenue from water service $5,816.
Last year the water pumped was considerably over a billion gallons, with
revenue of $110,932.

The surplus earnings for the year 1919, totalled $46,889.52, but in-
terest on debentures, sinking fund, and instalments and interest on cap-
ital advanced, reduced the net surplus to $2,687.47. Up to the end of
1919, the property value and equipment was placed at $985,212.00 and
the net debt, $753,122. As against this a sinking fund existed of $128,-
527, leaving the net debt at $624,595. The revenue meets all charges.

The first Water Commissioners consisted of J. N. Shenstone and C. B.
Heyd. Then for some years, A. Watts and W. Whitaker. Next, J. Fair
and A. G. Montgomery, and now C. A. Waterous and D. L. Webster. In
each year the Mayor is a member by virtue of his office. The first Sec-
retary was James Woodyatt, who was succeeded by W. Frank. For the
last twenty six years, Mr. Fred Frank has been Secretary and Manager.

At the inception the late Mr. David Webster was the engineer. He
came to Brantford with his parents from Scotland in 1852, and served


an apprenticeship with the Waterous Engine Works. While with that
firm, he installed Waterworks plants, and became associated with the
Brantford privately owned system in 1877. He continued as engineer
when the Municipality assumed control and was a most effective public
servant until his retirement in 1916, when he was made a presentation by
the Commissioners and retained as advisory engineer. His son, David
L. Webster succeeded to his post, but resigned in 1919.

Mr. Norman R. Wilson, is now Chief Engineer and Superintendent.
He is a member of the Institution of Civil Engineers, (England) , and of
the American Waterworks Association. G. Drury is chief operator, in
charge of the pump house and T. Lamb chief superintendent of outside




In the very early days of Upper Canada, educational facilities were
few and far between, and when they did exist, of the most primitive and
inadequate nature. A writer of the period, (Mrs. Anne Jameson) made
the assertion “Schoolmasters as a rule are ill fed, ill clothed, ill paid,
or not paid at all.” Very many of them were content to teach for
what board, lodging and clothing the settlers could offer and in the
generality of cases they were totally unfit for the vocation they fol-
lowed. As the country became more and more opened up matters
improved, but as late as 1833 pupils used United States text books,
replete with sentiments hostile to England, a reprehensible condition of
affairs, finally stopped by legislation of which Egerton Ryerson was the
prime instigator.

The first school in the village of Brantford was started
:?V~ * about 1826 and was held in the frame building on the

Market Square which was a veritable Pooh Bah among
local structures as it was also the civic hall, Court room, place of enter-
tainments and meeting house. Dame schools were also in vogue for quite
a period. In 1850 the west wing of the old Central School was erected,
with Dr. Ryerson as the leading figure in the opening ceremonies, but the
Town was commencing to spread out, and an agitation soon took place
for ward schools. In this regard the following document was presented
at a meeting of the civic fathers:

“To the Town Council of the Town of Brantford:

The Board of School Trustees of the Town of Brantford, in the County
of Brant, hereby demand and require of the Town Council of the Town
of Brantford, that the said Town Council do, within the time required
by law, and according to the forms required by law, issue the debentures
of the said Council for the sum of fifteen hundred pounds currency

:and that the said Town Council do place the same at the

disposal of the said Board, or do themselves dispose thereof for the best
price that can be secured therefor and pay over the proceeds thereof
to the said Board to build a school house in the East Ward, a school


house in the North Ward, and a school house in the Kings Ward of the
said Town and for purchasing sites for the said school houses.

CHARLES ROBINSON, Chairman W. H. BURNS, Secretary

May 2nd, 1853.

The upshot of this somewhat tart communication was
More that in the same year the three schools were established;

f r the EaSt Ward n Darlin S Street > at the corner of
Wellington; for the North Ward on Albion Street and
for the Kings Ward at the corner of Winniett and Oak Streets. All were
unpretentious buildings. In 1857 the main portion of the old Central
was erected and in 1871, the east wing was built.

In 1853 the “Public Schools,” as they were later designated, of Brant-
ford had six teachers and a total enrolled attendance of 785. Thirty
years later, 1882, there were four much larger school buildings, with 29
teachers and the pupils totalled 2,038. The average attendance in 1853
was 324, or 41 per cent.; in 1882, it was 1,400, or 69 per cent. In 1920
there are nine schools Central, Victoria, Alexandra, King Edward, King
George, Ryerson, Dufferin, Bellview, Ballachey and also a manual train-
ing school and school for domestic science. The number of teachers is
112, number of enrolled pupils 4,963, and average attendance of 3,660,
or 74 per cent. The amount paid in salaries in 1853 was $1,860 for six
teachers and in 1882, $9,027, for twenty nine teachers. Mr. Wilkinson
who was then Principal of the Central had a salary of $1,000, and there
were two other male teachers. The rest were women teachers whose
pay ranged from $400 to $200 per annum, chiefly the latter. In 1920
the salary list stands at $110,000 for 112 teachers.

In 1897 the North Ward, or Albion Street School was supplanted by
a modern building at a cost of $25,000. In honor of the diamond jubilee
of Queen Victoria it was named “Victoria School.”

In 1904 the Kings Ward, or Oak Street School, was replaced at a
cost of $12,000 by an improved building and named “Ryerson School,”
in honor of the founder of the Ontario Public School system.

In 1906-7 the East Ward, or Darling Street School, was rebuilt at a
cost of $30,000 and renamed “Alexandra School,” in honor of Queen

In 1913 the Morrell Street School, previously taken over from the
Township in connection with boundary extension, was abandoned and
the land sold to the L. E. & N. Railway. A new school was then erected
at a cost of $64,000 and named “Dufferin,” in honor of Earl Dufferin, a
former distinguished Governor General of Canada.

In 1915 a new school was completed on Rawdon Street at a cost of








$45,000. The name bestowed was “King George,” in honor of the
reigning monarch.

In 1910 the Huron Street School, later named the “King Edward,”
in memory of that monarch, had additional enlargement and the
total building cost has been $45,000.

In 1920 a new school was opened on Rawdon Street, between Victoria
and Arthur, at a cost of $150,000. It is named the “Ballachey School”
in honor of Major P. P. Ballachey who fell in the great war and who
had for many years been a school trustee.

In 1919 the addition of Bellview to the City added still another
school. The building, more than once enlarged, represents an outlay of
about $40,000.

All of the schools have kindergarten departments.
In 1909 a school nurse was appointed and in 1920 there are four.
In 1914 a school Dental surgeon was decided upon and in 1920 a medical

The old Central school was destroyed by fire during a night blaze in
February of 1890 and in October of the same year, the corner stone was
laid for the present large structure, representing an outlay of $50,000.
The approximate value of Public School buildings in 1920 is $675,000.
Board Th e following have been Chairmen of the Public School

Chairmen. Board from the time of ^organization :

18934 J. Ott
1895 W. S. Brewster

18967 W. Watt Jr.
18989 J. A. Leitch
19001 C. Hartman

1902 E. Hart

1903 W. C. Livingston

1904 W. J. Graham

1905 D. J. Waterous

1906 F. W. Frank

1907 T. E. Ryerson

1908 W. A. Hollinrake

1909 F. J. Calbeck

1910 T. L. Wood

1911 P. P. Ballachey

1912 A. E. Day

1913 G. H. Ryerson

1914 M. E. B. Cutcliffe

P. C. VanBrocklin
A. Kirkland
C. Robinson
Jas. Wilkes
A. Cleghorn
R. Sproule
W. B. Hurst
Jas. Weyms
C. Duncan
Jas. Weyms
W. Grant
E. Brophey
J. Bellhouse
A. J. Wilkes
Dr. Griffin
T. McLean
S. M. Thomson
W. Grant
E. Sweet


In connection with the other old time teachers of the Central School
such men were prominent as Mr. Hughes, Dr. Kelly, Rev. D. P. Muir,
D. C. Sullivan, Dr. J. King, W. Wilkinson.

In 1871 the Ontario Legislature passed an Educational
* Act which among other things provided for County

School Inspectors and in June of the same year, Dr. M. J.
Kelly was selected for that office in Brant. A deep scholar and many
sided man was the Doctor. He was born in the City of Quebec in 1834 of
distinguished Irish parentage and after taking the usual school course
in the city named, he attended High School and a French College in Mon-
treal. Subsequently he attended the Normal School in Toronto and
then Toronto University, where he first took up the arts course. Later
he took the medical and law courses and achieved first class honors in
all these holding the degrees of M. A. ; M. D. and L. L. B. He continued
his medical studies in New York, London, Edinburgh, Paris and Heidle-
berg hospitals and returning to Canada, taught in High Schools and later
in Upper Canada College. He then practiced medicine for a short time,
next edited newspapers and finally settled down in the Inspectorship work
of City and County, holding the joint position until his resignation of
the County position in 1902 and the City in 1904. Dr. Kelly possessed
a goodly share of native wit and his addresses at school and other con-
ventions were always eagerly anticipated, for allied to a vast store of
knowledge, he manifested great facility of expression. Throughout his
life he was a deep reader, selecting his books from a large range of
subjects and his retentive memory was proverbial. As City Inspector he
was succeeded by William Wilkinson, then J. P. Hoag, who resigned and
Mr. E. E. C. Kilmer was next appointed in 1908 and still holds office.

Prior to 1871, Public Schools were designated as “Corn-
Grammar mon Schools,” and a “Grammar School,” was established

in each district town, the master of which received an
annual grant of 100 from the Government. Such a school was inaug-
urated in Brantford on September 1st 1852, and it was located in a small
frame cottage on Nelson Street on the lot where the late Mr. John H.
Stratford later built his handsome residence. A private grammar school
had been carried on in the same premises some time previously of which
Mr. S. Read, father of S. G. Read and C. H. Read, still both residents of
the city, was the first teacher. Mr. Read was born in the Township of
Augusta, north of Brockville and afterwards became a minister of the
Baptist Church, engaging in missionary work. Another teacher was Mr.
Roche. The first teacher of the Public Grammar School was Mr. R. J.
Tyner, an Honor Graduate of Toronto University, who remained in charge


of it for three years. On October the 14th, 1856, a union took place be-
tween the Grammar and Public School Boards, and the location of the
Grammar School was transferred to the upper part of the North Ward
School, which was fitted up for that purpose, with Mr. Donald John
McLean as Teacher of the Grammar School, with an Assistant, in the Cen-
tral School. On November the 14th, 1859, he was succeeded by Mr. D.
C. Sullivan, L. L. B., who remained in charge until the separation of
the Boards on the first of January, 1867.

The separated High School was removed to temporary quarters on
Wellington Street where the Wood and Colter residences now stand. The
structure was the old frame edifice which originally did duty for Grace
church congregation, and W. Richardson was the teacher. A small brick
building was next erected in the East Ward, now 130 Park Avenue, and
two teachers were employed with D. Ormiston as Principal. The accom-
modation speedily became too small and in a very short time it was decided
to erect on George Street what a local paper described as an “elegant
and commodious structure,” now occupied by Stedman Brothers. In
1882, the staff consisted of a head master, first and second classical mas-
ter, first and second mathematical master, modern language master,
English master and a teacher of painting and drawing. The total salary
wage was $7,172, the Principal receiving $1,200 per annum. Pupils in
attendance numbered something over two hundred.

In 1909 the formal opening took place of the present handsome
structure on Brant Avenue, erected with site at a cost of $130,000. Both
from a class room and equipment standpoint it is conceded to be one
of the finest educational buildings in the Province. The average attend-
ance for 1920 is 565. The present staff consists of twenty teachers with
aggregate salaries of $42,000.

The first principal of the Collegiate was Dr. Mills, who
Principals afterwards became head of the Ontario Agricultural

?? . College. As a young man he lost an arm while engaged

Chairmen. , , , . , , , ,

in farm work and it was this mishap which led him,

quite late in life, to embark upon a scholastic career. J. C. Hodgson, fol-
lowed and resigned in 1882, to become High School Inspector for Ontario.
Mr. W. Oliver succeeded, and in 1893, Mr. A. W. Burt was selected, re-
taining the position until 1918, when after twenty-five years of laborious
service he resigned but still remains on the staff as English master. His
place was taken by Mr. A. M. Overholt the present occupant who was
Principal of the Sarnia Collegiate Institute when he received the ap-


The Chairmen of the Collegiate Board since the inception have been:
186771 J. Montgomery 19023 M. F. Muir

187280 B. F. Fitch 19045 Dr. Frank

18814 H. B. Leeming 19067 C. S. Tapscott

18857 Dr. Philip 1908 J. Ryan

18889 Dr. Digby 190910 R. E. Ryerson

18902 T. Woqdyatt 1911 Dr. Palmer

18934 F. Cockshutt 1912 J. P. Pitcher

1895-6 R. S. Schell 1913 E. Hart

18979 J. Harley 1914 W. Lahey

19001 E. H. Sinon

Among other High School teachers was Mr. O’Meara, who afterwards
became a Church of England Minister and a Canon. Another was Locke
Richardson who married a daughter of Canon Usher. He was a Shakes-
pearan scholar and reader of international reputation and in later years
devoted himself exclusively to this work.

In January 1915, the Public School Board and that of

f TV tne Collegiate were, in accordance with a provision of

the Statutes of Ontario 1914, merged into a “Municipal

Board of Education,” and the first Chairman was Arthur Coulbeck with

I. S. Armstrong as Vice Chairman. In 1916 N. Andrews was elected;

1917, Dr. Gamble; 1918, J. W. Shepperson; 1919, Dr. Marquis and 1920

Lloyd Miller.

In 1912 free night industrial classes were established at
ij; the Collegiate Institute. The scheme was launched un-

der the auspices of a Technical Advisory Committee com-
posed of E. Sweet, (Chairman) R. Ryerson, J. P. Pitcher, W. Lahey, E. C.
Tench, John Kavanagh, H. C. Coles, J. Adams. There was a small at-
tendance at the commencement, but the growth has been very steady until
in 1920 the total enrollment has reached 985. October to March is the
period of instruction and the average enrollment per month has been
552 with average attendance of 378. The subjects taught comprise the
following: Art^and design, automobile mechanics, cooking, dressmaking,
English and arithmetic, electricity, home nursing, mechanical drawing,
millinery, machine design, stationary engineering, woodwork, stenog-
raphy and typewriting, bookkeeping.

In more than one instance the applicants have been so numerous as
to necessitate three or four classes a week for individual subjects.

The instructors range from eighteen to twenty in nurdber, all experts
in the various classifications and the Collegiate pays one half the salaries
and the Ontario Government the other half.


At this writing, a large new addition to the Collegiate is contemplated
for technical purposes.

Mrs. P. P. Ballachey and Miss Colter were the first two ladies to be
elected School Board members, each polling a large vote in the election of

There are two Separate Schools and the institution of


Schools another is in contemplation. In the early days of St.

Basils, the classes were located in a white frame building,
situated near the corner of Crown and Palace Streets. Later a building
was erected on Pearl Street and in 1910, at a cost of $30,000, this was
replaced by a modern brick structure of two stories and basement. Even
with this additional accommodation, other class rooms have had to be
located in an adjacent building. St. Marys school, erected at a cost of
$20,000, has also been constructed within the last ten years. Separate
school pupils now number some 700, and there are thirteen instructors,
nine of them Sisters of the Order of St. Joseph and four lay teachers.
There is a Separate School Board whose members render efficient ser-
vice. Very Rev. Dean Brady is at present Superintendent.

Mr. J. G. Hodgins, Historiographer of the Education De-
ir partment of Ontario, in his work “Schools and Colleges

in Ontario 17921910” pays this tribute:

“The people of Brantford, neither in the erection of buildings nor the
furnishing of equipment, have been sparing in their support of popular
education, and the Authorities, recognizing this fact, have steadily en-
deavored to mould a course which would be at once thorough and prac-
tical. The result is a local system which is a model in almost every

It was the Government of the Hon. John Sandfield Mac-
Th 1*1 <? donald which decided that an institution should be

established in Ontario, for the education and instruction
of the blind. In accordance with this determination the Legislative
Assembly in December of 1869, was asked to ratify a vote of $75,000
for the purchase of a site and erection of a suitable building. The
journals of the House of the year named, show that there was some
controversy as to whether the administration should first submit site and
plans, or else be empowered to expend the amount asked where they saw
fit. The upshot was that the Cabinet were sustained in the last named
respect by a large majority and the next question was that of location.
The Provincial Treasurer happened to be the Hon. E. B. Wood, then
representing South Brant, in both the Local and the Federal Houses, and
it was, no doubt, due to his influence that the choice fell upon Brantford.


The estate decided upon was the farm owned by Dr. Kenwood, sixty-
five acres in extent, and situated on the northern outskirts of the town.
The southerly and larger portion, consists of a flat area suitable for
farming from which a large variety of supplies are obtained for the
institution, while the north westerly portion is on an elevation with the
Grand River Valley included in the landscape. With the existence of a
dry, sandy soil, the cool breezes from the river in summer time and the
large area for exercise the situation is rightly regarded as ideal from a
health standpoint. The main building, of Tudor style with a central tower,
has a frontage of some three hundred feet. It for many years supplied
quarters for the pupils as well as class rooms, but in 1912
two separate buildings were erected wherein the dormitories of the
two sexes are located. To the rear of the central structure there is an
extension 250 feet in length, in which are situated the servants apart-
ments, kitchens, store rooms, bakery, laundry and engine and boiler
rooms. A little to the west are the workshops, in which instruction takes
place with regard to chair caning, broom making and manual training,
and behind these are the farm buildings. To the east are the residences
of the Principal and the Bursar, while at the entrance to the grounds from
Palmerston Avenue is the home of the chief engineer.

The school was opened in May of 1872 with seven pupils
School an( j tne attendance in 1920 is 110. The scholars take

the complete Public School course and also part of the
High School course, while the little tots have their kindergarten. In
addition to the manual work already mentioned, piano tuning is taught
and there is much attention paid to the matter of musical instruction.
Pupils who manifest any aptitude in this regard are taught the piano,
pipe organ and violin, while there is also voice culture and much effec-
tive choral work. At the Christmas and summer closing exercises the
diversified talents displayed in these and other respects always serve
to surprise and delight large audiences. Typewriting is another fea-
ture which has lately been successfully introduced, the use of the dicta-
phone figuring largely in this respect. The girls in addition to the other
studies are taught knitting, sewing, both hand and mlachine and household

Physical recreation in the case of the blind is of course limited, but the
extent to which this can be indulged is a matter of astonishment to the
visitor. Each day, every pupil must spend at least half an hour in the
gymnasium where competent instruction is given and many games are
played in the open, with races and other contests at closing time in


summer. In short these afflicted ones are notable for their cheeriness
and varied interests.

The present attractive grounds were for many years a treeless waste
and it was mainly owing to Mr. Dymond, who was an authority on
arboriculture, that the existing transformation took place.

The first principal was Dr. E. Stone Wiggins, who later
Inose At became attached to the finance department, at Ottawa.

One of his fads was weather prognostication with regard
to which he attained Provincial celebrity. He was succeeded in 1874
by Mr. J. Howard Hunter, well known in connection with the High
School system of the Province. When he resigned in 1881 to become
Inspector of Provincial Insurance Companies, Mr. A. H. Dymond assumed
the post of Principal, and occupied the position until his death, May 12,
1903. Mr. Dymond was a native of England, and became prominent in
newspaper work in London. In 1869, when in his forty second year, he
came to Canada and became identified with the editorial staff of the
Toronto Globe. His prominence in the Counsels of the Liberal party
became still further intensified when he was elected M. P., for North
York in 1874. He was a prominent Anglican Churchman and a lay
reader in Grace Church. Mr. Dymond was an incisive speaker. His
son Mr. Allan Dymond is law clerk of the Ontario Legislature. His suc-
cessor was another newspaper man, Mr. H. F. Gardiner, who had done
editorial work in Brantford when a young man, and was at the time
of his selection, editor of the Hamilton Times. He retired in June 1916,
and was succeeded by Mr. C. W. James, Secretary of the Minister of
Education, who temporarily occupied the post until Mr. W. B. Race was
appointed, September 1st, 1917, coming here from Sault Ste. Marie where
he was Principal of the Collegiate Institute. Mr. W. B. Wickens was As-
sistant Principal until his death in 1917, when he was succeeded by Mr.
G. A. Cole, then Principal of the Public Schools Orillia. M. W. N.
Hossie held the post of Bursar from 1873 until his death in 1913 at the
age of 82. He was Deputy Sheriff of Peel at the time of his selection.
Mr. Hossie, who was an elder in Zion Church, was most active in Sunday
School work and in 1891 was President of the Ontario Provincial Sabbath
School Association. He was succeeded as Bursar by Mr. George Ryerson.

On March 24th, 1874, a public meeting was held in the
Young Council Chamber with regard to the advisability of

Ladie establishing a Young Ladies College in the Town. Rev.

Dr. Cochrane occupied the chair and there was a large
attendance of representative citizens. After favorable discussion the
following resolution was passed:


“That in the opinion of this meeting it is highly desirable that a
Ladies’ College be established in Brantford; that it is desirable that as
a guarantee of the educational and moral training of the pupils, said
College should be in connection with one of the Evangelical denomina-
tions; and that as the Episcopal, the Methodist and the Baptist Churches
have already successfully established such institutions in Ontario it is
considered advisable that the said College should be in connection with
the Presbyterian Church.”

A committee was appointed and on September 16th, 1874, the incor-
poration of a company took place with an authorized capital of $60,000.
The first Board of directors consisted of A. Robertson, Manager of the
Bank of British North America, President; H. W. Brethour, Vice Presi-
dent; James Kerr, Treasurer; B. F. Fitch, Secretary; W. Watt Sr., Rev.

\ Dr. Cochrane, G. H. Wilkes and Thos. McLean.

\ Purchase was made of the handsome residence and grounds of Hon.

ill. B. Wood on Brant Avenue, (site of present Collegiate) , and the build-

/ ing was extended so as to afford accommodation for about eighty boarders.
For the structure! and the improvement of it $50,000 was spent. The
inscription stone was laid on August 24, 1874 by her Excellency the
Countess of Dufferin, and the college was formally opened in the follow-
ing October. The first principal was Dr. Clarke, and then Rev. A. F.
Kemp, but neither remained for any lengthy period. In 1878 Mr. T. M.
Mclntyre was appointed and held office for many years. He was suc-
ceded by Mrs. Rolls, Miss Philpotts, and Rev. Mr. Cruickshank. The
resident pupils came from all portions of Canada, and there was also a
large attendance of day pupils. In addition to the literary course
especial attention was paid to music, the fine arts, and other accom-
plishments. From the first, Dr. Cochrane, who had taken a very active
pa^rt in the founding of the College, was associated with the staff as
President of the Faculty.

In later years others who became associated with the directorate
were, W. Buck, H. B. Leeming, Dr. Nichol, C. B. Heyd, G. Foster and
Robt. Henry. After an existence of twenty six years during which a
very high standard of excellence had been maintained, it was decided
that the Collegiate Institute course quite completely met local needs and
the institution was closed in 1900. The art and musical departments
were transferred to the Conservatory of Music which Mr. W. N. Andrews,
who had been musical director, established in the same year. Thus came
to a close the career of an establishment which for a quarter of a century
had filled a very important and effective part in the life of the com-


Brantford had a library, known as a Mechanic’s Institute
y -ir at an ear ty period of its history, even before the rebellion

of 1837. This event led to a temporary extermination,
but on, or about the year 1853 it was revived. The books were first
kept in rooms on the north side of Colborne Street, somewhere between
King St. and Lome Bridge. One of the earliest librarians was Duncan
McKay, who used to reside on Dumfries Street, (Brant Avenue), and
subsequently Mr. John Sutherland was placed in charge. The best
known and longest in office of the early custodians was Mr. James Wood-
yatt, Brantford’s first City Clerk. Under his management, the collection
of volumes became greatly enlarged and rooms were taken upstairs in
the Roy building, Colborne Street, now occupied by the Bank of

The collection of books had then become quite valuable and the in-
stitution was mainly supported by fees of members, and the proceeds of
an annual excursion, always well patronized. In 1879 the library was
burned and all the records perished. The remains of the books were
removed to the Kerby House block and when the Heyd Block was com-
pleted, the library was established on the second story. Shortly after the
passing of the act of 1882, providing for the establishment of free lib-
raries the Board of the Mechanics Institute here set about effecting a
change and the by-law was carried on January 7th, 1884, by a majority
of 811 votes. Mr. James Horning was elected the first permanent secre-
tary and he held the post until 1901, when Mr. E. D. Henwood was
chosen to fill the position and still holds the office.

In the early part of 1902, rumors of Mr. Carnegie’s lib-
Carnegie rar y benefactions commenced to circulate everywhere
ft 8 * , and Judge Hardy sent a note of enquiry to that gent-
leman with the result of a speedy reply from his Secre-
tary, offering $35,000 upon the usual conditions. The City Council
thereupon passed a by-law for the purchase of a suitable site on George
Street, and the design of Stewart and Taylor Architects, was accepted
with Schultz Bros., as contractors for the present handsome building.

The corner stone was laid by Rev. Dr. Mackenzie, Chairman of the
Board, at 2.30 on the afternoon of Tuesday, December 16th, 1902. Upon
the silver trowel, used by the Rev. gentleman there was the inscription.

“Presented to Rev. Dr. Mackenzie by the Library Board of Brantford,
Canada, upon the occasion of the laying of the corner stone of the Free
Library, the gift of Andrew Carnegie, December 16th. 1902.”

There was a large crowd in attendance despite unfavorable weather
and at the close of the ceremony an adjournment took place to Victoria


Hall and speeches were delivered by Dr. Kelly, Mayor Wood, Judge
Hardy, C. B. Heyd, M. P., Lloyd Harris, T. H. Preston and W. F. Cock-
shutt. All of the speakers eulogized Andrew Carnegie as a man who was
willing to spend much of his great wealth for the benefit of others.
In 1913 the continued growth of the library having ren-
Another dered the quarters inadequate, Judge Hardy, on behalf

rjHiarge- o ^ e Board again wrote to Mr. Carnegie, and he gen-

erously responded with a further grant of $13,000. The
City added $2,000 more and with this $15,000 the stack room and base-
ment were considerably enlarged. From the handful of books prior to
1837, the shelves are now occupied by over 35,000 volumes. There is in
addition, three large and commodious reading rooms, one for men and
another for women, on the main floor, and another for men in the base-
ment, where smoking is permitted. There is also in the basement a
separate library complete for children and in this department there are
about 4,000 volumes. In the catalogue room there are writing tables and
material for the accommodation of patrons; a handsome board room
completes the equipment. Mr. Henwood has instituted the Dewey cat-
alogue system by which all the books are divided into ten classes, each
contained in a separate room, with a common entrance from the main stack
room. By this means all the standard books become easily accessible for
reference. Another admirable feature is the “Story Hour” provided for
the children in a lecture room every Tuesday and Thursday afternoon;
historical and other works are discussed as far as possible in consonance
with the public school work. The reading rooms are open on Sunday
afternoons during the winter months,, from two to five o’clock, and the
Brantford Library led Ontario with reference to this innovation. The
staff consists of Mr. E. D. Henwood, Librarian, Miss Winnifred Matheson,
Assistant Librarian, Miss Jennie Draper, Miss E. Middlemiss, Juvenile

Mrs. S. W. Secord the first lady member of the Board, was appointed
in January 1918.

The Board consists of nine members, three named by the

2?*!^ City Council, three by the Public School Board and two

by the Separate School Board with the Mayor ex-officio.

First Board, (1884), Rev. Dr. Cochrane, (Chairman), James Wood-

yatt, W. Watt, Sr., Rev. Dr. Mackenzie, Dr. Kelly, Rev. Maxwell, Rev.

Father Lennon, D. Hawkins, Mayor Scarfe.

Present Board (1920), T. Hendry, (Chairman), Judge Hardy, Rev.
G. A. Woodside, D. J. Waterous, Mrs. S. W. Secord, Lt.-Col. Howard,
J. E. Quinlan, J. C. Waller, Mayor MacBride.



From the inception the Chairmen have been:

188498 Rev. Dr. Cochrane 1911

189900 Dr. Kelly 1912

1901 R. S. Schell 1913

1902-^1 Rev. Dr. Mackenzie 1914

1905 Rev. P. Lennon 1915

1906 Judge Hardy 1916

1907 W. C. Livingston 1917

1908 Dr. B. C. Bell 1918

1909 Lt. Col. Howard 1919

1910 J. H. Spence 1920

M. K. Halloran
T. Hendry

D. J. Waterous

E. J. Carlin

F. W. Ryerson

Rev. G. A. Woodside
J. E. Quinlan
Judge Hardy
Lt. Col. Howard
T. Hendry




During the Crimean war the stronghold of Sevastopol was finally
taken by a successful assault of the Allies on September 8th, 1855.
News travelled very slowly in those days and it was not until Thursday
September 27th, that Brantfordites became aware of the capitulation.
Flags and streamers were displayed and the following afternoon was
declared a holiday. At 4 o’clock a procession was formed, under the
supervision of H. Racey, and headed by the Union Jack and the Brantford
band the principal streets were traversed. At the conclusion of this
portion of the demonstration there was a large assemblage in front of
the Court House with Mayor Matthews in the Chair. Hon. W. H. Merrit,
representative of the County of Lincoln, was the principal speaker, and
other addresses were given by J. Wilkes, D. M. Gilkison, Rev. T. L. David-
son, E. B. Wood and Rev. J. Alexander.

“The Fenians have crossed at Buffalo and are now in

The Fenian possession of Fort Erie. More of them are still arriv-
Raid of


The receipt of this despatch in May of 1866 caused

great excitement in the town of Brantf ord and County of Brant and one
of the local papers contained the following announcement:

May 31 10 p.m. The bugle is now calling our worthy volunteers to
arms, and the men, as usual, are responding with alacrity, pleased to
think that their country has need of their services.”

Later the statement was forwarded that another column of Fenians
had effected a crossing at Windsor, and were marching on London,
Many of the rumors were exaggerated, but the fact of an invasion was un-
doubted and troops were hastily got together to meet the emergency.

On Monday, morning, June 18th, No. 1, Company Brantford Rifles
were ordered to leave for Niagara, and, headed by the band playing
martial airs, they proceeded to the station and took the train for Fort
Erie. On arrival there the order was countermanded and they returned
with only the satisfaction of having shown a readiness to do their duty.
However, rifle men and volunteers remained in readiness for any emer-


gency and the County Council met on June 21st, and took the following
action :

“The Council in committee of the whole recommend that the vol-
unteers of the County while on active service, have their pay supplemented
as follows, viz: Every non commissioned officer and private shall
receive in addition to his regular pay and allowances the sum of twenty-
five cents per diem; for every wife or mother dependent upon such vol-
unteer one dollar per week, and twenty-five cents per week for every
child, and if any member of this Council shall interfere to prevent the
Treasurer paying the same, that the Clerk be, and is hereby instructed to
draw up a Petition to both Houses of the Legislature asking for an Act
of Indemnity to enable the vote of this Council to be carried into effect.”

The report was adopted by eleven yeas to one nay, and it was owing
to the opposition of the gentleman of negative proclivities that the last
portion of the report was inserted. Royal troops attacked the motley
band of freebooters near Fort Erie and captured fifty nine of the filibus-
ters, together with many arms and munitions of war. The prisoners
were brought to Brantford under a strong escort of troops. A large
and hostile crowd had assembled at the depot and but for the presence
of the militia, acts of violence would in all probability have taken
place. In fact it was with some difficulty that the marauders were fin-
ally lodged in the local gaol.

After the Fenian trouble had evaporated it became known
Regular that regular troops would be forwarded to this district

Troops Sent an( j at a c ounty Council meeting held in September it
was moved by W. B. Hurst and seconded by John Com-
erford, “That the Council agree to pay the rent of the Kerby House or
any suitable building in town for barracks for the use of the military men
on their way to Canada, in the event of a full regiment of soldiers being
stationed in Brantford and that the acting Mayor, George Watt, Esq., and
Police Magistrate Weyms, Esq., be authorized to make such an offer.”

A resolution was also passed authorizing $2,500 for the erection of
a drill shed.

The local authorities rented the Kerby House, then vacant, and on
September 29th, 1866, the first instalment of the 7th Royal Fusiliers
reached here. The party consisted of sixty men, and one hundred and
twenty-five women and children, together with the heavy baggage of
the regiment. On Sunday, October 7th, the main body arrived, and
with hundreds of cheering spectators lining the roadway from the
station, they marched to quarters, headed by their fine band, playing such
stirring airs as “Rule Britannia,” and the “British Grenadiers.” The
Fusiliers left here on Wednesday March 28th, 1867, after a pleasant


sojourn of several months, and on ‘the same day five companies of the
Seventeenth Regiment, consisting of three hundred men, took up quar-
ters here. They remained until September 4th, when they were replaced
by the Sixty-ninth regiment fresh from Ireland. Old timers recall with
pleasure those military days, for officers sand men alike identified them-
selves whole heartedly with the interests and diversions of citizens and
added much gaiety to the community.

E. James who was a member of the Fusilier Band, and who remained
in Brantford after the regiment left, stated, when recently interviewed,
that the numerical strength was about seven hundred. They had been
in Malta and Gibraltar and were next transferred to Quebec, coming to
Brantford as before related in 1866. The band used to give concerts
in the square, now known as Victoria Park and each evening the bugle
band played a tattoo on the Market Square. Grace church was
attended as the place of worship and the band at first played en route,
but a deputation of citizens waited on the commanding officer and regis-
tered an objection to Sunday music so that part of the program was
abandoned. The old Wilkes homestead was used as a hospital. Dr.
Mandeville, the regimental surgeon, died here, and was buried in Green-
wood cemetery, also a band boy named Hill, who was drowned in the
Grand River during a bathing parade. In one of the early telephone
tests Mr. James played on the euphonium “The Heart Bowed Down,” and
Mr. W. Harris, also of the Fusiliers and still a resident here, a cornet
solo, “Then You’ll Remember Me.” These were certainly the first in-
strumental pieces heard over the wires.

The official record shows that the first Post Office at the
Post Office. “Ford” was established in the year 1825 but the name
of the settler the Indians did not surrender the land until five years
later who discharged the duties of the position is unknown. It must
have been a nominal position at the best.

It is established that in 1841 the Post Office was in a building which
used to exist on a small hill on the North side of Colborne Street a little
West of King. In 1850 the location was in a store on Colborne Street
a few doors west of the tavern which stood on the drug store corner.
Some time later it was on the south-west corner of Market and Dal-
housie Streets, and then on the north east corner of the same thorough-
fares. In 1856 the location was in the George Street end of the Kerby
block, but a fire in 1869, led to temporary quarters in the “Merchants
Exchange” block. The next location was at the corner of George and
Dalhousie streets, in the premises now occupied by the Canadian Express
Company. Finally, in 1880, it was moved into the building across the




_* 60


‘ O



street now known as the “Old Post Office”. The structure was the most
impressive in the place in those days and was erected at a total cost, in-
cluding fittings, of $35,000. The postal business was transacted on the
ground floor and all citizens had to secure their mail via private box, or
at the General Delivery wicket. Upstairs were the Customs and Inland
Revenue Departments.

The first definitely known postmaster was William Richardson, who
held the post until 1841. He was succeeded by one, Walker, whose term
concluded in 1848. James Muirhead then acted temporarily until 1850,
when J. D. Clement was appointed. In 1862 he was succeeded by his
son, A. D. Clement and the latter held office until his death in 1899 when
he was succeeded by W. G. Raymond, the present Post Master. Mr. Ray-
mond was born in London, England, and after attending the Royal Naval
School, and Royal Naval Academy became a naval cadet in 1868. He
remained in the navy until 1873 and finally launched into business in
Brantford. He was Mayor of the City when appointed, and is a well
known platform orator.

At the time of the removal into the then new quarters of 1880,
Mr. Clement had a staff of four assistants, Charles H. Clement, F. J.
Grennie, W. W. Buckwell, J. C. Montgomery. Of these, one still holds
office, Mr. J. C. Montgomery, for many years assistant postmaster. Two
others who joined the staff a little later were the late W. F. W. Tisdale
and E. G. Tranmer, now head of the money order department. A
postal delivery system was inaugurated in 1898, and not long afterwards
a general system of street letter boxes. The office was placed on a city
basis July 1, 1909.

The constant development of all departments of Domin-
f e ?y,. ion Government business in this centre led to the absolute

need of greatly enlarged quarters, and a substantial
grant was made by the Dominion Government for that purpose. Land
was acquired from the city part of the Waterous purchase fronting on
Dalhousie and Queen Streets and the contract let to P. H. Secord and
Sons. Owing to the unavoidable absence of Hon. Mr. Rogers, Minister
of Public Works, the corner stone was laid in 1913 by Sir Thomas White,
Minister of Finance, and the building was declared open to the public by
Hon. T. Chase Casgrain, Postmaster General, on June 17th, 1915. A
platform had been erected in the sorting room on the ground floor, with
suitable decorations including the flags of the Allies. Mayor Spence
presided and the Minister was introduced by Mr. W. F. Cockshutt, M. P.
He was made the recipient of a civic address and delivered a memorable



reply. Senator Fisher was also called upon and at the close “0 Canada”
was sung. Afterwards a luncheon took place at the Y. W. C. A.

The structure is rightly regarded as one of the handsomest and most
complete of Ontario public buildings. The sum paid to the Municipality
for the site was $43,000 and the building contract $245,000 so that with
equipment the total cost was about $300,000. In the building, there
are commodious quarters for the Post Office, Customs and Inland Revenue
Departments, and also for the Indian Office, Inspector of Weights and
Measures, (J. Thomas), and Inspector of Dominion Taxation, (H. H. Pow-

As compared with the Postmaster and four clerks who constituted the
entire staff in 1880, the total number of clerks is now 24, with 25 letter
carriers, while mail collection and other employees make the grand total
63. Four sub offices have also been established, Eagle Nest, Grandview,
Tutela and Farringdon Hill. Of the original letter carriers four still
remain, G. Broatch, W. W. Schuler, W. Lake and A. Aitken.

For the first year, the revenue was published (1869) and for 1880
and 1919 the reports of the Postmaster General give these figures.


1869 Brantford
1880 Brantford
1919 Brantford

For very many years Brantford’s public building was under the care
of Mr. John Squires. His successor is Mr. C. R. Vanfleet.

It was in the year 1852 that Brantford had attained
n* 8 \+ S enough importance to become a port of entry, with

Valentine Hall as first Collector. He resigned the fol-
lowing year and David Curtis was appointed to the office. Mr. Curtis
was the youngest of the twelve children of D. Curtis a U. E. loyalist,
who, after the war, came to Oxford County, and later fought again for
the British cause in the struggle of 1812. The son entered the Customs
service and was made Collector at Dunnville, when that was a most
important port in connection with the Grand River and other navigation
systems. In 1853 he was transferred to Brantford and was active and
prominent in public affairs, as well as occupying many offices in the
Masonic fraternity. His daughter, Mrs. (Judge) Hardy still resides
here and two other daughters, Mrs. Hewson and Miss Curtis, together
with a son, Capt. Curtis, reside out West. Mr. Curtis resigned in 1876
and later held for some years the position of Secretary of the South

Money Orders
Money Orders
$ 6,255
$ 16,474
$ 30,002


Brant Conservative Association. He was also prominent in military
affairs and was Captain of the first rifle company formed here.

The successor of Mr. Curtis was H. B. Leeming. The son of an
Englishman who came to Canada in 1840, and purchased a farm on
Tutela Heights, he remained on the homestead until he was thirty three
years of age when he removed to Brantford and entered into the whole-
sale confectionary business with Mr. Paterson. In 1867 he was Deputy
Reeve of the town and in the same year unsuccessfully ran against Hon.
E. B. Wood for the Dominion House. He was also Chairman of the Col-
legiate Institute Board, and President of the Young Mens’ Christian As-
sociation. His sons Dr. John Leeming and Dr. Charles Leeming live in
Chicago, Robert and Frank Leeming in Brantford and also Mrs. T. S.
Sanderson, a daughter.

Upon the death of Mr. Leeming, Thomas Foster, who had been As-
sistant Collector, was promoted to the position and upon his retirement
after some years A. Harley succeeded. The latter resigned in 1914, and
in 1<)15 J. H. Spence was given the post. He was Mayor of the City
at the time and had been on the Library and other boards. In addition
he occupied the position of Chairman of the Patriotic Association during
the war.

The growth of the local department is attested by these figures:

Fiscal Year Duty Collected

1852 3,422. 18s. lid.
1880 $ 115,248.54

1919 946,627.74

In 1867 this department was separated from the Cus-
l5^ toms and D’Acres Hart became the first Collector. He

was the son of the D’Acres Hart of whom mention is
made elsewhere and st brother-in-law of Major Lemmon. Upon the
resignation of Mr. Hart the post was given to Thomas Alexander and he
in turn was succeeded by J. Spence. The latter was a native of the
North of Ireland and upon coming to Canada embarked upon business
in Toronto. In 1868 he became deputy Collector at Kingston, next
Deputy Collector in Toronto and then Collector at London. From that
place he moved to Brantford and held office here until his retirement in
1901 at the age of seventy years. Mr. Spence is still living, at the age of
ninety; Mr. J. H. Spence is a son. Following his withdrawal Mr. E. H.
Sinon became appointed. The son of Mr. James Sinon, a well known
local contractor, he was at the time of his selection a classical Master at
the Collegiate Institute. He continued his interest in educational matters


and became chairman of the Collegiate Institute Board and also of
the Library Board. v

Upon the death of Mr. Sinon in 1904, the post was filled by the
appointment of Mr. M. J. O’Donohue who at the time was a member of
the Inland Revenue department, Guelph.

The collections at this port during three periods have been.

Fiscal Year Duty Collected

1869 $ 57,503.93

1880 89,363.26

1919 103,036.17

In the early days, Brantford did not boast of any police
rolice protection beyond that of “night watchmen.” Later on

there were three or four constables who divided day and
night work between them, but they did not wear uniforms. All that
they possessed to show their authority was a small shield, worn on the
vest, and instead of batons they carried heavy sticks. An amusing
incident occurred with regard to this primitive force. Early one winter’s
morning a traveller for a Montreal jewelry establishment, who had been
landed at Harrisburg by a much delayed through line train, found him-
self the only passenger for Brantford. He had samples of value in his
grip and on alighting he looked through the station yard hoping to find
a cab, but without result. While doing so he noticed a couple of men
watching him and when he finally started down town at a brisk walk
he became aware that he was being followed. He quickened his pace;
so did the pursuers.

Finally the commercial man broke into a run and cutting through
Victoria Park he landed in the Kerby House rotunda, well out of breath,
but able to gasp the information to the night clerk that he had been
chased by a couple of suspicious looking men. He had barely finished,
when in came the pair two of Brantford’s finest, who for their part had
entertained suspicions regarding the traveller.

It was not until 1875 that the local force was actually

placed on any kind of basis when Thomas McMeans was

appointed chief, and former watchmen McCartney, Halon

and Dunne were also continued. McMeans died in 1876 and Harry

Griffiths was then placed at the head of the department, a position

which he held for many years. In 1885, a re-organization was decided

upon and J. J. Vaughan was brought here from Toronto as Chief.

He was a native of County Donegal, Ireland, and had established a good

record on the Queen City force. Mr. Griffiths was given the position of


Sergeant and the rest of the department consisted of Constables Halon,
McCartney and James. There was some friction and the first three
resigned. James was made Sergeant and J. C. Wallace, W. Donnelly
and J. Hickey were appointed, with J. Adams as constable and Police
Court Clerk. In 1892 the staff was increased by the addition of J. A.
Chapman and T. Boylan and the force in 1899 was thus constituted, Chief
Vaughan, Sergeant James, Constables Donnelly, Boylan, Chapman, Pierce
and Felker. Chief Vaughan died in 1904, and Charles Slemin, senior
detective of the Toronto force secured the position which he still holds.
A native of County Cavan, Ireland, he had more than once been named
for meritorious service and in 1912 he received the Kings Distinguished
Service Medal, the first police officer in Canada to be so honored. At the
present time the department is manned by twenty men, with J. T. Wallace
W. Donnelly and J. Borthwick as Sergeants; J. Chapman Sergeant detec-
tive and F. L. Schuler detective. T. Boylan has been truant officer for
many years. Of sixteen on the force when the big war started the
majority went overseas, and those now wearing the Brantford uniform
who have had this distinction are Cara, Stewart, Tyrrell, Cobden, Barr,
Sawkins, Gillen, Stanley, Borthwick, Blanchard, and Lyle. W. Buskard
is Police Court Clerk.

Up until 1899 the police headquarters were in the City Hall, while the
Police Court and lock-up were in the fire hall. In the year named
removal took place to the present building on Queen Street. The annual
report of the Chief for 1919 showed that 968 cases had been tried in
Court and 1616 occurrences investigated, with 1482 cleared up in a satis-
factory manner.

Value of Lost and Stolen Property recovered by the Police, and

damages paid, occurrences cleared up $20,637.00

Fines disbursed to Corporation 8,652.31

Amount of money found on persons when arrested, returned

to them and receipt taken 7,041.18

Total $36,330.49

Expenditures of the Department for 1919 32,000.00

Approximate services rendered over expenditures $ 4,330.49

In 1875 the County Judge, Police Magistrate, and Mayor constituted
a board of Police Commissioners, but shortly afterwards the City Council
decided to assume control and did so until 1885 when the Commission
plan was again introduced.


Squire Matthews and other Justices of the Peace, used
fl to hear cases in the early days, but in 1865, Mr. James

Weyms was permanently appointed to the post of Police
Magistrate. A native of County Cavan, Ireland, his mother, upon the
death of the father, came to Canada and when twenty one years of age
young Weyms came to Brantford in 1836. On arrival here he en-
tered the employ of Arunah Huntington, then the wealthiest man in
Brantford, and in 1856 started a boot and shoe business of his own, near
what was then known as the “Iron Bridge.” In the interim, he had
been Reeve, Deputy Reeve and also Mayor. Mr. Weyms was a man
of shrewd judgment and he always endeavored, as much as possible, to
settle cases without having them get into Court. Upon his death in 1889,
he was succeeded by the late Mr. Thomas Woodyatt, who was born here
in 1845, a son of City Clerk Woodyatt. He was first of all engaged
with his father in the pottery business but subsequently decided to enter
the legal profession. Mr. Woodyatt was active in fraternal work, and
prior to his appointment, secretary of the local Liberal Association. As
an impromptu speaker at lodge and other gatherings he enjoyed more
than a local reputation. He was succeeded in 1907 by Mr. W. C. Liv-
ingston who at the time was in legal practice here.

During early years the people of Brantford, like those
uas WOFKS. Q ot }j er Ontario settlements, had to be content with
tallow dips, then candles, finally lamps, but even this illuminant, which
for a period was considered the acme of artificial lighting discovery,
finally became antiquated. Accordingly on March 19th, 1854, a meet-
ing took place in Burley’s hotel with regard to which the following item
appeared in a local paper:

“GAS COMPANY. If the expectations of the projectors of this com-
pany can possibly be realized, Brantford will soon repudiate tallow,
sperm oil, and all the multifarious and dangerous burning fluids now in
use; illuminate her streets, and light up her shops and private dwellings
with gas. Not with that species of “laughing gas,” with which efferves-
cent politicians have attempted to inflate the town during the past twelve
months, but with the real Simon pure; an article useful, cheap and
desirable. The nucleus of a company has already been formed, and
although we think the capital stock has been placed at too low a figure,
we heartily wish the projectors success in their undertaking, knowing that
if the enterprise be properly managed, it will be a lasting benefit to the

“town The meeting was largely attended by our business

men, and those who will most probably be the principal stockholders and

At the gathering above mentioned, several resolutions were adopted
Photo taken in the sixties of the east end of Colborne Street. The brick build-
ing to the left was occupied by Thomas Cowherd as a tinsmith shop and situated
nearly opposite the Kerby House. To the right is the canal basin, then of wide
extent, and the tow path can easily be seen. The building with the chimney con-
stituted the first gas plant, and the “Lubric Oil Works” housed one of the enterprises
of Yates & Stratford. The frame building with trees in front, in line with Cowherd’s,
was the original residence of Mr. G. Watt, Alfred Street, long since replaced b\
the present brick structure.


one limiting the duration of the franchise to fifty years, and another,
fixing the capital stock at $30,000 the Town Council to take stock of
$12,500. At a subsequent meeting these directors were elected, James
Wilkes, (President), Ignatius Cockshutt, P. C. VanBrocklin, H. Yarding-
ton, Allen Cleghorn, (Treasurer), R. Strobridge, A. B. Bennett, Duncan
Cameron, (Secretary). In the following year 1855, the appended tariff
of prices was adopted:

For a “patent flat jet,” burning three feet per hour, from sunset to
8 p.m., $13.20 per annum.

For the same, from sunset to midnight, $30 per annum.

For a “bat wing” jet burning five feet per hour, from sunset to 8
p.m. $20.40 per annum.

For the same from sunset to midnight, $48. per annum. A charge of
40 cents additional was made to those using gas on Sundays. There was
a discount of twenty per cent if accounts were paid before a certain date
in each quarter.

The use of meters was charged at the rate of 70 cents per quarter for
two lights, and $2.40 per quarter for thirty lights.

The enterprise met with many difficulties, the capital had to be in-
creased and there was further municipal assistance, but the works were
always kept going. Mr. James Wilkes was President of the Company for
three years, John Taylor, one year, A. B. Bennett, three years, G. C.
Keachie ten years, Wm. Watt, two years, and I. Cockshutt ten years.
Sheriff Smith was Secretary-Treasurer for several years.

In 1877 A. Finkle & Co. (Judge Finkle, Woodstock), secured a long
lease of the works. Upon the expiry of the term the local company
again took hold with Mr. Frank Cockshutt as President and in 1903, there
was a reorganization with Mr. H. H. Powell as President and Manager.
Ultimately the “Dominion Natural Gas Company,” became the owners.
This is a large holding concern both in Canada and the States, and the
President is Mr. H. L. Doherty of New York. The first natural gas was
introduced in 1906 from Bow Park and other wells but the flow did not
amount to much. From 1908 to 1914 the Selkirk field furnished the
supply and since 1914 the Tilbury field. With the introduction of the
“Natural” variety, rates were very much reduced. The City of Brantford
still holds $15,000 of the stock.







The life of the first comers in this County was a hard one, and yet,
withal, they seem to have been a contented lot. Comforts, as we know
them, they had none. The settlers usually came in by covered wagons,
and in the absence of bridges, streams and rivers had to be forded,
oftentimes at much risk. Once arrived, the pioneers had to do much of
their travelling on foot, or by horseback, chiefly the latter. Grist to
the crude mill, the visit of the wife to a distant friend or relative, minis-
trations of the few doctors and itinerant ministers all such things had
to depend upon trusty steeds, and the query: “Is he a good swimmer?”
was a common question in buying a saddle horse.

The labor of opening a farm in a forest of large pines,

ring , oaks, maples and hickories was very great, and the dif-

the Land. ,. ‘ . , , . . . . ‘ . ‘ , , ,

ficulty was increased by the thick growing underbrush.

Not only were the trees to be cut down, but the branches had to be cut
off the trunk, and, with the undergrowth of bushes, gathered together
for burning. The trunks of the large trees were divided and rolled
into heaps, and reduced to ashes. With hard labour the unaided settler
could clear and burn, an acre of land in three weeks. It usually re-
quired six or seven years for the pioneer to open a small farm and build
a better house than his first cabin of round logs. The boys had work
to do in gathering the brush into heaps. A common mode of clearing
was to cut down all the trees of the diameter of eighteen inches or less,
clear off the undergrowth, deaden the large trees by girdling them with
the axe, and allowing them to stand until they decayed. This method
delayed the final clearing of the land eight or ten years, but when the
trunks fell they were usually dry enough to be transformed into such
lengths as to be rolled together with ease. The lengthy fences formed of
tree roots tell of the labor entailed in that regard.

As before related, for a considerable period after settle-
^^ TO T^ ment commenced, roads were few, although Governor

Simcoe projected and partially completed Dundas Street
from Toronto to Woodstock, and which is yet known as the Governor’s


road. Yonge Street was also opened out to the North, while what was
known as the old Mohawk road ran from Niagara to the Mohawk village,
and thence through to Charlotteville, on Lake Erie. Dundas Street was
the artery of Upper Canada in these early days, designed by Simcoe to
run from Kingston to London, which place he had selected, on his first
trip through in 1793, as the most appropriate spot for the capital of
Upper Canada. The Hamilton and London road was not opened through
this County, except such part of it as was of the old Mohawk road, until
1810. The building of this road and its crossing the Grand River was
mainly what changed “The Ferry” to Brantford, and caused the city to be
located where it stands to-day.

Neither were they “stately homes” which sheltered the
1 Firs * first pioneers. It was not long as a rule before the first

cabin gave place to a second and better, but the first was
rough, like the means at hand for its construction. It was generally
of round logs notched at tfye ends, the spaces filled with sticks of wood
and daubed with clay. The roof was of clapboards, held in place by
poles reaching across it, called weight^poles. The floor was of planks
split from logs, while the fire-place, six feet wide, was lined with clay
or undressed stone. The chimneys were made of split sticks, fastened
with clay, which often caused the destruction of the precious tenement
by fire, careful though the inmates sought to be. The window opening
was frequently covered with paper, rendered more translucent by a
generous coating of oil or lard. These cabins were erected as a rule by
“bees” of the settlers from miles around. When the newcomer arrived,
with his wife, weans and household goods, the older settlers sheltered
them until the neighbors were gathered, the cabin erected, and the inmates
duly installed, ready to assist in performing a like service for the next

The cabin of round logs was generally succeeded by a hewed log-
house more elegant in appearance, and more comfortable. Indeed, log
houses could be made as comfortable as any other kind of building, and
were erected in such manner as to conform to the tastes and means of
all descriptions of persons. For large families a double cabin was
common; that is, two houses, ten or twelve feet apart, with one roof
covering the whole, the space between serving as a hall for various uses.
An eminent speaker in referring to the different kinds of dwellings some-
times to be seen standing on the same farm, as an indication of the pro-
gress of the people, said, “I have often witnessed this gratifying progress.
On the same farm you may sometimes behold standing together the
first rude cabin of round and unhewn logs, and wooden chimneys; the


hewed log house, chinked and shingled, with stone or brick chimneys;
and lastly, the comfortable frame, stone or brick dwelling, each denoting
the different occupants of the farm, or the several stages of the con-
dition of the same occupant.”

The furniture of the first rude dwellings was made of puncheons;
cupboards, seats and tables were then made by the settler himself. Over
the door was placed the trusty flint-lock rifle, next to the axe in useful-
ness to the pioneer, and near it the powder horn and bullet pouch.
Almost every family had its little spinning wheel for flax, and big spin-
ning-wheel for wool. The cooking utensils were few and simple, and the
cooking was all done at the fire-place. The long winter evenings were
spent in contentment, but not in idleness. There was corn to shell and
tow to spin at home, and corn huskings to attend at the neighbors’. There
were a few books to read, but newspapers were rare, and the Bible gen-
erally consituted the whole of the family library.

In the natural order of things those who migrated to

acter Brant County in the early years were of an independent,

of Pioneers. J J ; . . . ,

and venturesome nature. A large number ot them were

U. E. Loyalists who vacated what were quite comfortable homes and
holdings, in order to still live under the grand old Union Jack, and have
their families brought up in consonance with British institutions. Many
were the ties, and associations which had to be broken, but they did not
hesitate and boldly struck out into the new country with its lack of con-
veniences, and social environment. A number also came from the
Old Country to what was regarded as a land of promise. The hardships
were many, and continuous, and the refinements few. Newspapers were
practically unknown except occasional copies which came from Great
Britain and the States. Books were scarce, and in many homes the fam-
ily Bible was the one source of instruction whereby the little ones were
taught to spell out words. In the absence of amusements, and means of
culture, the rough and ready life led to much drinking, and oftentimes
rude and coarse diversions by the more lawless elements always to be
found in backwoods communities. Public gatherings were often marred
by scenes of disorder and fighting.

However, for the most part, the pioneer Brant County men and
women were possessed of good common sense. Tfiey led plain lives
and had great contempt for shams and pretence. Mutual help was at
all times willingly extended, and in sickness there was ever the ready
offer of nursing aid and the bringing of such delicacies as could be
prepared. That their lives in the main were based upon true and sure
foundations, is best attested by their sturdy and capable descendants.


It does not do to dogmatise with regard to the first white settlers in
Brant County, as there may have been some initial stragglers of whom
all trace has been lost, but the records of three or four of the pioneer
families will serve as illustrations.

The circumstances under which the Westbrook’s came to
Brant County possessed all the elements of romance.
On, or about the close of the Revolutionary War two
brothers, John and Alexander Westbrook, whose parents resided in New
York State, were in the fields, or woods, looking after their horses.
Some of the Six Nations Indians who were engaged on a
marauding expedition in the State named, took them prisoners, and
they were brought to the territory now known as Brant County. They were
kept by the red men for two or three years and well treated, but were
ultimately taken to the Niagara frontier and turned over to the Ameri-
cans in an exchange of prisoners. They at once returned home where
they were received as if from the dead, all hope regarding them having
long since been abandoned. However, they had been so impressed with
the surroundings of their enforced habitation that about the year 1782,
or 1783 they persuaded their father (Anthony) to come here and settle.
After many days of travel they finally reached the new home, locating
on Fairchilds Creek. John served with distinction in the war of 1812,
and became a Major. He was on terms of great intimacy with Brant.
Strong and stalwart of frame he was the stuff out of which pioneers
were made, and he considered it no great hardship to ride, as he often
did, with his grist, on horseback to the mill at Niagara. He married
Elizabeth Gage whose mother was of notable type. Mary Jones before
her marriage, she was at the time of her coming to Canada the widow
of a loyalist officer, John Gage, who had been killed during the fighting.
Even at this early day she had relatives in Canada and her brother,
Augustus Jones, was a well known land surveyor who had taken a bride
from among the Six Nations. Their son Peter was afterwards the well
known missionary chief. The young widow resolved to come to the
Dominion with her two children, James born in 1774 and Elizabeth, born
in 1776. Placing them and a few belongings in a canoe she made her
way along the old time water route to Canada; travelling up the Mohawk,
past Fort Stanwix, across the short portage to Wood Creek, down Oneida
Lake and the Oswego River and thence along the Southern shore of Lake
Ontario to Niagara and the head of the lake at Stoney Creek. She set-
tled in Saltfleet Township and cleared the land and tilled the soil until
her son James was old enough to shoulder the responsibilities of the
farm. This heroic woman died about 1839 in Hamilton at the home of


her son, when she was nearly one hundred years old. The marriage of
her daughter to Major Westbrook took place in 1796. They had a
family of sixteen children, their numerous descendants constituting many
prominent and well known families in the City and County. Alexander
moved to what is now Brantford, in 1817. He resided on the hill near
Lome Bridge, in a log hut overlooking the river and for some time
carried the mail on foot, and by horseback, between Ancaster and Water-
ford. He finally settled in Oakland. Haggai, another brother, also lived
in Oakland.

One of the earlier families to settle in Burford Township
The Yeigh was ^ at of j onn y e igh who came there in June 1800,

accompanied by his wife, four sons and one daughter.
The family started from their old home in Pennsylvania for the wilds
of Upper Canada, in a wagon drawn by four horses. It was a month be-
fore he reached the “Grand River Swamp,” and the City of Brantford
at that period had neither a name nor a location. Reaching Burford
Township, he settled on Lot 8, Concession Six, which he shortly after-
wards purchased from the original owner, David Palmer. The sturdy
Pennsylvanian was not long in hewing a clearing amid the forest, and
erecting a home. A potter by trade he also commenced to fashion house-
hold utensils, and customers came from far and near. The remains of
this primitive industry are still visible on the North side of the stone
road, about a mile west of the village. When he was 27 years old,
Jacob, the eldest son, married Mary, the daughter of Peter Lossing of
Norwich, and established a home on land which forms the site of the
present village. Both Jacob and Adam Yeigh took part in the war of
1812 and in the uprising of 1837. Edmund the only son of Jacob, was
also instrumental in organizing the Burford Infantry Company (No. 6
Brant Battalion) in 1866, when the Fenian excitement was at its height.
He held command as Captain for three years. The Yeigh family are at
present represented by Mr. Henry Yeigh, formerly a well known Brant-
ford business man, now of Toronto, and Frank Yeigh, also of the Queen
City. The latter was at one time Secretary of Hon. A. S. Hardy and has
also proved himself a writer of no mean ability.

Trials of ^ was *^ e l ast named gentleman who, many years ago,

Incoming during the course of a newspaper sketch, told this story

Settlers of the manner in which the original family came here:

“It is now necessary to go back to the year 1799 and to a cosy home
near Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. It is winter, and evening after evening
the family of John and Mary Yeigh discussed earnestly the proposed
migration to Canada. The sons were Jacob, John, Adam and Henry


and a daughter, Eve, and the youngsters were enthusiastic in the plan to
go where land was cheap, and there was elbow room for all. The father
was an industrious, frugal, honest man, who by years of toil had fairly
educated his family, and had gathered in gold enough to make a start
in the distant and unknown land.

“The little cavalcade commenced its long journey on the first day of
May in the year 1800. The strong Pennsylvania wagon, covered with
strong canvas, was laden with the most necessary household utensils. It
was drawn by four fine horses, and a good milch cow brought up the
rear. The morning was bright and beautiful when the simple-minded
neighbors gathered to say goodbye to those who thus went out from
the old home, and old friends forever. It is easy to pen the words, and
they will doubtless be carelessly read, but one can hardly realize the
pain of thus severing the ties of a lifetime.

“Day by day the allotted miles were covered, and at night the friendly
capacious wagon furnished cheap, and comfortable shelter. The milk
yielded by the generous cow was churned into delicious butter by the jolt-
ing of the unspringed vehicle. Thus, in thirty days from the day of de-
parture, the family arrived in Burford on the first day of June 1800.
The weather had been lovely before the journey began, the grass was
green, the rye fields headed and the foliage out; now the wind soughed
through the pine trees, flakes of snow fell, and on the morning of the
second of June hoar frost covered everything. No wonder there were
misgivings as to the wisdom of coming to such a region. The Dutch
pluck of the father and mother, and the enthusiasm of the youngsters,
however, could not be chilled by frost or snow, and the work of home
building began.

“It seems strange now to be told that the fertile plains of Burford
were passed by as being too poor to be worthy of consideration. The
whole plain was covered with scrub oak, and a little beyond the great
pine trees towered towards heaven, and this led to the conclusion that
the soil of the oak lands must be poor, or the trees would grow taller,
and, by a parity of reasoning the latter must be rich to produce such
giants of the forest. And so it came that the fine farm owned by Mr.
Arthur Pollard, near Burford Village, was left untouched for several
years, and the Yeigh homestead was erected about two miles west of
the present village. The latch string was always out to the wayfarer,
and night after night the cavernous kitchen fire place was surrounded
by dusky sons of the forest. As many as fifteen, or twenty, have been
thus sheltered at a time, and the family never lost to the value of a
cent by the Indians.”

It may be added that cold weather prevailed much later in the era

In 1783, Capt. Joseph Brant, who had been negotiating
Smith and f or the Grand River lands, induced John Smith and
Thomas j ohn xj, omas to come f rom N CW York State on the Hud-

Famikes. D . ., ~ c .,

son River, to what is now Brant County, bmith was

then forty-five years of age and had served in the Revolutionary War.


Thomlas was a good deal younger man and he afterwards married one of
Smith’s daughters. Charles and James C. Thomas, direct descendants of
the latter union and both residents of Brantford Township, upon the
occasion of a meeting of the Ontario Historical Society in Brantford
some years ago, presented a joint paper from which the following inter-
esting extracts are taken:

“Capt. Brant persuaded John Smith (great grandfather) and John
Thomas, merchant, (grandfather) to come with them to their new home.
The children of John Smith, who journeyed with him to the Grand
River, were: William Kennedy Smith: Joseph Smith, Eleanor Smith,
who married John Thomas, Mary Smith, who married Benjamin Winter-
mute, of Fort Erie; Harriet Smith, who married Mr. Macklem, of Chip-
pewa; and John Smith, jun. Taking these up in chronological order.
Wm. K. Smith married a sister of Capt. Jos. Brant and had two children,
Abram Kennedy Smith, and Margaret, who subsequently married William
Kerby, sen., who for a great miany years ran a grist mill which was
located nearly opposite Kerby’s Island. He was the father of James
Kerby who built the Kerby House. To A. K. Smith and Margaret Kerby
the Six Nations Indians granted the Smith and Kerby tract containing
1100 acres of land, which, in addition to the 200 acres previously grant-
ed to Wm. K. Smith, made a total of 1300 acres of land, part of the site
of the present City of Brantford. Joseph Smith married Charlotte
Douglas of Blenheim Township, and had three sons, viz., John Smith,
first Sheriff of the County, Joseph and Absalom, and several daughters,
whose Christian names we have failed to obtain, with the exception of
Harriet, who married Absalom Griffin, of Waterdown, and Mary first
wife of George Keachie, first governor of the goal, who had four child-
ren, two girls and two boys. His second wife was Miss Yardington,
daughter of the late Henry Yardington.

“Grandfather was married in 1791, and father, his sec-
An Early ond son was born 23rd January, 1801, in the two-storied

Frame House frame house erected by the Smiths and John Thomas,
for John Smith jun., was a carpenter by trade, and had
brought his chest of tools with him from the States. Some of these tools
at the present date are in a good state of preservation, and are used by
us when needed. They must have been located on the lot for some time
previous to the erection of the house, as most of the lumber used in its
construction had to be whip-sawed, i.e., by one man under the log and
another above it. This house was located on a 200 acre lot fronting at
where the village of Cainsville is now, on part of which lot the Meth-
odist Church stands. To be more explicit, the house was built a little
to the west of the church. The bricks for the chimneys of this house
were made by mixing the wetted clay and tramping it with oxen, and,
when at the proper consistence, placing it in moulds, handpressing and
sun-drying until they had enough for a kiln.


“This lot of land was in all probability the first lot of
The First land covered by a Brant lease, for Brant was about to
Brant Lease issue deeds when he was told by our great-grandfather

that as he (Brant) had no deed, he could not issue deeds,
but would advise him to grant leases for a term of years. Brant took
his iadvice and leases were issued for 999 years, at a rental of one dung-
hill fowl per year, if the same be asked for and demanded. One reason
for considering this lot as being covered by the first Brant lease issued is
that the starting point given in the lease is the “village, or church on the
river.” (Mohawk) another reason (and the two taken together are irre-
futable), is that when the Government of Upper Canada recalled all the
Brant leases, a corner stone with the initials J. T. chiseled on one side
thereof was placed at the south-east corner of the lot in the exact place
where the stake had been planted that is referred to in the Brant lease,
and the Government surveyors in running the lines for adjoining lots used
this stone as a starting point.”

“From the papers and documents in our possession and from what
father told us, it appears great-grandfather was a tall man, over six feet,
and physically strong in proportion a great pedestrian; which is evid-
ent from his repeated trips to Bertie, Fort Erie, Niagara-on-the-Lake,
Toronto, and other distant points. These trips were made on foot there
being no wagon roads of any great length in those days, so that the only
means of locomotion was on foot, or on horse-back. He despised the
latter means as being too effeminate for a man of his standing and con-
dition of life. (It may be interesting to state here that the saddle which
we used in our boyhood days had silver-plated staples inserted in its
front edge, one on each side of the pommel, for strapping fast the
saddle bags, or any other article.) That he was a man of integrity and
great business tact in his dealings with his fellowmen is shown not only
by his handwriting and letters, but is also proven by the large number
of Powers of Attorney which we have in our possession, not only from
his immediate friends and neighbors, but also from settlers extending
from east of Hamilton, as far west as London, south to Long Point, and
north to the northern boundaries of Blenheim.

“In 1810 father was sent to school at Fort Erie, and he
The War told us that he well remembers the fact that, in the

Of 1812. summer of 1812, the late James Cummings, J. P., of

Chippewa, rode into Fort Erie crying aloud, “There is
war; war is declared between the King and the Congress.” In conse-
quence of this event he had to be brought home to the Grand River but
the family were not allowed to remain in peaceable possession of their
home, as the British Government required the house, barn, and other
out-buildings for His Majesty’s stores and other military purposes. Upon
the premises a regiment was stationed, probably the 37th Fusiliers for
we remember a door of the house which was incorporated in the dwelling
erected in later years having “37th Fusiliers,” cut into it with a knife. The
officers took up their quarters in the house, while the barn (36×50) ser-
ved as barracks for the privates. Hie family retreated to the backwoods


of Blenheim (known as the “Queen’s bush” at a later period), taking
such portions of their furniture as they could conveniently convey.
Amongst the articles left in the custody of the new-comers was a fall-leaf
table of walnut, the leaves and top of which we have had placed on an
extension dining-table. An officer, in want of a candlestick, dropped
some of the melted tallow on the table and stood the candle thereon. He
allowed it to burn so low that it burnt a hole in the table, still visible.

After the close of the war, the family returned from the place of their
retreat, the backwoods of Blenheim, and found their homestead in a very
delapidated condition, far different from what it was when they left it
in 1812. At that time they had^ forty acres cleared and under cultiva-
tion, well fenced with rails, staked and ridered; but on their return they
found the house with panes of glass out and boards off here and there
from all the buildings. The planks used for approaches to the barn
doors were gone, as well as many from the floor; the rails used in fenc-
ing the cleared land had disappeared, as if by magic, for it seems the
soldiers stationed here soon learned that the well-seasoned fence-rails
were more combustible and portable than the standing timber near by.
So when they had ascertained the sad condition of affairs, and to a
certain extent realized the losses they had sustained by the occupation of
the premises by the British and Indians, they made a claim for 115,
which was paid.

The year 1816 was a memorable one for those living at
A Summer- that time. It was usually referred to by the old-timers
less Year. as the year without a summer, for there was frost during
every month of the year, except the month of August.
This, following the close of the war, made itself severely felt by the
settlers, for the little grain they had on hand did not suffice till they
gathered the next harvest, and many people were reduced to a state of
semi-starvation. The first man to secure some ripened sheaves of rye,
flailed out the grain and shared it with his less fortunate neighbors.

“The Indians suffered also, but in all probability in a lesser degree
for game was plentiful. One of the younger Indians having found a
bee-tree was voraciously devouring the honey, but was stopped by one
of his own race of more mature years and told that by eating it thus it
was likely to produce colic. He got some dry wood, and after cutting
it as small as possible, pounded it in a mortar (home-made) until it
looked like sawdust. The honey was then mixed with it and partaken
of with safety. On being questioned as to why he mixed the wood with
the honey he replied “that he knew of but one reason, and that was that
the belly must be filled.”

“It is probable that it was on his return home from a trip
Slaves in to Tennessee that grandfather brought with him two

Upper slaves, a negro and his wife. They lived in a log house

Canada on .the lot at Cainsville until their death, working for

and being cared for by grandfather. The woman died
first and was interred by her husband close to the east side line of the
lot where he planted a seedling apple tree and a hickory tree at the head


of the grave to mark its location. Subsequently the negro died and was
buried beside his wife. In due course of time the Hamilton and Brant-
ford Electric Railway was laid out and its course ran directly over the
spot where these two trees had been planted. The men engaged in
grading the line found the skull of the negro to be still pretty solid, but
the remainder of the bones had returned to mother earth.

Grandfather Thomas was a member of the A.F. and A.M., No. 6
Barton Lodge. This lodgs held meetings periodically in tan upper
chamber of the two-storied house on the lot at Cainsville. After the
close of the war of 1812, John Thomas journeyed southward to Virginia
and Tennessee to get his business settled, but was accidentally drowned
while fording a river in that country, and his body could not be traced,
although many efforts were made with that purpose in view.

Strange to say, no record can be found of the death of great-grand-
father (John Smith, sen.) But we have his last will and testament dated
13th September, 1827, and on comparing his signature thereto with that
of other documents, we have concluded that he did not live many years
after signing his will. From father we learned that on his demise his
corpse was interred in the Mohawk Church graveyard, his body being
that of the first white man interred therein.

“About 12 years before Brant County was separated from the united
Counties of Wentworth, Halton and Brant, father and the late William
Holmes, J. P., (from whom we get the name Holmedale) were gazetted
commissioners of the Court of Request, a court of equity as well as law.
They continued to hold sessions of this court periodically until the estab-
lishment of County and Division Courts.”

“About 1812 a school house was erected on the site of
Early School the one in what is now known as School Section No. 16,
House. but at the time we are speaking of was called, at least

by the pupils, Bunnell’s schoolhouse, because the site
was taken from a lot of land afterwards deeded by the Crown to Mr.
Bunnell, grandfather of A. K. Bunnell, Treasurer of the City of Brant-
ford. The first teacher was a Yankee adventurer named Forsyth, who,
with many others, had followed the army. The textbooks he introduced
were Mavor’s Spelling-book, the English Reader, Morse’s Geography and
Daboll’s Arithmetic all works of Yankee origin.

The spelling book opened up with the alphabet and gradually advan-
ced; a few illustrations of the commonest of our domestic animals were
given, with a brief descriptive article of each. These were interspersed
nearly to the end, where were found columns of words of five or more
syllables, the first being “abominableness.” The so-called English Read-
er was almost entirely made up of extracts from the best English authors,
but it also contained extracts from speeches made by Ben. Franklin,
Patrick Henry, etc. The geography seemed to be made up especially to
extol and enlarge the U. S. at the expense of Canada. To give an in-
stance; the little State of Rhode Island was allotted more space in that
work than could be spared for Canada, although the latter consisted of


two Provinces. The Arithmetic proved to be the best of the books, and
was a work of decided merit. After the war, father became a pupil at
this school, and frequently referred to his schoolmates the late Malachi
File, the late John J. File etc., the last mentioned being the father of
Levi File of the Township of Brantford, and also grandfather of Mrs.
John D. McEwen of Mt. Pleasant Road. It was not long after the
advent of Rev. James C. Usher, the founder and first rector of Grace
Church, Brantford, before he held Divine service in the school house on
Sunday afternoon. These services were heartily welcomed by the settlers
who signified their appreciation by the regularity of their attendance.

“Our ‘foremothers’ had no such conveniences as ‘cook-
Means of stoves’ with the numberless utensils accompanying them,
Cooking. but were forced to do their cooking by means of the old-
fashioned fire-place, with its crane and pot hooks of
various lengths for hanging the pot and tea kettle on. Those who had
not brick ovens, when they wished to roast meat or bake bread, used a
reflector made of bright tin, in shape somewhat like an open shed.
When in use this was set upon a frame of iron with four legs, the open
side towards the fire, and the frame filled with live coals. It is scarcely
necessary to state that the food to be cooked was placed inside the reflec-
tor. The frying pan had long legs and a long handle for convenience.
The smoothing irons (sad irons) were heated by standing them on end
in proximity to the red-hot coals, and consequently required to have the
ashes removed from their faces before using. They also provided them-
selves with a sheet-iron round pan, with an iron handle about six feet
in length, for baking short cakes and pancakes of buckwheat, corn meal
or wheat flour. To prevent themselves from getting overheated they im-
provised a jack made of iron, about five feet in height, and having
notches at intervals of about six inches apart to rest the handle at such
a height as would keep the pan level. Some bakers became so proficient
in its use that they were enabled to grasp the handle with both hands,
give it a toss and turn its contents, (one cake) upside down, when cooked
sufficiently on the lower side, and catch it in the pan.

“Some time about the year 1830, a man, J. Van Nor-
Stoves and man by name started a foundry at Long Point. Its chief
Ovens. products were “The Farmer’s Cook Stove,” with its at-

tendant furniture, and box stoves for heating purposes.
The castings in these stoves were much thicker than those in use now-a-
days, and rods for holding the stove together were not used, so one had to
be very careful in putting in wood or he might knock the back plate out
on the floor. Many farmers, as soon as bricks could be obtained, erected
brick ovens at a short distance from the kitchen, and thus were enabled
to bake a batch of bread that would last the family eight or ten days.
We have several pots made at Long Point and occasionally make use of

“Our ancestors had not the opportunity to buy at Satur-

Clothing. day bargains but were compelled, owing to circumstances

over which they had, no control, to raise sheep whose

wool was taken to the nearest carding mill, where it was made into rolls.


These were taken home and spun into skeins of yarn; thence it was taken
to the weaver to be made into cloth, which was given to itinerant tailors
to make into suits befitting the various members of the family. In a
similar manner with regard to footwear the farmer traded pelts of animals
to the tanner for leather, which was fashioned into boots and shoes by
shoemakers, who travelled from house to house with their kits of tools
on their backs.”

Isaac Fairchild came to Canada in 1790 and settled at
-, P. Fairchild’s Creek, to which he gave his name. He came

from the Mohawk river, near a place called Glen’s Falls,
New York State, and travelled through five hundred miles to his destina-
tion on the Grand River. The circumstances which led to his coming to
Canada were as follows: His brother Benjamin Fairchild, having found
an American soldier’s overcoat in a barrel at his father’s house, put it
on one day to go out shooting, not knowing that British Indians, origin-
ally from the Mohawk River, were in the neighborhood. Benjamin en-
countered them, and finding him with the soldier’s overcoat, he was
taken prisoner and brought to the Grand River. When the mistake was
discovered he was released and returned home. Isaac was taken with
the description given him of the beautiful country traversed by Benjamin,
and decided to leave the United States and settle in Canada. He was at
this time about twenty-one years of age. He married in 1796 Lucy
Kilburn, originally from Wales, who settled in Canada about 1795. Isaac
Fairchild was a typical pioneer. Large framed, able bodied, courageous
and industrious, carrying an erect figure and a firm step to a green old
age, he reared a family of fifteen children, eight sons and seven daughters,
many of whose descendants are prominent in the County. Mr. Fairchild
was a great friend of Capt. Joseph Brant. He was present when Brant
wounded his drunken son Isaac. At Brant’s request, he volunteered with
a band of the Six Nations to go and meet Capt. Wayne, who was report-
ed as invading Canada with a large band of American Indians. When
en route to meet the enemy, however, they were overtaken by a message
saying that Wayne was only taking over the forts at Detroit and other
places, which had been turned over to the Americans by the British Gov-
ernment. So the party disbanded and Isaac returned home.
Other pioneer families are referred to elsewhere.




In 1888, Mr. Charles Duriand, of Toronto, wrote some interesting
letters regarding Brant County, from which the following extracts are

“In 1804 my father, the late Captain James Durand, who died in
Hamilton in 1833, owned a large farm in Norfolk County, on which
some part of the Town of Simcoe now stands. He also had a store
there, and used very frequently to pass through the site on which Brant-
ford now stands, in going to Hamilton and from it to Norfolk. He also
bought a farm, or rather several farms, about the year 1818, in what was
then called the Grand River Swamp as it was indeed six miles from
the now site of Brantford, East of Fairchild’s Creek two miles. Here
he had a cleared and cultivated farm of near two hundred acres, running
back, and built two sawmills, the first in that part of the country, on the
creek about a mile back in the woods. The whole neighborhood was
dotted with the most beautiful pine forests and other forest trees. On the
farm I lived until 1829-30 with my father, and he had five other sons
at the time. I can recall many pleasant days, many beautiful associa-
tions, on this great wooded property of 1200 acres of land. It was, in
fact, part of the Indian Reserve and ran back to near three miles from the
Grand River. The Indians of the Six Nations, living below the Mohawk
Church, had a trail through the woods from their villages, which passed
through the great farm, and they used to pass through the cleared part of
our land and by our door, in going to the then largest, and indeed only
large trading village, Ancaster, ten miles east of us, through the swamp
road. Often have I watched these people, husbands and wives, many
women having infants on their backs, tramping down towards Ancaster
to sell baskets, berries or furs. Often also have I watched them in their
camps in the woods. They were more original then than now, yet we
never suffered, to my remembrance, from any thefts committed. Some
years later, in 1826-7-8, I used at times to take a horse on Sunday and
ride to the Mohawk Church, an English Church Mission then, presided
over by a missionary. You may be surprised at my saying that we had
no postoffice nearer than Ancaster then; no doctor nearer. We had
plain, simple country schools, taught by schoolmasters, who were gen-
erally Yankees and “boarded around,” among neighbors, and at one of
these schools I and my brothers used to go in 1820 up to 1825. These


are a few of the families I knew the Westbrooks, the Shavers, the
Barlows, the Days, the Vanderlips, the Bunnells, the Fongers, the Myers,
the Sages, the Vansickles, the Sagers, and old Mr. Augustus Jones, one
of the oldest surveyors in the West, who surveyed many of the Western
Counties, and who married an Indian woman. He lived up the river
near Brantford. Later on I knew the Raceys, the Kerbys, the Muirheads,
and others. Brantford was a mere Indian trading point at the time.
Beyond Woodstock and this side of London, was a vast desert pinery,
through which my father used to ride and in which wolves and bears
prowled in hundreds. The whole line of the Grand River was settled by
Indians in their original state and the beautiful river meandered in lovely
majesty along its wooded slopes, where only the Indian canoe or water-
fowl disturbed its bosom, and where the stately, yet timid deer slaked
their thirst. Among the bending forest trees, dipping their pendant
branches in the clear water, the lovely summer birds sang their plaintive

. ~ , j “I described in my last letter how beautiful the Grand

p. River was in 1820-30, when I first saw it, as compared

with now. Civilization and the march of men onward,
have their good, their charms, but they spoil the simplicity of the virginity
of nature, as seen in the ancient woods, when the birds sang so gaily,
the tall trees shone in their magnificent greenness, around the Brantford
region of country, and your now obstructed, river, flowed in majestic
beauty and silence under the bending trees, the willows and the vines
embraced their welcoming branches, and the Indians hunted their game

“Referring once more to old timers. There was the Westbrook
family. Old Major Westbrook was a powerful, jolly old former, and
I have heard that he and his wife went upon their old farm with only a
cow, an axe, and a few simple materials necessary to build a log cabin.
There they felled a forest and reared a family, and made the wooded
scenes ring with the songs of old revolutionary times, for he was a
Royalist, as was old Mr. William Vanderlip. I remember this old farmer
well. He lived only about four miles, or less, from Brantford in 1820
and belonged to Colonel Butler’s Rangers. His place was at the foot of
what used to be called the Grand River Corduroy Roiad. He was an
innkeeper, as was his son Edward, six miles east of Brantford. The
latter married a daughter of Mr. Jacob Langs, one of the first settlers
in the Brantford region, and who lived near my father’s place. He had
a large family of boys and girls. One of the best known families in
1820-30 was the Bunnell family, who owned a fine farm on Fairchild’s
Creek, four miles east of Brantford, and the sons afterwards, between 1830
and 1840, built a large flour mill in Brantford. Among the Indians of
that time, the Brant family was best known. Two of old Captain Brant’s
children were educated in England in first class style. His daughter, a
full blooded Indian, was a perfect lady and used, prior to 1820, up to
her marriage with William Johnson Kerr, to go into the society of all
the best families of Hamilton and Toronto. Abraham K. Smith, who


owned a large quantity of land in Brantford at one time, was as generous
hearted and social a fellow as I ever met.

“Old Mr. Jacob Langs, whom I knew so well, and who lived only on
the next farm to my father in old times, was talso of U.E. Loyalist stock.
He was born in New Jersey, and came to Canada at a very early period
prior to 1790. He married into a family named Fowler, in the States.
His son, John Langs, born in 1799, married Sarah, one of Major West-
brook’s daughters, and they had a large family. Patty married Peter
Westbrook, a son of the Major.

– “I learn that my father’s farm, has now been cut up into

a- j j no less than eight farms. It was one of the most beauti-

v , A f u l m that P art f the country in those times and wooded

* with noble pine, maple, and beech trees. A creek ran

through part of it, the lovely wooded valley was filled with wild
plum trees and wild grape vines, and blackberry patches were seen
in various parts of it. Often when a boy I have helped in the frosty
days of March and April to make sugar in these valleys making maple
sugar then was quite common. It was in the old forests on this farm that
I noticed the remains of Indian mounds or works, which must have been
there long prior to the Six Nations settlements. On the great farm, game
of all kinds in early days was very common, such as deer, bears, partridges,
ducks, quail, etc., etc. Ducks frequented the mill pond and creek. At
that time we had no threshing machines or reapers. We threshed with
the flail and with horses, generally four horses, which were used to tread
out the grain on the large barn floors, and often I have helped to do it.

“The ladies, in the old days of Upper Canada, used to ride long
distances on horseback. My mother rode from Hamilton to Norfolk,
before the war of 1812, and a Mrs. Bradshaw rode from Hamilton to
Niagara and Hamilton to Townsend. The wife of Russel Smith at
Burford, was her granddaughter.

“The people of those days had to be contented with few pleasures
and those of a very primitive kind. “Bees” were a popular diversion.
There was the logging bee, quilting bee, apple paring bee, husking bee,
and often clearing bees. After the bees were over, there would be a
jolly dance, courting of the boys and girls, and a happy reunion of the
parents. At times horse racing took place. I was iat one of these
meets near Brantford about 1828. Camp meetings in the woods were
also quite common. In 1833, in the summer, I visited Brantford with
a party of revivalists. We held a series of meetings and I stayed at
the house of old Mr. Wilkes, the father of the present Wilkes family.
Old Mr. Wilkes was a very intelligent Englishman. Among others I saw
was a Mr. Lovejoy, who married one of the daughters of Dr. Case, the
elder, of Hamilton.

“Distances in those days, were not heeded, as now, by
Distances f oot trave n e rs, or travellers on horseback. The horse-

Not Heeded, ^ack ride from Hamilton to the Town of Simcoe, or
from the Town of Simcoe to London, or Chatham, would be thought a


great effort now for ,a lady, or even a man. Methodist pioneer ministers
travelled all over Upper Canada in this way, among our sparse settle-
ments, prior to 1820-30. The roads were either Indian trails, or cut
through high woods, stumpy, rutty, and often composed of logs laid side
by side through swamps for miles. Such a road once existed for about
eight or ten miles east of Brantford, and west of Ancaster, called the
“Grand River Swamp Road.” Hundreds of times I have travelled over it
and once when on foot, I met ex- Judge Miles O’Reilly and his then young
wife (who was one of the family of old Mr. Racey, well known in your
town in 1831), going from his wedding in that year to Hamilton, where
he had just commenced the practice of law. Speaking of trackless roads
through Western Canada in old times, roads that were dismal for their
gloom and length, reminds me that there was such a road from Simcoe, in
Norfolk, to London Village. It passed through a region of towering
pines, perhaps thirty miles long, east of London. Once, on this road,
my father, on horseback, was chased by a pack of wolves, and he kept
them away, partly, by throwing out of his saddlebag pieces of meat or
provisions which they stopped to fight over and devour.

“Saddlebags, now little known, were then used by all travellers and
especially itinerant ministers of the Gospel. They consisted of two leather
pouches, connected by leather straps, thrown over the front part of the
saddle, or rear sometimes, filled with eatables, books, papers, or any-
thing necessary to carry. I have previously spoken of a revival visit
to Brantford in 1833. It was inaugurated under the auspices of the
Hamilton American Presbyterian Church, in order to try and establish a
church in Brantford. Brantford was a very small place in 1833, but
how much smaller when I first knew it in 1820 ! A number of families had
come to it after 1820, such as Mr. Wilkes family and the family of a well
known English squire, named Mr. Holmes, a leading magistrate for a long
time near Brantford. Then old Mr. Coleman, an English merchant, went
to Paris in 1833-4. Mr. Muirhead was a well known man in 1833, also
the late Sheriff Smith. Both of these gentlemen were intimate friends of
mine and noble men they were, generous, land upright, genial and plea-
sant. Another of your old townsmen I knew well about the same time
was Mr. John Cameron. I cannot here omit alluding to a very promin-
ent man who used to be often in Brantford, but who probably belonged
to Burford and that vicinity. I mean Dr. Charles Buncombe, who took
the most active part of any man in Upper Canada as a Member of the
Legislature, prior to 1837, in all progressive matters, especially education,
and who was driven from Canada. All the Buncombes were prominent
and useful men. Who now remembers a very well known man, and a
very funny one, too, Mr. Spurr of Paris?

“In my last, I alluded to the amusements of the people
Raccoon in 1820-30. Well, the old corn fields used to be more

Hunting. common than they are now. What a beautiful sight, too,

is a luxuriant waving, Indian corn field, and the yellow
pumpkins in the midst of it, and the graceful ears, with their tassels.
It is the grain of the Indians. One of the sports of old was raccoon


hunting at night. The coons are fond of young corn, so are bears. The
farmers, with their dogs, in the middle days of August, would on moon-
light nights, start out in the small hours of the morning, slyly enter the
corn field, near the woods, or in vales, and tree the coon by the aid
of the dogs. Their bark would soon locate the animals in some high
tree, and the axe men would soon fell the tree, whilst the dogs would be
held ready to pounce upon the animal amidst the fallen branches. Alto-
gether, it was fine sport; so was hunting bee trees in the late autumn
months. Your town and the country around was once famous for hazel-
nuts. Thousands of the bushes were seen for miles around Brantford.
The streams around your town and in Burford were once famous for the
speckled trout fishing. So, too, the creeks (especially Fairchild’s Creek,
that passed through my father’s farm), were filled in April with fish
coming up to spawn, such as pike, pickerel and perch. Fishing at night,
with lighted torches, was no small sport for farmers. Another amuse-
ment then common on my father’s and other farms, was sugar and
molasses making in March and April. The trees were tapped in the deep
woods and the boys and girls had fine fun when “sugaring off” came on.”

Eighty-nine years ago Mr. Adam Fergusson, an Advocate
A .Long Ago o f Woodhill, Scotland, made a tour of this portion of

Canada and a part of the United States. He was a dir-
ector of “The Highland Society of Scotland,” an institution which mani-
festly took a keen interest in the growing migration of Caledonia’s sons
to this Continent. Upon his return he published a book entitled
“Practical Notes made during a Tour in Canada and a portion of the
United States in 1831.” The volume was addressed to “My Lords and
gentlemen,” and issued in Edinburgh by William Blackwood in 1832. It
is significant of the time that he deemed it opportune to devote quite an
amount of space to his trip from Manchester to Liverpool by “The far-
famed railway,” stating in this regard.

“From the powers of the locomotive engines an the railroad, goods
and passengers are conveyed from Liverpool to Manchester, ia distance of
thirty- two miles, in about two hours. As a contrast to this rapid trans-
mission between the towns, the following statement may not be out of
place. A stage-coach was first established between Liverpool and Man-
chester in 1767. The roads were then so bad that the coach was drawn
by six, and occasionally by eight horses, and it required the whole of the
day to perform the journey. An old gentleman, now resident in Liverpool,
relates that, between fifty and sixty years ago, he occasionally visited
Manchester, when the coach started early in the morning from Liverpool ;
the passengers breakfasted at Prescot, dined at Warrington, and arrived
sometimes in time for supper at Manchester. On one occasion, at
Warrington, after dinner, the coachman intimated his anxiety to proceed;
when he was requested by the company to take another pint and wait a
little longer, as they had not finished their wine, asking him at the same


time if he was in a hurry: “Why,” replied John, “I’m not partic’lar as
to an hour or so.”

Another lengthy description was devoted to the tedious sea-voyage by
“Packet Ship”, followed by a pen-picture of New York and other United
States points of adjacent interest winding up with embarkation on a
steamer for Canada. Mr. Fergusson visited Quebec, Montreal, Kingston,
the Falls and other places travelling by wagon, stage-coach and horse-
back and finally reached this section of Ontario. After noting a visit to
the “Town of Guelph” he relates that he was conveyed by light wagon
to Gait and continues;

“After a very pleasant ride, we came, rather suddenly,
First View at an opening in the forest, upon the Ouse, or Grand
of River. River, where it made a beautiful sweep and a fine appear-

ance. A little farther down, some straggling houses and
extensive mills announced our arrival at Gait. A wooden bridge led us
to a commodious stone-building in the cottage style, the residence of Mr.
Dickson, delightfully placed upon a rising ground, and commanding fine
views of the river. I found with Mr. Dickson a kind and cordial
welcome and enjoyed the comforts of such a family not a little, after
the somewhat rough work of the last two days; Mr. Dickson is a very
extensive landowner, having purchased a large township, which he named
Dumfries, and, in the present full tide of emigration, I doubt not that
it will rapidly fill up. The system of dealing with settlers here is par-
ticularly favorable for those who are compelled to rely chiefly upon their
personal labour. Mr. Dickson opens an account with each individual,
receiving instalments in money or produce, and frequently where char-
acter warrants such confidence, even supplying the means of purchasing
oxen, implements, or seed. At an early period of the settlement he
formed a connection with Mr. Shade, an intelligent, enterprising Ameri-
can, who devotes his attention principally to the mills, where he carries
forward an extensive concern in the various departments of flour and
saw mills, with a cooperage similar to the one at Gananoque, and from
which he turns out uncommonly neat and reasonable articles. A son of
Mr. Dickson resides with him, giving his aid in the general management,
and was at this time just returned from an experimental voyage, in com-
pany with Mr. Shade, by which the important fact was ascertained, that
the Ouse affords a safe communication with the Welland Canal, a dis-
tance by water of 100 miles. A barrel of flour, which now costs 3s. to
reach Ontario, will thus be conveyed for Is. and all other produce, of
course, in like proportion. a difference of incalculable value to the dis-

“Mr. Dickson has a very neat garden tastefully laid out behind his
mansion, and adjoining to it a large extent of improved land. The rocks
at the river side are of limestone, which in fact forms the sub-stratum
of the whole, or most part, of Upper Canada.

As my time would not admit of a long sojourn, where I should
otherwise have enjoyed myself so much Mr. Dickson kindly offered me his


horses; and his son, though still an invalid from cold caught in his
aquatic excursion, insisted upon accompanying me to Hamilton, where I
could again rejoin the high road to Niagara.

Saturday, May 15. We had a white frost this morning,
Fine Farm followed by a beautiful day. Breakfast being over, we
Lands. started for Brantford, a village about twenty miles off,

chiefly belonging to the Indians. I was mounted upon
a capital steady mare, Mr. Dickson’s own pad; his son rode an un-
commonly clever, active hackney; and our baggage and sumptersteed was
bestrode by Simon Mackenzie, a Yankee Celt, a very civil fellow. Our
ride along the river side was delightful, and the scenery fine, farms and
forest in alternate succession. A few miles below Gait, we turned off
to examine two properties then on sale; they were contiguous to each
other, and appeared to consist of good useful land, well-watered by cop-
ious springs, on a lime-stone bottom. The situation was extremely plea-
sant, extending in front down to the river, and intersected by the public
road. Each farm contained about 200 acres, of which nearly one-half
was improved and fenced, with tolerable houses, and the remainder in
useful timber of various kinds. The price demanded was 40s. per acre.

“Returning to our route, we entered upon an extensive range of open,
grove-like woodland, principally oak, and the trees so dispersed as not
to interfere materially with the operations of the plough. It had much
of the appearance of some of the wildest parts of English park-scenery.
An old Indian path conducted us to a commanding point overhanging the
river, where we found a cool spring gushing frorn the bank, amidst
shrubbery and undergrowth. A small and verdant knoll marked the
spot where grand councils were wont to be held in olden times, and
where the calumet of peace has, no doubt, been often smoked, or the
tomahawks sharpened for war. It was a lovely landscape, with a greater
range open to the eye than usually occurs in the interior of Canada.
Here we seated ourselves, enjoying the contents of Simon’s wallet and
the spring, with due qualification, while our horses had a little rest in
the heat of the day. Adjoining to this spot lived a young Scotch settler,
who had recently purchased a lot of 100 acres from Mr. Dickson. He
had already got a very snug shanty erected and was laboring away with
his oxen, blythe and cheerful, at a good hazel-colored sandy loam.
Recognizing at once by his dialect from what part of Scotland he had
come, I inquired if he knew a particular friend of my own on the Borders,
and the poor fellow’s ecstasy was most amusing when he exclaimed that
his own father was a tenant upon my friend’s estate. “I’m sure,” says
he, “he’ll no hae forgot Walter Smith; but tell him you met the poacher
and he’ll be sure to mind me.” I of course hinted a suspicion that some
mishap attending that lawless character had accelerated his movements
across the Atlantic, which, however, proved not to be the case. “At all
events,” I remarked, “you neither need certificate nor qualification here;
what do you principally shoot?” “Indeed,” says he, “if you’ll believe me
Sir, I scarce ever think about it, for there’s naebody seeks to hinder us,”
a remarkable answer and not without its use in forming a clew to the


fascinations and excitement of a smuggler’s or poacher’s life. A herd of
deer, only two days before had. wandered past him, yet Walter felt no
inclination to leave the plow although his rifle stood loaded in the shanty.

“There is a lovely sheet of water here, called the Blue
Arrival at Lake, indented by finely wooded headlands; and, as I
Paris. sat admiring it, I could not but set it down as a splendid

feature in park or lawn scenery, when some demesne or
villa shall be here laid out by the hand and the eye of taste. A little
further down the river side, we passed a valuable gypsum quarry, prob-
ably formed by vitriolic springs acting upon the calcareous subsoil. It
is extensively used, and the deep verdure of the waggon-track, from what
had been scattered, spoke distinctly to its value as a top-dressing. At a
new settlement, named Paris, the property of Mr. Capron, we crossed the
river by an excellent bridge. The situation of Paris, I think, promises
success; ‘and Mr. Capron appears to avail himself of its natural advan-
tages. Extensive grist-mills are at work, and also one for preparing
gypsum, all upon a good mill-stream, which here joins the Ouse. Several
new buildings were in progress, and a post-office is expected to be soon
established. Upon the same side of the river as Paris, I had observed as
we rode along, many situations and farms apparently very desirable.

“From Paris, where the river makes some beautiful
Merrymak- sweeps, we continued our ride through what is called an
ing at Indian reserve. A large tract of land here and around

Brantf ord. Brantford belongs to them, and is managed by Govern-
ment in concert with their own chiefs, for behoof of the
tribe. The village is named after Joseph Brant, a celebrated chief. We
found it, on our arrival, swarming with Indians, as a sale of village lots
had taken place that morning, and high prices having been obtained
(even at the rate of 100 per acre), merrymaking and rejoicing concluded
the day. We spent the evening quietly and pleasantly in a private
family, but found our quarters in the tavern somewhat noisy. My bed-
room was snug and clean, but a joyous ball in the apartment below, with
a notable frog-concert outside, afforded me but little benefit from its

“Brantford appeared to me a pleasant situation. The river winds
finely past the platform on which it stands, and, upon the opposite side,
are extensive holms not unlike the banks of the Earn in Scotland, or of
the Eden at Carlisle. Of these, a great part belongs to the Indians, and
will, probably for a long time, remain unimproved. Occasionally there
are farms to be had, and I should consider a purchase here as likely to
prove a good investment. I have received particulars of an estate which
was for sale last summer, from a friend who looked at it. It is upon the
west side of the Ouse, exactly opposite to Brantford, and contains 600
acres, eighty of which are alluvial bottom land. It enjoys a valuable
water-power, capable of being turned to account in various ways; the
price asked was $3,500 dollars, or 875. An American gentleman, who
was inquiring after it, expected to buy it for 750. About two miles
from Brantford, an Indian village has been established under the spirit-


ual charge of Mr. Lugger, a clergyman of the Church of England, sent
out by the Society for Propagating the Gospel. Next day being Sunday,
we resolved to make a small detour, and attend worship in their church.
The institution embraces both spiritual and secular objects. They have
a Mechanics’ School where instruction is given in handicraft trades.

“We were favoured with another lovely day, and had a
At Mohawk sweet ride to die Mohawk Village. We found, upon
Village. our arrival, the Sunday School at work, and it appeared

to be conducted in an orderly and becoming manner.
The church is a neat, small building, in which the male and female por-
tions of the congregation occupy respective divisions. The clergyman
required the aid of an interpreter in the reading desk and pulpit. No
hearers could be more attentive or devout than these children of the
forest. The old men, with their milk-white heads and placid dignified
copper countenances, would have made admirable portraits, and all ap-
peared to join earnestly in the liturgy, and to listen with deep attention to
a plain, suitable discourse.

“Many of the women possess remarkably amiable expressions; and
the little ones, neatly swaddled up into the shape of a Bologna sausage,
were the funniest, comical looking bodies imaginable. It is common to
have a flat board, to which the little animal is strapped, and by which it
can, at any time, be safely hung up and put out of the way. After ser-
vice, I was introduced to two of the chief men, who gave me their hands
in, a stately and somewhat condescending manner, saying at the same
time, “Welcome Scotsman.” They were all well clothed, though the fash-
ions were certainly somewhat grotesque.

Mr. Fergusson at the conclusion of his book presented

*? following figures: –

Prices of Live Stock, Upper Canada

Horses 7 10 to 10

Oxen for labour, per pair 15 00 17 10

Milch Cows 3 15 500

Implements, Etc.

Waggon for pair of horses 20

Harness for pair of horses 10

A plough 300

Brake-harrow 200

Long chains to drag trees, each 150

Double horse-sleigh 700

Common ox-sleigh 200


Wheat per bushel 36 to 5

Barley per bushel 026 030

Oats per bushel 016 020

Indian Corn, per bushel 016 026

Pease per bushel 026 030

Potatoes per bushel 016 020

Hay per ton 200 2 10


Wages and Labour

Hire of a man for farm work, with board per month 2 10

Hire of female for ordinary house-work, per month 1 10

Carpenter per day 050

Blacksmith on job per month 450

Blacksmith for a set of shoes 10

Chopping per acre 1 10

Logging (collecting and dragging) per month 100

Ordinary fencing of split rails, per rood Oil

Post and rail fencing per rood 1 10

Sowing and harrowing per acre 050

Reaper’s wages (find themselves) per day 050

Common laborers at Indian corn or potato work, 036

Wheat, reaped, and hauled into rick-yard and stacked

per acre . 100

Thrashing and winnowing, per bushel 006

Household Furniture
Handsome sideboard two doors, and five drawers ….15

Secretary or writing-table 10

Sofas 12-15

Dining tables, three to a set 700

Bureaus, six drawers 500

Bureaus, six drawers, plain 400

Bureaus with four drawers 300

Breakfast tables 150

Black walnut chairs, hair-bottoms, each 1 15

Common Windsor chairs, each 050

Drawing-room table, claw feet 7 10

Drawing room table, plain 4 10

Bedsteads, high posts 200

Tent do 1 10

Dressing-table and washstand 1 10

Double washstand 1 10

Light Washstand 12

Ladies’ work-table 1 10

These articles are handsomely and substantially finished; and the
native woods, such as bird’s eye maple, black walnut, birch, elm, oak,
cherry etc., supply excellent and beautiful materials.”

. With the advent of stages, small hotels, so called, com-
Ciariy oieis. mence( ] t make their appearance at various points.
They were crude institutions and quite frequently “mine host” and his
family constituted pretty rough specimens. An early traveller who
made the journey from London to York on foot, passing through Burford
in the year 1820, has left the following account of the accommodation
furnished him at this period.

“At eight o’clock in the evening, I arrived at Dogge’s tavern where
I put up for the night. Taverns in the country parts of Upper Canada


consist for the most part of small log houses, with three apartments, a
kitchen, a bed-chamber and a bar room. The bar-room is alike the coffee
room, the dram shop and the counting house. The kitchen is the scul-
lery, the dining room, and drawing room, and the bed-chamber commonly
contains four or five beds, clean and plain, with cotton sheets and
linsey-woolsey coverlets, but having neither posts nor curtains. The
other accoutrements of this apartment are two or three chairs, and a
portable looking-glass, so that a small Lilliputian might put it in his
waistcoat pocket; and so far from returning a correct representaion of
the objects which it reflects, if you look at yourself in it length- wise,
it will double the longtitude of your visage, and if breadthwise, it will
equally augment the lattitude. Such is the furniture of a Canadian bed-
room. In this sort of apartment do men, women and children indiscrim-
inately seek repose from the fatigue of travelling.

“On entering one of these taverns and asking for a single
Lacking. bed, you are told that your chance of getting one de-

Comforts, pends entirely on the number of travellers who may

want accommodation for the night; and if you obtain
possession of a bed by promising to receive a companion when required,
it is impossible to say what sort of a companion may come.

“I have already said, that, in the bed-chambers of Canadian hotels,
you are not supplied with wash stand or any of the paraphernalia of the
dressing-table. But lest I should be hereafter accused of disseminating
erroneous or garbled statements, it may be as well to inform you that
on descending from your bed-room and walking outside the door, you
will find something in the shape of a pig-trough, supplied with water,
in this you may wash if you please, after you have dressed, or before,
if you have any disposition to walk out in your morning-gown.

“In addition to these comforts of a Canadian hotel, as an example of
others too numerous to mention, I may be allowed to say, if you have a
horse, you are obliged not merely to see him fed and cleaned, but to feed
him and clean him yourself.”




The settlement of what is now Brant County commenced in 1793,
with the present Township of Burford as the first area of the movement.
The latest of the existing Townships to have land taken up was Onondaga,
the first settlers arriving in 1836.

In the early days of the Province there was division into districts and
in 1839 Burford, and Oakland Townships became part of the District of
Brock, with the gaol and Court House located at Woodstock. In like
manner Brantford and other portions of the present County were identi-
fied with Hamilton. Brant County was later formed from parts of three
counties South Dumfries Township from Halton County and Burford
and Oakland Townships from Oxford County. In 1851 an act was
passed whereby certain counties were united for municipal, judicial and
other purposes and the counties of Wentworth, Halton and Brant were
so joined, each having power to elect Provisional Municipal Councils.
The act further provided that “so soon as a Court House and Gaol in any
of the said counties shall have been erected at the county town of such
County,” then the Governor in Council should have the power to issue a
proclamation dissolving the union between such County and other assoc-
iate Counties. Brant representatives took speedy action in this regard
at the first provisional meeting held in Brantford on the 15th day of April
1852. Those present were, Joseph D. Clement, Reeve of the Town of
Brantford; P. C. VanBrocklin, Deputy Reeve, Town of Brantford; Her-
bert Biggar, Reeve of the Township of Brantford; Benson Jones, Deputy
Reeve Township of Brantford; Eliakim Malcolm, Reeve of the Township
of Oakland; George Youell, Reeve of the Township of Onondaga; Dan-
iel Anderson, Reeve of the Township of South Dumfries; W. Mullen,
Deputy Reeve, South Dumfries; Charles Per ley, Reeve of the Township
of Burford; I. B. Henry, Deputy Reeve, Burford Township; John Smith,
Reeve of the Village of Paris.

J. D. Clement and Eliakim Malcolm were nominated for the post of
“Provisional Warden,” and Mr. Clement proved’ successful.


A resolution was passed authorizing the Building Com-
r*^ a JJ mittee to advertise for plans and specifications for the

erection of a Court House and Gaol in Brantford, and
a subscription list was reported to be already in existence.

At the session next day this resolution was carried: “That the sum
of 5,000, including the subscription list, be appropriated for the erec-
tion of a Court House and Gaol for the County of Brant, to be raised by
assessments on all the ratable property in the said county, in six annual
payments from this date.”

The Chairman of the committee on Public Buildings also submitted a
report; recommending the adoption of a plan and specifications, prepar-
ed by Mr. John Turner, and tenders were asked.

At the meeting of the Council on May 1st, following: it was reported
that the tender of Messrs. Turner and Sinon was the lowest four
thousand four hundred and four pounds, ten shillings and a contract
with them was authorized. The final payment, owing to extras, was
5,181, not including equipment.

The first By-law passed by the Provisional Council was as


“By-law No. 1. To provide a Corporate Seal, or

Common Seal, for the Municipality of the County of Brant, one of the
United Counties of Went worth, Halton and Brant.

WHEREAS it is expedient or necessary that a Common or Corporate
Seal should be adopted and provided for the Municipality of the County
of Brant:

Be it therefore enacted by the Provisional Municipal Council thereof,
in Council assembled, under and by virtue of the Upper Canada Municipal
Corporation Acts, and it is hereby enacted by the authority of the same,
that the Common or Corporate Seal of the Municipality shall be one inch
and a half in diameter, bearing the following device, figures and inscrip-
tion thereon, that is to say bearing upon it the words in its margin,
“County of Brant, C. W.” with an oak tree, and an Indian standing erect,
with a bow and arrow in his hands, and a deer in the distance, which
shall be the Corporate or Common Seal of the said Municipality of the
County of Brant. Passed in Council the first day of May A. D., 1852.

County Clerk, Warden”

The said seal did duty for many years when a more appropriate
design, suggested by the Brant Historical Society, was adopted at a
meeting of the County Council, December 17th, 1913, and the original
by-law repealed in favor of the following:


“That the Common or Corporate Seal of the Municipality of the
County of Brant shall be two and one-eighth inches in diameter bearing
the following figures and inscriptions thereon, namely, bearing upon the
margin of said seal the words “The Corporation of the County of Brant,
Ontario, 1853” and the motto “Fidelitas et Industria,” on the inner circle
below a shield, which shield shall be located in the centre of the seal and
shall bear thereon an Indian with the Pipe of Peace in his hand, and
in the vert of the shield between two sheaves of wheat shall be a wheel,
and the crest above the shield shall represent a bear standing upon a
log of pine and a log of oak tightly bound together, and the seal so above
described shall be the Common or Corporate Seal of the Corporation of
the County of Brant.”

Thel bear is the token of the Mohawk tribe; the logs of pine and
oak representing respectively the Six Nations and British nation, are sup-
posed -to be bound by treaty thongs; the sheaves of wheat represent agri-
culture and the wheel industry, while the Indian figure is represented as
standing at the edge of some water Brants ford.


At a meeting of the County Council on November 6th., 1852, a
petition was prepared affirming the intention of Brant to become a sep-
arate County and the necessary financial and other arrangements having
been made, the Provisional Warden was instructed to “sign all requisite
papers on behalf of the Council that may be necessary to effect a separa-
tion of the County of Brantford from the United Counties of Wentworth,
Halton and Brant.”

The final meeting of the Provisional Council took place in the Town
Hall, Brantford, Jan. 13th, 1853, when Warden Clement was made the
recipient of a hearty vote of thanks and a grant of 25.

The first session of the 1853 Council took place January
First 24th, 1853 with the following members in attendance: J.

^ eetin & of Woodyatt, Reeve of the Town of Brantford; J. Me-
Council Michael, Deputy Reeve of Town of Brantford; E. Mal-

colm, Reeve of Oakland; G. Youell, Reeve, Township of
Onondaga; Benson Jones, Reeve Township of Brantford; L. Chapin,
Deputy Reeve Township of Brantford; C. S. Perley, Reeve, Township of
Burford; I. B. Henry, Deputy Reeve, Township of Burford; C. Whitlaw,
Reeve of Paris; Daniel Anderson, Reeve of South Dumfries; W. Mullen,
Deputy Reeve of South Dumfries.

The Clerk of the Provisional Council having taken the Chair, received
the credentials of the various members representing the Municipality,


and called the members to order. After reading certain correspondence
between the Provisional Warden and the Executive Government, touching
and concerning the separation of the County from the United Counties,
and a telegram announcing the separation he called upon them to elect
their Warden, Whereupon

On motion of Mr. Jones, seconded by Mr. Anderson, it was resolved
that Eliakim Malcolm, Esq., be Warden of the County of Brant, for the
present municipal year.

The Warden elect, having been duly sworn in, before Alfred Digby,
Esq., M. D., took his seat and addressed the council as follows:

“Gentlemen :

I thank you for the honor you have conferred upon me by appointing
me Warden of this County which situation I will endeavor to fill to the
best of my humble abilities; and I trust, by our united exertions, that the
business of the county will be conducted to the furtherance of the interests
of the county generally.

“I have to congratulate you and the inhabitants of the County, that
we are now about to realize the much desired object which has for sev-
eral years past occupied the mind of the several townships now com-
prising the County of Brant. We are now, by proclamation, set apart
from die Union which lately was known as “The United Counties of Went-
worth, Halton and Brant,” and are become a separate County.

“Gentlemen: taking into consideration the extent of territory, com-
prising this county, its equal for natural advantages is not to be found
in United Canada. Its soil for the growth of wheat, (which is the prin-
cipal article of export) cannot be surpassed; and all other grains, cul-
inary roots and grass, are produced in luxuriant crops.

“The County of Brant, also, in proportion to its territory, I think I
am warranted in saying, possesses more hydraulic power than any
other county in Canada. This power is not confined to one locality, but
is so ordered by an all-wise Providence so as to be beneficial to the
whole County.

“As to the improvements. I would ask, what was the Town of Brant-
ford, now your County Town, at my earliest remembrance? What is it
now, and what are its future prospects? I have passed through this
place when there was only one log hut in it, and that was kept as a sub-
stitute for a tavern. Look at it now, with its beautiful public buildings,
iron foundries, steam engines, machine shops, numerous brick stores,
both wholesale and retail, flour mills, machine shops, of all descriptions;
well kept public houses, splendid public residences, printing establish-
ments, and I am sorry to say distilleries, breweries and low grog shops
the enemies and destructives of a great portion of the human race.

“The Town of Brantford is most admirably situated in the centre
of an extensive farming country; at the head of the navigation of the
Grand River, (one of the most splendid rivers in Canada) and when that
J. D. Clement, first Warden of the
Provisional County of Brant.
Eliakira Malcolm, first Warden of
the County of Brant after separ-
ation from Went worth and


navigation is completed, which we trust will not be long, it will afford
a cheap and easy mode of conveying the produce of the surrounding
country to market, and bring in return such articles of merchandise as
are wanted by the inhabitants.

“The main thoroughfare from the eastern to the western sections of
the Province, passes through Brantford and leading roads intersect it
from all parts of the surrounding country. A railroad is now in a state
of forwardness, approaching to completion, from Buffalo through Brant-
ford (where no doubt a depot will be located), to intersect the Great
Western at Paris, and thence to Goderich. We are looking forward to
the time which we trust is not far distant, when (if not thwarted by the
narrow-mindedness of our Legislature) we expect to have a railroad from
the Western extremity of the Province via St. Thomas, Norwich and Bur-
ford, through the town of Brantford, to intersect the Great Western be-
tween this town and Hamilton.

“Gentlemen: It has fallen to our lot to commence the local affairs of
the new county, and I trust that our united deliberations will be governed
solely for the benefit of the county.

“The principal thing is to guard against unnecessary expenditure of
the county funds. A steady and progressive course of improvements can
be made without overburdening the people of the county with taxes. My
motto, while I had the honor to be a member of the District and County
Councils, has been to guard against unnecessary expenditure of public
money. I would say further that I need not confine myself to the Town
of Brantford in relation to improvements. Take a view of the whole
county, and see the improvements in agriculture, and the numerous vil-
lages and towns springing up in all directions, and you will at once see
that the County of Brant is all that I have represented it to be.”

On motion of Mr. Youell, seconded by Mr. Jones,

Resolved, That John Cameron, Esq., be the Clerk of the County of
Brant, for the current year.

On motion of Mr. Youell, seconded by Mr. Jones,

Resolved, That Hamilton Biggar, Esq., be the Treasurer for the
County of Brant, for the current year.

At the session on the second day, By-law No. 1, was passed fixing
the salary of the Treasurer at 100, and the salary of the Clerk at 37.
10s. By-Law No. 2, enacted that the remuneration of County Councillors
should be “six shillings and three pence currency per day, and that
one day’s extra pay be allowed to each of the members of the said Coun-
cil residing three miles from the County town of the said County, for
every session of the said Council, to defray their expenses in coming to
and going from the said Council.” (The present pay of County Coun-
cillors it may be noted is $5 a day and mileage.)


At the County Council meeting held on the 23rd of June
jxT e f n n 1853, the following address was read, on the occasion of

the presentation of the national flag to the County of
Brant. The address was delivered by His Honour Judge Jones, and the
flag was presented by Mr. Sheriff Smith in behalf of the public officers
of the County of Brant.

“To the Warden and members of the Municipal Council of the County
of Brant, in Council assembled. We, the undersigned, public officers of
the County of Brant, would respectfully approach your honourable body,
and express the hope that it will not be deemed either amiss or obtrusive
in us in having considered that the public buildings of this fine county
should, in common with those of the other counties of this noble Prov-
ince, be provided with some emblem by which our nationality on all public
occasions may prominently appear, and in having procured that which we
have deemed most appropriate and expressive for such a purpose, viz.
“The flag that for a thousand years has braved the battle and the breeze,”
with a view to present the same to the said county. Presuming that we
are right in the expression of our hope, we would approach your honor-
able body as the proper medium through which to carry out the object
we have in view, to present to the County of Brant, and pray its accept-
ance through you, of this our national flag, which we now do, trusting
that it may long proudly wave over a free, prosperous and happy people.
Signed Stephen J. Jones, Judge County Court; John Smith, Sheriff; T. S.
Shenstone, Registrar; John Cameron, Clerk of the Peace; William Mur-
phy, Inspector; E. B. Wood, Clerk County Court and Deputy Clerk of
the Crown; Wm. H. Burns, Registrar of the Surrogate Court.” The flag
presented was the British “ensign,” or in the words of Campbell, “The
meteor flag of England.”

The Warden’s reply was as follows: “Gentlemen: As the head of the
Municipality of the County of Brant, on behalf of the inhabitants of the
county, I thank you for the presentation of our national flag, through
me and the members of this municipality, to the County of Brant, as an
emblem to be hoisted upon the splendid edifice, the Court House of the
county, by which our nationality on all public occasions may prominent-
ly appear; the flag which is the national emblem of the most powerful
and sympathizing nation under the sun, to which the oppressed of all na-
tions flee for succour and protection, ‘the flag that for a thousand years
has braved the battle and the breeze;’ and may it, as you well express it,
long continue proudly to do so over a ‘free, prosperous, contented and
happy people;’ and that it will do so under our noble constitution faith-
fully administered, no one can have any reason to doubt.”





1853 Eliakim Malcolm

1854 Eliakim Malcolm

1855 Allen Good

1856 Chas. S. Perley

1857 Daniel Anderson

1858 Daniel Anderson

1859 Charles Hedgers

1860 Thomas Conboy

1861 William Patton

1862 Arch. McEwen

1863 Wm. Mullen

1864 Chas. Hedgers

1865 John Lawrence

1866 Wm. Turnbull

1867 I. B. Henry

1868 S. D. Malcolm

1869 F. H. Leonard

1870 Matthew Whiting

1871 L. B. D. La Pierre

1872 Andrew H. Baird

1873 W. S. Campbell

1874 Arch Harley

1875 Robert Burt

1876 William Thompson

1877 Matthew Whiting

1878 C. Edmondson

1879 Matthew Whiting

1880 Thomas O’Neail

1881 Thomas W. Charlton

1882 William Devlin

1883 William Roddick

1884 Alfred Kitchen

1885 Thomas Lloyd Jones

1886 . . Daniel Burt

1887 William Hunter

1888 John H. Fisher

1889 Niles Rathbun

1890 Robert L. Hamilton

1891 Joseph Mclntyre

1892 Louis B. D. La Pierre

1893 Thomas Howden

1894 Philip Kelly

1895 Henry Stroud

1896 Daniel Whiting

1897 Joseph Mclntyre

1898 George Aitkin

1899 John Collins

1900 Thomas Scott Davidson

1901 John Jefferson

1902 Albert Barton

1903 Joseph Mclntyre

1904 James B. Howell

1905 John Weir

1906 John Patterson

1907 William Oliver

1908 William A. Kelman

1909 Richard Sanderson

1910 Jacob E. Messecar

1911 John Douglas

1912 John Brockbank

1913 Alfred Kendrick

1914 William Milmine

1915 George E. Cooke

1916 Morgan E. Harris

1917 Alvin B. Rose

1918 Edward Pitts

1919 Arthur J. McCann

1920 F. Rosebrugh

Town of

Reeves: 1853, James Woodyatt; 1854. D. McKerlie;
1855-6, John McNaught; 1857-8, Joseph D. Clement;
1859-60, Thomas Broughton; 1861-2, James Wallace;

1863, James Weyms; 1864, Jos. Quinlan; 1865, John Elliott; 1866-7,
George Watt; 1868, Alfred Watts; 1869, Francis H. Leonard; 1870-71,
Alfred Watts; 1872-3, Wm. J. Imlach; 1874, George H. Wilkes; 1875,
Alfred Watts; 1876, Robert Phair; 1877, John Elliott.

Deputy Reeves: 1853, James McMichael; 1854, W. Matthews; 1855,
John Elliott; 1856, Alex. Girvin: 1857-8, Henry Racey; 1859, John Corn-
erf ord; 1860, James Wallace; 1861-2, Ebenezer Roy; 1863, Wm. B. Hurst

1864, Jno. Montgomery; 1865, George Watt; 1866, John Montgomery;
1867, J. Humburch, H. B. Leeming, 1868, F. H. Leonard, John Comer-


ford; 1869-71, Wm. Paterson, W. J. Imlach; 1872, Robert Phair, Geo.
H. Wilkes, William Watt; 1873, R. Phair, J. J. Hawkins, B. Hunn;
1874, J. W. Digby, B. Hunn, George Watt; 1875, W. J. Scarfe, B. Hunn,
E. Brophey; 1876, E. Brophey, G. H. Wilkes, T. Palmer; 1877, J.
Ormerod, W. J. Scarfe, J. J. Hawkins. (Brantford became a City.)

_ , . . Reeves: 1853, Benson Jones 1854, H. Phelps; 1855,
Township of AHen Good; 1857 to 1863? Arch McEwen; 1863? j ames

Brantlord. Campbell; 1864, Wm. Turnbull; 1865, James Campbell;
1866 to 1873, Wm. Turnbull; 1873 to 1876, Wm. S. Campbell; 1876,
Arch. McEwen; 1877 to 1880 Christopher Edmonson; 1880, John Strick-
land; 1881, James Reid; 1882, Wm. Biggar; 1883, Wm. Roddick; 1884,
W. Biggar; 1885, D. Whiting, 1886, Thos. Brooks; 1887, W. Biggar;
1888, W. Biggar; 1899, Robert L. Hamilton; 1890, Robert L. Hamilton;
1891, Thos. Clark; 1892, Josiah Woodley; 1893, Daniel Whiting; 1894,
Daniel Whiting; 1895, Daniel Whiting; 1896, Daniel Whiting.

Deputy Reeves: 1853, Lyman Chapin; 1854, John Tennant; 1855-6,
John Whiting; 1857 to 1860, John Tennant; 1860, Wm. Hunter; 1861,
James Campbell; 1862, Wm. Hunter; 1863, Wm. Turnbull; 1864, Wm.
Hunter; 1865, Wm. Turnbull; 1866, Wm. Hunter; 1867, H. G. Town-
send, Geo. Bryce; 1868, H. G. Townsend, Wm. Hunter; 1869 to 1873, H.
G. Townsend, Wm. S. Campbell; 1873 to 1876, H. G. Townsend, Chris.
Edmondson; 1876, Chris. Edmondson, Alex. Duncan; 1877, Alex. Dun-
can, Thomas Sanderson; 1878, Wm. Roddick, James Reid; 1879, Wm.
Roddick, John Strickland; 1880, James Reid, Wm. Biggar; 1881, Wm.
Roddick, Wm. Biggar; 1882, Wm. Roddick, Daniel Whiting; 1883,
James A. Smith, Daniel Whiting; 1884, J. A. Smith and D. Whiting;

1885, Thos Brooks and Forbes D. Wilson; 1886 Forbes D. Wilson and
Robert H. Snider and Duncan McEwen; 1887 Robert H. Snider, Duncan
McEwen and Robert L. Hamilton; 1888, Duncan McEwen, Robert L.
Hamilton and Thos. Clark; 1889, Thos. Clark, Richard Pearce, Josiah
Woodley; 1890, Thos. Clark, Richard Pearce, Josiah Woodley; 1891,
Josiah Woodley, Beldun Lundy, William Edmonds; 1892, William Ed-
monson, William A. Rispin, Charles Thomas; 1893, W. A. Rispin, Chas.
Gurney, William Houlding; 1894, Wm. A. Rispin, Chas. W. Gurney, Wm.
Houlding; 1895, W. A. Rispin, C. W. Gurney, W. Houlding, 1896, W. A.
Rispin, C. W. Gurney, Wm. Houlding.

_ , . Reeves: 1853, Charles S. Perley; 1855 to 1871, Charles

Township of Hedgers; 1871 to 1876, Arch. Harley; 1876-7-8, Wm. D.
JSurlord. Bennett; 1879 to 1883, Charles Hedgers; 1883, Thos.

Lloyd Jones; 1884, Thomas Lloyd Jones; 1885, Thomas Lloyd Jones;

1886, Thomas Lloyd Jones; 1887, Thomas S. Rutherford; 1888, Niles
Rathburn; 1889, Niles Rathburn; 1890, William Bonney; 1891, Philip
Kelly; 1892, Philip Kelly; 1893, Philip Kelly; 1894, Philip Kelly, 1895,
Chas. Van Horn; 1896, Franklin A. Metcalf.

Deputy Reeves: 1853-4, Isaac B. Henry; 1855, Dr. Ross; 1856,
Charles S. Perley; 1857 to 1860, Henry Taylor; I860 to 1863, Isaac B.
Henry; 1863 to 1867, William Hersee; 1867 to 1871, I. B. Henry, Chas.
Perley; 1871, Jacob Bingham. Peter Doran; 1872, Arch. McDonald;


1873, Wm. D. Bennett, Ed. H. Parnell; 1874, Wm. D. Bennett, Paul Huff-
man; 1875, Wm. D. Bennett, Wm. Lumsden; 1876, Isaac B. Merrill, Paul
Huffman; 1877, Paul Huffman; 1878, Paul Huffman, Alex. Mclrvine;
1879, John T. Muir, Alex. Mclrvine; 1880-81, Wm. Bonney, Thomas
Lloyd Jones; 1882-3, Alex. Mclrvine, James Harley; 1884, A. Mclrvine,
James Harley; 1885, James Harley, T. S. Rulherford; 1886, Niles
Ralhbun, Thos. S. Rutherford; 1887 Niles Rathbun, Samuel C. Howie;
1888, David K. Huffman, William Bonney; 1889, David K. Huffman, Wil-
liam Bonney; 1890, Phillip Kelly, Thomas Costin; 1891, Alexander Mc-
lrvine, Charles Van Horn; 1892, Alexander Mclrvine, Charles Van Horn;
1893, Charles Van Horn, Franklin A. Melcalf ; 1894, Charles Van Horn,
F. A. Melcalf; 1895, F. A. Metcalf, Adam Crozier; 1896, Joseph D.
Eddy, John J. Collins, John Weir.

Reeves: 1853 to 1870, Daniel Anderson; 1870, Wm.

Township of Mullen; 1871 lo 1876, Robert Burl; 1876-7, James Deans

South 1878, L. B. D. La Pierre; 1879-81, Thos. W. Charllon;

Dumfries. 1882-3-4, Alfred Kitchen; 1885, Daniel Burt; 1886 Dan-

iel Burt; 1887, James Deans; 1888, James Deans; 1889,

Daniel McPherson; 1890, L. B. D. La Pierre; 1891, L. B. D. La Pierre;

1892, L. B. D. La Pierre, 1893, George Ailken; 1894, George Ailken;

1895, Dr. Patten; 1896, Dr. Patten.

Deputy Reeves: 1853 lo 1860, Wm. Mullen; 1860 lo 1875, Lewis B.
D. La Pierre; 1875, James Deans; 1876-7, Alfred Kilchen; 1878, Thomas
W. Charllon; 1879-81, Daniel Burt; 1882-3, John McRuer; 1884, John
McRuer; 1885, W. B. Wood; 1886, W. B. Wood; 1887, L. B. D. La
Pierre; 1888, L. B. D. La Pierre; 1889, L. B. D. La Pierre; 1890, George
Aitken; 1891, George Aitken; 1892, George Ailken; 1893, Dr. F. J. Pat-
ten; 1894, Dr. Fallen; 1895, John Folsetter; 1896 John Folsetter.

Reeves: 1853, Geo. Youell; 1854, W. N. Alger; 1855,
Township of Mulligan; 1856, W. N. Alger; 1857 lo 1861, Thos. Con-
Onondaga. boy; 1861 ^ Matthew Whiling; 1862, Richard Harris;
1863 lo 1866, Matthew Whiling; 1866, Bradshaw McMurray; 1867-8 Wm.
Hamilton; 1869 lo 1883, Matthew Whiling; 1883, Alexander Douglas;
1884, Alexander Douglas; 1885, Frederick Axon; 1886, William Hun-
ler; 1887, William Hunler; 1888, William Hunler; 1889 William Simp-
son; 1890 William Simpson; 1891 Thomas Howden; 1892, Thomas
Howden; 1893 Thomas Howden; 1894 Thomas Howden; 1895, Albert
Barton; 1896, Albert Barton.

Reeves: 1853 lo 1857, Eliakim Malcolm; 1857, Charles
Township of Chapin; 1858 lo 1863, William Thompson; 1863, John
Oakland. Eddy; 1864, S. D. Malcolm; 1865, Eliakim Malcolm;

1866, Wellington McAllister; 1867-8, S. D. Mal-
colm; 1869, Charles Chapin; 1870 lo 1874, William Thompson; 1874-5,
Smilh Beebe; 1876, William Thompson; 1877, Smith Beebe; 1878-9
Eliakim Malcolm; 1880 to 1888, William Devlin; 1889 to 1896, Joseph


Reeves: 1853, Charles Whitlaw; 1854, Hiram Capron;
Town Of 1855? Rugh Finlayson; 1856, Charles Whitlaw; 1857,

Fans. Hiram Capron; 1858, Hugh Finlayson; 1859, Norman

Hamilton; 1860-1, Wm. Patton; 1862 to 1867, John Lawrence, M.D.;
1867-8, Norman Hamilton; 1869-70, John Lawrence, M.D.; 1871-2, An-
drew H. Baird; 18734, Henry Hart; 1875-6, A. H. Baird; 1877, Thomas
Hall; 1878-9-80, Thomas O’Neail; 1881, David Brown; 1882-3, Robert
Thomas; 1884, J. H. Hackland; 1885, John Allan; 1886, John Allan;
1887, John H. Fisher; 1888, John H. Fisher; 1889, Thomas O’Neail;
1890, Thomas O’Neail; 1891, Andrew H. Baird; 1892, Andrew H. Baird;
1893, Thos. Evans; 1894, Henry Stroud; 1895, Henry Stroud; 1896,
Thomas Evans.

Deputy Reeves: 1853 to 1856, none; 1856, Wm. Patton; 1857-8,
Norman Hamilton; 1859, Charles Arnold; 1860-61 John Lawrence, M.D.;
1862, Norman Hamilton; 1863 to 1867, Robert Thomson; 1867, Henry
Hart; 1868 to 1871, Andrew H. Baird; 1871, Robert Thomson; 1872,
Matthew X. Carr; 1873-4, Geo. Angus; 1875, Robert Patterson; 1876,
Thomas Hall; 1877, Thos. O’Neail; 1878, Henry Hart; 1879-80, David
Brown; 1881-2, John Arnold; 1883, James H. Hackland; 1884, to
1886, W. J. Robinson; 1887, James Wilson; 1888, Andrew H. Baird;
1889, Peter H. Cox; 1890, Peter H. Cox; 1891, Peter Adams; 1892, Peter
Adams; 1893, 1894, 1895, Michael Ryan; 1896, Scott Davidson.

In 1897 the Hardy Act came into force. Under this

Under Ine measure the County was composed of four divisions,
Hardy Act. , J f . , ,

and provision made tor two representatives to be elected

from each, the men so chosen to form the County Council.

1897, Div. 1, Thos. Scott Davidson, George Aitkin; Div. 2, Albert
Barton, Daniel Whiting; Div. 3, Joseph Mclntyre, John Jefferson; Div.
4, F. A. Metcalf, John Collins.

1898, Div. 1, T. S. Davidson, G. Aitkin; Div. 2, A. Barton, D. Whit-
ing; Div. 3, J. Mclntyre, J. Jefferson; Div. 4, F. A. Metcalf e, J. Collins.

1899, Div. 1, G. Aitkin, T. S. Davidson; Div. 2, William Simpson,
D. Whiting; Div. 3, J. Mclntyre, J. Jefferson; Div. 4, J. Collins, F. A.

1900, Div. 1, G. Aitkin, T. S. Davidson; Div. 2, W. Simpson, D.
Whiting; Div. 3, J. Mclntyre, J. Jefferson; Div. 4, J. Collins, F. A.

1901, Div. 1, T. S. Davidson, James B. Howell; Div. 2, A. Barton,
John Y. Brown; Div. 3, J. Mclntyre, J. Jefferson; Div. 4, A. G. Ludlow,
John Weir.

1902, Div. 1, T. S. Davidson, James B. Howell; Div. 2, A. Barton,
Daniel Hanley; Div. 3, J. Mclntyre, J. Jefferson; Div. 4, A. G. Ludlow,
J. Weir.

1903, Div. 1, Henry S. Maus, J. B. Howell; Div. 2, A. Barton, D.
Hanley; Div. 3, J. Mclntyre, John M. Patterson; Div. 4, A. G. Ludlow,
J. Weir.

1904, Div. 1, H. S. Maus, J. B. Howell; Div. 2, A. Barton, D. Hanley;
Div. 3, J. Mclntyre, J. M. Patterson; Div. 4, A. G. Ludlow, G. Weir.
The Court House as it originally appeared. Photo reproduced from a wood cut

made in 1875. The hearse was probably introduced as the first of its

kind in the community.


1905, Div. 1. J. B. Howell, H. S. Maus; Div. 2, Wm. A. Douglas,
D. Hanley; Div. 3, J. Mclntyre, J. M. Patterson; Div. 4, Blackwell L.
Doran, J. Weir.

1906, Div. 1, H. S. Maus, J. B. Howell; Div. 2, W. A. Douglas, D.

Hanley; Div. 3, J. Mclntyre, J. M. Patterson ; Div. 4, B. L. Doran, J. Weir.

In 1907 the previous system of having Reeves and

JSacK to Uld Deputy Reeves constitute the County Council was
System. ‘


_ , Reeves: 1907, W. Oliver; 1908, James Miller; 1909,

Township of R Sanderson; 1910, J. W. Westbrook; 1911, J. W. West-
Brantford. brook; 1912? James Young; 1913, A. Kendrick; 1914,
H. Jennings; 1915, Morgan E. Harris; 1916, M. E. Harris; 1917, A.
McCann; 1918, A. McCann; 1919, A. McCann; 1920, R. Greenwood.

Deputy Reeves: 1907, J. Miller; 1908, Richard Sanderson; 1909,
John W. Westbrook, James Young; 1910, J. Young, John Houlding;

1911, J. Young, J. Houlding; 1912, J. Houlding, Alfred Kendrick; 1913,
Arthur McCann, Hudson Jennings; 1914, A. McCann, Rupert Greenwood;
1915, A. McCann, R. Greenwood; 1916, A. McCann, R. Greenwood;
1917, R. Greenwood, James A. Scace; 1918, R. Greenwood, J. A. Scace;
1919, J. A. Scace, R. W. Henry, U. 0. Kendrick; 1920, R. W. Henry,
J. Summerhayes.

Reeves: 1907, R. R. Taylor; 1908, R. R. Taylor; 1909,
of R. R. Taylor; 1910, R. R. Taylor; 1911, William Mil-
mine; 1912 Frederick W . Taylor; 1913, F. W. Taylor;
1914, William Milmine; 1915, M. Burtis; 1916, M. Burtis; 1917, Black-
well L. Doran; 1918, A. W. Eddy; 1919, M. Burtis; 1920, A. W. Eddy.
Deputy Reeves: 1907, Henry R. Virtue; 1908, William Milmine;
1909, W. Milmine; 1910, Frederick W. Taylor; 1911, William H. Bonney;

1912, Marshall Burtis; 1913, M. Burtis; 1914, M. Burtis; 1915, Alfred
W. Eddy; 1916, A. W. Eddy; 1917, A. W. Eddy; 1918, Adrian W. Smith;
3919, John F. Costin; 1920, W. H. Shellington.

_ Reeves: 1907, W. Allen Kelman; 1908, W. A. Kelman;

Township 19Q9? George L Telfer; 1910, G. L. Telfer; 1911, Allan

outh . Leslie Kitchen; 1912, A. L. Kitchen; 1913, Oscar A.

Dumfries. Wait; 1914? A Wait; 1915? Robert j Aitkin; 1916

R. J. Aitkin; 1917, Archie Crichton; 1918, A. Crichton; 1919, Fred Rose-
brugh; 1920, F. Rosebrugh.

, Reeves: 1907, W. Peddie; 1908, W. Peddie; 1909, John

lownship Douglas; 1910, J. Douglas; 1911, J. Douglas;

Unondaga. 1912? Michae i N . Simpson; 1913, M. N. Simpson; 1914,
James E. Walker; 1915, J. E. Walker; 1916, Alvin B. Rose; 1917, A. B.
Rose; 1918, William A. Douglas; 1919, W. A. Douglas; 1920, Arthur

_ , . Reeves: 1907, Jacob A. Messecar; 1908, George E.

JLownship Cooke; 1909, Jacob A. Messecar; 1910, J. A. Messecar;
Uafcland. 19n? George E. Cooke; 1912, G. E. Cooke; 1913, G. E.

Cooke; 1914, G. E. Cooke; 1915, G. E. Cooke; 1916, James B. Scott;
1917, J. B. Scott; 1918, J. B. Scott; 1919, J. B. Scott; 1920, J. B. Scott.


Reeves: 1907, J. M. Patterson; 1908, John Jefferson;
Pans. 1909 William T. Thomson; 1910, W. T. Thomson;

1911, J. Brockbank; 1912, J. Brockbank; 1913, A. L. Davidson; 1914,
Henry Stroud; 1915, T. Evans; 1916, T. Evans; 1917, E. Pitts; 1918,
E. Pitts; 1919, T. Evans; 1920, T. Evans.

Deputy Reeves’. 1910, John Brockbank; 1911, Alexander L. David-
son; 1912, A. L. Davidson; 1913, J. Rufus Layton; 1914, Thomas Evans;
1915, Edward Pitts; 1916, E. Pitts; 1917, Isaac Stewart; 1918, I. Stewart;
1919, John P. McCammon; 1920, J. P. McCammon.




By general consent there are no official buildings in Ontario which
possess a prettier situation than those of the County of Brant. They
not only occupy a well laid out square with an abundant lawn frontage,
but in addition the location of Victoria Park, immediately opposite, ser-
ves to add to the continuity of the picturesque setting. In notable con-
tradistinction to the antique and totally inadequate structure known by
courtesy as a “City Hall,” the County authorities have never spared any
expense in the matter of their official home, and even in the gaol con-
struction anything of an eyesore nature has been avoided. The original
building consisted of what is now the central portion and the first gaol
was a small antiquated affair, situated on the north side and cap-
able of holding about twenty prisoners. The entire property was sur-
rounded by a fence, ornamental on the Wellington Street side, and of
high wood for the balance. Two wings have been added since that per-
iod; much internal remodelling has taken place, and the unsightly regis-
try office, located on the Market Street corner, is now about to be torn
down because of the completion of a handsome new office on the George
Street side of the square. The massive gaol walls of later years have
also been much modified. Residences for the gaoler and assistant gaol-
er are included on the property. The Court room is splendidly equipped
with regard to space, seating, lighting and all other accessories. Upon
the walls are handsome oil paintings of three men who used to be in-
timately associated with court proceedure. That of Hon. E. B. Wood is
by Mrs. Stanley, wife of Dr. Stanley ; that of Hon. A. S. Hardy by Wyley
Grier and the third of Judge Jones, by the late Mr. Whale. Opening off
from the Court Room is the well equipped library of the Brant Law
Association. On this floor is a Judge’s room, the County Council Cham-
ber and the offices of the County Crown Attorney and the Clerk of
Brantford Township. On the lower flat are the chambers of the County
Judge and the offices of the Sheriff, Local Registrar of Surrogate Court


and Supreme Court; County Clerk and Treasurer, County School Inspec-
tor, County Engineer, and Gaol governor. The hall floors consist of tes-
selated pavement and the stairways and panelling are of oak. Citizens
used to crowd the County Chamber in olden days when such legal giants
as E. B. Wood, A. S. Hardy, Matthew Crooks Cameron, B. B. Osier, Ed-
ward Blake and Dalton McCarthy did battle there. Keen argument and
cross examination were punctuated with many brilliant interchanges and
the jury addresses were of a memorable description. Two of many
amusing incidents may be worthy of repetition. In a certain case one of
the above counsel was pressing a witness for an answer which he failed to
secure. Finally he exclaimed in exasperation, “Don’t you understand
plain English, Sir?” “Yes. I do,” came back the reply, “but if you’d
asked if I understood any other language you’d have had me sure.” On
another occasion Mr. Justice Armour was on the bench hearing a suit for
damages in connection with the removal of a house. Mr. McCarthy was
counsel for plaintiff and he brought out the fact that during the moving
process the residence was intact as to internal equipment. “In other words
it was a full house” interjected his Lordship. “Yes, my Lord,” came back
the reply of Mr. McCarthy, “and it was raised on four jacks.”

The only public execution which ever took place in con-

T A T^ T- 1 *

K^ *P” 11C nection with the Gaol was on June 7th, 1859, when two
colored men, John Moore and Robert Over met the ex-
treme penalty. Local papers of the day report that eight thousand people
were massed in the vicinity of the gallows, the latter erected outside the
Court house building. Sheriff Smith officiated, assisted by his son E.
C. Smith. The crime occurred on the night of Thursday, April 14th 1859
when Launcelot Adams, son of J. Q. Adams who kept a tavern in Oakland
Township, was carrying the mail between Paris and Brantford. At a
point on the Paris Road near the Good farm, he was ambushed and shot
to death. The mail bags were then taken to a ravine near the railway and
when the letters were opened there was quite a yield of Canadian and
American bills. Another man named Armstrong was also implicated and
as a reward for turning Queens evidence he was let off with a life sen-
tence. Twenty years later he was pardoned because he assisted the
guards at Kingston penitentiary in quelling an uprising of prisoners.

Burwell’s map of 1830 had the square marked “County

Bought for Court House,” a look into the future which was corn-
Ten Dollars. , ., ,,. , i
mon in those days, but it was not until LobZ that the

deed was formally acquired as follows:



VICTORIA, by the Grace of God, of the United Kingdom of Great
Britain and Ireland, Queen, Defender of the Faith.

To All To Whom These Presents Shall Come


WHEREAS the lands hereinafter described are part and parcel of those
set apart for the use of the Six Nations Indians; and whereas We have
thought fit to authorize the Sale and Disposal of the Lands hereinafter
mentioned in order that the proceeds may be applied, to the benefit, sup-
port and advantage of the said Indians, in such manner as We shall be
pleased to direct from time to time; ‘and Whereas The Council of the
County of Brant hath contracted and agreed to and with Our Superinten-
dent of Indian Affairs, duly authorized by Us in this behalf, for the
absolute purchase at and for the price and sum of Two Pounds of lawful
money of Our Said Province of the Lands and Tenements hereinafter
mentioned and described, of which We are seized in right of Our Crown.

NOW KNOW YE, that in consideration of the said sum of Two
Pounds by the said Council of the County of Brant to Our said Superin-
tendent of Indian Affairs, in hand well and truly paid to Our use, at or
before the sealing of these Our Letters Patent, We have granted, sold
aliened, conveyed and assured, and by these Presents, do grant, sell, alien,
convey and assure, unto the said Council of -the County of Brant and their
Successors in office and assigns for ever, all that Parcel or Tract of Land,
situate, lying and being in the Town of Brantford, in the County of Brant,
of Our said Province, containing by admeasurement one acre and six
tenths of an acre be the same more or less; which said Parcel or Tract
of Land may be otherwise known as follows, that is to say; being compos-
ed of the Block of Land bounded by Wellington, George, Nelson and
Market Streets in the aforesaid Town of Brantford.

To have and to hold the said Parcel or Tract of Land hereby granted,
conveyed and assured unto the said Council of the County of Brant their
Successors in office and assigns for ever; saving, excepting and reserving
nevertheless, unto us Our Heirs and Successors, all Mines of Gold and
Silver, and the free uses, passage and enjoyment of, in, over and upon
all navigable waters that shall or may be hereafter found on or under,
or be flowing through or upon any part of the said Parcel or Tract of
Land hereby granted as aforesaid.

GIVEN under the Great Seal of Our Province of Canada;

WITNESS, Our Right Trusty and Right Well-beloved Cousin James
Earl of Elgin and Kincardine, Knight of the Most Ancient and Most
Noble Order of the Thistle, Governor General of British North America,
and Captain Generlal and Governor in Chief, in and over Our Provinces
of Canada, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and the Island of Prince Edward,
and Vice-Admiral of the same, &c. &c. &c.


AT QUEBEC, this Twelfth day of July in the year of Our Lord one

thousand eight hundred and fifty-two and in the sixteenth year of Our

By Command of His Excellency in Council.


Secy. . Comr. of Crown Lands.

Recorded, 9th August 1852.

Tho. Amiot

Dept. Regr.



J. Smith 18531885

W. J. Scarfe 18851890

W. Watt 18901909

W. H. Ross 19091914

J. W. Westbrook 1914


John Cameron 1853 1874

H. McK. Wilson 18741889

Wilson & Watts 18891901

A. E. Watts 1901

County Clerks

John Cameron 1853 1874

H. McK. Wilson 18741901

A. E. Watts 1901


Hamilton Biggar 18531866

Charles R. Biggar 18661875

W. S. Campbell 18751896

Albert Foster 18971914

A. E. Watts 1914

County Registrars

T. S. Shenstone 18531895

W. B. Wood 18951905

A. Graham 1905

County Attornies

G. R. Van Norman 18591904

A. J. Wilkes 1904

1, Sheriff Scarfe; 2, Sheriff Watt; 3, Sheriff Smith; 4, Sheriff Ross

5, Registrar Shenstone, the first Registrar of the County.
(The photo of Sheriff Westbrook appears in Parliamentary group. I

Clerks, Brantford Township

Gabriel Balfour 18471849

John Cameron 18501854

H. A. Hardy 1854^-1857

John Cameron 18571874

R. M. Willson 1874^1904

J. A. Smith 1904

The County adopted the Highway Improvement Act in 1916, with A.
Me Vicar a^*the first Road Superintendent. In 1919, Major Jackson upon
return from service at the front, was made County Engineer.

For some years the offices have been combined of Registrar of the
Surrogate Court of the County of Brant; Local Registrar of the Supreme
Court of Ontario and County Court Clerk, and these positions have been
held by W. H. Burns, John Cameron and J. H. Goodson. Upon the death
of the last named, Mr. W. B. Rubidge Held the offices jointly until 1898
when Mr. John T. Hewitt was appointed. Upon his death in 1917 he was
succeeded by Mr. W. A. Hollinrake.

Mr. John Smith of Paris, who became the first Sheriff of
, ._ the newly separated County of Brant, was appointed

under Lord Elgin’s administration on the 21st of Janu-
ary 1853. His grandfather was an Empire Loyalist and was taken pris-
oner during the revolutionary war, but subsequently released. His
parents were Joseph and Charlotte Smith and he was born at the “Grand
River Tract,” on the present site of the City of Brantford. Mr. Smith
worksd on the farm until he was about seventeen years of age and then
entered mercantile life at Grimsby and Hamilton. In 1837 he opened
a store on his own account in Paris, but at the end of four years
again returned to Hamilton. Back to Paris once more, he started a
mill there and was so engaged when offered the position which he filled
with much acceptance for thirty two years. In 1838 he was secretary of
the first meeting held at Hamilton after Lord Durham had made his re-
port on the status of the Provinces of Upper and Lower Canada, recom-
mending their union, which took place in 1841, the Hamilton meeting ap-
proving of the recommendation of the report. Mr. Smith, who passed
away in his 78th year was active until the day of his death, August 10th.
1885. On that date he was breakfasting at the Kerby House, where he
resided, when seized with apoplexy. He was an ardent member of Grace
Church and a man of fine type. His son, C. E. Smith, Governor of the
Gaol, predeceased him by only a few weeks.

Sheriff Smith was succeeded in office by Mr. W. J. Scarfe. He was
born in Burrowes, County Kilkenny, Ireland, in 1844, and when sixteen


years of age left for Canada. After locating in London and Hamilton
he finally came to Brantford in 1867, and became identified with many
interests. He was a man of indomitable energy and the founder of the
Scarfe & Co., industry. Among other activities he performed valuable
work in transforming many old rookeries -into comfortable dwellings
and swept away numerous eyesores. Scarfe Avenue is one of the
examples of what he achieved in this regard. He was an Alderman for
many years and Mayor during 1884 and 1885; also President of the
South Brant Agricultural Society and a director of the B. W. & L. E.
and Southern Pacific Railways. He died on April 11, 1891, having dur-
ing his forty seven years of life accomplished far more than falls to the
lot of most men. The children still residing here are Mrs. W. H.
Webling, Mr. R. Scarfe, Miss Sadie Scarfe; Mrs. W. E. Phin of Hamilton
is also another daughter.

Mr. W. Watt Jr., became the next Sheriff. The son of W. Watt Sr.,
a pioneer citizen, he was born in Brantford in 1845 and concluded his
educational course at the University of Toronto, where he graduated in
1866 with the degree of B. A., and as silver medalist in modern lan-
guages. In 1873 he also secured the degree of L. L. B. but as related
in the story of the Brantford press elsewhere in this issue, his bent was
towards journalism and he finally became editor and part owner of the
Expositor. This association he retained for sixteen years and when the
paper was sold to Mr. T. H. Preston in 1890, he was tendered a public
banquet and complimentary address. He then resumed legal practise
in partnership with the late J. T. Hewitt, but a short time after was ap-
pointed Sheriff. He was twice married and one of his sons, Balmer
Watt, is engaged in journalistic work at Edmonton. Mrs. Watt is still
a resident of the city.

Upon the death of Mr. Watt, June 8th 1909, Mr. F. D. Reville was
gazetted Sheriff, but for business reasons was unable to accept and Mr.
William H. Ross secured the appointment. Born in Nelson, County of
Trafalgar, he first of all farmed extensively, but finally entered the in-
surance business and in that capacity came here from Hamilton. He was
a prominent member of Brant Avenue Methodist church and Superinten-
dent of the Sunday School. Mr. Ross died August 7th 1914, and was
succeeded by Mr. J. W. Westbrook the present occupant of the post.

Mr. Thomas S. Shenstone, the first County Registrar, was
-..,.. born in London, England, June 25th, 1822, and was re-

motely related to the poet Shenstone. ‘ When he was nine
years of age the family migrated to Upper Canada, settling in the County
of Wentworth. At the end of a year they located ten miles north of the


Town of Guelph, taking two and a half days to make the journey with two
yoke of oxen. Mr. Shenstone in 1841 commenced in business for himself
in Chatham but later removed to Woodstock, where he lost his all by
fire. During 1846, 1847 and 1848 he was a member of the Council of
the District of Brock, as the representative of the Township of East
Oxford, and for several years he was School Trustee for the Town of
Woodstock. In 1849, when only 27 years of age, he was appointed
magistrate and later became secretary-treasurer of the Woodstock and
Norwich Road Company, County Clerk of Oxford and Secretary of the
Board of Education. When the County of Brant was formed in 1853 he,
as before related, became Registrar occupying the post in a most cap-
able manner for a period of forty-two years. He was very active in a
philanthropic way and was senior deacon of the First Baptist Church and
Superintendent of the Sunday School for twenty-five years. He was lit-
erally a self educated man and was always busy with his pen. The sur-
viving children include Mr. J. N. Shenstone of the Massey Harris Com-
pany, Reuben, formerly part proprietor of the Expositor but for many
years resident of Toronto, and Mrs. Donnelley, of Chicago.

Mr. Shenstone died March 15, 1895 and was succeeded by Mr. W. B.
Wood who resigned in 1905 when Mr. Alex. Graham, a Brant County
resident who was in his last year as a law student, received the position.

The longest continual occupant of the position of Township Clerk
was Mr. R. M. Willson, a son of one of the pioneers. As a young man he
entered the law office of Matthew Crooks Cameron in Toronto and then
became associated with Mr. John Cameron, Brantford. Upon the death
of the latter he secured the post which he occupied until his death on
December 3, 1904, when 67 years of age. As a young man Mr. Willson
was active in military affairs and he saw service at the time of the
Fenian Raid.

Exclusive of Tuscarora Township, over which the County

C UOUniy Council has no jurisdiction, the County area with assess-
Area. J

ed value is as tollows:

Acres Assessment

Township of Brantford 71,369 $3,711,188

Township of Burford 66,702 3,068,292

Township of South Dumfries 46,625 2,424,500

Township of Onondaga 20,465 1,023,250

Township of Oakland 10,663 511,824

Paris (assessed for County purposes) 1,786,068

215,824 $12,525,122


Mr. R. Schuyler, District representative for Brant of the
Soil and Ontario Department of Agriculture, has kindly furnished

Apiculture the followm g : –

“The soil differs considerably depending on locality.

Commencing with the Western part of the County a section of clay
spreads down from Oxford for a distance from two to four miles, in a
fan shape from a few miles of the southern boundary toward the centre.
East of that is found a rather flat section not easily drained and carrying
in it quite wide stretches of swamp land which dries up fairly well dur-
ing the mid-summer months, but remains wet during the remainder of the
year. Through this section are narrow stretches of splendid soil mostly
of sand loam or clay loam nature.

“The soil in the eastern part of Burford Township from north to
south is generally a heavy sand loam underlaid with gravel at varying
depths, usually of sufficient depth to not injure the value of the land

“Oakland Township, which backs up against Burford to the South,
is with the exception of the south eastern part, of a lighter soil running
from a light sand to clay loam with sand soils prevailing.

“Brantford Township which covers quite a large area varies a great
deal. The portion west of the river from a line south of the Burford
road is more or less sandy and underlaid with gravel at varying depths;
some places rather too close to the surface to permit the soil to hold the
moisture. Some of this district is what might be called “plain lands.”

“The eastern portion of this section, however, from Mr. Pleasant east
including the village of Burtch and the east part of Brantford, is quite
rolling and running to a heavy clay, and is considered a good farming
district, the section nearer the Burford and Brantford Road being used
more for trucking and raising of fruit, potatoes etc. North of the Bur-
ford road, with the exception of small areas, the land is slightly heavier
and gradually runs to a heavy clay loam as you near the Governor’s road
which is the northern border of the Township. The Eastern part of
Brantford Township, other than the section immedilately surrounding
Brantford, is more or less rolling and changes quickly every few miles
from a clay loam to heavy clay,, usually heavier as you go east. All
around Brantford the land is suited to truck farming being of ia sandy loam

“Onondaga Township, with the exception of the land adjacent to the
Grand River and for a couple of miles back, is of a heavy clay soil and
quite rolling. This Township so far as the soil is concerned is possibly
the most uniform and is considered one of the best agricultural districts.


“South Dumfries too is a splendid farming section, the district east
of the Grand River being more rolling and in sections heavier than west
of the river. This district is noted for its flocks of sheep and herds of
Shorthorn cattle, a number of prominent breeders of both being found
in this section. Eastern South Dumfries is almost entirely dairy with
Holsteins predominating. There is a condensary and butter factory in
the village of St. George, the only village of any size in that vicinity.

“Onondaga is a beef raising district, a number of fine herds being
found there.

“Brantford and Oakland and Burford Townships especially are good
dairying sections.

“The Powdered Milk Factory in Burford takes the bulk of the milk
produced in the surrounding country. The city of Brantford also con-
sumes considerable of the milk produced in the adjacent districts.

“The central parts of western Brantford Township and Burford Town-
ship have a great many fine apple orchards, the bulk of the yield handled
through the Brant Fruit Grower’s Association. With the exception of
peaches, sufficient small fruits are raised on the farms for home con-
sumption. There are not many commercial orchards of these.

“Brantford district also raises a large quantity of canning factory
produce which is manufactured in the Burford Canning Factory.

“Paris, Burford and St. George are centres of the turnip shipping in-
dustry, while Scotland has been the centre of the onion growing district
which until a few years ago was first in the Province of Ontario. Of
late years however, owing to labor scarcity, this business has fallen away
a great deal. It might be said that practically all the farmers of the
county are following mixed farming with many making a specialty of
some particular line.”

(By T. W. Standing, B. ‘A.)

The development of education in Brant has followed the same general
lines as in other parts of the Province. In the pioneer days each settle-
ment organized its own school, the expense of which was met by the fam-
ilies who used it. Then came the act of 1843 under which every Town-
ship was divided into sections and a general rate throughout the section
was levied for the support of the school. In 1871 the present system of
inspection of public schools was introduced, M. J. Kelly, M. D., L. L. B.,
being appointed in that year by the County Council as Inspector of the
Public Schools of the County, including the town of Brantford. When


Brantford became a city, he remained in charge of the city schools as
well as those of the County. In 1902 on account of advancing years he
retired from the work in the county, but retained for a time his position
in the city of Brantford. The present County Inspector was appointed
in October 1902 and since that time the County and the City of Brantford
have been separate inspectorates.

From the year 1853, the first year of the existence of Brant as a
separate county, until the year 1907, there existed a County Board of
Examiners whose main business was to license and examine teachers for
the county. Its functions were gradually absorbed by the Provincial
Department of Education and finally the local boards were abolished in
the year above mentioned.

The first meeting of the Board was called on May 31st 1853, by the
Rev. David Caw, one of the local superintendents, under authority of a
letter from E. Ryerson, Chief Superintendent of Schools for Upper Can-
ada. The members present were Revs. Chas. Ruttan and David Caw,
James Keith, M. D.; Robt. McCosh, M. D.; and Herbert Biggar, Esq.

The first general meeting of the Board for the purpose of examining
candidates for teachers’ certificates was held on the 23rd of June. Messrs
Caw and Ruttan were appointed to prepare and have printed one hundred
copies of examination questions for teachers of the first, second and third
class. Some thirty candidates were examined and received certificates
as follows:

First class, Geo. W. Evans, Brantford; Wm. Dunn, Onondaga; James
Baun, Burford; John McLean; Edward Geo. Chaunt, Brantford; David
Caw, Brantford; John Borthwick, Brantford.

Second Class: Geo. White, S. Dumfries; Lewis M. Howell, Blenheim;
Jlames Bee, S. Dumfries; Patrick O’Donohue, Burford; Oliver 0. Kenny,
Blandford; James Philips, S. Dumfries; Peter Robertson, Brantford;
Isaac Connor, Onondaga; Robt. Hunter, S. Dumfries; Ewer Riley, Bur-
ford; John Gouinlock, Brantford; Thos. B. McLean, Brantford; Esther
D. Crandon, Brantford; John Sharp, S. Dumfries.

Third Class: Robt. C. Moffatt, Brantford; James McFarlane, S.
Dumfries; David Baptie, S. Dumfries; Miss Moriah J. Adams, Burford;
Pheobe Ann Salisbury, Burford; Amanda Adams, Burford; Sarah Ann
Allen, Burford; Jessie Clark, Brantford; Mary Ann Runciman, Brantford.

It would seem from the record that the nervous strain on candidates at
examinations in those days was quite as severe as it is now. The results
were recorded in this case in a tabulated statement showing the candidates
marks in the various subjects. Opposite two names the marks were enter-
ed for several subjects, and then blanks appeared with this significant


comment, “Gave over and retired.” Three other candidates also secured
marks in only a few of the subjects but were let down tenderly with the
following note: “These three last, as they were not finished, to have cer-
tificates for six months.”

According to the School Act of 1850 the Board was to consist of the
local town or township superintendents and the High or Grammar School
Trustees. It is not easy to determine exactly the membership of the
Board at any one time but the following seem to have been among
the earliest members during 1853 and 1854, Revs. David Caw, Paris;
Alex. A. Drummond, Brantford; Wm. Hay, Scotland, Chas. Ruttan, A.
Cleghorn and Elijah Clark; and Messrs. Robert Alger, Wellesley John-
ston, Herbert Biggar, Frederick T. Wilkes, James Keith, M. D. and Robt.
McCosh, M.D. At a later period, Revs. John Wood, John Dunbar, John
Gemley and Thos. Henderson took their place on the Board. In 1878 it
consisted of Revs. John Dunbar and Thos Henderson, and Dr. M. J.
Kelly, Wm. Wilkinson, M. A., and James Mills, M. A. Wm. Rothwell took
Mr. Henderson’s place in 1880, and Angus Mclntosh that of Mr. Dunbar
about the same time.

In the later years of the existence of the County Board its duties were
limited to examining the students of the County Model School, of which
Wm. Wilkinson, M. A. was the efficient principal. It was here that
many teachers of both city and county received their early training in
the art of teaching.

Since 1871 there have been three notable changes affecting the schools.
A somewhat radical change was made in the Public School course of
study in 1904. This was followed in 1908 by the discontinuance of
most of the County Model Schools, and the opening of four additional
Normal Schools with the object of eliminating the Third Class teacher.
Then, thirdly there was the evolution of the modern continuation school.
These have had their effect in the schools of the County. In 1902 there
were 20 third class teachers in rural schools, and 50 holding a higher
certificate. In 1919 there were 88 holding a first or second class and
only two with a lower certificate. Two excellent Continuation Schools,
one in St. George, the other in Scotland, supplement the work of the
Brantford Collegiate Institute and the Paris High School in providing
secondary education for the County.

The enrolled attendance of pupils has increased since 1902 in Paris
from 500 to 700 and in the rest of the County from 3,089 to 3,631. In
the same time the number of teachers has increased from 10 to 14 in
Paris and from 70 to 90 in the rest of the County including the suburban
district of Bellview recently annexed to the city of Brantford.


While the number of rural schools in the County has remained about
the same for many years there has been a decided improvement both in
the school buildings and in the desks, blackboards and other accommoda-
tions. Every school too, is well equipped with a library, maps and
other articles designed to assist in practical teaching. Excellent modern
school buildings have been erected within the last ten or twelve years
in Nos. 3, 6, 13, 14, 16, 18 and 23 Brantford, in No. 23, Burford and in
Nos. 3 and 13 South Dumfries, while in other sections the buildings have
been altered and brought up to date. In Cainsville the school has out-
grown the present two-room building and plans are already under way
for a fine new four room structure.

Another feature of school work indicating a change of attitude ought
to be mentioned before closing this sketch of the Schools of the County.
Reference is made to the teaching of Agriculture and household science
in a number of schools, and to the fact that the pupils of nearly all the
schools undertake some practical agricultural project in connection with
the school fairs which have been so faithfully and ably organized by the
District Representative of the Department of Agriculture, Mr. R. Schuyler
B. S. A. These projects link up the rural school with the home in a way
that was hardly possible under the older course of study, and it is highly
probable that a newly awakened interest in the rural school problem may
lead to much consolidation of these small one-teacher schools into larger
better graded and better equipped community institutions in the near

To the above sketch by Mr. Standing it may be added that in 1852
there were only two rural schools in the county constructed of brick; the
rest were frame and log structures. In that year salaries paid the
teachers totaled $11,402; in 1882, $23,851 and in 1919, $64,239, ex-
clusive of Paris. The following comparison with regard to rural schools
between the years 1909 and 1919 will prove of interest.


Teachers salaries $32,228.50

Buildings and Permanent Improvements 17,232.26

Equipment 646.57

Repairs, fuel, caretaking, etc 9,496.98

1919 $59,604.31

Teachers Salaries $ 64,239

Buildings and Permanent Improvements 6,579

Equipment 1,079

Repairs, fuel, caretaking, etc 31,476



Ten years ago the average salary of male teachers was $520 and
female teachers, $445. In 1919 the average of male teachers was $1,020
and female $755.

Mr. T. W. Standing, who became County School Inspector in 1902,
was born in Burford Township and was Principal of the Carleton Place
High School at the time of his selection.

In the third chapter reference is made to the fact that
T 77: nearly a century ago the New England Company became

interested in the Christian welfare of the Six Nations, and
said interest extended to temporal as well as spiritual matters. One of
the first two schools which they established was located close to Mohawk
Church. When destroyed by fire in the early days it was rebuilt and
its operations enlarged. Manual training was always an inherent prin-
ciple but at first no boarders were taken, as the Indians lived in and
around Mohawk Village. In 1844, owing to the dispersal of the red
men to the present reserve, between forty and fifty pupils were given
board as well as instruction, and the present number is fifty boys and
seventy girls. The original farm lands surrounding the building com-
prised some 450 acres, including Glebe land since relinquished.

In addition a good deal of the property has been disposed of to
manufacturing plants, although a considerable area has still been
retained for agricultural and gardening purposes. Greenhouses are also
maintained. Children are taken up to nine years of age and are kept,
clothed and instructed until sixteen years of age. The original regula-
tions, still in force, provided that pagans should have first chance, next
orphans and destitute children; after that, if the accommodation proved
sufficiently elastic, children on the reserve living too far from public
schools to establish regular attendance. The education accorded consti-
tutes the development of mind and hands alike. The boys are instructed
in carpentering, farming, gardening and the care of stock; the girls,
domestic work, laundering, sewing and so forth while those of the latter,
who manifest any ability in that direction, receive piano and organ
instruction. Drill is part of the curriculum in the case of both sexes.
The Public School course prevails and Mohawk Institute pupils usually
rank well in the Collegiate entrance examinations. Some former pupils
have entered the medical, engineering and teaching professions with
credit and also the ministerial arena.

In a sketch of the New England Company issued in 1884, it is
stated that Capt. Joseph Brant for many years acted with the Company’s
Missionaries as a sort of lay agent, reporting to the Company and draw-
ing for remittances. It was in 1822 that Capt. John Brant secured the


first grant for general school purposes and at the time of his death, in
1832, the New England Society was supporting seven such institutions on
the Reserve. That number was later increased to eleven but some twenty
years ago the Six Nations Indians took the entire burden upon them-

Rev. R. Lugger had supervisory charge of the Mohawk Institute from
1827 to 1837 and Rev. Archdeacon Nelles from 1837 to 1872. In the
last named year Mr. R. Ashton, who later took holy orders and became
Rev. R. Ashton, arrived from England, to accept the post of Superinten-
dent. Mr. Ashton as a very young man had attained a high place in
school management and for over forty years he most efficiently and
assiduously presided over the local institution. In fact it became
generally recognized as the model establishment of its kind on this con-
tinent and his advice and counsel were frequently sought by the Canadian
Government, and also United States authorities, with regard to Indian

Prospective Superintendents of such schools were also sent to the
Mohawk Institute for resident instruction. Upon his retirement Mr.
Ashton was succeded by his son, Capt Nelles Ashton and the latter taking
up a military career, Rev. Mr. Turnell assumed the position, but later
resigned. Mrs. Boyce, daughter of Rev. Mr. Ashton, is now in charge.
The pupils attend Sunday morning service at the old Mohawk Church
and they also have religious exercises within the building.

This institution, situated about a mile from Brantford on

y CK the Mount Pleasant Road near Farringdon church, was

founded by Mrs. Jane Laycock in 1851, and bears the
title “The Jane Laycock Childrens’ Home.” It was established for the
care of needy and neglected children, and also to provide them with a
good common school education. Prominence is given to religious instruc-
tion the will of Mrs. Laycock giving special emphasis to this in the
stipulation “that a portion of every day be given to reading the Holy
Scriptures and that the conduct of the children be governed thereby.” The
Home accommodates thirty children and is presided over by a Matron, with
a teacher to look after the scholastic needs. Mrs. Laycock died in the
year 1890 leaving a large part of her estate for the benefit of the school.
This was added to by her brother, Mr. Ignatius Cockshutt, and in 1904 the
Trust funds of the school and those of the Orphans Home on Sheridan
Street, Brantford, were united and placed under control of a board of
five trustees. During its lengthy existence the Laycock Home has fully
achieved its splendid object of fitting children for God fearing and
efficient citizenship.


This institution was established in the year 1888 and
JlOuS< j iag gmce rendered excellent service. Forty five acres of

land were given by Ignatius Cockshutt, and $5,000 in
cash by Humphrey Davis, who used to run a hop yard in the West
Brantford section. When the structure was completed it was found that
a debt existed of $10,000 and Mr. Cockshutt with characteristic generosity
gave his cheque for the amount. There is total accommodation for sev-
enty-five inmates of both sexes and the management is in the hands of
a Board comprising County and City representatives. The Superinten-
dents have been, J. Thompson, W. Devlin, W. Muir, H. Storey, J. T.

This institution is situated on ”Strawberry Hill,” on
The Brant tne Western outskirts of the city, and the land was

donated by Mr. . L. Cockshutt. The main building was
erected at a cost of $28,000, and the original accommodation was for
twenty patients. The opening ceremonies took place on August 2nd,
1913, the leading participants consisting of Mr. C. Cook, Vice-President,
(in the absence of President E. L. Cockshutt,) Mayor Hartman, Rev. R.
D. Hamilton, Warden Kendrick, A. G. Olive, F. Cockshutt, Very Rev.
Dean Brady, and Dr. E. C. Ashton. The Sanitarium was primarily
erected to look after incipient cases, and the cost of maintenance is
taken care of by the County and City in a most generous way. Several
buildings have been added to the original equipment, the capacity now
being thirty-five beds. The building of a residence for the nurses is
also about to proceed.

The original trustees were: E. L. Cockshutt, President; Christopher
Cook, Vice-President; A. G. Olive, Hon. Secretary; A. E. Watts, E. L.
Goold, J. T. Hewitt, Dr. Ashton, Dr. Frank, J. C. Coles, Warden Kendrick
and Mayor Hartman.

Present Trustees: C. Cook, President; E. L. Cockshutt, Vice-Presi-
dent; A. E. Watts, J. Inksater, H. T. Watt, A. G. Olive, W. J. Sweatman,
Dr. Dunton, Dr. W. H. Nichol, Aid. J. Hill, Warden Rosebrugh, Mayor
MacBride, Miss Edna Smith, Sec.-Treas.




In the war of 1812-14 the district now known as Brant County was
sparsely settled but the inhabitants, few as they were, did their share on
behalf of British interests. On May 14th, 1814 a force variously estim-
ated ! at from 300 to 800 men, under command of Capt. Campbell, landed
from six war vessels at Port Dover and applied the torch to every
building there and in the neighborhood. Twenty dwelling houses, three
flour mills, three saw mills, three distilleries, twelve barns and a number
of other buildings were destroyed. In fact but one house was left stand-
ing between Pattersons Creek and Turkey Point that occupied by the
widow and family of Samuel Ryerse at Port Ryerse. When word was
received of the depredations militia were concentrated at Brantford, under
Col. Talbot, and marched to the scene of the trouble, but arrived the
day after the enemy had set sail for their own shores. The destruction
subsequently of the Capitol at Washington by the British was in retalia-
tion for the conduct of the enemy at Port Dover as well as at Newark
and York previously, although the British spared private property.

On October 22nd, 1814 a force of over one thousand
v fj>- n ^ mounted men set out from Detroit on a raiding expedi-
tion through Upper Canada. They were under command
of Col McArthur and in three days had reached Oxford having en route
plundered peaceable inhabitants of stock and belongings. In cases of
resistance houses and barns were ruthlessly given to the flames. Mc-
Arthur had decided to continue the raid as far as Burlington and the
latter part of his route was to be through the Village of Burford and
thence to what was then the Grand River Ferry. Jacob Wood and George
Nichol, two residents of Oxford who had heard of the plans, started at
three a. m. on November 5th and three hours later reached Burford
where the Oxford militia had assembled under Col. Bostwick. The latter
after consultation with his officers, decided that it would be better with
his small force of one hundred and fifty men to march to Malcolm’s
Mills, ten miles distant, to form a junction with the Norfolk militia under


Col Ryerson. Meanwhile a traitor named Bazely had told McArthur of
what Wood and Nichol had done, and also related the names of many
who were serving with the Oxford militia whereupon detachments were
sent to destroy their homes and belongings. McArthur finding all clear
at Burford proceeded to the Grand River but found the waters swollen,
while Major A. C. Muir, of the 41st regiment, had destroyed the scow
which did duty as a ferry and with fifty militiamen and fifty Indians
was prepared to dispute a passage. In addition, the U. S. General
learned that matters were not going well in other directions, so he aban-
doned his purpose of continuing to Burlington and moved towards Mal-
colms Mills. Here the Canadians had made entrenchments on a slight
elevation on the west side of the creek and had also thrown up some
breastworks. McArthur’s account of this affair follows:

“We found the enemy, consisting of four or five hundred militia, with
a few Indians, fortified on a commanding ground beyond a creek deep
and difficult of passage, except at a bridge immediately in front of their
works, which had^been destroyed. Arrangements were made for a joint
attack on their front and rear. The Ohio troops, with the advance guard
and Indians were accordingly thrown across the creek under cover of a
thick wood, to approach the enemy in the rear, while the Kentucky
troops were to attack in front, as soon as the attention of the enemy was
engaged by the attack in the rear. The enemy would have been com-
pletely surprised and captured had not an unfortunate yell by our Indians
announced the approach of the detachment destined to attack their rear.
They were, however, defeated and dispersed with the loss, in the skirmishes
on that day of one captain, and seventeen privates killed, nine privates
wounded, and three capains, five subalterns and one hundred and three
privates made prisoners, whilst our loss was only one killed and six
wounded. Early on the 7th instant the enemy were pursued on the road
to Dover, many made prisoners and five valuable mills destroyed.”

There is every reason to believe that this was an exaggerated account,
but the fact is certain that, although outnumbered four to one, the Can-
adians put up a good fight and instead of surrendering to a superior
force conducted a successful retreat. In large part the invaders were
lawless free hooters, most of them described as dressed in hunting outfits
and equipped with scalping knives, tomahawks and long rifles. They
exchanged their mounts for good Canadian horses and plundered right
and left besides inflicting much damage.

Brant Subjoined are the names of the 1st Company of the 1st

County Regiment of Oxford Militia, (which included Burford

Members. and Oakland in its district) as on July 1st, 1812.

Captain Marvel White
Lieutenant Joseph Baker


Lieutenant John Williams

Sergeant Peter Martin

Sergeant Adam Yeigh

Private Abram Rounds Private Henry Pelton Jr.

Private George Rouse Private Josiah Rouse

Private Samuel Winkin Private Nathaniel Landon

Private Herman Barns Private Gordon Chappie

Private Sam. Chappie Private John Graham

Private George Lane Private Elijah Mudge

Private Joseph Davis Private Jonathan Kipp

Private Isaac Kipp Private Samuel Doyle

Private Ethan Burch Private Abraham DeCou

Private Alanson Rease Private Robert Greason

Private John David Private Jacob Stephen

Private John Woodley Private Josiah Brown

Private John Green Private Isaac Uptergrove

Private John Vollock Private Peter Shorfrith

Private John Emmons Private Henry Willsey

A number of the Six Nations Indians also enlisted in the

-. . war of 1812 and among them Chief John Smoke Johnson

Pensioners. . , ,

who was then twenty years ot age, and who alter he was

ninety years old could still recall many interesting reminiscences. Sub-
joined is a list of the Brant County Militia pensioners of this war as far
as could be obtained, the figures standing for monthly payments.

Peter Buck Brantford $20.00

Ephraim Lowrey Brantford 20.00

Charles Strange Perley Burford 20.00

Robert Carson Cainsville 20.00

Malachi Files .Cainsville 20.00

Henry Lester Harley 20.00

Charles Vanevery Harrisburg 20.00

John Oles Langford 20.00

Ben Strowbridge Langford 20.00

Robert McAllister Mohawk 20.00

Asa Secord Mohawk 20.00

John M. Sturgis Mohawk 20.00

Stephen Landon Mount Vernon 20.00

John Beacham Oakland 20.00

John Chambers Oakland 20.00

John Pebrie Oakland 20.00

James Cassada .. ….Paris . …. 20.00


Ebenezer Wilson Paris 20.00

Dan A. Freeland Scotland 20.00

Charles Petit Scotland 20.00

Philip Beemer Scotland 20.00

Joshua Bonham St. George 20.00

Joseph Fraser .Tuscarora 20.00

James Givens Tuscarora 20.00

Henry Silversmith Tuscarora 20.00

John Tutlee ….Tuscarora 20.00

Jacob Winey Tuscarora 20.00

John S. Johnson Tuscarora 20.00

Wm. Johnson Tuscarora 20.00

It is not within the scope of a County History to enter
. into lengthy details with regard to the causes of this up-

f 137 n ” sm g suffice it to say that there had been much feeling

aroused over the exercise of power, patronage and expen-
diture of public resources by the Lieut. Governor and his advisers, known
as the “Family Compact,” without regard to the views of the members
of the duly elected Assembly. Willifam Lyon Mackenzie was the leading
spirit in the demand for reform. A native of Scotland, where he was born
in 1795, he came to Canada in 1820 and first of all embarked with suc-
cess in mercantile pursuits. Public affairs however had more attractions
for him than trade, and in 1824 he entered on a journalistic career by
launching the “Colonial Advocate,” on the turbulent political sea by
which he was tossed for the rest of his life. He was very outspoken in
the paper and entering upon a parliamentary career also continued to
launch out right and left as a legislator. He was expelled from the
House on more than one occasion, but was always re-elected and the
“Advocate” office was also once destroyed by a mob. He was constantly
bringing forth lists of grievances some fanciful and others very real and
in 1837 he resorted to the extreme step of rebellion. The launching of
matters in Toronto was poorly conceived and badly carried out, with
Lyon Mackenzie speedily ‘a fugitive from justice, but he had many sym-
pathizers in the extreme move including a number of Brantford and Brant
County residents.

The recognized leader in this district was Dr. Charles
* , Duncombe. An American by birth but of English ances-

try, he settled in Burford Township about 1828 and pur-
chased the land upon which the village of Bishopgate was afterwards
located, together with much other property. He was one of the earliest
medical men of the County and possessing much skill, and a most affable


manner his practice and influence rapidly extended. He is described as
having been a handsome man, somewhat small in stature, but of pleasing
and dignified appearance, with a singularly winning manner as. a speaker
whether in private conversation or in public discussion. He was elected
member for Oxford in 1830 and again in 1834 and there was much in
what Mackenzie demanded which enlisted his sympathy. The under-
standing was that there should be an uprising of sympathizers in the
Townships of Burford and Oakland and other points to coincide with the
move in Toronto, and, although it is said with some reluctance, Dr. Dun-
combe finally consented to become the local leader.

Meetings were held at various houses, arms were collect-
P 11 tw1 e< ^ anc ^ a S atnerm S f some three hundred men actually

assembled at Oakland Plains under the Doctor, who
possessed no military experience whatever. Rumor had it that Toronto
had been taken by Mackenzie and the Duncombe plan is said to have
been to encompass the capture of the Town of Brantford. Perhaps in this
respect he was counting on the fact that quite a number of sympath-
izers were located here. However word came not only that Mackenzie
was in flight, but also that Colonel (afterwards Sir Allen McNab) was
at Brantford with a force of nearly 400 men, whose ranks had been still
further supplemented here by 150 volunteer towns people, and 100
Indians under Capt. Kerr. The double information led to a speedy
scatteration, Dr. Duncombe and his associate leaders heading for across
the line and the other participants keeping as quiet as possible, although
many were later arrested and afforded a taste of Hamilton and other
gaols. Col. McNab land his force marched south through Burford to
Scotland which village they occupied.

Messengers were sent to Simcoe, Woodstock, London and
Getting St. Thomas to have the militia called out to join McNab ‘s

, orc force- at Oakland. A considerable party of volunteers

also turned out, horse and foot, although, in certain dis-
tricts there was no response as feeling was on behalf of the uprising.
Judge Ermatinger of St. Thomas in his very interesting work “The
Talbot Regime” an amplification of the book “The Life of Colonel Tal-
bot” written and published by his father in 1859, gives the following
particulars as to the experiences of those who went from that district as
related to him by George Kerr of St. Thomas, one of the few survivors,
and since deceased:

“With such arms as could be collected the force of volunteers pro-
ceeded by the Talbot road to Delhi and thence through eleven miles of
woods without a break, until the open plain in the vicinity of the village
Dr. Charles Buncombe

Photo reproduced from “The History

of Burford,” by permission of

the author, Major R. C. Muir.


of Scotland was reached. The men were all anticipating a hot reception
there from Buncombe and his men, but instead of Buncombe they found
McNab and his force in possession of the village and neighborhood.
They had come on from Oakland, where the junction of the two forces
was to have been made. Buncombe had recognized the hopelessness of
his position and ordered his men to disperse. The main body was re-
ported to have taken the direction of Norwich and the volunteers were
despatched in that direction. Night overtook them in the woods, and
without food for either men or horses, with intensely cold weather, a
most cheerless night was spent. Fires were lit, and efforts made to fight
starvation and frost in the absence of other enemies, yet, in spite of all,
their sufferings were great.

“The morning brought word of the dispersal of Buncombe’s followers
to their homes and the order was given to pursue and, if possible, head
them off in all directions. Buncombe’s and Eliakim Malcolm’s papers
were seized by McNab. Malcolm was a former Justice of the Peace,
residing close to Scotland.

“The men from the west already referred to, took the road homeward,
moving as rapidly as possible, with a view to heading off or overtaking
the rebels who might be expected to retreat in that direction. This they
were successful in doing at Otter Creek, now Richmond. At the bridge
at that point some forty of them were taken without resistance in fact
they seemed glad to be confined in quarters where warmth and food
could be obtained, for they had suffered even more severely than the
loyalist party, since they, while lying in concealment or wandering in
the woods, were unable to kindle fires for fear of disclosing their where-
abouts. Similar captures were made in other directions. Some were
released on surrendering their arms and permitted to return home, others
retained as prisoners. Of those taken at Otter Creek a considerable num-
ber were conveyed to gaol at Simcoe.

Br. Buncombe’s movements, as narrated by his relations,
A 1 milling formed a series of exciting experiences. For three days
he lay concealed in the woods, aware that a reward of
500 was offered for his capture, subsisting as best he could on such
berries, herbs and roots as he could find at this inclement season his
white horse, known as “White Pigeon,” sharing his hardships. He at
night only ventured to mount the steed, which browsed by day in the
woods where he lay. Not until starvation stared him in the face did he
venture near human habitation; but having at length reached the vicinity
of Nilestown, he at last approached the house of Mr. Putman, a political
friend. The latter was not at home, but his wife, who came of a family of


opposite political faith, admitted him. In answer to queries as to who he
was and what he wanted, he placed his revolver on the table before him
saying at the same time: “I am Charles Duncombe and I must have food.”
Though frightened and doubtful at first as to what she ought to do, she
gave him food and finally consented to shelter and conceal him, which
was successfully accomplished by allowing him the use of a bedroom
and a nightcap. With the latter on his head and otherwise covered by
the bed clothes, he represented a grandmother of the household, sup-
posedly confined to bed by illness, so successfully that a party of passing
loyalists who thought they recognized his white horse and came into the
house to search for its owner, were thrown off the scent after a glance
into the bedroom and at the recumbent figure of the supposed “grandma”
in the bed. A brother of his hostess, who was suspected of complicity
in the recent trouble, was also sought for, but concealed in an outhouse,
escaped detection.

Dr. Duncombe next under cover of darkness made for the home of his
sister, Mrs. Shenich, near London. In response to a knock she opened the
door, but failed to recognize him.

“Is it possible you don’t know me, sister?” asked the unfortunate
doctor in amazement.

By way of reply, Mrs. Shenich led him into the house and before a
looking-glass, which showed to his astonished eyes that his hair had be-
come grey, not from age, but from the bitter experiences and anxieties
of the previous few days! He remained in hiding at his sister’s until a
Mr. Tilden, from the west, who had come to visit a married sister at
London, Mrs. Hitchcock, suggested a means of disguise, in which he
offered to convey him across the border in his wagon. The suggestion
and offer being accepted the sister cut off a curl of her hair, with the aid
of which and a bonnet and female attire, the doctor was transformed, to
all appearances, into a lady traveller and was driven without mishap by
Tilden to the neighborhood of Sarnia, where a safe crossing upon the
ice was effected.

Dr. Duncombe, subsequently removed to California where, after a
successful career, he died in 1867 at the age of 75.

In the Dominion archives there is the copy of a hand bill
n*f war( * believed to be the only one now in existence offering
a large reward for the apprehension of Dr. Duncombe.
It is headed by the Royal Coat of Arms, with the word “Proclamation”
beneath. Then follows the preamble, “By Command of His Excellency
the Lieutenant Governor a reward is hereby offered of five hundred
pounds to any one who will apprehend and deliver up to Justice Charles


Duncombe” etc., etc. Had the Doctor been caught he would have un-
doubtedly met with the extreme penalty, just as did Lount and Mathews,
two of the Toronto leaders, who perished on the scaffold in that city. It
is recorded of them that they both met their end with calmness and forti-
tude. A number of the Brant County participants were placed under
arrest on the charge of treason. When placed on trial some were
given gaol terms and still others were acquitted. It is worthy of note
that while the settlers of Burford and Oakland Townships, almost to a
man rallied to the defence of the country in the war of 1812, these self
same Townships were hot beds of the Mackenzie revolt in fact not a
few of the 1812 veterans were among Duncombe’s staunchest supporters.

Meanwhile Lord Durham had been sent to Canada to
urnam s make a searching enquiry into the causes of discontent.

He found five hundred insurgents crowding the Toronto
prisons, with many more in Hamilton and other gaols. Pardon was ex-
tended to the greater number, while the leaders he decided to exile to
Bermuda in order to avoid the excitement likely to be attendant upon
State Trials. Later the British Government declared such banishments
to be unconstitutional and set them aside, thus giving the prisoners their
liberty. Lord Durham, who acted throughout in a most wise and concil-
iatory manner, also composed a report which ranks as a classic in Cana-
dian political literature. It was mainly owing to his suggestions that
the Dominion became started on the road to really responsible govern-




In the early fifties Mr. Robert Morton, for many years a prominent
contractor in Montreal, decided to spend his years of retirement near
his two sons, Mr. Andrew Morton and Mr. J. Y. Morton, who had located
in business in the town of Brantford. On his arrival he purchased sev-
eral beautifully situated acres on Tutela Heights, Brantford Township,
and erected the house which was afterwards to become famous as the
home of the telephone, for this was the property purchased by Professor
Melville Bell shortly after he reached Canadian shores.

It has been the general impression that the invention of
Prof. the telephone by Alexander Graham Bell, was one of

Melville those flashes of genius termed inspiration. As a matter

of fact there was much continuity of research leading up
to the great and final achievement, not alone on the part of Mr. Bell him-
self, but also in an indirect manner by his forbears. The grandfather,
Alexander Bell, a Scotchman, was an eminent elocutionist and a corrector
of defective speech. He began his work in Edinburgh, but later removed
to London, and for about twenty-five years, until his death in 1865, was
acclaimed as head of elocutionists in the Metropolis of the world. His
son Melville Bell, father of Graham Bell, was then recognized as leader
of all speech instruction in Edinburgh, as was his other son, David
Charles Bell, in Dublin Ireland. A few years later, Melville was univer-
sally accredited as “the foremost of all teachers of speech science, and
the use of the voice.” It was he who made the great discovery of “visible
speech.” and no less an authority than Alexander J. Ellis, of the British
Philological Society, who gave his whole life to the investigation of the
problem of speech, said: “Mr. Melville Bell has brought out the most phil-
osophical phonetic alphabet yet invented, and has reduced it to a system
of writing far simpler, and easier than that in common use”.

In 1878 Max Muller, Oxford’s eminent lecturer, wrote: “The most
marvelous achievement in this branch of applied phonetics may be seen
Dr. Alexander Graham Bell, the inventor of the telephone.


in Mr. Bell’s Visible Speech When we want to exhaust

all shades of sound, when we want to photograph the peculiarities of
certain dialects, or measure the deviations of the pronunciation of individ-
uals by the most minute degrees, we must avail ourselves of that exquisite
artistic machinery constructed by Mr. Bell.”

The plan evolved by Melville Bell, enables anyone to

observe speech with the eye, as well as ear; hence the

Speech, AJtS u TU 4-

term visible speech. Ihe discovery was the outcome

of many years of study with regard to speech elements, and naturally
caused profound interest. This is not the place in which to give a tech-
nical description of the method, suffice it to say that by means of Bell’s
symbols the deaf and the speechless are quite readily taught the art of
lip reading, and are able to articulate clearly and thus to carry on a
conversation, without any use of the sign language or the finger alphabet.
The method has had a world wide adoption, including China, and
Japan. In tne last named respect Dr. Curry wrote:”

“Persons without an accurate ear can never learn to speak either
Chinese or Japanese adequately. Certainly they can never preach effect-
ively in such a language Visible speech gives a scientific

basis for observation, thus supplementing the ear by the eye. By its aid
the missionary can master any language in much less time than he can
without being trained by this scientific method.”

Mr. Bell taught the system to his sons and later gave a public demon-
stration before many educators. The work of instruction was first im-
parted to classes in connection with the University and New College,
Edinburgh. After the death of his father he removed to London, where
he received the appointment of lecturer in University College. His first
book was published in 1845 and during his long life he printed in all,
forty -eight works and also many pamphlets; in fact his authorship extend-
ed from 1845 to 1898. The titles show how wide was the range of his
investigations, and how various were the needs which he sought to meet,
from his “Visible Speech,” to his book on “Stammering;” from his “Uni-
versal Alphabetics” to his “Emphasized Literature and Sermon Reading;”
from his “Principles of Elocution,” to his “Visible Speech Reader;” from
his “Sounds and their Relations” to his “Steno -Phonography.”

In 1870, after the loss of two of his sons, Professor Bell,
Reason For on account of the delicacy of his sole remaining child,

^ \f* , determined to break away from his important activities

Brantford. A . . f .

in the old land and to come to America. His tirst idea

was to locate in the United States, which he had previously visited, and
where he had given three courses of lectures, two of -them at different


times before the Lowell Institute, Boston. However the decision was
finally changed to Brantford, and for some ten years he resided at
Tutela Heights in close proximity to this city. Upon his departure for
Washington, in 1881, he was tendered a farewell banquet in the Kerby
House and the story of his coming here is best told in a speech which he
made on that occasion.

“When I was a very young man, and somewhat delicate after a severe
illness, I crossed the Atlantic to take up my abode for a time with a
friend of the family on an island of Newfoundland. I was there long
enough to see a succession of all its seasons and I found the bracing
climate so beneficial that my visit undoubtedly laid the foundation of a
robust manhood. In 1867 and 1870 I suffered the grievous loss of two
fine young men, first my youngest and then my oldest son, (Charles Ed-
ward died in 1867, aged 19 years. Melville J. Bell, the eldest son, died
in 1870, leaving a widow who accompanied the family to Canada and
here married Mr. George Ballachey) and the recollection of my early
experience determined me to try the effect of change of climate for my
only remaining son. I broke up my home and brought my family to
Canada. Our plan was to give the climate a two years trial and my
slim and delicate looking son of those days developed into the sturdy
specimen of humanity with which you are all familiar. I was happily
led to Brantford by the accidental proximity of an old friend, and I have
seen no place within the bounds of Ontario that I would prefer for a
pleasant and healthful residence. How is it then that notwithstanding
this declaration I am about to bid adieu to the land that I love so well?
You all know my son; the world knows his name, but only his friends
know his heart is as good as his name is great. I can safely say that no
other consideration that could be named, than to enjoy the society of our
only son, would have induced us to forsake our lovely “Tutela Heights”
and our kind, good friends of Brantford. He could not come to us so we
resolved to go to him. I now confidently feel that my sojourn in Brant-
ford will outlive my existence because under yon roof of mine the
telephone was born.”

The words “because under yon roof of mine the tele-

wij phone was born” constitute confirmatory testimony of
Established. , _ i . < ” : i 1-1 i i

other facts which will be later adduced in the same

regard. When the Old Boys Reunion was held in Brantford in 1899, Mr.
Melville Bell sent this letter in response to an invitation.

“To the President of the Board of Trade, Brantford,
Dear Sir: I had the pleasure of living at Brantford at Tutela
Heights on the farther side of the river from 1870 to 1881; and within
these years the telephone was completed. Many of the early experiments
were made at my house, and one of the first lines ever operated was
from the porch of my house to the woodshed in a back building. My
son at this time lived in or near Boston, Mass. On one of his visits to


me we tacked a naked wire to the fence between my house and the
Dominion Telegraph Go’s line, and about a hundred invited guests came
from the city to hear talking and singing transmitted over the ordinary
telegraph wire.

On another occasion I gave a lecture in Brantford with telephonic
demonstrations, by means of two choirs of singers, one at my house and
the other at the office of the Dominion Telegraph Co. in the City. The
choirs kept time and tune, although three miles apart, and my audience
heard both in the ante-room of the Lecture Hall, where I had thirty tele-
phones arranged for as many listeners at a time.

Another interesting experiment took place at my house, when I
talked to Woodstock and London on the one hand and to Hamilton and
Toronto on the other, simultaneously. Listeners at each point heard all
that was said at all the other points.

I mention these facts because they connect the telephone with your
city, and justify the title which I have heard applied to Brantford. of
“The Telephone City.”

In those days the telephone was looked on merely as a scientific toy
without any practical utility. You know now the world necessity which
it has become.

I am
Yours very truly,

Alex. Melville Bell.”

Professor Bell returned here on more than one occasion, notably
when the Prince of Wales (now King George V.) visited the City in 1901,
when Mr. Bell, on behalf of the municipality, presented His Royal
Highness with a silver phone.

He passed away at Washington, August 7th 1905 in the

A ota Die eighty-seventh year of his age, and retained his mental
Benefactor. J , J , , .

vigor and much physical vigor almost to the last. In

fact in 1899 he attended a great convention of teachers of elocution, and
of oratory, at Chautauqua, and in a report of this event it is recorded of
him. “At the age of eighty Professor Bell stood upon the platform and
delivered an address with a grace of manner, pureness of pronunciation,
and distinctness of articulation surpassed by no other speaker at the con-

The “Great Master,” as he was known to his students, and in the
philological world, was a man of most benevolent disposition and
throughout his life he found his greatest joy in the beneficial results pro-
duced by his tenets, especially to the deaf and dumb, and those of
defective articulation. His life long desire was to get his writings in the
hands of every teacher of speech, whether he made any profit or not, and
ten years before his death he gave all his copyrights to the Volta Bureau
an institution in Washington, founded and endowed by Alexander Gra-


ham Bell for “the increase and diffusion of knowledge relating to the
deaf.” His genial and attractive personality made many warm friends
for him ‘among the residents of this community and County, and all were
genuinely sorry when, after the decade spent at Tutela Heights, he an-
nounced his intention to move across the border, in order to be near
his son, for the saving of whose life he had in the first place severed
many dear and important ties across the seas. His great achievements
never reached the spectacular fruition of a world famed invention, such
as said son encompassed, but his work in a fundamental way was also of
prime and lasting importance to mankind.

When the family arrived in Brantford, Alexander Gra-
ling 1 j jam g e jj wag j n fa & twenty-fourth year. A citizen who

knew him in those early days describes him as a “tall
young man, with large, dark, intellectual eyes, pensive countenance and
magnetic personality.” For a considerable period after his arrival he
used to spend most of his days swinging in a hammock, strung between
two trees on the Grand River height, and from which he could enjoy the
beautiful valley vista, with the town of Brantford picturesquely outlined
in the far distance. The words of one well known writer (Katherine
Hale) with regard to this spot will find a re-echo in the hearts of all
who have been there:

“I love this vision of Brantford from Tutela Heights. It is an actual
vision a moment of great beauty immortalized; a something seen at its
best that is fadeless; a glimpse which time cannot wither nor custom stale,
for the municipality has very wisely secured as a public park forever
the thirteen acres of what was the Bell estate and homestead, and so from
this undisturbed vantage there will always be that panorama of river-
meadow stretching between the eye and the roofs and spires of the Tele-
phone City, lying to the south.”

It was during these days when he was so gradually, but
Thought successfully wooing back his strength in the great out

of doors, that the mind of young Bell was busy with the
thoughts and plans which were ultimately to find fruition in one of the
greatest of world discoveries. Later on, as strength returned, he mingled
freely with town and county folk and became very popular, albeit he
was regarded as the possessor of eccentric notions All sorts of rumors
commenced to circulate with reference to strange experiments at the
house and comment reached a culmination when, with the help of others,
he was seen tacking stove pipe wire along the Township fences. “I’ve
heard tell of many things,” remarked one old dame,” but anything to beat
a man stringing a wire through the country to talk through it, is the
silliest piece of tomfoolery ever was. He’s clean daft.”


Criticism however did not balk young Bell’s determination, and surely
if slowly he was approaching the solution of the great problem. In this
regard it should be mentioned that during the experimental period, 1874-6,
Mr. Bell resided partly in Boston and partly in Brantford. He went to
the first named city as a teacher in the city school for deaf mutes, in
order to exemplify his father’s system of “visible speech,” and spent his
summer vacations from about the middle of July to the end of Sep-
tember with his parents. That the discovery of the telephone, both as
to the main principle and first transmission of the human voice, was
made at Tutela Heights, has time and again been affirmed by Mr. Bell,
and in great detail when in 1885 he gave evidence in an unsuccessful suit
which was brought in the United States to annul the Bell patents.

It was in 1874, shortly before Mr. Bell left for Canada
The Early on n j s usual summer vacation, that Dr. Clarence J. Blake

, .. of Boston, presented him with a human ear and it was

strations. _,

while experimenting with this at lutela Heights that the

final solution was reached. The following summer, while again visiting
here, his experiments were still further advanced to such an extent
that in September 1875 he commenced to draft patent specifications. Thus
the work continued until in the summer of 1876 demonstrations, on an
exceedingly small scale, were made at the Tutela Heights home. It
was on August 5th of the year named that a few personal friends were
invited to take part in the first exposition of an at all public nature. Those
present were: Sheriff Smith, Mr. Hunter, then Principal of the School
for the Blind; A. Robertson, Manager B.B.N.A.; A. S. Hardy, M. P.P. ; W.
Paterson, M. P.; James Wilkes, A. Cleghorn, A. J. Wilkes, B. F. Fitch,
Col. J. T. Gilkison, Dr. Digby, Dr. Corson, H. R. Corson (Markham), Dr.
Philip, W. Watt, Jr.

Mr. A. J. Wilkes, the only remaining citizen of the above assembly,
states that the receiver was located by the river bank and that between the
house and the point named there was a coil representing five miles of
wire. He first of all heard some squeaking sounds and finally could
faintly discern a human voice.

About this time also, at a little family gathering, Mrs. Arthur Tisdale,
who then resided close to the Bells and was a soloist at Farringdon
Church, was asked to sing into a transmitter from which the wires ran
to a grape arbor in the grounds. Upon hesitating as to the choice of a
song, Miss Mary Bell, a niece, suggested a solo sung by Mrs. Tisdale at a
recent sacred concert “I need thee every hour,” certainly symbolic of the
present status of the telephone. Other citizens also participated in sub-
sequent tests.


Likewise in the same year there was the first talk for any

T\ * A

T iti sort ^ distance between Brantford and Mt. Pleasant and

through the kindness of the Dominion Telegraph Com-
pany and the co-operation of Mr. Walter Griffin, then local manager,
a still more ambitious trial, on August 10th, between Paris and Brantford.
Then for the first time a message was transmitted by telephone over
a real telegraph line, and the proper relation of the parts of a telephone
to each other was discovered, enabling its use upon a long line. The re-
ceiver of the telephone was in Paris, the transmitter in Brantford, and
the battery which supplied the current, in Toronto. The young inven-
tor had made arrangements with his uncle, the late Prof. David C. Bell,
then a resident of Brantford, to take charge of the transmitting station, as
his father had stated that he would not be able to be present. Persons
were to sing, talk or recite, into the transmitting instrument in Brantford,
while he listened at the receiver at Paris. After observing the effects for
some time, he telegraphed by another line to Brantford instructing Mr.
Griffin as to changing the arrangements of the coils. As a result of this
a combination was at last arrived at which resulted in loud and clear
articulation being heard at Paris. He thought he could even recognize
the voice of one of the speakers as that of his father. Surprised, because
of his understanding that his father could not be on hand, he wired back
to Brantford to ascertain if his father had actually spoken into the tele-
phone. When the reply came that the voice was that of his father,
who had been reciting into the telephone for some time, he was delighted
beyond words.

In 1906 Mr. Bell was the guest of the Brantford Board

Dr. Bell Tells O f Trade at a brilliant banquet at the Kerby House.

J3.1S uwn During the course of the evening he made a notable

speech and these extracts are taken from a report of the


“In most interesting language Dr. Bell next took up the story of the
invention of the phone. He supposed that was the subject they would
like most to hear about. (Loud cries of Yes, Yes.) Well, during the
period he was part of his time in Brantford and part of his time in
Boston, and he supposed the idea of the phone was where he happened
to be.

“I can affirm to you, however, Gentlemen, that the inception of it
was here.” (Loud Applause.)

The speaker continued by stating that a certain medical friend in Bos-
ton had presented him with the portion of a human ear with which to
conduct a certain phase of experiments and that specimen he brought with


him to Tutela Heights in 1874. After describing said experiments in
detail he exclaimed:

“Gentlemen the telephone problem was solved and it was solved at
my father’s home.” (Loud applause).

Dr. Bell then proceeded to tell of his further experiments. He first
of all talked through a line extending from the barn to the stable. The
voice could be heard, but the articulation was about as plain as their arti-
culation of “Yankee Doodle,” (Laughter). Well, the experiments went
on, and finally the Dominion Telegraph Company, through Walter
Griffin, the manager, offered him the use of their lines. He went out
to Mt. Pleasant, and his uncle David Bell, stayed in Brantford. He
should explain that at this time he could only send one way, and an
answer could not be returned. It was arranged that his uncle recite
Shakespearean verse at a certain time and sing songs. He remembered
sitting in Mount Pleasant with his ear to the receiver and his watch in
hand, waiting for the fateful moment. Suddenly he heard a preliminary
cough, and then the words, “To be or not to be.”

“Gentlemen, it was to be, and for the first time between Brantford
and Mt. Pleasant.” (Loud Applause.)

The next desire was to speak from Brantford to the homestead on
Tutela Heights, but the problem that confronted them was that
the telegraph wires continued along the main road, and there was quite
a branching off to the Heights He finally decided to make up the
difference with stove pipe wire, and, coming to Brantford he bought up
all the article he could find in the stores. This wire they connected with
the end of a telegraph wire, and tacked it along the fences to his father’s
house. A large number of , Brantford people were gathered there to
witness the test, and he had arranged in case of a failure to connect
them up with the barn. But there was no failure. They had the same
success as with the direct wire to Mount Pleasant, and listened to a
fine program over the wires from the telegraph office in Brantford.
There were many within sound of his voice who remembered that after-
noon. Hie next important experiment was when they spoke from Brant-
ford to Paris, with the batteries for the wire in Toronto.

“This, Gentlemen, was the first long-distance telephone ever in opera-
tion.” (Loud applause.)

“The discovery of the principle of the telephone was here, and the
first experiments over actual lines were here.” (Loud Applause.)


The inventor made an effort to interest Canadian cap-
Couldn’t ^1 i, ut w ithout result. More than one Brantford cit-

T Jj4- p * n c 4-

f. izen declined the opportunity to invest and so did resi-

Canadian . ~ ,. T i. i T i

Capital dents ot other Canadian cities. In this regard Lord

Mount Stephen, in sending a subscription to the Brant
Memorial Committee in 1909, said during the course of his letter :

“I remember in 1875, or 1876, being then President of the Bank of
Montreal and in Hamilton on the business of the Bank, lunching with
Mr. Buchanan, then Agent of the Bank of Hamilton, together with a
number of the leading men of the place. During luncheon Mr. Buch-
anan read a note from Mr. Bell asking that he might be allowed to
show us a model of his telephone, after luncheon. Mr. Bell showed us
his model, which we all agreed was a very “ingenious toy.” Our foresighj,
as is always the case, was not equal to our hindsight. That is over
thirty years ago, but I remember it as if it had been yesterday.”

To Mr. W. F. Cockshutt, M. P., belongs the credit of

. , suggesting the erection of a memorial. He was presi-

Suggested. , . P _ . , , . , . . .

dent 01 the Board ot Irade at the time and his proposal

took immediate hold. There was, of course, much organization work to
be accomplished and this was effectively looked after by Mr. George
Hately, who was appointed Secretary. The subscription list met with a
handsome response from Dominion and Provincial Governments, prom-
inent men in Canada, England and the United States, the city of Brantford
and county of Brant, and private citizens of Brantford and other places.
The total amount obtained was $65,000 and this sum has not only enabled
the erection of the magnificent monument and the purchase of the gore
on which it is erected, but also the acquisition of the historic homestead
on Tutela Heights where the birth of the great modern invention took
place. As soon as the financial outlook was assured, it was decided to
call for competitive models and nine were submitted from Canada,
Europe and the States. The judges appointed were Sir B. E. Walker,
Toronto, President of the Bank of Commerce; Sir G. C. Gibbons, of
London and Hon. Mr. Davis, Senator of the State of New York. These
three gentlemen, each the possessor of critical knowledge with regard
to sculptural design, were not given the names of the competitors and
judged the models only by numbers. They had a hard task but their
unanimous award finally fell upon the model of Mr. W. S. Allward, of
Toronto, who has many notable monuments in other places, including the
Lafontaine statue in Montreal. It is worthy of note that when one U. S.
competitor saw Allward’s design in the display room, it having been un-
packed before his own, he remarked, “There is no use my taking out my
model for nothing can win against that.’*


A_ The symbolism which Mr. Allward had in view, and has

Impressive conveyed with such consummate skill, is the annihilation
Design. of space. Surmounting a series of steps is the main

portion of the monument a huge mass of white granite. This is faced
by an exceptionally large bronze casting upon which there is outlined, in
heroic size, the reclining figure of a man in an attitude of deep thought
and over whom there hovers another figure Inspiration with grace-
fully uplifted arm pointing to three shadowy figures outlined at the far
end of the panel as speeding through the air the messengers of Know-
ledge, Joy and Sorrow. On each side of the central portion and separated
by a distance of many feet, there are two large figures in bronze, on gran-
ite bases, one in the attitude of sending and the other in the attitude of
receiving a message. Thus by a stroke of true genius the sculptor, with-
out even the slightest indication of the mechanical part of the telephone,
has with great subtlety and skill conveyed the story of the annihilation of
distance by this modern Mercury. All competent critics agree that a
most notable work has been produced, one which breathes throughout the
spirit of true art. Mr. Allward, lavished loving creative power for the
best part of many years upon his task and the outcome has been a lour
de force.

The monument is most admirably located and the approach has been
artistically laid out as a small park.

It was at noon, on Wednesday, October 24th, 1917, that

-, … the unveiling of the memorial took place. Despite ad-

Unveiling. .

verse weather conditions there was a crowd in attendance

of colossal proportions those present including many men of prominence
in the telephonic world. The Duke of Devonshire, Governor General,
was greeted on his arrival at the depot by an immense throng, and under
the conductorship of Mr. W. F. Cockshutt M. P., he and his party entered
the station building when a number of introductions took place. With
the conclusion of this portion of the program the way was made to a
platform in rear of the depot where a civic address of welcome was read
by Mayor Bowlby. Chief A. R. Hill, Secretary of the Six Nations Coun-
cil, presented another address and to both of them the Duke made a fitt-
ing response. School children sang a number of Patriotic airs and a
procession then took place along thickly lined streets to the scene of the
ceremony; the gore across from Grace Church formed by the inter-section
of King, West, Albion and Wellington Streets. The gathering at the base
of the memorial was a most notable one and quite worthy of the day upon
which la fitting tribute was tendered to the genius of Alexander Graham
Bell. A still more pleasing feature consisted of the fact that he was there


in virile presence to personally receive an acclaim so often delayed until
world benefactors have passed to the great beyond. The Dufferin Rifles
band was in attendance and Army and Navy Veterans formed a guard of
honor. The latter were inspected by His Excellency, and Mr. W. F.
Cockshutt made the opening address. At the close of his remarks the
Duke conducted the formal unveiling, a Union Jack falling from one of
the outstanding figures, and the Stars and Stripes from the other. The
rain continuing, an adjournment took place to the Grand Opera House
where His Excellency, who was received with tremendous applause, said:

“I wish to convey my most grateful thanks to those who
Governor are responsible for the organization of to-days -proceed-

General’s ings that it has been arranged for me to take so prom-

Speech. inent and so interesting a part in them. There is nothing

which can appeal more strongly to the imagination and
to the sense of patriotism than the proceedings which we have seen today.
The telephone has become almost commonplace. Like many in this
theatre I can remember its invention. I have been trying to tax my mem-
ory as to the precise occasion of my first recollection of the telephone.
It was when I was a boy at school and was home on holidays. My grand-
father, who was a man of science himself, told me that one of the greatest
discoveries possible had been made. We knew very much less in England
than you did here, but certainly what had been discovered here, very
soon found its way to England.

“One can trace bit by bit the growing expansion of the telephone
throughout its various stages. At first one was asked if he had a
telephone and much surprise was evinced when the answer was “Yes,”
but the surprise of having a telephone gave way to the surprise of not
having one, and now one is never asked whether he has a telephone. The
question is “What’s your number?” (Laughter and Applause.) Therefore
the telephone has broad purposes commercially, industrially, politically
In every walk, every sphere and every activity in life, the telephone has
taken its part and has continued year by year to exercise a still greater
and growing influence and power. The miracle which has been accom-
plished through Dr. Bell’s invention certainly has taken a very remarkable
place in this tremendous and gigantic struggle in which we are engaged.
It is only right and fitting that the public spirit of friendship, if I may
say so, not only of Brantford but of a far wider circle, should find an
echo in Canada and farther afield as well. The citizens of Brantford
have only done what is rightly proper that they should to perpetuate for
all time the memory of a man who has done so much, not only for their
city but for civilization and humanity as a whole. (Great Applause.)

“I understand there are other claimants to some share in
Hall Mark Dr. Bell’s invention and discoveries, but the proceedings
For All of to-day will set the hall mark for all time to come on

Time. the true history of the birth of the telephone. (Applause.)

I venture most sincerely and most cordially to congrat-
ulate the citizens of Brantford on what they have done and the very great


attention which it draws to their city. I wish also and I know I shall
find a most cordial and sympathetic echo in my audience in this to
tender to the sculptor our hearty congratulations on the admirable suc-
cess which has attended the consummation of this monument. (Great
Applause.) And last, and by no means least, I should like to tender my
own and on your behalf your congratulations to Dr. Bell on seeing his
work duly and gratefully recognized. (Applause.)

“Times were in the past when death intervened before full justice
was done to the work of man. To-day Dr. Bell is to be congratulated
upon being able to receive the recognition of his fellow citizens and fel-
low countrymen. (Hear, Hear.)

“It is indeed a memorable day, not only for Brantford but for human-
ity, and the ceremony in which we have taken part will live for many
many generations after we have all passed away, and future generations
will be proud of the part we have taken.

“I have already formally unveiled the monument, I now formally
dedicate it and hand it over to the City in trust for all time to come.
(Great Applause.)

A deed of transfer was then signed by his Excellency and by him
handed over to Mr. E. L. Goold, Chairman of the Parks Commission.

Amid salvos of deafening applause Dr. Bell advanced to
‘ address the gathering. The entire audience rose to their

feet and when the demonstration had ceased, Mr. Bell
spoke as follows:

“Your Excellency, ladies femd gentlemen. There are some things
worth living for and this is one of them (Hear, Hear.) I came to Brant-
ford in 1870 to die ; I was given six months lease of life, but I am glad
to be alive to-day to witness the unveiling of this beautiful memorial that
has been erected in the City of Brantford. As I look back upon it, vis-
ions come to me of the Grand River and of Tutela Heights and my
dreaming place upon the heights where visions of the telephone came
to my mind. (Hear, hear and applause.) I little thought in those days
that I should ever see a memorial like this, a memorial that is not only
gratifying to me personally as an appreciation of my own personal
effort to benefit the world, but is an appreciation of the invention itself.

“I cannot claim what you know as the modern telephone.
Initiated It is the product of many, many minds. All I did was

Here. to initiate the movement of the transmission of speech by

electricity. It was initiated here. (Great Applause.)

“Much of the experimental work of the development of the apparatus
was done in Boston, still I am glad to be able to come forward and say
that the telephone was invented here. (Great Applause.)

“In past years I have tried to approximate the date of that invention
and haive given, in vague terms, the summer of 1874. But a few days
ago it occurred to me that it was possible to make a closer approximation
to the date of the conception than that. My dear father kept a diary, a


little pocket diary, in which occasionally he jotted down remarkable oc-
currences. I resided in the States and used to come to Brantford for my
summer vacation and for the Christmas holidays, and when I came home,
of course I would talk to my father of all the great ideas that were in
my mind. I remember in those days I had a conception of an electrical
motor, the details of which I have long since forgotten, but I was full
of this motor in the summer of 1874, at the time that I devised the tele-
phone. Of course I explained these things to my father, and in his
diary under date of July 26th 1874, occur these words, “Motor” and in
brackets “Hopeful.” (Laughter.) “Electrical Speech” with a big
query mark in brackets, but it goes to show that on July 26th, 1874, the
telephone had been invented and had been described to my father, but he
did not think it quite as good as the electrical motor. (Laughter.)

In the autumn of 1874, the telephone was described with
At Tutela drawings to a large number of people in Boston and the

Heights. vicinity. In 1875, the telephone was made the Brant-

ford telephone was made in Boston. In June 1875, the
telephone acquired a physical existence in Boston, and it was that tele-
phone that was invented the year before at Tutela Heights in Brantford,
Ontario. (Applause.)

“I am very grateful for the assistance that was rendered to me in my
initial effort on behalf of the telephone, both in Brantford and in Boston.
A great deal has been said, and very truly, connecting Boston with the ap-
pearance of the telephone. Too little has been said in the States concerning
the connection of Brantford. (Hear, Hear.) I have looked very carefully
over the history of the telephone with the object of seeing just what had
been done in Brantford and what had been done in Boston, and I am
prepared to state that Brantford is right in claiming the invention of the
telephone here. (Applause.) The telephone was conceived in Brantford
in 1874 and born in Boston in 1875. (Applause).

“I wished to ascertain further whether, in the practical development
of the telephone, there were any points that really could be claimed by
Brantford, because so much of the development had been done in the
States. I found another thing that is very worthy of remembrance in the
practical application of the telephone.

_ In 1875 and 1876 the experiments with the telephone

were parlor experiments. We would have one instrument

.Experiments. j n one room ^d another instrument in another room in

the same building. We would telephone from one room to another, and
then put articles of resistance in between, then we would surmise the tele-
phone would speak if on the other side of the Atlantic, but we did not
have an opportunity of trying it.

“The first opportunity to try the telephone on a long distance line
came in July 1876 in Boston, but the transmitting land receiving telephones
were in adjoining rooms of the same building. We had a line from Bos-
ton to Rye Beach and return, and for a time we imagined that the voice
had gone through the transmitting instrument to Rye Beach and back and



was heard on the receiver, but Lord Kelvin, who was then Sir William
Thompson, was present! on one of these occasions, and he said: “You
cannot assume that the voice has gone to Rye Beach and back on that
line. It might have come through the ground connection, and the only
way for satisfactory demonstration is to place the transmitting and re-
ceiving instruments miles apart.”

“The first time that instruments were placed miles apart
First Long and speech successfully transmitted from one place to
Distance the other was here in Brantford in August 1876. (Ap-

Speech plause.) It was really a very historical occasion, the 10th

Brantford of August, 1876, when experiments were instituted be-
To Paris. tween Brantford and Paris. The transmitting instrument

was placed in Brantford, the receiving instrument in
Paris, and the batteries used were in Toronto, so that made a pretty long
circuit. I was in Paris at the receiving end listening. Mr. W. H. Grif-
fin, who I am glad to know is still alive and with us to-day, was in charge
of the Dominion Telegraph Office in Brantford, at the transmitting end,
and there were various persons present who spoke and sang into the
transmitting instrument, and sounds were received in Paris. These were
the first experiments in the world in which sounds were received at a
distance of many miles. (Loud Applause.)

“There were also other experiments that some of these
The Stove older residents of Brantford may remember, in which
Wire the receiving instrument w&s placed on the porch of my

Incident. father’s house at Tutela Heights, and attempts were made,

successfully, to transmit speech and singing from Brant-
ford to Tutela Heights. The trouble was there were no telegraph wires
to my father’s house. There was a telegraph wire that went up past
Mount Pleasant, but it was some distance from the Mount Pleasant Road
to my father’s house, and there was no wire there. However we tried a
very unique and daring experiment to connect with Tutela Heights. We
could not get telegraph wires or poles to put the insulators on, but we
got stove pipe wire in Brantford. We cleaned up all the stove-pipe
wire in Brantford, and tacked it along the fences from the corner of the
Mount Pleasant Road to Tutela Heights and it worked. I do not know
of any other telegraph or electrical instrument that would have worked.
(Laughter.) But it worked, and we heard music and singing on my
father’s porch by quite a large number of the citizens of Brantford, and
that was the first public exhibition of the possibilities of speaking from
a distance by telephone. (Applause.) So you have two things that you
can justly claim the invention of the telephone here and the first trans-
mission of the human voice over real live wires. (Applause.)

“But don’t go too far, because there are those who claim
Both Ways and claim rightly that the first conversation ever held
Achievement over a telephone wire was held in Boston.

Now, let me tell you what was done here. We had
the transmitting instrument in Brantford and the receiving instrument in


Paris, so that you could talk from Brantford to Paris, but you could
not talk back. (Laughter). We had to telegraph back by another line.
That was the condition of affairs, so you must not claim too much. It
was the first transmission at a distance, but it was not the first reciprocal
conversation over a line. That was held in Boston on October 9th, 1876.

“There is another thing in this connection; The wonder-
Specifica- ful telephone industry of to-day has been built up by

tions Writ- others. I cannot claim to be ainy more than the one who
ten Here. initiated the whole movement. But this great industry

must- base its success upon a patent. Now that patent
the most valuable patent ever granted by the Patent Office was not
written by the Patent Office Solicitor, it was written by me. The spec-
ification was written by me and the first draft of that specification was
made in Brantford, (Hear, Hear,) in September, 1875, and it is that
same application that afterwards became the patent upon which the tele-
phone industry is based.

“I have with me in Brantford duplicates of the first telephones thlat
were used in the Brantford experiment of August 1876. I hope to have
the opportunity of showing these to-night in this building. First of all
there is a facsimile of the original telephone made in Boston in June,
1875, and it is exactly the same as the telephone conceived and described
and pictured in Brantford in 1874. These old relics are preserved in
the United States National Museum, and I was fortunate in having them
loaned to me and in bringing up here three or four instruments that
will be of interest to you. The receiver, I think, is the very same instru-
ment that was used in Paris in that first experiment. It is a little dilap-
idated, but it was a good instrument and shows the character. The trans-
mitter is one of those used in the Centennial Exhibition in Philadelphia,
and there was a triple mouthpiece which I discovered in the National
Museum that was actually used in 1876 here, and was made in Brantford.
It was for the purpose of demonstrating the important fact that la number
of voices could be switched through the telephone at the same time with-
out confusion.

“I wish to say on behalf of the Bell Telephone Memorial
Two Basic Association I have great pleasure in presenting to His
Facts. Excellency a silver telephone, and I hope that in using

this he will remember that the telephone originiated in
Brantford, (Great Applause,) and that the first transmission to a distance
was made here between Brantford and Paris. (Great Applause.)

At the conclusion of his address Dr. Bell presented to the Governor
General a silver telephone, duplicate of that which his father, the late
Professor A. Melville Bell, presented to King George on the occasion of his
visit to the city as Duke of York.

> “”*'”?-Stt&3SD Sir John Hendrie, Lieutenant Governor of Ontario, during
Uuier jjjg j-enjaj-ks a ptly said. “In reality there is no man who

has had so many monuments erected to him as Dr. Bell.
Throughout America, Europe, Africa, Australia, the West Indies, almost


wherever you go you see the blue bell, the sign of the telephone invention.”

Senator Robertson, Dominion Minister of Labor and Hon. W. D. Mc-
Pherson representing the Ontario Government, also spoke.

Luncheon was served at the Kerby House and in the afternoon His
Excellency formally opened the G. W. V. A. home on Dalhousie Street.
Rev. E. C. Jeakins, Chaplain of the local branch and President of the
Provincial G. W. V. A. extended a welcome and there was the presenta-
tion of an address.

The way was then taken to the old Bell Homestead on
TT A Tutela Heights where another address was in order, read

by Mr. E. L. Goold, Chairman of the Park Commission
Board. At the conclusion of formal ceremonies Dr. Bell, who was accom-
panied by Mrs. Bell and members of his family, spent a considerable
time in wandering about the property in happy reminiscence. Among
other things he pointed out the two trees between which his hammock
used to swing when he was seeking to win back his health and indulging
in dream visions of what afterwards became such a marvelous triumph.
He also went from room to room of the old residence, a low set, wide
spreading house with French windows on either side of the main entrance
and a spacious verandah sweeping across the front.

There was another large gathering in the Opera House at night when
Dr. Bell again delivered an address. Other speakers were, Sir Edmund
Walker, Hon Mr. McPherson, Mr. Gilbert Grosvenor of Washington, son-
in-law of Dr. Bell, and Mr. W. H. Griffin, of Kalispeo, who had assisted
in the first telephone experiments when a resident of Brantford.

Sergt. Turley representing the Great War Veterans Association recit-
ed and Miss Raymond rendered a vocal solo.

(The quoted extracts are from an official stenographic report taken
on behalf of the Brant Historical Society with Judge Hardy as Chairman of
the Committee having this duty in hand.)

a e ii The Bell Memorial Association was incorporated, by spe-

Memorial c * a l act f tne Legislature, under the distinguished patron-

Association, age of H. R. H. the Prince of Wales, (now His Majesty
King George V.) while H. R. H. the Duke of Connaught, accepted the posi-
tion of Honorary President. The directorate consisted of W. F. Cockshutt,
M. P., President; Lloyd Harris, Vice President; W.N.Andrews, E. L. Goold,
Geo. Kippax, G. H. Muirhead, T. H. Preston, F. D. Reville, A. J. Wilkes,
C. H. Waterous and die Mayor and Warden of each year for the time
being. John Muir, Treasurer; George Hately, Secretary.




Burford and Oakland Townships, the only sections of the County
not originally affected by the land grant to the Six Nations Indians,
have always been intimately associated and represent the earlier settled
portions of Brant County. Burford Township was surveyed in 1793 by
Augustus Jones, and was named after the old town of Burford in Oxford-
shire, England. Oakland was surveyed in 17%, also by Jones, as Town-
send Gore, but in 1798 it was transferred to Burford as Burford Gore.
This title it retained until 1821 when legislation bestowed the present
appellation of Oakland, so designated because of a ridge of oak trees
which ran through the Township, but many years ago vanished under
the axe of die settler.

At the very inception of its career Burford Township

Mlgnt nearly became the abiding place of an exceedingly pe-
culiar sect. Jemima Wilkinson, born in Cumberland,
Rhode Island, 1735, was one of a family of twelve children. When in
the twentieth year of her age, all were stricken with fever, but Jemima
just as the watchers thought she was about to breathe her last, suddenly
arose from her bed and from that time forward professed to have died
and arisen again. Styling herself “The Universal Friend.” she commen-
ced to preach, also pretending to have the power to work miracles, and
in a comparatively short time attracted a large number of followers. In
1786 at a meeting of her disciples it was decided to found a colony in
Yates County, N.Y. Next year twenty-five of her followers went to the
new purchase to prepare the land for wheat, and colonization was well
in progress when circumstances arose which rendered it likely that they
would be dispossessed, and Jemima, in 1792, selected one of her leaders,
Abraham Dayton, to make the journey to Upper Canada in order to
negotiate with Governor Simcoe for a new location. The Governor,
supposing the new sect to be Quakers, made a bestowal of land which
comprises the present Township of Burford. Preparations for removal
to the new site were at once made, but Simcoe upon discovering his mis-
take, annulled the grant. Dayton, however, was so impressed with the


region he had come to view, that he abandoned his co-religionists and
took up land, choosing among others the lots owned by Mr. John Keachie,
and the Bowen homestead. His house was located about eighty rods from
the stone road. He died in early years and was succeeded in possession of
his land by Benajah Mallory. His widow became the wife of Col. Stone
the founder of the village of Gananoque, below Kingston, and she lived
to a great old age. After the negotiations with Simcoe were brought to
an abrupt close, the “Universal Friend” disciples secured 1,400 more
acres of land in Yates County, and later added the Township of “Jerusa-
lem.” A house was erected for the religious impostor, situated on a farm
of one thousand acres cultivated by her followers. From the latter she
exacted the most complete submission, and the most menial services; in
fact her influence was practically supreme. Although entirely illiterate
she numbered among her adherents many educated people, her magnetic
person, and extreme tact and shrewdness offsetting any scholastic lack.
Her clothing belonged about equally to either sex as she asserted that in
the spiritual body there was no division. After some years her influence
waned, and when she died at the age of sixty-six the movement collapsed.
Celibacy was one of the tenets practised. Such was the extraordinary
sect which Burford Township and Brant County narrowly escaped.

Thomas Homer was the first settler in Burford Township
First Settler an( j th e most prominent man in the district for a period

Became Q f f ortv vears thereafter. He was a native of New Jersey,

Noted Man. .

and came to Canada in 1793 under these circumstances.

Col. John Graves Simcoe, the First Lieutenant Governor of Upper Canada,
had served as an officer in the British Army during the Revolution. On
one occasion he was taken prisoner by the Americans and in his extremity
one Thomas Watson, (uncle of Thomas Homer) performed an act of
kindness to him. This act was not forgotten by Simcoe and when in
1792 he was promoted to the Lieut.-Governorship, he wrote to Watson to
come to Canada and bring his friends with him. In response, Watson
came, bringing his nephew with him and Homer was promised a grant
of the Township of Blenheim on condition that he erected a saw mill to
encourage immigration. Mr. Horner waited until three concessions were
surveyed by Augustus Jones (father of the late Rev. Peter Jones) and he
then proceeded to New York for the purpose of purchasing machinery
for the mill. Upon his return he found that Governor Simcoe’s successor
would not confirm the grant made to him. Nothing daunted he com-
pleted the saw mill and about 1806 erected a grist mill, but both were
subsequently burned down. The site of these mills was just west of the
village of Princeton on the Governor’s Road. In 1798 he was appointed


Captain of Militia in the Norfolk Battalion and in 1806 Deputy Lieuten-
ant of the County of Oxford, but on the declaration of war between Great
Britain and the United States in 1812, he was superceded in the last
named post. This act of injustice did not, however, deter him from
manifesting his attachment to his country, and using his powerful in-
fluence with the Six Nations Indians, he enlisted several of them to pro-
ceed to the assistance of General Brock who was moving on Detroit. When
he and the red men had arrived within ten days march of their destination
word came that Detroit had surrendered. However, he and his force
remained on active duty for some time. The whole expense for supplies
was borne by him, without one cent to reimburse him for his outlay.
Afterwards Mr. Homer and a number of others volunteered as privates,
and while our forces were encamped on Burlington Heights he offered to
reconnoitre the position of the American naval force on Lake Ontario.
This duty he accomplished satisfactorily. In 1820 he was elected to the
Legislature as the representative of Oxford, and he held that position
until his death in 1834. In the House he was often appointed Chairman
of important Committees. He was the leading magistrate of Burford and
his name is to be found on all the old deeds. He also performed mar-
riage ceremonies, for the first time in 1801 when he united James Smiley
and Eunice Martin. Mrs. Smiley died on August 18th, 1875 at her home
on the Governor’s Road, when in the ninety-second year of her age. Mr.
Homer’s son Thomas J. Homer, and grandson Isaac T. Homer were also
magistrates and prominent men of Burford.

At the inception, Burford Township in common with

y OTtl

r”Kh other Townships of that period, suffered from the land

grabber. Hon. Robert Hamilton, member of the Legis-
lative Council, was given 3,700 acres. Rev. Robert Raddish, one of the
few missionaries who had an eye for the main chance, obtained 1,000
acres. This gentleman after acquiring title to a large estate in Upper
Canada, retired to the Old Land. Tonadine Lawe, a surveyor, obtained
2,000 acres. In addition Crown Lands were set aside to the extent of
9,650 acres and “Clergy Reserves” represented another exceedingly large
area. These properties never contributed a cent in taxes.

Charles Burtch was another pioneer who was granted large tracts
in the northern part of the Township as well as the Gore of Burford.
However, he neglected most of his holdings in Burford and finally lost
title to them.

Although a number of those who obtained lands were
Mara on actual settlers, many of the patentees had bought on specu-

lation or secured title by grants, especially the large


holders who never resided in the Township. The early arrivals were
thus obliged to select a grant, sandwiched between Clergy or Crown
Reserves and the land of some absentee speculator. Many of the first
settlers, eager to secure as many acres as possible, acquired more of the
soil than they were able to take care of, and through want of means or
assistance, failed to make the necessary clearings, or build the specified
amount of roadway. A few others abandoned their holdings or removed
to other parts. . One method was to issue “land tickets” when no clear
title could be given.

The first patents were issued on January 9th, 1798, when Jeremiah
Powell secured lots 7 and 8 in each of the 3rd, 4th and 5th concessions,
while Thomas Powell obtained lots 4, 8, 9 and 21 in the 12th concession
and lot 17 in the 13th concession.

It took a long time for values to advance. For instance in 1835
John and James Muir paid fifteen shillings (not quite $4) per acre for
Lot 22 in the Second Concession, Thomas Wright, sixteen shillings ($4)
per acre for Lot 17, Tenth Concession, and Andrew Roswell, twenty-two
shillings ($5.50) per acre for Lot Ten, Fourteenth Concession.

In 1837 Charles S. P. Perley obtained Lot 3, in the Fourth Concession
for seven shillings and six pence ($1.75) per acre; Eliakim Malcolm,
Lot No. 2, in the Fourteenth Concession for fifteen shillings, not quite
$4.00 per acre and Gideon R. Inglis one half ofi Lot 15 in the Thir-
teenth Concession for eight shillings ($2.00) per acre. Fifteen shillings
was the top price in this area.

An incident worthy of note is that Benajah Mallory, a grantee of
1,200 acres, joined the Americans subsequently in the war of 1812, and
the lands still remaining in his hands were forfeited to the Crown, by
decision of Hon. James Baby, James Maicaulay, Grant Powell, George
Crookshank, William Allan and Peter Robinson, Commissioners respecting
the Estates of Traitors.

Residing, about 1800, in the neighborhood of Burford village were
Abraham Dayton, the Yeighs, Landons, Benajah Mallory and John Pal-
mer. Later came the Aliens, Rounds, Fowlers, Douglasses, Stephens,
Lesters, Daniels, Dickeys, Ives, Col. and Capt. Bowen, Woodens, Matthews,
Lymburners, Fosters and others. Along the centre of the township were
found the Forces, Ryders, Rathbuns, Lawrences and others, while in the
south were the Smiths and the McWilliams. Along the Governor’s Road,
near Princeton, were some of the earliest settlers, U. E. Loyalists, who had
come in with Squire Homer, the Smileys, Martins, Lesters, Kipps, Eatons,


Aikins and Nelles, while to the north and west were the Beemers, Peltons.
Muirs, Virtues, Major Weir, Benj. Weaver, Seth Landon and others.

, In these early days shopping was done at Ancaster and
t *A^ gristing at the Indian Mill, west of Brantford where

D’Aubigny Creek crosses the Burford road. The first
white child born in Burford was Stephen Landon in 1797, at his father’s
home on the Stuart farm, near Burford Village. Abner Matthews estab-
lished the first woollen and carding mill on the town line between Burford
and Brantford, just north of Bishopsgate. The first store in Burford was
opened after the war, by George W. Whitehead, just east of where the
Brantford road turns off to Norwich. His father, the Rev. Thos. White-
head, was the first Wesleyan minister in Burford Township, and first
president of the first Methodist conference of the Province. They were
U. E. Loyalists and came from New Brunswick. The post office in Bur-
ford was established in 1820, Col. Bowen being postmaster. He was
succeeded by his son-in-law, William VanAllen, and in 1822 Geo. W.
Whitehead was appointed and held it until the appointment of his bro-
ther Willard M. Whitehead. Burford Village was originally known as
Dickey’s Corners, from a Mr. Dickey who kept a hotel where the present
hotel stands. Nathaniel and Cicero Ives opened a store opposite Dickey’s
hotel, before 1820. They owned the farm later acquired by Elisha
Stuart, and built a saw mill on the stream back of the farm. The first
saw mill in the north of Burford was built by Aldridge Wells on Lot 14,
Con. 3. He sold out and kept the first hotel on the Governor’s Road, at
old Princeton. The first doctor in the township was a Dr. Cornish,
father of the late Frank Cornish, of London, who lived at Princeton. Jere-
miah Cowan, father of Col. Cowan, of Woodstock, settled on the Blen-
heim side about 1818, as agent for the western lands of Hon. Peter McGill,
of Montreal. He was the first assessor and clerk of that township, and
postmaster at Princeton, and like many of the old generation had a quiver
full of olive branches, fifteen in all. Between Princeton and Burford was
then a wilderness there being but two or three settlers, Levi Lawrence,
Wm. Force, and Ransford and James Rounds, who built a grist mill on
the Terryberry farm, on the route. The first school in the township was
taught by Captain White, his log school house being in Burford Village.
He held forth from 1808 to 1811, when the war checked the education of
the rising generation, and after the war others succeeded the gallant cap-
tain in wielding the ferule.

At this period even the dealings of the Government with

PaWW*TI+ 1Y1

jraym.eii.1 in se t,tl ers were adapted to the circumstances surrounding
them. Subjoined are the Government terms in a reg-


ular form adopted for leasing lands, dated August 12, 1819, to Jacob
Yeigh, of Clergy Reserve Lot No. 9, in the 9th Concession, for 21 years.
For the first seven years the rent was to be 1, 15, or ten and a half
bushels of good, sweet, clean, merchantable wheat, for the second seven
years 3 10, or 21 bushels good, clean wheat, and for the third seven
years 5 5, or thirty-one and a half bushels.

In 1825 the officers of the First Oxford Militia were Col. Thomas
Horner, Lt.-Col. C. Ingersoll, Major Sykes Towsley, Capts. Henry Carroll,
J. H. Throckmorton, Jas. Carroll, Geo. W. Whitehead, John Kelly, Daniel
Brown, John Stephens, Robt. Alway; Lieuts. Abner DeCou, Wm. Reynolds,
George Nichols, Calvin Martin, Henry Daniel, Hugh Malcolm, Thomas
Ingersoll, Jacob Goble, Adjt. Ensigns, Peter Martin, Jos. Woodrow, A.
Burtch, Jos. Ingersoll, Wm. Underwood, Quartermaster, Wm. McCartney.

They were men of many-sided abilities in those days, for at this
time Col. Horner and Lt.-Col. Ingersoll were the representatives of Oxford
in Parliament. Col. Thos. Horner, M. P., was also Registrar of Oxford,
the Registrar of Wentworth and Halton at the same time being James
Durand. The population of Burford in 1825 is given as 675 and Oakland
341. In 1828 a regular volunteer company was organized in Burford
under command of Col. Geo. W. Whitehead, the roll including the names
of the Dutchers, Adam Lampman, Abisha Rand, Jonathan and Enoch
Ryder, Platt and Pierce Cronk, the Higsons and others.

The father of the late Bishop Reynolds was one of the earliest
settlers. He came in about 1796 and remained until 1803, when he pushed
further west to the Township of Dorchester. Lawrence Daniel came from
Nova Scotia in 1803, and was one of the leading men of the Township
during its early history, and for many years was Justice of the Peace.

John and William Fowler were early settlers migrating from New
Brunswick in 1798. In later years a prominent member of this family
was the Right Rev. Charles H. Fowler, Bishop of the Methodist Episcopal
Church. He was born in Burford in 1837 and died in New York, March
20th, 1910. He was a man of keen and ready wit. In this regard it is
related that during an important meeting of clergy and laity one of the
latter, displeased at a ruling, exclaimed: “Deliver me from the snare of
the Fowler,” whereupon the Bishop smilingly completed the quotation by
adding: “and from the noisome pestilence.”

Daniel Southwick, father of Daniel Southwick of Falkland, settled
in Burford in 1818 and carved a good homestead out of the forest. Wm.
Lloyd Jones, father of Thos. Lloyd Jones, came from North Wales in
1836. The son had many honors cast upon him by his fellow electors
in the township, which he bore worthily. The Muirs arrived in 1830.


An outstanding man of over eighty years ago was Col. Charles Strange
Perley. He was born in New Brunswick in 1796 and came to Upper
Canada with his mother in 1801. Although only sixteen years of age he
was present at several engagements during the war of 1812, and after
his marriage to a daughter of Col. McCall, of Norfolk, settled in An-
caster. In 1834 he located in Burford acquiring considerable property,
and speedily becoming prominent in the military and political life of
the Township. Surrounded by a family of five sons and five daughters,
his home was for a lengthy period a social centre. He raised a company
of militia during the rebellion of 1837 and soon after that was created
a Lt.-Colonel. He was a genial man of the “burly squire” order, and a
red hot loyalist. In 1840 he was appointed Magistrate of the District
of Brock and he was first Reeve after Burford Township became part of
the County of Brant.

The first meeting of Burford Township Council under
Council ^g Municipal Act of 1849 took place at the inn of Henry

Dorman (later Vanderlip’s) , Cathcart, on the 21st day
of January, A.D., 1850. The members elect were Ransford Rounds,
Chas. S. Perley, I. B. Henry, Robert Muir, and Chas. Hedgers. Ransford
Rounds was elected Reeve by the Council, and C. S. Perley, Deputy Reeve,
and Geo. G. Ward, appointed Clerk. It is worthy of mention that
Messrs. Henry and Hedgers were elected for twenty-one years in suc-
cession to this Council, a record almost unexampled in Municipal


The first grants of land in the Township of Oakland were made on
May 22, 1797. The grantees were Robt. Pelkington of Lot 2 on the 2nd.
Concession, Lot 1 on the 3rd. Concession, and Lots 1 and 2 on the 4th.,
in all 800 acres, Bulah Millard, Lot 4 on the 4th Concession and Lot 5
on the 5th, 400 acres. M. Andrew Meyers, Lot 1 on the 5th, and Lot 2
on the 6th Concession, 400 acres, and John Wray, Lot 3 in the 5th,
200 acres. Among the other early grantees were Lot 3, Concession 3 to
Margaret Hurst, August 10, 1801, Lot 1, Concession 1, Lot 1, Concession

2, North half Lot 8, Concession 3, and half Lot 8, Concession 4, in all
600 acres, to Finlay Malcolm, on May 17th 1802. On the same date Lot

3, Concession 1, was granted to Jane Corliss; 6, 7, 8, Concession 2, and
South half 8, Concession 3, 700 acres, to Edwin Beebe. Lot 9, Concession
2, to John Secord, 550 acres on Concession 2 to Charles Burtch. On
February 23, 1803, Lot 6, Concession 5, was patented to Ralph Clench,
Lot 10 Concession 3 and Lot 9, Concession 4, were granted Daniel


Secord, and on August 2nd 1806, Lots 5 and 6 Concession 1 and Lot 4,
Concession 2,600 acres, were granted to Mordecai Sayles.

The first instrument recorded is dated January 3, 1803, and is a
deed from John Smith, Jr., to Matthew Messecar, of Lot 12, in the 1st
Concession of Burford Gore, 200 acres.

The next, on February 8th 1804, was a deed from William Slason to
Haggai Westbrook, of Lot 7, 1st Concession Gore of Burford 200 acres.

Several of the patentees above named did not locate upon their grants.
Captain Pelkington was an officer in the Royal Engineers. Finlay Mal-
colm was the progenitor of the Malcolms of Scotland. Jane Corliss was a
daughter of Chas. Burtch, one of the earliest settlers. Margaret Hurst
lived at Niagara. Edwin Beebe did not settle, but his son did, who was
the father of the late Smith Beebe. John Secord settled on Lot 9, Con-
cession 2. It was held by his son, Asa. Daniel Secord settled on Lot 9,
Concession 4, and was succeeded by his son Daniel, while his grandsons
are residents of Oakland and Brantford City. Mordecai Sayles was the
grandfather of the late Mrs. Thompson, wife of Squire Thompson, of
Oakland, and the ancestor of several other families of the name.

From 1800 to 1803 the courts of Oakland and Burford were held at
the house of James Munro, in the Township of Charlotteville.

In 1804 they were removed to the house of Job Lodor, inn-keeper at
Turkey Point. They were held in Vittoria from 1815 to 1825, when the
court house there was burned, then in St. Thomas and London in 1826.
In 1840 Woodstock became the county town, and in 1862 Brantford.

Probably the earliest settler in the township was Finlay
“[?:’ Malcolm, a U. E. Loyalist, who came from Nova Scotia

and who was of Scotch descent. His son, Eliakim Mal-
colm Sr., was born in Oakland December 13th, 1801. Finlay Malcolm
took out his patent of 500 acres of land in 1802, and then had been a
resident for some time. He built a saw, carding and grist mill in the
early days of the century, the firm being Finlay and John Malcolm, the
latter being a son. He was a leading spirit in the township. Later his
sons, John and Eliakim, followed in his footsteps. The Malcolms are
still very numerous in the vicinity of Scotland. Other sons of Finlay
were Hugh, Charles, Duncan and Isaac Brock. Haggai Westbrook, of
the family who were the pioneers of Brantford Township, settled about
the same time as the Malcolms. Mordecai Westbrook, his son was born in
the Township in 1800. He was the father of Abraham Westbrook, ex-
Reeve of the Township. Hiram was another son of Haggai born 1808,
Abraham another, both long residents. Malcolm Brown was born in the
township in 1803, as was also his wife, Mary Fairchild, in 1810, his


father, Archibald Brown, having come in with die Malcolms. William
and Daniel were other sons. Matthew Messecar must also rank among the
pioneers, for the first recorded conveyance in 1803 is to him. He came
from New Jersey, and Mathew and Truemani Messecar, were his sons.
Wm. Messecar came later from Pennsylvania, his son being Wm. Messecar.
Wellington McAllister, actively in public life for fifty years, was born in
the township in 1815. George Cunningham, Constant Eddy, Peter
Malcolm, John Eddy and Squire Thompson were pioneers. The Fair-
childs, Isaac, Timothy, Samuel and Francis came from Fairchild’s creek.
When Squire Thompson came into the Township in 1822 there would
be, in addition to those already mentioned and their families, John Wood-
ley, Charles Edy, John Tyler, whose wife was a Malcolm and owned a
farm west of Squire Thompson’s; John Hendershot, who rented Mal-
colm’s mills for a time; Justus Smith, who was on 3 and 4 in the 4th
Concession; Daniel Hazen, who carried the mail from Hamilton to Simcoe
Richard Phillips, who lived on the south part of 8 in the 3rd, and who
went to the vicinity of Ancaster, Henry Bennett, Henry Lester, David
Lefler, Henry Gates and his son Hiram Gates, Charles and Thomas Sayles,
Charles Chapin, who lived on 3 in the 3rd, the father of Lyman Chapin;
Charles Burtch, who accumulated a good deal of property, John and
Nicholas Mclntyre, who went in in 1822, Nicholas being the father of
Daniel Mclntyre and Joseph Mclntyre ex- Warden; Benjamin Hoover,
Jonathan Burtch, son of Charles Burtch, and others. Moses Baldwin,
father of M. H. Baldwin, came from New Jersey and settled in Oakland
in 1833. The Merrits, Abraham, father of Benj. B. Merritt, and Caleb,
father of Isaac B. came in still later from New Brunswick. The Winegar-
dens settled in the township about 1812.

The village of Scotland was laid out and surveyed by
Eliakim Malcolm, son of Finlay Malcolm. He was a

IT … rr. i r

leading spirit in the lownship tor many years. He was
the first Reeve of Oakland and the first Warden of the County of Brant
and launched the new county in his opening address to the council in
January 1853, with all the dignity and circumstances befitting the occasion.
It is said that he would have been the first sheriff of the county, had he
accepted the offer of the government of that day. But he desired to be
Registrar, and the government being unable to gratify him in this, he de-
clined to accept the shrievalty. “Liak” Malcolm was a well known figure
and a man of affairs in the district and county with which he was assoc-
iated for 50 years. The village of Oakland was laid out by surveyor
Thos Walsh in 1810. In 1822 the Malcolm’s saw and grist mill, J.


Loder’s saw and grist mill, and Henry Gates’ carding mill were running

As Burford and Oakland were settled largely by those of the loyalist
stock it is worth noting, as a matter of record, some of those who
received land and scrip for their services in the war or as descendents of
the old U. E. Loyalists.

Those who received grants as loyalists, as appears by the
rants W Crown Lands records, included Eliakim Malcolm, his
brothers James, Hugh, Charles and Duncan, all sons of
Finlay Malcolm; Eleanor Doyle, Burford, daughter of Benjamin Doyle;
Lavina Sage, wife of Allan Sage, and daughter of John File; Elizabeth
Lennington of Dumfries wife of Wm. Lennington and daughter of David
Van Every; Eleanor Ellis, wife of Henry Ellis, and daughter of Ed. Mc-
Miohael of Walsingham; Anna Mudge, Dumfries, wife of Ed. Mudge,
and daughter of Stephen Middaugh; Abraham Nelles, son of Robt. Nelles,
of Grimsby; Jesse Millard, Oakland, son of Dan Mil lard; Asa Secord,
Oakland, son of John Secord; Sarah Baker, Oakland, wife of Elias Baker,
and daughter of Dan Millard; Rebecca Beamer, Burford, wife of George
Beamer, and daughter of Benj. Doyle; Charlotte Hawley, wife of Henry
Hawley, and daughter of John Files. Her grant was 200 acres in the
Township of Enniskillen; Hugh Clark, Burford; Sam Doyle, son of Benj.
Doyle; Matthias Woodley, Oakland, son of Geo. Woodley; Richard Boul-
sby, Buck’s Company Volunteers; Thos. Boulsby, volunteer in Captain
Thomas’ company; Martha Baker, wife of John Baker, and daughter of
Chas. Burtch. of Burford Gore; Delia Fowler, daughter, and Thos. and
Wm. Fowler, sons of John Fowler; Jane Corlis, late Jane Mount, Burford,
wife of Swain Corlis, and daughter of Chas. Burtch; Mary Gates, Burford,
wife of Henry Gates, and daughter of Chas. Burtch; Sarah Eddy, Burford
Gore, wife of Chas. Eddy, and daughter of Finlay Malcolm; Abraham
DeCou, Burford, son of Jacob DeCou; Dan Secord, Jr., Grand River, son
of Daniel Secord; Hannah Olmstead, Burford Gore, wife of Jonas Olm-
stead, and daughter of George Woodley. These were recipients of lands
in the province from one hundred to two hundred acres each.

Among those who received Government grants for services
durin S the war of 1812 were Miller Laurason, Dumfries,
private 2nd York; Henry Slaght, Oakland, private 2nd.
Norfolk; David Heron and George Winegarden, privates 4th Lincoln;
Andrew Heron, Jr., private 2nd Norfolk; Matthias Woodley, Burford
Gore; Stephen Douglas, Grand River; George Rouse, Joshua Rouse,
Abraham Rounds, Jonathan Stevens, all of Burford, privates 1st. Oxford;
Adam Yeigh, Burford, Sergeant in Capt., White’s first flank company and


G. W. Potter, Burf ord, Sergeant 3rd Lincoln. These grants were in Moore,
Brooke, Ekfrid, Nissouri and Zorra townships. Jos. Beamer, Martin
Boughner, Ghas. Glover, John Glover, Sam Jay, Peter Lefler, Anthony
Sovereen, John Sovereen and Conrad Winegarden, of Townsend, received
grants as privates of one hundred acres each in Zorra. Others receiving
scrip and land were John Woodley and Geo. Woodley, of Burf ord Gore;
Abraham DeCou, Geo. Lane, Horatio Fowler, Hugh Malcolm, Sergeant
Duncan Malcolm, John Malcolm, Josiah Brown, Anthony Westbrook,
Abner DeCou, Peter Martin, John W. Clark, Joseph Fowler, Samuel Fag-
erson, Jas. Secord and Henry C. Beamer, of Burf ord; Peter Malcolm and
Neal Brown, of Burf ord Gore; and Alex. Allen, Grand River. These
grants were nearly all in Efawn township.

Among those who participated in the war of 1812 and in
A Veteran ^ upr i smg O f 1337 was Squire Thompson of Oakland,

Pioneer. j i 1 j j

who remained clear in mind and memory, and active in

body until well on to the century mark. His father, Sergeant Thompson,
belonged to the First Royal Scots, who, upon the outbreak of the 1812
trouble, were ordered from the Barbadoes to Canada, and served at
Chippewa, Fort Erie, and Lundy’s Lane, where the Sergeant was wounded.
The first work young Thompson did was to help build up the breast-
works at Fort George, his father having hired him out as a boy of thirteen
or fourteen to one John Macfarlane for that purpose. When the Ameri-
cans took Fort Erie and the British laid siege to it, young Thompson drove
an ox-cart backward and forward, from Fort George to Fort Erie, with
ammunition and supplies, and had a hard time of it for a boy, with little
to eat and little time to sleep on these forced marches. Then he ran a
team every night on the battery, working at the approaches at Fort Erie,
and the Dutchman who owned the team, being frightened at such close
proximity to the fight, sold out to Thompson, who henceforth, while the
siege lasted drew four dollars and two dollars a day for rations. He
went to Niagara for a time after the war closed, and in 1817 came to
Brant County and served his apprenticeship as a blacksmith at Alberton.
Then Brantford did not exist. The principal part of the Mohawk village
was at what is now Cainsville, and called Cayuga. In 1822 he opened
a blacksmith shop at Oakland village, and did quite a trade for a few
years, there being no blacksmith shop nearer than Brantford, Burford
village or Waterford. About 1826 or 1827 he settled on a farm. When
the rebellion of 1837 was on the tapis he took an active part in the
debates and meetings which culminated in the rising. General opinion
favored a refusal to pay taxes, and resistance to so doing, even to arms.
One McGuire, a school teacher, was a strong exponent of this course,


but the Squire turned the tables on him by declaring that he could take
his books under his arm and leave, but the others could not carry off
their farms and their cattle so handily. When the rising took place Asa
Secord and the Squire had been to Waterford with wheat, and heard of
the meeting on their return home, but he made up his mind not to go
near it and passed on home. He was sent for, however, that same night,
and was*asked to take men to Johnson’s at Boston, where they would find
arms, and to a certain store at Mt. Pleasant where they would secure
powder and lead. He learned, however, that the Government had se-
cured the arms at Johnson’s so they went in search of the powder and lead.
He knew that Job Tripp, then a clerk in the store and long after a resi-
dent of Brantford, would give them the key of the store house on demand,
and that what they were seeking would be found under the wheat. They
secured the keg of powder and bag of lead and took them to Scotland.
Next day the stampede occurred, and among the rest Thompson and
Charles Chapin, who were together, considered it wise to get out of the
country. They left their horses at Johnson’s, in Boston village and made
for the boundary. Near Hartford, they met several others in a similar
situation with themselves. Chapin and Thompson however, kept together
and after going a certain distance, learning that the river was closely
guarded, they returned and remained in hiding until the proclamation of
amnesty to all those who had not been guilty of murder or arson. They
surrendered themselves to Andrew Eadie, a magistrate and were sent to
Hamilton gaol where they were incarcerated for ten months. Thompson
was freed from durance after managing to get an interview with Sir
George Arthur, the Governor, and Sir Allan McNab, while on a visit to
the gaol. Sir George, in the course of the interview, expressed surprise
that the son of a sergeant in the Royal Scots should be connected with
such an undertaking. Squire Thompson was a colonel in the militia, a
magistrate, Reeve of Oakland for several years, Warden of the county
and closely allied with the political and municipal history of this county
during a long and active life.


This is the largest of the Brant County Townships and reference has
already been made to three of the earliest settlers who came in prior to
1800. Another of the first arrivals was John File. When a lad, his
father sent him on an errand to the troops of the Revolutionary war and
he became so enamored of military life that he did not return. He fin-
ally became one of Butler’s Rangers and was on terms of friendship with
Brant. When the war was over, he settled about 1790, in Smoky Hollow


under an Indian lease. His sons were Joseph, Malachi, Benjamin and
John J. Isaac Whiting, the head of the family of that name was a U. E.
loyalist from Pennsylvania and served through the Revolutionary war.
He settled in 1795 in Norfolk County but soon after came into Brantford
Township. He was a strongly constituted man and speedily cleared a
farm, in the forest. David Phelps settled in the Grand River Swamp
about 1800. His ancestors came over in the Mayflower. Like many
other settlers, there being plenty of land, he furnished children to take it
up as soon as possible. He had sixteen. John Oles was born near Little
York, Haldimand in 1796. In 1803 his mother, being widowed, settled
at Mount Pleasant, where he resided till 1822, when, marrying a daughter
of Isaac Whiting, he bought 150 acres from his father-in-law, in his neigh-
borhood, which he farmed. Mr. Oles as a lad took part in the war of
1812. Jacob Langs came from Pennsylvania in 1807, swimming the
Niagara with his horse on the way, and settled at what is now Langf ord.
He had a large family, which came over after him, and the clan is now
large and well known, the oldest son, John, marrying a daughter of
Major Westbrook. The family brought over a peculiar treed of
horses, the Fearnaughts. The Vanderlips were U. E. Loyalists, the head
of the house, William, a Butler Ranger, settling in Wentworth. The
oldest son, Edward, born in Wentworth, in 1793, married a daughter of
Jacob Langs and settled in Brant. He was a magistrate, a councillor and
captain in the militia. He had nine children. Daniel Hawley came to
Canada from the States and took up a farm on Fairchild’s creek which had
been leased by Brant to Alex. Westbrook. Abram Hawley was also an
early arrival. St. Jean Baptiste Rosseau, who came from Lower Canada
in 1790 and settled in Ancaster, seemed to have obtained leases from
Captain Brant of several farms on Fairchild’s creek. He, with one Wil-
son, agreed to build a corn mill for the Indians, which they did some-
where in the early nineties.

Wheeler Douglas who was born in New York State in 1750, later con-
ducted a store in Albany, N. Y. In 1798 his property was destroyed by
fire and he then made a journey to the “Ford” remaining for about a
year with Capt. Joseph Brant. In 1799 he returned with his family and
settled on the Grand River. Later he took up a tract of five hundred
acres near Mount Vernon, receiving his lease from Brant, and spent his
latter years in comfort. The Kerr tract along the river just west of the
city, was part of the Brant farm owned by Captain Joseph Brant, and
devised to his son Captain John Brant, and from him to William Johnson
Kerr, who married a daughter of Joseph Brant. That part of the East
ward, south of Colborne Street, was called the Lafferty tract. It was a


tract of 700 acres along the east of the city claimed by the sons of Mrs.
Polly Lafferty, daughter of Brant Johnson of the Mohawks. The Biggar
tract, the gore between the Smith & Kerby tract and the old town proper,
now all built upon, was patented by Robert Biggar, in 1835, having been
first leased by Brant to Joseph Smith, the father of Sheriff Smith, and
transferred to Biggar shortly after the war of 1812. Capt. James Durand
took up 1200 acres on the Grand River swamp, two miles east of Fair-
child’s and built two saw mills on Hynd’s creek. He lived on this fine
property with his six sons until 1830, when he removed to Hamilton. In
1888 Charles Durand of Toronto, one of the sons, gave some interesting
reminiscences of the early days in Brant County. Extracts from these
recollections are quoted elsewhere in this work. John Day came to the
Township early in the eighteenth century and three of his sons fought in
the war of 1812. Solomon, the oldest, married a daughter of Isaac
Whiting. Benjamin Cornwall, together with his wife and family, settled
west of Brantford in 1811, but a few months later bought a quantity of
land east of Fairchild’s Creek, from Capt. Joseph Brant. Two of his
sons served in the war of 1812. Stephen Burtch settled in the Township
in 1813, and Burtch Post Office was named after his family. Enos Bun-
nell, the descendant of an old Cornish family and a U. E. loyalist, came
to Canada from Connecticut in 1800 and secured a farm of 184 acres
on Fairchild’s Creek which had originally been leased by Brant for 999
years to John B. Rosseau. Mr. Bunnell had two sons, Alexander and
Enos, the latter born on the farm in 1818. The boys when they reached
mans estate became prominent dealers in grain and located in Brantford,
erecting what was later known as the “White Mill,” a large structure
which used to be located on the far side of the canal bank at the foot of
Alfred Street. Enos, who was a very active citizen and interested in many
projects, died in 1875. He was the father of Mr. A. K. Bunnell, City
Treasurer, and the Misses Bunnell of this city. Another son, John A. Bun-
nell, went to Chicago in 1882 and in 1893 became a partner of Hately
Brothers, Packers and Provision Merchants. He is now President of
the Company. In 1907 and 1908, Mr. Bunnell was Vice President of
the Chicago Board of Trade and President in 1909, the first time that
honor had ever been won by a Canadian.

Other early families included the Legacys, Dowlings, Shavers, Shep-
pards, Kitchens, Moyles, Sandersons, Lucks, Depews, Carlyles, Goods,
Ramsays, Bothwells, Smiths, (G.) Campbells, Mclntyres, Townsends,
Raceys, Donohues, Connors, Dicksons, Ewings, Reids, Cleators, Lawsons,
Sears, Birketts, Pikes, Dickies.

The first Council of this Township was composed of David Christie,


Reeve; Herbert Biggar, Deputy Reeve; Benson Jones, James Cockshutt
and Edward Vanderlip, Councillors.


This was the last of the Townships to be settled, the land having been
surrendered by the Indians in 1840 and surveyed in 1841 and 1842 by
one Kirkpalrick. However the influx of white men commenced before the
dates named. The first actual settlers were David Jones and his father,
in 1836, followed by Joseph Brown, who settled on the river front and
opened the first tavern. In 1837 George and Thomas Brown, William
Lamb and William Urie, came in. In the same year James Ferris, John
Paterson and John Quin arrived, also James Chapman and Thomas Conboy
Sr. Among other early arrivals were John Dickinson, William Burrill,
and Arthur Smith, who settled on Lots 3 and 4, River Range. In the
centre of the township were the brothers Howell; Burns, Dutton, Walker,
James and Samuel Simpson, Joseph Matthews and Thomas Baker. Cap-
tain Murray started a grocery at the mouth of Big Creek, and John S.
Hager in 1838 was the first settler in what is now the village of Middle-
port. Peter McKerricker was elected in 1842 to represent the township
in the county council at Hamilton. Thomas Conboy was assessor, and
Frank Walker, collector. The first log school house was on the farm of
Henry Gilmore, Lot 24, Concession 2, with William Shannon as teacher,
who was shortly succeeded by Terence Jones, later of Brantford. In 1839
William Howell and Rev. H. Biggar built a saw mill on Fairchild’s Creek.
John Merrill erected a steam saw mill and grist mill in Onondaga, and
Thomas Bingham a steam saw mill in the New England settlement.
Thomas Armour, J. P., settled in the township about 1834. Alexander
Buchanan was also an early arrival. Thomas H. Dickinson, son of John
Dickinson, was born in Onondaga in 1835. Alexander Douglas was a
prominent resident and came in 1842. Edwin Fair settled in Onondaga
in 1838, and served in the rebellion of ’37 under Captain Willson. Rich-
ard Harris, settled in 1840. Isaac Howell, son of William Howell, was
born in the township in 1839. William Mulligan came in 1842. The
Howdens and the Hamiltons came later, also James Grant, J. P., and
Major W. N. Alger. Richard Herdsman, for twenty years Treasurer of the
Township, settled early, for there is a petition from him to the Crown
Lands Department in 1844, in which he states that he had served for
thirty one years, three months with the King’s Guards, fought with the
regiment at “Waterloo,” where he had a horse shot and four sabre wounds
for which he received a medal; also a medal for meritorious conduct, on
being discharged in addition to his pension. William D. Soules was the


first store keeper and postmaster in Onondaga Village, originally known
as Smith’s Corners.

Prominent among early settlers not already mentioned were S. R.
Howley, George Thomas, William Harrison, John Berry, Abram Diamond,
John Whiting, George Barton, Phillip Gillard, Robert Griffiths, James
Graham, Daniel McNaughton, (who was an active politician) ; James
Bateman, William Othred, Alfred Dickenson, Alexander Buchanan, Isaac
Hodgins, Alexander Fair, James Grant, Justice of the Peace; George
Johnson, John and Ebenezer Merrill, William Dutton, who owned a hotel
and the little wharf known as Dutton’s Landing; David Smith, the keeper
of a small grocery in the village of Onondaga, Colonel Willson, (father
of Mrs. John Cameron and R. M. Willson, Clerk of the Township of
Brantford) ; William Oliver, Richard Youard, who managed the first
store in the village of Middleport for Arthur Smith, about the year 1853.

John Solomon Hagar, who was quite a prominent figure in the early
days of the Township, had probably the most exciting experience after
his arrival. He came in 1838 and located on lots 62 and 63, river range.
Unknown to him a portion of the property had been used by the pagan
Indians as their “Fire Grounds” and here among other ceremonies, they
had practiced their annual custom of burning a white dog. For
this reason they made every effort to drive him away by acts of violence.
At one time they tore down his shanty. On another occasion they as-
sembled in such hostile force that he sent the rest of the family down the
river in a canoe to his father-in-law’s house, but the plucky pioneer remain-
ed to defend his property and was beaten and left for dead. He recovered
and subsequently obtained his patent. Mr. Hagar entered suit against the
Six Nations and obtained damages. In after years he lived on friendly
terms with them. This is the only incident ever recorded in Brant County
of any overt act upon the part of the red men.

In the year 1836 a dam was made on the river at Caledonia; in 1838
the tow path was surveyed. The commissioners sent to negotiate with
the Indians for the surrender of their lands were Col. Jarvis and Major
Winniett, and the surrender took place in 1839 and 1840.

It was not long before the lumbermen were at work among the large
forests of trees. James Little, who owned a sawmill at Caledonia, was
the first to get out logs which he floated down the Grand River. Ronald
McKinnon, Charles Smith, J. Britton and Peter McKerricher soon followed
and the latter continued in this business in a more permanent way than
the others.

With the first settlers and lumber men came the first taverns. The
first, a small log building, was erected by Joseph Brown at the confluence


of Big Creek and the Grand River. At about the same period George May
put up another log tavern west of Brown’s and it was in this building
that municipal gatherings took place. Charles Baldwin was the host of
another hostelry further up the River Road.

The second school in the Township was built near the mouth of
Big Creek in 1842, and Mr. David Dick was the teacher. Afterwards this
building was moved about a mile and a half west on a farm belonging
to Mr. Jacob Boyce.

The first clergyman who visited this settlement was a Rev. Mr. Hill,
an English Church minister. The few settlers brought their children to be
baptised by him. Not having any building for public worship he was
obliged to preach in dwelling houses, barns, or in any place he found
suitable. Rev. Dr. Ferrier, Presbyterian minister from Caledonia, found
his way to Onondaga to spread the Gospel in a somewhat similar manner
among the people. The first church in Onondaga was erected by the
New England Company.

The first session of the Township of Onondaga, after inclusion in
Brant County, took place in January of 1852. George Youell was elected
Reeve by the other members who consisted of Messrs. Alger, Carryer,
Mulligan, and May. W. D. Soules was appointed Township Clerk and
occupied the position until April 1871. John Henderson was acting clerk
for the balance of the year and until the first meeting in 1872, when Mr.
McKelvey was appointed and continued in office until his death in 1912,
when Mr. Alfred Burrill was selected as his successor.

When the municipality was included in the United Townships of
Onondaga and Tuscarora the first Councillors were W. N. Alger, George
May, Peter McKerricher and William Oliver. Among the rules adopted
by these gentlemen was one which commanded “that no councillor shall
speak disrespectfully of the Queen or any of the Royal family, or person
administering the government of this Province; nor shall he use unman-
nerly or indecent language against the proceedings, or against particular

The earliest frame barn belonged to Mr. Hagar, and was built in
the year 1843, and the second to Mr. William Peddle, and was raised
on July 2nd 1844. The people flocked from all around to see them,
they were such a novelty at this time. The first fanning mill was owned
by Mr. Ferris. This being the only one, it served the whole neighborhood
and was borrowed for miles around. |.*</

As by far the larger portion of the Indian reservation is on the south
side of the Grand River there are no bridges in this township spanning
that stream and ferries are in use during summer; these are propelled


by an endless chain. In winter the ice provides a safe crossing. The name
“Onondaga,” is owing to the fact of Indians of that tribe having been
mainly settled in what is now the Township.


This is the name given to the township which constitutes just about
all that remains of the former immense territory ceded to the Six Nations
Indians; six miles on each side of the Grand River from “its mouth
to its source,” a distance of one hundred miles.

The fact has already been related that at the time the Six Nations were
settled here the land had been previously acquired from the Mississauga
Indians by the British Government. In 1774 the Sachems, and war chiefs
and principal women of that tribe, in consideration of 1,180 7s 4d, sold
to “our Sovereign Lord, George the Third,” lands which roughly speaking
comprised the territory between the Niagara River up to Oakville, north-
westerly to Hespeler and London and south to Port Stanley. This region
was included in that tremendous cession, although land in that era was
held of little account and the Mississaugas had not much of a title. It has
been estimated that the grant given the Six Nations, counting land and
water, represented 1,200 square miles, or 768,000 acres, covering the
present townships of Sherbrooke, Moulton, Dunn, Ganboro, Cayuga, Sen-
eca, Oneida, Tuscarora, Onondaga, Brantford, Dumfries, Waterloo, Wool-
wich, Pilkington and Nichol.

That tract was much smaller than the Indians had previously possessed
in New York State, but they seemed to be satisfied.

The area which Capt. Joseph Brant had been authorized to surrender
was described in the power of attorney, as 310,391 acres. From a report
made to the Government in 1830 the disposition of those lands can be

94,305 acres, now constituting the township of Dumfries were sold to
P. Steadman for 8,841. This tract passed into the possession of Hon.
William Dickson, who paid the price and opened the land for settlement.

94,012 acres, the township of Waterloo, were sold to Richard Beasley
James Wilson and John B. Rosseau for 8,887.

3,000 acres additional were given to Mr. Beasley to make up a de-
ficiency in Waterloo township.

86,078 acres, the township of Woolwich were sold to William Wallace
for 16,364. Mr. Wallace paid for 7,000 acres, and the Indians report-
ed to the commission that they had given from this tract 10,000 acres to
Mrs. Glaus, daughter of Sir William Johnson, and 5,000 acres to Captain


Brant. Jacob Erb had bargained for 45,185 acres of Woolwich town-
ship at half a dollar per acre.

28,152 acres, Nichol township, were sold to Hon. Thomas Clark for
3,564 payable in 1,000 years from the date of the bond, the interest to
be paid annually.

30,800 acres, the township of Moulton, were sold to W. Jarvis for
5,775; sold out to Lord Selkirk, who sold to Henry J. Boulton.

The township of Canboro’ was granted to John Dockstader, who trans-
ferred it to Benjamin Canby for the benefit of Docfcstader’s Indian child-
ren. It was reported that Canby had paid neither principal nor interest.

The Township of Sherbrooke appears to have been given to Mr. Dick-
son, on his agreement to transact all necessary business of a professional
character for the Indians.

15,000 acres, comprised in the township of Pilkington, were sold to
Captain Pilkington.

The commissioners who made the enquiry in the year named, further
reported that nothing had been adduced calculated to show that Brant
had ever acted otherwise than with “due fidelity.”

Until long after Brant’s death the entire area of what is now Brant-
ford Township remained in possession of the red men, despite settlement
but in 1830 the village plot of Brantford and the north part of the town-
ship were deeded away and it was not long before further surrenders
were made.

The early history of the Iroquois (Six Nations,) shows

T> ^j that like the Attiwandarons, they were village builders.

Builders. . , . ‘ , , , , f ,

baid villages were clusters ot bark lodges, most ot them

communal dwellings and were surrounded by walls of tree trunks set in
the ground vertically, sometimes three rows deep, to give strength and
to close all chinks between the tall posts. About the base of the stock-
ade in many, if not most instances, the earth was heaped up in the form
of a wall, leaving on the outside a deep trench or dry moat, and on the
inside an elevation. The stockade was from 16 to 22 feet high and had a
running board, or continuous platform, ,on the inside, over which the
patrols might walk in guarding the town, or upon which the warriors
might assail a foe. There were always stones and other weapons, no
doubt blessed by magical rites, lying on the fighting top. In some ruins
of these earth circles or stockade bases there have been found quantities
of stones of a size useful for throwing by hand. The fortified town was,
in most instances, on a hill top, where a narrow neck of land connected a
lobate projection with the main terrace. For this reason a “nose” of a
hill, having a small stream on either side, was often chosen. The steep


sides of the hill gave protection in two or three directions and the neck
and point of the nose (where there was often a trail), were strongly for-
tified by a stockade. Where the favourite form of a hill could not be
located, the village stockade was outlined and the circular refuge built
up. The area of the walled enclosure among the Iroquois varied from
about half an acre to sixteen acres.

The houses were built of bark upon a framework of poles, some
dwellings having an arched, and some a peaked roof. These houses,
when small, might serve for two or more families, and when so were from
12-16 feet in width and from 20-30 feet in length. When of the usual
communal size for five or more families, the house might be from 16-20
feet wide or more, and 50-80, or even 100 feet and more, in length. In
the roof there were openings of sufficient size to permit the exit of smoke.
These smoke vents were at regular intervals at the boundary marks be-
tween families, though in some instances, each family probably had its
individual fire, instead of one fire serving for two families. The fires
were on the earth floors of the lodges, and about them the people clustered
when they were not sitting or reclining on the platforms that bordered the
lodge like wide bunks, one above the other. The lower platforms served
as beds and seats, keeping the inhabitants above the ground. The upper
platforms were used for storage places, or, in case of crowding, for
sleeping bunks. Braids of corn and other foods hung from the rafters
and braces within the lodge. Dried meat hung near the smoke vent so as
to be completely cured. The furnishings of the house consisted of mats
woven from corn husk or rushes, or rugs woven from the inner bark of
the elm or basswood; robes and coverlets of fur; dishes of bark and
wood; storage boxes and barrels of bark; a mortar or several mortars
and pestles of wood, and many small mealing stones and mullers; bask-
ets of various kinds used for storage and pack purposes, and for prepar-
ing corn and beans for food; ropes and pack straps woven from bark
fibre; paddles, clay cooking pots; bone implements for tools and for
holding food; stone hammers; stone-headed hatchets; scrapers of flint;
knives with flint blades; wooden and bark spoons, the former having
carved handles; notched ladders; baby carriers; etc. The lodge was full
of things needful for conducting domestic life. In a secure place on an
upper platform might be found some hunter’s lacrosse sticks, snow snakes,
and other articles used in games. Near by would be his favorite bow, his
quiver, articles of spare clothing, stone hunting-knives, war clubs, toma-
hawks, and many other things that a warrior and hunter might need. In
an especially secure place, safe from prying eyes, would be his ceremonial
paraphernalia, including, perhaps, a false face, rattles of various kinds,


feather wands, smoking pipes, mysterious bundles containing magic
charms and substances, war paint, and ornamental trophies. The women
would have their chests of fine furs, velvet-tanned robes, fillets of moose
hair and porcupine quills and other finery; they, too, would have their
magical things, designed to insure a full harvest, or to retain the love
of their husbands, for men even in those austere days must be charmed.
In the lodge were dogs, dolls, game stones and other things to delight
the children. In a convenient place would be a box of salve that would
keep away the fleas that did so evilly beset everybody who lived in a bark
lodge. Each house was full of utensils, but everything was orderly; it
would never do to get a long house in a litter. The floors were swept
and the dishes washed regularly. When a dish wore out or fouled, it
was simply burned or cast over the brink of a hill.

The houses clustered about in no special order. The world was free
and the aborigines gave no excuse for the existence of a street commiss-
ioner; everyone might build where he pleased, so long as he did not
offend his neighbor’s notion of where his house site right extended. A
village contained from 25 to 500 or more people and from three to sixty
lodges, though in later times there were often more.

Village life was made possible through agriculture. The Iroquois
were farmers who cultivated extensive patches of maize, beans, squashes,
sunflowers, gourds, tobacco and other garden produce. They stored the
surplus of the harvest in public granaries as well as in communal lodges.
The men cleared the fields and helped to prepare the soil, but the
women sowed the seeds and cared for the produce until after harvest.
It was the woman’s duty to provide the vegetable food, and the man’s
to bring home the meat. The women worked in little companies and
sang as they worked.

Garden tools were digging sticks made from poles, and long clubs with
a tough root spike; hoes made from antlers or flattened stones also the
shoulder blades of deer and elk; and wooden spades similar to canoe
paddles. Baskets of bark and of ash splints, were used for holding seed
or in harvesting it.

Such were the surroundings and such the customs of the ancestors of
the Six Nations whose record in war was one of outstanding achievement.
In 1771, before the loyalty of the Six Nations had been
further proved by the Revolutionary war, Rev. Charles
Inglis of Trinity church New York, said during the course
of a communication to the Earl of Hillsborough, then British Secretary
of State. “From the first reduction of this Province, (New York) by the
British arms, they entered into a strict alliance with the English, which


they have always inviolably observed. History, perhaps, cannot furnish
an instance where a treaty of this kind has been more faithfully adhered
to. It subsisted upwards of a hundred years without any material breach
on their part. Those nations, ever since their union in a league of con-
federacy, were greatly superior in courage and military skill to the
other savages of North America. From that period, which commenced
before we had any knowledge of this Province, they have been the terror
of all the neighboring tribes, most of which they have subdued; some
they have entirely extirpated. The spirit of conquest carried them far
beyond the limits of their own native districts. They have extended
their empire over a tract of country twelve hundred miles in length, from
north to south, and six hundred in breadth, from east to west. Their
alliance with the English naturally led them to take part with us when at
war with France. The French have often severely felt the power of
their arms. The Iroquois have more than once defeated the united forces
of the French and their confederate Indians, and have carried fire and
sword into the very heart of their settlements, threatening them with utter
ruin. They formed a barrier along our frontiers against the French and
the savages in their interest; and by this protection, and the lucrative
trade we carried on with them, they greatly contributed to raise the Prov-
ince, (New York) to its present flourishing state.”

On a number of Indian reservations, located upon this
_ continent, the story has too often been one of usurped

rights, and diminishing numbers, but the reverse has
been the experience of the Six Nations. The entire record, since their
habitation here, furnishes still another of the many illustrations, to be
found the world over, of the manner in which the British Government
acts towards native allies, and the progress of the Six Nations has, in every
direction, been of a notable character. There is no record of the exact
number who accompanied Brant here and other statistics, in detail, are
not available until the year 1858. However, a comparison with over sixty
years ago proves interesting.

1858 1919

Upper Mohawk 458 1028

Lower Mohawk 318 718

Walker Mohawk 20 44

Bay of Quinte Mohawk 156 123

Onondaga Clear Sky 230 254

Bearfoot Onondaga 68 120

Tuscarora 215 447

Upper Cayuga 173 570


Lower Cayuga 333 560

Kanada Senecas 46 137

Nikarondasa Senecas 74 89

Delaware 90 172

Oneida 56 379

Other Indians of Adopted Tribes 184

2421 4641

To the 1919 list should be added 119 Indians whose names do not
appear on the office pay list as they had been enfranchised within the
previous six months. It will thus be seen that between the two periods,
1858 1919, the Six Nations population has a little less than doubled.
The words “Upper” and “Lower,” as applied to the Mohawks and
Cayugas, designated their original location upon the Grand River.

The appellation of “Clear Sky” to a portion of the Onondagas, owes
its origin to the name of a prominent chief of the tribe who took Brant’s
place at a treaty gathering held where Buffalo stands to-day. The other
designation, “Bearfoot,” perpetuates, the name of a leader of his own
clan, who originally migrated from the Cayugas. The origin of the
words “Kanada” and “Nikarondasa,” as applied to the Senecas is not
definitely known.

The first council house used by the Six Nations, after

/”t * 1

their removal to this region, consisted of a small log
Sessions. , . , , , . ,. , ,,

structure, which has long since disappeared. Ihe present

council house, located in the village of Ohsweken, was erected in 1863.
It is a commodious white brick structure with a small tower and flagstaff
from which the Union Jack flies when the Chiefs are in council. The
building is also an assembly place for special events. Council meetings
are held each month. The Chiefs sit behind a railed off space at the
far end, and the warriors and women are allowed to occupy the specta-
tors seats, but are not supposed to interrupt debates. In essential features
proceedings are conducted on exactly the same basis as they were nearly
five hundred years ago when the League of the Iroquois was first formed.
In the centre sit the Onondagas the Fire Keepers. To the right of them
are ranged the Mohawk and Seneca Chiefs (the latter the door keepers,)
and to the left in the order named, the Oneidas, Cayugas, Tuscaroras, and

The Onondagas cannot initiate any debate and they very seldom take
part in discussions. In the opening of debate the Mohawk side of the
house leads, and then the speaking becomes general. At the conclusion
the Chiefs, usually by tribes, discuss in monotones the various points


advanced, and then the speaker of each side announces the decision
reached. If both sides agree, the Onondagas must confirm if none of
the fundamental principles of the League have been transcended. If
there is a difference the Onondaga chiefs confer and either send the sub-
ject back for further consideration or else their speaker announces a
final decision. They cannot render a compromise verdict. When some
closely contested argument has been finished there is tense interest with
regard to what the Onondagas may do. One of the modern changes is
that a Superintendent occupies a seat on a dais; an interpreter
at his right hand. He makes announcement of the subject to be consider-
ed; matters of which the Chiefs have informed him, or others which arise
officially through the Indian Department. The Superintendent has no
voice in the debates, but, when asked, advises on certain points. To
him, through the interpreter, a fourth speaker of the whole Council an-
nounces final decisions. In the debates the Mohawk, Onondaga and
Cayuga languages are principally used and the interpreter is necessary
because these tongues are quite widely diverse. There are in fact in-
stances on the Reserve in which husband and wife, of differing tribes,
cannot carry on conversation in their separate tongues.

Capt. John Brant was the first Superintendent of the local Reserve
and others, since have included Major Winniett, D. Thorburn, Lt.-Col.
Gilkison, Lt.-Col. Cameron and Major Gordon Smith, the present occu-
pant of the post.

It will have been noticed that the Deleware Chiefs sit in Council,
thus making in reality Seven Nations.

Around the sides of the Council House are flags bearing the totems
of the various tribes and on the east wall there is a group of pictures
of members of the British Royal family. These comprise the Prince
Consort and Queen Victoria; King Edward and Queen Alexandra; King
George and Queen Mary.

In addition to this collection, other pictures include those of Brant
and Oronhyatekha, founder of the I. 0. F., while Longboat, the famous
Indian runner who won the Boston marathon, is not forgotten.

There are about 850 pagans on the Reservation and their

agai] places of assembly consist of the Upper Cayuga, Lower

Cayuga, Onondaga and Seneca Long Houses. Their

principal meetings are held when planting is finished in the spring;

at raspberry (fruit) time, and harvest time. At these and kindred

gatherings the most important last three and four days petitions are

offered for bountiful crops, thanks returned for bountiful yields, and

general invocations voiced. There are many phases of Pagan mythology,


some of them quite poetic. Their idea of the creation of the world is
that there was an original spirit woman (the personification of earth’s
activities) who was cast out under circumstances of suspicion, tantamount
to the Immaculate Conception, and later gave birth to life and the destroyer
of life (winter.) From the inception there was a constant feud between
the two, with the woman the earth supporting the destroyer because of
the sustenance obtained from all forms of decaying vegetation ‘and bodies.
Life proving so successfully persistent the woman, wearying of the
struggle, finally challenged Life to decide the mastery by means of a game
of chance. To this end a bowl was produced and the issue settled by
the use of magical plum pits. Life won and, with that success, the per-
manent mastery, thus triumphing for ever over death. There is a reminder
of this game of chance in the constant use, at Long House gatherings,
of a bowl and colored pits to settle various matters. They do not believe
in one Great Spirit, but in supreme beings at the head, so to speak, of
various departments. There is the Master of Life, who is the source of
all forms of being, animal and vegetable; a Master of each Wind; a
Master of Thunder and so on. It used to be the annual custom to burn
a white dog, which must be without mutilation, and was therefore first
strangled. When killed the animal was decorated as a warrior and thrown
into a fire as a messenger of thanksgiving, or the bearer of many peti-
tions uttered in previous speeches and invocations. Tobacco was also
thrown into the flames with the idea that the fumes would reach the
Masters and prove acceptable. This sacrifice would take place just as
the sun was rising on the horizon, after an all night session at the
close of a gathering of many days. The dog had to be of Indian type
and it used to be a special charge for someone to look after their breed-
ing. This custom is said to have ceased, but there is no certainty in
this regard.

As related elsewhere, the New England Company has

_ for a very lengthy period, been active on the Reserve

and there are at present six churches there supported by

them. St. Pauls and St. Barnabas under charge of Rev. R. L. Strong;

St. Johns and Christ Church, under charge of Rev. E. Lee, and St. Peters

and St. Lukes, under charge of Rev. A. E. Paget.

The Methodists have four churches, Grand River, (Rev. J. Drew) ;
Jubilee, Rev. Thomas Whitebeam, (a Mohawk,) and the Deleware and
Garlow churches, under the care of Rev. T. Nelson.

The Baptists have three churches, Medina, (Rev. G. P. Near) and
Ohsweken and Johnsfield, ministered to by Rev. G. Wardell.

The above edifices are all either brick or frame.






Schools on the Reserve number eleven, with twelve teachers, three of
whom are white and the others Indian. The school houses are also of
brick and frame construction and the Public School system is taught.

The last government report shows 8,840 acres on the
Agricultural Regeryg st jii un d er woo d, 7,840 acres cleared, but not

cultivated, and 27,016 acres under cultivation. Wheat

harvested last year, 34,599 bushels; oats, 186,639 bushels, and also a
number of other crops. Horses and foals, 1,267; steers and work oxen,
360; milch cows, 1,020; young stock, 925; poultry, 35,000. Stone, brick
and frame dwellings, 550; log, 224. This table tells the complete story:

Total Value of Land $1,092,400

Value of Private Fencing

Value of Private Buildings

Value of Public Building Property of the Band

Value of Implements and Vehicles

Value of Live Stock and Poultry

Value of General Effects }

Value of Household Effects
Total $2,923,860

An Agricultural Society has been maintained for many years, with a
successful annual exhibition on grounds reserved for the purpose.

It is not often that it can be recorded with absolute

astoi certainty that a specific individual is the last of a former

His Race. ,. r ,,. . , , ., ,.

people, yet this aiiirmation can be made with regard to

John Key, whose Indian name was “Nastabon” (One Step) ; a Tutelo
Indian, who passed away in this County twelve years ago. The Tutelo’s
formerly lived in Virginia and North Carolina. Lawson, a Scotchman,
who was a pioneer surveyor in the last named region, published a book,
“A New Voyage to Carolina,” in which he described them as “tall, likely
men, having great plenty of buffaloes, elks and bears, with every sort
of deer amongst them, which strong food makes large, robust bodies.”

Lawson in 1712 was taken by the Indians and burned at the stake.
In their medicine lodges the Tutelos are said to have had large quantities
of pearls, which they had taken in war from more southern tribes. They
were a barbarous people, constantly at war with the Powhatan Indians
and in mortal dread of the Iroquois. They had been nearly annihilated
by the latter when a peace was concluded and they came under Iroquois
protection. In fact the records show that their remaining Chiefs were
allowed to sit in the great Council of the Six Nations. Upon the settle-
ment of the latter upon the Grand Hiver the few remaining Tutelos came


along and located on what are now known as the “Tutela Heights,” the “a”
having been substituted for the final “o” by current local custom. Of
those who remained in the States the last survivor was “Nikonha,” and he
died in 1871. “Nastabon,” without kith or kin and with no other living
person with whom he could converse in his own tongue, was kept on the
Six Nations pay list until the end. The last record of himself and of
his race is contained in this entry in the official book of the local de-
partment :

“Key, John. Age, 78. Died March 23, 1898.”

There are a few remaining Indians of part Tutelo descent and some
word remnants, but “Nastabon” was the last of the parent stock.




Sons and representatives of Brant County one of the smallest in
the matter of area having taken such a prominent place in other walks
of life, there is small cause for surprise that their names should loom
large in the realms of statesmanship both Dominion and Provincial.

The record in this regard includes a Premier of Ontario, Hon. A. S.
Hardy; A Speaker of the Senate, Hon. David Christie; A Dominion
Minister, Hon. W. Paterson; Two other Senators, Hon. Mr. Fisher and
Hon. Mr. McMeans; Also two other Provincial Ministers, Hon. E. B.
Wood and Hon. H. C. Nixon. In addition private members have occu-
pied prominent positions in the Legislative counsels.
Parliamen There was no representation in Parliament for Brant
tary Repre- County, except Burford and Oakland, before 1830.
sentation. The western part of the county had as local representa-

tives before 1830 Thomas Homer and Dr. Charles Duncombe. In 1831.
the eleventh Parliament, Oxford was represented by Charles Ingersoll,
and Wentworth by Sir Allan McNab. In the twelfth Parliament, 1835,
Oxford, Sir Francis Hincks, Wentworth, Hermanus Smith. In the thir-
teenth, 1836, Robert Alway, for Oxford, and Sir Allan McNab and Mich-
ael Aikman for Wentworth.

Between 1841, the first Parliament after the Union, and 1852, when
Brant was set apart, Oxford was represented by Sir Francis Hincks, Robert
Riddell and Peter Carroll, and Wentworth by Hermanus Smith and David

Brant, when first fully constituted in 1853, was divided politically
into these two constituencies.

East Brant, composed of the Townships of S. Dumfries, Onondaga. E.
Brantford and Paris.

West Brantford, composed of the Townships of Burford, Oakland,
Tuscarora, W. Brantford and Town of Brantford.

The first representatives to be elected were D. McKerlie for the East
Riding and Herbert Biggar for the West. McKerlie was followed by Hon.
David Christie, H. Finlayson and Dr. J. Y. Bown, until Confederation,


while Biggar was followed in 1861 by Rev. Wm. Ryerson, who was suc-
ceeded by E. B. Wood in 1863.

At Confederation the names of the ridings changed to North and South
Brant, Hon. E. B. Wood representing South Brant in both Commons and
Legislature, while North Brant was represented by Dr. Bown in the Com-
mons and Hugh Finlayson in the Legislature. In 1872 Wm. Paterson
was elected to the Commons in South Brant and succeeding representatives
have been R. Henry, C. B. Heyd, W. F. Cockshutt, Lloyd Harris.

In 1873 Hon. A. S. Hardy succeeded Hon. Mr. Wood in the Provincial
House, and members since have been T. H. Preston, W. S. Brewster, J.
Ham, M. MacBride.

Subjoined is the record since 1852 in chronological order:

1854 D. McKerlie 1854 H. Biggar

1855 D. Christie 1861 Rev. W. Ryerson

1858 H. Finlayson 1863 E. B. Wood

1861 Dr. J. Y. Bown


Dominion House


1867 Dr. Bown 1867 E. B. Wood

1872 G. Fleming 1872 W. Paterson

1882 J. Somerville 1896 R. Henry

1900 W. Paterson *1897 C. B. Heyd

1911 J. H. Fisher 1904 W. F. Cockshutt

1918 J. Harold 1908 Lloyd Harris

1911 W. F. Cockshutt
1918 W. F. Cockshutt



1867 H. Finlayson 1867 E. B. Wood

1879 J. Young * 1873 A. S. Hardy

1886 W. B. Wood *1899 T. H. Preston

1895 D. Burt 1908 W. S. Brewster

1905 J. H. Fisher 1914 J. Ham

1911 J. Westbrook 1919 M. MacBride

1914 S. Davidson
1919 H. C. Nixon

* Bye elections.

“South Brant” became the Riding of “Brantford” in 1903.
1, Hon. D. Christie; 2, H. Biggar ; 3, H. Finlayson; 4, Rev. Ryerson; 5, Dr. Bown;

6, Hon. E. B. Wood; 7, G. Fleming; 8, J. Somerville; 9. Hon. W. Paterson;

10, Hon. J. H. Fisher; 11, J. Harold; 12, R. Henry; 13, C. B. Heyd;

14, W. F. Cockshutt; 15, Lloyd Harris.


The Hon. Edmund Burke Wood constituted one of the
most picturesque and brilliant of Brant County figures.
He was born near Chippewa, Upper Canada in 1817, his
father, a man of Irish extraction, having removed to Canada from the
United States in 1812. Later the father settled in tfie Township of
Beverley, in what was then known as the Gore district, and he followed
the occupation of a farmer. He had several sons, all of whom are
described as having possessed much energy of mind and character,
but the subject of this sketch was the most notable.

E. B. Wood received the common school education of the day, proving
himself an excellent scholar, and in the ordinary course of events would
probably have remained on the land, but owing to an accident he lost
an arm in early manhood, and this disability forced him to give up the
idea of agricultural pursuits. A professional career was decided upon
and it is reported that he helped achieve the necessary money for that
purpose by some itinerant teaching. Finally he went to Oberlin College
Ohio, from which institution he emerged with a Degree of Bachelor of
Arts. Upon returning to Canada he decided to enter the legal profession,
and first of all studied in the office of Messrs. Freeman and Jones of
Hamilton. Before completing his studies he came to Brantford in 1850,
and was articled to Mr. Archibald Gilkison, who at that period was in
the legal profession here. When admitted as attorney he formed a part-
nership with Mr. Peter B. Long, Barrister-at-Law, with whom he was as-
sociated for many years. In 1853 Mr. Wood secured the position of
Deputy Clerk of the Crown in the then recently organized County of Brant
and about the same time acted as Secretary Treasurer of the Board of
Public School Trustees. In 1854 he was called to the Bar of Upper
Canada. When, in the early part of 1854 the Buffalo, Brantford and
Goderich Railway was transferred to an English Company, known as the
Buffalo and Lake Huron Company, with Captain Barlow as Managing
Director, Mr. Wood was appointed Solicitor for the Road. It was through
his assistance and advice, that the line was first leased to, and finally
amalgamated with the Grand Trunk Railway.

By this time Mr. Wood was generally recognized as a leader of the
Ontario Bar. He was not only most effective in cross examination, but
also in his jury addresses, and his practice became ^very large and luc-
rative. In the natural order of things such a man became marked for
public life, and about 1858 he commenced to be prominently identified
with political affairs. He canvassed actively against the Rev. William
Ryerson, who represented this County, and at the general election of 1863
he received a nomination, and defeated Mr. Ryerson. It did not take


him long to establish himself as one of the most distinguished of Parlia-
mentary debaters. His vigorous style, together with the fact that the
County he represented was named after Brant and contained the Six Na-
tions Reserve, led Darcy McGee in one debate to refer to him as “Big
Thunder, member for Tuscarora.” The “Big Thunder” stuck to him all
his life, just as the appellation “Little Thunder” was afterwards the
portion of Hon. A. S. Hardy.

Mr. Wood was an ardent advocate of Confederation and when the
change was brought about he was invited by the Honorable John Sand-
field Macdonald to enter the Cabinet as Provincial Treasurer. This
cabinet was known as the “Patent Combination,” from the circumstance
that it consisted of two Conservatives, Hon. John Carling and Hon.
M. C. Cameron; one Radical Reformer, Hon. E. B. Wood; one Baldwin
Reformer Hon. Stephen Richards, and one Glengarry Reformer, Hon. Mac-
donald. After his acceptance of office Mr. Wood, under the British
system in such cases, returned to his constituents for re-election. He
failed, however, to secure the nomination of the Reform Convention, the
choice of the delegates falling on Mr. H. B. Leeming. His tremendous
fighting instincts thoroughly aroused, Mr. Wood announced that he would
not only run for the Ontario Assembly, but also for the House of Com-
mons as well, (dual representation was permitted in those days) and he
addressed meetings, and carried on his canvass with such skill, and vir-
ility that he vanquished both his opponents Messrs. Leeming and Biggar.

In 1871, at the general elections for the Provincial Assembly he was
again returned, this time defeating Mr. David Plewes a well known local
miller and lay speaker of the period, and standard bearer of the Reform
Convention. When the House met it was found that Macdonald had lost
control of the majority of the members and Mr. Wood resigned his port-
folio as Treasurer a circumstance which precipitated the fall of the
Government. He also helped Mr. Blake and Mr. Mackenzie to evolve a
Liberal Administration. It was during one of the heated debates in this
period of crisis for the administration, that Mr. Blake sent a note across
the floor of the House to Mr. Wood. He was seen to glance at it, tear it
up and throw the fragments on the floor. Later a Conservative member
picked up the pieces and placing them together the two words “Speak
Now” were disclosed. As can naturally be supposed the incident consti-
tuted a sensation of the time.

Sir John Willison, in his most interesting “Reminiscences Political
and Personal,” relates that in 1872 he attended his first political meeting.
He was fifteen years of age at the time and walked four miles to the


Village of Varna, where a rough frame hustings stood at the cross roads
by a tavern. He continues:

“Before the second speaker had finished, a buggy, turning from the
Bayfield Road in a cloud of dust, stopped on the edge of the crowd, and
a heavy figure, with flowing mutton-chop whiskers, under a wide soft
hat, jumped to the ground and made his way to the platform. In a
moment there were wild shouts of “Speak now, Big Thunder” and a
tempest of booing and cheering. When he rose to speak the cries of
“Speak now” were renewed with noisy and angry vehemence, and ap-
parently by those who did not seem to be willing that he should speak
at all. I could not understand, but probably I alone among those who
stood around the hustings needed enlightenment. I gazed at the bulky
figure on the platform, I noticed that he had lost one arm, that his dusty
white vest was buttoned unevenly so that one side hung below the other,
and that in the teeth of the shouting he was indomitably calm and unper-
turbed. Finally the man who had first spoken made an earnest appeal
to the meeting to give the obnoxious stranger a hearing, and clamour sub-
sided. And he spoke. His voice thundered out over the cross-roads.
His words came with stormy fluency. There was tremendous volume
and vigour. The conquest was complete. He had not gone far before
there was tumultuous cheering. He seemed to sway the crowd as he would.
Instead of division, there was unity; instead of dissent there was eager
assent and a fervour of enthusiasm. Even “Big Thunder” could have
had few greater personal triumphs on the platform. It is curious that
so many of the orators which Brant has produced, or harboured, had
voices hardly less powerful than that which Mr. Wood possessed. Hon-
ourable A. S. Hardy was known as “Little Thunder.” Honourable William
Paterson would thunder as loudly as either Mr. Wood or Mr. Hardy.
Mr. Mahlon Cowan, who died the other day, with distinction at the Bar
and in public life riper than his years, had, too, the voice and manner
which seemed to be the peculiar product of Brantford. In this charac-
teristic, however, they have no immediate successors. For the time the
Grand River keeps its secret.”

After the fall of the Sandfield Macdonald Administration, party lines
were once more re-established and the member for South Brant
again took his stand among his natural allies the Reformers. He did not
immediately offer himself for re-election but when Mr. Blake retired
from West Durham, Mr. Wood was nominated as his successor, and be-
came elected to the Commons by a large majority. In the debate which
proceeded the fall of Sir John Macdonald’s Government in connection with
what was known as the “Pacific Scandal,” Mr. Wood greatly distinguish-
ed himself in a five hour speech, which was declared by many to have
been the ablest effort of that memorable period. Upon the formation
of the new Government it was quite generally considered that a portfolio
should have been bestowed upon Mr. Wood, and his name was freely


mentioned for the post of Finance Minister. It must have been a keen
disappointment to him that he should have been left out in the formation
of the Cabinet, but he continued to give a loyal support to the Reform
Government and in 1874 was appointed Chief Justice of Manitoba.

Mr. Wood was known, in the common parlance of the present time, as
a good mixer. As was the custom of his day, he was convivial in his
habits, and one of his favorite relaxations was to take a trip into the
County districts where he would stop at the farm house of some friend
or supporter. Then the word would pass around that “Big Thunder”
was at so-and-so’s and there would speedily be a large concourse of ad-
mirers who put in a merry night of it with Mr. Wood, as always, the
central figure in anecdote, and repartee. In fact he was quite Johnson-
ian in his manner of over towering any gathering of which he happened
to be a member. One of his favorite actions when speaking was to
smite the stub of his arm with his other hand. In his home life he was
the soul of hospitality. In later years he built a palatial residence on
the site of the present Collegiate Institute on Brant Avenue, the structure
afterwards becoming used for a Young Ladies College. At this home he
frequently entertained in a most royal manner, especially with regard to
garden parties, extending his invitations to all classes and having the
spacious grounds most brilliantly illuminated.

Considering the few early opportunities which Mr. Wood enjoyed,
end the many obstacles he overcame, there can be no doubt that he was
an extraordinary man. Both at the Bar and in Parliament he was recog-
nized as a leader, and his active and original mind, allied to great powers
of oratory, made him a dominant force.

Although he was a member of a prominent Scotch fam-
Hon. ily, with relatives actively engaged in Church and schol-

p ** l astic work, the Hon. William Paterson was a self made

man. He was a son of James and Martha (Lawson)
Paterson and grandson of Rev. Mr. Paterson, Minister for years at Mid-
mar, Scotland. His parents came to Canada soon after their marriage
and William was born in Hamilton, September 19th, 1839. When he was
ten years of age his parents both died of cholera, passing away within
a few days of each other and the little orphan was adopted by the
late Rev. Dr. Ferrier, and taken to Caledonia, Ont. He received
a rudimentary education in that place and Hamilton and at the age
of fourteen years came to Brantford to enter the general store of Mr.
Ignatius Cockshutt. He was with that gentleman for ten years and then
formed a partnership with Mr. Henry Leeming in the bakery and con-
fectionery business. Mr. Paterson possessed a natural bent for public


life although, strange to say, during the entire period of his lengthy
career he shrank from many features of it. The truth of the matter was
that he possessed an innate dislike of anything that tended to invade his
private affairs, and a “place in the sun” was something which he never
deliberately sought. In reality he possessed a retiring nature, something
which men whom he met on the hustings in the early days of rough
and tumble political warfare never realized, and would not have believed,
for when aroused he could give sledge hammer blows. As an evidence
of his diffidence he once related to the writer the fact that, notwithstanding
his many appearances before audiences, he always felt just before he
arose to speak that if any one should open a door behind him he would
make a bolt for it. He further stated that once started all such feelings
passed away. It might be added that to on lookers he never presented
any such appearance of initial nervousness.

Mr. Paterson was elected member of the Town Council of Brantford
in 1868 and was subsequently Deputy Reeve for three years, 1869 to 1871.
In 1872 when thirty three years of age, he was elected Mayor, and in
that year a general election took place. Mr. Alfred Watts was originally
the Conservative nominee, but he later handed over the Conservative stan-
dard to Sir Francis Hincks. The Liberal nomination came as a complete
surprise to Mr. Paterson and he was not even a delegate to the convention.
Along in the afternoon W. J. Scarf e, (afterwards Sheriff) and other lead-
ing Reformers dropped into the store as notification delegates.

“Come on up to the convention, Paterson,” said Mr. Scarfe.

“Oh, I am not a delegate,” replied the coming member. “Leeming
has gone and I am keeping shop.”

“Come on anyway,” insisted Mr. Scarfe. “We want you up there. You
have just been nominated unanimously, and you must come along and

It is related that the delegates had great difficulty in persuading Mr.
Paterson that the whole thing was not a joke. He finally asked for time
to consider and ultimately accepted. As before related, Mr. Watts was
his original opponent, but a sensation occurred when during the pro-
gress of the campaign, Sir John Macdonald, then Premier, and Sir Francis
Hincks, Finance Minister, attended an open air demonstration in Agricul-
tural Park in July and the announcement was made that the Conservative
nominee had stepped aside for Sir Francis.

During the course of his remarks Sir John exclaimed, “There is not
a person in this large and intelligent audience who will openly oppose the


“Oh yes there is” called out Mr. Paterson from a somewhat concealed
position in the crowd.

The incident did not end here. At the close of proceedings cheers
were given for Sir John, and Sir Francis, and they had started to enter
their carriage when Mr. Paterson mounted the platform. He stated that
he had no desire to interfere, but as the meeting was over he would like
to say <a few things. He criticized the two previous speakers in pretty
severe terms, and shouted “I would say the very same thing if they were
right here on the platform.”

“Oh we’re here.” exclaimed Sir John.

Turning around Mr. Paterson saw that they had not departed, and
continued with his speech. Then both Sir John and Sir Francis took the
platform once more and replied for about half an hour. Afterwards,
Sir John impressed by Mr. Paterson’s ability as a speaker, made the re-
mark that he had an undoubted future. The spectacular and efficient
manner in which Mr. Paterson handled himself created a great impression
in his favor, and he triumphed over Hincks by the comfortable margin of
272 majority. From that time until 1896, or twenty-four years in all,
he won election after election, finally meeting defeat at the hands of Mr.
Robert Henry. . During the period named, Mr. Paterson and his friends
made the objection that two deliberate attempts had been made to “knife”
him by means of the so-called gerrymander and the enfanchisement of
the Indians. At any rate he dexterously used both incidents to his own.

After his defeat in this constituency, Mr. Paterson found a seat in
North Grey, and later in North Brant, where he was finally unhorsed by
J. H. Fisher (now Senator) in the memorable Reciprocity election of
1911. In all he had spent thirty nine years in the Federal House, fifteen
of them as a Minister of the Crown.

It was in 1896, when Sir Wilfrid Laurier first attained power, that
Mr. Paterson was made Minister of Customs, and he manifested great
ability in the discharge of the duties of that important post. His pres-
ence in the Cabinet undoubtedly did much to remove the apprehension of
revolutionary tariff changes. As Minister he made many trips in the
trade interests of the Dominion, his itinerary in this respect including
important visits to England, Germany and Russia. In 1902 he was one
of the Canadian delegates to the Imperial Conference in London; he was
a member of the Tariff Commission of 1905; in 1909, he was appointed
by King Edward to act on the Royal Commission to report on trade re-
lations between Canada and the West Indies. With Mrs. and Miss Pat-
erson (now Mrs. Dr. Branscombe) he was present by invitation at the Cor-


onation of the late King Edward, and was subsequently presented to the
King and Queen.

Without doubt, the biggest single public act ever attempted by him
was the endeavor, in company with Hon. Mr. Fielding, to bring about a
Reciprocity pact with the United States. It is no secret that he felt the
defeat of his party upon this issue most keenly and that for a while he
experienced deep personal regret that he might be regarded as having
been responsible for the debacle which overtook the Laurier Administra-
tion. However, his mind was speedily reassured by the many testimonies
which he received of unabated esteem. The thought of continuing to re-
main in public life did not present itself; in fact had it not been for the
Reciprocity issue he would not have offered himself as a candidate in
1911 for at 72 years of age he had naturally become somewhat weary of
the gladiatorial stress in the political arena a stress all the more severe in
his case, because, in addition to his parliamentary duties, his services
had been in constant demand as one of the best platform speakers of the

One of the things which pleased him most in connection with his re-
tirement was the fact that on Friday, November 29th, 1912, the Liberals of
North and South Brant waited upon him at his home, and presented him
with a beautiful casket, containing an address in album form. The latter
was signed by several hundred admirers including many Conservatives.
He submitted a most touchingly written reply.

After a considerable period of ill health, he fell asleep at the residence
of his daughter, Mrs. Branscombe, Picton, on March 18th, 1914, at
the age of 75 years. Tributes to his worth and work were uttered by
public men, and voiced by the newspapers of all shades of politics from
one end of the Dominion to the other and in the House of Commons
Premier Borden said:

“Mr. Paterson, for more than a quarter of a century, filled a very
distinguished place in the public life of Canada. He was a man of
fine ability, an excellent debater and of a kindly nature, which won
the affection of the members on both sides of the House.

I sat in the House of Commons with him for sixteen years and I
was glad to number him among my personal friends, although we dif-
fered strongly in our political opinion.

On behalf of my colleagues and myself, I desire to extend to his
widow and family our sincere sympathy in the loss which they have

The funeral took place from his former residence in Brantford to Farr-
ingdon Cemetery, members of the City Council and other public institu-
tions attending in a body. Hon. Mr. Fielding was also present, not only as


a close personal friend, but also as representative of Sir Wilfrid Laurier,
and his other former colleagues. The attendance of the general public
was large and the evidences of regret at the passing of so worthy a man
were manifestly as genuine as they were widespread.

It may be truthfully said that the outstanding feature of Mr. Pater-
son’s life was his honesty of mind, and purpose. That trait was pre-
eminently characteristic of him in his successful business career, in his
political activities, and in all the relations of true citizenship. A deep
religious strain permeated his whole nature, and found special manifes-
tation in his activities with regard to Farringdon Church of which con-
gregation he was an elder, and in whose services each Sunday he took
unfeigned joy. His sermons were always an instructive pleasure to his
fellow adherents. He passed away in the plenitude of his years, honored
by all as one who had fought the good fight, and kept the faith in every

He was married in 1863 to Miss Lucy Olive Davies of Brantford and
the widow and two children survive, W. F. Paterson of this City and
Mrs. Branscombe, Picton. The second son, Rev. C. Paterson, a scholar
and minister of marked prominence, recently died in Winnipeg, deeply

To Arthur Sturgis Hardy belongs the unique honor of
. . o. having been the only native son of Brant County to attain

Premier honors. The Hardy family originally belonged
to that stern and resolute band of Covenanters of Scotland who withstood
so much persecution for conscience, and the sake of their religion. They
were the members of that section who found a refuge in the north of Ire-
land, and it was from the latter country that Captain John Hardy came to
America, and settled near Philadelphia prior to the Revolution. After
that eventful period he, in common with many U. E. Loyalists, came to
Canada. He brought with him his youngest brother Alexander, then a
boy of tender years, who was the paternal grandfather of the subject of
this sketch. They lived on the banks of Niagara River near Queenston
Heights on lands granted by the Government after the War of 1812.
Later, Alexander moved into Brant County and settled near Canning, in
South Dumfries, where he erected a mill. When this was destroyed he
continued farming near Blue Lake where he died in 1819, when his
youngest son Russell was seven years old. The later married Juletta
Sturgis, daughter of one of the first settlers of Mount Pleasant, so that
on both sides A. S. Hardy was descended from pioneer Brant County
stock. He was born on December 14th, 1837, in a house in the village


which his father, then a country merchant, occupied as a dwelling and

In early boyhood the coming statesman attended the common school in
the village, and later the academy kept by W. W. Nelles, a most scholarly
man whose establishment attracted students from a wide area. Later on
the lad was sent to the Rockwood Academy, near Guelph, and after leav-
ing there commenced to study law, in the office of his uncle, H. A. Hardy,
then practising in Brantford. He finished his legal studies with Messrs.
Paterson, Harrison and Hodgins, Toronto, and passed as a solicitor in
1861, later becoming a barrister. He first of all entered into partnership
with his uncle, but in 1867 began practice on his own account. In later
years he was senior member of the firm of Hardy, Wilkes and Jones, and
after that of Hardy, Wilkes and Hardy. In his younger days as Counsel
he was frequently pitted against that powerful advocate, and strong
lawyer, E. B. Wood, and it was the winning of one of his first cases,
with Mr. Wood acting for the losing side, which first brought him into
immediate and permanent prominence. Hitherto “Big Thunder,” had
been regarded as all powerful with juries, but many were the battles in
which he and “Little Thunder” were thereafter engaged with varying
success. It was not long before the local Reformers began to think of
him as a standard bearer and in 1872, when he was thirty five years of
age, he was offered the nomination in North Brant for the Dominion
House against Dr. Bown, but declined for business reasons. He suggested
Gavin Fleming of Glenmorris, who defeated the Doctor. The following
year Mr. E. B. Wood resigned his seat in the Ontario Legislature to run
for the Commons in West Durham, and an election became necessary
in South Brant. Mr. Hardy accepted the call to carry the standard and
had for his opponent Mr. J. J. Hawkins. The contest was of an exceed-
ingly keen nature, but Hardy proved the victor by 189 majority. From
that time until his death in 1901 he went through election after election,
without once sustaining a defeat, the only man in this County of whom
such a lengthy unbroken record can be chronicled. He took his seat in
the Legislature in January of 1874, and at once secured a leading position
as a speaker and debater. In the short space of three years he was asked
to become a member of the Cabinet a compliment seldom paid to so
young a member. His first portfolio was that of Provincial Secretary, a
post which he held for twelve years, when he became Commissioner of
Crown Lands. The latter office he filled until July 1896, when he be-
came Premier, and Attorney General, upon Sir Oliver Mowat resigning to
enter the Laurier Administration at Ottawa. In March of 1898 the Gov-
ernment went to the Country, and was sustained by a majority of five.


During his last session, that of 1899, it was manifest that his health was
broken, although he was vigorous and alert in mind as ever, and in
October of that year he resigned the post of First Minister. In his letter
of farewell to his constituents he wrote:

“For some time past I have been subject to an ailment from the effects
of which, I can for the future expect, at most, but temporary relief, and
which I cannot conceal from myself impairs my capacity for the full,
and satisfactory discharge of the onerous duties of my present position,
and which also compels me hereafter to lead a quiet retired life.”

To intimate friends his withdrawal did not occasion surprise as they
had for some months realized that it was only his lion heart, and high
sense of public duty which had kept him at the helm. From all sides
tributes poured in to his worth, and work, and there was a Provincial

The malady from which he suffered did not long permit him to enjoy
freedom from the cares of office, and on Thursday June 13th, 1901 he
fell asleep. It was well said of him that “he lived bravely, and died
bravely.” Hon. Mr. Hardy was laid to rest with Masonic rites in Green-
wood cemetery, on Sunday June 16th, 1901, amid all the manifestations
of Provincial mourning. Premier Ross, Hon. J. M. Gibson and others of
his former colleagues were in attendance, together with other notable
men from far and wide and representatives of the City Council and other
bodies, but perhaps the most notable feature consisted of the genuine
evidences of sorrow on the part of the plain people.

It is not going too far to class Mr. Hardy as Brant’s most brilliant son;
this fact was demonstrated in an infinity of ways. He was becoming rec-
ognized as one of the leaders of the Ontario bar when he answered the
call to duty in the public arena, and even when burdened with the cares
of a portfolio he not infrequently appeared in the Courts with notable
success. The clarity with which he marshalled the essential facts of a
case, his keen gift of cross examination, and forensic power in addressing
a jury, constituted an always effective combination. In short, had he
devoted his great talents exclusively to his profession the emoluments
obtained would have transcended many times the reward which he
secured from public service. In the discharge of his Parliamentary
duties, both as member and Minister, he always gave the best that was
in him, and no one ever doubted that he had most earnestly at heart
the best interests of the Province. No fewer than one hundred and fifty
Public and Private Bills were introduced by him, between 1874 and 1896,
and nearly every one passed, but the subjects dealt with were more im-
portant than mere numbers. Their wide scope, range, and variety are the


best evidence of his versatility and breadth of view. In his second Ses-
sion he introduced an important bill respecting Railway Traffic which
placed the relation of railways towards shippers and the Public, on an
entirely changed footing, namely by preventing a railway from setting
up notice of a condition protecting itself against a suit of damages, when
negligence could be established. Later on, he introduced Bills
amending the laws as to Division Courts, enlarging their jurisdiction,
simplifying their practice, and making their remedies cheaper. He car-
ried through an Act establishing the Provincial Board of Health which did
much to inspire local action on the part of the Municipalities in connection
with Public Health. Much might be said of Mr. Hardy’s efforts as to
temperance reform under the license law. The Act known as the Crooks
Act was more largely the work of Mr. Hardy than of Mr. Crooks if the
scope of the Act, when Mr. Crooks handed over the charge of the
Licenses to his successor, is considered with the Act as it afterwards
stood. He established the Bureau of Mines, passed an important mea-
sure for the protection of Provincial fisheries, and was responsible for the
law affecting cities of over one hundred thousand population whereby
Boards of Control were instituted. Other legislation introduced by Mr.
Hardy was a bill creating Algonquin Park and Rondeau Park. These
Parks are now looked upon as a monument to his foresight. It was Sir
William Van Home who said that if any public man in Canada deserved
a monument to his memory “that man was the late Premier of Ontario
Hon. A S. Hardy, if for nothing else than the legislation introduced by
him while Minister of Crown Lands, exacting that all pine logs cut from
Crown Lands, should be manufactured into lumber in the Province.”
Another incident, disclosed since his demise, is that upon the discovery
of nickel deposits in Ontario, Mr. Hardy urged the British Gov-
ernment authorities to assume entire control of them, excellent advice
which unfortunately was not followed.

As a platform speaker the Hon. gentleman had few rivals, for he
intermingled a fine sense of humor with the serious presentation of pub-
lic issues, and in the Legislature he was equally effective in the more or
less colloquial discussions of that chamber. When roused however, he
used to disclose a vein of sarcasm which made opponents wince, and
under stress of public cares he was sometimes exceedingly abrupt.

In private life he was a cheerful companion and winning friend, and
for many years he secured the votes of many of the Conservatives of the
South Brant riding on personal grounds, a circumstance which he was
always the first to acknowledge. His loyalty to his friends was prover-
bial, and his integrity eloquently manifested by the incident that after


twenty six years of public office he withdrew an absolutely poor man.
The manner in which he accepted the physical decree which ended his
political career, was eminently characteristic of the brave spirit which
distinguished him in every relation of life and which rightly endeared him
to all with whom he came in contact.

Hon. Mr. Hardy was married in 1870 to Mary, daughter of Hon. Mr.
Justice Morrison. The widow and two sons survive, Mr. A. Hardy,
Brockville and Dr. P. Hardy, Toronto.

. On Thursday, April 1st, 1920, in the Brantford Court

T hl^ House, the unveiling took place of a bronze tablet in

memory of this distinguished Brant County son. Al-
though nineteen years had passed since his demise, the attendance of
representative men of Ontario, and citizens of Brantford, Paris and the
County, amply served to demonstrate that his worth and his achievements
still remained in active remembrance. The tablet, the admirable work
of the Toronto sculptress, Miss Frances Loring, is situated in the main
entrance hall. It is surmounted by a life-like medallion in profile of
the honorable gentleman and this inscription follows:


Born, Mt. Pleasant, Brant County, 1837

Died, Toronto, 1901

Who began in this Court House the practice, of the Law The talents here
developed he devoted to the service of his Country, representing the
South Riding of Brant in the Legislature of this Province for Twenty-six
years and was successively Provincial Secretary, Commissioner of Crown
Lands, Attorney-General and Prime Minister of Ontario.

Erected by the Bar of Brant County in admiration of his virtues and
affection for his memory.

After the flag covering the tablet had been removed by Mr. A. L.
Baird, K.C., President of the Brant Law Association, Canon Fotheringham
offered a dedicatory prayer and Mr. W. A. Hollinrake, K.C., Secretary
of the Association, read an address, presenting the memorial to the City
and County. An adjournment then took place to the Court room which
was filled. Laudatory speeches were made by Mr. Baird, the chairman;
Sir John Gibson, James Barley, K.C., W. F. Cockshutt, M.P., W. G. Ray-
mond, Hartley Dewart, K.C., Liberal Leader in the Ontario Legislature and
John Harold M.P. Probably the greater interest attached to the speech
of Sir John Gibson, a cabinet colleague for many years of Mr. Hardy,
and later Lieut. -Governor of the Province. He told of his industry and
immense capacity for work, and in this regard dwelt upon the fact that


the deceased statesman always prepared his own bills instead, as now,
of having them drafted by law clerks, or highly paid professional men.
Others of the many characteristics dwelt upon, included Mr. Hardy’s
eloquence as a speaker and readiness in debate; his immense labor in the
revision and amendment of the earlier laws of the Province ; his initiation
of many highly important measures, and his scrupulous and unceasing
care, both as Minister and Premier, in maintaining absolute economy
and strict regularity. “With his high standing as a lawyer and marvel-
ous ability as a prominent and effective counsel he could, by exclusive
devotion to his profession, have derived a large income and become
financially independent, whereas it is well known that after twenty-six
years of laborious public life, he retired from the position of First
Minister, a poor man. Few men in public life have deserved more or