Ontario. Bureau of Industries.

Annual report of the Bureau of Industries for the Province of ..., Volumes 15-16 online

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Online LibraryOntario. Bureau of IndustriesAnnual report of the Bureau of Industries for the Province of ..., Volumes 15-16 → online text (page 24 of 24)
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maintained in the old fashioned " bees," when the neighbors gathered
for a logging oi' clearing, a barn-raising, a road-making, a corn shock-
ing or even a pig-killing. The women had their "bees" for carpet mak-
ing or quilting. Traces of these old customs ai'e still to be seen in the
well worn rag carpet of some old farm house or the log cabin quilt
that still appears at country fairs. Some student of early life has
told us that the rag carpet was the invention of the thrifty French
Huguenot. Many of our grandfathers and grandmothers made love
t'> one another at an apple-paring bee, when the young men pared the
fruit and the young women quartered, cored and strung them on
strings to hang up on the crossbeams to dry for winter's use. The

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school teacher, generally a full grown man who has seen service in the
old land, " boarded round " and was eagerly looked for in many
homos. The cobbler or shoemaker went from house to house with his
tools and roll of leather, staying at the house till the whole family
were rebooted or reshod. The peripatetic tailor dropped in from time
to time to make up a suit or two for Sunday wear. The clockmaker
came on his rounds and cleaned up the old clock, the grandfather's
clock, that stood in the corner of the living-room, and started it
aright, though the older members of the family never forgot to make
their reckoning by the sun. From time to time the dusty pedlar
turned in and laid down his capacious pack, and became for the time
being the most important personage in the world to the younger mem-
bers of the family. There was many a Doctor Maclure in the early
days, and the Ministers of all denominations were itinerants.

The railroad and the telegraph and the telephone and the electric
light have changed all this, — they have given us a different social life,
but not one that is more interesting.

The British Association, at its meeting in Toronto in August,
1897, appointed a committee to make an ethnographic survey of
Ontario. That report* has just gone forward. It has been prepared
mainly by Mr. A. F. Huntei*, of Barrie. Here is an extract dealing
with York and Simcoe that will show how complex we are. I give
York and Simcoe because they arc fairly complete and represent the
two eras of settlement.

York Cmmty.

No. . Immigrants. Date. Where settled.

1 Germans (Berccy's 60 families) 1794 Markham.

2 French Royalists (20 families) 1798 Yonge St. (King & Whitchurch).

3 Davidites (?) (from New York). . . . 1800 East Gwillimbury.

4 Eskdale (Dumfriesshire (Scots) . . . 1800 Scarboro'.

5 Quakers (from Pennsylvania) 1805 King & Whitchurch.

6 English (West of England) 1820 Richmond Hill (Vaughan & Markham).

7 Pennsylvania Dutch York & Vaughan.

8 Mennonists or Tunkers Yonge St. (Whitchurch).

9 Highland Scots Vaughan, King.

10 Annandale (Dumfriesshire) Scots Vaughan.

11 Negroes Vaughan & King.

12 Indians (Chippewas) (pop'n., 118) Georgina & Snake Islands.

* The full report will not be available for publication until September of the
present year. If procurable at the time, it will appear in the next issue of this

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Simcoe Cmmty.

1 Sutherlandshire Scots 1820 West Gwillimbury.

2 North of England (small) 1820 Penetang. Road & W. Gwillimbury.

3 French-Canadians 1828 Tiny.

4 Negroes (now chiefly gone). . . . -. 1828 Oro (20 families), Sunnidule.

5 Ulster Protestant (extensive) 1830 Tecumseth, Essa, Innisfil.

6 Irish Catholic (smaller) 1830 Adjala, Vespra, Flos & Medonte.

7 Argyleshire Scots 1832 Nottawasaga, Oro.

8 lAnarkshire & Renfrewshire Scots. 1832 Innisfil, Essa.

9 Germans (small) 1832 Nottawasaga.

10 Londonderry 1850 Innisfil.

11 Border District Scots (small) 1850 Innisfil.

12 Indians (Chippewas) (pop'n., 397) Beausoliel & Christian Islands.

This leads to another very interesting question — what do we, as
a province, owe to these various contributing elements ? What did
the U. E. Loyalists bring into our blood ? What do we owe to the
old Dutch of New Amsterdam ? What to the Huguenot of New
Rochelle ? What to the German from the Palatinate on the Rhine ?
What to the New England Puritan ? What to the Quaker ? What
to the so-called Pennsylvania Dutch ? What to the French- Canadian ?
and what to the English, Scottish and Irish settlers ?

It was a Parkman who discovered the romance of the old Regime;
it was a Longfellow who first sent travelers to the Land of Evangeline —
must we wait for some foreigner to -discover U8, and to find in our
ancestors and in us something to attract and to interest ?

Some years ago an Art Loan Elxhibition was held in Scm Fran-
cisco. Among the paintings was one by Millet. Among the visitors
was a school teacher. The picture drew the man. He sat down
before it and became entranced by it. It took hold of his brain, and
to-day from one side of the continent to the other Markham the poet
and Millet the painter are known as the authors of " The Man with
the Hoe." So may something similar result from this Exhibition.
May some of these old pictures, some of these old maps, some of these
old relics of peace and of war, stained with the blood of Canadians or
hallowed by the touch of heroes or of martyrs, humble and obscure
though they may have been, set some hearts aflame and brains aglow
to sing to us the deeds of our forefathers and to make sacred the
places trodden by our ancestors, that the annals of this people may be
tcnown and prized and revered, and that we may be inspired to be the
worthy sons of worthy sires.

C. C. James.

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Online LibraryOntario. Bureau of IndustriesAnnual report of the Bureau of Industries for the Province of ..., Volumes 15-16 → online text (page 24 of 24)