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Benares House Gallery
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Title: Grocery Account Book
Identifier: 2003.3.10
Donor: Bianca de la Roche
Item Date: 1936
Image Creator: Museums of Mississauga
Creation Date: 2005
Location: Benares Historic House

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Description: A grocery account book with a red-brown leather cover and gold writing. The cover has a window, which indicates who the book belonged to: 'Mrs. Clements, The Winnings'. The front cover has a gold border that frames the book. Above the window, written in gold, is 'Telephone: MALVERN 84'. The window is also framed in gold. Below the window is a gold crest, with 'God Grant Grace' in a banner. Below that, 'Grocers' is written in fancy gold print, with a decorative scroll underneath. Across the front of the cover, at an angle in large gold lettering, is 'Tipping & Morris', followed by 'Wine Merchants'. Below that there is a small gold circular symbol, followed by 'Lyttelton House, Great Malvern'. The edges of the paper has a design, and written on the bottom of the book is 'Mrs. Clement'. On the inside front cover, under the window, 'Eversheds Window Pass Book' is stamped. In the bottom left hand corner, the manufacturer is printed, which is 'J. Evershed & Co., Pass Book Specialists, Fairfield Road, Bow, E.3'. There are 38 pages of accounts with pages ruled with credit and debit columns. The list of groceries consists mostly of dry goods, fruit, bacon, butter, cheese, and nuts. Accounts start March 12, 1936 and the first payment was made May 22, 1936 for (in pounds) 16.4s.3d. Receipt #19949 has a stamp for tax, which was called 'Stamp Duty'. Receipt says, 'Received with thanks from M. Clements. Tippings Morris per __signature of Storekeeper.' The following account is on the next page, '1937. Expenses - Vale House, Tithe to April 1st'. On the next page, is wages with the amount paid to cooks, maids, chauffeurs, governess, gardener, etc. There is also the amount of anthracite and coal ordered. On the following page, there is a notation of 'Boat sails Dec. 7', Christmas 1938. The page lists gifts and names of beneficiaries. The following page is titled 'Lavender', and has a list of names. The next page is titled 'Christmas Cards', and has a list of names on it. The next to last page is titled 'Charities', and underneath are names. The last page has a list of household effects, such as chandeliers and light fittings. On the back cover is written 'J. A. Wilson Co., 9 Morrison St. Ode 1194 2 sts. W. of Spadina South of Adelaide Braul St. Car stop in King. Ask about socket for candlestick.' Overall, there are 9 receipts with stamp duty, of various account numbers and amounts.

History: This artifact belonged to Mazo de la Roche and/or her life long companion, Caroline Clement. In 1927, Mazo de la Roche’s (1879-1961) novel ‘Jalna’ won the $10,000 first prize in a competition sponsored by ‘Atlantic Monthly’, which provided her with international recognition and success in the future. Mazo de la Roche is significant to Mississauga as she lived in Clarkson during the time she wrote her award winning novel, 'Jalna'. Mazo lived in Trail Cottage, which was located on property that had originally belonged to the Benares Estate. Some people speculate the Benares House was Mazo’s inspiration for the ‘Whiteoaks' of Jalna. Mazo was friends with the Harrises and had visited Benares. She was born in Newmarket as Mazo Louise Roche. She was the only child of Albert and William Roche. Mazo died on 12 July 1961. See: C.J. Taylor, 'de la Roche, Mazo' ‘Canadian Encyclopaedia, 2000 Edition’ (Toronto: McClelland & Stewart, 1999), 639.

Artifacts donated by Bianca de la Roche, third wife of the adopted son of Mazo de la Roche, René. These items belonged to Mazo and/or her companion and cousin, Caroline Clements. René was adopted in England by Mazo in 1931 and died in 1984.
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