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Transcript: James Magrath Jr to Charley Magrath February 13 1845
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Title: Transcript: James Magrath Jr to Charley Magrath February 13 1845
Identifier: 2005.1.118.5
Donor: Geoffrey and Kathleen Sayers
Item Date: 1960-1970
Creation Date: 2011
Location: Benares Historic House

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Description: A double-spaced typewritten transcript on plain white office paper of a letter from Credit P.O. dated 13 February, 1845 from J.M. (James Magrath Jr.) to his brother, Charley, in Ireland. James states that a snowfall on the 2 & 3 Feb. He tells Charley how much they all enjoyed his last letter and that “I took 2 hours & 10 minutes to read it!!”. He says “Those Quaker lasses are certainly fresh. I suppose you could not catch hold of one of them”. James says that he “drove Tom in yesterday to Toronto, for the first time, to try what warm baths could do, and left him at the Hotel,”. He gives Charley a news update on business and says: “Only for the money you sent, it would have been all up with us. Nothing coming in and very little doing and business bad”. James also mentions the Dean case briefly. The letter covers election results, who married, who died, a couple of birthday celebrations, one being the Boy's. The reverse of the pages is blank.

Reverend James Magrath and his family emigrated from Ireland in 1827. He left Ireland hoping to secure a prosperous future for his family. Reverend Magrath became the first Rector of St. Peter’s Anglican Church in what was then known as Springfield-on-the-Credit. The Rev. worked diligently to serve the needs of both his family and his congregation. The family cleared the 700 acres allotted to them and built a home and farm which they called Erindale.
James Magrath Jr, was born in 1807. As James matured he became a dominant economic player in the local community using connections that his father had made. James, along with the Magrath family in general were accused in a libellous pamphlet by Joseph Dean, of a number of nefarious deeds including opening mail, stealing wood, price gouging and seducing a servant girl. Charges were later dropped. James never married. He passed away in 1868 at the age of 60.
Charles Eneas Magrath was born in 1809. He served in the militia with his brothers. Charles began his career as a local merchant in Streetsville. In 1844 he travelled back to Ireland to take care of the family properties returning to Upper Canada two years later. Charles married widow, Louisa Newbiggin Stanton, in the 1870’s. Charles died in 1884 at age 75.
These transcripts were typed by Kathleen Sayers, wife of Geoffrey Sayers, whose interest in family history led her to transcribe original papers, letters, newspaper clippings, transcripts and research notes relating to Geoffrey's maternal lineage. Geoffrey was the grandson of Arthur Harris and Mary Harris (nee Magrath). The original documents are held by the Peel Heritage Complex.
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