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Transcript: James Magrath Jr to Charley Magrath September 11 1845
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Title: Transcript: James Magrath Jr to Charley Magrath September 11 1845
Identifier: 2005.1.119.19
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 of letter dated Credit P.O. 11 Sept. 1945 (should say 1845) from J.M. (James Magrath Jr.) to his brother Charley in Ireland. James tells Charley about the arrival of William Watson and Speer. He tells Charley not to bring out any printed muslins, as they would be difficult to sell being old patterns and bad lengths. He is glad Charley is having some pleasure after all his hard work. They were unable to read out Charley's last three letters as there were visitors at the home. He is glad the piano is on its way and are grateful for the turf, books, pairs of trousers and especially the Charles Daguerrotype. “I have it down here showing it to the white people & brought it into Toronto. Everyone says, 'Oh, that's Charley but he looks cross!!!'” James mentions that the banks are doing nothing; he talks about money he owes and money owed him and gives news on various court cases and the price of wheat. He mentions some local news “Poor Ellen has had her little baby & she is worn in her temper more than ever, I think she will quit John again. They are down at Darlington, Clark the Hatter left all his property to the Methodists & they're building a splendid chapel behind Kitchener with it”. The reverse of the pages is printed with stock market graphs.

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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