|Description: A carpenter's apron made out of canvas and marked with large red letters: "W.H. Thompson Lumber, Builders' Suppliers and Fuel Phone 3355. Port Credit Made in U.S.A". The apron is divided into three pockets: two 20 cm wide and one 6 cm wide. There are two (44 cm x 1.45 cm) corded ribbon ties found on each side of the apron.|
This artifact was salvaged from the O'Neil farm located on 3361 Mississauga Road in Erindale.
James and Ann O’Neil of County Wicklow in Ireland immigrated (after the potato famine) to Quebec, where James found work on the railway. Around 1867 they moved to Streetsville, purchasing two properties equalling 80 acres of land. In the 1877 Ontario Census James (77) was listed as a farmer and a Catholic. His wife Ann (70) and daughter Bridget (26) live with him. James died in 1888. His son John Moody O’Neil (1841-1911) bought property south of his father's at Mississauga Road called the Grange Cottage. Their son John Thomas O’Neil (1878-1931) married Rachael Mosley and they had two sons, Hugh and John. Thomas moved to Vancouver for a short time but returned to his family home and built an addition on to the back of his family homestead at 3361 N. Mississauga Road. Hugh (1913-2006) was the last owner of the homestead and ran a fruit farm. Hugh was an eccentric and very wealthy man who choose to live in his parents neglected farm house.
The property was sold to the donor in 2008. The house and out-buildings have been demolished but heritage organizations were allowed to salvage any items that would help to preserve the history of Mississauga.
According to Robert Archer, a former employee of the O'Neil farm, Hugh's brother, John, used to live on O'Neil Court, which Hugh often referred to as "the other place". This apron is believed to be a gift to Hugh from his brother as John used to work for W.H. Thompson in Port Credit.