Etobicoke Township Residents from A History of Toronto and County of York

Jacob Anderson, lot 19, concession 2, was born in New Brunswick in 1804, and came along with the other members of his father’s family to Ontario in the year 1806. He bought the property on which he at present resides in 1824, and, in conjunction with his brother Abraham (now deceased), commenced farming. At the time of his first settlement the district was all bush; roads, there were none, and schools, churches, and like institutions had not been thought of as regarded the building of them. He has happily been spared to witness the remarkable improvements which the energetic spirit of a modern civiliztion makes when once it lays its colonizing hand upon a virgin soil, and we trust he may be spared for long years to come to witness the still greater triumphs which are amongst the evident probabilities of the future. Mr. Anderson married in 1828 Mary Morrow, now deceased; he has two children living. (vol. II, p. 245)

Andrew Barker, lot 31, concession A, was born in the Township of Vaughan, being the son of the late Aaron Barker, who emigrated to Canada in the year 1832, with his wife and family consisting of six daughters. He had been accustomed to farming in England, and on his arrival rented a farm in the Township of Vaughan for ten years. In 1841 he purchased the farm where Andrew now resides, and with whom he continued to live until his death, which occurred in 1873. He was a member of the English Church, and took great interest in all matters appertaining to its welfare. Andrew Barker was married in 1864 to Mary Ackrow, by whom he had a family of four children, three boys and one girl. Mr. Barker takes considerable interest in raising the best breeds of cattle and sheep.(vol. II, p. 245)

George Betteridge, lot 36, concession 1, was born in 1822, upon the farm where he at present resides. He is the third son of the late John Betteridge, one of the first settlers in the section, and a native of the city of Bristol, England, who emigrated to Canada with his wife and family, and at first located in Toronto. He was a baker by trade, and on his arrival opened a bakery on Queen Street, where he carried on business for three and a-half years. He then purchased the farm in Etobicoke, at present in possession of his son. George Betteridge was married in 1850 to Sarah Castle, a native of York County, by whom he had eleven children, seven only of whom are living. He is an adherent of the Methodist Church, and has taken an active part in promoting the general good of that body in his neighbourhood, having been a class-leader for twelve years, and led the choir for twenty-five years. He is earnest and sincere in the work he has undertaken, and as a Christian is an example worthy to be followed. (vol. II, p. 246)

Samuel Woods Bigham, lot 12, concession 1, was born in 1828, on the farm where he now resides, being the son of the late Andrew Bigham, who was born in County Down, Ireland, September 9, 1867, and was one of the first settlers in this township, having emigrated to America before 1800. Andrew Bigham was married twice, by his first wife he had seven children, four girls and three boys, and by his second wife he had nine children, seven boys and two girls. When he first located in Etobicoke it was so sparsely populated that he remained four years without a neighbour to the north and west of his lot. He died April 6, 1843, at the age of seventy-five years and seven months. His wife was sixty-four years old when she died, on February 27, 1853. Samuel W. Bigham married in the year 1849, Aliza Ash. He has not taken much interest in municipal matters, but is Superintendent of the Baptist Sunday school, and has been a School Trustee for a space of six years (vol. II, p. 246)

Charles E. Brown, west half of 20 and 21, lot F, range 3, proprietor of market garden, was born in New York State in the year 1839, and came to Canada in 1862, locating first at Niagara, where he worked for six years on a farm. He then moved to Sunnyside, and after spending two years on the farm of his mother-in-law, purchased the property which he now owns. He cultivates both farm and garden produce, and all his crops are in good demand. He married in 1865 Susannah Elizabeth, eldest daughter of James Charles, Esq., one of Toronto’s oldest merchants and residents, he having settled and started in business near the corner of King and Yonge Streets, in 1834. By this lady he had a family of eight children, seven of whom are living. (vol. II, p. 247)

Joseph F. Brown, lot 11, concession 3, was born on the farm where he now resides, being the son of the late Joseph Brown, who was a man well-known and respected in the neighbourhood. Mr. Brown, sen’r, emigrated from Yorkshire, England, in 1831, and soon after his arrival settled upon the farm now occupied by the subject of this sketch. The mother is still living and in good health, having reached the age of seventy-seven years. (vol. II, p. 247)

William Burgess, lot 1, concession 6, was born in Middlesex County, England, in 1844, and came to Canada with his father’s family when ten years of age. They came direct to Toronto, and lived a few years on Dundas Street, and followed the occupation of gardening. In 1860 William Burgess moved to his present farm, where he does a considerable amount of vegetable and fruit-growing. He also ships a large quantity of vegetables, etc., to the States. He married in 1871 Margaret Griggs, by whom he has four children. (vol. II, p. 247)

Matthew Canning, lot 17, concession 1, was born in the city of New York in 1827, being the son of the late Joseph Canning, who emigrated from Ireland and settled in New York, where he remained about four years previous to coming to Canada. He took up his residence in York Township, and located at different places until 1832, when he moved with his family to Etobicoke Township, and purchase the farm which his son Matthew now owns, where he lived until his death. Our subject took possession of the homestead, and, by industry and perseverance, has considerably improved the property, to which he has since added, owning now about 400 acres of land. He has taken a lively interest in municipal affairs, and from being a member of the Township Council, was elected Deputy-Reeve, and afterwards Reeve, which position he has filled with consummate ability for the past 11 years. He married in 1848 Janet Anderson, by whom he has a family of twelve children, 11 of whom are still living. His eldest son resides on the farm; five daughters are married. (vol. II, p. 247)

James Carruthers was born in Cumberland, England, in 1813, and is a son of the late James Carruthers who emigrated to Canada with his family in the year 1822, and settled in York Township. The township was then thinly populated, there being no place of worship nearer than Weston, where a small Methodist church had been erected; their wheat they had to carry to Pine Grove, it being the nearest grist-mill, which was run by old John Smith. James Carruthers was married in 1841 to Hannah Hind, also a native of Cumberland, England, by whom he had a family of twelve children, four of whom only are living. The family are adherents of the English Church. (vol. II, p. 248)

Allen Castle, lot 28, concession A, it was born on the farm where he now resides, and is the second son of the late Robert Castle, who emigrated from Yorkshire, England, about the year 1818. Robert had served his time to shoemaking, but did not continue in that business, evidently preferring the medical profession, which he followed for four years. After his arrival in Toronto he sailed the lakes for two or three years, as captain of a vessel plying between Toronto and Lewiston, afterwards following the occupation of bookkeeper for a similar period. He then turned his attention to farming, and purchased a farm in Markham, where he stayed two years, subsequently in 1825 he bought the land in Etobicoke, where his son Allan now lives together with his brothers, Thomas and James, and his sister Matilda. The family are members of the Methodist church. (vol. II, p. 248)

William Cave, Carpenter, Thistletown Village, is a native of Gloucestershire, England, and was born in the year 1810. He emigrated to Canada in 1832, and came direct to Toronto, the cholera being very bad throughout the country at that time; which somewhat disheartened him. He proceeded to Weston, and there settled down to his trade, building houses, barns, and all other works of the kind required in the neighbourhood. The first frame house put up in Thistletown was the driving house for Devin’s. Mr. Cave’s long residence in the township, and possessing as he does a good memory, together with more than ordinary power of observation, enables him to trace with much distinctness the rise and progress of the municipality. In the absence of schools within convenient distances, a teacher usually travelled around from farm to farm; spending a week here and there, and by these primitive means the children were not left completely without education. Mr. Cave married in 1834 Eve Philips; they had a family of nine children, seven of whom are yet living. The family are members of the Methodist church. Mr. Cave remembers the old Indian, John Etobicoke, and his squaw, after whom the township was named. (vol. II, p. 248)

Matthew Codling, lot 37, concession 4, was born in Etobicoke Township in 1838, being the eldest son of the late John Codling, who died in 1847. Mr. Codling, sen’r, emigrated to Canada at an early day and spend some years in Toronto, holding the position of Brewer at Helliwell’s brewery. In 1826 he left Toronto and purchased a farm in the Township of Etobicoke, the one at present in the possession of Matthew, which is now considered one of the nicest in the Township. Mr. Codling was married in the year 1863; his wife was Mary Pekins, a Canadian by birth; the issue of this union being four children. He has two brothers, who also have farms in the Township, Thomas and John. The family are adherents of the English Church, and are much respected in the neighbourhood. (vol. II, p. 249)

Robert Coulter is a native of County Down, Ireland, and was born in the year 1818. His father emigrated to Canada with his family in 1822 and remained for a short time inToronto; from there he removed to Etobicoke and settled on some land he purchased from D’Arcy Boulton. As an instance of the straits to which they were often put, it is recorded that a man named Stoddard carried a barrel of flour on his back from Toronto to Islington, a distance of nine miles. Mr. Robert Coulter was married in 1851 to Ann Jane Patterson, by whom he had a family of twelve children, seven daughters and five sons, viz.: Martha Ann, born April 18, 1852; Elizabeth Agnes, born September 1, 1853; Andrew, born January 20, 1855; Isabella, born July 8, 1857; Robert Wilson, born April 17, 1859; Albert Edward, born June 15, 1861; Hannah Caroline, born September 3, 1863; Sarah Maria, born April 18, 1865; Emily Adaline, born November 26, 1866; Florence Louise, born September 27, 1868; David Wesley, born October 14, 1870; Frederick Arthur, born July 30, 1874. Incidentally we may mention that no death has occurred upon this farm for fifty years. (vol. II, p. 249)

Meade Creech, builder, Lambton Mills, was born in the County of Cork, Ireland, in 1825, and came to America with his parents the same year. They settled in Philadelphia, U.S., and after a period of four years came to Canada and settled at Scarlett Factory, on Black Creek, where they remained about fourteen years, during which time Mr. Creech, sen’r, took the factory from Mr. William Taylor and assumed entire control. They subsequently removed to Lambton Mills, then known as “Cooper’s”, where Mr. Creech worked in the mill for a Mr. Hobson, since which time the family have been located there. Mr. Creech, sen’r, died in the year 1866. Meade Creech was married in Hamilton in 1851 to Charlotte Jane McCammon, a native of Prescott. Our subject is a builder by trade, and several dwellings and other buildings in the district testify to his skill and ability. (vol. II, p. 249)