HISTORY CORNER: Miller becomes town treasurer in Etobicoke in 1918

Opinion Dec 06, 2017 by Denise Harris Etobicoke Guardian

John Roberts Berry became the treasurer for the Township of Etobicoke in 1918, but he was actually a textile miller by trade. He immigrated to Canada in 1880 and worked at Dominion Woollens in Hespeler, Ont., where he met and married Frances Traplin,  daughter of mill worker John Traplin and his wife, Eliza.

By 1890, John and Frances Berry had moved to Lambton Mills, where John was proprietor of a wool manufactory on the west bank of the Humber River, south of Dundas. His wife’s family also moved to Lambton Mills and worked in this mill.

The Berrys rented a house on Fisher’s Road (now Kingsway Crescent). The Traplins bought a lot, and in 1892, they built the house that is 125 Kingsway Cres. today in a popular Ontario Gothic cottage style.

In 1894, John Berry became superintendent of a textile mill in Beauharnois, Que., and moved there with his wife and six children. In 1901, he became superintendent of a mill in Little Falls, N.Y. This time, Eliza Traplin joined them, as her husband John had recently passed away.

The family returned to Lambton Mills in 1914 and everyone moved into Eliza’s house at 125 Kingsway Cres. Eliza soon transferred ownership of the house to Frances.

In 1918, John Berry was hired as treasurer for the Township of Etobicoke. Until the township hall on Dundas Street in Islington was enlarged in 1922, he worked in a parlour on the main floor of his home.

Isabel Dodge, John’s granddaughter, was born in the house in 1923 and has fond memories of her grandfather. Isabel called him a true “English gentleman.” He was known for his distinctive walrus-style moustache. In the summer, he always wore a pansy in his lapel, picked from his own garden every morning. He walked to and from work in Islington every day, regardless of weather, and never owned a car. When he arrived home, it was Isabel’s job to replace his shoes with slippers while he sat on the front veranda smoking a cigar or pipe. The family attended St. George’s Anglican Church On-the-Hill and John played the organ every Sunday for many years. He also played the piano at home, often playing very loudly on Sunday mornings to wake up any laggard children.

Eliza passed away in 1928, followed by Frances in 1934. Ownership of the house was transferred to John from his wife’s estate.

John was Etobicoke’s treasurer for 20 years, retiring in 1938 at the age of 80. Reeve J. Armstrong commended him, saying that he “bore the heat and burden of the day for over 20 years, and his successor will find his shoes hard to fill.”

In 1946, John transferred ownership of the house to Isabel and her husband. Soon after, he moved into a nursing home where he passed away in 1951 at the age of 92.

Denise Harris is the historian for the Etobicoke Historical Society. Her column appears every second Thursday. Reach her at denise.harris@sympatico.ca

HISTORY CORNER: Miller becomes town treasurer in Etobicoke in 1918

John Roberts Berry immigrated to Canada and married the daughter of mill worker John Traplin, writes Denise Harris

Opinion Dec 06, 2017 by Denise Harris Etobicoke Guardian

John Roberts Berry became the treasurer for the Township of Etobicoke in 1918, but he was actually a textile miller by trade. He immigrated to Canada in 1880 and worked at Dominion Woollens in Hespeler, Ont., where he met and married Frances Traplin,  daughter of mill worker John Traplin and his wife, Eliza.

By 1890, John and Frances Berry had moved to Lambton Mills, where John was proprietor of a wool manufactory on the west bank of the Humber River, south of Dundas. His wife’s family also moved to Lambton Mills and worked in this mill.

The Berrys rented a house on Fisher’s Road (now Kingsway Crescent). The Traplins bought a lot, and in 1892, they built the house that is 125 Kingsway Cres. today in a popular Ontario Gothic cottage style.

In 1894, John Berry became superintendent of a textile mill in Beauharnois, Que., and moved there with his wife and six children. In 1901, he became superintendent of a mill in Little Falls, N.Y. This time, Eliza Traplin joined them, as her husband John had recently passed away.

The family returned to Lambton Mills in 1914 and everyone moved into Eliza’s house at 125 Kingsway Cres. Eliza soon transferred ownership of the house to Frances.

In 1918, John Berry was hired as treasurer for the Township of Etobicoke. Until the township hall on Dundas Street in Islington was enlarged in 1922, he worked in a parlour on the main floor of his home.

Isabel Dodge, John’s granddaughter, was born in the house in 1923 and has fond memories of her grandfather. Isabel called him a true “English gentleman.” He was known for his distinctive walrus-style moustache. In the summer, he always wore a pansy in his lapel, picked from his own garden every morning. He walked to and from work in Islington every day, regardless of weather, and never owned a car. When he arrived home, it was Isabel’s job to replace his shoes with slippers while he sat on the front veranda smoking a cigar or pipe. The family attended St. George’s Anglican Church On-the-Hill and John played the organ every Sunday for many years. He also played the piano at home, often playing very loudly on Sunday mornings to wake up any laggard children.

Eliza passed away in 1928, followed by Frances in 1934. Ownership of the house was transferred to John from his wife’s estate.

John was Etobicoke’s treasurer for 20 years, retiring in 1938 at the age of 80. Reeve J. Armstrong commended him, saying that he “bore the heat and burden of the day for over 20 years, and his successor will find his shoes hard to fill.”

In 1946, John transferred ownership of the house to Isabel and her husband. Soon after, he moved into a nursing home where he passed away in 1951 at the age of 92.

Denise Harris is the historian for the Etobicoke Historical Society. Her column appears every second Thursday. Reach her at denise.harris@sympatico.ca

HISTORY CORNER: Miller becomes town treasurer in Etobicoke in 1918

John Roberts Berry immigrated to Canada and married the daughter of mill worker John Traplin, writes Denise Harris

Opinion Dec 06, 2017 by Denise Harris Etobicoke Guardian

John Roberts Berry became the treasurer for the Township of Etobicoke in 1918, but he was actually a textile miller by trade. He immigrated to Canada in 1880 and worked at Dominion Woollens in Hespeler, Ont., where he met and married Frances Traplin,  daughter of mill worker John Traplin and his wife, Eliza.

By 1890, John and Frances Berry had moved to Lambton Mills, where John was proprietor of a wool manufactory on the west bank of the Humber River, south of Dundas. His wife’s family also moved to Lambton Mills and worked in this mill.

The Berrys rented a house on Fisher’s Road (now Kingsway Crescent). The Traplins bought a lot, and in 1892, they built the house that is 125 Kingsway Cres. today in a popular Ontario Gothic cottage style.

In 1894, John Berry became superintendent of a textile mill in Beauharnois, Que., and moved there with his wife and six children. In 1901, he became superintendent of a mill in Little Falls, N.Y. This time, Eliza Traplin joined them, as her husband John had recently passed away.

The family returned to Lambton Mills in 1914 and everyone moved into Eliza’s house at 125 Kingsway Cres. Eliza soon transferred ownership of the house to Frances.

In 1918, John Berry was hired as treasurer for the Township of Etobicoke. Until the township hall on Dundas Street in Islington was enlarged in 1922, he worked in a parlour on the main floor of his home.

Isabel Dodge, John’s granddaughter, was born in the house in 1923 and has fond memories of her grandfather. Isabel called him a true “English gentleman.” He was known for his distinctive walrus-style moustache. In the summer, he always wore a pansy in his lapel, picked from his own garden every morning. He walked to and from work in Islington every day, regardless of weather, and never owned a car. When he arrived home, it was Isabel’s job to replace his shoes with slippers while he sat on the front veranda smoking a cigar or pipe. The family attended St. George’s Anglican Church On-the-Hill and John played the organ every Sunday for many years. He also played the piano at home, often playing very loudly on Sunday mornings to wake up any laggard children.

Eliza passed away in 1928, followed by Frances in 1934. Ownership of the house was transferred to John from his wife’s estate.

John was Etobicoke’s treasurer for 20 years, retiring in 1938 at the age of 80. Reeve J. Armstrong commended him, saying that he “bore the heat and burden of the day for over 20 years, and his successor will find his shoes hard to fill.”

In 1946, John transferred ownership of the house to Isabel and her husband. Soon after, he moved into a nursing home where he passed away in 1951 at the age of 92.

Denise Harris is the historian for the Etobicoke Historical Society. Her column appears every second Thursday. Reach her at denise.harris@sympatico.ca