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The Gooderham & Worts families emigrated from the Scole / Bungay area of England in the early 1830s, arriving in York, (now Toronto, Canada). First came James Worts, accompanied by his 13 year-old son, James Gooderham Worts. They built the windmill near the mouth of the Don River. They were followed in 1832 by William and Ezekiel Gooderham, their sister, Elizabeth (James Worts' wife) and 54 extended family members. Over the following 75 years, these families created the largest distillery in the world, as well as contributing to milling, banking, railways, shipping, farming and other essential components of the growing industrial country. They were active in the church and in various communities, as well as in health care and even in our political institutions. In 2013, descendants of the Gooderham and Worts families created an online website that includes a family tree with photos, documents and stories.


1912 The first Canadian Big Sisters agency formed by Florence Gooderham Huestis

Big Sisters began as a “small sub-committee of the Local Council of Women, initiated by Florence Huestis, the President in answer to a request for assistance from the judge of Toronto’s newly established juvenile court.”

This was just one example of how Florence, adopted daughter of Henry Gooderham, had turned her own early difficult circumstances into a powerful tool of transformative action to help others.

Florence Gooderham Hamilton Huestis b1872

Henry Gooderham, fourth son of William Gooderham, and his wife, Mary Webster Hamilton had no children. They adopted Flora Hamilton, granddaughter of Mary’s father, William Hamilton following his death in 1880. Was she the offspring of a son or a daughter of William Hamilton? Attempts by descendants to discover the answer have been unsuccessful. Flora’s origins were the subject of much gossip among the Toronto elite


We ask you to help! If you are a descendant, historian or some other person with relevant information or material, please get in touch. Nothing related to living descendants will be available to the public. In fact, public information will be limited to people who died in the 19th or early 20th centuries.

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