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1834 This is a Yankee Place

"A good story is told about a pioneer selling wheat at the windmill, in the early days of the mill."

Toronto 1834 by Owen Staples

"In 1834, John MacKay, who recently died in Toronto, was a farmer in the township of East Gwillimbury. When a lad of nineteen, with a friend named Sutherland, he visited the city of Toronto. This time the youths were entrusted with wheat for sale. Their instructions were to sell to a Mr. Hogg, who was buying wheat at a point known as Hogg’s Hollow. The price at Hogg’s Hollow was fifty cents a bushel. Here a rumour reached the young men that a man named Gooderham down at the Bay front was paying 75 cents a bushel; and they determined to proceed there. The question in their minds was this: Would their wheat pass the higher inspection that Gooderham demanded? Coming to Bloor street, they proceeded to Parliament, from which point they could see the big wings of the windmill. Guided by that, they came to the mill itself. Mr. Gooderham himself jumped on their load, examined their wheat and said:

“That’ll do.”

They unloaded the wheat and saw for the first time a new patent scale. Sutherland looked on the whole contrivance with great suspicion. One by one Sutherland’s bags of wheat were placed on the scales and then dumped into a large bin. With the disappearance of the bags, Sutherland became uneasy. He turned to MacKay and said in Gaelic:

“ This is a yankee place we’ve got to and we will get nothing for our wheat.”

At this point Sutherland and MacKay stopped the proceedings until they could get some assurance of what was going to happen next. Mr. Gooderham totalled the weight of the first load, and the hearts of the highland youths rejoiced when they discovered that by Gooderham’s weight on the new Yankee scales, Sutherland had 29 bushels, 40 pounds of wheat, just 20 pounds more than he himself had figured upon. It is almost unnecessary to say that MacKay forever afterwards was always ready to hand out a first class certificate of character for William Gooderham."

Excerpt from Landmarks of Toronto; a collection of historical sketches of the old town of York from 1792 until 1833, and of Toronto from 1834 to 1914 by Robertson, J. Ross. (John Ross), 1841-1918. Published 1894.

Page image shown below

1834 This is a Yankee Place

A story about selling wheat to the Gooderham Mill.

Owner of originalGG
Date3 Dec 2018
Linked toThe Distillery, Toronto, ON, Canada

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