Bates and Innes staff, 1936 from the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum
Three Carleton Place men named Josiah Evoy, Wesley Evoy and George Craig were arrested for stealing wool from the felt mill of Bates and Innes. They were brought before Police Magistrate McNeely one Friday morning and committed to Perth for trial. The wool in question had been washed and oiled in preparation for the cards.
Four parcels were found– three in Evoy’s cellar and one in Craig’s attic. When brought before Judge Senlkler on Tuesday, January 1902, the trio pleaded guilty. Josiah Evoy was sentenced to 23 months in central prison; the others got 2-4 months in gaol with hard labour. — Almonte Gazette 1902
Of course it is wrong to steal, but you have to remember times were tough. There was a population explosion, immigration both foreign and domestic – added up and resulted in a scramble for any job available.
Large numbers of both skilled and unskilled people were looking for work, so wages were low, barely above subsistence level. If work dried up, or was seasonal, men were laid off, and because they had hardly enough to live on when they did work, they had no savings to fall back on. Long tedious hours working in our local woolen mills were harsh realities. In the case of Evoy, he had a barely year old daughter to support.
Henry Mayhew argued that:
“since crime was not caused by illiteracy, it could not be cured by education … the only certain effects being the emergence of a more skillful and sophisticated race of criminals.”
In those days the only solution to poverty was to put more family members, even children, to work in the mills, or in the Bates and Innes case- steal wool.
Photo of Bates and Innes calendar– Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum
|Event Date||11 Apr 1901|
|Event Place||Carleton Place, Lanark, Ontario, Canada|
|Father’s Name||Josiah Wm. Evoy|
|Mother’s Name||Mary Ann Falls|
1907 – Bates and Innes Co. Limited bought and equipped the former Gillies Woollen Mill in Carleton Place as a knitting mill. A Quebec company, the Waterloo Knitting Co. Ltd., similarly re-opened the Hawthorne Woollen Mill.
Charles Bates was born in 1873. He was a textile manufacturer and part owner of the Bates and Innes Woolen Mill. He died at the age of 90 in 1963. Carleton Place Chamber of Commerce.