In the Springtime of 1876, April 21, I came to town (Perth) having rented the McPherson carding mill as associate with my Uncle George. He was supposed to have the capital, but after a few days he got homesick and I decided to continue, feeling that to turn back would mean defeat and that I would never get anywhere.
The executors of the property trusted me to go ahead. I bought the yarn stock for 159 dollars and 60 cents on time. During the next two weeks business was good and I paid for this in full. As terms were cash I was enabled to finance. There was a shingle mill in connection. I bought the shingle stock and cut it into shingles, but I had much trouble in getting rid of the shingles.
I continued carding rolls for home spinning: charging four cents when oiled at home, and six cents per pound for spinning, deducting one pound in ten for loss; much of the wool was hand picked or semi washed.
Customers were strong on getting their own wool back in the yarn as each person thought that his wool was better than the others, but they did not always get it. I had much trouble in saving myself from becoming a first class liar as customers wanted to know when their work would be ready, and if not careful in promising trouble followed– sometimes with a severe chastisement.
In the autumn of 1876, together with a party, I went to *the Centennial at Philadelphia, Pa. We lodged in Germantown and had a rate one dollar a day. We were away 6 days in all, and altogether it cost me 28 dollars and a half. I was called the boy of the party, but I do not think it cost the others much more if anything. Of course we did not have Pullman accommodation.
When the custom season was over I was asked by the executors of the estate what I would give for the property where I was. I named 3000 dollars. Shortly after I was advised that the property had been sold to a *fellow elder at the figure that I had offered. I felt that I had been used, and naturally I was disappointed, however I resolved not to be outdone. I rented the small frame building at the south side of the stone flour mill and put in a water wheel. I installed carding and spinning machinery of a primitive character, and got into operation about the first of June 1877.
I got my share of the custom, and after two seasons, my opposition ceased to operate. The same executors came to me and asked me to buy the machinery. I told them I had no money, to which they replied that they would trust me. At the same moment one A. D. Disher– representing the McLaren Lumber Company at The Pache, province of Quebec– was on his way to buy the machinery. He was told that I had bought it so he came to me and asked if I would sell, and at what price. I named 1000 dollars for the cards, hand jack spinner, and the picker. He put his hand in his trouser pocket and produced one hundred 10 dollar bills. This happened without any banter whatsoever, and the deal was verbal.
I immediately went to the law office of F.A. Hall and paid off the claim. I had left a Judson roll card that had been operated by my Uncle Richard on the Haggart premises many years before, which together with some other equipment I had for 100 dollars. Without opposition the struggle was not so strenuous for a year or two, but the evolution had started from the homemade to the factory made.
Next- The Ryan Family and the Evolution of Socks
*In celebration of America’s one-hundredth anniversary of independence, the Centennial Exhibition took place on more than 285 acres of land in Philadelphia’s Fairmount Park May 10-November 10, 1876. Close to ten million visitors (9,910,966) went to the fair via railroad, steamboat, carriage, and on foot. Thirty-seven nations participated in the event, officially named the International Exhibition of Arts, Manufactures, and Products of the Soil and Mine. The grounds contained five major buildings: the Main Exhibition Building, Memorial Hall (Art Gallery), Machinery Hall, Agricultural Hall, and Horticultural Hall. In addition to these buildings, approximately 250 smaller structures were constructed by states, countries, companies, and other Centennial bureaus that focused on particular displays or services.
*Of possible interest, a notice in the Courier in August 1872 announced that John Drysdale of Glen Tay had come to work in the carding mill of McPherson Wool in Perth. The Drysdales had a connection to the Adams family, and a man by the name of Drysdale was injured in the woolen mill fire of 1870
Note—When the post office opened in 1851 a clerical error resulted in the community being called Innisville. The error was never corrected.
The first industrial process on the site was operated by the Kilpatrick family beginning in 1842 and established as a tannery shortly thereafter. In 1882 a new owner, Thomas Alfred Code, established Codes Custom Wool Mill with a range of processes, including: carding, spinning, fulling, shearing, pressing, and coloring of yarns. In 1896, its name was changed to the Tay Knitting Mill, and it produced yarn, hosiery, socks, gloves, sporting-goods, sweaters, and mitts. Another change came in 1899, when a felt-making process was introduced and the mill was renamed Code Felt. The company continued to operate until the closing of the factory in 1998.
51 Herriott – The Code Mill is actually a collage of five different buildings dating from 1842. T.A. Code moved to Perth in 1876, and bought this property by 1883. Code spent 60 years in business in Perth. The business started with a contract to supply the North West Mounted Police with socks, and continued for many years manufacturing felt for both industrial and commercial uses.
Code Felt Co today– Click here..
In the 1883, Mr. T. A. Code established Codes Custom Wool Mill with a range of processes, including: carding, spinning, fulling, shearing, pressing, and coloring of yarns. In 1896, its name was changed to the Tay Knitting Mill, and it produced yarn, hosiery, socks, gloves, sporting-goods, sweaters, and mitts. Another change came in 1899, when a felt-making process was introduced and the mill was renamed Code Felt. The company continued to operate until the closing of the factory in 1998. The following year, John Stewart began a major restoration and introduced new uses for this landmark. This impressive limestone complex with its central atrium now has an interesting mix of commercial tenants.-Perth Remembered
How did I get this?
I purchased this journal online from a dealer in California. I made every attempt to make sure the journal came back to its rightful location. Every day I will be putting up a new page so its contents are available to anyone. It is a well worn journal full of glued letters and newspaper clippings which I think belonged to Code’s son Allan at one point. Yes there is lots of genealogy in this journal. I am going to document it page by page. This journal was all handwritten and hand typed. Read-More Local Treasure Than Pirate’s Booty on Treasure Island
How did it get into the United States? The book definitely belonged to Allan Code and he died in Ohio in 1969.
Allan Leslie Code
1896–1969 — BIRTH 27 MAR 1896 • Ontario—DEATH JUN 1969 • Mentor, Lake, Ohio, USA
Andrew Haydon–He was the author of Pioneer Sketches of The District of Bathurst (Lanark and Renfrew Counties, Ontario) (The Ryerson Press, 1925) and Mackenzie King and the Liberal Party (Allen, 1930).
Information where you can buy all Linda Seccaspina’s books-You can also read Linda in The Townships Sun andScreamin’ Mamas (USA)