Where the Streets Get Their Names: Maddock Drive

By Melissa Cole, Curator

In honour of Remembrance Day and remembering those who fought in the war, it was appropriate to share a street name story related to one of Oshawa’s World War II fallen soldiers.

Frederick Daniel Maddock was born to Frederick and Minnie Jane Brown on June 2, 1922 in Toronto.  Frederick had three brothers, Gordon, Clifford and Leslie, and three sisters Maude, Viola and Shirley.  When the family resided in Oshawa they lived at 34 Elgin Street West.

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Frederick Daniel Maddock, circa 1941; image from OPL Book of Remembrance

Frederick, nicknamed “Red” because of his red hair, attended Centre Street Public School and went to the University of Toronto.  He was employed at General Motors before he enlisted on December 10, 1941 in Toronto.

After enlisting, he received training at Toronto, Moose Jaw, Trenton and McDonald, Manitoba.  In September 1943 he was sent overseas where he was a registered Flight Sergeant in the Royal Canadian Air Force, Division 15.

An article published in the Oshawa Daily Times on July 22, 1944 had a headline reading “Oshawa FL-SGT is believed killed – F.D. “Red” Maddock Reported Missing Some Weeks Ago.” The International Red Cross at Geneva reported that he had lost his life on May 25, 1944.  He is buried in Groesbeek Canadian War Cemetery, Netherlands.

Maddock Grave
F.D. Maddock Grave Marker, Groesbeen Canadian War Cemetery, Netherlands; image from Find a Grave

When the message was sent home that he had died, his brother Clifford, the only other brother who was eligible to fight in the war, was honourably discharged and sent home to his family.  The loss of one son was enough for the family.  It was common practice during WWII when a sibling died and there was more than one child fighting for our country, they would be honorably discharged and sent home.

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From Google Streetview

The veteran streets named Maddock Drive and Maddock Court in Oshawa are located at the east end of Oshawa, off Townline Road, north of Adelaide Avenue East and south of Beatrice Street East. Like other veteran’s streets, there is a poppy on the sign for Maddock Drive.

Where the Streets Get Their Names – Farewell Street

By Lisa Terech, Community Engagement

Ackeus Moody Farewell, “a man of boundless energy, pluck and endurance,”¹ was born in Vermont on January 1, 1782, the youngest of five children.  After the American Revolution, his family was one of many that left the United States, taking advantage of the free land being offered by Lieutenant Governor Simcoe to Americans wishing to travel north and help colonize the newly created Upper Canada.²  Moody and his family travelled north, and it was around 1801 that Moody arrived in an area that today is found around the King Street East and Harmony Road intersection. For some time, this area was known as Farewell’s Corners before becoming the Village of Harmony.  Moody did not settle here immediately, first apprenticing as a hatter, opening an unsuccessful trading post on Lake Scugog, and trying his hand as a crew member aboard the New Nancy.

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After ‘squatting’ on land north of Lake Ontario for several years, Moody purchased Concession 1, Lot 4 in 1804; in time, he would purchase more land in that same vicinity.  This would prove to be an eventful year for Moody as he married Elizabeth Annis also in 1804. The couple would have nine children together: William, Charles, Isaac, Acheus Moody Jr., Jacob, Abram, David, Levi, and Sarah.  According to Samuel Pedlar, Moody and family benefitted from establishing relationships with the local First Nations, trading with them and learning from their knowledge of the land.

1867 Centennial Map - Farewell Land

By 1812, he had opened his successful tavern with an interesting story, as this tavern reportedly was used to feed British soldiers and hold American prisoners of war during the War of 1812.  Thomas Conant recalled the tavern in his book, Upper Canada Sketches:

Here a large frame hotel had been built, kept by one Moode Farewell. This was one of the stopping places or houses of entertainment for the military men who passed to and from Montreal and York during the war.

Joviality and good cheer were characteristic of it, and many a merry night was spent there by the British officers. Many times my grandfather saw them call for liquors in the bar-room on arrival, each grasp his glass, touch his companion’s and drink to the usual toast of “Here’s to a long and moderate war.”  Could those old walls speak to-day they would recall the many, many times this toast was given.³

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Moody Farewell’s Tavern, illustrated by ES Shrapnel; this image appeared in Thomas Conant’s Upper Canada Sketches

Interestingly, Moody was a firm believer in temperance, the abolition of alcohol, and owning a tavern seems rather against this movement, so by 1837, he had shut his tavern down.  However, after the War of 1812 ended, Moody had built a gristmill and sawmill, so he was still generating an income despite closing down his tavern.

According to local lore, the naming of Oshawa is due in a small part to Moody Farewell.  As the story goes, in the 1840s, local movers and shakers were trying to get a post office for the community of Skae’s Corners, King/Simcoe and area, known as such because of the popularity of Edward Skae’s General Store.  The Province of Canada was willing to give a post office, but because so many communities at the time had the name ‘corners’ in it, they would have to pick another name.  A group were gathered at a tavern when in walks Moody Farewell with First Nations men he knew from his fur trading days.  The Indigenous men were asked what they called this area, and they replied ‘Oshawa’ which means ‘that point at the crossing of the stream where the canoe was exchanged for the trail.’

Moody’s wife Elizabeth passed away in 1851, as per her headstone; he would remarry a woman named Sarah Haviland Coryell before his passing in 1869.

A.M. Farewell

Farewell Street is a north-south artery in the east end of the City of Oshawa, and it runs through what was property owned by Moody Farewell.  Farewell Creek, which starts at the Oshawa Harbour before traversing through Clarington, takes its name from this family, as well as the Farewell Pioneer Cemetery.  This cemetery is located on Harmony Road, just south of King, and it started as a private family burying ground for the Farewells.  By the 1860s, Moody began advertising plots for sale at the ‘Harmony Burying Ground.’  Less than 100 years later the City of Oshawa became the owner of the cemetery; it was closed for further burials in 1968.  The cairn which is a distinct feature of the cemetery was dedicated in 1979 after the city wanted to better showcase the headstones and pay homage to the early settlers of European origins.

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  1.  Thomas Conant, Upper Canada Sketches (Toronto: William Briggs, 1898), 45, accessed from: https://ia800207.us.archive.org/34/items/uppercanadasketc00cona/uppercanadasketc00cona.pdf
  2. Samuel Pedlar, Samuel Pedlar Manuscript (unpublished manuscript, 1904), made available online through the Oshawa Public Library, accessed 12 Aug 2018 from: http://localhistory.oshawalibrary.ca/pdfportal/pdfskins/Pedlar/pedlar.pdfFrame 180.
  3. Conant, 44.

Oshawa Historical Society. Harmony Village: Remembering the Settlers & a Lost Cemetery, 2nd Edition. Oshawa Historical Society, 2012.

 

Where the Streets Get Their Names: William and Mary

By Lisa Terech, Community Engagement

Traversing through Oshawa’s downtown are the streets of William and Mary, fairly common street names, likely found throughout many communities.  These are early streets in Oshawa, and while definitively proving their namesakes may be challenging, it has been suggested that they were named for an early family who settled in Lot 10 Concession 2.

One of the earliest European settlers in what became the Village of Oshawa was a man named John Kerr (pronounced ‘car’).  According to Samuel Pedlar, John Kerr, originally from New York, arrived in the area in 1816 and purchased 200 acres ‘in the northwest ward,’ or Lot 11 Concession 2.  He purchased the land from Jabez Lynde, a name quite familiar in Whitby as his house is still standing as the Lynde House Museum, and several locales around the town still carry his family name.  John Kerr built a large frame building on the bank of the Oshawa Creek, which he operated as a tavern for a number of years.  Pedlar recorded that the frame building Kerr built was later moved and was the home for the JB Warren family, then JB Hare.  For a number of years, the settlement was known as Kerr’s Creek.

John’s brother, William, settled nearby not long after John arrived, purchasing land on Lot 10 Concession 2 from their father, Norris.  The land he owned was eventually parcelled up; this was the land located north of King Street and west of Simcoe, right in the heart of what would become the downtown. William (1796-1873) was married to a woman named Mary Turner (1795-1871), and Pedlar claimed they had three sons and two daughters (an interesting note to their family tree, their granddaughter married John Walter Borsberry, who operated the Borsberry Music Hall).  They are both buried in Union, although noted that their last name on their headstone is spelt Karr; according to Samuel Pedlar, this is a spelling the family adopted and continued to use.

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Detail from 1895 County of Ontario Atlas, showing section of Town of Oshawa; note, inside the circle is ‘Wm Karr’s Original Village of Oshawa.’

It is possible that William Street and Mary Street have been named for William Karr and his wife Mary. It fits rather conveniently, especially knowing they owned land around where these streets are located; this assertion was made previously by W. Ford Lindsay in his popular Then and Now column for the Oshawa Times and was repeated in a 1993 article, also in the Oshawa Times.  An article in the Daily Times-Gazette in the 1950s seemed to claim these streets were named for children of John Kerr, however, it doesn’t appear that John had a daughter named Mary (although he did have a son named William).  That being said, these suggestions do not mean definitive proof; a quick internet search can reveal dozens of other possible namesakes.  Whether the streets bear their names or not, the Karrs impact on the downtown core is prevailing, as land northeast of the Four Corners falls under what is known as the Karr Plan, a planning document, detailing land parcels and important to know when researching lot histories.


Sources:

John Goldwin, “Oshawa street names honor pioneer families,” Oshawa Times, 10 April 1993.

W. Ford Lindsay, “Then And Now: Some Served Long Helped Community,” Oshawa Times, 20 August 1970.

Samuel Pedlar, Samuel Pedlar Manuscript, transcribed from a microfilm of the original by Sharon Stark & Margaret Egerer (July/August 1970), accessed online 27 February 2019 from http://localhistory.oshawalibrary.ca/pdfportal/pdfskins/Pedlar/pedlar.pdf.

Where The Streets Get Their Names – Rossland Road

By Lisa Terech, Community Engagement

Like many of the other major arteries through the city, Rossland Road takes its name from the farmer who owned land in the second and third concessions in the 1800s, Rossland being the road between these concessions.  Atlases from the 1870s and 1890s shows John Ross and J. Ross owning these parcels of land; the challenge when researching this family is that Ross is a common name, and there were apparently two different Ross families, both with Scottish roots, who settled within East Whitby.

Above maps from the 1877 County of Ontario Atlas, showing land owned by the Ross family in East Whitby Township (left) and the Village of Oshawa (right).

According to Samuel Pedlar, James Ross Sr. (incorrectly identified by Pedlar as ‘John Ross’), was born in Morayshire, Scotland and in 1834 settled on the north half of lots 9 and 10 in the second concession.  James Sr. and his wife Helen were described as “ hard working industrious people of which any country might be proud.”

Together, this couple had five children, two daughters, and sons James (1843-1911), Alexander, and John.  Pedlar recorded that Alexander moved one township east, settling on the seventh concession in Darlington; John moved even farther away from Oshawa/East Whitby, “residing in the city of Winnipeg, Manitoba,” however son James stayed very local and resided “at the homestead.”  Farming wasn’t his only interest for James Jr. who served as town councillor for several years.

James Jr. married his wife Rachael sometime before 1871, and the couple had four sons.  He died in 1911, and Rachael passed away 11 years later.  The couple is laid to rest in Union Cemetery.

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A983.42.1 – excerpt from 1925 Oshawa Street Map showing Ross’ Road

For many years, Rossland was the northern limit to the Town/City of Oshawa, and often it was identified as ‘Ross’ Road.’  It was renamed Rossland sometime between 1930 and 1934.

Blog Look Back – Top 5 of 2018

Happy New Year! Throughout 2018, we shared 72 posts articles on the Oshawa Museum Blog, showcasing so many different stories from our city’s past. It was a highlight to partner with Durham College Journalism Students in the spring who shared 8 articles about ‘The Land Where We Stand.’  This series uncovered hidden stories about the land upon which our community is built and was a feature series for the Durham College Newspaper, The Chronicle.

We’re planning our new and dynamic posts for 2019, but to start the year, let’s look back at our top 5 posts of 2018

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Where the Streets Get Their Names: Oshawa Boulevard

One of the common questions asked (besides if the Oshawa Museum is haunted!) is what does the word ‘Oshawa’ mean? We used our popular ‘Street Name Stories’ series to help answer this question.  The current alignment of Oshawa Boulevard is a result of consolidating three consecutive streets, and we also highlighted how this road evolved through the years and what happened to Oshawa’s Yonge Street and St. Julien Street.

The 1918 Plane Crash

It was dubbed Oshawa’s most heavily photographed event; on April 22, 1918, a plane crashed into the northwest corner of King and Simcoe.  To mark the 100th anniversary of this event, we looked at how this was covered in the media and shared a few amazing photographs from our collection!

Where the Streets Get Their Names: Harmony Road

Two of our top five posts were looking at the stories behind Oshawa street names.  In 2017, we profiled streets that contributed to building our nation; this year, we used a number of posts to examine the history of Oshawa’s many villages and hamlets, including the former Harmony Village, through which Harmony Road traverses.

The Scugog Carrying Place

In honour of Indigenous Month, which takes place in June, Melissa Cole, OM Curator, highlighted at an interactive map that is found in our exhibition: A Carrying Place: Oshawa’s Indigenous Story.  This map depicts the approximate location of the Scugog Carrying Place trail, and Melissa explains how this map was carefully created.

Llewellyn Hall

In advance of the opening of our 2018 feature exhibit Community Health in the 20th Century: An Oshawa Perspective, Melissa looked at the history of Llewellyn Hall, its inhabitants through the years, and its brief history as a Maternity Home!

 

These were our top 5 posts written in 2018; the top viewed post for the year was actually written a few years ago, Keeping Warm: The Ways The Victorians Did! Perhaps our readers have an interest in vintage bedwarmers, or perhaps some are looking for inspiration for keeping warm during the cold Canadian winter months!

Thank you all for reading, and we’ll see you all in 2019!