Categotry Archives: 1890s


Fraser & Caroline Westcott House (1891)

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261 Division Street South

Dr. William H. Drake was a very prominent physician in Kingsville from 1856 until his retirement to Windsor in 1894. In 1891, Dr. Drake has this “summer residence” built but never actually lived in it. As soon as it was completed, private banker Fraser Westcott and his wife Caroline moved in and remained in this home for nine years. Caroline A. Westcott was an accomplished musician and composer of several published songs including “Essex Heroes,” “Our Queen” and “Mettawas Waltzes.” In 1899, Molson’s Bank purchased Westcott’s Bank and the Westcotts bought the house next door, on the corner of Division and Erie, which no longer stands. That same year, Dr. Drake sold this house to George and Marian Henry but it was a later owner, Heenan Bruner, who added the verandahs in 1922.

Mrs. F. Westcott, author of the Mettawas Waltzes has just had published another piece of music set to the words of that lovely hymn, “Jesus Lover of My Soul.” Musical critics speak very highly of this, Mrs. Westcott’s latest production, and it bids fair to become, if anything, more popular than the Mettawas Waltzes. On sale at Leggett’s.

The Kingsville Reporter, March 15, 1895 p.5

Branch of Molson’s Bank Established in Kingsville

On Friday evening last Mr. Thompson, manager of the Ridgetown Branch Molsons Bank, arrived in town, and inside of a couple of hours had decided to open a branch of the Molsons in this place. He at once got out his advertising matter and announced his intention to the public. It was first intended to occupy the DeJean block, but subsequently arrangements were made to absorb Westcott’s private bank, and use the premises occupied by that gentleman.

On Tuesday evening Mr. H.A. Barrier, head office accountant from Montreal, arrived in town and completed the arrangements made by Mr. Thompson, and the bank opened for business today. [. . .] Mr. F. Westcott has secured the position of accountant in the new business, which will be gratifying to his numerous friends here.

The Kingsville Reporter, August 24, 1899 p.4

Heenan Bruner is adding very much to the appearance of his home on Division St., by building verandas in front and at the side of the residence. The front is 12×30 and the side 6×30, all enclosed with glass and screened for the summer.

The Kingsville Reporter, August 31, 1922 p.5


Seger L. McKay House (1890)

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121 Division Street South

“House Mover” Peter J. Wigle and his wife Sarah moved into their new “Scotch cottage” style house on Division Street South in June 1890. Unfortunately, “Uncle Peter” died four months later at the age of 79. Sarah remained in the home and opened it up to boarders. One lodger was Seger L. McKay, a hardware merchant from Woodstock. As reported in October 1890, “Mr. McKay, of the new hardware store is a single man. The girls have made a note of this. If he worries through on his own more than 2 years, we give up. When our girls take a desirable young man in hand, the minister and cake is the general result.” It took a little more than two years, but in June 1893 the following announcement was printed in the newspaper: “Cards are out for the marriage of S.L. McKay, of Kingsville, to Edith, daughter of Lewis Wigle, ex-M.P., of Leamington.” After the wedding, “Mac” and Edith rented Sarah’s house and eventually purchased it in 1899.

J.A. Maycock has just completed a set of plans for Mrs. Peter J. Wigle’s brick residence. The design is of the “Scotch cottage” style and is very pretty.

Amherstburg Echo, July 19, 1889 p.6

Mr. S.L McKay and bride, arrived here Saturday night last, and will reside in Mrs. Peter J. Wigle’s house on Division street.

The Kingsville Reporter, July 14, 1893 p.5

Struck a Good Thing

Mr. S L McKay received a telegram this week from the operators on a property at Cobalt in which he is interested, to the effect that a six inch vein of native silver and a vein of from one to three inches of wire silver had been opened up. The property is known as the Cobalt Contact, is two and a half miles from the town of Cobalt, in the township of Bucke. Mr. McKay, Messrs. Geo. and B. Jasperson and Mayor Wigle have a sixth interest in the property. There are other good properties all around the claim.

The Kingsville Reporter, June 13, 1907 p.4

Mr. and Mrs. S L McKay removed from here this week to Sarnia. In the departure of Mr. McKay the town sustains a distinct loss.  As Mayor of the town and President of the Board of trade for years Mr. McKay displayed a grasp of business affairs which has been the admiration of everyone who knew him. In gas matters he launched some bold schemes, and they have all proven winners from a financial point of view. Mr. McKay came here twenty years ago from Woodstock and engaged in the hardware business. He was successful from the start, but when he branched out into gas and oil he sold his store. He and his partner, Mr. B. Jasperson succeeded in getting American capital interested in the possibilities of gas from this district and through this Mr. McKay was made secretary-treasurer of the Sarnia Fuel Supply Co., which necessitated his removal from here. His many friends wish for him and his family continued prosperity.

The Kingsville Reporter, October 13, 1910 p.5

Thos. Clark and family have moved into their Division street home recently purchased from Mr. S.L. McKay.

The Kingsville Reporter, November 24, 1910 p.5


The Hiawatha (1890)

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285 Division Street South

Leroy Case moved from LaGrange, Indiana to Kingsville in the 1883 and bought Simon Wigle’s farm just north of town. In 1889, Case decided to put all his resources into building a hotel on property purchased from John Herrington on Division Street South. Building was completed in the spring of 1890 and the hotel was named “The Hiawatha.” The front of the hotel, with its two-storey balconies, faced Lake Erie and the entrance was off of Park Street. The hotel business must have proved difficult for Case because by January 1893, it was reported that his “liabilities are about $5,000 and normal assets $2,500.” By December that year, The Hiawatha was sold to Detroit businessman Theodore H. Eaton for $1,800 and the contents of the hotel were auctioned off. Eaton hired local contractor Thomas Jenner to convert to the hotel into a ‘summer cottage’ at a cost of $5,000 and ordered furniture from McDonald & Pearsall, of Kingsville. Eaton used this house as a summer residence until his death in 1910 and the home remained in the Eaton family until 1947.

Letter from Mr. Leroy Case.

To Kingsville Reporter.

Dear Sir: In communing with my spirit this evening and musing over the causes directly responsible for my leaving Canada and friends I loved so well, would say, I am forced to come to the conclusion that leaving was the only remedy left. Had I not been so sorely oppressed and so uncharitably dealt with among people who call themselves Christians in my day of adversity, I certainly would never have resorted the the (sic) means I did; but it was done in order to extricate myself from the scathing invectives that were thrown at me from every quarter, even from the people that I have many and many times befriended, and they were the first to deal the knock-out blow. I struggled hard and left no stone unturned to maintain the honest reputation and esteem in which I was once held (just) previous to my failure.

Instead of those that proffered the warmest friendship to me in my prosperity coming to my rescue in time of need, they threw me down and passed judgment on me, without as much as giving me a chance to vindicate myself. I was forced, not only as a duty to my family, but also to myself, to succumb under the powerful pressure of public sentiment, – more properly defined as Hypocrites, or “wolves in sheep’s clothing” – to take advantage of the only avenue left and beat a retreat to a country where, at least, I will get fair play and have a fighting chance to get on my feet again, which, if undertaken in Canada, would have proven a dismal failure. Kick a man when he is down, is your motto, as was so thoroughly demonstrated in my case.

In conclusion would say that I maintain to be an honest man to a marked degree, and if ever I get aide, will be only too proud to pay off any and every claim now standing against me by man, woman or child, in the County of Essex.

Leroy Case.

Chicago, Feb. 5th, 1895.

The Kingsville Reporter, February 15, 1895 p.8

 Theodore Eaton Dead

Theodore Eaton, whose summer home is at this place, died quite unexpectantly in Detroit Sunday afternoon, weakness preventing him from recovering from an operation he underwent a few days ago. Heart failure is given as the direct cause. He was four years old when his father, also of the same name of Theodore H. Eaton, came to Detroit and founded the chemical and dye stuffs house which later took on the firm name of Theodore H. Eaton & Son of this business, Mr. Eaton became sole proprietor in 1888, upon his father’s death. His nephew, Rufus W. Clark, is a partner in the business. He is survived by the widow; a daughter, Margaret Montgomery, 19 years of age, and a son, Barion (sic) Clark, 17 years. Mr. Eaton was active in the patriotic and other societies, belonging to the Society of Colonial Wars, Sons of the American Revolution and Huguenot Society. He was a director in the Detroit Iron & Steel Co., an advisory director in the Security Trust Co., and a member of the Board of Commerce.

The Kingsville Reporter, November 10, 1910 p.1

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