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Notes for John Harte and Eliza Howes Meakins

1896 Photo of John Harte, 1896

Eliza Howes Meakins Harte

1835 "Charles William Meakins, Cabinet Maker, & Mary Anne Marshall his wife had a daughter born on the twenty sixth day of February last & baptized the seventh day of July one thousand eight hundred and thirty five named Eliza Howes by H Essen min'r. CW Meakins Mary Anne Marshall Ant'y Hamilton John Lepine" at the Presbyterian Church St. Gabriel Street, Montreal, Quebec. [1]

1849 John Harte immigrated to Canada. [2]

John Harte was "from Dungannon, Ireland, manufacturer of stoves, Hamilton and Belleville, was secretary to a lord in Ireland." Dungannon is in the townland Drumcoo in the parish of Drumglass in the county Tyrone. [3]

"John Harte, Belfast, Ireland. John brought a traveling desk in the sailing ship from Ireland to Canada. The sail to Halifax was supposed to take a month but because of storms took over two months. He stayed in Nova Scotia for a time, was married there. His bride died of "galloping consumption" within a year of their marriage. He contracted tuberculosis and spent about a year working with fishermen and cured himself. Then he wandered west. Taught school in Hamilton, at the little school house near the Reservoir. While he was teaching school he met Eliza Meakins and he married her. They moved to Toronto where John Harte founded a foundry. John Harte lived to be about 88 years.". [4]

"John's first wife died young. He was secretary to a lord in Ireland. He moved to Canada while grieving after his first wife died. He had wealth.". [5]

1851 John Hart was a teacher in Saltfleet, Wentworth County, West (Ontario), Canada. He was born in Ireland, and his age at his next birthday was 27. His religion was Episcopalian. [6][7]

1861 John Harte and his wife E. H. Harte lived in Hamilton, Wentworth, Ontario in a 1-story single-family frame house in St. Patrick's ward (District 1) with their children Marion (age 3 at next birthday), and John William (age 1 at next birthday, born in 1860). The religion of the family was Church of England. John's occupation was book keeper at Carpenter & Co. He was born in Ireland, age at next birthday 36. E.H. was born in L.C. (Lower Canada), age at next birthday 26. Both children were born in U.C. (Upper Canada). [8][9]

1870 Residence listed in birth record of son James Henry Harte (born 10 Jan 1870, registered 12 May 1870) is Hamilton.

1870 John Harte's rank or profession was listed as book keeper in the birth registration of his son James Henry Harte.

1871 John Harte (age 47, born in Ireland, origin Irish, occupation foundryman) and Eliza Howes (age 46, born in Quebec, origin English) lived at St. Andrews Ward (Subdistrict B), Toronto West (District 46), Ontario, Canada with their children Marion Elizabeth (age 12), John William (age 10), Adah Elenor (age 8), Charles Edward (age 3) and James Henry (age 1), all born in Ontario and of Irish origin. The older three children were in school, and the religion of all members of the family was Church of England. A servant Sarah Ann Carr, age 18, born in the United States, religion Congregational, and of Irish origin, lived with them. [10][11]

1871 John Harte is listed in Lovell's Canadian Dominion Directory for 1871 [12], as a machinist, iron founder in Toronto, York, Ontario.

1877 Address 40 Duke Street, Toronto, York in birth record of Mary Annette.

1881 John Harte (age 56, born in Ireland, occupation "stovefoundry") and Eliza Harte (age 46, born in Quebec) lived at St Thomas Ward, Toronto, York, Ontario, Canada with John W. (age 20, bookeeper), Ada E. (age 18), Charles E. (age 13), James H. (age 11), Sarah E. (age 8), Mary A. (age 4), all born in Ontario, and Sarah Scales, (age 29, born in Ireland, servant). The religion of the family was Church of England. [13][14]

1891 Census, Hamilton City, Ward1, Ontario, Canada: John Harte, age 67, born in Ireland, both parents born in Ireland, occupation hardware merchant, and his wife Eliza, age 60, born in Ontario, both parents born in England, lived with their son John W., age 30, born in Ontario, occupation hardware merchant and daughters Sarah, age 18, Annette, age 14, both born in Ontario. The religion of the family was Church of England and all could read and write.

1893 "John Harte ... owned an iron foundry in Toronto. He lost the factory in the severe depression of 1893, and moved his family to Hamilton to try to make a new start. He never recouped his fortune.". [15]

1900 In a letter to his granddaughter Ella Frances Miles, John Harte wrote, "Chicago 30 Jan 1900
Dear Nelly,
Had reply from Dorothy & request from Marshall for a story. Dorothy says she knows the rhymes in the story are mine, but of the story she is not so certain. She doesn't know that spinning out such a yarn any length you like is only fun, but that getting up words to rhyme & keeping the sense and meaning clear is quite a task. I remember when I was about your age I commenced writing would be novels, after reading Ivanhoe & other of Scotts works; but my papers getting into my fathers hands he laughed me out of it, telling me that it would not pay, & that very few indeed ever succeeded to make authorship support life in any decency. Of course I believed him and beyond writing Acrostics, Valentines and love Sonnets for my lady friends in my early twenties never tried authorship again. ---Since coming to America never thought of such things, till now in my old age & idleness it employs my mind & makes me forget.
I enclose you a short poem written for yourself & using your name for the heroine and hope you will like it---indeed on reading it over I flatter myself that some of the stanzas come up to the standard of Marmion or Lady of the Lake. Hope it will please you---I will give Marshall a story next week, but am in doubt whether to place the story in America or the old Country---the impressions of my boyhood are not American but as it might please Marshall most, may talk of boys in the Wild West---Tell Marion if she wishes I will try & please her in same manner but she must first write me, stating which she would prefer---prose or poetry & I will do my best for her, as she is accustomed to good authorship & will expect something entertaining.
I trust you are all well & that your father keeps improving. Wasn't it awfully sudden the manner in which young Mr. Armour died---It will be a severe trial to his father in his bad state of health. Mamma is anxious to hear from your mother or Sarah as she had no news for nearly a fortnight but suppose they are so busy without kitchen help that their time is limited---
Will finish by saying that when Marion & Marshall hear from me, all my grandchildren who are old enough to understand writing will have something by which they can keep in mind their loving old Grandfather" P.D. Armour's son, P.D. Armour, Jr. died 29 January 1900, the day before the above letter was written. [16]

1901 John Harte, born July 1823 in Ireland (age 77) immigrated to Canada from Ireland in 1849, occupation retired stove mfg., lived in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada with wife Eliza H., born February 1835 in Quebec (age 66) origin English, sons John W., born August 1860 in Ontario (age 40) occupation book keeper, and Chas E. born Dec 1867 in Ontario (age 33) occupation Asst. Supt. Copper Co, and daughter Annette, born August 1876 in Ontario (age 24). The family religion was Anglican. [17][18]

1905 On 6 October, John Harte died in Hamilton, Wentworth County, Ontario. His death record says he was age 83, born in Ireland, and the cause of death was senile decay, reported by physician James Baugh. His residence was 535 Main St. East in Hamilton, Ontario. [19][20][21][22]

1911 Mary Harte, Sarah Berry, Eliza Harte, and Sarah's sons John and Joseph lived at 535 Main, Hamilton East Subdistrict 2 Ward 1, Ontario. [23]

1921 On 13 July, Eliza Howes Meakins Harte, daughter of Chas. M. Meakins and Marian Marshall, died in Hamilton, Ontario at age 87 [24]. Her death certificate lists her cause of death as weakness from old age and heart prostration. Her residence was 535 Main St. East (16 years). [25]


[1] "Quebec, Vital and Church Records (Drouin Collection), 1621-1967", Presbyterian Church St Gabriel Street, Monreal, Quebec, [Ancestry_Image].

[2] Canada Census, 1901, Hamilton, Ontario, Ward 1, [Ancestry_Image].

[3] Family Document, Evelyn Miles Krase Notes.

[4] Family Document, John Joseph Meakin Harte, using notes written by Sarah Harte Berry.

[5] Personal Communication, Judith Schafer Chevalley Hiss, recalling information from her mother.

[6] FamilySearch.org, citing Canada census, 1851, [FamilySearch_Record].

[7] Canada Census, 1851, [Ancestry_Image].

[8] Canada Census, 1861, [Ancestry_Image].

[9] FamilySearch.org, citing Canada census, 1861, [FamilySearch_Record].

[10] Canada Census, 1871, [Ancestry_Image].

[11] FamilySearch.org, citing Canada census, 1871, [FamilySearch_Record].

[12] John Lovell, [Canadian] Dominion and Provincial Directories for 1871 (1871), 798, [Internet Archive].

[13] Canada Census, 1881, [Ancestry_Image].

[14] FamilySearch.org, citing FHL Film 1375882, District 134, Subdivision C, Division 1, Page 149, Household 770), [FamilySearch_Record].

[15] Family Document, Bishop John Joseph Meakin Harte Notes ("Reflections on my 1st 39 years").

[16] Family Document.

[17] FamilySearch.org, Canada census, 1901, [FamilySearch_Record].

[18] Canada Census, 1901, Hamilton, Ontario, Ward 1, [Ancestry_Image].

[19] Ontario, Canada, Deaths, 1869-1938 and Deaths Overseas, 1939-1947, Archives of Ontario; Series: MS935; Reel: 124, [Ancestry_Image].

[20] Ontario, Canada, Deaths, 1869-1938 and Deaths Overseas, 1939-1947, Archives of Ontario; Series: MS935; Reel: 124, [Ancestry_Image].

[21] FamilySearch.org, [FamilySearch_Record].

[22] FamilySearch.org, [FamilySearch_Record].

[23] Canada Census, 1911, [Ancestry_Image].

[24] FamilySearch.org, [FamilySearch_Record].

[25] Ontario, Canada, Deaths, 1869-1938 and Deaths Overseas, 1939-1947, Archives of Ontario; Series: MS935; Reel: 284, [Ancestry_Image].

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