The Campbells of Brampton

by Autumn Jones, nee Campbell

An oral history

The spring of 1912, Jim Algie who was a ball player went by train to South River to play ball and thought Lake Bernard looked interesting so persuaded a lot of the family, Kate, Rob, Fan, Bill, some of the Beatty girls to go there for a summer vacation. They rented a circus tent and went up by train I guess and pitched the tent past the present cottages on a sandy open part past Algies cottage. Young Jim Algie and Bud were the only children at that point – I was born in the fall of that year, 1912. The next summer they rented the big cottage from J.P. Johnston. Johnston's summer cottageIt was used as a hunting camp, the original big cottage and I imagine they all used the one cottage although in subsequent years I can remembsr the Jim Algies tenting before they bought the cottages. Later they went together and bought the whole piece of land from the lane to Algies big cottage for a very minimal sum. Kate took the big cottage, Sara: the Gould’s present cottage and Ted the Hall’s cottage.

My earliest memories are of visiting Auntie Fan and Uncle Bill and war. I remember quite vividly the armistice in 1918 and the deaths of Fan and Ted all about the same time. It was a dreadful Xmas that year (I was 6), Dawn was a baby and had a bad dose of pneumonia that winter and my mother grieved for a year over the death of her twin sister. We lived on the corner of Vodden St. across from the original Dale home where Ted and Alice (Auntie Tal lived) and remember Dad and I going to stay at Uncle Teds while I had whooping cough and Mom stayed at home with Bud who had dyptheria. Dad would shop for Mom and leave it at the front door. That was before 1918 since we moved into the Dale home after Uncle Ted died in 1918. My family lived in that house until 1950 when my father died. My mother died in 1938 when she was 50.

We also knew the Beatty family quite well in those early days. Uncle Bill Beatty had a lot of brothers and sisters and they were friends of the family. There was Bob, Bill, Gord, Stew, Mary, Edna, Brightsie and Bess. Stew married Grace Holwell and their children are Ann, Sue, and Olwen. Mary taught me for 3 years in public school and was an excellent teacher.l spent a lot of time at the Beatty house when I was young and after Auntie Fan died, her son Bill lived with the grandmother and grandfather Beatty and the girls before they married. Mary never married.

My mother was a very smart, interesting woman and our house after 1920 or so was filled with people every night – The Garbutts, Jennings boys, some Lockhurst boys, Mac Hall etc were constant visitors with a lot of cards played and the losers bought the treats at the end of the week. We kids were too young to take part in those things but used to hear the goings on at nites – all good clean fun as my mother wouldn’t allow any drinking in her house. Bud and I spent a lot of time at the top of the stairs until we mere discovered. In our teens, Bud’s friends were added to the nightly visitors and it was an interesting growing up period but often wonder how we ever got any homework done. I used to do mine in the center of all this and don’t think Bud did any.

Harry Algie and Auntie Ethel were both singers and used me as an accompanist to their ventures, no doubt with some urging from my mother as in my teens I was going to Toronto for lessons every Saturday.

Ort Carberry, Bud, Harris Fleury
Ort Carberry, Bud Campbell, Harris Fleury

All the young boys used to go hunting with my dad every Saturday and Ted Jones was one of these and he also was at our place a lot from the time he was 17 or so. They also used to go to the cottage in the Spring for fishing. Ted and Dad built the present Campbell privy on one of their fishing sorties – around 1925.

My father’s name was Robert Peel Campbell who was born in 1886 near Brampton. He came from United Empire Loyalist stock. His father was a big man whom I barely remember and his mother was a very tiny woman. They had 5 sons, Will who went out West quite young as a young man and had a family out there – Seth who died at the end of the first great war from the flu and had been overseas. Reg who married a fiery little Irish Catholic from the States. They lived in Brampton for a time while I was young and had 5 sons who were a lively bunch. They used to come to our house and use our boxing gloves, whaling the hell out of one another with the rest of us cheering them on. They moved to Boston later and don’t really know anything about them. Their names were Reg, Tom, Bob, Harold and Ned. Their mother’s name was Nora and she was a beautiful sewer and used to sew things for my mother -a rather delightful person as I remember. John was the youngest and he never married. Worked in a factory in Brampton and played lacrosse as goalie for the rather good teams they had in Brampton at that time. A rather lonely figure as I remember who used to come for dinner on Sundays on occasion and always bring jelly beans for Bette and Dawn . He died of pneumonia when I was around 12. I also remember visiting an old uncle of Dads who lived in Campbell’s Cross. He was very old and had long white hair and beard – his name was Peter Campbell.

My mother’s name was Kate Dale and was born in Brampton. Her parents were of Irish (mother) and English (father) descent and their names were Harry Dale and Bessie Young. They had 6 children, 5 girls and 1 boy. Harry Dale was a market gardener who travelled around the the town selling his produce from door to door. His wife made homemade made pickles and added them to the wares on the wagon. He later started a small greenhouse and added flowers to his supply. Harry had 3 brothers also in Brampton, Ned, Will and Tom and they subsequently worked in the greenhouse which became a thriving business in later years. Harry died in his early forties of blood poisoning after he had a tooth removed and Bessie died not too long after from something that could have been cured in this day. They left a young family Bertha, Sara, Ted, twins Kate and Fan, and Ethel. Bertha married shortly after this and Sara raised the ones. She also worked as a milliner in Brampton as she was very clever with her hands. The twins Kate and Fan spent a year at a girl’s private school in Whitby but then rejoined the family in the big house on Main St. N. in Brampton.

Bertha and Sara married brothers, Bill and Jim Algie who cam from Alton where their father owned a woolen mill. Bertha and Bill had 6 children, 5 boys and 1 girl, Harry, Mac, Bill, Loch, Bess and Alan. Sara and Jim had 4 children, two boys and two girls – Jim, Mary, Dale and Doris.
Ted Dale was a real character, must have been rather spoiled with all those sisters, and a great prankster. Had a dog he called old Ann. He married Alice Robinson. They had no children and Ted died in the influenza.

Kate married Rob Campbell and they lived in the States for a couple of years where Rob was a glass blower and Bud was born down there. They had five children Bud, Autumn, Dawn, Bettina and Peter.
Fan, one of the twins, married Bill Beatty and they had one boy Bill. She died within a week of Ted with influenza.
Ethel married Dr. Bill Brydon and they had 7 children. 4 girls and 3 boys – Elizabeth, Bill, Tom who died of cancer fairly young, Ted who was killed in second world war, Kate, Ethel Dale and Robin.
All these families lived in Brampton with the exception of the Bill Algies who lived in Toronto for a time but then moved back to Brampton and we had a lively relationship with cousins.

The three sisters Sara, Ethel, and Kate were on the board of directors of the greenhouse for years until their husbands took over in the latter years except Sara who remained on the board. Uncle Bill Beatty was on the board and later became genaral manager of the business. He was that position when I worked at the greenhouse for a couple of years before I married.

Ted’s parents were Edward Jones and Mary Kate Higgins. His dad was born in Wales end came to Canada when he was very young. Gwen Logan from Parry Sound was Edward’s sister. His grandfather Jones was a blacksmith in Brampton. Edward’s mother died and the father remarried again. Ted’s mother was born in Ireland and also came to Canada very young. The Higgins had a large family and Mary Kate had brothers also living in Brampton, Dinny Higgins being one that I know. Also a sister Ema which was short for Emily or Emma I don’t know which.

Ted’s father was a horseman and had many championship horses which he used to show at all the horse shows – thus the silver cups in our possession. The family moved to Ottawa and lived there for a time – don’t know for sure but imagine it had to do with horses. Ed Jones subsequently owned a coal business in Brampton in association with Clare Patterson. He was an avid curler and had a stroke while curling and died in his very early 40’s. Ted was 12 at the time and had a sister Edith 5 or 6 years older than he. Edith went in training for a nurse shortly after her father’s death which left Ed and his mother in their house in Brampton which was on the corner of Church and Main St. north east side.

Ted played football and hockey as a youth and I can remember watching him play hockey for a junior team against the Marlboros one nite in the Brampton arena. Believe it was an exhibition game. Ted played defense. He went to the University of Toronto taking a mining engineering degree and graduated in the late 20’s. He played football for the S.P.S. team and later told me that he must have taken a bad blow to the head during a game and had a concussion which wasn’t detected as he doesn’t remember much about that year at school.
Ted worked in Timmins during the summer months of his university years and Helen Russell (Mac Hall’s sister) lived there with her husband, who was a doctor, was very good to him and they were quite good friends. They were avid poker players in the bunk house where he lived in the summer and one summer just before he was going back to school he lost all his savings of the summer in a game. He phoned his mother that he wouddn’t be coming home and would be staying on in Timmins for the year as he didn’t have enough money to pay for his year at school. The next nite and another game and he won it all back so headed back to school. Ted always said was an all or nothing man and that episode certainly is an example.

When he graduated, the country was in a severe depression and there was no work. He had found that mining underground was too severe on his health as he had a sinus condition that couldn’t take the dampness. The summer of 1928 Ted spent prospecting with other young men northern Manitoba. They were away 4 months getting back the end of September. They went by canoe from the Le Pas and it was quite an experience for a young man. I remember seeing him when he came home and his hair was bleached white from the sun.

Ted worked at various jobs during the period after he graduated but nothing to do with mining. Carried the hod for brick layers at very low pay and finally got into construction of roads. Armstrong Brothers were just starting out in their business and there were some weeks that there wasn’t any money to pay the workers but it was work and Ted became foreman for Armstrongs so switched from mining to civil engineering. He worked on road construction continually from then on – no winter work or very little at that time and he moved around were the jobs were. In 1936 the economy was still in bad shape but a job came up in Simcoe County, an engineer of roads position. There were hundreds of applicants as there were still few jobs opening up. Ted got the job at a little over $2000 a year and moved to Barrie where he boarded at a Mrs. Campbell’s home on Dunlop East.

The previous winter Ted and I had belonged to a bridge club in Brampton with the Stew Beattys, the Dicksons, and Harry Dales. We were married in the fall of 1936 and moved to a home on Kempfeldt St. the spring and then moved to 23 Poynts.

Jones family
The Jones family