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Huston Family Stories

Source: From Barry Taylor (email dated April 9, 2000) as recorded by George Dodds Huston (posthumously released)

History of the Huston Farm

Alexander Huston was born in Tobermore, Ireland, in the year 1812. His early life was spent under the ministry of the eminent Dr. Carson, and during his residence in Ireland he is believed to have found the Saviour. In 1837, he married Margaret Moore, a descendant of Sir Thomas Moore, and three years later they were forced to leave Ireland due to religious persecution.
They came to Canada in a sailing vessel and settled in York Township, where they remained for six or seven years. During this period they were baptized by the Rev. Mr. Mitchell at what is now called York Mills. On moving form York, they relocated to Mono Township, Dufferin County, and hewed for themselves a home out of the forest at what is now called the Forest Lawn Cemetery. Their next move was to Lot 29, Centre Road, Caledon Township, Peel County, where they started anew and built a house and barn.
Having a creative ability, Mr. Huston built a loom. They wove their own cloth and made clothes and carpets, and sold them to the surrounding district. They made their own boots and shoes, also for others. He made a spinning wheel and made yarn for knitting.
The grain was cradled and tied by hand. Mr. Huston carried wheat on his back to Brampton to be ground into flour. He also carried a sugar kettle tied round his waist with a chain from Toronto to his home for making maple syrup and sugar.
To this union was born five daughters and five sons. Mr. Huston was identified with the first attempt to found the Baptist Church in Orangeville He was appointed a Deacon, and in later years was elected as an Honorary Deacon. For many years, Mr. Huston was crippled with rheumatism, but being endowed with a Christian character, he bore with patience and cheerfulness the infirmities of declining years.
He died at the family residence in Caledon on 10 June 1891. Leaving to mourn his loss were his wife, who died one year later, five daughters and four sons. One son, James, predeceased him.
At his death the farm was bequeathed to his son Alexander who in the year of 1882, married Agnes Wylie, a daughter of Squire and Mrs. John Wylie of Mariposa township near Lindsay. To this union a family of five children was born... three daughters and two sons. The eldest daughter and youngest son died in infancy. Ethyl, Mrs. W.H. McEwan of Brampton and Thomas Wylie Huston of Peterborough survive. Mrs. R.T. Watson of Montreal died in January 1940.
Alexander Huston built the house which is the present house and barn. The lumber for the house was bought in Owen Sound, and the stone was quarried at the back of the farm for the foundation of the house and barn, and was built by the late Thomas Homes and his son Ernie of Orangeville The brick for the house was bought from the kiln owned by Thomas Cook on the farm now owned by Mr. and Mrs. Almer Rayburn. A brother, Thomas Huston was the architect and another brother, Robert, was the contractor.
Mr. Huston built the terraces at the front of the house and landscaped the lawns. He died in 1913 at the age of 59. The funeral was held from his home.

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Last updated: September 19,2000