Joseph McFarland [ 1850 - 1911 ]

According to his obituary Joseph McFarland was born in Verulam Township, and as a young man was first employed by the R.C. Smith Company. It states that he went into business for himself in 1873, having bought out the stock of Mr. Joseph Littleton [FFPL 11.16]. McFarland first appears in the directories in 1876. In February 1877 McFarland’s grocery shared a “house” with Finn’s boots & shoes and the dwelling of M.H.J. Cochrane [CP 9 Feb 1877; 3]. In March he formed a partnership with John Moffat in the hope of greatly increasing his business [FFG 30 March 1877; 3]; the partnership lasted for six years, expiring on May 1st 1883 [FFG 14 April 1883; 2]. McFarland then commenced business two doors north of the Post Office in the shop owned by Mr. Cunningham [Ibid; 2]. He advertised himself as a “Dealer in Groceries, Glassware, Crockery, Teas, Sugars, Boots and Shoes, Ready-Made Clothing, Etc.” Like many merchants he also ran a delivery wagon [FFG 20 Sept 1884; 2 : 26 June 1891; 4]. Cramped for space, he rented “the large store” in Twomey’s block in August 1890 [FFG 29 Aug 1890; 4]. Electric lights were put in the store in July of 1894 to replace the old coal-oil lamps [FFG 27 July 1894; 5].

By 1904 McFarland was one of the “veteran merchants.” “A man of strict integrity, he represented the town for many years as reeve and councilor, and was a prominent member of the Methodist Church.” He moved into a new building at the NE corner of Colborne and Francis Streets about 1903. McFarland died on November 8th, 1911 and the business was taken over by his nephew Andrew McFarland and his son, Clifford McFarland. Wellington McFarland (1900-1948), another cousin, also worked for the firm. The store remained in the family until 1969 when Mrs. Wellington [Alice T. Green] McFarland (1902-1985) sold the business to Brian Devan.

527 "Jos. McFarland -- A most extensive and well kept stock of general groceries, books and shoes, crockery and fancy goods is to be found in Mr. Jos. McFarland's crowded store. The general public can find anything they desire in these lines and can also depend upon every attention from Mr. McFarland and his four courteous assistants. Mr. McFarland is one of the veteran merchants of Fenelon Falls, having been in the business here for 27 years. He does an extensive trade in both the Village and surrounding country. He is the present Reeve and has held the office for several years, as well as serving terms as Councilor and School Board Trustee." [Souvenirs (1904)] 528 CLIFFORD A. McFarland. Death came with startling suddenness to Mr. Clifford McFarland, widely known business man of Fenelon Falls on Friday, Sept. 25th, 1931. He was in his 47th year, and had been in poor health for some time. Born in Fenelon Falls, a son of the late Mr. and Mrs. Joseph McFarland, he spent his entire life here, engaging in a general store business for twenty-one years in partnership with his cousin, Mr. A. McFarland. A year ago he retired owing to ill health... [FFPL 31.35]. 529 Devan donated the second floor display cases from the McFarland Store to the Maryboro Museum where they remain part of the collection.

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