Peter Begin’s business activities can only be traced through the history of other stores. He is not listed in the 1871 Census and so must have arrived in the area in the next year or two. Sometime in 1873, according to D&B, Augustus Cadotte entered into a partnership with a Mr. Begin to run a general store.
This venture may have lasted less than a year. Sometime in March 1874 Peter Begin bought the Quebec and Ottawa House Hotel from John Swanton. Unfortunately the hotel was burned to the ground on the 16th of April 1874, and Begin lost heavily as a result [CP 24 April 1874; 2]. Nonetheless by the late 1870s, Begin was the owner of property on Colborne Street (possibly on the west side); renting a space to Remi Turcott about 1876, and to the Mechanics Institute in November 1878 [CP 8 Nov. 1878; 3].
Interestingly, Begin never appears in the directories as a business owner under his own name. He is not listed in the 1881 Census of the Village or in subsequent Census records, so he must have left the area by that time.