- Shoes July 1871 (Approx.) - 1877 (Approx.)
In 1871, Robert Hall was a 26 year-old, Ontario-born shoemaker from an Irish background. He is listed in the 1871 census of the County, and his name first appears in the D&B directories in July of that year. He made and sold boots and shoes throughout most of the 1870’s. Hall may have formed a partnership with one of the Ellises [perhaps John A. Ellis] in 1876, but the partnership does not appear to have lasted out the year.
Hall left Fenelon Falls for the “North West” sometime after 1877. E.D. Hand published a letter from Hall in 1884, received via John A. Ellis, telling of Hall’s experiences in the west [FFG 21 June 1884; 2]. Hand advises his readers that “… [Hall] would probably have been more satisfactorily situated, and perhaps better off, if he had settled in a farm in Ontario. … and it is to be hoped that his experience, added to that of the others whose letters have appeared from time to time in the Gazette, will have the effect of convincing the residents of this province who are not doing as well as they wish to, that they are not likely to better their condition by emigrating to Manitoba or the territory beyond it.”
In the business section of the 1871 Census it states that Hall was in business 12 months of the year, employed 3 males, and used 1600 lbs of leather to make an unknown number of boots and shoes, with a value of $2000.