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James Carmichael


Carmichael, James, Oshawa, was born in Argyleshire, Scotland, on February 9th, 1821. His father was James Carmichael, and his mother's maiden name was Cowan. Her family is very old in the annals of Argyleshire. Our subject came to Canada in 1842, and his people followed him three years later. He was educated at a parish school in Scotland, and later on in Glasgow. In that city also he was apprenticed to a dry good dealer, in 1837, and remained in this occupation till he sailed for Canada in 1842. He first went to St. Thomas, and then to London, taking situations in dry goods houses. In 1846 he removed to Toronto, and began business here in 1848, for himself, in the dry goods line. In 1853 he opened a branch in Oshawa, and in 1854 he opened another branch in Prince Albert. In 1873 he retired from the dry goods business in Oshawa, having in the meantime disposed of his other branches. In 1873 he began the manufacture of stoves, and this business he conducted for eight years, and then sold out. In 1877 he became postmaster, and has retained this position ever since. He has been a school trustee for twenty years, and this fact affords some evidence of the interest he has taken in education. He also took much interest in municipal affairs, and was reeve for some time. He was manager and president of the Oshawa Stove Company, while we was connected with that company. He is a master mason of Cedar Lodge, and is highly regarded among his brethren. He has travelled extensively through the United States, and visited all parts of Canada. In religion he is an Episcopalian, and his politics are in accord with those held by Alexander Mackenzie and Edward Blake. He has always taken a deep interest in public affairs, and at one time received unanimous nomination for South Ontario, but private business relations prevented his acceptance of nomination to enter the House of Commons,  and so refused to run for parliamentary honours. He married Frances Dain, from Newcastle-under-Lyne, England. She died in 1871. Mr. Carmichael is very genial in his manners, and is looked up to as a leading man in the town of Oshawa, and he has well earned the respect and the high regard he is held.


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