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The fonds comprises two journals of George Pashley recording his voyage from Liverpool, England to Cobourg, Upper Canada in 1833, and life and work in Cobourg, 1833-1834; and recording a trip through the middle and western parts of Ontario in October and November 1849, as an agent for a tree nursery. The 1833-1834 journal deals primarily with the difficulties of emigration, finding passage in a ship, the death of his daughter on the voyage at sea, and his first experiences of British North America. Pashley describes his efforts to find a place for his family to live in Cobourg, searching for work, and preaching the Wesleyan Methodist message. There is also some religious poetry. The 1849 journal recounts his travels in middle and western Ontario, from Cobourg north and west to Lake Huron and back home again via London and Toronto. It includes descriptions of Lindsay, York County, the Georgian Bay area, Owen Sound, Goderich, London, Brantford, and other communities. Pashley discusses his encounters and impressions of Indians, the progress of land settlement in Upper Canada, the prospects of agriculture in various townships, temperance meetings, and his experiences preaching and meeting with other Methodists.
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George Pashley was a tailor and Wesleyan Methodist lay preacher who emigrated to Upper Canada in 1833. Pashley was born 29 August 1806 in Cawthorne, Yorkshire, England, the son of Jonas Pashley and Hannah Hall. He married Hannah Stayton on 18 August 1829 but she died in 1830 after bearing them a son, John Stayton Pashley. George Pashley remarried to Catherine Elizabeth Frith on 20 January 1831, and they had a daughter Elizabeth born in 1831 or 1832.
George and Catherine Elizabeth Pashley departed from Liverpool, England in the ship "Reward" in August 1833. Their daughter Elizabeth died at sea during the voyage over, but the remaining family members survived and arrived in Cobourg, Ontario in September. They settled first in Haldimand Four Corners near Grafton, Ontario but by 1836 lived in the town of Cobourg, where George practiced his trade as a tailor and shoemaker, and preached. Two more children, Susannah Frith Pashley and Charles Frith Pashley, were born in Ontario. The family moved to Port Hope about February 1849, six months before the death of Catherine Pashley. As described in his journal, George Pashley made a walking tour of southern Ontario in October and November 1849 in which he met with other Wesleyan Methodists, temperance supporters, and preached. He died 24 December 1851. His two youngest children were raised by his brother Benjamin Pashley of Belleville, Ontario.
1. Upper Canada - Description and travel, 1849
2. Liverpool (England), 1833.
3. Liverpool (England) - Description, 1833
4. Colbourg (U.C.), 1833.
5. Colbourg (U.C.) - Description, 1833.
6. Methodist - Upper Canada, 1833-1834, 1849.
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