Manuscript Collection MS COLL 00321 - Milne Family Papers

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Reference code



Milne Family Papers


  • 1797-1957 (Creation)

Level of description

Manuscript Collection

Extent and medium

9 boxes, 2 mapcase folders (1.5 metres)

Context area

Name of creator

([fl. 1797-1957])

Biographical history

The Milne family was a Scottish family that settled in Ontario following the initial emigration of Peter Milne to New York in 1797. His brothers David, William and Alexander as well as their mother Helen joined him in New York. Alexander emigrated to Canada in 1817 and started a woolen mill and saw mill in Markham. Alexander and Peter Milne became partners in the operation of the mills in Markham ca. 1824. In 1827, Peter married and the brothers dissolved their partnership. Alexander moved to North York and established a mill at Don Mills and Lawrence (the site of Edwards' Gardens). He acquired the property along Lawrence from this site over to what is now Woodbine, where he moved his milling operations in 1832. Alexander operated it with his son William into the 1860s.
After Alexander's death, William Milne continued to operate the mill with his son Alexander W. Milne. In 1878, a new mill was erected after bad floods had damaged the previous one. After William Milne's death in 1880, Alexander W. Milne took over the operation of the mills. Either he or his son, Charles S. Milne, closed the mills in the early 1900s.
Charles S. Milne (b. 1877) married Edna Shepard Johnson in 1909. Edna (b. 1880) was the daughter of Abram S. Johnson and Saida A. Shepard, of North York.

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Content and structure area

Scope and content

This collection of family papers includes correspondence, land deeds, architectural plans and other family documents. The collection includes some early Johnson family papers, including a testimonial for Abraham Johnson, dated 1794.

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Material may be requested in person at the Fisher Library Reference Desk, or in advance using our online stack retrieval request form:

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Language of material

  • English

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Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library, University of Toronto

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