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Apr 1 1888 [approximate date]

Statement of Plaintiff C.B. McQuesten

Toronto High Court of Justice for Ontario
Queens Bench Division

That for 20 years prior to 1885 I was engaged in practice of my profession in New York and was in no way engaged in mercantile or other business transaction. That from the time my deceased father placed his estate in the hands of my brother and myself I entrusted the management of the estate to my brother giving him from time to time such powers of Attorney as he required.

That on the income or each portion as my late father wanted was to be paid over to my father from time to time I did not consider this was any especial reason why I should personally examine into investments of the estate. Relying on my brother's assurance that they were of a safe & proper nature.

That from time to time after my brother entered upon business ventures subsequent to 1880. Prior to this investment of $15 000 in April 1885 I expressed to my brother the desire that some portion of the estate should be invested in my name separate and apart from his to that it might be entirely free from my business questions arising in regard to him. And he gave me to understand that he would do this.

Save as above I in no way interfered in the matter of investment during my father's life time. I agreed to my brother's going into the Hespeler Manufacturing Co. business1; had a good deal of discussion with him about it and understood that forty thousand dollars worth of stock was taken either for his benefit and mine formally or half for me and half for him. I never saw nor signed any paper in connection with it. I did not know of this particular investment until the time of my father's death in the fall of 1885. When I insisted on a full statement of the affairs of the estate being rendered I got what purported to be. (If asked where it is, state, and add that I.B McQuesten left an impression copy can probably be produced).

The money loaned in June 1886 was part of what was borrowed as a mortgage of the arcade property and farm in Hespeler. I understood that part was to pay off a mortgage already on the property. As I had got no benefit from the monies derived from that mortgage, I declined to execute the one to the Canada Life unless the balance after paying off the one mortgage was invested for my benefit, & I agreed to its being loaned to the defendants (H.& McQ.) [John Harvery and Issac McQuesten]. I saw Mr Harvey when here at the time of my father's death in Oct 1885--Did you speak about this loan of $15000.

[End of document]

1 In 1881, Isaac McQuesten joined John Harvey and J. Schofield in operating a cotton and wool mill in Hespeler Ontario, which he and Harvey continued after Schofield left in 1885. However, the mill went bankrupt circa 1887 with $900 000 in liabilities. This statement suggests that Isaac was taking advantage of his brother's finances but was not forthcoming about how he used the money. Apparently Isaac had a tendency to make bad business and financial decisions which likely contributed significantly to the failure of the mill (see W2652). His earlier business dealings with William Dunn were clearly poorly managed, causing Isaac much frustration and although he attempted to recover his money it is not clear whether he was fully remunerated (W2554a).

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Copyright 2002 Whitehern Historic House and Garden
The development of this website was directed by Mary Anderson, Ph.D. and Janelle Baldwin, M.A.
Please direct questions and comments to Mary Anderson, Ph.D.

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