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Doyle, James
O'Neill, Ann
Doyle, Patrick O'Neill
Aylward, Ann
Doyle, Michael Patrick


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McDonald, Catherine Theresa

Doyle, Michael (M.P.) Patrick



Michael Patrick, Patrick and Ann's youngest son was born September 27, 1837. He was only eleven when his father died and the will stated that Michael was to receive sixty two pounds, ten shillings when the Doyle farm was sold, after the death of his mother. The 1851 census lists him as a boy of fourteen living with his mother, brother James and sisters Ann, Ellen and Bridget.

bullet  Maynooth

In 1850, The Canadian Government decided the veritable wilderness in the northern part of Hastings County should be opened up for settlers. Surveying started for the best road way and by 1856, M.P. Hayes opened an agency for the Hastings Road Settlement. Lots of 50 acres were deeded to settlers on both the east and west sides of the Hastings Road. The terms of settlement are quoted from a document of the Bureau of Agriculture, 1856. "That the settler must be eighteen years of age. That he take possession of the land allotted to him within one month, and put in a state of cultivation at least twelve acres of land in the course of four years - build a house (at least 20 feet by 18 feet) and reside on the lot until the conditions of settlement are duly performed. After which accomplishment, only, shall the settler have a right of obtaining a title to the property. The road having been opened by the government, the settlers are required to keep it in repair. The log-house required by the government to be built, is of such a description as can be put up in four days by five men. The neighbours generally help to build that log-cabin for newly arrived settlers without charge. And when this is done, the cost of the erection is small; the roof can be covered with bark and the spaces between the logs plastered with clay and white washed. It then becomes a neat dwelling and warm as a stone house."

Maynooth in the 1800's

Advertisement of this new settlement reached Puslinch and Michael Patrick (M.P.), along with other young men from the Township, including John Lynch, Martin and John Roddy, James Farrell, Pat Moran, John and James Doyle and his uncle John Doyle, with a spirit of adventure decided to start new lives for themselves in this "Terra Incognita". On November 17, 1858, Michael Bolger of Guelph sent a letter to Mr. Hayes declaring that he had given over all his claim in Lots 79 and 80, Concession 16 on the east side of Hastings Road in Monteagle Township to Michael Doyle. Mr. Bolger gave no reason for this but it is the first recorded instance of the many land transactions in the life of M.P. Doyle.

On September 3, 1860, M.P. purchased a parcel of 36 acres which was Lot 31, Concession 16 in Monteagle, East Hastings Road. This would indicate that M.P. built on the SE corner of Hastings and Peterson Roads. This diagram shows how the early settlement developed where the Hastings and Peterson Roads intersected.

The Doyle Corners (Four Corners) Location of M.P. Doyle Store in 1864

It did not take very long for M.P. after he settled there in the spring of 1860 to become a prominent citizen. As a matter of fact the new settlement was called "Doyle's Corners" or "Doyle's Settlement", no doubt due to the fact that four Doyle men had homesteaded there: M.P., James, brother John and Uncle John. Early maps of North Hastings call the junction of the four Townships - Monteagle, Herschel, Wicklow and McClure - Doyle's Corners. This seems to have been an unofficial local name since the first record pertaining to Maynooth Post Office states that it was established on October 1, 1861 under the name of "Tara".

It was natural that M.P. was appointed to be the first postmaster since he had already opened his general store by that time.

Raphael (R.J) Joseph Doyle wrote the following comment in February of 2009; "Barb and I went to Maynooth a few years ago and I walked into the Post Office and said "M.P. Doyle was my great grandfather, are there any Doyles around here now"? I thought the lady behind the counter looked like she was seeing a ghost. She asked if I could wait until she got the town historian to come over. The lady, known as the TH came right over. She said I was the first Doyle she knew of that came back. I'm sure their were others but none known to her. Our visit was fairly short but she said it would have been wonderful if I had made a visit on Labor Day for the Lumberjack Days. She said I would have been invited to ride on the main float in the parade."

By 1871, the thriving settlement of Doyle's Corners, ideally situated at the junction of four (4) townships (Wicklow, McClure, Monteagle and Herschel), boasted four stores, a school and a blacksmith. The first name of our community came from Michael Doyle, its first storekeeper and the first Reeve to serve Bangor, Wicklow, McClure, Monteagle and Herschel townships. Between 1871 and 1877, three names were submitted for official registration. The first two, Tara and Oxenden, already existed elsewhere in the province. The third name - Maynooth, after a town in Ireland - was accepted and by 1878 the hamlet had a second blacksmith, grist and saw mills, and both a Roman Catholic and Presbyterian Church. (Maynooth, Ireland today - In 1906, William Carswell, the local Justice of the Peace, offered the first daily stage coach service from Maynooth to Bancroft. Train service arrived in 1907 at Maynooth Station. During the 1950's and 60's, the forest industry and the Faraday Mines provided a thriving and local economy for a general store, a hardware store, 3 restaurants and a busy dining room at the Arlington Hotel. This was the only concrete station on the line - I've been unsuccessful in trying to find out exactly which line it was on, although I know it connects with Bancroft because I've mountain biked the old track bed from Maynooth to Bancroft with my Dad, many moons ago.

An early Maynooth article states "Two Irish brothers, Michael and John Doyle, settled across from each other at the cross roads, which soon became an intersection of the two main trails; one from Belleville called the Hastings Road and the other from Renfrew known as the Peterson Road. As Doyles' Corners was a resting place for the weary travellers, the Doyle brothers found themselves running a little hotel. Maynooth was a roaring frontier town. In the spring, the lumbermen would come out of the bush and at times there would be as many as 300 men in the streets and fights were common."

M.P Doyle Store in the Southeast Corner of Doyles Corners

By 1871, the thriving settlement of Doyle's Corners, ideally situated at the junction of four (4) townships (Wicklow, McClure, Monteagle and Herschel), boasted four stores, a school and a blacksmith. The first name of our community came from Michael Doyle, its first storekeeper and the first Reeve to serve Bangor, Wicklow, McClure, Monteagle and Herschel townships.

Between 1871 and 1877, three names were submitted for official registration. The first two, Tara and Oxenden, already existed elsewhere in the province. The third name - Maynooth, after a town in Ireland - was accepted and by 1878 the hamlet had a second blacksmith, grist and saw mills, and both a Roman Catholic and Presbyterian Church. (Maynooth, Ireland today -

bullet  Catherine Theresa McDonald

It was in 1861 that M.P. met the girl whom he was to marry -Catherine Theresa McDonald. She was the daughter of Donald McDonald and Elizabeth Cass having been born January 9, 1844 in L'Orignal, Ontario, and baptized February 1, 1844 at St. John the Baptist Church. Sponsors were Alexander and Penelopea MacDonnell. The 1861 Census for Hastings County lists her as living with Alex and Anne McDonald, who are presumably her uncle and aunt. M.P. is listed right beside Martin and Mary Roddy and their children so one may assume he is living with them. It was M.P. who persuaded Martin Roddy and his brother John to leave Puslinch and settle at Doyle's Corners.

Two of Catherine McDonald's brothers, Elihu and Angus, purchased land in Herschel Township in 1860. They were probably attracted, as so many other lumbermen were, by the pine forests which were accessible now by the colonization roads in North Hastings. The story goes that Catherine came to Doyle's Corners to teach and when M.P. met her he declared, "You are not going to teach. You are going to be my wife". The 1861 Census which was completed by January of that year states that there were no schools, churches or taverns in that section. Perhaps there were plans to build a school for the children of the new settlers.

Michael Patrick and Catherine Theresa were married on November 3, 1862 by Father Michael Byrne from the Church of St. James the Less, Eganville, Ontario. The witnesses were Angus McDonald, Catherine's brother and his wife Mary Doyle, daughter of John O'Neill Doyle who was an uncle of M.P. Since there was no Roman Catholic Church, Father Byrne would visit Doyle's Settlement at irregular intervals and perform the required ceremonies.

It is difficult to imagine the newlyweds being deliriously happy on their wedding day since M.P.'s first cousin, Richard Aylward, and his wife Mary were in Belleville Jail. They had been convicted at the Fall Assizes for the murder in May of 1862 of their neighbour, William Munro, and were sentenced to be hanged on December 8.

At any rate, they started their married life in the General Store. To obtain supplies, M.P. travelled by wagon to Belleville, 110 miles away, leaving home on Monday and arriving back on Saturday. He also had an account with A. Shannon and Co. on McGill St. in Montreal.

On April 28, 1864 he sent Mr. Hayes, the land agent, $0.20 to pay in full for Lot 31, Concession 2, Wicklow Township. By May 7, in another letter to Mr. Hayes, M.P. asks him to send the location ticket to George Leviston since he is going to let him have it. He also pays $20 as one instalment on Lot 29, also in the second concession of Wicklow. He obtained the patents for his original two Lots - 27 and 80, Concession 16, Monteagle on October 11, 1864.

In May of 1864, M.P.'s oldest brother John moved to Maynooth with his wife Charlotte and their young family. John had been to the area before, as had James and they had both bought property but never really settled.

bullet   The Richard and Mary Aylward Hanging

The summer before M. P. Doyle and Catherine McDonald were married, his first cousin, Richard Alyward and his wife Mary were found guilty of murder in Hasting County and were the trail was held at the same time that M.P. Doyle and Catherine McDonald were married. Very interesting story which you can read at Richard and Mary Aylward Hanging .

bullet  The Michael Patrick Doyle Family

M.P. and Catherine had a family of fifteen children, of whom the first five were born in Maynooth. John Joseph was born 29 Aug 1863, Michael Patrick 22 Apr 1865, James Eugene 23 Dec 1867, Edward Joseph 10 Feb 1869 and Joseph Francis 22 May 1871. M.P.'s cousin, Martin Roddy, who had left his farm in Guelph with M.P. to start farming in the new settlement had the first team of horses. But he had to sell them as they were not strong enough. Since the land was so stony, he couldn't grow enough feed for them. In 1868, he had to go to Belleville for an operation. He died on the operating table, a young man of 44, and the remains were brought back to Maynooth for burial. M.P. continued to be active in the community life in Maynooth. A quote states, "The first Reeve to attend County Council at Belleville January 1871, representing the five Townships was Mr. Michael P. Doyle of Maynooth."

The 1871 Census for Hastings County lists M.P. as a merchant, Catherine and four sons, John - 7, Michael - 6, James -4, and Edward-2.

This quote aptly describes the whole area around Maynooth. "The rugged countryside of Northern Hastings has handicapped the surveyor, discouraged the farmer, attracted the miner, rewarded the lumberman, and enchanted the artist, sportsman and vacationer." In his later years, M.P. was vehemently opposed to intoxicating liquors. I believe this passion against drink stemmed from the development in Doyle's Corners. Perchance, he did not want to be raising his young family in this roaring frontier town. In 1906 an article states: "Maynooth, Link to Maynooth. or the old time Doyle's Corners, in one respect is the Doyle's Corners of long ago. Still not all the people of Maynooth are classed among the heathen of old, but it is a fact that lawlessness and Sabbath Desecration still prevail in the village and country."

Borris - The home of Michael (MP) Doyle in Purslinch Township, Ontario, Canada
MP loved Ireland and the home of his ancestors so much he named his home after the home of his ancestors from Ireland - Borris.

At any rate, on 19 Aug 1872, M.P. sold his business and all his property Lots 31, 79 and 80, East Hastings Road, Monteagle Township to Simon Rouse for $4,000. Each lot was 50 acres and Lot 80 was the whole South side of the Main Street of Maynooth today. There must have been a provision in the sale to allow him to remain there until the following spring, since he did not resign his duties as postmaster until 31 Mar 1873. It is impossible to reconstruct all the land and mortgage transactions with which M.P. was involved while in that area. Suffice to say, he made numerous trips back to collect on his notes.

In April of 1873, M.P., Catherine (who was pregnant) and their five young sons and all their possessions started on their 300 mile trek back to Puslinch in a wagon. It would probably take them close to two weeks since they would travel south to Belleville and then west along the lake. Just imagine the trip! While in Maynooth, he arranged with the commissioner of Crown Lands to buy the original lot on which his parents settled as well as an additional 50 acres. According to Patrick's Will, M.P. was to receive sixty-two pounds, ten shillings when the farm was sold after the death of his mother. The entries in the Registry Office in Guelph for Patrick's 100 acre Lot 13, rear-half, Concession 4, Puslinch say nothing about Patrick and begin with M.P. receiving the patent for it on 11 Aug 1873 for the sum of $300. It is, therefore, impossible to ascertain whether it was ever sold or just left vacant until M.P. returned. The additional 50 acres for which he received the patent on 22 May 1873 was Lot 14, North-half of the North-half, Concession 4, Puslinch for which he paid $175.

They settled into the frame house on the south of the lot, which replaced the log cabin Patrick had built and on 25 Sep 1873, Catherine delivered another son - Francis de Sales. On 31 Mar 1874, M.P. bought 95 of the 100 acres of Lot 13, South-half, Concession 4 from Thomas Lynch for $300. On 11 Sep 1879, he purchased 85 acres of Lot 12, North-half, Concession 4 from William Kirkland and on 28 Jan 1882 the remaining 15 acres. In 1882 M.P. and his family - 11 children by this time - moved from Lot 13 to the Kirkland House on Lot 12. This home became the Doyle Homestead and M.P. named it "Borris" in remembrance of the place in Ireland from which the Doyle family emigrated.

At this time, he owned 345 acres and was developing into the shrewd heartless businessman so evident in later years. If his neighbours were unable to meet their mortgage payments, M.P. would take over their mortgage and evict them.

John Porter and his family lived across the road from the Doyles, on Lot 14, South-half, Concession 5. They had two mortgages on the place, one to Western Canada Loan and Savings Company and another to a James Laird. Under power of sale on 6 Apr

1881. M.P. took over these mortgages and another 100 acres were deposited in his land bank. With all this acreage and its produce, he needed good big barns so in 1891 one was raised at his home farm "Borris". Then on Monday 4 June 1894, a barn raising at the Old Porter Farm occurred, and on Wednesday 29 May 1895 another took place on Lot 13, Patrick's original farm. On 1 Oct 1884 he purchased the South-half of the North-half Lot 14, Concession 4 from James Lynch. To complete his goal of a farm for each of his six sons, he purchased Lot 1 Rear or North-half, Concession 3, Puslinch on 6 May 1901, from George D. Forbes. 595 acres had been amassed by this time.

In addition to acquiring land, M.P. and Catherine were busy with their growing family. Mary Teresa was born 28 July 1875, Patrick Joseph 22 Apr 1877, Thomas Stanislaus 9 Oct 1878, Elizabeth M. 4 Jan 1880, Annie Josephine 1 June 1881, Annie Marie 17 Sept 1882. Ellen Marie 17 Nov 1883, Aloysius Xavier 2 Apr 1885 and Josephine 12 Apr 1886. Of these 15 children, only 10 survived their parents.

Annie Josephine was stricken with cholera and died when she was three months old. Aloysius Xavier at two weeks of age, died of diarrhoea and they lost Josephine at the age of eight weeks. Aloysius and Josephine were buried in the same grave - Block C, Section 31, Grave 29. Patrick Joseph contracted diphtheria when he was nearly 10 and in those days, before innoculation, it was fatal. He was buried in Block C, Section 31, Grave 28. As well as losing these four youngsters, M.P.'s brother James died of pneumonia in 1882 and his sister Ellen (Sister de Sales) died of tuberculosis in 1883. All these tragedies made the 1880's a sad decade for the Doyles.

One would think that M.P. would be too busy at home with his large family and all his farms to travel; in fact, he travelled extensively. He returned to the Maynooth Area many times to keep track of his mortgages, to trade horses, and also to deal with the Indians and trappers for furs. According to a newspaper article he was in Louisburg, Kansas in 1874 to visit his brother James and sister Bridget. In January of 1896 he was again in Kansas to help Bridget settle her affairs as she was moving from Louisburg and in 1899 he made an extensive tour of the southwest. It is easy to imagine there were other trips but these are the ones which have been documented.

Another tragedy struck the Doyle family in 1896. Their son, Francis, developed tuberculosis so M.P. sent him to Kansas on 2 Oct 1896, and then to Denver, Colorado 17 Mar 1897 to cure him. His health continued to deteriorate, and since he wished to come home to die, his brother Michael accompanied him on the sad trip back. He was only home two days when he died on 6 Nov 1897.

bullet  The Michael Patrick Doyle Dynasty

It is difficult to describe M.P. Doyle, the man. He was certainly the head of the household in all respects. There is no evidence that Catherine accompanied him on his various trips or was involved in anything except child bearing. He is reported to have been very miserly and Catherine raised chickens for her pin money. However, she was the only farmer's wife in Pus 1 inch who had bread delivered to her door. In any newspaper article about the children, it would say the son or daughter of Mr. M.P. Doyle, not Mr. and Mrs. M.P. Doyle. Even in the naming of their 15 children, there is no continuance of the male McDonald names such as Donald, Elihu or Angus.

The stain glass window (Rose Window) was donated by Michael Patrick (M.P.) Doyle for his six sons - The Church of Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception, Guelph, Canada

M.P. had hoped to start the Doyle dynasty in Puslinch, setting up each of his six sons on one of his farms and running their lives, but his grand dream did not materialize since some of his sons were not willing to live under his strict thumb.

Through a deal around 1900, he bought a general store in Kings Mill, Michigan and sent his son Joseph and daughter Annie (Sister Mechtilde) to run it until he sold it. Well, Joseph met his future wife there but before he could make any wedding plans, M.P. had to go to Michigan to check on her family. Even after they were married, he would go to his sons' homes each morning to direct the farm work to be done that day. He would not allow any of his family to take the best horses into town, because he did not want them to be proud! When The Church of Our Lady in Guelph was being built in the 1880's, he donated the beautiful stained glass rose window on the south side of the Church, with the inscription "Doyle Brothers" on the hexagonal design.

John Joseph, the eldest son, was a very meek and gentle man and agreed to all his father's orders. Michael Patrick, the next son, apparently was not interested in farming so his father sent him to St. Michael's College in Toronto. The story goes that he hopped into a confessional and started hearing confessions. The parishioners were aghast at the wild Penances they were given and Michael was caught in the act. M.P. brought him back to Puslinch, gave him a brutal beating and a one way ticket anywhere.

James Eugene, the third son, was not an ambitious businessman like his father. He farmed as he was told to do, but M.P. recognized James' wife Sarah's efficiency and most dealings were done with her, not James. Edward Joseph, the fourth son, liked to kick up his heels and have a few drinks. M.P., with his aversion to liquor, was most displeased, but allowed him to remain farming. Joseph Francis, the fifth son, always got along well with his father, but his wife was never really happy on the farm and anxious to return to Michigan. Thomas Stanislaus, the sixth son, was probably M.P.'s favourite son. He agreed to anything M.P. said to keep in his good graces. He would drink more than Michael and Edward put together, but always behind his father's back. Of course, M.P.'s four daughters: Mary Teresa, Elizabeth M., Annie Marie and Ellen Marie were the apple of his eye. He even persuaded all four girls to enter the convent, no doubt for his own gratification, although only two stayed long enough to make the final vows.

But even the great M.P. Doyle could not forestall death. The following is from Ellen Marie (Helen) Doyle's diary:

bullet  The Michael Patrick Doyle's Death

"Saturday November 11, 1911, Father went to Guelph for the last time. Monday, November 13, 1911, Father got very sick. Dear Father went to confession and Communion and was anointed by Father Wiedner the first Friday of December, 1911 he somewhat recovered and was able to be around the house. He often regretted not being able to go to mass. As he never missed mass when he was able to go. Dear Father went to Elora June 1912 (where his sister Mary Ann resided). After I took him to the station, he remained for two months. On August 1, 1912, my Dear Father received Holy Communion and was annointed in Elora by Father Sullivan. He came home in an ambulance accompanied by mother and Thomas the same evening. He was pleased to get home to Borris to die. He again went to confession and Communion on the next Friday morning in August and again on the morning of the Assumption of The Blessed Virgin, August 15 Thursday and again on the next Tuesday morning August 20 and died the eve of August 21, Wednesday at 6:30. He held the crucifix and blessed candle in his hand nearly all day and died with the crucifix to his lips and the candle in his hand. He died so easy that I scarcely knew when life was gone. His last words were 'Jesus, Jesus, Jesus, have mercy on me' and 'Jesus, Mary and Joseph', and I saw his lips moving in prayer. The lighted candle remained in his hand nearly four hours after his death without our support. He looked lovely in the casket. A lady remarked that she has seen many a corpse, but never a one that looked as nice as our dear father."

bullet  Marriage Notes

Michael married Catherine Theresa McDonald, daughter of Donald McDonald and Elizabeth Cass, on 2 Nov 1862 in Eganville, Ontario, Canada. (Catherine Theresa McDonald was born on 9 Jan 1844 in L'Orignal, Ontario, Canada, died on 8 May 1917 in Guelph, Ontario, Canada and was buried in St. Joseph's Cem, Guelph - Blk C, Sec 31, Grave 27.)

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