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The Canadian men and women of the time: a handbook of Canadian biography
by Henry James Morgan, of 1176 pages (Toronto : W. Briggs, 1898). p. 367.
online original - min. CA$10 subscription required

GARTSHORE, Lt.-Col. William Moir, is the s. of John Gartshore, Dundas, Ont., and was b. there, Apl. 3, 1853. Ed. at the Galt Coll. Inst., under the late Dr. Tassie, he has been for yrs. in commercial life, and is now V. P. of the McClary Co., manufacturers of stoves and furnaces, London, Toronto, Winnipeg, Montreal and Vancouver, B.C. He is also Presdt. of the Peoples's Building and Loan Co., London, and was an ald. of that city, 1891-92. Lt.-Col. G. entered the V. M. service 1874, and possesses a 1st class r.s.c. cert. and a 1st class v.b. cert. He commanded a co. of the 7th Fusiliers during the N. W. rebellion, 1885 (medal), was promoted major, July, 1884, and was apptd. Lt.-col. commanding the 1st Regt. of Hussars, June 20, 1892. In Dom. politics, he is a Lib.-Con. and in Provl. politics, a Con.-Lib. He m. Dec., 1876. Catherine, 2nd dau. of John McClary, London, Ont. --- London,

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Prominent men of Canada: a collection of persons distinguished in professional
and political life, and in the commerce and industry of Canada

by G. Merce Adam, of 480 pages. (Toronto : Canadian Biographical Pub. Co., 1892). p.p. 131-34.
online original - - min. CA$10 subscription required

Hamilton, Ont.

In manufacturing cirles in Canada, Alexander Gartshore has won special distinction for himself by building up and successfully carrying on a great industry. His father, the late John Gartshore, was also a leading manufacturer for many years, and he left behind him a record so worthy as not soon to be forgotten in the community in which he lived. He was a native of Lanarkshire, Scotland, and came to Canada in 1829. Up to the year 1835 he was occupied in mill wrighting in various parts of the country, finally settling in Fergus. Here he built an oatmeal mill which he operated until 1837, when it was destroyed by fire. For a few months after he worked in Springfield on the Credit, whence he removed to Dundas, where he subsequently established what afterwards grew to be one of the chief manufacturing institutions of the country. He first built what was known as the Ewart mill, which he operated for some time, and then, in 1839, he started in the foundary business in a small way as to its dimensions, but destined for an important future, for John Gartshore was the pioneer manufacturer of grist and saw mills in Canada. In 1846 the works were burnt out, but the energetic proprietor soon had them built up again on a far larger scale. Marine work was added, and during the time the Great Western Railway was being built large quantities of machinery were manufactured for that road. Under Mr. Gartshore's management the business steadily increased until it reached immense proportions. The average number of men employed for years in the establishment was about 300. But a period of financial depression, succeeding the year 1857, was felt over the country, and the Gartshore works, with which the subject of our sketch was connected, lost heavily. In 1870 the business was sold out to the late Thomas Wilson, of Dundas, and its founder removed to Toronto. Three years later, the enterprising pioneer in the foundary industry went to his native land, where he died in 1873, much regretted by all who knew him. John Gartshore was a philanthropic and generous-hearted man, ever kind to the poor, and to this day there are thousands who hold him in kindly remembance. To him, in all important respects, his son, Alexander, has proven a worthy successor. He was born at Dundas in 1839, his mother, whose maiden name was Margaret Moir, being also a native of Scotland. His primary education was received under the late George Elmslie, Anonster, with whom he also went to Guelph in 1848. Afterwards he studied with the late Dr. Tassie in Hamilton, and left school with a good practical education. In 1854, young Alexander Gartshore, then a lad of fifteen, went to West Point foundary, New York State, to learn the trade of a machinist, and on his return to Canada, in 1858, he entered his father's works at Dundas, into which he was taken as a partner in 1865. In 1870, when the business changed hands, he went to Hamilton, in which city his first enterprise was to form a partnership, under the firm name of Gartshore & Cowie, for the manufacture of railway and other castings. Subsequently the manufacture of iron pipes was made a branch work in the establishment. Shortly after this, the partnership was dissolved, and Mr. Gartshore acquired full control, which he has since retained. The firm of Gartshore & Cowie was the first in Ontario to embark in the iron pipe industry, and under the management of the senior partner it has attained large proportions. The foundary has now a capacity of fifty tons a day, furnishes employment regularly to about 150 hands, and has a market which extends over the entire country from Quebec to Vancouver. Among the monuments to the mechanical skill of Mr. Gartshore and his father are the first pumping engines of the Hamilton Water Works, the plans for which were drawn by the former in 1857, and the engines of the union ferry boat between Detroit and Windsor. In his earlier days Mr. Alexander Gartshore took an active and loyal part in military affairs. He was a member of Notman's foot artillery in Dundas in 1858, and an officer of the sedentary militia at the time of the visit of the Prince of Wales to Canada. He is a Master Freemason, and has always been a staunch supporter of the St. Andrew's and Caledonian Societies. In politics he is a Conservative and a strong advocate of a protective policy. In religion he is a Presbyterian, and contributes largely from his means to the support of the Presbyterian body and church to which he belongs. On June 6th, 1866, Mr. Gartshore married Isabel, a daughter of the late John Hendrie, and sister of William Hendrie, the well-known contractor. As issue, there are eight children, of whom five are living, Alexander, the eldest son, being in the office of the Canada Life Assurance Co'y. In his business relations, Mr. Gartshores's record is of the highest; in privare life he is a most estimable gentleman, and is deservedly held in the highest esteem.

Transcripts by J. Raymond, Brisbane, Australia - June 2001