William And Robert Freeland
These brothers are the owners of that valuable property on the water front at the foot of Yonge street, known as "Milloy Wharf", or as it is put officially in the surveys and other documents, "Younge Street Wharf". Both of these gentleman rightly pride themselves of their holdings, which include some of the finest wharves in Canada, where the best of the Lake Ontario and St. Lawrence river steamboats make their landings.
Peter Freeland, the father of these gentleman, came to New York City, in 1819, from Glasgow, Scotland; but not being pleased with his location, he moved to Montreal, in the Province of Quebec, at that time called Lower Canada. There the son William was born in 1831. Still dissatisfied with his location, Mr. Freeland continued to travel westward, coming to York (now Toronto), in 1832. In that year Robert was born, so that there is little disparity in the ages of the brothers. Shortly after his arrival in York, Peter Freeland purchased, from the late Judge Sherwood and the late Peter McDougall, the water lot and water front, which in after years were destined to become so valuable in the hands of his two enterprising sons, and which at that time, land and water included, covered an area of but one acre. During his lifetime the property acquired considerable value, and eventually it passed into the hands of his two sons at his death, which occurred in 1861. It continued to grow in value and size, through later additions by Crown grants and purchase, until it was 1,400 feet in depth; 400 feet of this north of the Esplanade, was sold; on this portion there are extensive warehouses and the old Grand Trunk railway station. The wharf property extends 1,000 feet from the Esplanade to what is called the "New Windmill Line," or outer limit of the water lots, and has a width of 300 feet from Yonge street to Scott street. Including land and water, the area of the holdings south of the Esplanade is seven acres. There are 1,800 feet of wharf frontage for the mooring of vessels, and 40,000 square feet of ground floor in the warehouses.
Some of the more important vessels which regularly land at the Freeland wharves are the Chippewa, Corona, and Chicora, of the Niagara Navigation Company; the Corsican, Caspian, Hamilton, Algerian, Spartan, Corinthian and several others of the Richelieu & Ontario Navigation Co; the Lakeside, of the St. Catharines Navigation Company, and the Greyhound, of the Oakville service, etc. Besides these are a number of coal and other freight vessels which discharge their cargoes at the Scott street wharf, where there is an extensive coal yard, also part of the Freeland property, for many years past leased to Messrs. P. Burns & Co. In one of the large warehouses on the Yonge street wharf an immense wholesale fruit business is carried on, to facilitate the operations of which the Canadian Pacific railway has put in a first-class railroad siding, extending 400 feet down the wharf, for the loading and unloading of fruit and other freight directly from the boats and cars. The large and increasing traffic in fruit has become a chief feature of the Yonge street wharf, enormous quantities coming in daily, in season, from the Niagara peninsula, from New York State, the Grimsby district, the Oakville district, the Oakville district, and Essex.
Recently a new pier was extended by Messrs. Freeland into the bay a distance of 400 feet, more particularly for the accommodation of the Niagara Navigation Company's steamboats, and first-class waiting rooms and lavatories have been provided for the convenience of passengers. There is not any comparison between the present modernly constructed quay and the Young street wharf, which was originally built in 1841 by a joint-stock company of Toronto merchants, and which the late Peter Freeland and the present owners, extended from time to time.
The Richelieu and Ontario Navigation Company's Montreal steamers occupy the outer end of the old wharf, having been established here for the last thirty years; they also have the use of the large warehouse adjoining. This building is 165 feet long by 70 feet wide, with overhanging eaves 10 feet, loading platforms and yard in rear, and is most conveniently arranged for the heavy freight business of this line. An ornamental entrance to the wharf, with towers, arches and gates, faces the foot of Yonge street. Further down the wharf is an office, a substantial two-story building, with a tower. Gas, electric light and city water are laid on the premises, from the Esplanade to the rear end of the new pier.
Capt. Donald Milloy, one of the best known men in the wharfing business, had leased the Freeland wharves for many years hence the origin of the name "Milloy Wharf". The Freeland brothers were educated in Upper Canada College. They are really strong party men, though they favor Liberalism.
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This version of Volume II is based, with permission, on the work of the great volunteers at the Marine Captains Biographies site. To them goes the credit for reorganizing the content into some coherent order. The biographies in the original volume are in essentially random order.
Some of the transcription work was also done by Brendon Baillod, who maintains an excellent guide to Great Lakes Shipwreck Research.