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The Gooderham & Worts families emigrated from the Scole / Bungay area of England in the early 1830s, arriving in York, (now Toronto, Canada). First came James Worts, accompanied by his 13 year-old son, James Gooderham Worts. They built the windmill near the mouth of the Don River. They were followed in 1832 by William and Ezekiel Gooderham, their sister, Elizabeth (James Worts' wife) and 54 extended family members. Over the following 75 years, these families created the largest distillery in the world, as well as contributing to milling, banking, railways, shipping, farming and other essential components of the growing industrial country. They were active in the church and in various communities, as well as in health care and even in our political institutions. In 2013, descendants of the Gooderham and Worts families created an online website that includes a family tree with photos, documents and stories.


FEATURED STORIES

1863 William Henry Beatty established Beatty and Chadwick which became the principal law firm to the Gooderham and Worts empire

William Henry Beatty articled in Toronto to John Leys and in 1863, was admitted as a solicitor and entered into partnership with Edward Marion Chadwick, soon to be his brother-in-law.

The success of the law firm, Beatty and Chadwick was intimately connected with William Henry Beatty’s marriage in 1865 to Charlotte Louisa, a daughter of James Gooderham Worts, a partner in the Gooderham and Worts distilling and milling operations and an important figure in such other businesses as the Bank of Toronto and the Canada Permanent Building and Savings Society.

Beatty and his law firm, however, had to earn the family’s business; it was not until 1877 that the firm became the solicitors of the Bank of Toronto. By 1879 Beatty had moved his offices to the bank’s building at the corner of Church and Wellington. The link with the bank was solidified in 1881 when Worts became its president and Beatty its vice-president. The following year Worts died; in his will he had directed that Beatty be elected to succeed him on the bank’s board of directors. In addition to assuming this role, Beatty became an executor of his father-in-law’s estate and for many years directed its business interests.

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