No announcement yet.

Disappearance of Ambrose Small (Toronto, 1919)

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Disappearance of Ambrose Small (Toronto, 1919)

    Ambrose Small Case | The Canadian Encyclopedia

  • #2
    Another interesting story, Andrew....thanks !

    I had to chuckle when I read the theory proposed by Small's sisters of a 'papist' plot involving the Toronto constabulary. From watching Murdoch Mysteries ( a Canadian series), I learned of the bias towards Catholics at that time in Toronto.

    Most Irish cops in Toronto were Protestants...

    The fact that until the late 1920s the chief constable's annual report listed religious affiliation of personnel suggests that, as in other Canadian cities, the religious composition of civic departments was of interest to the public. Members of Toronto's major denominations, Anglicans, Presbyterians Methodists and later members of the United Church, were well represented in the department. Baptists, a minority in the city, were under-represented. Given the prominence of Orangeism in political circles, Toronto was reputed to be difficult territory for Catholic seekers of civic employment. They were not, however, excluded from the police department. Although poorly represented in the higher ranks, Catholics formed one-tenth of personnel in 1910 and slightly less in 1920, roughly in keeping with their percentage of the city's population. In neither year was there a Catholic divisional inspector

    Small seems to have been so disliked that the suspect pool was deep.


    • #3
      It should be noted, Howard, that 1/3rd of the Canadian population lives in Southern Ontario, which is the equivalent of New England. Your NE population is 1/21th or .05 %.

      Regarding Ambrose Small, there are some people who believed this was a pseudocide. Can you believe that? Ha ha. I don't and I "see pseudocides" everywhere.


      • #4
        I'm aware of those stats, San....I remember being very surprised that Toronto is larger than Chicago in terms of population, last year. It's the 3rd biggest North American city and Montreal is 6th. Philly is 7th.


        • #5
          Originally posted by Howard Brown View Post
          Small seems to have been so disliked that the suspect pool was deep.
          Yeah, it's really a very interesting case with no shortage of suspects. His secretary embezzling money from him, his wife who had been cheated on for years, the mistress who seems a bit unstable from the letters and things we have, any number of business rivals, hell, maybe even organized crime for all we know, and then there's always the possibility he just took the money and ran and went underground.


          • #6
            Here's Small's secretary in the 1911 Census. He's making 1200 a year working 48 hrs a week. That's about 30,000 a year today. His occupation on his 1909 marriage record says secretary but here it says delivery. I have him remarrying in 1917 to a librarian named Constance Spears, the daughter of doctor Hugh Spears who died in 1903.

            John Doughty
            in the 1911 Canadian Census
            John Doughty
            Scotch (Scotish)
            Oct 1880
            Toronto East
            40 - Ward 1
            70 River
            Employer: no
            Employee: no
            Opera House
            48 hrs week
            1200 dollars a year?
            1200 life insurance


            • #7
              John (also known as Jack) Doughty's father was a mill watchman in Massachusetts in 1855 and moved up to a mill overseer in Maine in 1870. Then he moved to Toronto where he became a rag and metal dealer and then, in 1891, he's a "Wolleing (?) Manufacterer".

              Gea Doughty

              in the 1870 United States Federal Census
              Gea Doughty
              abt 1828
              Lisbon, Androscoggin, Maine
              Lisbon Falls
              Oveseer Woollen Mill
              Agnes Doughty
              Agnes DoughtyJames Doughty William Doughty


              • #8
                My point about having a large proportion of people in the equivalent of New England is that it changes the whole socio-dynamics of a region and a county by direct consequence. A California professor, here to unravel the Layman/Academic Viking Hoax that began in 1936, stated, in 1961, that "the identification with Institutional Power is greater in [Southern] Ontario than anywhere else in North America." That's not a long time ago to guys like us. I definitely experienced it, and it goes across the board, for positive and/or negative.


                Originally posted by Howard Brown View Post
                I had to chuckle when I read the theory proposed by Small's sisters of a 'papist' plot involving the Toronto constabulary....
                Small seems to have been so disliked that the suspect pool was deep.
                And the suspects so well-liked and identified with that the suspect pool was possibly muddied to look even deeper.