File contains information pertaining to the land in McNab Township that was granted by the Crown to Archibald Laird of McNab personally. All the material consists of photocopies of documents in the National Archives under No. R.G. 1, E3, Volume 53.
1. Copy of letter by R.B. (The Hon. Robert Baldwin) Sullivan to Archibald McNab, dated Toronto, Sep. 27, 1839. The Executive Council cannot find justifiable vouchers, etc. for McNab’s claim. A payment of £4000 is recommended in lieu of all rights. 1. McNab is to assign his rights to the Crown, 2. £4000 to be paid to McNab, 3. McNab to sell his own land to the settlers at market value (without considering any improvements made), 4. the payment of £4000 is to come from said sale of lands; 5. Money already paid to McNab to the settlers is to be deducted.
2. Copy of letter over McNab’s signature to Executive Council, dated Toronto, July 30, 1839. Misunderstanding between him and the Council respecting the terms: McNab surrendering his claim to a grant of 5000 acres of land under certain conditions. McNab claims that Council is misinformed about the area of land settled in the township and that not 6500 acres but nearly 10,000 acres are now settled by a total of 165 settlers (families). He says that he has “located” about 15,000 acres in total. He wants payment of the full amount of his “admitted outlays” with interest.
3. Copy of short letter signed J.B. Harrison (Government House) to ?, dated July 24, 1839. Last paragraph of a letter to McNab “had better be omitted”.
4. Copy of letter over McNab’s signature dated July 25, 1839 (to Council?), entitled” Remarks by The McNab upon the Report of the Executive Council in the settlement of the Township of McNab, of date 23rd July 1839”. McNab was in Toronto to address the Council in the matter of his claim.
5. Copy of the Report of July 23, 1839 referred to above.
6. Copy of letter by the Executive Council to McNab, dated July 27, 1839, signed Sullivan.
7. Copy of note by McNab (all in his own hand) to R.A. Tucker, dated Toronto, July 4, 1839.
8. Copy of letter by Hagerman to Macauley (secretary of Lieutenant Governor), dated Toronto, July 15, 1839. Hagerman cautions about McNab’s power to evict 100 or more families. This might cause unrest among the new Loyal Scotch in the eastern part of the country — “most injurious”. “The (original) agreement made with McNab was most injudicious”. “The faith of the Crown ... must be maintained”. Recommended: grant McNab compensation and regain control of the township.
9. Copy of letter by McNab to Macauley, dated Toronto, Feb. 16, 1838, after Council’s and Lt. Gov.’s decision was made. Re monetary compensation by the government for expenses on behalf of the settlers. McNab values land (5000 acres) and buildings at £5000, expenses at £4000 (total: £9000).
10. Copy of letter by Archdeacon John Strachan to Robert Baldwin Sullivan, dated Toronto, Feb. 6, 1839 re McNab, recommending that McNab be given the right to do more or less as he pleases.
11. Copy of letter by Macauley (Lt. Gov.’s secretary) to Attorney General Hagerman asking for an opinion on Council’s recommendations re McNab.
12. Copy of letter (recommendations) by Attorney General C.W.A. Hagerman re McNab’s patent, etc. Dated Toronto, February 14, 1839. The Lt. Gov. to make the decision. McNab’s right to expel 50 or 100 families is questionable. Caution is urged. Recommends to send a confidential agent to the township to make a report re the causes of differences between McNab and the settlers. “Was it ever the Crown’s intention to place so much power in the hands of McNab?” In the meantime, the eviction of 12 settlers was approved.
13. Att. Gen’s office, dated Feb. 14, 1939, very similar to 12.
14. Copy of Recommendations by Archdeacon John Strachan, dated Feb. 5, 1835. “It is respectfully recommended that the services rendered by ... McNab in settling the township, ... with the exception of the Crown and Clergy reserves ...”
15. Copy of letter by Sullivan to Lt. Governor Sir George Arthur, dated Toronto, Feb. 8, 1839, including Executive Council minutes and recommendations re McNab - to grant patent in trust, referring to “trust deed for the lands under his superintendence”. Council regrets “exceeding;y” the original “stipulation entered into by the Government with the McNab, which made the grants to the locatees subject to the performance of agreements between himself and the settlers”. “McNab’s claim to 5000 acres of land “seems to have been voluntarily given up in consideration of ... certain prime timber in the township”. Council “did not notice this circumstance when the petition for a location upon lots occupied by the settlers was last before them — this accounts for locations of settlers upon lands settled by the McNab — these lands must therefore be considered, as seems to have been the design of the parties when the locations were made, to be precisely under the same circumstances as other lands”. Recommended: that a patent be issued to the Laird in trust so that he can convey lots to the settlers subject to remuneration for the Laird’s expenses in settling them.
16. Copy of letter over McNab’s signature to the Lieutenant Governor, dated Toronto, Feb. 5, 1839. “Upon the 5th of November 1823 he [i.e. the McNab] had the honour of obtaining the Grant of settling a township of land in the Province upon certain terms and conditions (a copy of which is herewith produced), a certain portion of which (8000) was specifically reserved for himself.”
“That upon the 7th day of April 1827, he received the commands of Government to fulfill and report upon all the conditions in the said Grant (which order and original copy of his answer is herewith also produced), when he then selected the Lots as reserved for himself — a copy of the schedule of which is in the hands of the Deputy Surveyor General. It has been already often stated that there was but a small portion of the Township fit for settling (not much above 7000 acres), the object of his settlement would therefore have been defeated wholly, had he reserved his own lands from settlement, he therefore gave the choice of his own lands to the settlers upon the same terms that he settled the rest upon.
“That he has strictly fulfilled all the conditions of his arrangement with Government in every respect, and having laid out considerable sums of money in improving his property — in erecting two separate establishments, with saw & grist mills, for the benefit of the Township and that portion of the County, he humbly requests that Your Excellency in Council may be pleaded to order a Patent Deed to issue to him of his own said lands according to the list which (is with the Deputy Surveyor General) . . .”
16. Copy of letter from Secretary Mudge to the Presiding (Executive) Counsellor, dated July 20, 1830.
17. Copies of several other documents (many pages) pertaining to the same matter (1830s and 1840s).
18. Handwritten transcript (by Kirstin Jeffrey, Arnprior, 1987) of a document issued on December 5, 1862 by the Registry Office of Renfrew County, pertaining to the conveyance of land (Lot 5, Concession C) in the Township of McNab first by the Crown to Archibald McNab (Feb. 28, 1828), then by Indenture of Bargain and Sale from James Middleton and Alfred Middleton to Daniel McLachlin, on January 28, 1852, then by Indenture of Mortgage from Daniel McLachlin to Alexander Simpson and (another property) to Nathaniel Burwash (in 1855). Also mentioned: dower rights of McNab’s widow (Margaret McNab) claimed in 1861/62. See also below.
19. Brown envelope containing copies of newspaper clippings of articles written by Harry Walker regarding “dower rights” claimed by McNab’s widow. Also containing photocopy of a handwritten copy of an “Indenture between Margaret McNab and Daniel McLachlin re dower’s rights claimed, dated Nov. 17th, 1862. This handwritten note was copied in 1987 when it was found by Peter Hessel and Kirstin Jeffrey “upstairs in the Arnprior Museum’s ‘old kitchen’, next to a filing cabinet (in clear plastic files) with reference number recorded (by PH) as 70.32.18.” The “original” handwritten copy is probably contained in the “Museum Collection”.
20. Photocopies of three pages (96, 98, 776) of unknown origin apparently in Archibald McNab’s handwriting. The first two pages are entitled “Rental of the Township of McNab 1839”. They contain the names of settlers with lot and concession numbers and the amount of “rent” due (in bushels of grain). Page 97 as well as subsequent pages are missing. The names of 50 settlers on page 778 may be signatures, but more likely entries by the same person (the Laird himself?). These three pages were donated by Arnold McIntyre of Arnprior in August 2000.