Young Immigrants to Canada

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Miss Fletcher

Little information has so far been collected on Miss Fletcher. However, from The Canadian News, April 22, 1875, comes this item:

Miss Fletcher's Efforts In The Cause Of Immigration
Many of our readers will remember that two years ago a large number of female domestic servants was brought to this city; and for a time, through the thoughtful precautions taken by the Rev. Dr. O'Connor, the new arrivals were accommodated with board and lodging at St. Patrick's Asylum, until they had been comfortably placed at service in the city or neighbourhood. Last year Miss Fletcher brought out another assortment of domestic "help," but took the greater number as far west as Toronto. Altogether she has brought over two hundred immigrants to Canada of the very kind the most needed in this country, and of the class which, by long oadds, is the most likely to be benefited by removal from the old world to the new. It is very grtifying to learn that of this large number Miss Fletcher has only heard of three who have disappointed her anticipations; all the rest have done and are still doing well, for themselves and by those who employthem. It may be mentioned that her enterprise is purely one of private benevolence; but, encouraged by what she had heard of the reception of Miss Rye and Miss Macpherson, at Toronto, she was induced to go there in the hope that her own private exertions would be supplemented by the allowances which the local Government makes on account of immigrants sent forward by the established agencies. Judge of her surprise, therefore, when she was brusquely told at the Ontario office: "We did not ask you!" The red tape rule up there seems to be that immigration must be of the regular pattern, and docketed by a gentleman with a fat salary at home. Mr. Donaldson, [Donaldson was the immigration officer at Toronto] however, did everything in his power to dispose of Miss Fletcher's charge, and with his aid all the girls were speedily hired out at good wages.

It gratifies us to be able to state that this heroic lady met with a much more kindly reception from the Minister and Deputy Minister of Agriculture at Ottawa. Indeed, we are assured that the Dominion authorities did all that was properly within their province to do, and with their encouragement Miss Fletcher returns to Liverpool to bring out another instalment, arriving here probably about the end of June. A committee of ladies has been formed in this city to look after these young women and see that they fined comfortable homes. We do not think it our duty to mention the names of the ladies referred to; but may say that among their number are wives of Ministers of the State, and also of some of our most prominent citizens. Her undertaking is therefore well patronised, and as she brings only those who are fit to work--say from fifteen to five and twenty years of age, no doubt many families will be glad to know that she intends to bring her next shipment to Ottawa, before attempting to go further west--where she was not "asked." Here she will be made heartily welcome and her wards will find ready situations. We wish her God speed.

Records:

Unknown.

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© Marjorie P. Kohli, Waterloo, Ontario, Canada, 1996-2010
Last updated: Oct 27, 2010, and maintained by Marj Kohli