Cover

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Frontmatter

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Table of Contents

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pp. v-vi

List of Illustrations

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pp. vii-viii

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Preface

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pp. ix-x

"Who is going to be interested in reading about the Armstrong family?" rightly asked my mother when this project began. Certainly very few will be drawn to these pages for the sake of our relatively bland family history, but I hope readers will be curious about the engaging glimpse of life in Victorian Toronto that...

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Acknowledgments

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pp. xi-xii

I cannot emphasize enough how important the role of my father, Dr. Andrew Armstrong, has been in editing these diaries. Without his inspiration, interest, and help in the initial stages of transcription, this project would never have begun. My father's genealogical research that preceded and guided my own, and his vast knowledge...

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Editor's Note

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pp. xiii-xiv

In most cases I have chosen to refer to individuals, notably Mary herself, by given name only. Though this is not conventional practice when referring to the author of a text, I have chosen to do so for two reasons. First, my narrative covers Mary's life before and after her...

List of Abbreviations

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pp. xv-xvi

Introduction

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I: A Canadian's Story

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pp. 1-14

Mary Wickson, like so many Canadians, was an immigrant. With her family, she left England for a new land at age fifteen. She probably did not have much choice in the matter; as the head of his household, her father made the final decision to uproot and seek new opportunity and prosperity across the ocean.1 Whether...

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II: A Diarist's World

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pp. 15-78

Mary's diaries, over 25,000 words in length, are exactly the type of document that Barbara Maas was referring to in 1990 when she speculated that many female-related historical sources were probably still lying in private hands, their academic value unknown to their owners. As the private journals of an "ordinary woman," Mary's...

Illustrations and Family Trees

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pp. 79-86

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Diary of Mary Armstrong, 1859

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pp. 87-134

January 1st At home all day, Mr. A2 at Primitive3 tea party, Saml.4 and Thomas5 tea, at John's [,]6 Mrs. C in England,7 Arthur8 making calls, Father and Mother9 at John's-----

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Diary of Mary Armstrong, 1869

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pp. 135-154

January 1st, 1869 Friday New Years Day Thank God we are all in good health and I never was happier in my life than today, sitting down in the kitchen mending socks...

List of Individuals

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pp. 155-160

Notes

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pp. 161-198

Bibliography

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pp. 199-210

Index

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pp. 211-229