J.J. Carrick

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J.J. Carrick, 1910

John James "J.J." Carrick (17 September 1873 - 11 May 1966) was an American-Canadian real estate developer, politician, and stockbroker. He was the developer of the 1909 Mariday Park neighbourhood in Thunder Bay, Ontario.

Among his many accomplishments: as mayor of Port Arthur he initiated the first daylight savings time in the world (in 1908), and he sold the first Remembrance Day poppies in Canada. [6]


J.J.'s father, John Alfred Carrick, was born in 1850 in West Malling, Kent, England. He emigrated to Canada in 1866. He spent some years in America, and was there in 1873 in Terre Haute, Indiana where J.J. was born. A few years later, when J. J. was still "young" [according to J. J. 's obituary], the family moved back to Canada, where they lived on a farm in Kincardine on Lake Huron [according to J. J.'s book Hall of Fame]. In 1910 John contracted "carcinoma of the stomach". He managed his son J.J.'s office in Fort William from 1910-11, after which he moved to Toronto, residing at 1841 Dundas. In 1915 he was having an operation on his stomach to remove a tumor when he died of complications from surgery.



Word was received this afternoon that Mr. J. A. Carrick, father of Lieut.-Col. J. J. Carrick, M. P., died in Toronto, following an operation for tumor of the stomach.

The late Mr. Carrick was sixty-five years of age and was born in England. He came to Canada at the age of 16 years and later removed to the United States where he remained to a few years after which he again returned to Canada. He was in 1910-11 manager of the Carrick offices in Fort William and since that time he resided in Toronto.

Besides his son, Lieut.-Col. John J. Carrick, of Port Arthur, at present in France with the Canadian forces, he leaves another son, Charles S., of Sault Ste. Marie, and a daughter, Mrs. F. E. Hare, of Toronto. The widow is a sister of Mr. A. P. Harvey, of Port Arthur.

— Port Arthur News-Chronicle, 25 August 1915, page 1

J.J.'s mother was Emiline Harvey (1849 - 10 June 1929). Emiline had a brother, A.P. Harvey, who lived in Port Arthur and died before 1939. A.P. Harvey's widow lived until at least 1966, according to J.J. Carrick's 1966 obituary.

CARRICK—The death occurred in Toronto, on June 10, 1929, of Mrs. J. A. Carrick, mother of John J. Carrick, formerly of Port Arthur.

— Port Arthur News-Chronicle, 11 June 1929, page 12.

Early life

J.J. was born 17 September 1873 in Evansville, Indiana, USA, to the aforementioned John Alfred Carrick (1850 - 1915) and his wife Emiline Harvey (1849 - 1929).

In the 1878 in the Evansville city directory, John A. Carrick's listing is: "Singer Sewing Machine agent, res 1701 Upper 2d". The only other Carrick listed is "Harry J.", also "res 1701 Upper 2D".

Carrick moved with his family to a farm in the small town of Kincardine on Lake Huron in Ontario, Canada, while he was young for some reason, and he graduated from the University of Toronto in 1897. [6]

In 2018, local Thunder Bay roofing contractor, bodybuilding, and entrepreneur Daniel Skaarup wrote and self-published a book, "Success Philosophy", containing the claim that from 1897 to 1903 Carrick worked for John D. Rockefeller, becoming a leading oil salesman. [6] This claim does not appear in any other source and therefore it's not clear where Skaarup obtained this information or whether it is true.

As an entrepreneur Carrick was greatly influenced by [Rockefeller]. It's my personal view that when Carrick came into contact with Rockefeller's level of wealth and success he got bit by the wealth bug so hard, he never got over it. Carrick became "on fire" with success and momentum and became a very talented salesman.

— Daniel J. Skaarup, "Success Philosophy: Standing on the Shoulders of Sleeping Giants"

Marriage and family

He married Mary Jane Day on 20 December 1899 in Simcoe, Ontario. He listed his occupation as "Traveller" on the marriage license.

Mary Jane and J.J. had three sons:

All three sons were outstanding athletes who attended the elite private school, St. Andrew's College from 1917 until grade 12, in Aurora, Ontario, and then went on to the University of Toronto. They all became stock brokers, taking after their father.

J.J. had five grandchildren:

Port Arthur

Carrick came to Port Arthur in 1903 (other sources say 1902), attracted by a real estate boom in anticipation of the Grand Trunk Pacific Railway locating at the Lakehead.

Carrick came to town like a lightning bolt, full of energy and enthusiasm. He managed to partner with some of the biggest names in Thunder Bay on numerous projects.

— Daniel J. Skaarup, "Success Philosophy: Standing on the Shoulders of Sleeping Giants"

J.J. Carrick was elected mayor in 1908, for one year or less, which was apparently the length of term at the time. [2]

  • 1907 - 1907 Alderman in Port Arthur
  • 1908 - 1908 Mayor of Port Arthur
  • 1908 - Conservative MLA in the Ontario Legislature
  • 1911 - 1917 Acclaimed MP for Thunder Bay and Rainy River, sitting until the next election in 1917.
  • 1915 - 1918 Lieutenant Colonel in the Canadian Militia during World War I.

Other Accomplishments:

  • February 1906 - 17 February 1916 Carrick founded a newspaper, with Orillia native Edward Blake MacKay [3]: the Port Arthur Daily News (merged, sold to Thompson in 1949, and ultimately became the Chronicle-Journal). "Carrick sold the newspaper in May 1918 to John Russell Smith of the firm Davidson & Smith."
  • On 1 July 1908, as Mayor, introduced Daylight Savings Time, making Port Arthur the first city in the world, and the only city in the world using it, for three years, until Orillia, Ontario implemented it in 1911.
  • In 1908, Carrick convinced the Canadian Northern Railway to build the Prince Arthur Hotel, over a poker game on a train from Winnipeg. CN paid Carrick $850,000 to have him build the hotel; the city provided the lot; this hotel is also the first place in Canada to sell the Rememberance Day poppies [6]
  • Carrick is "credited" with persuading the government to establish the Armoury and the Customs buildings in Port Arthur.
  • Apparently Carrick was also president of the Great West Coal Company of Brandon, Manitoba, for some period of time (unknown)
  • By 1910 Carrick had offices in Port Arthur, Fort William, Toronto, Winnipeg, and Montreal. He created his own mortgage finance company called The Red Path Estate. [6]
The Carrick House, which Carrick had built in 1906

Carrick lived in Port Arthur from 1903 (other sources say 1902) to about 1918. He built a house in 1906 that still stands. In the 1960s it was occupied by the Arthur Family [4]. As of 2019, "a local businessman Gene Prpich lives there, fittingly as he is an antiques dealer" - Jack Floyd. Sunrise Antiques [5] [6]

Rear of the Carrick House

The rear of the Carrick house faces Algoma, and it has a gorgeous park on the side.

Carrick, age 83, on 1 August 1957, in Port Arthur for a civic event

On 31 July 1957, 40 years after moving away, Carrick visited Port Arthur for a civic event as part of a weeklong celebration of Port Arthur's centennial [7], and was given a standing ovation. Former Mayor Charles Cox (1882 - 1958) called Carrick a "spellbinder and noisemaker", saying that he "laid the groundwork for the city of Port Arthur". Local historian Joseph Placide "J.P." Bertrand (? - 1964) introduced Carrick as a "big man with a big heart". [8]

[Many?] Greet Carrick As Great Man

One of the most distinguished men to [live on?] the shores of Port Arthur received a standing ovation at a civic luncheon Wednesday as [...od?] to address old friends in the city council he was instrumental in forming.

J. J. Carrick, 84, of Mexico had come home to his former home of Port Arthur and his friends were glad to see him. The ovation lasted for several minutes. Mr. Carrick was visibly moved by the things his friends said about him.

Former Mayor Charles W. Cox [Charles Winnans Cox (1882 - 1958)] called him one of the most distinguished men ever to live in the City of Port Arthur. Mr. Cox said "J.J." as he is known, a spellbinder and a noisemaker with energy and foresight and knowledge laid the groundwork for the city of Port Arthur as we know it today.

Local historian J. P. Bertrand, who introduced Mr. Carrick, referred to him as a "big man with a big heart."

Mr. Carrick was an Alderman on Port Arthur council in 1907, mayor in 1908, MPP 1908 to 1911 before he reached the age of 38. He was elected as a member of the House of Commons for Port Arthur, Fort William, Kenora and Rainy River in 1911 and represented the area until 1917, when he [was sent?] to go overseas.

Mr. Carrick told his audience that wild horses could not have kept him in Mexico City when he received the invitation to the Centennial.


He said the things people said about him embarrassed him slightly since his return to Port Arthur. He told the group it was almost "unbelievable" the work the local people had done for the Centennial. He quoted Disraeli who said youth is a blunder, manhood is a struggle and old age a regret, and said he had reached the age of regret that he was not now in Port Arthur.

Mr. Carrick, whose first office was on Arthur Street [called Red River Road since 1970], was a real estate agent in the early days of Port Arthur. He figured prominently in such deals as the Hyland Park and the old race track, Brent park and Victoria park in Fort William.

He became an alderman in 1906 and was the first man on the city council to boast a BA from a university. He told the group the happiest years of his life were those he spent in Port Arthur raising his family.

Ald. Angelo Mauro [1922 - 2008], chairman of civic reception committee which arranged the luncheon, told Mr. Carrick his name came up in almost any discussion about the early history of this city. He expressed the hope the popular visitor would come back again. Ald. Mauro arranged a lake trout dinner which Mr. Carrick called the finest he had ever eaten.


Mr. Carrick, who has travelled many times around the world since living in Mexico City, recalled how he had met Churchill during World War I. He said he had returned to England in 1944 just after his youngest son had been killed. He recalled a night when Mr. Churchill had been scheduled to make a speech to the world over the BBC. The prime minister hailed a cab and asked to be driven to the studios.

The cab driver said he couldn't take the unidentified man that far, and , when asked why, replied, "Churchill is going to speak in half an hour and I don't want to miss him." Mr. Churchill was so pleased with the answer he gave the man a pound note. The cabbie looked at the bill, and said "Aw, to ---- with Churchill."

The Prime Minister apparently has told this story with great gusto on himself many times.

Mr. Carrick recalled how he had started the News-Chronicle in 1907 with E. B. MacKay. The paper was known as the News in those days.

Mayor Wishart expressed the gratitude of the people and the council of Port Arthur for the work Mr. Carrick had done in the early days. She said some of the old timers had been invited to the luncheon because they or their fathers had had dealings with Mr. Carrick when he was in business here.

Crown Attorney, P. V. Ibbetson, QC, [Percy Victor Ibbetson] a former mayor [1931 - 1932] of Port Arthur, welcomed Mr. Carrick also. He said it "must be gratifying" to see the strides the city has made. He pointed out this progress had been made possible in a large measure by Mr. Carrick's ground-work.


Charles Miller, a long-time friend of Mr. Carrick's, wrote saying he could not attend the luncheon, but reminding the gathering of the "great part" J.J. had played in the early history of Port Arthur.

Mr. Carrick held aloft a picture of the city council in 1907 and recalled his days in company with such men as George O. P. Clavet, the first mayor, Samuel J. McCutcheon, George F. Horrigan, Robert Furguson, Robert J. Spofford, Sven Enborg, John Bowman, Neil McDougall, and the city clerk who ran the city business with only one assistant, James McTeigue, also a former alderman.

— Port Arthur News-Chronicle, 1 August 1957, Pages 1 and 5.

Since none of Carrick's sons lived in Port Arthur, it seems likely none of his direct descendants lived there at any point after the family exodus in 1917. However, Carrick's mother's brother, A.P. Harvey, and wife, lived in Port Arthur until their respective deaths, so if they had children it's possible Carrick has close family descendants still living in Port Arthur to the present day.

Later career

After the war he moved to Toronto to start a brokerage business. By 1939 it was called Gachin Holdings, with offices at 330 Bay Street, Toronto, a 16-storey office tower built in 1925 and fittingly known as the "Northern Ontario Building". [9]

J.J. Carrick's home in Toronto, at 49 St. Andrew's Gardens

J.J. Carrick lived in the second-most affluent neighbourhood in Toronto, Moore Park, at 49 St. Andrew's Gardens.

In 1930 he ran as a Liberal in the Port Arthur-Thunder Bay riding.

He ran as an independent MP in the St. George Riding in 1934, losing badly in 4th place with 207 votes to the winner, Ian Strachan, a liberal. [10]

Carrick spent the winter of 1934 - 1935 in California [11]. His son Alex visited for a month from about 9 March 1935.

On 13 January 1939 he attended a banquet commemorating the 50th anniversary of the founding of the Foreign Press Association. Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain gave a speech at the event, which was held at London's Grosvenor Hotel. [12] Later in January, he returned to Canada from the trip, which was his 27th round trip to England.

We're lucky we live in Canada. Continental Europe is a Mad-House with two raving Maniacs running wild, and civil murder in Spain. And we call it Civilization!

Arrived Saturday from England-my 27th round trip. We had on board in the steerage many Czechoslovakian refugees going to the U.S. What a pathetic sight-these destitute women & children. And we call it Civilization!

Talked with many prominent Britishers, attended the 50th Anniversary Banquet of the Foreign Press-the Germans stayed away-heard Chamberlain's great speech. We've got to take off our hats to that Old Boy. Well, what's it going to be for 1939. World War? Armageddon?

We're lucky we live in Canada. We're lucky we have a great gold producing mines-mining is Canada's most prosperous industry. Gachin shareholders are lucky. Original Gachin purchasers have received over 410% dividend returns. Gachin has investments in 21 Canadian dividend paying gold mines.

P.S.-Write Gachin Holdings, 330 Bay St., Toronto, for particulars. Buy Gachin for safety & better-than-average dividends.

— J.J. Carrick, in the Globe and Mail, 23 January 1939, page 21

Circa 1939 - 1945 President of "Books for the Boys" charity, run from his 330 Bay Street office in Toronto, which ran into the hundreds of thousands of books [13]. Carrick also encouraged war savings in speeches in 1941.

I propose herewith to review Gachin operations and give shareholders a concise account of Gachin's activity since the Syndicate was organized in 1932.

Gachin Gold Syndicate, a Partnership in which all subscribers were jointly liable, was formed on August 4, 1932, with an authorized capital of $25,000.

December 7, 1932, the authorized capital of the Syndicate was increased to $200,000, and the Syndicate Agreement stated:

(1) The Syndicate shall have as its main purpose the exploration and development of mining properties.

(2) The Syndicate shall not be converted into an Investment Trust.

August 11, 1937, Gachin Holdings Limited was incorporated with only one class of stock—no par value shares...

Dividends: Subscribers to Gachin Gold Syndicate have received nearly 50% of their original investment in dividend payments.

Perhaps the brightest aspect of Gachin Holdings Limited is its ownership of a large block of Kirkland Hudson Bay. Lake Shore control Kirkland Hudson Bay. They have invested nearly one million dollars in Kirkland Hudson Bay, and have both the finances and engineering talent to make it a successful producing mine.

Gachin Holdings Limited owns 63,330 shares of Kirkland Hudson Bay.

— Report to Gachin Holdings Limited Shareholders by J.J. Carrick, 3 May 1941

On 18 October 1968, two years after Carrick's death, Gachin Holdings Limited appeared in a Vancouver Sun column where readers could submit share certificates to discover if it had any value. It was listed along with several other companies as "CHARTERED SURRENDERED OR CANCELLED". So by this point it's clear the company has ceased to exist, perhaps liquidated after the death of Carrick. [11]


Carrick bought column space "at advertising rates" [9] in Canadian newspapers such as the Globe and Mail during the 1930s and 1940s, writing a column called Carrick-atures. This column was often accompanied by advertisements for his gold mining syndicate, Gachin Holdings.

Hall of Fame (1943), by J.J. Carrick

In 1943 he wrote a book (perhaps collecting some of previous writings) entitled Hall of Fame: Photos, Cartoons, Sketches, Eulogy, Humor, Ridicule; it was published in hardcover in 1943 by the "Institute of Financial Education". [7] In 2016, the copyright to this book fell into the public domain in Canada, 50 years after the author's death.

Hall of Fame featured in the prior art exhibits presented by Mad Magazine when defending their use of the face of Alfred E. Newman, since J.J. had apparently used it. Carl Djerassi, in recounting this fact in his 2014 book, The Pill, Pygmy Chimps, and Degas' Horse, called Hall of Fame "somewhat corny". [8]


Carrick was widowed in January 1947. In 1951, he retired and moved to Mexico, saying that country had the ideal climate for "health, happiness and longevity." [9]

In December 1953, a photographer visited Carrick's Mexico City home and took a photograph which reveals Carrick had commissioned at least two murals of the people depicted in "Carrick-atures". The photograph also reveals the Carrick's home was richly appointed in wood, and that Carrick apparently prized his many personal and business relationships. This photographer's photograph later appeared in the [University of Saskatchewan archives https://memorysask.ca/mural-of-j-j-carrick-photographs].

The interior of Carrick's home in Mexico City, photographed in December 1953 by an anonymous visitor whose photograph now appears in the University of Saskatchewan archives
6 Iztaccihuatl Condensa, the apartment complex now standing at the address where J.J. lived in 1966 (it's unclear if this building is the same one or if it was built after 1966)

By early 1966, his main residence was suite 404, at 6 Iztaccihuatl apartments, within Colonia Hipódromo Condensa, an upscale neighbourhood in Mexico City. (19°24'30.0"N 99°10'05.4"W) [13] [14]

On 11 May 1966, at age 92, he was visiting San Luis Potosí City (400 kilometres north of Mexico City) when, at 10:45 am, he died of acute cardiosclerosis uraemia. His body was brought back to Mexico City, where it was cremated on the following day, 12 May, at the cremation furnace of the Panteón de Dolores, the largest cemetery in Mexico. [13]

On 12 of May 1966, José Rodríguez Flores, Civil Registry Officer, filed a medical certificate with the Mexican government confirming the death of J. J. Carrick. [13]

The tombstone of Mary Jane Carrick (nee Day), the eponym of Mariday Park, at Creemore Union Cemetery, Creemore, Simcoe County, Ontario, Canada [1]

Carrick's ashes were later buried at Creemore Union Cemetery, in Simcoe County, Ontario, alongside his late wife and son Jack, who had predeceased him in 1947 and 1952, respectively. [14]


This obituary ran in the Port Arthur News-Chronicle on 12 May 1966:

Carrick's photo shown in his 12 May 1966 Port Arthur News-Chronicle obituary

Mayor in 1908, Dies at Age 92

A former mayor of Port Arthur and a member of the Canadian Parliament for many years, John James Carrick died Wednesday in Mexico City. [inaccurate; he died 400 km north of there]. He was 92. Mr. Carrick had lived in Mexico since his retirement 15 years ago. Survivors include his second wife, Mary [is this true? The same name as his first wife?], and a son, Donald Carrick, of Toronto and an aunt, Mrs A. P. Harvey of Port Arthur.

Mr. Carrick was born in the United States and moved to Ontario while young. He started his first real estate business in Port Arthur in 1902 and was elected mayor in 1908. As mayor he persuaded the Canadian Northern Railway to build the Prince Arthur Hotel in Port Arthur.

He represented Port Arthur as a Conservative in the Ontario Legislature from 1908 to 1911 and sat for the same riding in the House of Commons from 1911 to 1917.

He later ran unsuccessfully as an Independent-Conservative and as a Liberal. During the First World War he served overseas as a colonel with the Canadian Army. In 1914 he used The Globe and Mail column Carrickatures to appeal for books for Canadian forces overseas.


When John J. came to Port Arthur in 1902 there was a blacksmith shop on the most prominent corner in the city. Today this corner is occupied by the Prince Arthur Hotel. Mr. Carrick closed the deal for this hotel with Sir William MacKenzie during [Carrick's] term as mayor. The deal was made in Sir William's private car on the way to Winnipeg.

When J. J. Carrick came to Port Arthur, and for many years after, the first hundred acres beyond the crest of the hill was a cow pasture. Mr. Carrick developed it and today it is one of the finest parks at the Lakehead — Hillcrest. Mr. Carrick named it Mariday after his first [??] wife, Mary Day, and it was called such for many years.

Mr. Carrick is also remembered for his development of Carrick Addition, Brent Park and Highland Park in the south Algoma area where once was a race track. He was also given credit for developing Victoria Park in Fort William, now one of the finest residential centres there.


Both Mr. Carrick and his first [??] wife were graduates of the University of Toronto. They had three children. A son, John died some years ago [in 1952] and a son, Alexander Crozier Carrick, who was named after the late Dr. [James Alexander Crozier] of Port Arthur, was killed overseas in World War 2. The surviving son, Donald, was named after the late Donald Hogarth.

When J.J. Carrick returned to Port Arthur in 1949 after a 20-year absence thousands turned out in the rain to applaud the man who helped make their city. He was warmly welcomed again when he returned for the centennial celebrations in 1957.

— Port Arthur News-Chronicle, 12 May 1966, Page 1

This obituary ran in the Montreal Gazette on 13 May 1966. It contains apparent inaccuracies:

  • Carrick was not a soldier; he was a politician with an honourary title of "colonel"
  • He moved to Port Arthur in 1903 by other sources
  • His wife Mary died on 20 January 1947, according to their tombstone, so she did not survive him. [14] His Mexican death certificate also says he is a widower. [13]

TORONTO — (CP) — John James Carrick, a soldier, politician and writer who bought space at advertising rates for his column in The Globe and Mail, died in Mexico City. He was 92.

Mr. Carrick was born in the United States and moved to Canada while young. He started his first business in Port Arthur, Ont., in 1902 and was elected mayor in 1908.

The same year he was elected to the Ontario legislature as Conservative member for Port Arthur and sat until 1911. From then until 1917 he represented the constituency in the House of Commons.

During the First World War he served overseas as a colonel with Canadian army.

In 1941 he used the Globe and Mail column Carrickatures to appeal for books for Canadian forces overseas.

He retired and moved to Mexico 15 years ago, saying that country had the ideal climate for "health, happiness and longevity."

Surviving are his wife Mary and a son, Donald, of Toronto.

— The Gazette (Montréal), 13 May 1966, page 41

Family Tree

J.J. Carrick has at least 5 generations of descendants, including several highly successful athletes in Golf and Hockey. J.J.'s grandson John (Jay) Carrick founded [McAshphalt https://mcasphalt.com/advantage-2/history/] in 1970, which has become a very large industrial company.

Carrick family tree


[1] Canadiana Biography of J.J. Carrick [15]

[2] J.J. Carrick's Wikipedia page [16]

[3] Thunder Bay Museum [17]

[4] Petrone, Penny, 1995. Breaking the Mould. [18]

[5] Chronicle-Journal, 22 May 2005, "Boost and sell: John James Carrick". By Bryan Martyniuk.

[6] Success Philosophy: Standing on the Shoulders of Sleeping Giants, by Daniel J. Skaarup. [19]

[7] Carrick, J.J. Hall of Fame: Photos, Cartoons, Sketches, Eulogy, Humor, Ridicule. Harcover - 1943. Publisher: Instit. of Financial Ed.; First Edition edition (1943) ASIN: B001NRHR3C [20]

[8] Djerassi, Carl. The Pill, Pygmy Chimps, and Degas' Horse. The Autobiography of Carl Djerassi. 2014. [21] "There were references to a publication of that face [Alfred E. Newman]... to a somewhat corny book, Hall of Fame, published in 1943 in Toronto by one J. J. Carrick."

[9] J.J. Carrick obituary, Montreal Gazette, page 41, 13 May 1966.

[10] The Ottawa Journal, 14 March 1945, page 9.

[11] The Vancouver Sun, 18 October 1968, page 19.

[13] Death Certificate of J.J. Carrick, 12 May 1966.

[14] Tombstone of J. J. Carrick at Find a Grave [22]