Submitted by Ellen Mooney
Robert John and Ella Mooney were not the first in the family to move to and settle in the Massey area. RJ’s sister and brother-in-law, Mary and Frank McIntyre came first. and they convinced RJ and Ella that Temperance Valley was the place to farm.
In March 1899, Robert John and Ella and their two year old son Manson, came from Guyon, Pontiac County in Quebec. They packed up their belongings and livestock and loaded it all on a boxcar in Arnprior, Ontario and headed for their new home in Massey. RJ rode in the caboose so he could tend to the livestock.
Shortly after settling in, Dora May was born on May 7th and they went on to have ten children in total: Manson, Dora (McLaren), Keith, Arnold, Grace (Walford), Marjorie (Clarke), Bernice (Thornton), Allen, Wallace and Edith (Wolgemuth).
At first they rented a small log cabin but, by summer, a house had been built and about three acres cleared and seeded with grain and potato’s. By years end, a barn had been built for the livestock.
Robert John had a comprehensive interest in the community, church, school and municipal government and served as reeve of the municipality for many years, as secretary of the local school board and as an elder of the Massey United Church.
My grandparents were true pioneers. They hacked a hole in the bush to build a home and farm.
A farm that, 3 generations later is still in existence today.
Jonella Farms, a successful dairy operation is a proud tribute to what my grandparents started 117 years ago.
This summer (2016), Mooney’s will have a reunion to celebrate and remember our family heritage.
8/21/2016 05:50:28 pm
6/25/2019 12:53:58 pm
I am just reading your message now June 25/19. Sorry that I didn't reply sooner.
Leonard St. Louis
11/3/2017 10:17:13 am
6/25/2019 12:58:49 pm
7/17/2019 08:04:57 am
Hello! I am researching my great-grandfather who arrived in Canada in 1884 and moved to Walford. Frank Thornton settled in Walford and ran the general store - he married Emma Florence Cliff and had six children, one of which was my grandfather. I believe the Mrs Thornton (postmaster) referred to in another posting was my great-grandmother, and I am curious if Beatrice Thornton nee Mooney married into the Thornton family. Any information you could provide would be welcome.
7/17/2019 11:13:22 am
7/30/2021 11:00:04 am
Hello! My name is Don Clarke. I am Marjorie Clarke's (Mooney) grandson. She spoke often of Massey and I met most of her siblings at one point or another as a young lad as they stopped to visit either while passing through Prescott or for the weekend. I was born in 1966. One of my middle names is John which my father (Richard Clarke) and mother gave me for my father's grandfather (Robert John). I just happened to be looking up Massey on the internet and stumbled on this site. Hope all is well on the farm.
7/30/2021 02:08:24 pm
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This ongoing blog is a collection of articles and photos written by volunteers, staff and you, about the history of our region!