By Charlotte Gray

In February 1915, a member of 1 of Canada's wealthiest households used to be shot and killed at the entrance porch of his domestic in Toronto as he used to be strolling back from paintings. Carrie Davies, an 18-year-old family servant, quick confessed. yet who was once the sufferer the following? Charles "Bert" Massey, a scion of a well-known kinfolk, or the nervous, maybe mentally volatile Carrie, a penniless British immigrant? while the intense attorney Hartley Dewart, quality controls, took on her case, his grudge opposed to the robust Masseys may gasoline a dramatic trial that pitted the previous order opposed to the recent, wealth and privilege opposed to advantage and sincere labor. Set opposed to a backdrop of the nice battle in Europe and the altering face of a state, this sensational crime is delivered to bright existence for the 1st time.

As in her prior bestselling ebook, Gold Diggers--now in construction as a Discovery tv miniseries--multi-award-winning historian and biographer Charlotte grey has created a charming narrative wealthy intimately and brimming with larger-than-life personalities, as she shines a mild on a primary second in our prior.

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His reputation and philanthropy assured that his grandson’s premature dying might turn into a sensational information tale. yet there has been one other aspect to Hart Almerrin Massey, and one who Charles Albert Massey knew good. Bert was once 16 years outdated while his grandfather died, elderly seventy-three, and he had transparent thoughts of the tall, gaunt, frock-coated determine with the white beard, gimlet eyes, and forbidding manner of an outdated testomony prophet. For the 1st few years of his existence, Bert and his siblings were the darlings in their grandparents’ eyes. without notice, whilst Bert was once approximately ten, Hart had driven all of them to the margins of the Massey empire. The Massey identify was once an ambiguous inheritance. Massey relations background has the entire features that Canadians as soon as relished—log cabin beginnings, devotion to responsibility, efforts rewarded. notwithstanding, the 1st Masseys to set foot in British North the USA arrived for advertisement purposes instead of via loyalty to the Crown or imperial ambition. The Masseys have been Yankee Methodists who got here up from Vermont in 1802. Hart Massey, Bert’s grandfather, had archetypal pioneer beginnings: he all started lifestyles in 1823 on a hardscrabble kinfolk farm north of Lake Ontario, with regards to the little port of Cobourg. those have been years while Canadian agriculture consisted of an annual cycle of backbreaking drudgery: land-clearing, rock elimination, plowing, seeding, scything, and threshing—all performed by way of hand. Land was once reasonable, however the paintings used to be brutal and monotonous. The hardships triggered the English immigrant Susanna Moodie to put in writing, in Roughing It within the Bush, “My love for Canada was once a sense practically allied to that which the condemned felony entertains for his phone. ” Subsistence farmers just like the Moodies and Masseys scratched a dwelling from primitive farms at the harsh Canadian protect and struggled to feed their households. They seized on any primitive labour-saving equipment, resembling patented stump-pullers and more advantageous harrows, that neighborhood blacksmiths hammered into life. by the point he was once six, Hart Massey knew all approximately emerging at sunrise to fetch water, feed chickens, acquire eggs, harness horses, and assemble kindling. yet Massey males shared a worthy expertise: a flair for fiddling round with bits of steel. Hart’s father, Daniel, used to be fascinated with mechanical innovations and bought a workshop in within sight Newcastle. From an early age, Hart too had proven primitive engineering talents, and in 1851 he took over the Newcastle works, which was once now a superb neighborhood foundry. Hart had imaginative and prescient, and an intuitive knowing of marketplace forces, and the kin foundry’s acceptance quickly unfold past the rock-strewn farms round Newcastle. Hart geared the “Newcastle Foundry and computing device Manufactory” to the creation of mechanical mowers and reapers. His machines made farmers’ lives incomparably more uncomplicated, and Massey items have been quickly successful prizes at agricultural indicates. In 1867, the 12 months of Canada’s Confederation, Hart Massey’s mixed reaper and mower received a gold medal at a world exposition in France.

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