Dear Artist, keep creating

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Gooderham Building and so much more – Ancestral Surprise!

A surprising day indeed!

Following up leads with genealogists who have been helping me research my Maternal Family Tree…

We discovered I am a 5 x Great Granddaughter of Ezekiel Gooderham
– of the Gooderham-Worts Distillery, Gooderham Building and Manulife Financial fame.

My grandfather’s  – mother  – was Kate Gooderham.

Reverend Ezekiel continued on with the family’s traditional business of farming and eventually had sons go West.

The Gooderham have been farmers, millers, distillers, bankers, company presidents, soldiers and members of elected office.

You never know what you’ll find when you start digging up your own ancestry 🙂

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History of the Gooderham Family – Canada

It is from their farmland in Scole, Suffolk England, near the banks of the Waveney river that William, Thomas and Ezekiel Gooderham would set out to what was then the town of York (now Toronto) to join with their sister Elizabeth, their brother in law James Worts and his son, also named James.

Worts, who had served and seen action with William Gooderham in the Royal York Rangers had heard that York did not already have an active flour mill and saw an opportunity for a better life had gone on ahead in 1831.

In 1832 the rest of the family as well as a variety of servants immigrated to Canada on a ship called The Anne. The voyage was not without it’s tragedies as the Gooderhams assumed responsibility for the care of (but did not adopt) eleven children who had become orphans on the voyage to Canada.

A Mill was established near the mouth of the Don River and along with William Gooderham’s investment of £3,000 the partnership of Worts and Gooderham.

Tragedy would however soon strike both the family and the business, when Elizabeth Worts died in child birth. Two weeks later James Worts took his own life, drowning himself in the mill’s well.

The mill continued, but now as William Gooderham Company. With the shrewd business acumen that would in many ways parallel what seems to be a calling toward ‘Christian service’ as a hallmark of the family, William added a distillery to the business to make use of the mill’s surplus grain.

In 1845 William’s nephew James G. Worts became a full partner and Gooderham and Worts was born.



The Gooderham and Worts Distillery, the cornerstone and standard bearer of the Gooderham family business empire was sold in 1923 to Harry C. Hatch (who later also acquired ‘Canadian Club’ maker ‘Hiram Walker &Sons’) and stopped production totally in 1990 to make way for a condominium/urban renewal project called ‘The Distillery District’.

The end of the distillery, however was neither the end nor the entirety of the family’s legacy,

The Gooderham family were involved in the formation of what today are some of the biggest businesses in Canada, and some of Toronto’s more noteworthy landmarks.

These include…The Bank of Toronto

Bank of Toronto

Founded in 1857 by entrepreneur and avid yachtsman George Gooderham, the Bank of Toronto continued until 1955 at which point it merged with The Dominion Bank to become the Toronto Dominion bank, which exists today as TD Canada trust and is a multi-billion dollar business as a member of Canada’s ‘big five’ charter banks.


Manufacturer’s Life Insurance

Known today as Manulife Financial, George Gooderham was the first policy holder and one of the founding officer’s of the company, serving as one of it’s first vice presidents, and it’s second president after the death of it’s first president Sir John A. McDonald, Canada’s first Prime Minister.

The Gooderham Building

Also known as the flatiron building it is one of the more recognizable landmarks in Toronto. Until 1952 it served as the office for the Distillery.

The building was sold by the estate in 1957 and was declared a historical site in 1975.

George Gooderham House

Dubbed ‘Waveney’ after the river that flows near the family homestead in Suffolk England, it was built in the Annex area of Toronto as a mansion for George Gooderham.

It is here that he resided until his passing in 1905.

Since 1910 and to this day the building is owned by ‘The York Club’ a private gentleman’s club

Little Trinity Anglican Church

Established in 1842 as a church that was accessible to working class families who could not afford the pew fees of St. Andrew’s. A portion of the funding was provided as a donation by William Gooderham who also remained an active member of the church.

The Oriole

The Oriole I
The Oriole I 

George Gooderham’s racing schooner was the first flagship of the Royal Canadian Yacht Club, of which Gooderham served as Commodore for several years.

The Oriole IV, the last in the ship’s line currently serves as a sail training vessel for the Canadian Navy, and is the Canadian fleet’s oldest active service ship.


 – David Sproull – Author – 2013 – The History of the Gooderham Family in Toronto –

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Upstart Crow!

PATTI HENDERSON is an innovative female filmmaker who has been involved in a career of communications and entertainment since the age of five.


 At the age of five, Patti made her first TV guest appearance on THE BUCKSHOT SHOW, a children’s program produced at CFCN, in Calgary, Alberta. By the age of ten, she had become a regular in local theatre productions, but, since winning her first province-wide writing competition at the age of 12, Patti has continued to explore communicating through words and images from behind the scenes.

A double-major (Print/Broadcast) graduate of Communication Arts, and with studies in Fine Arts from the University of Lethbridge, Alberta; Patti began her journalism career as a newspaper and magazine writer/photographer for hometown and national publications. An adventurer at heart, she has worked ‘behind the iron curtain’ rewriting wire copy at the MTI News Service Centre, in Budapest, Hungary, and spent five winters as a features stringer writer for the BANGKOK POST in South East Asia.

Patti moved to Toronto, then Vancouver to work as a writer, researcher guest interviewer and assistant editor for producer and on-air host, for the shows MUCHMUSIC/MUCHWEST and Co-Producer of MOVIETV West.

One of her first MOVIETV assignments was covering the opening of The North Shore Studies, Vancouver’s first independent film and television studio lot. This introduction to film was to be the start of Patti’s film career, one of which has been increasing in responsibility ever since.

 Patti is also a member of I.A.T.S.E. Local 891’s Script Supervision Department and Editing Department. A few select credits as Script Supervisor include feature films RV and LEMONY SNICKET – A SERIES OF UNFORTUNATE EVENTS for Director Barry Sonnenfeld, EIGHT BELOW for Director Frank Marshal, BFG (Live action unit) for Steven Speilberg, TV Series; FRINGE, LOST IN SPACE, SUPERNATURAL, SMALLVILLE, DARK ANGEL, DEAD LIKE ME, DA VINCI’S INQUEST, MOTIVE, X FILES and select credits as Editor; Feature Film DREAMING OF JULIA with Harvey Keitel, as well as many award winning short films including; THE SPACE BETWEEN, Directed by Chad Lowe, starring Hilary Swank.

Within the last few years – she has expanded her experience and skills by working on set with the VFX Department as well as being a – Vendor side VFX Post Production Cooridinator and VFX Producer.

Patti is also dedicated to working with other Canadian, independent filmmakers and appreciates the opportunity to help them realize their visions, not only through working as a crew member but also through her involvement as a partner in the post production facility, Comet Post Production. Comet was well know across Canada for its’ support of independent filmmakers, offering the opportunity to post their projects, large or small, in an accommodating and creative environment. Credits include such projects as, Hard Core Logo, Kitchen Party, Taillights Fade, Twighlight of the Ice Nymphs…plus many, many more!

As a result, she brings creativity and understanding of all aspects of production to all her positions.

Patti’s first feature length script, BENEATH THE SURFACE, won one of three prizes given through the Praxis Screenwriters and I.A.T.S.E. local 891-script competition.

 Her first drama, UP THE WALL, was the FIRST Digital Video – 35mm project to be shot in Canada and financed by Sony Canada and B.C. Film.

Her Art Video entitled, FEAR NO ART – An Inquisition, has had rotation on BRAVO TV and she has directed ‘sizzle reels’ for factual/lifestyle series, including the project ‘Dark Passages’ picked up by Make Believe Media Inc.

For CBC, Patti directed and edited, SALMON CHANTED EVENING. A magic realism drama with a ‘touch of reality’ selected from over 350 scripts and produced in association with CBC and British Columbia Film; the film aired on CBC’s ZED program and was nominated for seven LEO FILM AWARDS, winning for Best Editor and Best Sound Design.

She has Directed and Co-Produced a variety of dramas, comedies and a dance short film for the Portfolio Shorts Program at VFS, including: STELLA’S BIRTHDAY, CHESS MATES, THE NEW BEGINNING, I’M GOING HOME, HAPPINESS SCHOOL, NEVERLAND, JOHN AND MELISSA, DRINK LIKE A FISH and MISS PEARLMAN” of which, was nominated for Outstanding Emotional Impact at the VFF Fall Impact Awards and recently aired on KTCS 9’s PIE program, showcasing Pacific Northwest films. Her work has played at festivals internationally and broadcast on CBC, CTV, Bravo!, Knowledge, SCN and KTCS 9.

Through her production company, WHARF PRODUCTIONS, Patti Produces, Writes, Directs and Edits projects that range from Lifestyle/and Branding to Commercials. A few select writing/directing/editing credits to date include: a 9 x 1/2 hour Home Improvement, Factual TV Series CBTV for ROGERS, HOMES EXPOSED for Global Television, PSA for OvCare Cancer Research, Field Directing for Keen Eye Productions – Ride To Conquer Cancer, :30 spots for SIGNATURE VACATIONS and in store loops for JACQUELINE CONOIR STUDIO and Vancouver clothing designer AWEAR.

Patti is also an alumna of WOMEN IN THE DIRECTOR’S CHAIR (WIDC) Program; one of eight emerging women directors selected from across Canada.

Her latest film, MY IRISH BARMITZVAH, is playing the festival circuit.

Patti is also currently working on her Young Adult Novel, TROUBLE WILL FIND ME  and cleaning out her apartment for a move to the UK in 2019.



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Burning 2018

A Poem for 2018

A poem for 2018 end

Letters swallow themselves in seconds.

Notes friends tied to the doorknob,

transparent scarlet paper,

sizzle like moth wings,

marry the air.

So much of any year is flammable,

lists of vegetables, partial poems.

Orange swirling flame of days,

so little is a stone.

Where there was something and suddenly isn’t,

an absence shouts, celebrates, leaves a space.

I begin again with the smallest numbers.

Quick dance, shuffle of losses and leaves,

only the things I didn’t do

crackle after the blazing dies.

by Naomi Shihab Nye

2018 was an incredible year! Thank you!

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The thing with feathers sings – my 2019

I have chosen this word as my ‘theme’ for 2019. Thank you 2018 for breaking open cages.

“Hope” Is The Thing With Feathers is one of the best known of Emily Dickinson’s poems. An extended metaphor, it likens the concept of hope to a bird that is permanently perched in the soul of every human. There it sings, never stopping in its quest to offer encouragement and inspiration.

“Hope” is the thing with feathers – (314)

“Hope” is the thing with feathers –
That perches in the soul –
And sings the tune without the words –
And never stops – at all –
And sweetest – in the Gale – is heard –
And sore must be the storm –
That could abash the little Bird
That kept so many warm –
I’ve heard it in the chillest land –
And on the strangest Sea –
Yet – never – in Extremity,
It asked a crumb – of me.
Source: The Poems of Emily Dickinson Edited by R. W. Franklin (Harvard University Press, 1999)






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