Interview with James F. Toy Sr., 1964 April 20 [audio]

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  • Family history; Father's work; Toy's job in the powder yards
    Partial Transcript: "It might have been then, because I know he came here in 1814, and he wasn't here long before he was killed. He was buried at 6th and West Streets. His wife's maiden name was Coyle, and she is buried in St. Joseph's cemetery." "My father was a carpenter, and he worked at the car building business all his life. "
    Synopsis: Poor quality. Hum throughout. Toy talks about his family coming to the United States from Ireland. He says that the first Toy in the United States died in a powder explosions. He says that a different member of his family owned horses and mules that he traveled with. He talks about where his grandparents lived. Toy talks about his father's work and how he personally worked in the powder yards in 1907 and 1908.
    Keywords: Explosions; Immigration; Ireland; Irish Americans; Tower Hill School; Upper Yard
  • Work after World War I; Salvaging the machinery at Hagley; Condition of Eleutherian Mills before the Crowninshields moved in; Peparing Eleutherian Mills and its outbuildings; Impressions of Colonel du Pont
    Partial Transcript: "In 1919 things were pretty dull around here... things were in bad shape." "They salvaged that. They had somebody come and take out the iron and blow up the stone walls. Then after that we started on the house. On the west side of that house is a stone wall we were supposed to tear down. In those days we didn't have any air-hammers, and so we got a fellow with a 16-pound or a 24-pound mall to beat on it."
    Synopsis: Toy talks about the Hagley area following World War I. He talks about wages in the powder yards and in DuPont owned farms. Toy describes destroying and scrapping the powder mills. He talks about the condition of Eleutherian Mills and DuPont's first office before the Crowninshields moved in. He says that the office had many records in it, which he burned because they had been damaged by an infestation of squirrels.
    Keywords: 1919; Crowninshield, Louise du Pont, 1877-1958; Destruction; Du Pont, H. A. (Henry Algernon), 1838-1926; DuPont; Eleutherian Mills (Greenville, Del. : Estate); Hagley Yard; Pests; Salvage; Scrapping; South Mountain Railroad; Squirrels; World War I (1914-1918)
  • Working for members of the du Pont family;
    Partial Transcript: "After 1907, 1908 I never worked around, then I became a carpenter, then I worked for all of them."
    Synopsis: Toy says that after 1908 he became a carpenter and eventually worked in the homes of many du Pont family members. He describes bringing water to Alfred I. du Pont's sunken gardens at Nemours. He describes building a dam in the Brandywine Creek to divert water for the gardens.
    Keywords: Brandywine Creek; Dams; du Pont family; Du Pont, Alfred I. (Alfred Irenee), 1864-1935; Homes; Nemours; Sunken Gardens
  • Growing up on the Brandywine; Stories about H.A. du Pont
    Partial Transcript: "My father and mother split up and my aunt lived in Long Row..." "The only one in the whole family who lived like a millionaire was the Colonel. He would have six butlers serve him breakfast if he only had oatmeal."
    Synopsis: Toy talks about living on Long Row. He describes the workers villages and the Hagley ares. Toy describes working for H.A. du Pont and H.A. du Pont's lifestyle.
    Keywords: Du Pont, H. A. (Henry Algernon), 1838-1926; Henry Clay (Del.: Village); Long Row
  • Inaudible
    Partial Transcript:
    Synopsis: Interview becomes very distorted and hard to hear starting at minute 0:48:00 and for the duration.
    Keywords:
  • Working in the powder mills in 1907 and 1908
    Partial Transcript: "I worked mostly on the glazing mill in the Upper Yard."
    Synopsis: Toy describes his job working in the powder yards.
    Keywords: Graining Mills; Powder mills; Upper Yard
  • Inaudible 2
    Partial Transcript:
    Synopsis: interview becomes very distorted and hard to hear starting at minute 1:03:00 and for the duration
    Keywords:
  • Going to church
    Partial Transcript: "Saint Joseph's, I got good attention there..."
    Synopsis: Toy talks about church and religious life.
    Keywords: Saint Joseph on the Brandywine Roman Catholic Church (Wilmington, Del.)