This is the text of the obituary of Joshua Coatsworth Dobie from a clipping hand-dated May 6, 1943, probably from the Port Arthur News Chronicle.
A resident of Port Arthur since 1872 and prominent in business, civic and church life of the community, Joshua Coatsworth Dobie, 72, died suddenly in hospital at Toronto this morning.
Mr. Dobie, who in recent years had been troubled with failing sight, went to Toronto about two weeks ago for an eye operation. Apparently well on the way to recovery following the operation, he died suddenly while eating breakfast today. Mrs. Dobie was in Toronto with him. The body will be returned here for burial.
Mr. Dobie was a son of the late Magistrate W.C. Dobie, who occupied the bench for 32 years until his retirement in 1919, and who died in 1928. Mr. Dobie was born at Bruce Mines, east of Sault Ste. Marie, and came to Port Arthur with his family when less than two years old. He attended public school and the Old High School here.
A life long member of the Presbyterian Church, Mr. Dobie took an active part in its affairs and for many years was on the board of managers. He took an active part in building the present St. Paul's church, when it was Presbyterian, and also in building First Presbyterian Church on Cameron Street. He served for many years on the Board of Education, was chairman in 1909 when the Collegiate Institute was built, and also on later occasions. He was a member of Port Arthur Lodge, I.O.O.F., and for many years has been a member of the Riverside Cemetary Board.
Mr. Dobie had a long connection in Port Arthur's business life. The Dobie store was started by his father, who turned it over to him on his appointment as magistrate. Mr. Dobie operated the store until about 1896, when he became associated in the Marks, Clavet, Dobie Company. The first store was on the present site of the Customs Building and the firm had two wharves, the Marks dock, now the C.N.R. No. 1 dock, and the Clavet dock, later known as the Booth dock.
A new store was built on South Cumberland Street and the firm continued there until taken over in 1929 by the Marshall-
Wells Company. Soon after the start of the Yukon gold rush a branch of the Marks, Clavet, Dobie Company was opened at Edmonton and Mr. Dobie managed that store for some years in the early 1900's. After 1929 Mr. Dobie retired from active business, but maintained an office and carried on a brokerage business.
Mr. Dobie was one of the first school pupils here, starting two or three years after the first class was organized.
He was married in 1905 to Dora Meikle, who was born in Port Arthur, [incorrect -- she was born in New Hamburg, Ont.] daughter of the late Mr. and Mrs. J.L. Meikle, pioneer residents here. There are five children: Dorothy, Mrs. Neil Fraser, Port Arthur, whose husband is overseas with the Canadian army; Russell, with the United States navy; William, with the Magnet Mining Company near Geraldton; Capt. Ted Dobie, with the R.C.A.M.C., overseas, and George, a theological student at McGill University, now in a mission field for the summer at St. George, near Saint John, N.B. Also surviving are two grandchildren; a brother, E.J.B. Dobie of Port Arthur; and two sisters, Miss Elizabeth Dobie of Port Arthur and Annie, Mrs. D.G. Sutherland of Boston Bar, B.C. Another sister, Miss Isabella Dobie, died in 1919.
H.B. Hardy, who was associated with J.C. Dobie in business for 30 years, said today: "It was my privilege and pleasure to have enjoyed a goodly measure of Mr. Dobie's acquaintance and friendship covering a period of 30 years, first as an employee and later as a partner in the firm of The
Marks-Co., Ltd. I can bear testimony to the esteem and affection he was held in by the staff and executive of our firm -- always actuated by the highest motives such as few men have evoked. He was a man greatly admired and respected because of his sterling attributes and our city and district can ill-afford to lose the assistance of men of his outstanding calibre." Clavet- Dobie