March

… er… I should say, the last week of March…

I usually take off a week in March to work in the garden. My father comes down from Canada and gets a breath of spring before spring actually sets in in New Brunswick. The ornamental cherry is looking lovely. There are lots of bees. Yay!

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The seeds are growing well at Jason’s house and some are actually so tall that he is having difficulty dealing with them. I don’t think he thought they would do so well. He keeps telling me is is time to plant them out and I keep telling him, not until mid April. Some came to my house so he could cope…

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On Thursday last, I finally got the last of the Irises out of the bed in the middle. The bed is loaded with Johnson Grass (the bane of my gardening existence) and had to be moved even though it is totally the wrong time of year. The bed is now covered with thick clear poly in hopes of frying the hell out of the roots and finally killing the grass. Wish me luck!!!

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When I was digging the last of the Irises, I found one that I had dug up last year, still alive, growing in the shade under the dogwoods…hmmm… so I planted three between each tree and we will see how they do. Thank you Brandon for your help and encouragement!!! Gizzy approves.

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The next three pics are just the stuff I planted a few weeks ago. Later is another pic and there is quite a difference in only a few days!

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Ok, This is my father…just a young guy at 83 years. Without a word of a lie, SIX days he pruned and hauled out climbing roses, wild raspberries, honeysuckle, and vining poison oak. He wrested with a barbed wire fence a bit too. I can actually see through into the field behind my house now.

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I had another bed that had to be emptied of perennials. I moved as many as I could to this small bed and decided to give it as proper edge. I ran out of room…

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So I had to dig a new bed…

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Meanwhile … he’s still at it…

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I had wanted this bed on the other side of the walk to sink pots into for invasive herbs. It had become totally overgrown with weeds and Johnson Grass. I started digging it out. The first day went ok. Obviously the clay needs some major amending.

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The second day I ran into some major Johnson Grass roots. This is just a small bit. I filled two buckets before I got smart and just dug out all the clay as deep as I could see the roots.

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It’s just a start …

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This is my dad’s arm after 6 days in the hedgerow at the back of my property. I don’t know what kind of immune system he has, but no issues from poison ivy/oak. I would have been covered. The other arm was almost as bad! Let it be known that I did not ask him to do this task. I think he likes the Redbuds and Dogwoods growing wild and can’t stand to see them choked out by the climbers. He also serviced my lawn tractor and mowed the lawn twice.

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All in all a very productive week. I have about a month and a half before the heat and humidity kicks in and I hibernate for the summer.

 

Here we go again …

Every spring I am energized, ready for a new gardening year. By June, when the heat and humidity her in North Carolina has firmly set in, I am toast. I just cannot hack the heat, humidity, clay soil and Johnson Grass!!!

This spring, however, I feel like I have a few things more to my advantage. First of all, the garden is in better shape this spring than last. I only have two raised beds that are totally overgrown with weeds. The others are only slightly overgrown with weeds!

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Of course, there is still the problem with weeds surrounding the beds, but I did get the pre-emergent down last fall and I am determined to do it again when it’s due!

In December I had a perfectly lovely day and found myself out weeding one of the beds. There were three lettuce plants that  had germinated late in the fall. I weeded the bed and thought what the hay! Let’s sow some snow peas! I had a lovely little row germinate in no time.

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Unfortunately, this is all that survived. So tomorrow I will sow some more to fill out the row and I’ll have some early and some later.

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The second reason, I feel I am ahead of the game this year is that my sweety has put together a new grow light stand. I am thrilled. I really missed starting my own seeds.

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There is nothing like picking the varieties you really want and starting them yourself. We set it up at his house since there is almost always someone there to tend them, and I have been getting daily photo updates. I forgot how fast things germinate. Several were up on the second day. Very gratifying!

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The third thing that will help … I am calling in help. Last year, when my yard looked really bad, I came home to find a business card magnet stuck to my mailbox. I laughed out loud. Obviously they thought I needed some serious help. Usually I HATE people leaving flyers and junk on my doorstep, but this was ingenious! It was small and not easily lost. It sat stuck to my fridge where I knew I would find it again. Today I made the call.

Lastly, I have found friends interested in starting their own seeds too. It’s great to bounce ideas off each other and let’s face it, it’s a great motivator! Now, off to get ready for a little seed swap tonight…

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Anne Archambault (Ancestor # 11, 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks, 2015)

I’m a little late this week but better late than never.

I’m trying to imagine what would have occurred in Montreal way back in the mid 1600’s when
Anne Archambault discovered that her husband, Michel Chauvain, was a bigamist. They contracted to marry in July of 1647, had two children, Paul (1650-1650) and Charlotte (1651-1718). By Feb 1654 Anne was married to Jean Gervaise.

Was there a big todo? Did her father, Jacques, confront him peacefully or otherwise? Were the neighbours scandalized? One would think not, since many men had mistresses back in the day, but Montreal was a small, and I imagine, close knit community. At any rate, Michel was packed off back to France presumably in disgrace. I wonder if his wife in France ever found out?

Cheers,

Donald Ross Stewart (Ancestor # 10, 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks, 2015)

S# 0004, Doc #2  B&WDonald Ross, born about 1827 at Barney’s River, Nova Scotia. He was the son of Archibald Stewart and Elizabeth Crocket. Archie came over from Scotland around 1801, landing in Pictou County, Nova Scotia.

Donald moved to Prince Edward Island from Pictou County as a young man and taught school at Cape Traverse. On 27 December 1862, Donald married Fannie Glover, daughter of William Gover and Ann Watmough. The J. P. officiating was Harry Compton Green, the husband of my 3x great aunt, Elizabeth “Caroline” Ellis. Finding this record and a few others in and around Summerside, where different branches of my family are connected in the records, really makes me realize how small a community it really was.

Donald and Fannie had two children, Lucy, born 26 Aug 1863, who went on to marry Kenneth Forbes Ellis (they are my great-grandparents) and William Allan, born 22 March 1864, who married Emma Blanche McPhail.

Donald died on the 21st of January 1873 of tuberculosis. He had been ill for a year. He is buried at the North Bedeque United Cemetery. His widow, Fannie, went on to run a hotel/boarding house situated on the waterfront in Summerside.

Cheers,

William Glover (Ancestor # 9, 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks, 2015)

wmgloverOne of my third Great-Grandfathers was William Glover. William is the progenitor of a very large number of the Glover’s on Prince Edward Island. According to a decorated list of family BMD dates he was born 14 July 1790. Numerous sources say he was from Dumfries, Scotland, but I haven’t been able to verify that yet and I am wondering if that is true. You see, William married Ann Watmough at Warrington, Lancashire, England on 3 May 1816. What was he doing in there? Just another mystery that I have yet to unravel. While I was looking for Ann’s family in Warrington, I noticed that there are Glovers in the same area. Not an unusual name, so no big surprise, but it makes me wonder. Was his family from Lancashire and his parents had travelled to or moved to Dumfries and so he was born there, then at some point they moved back to Lancashire, or was William working in Lancashire, having moved there himself as a young man?

Family-record

This is the family record that some of my info came from. You can see that a lot of the writing is consistent which leads me to believe the document was created after the death of Ann on the 23rd of September 1864. Clearly not a primary source document for a lot of the information included, but nice to have just the same.

William and Ann’s first son, William was born at Warrington on the 17th November 1816. In 1817 they moved to Prince Edward Island and settled at Five Lanes End. The name was later changed to Barrets’ Cross. In 1862, it was changed to Kensington. It might be only four roads now, but you can still clearly see where the fifth lane (black arrow) came into the intersection.

Five Lanes End

William was the postmaster and worked out of his house. The Post office was situated on the corner of the roads to Charlottetown and Margate (red arrow above).

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The post office was the section to the right. My father remembers visiting elderly cousins, Gordon and Jane Glover, in this house. They were siblings who never married. Gordon was the Post Master like his grandfather before him. At some point the house was moved across the road to Charlottetown and down several houses. The post office is gone and the house was updated, more windows were added to the front on the second floor and the centre gable was modified.

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William died on the 21st of April 1875 and was buried at St. Mark’s Anglican Church. S# 1309, Doc # 1051 2005_0912Image0001 S# 1309, Doc # 1051A William Glover Ann Watmough (2)All in all, I know relatively little. William won a prize in 1831 at the Prince County Cattle and Grain Show for the best sow and an entry in the Richmond Parish register says that he was an Inn Keeper. Looks like there’s a lot more work to do on this one…

Cheers,

Catherine Pillard/Pillat/Le Plat, Filles du Roi or Amerindienne? (Ancestor # 8, 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks, 2015)

This week I am branching out or back a bit further than I would normally. I don’t know much about Catherine Pillard, except what I read on the internet. I haven’t researched her much except to find that I am descended from her. I plan to do a lot more research on her and this post will get me started.

The reason I am interested in her is I came across a bit of conflicting information this week. Catherine was supposed to be one of the girls contracted to come to New France to provide wives for the settlers and soldiers living there. I suppose it is understandable that in the early years of a colony there is not necessarily a lot of women among the settlers. What’s a king to do? If he wants his colony to become well established, he sends women of marriageable age to marry his colonists. Hence les filles du Roi.

The only problem is, mt-dna tests done on several of her direct female line descendants show that she was Haplogroup A. If you are not aware, Haplogroup A is a native North American Haplogroup. More about that later.

by Eleanor Fortescue Brickdale,  Source

by Eleanor Fortescue Brickdale, Source

Between 1663 and 1673 approximately 770 women were sponsored by King Louis XIV to come to Nouvelle-France. Their passage was paid for and many received a small dowry. Most were between 16 and 25 years of age. On arrival they were cared for by the nuns. They had the right to refuse marriage if the man was not to their liking. Most did find husbands.

Catherine Pillat (Pillard, Laplatte, Le Plat etc.) apparently arrived at Québec on 30 June 1663 aboard Le Phoénix de Flessingue, having sailed from La Rochelle, France. This site includes the name of their parents. There is a baptism recorded in 1646 in the registers of Chapelle Sainte-Marguerite of La Rochelle, in Aunis, France, that is supposedly hers. She married Pierre Charron on the 19th of October 1665. I descend through her son François.

Another website claims that she is not on any passenger lists. They go on to explain that the evidence that Catherine came from La Rochelle, France is suspect and give a good theory for Catherine to be the daughter of Atseña, nicknamed Le Plat, a Huron chief. They breakdown the occurrences of various different versions of her name, and identify a place in present day Ontario (on Nottawasaga Bay and Lake Simcoe), that was part of the Huron Nation lands, that according to the Rocollet preist Sagard, was also known as La Rochelle by the french.

There is so much conflicting data out there, one does not know what to believe. All I can do is try to gather all the info I can and try to find the primary documents for myself. I do know that DNA doesn’t lie. If a reputable lab has done the work and the results are mt Haplogroup A and the genealogies of eight descendants have been scrutinized and found to be reliable, then barring a baby being switched at birth, I am thinking Pierre Charron’s wife was not who we think she was.

Catherine Pillat’s profile at wikitree

Today, I find out that Catherine is Haplogroup A10. I am waiting for further info on that. New developments everyday … how is one to keep up?

Cheers,

Dawn

Sources/further reading:

http://www.fillesduroi.org/src/kings_daughters.htm

http://www.afgs.org/Kings_Daughters_Anniversary.html

http://www.migrations.fr/NAVIRES_LAROCHELLE/phoenixflessingue.htm

http://www.geninfo.org/Pillard/La_Rochelle-E.htm

http://www.charron-ducharme.org/index.php/en/catherine-pillard-en/87-catherine-pillard-s-origin

Susan Bowness Bell Weeks (Ancestor # 7, 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks, 2015)

My great-grandmother Susan Bowness is another brick wall we have a theory about.

John T. Weeks and Susan Bowness

John T. Weeks and Susan Bowness

Her parents are stated, in several sources, to have been Robert S. and Thirza (Tuplin) BOWNESS, but other sources disagree and really, she doesn’t fit into the chronology of the family. She was adopted by Herbert BELL, the husband of Jean BOWNESS, who was the sister of Robert S.Bowness.

Apparently Susan was adamant that she was a BOWNESS. Indeed that is the only surname I ever heard associated with her, except for her married name of Weeks (though in her marriage records and in Herbert Bell’s will she is called Susan Bell). Susan also insisted that she was from Norboro, PEI.

Robert Bowness & Jean (Bowness) Bell also had a brother named James who lived in Norboro. James & his wife Sarah (sometimes known as Susan) sent their daughters Emma and Lydia to live with their aunt Jean in Alberton. It seems likely to me that they might have also sent another child to live with the same couple.

Emma Bowness and Susan were very close. My father & aunt remember Emma’s grandsons being “2nd cousins” (which is what they would be if Emma & Susan were sisters).

So the theory is that Susan was the daughter of James Bowness and his second wife Sarah Mugridge. This is my father’s matrilineal dna line (his mother’s mother’s mother etc). I have tested his mt-dna and am hoping someday to find other female direct line descendants to test and compare. My uncle told me that this is one mystery that I would never solve. Hehehe, He really shouldn’t say that sort of thing to me…only makes me more determined!

Cheers,

Dawn

Way Cool!!! Wikitree.com relationship finder

I joined wikitree.com late last year. I have been slowly adding my family tree, merging profiles, making connections and generally having a great time. Tonight I peeked at my G2G feed and saw a topic I am greatly interested in. You see, the reason I joined was for just this capability. They are working on the relationship finder.

Basically you plug two profiles in and the utility tells you how they are related. I saw this capability as a very useful tool for comparing with dna  Family Finder matches. This one tool will make a huge pain in my behind so much easier. Not only does it give you the closest relationship, it gives you ALL the relationships.

I tested it first with the profile of a guy on wikitree that I thought I would likely be connected to through my mother. She was French Canadian. It didn’t come up with the connection that I was expecting (must check to see if that line is entered), but came up with 9 other connections that were a complete surprise to me. I compared this same person to my son and the utility came up with 90 common ancestors!

Then, I compared myself to my ex. You see, a few years ago, I discovered I was descended from Mathurin Thibodeau through a son who settled in Quebec and my ex-husband was descended through a son of Mathurin Thibodeau who settled in Acadia. My ex and I are 12th cousins, again through connections that I had never identified. We have 6 common ancestors, not counting the Thibodeau line, which is obviously not entered yet (must get on that).

Got the Thibodeau line in…

Common ancestors my ex and I share (using my son as example)

Common ancestors my ex and I share (using my son as example)

Cheers,

Dawn

Margaret Potter (Ancestor # 6, 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks, 2015)

This weeks unofficial theme is “So far away”. I think that theme might be applicable for my great-great Grandmother Margaret Potter. Born in Greenock, Renfrewshire Scotland on 3 September 1829, I’m sure when she found herself in Liverpool, England sometime before the age of 20, she thought she was far away from her home. She likely never would never have imagined that she would end up in Prince Edward Island, Canada before she was 25.

Margaret’s father, Cap’t John Potter, is said to have died at sea. I have conflicting dates for his death, but I think he died in 1845. Margaret’s mother, Margaret Kemp Mills, also died that year. Margaret had one sibling that I know about, John, who was 3 years older than she.

I can imagine the relatives were scrambling to decide what to do with Margaret when she was orphaned at age 16. John would have been old enough to have gone out into the world to seek his fortune and indeed, I have found him in Sacramento California, in 1870, though not very prosperous but that’s another story.

The little information I have on the Potter family is that they were a seafaring family. Margaret’s father and maternal grandfather were both sea captains and I believe that some of Margaret’s uncles or cousins owned a shipping company. This is how I think she got to Liverpool and how she likely met her future husband John Ellis, also a sea captain.

The story in my family was that Margaret’s family thought John Ellis to be telling tall tales when he told them that horse races were held each winter on the frozen ice in Summerside harbour. Not having endured any Canadian winters I’m sure they couldn’t imagine the sea water freezing over to the degree necessary to run horses on it. Since most family stories are based on some degree of truth, even if they are embellished through the generations, this story gives me hope that I will find evidence that Margaret was living with relatives in Liverpool before she married John Ellis.

Margaret and John were married 4 October 1848 at St. Mark’s Anglican Church, Liverpool. Their first child, Margaret McGowan, was born 19 November 1849. In the 1851 British census, Margaret, was recorded living at 119 Bedford Street, Toxteth Park, Liverpool, Lancashire, England. She was married, 21 years old, born in Greenock, Refrew. Her husband was a Master Mariner away at sea. One servant was living in the household named Mary Ann Lloyd. Mary Ann was a nurse caring for baby Margaret, no doubt.

Hannah, was born 22 July 1851 in Liverpool. Sometime between then and 8 August 1853 when Kenneth Forbes was born, Hannah emigrated to Prince Edward Island where three more sons were born: John Henry, born 8 July 1855, Francis Potter, born 28 November 1857 and Everard Hutchinson, born 4 March 1860. John bought a parcel of land from his father and in true Sea Captain style built a house on the shore just east of the harbour in Summerside. There are no pictures of this house, but I like to imagine that it had a widow’s walk.

That was not the end of Hannah’s travels. Sometime before 25 Apr 1865 she returned to Liverpool. Everard Hutchinson died there that day and was buried at St. James Cemetery, Liverpool. I believe her next trip to the Island (Prince Edward Island) was her last Atlantic crossing. Her comings and goings around the Maritimes were recorded by Robert Ellis, her father-in-Law, in his day books. Captain John Ellis died 18 December 1873 and Maggie went on to live to a ripe old age of 88 years. She died 12 August 1917 and was buried at St. John’s Anglican Church Cemetery in St. Eleanor’s.

Cheer,

Dawn

1891 Canadian Census made easy

While working on my week 5 blog post the other day, I wanted to access the Canadian censuses, 1891-1911. Automatedgenealogy.com is my usual go to for the 1901 and 1911 censuses, but lately I have been looking at the 1891 which they have not indexed as of yet. Familysearch.org is my usual search site for anything else since I don’t always keep my Ancestry.com subscription up to date. The problem is, when you find an individual in the 1891 census, the whole household is not listed when you open up the detail summary.

Detail Summary for 1891 Canadian Census

Detail Summary for 1891 Canadian Census

I could just look at the image, but I need an Ancestry.com subscription for that. I remembered that LAC (Library and Archives Canada) has the images available, but it had been a long while since I had tried accessing any.

A quick search for 1891 Census and voila…

1891 Census info page at LAC

1891 Census info page at LAC

From the search I did at familysearch.org I knew Jos. A Roch in Hochelaga was who I was looking for.

Search form

Search form

It comes back with one result…and he’s my guy!

Jos. A. Roch

Jos. A. Roch

I have the whole household instead of trying to search for each person that I think should be present.

Census image

Census image

And besides, I have the image from the original image owner!

Cheers,

Dawn

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