The Milne/Smeed Connection

Family Stories Past and Present


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Welcome, Sienna-Rose!

Jade Dallow and Jack Harding wish to announce the safe arrival of their daughter, Sienna-Rose Dallow Harding. She was born on Friday, June 8, 2018 in Gloucester.

Proud first-time grandparents are Paul and Sandra Dallow. Sienna-Rose is the third great grandchild for David and Audrey Dallow. Congratulations and best wishes to all.

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George Hewitt (1805 – 1893)

#52ancestors Week 9 – Where There’s a Will – George Hewitt (1805 – 1893)

George Hewitt was born in Edgefield, Norfolk, England on 27 September 1805. He was the son of James Hewitt and Mary Hagon. On 6 June 1826, George married Mary Clements in Edgefield.

By 1836, George and Mary had five children: Elizabeth, Mary, Rebecca, John and James. Several years of poor weather and the resulting crop failures had made life difficult for the family. They, along with other family members, took advantage of an assisted emigration scheme to journey to what was then Upper Canada (Ontario).

After one year on a piece of land that was very unsuitable for farming they moved to their land in Blenheim Township, Oxford County. The farm they carved out of the wilderness remained in the family until the early 1990s.

Five more children were added to the family: William, Henry, George, Richard and Thomas. James, George and Thomas all died at a young age. In spite of early hardships and tragedies along the way, George and Mary lived long and prosperous lives together.

George drew up his final will and testament on 10 January 1887. He died on 27 November 1893 and his will was probated 1 December 1893. Sons William and Richard had been appointed as executors. All of George’s personal effects and monetary estate were bequeathed to his wife, Mary. According to the provisions of the will, the “farm and homestead” was also to pass to Mary, to have and use during her natural life “only so as not to interfere with or encumber the freehold title”. Upon Mary’s death (which occurred in 1896) the farm was to pass to youngest son, Richard. All personal effects and estate were then to be sold or divided equally among George’s children except son, John.

According to the 1881 and 1891 Census of Canada, Richard and his family were living on the farm with George and Mary. Given the advanced age of his parents, Richard had probably already been running the farm for some time. George’s son, Henry, had land nearby and son, William, had a farm in Elma Township, Perth County. The sons each received an extra two hundred dollars. The three daughters were all married and they each received one hundred dollars..

So what of my great grandfather, the oldest son, John? George made special mention of him in the will. He stated “my son John who has become unsteady and wasteful in his habits” was to receive ten dollars having earlier been given one hundred dollars (presumably as an advance because of ongoing financial difficulties).

Richard was instructed to pay all costs and expenses for a “decent Christian burial” for George and Mary as well as any other debts so that none of the other heirs would be charged with such payment. Richard carried out these wishes. George and Mary were buried in Plattsville Cemetery, Oxford County and commemorated with a large memorial stone.


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Rebecca Cromer Johnson McArthur

52 Ancestors Week 3 – Longevity

 

Rebecca Cromer Johnson McArthur

Rebecca CROMER (?) was born in County Kilkenny, Ireland on 10 May 1807.

She lived a long life in three countries, married and was widowed twice and raised three daughters mainly on her own in what must have been difficult circumstances.

The (?) follows the name Cromer because although it appears as Rebecca’s maiden name on one of her daughter’s death certificates no record of the surname Cromer can be found in Ireland at the time in question. The name may have been mispronounced or misspelled on the document. This has led to difficulty in tracing Rebecca’s early life and her ancestors.

It is not yet known when Rebecca left Ireland, however, by 1845, Rebecca was married to William JOHNSON, a seaman, and living in New York City.  They attended First Mariners’ Church which was located on Roosevelt Street on the Lower East Side of Manhattan. William and Rebecca probably lived in this area whose proximity to the docks and the notorious Five Points district would make it a none too desirable location for raising a family.

Nevertheless, the baptismal register of the Reverend Henry Chase of First Mariners’ Church, New York shows that William and Rebecca’s daughter, Mary Elizabeth, was baptized on 6 May 1845 and daughter, Catherine, was baptized on 30 September 1847.

At some time before 1850, Rebecca became a widow for the first time. Rebecca and a new spouse, Daniel McARTHUR, also a seaman, were in Ontario in 1851 when their daughter, Agnes Rebecca, was born. The growing family has not been located in either the 1850 U.S. Census or the 1851 Census of Canada.

In the 1861 Census of Canada, Rebecca and her three daughters are living in Wentworth County. Daniel is not in residence at the time. He died on 15 May 1862 and Rebecca became a widow for the second time.

Daniel’s will in 1862 refers to Rebecca Johnston, not naming her as his wife. He leaves her $10, a dark grey cow and one half of his bedding. He also leaves Mary and Catherine Johnston $10 each. To his daughter, Agnes (no surname given), when she reaches the age of 20 he leaves his land, $100, and all other possessions.

The wording of the will and the bequests suggest that Rebecca and Daniel never actually married even though her tombstone refers to her as “widow of Daniel”. The fact that Daniel is recorded in the will as a seaman like Rebecca’s first husband, William Johnson, suggests that they may have met in New York City.

Daughter Agnes married Henry Quillman and the couple resided on the farm that had been left to Agnes. Daughter Mary Johnson married William Wallis and that couple moved to the Stoney Creek area. Daughter Catherine Johnson married William Milne. Catherine and Billy lived in Millgrove until about 1879 when they moved to Elma Township in Perth County.

According to census records from 1871 to 1901, Rebecca lived with Agnes and Henry until her death which occurred on 14 September 1902. The 1901 census provided Rebecca’s birth date of 10 May 1807 and the age of ninety-three. When she died the following year, her obituary in the Hamilton Spectator and the official death registration both state Rebecca’s age as ninety-seven. The Memorial Inscription says she was 98. Whichever of these ages is correct, the Spectator was right in naming Rebecca as one of the oldest members of her community.

        

#52ancestors


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Remembering

66B43B01-7E56-437E-9301-E58BE5D78272.jpegMilne Brothers and Sister in the Canadian Armed Forces

Remembering my Dad, Charlie, Uncle Ross, Uncle Bob, Aunt Ida and Uncle Les Crowie.

Dad and Uncle Bob married overseas and returned home with their English war brides, Bet and Kath, and daughters, Jane and Ann.

Uncle Ross was wounded at Caen but recovered and returned to service. On his return to Canada he was reunited with his wife, Annie and daughter Betty, and met daughter Joan for the first time. She was born shortly after he went overseas.

Aunt Ida served at various bases in Canada. She married her soldier, Uncle Al, near the end of the war.

While  Uncle Les was serving, his wife, Aunt Rose, worked at the DIL munitions plant in Ajax as one of the “Bomb Girls”.

 


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Audrey Madelaine Smeed (1888 – 1970)

Audrey Madelaine Smeed was born in East Grinstead, Sussex on 23 June 1888 and died in Dormansland, Surrey on 27 October 1970. She was the eldest of the seven children of Charles Smeed 2 and Ann Maria Burt.

The 1891 census shows Audrey living with her parents at Blackwell Farm, East Grinstead. In 1901 the family had grown and Audrey lived in Burstow, Surrey with her parents, one of her brothers and two sisters. By 1911 the family of parents and all seven children lived at Newchapel, Surrey where Charles was a gamekeeper.

After Charles retired he and his wife lived at Orchard Cottage, Dormansland, Surrey. As the only daughter who never married, Audrey lived most of her life with her parents. After their deaths in the early 1940s Audrey remained at Orchard Cottage on her own. She was later joined there by her brother, Percy. Their sister, Doris, also resided with them from time to time.

Percy died in 1969 and Audrey passed away on 27 October 1970 at the age of eighty-two.


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Family Stories

Family History Month (October) is almost over and still no stories submitted. If you don’t want to write a story send me a name and details of a family member who is special to you and I’ll write the article for you.

If the person is living be sure to obtain his/her permission. Include a photo if possible.

Lizzie Hewitt Hall and Ida Hewitt Milne

Ellen Lindfield


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A Marriage at Black’s Tavern

William Milne and Catherine Johnson were married on October 3, 1871.

According to the marriage registration, Billy and Catherine were married at Black’s Tavern, Flamborough West Township, Wentworth County. The tavern was owned by Joseph Black, the father-in-law of Billy’s brother, Charles.

William was the son of Charles Milne and Elspet Ross. Catherine was the daughter of William Johnson and Rebecca Cromer.

More detail about the lives of Billy and Catherine can be found on the Milne page of this website.