Tuesday, April 29, 2014

52 Ancestors: #17 George William Smith (1844-1925)

George William Smith, my 2nd great grand uncle, was born on this date in 1844, in River Glade, Westmorland County, New Brunswick, the sixth of eight children born to George Alfred Smith and Caroline Steeves, and their second son.

George's great grandparents, Nathaniel Smith and Elizabeth Duck, and their children, came to Canada from England in 1774, during what is called The Yorkshire Emigration.

George was a farmer in Elgin, Albert County, for his entire life.

He married Barbara Ann Steeves on August 12, 1869. Barbara was the daughter of William Bleakney Steeves and Charlotte Steeves.

Together, George and Barbara had eight children of their own:

Jessie May, b. 1870
Annie Mable, b. 1873
Estella Maude, b. 1875
Madge C., b. 1877
Urbane A., b. 1878
George William, Jr., b. 1881
Robert Ainsle, b. 1884
Ina Minetta, b.1887

George died a widower, on November 5, 1925, in Elgin, and, according to his death certificate, was buried in Gowland Mountain.


"Canada Census, 1871," index, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/M4M6-N48 : accessed 27 Apr 2014), George W Smith, Elgin, Albert, New Brunswick, Canada; citing p. 37, line 9; Library and Archives Canada film number C-10395, Public Archives, Ottawa, Ontario; FHL microfilm 2229127.

"Canada Census, 1881," index, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/MV63-26M : accessed 27 Apr 2014), George W. Smith, Elgin, Albert, New Brunswick, Canada; citing p. 56; Library and Archives Canada film number C-13177, Public Archives, Ottawa, Ontario; FHL microfilm 1375813.

"Canada Census, 1891," index, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/MWKZ-LDG : accessed 27 Apr 2014), George W Smith, Elgin, Albert, New Brunswick, Canada; citing Public Archives, Ottawa, Ontario; Library and Archives Canada film number 30953_148099.

1901 Census of New Brunswick, Elgin, Albert County, George W. Smith, transcribed digital image, Automated Genealogy (http://automatedgenealogy.com/census/View.jsp?id=784&highlight=46&desc=1901+Census+of+Canada+page+containing+George+W.+Smith) : accessed 27 Apr 2014.

1911 Census of New Brunswick, Elgin, Albert County, George W. Smith, transcribed digital image, Automated Genealogy (http://automatedgenealogy.com/census11/View.jsp?id=1923&highlight=41) : accessed 27 Apr 2014.

Brides, Philip and Joan Smith Brides, The Descendants of Nathaniel and Elizabeth Smith. (Halifax, Mass., August 2000), p.42.

New Brunswick. Dept. of Health and Social Services. Index to Death Certificates (RS141C5), Reg. 1346, Vol. 1, Microfilm F18797. Provincial Archives of New Brunswick, Fredericton, NB, Canada. http://archives.gnb.ca/. Accessed  and downloaded 4/27/2014.

Yorkshire Emigration to Nova Scotia, 1772-1775 (http://www.libris.ca/yrkfam/yrkemi.htm).


This is the 17th in a series, “52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks,” coordinated by Amy Johnson Crow at No Story Too Small.

You might also enjoy:

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

52 Ancestors: #16 Howard Clarence Seavey (1897-1956)

Howard Clarence Seavey, my grandfather, was born on this date in Bridgton, Maine, the fifth of seven children born to Clarence Seavey and Nettie Griswold, and their first son.

Howard with his sisters. His brother Archie (born in 1902) not pictured.

He enrolled in the the Naval Reserve in 1917 and served until 1919, mainly on ships in and around the Portland, Maine, area.

Sometime during the late 1920's, he met my grandmother, Mattie Louise Leighton. a young woman nine years his junior, and they were married in the parish house of the Chestnut Street Methodist Church in Portland, Maine, on January 30, 1930.

My father, Richard Packard, was born to Howard and Mattie on November 12, 1930. My aunt, Pauline Lovell, would arrive three years later.

My grandfather worked a variety of jobs, from the Eastland Hotel, to Hannaford Brothers, to Maine Steel, to the Post Office. When my dad and aunt were small they moved frequently, almost every time the rent went up.

From 1934 (when my dad was 3 years old), to 1937 (when my dad was 6), they lived at 44 Beach St, 20 Day St., and 77 Deake St., all in the Willard section of  South Portland. From 1938 to 1940, they lived at 81 Pine St., in the Ferry Village neighborhood of South Portland.

They moved to Portland after that and lived at 243 Valley Street, where my dad remembered walking to Nathan Clifford School. From Deake Street forward to 1956, their household included my grandmother's Aunt Polly, who had been a great support to her as a child.

But as the children grew older, the decision was made to move back to South Portland, so, the story goes, that they could graduate from South Portland High School.

He and my grandmother bought their first and only home at 18 Bayview Avenue, atop Meetinghouse Hill, in South Portland.

My grandfather's ties to Bridgton remained strong throughout his life, where the family frequently went for swims in Woods Pond, often when his younger brother, Archie, was visiting from New York.

From left, Richard Seavey, Archie Seavey, Howard Seavey

On a September Sunday morning in 1956, just shy of my parents' 2nd wedding anniversary, and me just over a year old, my grandmother came downstairs and spoke to my grandfather, as he was reading the sports page of the Sunday paper. He had suddenly, and without warning, passed away. He was only 59 years old.

My grandfather, Howard Clarence Seavey, is buried at Forest City Cemetery, in South Portland, Maine.


Ancestry.com. Maine Military Men, 1917-1918 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2000, Howard C. Seavey.

Howard C. Seavey grave marker, Forest City Cemetery, South Portland (Cumberland County), Maine; photographed by Pamela Schaffner on 8 August 2009.

Maine. Department of Health and Welfare, copy of a record of live birth, Office of the Clerk of Bridgton, Maine, issued 12 Oct 1970, Howard Clarence Seavey.

Maine Department of Human Services, record of a marriage, Howard Clarence Seavey and Mattie Louise Leighton; Office of Vital Records, Augusta.

Maine Department of Human Services, copy of certificate of death #034030-1803403(1956), Howard Clarence Seavey; Vital Records Unit, Augusta

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

52 Ancestors: #15 Albert Thorburn Hamilton (1895-1979)

Albert Thorburn Hamilton, my great grand uncle, was born on this date in Upper Stewiacke, Colchester County, Nova Scotia, in 1895, the seventh of nine children born to Peter Suther Hamilton and Isabella Fulton MacKay, and their third son.

When he was around 23 years old, in 1919, Bert immigrated to the States, stating that his destination was the home of Mrs. E. K. Noyes, who was his sister Mary, married to E. Kent Noyes and living at 1367 Washington Avenue in Portland, Maine.

In the 1930 U.S. Census, Bert was living with his brother Dan, as well as his mother Isabella, at 67 College Avenue in Portland, and working as a truck driver. By 1940, he was lodging in Hannah Fowler's rooming house at 10 Shepley St., in Portland, with Dan and Dan's wife Lettie.

Bert Hamilton never married. In my youth, I remember his visits to his sister Vina, my great grandmother, in Portland. I was told he had a "club foot," which, naturally, fascinated me, although I never heard the story behind it.

Nana and Uncle Bert During One of  His Visits
Our House in South Portland,

By that time, the 1960's, he had moved back down east. He and their unmarried sister Stella lived very near "the old home place," in Nova Scotia, until Stella passed away in 1966.

Bert Hamilton died at the Colchester Hospital, in Truro, Nova Scotia, on January 30, 1975.
His obituary read:

Albert T. Hamilton
UPPER STEWIACKE - Albert T. Thorburn Hamilton, 79, died Thursday at Colchester Hospital, Truro.
Born in Upper Stewiacke, he was a son of the late Peter and Isabel (MacKay) Hamilton. He was a member of Elm Lodge No. 115.
He is survived by a brother, Dan, Portland, Maine.
He was predeceased by two brothers and five sisters.
The body is at the Mattatall Funeral Home, Truro. Funeral and committal service will be held Sunday at 2 p.m. in the the Springside United Church, Rev. David Whiston officiating.

Bert Hamilton is buried with his sister Stella in Pembroke Cemetery in Upper Stewiacke.


1930 U.S. Census; Census Place: Portland, Cumberland, Maine; Roll: 831; Page: 4A; Enumeration District: 0077; Image: 844.0, Albert T Hamilton.

1940 U.S. Census; Census Place: Portland, Cumberland, Maine; Roll: T627_1475; Page: 4A; Enumeration District: 3-69B, Albert T Hamilton.

“Canada Census, 1901," index, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/KHK2-TGV : accessed 15 Apr 2014), Albert I Hamilton in household of Peter S Hamilton, U, Colchester, Nova Scotia, Canada; citing p. 12, Public Archives, Ottawa, Ontario.

CanadaGenWeb's Cemetery Project. CanadaGenWeb.org. http://cemetery.canadagenweb.org.

“Albert T. Hamilton,” obituary, The Chronicle-Herald (Halifax), 1 Feb 1975, p.40, col 4. Retrieved: Library and Archives Canada, 15 Apr 2014.**

Ancestry.com. Border Crossings: From Canada to U.S., 1895-1956 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2010.

** I am particularly grateful to Ken McKinlay in the Nova Scotia Roots Facebook Group, who kindly found Uncle Bert's obit while giving a tour at LAC in Ottawa this afternoon, just in time for this story.


This is the 15th in a series, “52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks,” coordinated by Amy Johnson Crow at No Story Too Small.

You might also enjoy:

Monday, April 7, 2014

52 Ancestors: #14 Rosanna Austin (1737-?)

Rosanna Austin, my sixth great grand aunt, was born on this date in 1737 in Brunswick, Maine, the third of five children born to Benoni Austin and Mercy/Marcy Thompson, and their second daughter.

Her older brother John, my sixth great grandfather, fought in the Revolutionary War, and was honored in 2013 with a marker in the Austin Old Burial Ground Cemetery in West Farmington, placed there by the Colonial Daughters Chapter of the DAR.

Re-dedication of John Austin's Grave Site

Her younger brother Benoni took part in 1775's Thompson's War, a skirmish between a Patriot militia from Brunswick and the Loyalists aboard the HMS Canceaux anchored off Falmouth, now Portland. The episode ultimately provoked the retaliatory "Burning of Falmouth" five months later.

Spruce sprigs were worn in the caps of the
 men who were part of Samuel Thompson's militia

By contrast, there is very little known about Rosanna. At eighteen years old, she supposedly married Samuel Allen of nearby Topsham. There was a Samuel Allen from Topsham who fought in the Revolution, so perhaps this was Rosanna's husband. It is unknown whether she had any children, or when she died, although she probably lived most of her life and died in Topsham.


Ancestry.com. Massachusetts Soldiers and Sailors in the Revolutionary War (Images Online)[database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2004.

“Colonial Daughters rededicate ancient cemetery, Revolutionary War veteran’s grave,” Daily Bulldog, August 31, 2013 (http://www.dailybulldog.com/db/features/colonial-daughters-rededicate-ancient-cemetery-revolutionary-war-veterans-grave/)

Wheeler, George Augustus, M.D., and Henry Warren Wheeler.  History of Brunswick, Topsham, and Harpswell, Maine, including the ancient territory known as Pejepscot (Boston: Alfred Mudge and Son, 1878), pp.681-683, 811-816, 857, 880.

Woodard, Colin. The Lobster Coast: Rebels, Rusticators, and the Struggle for a Forgotten Frontier (Penguin Books, 2004), pp.136-137.