William Hanington comes to Canada

William Hanington comes to Canada

By Lucy Hanington Anglin

The property was described as “a commodious estate upon the outskirts of the thriving town of Halifax, in the Colony of Nova Scotia”.  Imagine William’s surprise to arrive in Halifax to discover that “outskirts” meant a 200-mile hike through thick forest and deep snow!

My great-great-great grandfather, William Hanington, was born in London, England, in 1759.  He was the son of a fish dealer, trained as an apprentice to the Fishmonger’s Company but became a freeman in 1782.  In 1784, this adventurous young man purchased land in Nova Scotia from an army officer, Joseph Williams, who had been given a 5,000 acre grant as a reward for services.

After the initial shock upon arrival, he and his friend, Mr. Roberts, found an Indian guide, loaded all their worldly belongings onto a hand sled, trudged through the snow, slept in the open and finally arrived in bitterly cold Shediac in March 1785.  Mr. Roberts was so discouraged that he immediately returned to Halifax and sailed back to England on the first available ship!

William, however, was made of sturdier stuff and was delighted with it all.  There was a good size stream flowing into the bay and he had never seen such giant trees!  He was astute enough to see the lucrative possibilities for trade in lumber, fish, and furs.

Seven years after his arrival, at the age of 33, he hired a couple of Indian guides to paddle a canoe over to Ile St. Jean (now known as Prince Edward Island) where he heard there were other English settlers.  While riding along in an oxcart through St. Eleanor’s (now known as Summerside), he spotted a young lady (age 18) named Mary Darby, feeding chickens in her father’s yard.  It was love at first sight, he proposed to her on the spot and she accepted.  They married and paddled back to Shediac where they raised a large family of 13 children.  Three years later, missing the companionship of another woman, she persuaded her sister Elizabeth and husband John Welling to come over from Ile St. Jean and settle on their land – becoming the second English family in Shediac.

Within the next five years, William had eight families on his property of about one hundred acres of cleared land.  He opened a general store and dealt in fish, fur and lumber.  The furs and timber he shipped to England and the fish to Halifax and the West Indies.  He imported English goods from Halifax and West Indies products, mainly sugar, molasses and rum from St. Pierre. He also bartered with the friendly Indians for furs and helped them clear land.  Before long, a considerable village clustered about the Hanington Store – including a post office and a tavern.  William remained the leading light of the community and acted as the Collector of Customs of the port, supervisor of roads and as Justice of the Quorum (magistrate) in which capacity he married many couples.  To top it all off, in 1800, just fifteen years after his arrival from England, this remarkable young man opened a shipyard at Cocagne and built several vessels there.

Until 1823, there was no church, and William being a religious man, conducted service in his home every Sunday.  So William donated land and lumber, and oversaw the completion of St Martin-in-the-Wood, the first Protestant church.  In 1838, age 79, it only seemed fitting that William was buried in the cemetery there in the shadow of the church he founded.  A huge memorial of native freestone, complete with a secret compartment, still stands.

The Coal Miners of Scotland

By Sandra McHugh

My great-grandfather, John Hunter, was born in 1868 in Scotland. At the time of the 1881 census, he was 13 years old and his occupation was a coal miner.  And his father William was a coal miner.  In every generation back to James Hunter, born in 1621, there were coal miners.  For over two hundred years, the Hunter family were coal miners.

Scotland’s history of coal mining explains these generations of coal miners.  In 1606, Parliament passed an Act whereby coal miners were bound to the collieries’ owners: “no person should fee, hire or conduce and salters, colliers, or coal bearers without written authority from the master whom they had last served.”  This Act effectively ensured that coal miners and their families were bound to the colliery for life.  A collier who deserted was considered to be a thief and punished accordingly. This Act also gave the coal owners and masters the powers to apprehend “vagabonds and sturdy beggars” and put them to work in the mines.  A further Act of 1641 extended those enslaved to include other workers in the mines and forced the colliers to work six days a week.1

The process of emancipation only began with an Act of Parliament in 1775 which defined how the colliers could be freed by age-group. Once the father of the family was freed, the entire family was freed.  But still, the process of complete freedom was only achieved with another Act of Parliament in 1799 by declaring the colliers “to be free from their servitude.”2  For approximately 200 years, colliers and their families had been legally bound to the colliery owners.  These families had no choice and sons began to work in the coal mines at a very young age.  This continued into the 1800s, even after the Act of 1799.  It was expected that sons would follow in their father’s footsteps and their families needed the income that the sons would bring.  Women also worked for the colliery, when possible.

On June 22, 1842, Parliament passed a Bill with the objective of improving employment conditions for both boys and women in the mines.  Males under the age of 10 were forbidden to be employed in the mines and boys who were not yet 13 years old were limited to 12 hours of consecutive work.  In addition, these boys could not work more than 3 days a week, nor for two consecutive days.  These rules applied even if a boy worked for different owners.  With this Act, women were also forbidden to work in the mine.3  Women were then employed to work at the pit head, therefore not in the mine.

Resources and credits

  1. http://www.scottishmining.co.uk/8.html
  2. http://www.scottishmining.co.uk/8.html
  3. http://www.scottishmining.co.uk/388.html

Family History Writing Studio Now Open


Great news for family history writers. Lynn Palermo, the creator behind the Armchair Genealogist and the annual Family History Writing Challenge has created a virtual website for all of us.

The Simcoe Ontario-based genealogist and author has just launched The Family History Writing Studio, a multi-media website with workbooks, webinars, and personal coaching from Palermo.

One can spend a lot of time floundering around trying to sort it all out,” Palermo wrote in a press release distributed earlier today. “Our goal is to help writers break it down into manageable tasks. We also want to help take the fear out of writing and provide family historians with knowledge and self-confidence.”

Her popular newsletter, “Storylines” will be relaunched as part of the Studio next month.

It will have a fresh look but with the same great how-to articles along with tips and tools to help you become a more efficient family history writer,” says the press release. “The new Storylines will reflect the popular Daily Dose newsletter from The Family History Writing Challenge. Storylines will also keep members up to date on all the newest workshops, webinars and courses coming out of the FHWriting Studio.

A series of writing courses will be launched from the studio next September.

Here is how Palermo describes the many products that form part of her studio:

Workbooks –  A series of Family History Writing e-Workbooks designed to build on one another. Each ebook looks at one aspect of writing a family history narrative. Filled with worksheets, they will help writers apply the various elements of creative nonfiction to narratives.

Webinars – On-demand webinars are designed to complement the workbooks. Lynn personally guides writers through exercises and examples to expand on the workbook content. These on-demand webinars are designed to watch over and again at your convenience.

Courses – Coming this September, a variety of online courses,  designed for writers who want to take a more in-depth look at a particular aspect of writing in a more intimate setting will begin. Lessons are delivered in a variety of formats including downloadable worksheets, workbooks, and videos. All courses include private groups and forums to bring the class together for discussions and critiques with the teacher. Classes are small to provide a more personal learning environment.

Personal Coaching – If you’re nervous about sharing in a group environment then personal coaching might be more your style. In the personal coaching section, Lynn offers a couple of options to work privately together, whether it be to brainstorm your stories or book or for a critique of your written narrative.

Writing Groups – The Family History Writing Studio is designed to meet the needs of individuals and writing groups. The Studio offers options  for small genealogical societies that cannot afford an in-house speaker or the cost of a webinar. Information for writing groups and societies can be found here.

Click here, to learn more about the inspiration behind The Family History Writing Studio.

When asked to express why she decided to launch the studio now, Palermo wrote:

Genealogists come to family history writing with a variety of skills and generally with an overwhelming fear of writing. Because there are multiple aspects to writing stories and producing a family history book, we saw a need to create educational tools to address genealogist’s  individual needs on their journey to becoming a writer.

“We also wanted to provide flexibility, because we understand that we all have busy lives and finding time to write is not an easy task to add to one’s schedule,” continued Palermo.

As one of the 1000 genealogists who participate in Palermo’s annual writing challenge, I’m very happy that she’s developing this new tool for all of us.

Congratulations on producing another great resource, Lynn.




Building the Lachine Canal

The Lachine Canal

The Lachine Canal

by Janice Hamilton

When Stanley Bagg and his business partners began excavating a canal around the Lachine Rapids near Montreal in 1821, they had to deal with more rock and water than they had bargained for.

The Lachine Rapids are a short stretch of white water and submerged rocks in the St. Lawrence River that impede shipping between the port of Montreal and the Great Lakes. According to the legislation that authorized the project, the 14.5-kilometre canal was to be five feet (1.5 metres) deep. On the surface, it was to be forty feet (12 metres) wide so that the long, narrow Durham boats that transported goods and passengers on the river could pass each other. There was to be a towpath beside the water so horses could pull the boats, since it would be impractical to use sails.

The locks were the most impressive part of the project. There was a regulating lock near the canal’s entrance at Lake St. Louis (a broad stretch of the river upstream from the rapids) to allow water into the canal. The other six locks between Lachine and the port raised and lowered boats a total of 13.7 metres. This was nothing compared with the 560-kilometre long Erie Canal, or the Welland Canal with its 90-metre drop over 42 kilometres, but what set the Lachine Canal apart was the fact that all the locks were built of stone, rather than wood, 1.8 metres thick and sealed to prevent leaks. “Nowhere else in North America, or even Britain (with one exception) had locks as large and as solidly built as those on the Lachine ever been constructed,”1 historian Gerald Tulchinksy wrote.

The main contractors, Thomas Phillips, Andrew White, Oliver Wait and Stanley Bagg, were responsible for excavating the canal. Their contract included building the locks and constructing two impressive stone bridges and numerous wooden footbridges so the farmers whose land was crossed by the canal could reach their fields. They had a separate contract to build fences which were supposed to keep grazing cows from damaging the canal banks and workers from scavenging firewood in the nearby farmers’ orchards.

The contractors subcontracted some of the work. For the rest, they hired masons, carpenters, foremen and hundreds of day labourers equipped with picks and shovels, the majority of whom were recent immigrants from Ireland. Horses helped with the heavy hauling.

As treasurer, Stanley Bagg recorded the employees’ pay and kept the account books that listed purchases such as timber and tools.

The canal was designed by Thomas Burnett, a British engineer who had canal building experience in England, but who died before this project was finished. The ten commissioners who had been named by the government to oversee the project visited the work site frequently and met with project leader Phillips whenever problems arose.

Spring flooding was the first major problem the contractors encountered, and it delayed the start of the construction season year after year. The water came mainly from the St. Lawrence River. (This is not an issue today because a dam near Cornwall, Ontario regulates the water level.) In addition, runoff from snow on the Island of Montreal collected in the low, swampy area near the canal’s route. This meant work usually could not start until July, and generally wrapped up around October. Although some work went on in winter, progress was difficult once the ground was frozen.

Soon after they started digging, the contractors discovered a huge area of hard, igneous rock that had to be blasted to make way for the canal, but the men the contractors had engaged to supply gunpowder (one of whom was Stanley Bagg’s brother, Abner,) had difficulty getting hold of it. On October 24, 1822, Abner wrote, “I have just had a most terrible letter from them [the contractors] on the subject, in which they say that no less than 400 men must stop working this day for want of gunpowder….”2

the last lock of the Lachine Canal, 1826

the last lock of the Lachine Canal, 1826

The delays worried the commissioners. On May 19, 1823, they formally notified the contractors “of the heavy responsibility to which they will be liable if the construction of the aforesaid [masonry] works be delayed by their default, and therefore that their utmost exertion is required to effect the rock excavation to its full depth along the middle of the canal ….”3

Another problem arose when they reached the St. Pierre River, also known as the Little River. Normally it was nothing more than a small stream, but it turned into a torrent in the spring of 1824, washing away part of the newly built canal embankment. To prevent further damage, the contractors dug a basin to accumulate some of the spring runoff. They built a tunnel for the river beneath the canal.

All these difficulties were unexpected, and costs skyrocketed. The initial estimate was 78,000 pounds; the final cost came to 107,000 pounds. When the money ran low in 1823 and the government balked at spending more, commission chairman John Richardson arranged a loan from the Bank of Montreal. Eventually, the government funding came through, but the uncertainty must have been of special concern to Bagg, the man who paid the bills.

Stanley Bagg

Stanley Bagg

Part way through the project, the commissioners persuaded the government to approve a shorter and less expensive route. The commissioners decided that the bid from Bagg and his partners for the new section of the canal and a wharf was too high, so someone else did that work.

By August 1824, 11 kilometres of the canal were finished and the waterway opened to commercial navigation as far as the fourth lock. Other builders continued working on the project into 1826, but as far as Bagg and his partners were concerned, the contract was essentially complete in 1825.

This must have been an intense period of Bagg’s life, with dawn to dusk activity during the construction season and year-round worries. He lived near Lachine in the summers since his own house was on Saint Lawrence Street, far from the work site. Furthermore, his task as treasurer must have been challenging: this was the first time such a large civilian project, with so many employees, had been undertaken in Canada.

Meanwhile, ever the entrepreneur looking for additional ways to make money, Bagg also owned a store in Lachine where employees could buy beer, rum and a few groceries. He and several partners also owned a bakery that provided bread to the workers. In addition, the contractors provided bunkhouse accommodations in Lachine for some of the day labourers.

lachine canal map1m_edited-1

the Island of Montreal showing the canal, 1834

In the end, this massive undertaking was a success. “The competence of the engineer, foremen, labourers and skilled hands in building a substantial canal is attested by the fact that it lasted more than twenty years,” observed Tulchinsky. “No major repairs or alterations were necessary and the Lachine Canal proved adequate for handling the growing volume of traffic to and from the Great Lakes region.”4 It carried thousands of new immigrants toward the interior of the continent, and commodities such as grain, flour, salted pork, ash and timber. In the summer, proud Montrealers took cruises on the canal and strolled along its banks.

Eventually, in the 1840s, a larger canal was built alongside the old one to handle the increased traffic; then the cows and orchards disappeared, and industries grew up along its banks

Stanley Bagg and his colleagues could be proud of their accomplishment, but Bagg never took on another project of this scope, working primarily as a timber merchant for the rest of his life.

For the background to this story, see http://writinguptheancestors.blogspot.ca/2015/02/stanley-bagg-and-lachine-canal-part-1_27.html


  1. Gerald Tulchinsky,“The Construction of the First Lachine Canal, 1815-1826” thesis, 1960, McGill University Department of History, Montreal, p. 77. http://www.collectionscanada.gc.ca/obj/thesescanada/vol2/QMM/TC-QMM-112940.pdf
  2. “Abner Bagg Letterbook, Oct 1821-Sept 1825” P070/A5,1, Bagg Family Fonds, McCord Museum, Montreal.
  3. “Lachine Canal Commission,1821-1842”, Library and Archives Canada, Ottawa.
  4. ibid. p. 109.

Photo credits: Janice Hamilton; John Hugh Ross, ROM 980.104.6 Royal Ontario Museum; private collection; Carte de l’île de Montréal… Iris # 0000083791, Bibliothèque et Archives nationales du Québec.

Huguenots – Index of Names


The Cross of Languedoc

Part 1. 

Huguenot Trails

 Is an Index of family names appearing in “Huguenot Trails”, the official publication of the Huguenot Society of Canada, from 1968 to 2003.

“Huguenot Trails” publications are available in the periodicals section of the Quebec Family History Society in Pointe-Claire, Quebec

While many family histories are given at length, and others are mentioned only briefly.

 Part 2

 Huguenots in Nouvelle France – Québec (New France – Quebec)     1604-1763

 Family listings –  2nd compilation

Fichiers huguenots

Michel Barbeau Author, researcher, compiler and consists of

 Huguenots from France (319 pioneers)                 http://pages.infinit.net/barbeaum/fichier/

Calvinists from Switzerland (21 pioneers)    http://pages.infinit.net/barbeaum/suisses.htm

 Part 3.

 Huguenots in Nouvelle France Québec (New France Quebec1600-1765

Family listings  – 3rd compilation

 Listing of family names obtained from the writings of many authors and  Various Online Sources

Click on the links below to open in  new windows

Part 1

Trails – Family Names

Part 2.

 The Huguenots 2 in Nouvelle France

Part 3.

The Huguenots in New France #3

The Harvester Scheme and the Empire Settlement Act

By Sandra McHugh

Who would have thought that finding the immigration records of my grandparents would have led to me to learn about two British government initiatives designed to promote immigration in the 1920s?  I was looking in the Library and Archives Canada web site and found digitized records of Form 30 that recorded the entry of every immigrant between July 1921 and December 1924.1  I was thrilled to find the form that my grandfather, George Thomas Deakin, signed in August 1923, and the one that my grandmother, Grace Graham Hunter, signed in February 1924.

My grandfather’s form indicated that he came to Canada as part of the Harvester Scheme.  In 1923, Canada had a bumper wheat crop and North America could not provide the labour needed to harvest the crop.  Under the Harvester Scheme, the two major Canadian railway companies entered into an agreement with the British government to transport 12,000 workers out west where they would earn $4.00 per day plus board.  This was considered a successful scheme as 11,871 migrants went out west to work, the harvest was successfully completed, and 80% of the harvesters stayed and were considered “successfully assimilated.”2

My grandmother’s passage was paid by the Empire Settlement Act.  This Act was passed by the British Parliament in 1922 and its purpose was to provide an incentive for migrants to settle in the colonies.  Canada badly needed farm labourers and domestic workers.  At that time, the Canadian government favoured immigrants from Great Britain as a means of ensuring the predominance of British values.  In the early 1920s, it was difficult for Canada to attract immigrants from Great Britain as Britain was enjoying a period of prosperity right after World War I.  Another reason was the prohibitive cost of transatlantic transportation.  Even passage in third class would have been expensive for a farm labourer or a domestic worker.3

My grandmother came to Canada to enter into domestic service as a cook and her destination in Montreal was the government hostel.  Hostels were located in major urban areas across Canada.  These hostels were partially funded by the provinces and immigrants from Great Britain were allowed free dormitory accommodation for 24 hours after their arrival.  Young ladies were looked after by the Superintendent of the hostel and referred to a church worker.  They were also referred to Employment Services of Canada who would find them employment.4


1 Library and Archives Canada:  http://www.collectionscanada.gc.ca

2 Foster, John Elgin, 1983, The Developing West:  Essays on Canadian History in Honor of Lewis H. Thomas, University of Alberta


4 Crawford, Ruth, 1924, “Canada’s Program for Assimilation”, The Rotarian, May 1924, p. 16

Searching for Ancestors in France

Many original documents of French ancestors are available online via the 92 of the 95 departmental archives in France.

To make it easy for you to use these wonderful public resources, I have compiled the links into a single pdf document, which you can download from this link: Master copy 10 12 13 Les Archives départementales en France.

Also included are maps so that you can figure out which modern department holds the historic records you need to find.


Rediscovering St. John the Evangelist Cemetery in Lotbinière



Rediscovering St. John the Evangelist Cemetery

St. John the Evangelist Cemetery dates back to 1845, but over the years, its exact location was lost and the site largely forgotten. Canon Harold Brazel went searching for the cemetery in the 1980s, but never found the spot. Steve Cameron, co-founder of the Irish heritage and history group Coirneal Cealteach, recently took up the search and found exactly where it was located, on St. Margaret’s Range. He took our Rachelle Solomon there to see what remains and to talk about the history of Irish settlers in the region

The family researchers, historians, writers of Quebec who are making a distinct effort to preserve the heritage of the English language families of Quebec.

This week, my choice is: Stephen L. Cameron

There is a short audio sound bite that accompanies the above brief article that  requires Adobe Flash.


Stephen can be reached at Coirneal Cealteach at; tirnanogsa@gmail.com

Genealogy Societies of France

Genealogy Societies in France

If you are interested in joining a genealogical society in France to pursue your research, the information found within this list may be very helpful.

The document contains a comprehensive list of 95 departments and their genealogical societies.

The following information is noted for each of the societies.

  • location,
  • number of years in existence
  • email address
  • internet addresses
  • cost of membership

Right Click and choose  open in a new window:  Genealogy Societies of France.

No Fairy-Tale Ending

By Janice Hamilton

Last year, I posted an article on my family history blog (writinguptheancestors.blogspot.ca) about Polly Bagg Bush, an American whose brothers Stanley and Abner Bagg were well-known merchants in Montreal in the 1820s and 1830s. You can read it at http://writinguptheancestors.blogspot.ca/2014/05/polly-bagg-bush-surprise-sister.html. Now, here is the story of Polly’s daughter Mary Sophia Roy Bush, who married into the Lambert Dumont family, owners of vast stretches of forest and farmland in the Saint-Eustache region of Quebec, northwest of Montreal.

It must have been a happy wedding. For a girl from relatively humble American roots to marry the owner of one of Quebec’s vast seigneuries, this must have seemed like a wonderful match. And the groom had recently lost his parents, so family members were no doubt pleased to see him marry.

Unfortunately, there was no fairy-tale ending to this story.

The bride was Sophia Mary Roy Bush. She was born Sophia Mary Bush around 1815, the daughter of William Bush, farmer, of West Haven, Vermont, and Polly Bagg Bush. (Sophia’s grandfather, Phineas Bagg (c. 1750-1823), was our common ancestor.) Her family struggled financially, so Sophia had come to Montreal to live with her aunt and uncle, Sophia Bagg and Gabriel Roy, who had no children of their own.

The groom was Louis Charles Lambert Dumont, born in 1806, the son of Eustache Nicolas Lambert Dumont. Eustache Nicolas had been co-seigneur of Milles-Îles, a judge, militia officer and politician, but he had accumulated crippling debts running the seigneury, and had fallen out with his sister because their father had left them unequal shares of the seigneury.

The Dumont family had been seigneurs of Milles-Îles since 1743. They owned a vast area of wilderness and fertile farmland northwest of Montreal. According to traditions that went back to the time of New France, the habitants, or farmers, paid rent annually to the seigneur, cleared the land and grew their crops. The seigneur built grist mills, saw mills and roads. In 1770, the Dumonts donated land for the construction of a Catholic church and the village of Saint-Eustache grew up next to it. They later built their seigneurial manor house near the church.

Louis Charles’ and Sophia’s wedding did not take place in Saint-Eustache; it was held at the parish church in Saint-Laurent, where the Roy family lived, on September 22, 1835. Saint-Laurent is now a suburb of Montreal, but at that time it was a rural area on the Island of Montreal.

On the bride’s side, no less than eight family members signed the parish record book. Her parents’ names did not appear, so they had probably been unable to come to Montreal for the wedding, but Sophia Bagg and Gabriel Roy signed, as did the bride’s uncle Stanley Bagg, his 15-year-old son, Stanley Clark Bagg, and his mother-in-law, Mary Mitcheson Clark. Sophia’s and Polly’s other brother, Abner Bagg, seems to have been absent, but his wife, Mary Ann Mittleberger, did sign the register.

sophia mary roy bush mar sigs crop

Among Louis Charles’ relatives who signed the book were his sister Elmire, her husband, Pierre Laviolette, and seven other members of the Laviolette family. The groom’s brother, Louis Sévère Dumont, was also present. Their father had died that April, their mother the previous year, and their twelve other siblings were deceased.

The newlyweds went to live in the seigneurial manor house in Saint-Eustache, but their life was not easy. Louis Charles was learning how to administer the debt-ridden seigneury, arguing over money with his brother and fighting off court challenges over the property by his aunt. Then the couple’s first-born child, a daughter, died in 1837, shortly after her first birthday.

Meanwhile, social and political tensions had been increasing in Lower Canada. When the government refused to approve reforms, an armed rebellion broke out. On December 14, 1837, some 2000 government troops attacked the Patriotes, or rebels, barricaded inside the church at Saint-Eustache, killing some 60 people. The troops burned the church, the convent and much of the village, including the Dumont manor house.


Fearing trouble, the Louis Charles and Sophia had left Saint-Eustache for Montreal in November. When they returned in the spring, they moved into a smaller house down the road. Their second child, Marguerite Virginie Lambert Dumont, was born there on August 21, 1838.

On June 27, 1841 Sophia died suddenly, age 26. The body of Louis Charles, 36, was discovered in his house on November 1. His brother, Louis Sévère, died eight weeks later, age 31. None of the accounts of this family’s history explains these deaths, and several historians seem to suggest that these events were suspicious. Three-year-old Virginie was now an orphan and a future heiress.

What happened to Sophia’s orphaned daughter? Read about Marguerite Virginie Globensky at http://writinguptheancestors.blogspot.ca/2015/01/the-story-of-marguerite-virginie.html


I do not know Mary Sophia’s exact birth date, but the priest who buried her on July 1, 1841 wrote that she was age 26 years, three months at the time of death, so she must have been born around the beginning of April, 1815.

Written accounts refer to Sophia Mary as Gabriel Roy’s adopted daughter. So far I have not found legal adoption records, though there may be some. The parish marriage record simply refers to her as the daughter of William Bush and Polly Bagg. Sophia’s birth parents were Protestant, so in 1827, Sophia was baptized Catholic. That church records says she added the name Roy at that time, and it refers to Gabriel Roy and Sophia Bagg as her sponsors. She was age 12 at the time and signed the parish record book herself.

Polly, Sophia, Stanley and Abner Bagg were born in Pittsfield, Massachusetts in the 1780s to Phineas Bagg and his wife Pamela Stanley. The Bagg and the Stanley families had lived in Massachusetts and Connecticut since the mid-1600s.

Saint-Laurent parish records show that Sophia Bagg and Gabriel Roy did have one child: Edouard Gabriel Roi, born in 1812, died in 1815.

On the Bagg side, one important family member was missing from the marriage register: Mary Ann Clark, wife of Stanley Bagg, had died the previous year. The Mary Ann Bagg who was present was Abner Bagg`s daughter. Another name on the marriage record was Mary Maugham, who was related to Mary Mitcheson Clark.

There are BMD records for these families in the Drouin Collection on Ancestry.ca, but indexing mistakes and legibility issues make them hard to find. Search for Dush instead of Bush, and for Dumont, not Lambert Dumont. Also, Sophia’s name appears in the records as both Mary Sophia and Sophia Mary, though in French-speaking Quebec she would have been called Marie Sophie.

There are many websites and books concerned with the individuals and events of the Battle of Saint- Eustache. Among those I consulted were the entry on Nicolas-Eustache Lambert Dumont in the Dictionary of Canadian Biography (www.biographi.ca/); Elinor Kyte Senior’s Redcoats and Patriotes, The Rebellions in Lower Canada 1837-38, Stittsville, ON: Canada’s Wings, Inc. 1985; André Giroux, Histoire du territoire de la ville de Saint-Eustache, tome 1, L’époque seigneuriale 1683-1854, Québec: Les Éditions GID, 2009; an article about the Dumont house written by the Société de généalogie de Saint-Eustache, http://www.sgse.org/maisons/chron/a00226.html; and an online article by André Giroux, Les héritiers d’Eustache-Nicolas, http://www.patriotes.cc/portal/fr/docs/revuedm/06/revuedm06_6.pdf.

Members of the both the Dumont and Globensky families fought on the government side at the Battle of Saint-Eustache. Sophia`s relations were also involved in putting down the rebellion. Her uncle Stanley Bagg was a major in the 1st Battalion Loyal Montreal Volunteers, and according to a family story, his son, Stanley Clark Bagg, age 17, was an ensign bearer at the Battle of Saint-Eustache, but I have not yet confirmed that.

photo credits: Ancestry.com; Janice Hamilton


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