Welcome to our genealogical family history site!

Sirnames in the direct line here are: Young; Gardner; McLean; Peters; Mussell; Taylor; Stevens; Bruce; Foulds; Prince; Thomas; Fidler; Mackagonne; Wilson and Brown. On-going research is providing more all the time!

I encourage you to email family stories, pictures, personality profiles and interesting facts to me (along with the appropriate sources) and I'll see that they get posted. These would help us all to appreciate our strong, rich heritage as something to be immensely proud of!

While you're here, watch the slideshow (links on the left) and watch some aboriginal YouTube at the bottom of the page where you're invited to listen to some great Metis fiddle music from Trent Freeman and others. Soon, I hope to feature Stan and Sam Young - so keep watching!

Don't forget to have a look at the 'helpful links' for some FREE excel spreadsheets. I'm providing them for your personal use only to help you keep track of your own family tree. They're for Windows Microsoft Excel 97. I have Office 2007 versions as well, with a few more features, so if you email me at wsoapco@gmail.com , I'll be happy to send them to you.

**NEW** I have a full list of Metis Scrip Affidavits for the Thomas line! I can send you the spreadsheet - just ask me!

If you have a listen to the 'Youtube' Chinook Jargon song, or watch the slideshow, just hit the 'Back' button to return here. Thanks for visiting!

Friday, April 3, 2009

Three Taylor Brothers

Pictures just in! Three of the Taylor brothers with their wives. They are sons of George Taylor III (HBC sloopmaster/translator/surveyor) and Jane Prince.

This George is known to our family as George IV ID#4636 born Oct 3, 1829 and baptised Aug 2, 1833. He married Isabella Cooper on March 6, 1854. She was born 1835 to Thomas Charles Cooper #951 and Catherine Thomas. They lived at St.Andrews, Red River Settlement, then their scrip was issued Apr 16, 1877 and George became a Prince Albert, Saskatchewan farmer.

At right, is Robert Alexander Taylor #4637, his wife Elise Waller (aka Valeur or Valler in source docs) Their Grandson is standing there, Leslie Frost 1895 - 1918, son of Caroline Taylor and James Frost. This was taken by their home in lockport, just a little ways from selkirk.
Robert Alexander 1836-1919 and Eliza (Waller) Taylor 1846-1921 daughter of Nancy Birston and James Vollar/Voller/Waller.
Caroline Taylor Frost was the eldest child of Robert Alexander & Eliza Taylor.
Of stories collected to date Robert Alexander is one of the most interesting characters to emerge from out of the past. Two of his grandchildren were able to comment on him. Hopefully, some of those stories will be passed on to me to add to this post soon, so stay tuned.

At right is the second youngest boy Edward Prince Taylor #4633 Feb 1, 1840 - Jul 10, 1919. He died the same year is elder brother Robert did. With him is his second wife, Sarah Stevens Oct 1854 - Oct 9, 1944. They married June 15, 1871. Edward had 4 children with his first wife and 13 with Sarah. I'm having lots of fun sorting them all out too! ;)

Most interesting thing of all though (for me at least) is that the couple at right, Edward and Sarah, are my direct great Grandparents on my Granny's side -Emily Caroline (Taylor) Young's parents. And the top picture of George and Isabella, are my direct great-great Grandparents on my Grandpa's side! (Richard Victor Young's Grandparents) And Richard Victor Young married Emily Caroline Taylor... so, this means my Dad's parents were 2nd cousins. I understand this happened alot at the Red River Settlement and was sometimes unavoidable (just like some 'Royal Families'?). But, my Dad turned out to be a great Dad and I think I turned out ok too but Mom says she brought some new blood in just in time. :D

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Chief Peguis



by George Siamandas

Chief Peguis signed the landmark treaty on July 17, 1817. He was thought to have been born in the early 1774 in the Sault St Marie area Peguis led a group of Salteaux or Ojibwa west for more abundant supplies of game and fish. His group eventually settled in the Netley marsh area originally called the Death River, located 14 km south of Lake Winnipeg in the 1790s.

Several other Indian tribes had been decimated by disease in the area. Two remaining camps of Cree and Assiniboine did not feel threatened because Peguis' people were not buffalo hunters. The HBC had also wisely established good relations with Peguis and Peguis had ignored the North West Company's warnings that once the colony was established that they would eventually take away their lands.

Over the years Peguis formed strong relationships of trust with the Selkirk settlers welcoming them on their arrival. On one occasion offered he transported the settlers' children to Pembina were they wintered for the first few years. Peguis has always been associated with peacefulness and reconciliation. He tried to calm things during the HBC-NWC wars. The master diplomat listened patiently and resisted taking sides and came to the defense of the Selkirk settlers. When issues of who owned the land came up it was Peguis' view that it belonged to the Great Father. But that it could be loaned to Selkirk for a while. Shortly after the settlement was established Peguis decided that the issue of land should be settled and pursued the matter.

Selkirk obtained access to 300,000 square kilometres. He now controlled a 2 mile strip on both sides of the Assiniboine and red Rivers extending to Lake Winnipeg, Grand Forks, and Portage La prairie. The annual fee would be 100 pounds of tobacco paid to the Cree and Salteaux tribes. Peguis received a silver medal and red coat trimmed with gold braid which became the chief's most prized possession.

By 1829 after the aboriginal hunting grounds had been destroyed by agriculture. An agricultural program was initiated for the Salteaux. The aboriginals remained sceptical about the value of farming. And indeed the series of floods, droughts and grasshopper infestations discouraged the Indians. Gradually the cultural changes came forward, and Peguis had doubted his people would warm to them. Indians were expected to become farmers, the kids would go to school, and that they would become Christians, in part requiring the men to take only one wife.

Peguis retorted that he could see little harm in an Indian having two wives when a certain settler he knew was already keeping two. But on October 7 1840, Peguis agreed to give up three of his four wives to be baptized a Christian. He took on the name William King and his wife Victoria. Peguis's descendants took on the surname Prince. As a result of this cultural betrayal, Peguis lost support within the native community and there were efforts to make his eldest son chief. Peguis, however remained firm in embracing Christianity and this early mission became St Peter's Parish.

During the late 1850s and the through the 1860s the original nature of the 1817 treaty became hotly debated. Peguis argued the HBC had no right to sell land and that it still belonged to the Indians. It had only been loaned for a time. Andrew McDermot argued that the land had been sold. Donald Gunn sided with Peguis.

The cut-nosed chief as he was called because he had part of his nose bitten off in a fight, continued to exercise his oratorical skills. He continued to be an ardent defender Indian land rights right into his 90s arguing the land had never been sold. He died Sept 25 1864 and was buried at St Peter's churchyard with the highest of tributes.

His children carried on his leadership and indeed his son Henry Prince was the first native to sign treaty No 1 in 1871. Both of his sons became men of the cloth and William Henry Prince became a missionary teacher at St Peter's.
His great grandson Albert E Thompson became Chief in 1953, and helped organize the Manitoba Indian Brotherhood.

Friday, March 13, 2009

HBC Record Capt. George Taylor II and George Taylor III

HBC record of George Taylor III

This is the service record of George Taylor II; son of George Taylor I and Margaret Grieve of Berwick-on-Tweed, England. (Click on the image to see a larger copy)

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

George Taylor (and sons)

This post will follow the George Taylor line so get ready for a long read! Extensive research has gone into this to sort out all the 'Georges' with lots of sources consulted. Some of them conflict, but most are eliminated as obvious blunders or transcription errors, which leaves but a few shadows here and there.

The George Taylor we'll start with here was married on June 21, 1757 to Margaret Grieve in Berwick-on-Tweed, England. Tragically, he died in late 1758 before he saw his son – George Taylor II who was either born or baptised August 19, 1759 in Berwick-on-Tweed. When George II was four years old he lost his mother too, who died in 1763.

George II grew up and became a 'sloop master', with the title Captain. His started off as 'Seaman' on the "Prince Rupert" in 1786 and the "Seahorse", then on May 17, 1787 he entered into the service of the Hudson's Bay Company as 'Sloop mate' at Churchill. His HBC career ended in 1818 and he is listed in 1821 as "the late Master of a Schooner".

It was either 1790 or 1799 that he married Jane, daughter of Chief Pequis. (Born early 1774 - Sept 25, 1864 Pictured at right) Jane was born in 1776 at York Factory and died November 15, 1844 at the Red River Settlement. Of course these birthdates make the Chief a very young father so I suspect his is incorrect, more research is needed!  Please comment if you know his documented birth date.

Jane was a home Guard Cree of the Ten Shilling Creek area, and was supposedly taken prisoner by George Taylor. I think the Chief would have scalped him for that - it's more likely the Captain accepted the Chief's daughter to promote good relations between the HBC and the Cree Nation. See my next posting for more info about the Chief.

In the book, "Many Tender Ties" by Sylvia VAN KIRK, it says, "George TAYLOR, the sloop master at York, evidently took pains to teach his Indian wife Jane, and their family of eight children, clean and industrious habits. Two of his daughters, Mary and Margaret, were widely admired, not only for their beauty, but for their "civilized" womanly qualities".
Also, some sources say Jane used Bruce as a surname later for her government paperwork and chose it probably due to a family kinship she felt with Benjamin Bruce and his Cree wife, Mathilda. Jane and Mathilda were close in age so it's conceivable to me that they were sisters... I haven't found any evidence to prove it.

George first left Jane in 1815, then possibly for good in 1818 and this time took Robert (his son) with him. February 11, 1815 journal of James Swain at York Factory: "Captain Taylor's wife came for a little Provision. Gave her a little biscuit, pemmican, damaged salt beef etc. It is believed that George abandoned his wife and nine children in 1815 and again in 1818 for the last time". However, other sources indicate he returned and died in Canada. She apparently received a gratuity from HBC and George Simpson as stated in his biography titled "Little Caesar" dated 1829.
As a widow, Jane lived with her daughter Margaret at Bas de la Riviere. She named four daughters in her will.

Their Children:* Those in blue are still being researched so final sources are not in. They are possibly of different mothers.

  • Robert M. Taylor; Born pre 1790 and died before 1837 in England.

  • Peter Taylor; Born after 1790-Dec 12, 1837 or 1838. HBC records say 1839. He starved to death on Arctic Discovery expedition with Dease and Simpson.

  • Jane Taylor; born 1790 or after, married a MacDougall (?-before Apr 1840)

  • John Taylor; born 1794 in Fort York, died Sept 5, 1809 in Fort Severn.

  • Mary Taylor; Born 1796 and died after 1838. She married John Stuart (? – 1847) Chief Factor of Bas de la Riviere. He abandoned her in 1835.

  • George Taylor III #4638; Born 1800, died November 15, 1844 St. Andrews, MB. He married Jane Prince (born 1808) on Jan 11, 1828.

  • Margaret Taylor; Born in 1805 Polar Sea, registered at York Factory and died Dec 16, 1885 in Winnipeg. She was baptised July 7, 1833 in St. Johns. She became the country wife of Gov. George Simpson in 1826. She was pregnant when he abandoned her and their son in 1829 to go to England to bring back a new bride (his 6th). She was his 18 year old 1st cousin Francis SIMPSON, daughter of Geddes MacKenzie SIMPSON, George's uncle, and she didn't end up staying in Canada very long. Margaret was sent to Bas-de-la-Riviere at the mouth of the Winnipeg River presided by Chief Factor John STUART, husband of Margaret's sister Mary. Margaret, the last country wife of George SIMPSON, was similarly "placed" with a new husband, Amable HOGUE, an HBC employee. They married March 24, 1831. Amable Hogue #2211 or 2084 (1795 – 1876) was son of Louis Amable Hogue and Marie Anne Labella and was baptised Jul 14, 1796.

  • Thomas Taylor #4642; born 1797, baptised Aug 12, 1821 at Norway House by HBC Chaplain and recorded at St. Johns. Married Aug 16, 1831 to Mary Keith, born 1811, daughter of Chief Factor James Keith. He died in 1879. (Thank you to Thomas's GGG grandchild for the birth/death dates)

  • Unknown daughter
The Little Emperor - By George Siamandas
George Simpson the HBC's most distinguished Governor was appointed Gov of all of the HBC's North America operations in June 13, 1839. He was born out of wedlock in 1786 or 1787 in Scotland and was brought up by his aunt. In 1800 he went to London and worked for his uncle whose business brought him into contact with the Hudson Bay Co.
In 1830, in his forties, Simpson went back to England to find a bride. He chose his 18-year-old cousin Frances Ramsey Simpson. But he had not been without female companionship in the preceding years. He had taken on many Indian women ("his bit of brown") whom saw only as sexual objects, and which he passed off to other HBC men once he had tired of them. He also fathered numerous illegitimate children both in England and North America, most of whom he ignored. Between 1830 and 1833 the newly married Simpsons took up residence at Red River. They would have no half-breed women in their house. Frances Simpson had no friends and lived a very lonely life at Fort Garry. In 1832, their first child died and Frances developed a serious disease from which she did not recover. In 1834 they returned to England and Mrs Simpson would never come back.
Taken from The Winnipeg Time Machine

George Taylor III

George Taylor III #4638 was born in 1800 at York Factory, and died Nov 15, 1844 of an unknown illness. According to the Genealogy of the First Métis Nation; he was born in NWT and was Protestant. He entered into service for HBC in 1819 as a clerk at York Factory; and became Sloopmaster in 1821 and Surveyor in 1836. He also served as a translator. Here are some interesting facts about George III:

In the book "Company of Adventurers", by Peter C. NEWMAN, it says of Dr. John RAE, a surgeon, who never practiced medicine for eleven years prior to this, had to qualify as a surveyor. Dr. RAE'S would-be instructor, George TAYLOR, was too ill to teach at Red River Settlement. The year was 1844. Obviously, this is George Jr. who may have followed in his father's footsteps as an accomplished surveyor and sloop master with the HBC. George Jr. died in 1844.
(Source: http://www3.sympatico.ca/larry.quinto/taylor.htm)

Manitoba's Red River Settlement:

Manuscript Sources for Economic and Demographic History



In 1835, the Hudson's Bay Company employed George Taylor to resurvey old lots and extend the limits of vacant surveyed land north and south along the Red River, and westward along the Assiniboine. The limits of these newly numbered lots fell between parishes 6 and 7 to the west, 14 to 15 to the south, and 23 and 24 at the northern limit (see map).

At the same time that the survey proceeded, Taylor prepared memoranda which reflected existing occupancy. The company then entered these field notes into account books indicating whether the occupant had received a prior grant from Lord Selkirk, and how much land had been granted gratuitously or for a fee payable to the Hudson's Bay Company.

George married January 11, 1828 at St. Johns. His bride, born in 1808 at Albany House was 20 year old Jane Prince, a Métis daughter of Mark Prince (1761-?) and a Saulteaux Native woman.
Jane and her sister Faith travelled to Europe with their Dad Mark Prince in 1824, Jane returned in 1828 for her wedding. George and Jane were married for 16 years until his death in 1844 when Jane was 36 years old. Jane then married Frederick Hemingway on Sept 28, 1848 at Oxford House when she was about 40. She was widowed again at 49 in 1857. She was still around in 1875 at age 67 to sign an affidavit for her son Edward's scrip application. One source, states her date of death as November 5, 1897, which means she lived to be 89 years old.

Their Children:

  • Mary; born Oct 12, 1828 (B.235/a/11,fo.64)
  • Jane; no information yet
  • George Taylor IV #4636; born Oct 3, 1829 at York Factory and baptised Aug 2, 1833. (Genealogy of Métis First Nation lists his birth as Oct 1) He married Isabella Cooper March 6, 1854 who was born 1835 at the Red River Settlement. Daughter of Thomas Charles Cooper #951 and Catherine Thomas. George's scrip issued Apr 16, 1877.

  • Robert Alexander Taylor #4637; baptised Mar 9, 1836 at St. John and died Mar 26, 1919 aged 82 or 83. He married Elise Valeur (Valler) on June 27, 1867. She was born Jan 23, 1850 at RRS, also Métis. Robert's scrip issued May 22, 1876.

  • Victoria Taylor; born Feb 25, 1837 at RRS, baptised Dec 11, (1834 or 7?) and died in 1911 aged 74. She married Oct 9, 1851 to Alexander Thomas #4668, born 1835. Victoria's scrip was issued May 22, 1876.

  • Sarah Taylor; born Jun 1, 1838 at St. Johns, baptised Jul 8, 1838 married John Moneab. Sarah's scrip was issued Apr 16, 1877.

  • Nancy Taylor; born 1838? Married John Cox #976, born 1799 in Scotland. Her scrip affidavit states year of birth as 1818.

  • Edward Prince Taylor #4633; born Jan or Feb 1, 1840 at St. Andrews and died Jul 10, 1919 aged 79 in Prince Albert, Saskatchewan. His first wife was Mary Sabiston born 1846 daughter of Alexander Sabiston (born 1829) and Sarah Flett (born 1832). They married Jun 23, 1862 at St. Andrews and had 4 children: Edward, Elizabeth, Marianne & Victoria. On June 15, 1871 Edward married Sarah Stevens (Oct 1854 RRS – Oct 9, 1944 Prince Albert). They had 13 children. TOTAL 17 CHILDREN.

  • Thomas Taylor #4940; born 1843, baptised Jul 26, 1843 at St. Johns and died Jul 14, 1875 aged 32. Married Jul 9, 1868 at St. Andrews to Marianne Young (dad#5213) born 1852 at RRS, daughter of James Young (1822 – 1870)and Isabella Stevens (1826 – Jan 17, 1919).

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Manitoba Scrip Affidavits - Taylor

Parents: Alexander Taylor and Mary McDonald

Applied: 1875    Thomas Taylor b: 1868 Poplar Point; Lives: Poplar Point

Applied: 1875    Charles Taylor b: 1870 Poplar Point; Lives: Poplar Point

Parents: David Taylor and Nancy Unknown

Applied: 1875    William Taylor b: 1855 St. James; Lives: St. James

Parents: George Taylor and Isabella Cooper

Applied: 1875    Annabella Taylor b: 1858 St.Andrews; Lives: St. Paul

Applied: 1875    Catherine Jane Taylor b: 1860 St.Andrews; Lives: St.Andrews

Applied: 1875    Thomas Taylor b: 1862 St.Andrews; Lives: St.Andrews

Applied: 1875    Louisa Taylor b: 1866 St. Andrews; Lives: St.Andrews

Applied: 1875    Victoria Taylor b: 1869 St.Andrews; Lives: St.Andrews

Parents: George Taylor and Jane Unknown

Applied: 1875    Marguerite Taylor (Hogue) b: 1805 Polar Sea; Lives: St. Charles

Applied: 1875    Nancy Taylor (Cox) b: 1818 NWT; Lives: St.Andrews

Applied: 1875    Robert Taylor b: 1837 St.Clement; Lives: St.Andrews

Applied: 1875    Victoria Taylor b: 1837 NWT; Lives: St.Andrews

Parents: George Taylor and Jane Prince

Applied: 1877    George Taylor b: 1829 York Factory; Lives: St.Andrews

Applied: 1876    Sarah Taylor b: 1838 St. Johns; Lives: St.Andrews

Applied: 1875    Edward Taylor Senior b: 1840 St.Andrews; Lives: Sask River

Applied: 1875    Thomas Taylor (Mary Ann Young) b: 1843 St. Andrews; Lives: ?

Parents: James Taylor and Amelia Bird

Applied: 1875    John Taylor b: 1858 Poplar Point; Lives: ?

Applied: 1875    Elizabeth Taylor b: 1860 St. Paul; Lives: ?

Applied: 1875    Alfred Taylor b: 1862 St. Paul; Lives: Poplar Point

Applied: 1875    Benjamin Taylor b: 1864 St. Paul; Lives: Poplar Point

Applied: 1875    David Edwin Taylor b: 1865 Poplar Point; Lives: Poplar Point

Applied: 1875    Albert Taylor b: 1867 Poplar Point; Lives: Poplar Point

Parents: James Taylor and Mary Unknown

Applied: 1875    John Taylor b: 1834 St. Paul; Lives: Headingly

Parents: James Taylor and Mary Inkster

Applied: 1875    Elisabeth Taylor (Slater) b: 1838 St. Paul; Lives: St. Paul

Applied: 1875    Mary Taylor (Banermen) b: 1839 St. Paul; Lives: Kildonan

Applied: 1875    David Taylor Jr. b: 1846 St. Paul; Lives: Poplar Point

Parents: John Taylor and Flora Campbell

Applied: 1875    John Taylor Jr. b:?

Applied: 1875    Mary Margaret Taylor b:?

Applied: 1875    William H. Taylor b:?

Parents: Peter Taylor and Catherine McDonald

Applied: 1875    Maurice Edward Taylor b: 1867 Poplar Point; Lives: Poplar Point

Applied: 1875    Flora Ann Taylor b: 1868 Poplar Point: Lives: Poplar Point

Parents: Robert Taylor and Eliza Vawler (Valleur)

Applied: 1875    Mary Ann Taylor b: 1868 St. Clement; Lives: St. Clement

Parents: Samuel Taylor and Nancy Unknown

Applied: 1875    William Taylor b: 1848 Moose Factory; Lives: St. Clement

Parents: Samuel Taylor and Nancy McKay

Applied: 1875    Mary Taylor (Armit) b: 1854 NWT

Applied: 1875    William Taylor b:? Lives: St. Clement

Parents: Thomas Taylor and Mary Ann Unknown

Applied: 1882    Victoria Jane Taylor b: 1870 Lives: St. Andrews

Parents: Thomas Taylor and Mary Ann Young

Applied: 1875    Victoria Jane Taylor b: 1870 Lives: St. Andrews

Applied: 1875    Alexander Thomas Taylor b: 1875 Lives: St. Andrews

Parents: Thomas Taylor and Mary Keith

Applied: 1875    Thomas Taylor b: 1831 NWT; Lives: Westbourne

Parents: William Taylor and Margaret Unknown

Applied: 1875    Elizabeth Mary Taylor b: 1857 St. Andrews; Lives: St. Andrews

Parents: William Taylor and Margaret Gunn

Applied: 1875    George Taylor b: 1858 Poplar Point

Applied: 1875    Margaret Taylor b: 1860 Poplar Point

Applied: 1875    William Taylor b: 1862 Poplar Point; Lives: Poplar Point

Applied: 1875    Jane Taylor b: 1864 Poplar Point; Lives: Poplar Point

Applied: 1875    Donald Herbert Taylor b: 1868 Poplar Point; Lives: Poplar Point

Parents: William Taylor and Sarah Unknown

Applied: 1875    Catherine Taylor (Matt) b: 1836 St. Paul; Lives: Poplar Point

Parents: William Taylor and Sarah Sabiston

Applied: 1875    James Taylor b: 1825 St. Paul; Lives: Poplar Point


Manitoba Scrip Affidavits Cooper, Young & Stevens


Parents: Jeremiah Cooper and Catherine (Katherine) Unknown

Applied: 1875 Lydia Catherine Cooper b: 1867; Lives: St.Andrews

Applied: 1875 Isabella Cooper b: 1869; Lives: St.Andrews

Parents: Thomas Cooper and Catherine Unknown

Applied: 1875 Louisa Cooper (Anderson) b: 1837 Moose Factory; Lives: St.Andrews

Parents: Thomas Cooper and Catherine Thomas

Applied: 1875 Jeremiah Cooper b: 1842 St.Andrews; Lives: St.Andrews


Parents: James Young and Isabella Stevens

Applied: 1875 Jane Young (Fidler) b: 1849 St.Andrews; Lives: St.Clement

Parents: James Young and Isabella Unknown

Applied: 1875 Louisa Young (McCorrister) b: 1851
St.Andrews; Lives: St.Andrews

Parents: Henry George Young and Catherine Jane Taylor

Applied: 1900 Samuel Amable Young b: 1884 Puckhan; Lives: Brancepeth

Applied: 1900 Richard Victor Young b: 1885 Puckhan; Lives: Brancepeth


Parents: Richard Stevens and Mary Unknown

Applied: 1875 George Stevens b: 1821 Rupert House; Lives: St.Clement

Applied: 1875 Theresa Stevens (Fox) b: 1823 NWT; Lives: St.Andrews

Applied: 1875 Mary Stevens (Lyons) b: 1832 St.Andrews; Lives: St.Andrews

Applied: 1875 Robert Stevens b: 1838 St.Andrews; Lives: St.Andrews

Parents: Richard Stevens and Mary O'Connor

Applied: 1875 Isabella Stevens (McLeod) b: 1826 St.Andrews; Lives: St.Andrews

Parents: Richard Stevens and Nancy Unknown

Applied: 1875 William Stevens b: 1829 St.Andrews; Lives: St.Andrews

Parents: George Stevens and Sarah Unknown

Applied: 1875 Mary Ann Stevens b: 1852 Eng River Dist, NWT; Lives: St.Clement

Applied: 1875 Sarah Stevens b: 1857 St.Clement; Lives: St.Clement

Applied: 1879 Rachel Stevens b: 1870 St.Clement; Lives: St.Clement

Parents: Robert Stevens and Mary Ann Unknown

Applied: 1875 Henry Stevens b: 1869 St.Andrews; Lives: St.Andrews

Parents: John Stevens and Mary Unknown

Applied: 1877 Marguerite Stevens (Primeau) b: 1807 York Factory; Lives: Sask

Parents: William Stevens and Mary Foulds

Applied: 1875 Sarah Taylor b: 1855 St.Andrews; Lives: ?

Applied: 1876 Sarah Taylor b: 1854 St.Andrews; Lives: St.Andrews

Applied: 1878 John Charles Stevens b: 1870

Parents: Not Listed

Applied: 1875 Mary Stevens b: 1800 Moose Factory; Lives: St.Andrews

Applied: 1875 Mary Ann Stevens b:?; Lives: St.Andrews

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Patriot Wars

On December 3, 1838, the Patriot Wars broke out. A group of about four hundred men from Detroit called 'The Patriots' raided Windsor in what is called "The Patriot Rebellion", but they were repulsed by the Canadian Militia under the command of John Prince (1796 – 1879) on Dec 4. Four of the invaders were summarily executed by Prince.

1838 - December 4. Battle of Windsor, fought in the Baby orchard, ended the Patriot War, which had resulted from political disturbances in Upper Canada. Invading "Patriots" were largely American.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Henry George Young & Catherine Jane Taylor

Henry was the fourth child (1st son) of James Young (1822-1870) and Isabella Stevens (1826 – 1919), who were married c.a. 1848 at St. Andrews Parish. (As a reminder, St. Andrews was located on the east side of the Red River, across from Lower Fort Garry.) Henry was born on Nov 11, 1855 and was baptised Dec 9, 1860. He had three older sisters: Jane (July 21, 1849) who would have been six when he was born; Louisa Rachel, four and a half (Mar 1, 1851); and Mary Anne (Jan 9, 1853) would have been almost three. Three little girls and a new real live doll... I can only imagine the attention he would have gotten! (It wasn't until four years later that the next brand-new little doll joined the family group)

Well, he grew up none the worse for wear. When he was almost ten in 1865, typhus (some say Cholera) ravaged Red River and within one family (the Bruneau household), twelve died! As far as I know, everyone in Henry's family survived – and didn't miss a beat, by this time they had seven children and one on the way. Life went on, the fall arrived and this is when it's time to cut the hay and hunt for winter provisions. Only this fall, the buffalo hunt was very poor and many Métis went hungry that winter. The hay stacks remained on the ground, in many cases, near their winter homes.

They suffered a lot of hardship but realized it also made life more precious. Their relationships were that much more special which fostered their growing sense of community. In the winter, all travel was by cutter and cariole with chains of bells, the families dressed in their warm furs. Some twenty cutters and carioles would comprise a surprise party that called on friends for dance and merriment. If you look at the annual patterns of all the Métis activities, they combined music, dancing and socializing as an important criterion of their civilization and their quality of life. The women and children were always included in the merrymaking as the Métis are a very strong family-oriented people. In this environment, it's no wonder an inspired young man such as Henry would pick up a fiddle and play it with all his heart and soul. Possessing an in-born talent he became a master, later teaching his own sons the intricacies of the fiddle and the unique rhythms of the Métis music.

Incidentally, it's believed the "Red River Jig", a most popular dance of the Métis, was created about 1875. The dance was based on an Indian dance which they said was based on the dance of the 'Prairie Chicken' in mating season.

Speaking of that, Henry married Catherine Jane Taylor (Nov 11, 1859 – Dec 18, 1954) on April 12, 1877 at St. Andrews in the Rapid Church. She reportedly had beautiful big brown eyes. She was born at Little Britain (St. Catherine's) and was baptised Dec 11, 1859 at St. Andrews, in Red River.

Her father was George Taylor (ID# 4636), a Métis farmer who was born Oct 3, 1829 at Red River, possibly York Factory, which was a major HBC trading post. This is possible since his father was a trader and is included in the Hudson Bay archives. Her mother was Isabela Cooper (ID# 4638) who was born in 1835 at Red River. Her parents lived at St. Andrews so this is likely where she was born.

In March 1877, just before Henry and Catherine were married, the Tetons' Dakota Sioux refugees arrived in Canada with 57 lodges, and Sitting Bull a.k.a. Tatanka Yotanka (1834? – 1890) arrived with 135 lodges. It would be interesting to find out how this would have impacted on the community of St. Andrews Parish being so close to the United States border.

Nine months (almost to the day) after they were married, George Young was born on Jan 16, 1878. This is the year that John Norquay, a Métis, became premier of Manitoba until 1887. He was never completely clear of racial slurs, during heated debate, the opposition said "It's the Indian in you!" Also this was the year that the Americans prevented the buffalo from returning to Canada by setting prairie fires north of the migrating herds. Once confined, the last great slaughter took place. The ramifications on the Canadian population that winter were significant.

In 1879, the buffalo was essentially extinct in Canada as a direct result of the American actions over the last number of years. Survival would depend heavily on the agricultural development of the region. Even through all this hardship, Arthur James was born on Apr 15, 1880, a robust boy who lived to be 95 years old, he died in 1975!

Political tensions were rising and the future of the Métis way of life was reaching towards the end of an era. Henry and Catherine started to plan to go west. They were going to have to leave their land to make room for the new settlers. They were each given a scrip note with a monetary value of ten dollars each and were told they could buy two sections of land with them in Saskatchewan. They decided to make the trip.

At the beginning of the year, on Jan 7, 1882, John Charles Young was born. That year, the Young family started on the long trek west, a brave and historic venture. They made the journey in Red River carts via the course following west to Qu'Appelle and north to Prince Albert, then on to the Puckahn Post Office, which is now only a landmark across the river and west from Fenton. There, they resided for the remainder of the summer and winter of 1882 -83. In 1883, they moved south of Brancepeth in the Derby Homestead district and decided to stay. First in a self-made sod house, they settled into the "old homestead" in Brancepeth on Dec 7, 1884, where they resided ever since. From this point forward, they felt their Métis heritage would have to be a secret for fear their land would be taken again, but they cherished and kept their spirit, their music and their unshakable family ties. It would be generations before their true heritage would be revealed again.

In a newspaper article titled "Mrs. Young Symbolized the Spirit of the West", written after the passing of 'Granny Young', I will quote: "A highly respected family by all who knew them, which was many. McDuff and Granny (as they were known) held their birthday party on November 11 as both their birthdays fell on the same day. This was not an ordinary party, but one where as high as two hundred people would gather during the course of the afternoon and evening, have supper with the happy family, then enjoy a very pleasant evening reminiscing the old times. Their stories of hardships and struggles (which they laughed about) that went with pioneering would cause a shudder from the present-day resident."

Children of Henry George Young "McDuff" and Catherine Jane Taylor "Granny"

  1. George Young was born Jan 16, 1878 in St. Andrews, died in 1958 (80)
  2. Arthur James Young was born Apr 15, 1880 in St. Andrews and died in 1975 (95)
  3. John Charles Young was born Jan 7, 1882 in St. Andrews and died Feb 19, 1902 (20)
  4. Samuel Amable Young was born Feb 2, 1884 in Brancepeth and died Feb 6, 1912 (28)
  5. Richard Victor Young was born Dec 16, 1885 in Brancepeth and died in 1956 in Kinistino Hospital (71) He married Saskatchewan-born Emily Caroline Taylor (Sept 8, 1894 – 1990) daughter of Edward Prince Taylor (Feb 1, 1841 – Jul 10, 1919)who was a farmer, and Sarah Stevens (Oct 1854 – Oct 9, 1944)
  6. Elizabeth Isabelle Young was born May 18, 1889 and died Dec 1, 1973 (84)
  7. Walter Young was born Aug 12, 1891 and died May 19, 1894 (2y 9mos)
  8. Blanch Young was born Dec 24, 1893 and married first Rowen Stevens, who died from a bacterial infection, then Englishman John Thomas Stubbs. Blanch died in 2000? (107)
  9. Thomas Miles Young was born Mar 17, 1896, joined the military Jun 1, 1918, married Lottie Boylen, and died in June 1975 (79)
  10. Claude Young was born Feb 12, 1898, married Edna Ethel Peters and died Mar 17, 1987 (89)
  11. Catherine 'Lottie' Young was born Aug 15, 1901 and died Jan 18, 1925 (23)
  12. Lucy Lena Belinda Young was born Jan 6, 1904, married Andrew Curle (May 1903-1988) and died Mar 6, 1976 in Calgary (72)

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

James Young & Isabella Stevens

The Canadian Patriarch of the Red River Métis Young family is James YOUNG, Métis ID #5213. At this point nothing is known about how he came to be in Canada or when exactly he arrived. It should prove to be a very interesting story though since we have on our record that his father Dick (Richard) Young was probably here before. James’ mother was a native woman – however, James was apparently born in England. I’m not totally convinced he was really born in England and would like to see their travel papers... and birth/baptism records. Also unknown, is who his siblings are.

So far, we know James was born in 1822. Around 1848, at the age of about 26, he married Isabella STEVENS (1826 - Jan 17, 1919) at St. Andrews Parish in Red River who would have been around 22.

Around the time of Isabella's birth, the Metis community was dealt a couple of very hard blows. In 1825, the buffalo hunt was a total failure and the Metis, who had ranged far out onto the plains, survived their homeward trek by eating their dogs, horses, their buffalo robes, leather tents and their shoes. The Reverend David Jones, (1798 - 1844), noted that this severe lesson may teach the thoughtless Canadian half-breeds to turn their attention to diligence and industry on their farms. (sic) He considered hunters to be "idle, roving, imprudent and, in times of want, even threatening and dangerous." He however, indulged in pemmican when it was available and it was the staple food of his mission school.

Then on May 5, 1826, the year Isabella was born, a flood drove many Red River farmers from their homes. This great flood carried away houses, cattle and trees. They were swept away in 1/2 hour when an ice jam broke. Fortunately, only five people were killed. Three churches and the mill survived. This is the largest flood in recorded times. They survived by digging cellars in the prairies, roofed with sod, and thereby lived underground through the winter; much as the first Scots had when they arrived. Many departed for the United States and some estimate the number was as high as 500 people! Most of the Swiss and German mercenaries, some 250, quit Red River. The flood waters didn't crest until May 22.

This rugged family survived and even thrived.

Isabella was the third child of Richard Stevens, (ID #4476) who was born in 1793 in Severn, Glouchester, England and a Cree woman named Mary or Nancy. I have found records for six children. James Young died in 1870 at the age of 48 in St. Andrews, Red River – before the census was taken that year. Isabella was enumerated as a Widow in St. Andrews with their children.

Information on Isabella’s mother is conflicting but here is the information I have collected so far. At 'peterfidler.com/descendants' they have Mary’s last name listed as O’Connor, others have her last name – or Indian name as “Meenish”, and one family member told me she was Eskimo from the east side of James Bay. According to one source, she may have been born in 1781, baptized December 27, 1831, and died Oct 24, 1828. This information needs more substantiation though, she would have already passed on before her baptism! If we were to guess, she was probably born c.a. 1890. It would be great to sort this information out, so if anyone has some solid sources please email me and I’ll update this posting. Also, a source (ancestors.ca) reports she was previously married c.a. 1810, to John Thomas Jr. (Sept 25, 1782 – Jun 3, 1816) of Moose Factory. He was an HBC man from 1797 to 1816 and was the son of Chief Factor John THOMAS and Margaret.

In 1875, Isabella - living in St. Andrews, applied for scrip as the wife of Malcolm MCLEOD, and the widow of James YOUNG. Here is some information on him. According to the census of 1870, Malcolm was the occupant of Lot 135, St. Andrews Parish (east side of the Red River, across from Lower Fort Garry). He was born Oct 21, 1821 at Green Lake, Saskatchewan, an illegitimate child of Charlotte (nee Pruden), half-breed daughter of John Peter Pruden (the Scottish patriarch of the Pruden family of Red River) and John McLeod Sr., born 1788, a Chief Trader for the HBC (Hudson’s Bay Company).

Malcolm was sent to Edinburgh, Scotland, to be educated as a lawyer. He studied law in Montreal, was admitted to the Bar in 1845, and became a judge there. The census of 1881 for St. Clements/Lisgar lists the family as: " Malcolm McLeod Sr., age 35; wife Isabella, age 52. Children: Jemima Young, age 15; and Malcolm J. McLeod Jr., age 7. "


Children of John Thomas Jr. and Mary (Nancy; Meenish; O’Connor; Thomas):

Charles THOMAS born 1811 married Mary BOUVER (born 1827 and baptized Apr 7, 1828) and died in 1904... and Eleanor THOMAS

Children of Richard STEVENS ID#4476 and Mary (Nancy; Meenish; O’Connor; Thomas):

1. Thyrza STEVENS
2. Henry George STEVENS born 1821 NWT
3. Isabelle (Isabella) STEVENS born 1826 at St. Andrews, Red River, MB. and died Jan 17, 1919 age 93, as Isabella MCLEOD in Lockport.
4. William Richard STEVENS born June 15, 1829 at St. Andrews, Red River MB. and died in 1918 in Halcro, Saskatchewan. He married in Dec 1850 at St. John’s Parish, Mary Anne FOULDS (born Mar 22, 1828 St. Andrews; died Aug 17, 1883 St. Andrews) daughter of English HBC man John FOULDS (born 1798 in Liverpool, Lancashire, England; died Aug 27, 1868 at St. James, Red River) and Mary FIDLER (born June 27, 1811 on Charlton Portage on the Assiniboine River; died Oct 17, 1842 at St. Johns). More information on this family can be found in the “Fidler” section of this blog. (not entered yet)
5. Mary born 1832 in NWT (Red River)
6. Robert born 1838 in NWT


Children of James Young and Isabella Stevens

1. Jane YOUNG was born July 21, 1849 in St. Clement, married William FIDLER , and died in 1916 at the age of 66

2. Louisa Rachel YOUNG (a.k.a. McLeod) was born Mar 1, 1851, married William McCORRISTER.
3. Mary Ann YOUNG (Marianne) was born Jan 9, 1853, and married on Jul 9, 1868 at St. Andrews, Thomas TAYLOR (ID#4940), a trader born in 1843 also at St. Andrews. He was baptized Jul 26, 1843 at St. John, and died Jul 14, 1875. His parents were Capt. George TAYLOR (1800-Nov 8, 1844) and Jane BRUCE (1808 – Oct 1, 1844) who was the Cree Chief PEQUIS’ daughter, adopted by Benjamin BRUCE . Mary Ann’s second husband was
4. Henry George YOUNG was born Nov 11, 1855 at Red River Settlement, baptised Dec 9, 1860, and married Apr 12, 1877 Catherine Jane TAYLOR born Nov 11, 1859 at Little Britain (St. Catherine’s) MB; died Dec 18, 1954 in Birch Hills, Saskatchewan) daughter of George TAYLOR ID#4636 (born Oct 3, 1829 in Red River) and Isabela COOPER ID#4638 (born in 1835 at Red River).
5. Isabel YOUNG born c.a. 1859
6. James YOUNG Jr. Born Jul 10, 1862, married Margaret Ann GUNN
7. John YOUNG born Jul 17, 1863, married Lydia Catherine COOPER
8. Jemima YOUNG born 1866, married Roderick MCDONALD
9. Lara YOUNG born 1868

Children of Malcolm J. MCLEOD and Isabella STEVENS

1. Malcolm J. McLeod Jr born 1874