Ottawa Lumber Kings — Alexander & Janet (Young) McDonell

December 6, 2014

Years ago Elaine sent me a newspaper from Chapeau and in that newspaper was a very interesting article about early settlers in the Chapeau and Chichester area.  Elaine would be interested in the Jewell Family and me, well I was interested in the MacDonnell Brothers that the article shared about.  Elaine is the author of the book about the deaths and burials of the St. Alphonsus Catholic Church in Chapeau and a Burns descendant.

Early Settlers...

Early Settlers…

This article mentions MacDonnell brothers who had settled at Sand Point and I became curious.  In the article above it mentions Alexander MacDonnell at Sand Point, Colin at Birchell’s du Fort*, Rory on Calumet Island and John on Allumette Island.

So in 2012, I drove into Arnprior through all the construction and found my way to the Archives which are in the basement of the public library in the middle of town. Here is the post I wrote.

Arnprior, Renfrew County, Ontario: Archives,”June 15, 2012.

After I spent several hours gathering information, I headed out and visited the Albert Street Cemetery which over a few blocks towards the Ottawa River.  This is where Alexander and Janet (Young) MacDonell were buried. On his tombstone the name is spelled McDonell.

Arnprior: Albert Street Cemetery!” June 15, 2012

Arnprior-Braeside Archives: http://www.adarchives.org/index.html

I have learned that this cemetery may have been called “Inchbuie” cemetery in the past.

To find the graves in this cemetery you can go to the website of the Grave Marker Gallery for Ontario select Eastern Ontario then Renfrew County, and then scroll down to McNab and Braeside for those cemeteries and further for the Town of Arnprior  which has pictures for the Albert Street Cemetery and click on Block A.

http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~murrayp/renfrew/index.htm

Duncan Darby MacDonald in his Book of Charts Part IV, Chart 13 the Lundie MacDonells has the brothers listed in the above article as sons of the Alexander and Janet MacDonell (1754 to 1847 both lifespans) who are buried in the St. Alexandre De Chenaux Cemetery in Clarendon Twp., Pontiac Co., Quebec that I posted about in the previous post on this blog!

To find this cemetery you need to go the Grave Marker website choose Quebec, then Pontiac and then scroll down to Clarendon Twp. which is across from Sand Point on the Quebec side of the Ottawa River.

http://www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~cangmg/quebec/pontiac/index.htm

Here is the source information for Duncan D. MacDonald’s book of genealogical charts.

Source: A collection of genealogical charts  Part-IV, 3rd Edition, ISBN O-921133-39-1.  Much of the earlier work done by Daniel F. McDonald of Bristol, Conn and other members of his family at Bridgend (Stone Villa) Lancaster.  A second edition was published in 1988 and the 3rd in 1993.  FHL#971.37 D2, book only.  

There are 15 pages for Chart 13.  I refer to Chart 13, Sheet – 3 page 724, Sheet 3-A page 725, Sheet 3-B page 726, Sheet 3-C page 727 Ancestors and Descendants of Alexander & Janet MacDonell, Sheet 3-D page 728, Sheet 3-E, page 729.

In these pages Duncan has pictures of Alexander’s home in Sand Point. I have seen the beautiful brick house up against a hill overlooking the Ottawa River and was surprised it was set back so far.  Duncan further shares about Alexander’s businesses with photos and more stories.

Ottawa Region - Canadian Government

Ottawa Region – Canadian Government

The above map is the best I can do to capture the Ottawa River and the area we are talking about. Click on it and it will get larger.  You can find Sand Point at the bottom right, Sheenboro is at the top left behind the blue control which does not work on this map because it is a jpg.  If you look hard enough you can find Calumet Island by finding Bryson on the Quebec side and go northwest. Allumette Island find Chapeau and Pembroke.  This is a topo from the Canadian Government website.

These MacDonnell brothers were called the Otttawa River MacDonnells or Lumber Kings of the Ottawa River at Sand Point.

Once again we get variations in the spelling of the surname depending on the author: MacDonell, MacDonnell, and McDonnell so be aware.

Alexander MacDonnell who married Janet Young and settled at Sand Point (Renfrew County) is referred to as the King of the Four Rivers:

He would bring the lumber down these rivers to the Ottawa River or he did a great deal of exploring of the area and rivers for lumber. This Alexander and Janet are buried in the Albert Street Cemetery in Arnprior, Ontario (1795 to 1896 both lifespans).

According to Duncan Darby MacDonald his Chart 13, Sheet 3-A page 725 he writes:

“Of the 11 brothers 6 are reported to have gone to make their mark on the “Ottawa.””  

So Alexander and Janet MacDonell natives of Knoydart, Scotland (Inverness) had the following children according to Sheets 3 and 3-A, Chart 13, Part IV. There are differences between the two sheets like the order of the children.

Children:

  1. **Archibald, m. Anna MacMillan sheet 3-B, Chart 13
  2. Hugh m. Margaret MacLean, Chart 168, Sheets 4-12 also Chart 13, sheet 3.
  3. **Angus Mor had a son James.
  4. Ronald (drowned) – He is the one buried with them in St. Alexandre Cemetery but remember there are only 3 identified burials out of a possible 100, lost.
  5. Dougald
  6. Little Alexander – This might be Alexander Roderick who died in 1851 and is buried in the family plot of the Albert Street Cemetery?
  7. **James m. Christine MacDonald, see sheet 3 of Chart 13
  8. Rory
  9. John – see sheet 3-C and 3-E of Chart 13 Calumet and Allumette Islands. This would be the John who married Flora McKinnon and then Flora McLellan. Flora McLellan and John MacDonell were the parents of Janet who married Ronald/Ranald son of Alexander John MacDonell and Ellen McPherson see sheet 5, Chart 13 page 734.  This is the chart I dispute in my post dated November 6, 2014 of this blog regarding the parentage of Mary married to Archibald.
  10. Sam – Portage du Fort
  11. Coll of Colin – 1000 acres at *Birch’s Creek, Quebec of Les Chats
  12. Penelope m. Dr. John Judge – First doctor in Pembroke, see sheet 3
  13. Alexander and (Agnes) Janet Young – Big Alex – see sheets 3, 3-A, 3-C King of the Four rivers, buried in Arnprior.
**Angus, Archie and James stayed in the Glengarry area of Ontario per the sources I have. On another source a Mary and Janet are listed – total of 15 children?
The order of the children is also different based on the 1815 emigration information at this website:  French, Scottish, Irish, German and English families of James and Deborah McDonald:  http://wc.rootsweb.ancestry.com/cgi-bin/igm.cgi?op=GET&db=ranaldthecalf&id=I17291

There is disagreement as to how many sons there actually where, some believe there were 12; you can see that I have 13 children listed.

When I visited Arnprior in 2012, I collected articles about this Alexander MacDonnell who settled at Sand Point (above Arnprior) on the Ottawa River.

Source: History of Early Ottawa, from the Ottawa Journal dated Saturday, February 7, 1925, by a H.R. Morgan. Copied from a newspaper article in the files of the Arnprior & District Museum by James E. Isbester, 1987. About nine typed pages of which I only copied some.  

Sand Point – vanished and all but forgotten is the prominence which it enjoyed at the time when it was the western terminus of the Canada Central and Brockville and Ottawa Railroads, when it was the gateway to the Upper Ottawa region and when practically all the trade and traffic destined for that area passed through its depots and warehouses.”

Alexander McDonell and the family to which he belonged…where fishermen in their native Scotland…they emigrated in 1815 and established themselves in the Township of Drummond, not far from Perth. After the lapse of a few years, the great portion of the family left that neighborhood and betook themselves to Glengarry…whence the final move to Sand Point was made by six of the sons and two the daughters.

Alexander apparently did not take at all kindly to the primitive method of agriculture which obtained in Drummond and at an early age entered the lumbering trade upon the river Trent, when he drifted to the Ottawa. There he gained further experience and carried on a great deal of exploration. Perth was at this period the commercial metropolis of the district, and it was upon his visits to that town that he fell in with Chief McNab and the latter’s suggestion about the year 1824, accompanied him as guide upon his trip to the Ottawa to choose a site for his memorable colony of Highlanders.  This is not the Township of McNab.  http://clan-macnab.com/the-notorious-chief/

Entering the lumbering trade:

It was not long after this that Alexander McDonell embarked upon lumber in his own behalf and his first raft of red pine timber was made from trees cut down immediately in rear of the place which he had decided upon as his future abode. This was Sand Point where he cleared a farm, built a dwelling house and remained until the time of his death. 

This article goes on to describes his interactions with the Indians and the Hudson’s Bay Company to bring timber down the Bonnechere. His exploration of the rivers in the area. The article states the government introduced timber licensing and in 1826-27 McDonell made the first raft of red pine timber ever taken from Mud Lake upon the Bonnechere.

In 1830, in Montreal, Mr. McDonell was married to Miss Janet Young, sister of the Hon. John Young, and not long afterwards a new house was built. 

Here is another source I found that has some interesting information:

Source:  Sand Point, Ontario c. 1824 to 1994, by Dalton Appleby 6/4/1994. Not sure how many pages for this manuscript but it may be a good 10. I copied some but not all. 

What is presented here is a brief summary of the above source found at the Arnprior-Braeside Archives in Arnprior which is fairly detailed.

The village of Sand Point, is situated six miles west of Arnprior, at Concession XIII, Lots 18 & 19 in the Township of McNab, Renfrew County. It is on the south shore of Chats Lake on the mighty Ottawa River.

It got its beginning, long before roads, railways and telephones existed west of Ottawa, in the 1820’s. Alexander MacDonnell a Scotsman from Glengarry County, Ontario chose the location as his headquarters for exploring timber rights in the area. 

MacDonnell House in Sand Point

MacDonnell House in Sand Point

He built a temporary headquarters and later built a permanent complex on higher ground above the wharf in the 1850s. It consisted of a commercial, residential, entertainment complex (Chats Lake House), a long narrow office building and a large prestigious looking residence for himself, all faced with limestone blocks. The arrival of the railroad in the 1860s gave a tremendous boost to the expansion of the area.  It included boarding houses, a hotel, a school, two churches, two cemeteries, two grocery stores, a dairy, a stave factory, a powder factory, a limekiln, a shipyard, tenements, a cement ferry dock… 

MacDonnell donated the land for the Catholic church, the public school, the Presbyterian Church and no doubt other structures. 

34 The Youngs, of Montreal Harbour fame, and the MacDonnells were related by marriage. Alexander married Janet Young. Alexander entice the Youngs to come to Sand Point to help him to develop the village. 

35 MacDonnell enticed the McDonalds from Glengarry County, related by marriage to come and run his commercial enterprise in the 1860s. Catholic Scotsman Ronald McDonald, his wife Penelope and their two children Flora Ann born in 1859 and John Ronald (John R.) born in 1860 arrived in Sand Point some time after the children were born and before the 1871 census which lists them in McNab Township. They came from Lochiel, Glengarry Co,, Ontario. Ronald was born in Inverness Shire, Scotland in 1814 or 15….

John R. sister Flora married John Brennan and lived in the MacDonnell house. John R. married Ellen Toner of Portage Du Fort in the 90s. Her father Captain Toner used to doc at the wooden wharf…Ellen and John R. had at least five children: Patsy, Claire, Vita and Flora.

MacDonnell-McDonald Family tree

MacDonnell Tree

MacDonnell Tree

There is so much more about this man’s business interests and family in the sources above but not a lot about his family connections.

From the above sources there are a lot of places to start doing research on this family. Also, to widen the net of your research by expanding the geography of your search. Montreal is mentioned for the marriage and the Youngs apparently were prominent, The last article describes census for 1851, 1871, 1881, 1901 for McNab Township which might be interesting to take a look at. Of course petitions and land records for Renfrew and Pontiac (Quebec notaries).

Mr. MacDonald’s charts point to Beckwith and Drummond Twps. in Lanark, formerly the Bathhurst District and one could go back even further in the records of the area, if they exist?

My curiosity has been satisfied.  I was interested in this Lumber King Alexander MacDonell’s family connections. It seems I have at least found some sources that can lead to more research.

Keeping all this in mind, my interest now returns to my family and the origins of Alexander John MacDonell and Ellen McPherson and their daughter Mary who married Archibald MacDonell.  So I will be studying Chart 13, Sheet 5, Part IV quite a lot and disputing Mr. MacDonald’s lineages as necessary.

*Birchell Du Fort – where is this location in the Ottawa area? If you know please help me out and leave a comment.  It might have something to do with Chats Lake a part of the Ottawa River between Sand Point and Ottawa City?  Another variation on Mr. MacDonald’s chart was Birch’s Creek Les Chats Quebec.  Modern maps are not helping.

John Mor MacDonell husband to Flora McLellan…

November 13, 2014

In past post I have shared about Ronald and his wife Janet’s story.  She is the daughter of John Mor MacDonell and Flora McLlellan and he is the son of Alexander John MacDonell and Ellen McPherson. This makes Ronald (Ranald) a great great uncle.

Here are the posts I wrote:

  • Revisiting: Ronald (Ranald) and Janet McDonell – The Lundie Family Connection!, August 26, 2014
  • The Ronald McDonell & Janet McDonell Family, September 29, 2011

Mr. Perrault who commented on my the Revisiting post told me that there was a burial for John McDonald at St. Alphonsus.  He was correct, I was so busy getting ready for my trip to Ontario and Quebec that I had tucked away the record on my computer. His comments reminded me of this and so I share it with you.  I found it the other day.  So here is a transcription of the St. Alphonsus Church record.

Burial of John McDonnell

Burial of John McDonnell

John Mor MacDonell and his 2nd wife Flora McLellan

S3 John McDonell, St. Alphonse, Allumette Island, 13 February 1861.  I the undersigned priest of this mission have interred in the cemetery of this mission the body of John McDonell aged sixty-three years died 7th inst. Husband of Flora McLellan present Samuel McDonell, and James McDonell who have not signed.  Jas C. Lynch, Priest.

You can find a shortened version of the burial information:

#1324 McDonell, John 06 Feb 1861 buried 13 Feb. 1861 63 y. h/o Flora McLellon, 89

Source:  St. Alphonsus of Liquori, Chapeau, Allumette Island, Pontiac County, Quebec. Cemetery Inscriptions and Burial Records, by Elaine Brown.

I visited the St. Alphonsus Cemetery (old) in 2012 and stopped by several times but I did not find a tombstone for either John nor Flora but then I was not looking for this couple. There were a lot of missing stones, broken stones and more.

http://macdonellfamily.wordpress.com/2012/05/28/touring-the-upper-ottawa-river-st-alphonsus-of-liguori/

In the 1871 Canadian Census, I found a Flora McDonell living in Chichester, Pontiac Co., Quebec with a Allan and James McDonell ages 34 and 33. She was 62 years old which means she would have been born in 1809. If she is the correct Flora she was 18 years old when she married John in 1827, this date may be in the Perth Marriages, but I have not check them as this time.  She was born in Scotland and is Roman Catholic.  I have not been able to find a Flora in other census at this time.


The Alexander & Ellen Lineage vs. the Angus and Janet Lineage

November 6, 2014

When I started researching my father’s MacDonald surname, I had quite a bit of material to use to get started.  I had two family trees done by my Great Aunt Nellie, sister to my grandfather Ronald (R.S.).  The charts were dated 1932. I had the genealogical notes done by my Aunt Miriam a sister to my father.  I had pedigree charts and my own knowledge of my family.

I started at the beginning and began building and researching my family studying the life of my grandfather Ronald, his marriage to Grace, his siblings and their lives and also the lives of his parents Archibald and Mary McDonell. I was able to build a family history back to Archie and Mary to their marriage in 1861 and the Canadian census of 1861.  I have presented my findings in this blog about the lives my great grandparents Archie and Mary McDonell.

Using Nellie’s charts I was able to find many of the people on Mary’s side of the chart.  I used the census and the St. Alphonsus Catholic Church records in Chapeau.  All of the records pointed to Alexander John MacDonell and Ellen McPherson as the parents of the individuals I have featured on this blog in past posts.  Archie’s side of the family has only revealed one brother, a John McDonell who was living in Sheenboro.  There is a chart of his side of the family done by Nellie.

Mr. Duncan Darby MacDonald’s charts on pages 721 to 735 and specifically the one on page 73A, Chart 13 Sheet 5 – The Kennedy Connection, from his book PART IV is different than Aunt Nellie’s chart. Here is the detail of that book.

A collection of genealogical charts  Part-IV, 3rd Edition, ISBN O-921133-39-1.  Much of the earlier work done by Daniel F. McDonald of Bristol, Conn and other members of his family at Bridgend (Stone Villa) Lancaster.  A second edition was published in 1988 and the 3rd in 1993.  FHL#971.37 D2, book only.  

Here is a copy of my Aunt Nellie’s chart, which I have featured in a past post, just click on the photo below and it will open. There is a series of these posts in which I discuss both sides of the family and my findings.  You can find the posts by search for Nellie’s Charts.  This is the specific post I will be discuss in here, Post dated July 21, 2011 Nellie’s Charts – Her Mother Mary McDonell’s Family!

Alex. Ban McDonell Family Chart

Alex. Ban McDonell Family Chart

Now I cannot republish Mr. MacDonald’s chart here so I will have to recreate it.  He has for Mary, Rachel and Margaret the parents as Angus and Janet McDonell. There is also a brother named Angus.  It is this man who he indicates married Janet Catherine MacDonell.  After his death, she remarried to Thomas Payne.

See this post dated October 20, 2011 – Jennette Catherine McDonell and Her Two Marriages.

Angus & Janet MacDonell

Angus & Janet MacDonell Family per Duncan D. MacDonald Chart 13, Sheet 5 Part IV

You can see my two great grandparents are the pink boxes on the right.  This means, according to Duncan D. MacDonald, that Mary was not a sister to Jennette.  It also means that she is not a sister to Ronald who married Janet, a daughter of John Mor MacDonell and Flora McLellan members of the Lundie MacDonell family.

See my post dated August 26, 2014 “Revisiting: The Ronald (Ranald) and Janet McDonell – The Lundie Family Connection!”

Here is an expanded version showing some descendants.  On the left in the 2nd row Angus, a son, married to Jennette Catherine MacDonell. On the right are my great grandparents Mary and Archibald. Unfortunately, Duncan D. MacDonald does not give any lineage for Archibald.  He does for Alexander John MacDonell and has his wife Ellen McPherson with no lineage.

Duncan MacDonald's version of the Angus & Janet Tree

Duncan MacDonald’s version of the Angus & Janet Tree

Mr. MacDonald would have the following children for Alexander John MacDonell and Ellen McPherson, just click and it will open. Remember to hit your back button to return.

Alex and Ellen as per Duncan's Chart

Alex and Ellen as per Duncan’s Chart

So what is the real story? Who is my great-grandmother Mary McDonell a daughter of?  She is a daughter of Alexander John and Ellen McPherson per her marriage record to Archibald McDonell, from the St. Alphonsus Catholic Church in Chapeau, Pontiac Co., Quebec.

A. McDonell & M. McDonell Marriage

A. McDonell & M. McDonell Marriage

It reads as follows: .

 #M51, #1029798, The marriage of Archibald and Mary McDonell on April 9, 1861 at the St. Alphonse Church.

“St. Alphonse Allumette Island 9 April 1861 after the banns of marriage have beene once published at the prone (?) for mass in this mission between Archibald McDonell of this mission son of age of John McDonell and of Sara McDonell on the one part and Mary McDonell of this mission daughter of age of Alexander John McDonell and Ellen McPherson on the other part – a dispensation of two of the banns of marriage have been granted by us in virtue of a power accorded to us by his Lordship the Right Revd Doctor _______Bishop of Bytown and wherein no impediment have been discovered we the undersigned Priest of this mission have received their mutual consent to marriage and have giving them the mutual benediction at Saint Alphonse Allumette Island on this date aforesaids and on the presence of John McDonell and Rachael McDonell who have not signed.” [____ Lynch,] Priest.

In the 1861 Canadian Census it reads for line 37, pg 2, Allumette Twp., FHL Film #0517406, Dist. 415 through 430E,

Line 36 Allumette Twp. Rachel McDonell, born LC, Catholic, age 23, female. Line 37 Alex Jno McDonell, Farmer, born U.C., Catholic, age 66 male; line 38 Mary McDonell born U.C., Catholic, age 25, female; Line 39, Duncan McDonald, Laborer, born L.C., Catholic, age 19, male; Line 40, Finlay McDonell born L.C., Catholic, age 16, male.

So here we have a Alex Jno McDonell with Rachel, Mary, Duncan and Finlay.  This census does not show a relationship but they are grouped so we can assume some sort of connection.

Rachel died on 8 January 1881.  She is listed in the 1876 to 1886 Register of the St. Alphonse book. She is S1, Her entry reads:

S1 Rachel McDonell, St. Alphonse All. Island, 11 Aug 1881 We the undersigned [    ] have interred the body of Rachel McDonell died 8th Inst. parents were Alexander John McDonell and Ellen McPherson, aged 40 years. Present Angus McDonell and Alexander McDonell who have not signed.  Ja. C. Lynch, Priest. 

Based on these documents, I do not think that Mary or Rachel are the daughters of Angus and Janet.  They are the daughters of Alexander John McDonell and Ellen McPherson as my Aunt Nellie has indicated in her chart.  Other names on the chart all follow the lineage to Alexander John and Ellen.

What about Margaret, well she is a daughter of Angus and Janet. Again in the St. Alphonse church records 1859 to 1876 there is an entry for a death:

Margaret McDonnell, #S52, St. Alphonse Allumette Island, Dec, 23, 1862. We the undersigned priest of this mission have interred in the cemetery of this mission the body of Margaret died yesterday, aged 20 years daughter of Angus McDonell and Genet McDonell.  Present John Connoly & Donald McDonell who have not signed.  J.A. Lynch, Priest. 

I looks like Angus and Margaret were siblings and children of Angus and Janet/Genet.

From the book by Elaine Brown on the St. Alphonse Church there is these entries we see that Angus J. McDonald died in 1866 and the children above are not listed with an Angus, but with Alexander Jno. McDonell.

#A76, Row 3, pg. 4 Cemetery Inscriptions: Payne McDonald, 1) Janet C./McDonald/wife of/Thomas/Payne/died Sep 2, 1916/aged 84 y’rs/rest in peace/PAYNE; 2) Angus J/McDonald/died/July 15, 1866/aged 37 y”rs/rest in peace/

In my post dated March 23, 2010 The Records of the St. Alphonse Church. When I did the research on my family these records were not yet online at Ancestry.com and Family Search and even though the search engine is there it would not give me Angus and Jeanette’s marriage, I had to do it the hard way scrolling through the pages on Ancestry.  I knew the film number and the date so that helped.  Here is their marriage.

Baptisms, Marrriages & Burial Registers of the St. Alphonsus Catholic Church FHL#1029797, 1846-1858 with an additional index 1846-1876,  #M10, FHL#1029797. 

St. Liguoris, Allumette Island, September 26, 1851 after the banns of marriage have been twice published at the [       ] in this mission between Angus J. McDonell of this mission, son of age of Angus McDonell and Janet McDonell on the one part and Jennette McDonell daughter of age of  [  ] John McDonell and Ellen McPherson on the other part. A dispensation of the banns of marriage have been given by us in [     ] of a power accorded to us by his lordship the Right Rev. Doctor Guigues Bishop of Bytown and whereas no impediment having been discovered we the undersigned priest of this mission have received their mutual consent to the marriage and given the nuptial benediction at Liguori Allumette Island on the day of the date above mentioned and in the presence of Thomas McDonell, William McDonell and Catherine McDonell who have not signed.  Jas. Lynch, Priest. 

Unfortunately, Mr. Duncan D. MacDonald does not give sources and if he does only in some places on his charts. I am glad that I have found this information and can now study it and do more digging into the records.

I think I will continue to believe that my Great Aunt Nellie’s chart is correct.

 


Update on Janet McDonell and her life after Ronald

August 31, 2014

In the post about Janet and Ronald that I wrote on September 29, 2011, I didn’t mention Janet’s second marriage to Thomas Poupore.  I did an update to the post indicating that omission.

As a result, I could not help myself and decided to do some further research on what happened to Janet McDonell the widow of Ronald.

Janet remarried to Thomas Poupore on the 12th of February 1872 in the St. Alphonse and that record is in the 1859 to 1876 Register of the St. Alphonse Church at Chapeau, Ile Aux Allumettes, Marriage 11. The record covers two pages of the register.  This collection called the Drouin is available at Ancestry.com and Family Search and there is the Drouin Institute.

First page of the Marriage of Thomas Poupore and Janet McDonell

First page of the Marriage of Thomas Poupore and Janet McDonell

” The St. Alphonse Allumette Island, 12 Febry, 72. Whereas a dispensation of three of the Banns of Marriage has being granted by us in virtue of the power accorded to us by his Lordship the Right Rev. Doctor Guigues Bishop of Ottawa to Thomas Poupore of this mission son of age of John B. Poupore and Rosy Boyd now deceased of the one part and Janet McDonald widow of deceased Ronald McDonald on the other part no impediment having been discovered we the undersigned Priest of this mission have received their mutual consent to marriage and have given them the nuptuals benediction at St. Alphonses Allumette Island on the day and date aforesaid in presence of Denis Lynch and Annie Kell Kelly who have not signed.  E. Marcellin, Priest.”

This couple appears in the 1881 Canadian Census for Pontiac County, page 4, Dist. 98, Quebec,  on line 3 through 6.

14/14 Poupore, Thomas M, 50, 1, O, Catholic, French, Farmer, Married

Poupore, Janette, F, 49, 1, O, Catholic, Scotch, Married. 

Poupore, Rosa, F, 8, 1, Q, Catholic, French. 

Poupore, Thomas, M, 6, 1, Q, Catholic, French

The baptism of Rose Anne took placed on the 6th of July 1872.  It is recorded in the records of the St. Alphonse Church 1859 to 1876, Ille Aux Allumette, Chapeau, St. Alphonse, Pontiac, Q. B84.

St. Alphonse Allumette Island 6th July 1872 we the undersigned Priest of this mission baptized Rose Anne [Mary] 9th ultimo of the lawful marriage of Thos. Poupore and Janet McDonell the sponsors were Joseph Wheelan and Isabella Poupore who have not signed. Ed Marcella. 

Unfortunately, we find Thomas listed as a widow in the 1891 Canadian Census, Province Quebec, page 12, District # [170] Pontiac, Chichester Twp., enumerated 12 day of April, 1891 by H. Landon.

Line 1 thru 3, Poupore, Thomas, M, 64, W, Ont., French Canadian 1, POB Father Quebec, Mother Ontario, RC, Farmer, can read and write. Poupore, Rose, F, 18, S, born Quebec, FrCa, Father born Ont, mother Que, RC, can read and write. Poupore, Thomas, M, 16, S, born Que, FrCa, Father born Ont, mother Que, RC, can read and write.  

Janet died on the 19th day of November 1890.

St. Alphonse Church Records, 1890 to 1893 Ile Aux Allumettes Chapeau, St. Alphonse of Pontiac Quebec.  S.37 Jeannet McDonnell, page. 23.

On this nineteenth day of November one thousand eight hundred and ninety we the undersigned parish priest have interred in the R.C. Cemetery of this parish, the body of Jeannette McDonnell who died on the seventeeth instant aged about fifty eight years, wife of Thomas Poupore, of this parish. Were present, Eugene Bergeron, laborer, and William Holden, farmer of this parish who declared they could not sign.  D. Leduc, PP. 

Thomas appears in the 1901 Canadian Census with his son Thomas and in the 1911 census he is still with his son Thomas who has married to Ethel and they have Lawrence, Rayburn, Joseph E. and Thomas the Father who is now 86 years old. Below Thomas is Allan MacDonald a border who is 65 years old. Is it possible this is Janet’s brother?

St. Alphonse Church records 1897 Ile Des Alumettes, Paroisse St. Joseph, Pontiac, Registres Au Greffe Campbell’s Bay, # S6, On the Twenty-fifth day of February one thousand eight hundred and ninety-seven, we, the undersigned priest have interred in the RC Cemetery of this parish the body of Rose Mary, who died on the twenty third instant, aged twenty four years and eight months and half, daughter of Thomas Poupore and of late Jeannette McDonnell, of this parish. Were present Thomas Poupore and Thomas John Poupore, who signed with us. 

I believe that this Thomas Poupore died probably about 1914.  I have to do a little more studying of the records to be sure.  Here are the cemetery records.

A 56 Poupore and McDonald (1) in memory of Janet McDonald wife of Thomas Poupore, died Nov 17, 1890 aged 58 y’rs, rest in peace. and Rose Mary Poupore, Feb 23, 1897 aged 24 y’rs & 8 mo’s, rest in peace.

#1341 Jeannett McDonnell, 17 Nov. 1890, 19 Nov. 189, 586 w/o Thomas Poupore, Eugene Berjeron, William Holden. Note:  I had place a ? by Janet’s name.  The mystery is solved.

#1631, Poupore, Rose Mary 23 Feb 1897,, 25 Feb 1897 24 y 8 1/2 m. d/o Thomas Poupore & late Jeannette McDonnell, Thomas Poupore, Thomas John Poupore.

Here is an interesting entry in this book? McClellan or McLellan?

#1302 McClellan, Flora, died 06 Nov. 1881, buried 8 Nov. 1881, 76 yr wid/o John McDonnell, present William McDonell, Joseph Bergeron.  

From the Book:  St. Alphonsus of Ligouri, Chapeau, Allumette Island, Pontiac Co., Quebec,  Cemetery Inscriptions and Burial Records, by Elaine Brown, March 2000. 

Go here for some of the tombstones for this family.

http://www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~cangmg/quebec/pontiac/allumett/stalplig/l-to-z/page0004.htm

I think is is very interesting the different spellings of Janet’s name:  Jeanette, Janet, Jeanett and I have seen Genet and Jennette. I have had trouble placing the families when the spellings are so varied. Handwritting is also a challenge to decipher.  You have to collect the different versions and this is evident here.


Some Sheenboro Families that migrated to Saskatchewan…

August 1, 2014

When I was traveling in the Upper Ottawa Valley on both the Ontario (Renfrew) and Quebec (Pontiac) sides in 2012,  a nice lady found and commented on this blog.  She was very enthusiastic and was involved with the Sheenboro history.  Unfortunately, I had already returned to my home and did not get a chance to meet her.  We have since them communicated via email and more.

She said she was related to everyone in Sheenboro, Pontiac Co., Quebec and she is very interested in the families, genealogy and the history of the people of the Upper Ottawa River including Sheenboro, Chichester and Chapeau on Allumette Island.  She had also visited many of the cemeteries and taken photos of them calling it her Stones and Bones tour.

Her name is Linda Berube Inch and she is on Facebook and Ancestry and is also the administrator of the Facebook group titled:  The League to Preserve Timmins Heritage.  Apparently a lot of people from the Sheenboro and Chichester area migrated to Timmins. If you are like me, Timmins is north of Sudbury, Ontario which is north of Toronto.  Linda has many photographs and interesting documents and information on this page so you might want to check it out.

She has graciously given me permission to share this photo which she presented on her Facebook page.

Sheenboro Families

Sheenboro Families

Unfortunately the photo is very difficult to read so with help from Linda this is what we came up with:

“Sheenboro natives who left Sheenboro (in order to) establish a new colony called Sennetville. The families that followed him (?) (were..) T.J. McGuire, James Devine, Thomas Burke, and Hugh Downey. Individuals (included) Simon Sullivan, Michael Hayes, Harold Hayes, Bridget Masterson, Angus MacDonald ( Ida Perreault) married Angus MacDonald and later returned to Sheenboro (Ida was born January 27 1883 and returned on July 12 1904. Jenny and M– Slattery became nuns out west. Margaret Meehan became a nurse in the west. The M Slattery could be Mary.”

I am particularly interested in Hugh Downey and his wife Theresa McDonell who was the daughter of John McDonell and Julia Elizabeth Lacour (Ricard/Tebeau/Thibault).  The Angus MacDonald mentioned married Ida Perrault and was a son of John and Julia.

John looks very promising as the brother of my great-grandfather Archibald McDonell who lived in Chichester and was the Culbute Lockmaster.

I have been trying to find more of Archibald’s siblings but have not been as successful as I have with his wife my great-grandmother Mary McDonell.  Yes she was a McDonell as well. This whole blog is about these families and the ones connected to them.

You will find past posts on this blog about Hugh Downey and Theresa and the others I have mentioned.  Here are several posts you may want to study. I am still trying to make sure the lineage is correct so if you have information please comment.  Just go to the side bar on this blog and you can search for them either in the Archives or in the Categories.

 The Migrations of the Downeys and MacDonalds, dated June 5, 2014

A Discovery:  Archie’s brother John McDonell, living next door in Sheen?, dated March 31, 2012.

 My curiosity being what it is, I tried to find information about this Sennetville Colony mentioned above but cannot bring up anything of significance online. The Archives of Saskatchewan has a very nice website devoted to settlement but no mention of this group of settlers at Sennetville:   http://www.saskarchives.com/sasksettlement/

UPDATE 8/1/2014 at 10:03 am – From the Encyclopedia of Saskatchewan we find the Irish Colony called Sinnett after the Fr John Sinnett :   http://esask.uregina.ca/entry/irish_settlements.html  Try Fr. Sinnett in Saskatchewan, Irish Settlements etc. in Google.  Very interesting. 

If you have any information about any of these families and their migrations, please contact us by leaving a comment on this blog, both Linda and I would  love to hear from you.

NOTE:  I have learned about the nature of Canadian research and after traveling in Ontario and Quebec that you need to increase your search area (geographically) for your ancestors.  They were a lot more mobile then we think and you just might find them in Ottawa or Montreal, or further out West or even into the USA like my family did in 1901.  Remember that the area of Sheenboro, Chichester, Waltham, Chapeau (Allumette Island) and Pembroke was a thriving mining, lumbering area when our ancestors were there but by 1900 it changed and now it is a sleepy neighborhood community. I know, I traveled it and you can read about my travels in the posts titled Tour/Touring of the Upper Ottawa Valley which includes Renfrew and Pontiac Counties.

UPDATES 8/3/2014: a book to check into:  The way things were…LeRoy and District Saskatchewan Centennial 1905-2005, Vol. #2 under Loyola School District #1910. The History of Loyola, it was the school in the hamlet of Sinnett. 


A 1848 Group Land Petition from Waltham, Sheen, Mansfield & Chichester

July 10, 2014

In 2012, when I traveled to Canada, I visited the Libraries and Archives in Ottawa for one day. Before I went, I of course studied the land petition indexes online at the Libraries and Archives website, and found a very interesting piece of documentation.

Upper Canada Land Petitions 1763-1865 Index:

  • Name:  Inhabitants of Waltham, Sheen, Mansfield & Chichester
  • Place:  Waltham, Sheen, Mansfield, Chichester
  • Year:   1848
  • Volume: 540A
  • Bundle: W4
  • Petition: 172
  • Microfilm: C-2964
  • Reference: RG 1 L3

From this information I pulled the microfilm while in the research room and took a look and photos.

Apparently the inhabitants of the whole community at that time in 1848, banded together and signed a petition for a land patent.  I share this because I am trying to get back as far as possible in the Chichester, Chapeau, Sheen area with the inhabitants.

Unfortunately, the microfilm is dark, fuzzy and difficult to read and interpret.  It looks like there were two letters submitted and a decision by the council for 3 shilllings.

Here as at least one of them with the list of the petitioners and again I did my best:

Inhabitants petition 1848

Inhabitants petition 1848 – a portion of one of the letters written in the file

1482 Petition – Inhabitants of Sheen C. _______

For a reduction in the price of their lands  (some intials) 18th April 1848

To his Excellency the Right and Honorable ___ Everts of Elgin and _____Governor General of the British North America……

In Council.  The petition of the undersigned settlers of the Township of Sheen county of Ottawa Canada East Hunbley Heweth. 

That your petitioners generally, recently migrated from Great Britain and Ireland, that from the great depression in the Lumber trade, the partial and in many cases total failure of the potatoe crop, has plaud your petitioners with their large, and helpless families, into circumstances from which, many years of prosperity will not essace from their recollection.

That the land we now occupy has been surveyed during the past winter – the ___ discription of  soil in which it has pleased Providence to cast our lot, and the peculiar circumstances of our situation, in this remote section of the Province, combined with the fact that all the merchandable timber has, from time to time, been taken away, by lumbermen, and others, under our possessing of little value.  

That our petitioners would therefore suggest, and pray for a reduction in the price of land, your petitioners are of the opinion  3 k p acre is the utmost value of that which they ___and under the  made favorably circumstances, the utmost they will be able to pay.  And as in duly bound, your petitioners will even pray. 

I transcribed these names to the best of my ability but I could be incorrect.  Some names might be French and I am not familiar with them and the person who transcribed the names didn’t spell well. I am particularly interested in the Ronald Roy McDonald.

  • 1. James W. Juston
  • 2. Daniel Ferguson
  • 3. Patrick [   ] Flinn
  • 4. John Murray
  • 5. Alex McGilverey
  • 6. Jonathan Perrault
  • 7.  Thomas Maher
  • 8.  Edward Rennick Resnick
  • 9.  ______ Tracey
  • 10. Ranald Roy McDonald
  • 11.  Tim Crinaw
  • 12. H….S. __________
  • 13. David Ferguson
  • 14. ________
  • 15. John Ferguson
  • 16. John Downee
  • 17. Richard Michael Hayes
  • 18. Owen Levine
  • 19. Thomas Harington
  • 20. Ra___Oatchern Rafrared Oatchern
  • 21. John Ferguson
  • 22. John McCormick
  • 23.  David Ferguson
  • 24. John Sturis
  • 25. Charles Hutchison
  • 26. John Wall or Sewll
  • 27. Mathe Ryng
  • 28. Peter Costille
  • 29. Gory Mars
  • 30. Richard Mackey
  • 31. John Walchome
  • 32. James ____
  • 33. Patrick Kelly
  • 34. Richard O’Brien
  • 35. Bryan Goletere
  • 36. George McKnay
  • 37. Edward Kelly
  • 38. Rutt Patt Bray
  • 39. William ____________
  • 40. Patrick Matheson
  • 41. Michl Michelson
  • 42. James Walker
  • 43. Samuel Hutchinson
  • 44. Patrick Kelly
  • 45. Thomas Kelly

UPDATE 12/17/2014:  In September 2014, I was able to obtain another copy at the Archives of Ontario of this petition and have transcribed more of what was in the file.  See my 12/17/2014 posted titled:  Revisiting the Waltham, Sheen, Mansfield & Chichester petition of 1848.  Note that anything in read is an an attempt at updating.  Unfortunately the actual petition is still difficult to read.  

If you would like a copy of this file, leave a comment and we can make arrangements for me to send you one.  It will be difficult to read.  On the other hand, if you know of this petition and have a better transcription I would be very interested.  Thanks.


Sarah M. (Burns) McDonald passes!

October 25, 2012

Sarah’s Tombstone

Jack had died in December of 1949 and Sarah, his wife, followed just shy of two years.  They are both buried in the St. Thomas Cemetery in International Falls.  This cemetery is part of the Forest Lawn Cemetery and there is a link to it under Minnesota Links on the right side of this blog.  They have the burials online.

Jack and Sarah appear in the 1930 U.S. Census living in International Falls, Koochiching County,  Minnesota with their daughter Mary C. McDonald.  It was Mary who cared for both of them at the end of their lives.

John and Sarah McDonald 1930 Census

Sixth Street, line 6, 903, 247, 271, McDonald, John A. Head, 0, $3000., M, W, 60, M. 32, no, yes, Canada English, Father and Mother Canada-English, English, 00, 43, 1901, NA, yes, Janitor, Public School, 6×44, w, yes, no. McDonald, Sarah, wife – H, F, W, 56, M, 28, no, yes, Canada-English, Father Northern Ireland, Mother Irish Free State, English, 00, 43, 1901, NA, yes, none. McDonald, Mary C., daughter, F, W, 17, S, yes, yes, Minnesota, Parents Canada-English, 64, 43 0, yes, none.

Source:  John McDonald Family, 1930 U.S. Federal Census, International Falls, Koochiching Co., Minnesota, Third (Part of) Block No. 56  lines 1-5, Block no. 55 lines 6 to 50. RD#36-21, SD#2, Sht #13A (154), enumerated April 11, 1930, Carl. V. Linsten.

Ten years later they are still a family of three:

Sixth Street, Line 56, 903, 49, 0, 2500, no, McDonald, John A., Head, M, W, 71, M, no, 4, Canada-English, NA, same house, blank for parents, yes – – – -, 60, Janitor, Public High School, GW, 52, 1800, no. McDonald, Sarah, wife, F, W, 65, M, no, 5, Canada-English, NA same house, blank for parents, no, no, no, no. H, o , o, no. McDonald, Mary, daughter, F, W, 27, S, no, H-4, Minnesota, same house, blank for parents, yes – – -, Bookkeeper, County Treasurer’s office, GW, 52, 932, no.

Source:  John A. McDonald Family, 1940 U.S. Federal Census, International Falls, Koochiching Co., Minnesota, Ward #3, SD# 12, ED# 36-198, Sht# 2B, enumerated on April 4, 1940, Dorothy P. Barkovic.

Here is the Death certificate for Sarah.

Sarah’s Death Certificate

Sarah was a resident for 50 years in International Falls, MN, died at the Falls Memorial Hospital, lived at 903 6th St., died Oct 25, 1951, female, white, widowed, date of birth Feb 18, 1874, age 77 yrs., housekeeper, owns own home, born in Canada, citizen of the USA. Father George Burns, mother Katherine Burns, spouse John A. McDonald #4201. Did not serve in armed forces, no SS#, informant was the Memorial Hospital in International Falls. Died of congestive heart failure and coronary sclerosis, no autopsy. Burial on Oct 27, 1951 at St. Thomas Cemetery in International Falls, MN, filed Oct. 27, 1951. Handled by Green Mortuary, International Falls, MN.

Source:  Sarah McDonald, Certificate of Death #7429, Oct. 25, 1951, Minnesota Department of Health, Division of Vital Statistics, FHL#2139363. 

Appearing in The Daily Journal, International Falls, Friday, October 26, 1951 is an article about Sarah.

Sarah Burns McDonald “Mrs. McDonald”

Sarah McDonald, City Resident Since 1904, Dies. Mrs. Sarah MacDonald, a resident of International Falls since 1904, died late Thursday in Memorial hospital following a year of illness. She was 77. Death was attributed to heart ailment. The deceased was the widow of J.A. (Jack) McDonald, one-time mayor of the Falls. One daughter,  Mrs. Gilbert (Mary) Louiseau —-Sixth St. survives. Funeral services are set for 8 am Saturday in St. Thomas church with Fr. Edward Lamontagne officiating. Interment will be in St. Thomas cemetery. The Rosary will be recited at 8 pm today in the Green Mortuary chapel. Mrs. McDonald, the former Sarah Burns, was born Feb. 18, 1874 in eastern Canada and moved to the United States immediately following her marriage in 1901. The couple lived in Bemidji before moving to the Border City. The late husband of the deceased served as mayor of International Falls from 1922-24 and was long active in municipal and fire department affairs. He was employed as engineer-custodian of Alexander Baker school for 32 years. Mr. McDonald died Dec. 11, 1949.

This is what Sarah’s daughter said about her mother when I visited her in 2000:

Her mother came from Pembroke, Ontario, Canada. She remembers going back to visit her grandmother Catherine who lived in a big brick house in Pembroke with her son whom Mary called “Uncle George.” Mary said that George was wealthy. Sarah was very social and she kept a good home and always had help around the house. Sarah was known as Mrs. McDonald, probably a gesture of respect. Her mother would cook and set a nice table. Jack and Sarah’s home was a social place for the town, people were always coming over and stopping by.

The spelling of Sarah’s middle name was shown as “Mariah” in the Koochiching County Courthouse records.

Sarah was a member of a very well-known and large family in the Pembroke,  Renfrew County, Ontario and Chichester, Chapeau areas of Pontiac County in Quebec.  They were the Burns family and my friend and almost cousin Elaine Burns Brown has featured them on her website at:  http://www.personainternet.com/etbrown/  I also have this under my links specifically:  Family History Websites of Interest on the right side of this blog.  I highly recommend that you go there and study her website it covers Burns, Hughes, Somerville, Gentle and also McDonald and more.


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