02 December 2012

December Ancestors

For the sake of brief entries, I am not footnoting the facts in this ongoing memorial. Sources have been noted either in other blog posts or in my family history books.

8 December 1871 Jessie Isabella McFadyen was born in Provincetown, Massachusetts, the daughter of John McFadyen and Isabella Campbell; she was their second child and first daughter. Her parents were Cape Breton natives who sailed to "the Boston states" as an interim step toward their final destination: the Canadian prairies. Her father worked in Provincetown for a few years to finance the remainder of the trip. And indeed young Jessie Isabella (known as Belle) and her brother Hector would find themselves in Oakbank, Manitoba, three years later. Belle later married William Charles Dougall on her father's farm in 1894. She was my grandmother.

24 December 1814 On Christmas Eve, Donald McFadyen, a native of Coll, Scotland, was discharged from the 2nd Battalion, 91st Argyllshire Regiment of Foot, in southern England. Donald would have had a long journey to his island home in the Inner Hebrides where he spent another thirteen years, eking out a scant living for his family from the land. It is still not clear to me whether he chose to leave for Nova Scotia or was forced to go in 1828. His battalion was disbanded the following year as the Peninsular War ended. Not much is known about the old second battalion, even by current regimental historians. The Argyllshire and Sutherland Highlanders Museum is situated in Stirling Castle.

26 December 1914 Catherine Fraser Dougall died on this date in Winnipeg, Manitoba, three days shy of her 81st birthday. She was the mother-in-law of Belle, above. Catherine became the wife of Scottish-born Peter Dougall, outliving her husband only by six months. Both are buried in Elmwood Cemetery, Winnipeg. Catherine was my great-grandmother.
Catherine Fraser Dougall, 1833-1914
29 December 1833 Catherine Fraser (as above) was born in St Andrews, Quebec, the daughter of John Fraser from Killin, Perthshire, Scotland, and his wife Nancy Fraser of Inverness-shire, Scotland, lineage. Catherine's marriage to Peter Dougall incurred residential moves to Vankleek Hill and Renfrew, Ontario, then finally Winnipeg. She became the mother of nine children who, as adults, scattered between Renfrew and Winnipeg to California, Minnesota, and New York.   

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