Saturday, 19 January 2019

2019 - #52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks. Week 4, Prompt: ‘ I’d Like to Meet...’

I’d Like to Meet...
                                   my grandmothers and grandfathers so they could tell me who all these people are in the photos I have inherited from my mother and father, with no names on them.
I believe this is not an uncommon happening, as I have read and heard other historians saying the same thing.

It is such a shame, as I would love to put names to faces and add them all to my family tree.  It would help me see them more clearly and I would have a lovely record for descendants. 

Dating photographs is an interesting exercise, but how sure can I be, when these people lived in different parts of Australia, England, and Scotland.  I don’t know whether they were up-to-date with the fashions of the time, which we rely on to establish time.
Distinguishing between the same gender members of the same family can be quite difficult, especially if there are strong family resemblances.

I have managed to work out a few, through matching them to named photos that cousins had of the same relatives, sometimes even a copy of the same photo. 
But sadly, there still remains a box of lost people who I will probably never meet.



This is one photo I have worked hard at naming.  
I believe it to be Rees Coventry Rees  1842-1920 and Eliza Wells (My mother’s Aunt) 1854 – 1892.  
Photo was taken at Broken Hill by G F Jenkinson

Tuesday, 8 January 2019

2019 - #52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks. Week 3, Prompt: ‘Unusual Name'



‘Unusual Name’

I have chosen Jonnet Mash for my person with an unusual name this year. Jonnet is one of my 7th great grandmothers on my paternal side.

I have not done any research on Jonnett as yet so I will see what I can find now.

In looking for Jonnett’s birth I discover her parents' names – my 8th great-grandparents.  Firstly there are two baptism dates –  03 March 1633 and 1641.
  1. The 1633 entry has Janet Mash daughter of James Mash and Janet Bukise.  (Ancestry: FHL Film 1067782, Ref ID: 2:1850HHR, Scotland Select Births and baptisms 1564 – 1950.)
  2. In the 1641 entry, her name is given as Jonnet, other researchers or records have her listed as Janet Mash.  Her mother is Jonnet Buccasie,  whereas other researchers or records have her listed as Janet McCaskie, Mukasie, Muckassie, Muckarsie or Bucise.  Her father is James Mash whereas other researchers or records list him as Mash, Mashe or Masche.  (Ancestry: FHL FILM, 1067782,  Ref ID: 2:1850Z8Q, Scotland Select Births and Baptisms 1564 – 1950.)
So, it seems that the parents have trickier names to unravel than the daughter!

Researching further I find a marriage record for James Mash and Janet Mackasie, 12 Dec 1628. ( in Scotland Extracted Parish Records 1571-1997)
Next, I find (so far)  baptisms for five siblings of Janet’s all at Liberton, Midlothian, Scotland. 
The children were born in the  following order:
Margaret- 28 Jan 1630, (Janet- 03 Mar 1633),  Marione- 31 July 1638, (Janet- 25 Feb 1641), William- 17 Dec 1643, Issobell- 22 Nov 1646 and David- 13 Jan 1653.  There are a few gaps there so there could be more children or some died.
As I have two baptismal dates for Janet with the same parents, one possibility is that the first Janet died, and they used the same name later for another daughter to carry on mother Janet’s name.  I have not been able to find a death record as yet.  
I will research all of this further when I have a membership with ‘Scotland’s People’.
***
Direct line of Ancestors down from Janet’s parents:
Janet McCaskie/Buccasie, etc + James Mash
Janet Mash + Donald MacKintosh
Donald MacKintosh + Anna McBean
Alexander MacKintosh + Christian Ross
John McIntosh + Margaret Morrison
Alexander McIntosh + Isabel Cairns
Richard McIntosh + Elspeth Gray
         Isabella McIntosh + James Finlay Lumsden
         Isabella McIntosh Lumsden + Francis George Pearce
         William Louden Pearce+ Lilian Agnes Cottam
                  Me

***


· ‘Liberton Wynd from the Cowgate, Edinburgh’
· Artist: Henry Gibson Duguid- Scottish (1805-1860)
· National Galleries of Scotland: William Finlay Watson Bequest 1881





The Liberton Inn and Kirk at the crossroads that was the centre of the village, now swallowed up into southern Edinburgh city.
Photo taken 15 May 2005. 
Copyright: Richard Webb & licensed for reuse under creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0 http://www.geograph.org.uk/photo/9988

***


NB: See link for a history of Liberton http://www.southedinburgh.net/history/liberton
Liberton was once home to Arthur Conan Doyle, who lived in a small cottage near the Braid Burn, which is now inside the grounds of the Cameron Toll Shopping Centre car park and is now a small school. (Wikipedia, 08 Jan 2019)

Monday, 7 January 2019

2019. #52Ancestors in 52 Weeks. Week 2, Prompt: ‘Challenge'

Week 2 Prompt: ‘Challenge’

A Challenge for many in the Cottam ancestry line of my family has been coping with the genetic skin disease “Hailey-Hailey”

Those members of the family who I know have suffered from it are circled in this rough family tree:





I probably won’t be able to trace it back any further as none of the 6 siblings are still alive.

My mother (4. Lilian) said that her father (Joseph COTTAM) had a bad rash at times but they didn’t know what it was.

Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Centre (GARD)
  ( Last updated: 31/05/2017)
Hailey-Hailey disease is a Congenital and Genetic Skin Disease.
Also known as Benign familial pemphigus; Benign chronic pemphigus; Familial benign pemphigus.

Hailey-Hailey disease causes blistering. Signs and symptoms include a painful rash and blistering in skin folds, such as the armpits, groin, neck, under the breasts, and between the buttocks. 
Secondary bacterial, fungal and/or viral infections are common and may exacerbate an outbreak. Some people have found that outbreaks are triggered by certain foods, hormone cycles, and stress.  Symptoms are often worse in the summer months due to heat, sweating, and friction. 
Hailey-Hailey disease is caused by mutations in the ATP2C1 gene and is inherited in an autosomal dominant manner.[2] 
 A mutation on one copy of the gene causes only half of this necessary protein to be made and the cells of the skin do not adhere together properly due to malformation of intercellular desmosomes, causing acantholysis, blisters, and rashes. There is no known cure.
The differential diagnosis includes intertrigo, candidiasis, and frictional or contact dermatitis. A biopsy and/or family history can confirm. The lack of oral lesions and intercellular antibodies distinguishes familial benign pemphigus from other forms of pemphigus.

Treatment focuses on reducing symptoms and preventing flares and may include topical medication, laser, and other procedures.[1][3][4]


I have found that it has a peculiar action: a blister forms and then there is a spread of blisters outwards in a sort of circular fashion across the skin. As they heal – they leave a reddened area which turns to a brownish discolour and takes a long time to disappear. If the blisters break, crust scabs form and become itchy as they are irritated by clothing, etc. The process can go on for months, with other blisters forming close by or in more areas of my body.  
With sores often over my back, under my arms, chest, knees, and on my neck. I stay inside waiting for healing.  I have tried many so-called cures but the only thing that works is time and patience as the blisters seem to have their own idea of when to give in. At their most debilitating I take prednisone tablets, which do help in healing the current ones, but have the side effect of thinning the skin!  And make me feel queerer than usual as if I am 'out of my body' and as hungry as a hunter.

My blisters form when my body gets heated in any way such as hot weather; body being heated up from warm clothes or temperatures in cold weather; skin rubbing together as in folds or body parts; anything rubbing on skin such as tight elastic, wrinkles in sheets, a loose thread or tag on clothing; stress causing build-up of heat as in being ‘hot under the collar’.
It is a case of always being aware of my body and changes in temperature and mood.

I will research further to find out if any more family members have also been unlucky in inheritance.

Having said all of this though I do appreciate that many people inherit far worse things than I have done.

Friday, 4 January 2019

2019 Challenge #52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks. Week 1, Prompt: ‘First'

Week 1 Prompt: 'First'

Mary Anne Cottam was the first of my mother's ancestral side - the Cottam family to be born in Australia.  
Her parents were Englishman James Cottam from Lancashire and Eliza Shanks from Co. Down, Northern Ireland who were married in 1860 in Kilmore, Victoria. (as per Marriage Certificate)

Anne (as she was known) was born in March 1862 at Darraweit Guim, a country town near Lancefield, Victoria and was still living there in 1909.  The Census says at Chintin near Lancefield.

Anne was 51 when she married Alfred George Holt in 1913 and was his second wife.  Alfred's first wife, Agnes who was Anne's sister died aged 39 in 1912.


Death Notice for Agnes Holt in 'The Argus'.

I was told by a family member that Anne had no children but reared the five children of her sister Agnes.  The Holt children were - Gordon Ernest, Elizabeth Beryl, Harold Lindsay, George McLeod and Irene.
I am yet to prove that the last daughter born - Irene Agnes HOLT - was a daughter of Agnes or Anne, but so far it seems she was born in 1914.
It would have been a hard task for Anne at age 51 taking over the care of all the children aged from eight years old down to babies. She would have known them being their Aunt, but to suddenly have a family of five to care for and a new husband must have come as a shock to her as a middle-aged spinster.

Anne was more than ten years older than Agnes her sister, the youngest of the family, and would have been about six years older than her husband Alfred.
Once married she lived at ‘Wahroonga’ 43 Kent St, Kew.  (1919 Census)



‘Wahroonga’ Kew 2007: Google Earth.

Anne was 71 when she died on 30 Jan 1935 and is buried in the Boroondara Cemetery at Kew (nearby their home) with her sister Agnes and their husband Alfred George Holt.



Grave for Anne, Agnes and Alfred Holt, Booroondara Cemetery, Kew.

Wednesday, 12 December 2018

#52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks Week 52 Prompt: ‘Resolution'

Week 52  Prompt: Resolution

My New Year’s Resolution for 2019, is to follow the learnings of the course below, in my family history research this year.


( I wrote this entry below in April 2015)

Just prior to Christmas 2014 - an advertisement on the Tassie Facebook page caught my eye for a free University Course being held online from The Uni of Tasmania named “HSP 105 Introduction to Family History”.   It was only for 9 weeks over the Summer Semester running from 08 Dec 2014 to 13 Feb 2015. 

The Unit objectives included:

  • Understand family history planning, research, and recording
  • Evaluate primary and secondary sources of information
  • Conduct genealogical investigations
  • Analyze genealogical problems and develop plans for solving them
  • Present the findings of your applied genealogical work. 

On reading these I thought It sounded really good - after all, wasn’t I already doing most of them?  I thought it would be interesting to do some study on the subject and hoped to learn some good new ways to break down some brick walls.

Although we would be slowly travelling down south to Victoria by car when the course started, my husband and I both decided to enroll.   It might be hard going back to Uni. study, but we would help each other. We packed our laptops with our own current family history information, memory sticks, backup hard drives, and power cords. 


Hobart city in the foreground. Hobart Uni Campus is below the Casino tower R Foreground.


Apparently, Uni. of Tas was swamped with people interested - and thousands enrolled.  However, out of us all, I think there were only about 550 who finished.   
This online way of study is really taking off and is available all over the world now. 

We had no idea of what involvement there would be.  The course outline had suggested 4-5 hours study per week, but once we got to Melbourne and heavily into the course it would have been at least that much per day !!

We had to learn first of all how to navigate the University study site - online student centre, e-student email and the catacombs of the MyLO (My Learning Online) environment.  Luckily there are service desks and Info. Tech. assistants on hand to help !

Dr. Dianne Snowden was our Coordinator and was a very helpful, learned researcher.  Those who went down to the conference recently in Canberra may have met her. 
Dianne Snowden joint authored ‘Patchwork Prisoners’ about the convicts on the ‘Rajah’ and making the Rajah Quilt. 
We were given weekly topics in the MyLO units content and discussions.  We needed to view the lectures and/or video interviews with well-known researchers about the topic then read the recommended texts.  Any recommended resources had to be read or checked and then complete the related self-tests online. 
We were divided up into groups of about 20 students with a dedicated mentor. We could discuss in the group how we were going or any questions or relevant info we had. This was important as at the end of the course we had to comment on how our weekly posts and replies in the group discussions had helped others and added positively to the topic
There were also other ‘Discussion’ areas we could join in - such as - Technical, Weeks topic, DNA, Brick Walls, etc. - that were all very interesting.  However, with thousands of posts it was too overwhelming to participate in many, plus get all the work done.  
The course covered many topics:

Week 1: Introduction and getting started - family information, evidence, trees, charts, forms, logs. 

Week 2: Oral History.  Plan an Oral History interview with a family member.  Types of questions, Interview, Record the interview and then write up.

Week 3: Planning your Research.  Aim, List of repositories and records to use for conducting research.  Primary and Secondary sources. Critical evaluation. The Research Process.   With your plan include a completed Ancestral Chart up to current knowledge using info from your oral interview.

Week 4: Conducting your Research.  Follow a methodical Research process. Tips on Research and evaluating sources. Critically analyze genealogical problems. Develop plans for solving them .

Week 5:  Maps and supporting materials. Reading handwriting.  More Problem Solving. Overcoming Brick Walls. Timelines. Mis-transcription. 

Week 6:  Discussions and further Problem solving.

Weeks 7 & 8: Presenting your family history - reunions, creative presentations, traditional, books, online blogs and presentations.  Guides to writing Family History. Preservation of materials.

Week 9:  Presentation of our Research Report.  Becoming an Independent Researcher.  Family History Groups. Introduction to Convict Research. 

By about week 6 we had returned home which made it a lot easier to study and check our own manual information.

So, the big day arrived when we had to post our final project.  We had to write a report of our genealogical investigation, using all the tools we had been taught.  The report had to include the aim, sources, a biographical report of 1000 words including conclusion.  There had to be an ancestral chart completed for the relevant individuals and a completed Family Group Sheet for the main selected individual.  All of the sources had to be defined as Primary or Secondary. All due on Friday the 13th !! of February.

We had passed the other assignments during this first unit - but this was the one we had put all our time into and fashioned into a University standard works of art with referencing, etc.  What a relief for us both to finally get it finished.

And wouldn’t you believe it - I hadn’t been able to find a birth certificate or baptismal record for my main individual - and a week after we handed in the assignment, I had a reply email from a church in Melbourne I had given up on. They had found the baptismal record proving that none of the secondary sources of information stating his birth date were correct, in fact I don’t think he would have even known his own real birthday, himself!


Tuesday, 11 December 2018

#52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks. Week 51 Prompt: ‘Nice'

Week 51 Prompt:  'Nice'

I think for this prompt I will write up a couple of 'nice' memories that come to mind. I can always add more later.

When my mother and father were having a house built out on the new orchard in Grahamvale, Victoria the builder asked my mother if she wanted the cut-out piece of timber from the sink space to use as a kitchen board.  Her answer was "Yes please" and the photo shows the result.   
What a great way to obtain a pastry board - part of your own kitchen - can't imagine that happening today
On looking at it I can see that the builder/carpenter also 'prettied' it up a bit by cutting our circular corners, possibly to match the starter holes for sawing the rectangle. 



There are old red rubber stoppers screwed into the four corners of the base to keep it from slipping - they are in the early stages of perishing.  



I do not know what timber it is - I thought pine by the colour - but it is a little heavier than I would have thought pine would be.  Will have to look at what timbers builders were using for kitchen structures around 1948.  Did they use Tassie Oak?  I love this board as I can immediately see us kids, all of us girls in aprons - 'pinnies', helping Mum knead dough for bread, roll and cut out scones.  
If it was pastry then the left over bits we could roll in to long sausage twirls with a little homemade jam in the middle - a real treat.  The smells arise straight away and my tummy rumbles.  
The glass rolling pin - these were common then and there is always some flour attached on the inside !  It is heavy glass sealed at one end and with a strong cork at the other - I believe you could put cold or hot water in to assist with the process of rolling that you required at the time. I imagine cold water in Summer and maybe warmer in winter !  I have never tried this - will have to experiment.
I just love the memories that come with these household articles that I have inherited.


Pre-school days I would have been about 3 or 4 years old. We have this beautiful big Collie dog called “Lassie” and she will let me ride her around the yard.  We go up to the gate together, about 100 yards, to meet my older brother and sister in the afternoon when they return home from school. They hop off their bikes and we all walk home together next to the irrigation channel beside the road.  When it is too hot and dusty, we wade through the water cooling  off and squeezing the mud between our toes like happy little piglets.  


Remembering now what it was like as  a child - I recognize that we had a good childhood - living in the country - on an orchard, with our pets, the dogs, cats, hens and chickens.  School was a rideable distance from home.  We all travelled in a posse as the kids from different families turned off to their own homes along the way.  We were the last ones on our road.



#52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks. Week 50 Prompt: ‘Naughty'

Week 50  Prompt: ‘Naughty’

When my sister (Fran) and I were young girls living on the orchard in Grahamvale  Victoria, we celebrated Christmas as a family affair at home in the morning and later with the extended Pearce families.  Santa Claus filled our little unbleached calico sewn stockings that Mum had made, with netting fronts and our names penned at the top.  There were nuts in shells and some sweets, little paper blowing trumpets or tin animal clickers, and nice big fruit. We had Christmas presents under the decorated tree from Mum and Dad and each other.  FIne glass trimmings were handed down the family. Coloured concertina Chinese paper lanterns hung around the Big Room amidst streamers we had made.
The rest of the day we went out to the original Pearce orchard where matriarch Grandma Pearce lived with  Aunty Tibbie, Uncle Jim and Aunty Muriel and children next door and Aunty Ray and Uncle Ray down the road a bit with their family Jim and Isobel.

The Oaktree seedling Grandma and Grandpa had brought out from Scotland in 1912, was now a large spreading tree and was decorated with coloured light bulbs and streamers each year. We all shared Christmas lunch and leftovers for dinner.  I can remember Aunty Muriel telling us kids to go away for a bit when they were preparing the meal.  She was cutting up the chicken and I reached for a fragment (as Mum let us) and she brought her carving knife down just short of my finger – making a definite point that stayed in my mind forever.  The kids ran free and swam in the channel.  In the evening, once dark, we were handed presents from the tree, including the orchard workers still around.


The Pearce Christmas tree all lit up for gift time

***

However, one year we learned of a different celebration. We had a family emigrated from Holland who came to live over the road.  They invited Fran and me to attend their Dutch Club Christmas celebrations in the lead up to Christmas day.

And so, we met ‘Black Peter’ for the first time.  An energetic young fellow with painted black face and hands. It was explained to us that he dealt with the children who had not been good during the year.  We were petrified of him and remembered all the naughty things we had done the past year.  He ran down the street ahead of the truck with St Nicholas on it. He took some of the boys aside and spoke to them.  We were so relieved when he didn’t come to us.



‘Taking away the naughty children’,  Source: J. Schenkman 1885.


St Nicholas’ truck stopped at the hall and he handed out gifts to us all – Fran and I were surprised that we were included (I don’t know how that happened still). 
I received a wonderful little china doll’s tea-set in a pretty box and loved it. I treasured it so much over the years. When I had my own first daughter I eventually reneged and let her play with it.  She did love it too, but gradually pieces broke or went missing until there was only a little cup, saucer and jug left.  All well and truly gone now – but the memory of being thought of so sweetly on that day lives on.
As well as not being naughty so ‘Black Peter’ doesn’t come after me.




Some information about St Nicholas and ‘Black Peter’(Zwarte Piet)

Origins:

According to Hélène Adeline Guerber and others,[3][4] the origin of Sinterklaas and his helpers has been linked by some to the Wild Hunt of Odin. Riding the white horse Sleipnir, he flew through the air as the leader of the Wild Hunt. He was always accompanied by two black ravens, Huginn and Muninn.[5] These helpers would listen, just like Zwarte Piet, at the chimney, which was just a hole in the roof at that time, to tell Odin about the good and bad behavior of the mortals below.[6][7]
The introduction of Zwarte Piet did coincide, by and large, with a change in the attitude of the already existing Sinterklaas character, who had been quite severe towards bad children himself, and had in fact often been presented as a bogeyman when he was still a solitary character;[9] moreover, some of the same terrifying characteristics that were later associated with his servant Zwarte Piet were often attributed to Saint Nicholas himself.[13] The depiction of a holy man in this light was troubling to both teachers and priests. Sometime after the introduction of Zwarte Piet as Sinterklaas' servant, both characters adopted a softer character.[14]
The lyrics of older traditional Sinterklaas songs, still sung today, warn that while Sinterklaas and his assistant will leave well-behaved children presents, they will punish those who have been very naughty. For example, they will take bad children and carry these children off in a burlap sack to their homeland of Spain, where, according to legend, Sinterklaas and his helper dwell out of season. These songs and stories also warn that a child who has been only slightly naughty will not get a present, but a "roe", which is a bundle of birch twigs, implying that they could have gotten a birching instead, or they will simply receive a lump of coal instead of gifts.
Reference:Wikipedia: ‘Zwarte Piet, 
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zwarte_Piet, Accessed 09 December 2018.


The history of Sinterklaas, Father Christmas, and  Zwarte Piet.
The Dutch Sinterklaas looks at first glance very much like Father Christmas. On closer inspection though, Sinterklaas is a tall skinny serious-looking bloke with a long white beard and a miter on his head wearing a floor-length red robe over a pontifical dress - which makes sense because he is actually a bishop.
On his birthday, the 5th of December, he hands out presents to all the Dutch children that have been good. Adults get nothing.
He precedes the American-led legend of Father Christmas or Santa by about 50 years, having been introduced in the 1850s in the United States by Dutch immigrants.
Sinterklaas is more stern than Father Christmas. Not only does he cut a statelier figure, he is also a grounded man who transports himself on a white horse, not reindeer.
While he does ride the Dutch rooftops at night to deliver the presents through the chimneys - a feat in itself for such an old man - you won’t catch him flying through the air with a bunch of reindeer (who are notoriously untamable) in a magical sleigh.
Their outfits are Renaissance in style, complete with bright colourful fabrics and tight tights and puffy pants. Black make-up is painted thickly on their faces.
Adorned with black curly wigs, big golden earrings and red lipstick, the Zwarte Piets jump around throwing candy (pepernoten) into the crowds and generally play silly buggers with everyone, except for with Sinterklaas – who is their boss, and they, his helpers.
The key difference in the blackface debate come to his helpers: Father Christmas has an army of elf helpers, Sinterklaas has servants - black servants. (Some say from the Moors, others from going down the chimneys. 
As the tradition of 'Sinterklaas' or 'St Nick's Day' is celebrated ... by Dutch nationals all around the world, the topic of Santa's sidekick, the blackface character known as 'Zwarte Piet' or 'Black Pete', continues to divide the Dutch community - even in Australia.  It now causes quite a commotion with Anti-Racist riots due to the wording ‘Black’ and the painting of the faces.
[St Nick's] servants are all, without exception, called Zwarte Piet (Black Pete), which many people still proudly dress up as every year.
In the Dutch legend, Sinterklaas actually lives in Spain, and the Zwarte Pieten are ‘Moors’ who live in Spain. Once a year he gets on a steamboat and sails to the Netherlands to celebrate his birthday with all his Zwarte Pieten.
  

Monday, 10 December 2018

#52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks. Week 49 Prompt: 'Winter'

Week 49 Prompt: 'Winter'

Snow covered train in Saskatchewan 1947.  Photo by Krista Wilson, posted on Pinterest, 'Saskatchewan my home', https://www.pinterest.com.au/wilsonkl33/saskatchewan-my-home/

"In Saskatchewan, a train was halted in a blizzard that raged from, Jan 31 - Feb 09, 1947.  The train was then buried completely by a snowdrift, 1 km long and 36.7ft deep.  It was called the worst recorded winter conditions in the railroads recorded history.  All roads into Regina were also blocked in with snow as was all of Saskatchewan, and the rest of the prairies didn't fare much better either.  Many people were trapped in their homes for over a week."


Winter always reminds me of my second cousin - Melvin Pearce who had described the freezing snow of Canada, to me.  My Aunt Tibbie had organized for me to be his pen friend when I was at secondary school.  We wrote for a couple of years and then I heard no more from him.  I later found out that he had died in a home accident.

Melvin had told me that he had a hen house and run, and was proud of his hens and having eggs to collect for the family.  He sent me some photos of the henhouse - possibly lost now :(        I will keep a watch out and post if I find them.

Winter had been freezing and now the weather was warmer, the hens were laying well again.  But apparently the eggs were going missing and one night he went out with his gun to shoot the suspect fox.  However, something went wrong, and he was accidentally shot dead by himself. 

This was a great shock to me.  Melvin was two years older than I was and was sixteen years old when he died. Death of a friend was not a common thing for me at that age, and it left a lasting impression. I wanted to leave a remembrance to Melvin on my blog.

RIP Melvin Pearce: 02 May 1944 - 19 Jun 1960. 


Melvin’s family background: 
His grandfather was James Arthur Pearce (Jim) a younger brother of my grandfather George Francis Pearce who was 18 years older.
Jim was born 04 Sep 1881 in Innerleithen, Peeblesshire, Scotland.
He married Margaret Helen MANN, daughter of  Allan Mann and Sarah HEARST in Canada. Sarah was born 05 May 1890 in St. Joe Township, Nth Dakota, USA.
Jim died seven years after his grandson on 04 Jun 1967, age 86 years and Margaret died 21 May 1978 age 88 years.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ 

Jim had left Scotland as a 22-year-old young man and arrived in 1904, settling in Tisdale, Saskatchewan. He became a farmer there.  The family corresponded with their niece Aunty Tibbie in Australia, who was a  prolific letter writer all her life. 
At wintertime, they wrote that they were completely snowed in.  I couldn't imagine what that was like from here in the area I lived in, in Victoria as it was never cold enough for us to have snowfalls.

Jim and Margaret had a son Ronald Stuart Pearce born about 1916 in Saskatchewan. (He died sometime after 1974).
Ronald was the father of Melvin Pearce.  (I have not yet researched the rest of the family yet, so have not discovered who Ronald's wife was or if they had any other children.  I don't think Melvin had mentioned any.)


History of Tisdale:
English explorer Henry Kelsey passed through this area in 1690 during his exploration of the Carrot River.

The post office of Tisdale, provisional District of Saskatchewan, North West Territories was created on February 1, 1904. The community was originally known as "Doghide" after the Doghide River that flows through the town, but with the arrival of the railway, the community was renamed "Tisdale" in honour of F.W. Tisdale, an employee of the Canadian Northern Railway.[3]
Reference: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tisdale,_Saskatchewan

So it would seem that Jim may have been an early settler there.