Pioneers

Back to Catagories
Pioneers          
Elizabeth Jane Bulloch Adams

Born January 8,1886 Lanark, Ontario, In March 1904, her family traveled to Sinclair, Manitoba in order to farm near their extended family. They brought five carloads of livestock, furniture and lumber with them from Ontario. In 1906 she married Robert Adams in Sinclair, and the pair moved to their own homestead. They had hired help for the maintenance of the house as Adams worked alongside her husband farming, driving the binder. She also assisted the doctor in Sinclair with maternity cases and farm accidents. Her story was recorded in Voices of Yesteryear, part of the Westman Oral History Collection of Audiocassettes. Sources: Memorable Manitobans by Angela Graham. Manitoba Historical Society Online (Accessed December 2011)

Nancy Alexander Born May 25, 1824. Died March 23 1912, Lake Hill District, British Columbia. Nancy was a free black who married a free Black carpenter, Charles Alexander, in Springfield Illinois, U.S.A. on December 25, 1849. The couple originally settled in St. Louis Missouri, U.S.A. In 1855 the family, now including two children, travelled four months to reach the gold fields of California. Charles did not have much success as a prospector and the family was on the move again by 1858. Sir James Douglas, of the Hudson Bay Company had put out the call for settlers to come to Vancouver Island. The Alexander family were one of some 700 Black families to answer the call to settle in Canada. In the fall of 1861 the family settled in South Saanich, British Columbia to raise their family of twelve children. Charles would build the 1st school in the area and the 1st Shady Creek Medothist Church. The Church was then and is now racially integrated.  He also assisted in establishing the 1st Temperance Society. In 1894 the family moved to Lake Hill District of British Columbia. Nancy was one of the 1st members of the local Women’s Institute. As of 1992 the couple had 400 descendants. Source: British Columbia Black History Learning Centre online (Accessed January 2014)
 
Sarah Ballenden

Métis Pioneer

Born 1818,Rupert's Land, Western Canada. Died 1853 Edinburgh, Scotland.   She was one of 8 children of a North West Company Trader and an aboriginal mother. In the 1830's  she married John Ballenden and the couple would have four children. She died in Edinburgh, Scotland supposedly of a broken heart. She had been the victim of strong racism that occurred in the early Red River Settlement. She had been accused of having an affair with a white man and even though her name was legally cleared  the stigma remained and she was snubbed and an outcast in Red River society. Source Dictionary of Canadian Biography Vol. lll pg. 573-74.Recommended reading: The Reputation of a Lady: Sarah Ballenden and the Foss-Pelly Scandal by Sylvia Van Kirk Manitoba History, No. 11 Spring 1986.
 
Frances Hornby Barkley

 

Pioneer adventurer

(née Trevor) Born 1767 Bridgewater Somersetshire, England. Died 1845. At 17 she married Captain Charles William Barkley, a fur trader. The couple arrived in Vancouver, British Columbia in June1789. She was the 1st European woman in British Columbia. In 1788  she gave birth to her first child, William  in Mauritius and the family headed back to England thus having circumnavigating the globe. She was the 1st women  to have circumnavigated the globe without having hidden the fact that she was a woman. In 1791 a daughter was born in India as the family headed back around the globe. In 2009 the University of Auckland, New Zealand established the Barkley Scholarship in her honour. The M.V. Frances Barkley, a vessel carrying passengers on the west coast was named in her honour. She managed to keep a detailed diary of her trip to Canada and her additional globetrotting adventures which provides a rich record of this adventuresome woman. Source: 100 more Canadian Heroines by Merna Forster, Dundurn Press, 2011.
 

Elizabeth Barrett

Died 1888, Morleyville, Alberta. Like many young women of her era Elizabeth attended Normal school to become a teacher. In 1874 she was teaching at Orone, Ontario when she decided to head the call for teachers and missionaries to go to the Canadian Northwest. Her 1st post was at Whitefish Lake Mission100 miles northeast of Fort Edmonton with the Rev. Henry Bird Steinhauer ‘Shawahnekezhik, an Ontario Ojibwa she was the 1st First Nation Christian Missionary in the Northwest. Elizabeth taught there two years and made sure that Henry’s son, Egerton Steinhauer could continue with the Whitefish Lake school. While at Whitefish Lake Elizabeth had learned the Cree language. In 1877 she was one of six white women to sign Treaty No. 7 with the local tribes. Her second assignment was with Reverend George McDougall and his family at the Morley Mission. Here she studied the language and customs of the Stoney. She was soon relocated to Fort Macleod where she opened a public School, the 1st in southern Alberta. She also held the 1st Medothist Services at Fort Macleod. Suffering from ill health she returned to Morleyville. Cochrane, Alberta is proud to be home to the Elizabeth Barrett Elementary School, named for the 1st professional teacher in Alberta. Source: 200 remarkable Alberta women. Online (Accessed October 2014)
 

Charlotte Berczy

 

Pioneer, painter, teacher, and founder of early Toronto Society.

Jeanne Charlotte Allamand Berczy. Born Lausanne, Switzerland April 16, 1760. Died September 18, 1839. On Novembe1, 1785 young Charlotte married Wilhelm Albrecht Ulrich Moll AKA Guillaume (William) Berczy. The young couple were bonded together by their love of art and their painting. They would move around Europe and settle in London, England for a short time in 1790 when William became involved with the Genoese Company which was interested in settlements in New York State. They sailed for the USA in 1792 and by 1794 William was working with the German Company with plans for settlements in Upper Canada. William and Charlotte are considered early founders of Toronto, with William responsible for settlers in the Markham area to the north. Business meant that her husband traveled extensively and for long periods of time. She often found herself in charge of the settlers. She also supported her two sons by establishing a textile shop. In 1798 the family settled in Montreal where she supported herself by opening an academy to teach painting, music and languages (French, Italian and German) She was one of the first women on record to teach art in Montreal. The Royal Ontario Museum holds some of her portrait paintings. Source : Dictionary of Canadian Biography Vol.  Vll  pg 13 (Toronto: University of Toronto Press)
 
Lucie "Ruthie" Blackburn

National Historic Person

Born 1804 West Indies. Died Toronto, Ontario 1895. “Ruthie” was sold as a slave for the Backus family in New Orleans. She became a house slave and cared for the daughter.  She married Thornton Blackburn, a fellow slave. In June 1831 she was sold when the daughter suddenly died. The young couple posed as freed blacks and escaped with forged papers they managed to escape to Cincinnati and on to Detroit across from Sandwich (Windsor Upper Canada. Michigan was a free state and the couple lived there until Thornton was recognized as a runaway slave. The couple were imprisoned but with help they escaped to Upper Canada where they were freed according to the law. The couple settled in Toronto where “Ruthie” took a non slave name of Lucie. Thornton worked as a waiter and then they began in 1837 the first cab company in Upper Canada. They were successful in business and were able to purchase a small home. In 2002 an historic plaque was placed at the site of their Toronto home and the Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada recognized the couple as persons of national historic significance. Source: 100 more Canadian heroines by Merna Forester (Dundurn , 2011)
 

Mary Bradley (née Coy) Born Grimross (Gagetown) New Brunswick September 1, 1771. Died March 12, 1859. She and her first husband, David Morris took up farming in the Saint John New Brunswick area in 1801. Widowed in 1817 she remarried in 1819 to Levitt Bradley. Unable to speak out at church meetings simply because she was a woman gave her a cause. She spoke out whenever she could and sought out a church that accepted women as speakers. In 1803 she joined the Wesleyan Methodists. In 1849, although a relatively uneducated person, she published A Narrative of the life and Christian experience of Mrs. Mary Bradley of Saint John. Her life was dedicated to the expansion of the Christian word. In her will she left a large portion of her substantial estate for continuance of the teaching of the Christian gospel.
Esther Brandeau.  Born approximately 1718. She was the first person of the Jewish faith to set foot in New France. Disguised as a boy and using the name of Jacques La Farque she sailed to Quebec in 1738. Once her disguise was discovered she told a tale of having been the only family member to have survived a shipwreck and having survived as a cabin boy and baker’s boy in a Christian community. She was unwilling to accept the Catholic teachings of the Nuns of Quebec and after being deported back to France she disappears from written history.
Molly  Brant (also known as Mary) (Native name Konwatsi'tsiaienni = someone lends her a flower) Born circa 1736 Died April 16, 1796. She was one of the powerful Six Nations Indian matrons who were chose the chiefs of the Iroquois Confederacy. She was also the life partner of William Johnson, the British Superintendent of Northern Indians. She was the chatelaine of Johnson Hall in New York state, where she entertained and took over total management when Johnson was absent. She encouraged the Iroquois to support the British during the American Revolution. Her lands in New York were ravaged by the Americans for her stand with the British and she was forced to flee to Canada. The Governor of the area had a house build for her and she received a pension of 100 pounds a year, the largest pension ever paid to a native person during this era.
Amelia Lemon Burritt

Pioneer and Suffragist

Born August 1, 1822 on the banks of the St. Lawrence River Died January 29, 1929, Portage la Prairie, Manitoba. She came to Winnipeg with her husband in 1880. During the work of the Political Equality League to gain the vote for women, at the age of 93 years, she got 4,000 names on a petition to Premier T. C. Norris. Interviewed on the occasion of her 103rd birthday in 1925, making her the province’s oldest women at that point. Source: Pioneers and Prominent People of Manitoba Online version 2007, Manitoba Historical Society; Memorable Manitobans Online (Accessed December 2011).
Sarah Foulds Camsell Born 1849, Red River Settlement, Manitoba. Died January 9, 1939, Penticton, British Columbia. In1868, she was invited by the wife of fur trader William Lucas Hardisty to accompany her on her return to Fort Simpson, North West Territories. There, she met and married Julian. Stewart Camsell on 28 January 1869. The couple lived much of their lives in the North West Territories raising a family of eleven children, nine of whom lived to adulthood.  Sarah returned to Winnipeg in 1900. In 1923, her reminiscences about her life were included in the book Women of Red River, published by the Women’s Canadian Club of Winnipeg. She moved to Penticton, British Columbia in 1931, where she died. Source: Memorable Manitobans. Biography by Gordon Goldsborough. Accessed March 2012 .
Zina Young Williams Card

'Aunt Zina'

(née Young) Born April 3, 1850, Salt Lake City, Utah.  Died January 31, 1931, Salt Lake City, Utah. Zina was the daughter of Mormon leader Brigham Young (1877) . As a member of Jesus Christ of.  Latter Day Saints religion , Zina was in favour of plural marriages. On October 12, 1868 she became the second wife of Thomas Williams (died 1874).  The couple had two sons. After the death of her husband, Zina, to support her small children, learned how to produce silk, raised silkworms and turned the silk into fabric. In January 1879, Zina and Emmeline B. Wells travelled  to Washington, D.C., as delegates to the 1st women’s Congress. There, Zina met powerful women including Susan B. Anthony, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, and others. Returning home, Zina attended school at Brigham Young Academy where she became Matron of young ladies. Her son Thomas died in 1881 and she turned her efforts to working harder at the Academy. On June 17, 1884 she became the second wife of Charles Ora Card (1839-1906). Charles’ 1st wife had divorced him so in fact Zina was his third marriage. June 3, 1887 Zina moved with ten other families to join her husband at Lee’s Creek in southern Alberta. Charles other wife and children remained in Utah. Zina used some of her own monies to fund a school and local businesses in the settlement. Her 1st home was a log cabin nick named the ‘Cotton Flannel Palace” because she lined the walls with bright cotton flannel. Charles was often absent from the community as he visited his other wives and families in Utah and Iowa. Perhaps the wide distribution of his families was his way of avoiding the law against plural marriages. Zina meanwhile welcomed visitors and new settlers as guests in her home. In 1900 Charles gave Zina some land and she funded the building of a large brick home to accommodate the family and numerous visitors. Zina's many responsibilities were establishing a drama society, leading the Young Women’s Mutual Improvement Association, raising her own children and sometimes the children of other wives, entertaining literally hundreds of visiting dignitaries, and acting as a surrogate mother to much of the western Canadian province. She also served as a midwife. Throughout the area she was known as Aunt Zina. When Charles became ill she moved back to Utah with him. Her only daughter, Zina, married and remained in Alberta. The church work that Charles did to lay the foundation of the Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter Day Saints (Mormons) in Canada has earned him the title of ‘Canada’s Brigham Young’. Lee’s Creek was renamed Cardston in honour of this pioneer family.  Sources: Sanderson, Kay. 200 Remarkable Women of Alberta. (s.l., s.d.) online (Accessed September 2014)  ; Aunt Zina; the life of Zina Young Williams Card. Church History. History.lds.org (accessed September 2014)
 
Eliza Ann Chipman Born July 3, 1807 Nova Scotia. Died October 23, 1853.  She would marry the Reverend  William Chipman May 24, 1827 and become stepmother to 8 children at 19 years of age! She and William would also have 12 children of their own. From 1823 until her death she kept a personal and secret journal. Two years after her death her husband, published the diary his wife had left behind. The importance of such a work lies in the insight provided into the daily life of the pioneers themselves. Eliza Ann was a strong individual with close connections to her Baptist belief. Her writings show her support and encouragement for education for education. After all she did have a household with 20 children! The Memoirs of the life of  Mrs. Eliza Ann Chipman… left a literary legacy providing a portrait of women’s lives in early 19th century Nova Scotia.  Source: Dictionary of Canadian Biography V. 111 pg 148-149.
 
Suzanne Connolly

Born 1788. Died August 14, 1862. She was also known as La Sauvagess or as Suzanne Pas de nom. She was partnered/married as was the custom of the fur trade era with William Connolly in 1801. Usually when traders returned to the urban centers of Canada they made a choice of either leaving their partner/wife and children or taking them with them. Most traders simply left. Suzanne moved to Lower Canada with William where he married Julia Woolrich in the Catholic Church. In 1841 Suzanne and her 6 children moved back to the Red River Country where she took residence in the Grey Nuns Convent and was supported by William and later  by Julia.  Her daughter Amelia would marry Sir James Douglas (Governor of the Hudson Bay Company). Her son John sued and a case for part of his father’s estate. The case was pursued through various levels of the British court system before a settlement was accepted. Suzanne was the only Canadian woman who’s “legal” marriage question came before Privy Council. She had lived as wife to William Connolly for 28 years. Source: Dictionary of Canadian Biography vol.  IX pg 150-151.
 

Elizabeth Couc Died 1667. Captured by an Iroquois Indian war party about 1695 she was raised by the tribe and as an young woman married one of the tribes young men. She moved from the Detroit area to New York where she was known as Mme Montour and was a valuable interpreter. She married a Chief of an east coast tribe and followed him to Pennsylvania. Full information may be found in the Dictionary of Canadian Biography.
Regina Mary "Polly" Rowell Craig Born Regina, Saskatchewan December 13, 1882. Died 1965. She was the firs settler child born is what is now Regina, Saskatchewan. Thomas Rowell brought his wife from Durham County, England to take up free Canadian Land. They named their daughter in honour of their new hometown. Regina was presented with Deed no. 1, Regina on April 11, 1883, a deed to lot 23 in block 282. Unfortunately the land was not tax free for the baby and the land was seized by the town for non-payment of taxes and sold. The deed itself was eventually useful to Regina when she went to claim her old-age pension, she used the deed as proof of age. Regina married Henry Craig and the couple had two sons. Regina Rowell Craig was honoured by the City of Regina by having a street, Rowell Crescent in northwest Regina, named after her. Source: City of Regina. Heritage. Online (Accessed January 2012.)
 
Marie Rose Delorme-Smith

Born 1861, Manitoba. Died April 4, 1960, Lethbridge, Alberta. She was the daughter of Métis fur traders. She had two years of convent education and was fluent in English, French and Cree.  In 1877 at 16 she married Charlie Smith who paid her parents $50.00 for his bride The couple had 17 children. Marie out lived Charlie and 12 of her children. In 1881 they started the Jughandle Ranch near Pinchi Creek, Alberta. Marie not only cared for her family but she also sewed buckskin cloths by hand while acting as nurse and midwife. When Charlie bought her a sewing machine she was to trade hew sewn goods for food and clothing. She. She and 2 other women sewed 36 tents for Canadian Pacific Railway workers to use. The ranch was sold and a house was purchased in Pincer Creek where after Charlie’s death in 1914 Marie took in boarders and expectant mothers. Marie wrote an account of her life leaving a legacy of a firsthand account of western Canadian pioneer life. Sources: Herstory, the Canadian Women’s Calendar 2006 Coteau Books, 2005 : Métis Culture and Heritage Resource Centre. Accessed April 2013.
 

Mary Hoople (née Whitmore) She married and settled with her husband to raise a family in the Saint Lawrence River area near modern day Cornwall, Ontario. During an uprising, she was captured by Indians and forced to live 7 years with her captors. Her infant daughter was killed by the attackers and her daughter Sally was taken from her and she never saw her again.  Returned to her own people she became the local woman to seek out during illness. In the famine of 1788  she was able to locate  berries and roots to eat. This knowledge, which she had gleaned from her aboriginal captors, allowed her to help save people, many of whom were United Empire Loyalists settling along the St. Lawrence River, from starvation. The area of settlement around her family home is still called Hoople’s Creek. Her story is almost legend in the area where she is sometimes called the witch of Hoople’s Creek or simply Granny Hoople. She is also sometimes credited as being Ontario’s first woman doctor. Source: Local History Collection, Cornwall Public Library. Cornwall, Ontario.
Catherine Jérémie de Lamontagne. Baptized September 22, 1664. Died July1, 1744. In her era, this mother of some 11 children would become a well known midwife and amateur botanist. She collected plants and sent them back to France for study. Her shipments were made more valuable by the descriptive notes she  included  with explanations of the  properties and effects of the medical herbs. 
Francoise Marie Jacqueline de la Tour The first European woman to make a home in Acadia.
Elizabeth Doane (née Osborne) Born Massachusetts 1715. Died May 24, 1798. As a young woman she married Captain William Myrich who was lost at sea. The widow then married William Pain who dies within a year of the marriage. Her third marriage was to Edmund Doane in 1749 and the amalgamated family was a total of 7 children. The new family settled in Nova Scotia. Since there was no doctor in the area her skills in roots and herbs as remedies were welcome in the province. She was well known for her doctoring, nursing and midwife skills well into her 80's.
Mary Barbara Fisher

(née Till) Born 1749. Died February 15, 1841 Fredericton, New Brunswick. She married Lewis Fisher who fought for the Crown with the New Jersey volunteers during the American Revolution. In 1783, along with 34,000 other Loyalists, the family fled to Nova Scotia and then on to New Brunswick by November of that year. They left their comfortable living conditions to suffer some of the most frightening winter weather conditions of the British Colonies without having had time to construct solid living shelters, surviving in tents their first winter in their new homeland.  One of Mary’s sons, Peter (1782-1848), is regarded at New Brunswick’s first English language historians and based his work Sketches of New Brunswick, published in 1852 on his mother’s memories. Her granddaughter, Georgiana, no doubt named from the families Loyalist cause, left a manuscript recalling stories her grandmother told her. These stories were published by Natural Heritage Books in 2012 providing a new generation of Canadian with a apt description of what early hardships the loyalists survived in support of the King. Source: Early Voices: Portraits of Canada by women writer’s 1639-1914. Natural Heritage Books, 2010.
 

Caroline Blowers Gaetz. (née Hamilton) Born April 12, 1845, Nova Scotia. Died December 20, 1906, Red Deer, Alberta. In 1865 Caroline married Methodist minister, Leonard Gaetz. (1841-1907). The couple would have 11 children. Ill heath forced Leonard to resign from his ministry in 1883 and he took his family to the North West territories near Red Deer Alberta. It must have been quite a shock for Caroline to move from a comfortable home that she would have had with a church for which her husband worked to living in a log cabin in the far west. In 1890 the family had relocated to a large house in Red Deer itself. In 1897 Leonard once again returned to the pulpit and served at churches in Brandon and Winnipeg, Manitoba. In 1901 the family returned to Red Deer to retire. In 1909 the newly built Methodist church in Red Deer was named to honour Rev. Leonard Gaetz and in 1925 with church union it became the Gaetz Memorial United Church. Sources: Sanderson, Kay. 200 Remarkable Women of Alberta. (s.l., s.d.) online (Accessed September 2014)  ; Cemetery Project, Red Deer Cemetery, Red Deer Alberta. Online (accessed September 14, 2014)
 
Theresa Mary Gowanlock. (née Johnson) Born Tintern, Upper Canada (Ontario) July 23, 1863. Died September 12 1899.   She was married in her home of Tintern, Lincoln County, Ontario on October 1, 1884. The newlyweds headed for western Canada to begin  life where she one of two white women at their settlement.  Her husband, John was massacred by the Cree Indians at Frog Lake, North West Territories (now Alberta) during the Northwest Rebellion on April 2, 1885.  Theresa was taken captive into the camp of Chief Big Bear, and held captive for two months before being rescued by the Northwest Mounted Police. Theresa and the other white women captive Theresa Delaney wrote of there experience. Theresa returned home to Ontario but never overcame the terrors of the ordeal which broke her spirit. A good biography may be found at:  http://www.rootsweb.com/-nwa/theresa.html
Eliza Victoria Hardisty (née McDougall) Born 1849. Died 1929. Her parents were Wesleyan-Methodist Missionaries in the Canadian North West territories. Her mother, Elizabeth Chandler McDougall (1818-1903) believed in equal education for all her children and sent them all to Canada East for their education. After attending the Wesleyan Female College , Hamilton, Canada West, Eliza joined her family at their Victoria Mission on the North Saskatchewan River. It was here she met Richard Charles Hardisty (1831-1888) an employee of the Hudson Bay Company. The two were married on September 21, 1866. The couple had 4 children, three of whom lived to adulthood. In 1877 Richard became Chief Factor for the Hudson Bay Company in Edmonton. He built his family home on what is now the site of the Alberta Legislature. As 1st Lady at Fort Edmonton, Eliza welcomed visitors and her home became the social centre for the fort. In 1877 Eliza was one of only 6 women who signed Treaty No. 7 between the government and the Aboriginal people. In 1883 the family spent two years in Calgary where Eliza one more was a main force in the social life of the town. In 1885 the couple returned to Edmonton and Richard was appointed as Alberta’s 1st senator. Source: Sanderson, Kay. 200 Remarkable Women of Alberta. (s.l., s.d.) online (Accessed September 2014)  ; Simonson, Gayle. Eliza McDougall Hardisty; Prairie pioneer (2005) online (Accessed September 2014)
 
Alexandra 'Lexie' Helen Hargrave (née Sissons) Boren June 23, 1853, Kent, Ontario. Died June 5, 1932, Medicine Hat, Alberta. Lexie came to the Canadian Northwest as a young woman. On February 17, 1875 she married James Hargrave (1846-1935) an employee of the Hudson Bay Company to who she had been engaged for 2 years. James was ill when they were married but her good nursing brought him back to health. Lexie followed James as he was posted to Norway House, Fort Frances and Cumberland House, all HBC posts. In 1882 James resigned from HBC and became an independent trader and rancher. In 1884 Lexie and their younger of 5 children joined James on his property. Lexie had become fluent in Cree and she made sure all her children learned the language as well. Knowledge of the language and respect for the Aboriginals was a great help to making friends wherever they settled. In 1888 after suffering some setbacks with fire and poor crops, James, his 11 year old son Thomas and an aboriginal friend, Corn Man, searched for natural pasture land. They established a home that was fueled by gas from a one of the 1st wells drilled in the area. Source: 200 Remarkable Alberta Women. Online (Accessed October, 2014) ; Butler, Lorna Michael. The Hargrave Ranch 1888-2013. (2013) ; Hargrave: Our family tree. Online (Accessed October 2014)
 
Letitia Hargrave (née McTavish) Born Rupert's Land, Canada. .Died September 18,1854. In 1840 she married and accompanied her husband James Hargrave to his job as Chief Trader of the Hudson Bay Company at York Factory. She was one of the earliest pioneer women of the fur trade in Western Canada. She enjoyed corresponding with her family back in Scotland and her letters have been saved over the generations providing written accounts of her  insight as to the daily life in the Canadian “wilderness”  of the Hudson Bay Company and the fur trade. She realized early that the morals and norms of British society had to be “relaxed” for the lifestyle of the HBC outposts. She wrote of adapting her wardrobe to include the warmer native clothing. Can you imagine the beautiful fur s that might have been her winter clothing? Sources: Dictionary of Canadian Biography vol. lll pg. 589-90 & www.furtraders.ca accessed March 10, 2008.
 
Nora Hendrix

Born Knoxville, Tennessee, U.S.A 1883 Died 1984. She moved to the long established black settlement in Vancouver, British Columbia in 1911. She and her husband Ross would raise their family including James also know as Al. Al would raise  his family back to the U.S.A., but would send his son, Jimi , to visit Grandma during summers and young Jimi’s would live with his musical and talented grandma Nora. She was one of black Vancouver’s pioneers. A well know church choir singer she also was involved with a theatrical performance troop that accessorized in colourful and rich long fitted gloves, giant hats and feather boas. What fun for a grandson, who no doubt became influenced by what he saw. Jimi later played at one of Vancouver’s’ east end night clubs the Smillin’ Buddha Cabaret and went on to perform around the world creating a musical legend. Nora is buried in the Hendrix family plot in Seattle Washington, U.S.A.

Mary Hoople


"Granny Hoople"
(née Whitmore). She married and settled with her husband to raise a family in the Saint Lawrence River area near modern day Cornwall, Ontario. During an uprising, she was captured by Indians and forced to live 7 years with her captors. Her infant daughter was killed by the attackers and her daughter Sally was taken from her and she never saw her again.  Returned to her own people she became the local woman to seek out during illness. In the famine of 1788  she was able to locate  berries and roots to eat. This knowledge, which she had gleaned from her aboriginal captors, allowed her to help save people, many of whom were United Empire Loyalists settling along the St. Lawrence River, from starvation. The area of settlement around her family home is still called Hoople’s Creek. Her story is almost legend in the area where she is sometimes called the witch of Hoople’s Creek or simply Granny Hoople. She is also sometimes credited as being Ontario’s first woman doctor. Source: Local History Collection, Cornwall Public Library. Cornwall, Ontario.
Gudrid Born Iceland. Died 980. As a youth she and her family followed Erik the Red to Greenland. She was a seasoned traveler by the time she found herself at a settlement in North America (Vineland) and gave birth to a son, Snorri in 1007. He was the first European child to be born in North America. The young family remained in Vineland for some three years before they abandoned the settlement and returned to Greenland. Her story was put into writing by great grandson, Thorlak who became Bishop of Skalholt.
Marie-Anne Lagemodiére. Born Maskinongé, Quebec August 2, 1780. Died December 14, 1875. Marie-Anne traveled with her fur trading husband and in 1806 was one of the first white women to visit such outposts as Red River and Fort Edmonton. Her daughter, Reine, was the first legitimate white child to be born in the Canadian west in 1807. Marie-Anne was also the grandmother of Louis Riel.
Sarah L'esperance. (née Allyn)  Born May 3,1692. A daughter of a Massachusetts Puritan family, Sarah was kidnapped from Deerfield by the Indian allies of the French and taken to live in Quebec. She was 12 years old. She trekked through the harsh wilderness of New England and New France and grew strong in her survival of the ordeal. She was baptized as a Catholic in 1705 in Bellevue, Quebec.  At 18 she married Guillaume LaLonde dit L'esperance and they had 10 children. 
Elizabeth Lount (née Soules) She married Samuel Lount in 1815 and had a family of seven children. Her husband was a well respected blacksmith and surveyor. He was reported to b a generous man. However, he had what was considered at the time by the powers of the community to have questionable political beliefs. He sided with the rebel William Lyn Mackenzie and participated in the Upper Canada Rebellion of 1837. Unfortunately for him and his family he was caught attempting to flee to the United States the same as other rebels had done. He was arrested and sent to trial where he was sentenced to hang on April 12, 1838. Elizabeth Lount stepped up in defense of her husband. She spoke out on his behalf and gathered 35,000 signatures on a petition to grant clemency to her husband. Governor John Beverly Robinson would not listen to her efforts. Several years later, the rebels who had escaped were granted amnesty and many like William Lyon Mackenzie returned to the serve the colony. In a letter addressed to Mackenzie in 1850, Elizabeth Lount provided a written description of her husband which gives historians insight to this historical figure.
Elizabeth McDougall (née Boyd) Born Grey County Canada West (Ontario), 1853. Died March 31, 1941. As the wife of a Methodist missionary husband she accompanied her husband to his postings. She took the trek across the early plains to become the first white woman in the Alberta foothills. For some 25 years she and her husband worked to share their faith at the Stoney reserve. She managed to travel with her husband by all of the traditional conveyance of the time including canoe, wagon and dog sled. She would raise her six children in the foothills. In 1898 she retired to Calgary where she became president of the Southern Alberta Pioneer Women and Old Timer’s Association. She held the strong belief that it was the presence of the frontier women who allowed the frontier families to survive. She pointed out the large number of bachelors who found it necessary to leave prairie life when they did not have the emotional and physical support in their work from a loving, energetic and sympathetic woman.
Elizabeth Chandler McDougall Born 1818, England. Died 1903, Morley Alberta. Elizabeth married the Reverend George McDougall, a Wesleyan Methodist minister and missionary. The couple had nine children . She believed in education equally for boys and girls and all the children were sent back to eastern Ontario to be educated. The family settled at Morley Mission, Alberta where Elizabeth not only cared for her family but she also administered to the sick of the Mission. While her husband was away, often for long periods visiting various points of his large geographical charge, she also took over the running of the entire business of the Mission. Upon the death of her husband she remained at Morley Mission in order to carry on business. Source: Sanderson, Kay. 200 Remarkable Women of Alberta. (s.l., s.d.) online (Accessed September 2014) 
Mary McKenzie

(née Mckay ?) Born 1796. Died October 4, 1886. Her mother was probably descended from a voyageur and her father was a Nor’Wester who abandoned his family to return to Scotland. Mary became the wife of another Nor’Wester, Charles McKenzie. Together they traveled and lived in the undeveloped Canadian north west. She was an accomplished hunter and kept her family and at time other non hunting families of her community in wild game, including bear meat. She was also a competent business woman of her era, for her husband left her in charge of his fur trading post while he took care of company business in the south. Her story is told through the pages of her husbands journals. She did not keep a journal of her own. She outlived her husband by three decades living with her son and his family in St James, west of the Red River along the Assiniboine. Source:  The Beaver, February/March 2005.

Margaret McLaughlin

(née Waddens) . Born 1775(?)  Canada. Died Oregon City, Oregon, U.S.A. 1860. She was the young “country bride of Alexander McKay a fur trader of the North West Company. The would have been married by mutual contract as was the custom of the day for “country wives” . The couple had 4 children. By 1811 she was a widow of a murdered husband and she became the “Country wife” of a medical doctor John McLaughlin (1784-1857), in Sault Ste Marie. John brought Margaret a step son and the couple would have four children of their own. The family first settled in Fort William (Thunder Bay, Ontario) with Dr McLaughlin working in the fur trade which meant he travelled the north. In 1824 the great fur companies amalgamated and the doctor was chief factor for the Hudson Bay Company in the area of Oregon. Margaret and the family soon followed to the west where the doctor helped found Fort Vancouver. Margaret was  hostess to other wives, many of who were like herself aboriginal  “Country wives” She was also known to have travelled on shorter trips with her husband for his work. A true pioneer her family became spread across North America, some following their aboriginal roots and others following their father’s people. Dr. McLaughlin is considered by some to be the father of Oregon. There were formally married November 1842 when the church became established in their area. Sources:  Pioneers every one by E. Blanche Norcross (Burns and MacEachern Ltd. 1979) : Dictionary of Canadian Biography under “John McLaughlin” by W.K. Lamb Vol. viii.
 

Catherine McPherson

Born Scotland circa 1789. Died 1876. In 1813 she courageously left her homeland as on one the settlers of Lord Selkirk’s Red River project. The party landed in Fort Churchill where they spent the long, cold winter. On June 21, 1814 the settlers finally reached the Red River Settlement. Catherine married Alexander McPherson and they began a pioneering adventure that would see their home burned in a raid, their crops destroyed in raids and in naturally bad weather. The family survived floods and droughts and plagues of grasshoppers as well as epidemics of small pox. These early prairie pioneers were true heroines of Canadian life.
 

Nancy McTavish Leblanc

Métis pioneer

Aboriginal name Matooskie. Born Hudson Bay Lands, Canada 1790. Died July 24, 1851. Her Father was a North West Company Trader and her mother an aboriginal woman. She herself was abandoned by her first husband, McTavish, a fur trader. It was the custom held by man fur traders to cohabit with aboriginal women and when they decided to leave the fur trade and the area they would abandon their fur trade territory wives and children and perhaps legally marry a white women and start a “legal” family. The Hudson Bay Company arranged a marriage for Nancy with another trader Pierre LeBlanc in 1831. Nancy was just one of many victims to the whim of the HBC. The practice of abandoning aboriginal partners and their children and then the HBC custom of partnering the women with other traders fostered racial discrimination that lasted for many decades in the Canadian northwester regions. Source: Dictionary of Canadian Biography, Toronto, University of Toronto Press, (also online) vol. lll pg 560-561.
Mikak

Born Labrador circa 1740. Died 1795, A daughter of an Inuit Chief, Mikak lived with her husband and son in a small British fishing station when the settlement was raided and her husband was killed. The young widow learned to speak English from a British solder, Francis Lucas. She and her son went to England with Lucas. Here she  was treated like the Inuit Princess that she was. She and her son had their portrait painted by the famous artist John Russell. In London she met Jens Haver, a Moravarian Missionary. She helped the missionary raise funds for a mission and in the summer of 1768 she returned to Labrador with Francis Lucas. When Jans Haven arrived in 1769 she helped establish the mission for which she had helped to raise funds from the British. She remarried an Inuit hunter, Tugavina, and settled with her family in her homeland.     
 

Sally Ainse Montour Born circa 1728. Died 1822. She grew up on Susquehanna River (now New York State, U.S.A.) and learned English at the colonial school. She married at 17 to Andrew Montour. She left her drunken husband circa 1750 and her 2 children were placed with a family in Philadelphia. She had her 3rd child shortly after the break up while living with her Oneida relatives. She became a fur trader with the British, eventually trading in the Great Lakes area. By 1774 she settled in Detroit as a prosperous businesswoman with slaves. She purchased properties on the Thames River near Chatham Ontario and married an English trader, John Wilson. After the American Revolution she had a legal battle for her Detroit properties. Her husband’s claims in Canada were reduced substantially and fire destroyed her harvest in Canada where she was forced to exist on charity. She continued to submit land claim through to 1815 when the Claims Council insisted she was dead. An historical plaque in Chatham, Ontario commemorates the life of this fiery aboriginal Woman:  Sources: Dictionary of Canadian Biography Online, accessed 2011 : 100 More Canadian Heroines: Famous and Forgotten Faces by Merna Forster (Dundurn Press, 2011)
 
Ruth Morton

(née Mount) Born March 17, 1848, Yorkshire, England. Died December. 14, 1939, Vancouver, British Columbia. Ruth arrived in British Columbia in 1884 to marry John Morton,(1834-1912)  She was the first white woman to settle in the area of New Westminster, British Columbia. The couple would make their first home on English Bay. John Morton and his partners Samuel Brighouse and William Hailstone, are known in local history lore as The Three Greenhorns. After their first business failed he and his partners bought 550 acres in what is now the West End, at $1 an acre. When the Canadian Pacific Railroad arrived, "the Morton Ranch" proved a bonanza. Upon his death in 1912, John Morton left funds to build a church, The Ruth Morton Memorial Baptist Church, to be named in honour of his wife. Source: The Vancouver Hall of Fame online ; “Romance…” by Bruce Woods, Newsletter, Vancouver Historical Society Vol. 51 no. 7. 
 

Catherine Papineau (née Quevillon) Born 1686. Died 1781. As a youth she was carried off by the Iroquois and was ransomed only after several years in captivity. During her full lifetime she would marry four times. In 1704 she married Samuel Papineau, a soldier. They would have nine children together and founded a Canadian family dynasty.
 
Arabelle "Belle" Frances Patchen

Born St. Paul, Minnesota, U.S.A. August 10, 1874. Died 1952. As a child she had moved with her family to the American northwest coast. In 1898 in Spokane, Washington she married an older gentleman of local society named Allen and became a trophy wife. She was the talk of the town after a popular scandal when, for charity, she road a horse bareback sporting only pink tights with a short knee length skirt! She married a second time to Thomas Noyes and the couple headed north to Nome , Alaska in 1900. Here the couple adopted a half Inuit girl, Bonnie, in 1905. After the death of Tom, Belle married a 3rd time in 1919 to surveyor, Bill Muncaster and the family took a honeymoon across two northern glaciers. The couple spent years searching for gold along the Canadian U.S.A. boarder finally staking a claim. Fighting off wolves, wolverines and severe winter weathers the scraped by with a meager earning that barely paid for expensive supplies. It is a common story of life in the north. In her 60’s she was teaching young men how to pack supplies and seek their fortune in the North. A true pioneer who embraced Northern life to the fullest.  Source: “Pioneer woman of Squaw Creek”  by Michael Gates in Yukon News November 23, 2007 Accessed online June 2011.

Myrtle Philip

(née Tapley) Born Maine, U.S.A. March 19, 1891. Died August 1986.  As a young teacher she met and married Alex Philip in 1908. This adventuresome couple eventually settled in Vancouver, British Columbia but cold not resist the call of the mountains. In 1914 they established Rainbow Lodge at Alta Lake, which is now the modern famous Whistler ski area. Myrtle became a well known horsewoman, fisher, hiker, organizer and community builder. In 1915 she petitioned the Government for a post office and became the areas first post mistress. She established the first school even though the government offered no help. The Rainbow Lodge, under the Philip’s expert management, grew and prospered and in the 1940’s was expended to accommodate 100 guests. The couple sold the Loge in 1948 and it continued operation through to 1977 when the main building was destroyed by fire. Toda the area is preserved as Rainbow Park with some of the original cabins on site. In 1976 the Myrtle Philip Elementary School was established and in 1992 the Myrtle Philip Community School  became a centre of  activities. There is also the Myrtle Philip Community Centre. Each year Whistler celebrates Myrtle Philip Day on March 19thSources: Herstory: the Canadian Women’s Calendar 2007 Coteau Books, 2006 page 78.; Myrtle Philip Community School. On line Accessed June 2011.

Ada Annie Rae-Arthur

Cougar Annie

Born Sacramento, California, U.S.A. June 19, 1888. Died Port Alberni, British Columbia April 28, 1985. In 1915 after having lived in England, South Africa and the Canadian Parries, Annie with her husband and 3 children came from Vancouver to settle on a 5 acre tract of forest wilderness at Boat on the west coast of Vancouver Island. With great hardship, they cleared the land and made a large unique botanical garden,  a mail order nursery business, post office and general store. Defending her land against prowling animals, Annie used her shotgun skills as well that she earned the nickname “Cougar Annie”. After four husbands ( the last one was a drunkard and was run off with a shotgun in 1967) and eleven children, she finally left her home and beloved garden when she was over ninety. Cougar Annie’s garden became derelict but was lovingly returned by Businessman Peter Buckland and run as a tourist attraction with botanical study centre opening in 2007 by the Boat Basin Foundation. However in 2010 the property was up for sale because of high debt. Source:  Cougar Annie Further fabulous Canadians hysterically historical Rhymes by Gordon Snell and Aislin. Toronto: McArthur & co. 2004. Pages 59-63: Ecotrust Canada Ecotrust.ca accessed August 2011.

Marie Rollet. Born France, circ 1580. Died May 27, 1649. In 1617 she arrived in New France with her husband and young children. Her husband would be known as Canada’s first farmer. He was also an apothecary and Marie befriended the local natives to whom her husband administered. She is Canada’s first farmer’s wife. Their farm was on Cape Diamond which is located in the heart of the modern city of Quebec. She may also be considered Canada’s first teacher as records show she enjoyed teaching the local native population. After the death of her husband in 1627 she remained in her new homeland. She would marry a second time to a settler by the name of Hubot and they would raise an adopted native daughter
A Québec, La première de la colonie, veuve de l'apothicaire Louis Hébert, pratique " l"interculturalisme" avant l'heure: elle instruit les "sauvagessess" et les forme ...à l'éuropéenne.
Marie-Henriette LeJeune Ross

'Granny Ross'

Baptized August 13 1762 Rochefort, France. Her family would emigrate and settle in Acadia only to be deported back to France twice as the area transferred back and forth from the France to England. As a young girl in France she married Joseph Comeau and in 1784 the young couple headed back to Cape Breton where Comeau drowned leaving a young widow. Marie- Henriette married Bernard Lejeun dit Briard and after being a widow again in 1792 she married James Ross. She not only raised her family of 11 children but she became a known healer herbalist and midwife who traveled hundreds of miles tending to the care of the people of Nova Scotia for over 60 years. Her name and stories of her life deed have been passed down through the family from generation to generation merging fact and fiction. She is said to have killed two bears one with a musket and one with a fire shovel! She is known to have spent hours in the forest studying plant life and learning the medical properties of the flora and fauna making her a knowledgeable scientist of her day. Sources : Canadian women in Science, Library and Archives Canada, accessed March 2006; Dictionary of Canadian Biography vol. lll p. 498-499

Elizabeth Russell. Born December 26, 1754. Died 1822.  After the death of her father she moved to the Canada's with her older half brother, Peter. Peter was an administrator in the colony. She became an able entertainer on behalf of her brother and his position in York (Toronto), socializing with the elite society of the day. In her letters and diary she has left a detailed picture of one woman's life in early Upper Canada. 
Mrs. Sargeant, wife of the Governor of the Hudson Bay Company, her companion, Mrs. Maurice, and a maidservant are the first English women to come to James Bay in 1683.
Mary Scovil.  (née Barber) Born September 25, 1803. As a young woman she was a teacher. She worked in Sutton Township ( Lower Canada) in 1834 for her room and board and a salary of $1.00 a week! She married a farmer, Stephen Scovil. At 44 she was pregnant, a widow and already a mother of three older children. She worked harder than ever with her farm. Against the sentiment of her own era she worked herself into the position of a prosperous farmer. A strong minded individual she left her estate to her family assuring that her daughters inheritance could not become part of the estate of their husbands!
Eudoxia Sorochan Shewchuk Born Ukraine. Died 1967, Manitoba. She immigrated to Canada at 16 with her widowed mother and three siblings. Landing in Montreal with only $4.00 to their name, Eudoxia took simple jobs to earn enough money to send her mother and siblings on the train to Winnipeg. She remained behind to earn money for the family as a live in house keeper until she could afford to join the family. In 1908 she married Peter Shewchuk and the couple settled in Saskatchewan in 1909. Here they would raise their 11 children. She often took their farm produce to market. In winter she had to break a path for the horse and wagon to reach the market with goods. She was a well known midwife in Saskatchewan. She was also a natural negotiator and helped people solve many conflicts peacefully. In 1944 the couple sold their farm and relocated to Manitoba. Source: Herstory: The Canadian Women's calendar. 2008  (Saskatoon Women's Calendar Collective / Coteau Books, 2007)
Susan Sibbald (née Mein) Born Fowey, Cornwall England November 29, 1783. Died July 9, 1866. In 1807 she married Col. Sibbald. After the death of her husband in 1835 she emigrated to Canada to investigate her sons' activities and to find a suitable farm for the, She took a day tour on Lake Simcoe and decided to settle on what is now called Sibbald Point. Mrs. Sibbald and John Coomer donated land for a cemetery and church near the entrance to her estate which she name Eldon Hall. She was a close friend with the daughter of Governor General Simcoe. A great grandson published her memoirs that included letters covering her years in Canada( London, 1926)
Frances Ramsay Simpson
Lady Simpson
Born London, England. March 28,1812 Died March 21 1853. She married her cousin, George Simpson February 24 1830. His career a Governor with the Hudson Bay Company would bring her to Canada. She and her companion, Catherine Turner, wife of another HBC employee, were the first white women to travel to remote Hudson Bay Company areas. After a visit to Rainey Lake ( in modern Ontario) the settlement was named Fort Frances in her honour.  Living in Red River she became homesick and lonely and remained semi invalided after the birth and death of her first child. Eventually the family settled permanently in Lachine Quebec in 1845 were their five Canadian born children could be raised. The diaries she wrote during the time she spend on her adventures in the Canadian west left a vivid written record of the times.
Rhoda Skinner Born 1775. Died 1834 Scarborough, Upper Canada. She married Parshall Terry, becoming mother to his seven children. The couple had 12 children together. After the death of Parshall she married William Cornell (1773-18??) and adding 12 more step - children to her family. In all she was mother to 37 children. Source: Toronto’s Historical Plaques Torontoplaquws.com accessed May 2012.
Charlotte Small Born Canadian North West 1786. Died 1857. Charlotte was the daughter of fur trader Patrick Small and a Cree wife. Her father left the business and abandoned his fur trade family when Charlotte was just five. As a young woman of 13 she married the 29 year old explorer and well known map maker David Thompson on June 10, 1799 at Ile-à-la Crosse in the Canadian North West . They remained together for 58 years and would have 13 children. Charlotte and children often traveled with David Thompson on his exploits. She was possible the best traveled Canadian woman of her time! Thompson mapped the largest expanse of North American than anyone else. He retired from the North West in 1812 and relocated his family to an area near Montreal. On October 30, 1812 the couple were remarried according to his tradition and Charlotte and the children remaining at home were also baptized. Charlotte signed the church registry in a clear and confidant had leading historians to believe that she could both read and write. The couple never returned to the Canadian North West but lived their lives out together in the Montreal area Charlotte died only three months after her 87 year old husband died. Source: Travels with Charlotte by Aretha Ven Herk, Canadian Geographic Vol. 127. No. 5 July/August 2007 Pages 54-64.
Jane Stafford (née Gibb) Born March 7, 1842, Auchinleok, Ayrshire, Scotland. Died April 3, 1925, Lethbridge, Alberta. On December 13, 1863 Jane married William Stafford (1842-1907) who would become a Galt Mine superintendant in Canada. The couple resided in Scotland for the 1st portion of their married life where they became parents of 7 children. In 1871 the family settled in Wolfville, Nova Scotia where 4 more children were born. In 1882 William and his son Henry left for the coal mines of Alberta. Jane took the arduous journey west a year later with her other children. The family settled in the rough mining area of Coal Banks, Alberta where Jane was the 1st white woman I the area. Here she gave birth to Henrietta, the 1st white child born in the area and two more children. Jane made the Stafford house a welcome place for all visitors and it was in her home that the 1st church services in the area were held. Jane took a great interest in the lives and welfare of all the peoples of the community from the miners, settlers and Aboriginals alike. She had left the relative comfort of a life with all community conveniences in Nova Scotia to be participant and witness to the rough and tumble coal mine town into the settlement that would become the town/city of Lethbridge. Source: Sanderson, Kay. 200 Remarkable Women of Alberta. (s.l., s.d.) online (Accessed September 2014) 
 
Sylvia Stark (née Estes) Born enslaved Clay Co. Missouri, U.S.A. She taught herself how to read and write by learning from the lessons of the white children she cared for as a slave. Her father , owned by a different person, wanted to gain freedom for himself and his family. He earned money working the gold fields in California with his slave owners and had to seek legal help in order to purchase his freedom and that of his family. The freed family originally settled in Missouri but fear of the Klu Klux Klan forced them to move to California. Sylvia married Louis Stark in 1855. California law changed in the late 1850’s and it was not favourable to freed slaves. The Stark and Estes families moved to British Columbia in search of full freedom. Sylvia and Louis and their children settled as pioneer farmers on Salt Spring Island, a fertile gulf island between the mainland and Vancouver Island. In 1875 she and her husband left the farm to the oldest son, Willis, and resettled in Naimao on Vancouver Island. In 1895 Louis was murdered and Sylvia returned to Salt Spring Island to farm with her son. Sources; Sylvia Estes – women in BC http://bcarchives.gov.bc.ca (accessed December 2011) : Sylvia Stark . March 4, 1997 Section15.ca (Accessed December 2011)
Frances Anne Stewart. (née Browne)  Born Dublin, Ireland 1794. Died October 24, 1872. She married Thomas Alexander Stewart on December 16, 1816. When Thomas lost his job with a bankrupt company the young couple decided to emigrate to Canada with other family members. They left Ireland on June 1, 1822 spending seven weeks aboard ship for the crossing to Canada! A true pioneer  to Upper Canada, she was a diarist and letter writer.  Her letters to home have left us with a rich insight into early Canadian life of such of her friends as the Strickland family. Her family published her writings after her death. Many of her personal writings are stored in the Archives at Trent University , Peterborough, Ontario.
Charlotte Taylor

Born London, England between 1752-1755. Died Tabusintac, New Brunswick. April 25, 1841.  In the 1775 she reportedly ran off to the West Indies to escape the disapproval of her family. Here she would experience the death of her partner and would find herself along and heavy with child. In that same year she married Captain John Blake and gave birth to her first child Elisabeth Williams. The Blake’s found their way to Canada’s east coast and became pre-loyalists. Charlotte was a true pioneer of the Canadian Maritimes, being among the first to settle in wilderness areas. A son Robert Blake Jr. (1782-1853) was born in the Canadian wilderness. After the death of Robert Blake Sr. in 1785 she partnered with William Wishart (perhaps a neighbor) and a son William Wishart (1785-1851) was born. Within the next two years Charlotte married Philip Hierlihy (  - 1804). In all Charlotte would have 10 children. In 1785 she would snowshoe to Fredrickton, the centre of New Brunswick government, to ensure the title of land from the estate of her first husband. The land ownership battles would be a major part of the families’ life struggle. Charlotte survived and ensured the survival of her family . She was a land owner and a desirable widow who married, as was the style of the era, several times to ensure survival. She outlived her husbands and some of her children, but was comforted by a family members who made up a true dynasty.  She is considered the Mother of Tabusintac. Sources: Charlotte Taylor: Her life and Times by Mary Lynn Smith http://ww3.bc.sympatico.ca/charlotte_taylor  Accessed July 2007.

Emilie Tremblay (née Fortin) Born Saint-Joseph-d’Alma,  Quebec January 4, 1872. Died Victoria, British Columbia April 22, 1949. She moved with her family as a teen to Cohoes, New York, U.S.A. December 11, 1893 she married a miner from the Canadian Yukon Pierre-Nolasque Tremblay. He would take his bride across country to access trails to the north. In 1894 she was the 1st white woman to climb the famous and traitorous Chilkoot trail. She learned to cook on the trail and also learned English to converse with the miners they met. The couple lived in a small log cabin and opened their doors that first Christmas with Emilie cooing a full course Christmas meal for one and all. During a trip home to New Your, gold was discovered in the Klondike and the northern live changed with a flood of hopeful fortune seekers. The Tremblay’s returned home to the north laden with supplies to sell to the miners at Bonanza Creek located close to the new Dawson City. In 1906 the couple travelled to Europe in style and visited relatives in Quebec on the way home. The couple adopted one of Emilie’s nieces to return home with them. In the family settled in Dawson City where Emilie opened a dry goods business known simply as Mrs. Tremblay’s Store. Emilie was active in charity work with her church. She knit 263 pairs of socks for soldiers in World War l. She founded the Society of the Ladies of the Golden North in 1922 and in 1927 she was president of the Yukon Order of Pioneers. In 1937 she received the King George IV Medal. In 1940, now a widow she married Louis Langois and once again, of their own choice, the couple lived in a small northern cabin. In 1946 she attended the annual Convention of Alaska and Yukon Pioneers in San Francisco. The following year the aging couple sought comfort living in Victoria, British Columbia. Sources: Pioneers every one by E. Blanche Norcross (Burns and MacEachern Ltd, 1979) : Emilie Tremblay. The great names of the French Canadian Community Online (Accessed November 2012)
Kate Weldon

Catherine (Kate) Weldon née Liggett. Born Ireland February 4, 1850. Died 1903. She and her brother sailed to settle in the U.S.A in 1871. It was there that she met and married another Irish immigrant, George Weldon in 1876. Emigrating to Hamilton, Ontario George was approached by the representative of the Canadian Pacific Telegraph line who enticed the couple to build establish and maintain a telegraph station in the Canadian northwest site of Humboldt. Kate was an expert telegraph operator and soon taught George. On August 25, 1878 Kate sent the first commercial telegraph message from the earthen floor, rough wood station they had built. Known for being a good hostess her hospitality even welcomed the Marquis of Lorne, Governor General, on his visit in 1881.  In 1882, despite the attempt to receive instructions of help for their sick child over the telegraph, the Weldon daughter died. In 1883 the Weldon’s left for Grenfell where George worked as a CPR agent and Kate would give birth to their son. Source: Saskatoon Women’s Calendar Collective. Herstory 2007: the Canadian Women’s Calendar (Regina: Couteau Books, 2006)  pg. 6..

Eunice Williams. Born Deerfield, Massachusetts U.S.A. September 17, 1694. Died November 26, 1785. She was also known by the names Marie, Maria, Margueritte, Marguarett, Gannenstenhawt (meaning she who brings in the corn), Ouangote, Aongote (meaning they took her and placed her as a member of the tribe). Eunice was captured by Indians in her home in Deerfield, in the colony of  Massachusetts in 1703 or 1704. She was taken with 100 other prisoners to Canada. Her father spent many years trying to trade or exchange his daughter and bring her home. The tribe she lived with became very fond of the child and she learned their ways. Eventually she married a brave. She would keep in touch with her family and often visited her brothers with her own husband and children. Her children took their mother's name as is the native tradition. One of her grandsons became a chief of Sault-Saint-Louis. Her descendants may be found living in this same area today. 
Julia Smith Winder (née Stimson) Born 1846, Quebec. Died 1926, Lennoxville, Quebec. Julia (Some sources call her Jane) married William Winder (1844-1885) and the couple first lived in California before returning to Quebec in 1872. The following year William joined the new North West Mounted Police and was assigned as superintendant to Fort Macleod in Alberta. Julia moved west with her two children and would give birth to her third child at the fort. Life in the early north west Canadian frontier was not easy but Julia was able to share the hardships with other NWMP wives at the fort. Hardships and separation from their husbands was a part of NWMP family fife. In 1881 William retired from the NWMP force and with the financial aid of supporters like his brother-in Law, Frederick Stimson, entered into pioneering cattle ranching in the area. Julia returned to Quebec in 1884 for the birth of their forth child. After the death of her husband 1885, Julia and her 3 youngest children returned to live in Quebec. Source: Sanderson, Kay. 200 Remarkable Women of Alberta. (s.l., s.d.) online (Accessed September 2014) 
 
Elizabeth 'Libbie' McDougall Young Born 1852. Died 1945. Libbie moved to Alberta with her family in 1863. She returned to Ontario to attend the Wesleyan Female College in Hamilton. By 1870 she was back in Alberta at the family Wesleyan/Methodist Mission at Morley. In 1873 she married Harrison Stevens Young, an employee of the Hudson Bay Company (HBC). The young couple settled at the HBC post at Lesser Slave Lake. Libbie spoke fluent Cree and was readily accepted by the aboriginal community at the HBC outpost. During the Northwest Rebellions the family lived at Lac La Biche where they were forced into hiding in the woods to ensure their safety. The couple had nine children, 6 of whom lived to adulthood. Between 1887 through 1909 the family lived in Edmonton where Libby was known as the last chatelaine of Fort Edmonton. Source: 200 Remarkable Alberta Women. Online (Accessed October, 2014)
 
   
TOP OF PAGE