The Abbott Family established in Lennoxville in 1843:
From merchants and postmasters to a federal Minister
Gérard Coté (LAHMS) and Jean-marie Dubois (Université de Sherbrooke)
Astreet opened in 1956 by Arthur Speid on the Uplands estate and was named after a pioneer and in- fluential Lennoxville family.
Ephraim W. Abbott, born in 1822 in Grotton, Vermont, came to settle in Lennoxville in 1843. He first worked as a clerk at the store of his uncle, Charles Brooks (who, in 1855, would become the third Mayor of Ascot Township, and in 1871, the first Mayor of the new Town of Lennoxville). In 1859, Ephraim married Elizabeth L. Harvey (1833-1911) in Barnet, Vermont. They had 8 children, all born in Lennoxville : George Henry (18611861), William Harvey (1862-1950), Caroline Chandler (1864-1???), Mary Elizabeth (1865-1???), Margaret Helen (1867-1947), Arthur Strobridge (18691???), Lewis Duff (1871-1905) and Maria Isabella (1873-1874). Ephraim became a prosperous general merchant in Lennoxville, being postmaster from 1873 to 1900. The post office was then in his general store on Main Street (which became Queen Street in 1952), next to City Hall (now the office of the Borough of Lennoxville). After the 1874 fire that wiped out part of the downtown area, he rebuilt his store near the corner of Belvidere Road (now College Street). From 1855 to 1865, he was SecretaryTreasurer for the Township of Ascot. From 1871 to 1873, he was first Secretary-treasurer of the new Town of Lennoxville, and Municipal Councillor from 1874 to 1876. He died in 1900 in Lennoxville and was buried with his wife in Malvern Cemetery.
In 1888, his son William Harvey married Elizabeth R. Oughtred (1866-1951). For a few years, he managed the family business, E. W. Abbott and Sons. For over 60 years, he worked for the post office, and like his father, he was postmaster from 1901 to 1939. He was SecretaryTreasurer of Lennoxville in 1888 and Mayor from 1898 to 1900. He was the president in 1934-1935 of the Lennoxville Curling Club. He died in Lennoxville in 1950 and was buried with his wife in Malvern Cemetery. We do not know anything of their other children except for Margaret Helen who was a spinster that lived with her mother and Lewis Duff who worked in the family business.
Lewis Duff’s son, the Honorable Douglas Charles Abbott (1899-1987), grew up in Lennoxville, studied at Bishop’s University and married Mary Winnifred Chisholm (1904-1980). From 1916 to 1918, he served overseas with the Mcgill Siege Battery, in the Royal Flying Corps and finally in the Royal Canadian Air Force. He studied law at Mcgill University and continued his studies at the Université de Dijon, in France. He joined the Quebec Bar in 1921 and partnered in Montreal with Fleet, Phelan, Fleet & Le Mesurier. In 1940, he was elected as a Liberal member of Parliament for the seat of SaintAntoine—westmount. In 1945 and 1946, he was Minister of Defense and, from 1946 to 1954, Minister of Finances and Receiver General. From 1844 to 1973, he was on Bishop’s University Board of Governors and was Principal from 1958 to 1968. From 1954 until he retired in 1973, he was a judge on the Supreme Court of Canada. On June 1st, 1963, the Université de Sherbrooke awarded him an honorary law degree. In 1964, Bishop’s University Abbott Hall was named after him.
William Harvey Abbott (courtesy of Lennoxville Curling Club)