The Haw­leys of Vic­to­ria and In­ver­ness Coun­ties

In Those Days in Vic­to­ria County

The Victoria Standard - - Culture / Heritage - JIM ST. CLAIR

Cap­tain Matthew Haw­ley was born in Wood­bury, Con­necti­cut in the 1740s. His great-great grand­fa­ther Joseph Haw­ley first set foot in North Amer­ica around 1639 and be­came a prom­i­nent, wealthy resident of Strat­ford, Con­necti­cut, on the sea coast near the mouth of the Con­necti­cut River. Among his ac­tiv­i­ties were that of ship­builder and owner, in­clud­ing the schooner “John and Es­ther.”

Joseph Haw­ley was born in Par­wich, a small farm­ing village in the mid­lands of Eng­land. In fact, nu­mer­ous gen­er­a­tions of Matthew Haw­ley’s an­ces­tors set­tled in Con­necti­cut, hav­ing been born in Eng­land. Records re­veal the Haw­leys liv­ing in Eng­land as far back as the 1500s.

Cap­tain Haw­ley was a United Em­pire Loy­al­ist who ar­rived in Nova Sco­tia aboard the “Argo” in the 1780s af­ter a seabound jour­ney from New York. He is said to have been the owner of a small fish­ing/ trans­port boat which he an­chored near his home along the North­east Brook in Mabou.

Cap­tain Haw­ley fa­thered chil­dren with two part­ners Chloe Brown of Con­necti­cut, and Abi­gail Squires who was thought to be a na­tive of New­found­land. Abi­gail was an Ir­ish Catholic whereas Matthew’s an­ces­tor Joseph Haw­ley was a Pu­ri­tan sep­a­ratist from the Church of Eng­land. HAW­LEYS TO INGONISH

Hav­ing orig­i­nally set­tled on the In­ver­ness side of the is­land, Matthew and Abi­gail’s son Matthew and his wife Mar­garet (Hors­ford) even­tu­ally moved from the Brook Village/mabou area to Ingonish in the 1850s. By the 1861 cen­sus, they are listed in Vic­to­ria County and en­gaged in fish­ing. By the 1881 Cen­sus, over forty Haw­leys ap­pear as res­i­dents in the area. Ev­ery Haw­ley is iden­ti­fied as of Amer­i­can ori­gin, even though wives were of­ten of Scot­tish and Ir­ish ori­gin. A CU­RI­OUS CHANGE

Al­though all of Cap­tain Haw­ley’s an­ces­tors were English, and the Haw­leys of Ingonish were listed in the 1881 Cen­sus as Amer­i­can in ori­gin, a sudden his­tor­i­cal shift arises not twenty years later. Cu­ri­ously, by the time of the 1901 Cen­sus, the fifty Haw­leys of Ingonish state that they are of Ir­ish ori­gin. Per­haps they were re­mem­ber­ing their an­ces­tor Abi­gail Squires who was of Ir­ish de­scent? Sig­nif­i­cantly, the Ingonish Haw­leys also be­came Ro­man Catholic, while most of their cousins in the Mabou and Port Hood area were Pres­by­te­rian or Bap­tist.

What­ever the cause for the cu­ri­ous change in fam­ily tra­di­tion, the descen­dants of that pioneer­ing group of res­i­dents in Vic­to­ria County were in­dus­tri­ous and helped to es­tab­lish a strong fish­ing pro­fes­sion still present to­day.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Canada

© PressReader. All rights reserved.