[Fort Fairfield Review, Dec. 26, 1906]
Thomas Lawson of Andover and Perth, N. B., died of heart-failure, very suddenly, Friday morning, December 21, about 10:00 o’clock. He had not been feeling well for a day or two, and had that morning arisen late, got his breakfast, and then gone back upstairs. A few minutes later Mrs. Lawson, who went up to see him, found him dying. Dr. Peat was summoned, but did not reach the house before Mr. Lawson had breathed his last.
The deceased was one of the ablest lawyers and most prominent citizens in his part part of New Brunswick, and his death produced a painful shock upon the minds of many neighbors and friends.
The funeral took place at the residence, Andover, Sunday afternoon, Rev. G. C. Pringle of the Presbyterian church offering prayers. Benjamin Lodge, No. 31, Free and Accepted Masons, of which the deceased was an enthusiastic and remarkably well informed member, was in charge. There were 88 Masons in the line of march from Masonic hall to the residence and thence to the new Presbyterian cemetery and back, some 30 of them being from Fort Fairfield and some from Grand Falls and elsewhere.
The services at the grave were impressively conducted by Worshipful Master M S. Sutton, assisted by H. W. Trafton, Master of Eastern Frontier Lodge, Rev. J. R. Hopkins offering prayer.
The attendance of the general public was very large, the funeral being doubtless the most numerously attended one ever held in Andover.
The deceased was born in Glasgow, Scotland, 43 years ago, and came over with his parents, Mr. and Mrs. John Lawson, who settled in Upper Kintore, in the spring of 1874. A year or two afterwards the elder Mr. Lawson and family moved to Fredericton, the deceased there attending Fredericton Collegiate School. He was also a page in the local House of Assembly from about 14 to 18 years of age.
Mr. Lawson was married about 1885 to Miss Lucy Ward of Fredericton, and moved to Andover a year later, establishing a law office there. In 1900 he moved his office to Perth. From about 1898 to 1902 Mr. Lawson was a member of the New Brunswick Assembly. He leaves a widow and four children—Miss Bessie, about 20 years of age, George, Fannie and Marian, the latter about six years old.
The deceased had a very strong and attractive personality. He was cast in a large mould, physically, mentally and socially, and counted his friends by hundreds. With one or two conditions different, he might have been one of the very foremost men of New Brunswick, because he had the brain capable of important achievements and the friendships necessary to political success. He was always prominent in the affairs of Benjamin Lodge, his retentive memory and pleasing powers as a speaker serving him and his brethren there in good stead.
“Death takes us by surprise
And stays our hurrying feet,”
and it causes keen sorrow in this case to many friends of their departed neighbor and brother. Much sympathy is felt for the family of the deceased.
[Fort Fairfield Review, Dec. 26, 1906]
MYSTERY OF SEVEN YEARS CLEARED. Victoria County, N. B., Furnishes Another Sensation—Skeleton Found in Woods Was John Mckenzie
[Fort Fairfield Review, July 4, 1906]
A dispatch from Perth, N. B., a few days ago to one of the dailies says:
The skeleton of John McKenzie, who disappeared from his home at Lower Kincardine on April 28, 1899, was found last Wednesday by Andrew Davidson, Sr., on his farm, which adjoined the McKenzie homestead. The remains were [buried] in the Presbyterian cemetery Thursday.
The discovery of the remains of Mr. McKenzie clears up a mysterious disappearance which has long been the subject of conjecture in the Scotch Colony. In 1899 the time when Mr. McKenzie was missing, he was in a weak state of health, and it was supposed had wandered away only to die in the woods. Search parties were out for days looking for the unfortunate man, but no trace of him could be found.
The sad affair has been suddenly recalled by the event of last Wednesday. Mr. Davidson, Sr., while out looking for his cattle, found the skeleton of Mr. McKenzie in the corner of a wood, the boundary of which separates the two farms and some 50 paces from the edge. The remains were lying as if the unfortunate man had fallen backwards while sitting on a log, the head being lower than the body.
The clothing was still partly round the bones and a pencil, pocket knife, pipe and stick owned by the deceased were found nearby. The spot where the remains were discovered is not more than 300 years from Mr. McKenzie’s home, and it is supposed he must have wandered off into the wood, been seized with sudden illness, and died there.
At the time of his death he was survived by a wife and ten children. Mrs. McKenzie died about two years and a half ago and some of the children are still in the colony and doing well.
The funeral took place Thursday, Rev. Gordon Pringle, conducting the service, and burial was made in the family lot. It may be noted as a curious coincidence that a tombstone in memory of the deceased was placed in the graveyard on Wednesday, the day the remains were so strangely recovered.
The following letters were written by William Linton Duncan (1856-1941) and published in the Fort Fairfield Review. He was born in Banchory, Scotland and was sixteen years old when his family left their home in Stonehaven, Scotland in the spring of 1873, bound for the new Scotch Colony in Victoria County, New Brunswick. In 1885 he married Catherine Cocker in Kincardine, N. B. Four of their nine children were born in Kincardine before William moved his family to the Gardner Creek Road in Washburn, Maine about 1891.
[Published in the Fort Fairfield Review, February 5, 1919]
Fine Celebration at Upper Kintore of Birthday of Robert Burns
The celebration of “Robbie” Burns” birthday was held in the Upper Kintore hall Monday evening, January 27, and was largely attended. An excellent program was carried out by the old and young. Rev. Gordon Pringle acted as chairman and in his usual pleasing way kept the audience in roars of laughter. Thomas Patterson of Washburn, formerly of Edinburgh, Scotland, was present and delighted the audience with a musical treat. Mr. Patteron has a beautiful voice and is a born humorist, and in staging Harry Lauder’s songs held the audience spell-bound.
William Duncan of Washburn and William Cumming of Easton, who, previous to moving to Uncle Sam’s land, were colony boys, also came to attend the Scotch “nicht” and t00k their part in the program with hearty good will.
The program was as follows: “Scots Wha Hae,” by choir; address by chairman, Rev. G. C. Pringle; Solo, “When I Come Back Again Frae Bonnie Scotland,” Mr. Patterson, (encore); reading, “To A Mouse,” Mr. Duncan; duet, “Loch Lomond,” Mr. Patterson and Miss Rebecca Barclay; chorus, “It’s Nice to Get Up in the Morning,” by the children; solo, “Just as His Father Wis Afore Him,” Mr. Patterson, (encore); solo, “The Barrin Door,” J. Farquhar; quartet “Annie Laurie,” Messers Patterson, Duncan, Barclay and Miss Barclay; solo, “Robin Tamson’s Smiddy,” William Cumming, (encore); chorus, “The Wee Hoose ‘Mang the Heather,” by the children; solo, “I Love My Bonnie Jean,” Miss Jennie Nevers; address, James L. Mavor; solo, “Roamin in the Gloamin,” Mr. Patterson (encore); recitation, James Hutcheon; solo, “A Wee Deoch and Doris,” William Duncan; solo, “I Love a Lassie,” Mr. Patterson (encore); duet, “The Minute Gun at Sea,” Messrs. Cumming and Barclay; solo, “Mary of Argyle,” Miss Barclay; solo and chorus, “Laddies at the Scheule,” William Christie; solo Ruth Stevenson, (encore); solo, “We’d Better Bide a Wee,” Miss Margie Paul; solo, “The Auld Scotch Song,” Mr. Barclay; solo, “He Was Very Kind to Me,” Mr. Patterson, (encore) “It’s Nice to Get Yer Breakfast in Yer Bed on Sunday Morning;” solo, “Britannia the Pride of the Ocean,” Mr. Duncan.
Mr. Patterson also took the house by storm by imitating the bagpipes and singing an Italian song. The program was then closed by all heartily singing “Auld Lang Syne,” when all the auld Scotch “Freens” gathered on the stage reunited to “tak a richt guid willie hand shak” for “auld time’s sake.”
Luncheon was then served and a good cup of tea enjoyed by all.
A hearty vote of thanks was given for all who so ably assisted in the program making it such a grand success. Cheer after cheer went up for Mr. Patterson who so willingly responded to all encores and for Messrs. Duncan and Cumming for coming so far to take part.
The floor was then cleared and dancing indulged in “till the wee sma’ oors” of morning when the crowd departed, all hoping to meet again and have the pleasure of hearing Mr. Patterson Burns “nicht” 1920.
April 6, 1911: Ross Dean who has ben working for Geo W Dinsmore went home sick. James Cumming has taken his place for the present.
Sept. 21, 1911: Jas Cumming and mother called on Robt Cumming Sunday.
Oct. 19, 1911: James M. Cumming went hunting last week with the Methodist minister from Easton.
Oct. 26, 1911: James Cumming and the minister have returned from their hunting trip and brought back game, but it was the kind that scampers up the trees lively.
Dec. 21, 1911: James Cumming is firing potato cars.
Feb. 22, 1912: James Cumming visited his grandmother Sunday. On his return home he called on your scribe.
April 25, 1912: James Cumming and A D Nichols attended I O O F lodge at Easton Wednesday.
Mar. 14, 1912: James Leith returned from Portland last Monday. He has employed James Cumming to work for him.
Oct. 3, 1912: James Cumming and lady friend called at A. D. Nichols’ Sunday.
Jan. 2, 1913: J. M. Cumming spent Friday evening at the writer’s. [writer’s means the person who wrote the article in the newspaper: A. D. Nichols]
April 24, 1913: Should you happen to see a young man traveling along the road with the sign Cummings & Lent painted across his back you may know it is James Cummings, the amateur painter.
May 15, 1913: Easton: C W Spear has sold his car to James Cumming.
Aug. 28, 1913: Cumming & Lent are painting at W F Glidden’s.
April 23, 1914: James Cumming is painting the interior of P E Ackerson’s home.
May 21, 1914: James Cumming is painting Alec Cumming’s house in Houlton.
June 25, 1914: James Cumming is painting for Chas Spear.
Aug. 13, 1914: James Cumming was in Washburn Friday.
June 17, 1915: Upper West Ridge: Jim Cumming gave his uncle Robt a spin in his auto Sunday. There is about one Ford for every two hens around here.
July, 1914: James Cumming took a party over to the Scotch Colony July 4th.
Sept. 3, 1914: James Cumming and crew are painting the interior of the church.
July 29, 1915: Jim Cumming has repaired and improved his auto. Now he sits up very straight when he starts by with his auto filled with females.
Nov. 22, 1917: A hunting party consisting of Mr. and Mrs. James Cummings, Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Cummings, Misses Lizzie and Barbara Cummings, Alexander Cummings and Mr. Langley all of Easton are staying at R. T. Snow’s camp.
Dec. 13, 1917: Easton: James Cummings has purchased the W. H. Gould dwelling house on Presque Isle street.
James Cumming Easton 88. Died 4-7-1974 at a Mars Hill hospital following a illness of several months. He was born in Kintore, NB., Canada, 10-28-1885, the son of William and Annie (Duncan) Cumming. He had farmed in Easton for more than 40 years. He is survived by a son, Morrison of Easton and a daughter, Mrs. Paul (Jeanne) Tobin of Port Charlotte, FLA., 2 sisters, Mrs. Barbara Lyon of Presque Isle and Mrs. Edward (Cecilia) Milbury of Easton, 13 grandchildren, 12 great grandchildren. He was predeceased by a daughter, Mrs. Otis (Anna) Barnes of Fort Fairfield in 1970. Burial Estes Park cemetery.
GOOD SCOTCHMAN GONE TO HIS REWARD: Thomas Cumming was a Highly Respected Citizen–Raised a Large Family (By our Upper West Ridge Cor.) [Mars Hill View, Thursday, Feb. 24, 1910]
Mr. Cumming was born July 17, 1824 in Aberdeenshire, Scotland and was a dairyman by occupation living as I understand on his father’s old homestead and was considered quite well off keeping servants in the house and on the farm. He fell heir to 2200 pounds of money or its equivalent and by faithfully carrying out his business interests increased his finances several hundred pounds. After a time he concluded to change his location with the thought of greater possibilities for his future business, but contrary to his expectations the soil proved poor and instead of gaining financially he met the reverse.
About that time the N. B. Government knowing that the Scotch made desirable citizens threw out an inducement as it was then supposed to be to induce the Scotch to come to New Brunswick and establish a colony. The Scotch sent a man over to meet the land agent and explore the county. It is said that the land agent either to deceive the people or else not being well informed of the use of the compass travelled in a circle and did not explore very much of the then wilderness thus giving a favorable impression. The bait was eagerly taken and as a result quite a number of families came over and settled in Kintore, thus forming a Scotch Colony. The place proved to be a bitter disappointment and to use my own expression an imposition to an honest people as it was not a desirable place to live and still does not expect a brighter future.
Mr. Cumming tried farming and lumbering and erected a sawmill which was destroyed by fire. Some of his capital was lent to his friends who were financially embarrassed and were never able to liquidate the debt and in consequence losses were sustained in that way. Finally he became a poor man but not discouraged and was never known to complain of his lot.
Fourteen years ago Mr. Cumming and his son purchased a farm in Mars Hill and spent the remainder of his life there where they gained financially and have a good home. Mr. Cumming was married three times. In June 1851 he married Maria Jack who raised three children and died. He again stood at the marriage altar May, 1856 and was united in marriage to May Jack who brought 12 children into the world and passed away in July, 1875. In June, 1877 he again went through the trying ordeal and was married to Mrs. Betsey Emery who survives him. His wives were all natives of Scotland. The first family consisted of Jean Anne who married John Brown of Sherbrooke, Quebec, John J. who married Letitia Alland of Scotland, Margaret who married Capt W H Miller a native of New Brunswick. Of the second family six are living, Wm S. who married Annie Duncan living in Easton, ME., James M who married Barbara Duncan living in N. H., Thomas of Plaster Rock, N. B. who married Nettie Sisson, A C of Houlton, ME. married Maud Jordan of Sherbrooke, Quebec, Robert the bachelor who lives with his stepmother; Geo C of Plaster Rock, N B married Barbara Staples of Fredericton, N. B.
See the obituary transcribed above here.
Update July 7, 2015: Two more items regarding Thomas Cumming’s death and funeral were published in the Fort Fairfield Review on Feb. 23, 1910:
Feb. 23, 1910: Thomas Cumming, age 86 years, died at the home of his son Robert Cumming in Mars Hill on February 25 of bronchitis after three weeks illness. The funeral services were held at his old home in Victoria, N. B., Thursday February 17. His six sons were pallbearers. The deceased leaves a widow, six sons and one daughter, 39 grandchildren and 18 great grandchildren to mourn their loss.
Feb. 23, 1910: The funeral of the late Thomas Cumming of Easton took place Thursday afternoon. Rev. G. C. Pringle officiating. The deceased was born in Aberdeenshire, Scotland in 1824, and came to Kintore in 1874, where he lived until the past few years. He has mad his home with his son Robert in Easton. Mr. Cumming was a highly respected resident and many of his old friends and neighbors were present Thursday to pay their tribute of respect.
Family legend becomes truth! As seen in the Star Herald, Feb. 28, 1935, William L. Duncan, Sr. presented to Washburn High School a ship’s model that he made from a piece of the “Constitution.”
The letter was published in the Star Herald on January 23, 1918.