Monday, 27 August 2012


When I was researching Robert Newton (1821 - 1895) I thought I would look to see if there were other Newtons in the area that might be related.  All I knew was that he was Irish, he was a Protestant and he was a farmer.  He was in Ontario in 1851 according the the Census and he was living in Peel County.  By 1861 his first wife Margaret Fallis had died and he had remarried Isabella McKnight and he had moved to Wallace, Perth County.

It was rather a slow start.   The Toronto Family History Centre  has a weekly newsletter and there is an opportunity to have your  question published with (hopefully) a solution provided, either by the volunteers or another newsletter recipient.   Several years ago I sent in my question asking how I could find out when and where Robert Newton married Isabella McKnight.  Robert's first wife Margaret died in 1855 in Wallace Perth County and Isabella and Robert's first son Robert T. was born about 1857.  It looked like I had a two year window and a possible location of Wallace.

The answer came back that records for that period and that location were very scarce and it would be difficult to find out.  Great I thought, I'd already figured that part out, that was why I was asking where I could start my search.  My goal always to find out the parents names of Robert.

The next week however I received this reply from genealogist Fawne Stratford-Devai:

Fawne Stratford-Devai writes:
“Regarding the question for the Perth County marriage records pre-1869, we are very fortunate that the returns to the clerk of the peace were found and transcribed by Dan Walker and myself some years ago. The full transcription with index is available from Global Genealogy at:
Perth County Baptism, Marriage & Burial Register, 1852-1859
Compiled by Dan Walker & Fawne Stratford-Devai
[Also available at the Toronto Reference Library and North York Public Library]
When I checked the transcriptions, I found the following entries for Newton/McKnight:
Marriages by Rev’d John Armstrong Wesleyan Methodist Minister
Robert NEWTON, to Isabella McKNIGHT. 11 Jan. 1857, Wallace, by Licence. Rev. ARMSTRONG. Wit. William McBRIDE and S. ARMSTRONG

Hooray for the internet.  A source for the marriage and where I could locate the source.  Not the complete answer I was looking for but it did confirm the marriage date between Robert and Isabella.

I decided to go back to the Census and see if I could find any other Newtons in the general area that were Irish, Protestant and possibly farmers.

Here's what I found on the 1851 Census:

William Newton born about 1826 in Ireland living in Waterloo County
George Newton born about 1821 in Ireland living in Waterloo County
Maria Newton Holt born about 1828 in Ireland living in Waterloo County
Henry Newton born about 1828 in Ireland living in Peel County

There was also a Henry Newton listed in the City of Toronto and Home District Directory and Register 1837.  He was listed at Albion Township, Peel County, Concession 1 Lot 27.

Could these be relatives of Robert?  The Henry that owned land in Albion, was probably not the same Henry in the 1851 Census.  That Henry would be just 9 years old in 1837. 

I did some more digging and found that William, Maria and Henry Newton (1828) were related.  Following their marriage registrations the parents for all three were listed as Henry Newton and Mary Bryan or Bryant.  I also found that when George Newton was married Robert Newton and William Fallis were the witnesses.  Fallis is the maiden name of Robert's first wife.

George married a Leitia Eason and  on the 1851 Census there is a William  Newton (1828)  living with the family in Waterloo.  Henry (1828) is also living quite nearby as well. Perhaps George is related to the other 3 Newtons.

A very helpful volunteer a the Peel Region Ontario Genealogical Society looked up some information for me as well.  She reported that a Henry Newton age 21 and a Maria Newton age 16 appeared on the Index for Baptismal Register for the Mission Chinguacousy,  Gore of Toronto and parts adjacent.  They had been confirmed 28 October 1844 in Albion, Peel, living at Lot 20 Concession 2.
Now that is not the same Concession and Lot where the other Henry was living but it was in Albion.

Also according to the Peel Region volunteer, the original land for Henry Newton - Lot 27, Concession 1 had been owned by an A.J. Fallis, by 1859.  Once again the Fallis name appears.

Now all I had to do was connect these Newtons to Robert.


Wednesday, 15 August 2012


I received a comment from a descendant of the William J. Faulkner family about the information from the North Ontario Vintage Postcards website that Lily Faulkner was the daughter of William J. Faulkner and Saphonia Garbutt.  I have updated this blog to clarify the information.

John Crosby Faulkner, is the oldest son of William Faulkner and Annie Jane (Hanna) Crosby. John Crosby Faulkner was born in Dublin Ireland around 1844 and died in Sundridge Ontario in 1932. He was a photographer working in Toronto and later in Sundridge.

John married Jennie Stewart in 1874 in Toronto at St. James Cathedral. Her parents were John and Frances Stewart. Jennie Faulkner died in 1918 in Sundridge. Both John and Jennie Faulkner are buried in the Strong Cemetery in Sundridge.

John and Jennie had no children, but adopted a girl Lily Agnes Faulkner born about 1888 who was also a photographer in Sundridge. According to Northern Ontario Vintage Postcards site,
Lily was the daughter of John's younger brother William.   However to date there is no proof of this.
The 1891 Census shows the 3 children of William Joseph Faulkner and Saphonia Garbutt Faulkner as Louis aged 10, Henrietta, aged 5 and William, aged 2.   Perhaps the idea that Lilllian was William's daughter evolved by misreading the child's name William for Lillian on this census.  A tombstone indicates Lillian was born in 1888, while William was born 10 January 1889 and died 28 July 1970, in Vernon, B.C.  It is believed that Lillian died in 1986 in Sundridge, Ontario.  If anyone knows Lillian's parents names, please leave a comment below.

John Crosby Faulkner is listed in the book The Ontario Photographers List by Glen C. Phillips.

  • Faulkner, J. C., photographer 1887 - 1892 - Toronto
  • Faulkner, J. C., photographer 1892 - 1900 - Sundridge
The Dun & Bradstreet Commercial Directory also lists him as a photographer.

  • Faulkner, J. C. 1901 - 1907 Sundridge
  • Faulkner, John C. 1914 - 1920 Sundridge

In 1881 John & Jennie Faulkner are listed as living in the St. David's Ward, in Toronto. By 1891 the Census shows the couple living in Joly Strong - Sundridge, in the Muskoka and Parry Sound area of Ontario. John's address on the 1911 Census is 5 Main Street, Sundridge.

The photograph used in this blog was taken by John Crosby Faulkner. It is a picture of his brother Ford Faulkner, his wife and children. It was taken around 1910 in Toronto.

Tuesday, 14 August 2012


This bible represents my starting point in researching my genealogy.  I knew that my paternal grandmother's maiden name was Faulkner, but that was all I knew.  This gave me dates, names and places to commence my journey.

Bible presented to Sarah Ann Faulkner by her father R. Newton 1884
Holy Bonds of Matrimony Ford Faulkner & Sarah A. Newton June 25, 1879, Fordwich, Ontario

Robert Newton is my great-great grandfather.  He was born about 1821 in Ireland and came to Canada before 1849.  He lived in Peel County, Perth County and  Huron County in Ontario and then in Manitoba and was a farmer.  Robert married twice.  His first wife was Margaret Fallis she was born in 1827 in County Fermanagh in Ireland.  It's not clear where Robert and Margaret married, but possibly in Ontario.   Sadly she died in 1855 in Wallace, Perth County, Ontario, probably shortly after giving birth to her daughter Margaret.  Margaret Fallis' parents were James Fallis and Esther Spence.

Robert and Margaret had at least 5 children born in Ontario:
  • Ester Ann  1849 - 1933
  • Mary           1850 - 1937
  • William Henry 1851 -
  • Susan          1853 - 1864
  • Margaret     1855 - 1912
On the 1851 Census Robert and Margaret Newton were living in Albion, Peel County.  According to The Christian Guardian, Margaret died 24 February 1855, in Wallace Township, Perth County.  Therefore the family must have moved between 1851 and 1855.

In 1857 Robert Newton married a second time.  His wife was named Isabella McKnight.  They married in Wallace, Perth County.  Isabella was the daughter of George Mcknight and Mary Smith of Fermanagh Ireland.  Isabella was born in about 1839 in Palmerston, Minto Township, Ontario.

Robert and Isabella had at least 11 children:

  • Edward George  1856 - 1939
  • Robert T.   1857 - 1927?
  • Sarah Ann   1860 - 1933   - My direct line - great-grandmother
  • Simon A.    1861 - before 1881?
  • Stewart A.   1863 -
  • Susan  1864 - 1892
  • Mary Matilda   1868 -
  • Anna Maria 1870 - 1915
  • Elizabeth Jane   1874 -
  • Christina  1875 -
  • Thomas John  1876 -
On the 1861 Census, the family was living in Wallace Township, Perth County, Lot 37, Concession 8.  Margaret Newton, born 1855 to Robert & Margaret Newton was living with her grandparents James and Esther Fallis in Albion.  By the 1871 Census, the family had moved once again, this time to Huron County.  They are listed in Howick, the  North Huron District of Huron County.  Robert Newton  owned 50 acres of  property on Lot 24, Concession 2.

The family moved to Manitoba between 1871 and 1881, as the 1881 Census shows the family living at St. Clement, Lisgar, Manitoba.  The children included in the census were: Robert, Stewart A., Maria, Christine, Elizabeth and Thomas, ranging in age from 22 to 6. 

My great grandmother Sarah Ann had married Ford Faulkner in 1879  and they stayed in Howick, Huron County along with her brother Edward who was staying with them.  Edward was to move to Manitoba later to join his family.

Ester Ann married Thomas Campbell in 1865; she and her husband stayed in Howick until the 1901 Census indicated they had moved to Brandon, Manitoba .

Mary Newton married Robert Armstrong and they stayed in Ontario.  William Henry Newton married Louisa Ann Mosier, in 1879  and by 1911 they had moved to Saskatchewan. Margaret Newton (1855) didn't live with her father, first she was living with her grandparents James and Esther Fallis and by 1871 she was living with her uncle Robert Fallis and his family in Peel County.  In 1880 she married Samuel Cornish Saunders .

Sarah Ann and Ford Faulkner eventually moved to Toronto between the 1881 and 1891 Census.

At this point in my research I had now "lost" both of the Susan Newtons I had recorded.  The first Susan born to Robert and Margaret was born in 1853 and the second Susan born 1864 to Robert and Isabella.  I assumed the Susan born 1853, must have died before 1864 as another Susan was born in 1864.  That detail was to become very important to my research later on.  Susan, born 1864 was not with the family in 1881 in Manitoba.

Robert Newton (1821) died in RM N. Cypress, Manitoba, 11 November 1895.  His parents were not listed, but his birthplace is listed as Queen's County Ireland.  Isabella McKnight Newton died 15 May 1913, in Elton Manitoba.  Her birth date is listed as 6 April 1839 and she was born in Palmerston, Minto Township, Ontario according the the death certificate.

Now, I don't know if you have been keeping count, but Robert Newton and his two wives, produced 16 children, that I am aware of.  I can only hope he was as productive as a farmer as he was as a husband.