Wednesday, 30 January 2013


Willliam Joseph Faulkner is the 4th son born to William Faulkner (1815- ) and Annie Jane Crosby (1819 - 1876).  According to the Wesleyan Methodist Baptismal Register, he was born in Tecumseth, Simcoe County, Ontario, on July 1, 1850 and baptised the following May in Bradford.  So far this baptism record is the only record I've found for any of the children.

It does establish the family in Simcoe County in the 1850's even though the 1851 Census is no longer available for this County.  Ford Faulkner an older brother is listed as being born in Toronto, between 1847 and 1849.  This gives us a time frame for the family.  William senior and his wife Annie Jane came from Ireland with 2 children born in Ireland between 1844 and 1845.  If Ford Faulkner was born between 1847 and 1849 the family must have emigrated in that time period.  Likewise they must have moved from Toronto to Simcoe County by July 1, 1850, where William senior was the first tailor in Newton Robinson.

William Joseph Faulkner married Saphronia Diana Garbutt in West Gwillimbury, Simcoe, in 1880.  They lived in Simcoe County and then by 1891 the family had moved to the Muskoka area, where William was a baker.

William and Saphronia Faulkner had at least 4 children:

Lewis Norman Faulkner  1881 - 1908
Henrietta Jane Faulkner   1885 - 1965
William Garbutt Faulkner  1889 - 1970
Florence M. Faulkner  1895 - 1931

The  Vintage postcards website indicates that William Joseph Faulkner had a bakery and confectionery shop in Sundridge, Muskoka County, but it burnt down in 1903.  This shop was at Paget and Main Streets and was next to his brother John Crosby Faulkner's photography shop.

William died in 1905 while working with his son William Junior on a harvest excursion in Strathclair Manitoba.  William Senior worked as a baker for the harvest.  Another researcher sent me a newspaper article, date and paper unknown, that recounts his death.  However, the article indicates he died on the excursion in Strathclair, while his death registration was in South River, Parry Sound, Ontario.  Strathclair is about 2,000+ km west of South River, so I'm not sure how accurate the newspaper article is.   The article goes on to say, that the body was brought home for interment and William is buried in the South River Cemetery in Sundridge, Ontario

Willliam Garbutt Faulkner

There are no known pictures of William Joseph Faulkner, but here is a nice one of his son William Garbutt Faulkner (1889 - 1970).  This has been shared with me, by a descendant of William Faulkner's family.  I always think it odd that there aren't more photographs of the Faulkner family, since John Crosby Faulkner was a professional photographer.  I guess it's like the old story of the cobbler's children never having any shoes.

At some point the family had land in Saskatchewan. Saphronia Diana Faulkner is listed on the Saskatchewan Homestead Index. Charles George Gandier and Thomas Edward Casson. is also listed in the same area, which I think was near Battleford, Saskatchewan. As the property is listed in Saphronia's name I'm assuming this was sometime after 1905.

I've just found the family in Battleford, Saskatchewan on the 1916 Census.   It was a tricky one to sort out.  The Ancestry Index had her listed as "Sophronia Din* *Lronor".  Oh, well, now I'll have to be creative to find out where they were on the 1911 Census.

Henrietta  married Charles George Gandier in Ontario in 1903 and they are living near Battleford.  William Garbutt Faulkner married Blanche Pike in 1915, in Saskatchewan and Thomas Casson and Florence Faulkner were the witnesses  Saphronia Diana Faulkner is living with William Garbutt Faulkner..  Florence Faulkner  is listed as a spinster so she must have married Thomas Casson after that period.  According to the Census they moved  west in 1909.

Saphronia Faulkner died in 1921, but the exact details are not known.  Possibly she died in Saskatchewan.

Wednesday, 2 January 2013


Mary Jane Faulkner was born May 1, 1852 (per her death certificate)  in Ontario.  She died in 1909, in Fordwich, Huron, Ontario.  Mary Jane was the oldest daughter of Willliam Faulkner (1815 -) and Annie Crosby (1819 - 1876).  The Faulkner family had emigrated to Canada from Dublin Ireland around 1847-1849.  Mary Jane's older brother William Joseph Faulkner was recorded as baptised in Simcoe County in 1851, so it is probable that Mary Jane was born there as well, possibly in Newton Robinson.

 This picture of Mary Jane Faulkner appears to be from a larger group photo.  The photographer is shown as "Faulkner, Sundrige".  This is Mary Jane's brother John Crosby Faulkner, who had a photo studio in Sundridge Ontario.  The back of the photo says "Aunt Mary" according to a distant relative who sent me this copy.  The photo belongs to the Annie Margaret Faulkner family.  Annie Margaret is the younger sister of Mary Jane.

Mary Jane Faulkner married James Rowe in 1873 in Simcoe County.  James Rowe was from Cornwall, England and his parents are listed as James and Susan Rowe.  James and Mary Jane settled in Howick, Huron County according to the 1881 Census.  William Faulkner, Mary Jane's father is also living with the family.  A few doors away, Ford Faulkner, his wife Sarah Newton Faulkner and her brother Edward Newton are also living in Howick.  James Rowe was listed as a brickmaker, a farm labourer and also an insurance agent on the various census.

Mary Jane and James Rowe had at least 7 children:
    • William Henry 1874 -
    • Henrietta Gertrude 1876 -
    • Susan Jane (Elsie) 1878 -
    • Alberta 1881 -
    • Matilda "Tillie" 1885 -
    • Annie Mary 1887 -
    • Elmer Austin 1894 - 1918

Henrietta Rowe married Charles W. Ruttan in Huron County in 1906.  Susan Rowe married John Thompson in 1903 also in Huron. Tillie married Herbert Bricker Huron in 1918.  Lance Corporal Elmer Austin Rowe was killed in the First World War and is buried in France.  He was attached to the Fort Garry Horse Unit, so he must have been in Manitoba prior to enlisting in the Army.

When Mary Jane Rowe died in November 1909, her daughter Alberta wrote a letter to Annie Margaret Faulkner Fawcett.  Annie Margaret Fawcett was living in Ludden North Dakota at the time.  It's a lovely letter from Alberta expressing her sorrow at her mother's death.

The letter indicates that Will had just been married and returned home with his new bride and did not return for the funeral.  I'm not sure where home is, but I think perhaps it is Manitoba.  The letter also mentions Etta (Henrietta) had returned for the funeral with her  3 month old baby and expects to stay all winter as it is a long journey home.  Once again, I believe that Henrietta and Charles Ruttan lived in Manitoba.   At the time of Mary Jane's death Alberta, Tillie and their father James Rowe were at her bedside.

The letter goes on to say that Uncle John and Aunt Jennie (John Crosby Faulkner and his wife Jennie Stewart) and Uncle Ford and Aunt Sarah (Ford Faulkner and his wife Sarah Ann Newton) "came up" for the funeral.  The letter closes by wishing her aunt Annie Margaret a Merry Christmas and is signed "Niece, Alberta xxx"

There was a notice in a local paper in Huron County that indicated " On account of the late Mrs. Jas. Rowe's funeral, there will not be any service at Newbridge on Sunday afternoon."  Newbridge was a small village in Huron County.

Mary Jane Faulkner was buried in Fordwich Cemetery.  Her husband James Rowe died in 1919 and he was buried with her.  The tombstone inscription  also lists their son Elmer Austin Rowe.