Tuesday, January 10, 2017

William HUSTON (1823-1877) and Esther PARK (1821-1905)

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George SIM > Mary Ann WALLACE-SIM > Mary HUSTON-WALLACE > William HUSTON and Esther PARK

In the mid-1800s, Canada gave away farm land to immigrant families with the stipulation that the land be cleared else it would revert back to the crown. Formerly the “Indian Peninsula”, Owen Sound was initially considered “marginal” farm land and one of the last areas of Ontario settled by white men. As late as 1855, Sarawak Township (today known as Georgian Bluffs) was an Indian reservation. By 1857, the Indians peacefully gave up their lands. William HUSTON and his family arrived in the township of Sarawak between 1862 and1864. The last son born in Ireland was Thomas in 1862. Son David, was the first HUSTON born in Canada in 1864 and our earliest document for the HUSTONs is a Sarawak directory from 1864.

William and Esther were originally from Ballymoney, County Antrim, Ireland (north of Belfast). Their Sarawak farm was located on concession 2, lot 30. In Canada, William was an inn keeper and a farmer. We found 13 children: Mary WALLACE (our ancestor), Jane MULLARD, John, Alexander, Sarah “Sally”, Mathew, Martha, Esther GILCHRIST, Anne GILCHRIST, William, Robert, Thomas and David. They were Presbyterians.

From the Grey Roots Museum and Archives
William died at about age 54 on 16 May 1877 of “renal affections” (swelling or infection of the kidneys). Esther, with the help of her sons, maintained the farm. Eventually, the sons were freeholders or tenants on neighboring farms. Esther died at age 84 on 14 Mar 1905. Both are buried at Greenwood Cemetery, but William does not have a gravestone.
HUSTON Century Farm, 1948
Photo from Grey Roots Museum and Archives

The HUSTON farm was listed as a “Century Farm” in a regional book published in 1973. It remained in the HUSTON family with great grandson Gerald HUSTON owning it until his death in 2010. It is unknown who owns it today.
Visit their on-line memorials

Can you help ID the people in the Mystery Photos of Owen Sound?

Map of Sarawak Township with WALLACE
and HUSTON Farms in red

This concludes the SIM Family Tree - Stay tuned for updates.
Next, we will post the OTWELL Family Tree.

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