Thursday, December 29, 2011

Sad Ending to a Young Life

Annie was my grandmother Nevard's sister. She married Herbert Button.
A letter from Susan Hall to her daughter, Mary Nevard in Canada.
Grove Farm
Nov. 13th, 1910
My Dear Mary
I thought you would like to hear from me again as soon as I could write. You asked me about things that you couldn't understand. I will try to explain everything. I may have told the same before.
I received a letter from dear Annie the Thursday after the baby was born, it was born the Tuesday night.
In it, it said Annie was going on alright and I needn't worry but I still felt bad when I found the dear little baby was dead. I wrote back directly and she received my letter that same night and she was very pleased to receive it. Then I had a postcard on the Saturday morning to say she was going on nicely.
The next monday morning there was a letter to say that poor Annie was suddenly taken worse the Saturday night. I said well I must go and see by the next train, so Alice and I both went. We couldn't have both went and left Louie but Mrs. Nevard came here the Friday before.
We sent a telegram to Herbert to say what train we would be going by. He met us at Liverpool street and told us poor Annie had passed away. We wanted to go and see her but he said he couldn't take us it would be too much for us coming so sudden and he couldn't bear it. But he said he had sent a telegram for Father to go up but we were got to the station before it came. He kept saying he wanted Father to come so he sent a telegram to Father to say we were coming home, would he go. So Father went by the five train. Alice and I were very much upset. We felt it terribly to think we couldn't see her. Alice took her night dress and other things, I though she could stop with Annie a few days.

When Father went he cheered Herbert all he could. He said he had nothing to live for in this world. He seemed as if he didn't know what he was doing. They all told Father he had done him a world of good.
Father said he done the right thing not having us go to see dear Annie. If I had known I would have left anything to have gone and see her before she died.
Dick and Maude had been waiting to come when Annie and Herbert came for their holiday. I am sending you a memorial card of dear Annie. They were not done when I wrote to you.

Herbert's sister, Susie, thats living in London used to go and see Annie very often. She was there the Thursday before she died. She said she worried so about losing the baby. I wish they had wrote and told me then. I should have gone but I didn't know it.
We shall send you some of dear Annie's clothes later on. We thought of sending her wedding coat and shirt and white silk blouse as I should like to send something good. We were glad to hear you had got the threshing over. I hope you will be able to make a good price. I will answer Ernie's nice letter another time
Hoping this will meet you all quite well.
With love to all I remain your everloving Mother.
Susan Hall

Tuesday, December 27, 2011


I am actually re-cycling this Nevard blog post. It originally appeared over on "Mindless Ramblings" a couple of years ago so some may have missed it. It is a letter written by Arthur Nevard to his brother, Horace.

Dear Horrie

I received your letter this morning alright. I am glad you received the JBs alright. I sent them instead of a letter as I have been busy since the beginning of December getting ready for moving and since we have been in here I have been busy fixing up the house but we have got it comfortable now.
We have one patient in the house. She has been in for two weeks and is going out on Sat. She comes from Pense, the first baby. She is doing well now but has been a hard case. Cissy Southward from Cupar is here too. She is taking her normal class. She will be here about another month. We have another lady from Cupar for a week or so. There is another one coming in any day now.

I think it will pay alright when the warmer weather comes as the coal bill is high now the winter being such a cold one and the house a larger one too. 12 rooms and bathroom. We had to spend quite a bit of money for new floor cloth, bed, etc. but you see Daisy has been helping me pay off the farm debts so I could not very well refuse.
Besides she thinks she can make more money here than going out and nothing venture, nothing have.

The 68th are recruited up to full strength now I guess and may be going any time now. There is another regiment being formed now, or will be in a week or so. The 195th I think it is. They wiill begin to recruit as soon as they can find quarters for the men. The Lieut Col. is here now.
We have lots of snow this winter here. It is drifting quite a bit and makes a lot of work for the street cleaning dept. and the street railway to keep the tracks clear.
I had my notice from the city and sent in my application but don't know the result yet and I would not care if it was the end of March as it would be easier getting another job but they are not so plentiful now. I think several have left the city hall. They are sick of it as this is the 3rd time at any rate that the civic staff have been considered for cutting down and in fact even since the war started the council has been trying to cut wages and do away with all the help they can but it should not be necessary to do it every new council that comes into power as it only shows that the heads of departments and the commisions don't know their business in my estimation.
The Rev. Earp is at Winnipeg taking an officer's course. He is trying to go with the 68th to the front as Army Chaplain.
I think he has made up his mind anyhow to go to the front one way or another. I have not seen any Lipton fellows here although there may be some. Grace Church congregration is made up chiefly of women. There are about 70 men gone in the Army. J. Took is teaming coal for Whitmore now. Joe and T. Borden are down on the farm at Mclean. They are finding out they have a pretty tough proposition I believe and Joe is not happy at all. He would sooner be in the Army he told me. Frank Borden's wife was not cut out for a farmer's wife and they have found it out to their cost. They have not said it in so many words but that is the conclusion I draw by putting 2 and 2 together.
I hope you will get along alright with the broncho busting. I guess you won't do much til the snow goes by the look of things.
As usual A is in a hurry and asks me to finish this off. We are doing alright, not making big profits yet out
of our new venture but just paying our expenses. As you know expenses at this time of year are great.
My love to Mary. I thought she owed me a letter but it seems its the other way. Jenny Dobson, Mrs.
Brinkworth's sister is dead and buried last week. We have a Mrs. Holland of Cupar here, a notorious woman
from Cupar. Her husbands in jail for bigamy, a lady from Pense, and Cis Southward who is studying
for Normal. She is a nice girl.
A says let the others look at this letter. He he's no time for writing to all. We hope to see you down here one
of these days. The folk are about the same. They came in to our place after Church on Sunday evening.
Mr. Earp is going as chaplain of the 68th. We will miss him.
Much love to you all, especially Mary and Dick. Hope all are well.


I don't know but I like to think that these photos were taken at the house mentioned in the above letter. Other photos of the same house hardly look like it could contain 12 rooms as mentioned in the letter. Maybe they were very small. The address I believe is 2081 Ottawa street. I wonder if the house still stands today?
 Daisy, Arthur, and Ernest Nevard. 2 other women unknown.
Arthur Nevard, same house, different occasion.

Just Another Christmas Card

This Christmas card from 1913 was sent to my Ernest Nevard family by their friends the C.H. Fisher family.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Another Nevard Christmas Card

This one from Grandmother to "Master E.W. Nevard, or as we knew him "Bill". No date on this one but I'd guess it is between 1906 and 1910.  Grandmother Nevard or Hall, no mention of which one but they were in adjoining counties of Essex and Suffolk.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

First Christmas at The San

Followers of this blog might recall that Bill Nevard left the farm in the fall of 1948 to begin working full time at the  TB sanatorium near Fort Qu'appelle. This journal entry from December 24 of that year gives a brief view of work and life at "the san".
Dec. 24, 1948
Syd Longstaff was helping me today so as to get most of tomorrow's work done ahead. Alfonse Magillis has apparently been fired. After supper I helped Alf Johnson carry the little organ from the lodge to the children's ward. Then we went to the assembly room and joined the other carollers. Then all went back to the kid's ward to start our show. Several of the nurses were there including Miss Gow, Miss Jobson, while Miss White was there to play the violin and Mrs. Phinney the organ. The men present were: Mr. Anderson, Alf Johnson, George Fisher, Frank Froh, Mr. Smith, Jack Mitchell, the Whites, Father and son, Dick and I. We sang carols all over the main building and then went to the pavilions 28, 31 and 32. After which we went back to the assembly room for lunch.

Monday, December 12, 2011

First Christmas In The New Land

Christmas 1906 would be my grandfather , Horace Nevard's, first Christmas in the new land. He had crossed the Atlantic earlier that summer from his homeland of Essex, England to seek out his fortune in the new province of Saskatchewan, Canada.
Horace sent and received regular letters from the girl he left behind in Suffolk, England and was no doubt happy to read this one written by Alice Hall (who was to eventually beome my grandmother)
Grove Farm
Saxmundham Dec. 9th/06

My Dear Horrie
I hope this will find you quite well. It is a month ago yesterday since I heard from you but Louie had a letter from Arthur yesterday and he said that Ernie was not back yet and he did not expect him until the blizzard was over and so I don't suppose you were back either

We had a letter from Mary a fortnight ago and she told me I must not expect a letter from you just yet as you were away. But I hope I shall soon hear from you now as it seems such a long time since I heard from you. I expect you are all got to the homestead for the winter by this time. It is very cold here today and it has been snowing a little but I suppose it is much colder where you are. I have had the neuralgia lately but it is better now.
I went to Saxmundham Church this morning. There isn't a Church near where you are now is there? It is a month tomorrow since Louie came back and your mother stayed here a fortnight . I don't think she likes to leave the baby as she was got so fond of him. Louie has put him in short clothes today for the first time. He look such a nice little boy. Father is nursing him now. I expect little Ernie would like to see him. I took him out for about half an hour on Friday. I went to the town and bought a bottle for him one day which made me think of the day when you went to Colchester and bought the baby's bottle.
 You have a long way to go to the town where you are now don't you? I don't expect you see very many people. I hope Mary's hands are better now as Arthur said when he wrote to Louie they were cracked and chapped. Dick has had a cold but he is better now.
Annie wishes to be remembered to you. I should think it was rather cold riding up to the homestead wasn't it? I should have waited til I heard from you before I wrote but I wanted to write to you for Christmas and I thought if I waited any longer you would not get it by Christmas.
This will be the first Christmas you have been away from home won't it? I expect Dick, Maude and Elsie will come here for Christmas. I don't know much else to tell you this time except that I should very much like to see you. So now I will bring my letter to a close. Wishing you all a very happy Christmas, I remain your ever-loving

The card that accompanied the letter.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Historic Nevard Document

It seem that every time I think I have seen all the old historic documents my family saved, another one turns up. I found this one in an old wooden trunk the other day. It is the certificate of apprenticeship my grandfather had done up when at the age of 16 he signed up for four years carpentry apprentice. I always knew he had been a carpenter before leaving England but this is the first official document I have found. Heavy old parchment paper written in a combination of old english and legalese, it takes some time to decipher but I did finally get it transcribed for easier reading.
This indenture withseth that Horace Walter Nevard, of the age of sixteen years or thereabouts by and with the consent of his father, Arthur William Nevard, of 36 Straight Road Lexden in the County of Essex, carrier, doth put himself apprentice to Thomas William Miller of Pownell Crescent, Colchester in the said County of Essex, builder.,
To learn his Art and with him after the manner of an Apprentice to serve from the twenty-sixth day of May, one thousand nine hundred unto the full End and Term of Four Years from thence next following to be fully complete and ended. During which term the said apprentice his Master faithfully shall serve his secrets, keep his lawful commands everywhere gladly do.
He shall do no damages to his said Master of the same. He shall not waste the goods of his said Master nor lend them unlawfully to any.
He shall not contract Matrimony within the said Term nor play at Cards or Dice Tables or any other unlawful Games whereby his said Master may have any loss with his own goods or others during the said Term without license of his said Master shall neither buy nor sell.
He shall not haunt Taverns or Playhouses nor absent himself from his said Master's service day or night unlawfully.
But in all things as a faithful Apprentice he shall behave himself towards his said Master and all his during the said Term.
Finding unto the said Apprentice sufficient Meat, Drink , medicine, medical attandance and clothes, Lodging and all other neccessaries during the said Term.
The Amount of the Money or the Value of any other matter or thing given or agreed to be given with the Apprentice by way of premium must be truly inserted in words at length otherwise the Indenture will be void and double such amount or value forfeited.
Signed Sealed and Delivered by the before named Horace Walter Nevard, Arthur William Nevard and Thomas William Miller in the presence of Chas. E. Page, Solicitor, Colchester.
for the true performance of all and every the said Covenants and Agreements either of the said parties bindeth himself onto the other by these Presents. The Witnesses whereof the parties above named to these Indentures interchangeably have put their Hands and Seals the twenty-third day of June in the sixty-third Year of the Reign of our Sovereign Lady Queen Victoria by the Grace of God of the united Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. Queen Defender of the Faith and in the Year of our Lord one thousand nine hundred.
the said Thomas William Miller in consideration of the faithful services of his said Apprentice shall pay him the following, namely: Five shillings per week for the first year. Seven shillings per week for the second year. Nine shillings per week for the third year and Eleven shillings per week for the fourth year. said apprentice in the Art of a carpenter the said Arthur William Nevard whom he useth by the best means that he can shall teach and Instruct or cause to be taught and instructed.