IRISH CANADIAN ANCESTORS IN DUFFERIN COUNTY
Mount Hope Roman Catholic Cemetery Toronto
Resting place of great grandparents William and Sarah Deverell
William Deverell and Harriet Howard
William Deverell married his first wife Harriet on April 5th 1837 at the Lea Church in Portarlington, Ireland, a community near Dublin. This was thought to be a Church of England or Anglican church. This information is contained in a family Bible that is part of the Deverell family collection at the Dufferin County Archives at Rosemount.. The bible contains an inscription that says it was presented to Mistress Harriet Howard on March 27th 1837 by the children of Kilmaligne Female School on the occasion that she was leaving her teaching position to be married.
A daughter Fanny was born to this marriage on Feb. 24th, 1838, but tragically Harriet died Dec.24th 1838 aged 24 years for reasons that are unknown.
William Deverell and Margaret McEvoy
Almost one year after Harriet’s death on Nov.12, 1839 William married Mary McEvoy who was Catholic and at that time he and daughter Fanny became Catholics, although it is not known how much if any formality would have been involved. William ultimately married for a third time after Margaret’s death in Canada, but this mother and father are the great great grand parents of the Deverell descendants, that is the Author and his cousin Denise in this family history.
William and Margaret had two children in Ireland, Henrietta born Sept 1st 1840 and Elizabeth bornFeb.26, 1843. Sometime after the birth of these two children the family emigrated to Canada, although in those days when Ireland was under British control and Canada was a British colony the move was effectively a relocation within the Empire and there is no immigration record as such.
It is not known where they lived initially, but three more children were born in Canada, William Ritchon on June 15, 1845; Robert Anthony on Jan3,1848 and Margaret on June 12th 1851. The Author is descended from William Ritchon Deverell who is his paternal great grandfather.
By the year 1848 the family had settled in the Township of Mulmer in the County of Dufferin.The family attended church at St. Cyprian Roman Catholic church near the hamlet of Mono Center in Mono Township just south of Mulmer. A history of this Church and its status today is given later in this history in the Chapter on the Devlins. As was the custom in those days a graveyard was located next to the church. William’s wife Margaret McEvoy r died sometime after1861 and as far as is known was buried at the St. Cyprian cemetery. This will be discussed further in the section on the church’s history mentioned above.
Approximately five years after Margaret’s death William married for the third time in 1866 to Eleanor. He returned to the Anglican church at this time and fathered two more children Jemima and Weldon.
William’s age and the correct spelling of his name varies somewhat depending on references in the family bible, the census or his tombstone, but a general consensus would be that he was born about 1912. The Shelburne newspaper has the following record of his death spelled” DEVERAL -at his residence Lot 5 Con.1 EHS, Mulmer, William Deveral, aged 77 years. Deceased was one of the oldest residents of the township having come in about the year 1848 The funeral took place yesterday (Wednesday) and was well attended, the remains being interred in the church of England burying ground at Whitfield, Lot 11, Con 1 EHS Mulmer township”
His headstone reads “William W Deverel died July 12, 1886, aged 74 years” Nearby in this cemetery is another headstone for Henrietta Deverell died Jan 14,1868 aged 27 years 3 mos. This is William’s daughter born in Ireland as referred above. As to how she came to be buried in an Anglican cemetery rather than the Catholic St Cyprian’s is an interesting mystery given that her mother Mary McEvoy is thought to be buried 7 years earlier at St Cyprian a Catholic cemetery.
Christ’s Church and cemetery, Whitfield, Mulmer Township-Sept,2002. Burial place of William Deverell
“Footnote” to Deverell name and origin
The spelling of the Deverell name varied from an e and two l’s to el and al depending on the source. The evolution of the name was the subject of research by one of the family descendants in more recent years. The originating location of the Deverel’s to Canada as noted above was the town of Portarlington, located 35 miles southwest of Dublin. The place takes its name from Lord Arlington who was granted land and town site in the area by Charles II and from the small port on the River Barrow.
The land was forfeited to the Crown after James II was defeated in 1690 and was awarded by William III to General Rouovigny one of his companion in arms who he made Earl of Galway. According to Samual Lewis’s book of 1851″ A Topographical Dictionary of Ireland”, the Earl settled here a colony of French and Flemish Protestant refugees. While there were several status/property control changes over time the rights of these settlers generally prevailed, and while the French language was used for sometime these settlers were eventually integrated into the Irish protestant community and the Church of England.
So from all this, we can see that the Deverell’s of Portarlington and later of Mulmer Township were quite likely of French Protestant origin, part of the flood of Huguenot refugees that moved through England into Ireland after their expulsion from France and Belgium in 1685. Most were middle class artisans and professionals and were moved into Ireland where their expertise helped spur trade and commerce in the towns where they settled, Portarlington being a case in point.
Dufferin County Map with Deverell/Devlin Genealogical Locations
The base map below has been extracted from the Dufferin County website and has been amended to include most of the living locations, churches and cemeteries which are linked to the Deverell and Devlin family histories which began above and follow. The reader should use it as a reference and help in following the stories as appropriate
Map of Dufferin County with Genealogical Location
Searching for the Deverell’s in Ontario
The Author began his search for his Deverell ancestors in Ontario early in the year 2000. The only starting point available was information contained in grandfather Ambrose Deverell’s obituary that he was born in Dundalk, Ontario about 1880. This town of about 2000 people today is located about 150 kilometers north and slightly west of Toronto.
The most logical starting point was the LDS Library in Edmonton which we had made extensive use of in researching the Murphy/Kilgallin histories in Ontario and Quebec. This library had all the Ontario birth and death micro-film records since they began near the time of Confederation and presumably all the early Catholic Church records. Unfortunately the only birth record that could be found was that of a Sarah, born to a William Deverell and Sarah Devlin in Mulmer Township on March 8th 1882. Despite several frustrating search’s of the LDS indexes no Catholic church records were listed from that part of Ontario.
It was felt that this young Sarah was possibly a sister to Ambrose and the William Deverell possibly his father, and for the first time his mothers maiden name was possibly Sarah Devlin. Using this information as a base, the on-line Archives of Canada 1871 Ontario census search engine was used to find a 25 year old William Deverell living in Mulmer Township and a half dozen or so Devlin families in the surrounding Townships.
As the on-line data is limited to only the Head of Household, copies of the actual census sheets involved were ordered from Ottawa. This revealed that 25 year old William Deverell was living on a farm in Mulmer with his brother Robert and sister Margaret. All but one of the Devlin entries proved negative ,but one showed a 70 year old Huge Devlin living on a farm in Mono, District of Cardwell with three children James, Mary and Sarah aged 22. Could this be the Authors great grandmother, the young Sarah before her marriage to William, and was Huge Devlin the Authors great great grandfather? These findings were very encouraging but without the availability of area church records on births, deaths and marriages the search appeared dead ended at this point.
The Author was also able to come up with another pertinent finding using OCFA The Ontario Cemetery Finding Aid An Annie Deverell and a Mary Devlin were buried at St. Patrick’s church and cemetery in Melancton Township. The cemetery transcription book for this cemetery was ordered from the Dufferin Branch of the OGS, and revealed that Annie was the daughter of William and Sarah Deverell died at age 16. Mary Devlin died age 75 and was thought to be the sister to Sarah indicated in the 1871 census of Huge Devlin’s family.
It was thus possible to assemble a family consisting of a husband and wife William Deverell and Sarah Devlin, both Catholic. The family had a father in law Huge Devlin and two children Sarah, born 1882 and Annie born 1886 died 1902. Also an sister/aunt Mary. On the basis of the above these two children would be siblings of Ambrose the Authors grandfather. All persons or cemeteries were located in Dufferin County in the Townships of Mono, Mulmer and Melancthon. The village of Dundalk was just a few miles away.
By the spring of 2001, my research efforts had pretty well come to a dead end in terms of how to proceed further as regardsin the lack of available micro-film of the local Catholic churches through the LDS Library. As a kind of last resort it was decided to contact Don Reid in Napeon by email to see if he could offer any suggestions. Don had been very helpful on the Kilgallin research, he having researched and written many articles and a book on the history of Bornish, Ontario, and while a teacher by profession, was a very experienced “amateur” genealogist in terms of Ontario records.
Don’s reply was almost immediate, advising that for whatever reason the Archbishop of Hamilton had refused permission for Diocesan records to be given to the Mormons for micro-filming and the best way to proceed would be to write to each of the churches directly to seek information as to where the registries were located. Dundalk was a mission under three different churches during the period of interest so letters were sent to all three. The required information was obtained from the website of the Diocese and letters were sent to St. Mary of the Assumption, Owen Sound; St. Mary of the Purification, Mount Forest and St. Joseph in Markdale.
Within a few weeks the Author received an email from Bob McIntee from Forest Lawn who advised that the priest at St. Mary’s there had passed the request to him for response and follow up. Bob advised that he volunteered to handle these kinds of requests on behalf of the resident priest in exchange for a charitable tax receipt for a donation made by the requestor. This seemed like a fine arrangement to the Author, particularly valuable in this case because Bob was helping another person from Forest Lawn, a Guilford Deverell who apparently was a descendant of this same family! Bob was also in touch with a Denise McGarvey of Toronto, another Deverell descendant.
Bob advised that working through these people and with help from the Dufferin County Museum and Archives he would put a package of material together and send it. It was also learned that Denise McGarvey was in possession of the Deverell family bible which was full of family records.
Around the beginning of July, 2001 the Author did receive a package of genealogical information on the Deverell family in Ontario from Bob McIntee and was then able to create the complete links to his grandfather Ambrose. The William Deverell-Sarah Devlin family which had been speculated on and assembled above, was in fact his great grandfather and great grandmother.Sarah, Annie and Ambrose were all siblings of a total family of seven children.
It was now clear that Guilford Deverell of Forest Lawn, Denise McGarvey of Toronto and the Author were all great grandchildren of William and Sarah. It seems that there are six or seven additional Deverell cousins from Ontario that stay in periodic touch. Much of the family histories appearing on these pages have been undertaken by one or the other of these Deverell descendants over the last decade or more. The research work on the most elderly William Deverell which appears at the top of this page is most impressive. This Authr would like to acknowledge credit for this and the other research provided by Bob McIntee, much of which appears to have been done by a member or members of the McCabe family. In due course it is hoped to learn more about the research authorship of this material and provide appropriate credits.
The descendants of the McCabe family, James and Bridget came to Mono County at a fairly elderly age. Their son Edward married a Mary Murphy. They in turn had a son James who married Elizabeth Deverell, a sister to William Ritchon in 1864, thus creating the Deverell connection.
There is a further interesting connection within this family grouping. As will be seen later Ambrose Deverell, the son of William and Sarah married Maude Herriot in Souris Manitoba in 1905. Maude was the daughter of James Herriot who with his brother William, along with their wives and children moved from the Waterloo area to Souris in 1881.
Referring back to the McCabes immediately above, James and Elizabeth’s youngest child was Patrick born about 1885/86. As a young man he traveled west to work at clearing bush for road projects, ending up at Souris where he met and married Lena Herriot born 1894. Lena was Maude’s first cousin the daughter of her fathers brother William. Pat and Lena moved back to Ontario after marrying where they apparently spent the rest of their lives which included raising seven children. The youngest child Terrance married a Stella Mulhall. This couple seemed to be the coordinators and primary authors of a McCabe/Deverell history from which much of this material has been extracted.
The Author was able to corroborate the McCabe-Deverell-Herriot connections described above through references to the McCabe-Deverell family history material supplied via Bob McIntee and Denise McGarvey.Also of assistance was the 1983 Robert Herriot family research referred to in the Herriot section of this history and available through the Author’s mother. Both of these family histories contain details and names regarding the marriage of Pat McCabe and Lena Herriot as well as their son Terrance and his marriage to Stella Mulhall.
THE DUFFERIN COUNTY MUSEUM and ARCHIVES
In September of 2002 the Author and his wife Jackie traveled to Ontario to visit the towns, churches and cemeteries of the Dufferin County and Dundalk area, as well as paying a visit to the Defferin County Museum and Archives. We met our cousin Denise McGarvey there, had some very interesting genealogical discussions with her as well as with the Museums Curator and did a bit of further research using the Museum’s Archival records. There are many records and some pictures concerning both the Deverell and Devlin families at the Museum and in their Archives. Denise brought the Deverell family bible with her from Toronto and took this occasion to formally sign it over for the Museums safekeeping.
Dufferin County Museum and Archives
Don Murphy and Denise McGarvey with Deverell family bible at the Dufferin Museum
William Ritchon Deverell and Sarah Devlin
William Ritchon was born on June 15th 1845 in the Township of Mono to William Weldon Deverell and Margaret McEvoy. He was their third child in what was the elder Williams second marriage and the first of their children to be born in Canada after their arrival here sometime between 1843 and 1845.
Sarah was also born in the Township of Mono on July 14th 1848 the daughter of Huge and Margaret Devlin. Their families would have both attended St Cyprian Catholic church near Mono Centre. The Devlin family continued to live in Mono, however at some point the Deverell’s moved to a farm immediately north in the Township of Mulmer
In the 1871 census a 25 year old William Ritchon is living on a farm in Mulmer with his sister Elizabeth and brother Robert. The elder Deverell is also living there nearby with his third wife and two young children. His first wife, Margaret McEvoy, the mother of William, Robert and Elizabeth having passed away some years before
William Ritchon and Margaret Devlin were married on January 28th 1872 in St James Catholic church located in nearby Adjala Township. It is an interesting finding that the marriage took place here as opposed to St. Cyprian. It is known that the latter was always a mission and that the sponsoring church and residence of the priest changed several times through the years. In 1872 St Cyprian was under the jurisdiction of St James which is one of the oldest catholic churches in this area. It is located in the village of Colgan which itself is located on the border of Adjala and Tecumseh Townships which are both in Simcoe County. The village of Colgan is located about 10 miles due east of Mono Centre as can be generally seen by the map above. So all of these churches and farm locations were in proximity and a descent wagons ride apart.
St. James Roman Catholic church, Colgan, Ontario May, 2006
According to research done by other family members thought to be the McCabe’s, William and Sarah farmed in Mono Township for their first eight years before moving to Mulmer. During this time they had seven children starting with Robert born November 16th 1872. Margaret was born November 23rd 1874, followed by Mary Elizabeth (Lina) on Aug 4th 1877.
The Author’s grandfather Wilbert Ambrose was next on October1st 1879 and Denise McGarvey’s grandmother Sarah Ellen (Ella) was born on March 2nd 1882. As noted earlier this birth record was the only one the Author could find in the Ontario micro-film Archives of births and deaths, took place in the Township of Mulmer, and is perhaps the best indication of their farm life in Mulmer.
Their final male child, William Charles was born Feb 19th 1884 and their last child Annie on January 13th 1886. Tragically Annie died of tuberculosis on April 18th 1902 at aged 16. She is buried in St. Patrick’s church cemetery in Melancton along side of whom the writer is almost certain is her Aunt Mary Devlin, Sarah’s sister. The Authors discovery of these deaths in the Melancthon cemetery transcription book when searching for Deverell family records is referred to above. The church as shown below was known as the brick St. Patrick’s church and was built on 1 1/4 acres of Lot N.281 C1 purchased in 1881 in the north-east of Melancthon Township. It’s predecessor was a log church nearby on the other side of Highway 10 built on 5 acres of Lot 280 C1 purchased in 1858.
St. Patrick’s Catholic Church and Cemetery, Township of Melancthon
This picture of William and Sarah and their family was probably taken around 1897-98 judging by the age appearance of Charles on the back row left and Annie in front between her parents. It is in the safe keeping of the Dufferin County Museum at Rosemont.
The family, Back row, left to right with married names for the girls in brackets are Sarah Ella (McGarvey) , Maggie (Crisp), Elizabeth (Lina) (Phelan), Charles
Middle row, Ambrose, William and Sarah (Devlin), and Robert
Front, Annie, died age sixteen
The Author did not have access to the 1881 and 1891 censuses at the time of this writing, but it is assumed that William and Sarah continued to live, farm and raise their growing family as pictured above in Mulmer Township for many years. However at some point probably before the turn of the century the family moved to the village of Dundalk which was located in the Township of Proton, County of Grey.The village was located near St. Patrick’s church in adjacent Melancthon, where it appears, given the burial location of child Annie and Sarah’s sister Mary the family went to church. Dundalk itself had a fairly long established Catholic church St. John Evangilist so this worship approach is not immediately explainable
According to the 1901 census William and Sarah are living in Dundalk with all of their children except the oldest Robert. William’s occupation is given as a day labourer. The writers grandfather Wilbert Ambrose is still living at home in Dundalk at this time listed as a butcher.
By the 1911 census all of their children have left home and they are living in Dundalk with Sarah’s sister Mary who died a few years later in and is buried at St. Patrick’s in Melancthon with Annie. The census lists William as a cement worker at this time when he would have been 65 years old. At some point after that Sarah and William appear to have moved to Toronto where they are both buried. Below is a portrait type photograph of them either in Dundalk before they moved or later in Toronto. The photo was part of my mothers records, inherited after her death in 1992. The Author’s mother was Mary Murphy (Deverell) the daughter of William Ambrose Deverell of Souris Manitoba. See Ambrose and Maude below.
William and Sarah Deverell
Sarah Deverell died on May 6th 1928 and is buried at Mount Hope Roman Catholic cemetery Toronto. Her husband William died March 22nd 1933 and is buried with her in Mount Hope
William and Sarah’s grave Mount Hope cemetery Toronto
Ambrose Deverell and Maude Herriot
Ambrose Deverell was born Wilbert Ambrose on Oct 1,1879, the fourth child of William and Sarah Deverell. It is almost certain that he was born at home on the family farm in Mulmer, and while although there is no birth record for him in the Ontario vital statistics, his next youngest sibling Sarah Ella has a birth record in Mulmer. Ambrose was still living at home in Dundalk with his parents at the time of the 1901 census in the Spring of that year with his occupation shown as a butcher. Ambrose went west in 1903 spending a short time in Elgin, Manitoba before settling in Souris. presumably in search of a location to establish a butcher store business.
Maude Herriot was born in Waterloo Township in 1877, the second child of James Herriot and Mary Mihm. She moved west with her parents in 1881 when they and two other families including James brother William travelled to, and settled in the Souris Manitoba area.The third family was headed by Jacob Jantz and all three men were married to Mihn sisters, the daughters of Adam and Mary. These families all appear in the 1881 census of Waterloo Township meaning that their trip west took place as one would logically expected in the summer of 1881. Maude is listed as being 14 in the 1891 Manitoba census and 21 and living at home with her parents near Souris in 1901.
Maude and Ambrose were both Catholics so it is not difficult to surmise how they would meet, and they were married on August 24th 1905 in the Souris Catholic church. Below is their wedding picture and a wedding invitation.
Maude and Ambrose Deverell
Ambrose and Maude’s wedding invitation
Ambrose and Maude lived their entire lives in Souris where he opened his own a butcher shop shortly after he was married and continued to operate until his eventual retirement. On October 28,1907 their first child Mary Eveline was born and on May 18, 1914 a second daughter Eveline Gertrude. Regrettably this daughter died at age seven months on Dec.16th 1914. She is buried at Glenwood Cemetery in Souris The couple had no further children so the Author’s mother Mary was effectively raised as an only child. The picture below depicts Mary with her father at what is guessed at as about High School age. Beside the picture is an article from the Souris Plaindealer on Ambrose and his meat business.
Mary with her father Ambrose Souris Plaindealer Article
While residing in Souris Ambrose was very active in community and church affairs particularly the Souris School Board, the volunteer Fire Department and the Knights of Columbus. Maude died in 1938 and Ambrose remarried to Theresa Cahalan. Ambrose died on March 19th 1965 at the age of 86. His full obituary can be read below. Maude, Ambrose and Theresa are all buried in Souris-Glenwood Cemetery.
The Author remembers well the visits to Souris as a young boy from his home in Rossburn, where dad was the school Principal. The Authors brother Ted had married a Souris girl and was also living there on a farm ten miles west of the town. My grandfather lived in a two story house on the west end of town just across a small bridge over Plum Creek . As soon as one crossed the bridge you drove straight up grandfather’s driveway. The house faced the creek and had a large porch on the front and on the immediately adjacent north side. Grandfather used a solid wooden cane to assist in his walking and for reasons unknown while sitting on the porch or in the house he was inclined to give my brother John and I a friendly poke every now and then.
Grandfather was a butcher and operated the Souris Meat Market. I remember one time being with him when he went to place curing salt on a carcass of meat he was curing. According to his obituary he retired in 1945 when the Author was only five and still living in Winnipeg when dad did not have a car, so there is some contradictions in this memory but it is real.
The Author also remembers visiting Souris’s Victoria Park along the Souris River and the famous Swinging Bridge which is still a tourist attraction today. One very vivid memory is about walking around down town and visiting the Woolworth 5 and 10 cent store. If memory serves me correctly it was located right at the T intersection of the main street and the more or less east west street along the top of the river valley. The popular thing to do on Saturday evening was to walk around down town and the evening would not be complete without buying a bag of french fries. There was a little store front where these incredibly tasty fries were sold, piping hot in a small white paper bag. It was customary to put vinegar on them in those days. This little local shop was renowned for these fries, and this was 20 years before McDonalds came to Canada!
Ambrose Deverell’s obituary Maude and Ambrose Deverell (Top left)
Maude Deverell’s grave at left, Ambrose’s on righ