Friday, 1 October 2010

Ottawa and Irish Roots of Canada's New Governor General

When David Johnston, Canada's new Governor General, steps into Rideau Hall as his official residence he will be returning to live in a community in which he has roots.

According to Who's Who David Lloyd Johnston, the son of Lloyd Allen Johnston and Dorothy Stonehouse, was born on 28 June 1941 at Sudbury Ontario.

Although born in Sudbury the family only lived there for a few years. His father was born and died in Sault Ste Marie. The Sault's Greenwood cemetery holds the remains of three generations of the Johnston family: father, Lloyd Johnston (1908-1984), grandfather, Gilbert Johnston (1878-1952) and great-grandfather, Oliver Johnston (1856-1927).

The family moved to Sault Ste Marie around 1900 from Huntley and initially Fitzroy Townships in Carleton County, now part of the City of Ottawa.

The earliest record of the family found so far is in the 1852 census where George Johnston is recorded in Fitzroy Township, Carleton County, age 27 at next birthday, a shoemaker, born in Cavan, Ireland. His wife Mary Ann (Evoy) is listed, age 20 at next birthday, and born in Huntley Township, Canada West. They were only just married.

Births to the family are traceable through the baptismal records of the Anglican Diocese of Ottawa. They didn't appear to believe in civil registration of births!

In the 1871 census Oliver (16) is found with his parents, George (41), a shoemaker and Mary Ann (37), in the sub-district of Huntley, Carleton County, Ontario. Other children in the household are Jonathan (14), Loretta (13), Robert (10), William (8), Ann (7), George (4), and Edward (4). By 1881, Lechie (9) and Joseph (5) were added to the family.

With such a large family there must be many cousins who, if they know of their relationship, will celebrate the elevation of their relative to the vice-regal post.

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

Yes, some Johnstons from Huntley are looking for a connection using their Family Bible and other records. Very likely there is one. There are many descendants of them in that area. The census records do not compute, though. George, age 27 in 1852 census should be about 46 years in 1871 census, and Mary Ann would be about 39 years old.

Anonymous said...

My husband Robert, born 1955 in Sault St Marie is related to these Johnston's and Oliver Johnston is his Great Grandfather!

Al-134 said...

My aunt's records show George Johnston married Mary Ann Evoy in richmond on Jan 17, 1852 by Rev. John Flood.