Havelock, Kings, New Brunswick, Canada
Surnames/tags: Hicks New Brunswick
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|If Scribbling in albums
With the greatest of pleasure
I'll scribble in yours.
Welcome to Butternut Ridge
My great grandmother Mary Etta (Hicks) Maxwell (1864-1921) grew up in Havelock, New Brunswick, known at the time as Butternut Ridge. It was a rural farming community which in 1885 was connected to the wider world by a railway, a spur line attached to the Intercolonial Railway. In 1883 Mary Etta started an autograph album. The coming railway may have been a factor as she knew it would make it easier to go places and also for more people to visit. So while many of the names in the album are those of people in her community: neighbours, cousins, and so on, there are also examples she collected in other places, as far away as Boston.
As noted, the first entry was in 1883 when she was about 19 years old, and the last was in 1889. But most date from the period between 1883 and 1886, no doubt because Mary Etta eventually found romance and had other things on her mind. She was married in 1889 and moved to the coastal community of Rockport, New Brunswick.
We know she retained a close connection with Havelock because her daughter, my grandmother, would often visit there, at least in the early years of the twentieth century.
|A gathering in Havelock around 1915. My grandmother is
in the middle right with her hand to her chin. We have
not yet identified most of the others.
Gradually, people died or moved away and the family connection faded. As a young person growing up in the 1960s and 70s, I was not aware of the Havelock connection. It is for reasons like this that objects like a simple autograph album can open up a whole new understanding of community and connections, and how tenuous those connections can sometimes be. I think this is reflected in many of the little poems and ditties contained on the pages: "Remember me" they often plead.
It is my intent to reproduce many of these pages and link them to the people who signed them. In this way I hope this Space can provide a window on the little community of Havelock/Butternut Ridge in the 1880s.
|Class photo - Havelock school, 1888.
The girl in the front marked by x is a daughter of Bliss Thorne;
the other girl marked with an x is Ella M. Thorne. Mary Etta may be
the one in the front with the white Apron.
All others unidentified. Maybe you can help.
This is a work in progress. There are more than 50 pages that I hope to include here over time. While they will be shown chronologically, they will be added at random. So please come back from time to time. I welcome your comments and insights. Note 1: If you click on any of the pictures below and scroll down a bit, you will find my transcription. If you click on the picture a second time you will see an enlargement so you can read the inscription yourself. Suggested corrections are welcome. Note 2: If you only have time for a few of these pages and profiles, look for the starred (*) ones.
- ↑ Communitystories.ca