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Page 43 - A Legend Reconsidered "Granny Ross" by Elva E. Jackson

Published by Ronald Caplan on 1984/8/1 (894 reads)

to the census-taker of 1818. This census shows that David Ross also came to Cape Breton in 1803. Thus of the four brothers we find that James came to Cape Breton in 1783, the year Britain recognized the independence of the American colonies; and though he came to Margaree first we do not know the date. William came to the Margaree Valley in 1793 and Edmund and David came to re? side in 1803. The four brothers married women of four different nationalities. James, who was born about 1757, married Henriette LeJeune Briand, the French woman who later became endeared to the community as Granny Ross. William, born 1768, married Esther Moore, a Scotswoman; Edmund, bom in 1770, mar? ried Ann Lawrence who was part Dutch; and David, bom 1772, married Elizabeth Mason, an Irishwoman, at Rawdon, N. S. Henriette LeJeune, who had come to Louis? bourg so many years before, much older than her sisters-in-law, with her know? ledge of nursing for many years, became the midwife and nurse of the community. She must have been busy ushering babies in? to the world. When William petitioned for more land in 1812, he stated he had 9 chil? dren residing with him; and 3 years later, when he asked for land at Little Baddeck (now Washabuck) "in order that his family might be nearer the markets," he had 11 children. Edmund had 8 children in 1818 ac? cording to the census, and David had 10 children at that same date. How hard the early years must have been can only be guessed. In 1787 when James Ross appeared in Sydney seeking his grant of land, the city itself was just slowly rising on the plans made by the engineer of Lieutenant-Governor des Barres. In 1785 Cape Breton had been given its separate government with 5 councillors and Hon. Richard Gibbon as president. The minutes of the council are full of references to the scarcity of food. Separate permits had to be obtained for each cargo, and goods came mostly from the United States via Hal? ifax. Thus the early days of Margaree, far from the supply centre at Sydney, must have seen many a hungry time with little vari- FEATURING THE lumnDLvn WELCOME HOME y friri WHEN TRAVELLING IN THE SYDNEY AREA. BE SURE TO STAY AT HOME 539-3700 DOUNIOUN Theatre Project WANDLYN INN FINE DINING AND WARM HOSPITALITY 100 KING'S ROAD, SYDNEY, NOVA SCOTIA 1-800-561-0000 (902) 539-3700 (43)
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