Sunday, June 01, 2008

1942 Family Tree Letter to Martha Hansen, British Columbia to Missouri

Letter: Fort Hammond, B.C.
Feb. 17, 1942
Mrs. Martha S. Hansen
402 Pierce Street
Kirksville, Mo.
Dear Cousin Martha
Let me say 1st that it is a matter of history (& you may know it) that a
group of 50 families left Saxony, Germany, something over 300 years ago &
were settled by the British Govt. in the South of Ireland, which was
almost entirely Roman Catholic. These 50 families were so persecuted by
the Hun of that day that they were forced to flee for their lives as the
Jew is today. I will just mention 3 families: Sparling . . Ruckle . .
Heck . . (I am not sure of the spelling). A Miss Sparling married a
Ruckle & their daughter married a Mr. Heck - - who emigrated to America
in or about 1760. This Barbara Heck, according to the Methodist Church
history, was the founder of Methodism on this continent.
My father informed me that John Wesley preached to this Protestant group
& organized a Methodist Church, & that it was under the Ministry of Jno.
Wesley that this group left the Episopal Church to become Methodists.
In 1842 Jno. Sparling & his wife Mary Williams left Ireland with 3
children: Ann, 7 yrs. old; my father, James W., 4 yrs.; and Robert W.
about 2 yrs. old. Jno. William, when he was about 1 yrs. old (still
living in Ireland) was left in the care of the nursemaid, & through some
neglect the child fell off the nurse’s knee, sustaining injury which
proved fatal. The father settled in the township of Blanchard, taking up
a homestead which is today the site of the city of St. Mary’s, Ont. He
was Magistrate for this town for many years.
Joseph Walter was the 1st male child born in this township - - You will
understand from this that the country was really just a forest & they
were among the 1st settlers.

A few facts about the 1st 9 – I understand that Ann, Mary Jane, and
Elizabeth never married. Margaret married a Mr. Latimer, & died in
confinement. Her daughter Susie was raised by relatives, & married a
Methodist Minister by the name of Arthur Coone. They had 3 children. The
oldest died at 8 or 10, the remaining 2, a boy and girl, live in
Vancoouver, B.C. Miriam is a Registered Nurse, & Adrian works in the P.O
in the city. Mr. and Mrs. Coone are buried in Vancouver.

Now for the male side. - - Jno. William lived 1 yr. James Wyndham married
in October 1858 and was the father of 9 children. His wife was Margaret
Gilpin, who left Ireland when she was 25. She was 6 yrs. older than
father & lived about 20 yrs. after his death. My father died on Nov. 11,

These 9 children were raised & they all married & had families. Robert
William married my mother’s sister, & they had 10 of a family. They all
married but the oldest boy, who was a graduate of Toronto University and
died of appendicitis at the age of 30.
Joseph Walter married Susanna Kerr and from the union there were 4

William Henry married & had but 1 child. Joseph & William (bishop in M.E.
church in Canada) were Methodist ministers and great preachers of their

When I was in Los Angeles, Calif., some 30 years ago, spending the
winter, I met your Uncle Harvey Hutton and had lunch with him. I
understand his family live in that city today. ----

Do you ever come to Canada? It is out of the question for a Canadian to
get a chance to travel south unless you have good reasons—but we honor
your dollar by allowing you 1.10 for every dollar. That should be quite
an inducement for the American to travel. Of course, British Columbia is
the finest of the 9 provinces of the dominion--Should you take the trip
this summer, make it Vancouver. You need not be afraid of the Jap. We can
fix him as well as Hitler.

I trust you are in good health. I am Yours very sincerely,
W.J. Sparling

Notes: Not sure who Martha or W.J. are; this letter was given to my grandmother, June Sparling, by her father's cousin Shirley Sparling. I think my grandmother's family is from the Chillicothe, Missouri area.

Submitter: Celia Emmelhainz

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