Stumbled upon by chance – Mary McCutcheon (1865-1916)

Finally, after 5 years of searching records for Mary, she has been found.  How did I find her?  Through someone not even remotely related to the McCutcheons!

As was suspected, Mary came west with her parents and siblings from Arthur, Ontario circa 1885, arriving in Springhill. MB.  As noted in the following records, tracing her was very difficult considering the many miss-spellings of her maiden name.

Mary McCUTCHEON , second child of Hugh Robert “HR” McCutcheon  and Rebecca Lamott, was born on the 26th August 1865 in Arthur, ON. and she died on the 26th December 1916 in Wynyard, SK.  She married Thomas Alfred DENHAM (1866-1948) on the 24th July 1889 in Neepawa, MB. The spelling of her name on the Manitoba Vital Statistic marriage record is “McCuthion”.

Mary’s death registration has recorded her parents as “Rebeeca Lamolte and Robert McCulehim”.

Thomas Denham was born in Ontario in 1866.  He arrived in the Rosedale area circa 1886 and applied for a land grant.  He received his grant located at Township 15; Range 16; WPM, the south east quarter of section 24 in the township of Springhill, MB and fulfilled his obligations to the government, receiving his Letters Patent on the 21st July 1891; Homestead # 28180.

The Denham homestead was situated 3 and ¼ miles south-east from HR’s farm.

In January 1899, Thomas and Mary lost 4 of their 6 children to diphtheria. Diphtheria was and still is a deadly disease.  Von Behring shook the scientific world for his discovery of a serum therapy for diphtheria and was awarded the first Nobel Prize in medicine in 1891.  In 1913, Behring developed a vaccine for the treatment of this often fatal illness to children. Unfortunately for Mary and her 4 children this treatment was not readily available until about 1924.

Sometime between 1891 and 1901, they converted from Methodist to the Seven-Day Adventist religion.  Shortly after the deaths of these children, the family moved north to the Village of Birnie while still farming their land in Springhill.

By 1916, they left Birnie,  moving westward to settle in Wynyard, Saskatchewan, located on the Yellow-head highway. The stagecoach era was drawing to a close; however, in northern Saskatchewan there were still a lot of isolated areas that were accessible only by stagecoach.  They were living on King Street in Wynyard, where Thomas was working as a teamster, doing odd jobs on the side.  It was here where Mary died and was probably buried in the Seven-Day Adventist Cemetery in Wynyard.

 On 3 out of 8 birth registrations for her children, Mary’s name was spelled “McCutchin”.

The rest of her story can be found under Chapter 7 – John McCutcheon’s son Hugh (1795-1861):

I: Hugh Robert (HR).

Attached is a portion of the grid for the Township of Springhill showing how close in proximity that 5 members of this family lived to one another.  The sections that are colored are: blue sections were reserved for the Canadian Pacific Railway; green sections were reserved for schools; purple were reserved for the Hudson Bay Company.  It appears that both HR and his son William purchased their farms from the Hudson Bay Company.  The original patentee on the 1/4 section where Margaret McCutcheon and William Anderson farmed was William Pockett.


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