Waterloo Region Generations
A record of the people of Waterloo Region, Ontario.

Charles Findlay[1]

Male 1847 - 1914  (67 years)


Personal Information    |    Notes    |    Sources    |    Event Map    |    All    |    PDF

  • Name Charles Findlay 
    Born 1847  , Ontario, Canada Find all individuals with events at this location  [2, 3
    Gender Male 
    Interesting business, story 
    Occupation 1869  , Waterloo Region, Ontario, Canada Find all individuals with events at this location  [2
    farmer 
    Occupation 1871  Nichol Twp., Wellington Co., Ontario Find all individuals with events at this location  [4
    merchant 
    Occupation 1874  Pilkington Twp., Wellington Co., Ontario, Canada Find all individuals with events at this location  [5
    machinist 
    Occupation 1876  Salem, Wellington Co., Ontario Find all individuals with events at this location  [6
    merchant 
    Occupation 1878  Nichol Twp., Wellington Co., Ontario Find all individuals with events at this location  [7
    merchant 
    Occupation 1881  Little Saskatchewan, Western Extension, Manitoba Find all individuals with events at this location  [8
    farmer 
    Eby ID Number 00031-2479.1 
    Died 28 Feb 1914  Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada Find all individuals with events at this location  [2
    Cause: pneumonia 
    Buried Shoal Lake Cemetery, Shoal Lake, Manitoba Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Person ID I21259  Generations
    Last Modified 18 Nov 2019 

    Father James Findlay,   b. Abt 1818, New Machar, , Aberdeen, Scotland Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Yes, date unknown 
    Mother Margaret Ruxton,   b. Abt 1804, Foveran, , Aberdeen, Scotland Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Yes, date unknown 
    Married 27 Aug 1826  Foveran, , Aberdeen, Scotland Find all individuals with events at this location  [9
    Family ID F21818  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family Magdalena Eby,   b. 1 Jul 1852, Waterloo Twp., Waterloo Region, Ontario, Canada Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Yes, date unknown 
    Married 6 Oct 1869  Pilkington Twp., Wellington Co., Ontario, Canada Find all individuals with events at this location  [1, 2
    Children 
     1. Jacob Brubacher Findlay,   b. 27 Dec 1871, Nichol Twp., Wellington Co., Ontario Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Yes, date unknown
     2. Agnes Magdalena Findlay,   b. 4 Apr 1874, Nichol Twp., Wellington Co., Ontario Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Yes, date unknown
     3. James Lloyd Findlay,   b. 3 May 1876, Nichol Twp., Wellington Co., Ontario Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Yes, date unknown
     4. Charles Stanley Findlay,   b. 14 Aug 1878, Nichol Twp., Wellington Co., Ontario Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Yes, date unknown
     5. Eleanor Caroline Findlay,   b. Abt 1882, Shoal Lake, , Manitoba, Canada Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Yes, date unknown
     6. Urias Irwin Findlay,   b. 9 Oct 1887, Shoal Lake, , Manitoba, Canada Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Yes, date unknown
    Last Modified 19 Nov 2019 
    Family ID F5203  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Notes 
    • The life of Charles Findlay, one of Shoal Lake?s first pioneers, began on May 11, 1846. He was born on his parents? homestead in the township of Nicol County of Wellington, Ontario. His parents, James and Margaret (Ruxton) Findlay, had emigrated from Aberdeen, Scotland. They raised a family of eight, namely: Dave, Alex, James, Robert, Charles, William, John, and Agnes. Charles received his education at the public school in Salem, Ontario, and at the age of fourteen set aside the books to assist his father on the farm. At Salem, on Oct. 6, 1869, Charles was married to Magdalena Eby who was the daughter of Jacob B. and Lucy (Kauffman) Eby. Magdalena was born on July 1, 1852. The Eby family were of Pennsylvania Dutch stock, having settled at Hammer Creek, Elizabeth Township, Lancaster County, Pennsylvania in the 1700?s. The stately stone house built in 1754 by Magdalena?s great-great-great grandfather near Hammer Creek is still in use today. The stone mill also constructed at this site in 1790 is likewise still in use. Magdalena?s grandfather was Bishop Benjamin Eby, the first Mennonite minister in Berlin (Kitchener), Ontario. The Ontario government has erected a plaque in Bishop Benjamin?s honour on the site of the original church in Kitchener.

      After his marriage, Charles was engaged in the store business in Salem, Ontario. The spring of 1879 saw Charles, along with his brothers Robert and James, brother-in-law Henry Eby, and John Simpson pull up their roots in Ontario and head west. They travelled by rail via Chicago and St. Paul to St. Boniface. A ferry transported men and belongings across the Red River into the newly incorporated City of Winnipeg. The men stayed in Winnipeg only long enough to purchase the necessary equipment, wagons, and oxen and then ventured north-westward along the Edmonton Trail. May 7th, 1879, found the men camped at the South End of Shoal Lake near the NWMP garrison. They liked the lay of the land, its undulating plains, wooded areas, and water supply. Travelling up the east side of Shoal Lake, each man sought a piece of land he would call home. Northwest of the present site of Shoal Lake, on 13-17-24, Charles filed claim on his homestead and preemption. At this date, the survey had not been completed beyond the South End, so the men undertook to run their own survey lines from the last stake. So accurate were their measurements that only minor changes were made by the Government surveyors the next spring. For the site of his new home, Charles chose a hill which was blooming so profusely with crocuses he named it Crocus Hill. During the ensuing weeks, all the men worked together, felling logs, and erecting homes. Potatoes were planted. Preparations were then made to meet their families in St. Boniface who had followed from Salem at a later date. The trip to and from Winnipeg occupied the better part of two months. The return trip was delayed en-route for nearly three weeks with the disappearance of the oxen one night. With the aid of friendly Indians the oxen were eventually found and the settlers were once again on their way.

      Upon their arrival at their new homes, the settlers removed the canvas covers from their wagons and used them as partitions and curtains. Provender for that first winter consisted of wild game, fish, and potatoes. Sufficient flour had been brought with them, but an insufficient supply of salt forced Charles to drive to Palestine (Gladstone) to procure some as soon as travel was possible.

      During the first years, wheat was taken to Gladstone, The Bend, and Assessippi to be ground into flour. On one of these trips homeward from the mill, Charles dug up some spruce trees and transplanted them on Crocus Hill. In his diary, Charles records having fought a prairie fire from Oct. 21 - Oct. 25, 1879. Such fires plagued the settlers for a few years until a sufficient amount of prairie sod was broken. A particularly bad fire in the fall of 1886 came within a few feet of engulfing the Findlay home in its path.

      The crops of 1880 and 1881 were cut with a cradle. With neighbourly help and a pooling of the equipment at hand, the crops were harvested. Although progress may have seemed slow at first, Charles developed a fine farm in the ensuing years. In 1883 he added a second homestead and preemption to his holdings.

      Charles and Magdalena were active in all community projects, including the formation of a school for the children. Charles was one of the founding members of the Shoal Lake Agricultural Society and was its president for many years. He was secretary treasurer for the local Grain Growers Association for a number of years.

      Charles and Magdalena raised a family of eight: Jacob B. (1871-1962), Agnes (1874-1893), James (1876-1878), Charles Stan (1878-?), Eleanor (Ella) (1883-1974), Irvin Urias (1887-1954), Allan (1890-1979), and Ross (1891- 1939). The eldest four were all born in Salem, Ontario, and with the exception of James who died at two years of age, came west in 1879. Agnes died of appendicitis in 1893 and was buried under the spruce trees on the family farm. The four youngest children were born at Shoal Lake.
      While attending the opening of the new Agricultural College in Winnipeg in 1914, Charles was taken ill. He died a few days later, on Feb. 27, 1914. Mrs. Findlay died on April 23, 1916. Both are buried in the Shoal Lake Cemetery.
      On July 1, 1979, the descendants of Charles and Magdalena Findlay gathered for a reunion on the old homestead. To mark the farm?s centennial, a cairn was erected. The cairn shall also remain as a tribute to this pioneer couple who helped forge the way toward the settlement of the West.


      Ripples on the Lake, a history of the Shoal Lake, Manitoba cummunity.

      ________________________

      "One of the pioneers of the Shoal Lake district died on Friday in the person of Charles Findlay, aged 68 years. His death occurred in the Winnipeg General hospital, after an illness on nine days. The cause of his death was pneumonia. The deceased came from Salem, Ontario to Manitoba in 1879, and settled at Shoal Lake, where he became one of the district's leading farmers. He took a leading interest and all public affairs, and held a number of public offices. He was a Fenian raid veteran and held a veteran's medal. He leaves a widow and a family of five, Ella, Allan, and Ross at home. J. B. Findlay, at Kelloe, Manitoba and Irvine Findlay, at Ruthland, Saskatchewan. The interment took place Sunday.


      Manitoba Free Press 4 Mar 1914 pg 3

  • Sources 
    1. [S3] Book - Vol I A Biographical History of Waterloo Township and other townships of the county : being a history of the early settlers and their descendants, mostly all of Pennsylvania Dutch origin..., 568.

    2. [S4] Vit - ON - Marriage Registration.
      Charles Findlay (farmer of Waterloo) Born: On Age: 21 Est. Birth: abt 1848 Father: James Findlay Mother: Margaret Buston married Magdelina Eby Age:: 18 Est. Birth: abt 1851 Born: On Father: Jacob Eby Mother: Lucia Caufman married 6 Oct 1869 Marriage Place: Wellington, Pilkington

    3. [S462] Census - Manitoba - 1881, Little Saskatchewan, Western Extension, Extension, Manitoba, Film 1375920 District 186 Sub-district E Division 4.
      Charles FINDLEY M Male Scottish 33 Ont Farmer
      Magdlina FINDLEY M Female German 28 Ont
      Jacob B. FINDLEY Male Scottish 10 Ont
      Agnes FINDLEY Female Scottish 7 Ont
      Charles FINDLEY Male Scottish 3 Ont

    4. [S57] Vit - ON - Birth Registration.
      Jacob B Bumbecker Findlay Date of Birth: 27 Dec 1871 Gender: Male Birth County: Wellington Father:: Charles Findlay (merchant of Nichol) Mother: Magdalena Eby

    5. [S57] Vit - ON - Birth Registration.
      Agnes Magdalina Findlay Date of Birth: 4 Apr 1874 Gender: Female Birth County: Wellington Father:: Charles Findlay (machinist of Pilkington) Mother: Magdalina Eby

    6. [S57] Vit - ON - Birth Registration.
      James Lloyd Findlay Date of Birth: 3 May 1876 Gender: Male Birth County: Wellington Father:: Charles Findlay (merchant of Salem, Nichol) Mother: Magdalina Eby

    7. [S57] Vit - ON - Birth Registration.
      Charles Stanley Findlay Date of Birth: 14 Aug 1878 Gender: Male Birth County: Wellington Father:: Charles Findlay (merchant of Nichol) Mother: Magdalena Eby

    8. [S462] Census - Manitoba - 1881, Little Saskatchewan, Western Extension, Extension, Manitoba, Film 1375920 District 186 Sub-district E Division 4.

    9. [S1747] Church Records - Scotland, Aberdeen, Foveran - Church of Scotland, Parish Church of Foveran, FHL microfilm 993184.
      James Findlay, married Margaret Ruxton 20 Aug 1826 Foveran, Aberdeen, Scotland

  • Event Map
    Link to Google MapsBorn - 1847 - , Ontario, Canada Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsOccupation - farmer - 1869 - , Waterloo Region, Ontario, Canada Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsMarried - 6 Oct 1869 - Pilkington Twp., Wellington Co., Ontario, Canada Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsOccupation - merchant - 1871 - Nichol Twp., Wellington Co., Ontario Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsOccupation - machinist - 1874 - Pilkington Twp., Wellington Co., Ontario, Canada Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsOccupation - merchant - 1876 - Salem, Wellington Co., Ontario Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsOccupation - merchant - 1878 - Nichol Twp., Wellington Co., Ontario Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsOccupation - farmer - 1881 - Little Saskatchewan, Western Extension, Manitoba Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsDied - Cause: pneumonia - 28 Feb 1914 - Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada Link to Google Earth
     = Link to Google Earth