So I’m watching TV and an ad comes on, trying to get me to pay some service to track down my family history. For my mother’s family, The Bradfords, I’d ask my Great Aunt. She seems to have it pretty much down. For my father’s family, The McQueens then Camerons, I need go no farther than my bookcase.
My great great great grandfather, Alexander McQueen, was born in Contrea, Invernesshire, Scotland. He came to Nova Scotia with a contingent of Scottish soldiers to reinforce the 82nd British Army Regiment. Apparently they were having a problem with some pesky colonists to the south. The year was 1778. He was 30.
After [losing] the American War of Independence, Alexander was given property in Nova Scotia. According to the Royal Nova Scotia Historical Society, Alexander McQueen was the first McQueen in Nova Scotia. That’s kind of cool…
My father’s mother was a descendant of Alexander McQueen.
Below are Alexander’s papers for his honourable discharge from the King’s Army and the McQueen clan badge.
My father’s step-father, Colin Cameron, was born in Glasgow in 1900. When Colin was five, his father, David (a Glasgow dock worker) decided to move the family to Canada. They lived on a farm in the Fort Steele area of British Columbia’s East Kootenay region. My grandfather was a trapper, a B.C. Forest Service ranger, and eventually a lumberman, starting Colin Cameron Lumber in 1942. He died in 1963. I never met him.
My grandmother died in 1985. Both sources I consulted for this blog, talk of her love of music and her piano. She left it to me in her will and it sits seven feet to the right of me as I write this entry.
Below are pictures of Colin and Queenie on their wedding day, Colin’s logging camp and a pay stub, and the Cameron clan badge, as tattooed on my right shoulder.
I think this stuff is pretty cool. You may not share my enthusiasm for my father’s family but
I posted this, not for my father’s family, but in the hopes that you might take an interest in your own. We are all connected to history so we all share the stewardship of the future.
This little stroll down someone else’s memory lane retold from The McQueen Story by my great aunt, Phylis McQueen Smith; my great uncle, Archie McQueen; with memorabilia supplied by my grandmother, Margaret “Queenie” McQueen Cameron. I also used pieces written for Kootenay Ripples: Wasa, Ta Ta Creek, Skookumchuck by Scott Owen, Frances West, and Ken Roberts.