Christina Sager, an early (and appreciated!) supporter of this blog, grew up in Queensborough like I did – though somewhat later. (When I was in my early teens, before Christina was born, I babysat her older siblings once or twice.) She and her husband also have an Eastern Ontario home-restoration project on the go, and you can learn about it on their blog here. Christina’s great-grandparents, Will and Isabella Holmes, lived in a house right across the way from the Manse; it was Will who warned us “Don’t drink the water!” on the day our young family first arrived at the Manse in July 1964. (And we proceeded to carry drinking water from a communal village pump for all 11 years that we lived there.)
This photo of them – I think chances are good that it was taken at their home (no longer standing), but I am far from sure of that – was given to me by Barbara (Sager) Martin, the younger sister of the late Bobbie (Sager) Ramsay, Queensborough general-store-keeper and pillar-of-the-community extraordinaire. It’s so lovely to have the photo, to see again those kind faces that I remember from my very earliest childhood. Here is another one from the same event:
And finally, here is a photo, also kindly given to me by Barbara Martin, of the October 1939 wedding of Will and Isabella’s daughter, also named Isabella, to Allan Sager, the brother of Bobbie and Barbara. Allan and Isabella are Christina’s grandparents.
This photo was taken on the front lawn of the Manse; the resident minister, The Rev. Snelgrove, performed the ceremony. Some months ago Christina sent me another photo of the wedding, featuring just Allan and Isabella (you can see it, and read about what it taught me about time passing and landscape changing, here), but this one includes their attendants, Jennie Sager (sister of Allan, Bobbie, Barbara – and Bernice and Eileen) and – here is where my memory fails me and I’m annoyed that I can’t find the notes that I took the day that Barbara gave me the photos – either Earl or Gordon Sager. Christina, or others reading this, can you set me straight? Earl and Gordon were brothers who farmed together and obviously were related to Allan (and Jennie, Bobbie, Bernice, Barbara and Eileen), but I’ve forgotten how. Uncles?
Anyway, this post will be primarily of interest to us Queensborough folks who knew (or are related to) Will and Isabella (mother and daughter) and Leslie and Allan and Jennie and Earl (or is it Gordon?). But I like the photos too for the sense of time and place that they convey. The curtains and the couch upholstery and the carpet in the wedding-anniversary photos, for instance: that just is rural Ontario, mid-1960s.
And the wedding photo? That is just a happy day, a long time ago. At the Manse.