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Robert “Squire” Doak

Robert Doak the 2nd was born in Ochiltree, Ayrshire, Scotland on April 4, 1785. In the early 1815 Robert Doak planned to move to Kentucky and settle with his young family. However, due to a storm on the Atlantic Ocean they were forced to dock in the Miramichi Harbour. Robert Doak seen an opportunity to grow and be successful in the area and decided to stay. In 1817 Robert Doak became an innkeeper at an inn in Nelson Parish. After 2 years, Robert decided it was time to move on and moved to Blackville. Here he operated a sawmill with his brother James Doak and Alexander MacLaggan. In 1825 Robert Doak and his family purchased a small cottage and some land from a man named Ephraim Wheeler Betts in what was then called Betts Settlement. Here Robert Doak built and ran a carding mill, gristmill, oat mill and sawmill successfully for many years. The family also had quite a large farm where they raised dairy cows, sheep, pigs, chickens, oxen and horses along with planting a variety of crops. However, Robert Doak did not stop there. He was also an Overseer of the Poor, Overseer of the Highway, Chief Magistrate in Betts Settlement, Justice of the Peace, School Trustee and a Coroner.

Robert Doak and his wife Jane Kirkland had 6 children:

  • Margaret Doak (1810-1871)
  • Agnes Doak (1812- 1879)
  • Jane Doak (1816- 1857)
  • Robert Kirkland (1818-1899)
  • William Doak (1822-1887)
  • James Andrew Doak (1824- 1863)

When Robert Doak passed away in 1857 his son James took over the family business and farm as many of his siblings moved away. James passed away from heat stroke after working in the fields tending to their crops in 1863. Since his two children were to young to take oer the family farm, his wife Ann Harvie Doak ran the family businesses. She did this quite successfully until her son Robert Harvie Doak was old enough to take over. Robert Harvie married and had 3 children, Annie, Margaret and Hubert. Margaret was a school teacher and lived in the house until 1979 when she passed away. She had no children and was never married so she left the house and property to the Province of New Brunswick to be turned into a historic site.