THE DOAK FAMILY OF DOAKTOWN, NEW BRUNSWICK
(In Alphabetical Order)
From notes gathered by the Central Miramichi Historical Society (CMHS), the Provincial Archives of New Brunswick (PANB), Census data, and from other sources.
DOAK, AGNES – Born on August 17, 1792, the daughter of Agnes (Duncan) and Robert Doak, Senior. Younger sister of Squire Robert Doak. While still in Scotland, Agnes married HENRY DAWSON (date of marriage unknown but possibly circa 1812-16) but it is said that her husband was killed in a street riot. Accompanied by her infant daughter Margaret, Agnes came to New Brunswick with her brother Robert, and other members of the Doak family in 1815 and settled in Doaktown circa 1822. Married HENRY SWIM (sometimes referred to as Squire Doak’s “adopted son”) on June 19, 1823 (Henry and Agnes were married by Richard Price, Justice of the Peace, their witnesses being William and David Masterson).
It is suggested that Henry and Agnes had seven children. all born in the Doaktown (Northumberland County) area of New Brunswick:
William Byron Swim – b. June 24, 1824 John Swim – b. circa 1833
Robert Swim – b. May 19, 1826 David Kirkland Swim – b. circa 1835
William Henry Swim – b. May 3, 1828 James Swim – b. circa 1837
Duncan Elijah Swim – b. circa 1831
In a note contained in a file pertaining to the Doak Family compiled by the Central Miramichi Historical Society, it is suggested that Margaret Dawson, the daughter of Agnes Doak and her first husband, Henry Dawson, grew up to marry Arthur Attridge. The couple had several children, one of who was Richard Attridge who was later to marry Jane Freeze, the daughter of Margaret (Doak) and Hiram Freeze. Margaret (Doak) Freeze was the eldest daughter of Squire Robert Doak, Agnes’ older brother. In notes detailing tombstones in the United Church Cemetery (Doaktown), there is mention of “Margaret, wife of Arthur Attridge” who died on March 9, 1860 at the age of 42. If this was Margaret Attridge nee Dawson, she would have been born circa 1818.
Agnes (Doak) Swim died on April 1, 1840 at the age of 48 after almost 17 years of marriage to Henry. Henry Swim died on April 21, 1873, aged 81.
DOAK, DANIEL ALEXANDER – According to the 1901 Census, Daniel Doak was born on May 8, 1858. He was the son of Susannah “Christie” (Storey) and James A. Doak, grandson of Mary (Symington) and James Doak (the elder brother of Squire Robert Doak). Married LAURA E. BRUCE (b. February 6, 1870) on November 17, 1886 and, according to PANB and Census data, the couple had the following children:
(1) Chester Elmer Doak – born February 29, 1887
Married Maude A. Sutherland on August 23, 1913
Note (1): Arden Doak says this about his Uncle Chester: “At one time he worked for the Canadian National Railway. He left his family and moved to Maine. While there, he met a woman and married her without divorcing his wife. He was punished for this infraction. On his return home, he resumed life with his legitimate wife. He was a laborer and also a guide for American sportsmen. He built a house on the Grand Lake Road just outside of Doaktown and was a registrar for hunting licenses. Note (2): Chester is pictured (wearing an apron) as part of the “Holmes Mill Crew” (undated). Note (3): One of
. . . 2
Chester and Maude’s sons was John Thompson Sutherland Doak who died on August 21, 1985 (see obituary filed under “D”).
(2) Lawrence Edward Doak – born October 5, 1888
Married Elizabeth (“Lizzie”) L. Holmes on February 19, 1913
* Parents of Arden E. Doak. Note: Elizabeth (“Lizzie Louise”) Holmes had been born on January 18, 1893 and was the daughter of Howard Walter Holmes, the granddaughter of Samuel Holmes, and the great-granddaughter of Lewis Holmes, the first Holmes to settle in the Doaktown area.
(3) Frances Enid Doak – born February 9, 1890
Married William Hazen Lyons on June 3, 1912
Note (1): Frances and William Lyons had five children: Venus (b. circa 1914), Alma (b. September 19, 1916), Albert (b. May 5, 1919), Nelson (see notes under “Lyons, William Hazen), and Calvin.
(4) Gordon H. Doak – b. September 4, 1891
Married Eveline (“Evie”) Lyons on August 5, 1912 and had two sons, Hartford and Harry. Gordon is presumed to have died on February 27, 1917 when he was only 26 (it is believed that Evie later married a Mr. Harriman). See group photo including Eveline and Gordon Doak circa 1915, together with Frances (Doak) Lyons and her husband, William Lyons, and other members of Daniel Doak’s family (filed under “L”). Gordon is also featured in a school photo circa 1914 filed under “S.”
(5) John Doak – born 1892 (?)
Married Violet Kitchen (no further information known at this time). See photo of John and Violet Doak filed under “L.”
(6) Walter Deretheal Doak – born November 10, 1894
Married Ruby Alice Amos, the daughter of Annie (Porter) and James Amos on February 18, 1923. Note (1): Arden Doak has this to say about his Uncle Walter: “He was a laborer and a woodlot owner who sang in the United Church choir and taught Sunday School. His first house was built on the South Road adjacent to the Russell & Swim mill. After his wife moved to the center of town, he sold his house and built another adjacent to his daughter’s. He had one son who died in his twenties, and two daughters. Note (2): See photo of a men’s baseball team from the early 1900’s, including Walter Doak and his brother, Bruce (filed under “B”).
(7) Bruce Weldon Doak – born September 18, 1899
Married Dorothy Irene Connors of Blackville on January 15, 1930. See photo of Bruce and Dorothy Doak filed under “L.” Note (1): Bruce Doak is included in a photo of a 1908 Sunday School Class filed under “H” (ü) – he is in the back row, the first boy on the left. Note (2): See photo (filed under “B”) of a men’s baseball team from the early 1900s showing Bruce Doak and his brother, Walter.ü Note (3): Arden Doak says of his Uncle Bruce: “After the death of his mother, he lived in the homestead which included farmland, an orchard, and woodland. He worked for Russell and Swims [a large lumber mill in Doaktown which opened circa 1922] but later sold the homestead and built on a site in the center of town. He used the first floor as a barber shop and had his living quarters on the second floor. For a few years, he was the middleman for selling Christmas trees. He had one son (Ronald) and one daughter (Marjorie). Another son died in infancy.”
. . . 3
(8) Edna Viola Doak – born Boiestown July 17, 1901
According to records on file at PANB, Edna married Walter Lee Jonah (b. June 12, 1900, the son of Sarah Elizabeth “Lizzie” (Wilson) and George Alfred Jonah) on February 18, 1923. However, it would appear that Walter died just over a year later on September 16, 1924 and that Edna remarried on November 2, 1928, this time to Douglas Davidson Mayes. Edna is included in a group photo of Zaida Hinton’s Sunday School class circa 1912 (filed under “H”ü) – she is the last girl in the back row to Zaida’s left.
(9) Mildred Moretta Doak – born December 4, 1904
Married George O’Dell Green on June 29, 1924
Note: George Green was born on July 15, 1903 in Blackville, the son of Margaret (Lebans) and Leverett [sic] James Green. Mildred and her husband had at least two children, Donnie and Audrey Green.
(10) Lillian Marie Doak – born February 13, 1908
Married David J. Cashen on June 17, 1930 in Saint John.
In his book Retrospections (p. 5), Arden Doak (the son of Lizzie and Lawrence Doak) refers to his uncles, Walt and Bruce, who apparently still lived at home when Arden himself was a young boy. He says, “. . . either Uncle Walt or Uncle Bruce would cut my hair. Uncle Walt was so slow at it that I fainted. Fortunately, he did not pursue [barbering] as a career. Uncle Bruce did, and made a living practicing the trade.” Note (1): See photo of the Daniel Doak house on the South Road (with Frances Doak standing on the back step), filed under “D.” Note (2): See also photo of Laura and Daniel Doak (with most of their children) circa 1910 filed under “D.”
Daniel A. Doak is recorded by PANB as having passed away on February 15, 1928 (see PANB Death Registrations 23796, Volume 23, Microfilm 18926). He would have been 73 years old.
DOAK, DAVID – According to the 1901 Census, David Doak was born on September 16, 1846 (he was 55 at the time of the Census). Parentage unknown but from information obtained from the 1861 Census, a David Doak, aged 16, was living in the household of Thomas S. Doak, and his “relationship” is given as brother-in-law. Note: Thomas Doak was the son of Squire Robert Doak’s elder brother, James.
David Doak married HANNAH WARD, born on July 12, 1855. By 1901 the Doaks had five children living at home:
- George Doak – b. April 11, 1876. George Thomas Doak grew up to marry Dora Inez Mitchell, daughter of Mary Ann (Gilks) and Alexander Valentine Mitchell. Parents of Dorothy, Sterling, Atherton, Wallace, Aubrey and Delbert Doak. Died on November 14, 1910 in Blissfield (see PANB Reference C1j1, Page 111, Line 194, Microfilm F16256).
(2) Annie Doak – b. March 5, 1881
(3) Howard J. Doak – b. February 5, 1883. PANB records the death of a Howard J. Doak who passed away on October 13, 1961 in Saint John. He was recorded as
. . . 4
being 78 years old at the time of his death (from heart disease), a laborer and single. His parents were reported as being Hannah (Ward) from Blackville and David Doak.
His death was reported by his sister-in-law, Mrs. George Doak. In another document on file with PANB, a Howard Doak has issued a sworn statement that he is a brother to Clementina Doak and attests to the parentage of her son, Wilbert Gordon Doak, who was born on February 10, 1891. In his statement, Howard noted that he was seven years older than the baby which would make his own date of birth (1883) fairly accurate.
(4) Percy Doak – b. June 15, 1887
(5) Gordon Doak – b. February 10, 1891
It is believed there was at least two other children born to Hannah and David, a daughter named Amy Adele Doak who was born in Doaktown on March 2, 1904. She would grow up to marry (on June 8, 1937) John Daniel (“Danny”) Carr, the son of Margaret (Nagles) and Arthur W. Carr. Note: The Marriage Certificate noes that Arthur W. Carr had been born in Saint John. Witnesses to the marriage were Daisy Irena Doak and James Darrell McCloskey, the son of Amy’s employer, Mrs. Hedleigh McCloskey. An article in the Miramichi Headwaters dated July 1, 1986 states that Amy lived in Doaktown until she moved to stay with her grandmother in Astle about 1916. Prior to her marriage she was employed as a domestic for the late Mrs. Hedleigh McCloskey. Amy and Danny had one child, a daughter Marilyn who, at the time of the 1986 article, was living in Montreal. Danny worked for the W. S. Anderson mill and also for the Miramichi Lumber Company in charge of fire equipment.
A second daughter (for whom little information has been found) named Clementina was referenced in an affidavit by her brother, Howard J. Doak.
No information regarding the dates of death for David Doak and his wife Hannah (Ward) Doak is known at this time.
DOAK, DELBERT DAVID – Born on October 8, 1915, the son of Dora Inez (Mitchell) and George Thomas Doak, brother of Dorothy, Sterling, Atherton, Aubrey and Wallace Doak. Married Naida I. Mitchell (b. August 18, 1921, the daughter of Prudence (Price) and Manford Mitchell) on March 18, 1939 (see PANB Marriage Certificates #13990, Reference B4/1939, Microfilm F20012). The couple had four children: Allison (b. June 8, 1939) , Beverley, Delia (b. September 27, 1940) and Mae Louise (b. June 4, 1947). Note (1): Beverley Doak (b. September 26, 1943) died on April 10, 1993 at the age of 49 (see obituary filed under “C”).ü Note (2): In 1993 Allison Doak received a long-service award from Russell and Swim’s/Irving Limited for 34 years of service and, at the time, was still working for the company.
According to his obituary, Delbert worked as a carpenter and was a member of the Doaktown Wesleyan Church. He died on October 30, 1991 at the age of 76, having been predeceased by his sister Dorothy and brothers Aubrey and Wallace. See obituary on file.
DOAK, GEORGE THOMAS – Born on April 11, 1876, the son of Hannah (Ward) and David Doak. Married (date unknown at this time) DORA INEZ MITCHELL (b. 1886), the daughter of Mary Ann (Gilks) and Alexander Valentine Mitchell. The couple had six children:
. . . 5
- Atherton Doak – b. September 24, 1907; d. September 23, 1994
- Sterling Stillman Doak – b. October 31, 1909; d. April 23, 1992
- Dorothy Doak – date of birth unknown; d. March 1, 1970
- Aubrey Burns Doak – b. March 24, 1911; d. July 6, 1964
- Wallace Ward Doak – b. June 12, 1913; d. September 4, 1979
- Delbert David Doak – b. October 8, 1915; d. October 30, 1991
Dora (Mitchell) Doak’s sister, Carrie, married Abel Clowater. In Golden Memories of New Brunswick, written by Peter D. Clark (p. 69), Carrie’s daughter, Inez, writes that the Doak’s lived across from each other on the South Road.
Dora (Mitchell) Doak died on December 25, 1970, aged 84. No information to date as to when her husband George passed away.
DOAK, JAMES – Born on April 17, 1783, the son of Agnes (Duncan) and Robert Doak, Senior. Elder brother (by two years) of “Squire” Robert Doak. Married Mary Symington (b. October 3, 1782) and had five children:
- Robert Doak – Date of birth unknown. Married Hannah Cochrane. Note: Other sources cite Robert as being the second husband of Hannah Lyons.
- Thomas S. Doak – Date of birth unknown but thought to be circa 1814 or 1819 (see notes below under “Doak, Thomas S.”). Married (a) Margaret McGraw; and (b) Matilda McKiel. Note (1): After Thomas’ death, Matilda married Thomas Parker, Senior. Note (2): There is a suggestion that Thomas, despite having a disability of some sort, was a school teacher. Note (3): The 1851 Census for the Parish of Blissfield lists a Thomas S. Doak, a widower, aged 37 (and therefore born circa 1814) who is living with his brother, William M. Doak, aged 26, and a Mary Doak, aged 57.
- Miriam Doak – date of birth unknown. Said to have died at sea circa 1820 during the family’s voyage from Scotland to Canada.
- James A. Doak – date of birth circa 1820 (see listing under “Doak, James A.” below).
- William M. Doak – date of birth unknown but thought to be circa 1825. Married Jane Craig. Note: The 1851 Census for the Parish of Blissfield indicates that William, who was 26 at the time and presumably single, was living in the household of his older brother, Thomas S. Doak.
The 1851 Census for the Parish of Blissfield lists James Doak, aged 69 (and therefore born circa 1783). Despite describing himself as “infirm,” James gives his occupation as “Farmer.” The household also includes his son, James (aged 30), James’ wife, Sarah [sic] Christie, and their three daughters, Jane (aged 6), Christy (aged 4), and Ann (one year old).
DOAK, JAMES A. – Born circa 1820, the son of Mary (Symington) and James Doak, grandson of Agnes (Duncan) and Robert Doak Senior. Nephew of Squire Robert Doak (i.e., Robert Doak, Junior).
Married Susannah Christine “Christie” Storey (b. July 1, 1826), the second daughter (and third child) of Christy Ann (McDonald) and Joseph Storey, the first known Storey on the Miramichi. The marriage took place on October 27, 1843 when she was 17 and her husband was 23. Susannah and James had ten children:
. . . 6
- Mary Jane Doak – b. 1845 and married N. Green on November 26, 1863.
- Christina (“Christy”) Doak – b. 1847. Married Robert Fulton Ross in 1873 and had three children: Ann Harvie Ross; James Loggie Ross; and Margaret Stevens Ross. Died May, 1935.
- Joseph Edward Doak – b. 1849. Married Mary Ann Curtis (date of birth and parentage unknown at this time). Documentation including the 1901 Census for the Parish of Blissfield and information obtained from the Provincial Archives indicate that the couple had (at least) the following children: Johnson (?) Doak, b. January (?) 12, 1883 (aged 18 at the time of the 1901 Census); Ernest Haviland Doak, b. September 10, 1884 (aged 16 at the time of the 1901 Census); Agnes Grace Doak, b. March 26, 1891; Daisy Alma Montgomery Doak, b. May 22, 1900; and a daughter whose name appears to be “Adelaide,” b. October 21, 1897 (?). Note (1): The Archives have a certificate on file signed by Ernest Haviland Doak of Victoria, BC in 1949 attesting to the fact that he is Daisy’s older brother and that she was born on May 22, 1900. He notes that he is her senior by 16 years which would “fit” with his given date of birth of 1884.
There is a photograph on file depicting a mill which was supposedly built and owned by Joseph Edward Doak of Doaktown on the northeast corner of Main Street and Dufferin Avenue in Saskatoon during the years 1909-1915. The caption reads that “Mr. Doak brought the machinery from Doaktown where he owned a similar set-up for several years. The mill was a busy place manufacturing everything from church pews and household furnishings to various kinds of building materials. Many of the finer homes in early Saskatoon were constructed of material made by Doak Sash and Door Manufacturing. At least 20 men were employed at the mill. This was during the “boom” period before World War I. Mr. Doak lived until 1919. His youngest daughter, Daisy, was educated in Victoria School, Nutana Collegiate and Teachers College. She taught school near Dundurn and in 1922 married Cecil G. Schmitt who practiced law with the firm of Estey, Moxon & Schmitt for 50 years. They both reside in Saskatoon.” Note: Joseph E. Doak is listed as the “Manager” of the Doaktown Review on March 28, 1902. It is unknown when he left Doaktown for Saskatoon.
- Ruth Ann Doak – b. 1851. Married Coke Price, Jr. on August 10, 1870.
- Allen H. Doak – b. April 10, 1854. Married Bertha Culhane (b. April 10, 1854), the daughter of Ann (Carroll) and Patrick Culhane on October 7, 1879. The couple is said to have had six children: (a) Jessie Laura Doak – b. June 1880; died September 24, 1935; (b) Albert Loggie Doak – b. September 18, 1882; (c) Stillman Henry Doak – b. October 13, 1883; died October 31, 1966; (d) Hessie Doak – b. in 1885 (adopted by her great-uncle Joshua Storey and his wife Mary Jane (Beek) Storey; (e and f) twin girls, Susie and Minnie, born on March 3, 1887.
- Susan Doak – b. 1857. Married a Mr. Donaldson.
- Daniel Alexander Doak – b. May 8, 1858 (?). Married Laura Bruce on November 17, 1886 (see listing under “Doak, Daniel Alexander”)
- James T. Doak – b. 1859. Married Helen (“Nellie” Clearwater on September 9, 1885. According to PANB, the couple had at least two children: a daughter, Catherine E. (b. March 14, 1889); and a son, Charles Everett (b. February 6, 1889). Note: These dates of birth are obviously in error and should be verified.
. . . 7
- Peter Doak – b. 1861. Spouse (if any) unknown.
- Miles Milton Doak – According to The Bamford Saga (p. 213), Miles Milton Doak was born on February 9, 1868 and married Sarah (Stewart) Betts, the widow of Jared Betts. He died on August 26, 1917 (date of date for his wife Sarah is as yet unknown).
In the 1861 Census for the Parish of Blissfield, James Doak, aged 42, and his wife, Susannah, aged 33, are shown as having five children living at home: Ruth Ann (aged 11); Joseph (aged 10); Allen (aged 8), Daniel (aged 5) and James (one year old).
Christy (Storey) Doak died on April 8, 1890 at the age of 64 while her husband James A. Doak died in March of 1896, aged 76.
DOAK, JAMES ANDREW – 1824-1863. Sixth child and youngest son of Jane (Kirkland) and Squire Robert Doak, possibly named after the Squire’s elder brother. Date and place of birth as yet unconfirmed; however, the Dictionary of Miramichi Biography (p. 105) states that James A. Doak died in 1863 at the age of 39 which would make his year of birth circa 1824. Note: The Anglican Church Baptism Registers (Chatham Parish) for 1822-1838 and 1838-1885 give James Andrew’s date of birth as August 10, 1826. This is confirmed by the Ancestral Charts of the Squire Doak Family on file at the Doaktown Community/School Library. However, notes received from Maggie Doak through the CMHS indicate that James Andrew Doak, “Father’s brother,” was born in Doaktown in 1824.
On March 20, 1849 when he would have been roughly 25 years old, James Andrew Doak is said to have married Ann Hervie, born on July 31 (or on July 10), 1826 in Scotland. It is believed that Ann’s ancestry was French Huguenot.
The couple had two children: (1) Robert Harvie Doak (b. May 15, 1850) who married Christina Cameron; and (2) Margaret Jane Doak (b. August 7, 1857) who married Thomas W. Flett.
It is believed that James Andrew Doak inherited his father’s “tools of trade” and property when the Squire died in 1857 (James would have been roughly 33 at the time). In this context, it should again be noted that James was the Squire’s youngest son; however, his eldest brother, Robert Kirkland Doak, is said to have moved to Maine sometime in the early 1860’s, while his other brother, William, became a minister and also moved to the US.
At the time of the 1861 Census for the Parish of Blissfield, James and his wife Ann are 37 and 35 years old respectively. They have two children, Harvey [sic], aged 11 (b. circa 1850); and Margaret Jane, aged 4 (b. circa 1857). Also living in the household is James’ mother, Jane, who is 70 years old.
James Andrew Doak died on August 25, 1863 in Doaktown at the age of 39 (as is noted above, his father had been only 33 at the time of his death). His widow, Anne (Harvie) Doak assumed the management of his affairs and successfully conducted the mill, lumbering and farming businesses until her only son, R. Harvie Doak (only 13 at the time of his father’s passing), was old enough to take over.
The 1901 Census records Ann as a “widow,” aged 74, who is living with her son, Robert Harvie Doak, and his family.
. . . 8
In a letter published in the Atlantic Advocate in October 1967, Ann Hanley of White Rock, British Columbia, a granddaughter of Ann (Harvie) Doak, writes: Mrs. Ann Doak was a wonderful woman in her own right. When her husband . . . died of sunstroke while hurrying to get the harvest in one hot July day, she took over the management of the farm and mills that supplied grain, wool, and lumber for the district. As they usually raised a hundred hogs annually, fed from the kitchen, besides cattle, hay and grain, it was big business for a small settlement.
No one seems to have known Mrs. Ann Doak’s origin or at least written about it. Perhaps because so few people remain who remember that after the French Revolution, many French families moved to northern New Brunswick. Mrs. Ann Doak’s father lived on the Jacquet River at this time. The family name was Herve, which was Anglicized to Harvie. He had been an agent of French firms, I think in the Channel Islands, if not in France. He sometimes walked from his home in northern New Brunswick to visit his daughter in Doakton – walked because of an accident to his spine, making it difficult to ride in the carriage of the day. Mrs. Doak’s only son (Margaret Doak’s father) was named Harvie after the Herves.
The files of the Central Miramichi Historical Society (re: St. Thomas United Church) include information concerning a deed signed on January 9, 1879 by Mrs. Ann Doak, “widow of James Andrew Doak, and her two children, Margaret Jane Doak and Robert Harvey Doak” conveying the land necessary for the construction of the Presbyterian Church (later St. Thomas United Church). At the time, Mrs. Doak’s son, Robert Harvey Doak, appeared to be one of the deacons of the Church. Note: There is a story that, before the Presbyterian Church was built, what is now the United Baptist Church was the only community gathering place in the village. However, it is rumored that one night Mrs. Doak – or one of her family – came to the church only to find the door locked. She was so incensed by what she deemed a very “un-Christian” act that she resolved then and there to help in any way she could the construction of a new (Presbyterian) Church. It is said that the deed conveying the land from the Doak family to the Church stipulated that the property was always to be used for church purposes.
James’ descendants (ending with Maggie Doak) remained on the family farm situated along the Main Street in Doaktown until 1979.
DOAK, MARGARET – Eldest child of Jane “Jean” (Kirkland) and Squire Robert Doak, born in Scotland (date of birth unknown at this time but thought to be May 1, 1810.). Margaret was married three times – first to William Robinson; secondly to John Wesley Robertson; and thirdly to Hiram Freeze. See notes under “Freeze, Hiram.” She lived her entire adult life in Doaktown and died at the age of 61 years, 10 days on May 10, 1871.
It is suggested that one of the children born to Margaret (Doak) and William Robinson was a son, Robert Doak Robinson, who was later to marry Mary Mountain. It is further believed that Margaret (Doak) and William Robinson had a second son, also named William (date of birth unknown at this time). Both William and his brother Robert Doak Robinson were raised by Margaret’s third husband, Hiram Freeze.
. . . 9
Margaret and Hiram had three known children of their own: Samuel Freeze (b. 1843); Jane Freeze (b. 1847); and Margaret Ann Freeze (b. 1851). As noted above, Margaret died at the age of 61 on May 10, 1871.
DOAK, MARGARET JANE – Youngest child and only daughter (b. August 7, 1857) of Ann (Hervie) and James Andrew Doak, granddaughter of Jane (Kirkland) and Robert (“Squire”) Doak. Note: Margaret was born just a few months after her grandfather died on April 5, 1857.
A partial excerpt from the Union Advocate, undated but sometime between January 7, 1874 and December 27, 1883, indicates that a Margaret J. Doak, only daughter of the late [emphasis added] James Doak, Esquire, of Doaktown, was married to Thomas J. Flett at the residence of the bride’s mother . . .”
The Dictionary of Miramichi Biography indicates that Thomas Ward [emphasis added] Flett (b. on April 5, 1858) was the son of Mary Ann Underhill and John Flett. John Flett, Thomas’ father, came to the Miramichi in 1816 from the Orkney Islands in Scotland where he and his sons worked as blacksmiths. By the early 1850s, however, Flett had erected a carding mill which became the principal operation of its kind on the Miramichi for the next 80 years. John and his brother William also became involved in the lumbering business and in the 1870s ventured into brickmaking under the company name Miramichi Steam Brick Works.
John and Mary Ann had at least five children but it was their son Thomas W. Flett who inherited the business after John died in 1889. Thomas was as successful in business as his father had been, opening a “rotary box shook mill” which produced lumber for packing crates used to ship everything from bananas to glassware. By 1900 hundreds of thousands of packing boxes were being supplied annually by the mill to overseas markets and there were as many as 110 employees on the payroll. Thomas continued the carding mill operation begun by his father but was also involved in farming. By 1900 he had over 160 acres under cultivation and nearly 90 head of livestock.
Thomas Flett served as a country councillor for a number of years and as warden between 1893 and 1906. He was a member of the Masonic order, being Worshipful Master of Northumberland Lodge in 1905.
There were no children of his marriage to Margaret (Doak) Flett. Thomas died in Newcastle at the age of 60 on January 2, 1918. His wife passed away in 1926.
DOAK, MILES MILTON – Born February 9, 1868, the son of Susannah Christine (Storey) and James Doak; grandson of Mary (Symington) and James Doak. Great-nephew of Squire Robert Doak. PANB records the birth of a Wilbert Gordon Doak (b. February 10, 1891) to Miles M. Doak and his wife, Clementina Doak. See notes under “Howard Doak” below which appear to indicate that Clementina was the daughter of Hannah (Ward) and David Doak.
Wilbert Gordon Doak married Mary Elizabeth Segee of New Maryland on March 17, 1915. At the time, the groom was 24 years old and a “student;” the bride was 16. PANB records the birth of a daughter, Muriel Arlene Doak born on March 14, 1916. Muriel would grow up to marry Paul Frederick O’Hara on December 3, 1931 (the bride like her mother before her was only 16; the groom was 20 and working as a laborer). The bride gave her residence as Nasonworth; the groom was from Fredericton. The couple evidently divorced because on December 17, 1949, at the age of 33, Muriel married Bruce Clinton Nason, a 50 year old
. . . 10
Customs Clerk from Vanceboro, Maine. No further information is known concerning Muriel, or of her parents Mary Elizabeth (Segee) and Wilbert Gordon Doak.
Although it is yet unclear what happened to Clementina Doak, Miles Doak married for a second time Sarah (Stewart) Betts, the widow of Jared Betts, on February 7, 1915 when he was 47. There were no children. He died on August 26, 1917, aged 49. Note: In an interview conducted in 1983, Thomas Sturgeon recalled his first job as helping Miles Doak haul wood from the mill for 25 cents a day (Tom said he was 12 years old at the time so the year must have been circa 1915).
DOAK, ROBERT, SENIOR – Born on July 31, 1758 in Ochiltree, Ayshire, Scotland (possibly the son of William Doak). Married Agnes Duncan (date unknown) and died in Doaktown in 1823 at the age of 65. Robert and Agnes had eight children (as recorded in his Bible):
(1) William Doak – b. November 28, 1779 – d. March 18, 1851
(2) James A. Doak (b. April 17, 1783. Married Mary Symington (b. October 3, 1782) and had five children: (a) Robert Doak; (b) Thomas S. Doak; (c) Miriam Doak; (d) James A. Doak; and (e) William M. Doak, born in Canada.
(3) Robert Doak, Junior – b. April 4, 1785 (see listing under “Doak, Robert (“Squire”).
- David Doak – b. September 22, 1788 (died young);
- Margaret Doak – b. October 5, 1790
- Agnes Doak – b. August 17, 1792. Married (1) Henry Dawson; and (2) Henry Swim.
- Janet Doak – b. September 13, 1794.
- David Doak – b. September 7, 1800 (unmarried).
DOAK, ROBERT (“SQUIRE”) – April 4, 1785 – April 5, 1857. Innkeeper, mill owner, farmer and magistrate. See Dictionary of Miramichi Biography, p. 105. Born on April 4, 1785 in Ochiltree, Ayshire, Scotland, the son of Agnes (Duncan) and Robert Doak. Nothing specific is known about his youth, education or financial background except that he is said to have married Jane (“Jean”) Kirkland (b. May 1784) of Tarbolton on November 16, 1808 when he was 23. Note: In a note contained in a file compiled by the Central Miramichi Historical Society, Robert Doak is described as being a “young Scot army officer” at the time of his marriage.
Jane and Robert Doak had six children:
- Margaret Doak – b. May 1, 1810. Married (1) Willian Robinson; (2) John Wesley Robertson; (3) Hiram Freeze. See notes under “Doak, Margaret.”
- Agnes Doak – b. July 15, 1812. Married Stephen Hilton on October 29, 1829. Died April 4, 1879
- Jane Doak – b. January 23, 1816. Married (1) Nathaniel Hilton; (2) John Fairbanks. Died June 11, 1857 in Palmyra, Maine.
. . . 11
- Robert Kirkland Doak – b. October 1, 1818. Married Mercy L. Green on October 1, 1847. Died February 24, 1899. See notes under “Doak, Robert Kirkland.”
- William M. Doak – b. February 22, 1822. Married Rachel Edison on July 21, 1858. Died on November 25, 1890 in Sarnia, Ontario at the age of 68. Note: See (two) photographs of grave site in Sarnia filed under “D.”
- James Andrew Doak – b. August 10, 1824. Married Anne Hervie (see notes under “Doak, James Andrew”).
A document dated April 1, 1825 is on file showing the transfer of land (estimated at 200 acres) from Jared Betts “surviving administrator of the Estate of Ephraim Wheeler Betts” to Robert Doak. The document goes on to note that Ephraim Wheeler Betts died intestate and that administration of his estate was granted to Jared Betts and Evan Munro, since deceased, by Thomas H. Peters, Deputy Surrogate for the County of Northumberland. Note: Ephraim Betts had been a Loyalist, a sergeant in the 2nd Battalion of DeLancey’s Regiment in the Revolutionary War. He is remembered as one of the first settlers in the Doaktown area.
Robert Doak is listed in the 1851 Census for the Parish of Blissfield, together with his wife, Jean. He gives his age as 65, his heritage as Scottish, and his occupation as “Farmer.” Jean gives her age as 66. There are no children listed as living in their household.
Squire Doak died in Doaktown on April 5, 1857, aged 72, reportedly from cancer of the face. His wife, Jane, died eight years later on November 20, 1865. Note: See excerpt from Moncton Times Transcript, dated January 21, 1984 describing Squire Doak’s contributions to the Village (filed under “D”). See also Margaret Doak’s account (published in the Atlantic Advocate in September 1967) listed under “Doak House.”
According to one account, until the mid-1800’s the village had no particular name. However, in 1854, the Government set out to rectify the matter and because Squire Doak was the community’s most influential resident, the village became known as “Doakton” which was eventually changed to “Doaktown.”
DOAK, ROBERT HARVIE – The eldest child and only son (b. May 15, 1850) of Ann (Hervie) and James Andrew Doak, grandson of Jane (Kirkland) and Robert (“Squire”) Doak. Robert was only 13 when his father died of sunstroke; his mother Anne (Harvie) Doak assumed the management of the family’s affairs and successfully conducted the mill, lumbering and farming businesses until her son was old enough to take over.
Harvie Doak spent most of his lifetime operating the various mills on the Doak family property and conducting the farm which he inherited from his father. He was known as “quite a mechanical genius,” building a store in 1888 in which he sold agricultural machinery and farm supplies. In 1894 he erected a building in which to manufacture implements used in farming.
Following is an excerpt from an article published in the Union Advocate on April 21, 1875:
While in Doaktown a few days ago, we visited the milling establishment of Mr. Harvey [sic] Doak and were certainly pleased with what we saw . . . There is a saw mill with one gang, which does good work. There is a grist mill which will grind 160 bushels of grain per day; and a carding mill, the capacity of which is about 90 pounds per diem. These mills are all in one large and very strong building, each being run with a separate wheel, the power being supplied from a brook about one-quarter mile distant. The water furnishes sufficient power to run two of the mills at
. . . 12
one time, and it is an interesting fact to know that since the earthquake a few years ago, the supply of water in the brook has largely increased.
Mr. Doak is an enterprising young man and is evidently quite a mechanical genius. Under his direction, the mills do excellent work, although the amount of business done is scarcely in keeping with the value of the establishment which is estimated at about 10,000 [sic]. Mr. Doak is adding . . . some new machinery for the manufacture of laths, which will provide a great accommodation to the people residing in that section.
In 1882 the Miramichi Advance published a calendar which also included the names of various officials of the Parish of Blissfield. Harvey [sic] Doak is listed as “Clerk of the Market.”
At the age of 35, Harvie married CHRISTINA CAMERON from Black River on October 28, 1885, and the couple had a son (Hubert Edison Doak) and two daughters, one of whom was Margaret M. Doak, a school teacher who lived in the family home (now the Doak Historic Site) for most of her life until she died in 1979.
Census information from 1901 indicates the following:
Harvie Doak – b. May 15, 1850 (50 years of age) – Farmer
Christina Doak – b. February 17, 1856 (45 years of age) – Wife
Annie Harvie Doak – b. August 6, 1886 (14 years of age) – Daughter
Maggie Maria Doak – b. January 7, 1889 (12 years of age) – Daughter
Hubert Edison Doak – b. February 1, 1894 (7 years of age) – Son
Ann Doak – b. July 31, 1826 (74 years of age) – Mother
Annie Harvie Doak married the Reverend Chester Earle with whom she had two children: Harvie Earle, M.D., and the Reverend Douglas Earle. Neither her sister, Margaret (“Maggie”) Maria Doak, nor her brother, Hubert Edison Doak, ever married. Note: In an interview conducted on July 12, 1982, Mrs. W. K. Swim, who taught at the Doaktown Superior School in the 1920s, remembers that Maggie Doak taught in the Campbell area but “came home and lived here after her brother died.” Hubert Doak passed away in September of 1939.
Harvie Doak passed away on January 22, 1901 [or 1909?]. His wife, Christina (Cameron) Doak, died on April 16, 1925.
DOAK, ROBERT KIRKLAND – Born October 1, 1818, the eldest son (but fourth child) of Jean (Kirkland) and Squire Robert Doak. Note: Robert was probably born either in Chatham or in Blackville, given that his father was still operating a mill in Blackville (in partnership with Andrew MacLaggan) at the time.
On October 1, 1847 at the age of 29, Robert married MERCY LAVINIA GREEN (b. March 26, 1826), the daughter of Sarah (Mitchell) and Andrew Green and the granddaughter of Sarah (Crabtree) and Lewis Mitchell.
The NB Archives show that the Robert and Mercy had a daughter, Jane Kirkland Doak, born on December 1, 1848, as well as twin girls, Agnes Amelia and Isabella Margaret, born on July 15, 1857. The 1851 Census for the Parish of Blissfield mentions another daughter, Sarah M., who was one year old at the time and therefore born circa 1850.
. . . 13
By the time of the 1861 Census, Robert and Mercy were 44 and 34 years old respectively and there are seven children living at home: Jane K., aged 12; Sarah M., aged 10 (b. circa 1851); Mercy L., aged 8 (b. circa 1853); Robert A., aged 6 (b. circa 1855); twin girls Agnes A. and Isabella M., aged 4; and Anna, aged 1 (b. circa 1860).
Sometime between 1863 and 1869, the couple moved to the Sebec/Dover/Milo area of Piscatiquis County, Maine where they were joined by Mercy’s parents. Note: Andrew Green died on March 2, 1869, aged 85. He is buried in the Harriman Cemetery, Sebec, Maine with his wife, Sarah (Mitchell) Green who passed away at the age of 89 on October 1, 1873. Robert Kirkland Doak apparently became a United States citizen on September 2, 1877.
In a file compiled by the Central Miramichi Historical Society, the children of Mercy (Green) and Robert Doak are listed as follows:
- Jane Kirkland Doak – b. in Doaktown on December 1, 1848 (probably named in honor of her paternal grandmother). Married a Mr. Bond and died on November 15, 1935 at the age of 87 in Los Angeles.
- Sarah Mitchell Doak – b. in Doaktown on March 1850. Married a Mr. Lanpher and died on March 7, 1922, aged 72. Buried in the Dover (Maine) Cemetery.
- Mercy Lavinia Doak – b. in Doaktown on October 25, 1852. Died on October 20, 1919, aged 67. According to her tombstone, she was the widow of William H. Gould. Buried in the Harriman Cemetery, Sebec, Maine.
- Robert Andrew Doak – b. in Doaktown on March 2, 1855; died on February 5, 1911, aged 56. Buried in the Dover (Maine) Cemetery.
- Agnes Amelia Doak – b. in Doaktown on July 15, 1857, twin sister of Isabel Margaret Doak. Married a Mr. Kennedy and died in 1958 in Melrose, Mass. at the age of 101.
- Isabelle Margaret Doak – b. in Doaktown on July 15, 1857, twin sister of Agnes Amelia Doak. Married George A. Lufkin in East Boston on September 3, 1885 when she was 28 (and living in the home of her oldest sister, Jane (Doak) Bond). Died on November 5, 1936, aged 79 in Melrose, Mass (her husband had predeceased her in March of 1935). In her obituary printed in the Free Melrose Press on November 12, 1936, it was noted that Isabelle had resided with her twin sister, Mrs. Agnes A. Kennedy, also of Melrose. It was said that she came to Foxcroft, Maine as a child of 8, and that she had two children: George D. Beachmont and Mrs. Allen P. Wilson. She was survived by two sisters, Agnes and Florence, as well as seven grandchildren.
- William Turnbull Doak – b. in Doaktown on October 7, 1863. Died on February 22, 1910 (?) in Riverside, California.
- Florence Sterling Doak – b. in Fo00xcroft, Maine on November 11, 1869. Married John Franklin Rice (no information as to when she died or where she is buried except that she was still alive in 1936 when her older sister, Isabelle (Doak) Lufkin passed away).
Robert Kirkland Doak died on February 24, 1899 at the age of 81 in Paterson, New Jersey. His wife, Mercy, had predeceased him on September 14, 1872 (“aged 46 years, 6 months and 12 days”) and is buried in Dover, Maine.
. . . 14
DOAK, THOMAS S. – Date of birth unknown but thought to be circa 1814 or 1819. Second son of Squire Robert Doak’s older brother, James Doak and his wife, Mary Symington. There has been a suggestion that Thomas, despite having a disability of some sort, was a school teacher. He is said to have married twice: (1) Margaret McGraw and (2) Matilda McKiel. Note: Given the information found in the 1861 Census, it would appear that Thomas and Margaret were married sometime around 1843 while his second marriage probably took place circa 1856.
The 1851 Census for the Parish of Blissfield lists a Thomas S. Doak, a widower, aged 37 (and therefore born circa 1814) who is living with his brother, William M. Doak, aged 26, and a Mary Doak, aged 57.
By the time of the 1861 Census, Thomas has married his second wife, Matilda, who gives her age as 28 (her husband was 42 at the time and gave his occupation as “Farmer”), and there are four children living in the household: Mary, aged 18 (b. circa 1843); Marjorie, aged 4 (b. circa 1857); Emeline, aged 3 (b. circa 1858); and Thomas Alexander (“Sandy”), aged 2 (b. 1859). Also living in the household at the time of the 1861 Census was David Doak, aged 16, who is identified as a brother-in-law.
In 1882 the Miramichi Advance published a calendar which also included the names of various officials of the Parish of Blissfield. Thomas Doak, among several others, is listed as a “Hog Reeve.”
DOAK, WILLIAM M. – Second son of Jane (Kirkland) and Squire Robert Doak; (younger brother of Robert Kirkland Doak), born February 22, 1822 in Doaktown. William became a Presbyterian Minister and eventually settled in Sarnia, Ontario. His wife Rachel Edison (b. in 1834 in Bayham, Ontario), was a cousin to Thomas Edison, the inventor.
William and Rachel had two children: (1) William Edison Doak (b. July 23, 1859 in Ontario; married Nellie McClellan on July 18, 1898 in Rathdrum, Idaho. William died on December 12, 1948 in Libby, Montana; his wife died in October 1964, also in Libby (the couple had no children); and (2) Anna Kirkland Doak (b. January 2, 1864 in Avonton, Ontario); married Thomas William Fleetwood and died on July 14, 1948 in Helena, Montana having been predeceased by her husband in 1931. There were no children.
Note: In an excerpt from a newspaper dated July 22, 1948 published in Libby (Lincoln County), Montana, it is noted that Anna Kirkland Fleetwood had lived in Libby “for the past 40 years until a few years ago when she went to Helena to live at the Odd Fellows Home. She is survived by her brother, William Doak of this city. Mrs. Fleetwood was a faithful worker in the
Presbyterian Church and a member of the Rebekah Lodge.” In an obituary dated September 17, 1931, Tom Fleetwood is described as a “long-time and highly respected citizen of Libby” who passed away “after an illness of about three months following a stroke of paralysis.” The obituary goes on to say that Mr. Fleetwood “was born near Minneapolis on July 21, 1859 and was 72 years old at his death. When a young man, he was a telegraph operator. When still a young man, he removed to Billings, Montana and later to Great Falls where he was sales manager for the Holder Lumber Company. It was in the early ‘90’s that Mr. Fleetwood came to Libby . . . he acquired a tract of land north of the city and lived there a number of years. During his residence here, he has devoted his time to farming and mining. . . . He was a man of high honor and integrity, a warm friend and a kind and companionable husband.”
. . . 15
The Reverend William M. Doak died at the age of 68 in Sarnia, Ontario on November 25, 1890 where he is buried. His wife Rachel died on May 10, 1913, aged 79, in Pipe Creek, Montana. Note: In an obituary published on May 15, 1913 in the Western News (Libby, Lincoln County, Montana), Rachel (Edison) Doak is described as having died at the home of her daughter, Mrs. Thomas Fleetwood.