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- Taylor, Hugh
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Hermina Agnes Wessel was born to John Wessel and Agnes Henry (Hamana) in Gastown on June 20, 1878. Mr. Wessel who hailed from Amsterdam, Holland, came to Canada as a mariner travelling by way of Cape Horn. He worked at the Hastings Sawmill in Gastown which was then managed by a man named Richard Henry Alexander. He married Agnes, daughter of Henry and Catherine Hamana, recent Hawaiian immigrants to Canada, and together they had three children: Hermina, John Jr. and Sarah, of which Minnie was the eldest.
In 1879, Minnie moved with her parents to South Pender Island where her father was installed as a shepherd with James Alexander, brother to the manager of the Hastings Sawmill. Her mother left their family after the birth of Sarah, the youngest Wessel child. Her father soon thereafter divorced his wife and entered both Hermina and Sarah into St. Anne’s Convent in Victoria, while her brother John stayed with their father on South Pender Island. John Wessel Jr. died at the age of 10.
In 1889 John Wessel moved to Saturna Island to work for Mr. Warburton Pike as manager of the Pike Ranch. Upon graduating from the Convent, Hermina moved back with her father where she lived until her marriage to Hugh Taylor in Victoria on November 20, 1902.
At the time of their marriage Hugh Taylor had a freighting contract to carry supplies for the construction of the Dominion Yukon Telegraph Line. So for their honeymoon, the two rode horseback in the pack train from Ashcroft to Hazelton. Arriving in the late summer, Minnie Taylor remained in Hazelton while her husband went on to Telegraph Creek. The next year they built their log ranch house at Kispiox, Mr. Taylor became the local telegraph operator and together they taught themselves the Morse code. At the birth of their second child, this knowledge of Morse code allowed them to communicate with Dr. Wrinch at the nearest hospital through their local telegraph operator in Hazelton!
In the spring of 1919 Hugh Taylor was appointed to the staff of the Public Works Department of the Provincial Government and so the family moved to South Fort George. Upon their arrival they stayed in the Alexandra Hotel until their household effects arrived by train. In 1921 Mr. Taylor died of pneumonia.
Minnie Taylor and her family lived in Prince George until 1935 when she moved to live with her daughter Lucy and family in Grand Forks. During the war years she lived with her son Dixon and family in Chisolm Mills, afterwhich she returned to the Lower Mainland where she again lived with Lucy and family until her death on February 3, 1972. She was survived by four daughters (Mrs. Ellen Garland, Mrs. Violet Baxter, Mrs. Lucy Burbidge and Mrs. Virginia Woods) and two sons (Arthur and Dr. Hugh Taylor Jr.). She was predeceased by her two sons Dixon (1962) and Thomas (1944).
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This photograph album consists of images pertaining to early settlements, bridges, riverboats, railways, cross-land travel companies, and family and social life including portraits and such events as cross country skiing, picnics, family gatherings, basketball team photos, masquerade dances, dramatic plays, hockey games and team dinners. Identified individuals include: the Tillicums, Bill Bennett, Jean Caux, Frank Johnstron, the Taylor Family (Hermina, Hugh, Ellen, Violet, Lucy, Dixon, Arthur, Virginia, Tom and Hugh Jr.), H.G.T. Perry, Betty Angus, Mrs. Kirkpatrick and Mrs. Davis. Identified geographic locations include: South Fort George, Prince George, Hagwilget Bridge, Walcott, Prince Rupert, Finlay River Rapids, Lulu Island, Ashcroft, Skeena River, Nechako River, Bulkley River, Kispiox and Hazelton.
This file also contains a one way Canadian National Railways ticket in the name of Miss V.B. (Violet Bourchier) Taylor to travel from Prince Rupert to Vancouver in July 1927.
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