Descendents of Henry Swan (1773 - before 1851)
and Elizabeth Russell (ca. 1783 - 22 Jan 1870)

Table of Contents

 First immigranT Generation                 


 Second immigranT Generation            









 Third immigranT Generation               























































First Immigrant Generation

1. Henry Swan

Son of Robert Swan & Dorothy Paterson. Born 1773 in Donaldsons Lodge, Northumberlnd Co, England. Died 1850/1851. Occupation Weaver.


Ref: Jocelean Swan Hall and Margaret Swan Crozier, "The Swan Family", 1980.


Henry Swan and his wife Elizabeth Russell lived at Donaldsons Lodge, Northumberland, England, during the period 1806 and 1813 where records show that   two of their children were born and one died.   In the records at that time Henry is listed as a Weaver.   The early Swan family   were fishers on the river Tweed.


Unknown where Henry died, whether he died in England before his family came to New Brunswick, or if he died shortly after arriving in New Brunswick.   The 1851 Census for the Harvey Settlement area lists his wife Elizabeth as a widow and living with son John.


He married Elizabeth Russell, in England. Born About 1783 in Ford, Northumberland, Eng. Died 22 Jan 1870 in Harvey Station.


From Morning News, 29 Jan 1870:   "Died Harvey, York Co., 22nd inst., Elizabeth Swan or Russel, native of Ford, Northumberland, age 86."


It is believed that Elizabeth was a sister of Isabella, wife of James Rutherford, who came to New Brunswick in June 1850.


They had the following children:

  2   i.   Isabella Swan

  3   ii.   Robert Swan

  4   iii.   James Swan

  5   iv.   James Swan

  6   v.   Elizabeth Swan

  7   vi.   Alexander Swan

  8   vii.   John "Jack" Swan

  9   viii.   Sarah Swan



Second Immigrant Generation

2. Isabella Swan

Daughter of Henry Swan & Elizabeth Russell. Born Approx 1800 in Northumberland, Eng. Died 20 May 1851 in Harvey Settlement. Buried in Harvey Settlement Cemetery. Religion Presbyterian.


She married John Thompson, 29 Jan 1832 in Cornhill Parish Marriage Register 1798-1850, England. Born 1800 in Northumberland, Eng. Died 25 Aug 1888 in Harvey Settlement. Buried in Harvey Settlement Cemetery. Occupation Teacher. Religion Presbyterian.


Not sure if John Thompson had middle name of "Stuart", unable to confirm.


John Thompson and Isabella Swan were married by banns on 29 Jan 1832 in Cornhill Parish, England.  


Among the original setlers of Harvey, N.B., they sailed from Berwick-upon-Tweed on May 28, 1837 on board the brig "Cornelius of Sunderland" which carried coals, glass, etc. and 137 passengers.   They arrived at Saint John, N.B. on Wednesday, 12 July, and proceeded to Fredericton in the steamer, "Water Witch".

John received a land grant of 100 acres, Lot 9W, in Harvey Settlement.   He had been educated as a school teacher and served in this role when he came to the Harvey community.   He served as Clerk of the Session in the Presbyterian Church, and as an elder.


They had ten children, three born in England and seven born in Harvey.   Isabella died when the youngest child was about two years old.


Copied from newspaper item - 1888 (undated):

John Thompson departed this life at noon on Saturday, and was carried to his long home on Monday.   Mr Thompson was one of the first settlers and had reached the 90th year of his age.   He was the only teacher or schoolmaster in the settlement for quite a length of time.   There is only one person in the parish now living who can claim to have been born in the seventeenth century, George Davidson, who was likewise one of the first of the Harvey settlers.


The following is information gathered from research at the Provincial Archives of NB by Bruce Elliott, summer 2004, and contained in an e-mail to J. Hall,dated 19 Aug 2004:

"The first is Thompson's licence to teach school, in RS655 1844.   On 2 Apr. 1838 he was approved by the Board of Education for the County of York.   In the minute of the meeting he was called a native of the County of Northumberland, England, and it was said he had produced testimonials of   "moral character, religious principles and sober habits" and passed an   examination in the 3 R's and English grammar, and was granted a certificate as requested.   A pity the testimonials were not placed on file.   On 14 Oct. 1844 the trustees of schools for parish of Kingsclear certified that he had been teaching a school in the Harvey Settlement there for many years with exemplary conduct, and currently enrolled 19 males and 15 females; a renewal of his licence was approved 30 Dec. 1844.


"Secondly, the Dunham & McDougall Family Collection (MC167) includes a letter from Thompson to Jonathan McDougall who came to Stanley with the first party, but soon left.   McDougall was said to have been living in Gagetown when he received this letter, but that is not apparent on the document itself.   The file contains an inaccurate typescript version, but my copy below is from the original which is also there.   The transcriber thought he had signed John C. Thompson, but there is no middle initial C, just a big curl at the start of the T. of Thompson.   The letter was actually written by the nephew and namesake because John had injured his hand.   Note that he refers to his father-in-law back in England, alas not by name.   It would appear that McDougall and Thompson might have known one another in the old country.   If not, then McDougall managed to hear of Thompson soon after his arrival and knew that he was a teacher.   That John had already heard the news of the death of McDougall's wife and sent word home, however, suggests an old-country acquaintance.   McDougall's first wife was a Mather from Northumberland, though he himself was born in Scotland; a letter from McD's father-in-law in Otonobee Twp. near Peterborough, Ontario was given to Trent University Archives there by the same donor who gave the Thompson letter to PANB.


"Here is the text of the letter:

"Stanley Feby 1st


My Dear Sir

I received your Letter stating that there is a Schoolmaster a wanting at the Place where you live but I have made up my mind to go to Harvey's settlement along with my Countrymen who are anxious for me to Settle amongst them and have offred a very advintageous proposal although I may expect to undergo more privations for one year then in that you recommend me to   I have also the offer of the Company School at Stanley   I have had a call of some of the Supporters of Mr. Henry offering to send there Children to me if I would remain but there is no money and things [offer?] a very gloomy aspect and are becoming mor so every day   the people here condole with you in the loss of your Partner in life   The news of her death reached us before I wrote to my Friends in England and I took notice of it in my letter to my Father in law   I feel grateful for your kindness in having me in your mind and recommending me to the Subscribers of the situation referr'd to   We are all well but I am under the necessity of employing my Nephew to write this lettor on account of a severe bruise in my hand   you are expected up here in the spring there are several talking about clearing out in the spring if the Company does not go on and there is little prospect as Cap Kendall is going home and Cap Hayne is to be Commissioner in his stead   my Wifes has her best respects to you


I am Sir

Yours Truly

John Thompson"


They had the following children:

  10   i.   John T. Thompson

  11   ii.   Elizabeth Thompson

  12   iii.   Margaret Thompson

  13   iv.   Mary Ann Thompson

  14   v.   Isabel Thompson

  15   vi.   Henry Thompson

  16   vii.   Thomas "James" Thompson

  17   viii.   Robert Thompson

  18   ix.   Jane "Jennie" Thompson

  19   x.   Alexander Swan Thompson



Second Immigrant Generation

3. Robert Swan

Son of Henry Swan & Elizabeth Russell. Born 11 Jan 1806 in Northumberland, Eng.


In the Cornhill Baptism of Dissenters:   Robert Swan, son of Henry and Elizabeth Swan of Donaldsons Lodge, 11th Jan. 1806.


No further information on Robert.



Second Immigrant Generation

4. James Swan 

Son of Henry Swan & Elizabeth Russell. Born 8 Mar 1809 in Northumberland, Eng. Died 19 Mar 1813 in Northumberland, Eng. Buried in England.


Cornhill Baptism of Dissenters:   James Swan 2nd son of Henry Swan of Donaldsons Lodge, W., by his wife Elizabeth late Russell, b. Mar. 8, 1809.


Listed in the Cornhill burials before 1850, was the following:   "James Swan, son of Henry, Weaver and Elizabeth his wife late Russell, Donaldsons Lodge, Mar. 19, 1813, age 4."


Second Immigrant Generation

5. James Swan

Son of Henry Swan & Elizabeth Russell. Born 1813 in Northumberland, England. Died 16 Mar 1870 in Harvey, York Co, NB. Buried in Harvey Settlement Cemetery. Occupation Farmer. Religion Presbyterian.


Ref: Jocelean Swan Hall and Margaret Swan Crozier, "The Swan Family", 1980, p. 20.


James and his wife Jane entered Canada with their daughter Mary, in 1840.   They settled on Lots 17 and 18, second tier, Harvey Settlement.   The agricultural records of the 1861 census show that James owned 200 acres of land, 50 of which were improved and 150 unimproved.   The cash value of his land was given as 150 pounds and the value of implements and machinery was given as 10 pounds.   He owned three horses, three milch cows, two other neat cattle, fourteen sheep, and three pigs.

James Thompson

From Thurs. Daily Telegraph, 24 Mar 1870:   "Died Harvey, 16th March, James Swan, age 56, native of Northumberland, England.   He entered the communion of the Church in early life under late Dr. Thompson of Coldstream.   About the year 1840 he emigrated to America; left wife, seven children."

From Colonial Farmer, 26 Mar 1870:   "Died Harvey Settlement, 16th inst., James Swan, age 56, native of Northumberland England."

He married Jane Moody. Born 1818 in Northumberland, England. Died 5 Aug 1879 in Harvey, York Co. Buried in Harvey Settlement Cemetery. Religion Presbyterian.


Jane is listed as English in the 1851 and 1861 Census.   Research needs to be done to determine the names of her parents.


They had the following children:

  20   i.   Mary Swan

  21   ii.   Henry "Harry" Swan

  22   iii.   John "Jack" Swan

  23   iv.   Robert Swan

  24   v.   Isabella Swan

  25   vi.   William Swan

  26   vii.   James Thomas Swan

  27   viii.   Elizabeth H. "Bessie" Swan

  28   ix.   Alexander "Sandy" Swan

  29   x.   Sarah Jane "Janie" Swan

Undated tin type photograph of James Swan (b. 1813, Northumberland; d.16 Mar 1870, Harvey Settlement).


Second Immigrant Generation

6. Elizabeth Swan

Daughter of Henry Swan & Elizabeth Russell. Born 1817 in Northumberland, Eng. Died 1882 in Harvey Sta. Buried in Harvey Settlement Cemetery.


It is believed that Elizabeth came to Canada in 1850 with her parents (mother?), brothers Alexander and John, and sister Sarah.


At the time of the 1861 census, Elizabeth's mother was living with them.   In the 1871 census, an Alexander Nesbit, age 12, born in NB, lived with Elizabeth and John Taylor.


She married John Taylor, 19 Aug 1857 in Harvey Settlement By Rev. Samuel Johnson . Born 1 May 1825 in Inverarity, Forfar, Scotland. Died 4 Jan 1904 in Harvey Sta. Buried in Harvey Settlement Cemetery. Occupation Farmer And Trading. Religion Presbyterian.


PANB #F15552, p. 295:   John Taylor to Elizabeth Swan on Aug 19, 1857, by Samuel Johnson.   Witness, William Taylor.

Elizabeth Swan (b. 1817, Northumberland; d.1882, Harvey Station) was the first wife of John Taylor.

 After the death of Elizabeth, John married Phoebe A. Hartt, but left no family by either wife.


John bought the woolen mill business at York Mills from George Lister, and he continued the business for several years.   He built a community hall in the center of Harvey village.   He was installed as an elder of the Presbyterian Church of Harvey on June 22, 1856.


From church records:   John died Jan. 4, 1904, age 79, suffered from apoplexy, ill about 1 1/2 years.

From a newspaper item, (with picture of John Taylor) Saturday, 25 Nov 1893:

A Typical and Worthy Scotchman.

His History Shows What Honesty and Perseverance Can Accomplish.


The portrait is from a photograph recently taken for the present occasion.   John Taylor, of Harvey Station, is the original.   He came to this country from Scotland in 1850; was born at Whigstreet, Parish of Inverarity and County of Forfar, in 1825, and is therefore about the same age as Lieut-Governor Boyd.   Mr Taylor settled on a lot of wilderness land at Tweedside, so-called, on the western shore of Oromocto Lake, in 1852, where the Swans and others had "got planted unco richt" two years previously.


Tweedside is merely an extension of Harvey on the south.   It was originally termed the Campbell block, having been granted to Sir Colin Campbell.  

The land was divided into ten lots and sold to these people by Andrew Inches, who was then or some time shortly after dubbed by George L. Hatheway, "the king of the crown land office."

The road, instead of being a bridle path as has been said, was then at its best; better in fact than it is today, and no finer tract of land could then be seen between Fredericton and St. Andrews; and no finer farms can be seen on the same road at the present time.   The first frame house was erected by Mr. Taylor.   He went on with his farming for a number of years, but when the American war broke out he turned his attention to business and opened a trade between the villages and the citizens of St. Stephen and Calais.   This proved to be a lucky step for him and was a boon to the settlers as well.   Fortune favored him and he began to be favorably known to the merchants of not only these towns, but Fredericton and St. John as well.


After the completion of the European and North American Railway (now the Atlantic division of the Canadian Pacific Railway) he sold his farm at Tweedside and removed to Harvey Station.   Here he continued trading, and seeing that business at that place promised well, he erected a large and substantial building, the upper portion of which was designed for use as a public hall; the lower divided into two commodious stores for his own use.   Previous to this he had become a shareholder in the York woolen mill, the largest mill of the kind in the province, and after a time became sole owner.   Carrying on this business took him away from home a great deal and he decided to sell, which he did at a good profit.   The mill while under his control got the reputation of manufacturing an extra fine quality of goods, which reputation it has satisfactorily sustained.   Mr Taylor has been twice married.   His first wife was a woman of fine attainments and a sister of John and Alex Swan of Tweedside.   She died in 1881.   Three years after he married Phoebe Amanda, eldest daughter of the late David Hart of Fredericton Junction, a lady esteemed by all who have the pleasure of her acquaintance.


Mr Taylor has had no children of his own but has had the care of his brother's children, two boys and two girls, since they became orphans and all who know the young folks will say that he has fulfilled his duty to them in the fullest sense.


He is still hale and hearty as his picture shows.   He enjoys the friendship of many prominent men through the province by whom he is esteemed and respected for his many excellent traits of character.


Three times he has been privileged to visit his native land, thus having seven times crossed the Atlantic.


In his time he has contributed a good deal to the press, largely for the St. Croix Courier.   His productions always show a keen foresight; a fine descriptive faculty, and an accurate estimate of men and matters.   It has been said of him that he is a close observer; as glib with the pen as a true Scotchman and a worthy representative of "The land o'cakes."  


From newspaper obituary (1904):

Harvey:   Our readers generally will regret to hear of the death of the sturdy Scotchman, John Taylor, which occurred at his home in Harvey on January 4th.   He had been in failing health for four years past.   He was born May 1st, 1825, near Fotheringham, in the parish of Inverarity, Forfair, Scotland, and came to this country in 1850.   He lived in Charlotte County for a while, and settled in Tweedside in 1854 and engaged in farming and trading.   He went to Harvey Station in 1876.



Second Immigrant Generation

7. Alexander Swan

Son of Henry Swan & Elizabeth Russell. Born 1818/1819 in Northumberland,   England. Died 19 Nov 1905 in Harvey Station, NB. Buried in Harvey Settlement Cemetery. Religion Presbyterian.


Ref: Jocelean Swan Hall and Margaret Swan Crozier, "The Swan Family", 1980


He first married Mary Taylor, in England. Born 1818/1819 in England. Died 15 May 1853 in Harvey Station, NB. Buried in Harvey Settlement Cemetery.


They had the following children:

  30   i.   Henry "Harry" Swan

  31   ii.   Robert Taylor "Bob" Swan

  32   iii.   James T. Swan

  33   iv.   Mary Swan

He second married Elizabeth "Bess" Dryden, 31 Mar 1858 in Harvey, York Co., NB By Rev. Samuel Johnson.   Born 1830. Died 5 Mar 1914 in Tweedside. Buried in Harvey Settlement Cemetery.


Witnesses to marriage to Alexander Swan were John Nesbit and Eleanor Johnson.


3717. Elizabeth "Bess" Dryden (b. 1830; d. 1914, Tweedside);, 2nd wife of Alexander Swan. Collection of Brian Swan, La Peche, Quebec. Album orginated from his grandmother Ella Jessie Swan (née Thompson) who provided the image identification. Rephotographed, 9 Jun 2008 by Tim Patterson. Cropped and contrast adjusted by Tim Patterson 10 Feb 2009

alexander swan.jpg

Memorial for Alexander Swan Sr b 1818-1819 d Nov 19, 1905
son of Henry Swan and Elizabeth Russell.
He was married to 1) Mary Taylor 2) Elizabeth Dryden Kelly.

Alex and mary came from the River tweed area in 
Northumberland County England in 1850 with their 3 
young sons, Alex's parents and his young brother John.
It is believed that Alex was a Mason before coming to 
Canada and the 1861 census lists his occupation as 
" Farmer and Mason" He made all the shoes worn by his 
family also. He lived on a farm in Tweedside , 
His first house was a log house, and in 1860, 
he built the house where his grandson Stephen Swan lived

Alexander Swan (b. 1818, Northumberland; d. 9 Nov., 1905, Harvey Station) and his second wife Elizabeth "Bess" Dryden (b. 1830; d. 5 Mar 1914), Tweedside.

From The Daily Gleaner, 24 Jun 1913, page 2:


Tweedside, June 20 --   Mrs Worling, of St. Marys, is visiting her sister, Mrs Alex Swan.   This is the first time they have met, Mrs Swan having come to this country before her sister was born.   Mrs Swan is 82 years old and her sister 60.


Copied from newspaper obituary (1914):

Harvey Station, March 7 -- Mrs Elizabeth Swan, widow of Alex Swan died at her home at Tweedside yesterday morning.   She was in the eighty-fifty year of her age and has been in failing health for some time.   She was a native of north of England and came to this province about sixty-five years ago and for some time resided in St. John.   She was twice married, her first husband, whose name was Kelly, dying about sixty years ago.   She married Mr Swan and came to Tweedside over fifty-six years ago and has resided there since that time.   Mr Swan died a short time ago at an advanced age.   She is survived by two daughters by her first marriage, Mrs Thos Piercy, resi