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History Through Photographs
 New Brunswick Museum

As soon as Gramp arrived from town, he handed us the Robbins Drug Store envelope that held the developed pictures we had taken last week.

We could hardly wait to see the results of our day as photographers. Fortunately the pictures had turned out just fine, even better than we expected.

The one of the black bridge brought memories to Dad of the picture Tillie took years ago when the sloven, loaded with turnips, broke through the floor. This led into quite a discussion about that eventful day.

Pictures certainly do bring back memories and get people talking.

That happened last week when I mentioned photographers in my column. Ron Keith advised me the Library and Archives Canada had a very interesting paper compiled in 1973 by Jim Burant, titled, “Photographers and Photographic Studios, St. John New Brunswick 1845 - 1865".

Peter Larocque, Curator of NB Cultural History & Art at the New Brunswick Museum very kindly made me aware of the collection of photographs on their website at  in the Exhibitions section.

When I clicked on the website, I was astounded. I forgot about the necessary tasks of housework and escaped to the world of yesteryear through all the photographs.

My first stop was at “The New Brunswick Museum Presents” to discover New Brunswick's history through five exhibitions created by the NBM Archives and Research Library.

1) Double Vision: New Brunswick Stereographs 1865-1880 gave me a glimpse of more than two hundred images of such scenes as: Mispec Saw Mill, Inner Harbour at Quaco, Ruins of Calhoun Mill in Jacquet River, View of Homes in Portland Valley of Saint John, Brick Yard on Loch Lomond Road in Saint John, John Boyer's House at Markhamville, Log Jam at Grand Falls and View of Countryside at Clifton Royal.

2) William Francis Ganong's field trips around the province of New Brunswick provided 820 loose photographs and nine photograph albums containing an additional 1,053 images, which  constitutes a unique record of late 19th and early 20th century New Brunswick, capturing many out-of-the-way places perhaps never before, and seldom since, photographed. More than 800 can be viewed on the website with scenes of a Cow Moose Swimming in Diatom Lake, Scow - the Tobique Lass, Six Trout and Guide at Milpages Inlet, William Laskey in the McKiel Brook Region, and Mouth of Tay Creek at Nashwaak River

3) Nearly 200 photos of before and after the Great Fire of Saint John, New Brunswick in 1877 portray a city that fell to ashes but rose again.

4) Wolastoqiyik, Mi'kmaq and Passamaquoddy First Nations Cultures in Atlantic Canada provides a visual point of access into many aspects of the daily life and history of the province's First Nations citizens with photos such as, Aboriginal Group at Gagetown, Gabe Tomah at Grand Lake, Louis Mitchell - Passamaquoddy - 1898, Nicholas Lolar - Wolastoqiyik Guide, Mrs. Noel Peter Paul with family members,  Silas T. Rand with two boys, and countless pictures of canoes and many of camps and other Indian dwellings.

5) Construction of the Cutty Sark and the War Moncton is a virtual exhibit documenting the construction of these two cargo vessels, from the laying of their keels to their launching. The images detail the traditional shipbuilding methods used in New Brunswick at the end of an era when wooden-hulled sailing vessels were being rapidly superseded by steel-hulled steam vessels.

The Keys to History portal consists of dozens of virtual exhibitions and a searchable database of some 110,000 images of selected items from the collections of the New Brunswick Museum, McCord Museum, Musée acadien of the Université de Moncton, Guelph Museum, North Vancouver Museum and Archives Centre d'études acadiennes.

The website of the New Brunswick Museum at  provides many interesting details of New Brunswick’s history through photographs.

Query 1307
Hodgson - Photographs: Clifford Hodgson of Saint John, a landscape photographer in New Brunswick from 1950 to 1990, died in 2000 at the age of 97.  He left a collection of more than 10,000 photos which his family will be donating to the Provincial Archives of New Brunswick. But first the family is looking for help in identifying and dating approximately 150 photos. Corrections of any of the named pictures would also be greatly appreciated. To help with the identification and to display some of his father's work, Donald Hodgson has set up a website at with more than 800 of the photos. He can be contacted at

Query 1308
Bryson: James Bryson, Irish, was granted land in Sunbury County in June of 1829, having arrived in New Brunswick in 1819.  Was he in the Royal West India Rangers or Royal York Rangers?  Was he the brother of Michael Bryson, Irish, who arrived in New Brunswick in June of 1829?
2703 Mayfair Ave. N.
Seattle, WA 
98109, USA

Query 1309
Lane - Beatty: Nellie Alice Lane of Saint John, New Brunswick married Benjamin Beatty at Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island in May of 1888. Both were in the Salvation Army. In the 1901 census for Saint John, Benjamin was a Baptist Minister. It was listed that their first child was born in Nova Scotia in 1889.  By 1910 they were living Maine. Their only son, Percy Gladstone Beatty, was a Baptist Minister in Maine and died in Florida. Can anyone provide information on the names of the parents of Nellie Alice Lane Beatty?
Gamleveien 13
3218 Sandefjord

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Ruby M. Cusack is a genealogy buff living in New Brunswick, Canada. Send your New Brunswick genealogical queries to her at:  Include your name and mailing address for the benefit of the readers of the newspaper who do not have access to E-mail but could have information to share with you. Please put "Query" followed by the surnames in your query. For more information on submitting queries, visit
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