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SHIELDS, William and Agnes Jeffrey

William Shields (1787-1860) married Agnes Jeffrey (1787-1847) in 1814 in Killinchy, County Down, Ireland. They would be buried at the Lowry Cemetery at Fitzroy Township, West Carleton, Ottawa, Ontario.

The Jeffrey extended family had all come to Fitzroy Township as part of a large kinship network  consisting of all the Jeffrey sons and daughters with their spouses and families. See JEFFREY entry. Agnes was one of the Jeffrey family daughters who immigrated with her husband William Shields and their children. Their children were all born in Ireland but their grandchildren would become Canadians.

1851 Census: Shields Family.

1851 Census: Shields Family.

In the 1851 Census William Shields (then aged 61) was listed as a cooper as were four of his sons. Shields; Colonial Cooper Trade   Agnes is not listed having  died earlier in 1847. The older children had moved from home.
Shields Cooper image

The children of William Shields and Agnes Jeffrey are:

1. Andrew Shields (1815-1899) and his wife Martha Jeffrey were also part of that big wave of immigrants. They would live in Horton Township, Renfrew County.

2. Jane Shields (1819-1881). Died in Cobden, ON.

3. James Shields (1821- )

4. William Shields (1823- )

5. Martha Shields (1824- )

6. John Jacob Shields (1826- 1898). Died in Fitzroy Township.

7. Annie Shields (1828- )

8. David Shields (1831-  )

9. James Shields (1833-

10. Hugh Shields (1834-1894). Buried in Bethel Cemetery Westmeath Township. He married Martha Clarke Donaldson (1835-1901), daughter of John Donaldson & Janet Jeffrey. Later, sometime in the late 1870’s they moved to Westmeath Township.

1881 Census Westmeath Township

Shields Hugh M 47 Ireland Methodist Irish Farmer Married
Shields Martha F 46 Ireland Methodist Irish Married
Shields John M 22 Ontario Methodist Irish Farmer
Shields Agnes F 21 Ontario Methodist Irish
Shields Jane F 19 Ontario Methodist Irish
Shields William M 17 Ontario Methodist Irish Farmer
Shields Andrew M 15 Ontario Methodist Irish Farm Laborer
Shields Mary Ann F 13 Ontario Methodist Irish Farmer
Shields Martha Elizabeth F 11 Ontario Methodist Irish
Shields James Samuel M 9 Ontario Methodist Irish Farmer
Shields M Hugh M 6 Ontario Methodist Irish
Shields David Alexander M 3 Ontario Methodist Irish

11. Samuel Shields (1835- )

12. David Shields (1836-1927), died in Lanark County.

13. Alexander Shields (1840-1928) m. (1) Mary Ann Burr (1844-1898) in 1863 in a Wesleyan Methodist ceremony in Lanark. The young couple moved north, (date unknown,) to Westmeath Township.  He then married (2) Alice Checkley (1847-1929) – no children.

1881 Census Westmeath Township

Shields Alex M 40 Ireland Presbyterian Irish Cooper & Farmer Married
Shields M A F 37 Ontario Presbyterian English Married
Shields Agnes F 17 Ontario Presbyterian Irish
Shields William J M 16 Ontario Presbyterian Irish Farmer’s Son
Shields M J F 14 Ontario Presbyterian Irish
Shields J C M 9 Ontario Presbyterian Irish


Shields-Burr stone, Beachburg

Shields-Burr stone, Beachburg

They are  buried in Beachburg Union Cemetery Beachburg, Westmeath Township. Alex purchased 250 acres of bush land. Clearing their land and then building a municipal road system was very hard, back-breaking work. We have this excerpt from the Westmeath Women’s Institute Tweedsmuir Book describing the early road building at the Shields property.

“It was at that time very hard labour.  John T. Anderson had the contract of building the road to Gore Line and building the bridge at George Shields Creek then owned by Alex Shields.  He (Alex) owned 250 acres at that time. He divided the farm in two parts; one half he gave to George Shields when he got married, the other half to James Shields.

The Shields homestead was on the east side of Gore Line, north of the Hawthorne Road intersection:

1893 Voter List for Shields men.

1893 Voter List showing land ownership:  Lots 18 & 17, Concession 9, East Muskrat Lake.

The children of Alexander Shields and Mary Ann Burr are:

I. Agnes Shields (1863-  ) m. Edward McDonald (1857-1913). They had 7 children.

II. William “James” Shields (1866-1942) was born in Fitzroy Township of Carleton County. He married (1)Catherine “Katie” Davidson (1878-1903) who was the daughter of John James Davidson and Catherine Dickson. They married in Beachburg in 1898 when she was 19 yrs. See DAVIDSON entry. Their children were:

i.  Mary Jane Shields (1898-1984) m. Charles Josiah Osborne Price (1905-1988). One son George Osborne Price – buried at Beachburg. Son George Price m. Colleen Adams in 1951.

ii.  Clara Norma Shields (1901-  ), registered nurse.

iii.   John Alexander “Alex” Shields (1903- 1977) Shields, Alex m. Eva Jane Collins in 1929 and they raised three children in Copper Cliff:  Darrel Shields m. Helene Hortubise, Betty Shields m. Jack Blackman and David Shields m. Susan Johnston. The family returned to Beachburg in 1963 after Alex retired from INCO.  Their son David Shields and his family reside in Beachburg. Shields, Alex Photo

The year following Katie’s death in 1904, James married her younger sister (2) Sarah Davidson (1888-1965). Sarah was aged 31 years. The Davidson family were neighbours farming further north on the Gore Line, Westmeath Township. See DAVIDSON entry.  James would received half of the Shields land from his father Alex.

The children of Wm. James Shields and (2) Sarah Davidson are:

iv. Verna Shields (1903-1991)  m. ___ Stewart, Beachburg Cemetery

v.  Kathleen Ellen “Katie”  Shields (1905- 1994) m. William Edward O’Brien (1904- ) and buried Falconbridge Parklawn Cemetery. See O’BRIEN entry. Children were: Beryl Catherine O’Brien (1926- ) m. Malcolm T. Dunn; Constance O’Brien (1928-1929) infant death; Helen Lorrain O’Brien (1931- ) m. Patrick Judge Hartt.

vi.  Herbert “Herbie”  Shields (1907  -1970)  Shields,Herbert James1 m. Ella Leonore Marie Miller (1909-1998) , lived in Sudbury, ON.  Their son: Dr. Garwood Shieldsm. Irene___ in 1970.

viii.  Bradley Shields (1912-1960) m. Freda Boyd Sheilds,Bradley  m. Freda Boyd (1920-  ), daughter of Henry Boyd and ___Gordon.  Their children: Elaine Shields m. Daniel Maves; Barry Shields m. Greta Robinson; Elwood Shields m. Sonya England; Elvira Shields m. Joe Mason; Donalda Shields m. Clifford Tubman; Armelds Shiled m. Arthur Maves; Catherine Shileds m. (1) Lloyd McBride and (2) Ron Meek; Colleen Shields m. Larry Edwards; Boyd Shields; Mervin Shields.

viii.  Elsie Shields (1915-1994)  m. ____Watt

III. Margaret Jane Shields (1866-1954) m. Andrew Elliott (1851-1932). They had 8 children.  See ELLIOTT entry. They are buried at Thompsonville Cemetery, Horton Township, Renfrew County, Ontario.

One son Hugh Alexander, known as “Alex”, married Susan Teston; with their one son Royden Elliott lived on Pleasant Valley Road at the foot of the big hill; a farm later sold to Arndell & Ellie McBride.

IV.  John “George” Shields (1871-1946) m. Jennie Spotswood (1874-1943) from a local Westmeath family. See SPOTSWOOD entry. George would received half of the Shields land from his father Alex. The children of Jennie and George are:

i. Mary Alvira Shields (1900-1912). Died as child.

ii.  Dawson Orbal Shields (1906-1971) m. Sadie Stephens. Shields, Dawson & Sadie

iii. Laura Mirl Shields (1909-  )

iv. Laurence Shields (1909-  )