Submit a New Listing

SMYTH, William and Ann Larmour Smyth

A family of Irish-born “Immigrant Ancestors” undertook the hazardous Atlantic voyage and arrived here sometime after 1846 when the older children were grown – eldest son James was married by that time.  The  family consisted of widower James Smyth Sr. (1801-  ) with seven Smyth children and one daughter-in-law. They came out from Antrim County in the Belfast, (now Northern Ireland) area. The mother  Ann Jane Larmour had already died back in Ireland. The seven children of James Smyth and Ann Larmour were:

1.Mary Smyth  (1821- 1906) m. Martin Lebeau (1831 – 1919) (also an early township family). 1906 Mary’s Death.  He was also from a Perretton area of Westmeath Township family. Mary’s maiden surname is not listed on her death registration. Mary and Martin would have a family of five children and descendants are still in the Westmeath Township area with one having served recently as Mayor of Whitewater Region. See LEBEAU entry.

2.Elizabeth Smyth (1823- ) m. Hugh Russell.

3. James Smyth Jr. (1825-1877) m. Ann Jane Watson (1827-  ) on January 9, 1846 in Parish Church of Magheragall, County Antrim, Ireland. James and Ann would have eight children and  Ann would live with their daughter  Eleanor Smyth (1856- ) and son-in-law William Cotnam (1852- ) of Greenwood. See COTNAM entry.

Jane Watson Smyth. Photo courtesy of Verla Collins Robinson.

Jane Watson Smyth. Photo courtesy of Verla Collins Robinson.

1871 Census Westmeath Twp. - Smith (Smyth) household. James is now a widower and living with his son James and family.

1871 Census Westmeath Twp. – Smith (Smyth) household. James Sr. is now a widower and living with his son James and family. Another son John Smyth aged 37 years. is farming on the neighbouring property. Neighbours are England and Robinson households.

The children of James Smyth and Anne Jane Watson are:

i. Ann Jane “Jennie” Smyth m Michael McDonough.

ii. John Smyth (1850-   ) m. (1) Annie Fiddler and then (2) Emily Hamblin (1851-  ) of Merrickville, Ont. John was a harness-maker living in Pembroke when they wed. 1881 John & Emily Marriage

iii.  Elizabeth “Lizzie” Smyth (1855-  ) m. George Coffey (1854-  ) in 1881 in Westmeath. George was a farmer and the son of George and Jane Coffey also of Westmeath. 1881 Elizabeth & George Marriage.

iv. Eleanor Smyth (1856-  ) m. William Cotnam (1852-  ), son of George Cotnam and Catherine Lee also of the Greenwood area. 1878 William & Eleanor Marriage. They would have four children. See COTNAM entry.

v. Susannah Smyth (1858-  ) m. Thomas “Tom” McCracken (1859-  ) in 1892. 1892 Thomas & Susannah Marriage. See MCCRACKEN entry.

The McCrackens would run a hotel at the Pembroke-Westmeath Road’s turn off to Beachburg. That corner was called Chaffey’s Corner.

vi. William Smyth (1860-1925 ) m. Sarah Jane “Jennie” Beach (1855-1942), daughter of Abel Beach (1819-1904) & Sarah Jane Graham (1833-  ). This is “Beach” of the family that founded the Village of Beachburg;  pioneers David Beach (1790-1866) and  Sarah Luke (1796-1874).  1888 William & Sarah Jane marriage.

1911 Census Westmeath Township - Smyth Household. Jennie and William have in their household their niece Eva and nephew James, children of his younger brother James and . Also living with them is James's elderly Uncle Thomas Smyth.

1911 Census Westmeath Township – The Smyth Household of Jennie and William Smyth have in their household their  nephew  James and niece Eva, children of William’s younger brother James Smyth and Margaret Robinson. Also lodging with them is James’s elderly Uncle Thomas Smyth.

They had one son (1) William “Arthur” Beach (1894-1960) 1894 William Smyth (Smith) Birth. (Note how the surname was initially entered in the record as Smith, then corrected.) He married Nina Blackwell (1892-1966), third-born daughter of George Blackwell and Sarah Lyons; George operated a sawmill in Westmeath circa 1939. See BLACKWELL entry. Arthur worked for a carnival that traveled around. He was an electrician for the carnival. He died in Tampa Florida. Nina would remarry to (2) William “Mac” MacKenzie;  and would live out her life in Michigan.

Two of Nina’s brothers also moved to the USA. Three siblings Richard Allen Blackwell, Nina Blackwell, and George Irwin Blackwell and their brother-in-law William Arthur Smyth, Nina’s husband, made up the group who would move to Michigan, USA.

vii. Sarah  Smith

viii. James Smyth (1865- 1910) was about 36 years old,  when he married Margaret “Maggie” Robinson (1874-1909)  and their photo below  is circa 1899. Margaret Robinson m. James Smyth in 1895 and they had three children; two of them Irwin and Eva are pictured below. Margaret was the daughter of James Robinson and Margaret McLaughlin. See ROBINSON entry. They farmed in Perretton, Westmeath Township. As Methodists they attended the Perretton Methodist Church.

They died within a year of one another; both of tuberculosis, then known as consumption, and their two youngest children were taken in by James’ brother William and his wife Jennie.  1909 Margaret Death   1910 James Death Reg.

SMYTH, James & Margaret Robinson, Circa 1899

SMYTH, James & Margaret Robinson, Circa 1899

Irwin & Eva May

Irwin & Eva May Smyth, circa 1905. Photo from Marvin Smyth.

Later  their son Irwin Smyth moved to Detroit, Michigan.  Marvin Smyth, Irwin’s son and living in Dearborn, Michigan, has submitted some of his research to this Registry:  SMYTH File .  He is a part of the family branch which moved to America – and shown as a lad of 5 years old in the Smyth,1940 Census.

This is an excerpt from Marvin Smyth’s personal reflection on his Canadian fore-bearers and his search for family information:

“James Smyth (1825-1877) and Ann Jane Watson (1827-1897) were my great-grandparents.  They were born in the area of the Townland Ballyclogh, County Antrim, Northern Ireland.   They were married there in 1846 at the Magheragall Parish Church, Church of Ireland.    They along with brother John Smyth (1828-1898) to Canada and together acquired 225 acres crown land Lot 20, Concession A, East of Muskrat Lake.  James had the north half of 112 1/2 acres and John the north half of 112 1/2 acres.  This was their life-time home.   They are all buried in the Holy Trinity Anglican Cemetery in Pembroke (along with other family members).   That was their only connection with Pembroke a far as I know.

“James and Ann Jane had eight children.  This included my grandfather James (1865-1910) and his brother William (1860-1925) who between them eventually acquired all of the 225 acres.  (They spent their entire life on this property.) James’ wife, Margaret Robinson, died young in the year 1909 and James died in 1910.   This left two orphan children, my father Irwin, 9 years old and his 6 year old sister Eva.   William and his wife Jenny Beach took custody of the children after James willed all his property, money and belongings over to them.   Irwin and Eva had less then a good life and left “home” as soon as they were able to do so.  Both of them eventually ending up in Michigan.

“Nina (Blackwell) Smyth married William and Jenny’s son.  Interestingly, Eva (my aunt) was married to Nina’s brother George Irving Blackwell.  They had 12 children.  Irving abandoned the family and moved to Alaska where he died in 1959.    Eva died in 2000, out-living 9 of her 12 children and of course her husband.

“My parents separated when I was seven and divorced when I was eight.   My contacts with my father were very infrequent and he died when I was 17.   I never recall him talking about his life growing up in Westmeath (I had no idea where Westmeath was located) and I had no contact with Smyth relatives except a few visits with his sister Eva when I was very young.   (Much later in life, I did get in touch with her on several occasions.)

” I bring these points up so as to explain that I had virtually no information on my Smyth roots when I started my search in the mid-late 1990’s.   I had a small notebook my sister had obtained in 1975 from our great aunt  Christina (Robinson) Carnegie, containing limited info, mostly on the Robinson’s and a little on Smyth.

“A few more related facts.   All eight of James Smyth’s and Ann Jane Watson’s (my great grandparents) children immigrated to Canada from Northern Ireland, some settling in Westmeath.   One mystery that I have been unable to resolve is about my great-great grandfather, also James Smyth and his wife Ann Jane Larmour.   I found James living with his son James and Ann Jane Watson in Westmeath in the 1851, 1861,1871 and 1881 census as a widower.   He must have been born around 1800 in Northern Ireland.   I have never been able to find out a thing about his wife Ann Jane Larmour.  It is likely she died in Northern Ireland.   Since the older James appears in the census through 1881, he obviously outlived his son who died in 1877.   But, I can find no death record and no location of his burial.   The only records are the census records.

“My grandparents, James Smyth and Margaret Robinson are buried in the Grace United Church Cemetery in Perretton.”

Perretton Cemetery Stone

Smyth-Robinson stone, Perretton Cemetery.

4. Thomas Smyth (1826-1911) m. unknown.  Thomas was long-lived to 84 years and is buried at Greenwood cemetery. He also resided in Township of Pontefract, County of Pontiac, Quebec. At the time of his death Thomas was a widower living in Westmeath Twp. as  lodger with his nephew William Smyth. 1911 Thomas Death.

5. John Smyth (1828-1898) m. Margaret Orr in 1869 in Pembroke, Ont. Buried in Pembroke.

1898 John Smyth Death

1898 John Smyth Death

6. Sarah Smyth (1831-1904)  m. William Hughes.

7. William Smyth (1835-  ) m. Elizabeth Spotswood (1843-  ) on March 31, 1866. She was the daughter of William Spotswood and Jane Graham. See SPOTSWOOD entry.

1911 Census, Manfield, Pontiac, Quebec - Smith Household

1911 Census, Manfield Twp., Pontiac, Quebec – Smith Household. (Spelling is now Smith.) The parents William and Elizabeth are living with many of their grown children –  four of the five sons are bûcheron (lumberjacks) and the eldest Thomas is a contremaître (overseer or foreman) in the lumbering industry of that era.