52 Ancestors #8 – Ann (Nancy) Trowsdale

Samuel SherrenThe photo is of Samuel Sherren (1791-1864). He was Ann (Nancy) Trowsdale’s husband. I got this photo from Ancestry.com where Sherrens of the World posted it.

Nancy was born December 4, 1803, in Yorkshire England.  I know I do a lot of digging in the family tree, especially the Trowsdales, but I find the links very complicated. I suppose they are all like this, all families, but living on an Island has a special twist to it. Those were days of small communities and limited travelling opportunities.

It is therefore no big surprise to see families twining together over the decades. Nancy was one of the seven children of Joseph and Mary (Clark) Trowsdale who came to Crapaud, Prince Edward Island on the Valiant in 1817. Her brother Barnabas is my third great grandfather.


Nancy was thirteen when the family emigrated to Canada. They arrived in the fall of 1817. She turned 14 in December. On the journey over, she met the Sherren brothers, William and Samuel. They were furniture makers headed to St. John’s, Newfoundland, a British colony that had been devastated by a recent fire. The British government in Newfoundland asked carpenters and cabinet makers to come and help rebuild the city.

Samuel had just turned 26 in July. He was quite smitten by the young Nancy and opted to move to Prince Edward Island, leaving his brother in Newfoundland.

In 1823, Samuel and Nancy got married.

They had seven children:

  • Mary Sherren (1824 – 1893)
  • James Trowsdale Sherren (1826 – 1906)
  • John Sherren (1828 – 1910)
  • Hannah Sherren  (1832 – 1880)
  • Sarah Ann Sherren (1837 – 1864)
  • Amelia Sherren (1838 – 1924)
  • George Samuel Sherren (1842 – 1869)

Twining Families

Nancy is my third great grand aunt.

Aunt Nancy


Her husband, Samuel has a relationship to me as well.

Fred's great grandfather.


Of course this also means that my third great grand aunt Nancy is the great grandmother of the husband of my great grandmother.

Printing Genealogy Reports

It's a long journey

It’s a long journey

A neighbor here in Arizona (Bev) was telling me about the problem printing reports from her Family Tree Maker program.

She is a way ahead of me. I had not gotten to that part yet and assumed that reports were easy to print out just as we wanted them.

It turns out that Bev and I had the same desire for descendant reports that allowed us to choose an ancestor and print out a report showing the descendants running from left to right.

Alas. That was not possible. So we did a little digging and found this dandy add on program.

Progeny Charting Companion

I ordered the Charting Companion for Family Tree Maker. Actually I ordered the wrong version at first but the Progeny owners were extremely helpful in correcting my mistake. I have Windows 8 and FTM 2012. The latest version of Charting Companion is version 5 which replaces version 4 but version 4 is the one that works with my setup.

You can download the trial version of Charting Companion 4 here. It is worth a try if you want to see how powerful it is.

Progeny Genealogy is located in Nova Scotia and that gave me a big thrill as I am from the neighboring province, Prince Edward Island. This great program is from my neck of the woods.

It works with more than just Family Tree Maker and I love the power it gives me over my reports. Here’s a tiny snapshot of how it looks. I have it color coded by lineage.


52 Ancestors #7 – G. Thomas Cameron

George Thomas Cameron (1861-1951)

George Thomas Cameron (1861-1951)

This is my great grandfather G. Thomas Cameron. That is me on the right. My cousin Margie Robertson is on the left and in Great Grand Daddy’s arms is my baby brother Stirling Reid. Stirling was born in February 1951. Grand Daddy died that year. I remember being at his funeral.

Thomas’ father John was born on Prince Edward Island around 1822 and his parents were both born in Scotland. Right now I don’t have a great deal of information on them but I hope to discover more soon. Thomas’ mother Susanna Goodwin was born on Prince Edward Island. Her father was Irish and her mother was English. I have very little information on them too.

On June 26, 1890, he married Louise Francis who was two years younger than he was. According to the daughter of their daughter Louise, great grandma Louise was a very strict mother. She had stringent rules for living life and heaven help anyone who did not obey her.

Although I have seen and touched and loved my great grandfather, I don’t know a lot about him. He didn’t scare me, that I do know.

Thomas and Louise had six daughters and one son. It was a kind of a bad luck family. The only son Jack (1904-1928) was kicked by a horse and died of his injuries. He was single at the time. The story was that as he lay dying he announced to the family sitting death watch beside his bed that he saw the pearly gates. He had a beatific look on his face as he told his family the gates were beautiful. And then he died.

Their oldest daughter, Annie Blanche (1891-1983) was known as Blanche. She moved to Winnipeg where she lived in a boarding house and had a job as a stenographer. She married James R. (Jimmy) Littlejohn and they had one daughter, Phyllis. Blanche was scary, unlike her father. Possibly she was like her mother. She was horrifically strict with her daughter Phyllis.

Their next daughter was Bertha Helena (1894-1976), my grandmother. She was a kind and talented woman. She was a fantastic seamstress as well as a great cook.

The third daughter was Mildred Millicent (1897-1929). Millie died young as a result of serious post partum depression after the birth of her second child. This was also the year after her only brother died.

Rhoda Francis (1898-1974) was an aunt who was loving and kind like my grandmother. She loved to laugh. The next daughter was Reatha (1902-1978). Reatha had an unfortunate experience in 1922. She was barely 20 when she gave birth to a daughter and therefore, because she was single, she had to give up her baby and leave the Island in disgrace. She was a survivor and built a good life for herself in New Hampshire.

The last daughter was Louise (1907-1990). She was like Nana and Aunt Rhoda. Kind, loving and talented.