William was born in a little place called Hett, I think this is in Durham, England, on April 20, 1860. From information in the family Bible we think he must have had two brothers, George and Joseph, one of these brothers coming with him to North America, probably to the United States sometime prior to, or during, the year 1890, as an entry in this Bible states that William married Mary-Ann Spurr at Cordonado, Iowa, U.S.A. on April 18,1891. William and MaryAnn had four children whose vital statistics I will include at the end of this information. William and his brother, who as far as we know remained in the United States, became separated and as neither one of them could write or read, completely lost contact with each other for the rest of their lives. We are not sure when William and Mary-Ann went to England but it must have been prior to May, 1895, as Adam their second child was born May 29, 1895 at Seaham Harbour, Durham, England. Their family consisted of three girls and one boy: Ellen born February 22, 1892 and died September 18, 1904; Adam born May 29, 1895 and died at Burnaby, B.C. March 9, 1964; Jane-Ann born July 11, 1898 and died October 6, 1899; and Ivy (Lothian) born August 9, 1902 and who also is now deceased although I do not know the date of her death.
William emigrated to Canada going to Coalhurst sometime in 1910 and his family followed a year later. As Mary-Ann was not well they were allowed to emigrate on compassionate grounds. She died in Coalhurst on October 7, 1915, and immediately upon his mother's death, Adam joined the army and saw action at Vimy and Ypres, and suffering gas poisoning was sent to England to recuperate. On his return home Adam became involved actively in sports and was a member of the Coalhurst, FC. Football team which won the Scott Cup in 1921 for which he was given a gold watch inscribed with that information. In December, 1924 Adam married Margaret Lorimer Kerr of Lethbridge. Margaret was a school teacher at Lethbridge (Galbraith School) and Foremost, Alberta - came from a pioneer family who had settled in Lethbridge in 1886. Adam also became very active in the miners' union and served as secretary for a number of years. Adam and Margaret had four children, all of whom were born in Coalhurst. Margaret Kerr Robinson was one of the first open heart surgery patients in Vancouver - died May 22, 1959.
William was not a very tall man and hence the nickname 'Litte Billie' which he was called in England as well as in Canada. He could not read but was fervently religious and used to have one of Ivy Lothian's children, Hannah, read the Bible to him. I am not sure when William began living on the farm but he had one hundred and sixty acres and Adam, Margaret and their family moved onto the farm with him, I think in early 1933. He died of pneumonia on March 14, 1937 and is buried in the Lethbridge Cemetery.
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