George Whitfield and Margaret Bachelder  
 This account of the life of our parents George Whitfield Bachelder and Margaret (Gauley) was written by Doris Petersen (Bachelder) from her own recollections and from stories from our parents. Written on Jan.16, 2001. 
(Please click on photos to view larger version.)

     George Whitfield Bachelder

George and Margaret (Gauley) Bachelder and son Fred 1907

 Born October 24th, 1880 at Rougemont, Quebec.  Youngest son of Jethro and Sarah Bachelder.
 Grew up on a mixed farm. The special crop was apples. Grandpa (Jethro) had a prize sow and won several ribbons on it.

 While Daddy had the usual grade schooling- he spent one year in Sabrevoix College, where he studied math and French. He got very good grades in each.
 At age seventeen he left home with a bicycle and five dollars cash. One thing he learned while travelling around the country while working at ‘ The Guelph College’, was how to make butter and cheese.

 Later on he got a job as callboy for the grand Trunk Railway at London, Ontario. It was there he met Margaret Gauley. She was living with an aunt and uncle after losing her parents.

 He got sick working in the soft coal that was used to fire the engines. Soon he had to quit his job. At that time the western farmers had very good crops and needed help to harvest it. The government answered by advertising free passage west to anyone who wanted a job.George and Margaret in Alberta with Fred, Walter, and Doris He and Mamma and baby Fred arrived in Edmonton where he worked on the different farms where needed. The government set aside some ground for anyone who wanted to homestead. He got a quarter section at Bashaw, built a small house where Marietta and I were born. Walter was born in Edmonton. He cleared land and drained several small sloughs into a large body of water. He grew red wheat in this rich land. Had a team of oxen he called Jim and Bill.

  He had always wanted to go back east so when the railway talked of extending the line up to Rouyn-Noranda  gold fields, he sold the farm and started back. George and Margaret visit his parents in Union Point, Man - about 1915Got as far as Manitoba where his brother Arthur had a farm at Union Point, stopped there to give him a hand. Grandpa and Gramma Bachelder were there, Aunt Etta was there also. Marietta died there and is buried in one of the graveyards. She was two years old.
George in trainFinally the railroad started the new line in Quebec so he moved to Quebec City where he applied for a job with them. Got on as a fireman and was sent to Doccet. Carol was born there.Buddy (Jethro), George Whitfield Bachelder and Carol - Parent, P.Q.
 Worked out of there for awhile and then was transferred to Parent. There Buddy(JW),Lewis, Robert and Eddie were born. Robert, Lewis, Buddy(Jethro), Eddie, and Doris in La Tuque, P.Q.Built a house beside the river, it flowed into the Gatineau which ran into the Ottawa river.

Mamma had always wanted a fruit farm so she packed us all up (Eddie was a baby then) and out to Vancouver. We lived there on 54th and Kerr Road. Daddy came out and spent Christmas with us, and then went down to Los Angeles where Grampa had gone after Gramma had died. George Bachelder in California with father Jethro and sisters Electa and Lila - 1926Aunt Lila had met and married a Charles Molyneau in Vancouver (where Aunt Annie and uncle Fred Alcorn lived, Daddy's oldest sister). Then Aunt Etta moved down there after she retired from teaching school. Daddy went back to his job in Parent after a long visit.

 In the spring Mamma and Fred and Walter saved enough money from their jobs and bought a car. Mamma had heard of some good farms for sale in the Arrow Lakes area of the Kooteneys so we went out there. No luck there so we went back east. The car was called a Baby Grand. 

George Whitfield Bachelder LaTuque, P.Q. 1940 In the meantime, Daddy had been transferred to Fitzpatrick division point, three miles from La Tuque.  Lived in several houses before renting a two story one beside Joe Spains grocery store and finally built a house. Eddie and Joan with Margaret Bachelder - about 1939 Joan was born in La Tuque in 1931. 

Daddy worked there until he was 65.  He and Mamma sold their house and went down to Ontario to a place called  Avonmore, bought a place there.  After a few years there, they sold it and moved to Dunnville.  He died there at age 71.

     Mamma sold the place and she and Robert put their money together and bought the house at  Bronte.  Robert was living at home and worked at the Ford plant in Oakville.  After a few years in Bronte, Mamma and Robert bought land and built a house just out of Milton.  This was to be their dream home, but ill health befell Mamma  and she died in 1965, leaving everything to Robert. 

      After Mamma died, Robert brought Daddy to Milton and buried him beside Mamma.  Walter’s ashes are there also, and now Robert. 

      There are some 99 Bachelders in Canada.

 by Doris (Bachelder) Petersen


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