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Kimberley Families

The John A. Morrison Family
as told by by son, Murdo and daughter, Nancy

John Morrison was born on the Isle of Skye and his wife was Annie McCusbic from Harris, Scotland.

They knew each other in Scotland before An- nie sailed for Canada to join her brother and a girl friend that had come to Nelson, B.C.

John was once a sailor, but he too came to Nelson to find Annie. They were married in 1910 and he obtained work on the Kootenay Lake Ferry. Later he went to work at the Athabaska Mine at Silverton. Two sons, Murdo and Angus were born in Nelson. For awhile, John also worked in the smelter for the Granby Co. in Grand Forks. A daughter, Kay, was born there. When the smelter closed down, he took his family to Anyox and worked for the Granby Company Smelter there. A second daughter, Nancy, was born.

When Anyox Smelter closed down, John debated whether to go to work in Texas or take a job at Kimberley where he was advised to go. This was In 1924 and the Concentrator hired him. He became the Chief Operator in the Rolls Plant.

There were no available houses in the town, so his family had to live in Cranbrook for a few months.

They moved to Chapman Camp as soon as a house was completed for them. There were still a few tents lived in where the swimming pool now stands.

While the furniture was being moved in, Nan- cy, only three, went to play with a little neighbor girl. She was all bundled up with a thick wool scarf around her head and neck. After a few minutes her mother came out and sent Nancy away, as the little girl had mumps, but it was too late, the damage was done, and Nancy's first introduction to Kimberley was a case of mumps!

Murdo Morrison

A third son, Kenneth, was born in Kimberley and when Mrs. Morrison went to the hospital, John started off for work in a hurry and in his ex- citment and anticipation, he discovered on his way that he was carrying the tea pot, instead of his lunch bucket. His buddies never let him forget that incident.

The children received all their education in Kimberley schools and the three boys took their apprenticeships with the Company. Murdo entered the carpenter shop in 1928 and Angus in 1929 was the first plumber apprentice.

Murdo recalls the time the Boy Scouts were taking a hiking trip over the Rose Pass to Craw- ford Bay under the leadership of Alf Watson, when he took sick and hap to be brought back after making it to the summit.

Some of Nancy's memories of growing up in Chapman Camp were when Indian Pete came to town. He would bring an extra horse and give all the kids a ride. She remembers George James and his one man band, playing for numerous con- certs and dances. She also recalls the time her father decided to cut down a big Tamarack tree in the yard, that was too near the house. Just as it was ready to fall, it pivoted and fell on the house. It didn't do too much damage, but the noise of cracking branches and rattling dishes was most frightening, but Kenny thought it was a huge joke.

Murdo and Angus took up boxing under Herb Stanton's instruction and Murdo is remembered for his many good fights. On May 24th of 1932, he won the Western Canadian Middleweight Championship. He married Alba Sheretta in June of that year. In 1935, he transferred to Trail and was the First Aid Attendent there. He started a boxing class there and trained as many as ninety-eight fighters, both junior and senior, and did his own promoting of bouts. They have two children, Neale and Brenda. He is now retired. He acted on the Trail City Council for nine years and was Secretary of the West Kootenay Conservative Party for a number of years.

Angus worked as a plumber and steamfitter at the Concentrator. Later he went on construction, working on refineries and pulp mills and is retired and living in West Vancouver.

Kay married Everett Price from Coleman. They have three sons and reside in Victoria.

Nancy was still quite young when her mother died, so she kept house for her dad and younger brother, Kenny. Kenny married a Vancouver girl, Eleanor Jack, and they live in Kimberley and have two daughters and a son. He is now working on construction.

John Morrison married his wife's girl friend from Scotland and moved to Trail. They have both passed away.

Nancy married Fred Leggett in 1941. They have a son and a daughter. Their son was born in Souris, Manitoba, while Fred was an Air Force mechanic during the war. He is a fish biologist at Williams Lake, married with three children, two boys and a girl. Their daughter, Louanne, married David Sanderson. She is a practical nurse and is the therapist and activity director in the extended Care unit of the local hospital. They have two sons.

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