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History of Inverness County, Nova Scotia
Chapter XXXVII - West Lake Ainslie

Lake Ainslie is a beautiful body of fresh water in the very centre of Inverness County. It is twelve miles long, with an average width of three miles. The East side is called East Lake, and the west, West Lake. It is named Ainslie after the last Governor of the Island of Cape Breton. Both the East and the West sides are now densely peopled. Every spring Trout and Alewives come up from the sea into this lake in bounteous quantities, via the South "West Branch of the Margaree River, which has its source at Scotsville. Not many salmon from the sea ascend this South West river in summer, preferring the colder waters of the North East branch; but in the autumn spawning time they come up in force. And we heard a voice saying that the casualties are usually heavy.

The Northern tip of this Lake at Loch Ban is within three miles of the Gulf of Saint Laurence, and the Southern end, or Head Lake, is within seven miles of the waters of Whycocomagh as the crow flies. The people inhabiting the West side are largely Catholics, those on the East all Presbyterian Protestants. The placid Lake gives both an equal opportunity to wash away their sins.

Nearly a decade of the 19th century had passed before people began to settle at West Lake. One of the first to come was Allan McCormick who had been for some years in Prince Edward Island. He was married and had two children and a lot of land on yonder Island. His wife having died, he sold out his property in P.E.I, and gave the young children in charge to certain friends. When those children grew up they got married over there, and never came to Cape Breton. Allan McCormick selected and acquired a large tract of land at West Lake Ainslie, near the mouth of Black River. He got married again to Margaret McLellan of Broad Cove, with issue: Donald, Allan, Angus, Catherine, Ann and Mary.

Mary died young. Ann was married to one Angus McDonald, who formerly lived at Black River, but subsequently removed from there. Catherine was married to Hugh McDougall of Rear West Lake and had a family.

Donald (son of Allan) was married to a Miss McLellan of S. W. Margaree, but had no family. He and his brother Allan Jr. always remained on the parental farm, and were always quiet and comfortable.

Allan was married twice and had a large family by the first, and a smaller family by the second marriage. Three of his sons by the first wife were: Reverend Michael McCormick P.P. of East Bay, the late John McCormick, Medical Doctor of Boston, Mass. and Joseph McCormick Chief Police of Sydney, C. B.

Angus, (son of Allan) was married to Catherine McLellan, Ronald's daughter of Strathlorne, and had a fine family of sons and daughters. In his younger years Angus was a school teacher in Inverness County. Later on he engaged in a retail business at the mouth of Black River which he continued all his life. He was highly thought of by customers and creditors. When Municipal Councillors were created to govern local affairs in the County he was elected by the District of West Lake, and could not be defeated until his fatal final illness disabled him for public service. He was loved and respected by the whole district.

Angus MacDougall (Ban) came to West Lake about the year 1812. He was a native of Moidart, Scotland, and had spent several years in Antigonish before coming to Cape Breton. His first wife died in Antigonish leaving with him the following family, namely: Duncan, John, Allan, Angus, Hughie, Donald, Margaret, Mary and Katie. He married again after coming to the Lake to a Miss McFar-lane by whom he had one other son Alexander.

The daughter Katie was married to John McDonald, Og; the daughter Mary to John Rankin; and the daughter Margaret to Dougald MacDougall. All three had large families.

The son Duncan was married to Mary McDougall of Broad Cove Banks, with issue: Donald, Duncan, Alexander, Margaret, Ann and Mary Ann.

John (son of Angus Ban) was married to Jessie MacDonald of Broad Cove Chapel with issue: Alexander, Ronald, John, Angus, Margaret, Catherine and Christie. The three daughters and the sons John and Angus never got married.

The son Angus was a superior dancer. He would be invited to every frolic and wedding, and was thus neglecting his duties at home, whereat his father was very indignant. The priest of Broad Cove, knowing the old man's feelings in that regard, met the latter on the road and started praising Angus as a dancer. "Yes", quoth the irate father, "he can dance, the little sense that God gave him all dropped into his feet."

Allan (son of Angus Ban ) was married to Catherine McEachen of Mount Young, Mabou, with issue: John, Alexander, Angus, Donald, Stephen, John Jr., Margaret, Mary and Julia. Margaret, Angus, Stephen and John Jr. were married and had families: all the rest of the family died young and unmarried.

Angus (son of Angus Ban) lived on a rear farm, was married to Jessie Gillis from Judique, and had a family of four sons and two daughters, namely: John, Alexander, John Jr., Donald, Mary and Margaret. The daughters remained single, as did also Donald, and John Jr. John and Alexander were married and had families, the former with his family remained on the homestead, the latter having a farm and being in charge of the railway station at Glencoe.

Hugh, also, occupied a rear lot, but was a great hustler and got along well. He was married to a daughter of Allan McCormick, Sr.

Alexander, son of Hugh, has been away in the Western States for about forty years. Angus is home on the farm doing well, and Margaret was married to Donald Burke and is now dead.

Alexander (son of Angus Ban by the second wife) remained on a front lot of the large tract of land owned by his father, The brothers Duncan, Allan, John and Alexander lived side by side on the Lake Front, each owning two hundred acres of the land acquired by their father Angus Ban.

This Alexander was married to Mary McLellan, daughter of Alexander McLellan of West Lake, and left one son, Angus, who is now dead. This lot owned by Alexander is now vacant.

John MacDonald (Iain Mac Allaisdair) came from Uist to Prince Edward Island and thence to West Lake, about the year 1814. He' also acquired a large tract of land. He had one son John, Og, and six daughters, to wit, Mary married to Thomas Burke, Sarah to Archibald McIntyre, Ann to a Mr. Sullivan, Catherine to a Mr. McPhee, Christie married in P.E.I, and Mary married to Dennis Murphy.

John Og, was married to Katie daughter of Angus Ban MacDougall, and had the following family: Angus, Alexander, John, Donald, Margaret, Ann, Rachel, Mary, Dolly, Margaret and Katie.

Donald McKinnon from the Isle of Muck was the next pioneer farmer at West Lake. He lived next to John Og McDonald, was married and had the following family: Malcolm, Hector, Alexander, Neil, Donald (Ban) John, Ann, Jessie and Margaret.

John was a tailor and several of the other brothers were carpenters, but all owned farms, and all did well.
The next to the McKinnons was Donald McDonald (Domhnull MacChallum) who came from Uist, Scotland, and took up the farm at Mason's Point on which his son James (Red Jim) afterwards lived and died. This James was the father of that honest, hard-working man, Donald J. MacDonald, Municipal, Councillor, who died quite recently.

John Walker was from Uist, Scotland, and pitched his tent near the mouth of Hay River, where he took up a large farm fronting the Lake. He had four sons, Donald, Alexander, Roderick and Angus. The first three named sons took farms up for themselves to the rear of Hay River, the son Angus remaining on the front farm blazed out by his father. From these four sons are descended all the Hay River Walkers we know, and their name is legion. This old John Walker was a rugged Scotsman of industry and ambition. The beautiful farm at Hay River now left to his grandson Archibald is pretty good evidence that strenuous things "were doing" there in former times.

What is known as "The Glebe Farm" at West Lake was formerly owned by one John McEachern, who rejoiced in the soubriquet of "Yellow Top". He had a large family but all traces of him and them have long since disappeared.

Big John McDonald had three able sons, Angus, Donald and Allan. Angus lived on the rear of the Lake, Donald and Allan on the front. Allan is well remembered by our readers as one of the most affable men of West Lake, and one of the most prosperous. The farms of Donald and Allan are now in the hands of their respective sons.

We do not rightly know who was the original holder of the next farm. Donald McVarish lived there long, and had a family. He sold it to John Gillis, who deeded it to the present owner D. F. MacDonald. But we have doubts as to McVarish being the pioneer settler there.

Long ago we heard of a man who owned a farm around there, but left before our time. His name was Alexander McDonald, commonly known as "Black Sandy." He may have been the first settler on this farm. We remember Black Sandy only from a story which we had from the old people concerning him. He got up a mowing and a reaping frolic one day to which he invited the whole country side. He was afraid they would not come but to his glad surprise they came in full strength, and long before sunset there was not a blade on the farm left uncut. Black Sandy was happy. The neighbours wanted no recompense but a night-frolic. They would get that, and did. After dark the night frolic commenced, and the song-singing, and the dancing, and the drinking, and finally the most general and unrestrained fighting that night in America. Black Sandy was so grateful for the work they did for him that he made no protest. When they got tired fighting, they began to break every moveable thing in the house. Still no objection from Black Sandy. At last they began pulling the windows out of the house, throwing them on the floor and dancing on them. Flesh and blood could not stand that. Black Sandy went outside; came back with blood in his eye and the axe in his hand,ready to slice them all up, one after the other. They knew what he meant. That crowd got flying in pairs, through the doors, through the windows, through every opening that promised an escape from instant death. In five minutes there was not a soul on the premises except Black Sandy and his wife, sitting silently by the ingle side, looking hard into the fire. At length, Sandy got out of his reverie, looked at his disconsolate spouse, and said: "Ah, Mary, those fellows are gone". The woman's sad reply was merely: "Oh yes." The sympathetic remark with which Black Sandy then dismissed the subject was "Condemn them: they were nice as long as they stayed".

We come now to a block of land containing one thousand acres granted by the Crown to Captain Angus MacDonald, Tulloch, and his brother, Captain Ronald MacDonald. The latter, having decided not to remain at the lake, sold his moiety to John Mclsaac of Big River, Broad Cove. Mr. Mclsaac went to live on the five hundred acre lot which he had bought. It was not long before this lot became the subject of a most peculiar lawsuit. An action was brought by Mr. Crawley, the Surveyor General at Sydney, for trespass on two hundred acres of land which he claimed between the several lots of the two MacDonalds. Mclsaac and the MacDonalds were made defendants and the case was fought out in the Supreme Court at Port Hood before a Judge and Jury. The plaintiff was non suited; a new action was commenced forthwith. It was fought out again at Port Hood, and again a verdict was given for defendants. The plaintiff appealed again, and got another order for a new trial, with a change of venue to Antigonish. The case was tried in Antigonish resulting in a repetition of the old verdict for the defendants. Another appeal was taken which seems to have died in Halifax. Nothing more was ever heard of the case. Mr. Mclsaac sat down to enjoy what he bought, and remained with it till his death at an old age. The case was never determined at law, except by lapse of time and the natural death of all the parties in interest their heirs, executors, administrators and assigns.

We have not seen the record of this case, nor the documentary title to the lands. The following version of the facts was given to us by an old gentleman at West Lake:

When the Tulloch application for Grant was accepted and completed, a Surveyor was instructed to go to West Lake to measure and lay out the land. Mr. Crawley, the Surveyor General, asked the Surveyor to mark out for him (Mr. Crawley) two hundred acres somewhere along the front of that Lake.

To West Lake the surveyor came, and Capt. Angus Tulloch and several neighbours went with him to see, measure, and lay out, the Tulloch lands. The surveyor measured out one thousand acres in one solid block, designating the Northern half for Capt. Ronald MacDonald, and the Southern half for Capt. Angus. The boundaries were clearly marked and established to the satisfaction of all hands.

That evening the surveyor and Capt. Angus Tulloch fell into a disputation on some other subject not connected with these lands. The argument ended in a rushing exchange of hot personal compliments.

The surveyor's subsequent plan showed the two Tulloch lots separately, in two narrow strips, running out into the interior wilds, far beyond the general rear line of the Lake lots, and showing between them a two hundred acre lot for Crawley. The Tullochs and Mclsaac refused to recognize this new plan (of wrath), standing by the actual lines, corners, and measurements made in the survey by the surveyor in their own presence. Hence the legal tournament.

We understand the surveyor's name was Childs: if so, the terminating "s" was pretty well worn off before the Tullochs were done with him.

The Tulloch MacDonalds, a family of prowess and high spirit, are descended from Angus, second son of John Dubh (First of Bohun-tin or Sliochd an Taighe) son of Ronald Mor VII Chief of Keppoch. The Tullochs of Inverness County are from Captain Angus Tulloch MacDonald and his wife a daughter of MacDonald of Killiechonate, a family descended from Donald Glas VI of Keppoch. Captain Tulloch and his brother-in-law of Killiechonate "An-t-Oifigeach Dhu" gallantly distinguished themselves at the capture of Louisburg in 1758 and were handsomely pensioned by the British Government.

Captain Tulloch's family were (1) Ronald who emigrated to Prince Edward Island (2) Angus, who emigrated from Lochaber, Scotland, in 1807 and settled at Lake Ainslie. He married Mary daughter of Allan MacDonald of Broad Cove Banks with issue five sons and three daughters, namely, (a) Allan who married Mary daughter of Hugh MacDonald (Eoghan Iain Mhoir) of Black River (b) John, who for a number of years conducted a general store at Lake Ainslie. John's first wife was Mary daughter of Angus MacLellan (Aonghas Mac Dhom-hnuill Og) of Broad Cove and his wife Flora MacDonald of the Glenaladale family, P.E.I. His second wife was Jessie, daughter of Diogenes MacDonald of River Dennis, (c) Angus who married Flora MacDonald daughter of Donald MacDonald (Diolladair) of Black River (d) Neil whose first wife was Ann MacDonald a sister of his brother Angus' wife. Neil's second wife was Margaret daughter of Hugh Cameron of South West Mabou, (e) Alexander who married Margaret, daughter of the above named Hugh MacDonald. Alexander was engaged in commercial business at Brook Village for upwards of fifty years in which sphere, through probity and hard work, he occupied a prominent place. He died December 2nd, 1919. Alexander MacDonald (Tulloch's) family are: Angus, Hugh, John, Alexander, Catherine (Nursing Sister who was overseas during the Great War and did splendid service at Bramshott, Boulogne and Amiens) Mary, Margaret and Ann Belle. (f) Mary married Angus MacDonald of Lake Ainslie. (g) Margaret and Ann remained unmarried.

(3) Margaret daughter of Captain Tulloch married Donald MacDonald (An-t-Saoir) of Bohuntin, Scotland, See Poplar Grove. A fourth son Alexander of Donald An-t-Saoir and Margaret Tulloch settled at Port Hastings. He was a sea Captain. He was drowned on a voyage home from Newfoundland in 1852. Captain Ronald MacDonald, a mariner of note, who died at North Sydney on August 8th, 1919, was a son of Alexander's.

Captain Ronald was a typical Scot, a splendid entertainer and an enthusiastic student of Highland literature and tradition.

(4) Mary daughter of Captain Tulloch married John Beaton of Mabou Mines, See Poplar Grove.

(5) Another daughter of Captain Tulloch married Andrew Mc-Innis of Mabou Mines from whom the family of the late Hugh Mac-Eachern (Eoghan Dhu) of Judique and several families in Prince Edward Island.

Captain Angus McLellan, who came with his father from Scotland to Antigonish afterwards took up a farm at West Lake, and in the neighborhood of the Tulloch estate. He was married and had a young family coming here. Owing to his military position and association in the old land, the Captain and his family would appear to have some advantages over the most of their neighbours in respect of headlights.
They could read and write some, and talk plenty English of a special brand.

Naturally, the gallant Captain was, also, of a soldierly turn of mind. He was not one little bit too easily scared. At that time, West Lake, like the rest of the wide forest, abounded in wild animals. Bears and deer were particularly plentiful. Armed with only the woodsman's axe, Captain McLellan killed six of the former and one of the latter as a pleasant diversion from his day's drudgery. Any wandering moose that came within the reach of his musket paid the penalty of nature so quickly that it never knew what happened it.

Shortly after coming here, one of Captain McLellan's youngest children died. There were no imported caskets then; and there was not a board for sale within many miles. The Captain went to the woods, cut down a pine tree, chopped off a block the length of a small coffin, and, with the axe and some wooden wedges, he split that block into rough boards with which he made a little coffin. He carried that coffin under his arm three miles along the shore, until he came to a spit of dry land projecting into the Lake. There he interred the first white human being ever buried at West Lake. That place was subsequently chosen for the first Catholic cemetery at West Lake. Before that time Indians aplenty died and were buried along this Lake. There were three Indian graves distinctly marked, on Captain McLellan's own farm. Thus the immigrants of the Lake had, from the very outset, a physical, albeit uncanny, reminder of the goal we are all heading for.

Captain McLellan's family consisted of four sons and five daughters. The sons were: Angus, Alexander, Charles and John.

The son Angus married Margaret McNeil of Mabou, and took up a farm at Centreville East, where his son James is now living.

The son Alexander also took up a farm at Centreville, near his brother, but afterwards removed from that farm and this country. One of Alexander's daughters was married to Alexander McDougall (son of Angus Ban). She and her husband and her only son are long since dead. Another daughter of Alexander was married to the late John Gillis, a native of Broad Cove, who had been for many years in New Zealand, bought a farm at West Lake on which he lived for two score years, and died in the town of Inverness not long ago at the age of ninety-four years.

James (son of Captain McLellan) was drowned on the Grand Banks, whither he had gone to fish.

The son John lived his younger years on the old homestead with some of his sisters, and never married. When living at the Lake with his sisters he became one of the first and most prominent mail couriers of Inverness County. He had a contract for carrying the mails weekly from Port Hood to Mabou, and thence to Whycocomagh, and back to Lake Ainslie. He continued in that service for upwards of thirty years. He travelled on foot and carried the mail on his back. What would our auto-joy-riders say to a proposition of that kind?

Poor old John the Post! He was getting old when we knew him, but he was a cheerful, pleasant, man to meet. Like many more of the old-timers, he worked his passage through a long life of uncertainties; but he did it with good grace and patience.

Angus Walker came from Mull, Scotland, to Upper West Ainslie ninety years ago, and bought a two hundred acre farm for $80.00 from the widow of one Donald McEachen, who was presumably the first settler.

This Angus Walker was a brother to the first John Walker, who had settled at Hay River, and was married in Scotland to Catherine MacDougall of Mull by whom he had six daughters and one son. The names of the family were as follows:

(1) Catherine, who married Ronald Fraser, carpenter, of Arisaig, Antigonish.
(2) Effie, married to Donald McDonald of Lake Chapel;
(3) Ann, married to Peter McQuarrie, Centreville; (4) Margaret, married to Michael McEachen of Pictou, N. S.; Mary, married to Colin McDonald of Pictou, and John, who is now the well known and respected owner of the homestead, and is himself a venerable octogenarian.

John was married twice, first to Mary Kennedy of Strathlorne by whom he had Maggie, Catherine, Mary, Jane, John Jr., and Dan. All of this family are in Boston except Dan, who is in British Columbia, and all are doing well. He was married the second time to Ann Walker of West Lake by whom he had the following issue: Mary, Maggie, Katie J., Angus R., John Archibald. Angus F., and Kenneth J.

We happen to know something of the son "John Archibald"aboye noted. He is among the best educated young men in Nova Scotia. Having made a full course in St. F. X. University, Antigonish, graduating in Arts with honours, he took a post graduate course in the Catholic University of America at Washington, where he added an "M. A" to his ribbons; thence he went to Halifax, studied law at Dalhousie, was admitted to the Bar of Nova Scotia, and is now practising in Halifax as a member of the firm of "Davison, Forsyth & Walker". Not a bad record for a young man from West Lake.

Donald Cameron, who had sojourned for a time at South West Mabou, came to Upper West Lake sixty-eight years ago, and lived there for the remainder of his life. He acquired one hundred acres of land at the Lake, and was married to Flora Walker, daughter of Angus Walker above described, with issue:

Angus, Alexander, John, Archibald, Maggie in Boston married to James MacDougall; Flora, who was married to Angus Boyle, died in mid-life and was deeply mourned by all her acquaintances; Mary, married to Charles Doe in Boston, and Bella married to John Ormand of Boston.

The two sons, John and Archibald, died young and unmarried. The sons, Angus and Alexander are two of the strong farmers of West Lake, each with a well worked farm and a well raised family. Angus has been for several years the representative of this district in the Municipal Council at Port Hood.


In the year 1816 Margaret MacDonald, widow of Archibald MacDonald, came from Lochaber, Scotland, to Arisaig in the County of Antigonish. She had the following family, namely: Donald, Ronald, and Alexander; Jane, Margaret, Marcella, Mary and Ann. Two of these daughters, Margaret and Ann were married in Scotland, the former to Big John MacDonald, who subsequently came to Black River in the district of Hillsboro, and the latter to Alexander MacMillan, who settled in Judique.

In the year 1818 this widow MacDonald, with her daughter Jane, and her two sons Donald and Ronald, came from Arisaig, Antigonish, and took up a four hundred and fifty acre farm near the mouth of Black River, in the district of West Lake Ainslie. Not long afterwards the other son, Alexander who was a saddler by trade, and his other unmarried sisters, also came to Black River with their mother, the daughter Jane, and their older brothers Donald and Ronald.

The daughter Jane was married to Neil McKinnon of Broad Cove Ponds, with issue: Charles, Alexander and Catherine. While these children were very young their father was drowned, and the care of farm and family devolved upon the mother, brave, thrifty "Jane the Saddler". She reared her young family well and cleverly, and had that fine farm worked up to a high state of cultivation. Her only daughter Catherine was married to Donald McDonald of Broad Cove Chapel. Her son Charles got married, sold the half of the farm which had been given him, and left the County of Inverness. The son Alexander died in Pennsylvania, unmarried.

The daughter Mary was married in Arisaig, Antigonish, to Hugh McDonald, with issue: Alexander, Donald, Archibald, Angus, Stephen,. Margaret, Mary and Ann.

The daughter Marcella was married to Alexander McInnis of Upper West Lake with issue: Duncan, Alexander, Hugh, Marcella, Katie and Ann.

The daughter Margaret, who was married in Scotland to Big John McDonald and afterwards settled at Black River had the following family: Hugh, Dougald, Archibald, Angus, Elizabeth (Betty), married to Donald McPhee, and Katie married to Donald McDonald (Mirami-chi).

Ann who was married to Alexander McMillan and lived in Judique had the following children, Duncan, Hugh, and two daughters whose names: were Isabel, married to Ronald Beaton of Little Judique and Catherine, married to Angus McEachen of Judique Mountain.

Donald MacDonald, commonly called "Donald the Saddler", was married to Sarah McPherson, daughter of Maurice McPherson who came from Lochaber, Scotland, to South West Mabou, with issue: Archibald, Maurice, Alexander, Angus, John, Betty, Ann and Flora.

Betty was married to Dougald MacDougall of Broad Cove Banksr with issue: John, Donald, Alexander, Lauchlin, Angus, Maurice, Alick, Jane, Sarah and Maggie.

Ann was married to Neil MacDonald (Tulloch) with issue: John, Donald, Angus, Mary, Isabel, Sarah, Katie, Mary, Ann and Maggie.

Flora was married to Angus MacDonald (Tulloch) with issue: John, Alexander, Angus, Ronald, Donald, Maurice, Joseph, Mary, Ann, Sarah and Sarah Jr. All these daughters are dead except Ann.

Archibald (son of Donald the Saddler) was married to Margaret MacDougall, daughter of Allan MacDougall of West Lake, with issue: three sons and four daughters.

Maurice was a carpenter by trade, and was married in Boston to a young lady of Irish extraction, with issue, one son who is dead.

Alexander was also a carpenter by trade, and usually worked in different parts of the United States. He died unmarried in St. Louis, Illinois in 1864.

Angus died unmarried in Montreal.

John, who always remained with the good old homestead at Black River was married to Ann MacDonald, daughter of Archibald MacDonald (Black Sandy) of Mount Young, with issue: Mary, Katie, Isabel, Alexina, Flora, Ann, and Sarah, besides two little boys who died in infancy.

Ronald MacDonald (Saddler) was married to Katie MacDonald, daughter of Allan MacDonald, then living at Black Glen but afterwards moved to Glencoe, with issue: Archibald, Alexander, Betty and Margaret.

Archibald always lived on the farm, but never got married.

Alexander's wife was Mary McLellan of South West Margaree by whom he had the following family, namely: Ronald, John, Dougald, Katie, Ann, Jessie and Mary. The last two named daughters became nuns, Jessie in Baltimore, and Mary in Maiden.

Alexander was married a second time to Margaret McKay, with issue: John, Allan, Mary, Maggie and Mary Catherine.

Betty (daughter of Ronald the Saddler) was married to JohnMac-Daniel of North East Margaree, with issue: Myles, Willie, John, Frank and Albert; Betty, Matilda, Sarah and Margaret.

Margaret, daughter of Ronald the Saddler, was married to Alexander Beaton (Old Squire John's son) of North Coal Mines, Mabou, with issue: Finlay, Ronald, Alexander, Duncan and John; Beatty, Maggie and Katie.


Angus MacInnis, Og, came from the Isle of Barra, Scotland, to Upper West Lake in 1831. He acquired 160 acres of land fronting on the Lake, that being all the land there which had not been taken up previously. He was married coming here to Lucy McDonald, a native of Barra, with issue: Neil, Charles, Angus, Margaret, Emily, Mary, Flora and Christina.

The sons Charles and Angus made their homes at West Lake, living side by side on separate lots of land. Charles was married to Catherine McPherson of Big Pond, Cape Breton County, with issue: Joseph Neil, Reverend Roderick, Angus, Mary, Lucy, Catherine and Martina.

The son Rev. Roderick was born at West Lake July 10th 1863, and died in Boston, in the summer of 1920. He received his education at St. F. X. College, Antigonish, and at the Grand Seminary, Montreal, was ordained priest at Montreal, January 26th, 1900. His first charge was the parish of Red Islands, his second was Big Pond, his third was Reserve Mines, his fourth and last, Whitney Pier. He was a man of wonderful zeal and energy, and did a surprising amount of good work in every place in which he labored.

Angus (son of Angus Og) was married to Margaret McDonald of Hay River, with issue: Charles, Angus, Lucy, Catherine, Mary, Flora and Jessie Ann. The last named is a sister of Charity of Mount St. Vincent, Halifax.

Alexander McInnis owned a farm further up towards Head Lake, and was married, as elsewhere stated, to Marcella MacDonald of Black River, a sister to Donald the Saddler. After his death two of his sons, Duncan and Alexander, owned and occupied the property. These were very respectable people.

Duncan was married to a daughter of Angus McLean (Ban) of Trout Brook, with issue: Alexander, Angus, Donald, John, Margaret, Micey, Ann and Jane.

Alexander was married to a daughter of Hugh McDougall of Whycocomagh, with issue: Hugh, John, Marcella, Jane, Margaret, Katie, Mary, Alexina and Ann.

There is not any of these two families now residing at West Lake.


This John MacIsaac was married to a daughter of Thomas MacDonnell (Ban) of Indian Point, Judique with issue: Allan, Angus, Ann, Mary, Katie, Helen and Jessie. All the daughters lived and died unmarried, excepting Helen who was married to Donald MacDongall, and had an interesting family of sons and daughters. The oldest son Allan went to New Zealand in his young manhood and never returned. The son Angus was married to Mary, daughter of Lachlan Macdougall (Ban) of Broad Cove Banks, with issue: John, Mary,Bell, Flora, Rosie, Annie, Mary and Katie. The widow of Angus, with her son John and some of the daughters, now owns and occupies that fine old farm which had been the subject of such strange litigation. It is a good farm, and the young man, John MacIsaac who now operates it is signally industrious and thrifty. Several American companies have been, at different times, boring for kerosene oil on this estate. They failed to strike the real belt, but the indications of its existence are pretty clear.


West Bay may have seen better days; but, through all the vicissitudes of life or fortune, it shall never cease to be interesting. The Bay itself, from which the district derives its name, is a particularly captivating sheet of water. During the summer or autumn months a drive from the village of West Bay to Marble Mountain is an outing that is hard to beat. We motored through there last fall, and we could not if we would forget the charm of our experience. The road follows the windings of the shore, and in large part runs along the brow of an agreeable mountain. Driving on the mountain side eastwardly one sees ahead of him a dark body of land which, at first sight, looks like one long Island. On nearer approach it is found that it is not one long Island but a cluster of small islets, each of which is an exquisite curl of beauty. In the autumn every one of these islets, as well as the mountain's brow, is covered with handsome groves of hardwood trees whose foliage is decorated in all varieties of tints and hues. Imagine a November Sun pouring down the radiance of its blessings on that placid stretch of water and those gorgeous groves on hills and islets. A sylvan scene of sacred power!

There are many fine farms and good farmers in the West Bay region, although a good deal of the district is broken up by mountains, hills and gulches. Despite some disadvantages, farming is an important pursuit here. There is, also, a very considerable amount of fishing of various kinds. The quarries and lime works at Marble Mountain created an industrial enterprise of large dimensions and great value in that section of this district. Like the most of the world's industries, this one at Marble Mountain has suffered the blight and aftermath of the Great War. It is devoutly to be wished that operations here will soon resume their former activities under conditions that will ensure lasting success.

We regret very much that the quaint little village at the head of West Bay has recently undergone some changes that are not satisfying. When we first visited this hamlet some thirty years ago it was plainly athrill with the joys of living. Times were good then, business was brisk and promising, the people were at work and happy. Last fall we saw the place again. It had changed enormously. Leading men had passed away; business had disappeared; employment there was none; the outlook was dark and cheerless. All seemed lost but hope; and that great virtue remained, strong and assertive.

The brave, intelligent, yeomanry of the West Bay district are not to be scared away from their duty by local little tilts with hard times. The untoward events to which we have alluded will only serve to make these good people bend to their work with firmer and wiser resolve. That is just the way out of all social and economic difficulties. Don't whine: don't take cold feet; go straight to your lawful work, and do it. Work well; work sanely; work all, for all, in friendly feelings and good fellowship. Then, adversity takes flight; prosperity returns; order takes its wonted seat; Justice fills the land and rules the lives of the people; peace prevails and fears not. So may it be with West Bay.


One of the early settlers in this section of the West Bay district was Angus MacIntyre from Harris, Inverness, Scotland. He was married in Scotland, and had a family of one son and two daughters. One of the two daughters died in Scotland, the other died in Cape Breton. Mr. MacIntyre came into the West Bay district in 1828, and took up two hundred acres of land near Lime Hill. His only son, Norman, was married to Catherine MacInnes, with issue: Angus, John, Peter, Murdoch, Duncan, Peter R., Margaret, Christy, Catherine and Sarah.

Margaret married D. MacAskill of Loch Lomond in the county of Richmond, and had one son, Malcolm, still living at Loch Lomond.

Christy married Malcolm MacCuspic, and had a large family, five of whom are in the United States, and one at home.

Angus married in Provincetown, Mass. and had two daughters: Lizzie and Mary, and one son who died young.

John was, also, married in Provincetown, Mass. and had one daughter, Catherine, still in Provincetown.

Peter R. was married at home to Mary W. MacKenzie, and had three of a family, namely; Catherine, Mary, M. and Norman D.

Donald Campbell and family came into the West Bay district the same year (1828) that Angus MacIntyre came and from the same place in Scotland. He was married in the old country, and had four sons and two daughters, namely: Archy, John, Kenneth, Angus, Christy and Margaret.

Christy married Norman Campbell, Mary married Norman MacAskill.

The son Archy and all the other sons were married in West Bay and had large families.

The father, Donald Campbell, acquired 200 acres of land near, Lime Hill which constituted the original homestead in America.

Mrs. Angus MacRonald settled at Lime Hill in 1828. She, also came from Harris and took up two hundred acres of land. She was married twice in Scotland, first to Hector MacKinnon and after his death to Angus MacRonald. It does not appear that she had any children by the second marriage. By her first husband, Hector MacKinnon, she had Hugh, Norman, Catherine and Margaret, all of whom came with her to West Bay. The son, Norman MacKinnon, was married at West Bay to Mary MacRae, with issue, four boys and three girls.

Kenneth MacKenzie and family of three sons and one daughter came to this district from Loch Alsh, Inverness Shire, Scotland, and settled down on 200 acres of land. The names of his children were: John, Murdoch, Duncan and Mary, all of whom were married here and raised large families.

Alexander MacDonald (wild) was another of the early settlers at or near Lime Hill. He also, came from Loch Alsh and had a family of seven sons and two daughters, namely: Rory, John, Duncan, Donald, William, Frank, Mary and Catherine. Of this family only Frank got married at home. He (Frank) had two sons and two daughters.

Ronald MacDonald was another of the pioneer settlers here. He took up 400 acres of land, was married but had no family.

Charles MacInnes and family came from Tyree, Scotland, settled down on 200 acre lot, was married, with issue: John, Donald, Allan, Donald Jr., Flora, Mary and Isabel. None of this family got married here.

Alexander MacLeod and family came from Harris, Scotland. The family consisted of John, Roderick, Mary, Margaret, Christy and Catherine. John got married here and had five sons and three daughters. Christy got married at home here and had three sons and two daughters.

Robert Cameron came from Lochaber, secured 200 acres of land, and had a family of two sons and four daughters, none of whom got married and all of whom are dead.

Robert Dallas and wife came to West Bay district from Edinburgh Scotland, they had no family. Mr. Dallas had some education and was the first teacher and a good one in the school section at Lime Hill. Until quite recently this section was known and named as Dallas Brook section to commemorate its first popular and efficient teacher.

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