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JAMES SINCLAIR (1811-1856)

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JAMES SINCLAIR (1811-1856)

Post by gnstill » Tue Jul 16, 2013 5:46 am

New Family Page: JAMES SINCLAIR (1811-1856)

Please post comments and queries about James SINCLAIR and his family here.

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Re: JAMES SINCLAIR (1811-1856)

Post by lookingforshoulders » Sun Jul 21, 2013 1:30 pm

Another great page, Gary. Halcrows are part of the Sinclair clan so I enjoyed reading about James. He was with my 3rd great grandmother, Isabella on the Oregon journey.

Thank you. :)

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Re: JAMES SINCLAIR (1811-1856)

Post by arnet1 » Mon Jun 16, 2014 7:11 pm

I have additional info regarding the following comment in an earlier post.
In 1893 son Colin James married Mary Rowena PHILLIPS, daughter of David ROWENA & Michael PHILLIPS of so far undetermined origins. This marriage took place either in BC or Montana.
The Hudson Bay Company Archive contains this information on Phillips.
PARISH: England
d. 1916

Appointments & Service (An Outfit year ran from 1 June to 31 May)

Postmaster Kootenais Fort Shepherd B.226/g/13-17; SF ‘Kootenay’

1869, December Dismissed B.226/b/43, fo. 40

After Phillipps’s dismissal, apparently for incompetence and inability to adapt to changing circumstances in the Kootenay trade, Chief Factor Roderick Finlayson described him as “a young man well introduced to us... I first ordered him to the district in 1863 to succeed Mr Linklater as Indian trader.” 1863 may be a slip of the pen for 1865 (B.226/b/43,fo. 41).

In G.P.V. and Helen B. Akrigg, 1001 British Columbia Place Names, Discovery Press, Vancouver, 1970, article on Phillipps Creek, pp. 134-135: After Michael Phillipps, son of the Rev. Thomas Phillipps of Densall, Hertfordshire. He is an interesting transitional figure in the history of the East Kootenay. Originally he was an H.B.C. clerk at Fort Kootenay and married Rowena, daughter of Chief David of the Tobacco Plains Indians. Later he became the first homesteader in the district, and the first Indian Agent in the area. He prospected along the Elk River in 1873 and was disgusted at finding nothing but coal. He may have discovered the Crowsnest Pass from the west in 1873, ignorant that it had already been found by the Palliser expedition. He died in 1916
There is a second somewhat rosier picture of Phillips in an article called Cemetary Visit by Elsie G Turnbull (BC Historical News, Vol. 19 No 1 1985 p. 12). It contains several inaccuracies, although it is still intersting. Here is the excerpt relating to him.
One of the outstanding settlers was the Englishman Michael Phillips. Bred and educated in the British tradition, he came out in 1864 to work for the fur-trading Hudson's Bay Company as a clerk at Fort Shepherd, and was put in charge of trading at Tobacco Plains, WildHorse Creek, and Perry Creek. He resigned in 1870 and took up land for ranching along Phillips Creek, spending much time prospecting and exploring the upper waters of the Elk River. Phillips is credited with the blazing of the Crowsnest Pass and discovery of its coal fields. In 1877 he was appointed Indian Agent for the East Kootenay Reserve, and though he met oposition from Indians who disputed the right of white men to allocate lands upon which they had lived for years, he was able to avoid friction and to gain their support and admiration.

Soon after his arrival at Tobacco Plains (AS note: 1866 according to one source), Michael Phillips married Rowena David, daughter of Kootenai Chief Paul David. They had a large family, many of whom now lie in Roosville Cemetary. Michael and his wife are in graves outlined by white crosses. A white cross marks Rowenaès resting place, while a slant-faced headstone commemorates her husband with the words, 'To memory Ever Dear'.
Finally, there is this reference in Letters from the Rocky Mountain Indian Missions by Philip Rappagliosi
David was chief of the Kootenai band that lived in the Tobacco Plains area in the Kootenay River Valley near where Eureka, Montana, was later located, and north into British Columbia. Chief David's daughter, Rowena, married a white Hudson's Bay Company employee and government agent in 1866. In 1884 David took part in the frustrating negotiations with the British Columbia government representative for a reserve for the Tobacco Plains band. Chief David died in 1891.

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Re: JAMES SINCLAIR (1811-1856)

Post by gnstill » Tue Jun 17, 2014 6:31 am

Thanks very much for that excellent information Arnet. I have updated the James SINCLAIR Page accordingly.

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