Old Burying Ground – Volume IV

The fourth and final volume of Louise Hill’s work on the Old Burying Ground in Fredericton, New Brunswick, Canada was unfinished at the time of her death. Her draft manuscript and detailed notes were taken up by friends who share her enthusiasm for the subject.

The full text of Volume IV is now available online, without charge, here at LoyalistFamilies.com.

We hope and believe that Miss Hill would be pleased with the results.

John Elliot Woolford, artist and architect


In memory of J. E. Woolford, Esq., late Barrack Master, Fredericton, died 12th Jan. 1866, aged 88 years.

In memory of Margaret, wife of J. E. Woolford, Esq.

Royal Gazette, Fredericton, NB, 6 February 1833:

Died on Wednesday morning last, the 30th ult., Mrs. Margaret Fullerton, wife of J. E. Woolford, Esquire, Barrack Master of this place, deeply and deservedly regretted.

John Elliot Woolford of the Barracks Department was appointed Assistant Barrack Master at Saint John in 1823. He bore the title until 1839 or 1840 when he was described in the New Brunswick Almanack as Deputy Barrack Master, and in 1842 as Barrack Master. He had charge of the army buildings in Fredericton.

J. E. Woolford was in charge of the building of Government House, and the very fine plans of the same are now in the Archives, Ottawa. The contract for building Government House was awarded to Jedediah Slason, and it was built in 1827.

New Brunswick Royal Gazette, 14 March 1826:

Contracts will be received by William F. Odell, Thomas Wetmore and Samuel D. Street… building a college… rough stone, hewn stone for the corners, boards, planks and scantling.

William F. Odell and the Reverend George Best advertised contracts in the New Brunswick Royal Gazette, April 1826, for a building for King’s College. The contract was awarded to James Taylor and also to Cross and Murray of Saint John. J.E. Woolford was the architect, and a model of the college building which he designed stood in his home.

Had there been a public library at that time, Mr. Woolford probably would have designed it, as the following notice suggests:

Royal Gazette, Fredericton, NB, 19 July 1839:

Fredericton Library — A General Meeting of the Proprietors is requested at the residence of Mr. Woolford on Friday afternoon next at 21st instance at 4 o’clock to decide upon the selection of a Library Room and such others matters as may be brought before the meeting. By order of the President. R. Gowan, Secretary.

J.E. Woolford resided in Regent Street opposite the Park Barracks until 1841.

Royal Gazette, Fredericton, NB, 10 July 1839:

Notice "The Subscriber" respectfully intimates to his friends and the Public that he has taken that commodious and pleasantly situated House in Regent Street owned by Captain James Segee next door to J. E. Woolford, Esq. and nearly opposite to Mr. Donald McLeod where he intends keeping a Genteel Boarding House for the reception of permanent and Transient Boarders. Good staffing is required. Joseph Estabrooks.

Royal Gazette, Fredericton, NB, 1 November 1841:

Welner-Baile Tailoring Shop in the House lately occupied by Barrack Master Woolford, Regent Street.

He was one of the artists who exhibited at the Grand Exhibition in Saint John in August 1842, and was President of the Floral and Horticultural Society of New Brunswick in 1843. He retired in 1859 from the Barracks Department, but remained in Fredericton until his death.

The Head Quarters, Fredericton, NB, 17 January 1866:

John E. WOOLFORD, Esq., late Barrack Master in this garrison was a native of England, born in London; served under Duke of York in Holland, afterwards under Sir Ralph ABERCROMBIE in Egypt where he was present at all the principal engagements. It was there that his merit as a sketcher of landscapes attracted the attention of Lord Dalhousie, under whose patronage he settled in Scotland on his return as an artist. On Lord DALHOUSIE’s appointment to the Government of Nova Scotia, he accompanied him to that country. In 1821 when his Lordship made a tour through Upper and Lower to Lake Superior, he attended him as an artist, and took views of all the principal residences on their route. In 1823 on a change being made in the Barrack Dept., he received his late appointment to this garrison and held it until 1858. It was the plans of Mr. WOOLFORD that both the College and Government House were built. He was married to a lady of the ERSKINE family, related to Lord BUCHAN and the late Lady DOUGLAS wife of Sir Howard DOUGLAS.

Vavasour and Edwards


Henry Froude Vavasour died Nov. 21st, 1885 aged 58 years. Also his wife Jane C., died July 7th, 1917 aged 87 years. Cora Forrester Vavasour died June 23rd, 1865, aged 3 years.

In Memoriam. Maude M. Vavasour died Jan. 5th, 1890 aged 31 years. "To live in Hearts we leave behind is not to die." "Nearer my God to Thee."

Edwin Edwards died Jan. 18th, 1880 aged 64 years. This monument is erected by his Sister and her Children in memory of a Beloved Brother and Uncle.

Lot #21, 12 x 14 feet, surrounded by iron paling with the name VAVASOUR over the gate. The tall handsome monument stands alone.

Edwin Edwards was an Irishman and a mining engineer who, upon retirement, came to New Brunswick and lived with his sister Jane C. Edwards, Mrs. Vavasour. She used to tell of being in Australia with her brother and of having seen, in a miner’s home, quintuplet babies asleep in a sliced hogshead.

Henry F. Vavasour, bookseller and stationer, was an only child of Henry Vavasour who died in 1832. He lived on the south side of King Street a few doors above York Street. His mother was Maria, third daughter of Samuel Grosvenor, and his stepfather was Thomas H. Cripps. The bookstore was bought by Francis Beverly.

Members of the Vavasour family were talented. Miss Maud Vavasour was extremely musical as they all were, and she had a beautiful singing voice. Her brother, Edwin Vavasour, worked all his life in the Fredericton post office. He died aged seventy and was buried 30 April 1926 in the Rural Cemetery.

See also The Old Burying Ground, Vol. II, p. 51.

Ann, wife of James Taylor


In memory of Ann, wife of James Taylor of this city who died 2nd Jan. 1863 aged 67 years. Native of Carlisle, England.

Footstone: “A.T.”

Two bases of stones are found in the lot next to the Adams lot. Part of one stone lies flat next to its base and carries the above inscription. This tombstone has been repaired, and if there had been more to the inscription, it is obliterated by cement.

In 1861, James Taylor had at least three acres under cultivation: hay, oats, and potatoes. His farm was near the Carleton Farm of the Odells.