Costain Genealogy #2

Elida Eakin Costain, 1st left.

It is the premise of this blog that in the twentieth century LETTERS kept a wide-flung family together.  Cynthia and the women of the family on the Hazell side did write letters and keep in touch with the day-to-day events of their lives, probably because they had done this in previous generations- the colonial outposts of the empire looked to England and the family was wealthy enough to have the leisure to write at length, and visit, even in different countries.  I’m not sure that this was true for farmer families in North America, who moved across the continent in the hopes of a better life for their children, and who lived in a different economic bracket. Elida Eakin was born in Nebraska but must have moved in the 1890s or 1900s, because she and her immediate family lived in Ponoka, Alberta, in Canada, where her first 3 children were born.  Her husband, Henry Costain, moved from Prince Edward Island where he had grown up, to the West before World War 1, and married and lived in Ponoka before moving his family to Saskatoon, Saskatchewan in the 1920s.  Elida kept in touch with her immediate family in Ponoka, Henry with his, but the familiarity with the more extended members of his Costain family in P.E.I. was lost- something that wouldn’t have happened if he had continued living there and had bumped into distant cousins as one does in a small community.

I’m sure Elida wrote to and occasionally visited her sisters; my Auntie Merle did the same with her cousins but they were not as close as the Hazells were. The Costain children knew their aunts and uncles who visited occasionally, but not the P.E.I Costains.  The families were as large, but it was a different culture; a busier, more hard-working lifestyle; and letters were probably infrequent and concerned with the major events of life, rather than minutia.  Also keeping in touch seems to have been the business of the women of the family rather than the men- certainly Cec’s letters indicate this- I doubt he ever wrote much to his aunt or cousins.  Both Cyn’s parents were the youngest of 12 children, but on her father’s Ewing side, she seems to have been in touch with only 3 or 4, and a couple of cousins.  (There’s a distant Ewing cousin in Australia who visited Cyn and went to Ireland, and sorted out that genealogy- I assume some of Gordon’s generation, or earlier ones, moved to America and Australia- and she gave him the ‘Antique cup and saucer’ listed in her Wedding Present List as coming from Uncle Jim.) When you look at the wedding presents on Cyn’s list, there were gifts from aunts, uncles, and cousins- 9 Hazells, 6 Ewings, 2 Costains, and the 1 Eakin aunt.                                                                                                                                                    

So I know very little about the Eakin side of my father’s family, having only met one of his cousins, Evelyn Abbott.  This rough sketch is all I know of my grandmother’s family- any corrections welcome!  

Costain Genealogy #1

The Costains emigrated to Canada from the Isle of Man sometime in the first two decades of the nineteenth century and settled in Prince Edward Island. My cousin Sharon Moor did a thoroughly researched family tree that runs to 248 pages in a PDF file that I find hard to navigate- if you know the name of the Costain you are looking for, no problem, but finding his father- I couldn’t. 

However: Thomas Costain married Jane Brydson in 1793 in the Isle of Man and they died in P.E.I.  John, Paul, Thomas, and Richard Costain were born in the Isle of Man but died in P.E.I. after marrying and having lots of children, so I assume they emigrated as a family, leaving a married sister behind and bringing the unmarried ones with them.  John married Isabel Leard, a P.E.I. girl, in 1823, the rest followed suit, and they all proceeded to populate the island.

A generation later, Job Costain married his first cousin Mary Costain in 1877 and they had 7 children, one of whom was my grandfather.  So that is where my amateur tree will start.

There was one other son, Stephen Darrell, born to Henry and Elida in 1937 with Down Syndrome, who died in infancy.

Henry Hudson Costain had grown up on a farm in Prince Edward Island, had gone to university but not taken his degree, and went west as a teacher. He married Elida Eakin, a teacher, and they started their family during the First World War. Henry’s brother Harry joined the Canadian Expeditionary Force and fought overseas, being seriously wounded in 1918 and not returning to Canada until 1919. Henry and Elida moved from Ponoka, Alberta to Saskatoon, Saskatchewan in the 1920s and farmed there- perhaps because that was where the provincial university was. Harry moved west also, and lived in Calgary.

Although the Depression was hard even on poultry farmers, Henry’s children were able to go to university- Merle got her B.A. before she married and later became a teacher. Lena became a nurse, and kept working during her marriage. Cecil got his B.Sc. and became involved with the new invention, radar, during the war, and served with the British Navy as a radar officer. His wartime letters home have been posted. He emerged as Lieutenant Commander and went back to the University of Saskatchewan for his M.Sc. and then got a Commonwealth Scholarship that sent him to Cambridge in England for his Ph.D. where he met and married Cynthia.

In 1950, he is still working on his Ph.D but at the University of Michigan, where his professor, Dr. Sutherland, has moved. Once he has his degree, he expects to be working in Ottawa at the National Research Council, and this holiday trip includes some ‘business’ he has to see to in Ottawa. His brother Russell is working in Saskatchewan, and expecting to get married soon, and the youngest Costain, Carman, is still at school-or university- and has classes during the summer with the Air Force Reserve.

Cyn and Cec will meet the first members of the next generation on this 1950 holiday- Merle’s 3 sons and Lee’s baby- and I will attempt the next part of this genealogy once I’ve been born, the brothers are married and all my cousins safely arrived in the 60s!

July 30 1939

Hazells at the Reunion

Sunday 30th July.

Up earlyish – had a bath & to breakfast- all very amusing. Marie & Sam there too. After breakfast one of the boys – Jack – arrived & took us over to Mill & Ford’s. Arranged things & home again. 

Ford came over with Margs & Hugh & Mum & Peg & I got in & we went a ride – very lovely. The country & mountains are glorious. So many trees everywhere & lakes too – the trees amaze me– they’re all over the place. To West Point Military Academy first- a marvellous institution – everything beautifully arranged & set out – then up to Bear Mountain Inn. 

A lovely place – all logs. Sat down for a drink & in arrived Aunt Phine & the rest. I had Planter’s Punch- very strong, made me feel quite pleased. 

Took snaps – one of the policeman. Ate doughnuts-quite different to our – all icing on! Home through Tuxedo Park – where the millionaires live! Very lovely. 

Margs, Mum, Ford & I dashed off for a bathe at the pool – lovely & warm. Rushed home & changed. Had drinks & then supper- ate a lot! All sang & played games – everyone very merry.

They went eventually & Margs, Bibi, Lois, Peg, Mona & I off to Community Pool to Bathe in the nude. Much giggling & we got in- lovely feeling- suddenly the light went on. We nearly had a fit! Pegs threw our bathing suits in, but before we had time to do anything 2 men arrived – said it was time to lock up. A great scramble to dress & so home. Awfully funny!

Peggy, Bebe, Marie Dorman, Cynthia, Sam Dorman, Millie, Ford & Hugh, Mona, Cora Pembleton
Auntie Muriel, Aunt Trixie, Aunt Phine, Uncle Arthur, Aunt Ettie, Carol Ewing, Marguerite
Taken at Uncle Artie’s place, Central Valley, NY

July 25 1939

Hazell Genealogy: Carol’s Generation

Before the ship docks in New York, a bit more genealogy is required!  As I have said before, Cynthia’s mother Carol was the youngest of 12, and this trip was to reunite her with sisters she had not seen for 20 years (when she had left St Vincent after the Great War and joined her husband in England with the 4-year-old Cynthia) and with her oldest brother possibly for the first time in 40 years.  

The oldest Hazell son, Arthur Hazell, (Uncle Artie) had lived in the United States all his adult life, married Josephine (Aunt Phine), had adopted Marie who married Samuel Dorman and had a daughter Bebe. They lived in Central Valley, New York.

Her sister Ethel Simmons (Aunt Ettie) had also stayed in the West Indies during WW1 with her three girls, but had joined her husband in New York soon after. Those girls, Millie, Marguerite, and Mona, had grown up on Long Island, New York, and were American.  By 1939, Millie had married Ford Pembleton and had a son, Hugh; Margs was dating Bill Jaeger who she was to marry, and Mona, like Cyn, was fancy free! 

Visiting from St. Vincent were the sisters Muriel Hazell (Auntie Moo) and Beatrice Otway (Aunt Trix or Trixie).

Visiting from England were Peggy, (whose mother Auntie Mil, and older sisters Jean and Brenda, had seen off on the train in London, and whose father, Fred Hazell, was at home in St Vincent) and Carol Ewing, with her daughter Cynthia Ewing.

There was definitely a generation divide- the siblings and spouses in their 50s and 60s (Carol, the youngest, was 45); the cousins, all girls, in their teens and 20s or early 30s, and essentially meeting each other for the first time- on July 25 1939…

Tuesday 25th July.

Awoke early. Fog horn blowing still but the sea terribly calm. To breakfast. Everyone looking so proper in landing clothes. Up on Sports Deck afterwards & talked to Nelson & Hebert. Took a few snaps. Jacob up & we all played shuffleboard. Jacob said his coat was “just like a dog” after my jacket last night, so I lent him my coat brush & we went to brush it to discover that all his luggage had been removed! Up on deck again watching lots of little boats.

Peggy & I then decided to go into 1st lunch so as not to miss anything, so we asked our steward & he fixed it. Jacob came & had coffee with us then we all went & finished packing. Jacob & I up on fore deck then and saw heaps of boats. Most terribly still and hot with a heat haze all over. Peggy joined us & then at last land appeared – little bit a time. More & more land & then in the distance the Statue of Liberty – it came closer & closer & then suddenly in the mist we saw the skyscrapers- great shadows which got clearer & clearer. Nelson came & showed us a few of the things then we began to get into the dock. Crowds of people waiting & every minute it got hotter- talk about heat waves! As the ship came along side the dock, all the hundreds of people waiting waved & shouted, but we couldn’t see anyone we knew. Peggy & Jacob & I stood on piles of rope & watched for ages until at last I saw someone that looked like Marguerite then Peggy recognized Auntie Muriel & we all got wildly excited & waved & yelled.

We then had to go down for the Immigration inspection & we got a message that the Captain said we could go through 1st class, so I said goodbye to Herbert & Harry- then a very touching farewell to my Poppa! – dear Nelson he is so kind – and to poor Jacob, who was very woebegone. Peggy meanwhile had tripped downstairs & broken the heel off her shoe, poor kid, so the steward eventually took off the other one to make them quits! I then saw Clifford & said goodbye & he gave me his card & asked me to write! After this we all rushed through to the 1st class – had to wait ages, but got at the beginning of the queue & at last Margs found us & Uncle Artie got us through quickly. Onto the dock & then such a business meeting everyone- Margs – Uncle Artie – Aunt Ettie- Auntie Muriel- Trixie & Bill Jaeger! Some reception! Then the Customs! What a mess – everything upside down & us all hot & bothered! Quite a nice Customs man who chatted when he took me to pay the tax 1$75c!! Then Peggy & Uncle Artie rushed off & we went – Margs & I in to car with the luggage & the rest in a taxi.

Everything & everyone is so American that they make me laugh. The cars all on the wrong side of the road & dashing along at a terrific rate- the policeman – just like on the films! & Broadway & 5th Avenue & everything!

It took about an hour to get to the house then we just passed out – the heat! Never seen anything like it – I nearly died! Sat around & had a drink – Tom Collins – rum – pineapple juice & ice! Then after a while dinner. After dinner Bill arrived – terribly American complete with cigars & straw hat! Then we packed in cars & went down to Jones Beach. Dark by then lay on rugs on the sand & I fell asleep. Home after a while & slept all the way. To bed. What a night – hot & felt like hell!

Hazell/Laborde/Melville Genealogy

Hazell Family Genealogy

(as written by my mother in a scrappy notebook and interpreted by me.  I include (nasty) little details that were part of oral family history that she noted in the list in square brackets.)

Two Hazell brothers came from Liverpool to Saba with their wives.  Went from Saba to Bequia where they settled. 

Hercules Hazell b. 1749 in Saba d. 1833

Elizabeth Simmons 1785-1848 (I’m inclined to think these are the dates of her marriage and death)



Hercules Hazell

m. 1809

Eliza Gregg, his cousin, daughter of Mary Hazell


John Hercules (seven children in total, the rest apparently not relevant)

m. July 25 1840   Married in Bequia.

Jane Anne Arrindel [Her father had slaves and when they did something he didn’t like he stamped on their feet.]

John was drowned in Mustique 1886.


John Gregg Windsor Hazell 1848-1915 (again, one of 7 children)

m. 1872

Marion Laborde


Alfred Gregg Hazell (Uncle Fred) (one of 12 children, dates to follow)

m. 1914

Mildred Ince


4 daughters, Jean, Brenda, Peggy, Patsy- my mother’s cousins.  (Not sure why my mother’s list had Fred, the youngest son, in the line of succession, but he was the one who inherited the business, having stayed in St. Vincent.)

The 12 Hazell children of JGWH and Marion Laborde:

Georgina 1873 (Auntie Gee)

Arthur 1875 (Uncle Artie?)

Blanche 1877 (Auntie Bee)

Ethel 1878 (Aunt Ettie)

Cyprian 1880 Died in infancy?

John Louis 1882 Died as a young man?

Muriel 1884 (Auntie Moo)

Trixie 1886

Willie 1888 Died 1918 in WW1, Loos I think

Doris 1890 Is she the one who died in 3 days of a stye?

Fred 1892 (Uncle Fred)

Carol 1894 My Grandmother

Laborde Family

Jean Dupin Dauphiné Laborde came to St Vincent in 1751.




William Danger Philipe

m. 1770

Marie François Guilleampré La Croix


Maxime (3 children)

m. 1787

Marie Francois La Croix


Horatio William (5 children)


Georgina Melville


Marion Laborde (6 children)

m. 1872

John G.W. Hazell

Note: When Marion married Jack, her sister, Wilhelmina Maria, came with her and lived with the Hazells all her life, never calling her brother-in-law anything but Mr. Hazell.  She was known as Aunt Min.

Melville Family 

John Melville

m. 1715

Margaret Ochterloney?



m. 1747

Anna Duff (1st wife)


Alexander b. 1758 (one of 7 children). Graduated from U. of Edinburgh 1778/80 in Medicine.  Joined British Army and during the Revolution served in America then he 


Lady Elizabeth Spencer in Virginia and came to St. Vincent and settled.


Dr. Alexander Melville (one of 8 children)


Margaret Jane Cox 


Thomas b. 1797 (0ne of 8 children)


Sarah Rebecca Lyte


Georgina 1821-1868 (one of 4 children)


Horatio William Laborde 1821-1891


Marion (one of 6 children)


John Gregg Windsor Hazell


12 children

Now, here are the family tree diagrams Cynthia and her Hutchinson cousins Basil and Ina, maybe Monica too, put together in Ottawa toward the end of the century. Cyn was clear about her own generation, but the third generation is scrappy, and their children mostly missing. As we get into the 1950s, maybe the letters will help fill in the blanks.

Hutchinson Family Tree 1
Hutchinson Family Tree 2
Ettie and daughters
Fred and daughters