Hugh Bernard Ashton Birch

Terrace, British Columbia, Canada

Hugh Bernard Ashton “Hughie” Birch

Hughie Birch, ca Feb, 1936, at 4th cabin
photo courtesy McRae Collection, Terrace BC

b- Apr 1889, London England (Reg Hendon Dist, Middlesex Co)
d- Sept 19, 1956, in his cabin at Mocassin Flats, Whitehorse, Yukon, age 67
buried in Pioneer Cemetery, Whitehorse Yukon.
Age 27, widower, Dominion Gov't Telegrapher at Terrace when he married.
son of Walter Bernard Birch (Accountant), b- abt 1864, and Rose (Rosa) Ashton, who married Aug 7, 1888, St. Mary, Finchley,Barnet, England
daughter of Jonas Ashton, she was a professional musician in 1901
both Mother and Father born in London England
Grandfather- Frederick Ketchley Birch
brother- Guy Cyril Ashton Birch age 10 in 1901, who died in Tacoma WA age 63
Hugh came to Canada at age 13
Lived in Calgary AB and then moved to Vancouver BC
Learned to be a landline Telegraph Operator at age 16, in Vancouver BC
He left Vancouver Feb 10, 1910
Worked for the CPR for a few years,
then the Dominion Government Telegraph Service in Northern BC and the Yukon
He worked for 35 years for Dominion, the max allowed.
He worked at 32 different stations
Sept 22, 1941 he arrived in Dawson City for the first time,
He never went back to England.
1911 census shows him at Graveyard Point, shown immigrating in 1897, Dom Gov't Telegraph Operator.
He moved to Whitehorse and was Telegraph Operator up there.
Spent over 10 years at Lower Lake LaBerge stationm until the old line was closed.
He retired 1952 closing the office at the end of the line at Whitehorse
He was living in a little cabin at Lower Lake LaBerge, when he died.
1956 he was a Fire Lookout operator at Haeckel Hill, near Whitehorse, in his 3rd year there.
His winter job was working at Irene's Laundry in Whitehorse

His first wife- Harriet Maud McNames, he married Aug 25, 1909 in Vancouver.
b- ca 1886 in Holland? (1921 census says Ontario?)
d- Jan 25, 1916 in Terrace BC, age 30
Obviously she had complications from child birth on Jan 22

He had 3 sons with Harriet:

Hugh Ashton Birch
b- ca 1912 in BC (age 9 in 1921)
d- bet July 12 and 14, 1927 one mile west of Notch Hill BC, on the CPR Tracks, age 16
Killed in a gruesome train accident,
He was running away from the Boy's Industrial School at Coquitlam, where he was an inmate from Aug 1925.

Walter Ashton Birch
b- Sept 23, 1913 in Port Simpson BC
d- May 16, 1977, near Hazelton BC, Single Vehicle Car Accident, age 63
Funeral in Prince George
married Elsie Jones Apr 2, 1934, in Vancouver BC
when he died his wife was Agnes Birch of Prince George BC
his ex wife was Letitia Birch, nee Fegan, and they had a son Kenneth “Ken” W. Birch, both alive in 1977 living in Vancouver

Thomas McNames Birch
b- Jan 22, 1916 in Canada (age 5 in 1921)
d- Oct 3, 1979 in San Francisco, USA (in Novato, Marin, CA per other records)
He was alive in 1977, living in San Rafael, Marin, California
age 50 in 1967 when he had trouble with the law
wife- Mildred Birch in 1967

married 2nd -Priscilla Angeleka (Angelina?) (Angelexa?) Stuart,
Sept 15, 1916, in Government Telegraph Office in Terrace, by Rev. Thomas Jabez Marsh
b- Dec 5, 1892 in Copper City BC
(marriage cert says born in Victoria, BC)
d- Sept 13, 1920 age 28 in Hazelton BC
buried in Stuart, Dobbie, Private Graveyard
daughter of John “David” Stuart

H. Birch was alive and in Hospital in Feb 1925 with a broken foot.
1927 he was in Hazelton, where he remarried again

3rd wife- Elizabeth Wilson, June 1, 1927,
b- ca 1908 (age 19 in 1927) Hazelton BC
daughter of Thomas Wilson, b- Hazelton BC, and Annie Williams, b- Bear Lake BC
Here he is shown as a Chauffeur, widowerm age 39

I now know he had a daughter Mrs Robinson, who lived in Vancouver, BC, who attended to his funeral arrangements


  • Last modified: 2020/01/27 22:25
  • by dlgent