Trecothick Creek

Trecothick Creek

The stream rises in the high ground south of Curry’s Corner and meanders north through pasture land, skirting the old part of town, emptying into the St. Croix River near its confluence with the Avon. Its route has been altered over the years to accommodate roads, the railway and various developments until today it flows more or less neglected and forgotten.

On a small hill overlooking the stream the Acadians built the second parish church of l’Assomption in village Landry. The graveyard was located nearby. The church and graveyard are long ago forgotten. The name of the stream during the Acadian period is unknown, but its rather unique current name is a reminder of a bygone era when the province was a small British colony, opening up to immigration.

Beginning in 1758, the colonial government of Nova Scotia began a serious attempt at settlement. The initiative was quite successful in attracting settlers. It also attracted land speculators who acquired huge land grants, perhaps the most notorious of these being Col. Alexander McNutt. But there were others, including such luminaries as Benjamin Franklin, who was a principal in the Philadelphia Company that acquired a land grant of 200,000 acres in the Tatamagouche area. In addition, there were several wealthy entrepreneurs who purchased land from original grantees for investment purposes. One of these was Barlow Trecothick of Boston and London.

It appears that Capt. Charles Proctor owed Trecothick £1,867. On 25 Feb. 1767, Proctor assigned several parcels of land in Nova Scotia to Trecothick as repayment of this debt. Among these were lots of land at Pisiquid that Proctor had acquired in 1759 as part of the Maugher-Francklin grant. Part of Proctor’s grant lay along the St. Croix River between Fort Edward hill and the mouth of the stream. The stream, which acquired its name from its new owner, bisected the first lot between the river and Wentworth Road.

Barlow Trecothick was born in Boston in 1719 and lived there until 1741. By 1750 he was a merchant in London trading with the colonies. He engaged in politics and became Lord Mayor of London in 1770. A friend of Benjamin Franklin, he was an advocate for the Colonial cause, opposing the Stamp Act and other punitive measures.

Trecothick married twice but had no children. Prior to his death in 1775 he willed his estate to various charities as well as to family members and friends. He offered much of his estate to his sister’s son, John Ivers, on the condition that he take his surname. Thus John Ivers he became John Ivers Trecothick.

Following John Ivers Trecothick’s death 1846, his children engaged prominent Windsor lawyer, Lewis Wilkins, to dispose of his local assets. On 1 Dec. 1848, Wilkins sold, on behalf of the inheritors of the Trecothick estate, several parcels of land in the Windsor Area. The purchasers included; the trustees of the Presbyterian Church of St. John’s, Edward King, Monson Goudge, Perez Cunningham, William Dill, and Archibald Edmonstone.

It is doubtful that Barlow Trecothick ever set foot in Windsor, but, after 245 years, the small creek as well as a new walking trail still carries his name.

John D. Wilson
Windsor, NS
October 2017
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About the Author

John D. Wilson is a lifelong resident of Nova Scotia.  Born in Windsor Forks in 1939, he followed a career in the computer field. In 1975 John joined the Engineering Technology Department of the Nova Scotia Institute of Technology where he taught Electronic and Computer Technology. He led in the establishment of a number of training programs including the Automated Manufacturing Technology Program. John later joined the Adult Training Division of the Department of Education from which he retired in 1997.

John and his life partner, Laura (Baxter), live in Wentworth Creek where they raised two daughters who have given them the precious gift of three grandchildren.

History and genealogy have been John/s passion from childhood, West Hants Historical Society offered him a wealth of information on the community and its people. Here he studied records, assisted visitors from all over the world and developed deep friendship with fellow volunteers. He has served in many capacities with WHHS from volunteer, to researcher to President. John has researched a great deal of the history of Hants County and has written a number of related articles that he wishes to share on this Website.

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