On Saturday Stephen Giles, originally from Carleton Place, and who now lives in Ottawa bought an oil painting at St. James Anglican Church Bazaar in Carleton Place. To anyone who wasn’t really looking, it could have been just another oil painting found on a White Elephant Table. But I have personally always believed that everything once had a story, and when Stephen showed it to me I became intrigued. The inscription on the bottom of the painting was signed “Roy F. Fleming” and I wrote it down thinking it might have some local interest.
The old painting might have been used just for the frame until he also showed me a ripped label on the back with only the words inscribed: “it was something grandfather had painted” showing. When I got home I did some sleuthing and found out the late Roy Franklin Fleming and the late Bertha Elizabeth Hawley were the parents of Bruce Hawley Fleming who passed away in Almonte in 2010.
Bruce was also the husband of the late Agnes Hogarth– father of Ruth and her husband Ed Larmour, Carleton Place. I immediately recognized the last names and wondered if the grandfather of the Larmours could be the painter of this piece of art. The next day I posted the information on Facebook and the artist was indeed verified by the Larmour family as Roy Franklin Fleming their grandfather.
It’s one thing to have found the artist of an old painting, but it is another to have the whole story come 360 with a Hallmark ending. The finder of the painting Stephen Giles and the great granddaughter of the artist Megan Akey were reunited on Facebook thanks to Joanne Morris Samler who caught my posting. Stephen decided to give the old family painting to the great granddaughter as he said it would mean more hanging on her wall than on his.
With one kind gesture you can change a life and gestures like this could change a world. Remember every act of kindness creates a ripple with no end. Thank you Stephen for helping to keep family history alive.
|Name:||Roy Franklin Fleming|
|Birth Year:||abt 1879|
|Birth Place:||Grey County Ontario|
|Marriage Date:||28 Jun 1917|
|Marriage Place:||Carleton, Ontario, Canada|
|Spouse:||Bertha Elizabeth Hawley|
where you can buy all Linda Seccaspina’s books-You can also read Linda in The Townships Sun and theSherbrooke Record and and Screamin’ Mamas (USACome and visit the Lanark County Genealogical Society Facebook page– what’s there? Cool old photos–and lots of things interesting to read. Also check out The Tales of Carleton Place. Tales of Almonte and Arnprior Then and Now.