Mrs. Henry (Jennie) Majaury — “Grandma Majaury” — of Darling Township, (where nobody can remember when she wasn’t around) passed away peacefully at her home on the Lanark-Calabogie Road on Sunday evening, February 13th. In poor health since Christmas-time, her stamina was worn down so that she could no longer keep up the struggle of life. With her passing goes a link with the romantic and colourful past of Darling Township, which Mrs. Majaruy had seen transform from a pioneering community to a community with all the marks of progress and modern trends.
Born on June 25, 1851, the daughter of Joseph Crawford, an Irish immigrant and Margaret Stewart, a Scotch immigrant, Mrs. Majaury, the former Jennie Crawford, embodied characteristics of both nationalities. Born in Darling Township, she lived her whole 103½ years in the same community. She kept a young spirit throughout all her life and was always ready to learn something new and interesting. Her home was a popular gathering place not only for the members of her own family but for all who in late years came to visit this “grand old lady of Darling Township”. She did not know much of luxury or of convenience but that did not prevent her from having a cheery disposition, a happy outlook on life and an indomitable spirit. Her Irish wit and humour were ever on display and even during the last few days of her life her active mind was ready with a sharp remark or a spirited quip. Friends said she cherished life not for the number of years but for the joy of living and doing things. Her deep concern of the past few years was that she was not able to do as much as she used to.
It was not her privilege to enjoy much schooling but one could never think of Grandma Majaury as not knowing much. What she lacked in schooling she made up for in the broad school of experience. Her kindly way, her hospitable manner and her ability to get the most out of life endeared her to her family and the host of people who were her friends. During her lifetime she witnessed many changes and saw such events as the old ox-team give way to the horse and then the motor car. One of her fondest dreams was to have an airplane ride and this dream came true on her 102nd birthday when she was taken up “in the air so blue” at Carp. “The only trouble”, she commented, “was that they didn’t take me up high enough nor keep me up long enough”.
Of late years her birthday celebrations were grand occasions and usually lasted for several days. Friends and relatives from many points made a special effort to be with her on these occasions. And when the evening came she would become young again and dance a jig to start off the dance.
Mrs. Majaury was mother to five sons and four daughters and never did she have the assistance of a doctor. As well she helped to bring up several other children. Of her family two sons and two daughters are deceased. Her husband died in 1912. Surviving are three sons: Thomas and Joseph of Darling Township, and James of Carleton Place; two daughters, Mrs. Joseph (Margaret Ann) Foster of Calabogie and Mrs. William (Katie) Folkard of Carleton Place; 59 grandchildren, 150 great grandchildren and 26 great-great grandchildren.
In her earlier years she was much devoted to community work, besides caring for her family. She has mentioned many times of walking the fifteen miles to Lanark or to Calabogie to shop. But through all her life she maintained a healthy outlook and a strong faith in her God.
Funeral services were held from her late home to St. John’s United Church, Hopetown, on Thursday, February 17th with a cortege almost half a mile long. It was the largest funeral ever held in Darling Township and friends and relatives came from Renfrew, Kitchener, Calabogie, Toronto, Cobden, Lanark, Carleton Place, Smiths Falls, Almonte, Clayton, Arnprior, Georgetown and Port Hope. Her daughter, Mrs. Foster of Calabogie and her son, James of Carleton Place were unable to attend because of illness.
Rev. R.J. McNaught of Lanark conducted the services both at the home and at the church and in his message he paid fitting tribute to the life, which, for over a century, had played such an active part in her home and community. Rev. M.M. Hawley of Middleville was ill at the time with laryngitis and unable to attend and take part. Assisting in the service was the choir of St. John’s Church with Mrs. Harvey Wilson as organist. Mr. Harry Stead sang a solo “Good night and good morning”. The interment was in St. John’s Cemetery. Pallbearers were Messrs. Lawrence King, Peter Lalonde, Harold Devlin, John Kubesiekie, Howard Virgin and John James.
The flower bearers were John Majaury, Aurel Majaury, James Majaury, Jimmy Hunter, Stewart Hurdis, Barry Walters, Leslie Ladoucer, Rayburn Sweeney, David Majaury, Jimmy Garra.
The many floral tributes bore mute testimony to the esteem and affection in which she was held and were as follows:
Broken Circle — Family.
Cut Flowers — Mrs. Robinson; Mr. Joe Crawford.
Cross — Katie; Harold and Joe Crawford.
Spray — Bill Wilson, Ted Pierce and Oliver Dobson; Mr. and Mrs. Nelson Laverture; Mrs. Sophia Majaury; Mr. and Mrs. Ben Fisher; Charlie and Rose Raycroft; Gordon and Reta Headrick and family; Mr. and Mrs. James Gunn; Mrs. Stan Thompson; Mr. and Mrs. Gordon Marshall; Mr. Fred Collins; Mr. and Mrs. John Poynter and Hyacinth; Mr. and Mrs. Ormond Paul and family; Mr. and Mrs. Ed. Lawson and family; Mr. and Mrs. Merville James and family; Mr. and Mrs. James M. Majaury; Mrs. Irene Walters and family; Mr. Aurel Majaruy; Mr. and Mrs. Sam Hunter and family; Mr. and Mrs. Russell Horne; Darling Township Council; Officers and Members. L.O.B.A., Carleton Place; Mr. and Mrs. J. Voyce; Mr. and Mrs. M. Topping and family; Mr. and Mrs. C.T. Hill and family; Mr. and Mrs. R.O. Mearoe; Mr. and Mrs. Gordon Knight; Mrs. Bill Knight; Mr. Stewart Chalmers.
Gates Ajar — Mr. and Mrs. Joe Majaury, Mr. and Mrs. Jim Majaury, Mr. and Mrs. Jack Mann, Mr. and Mrs. Ervin Majaury, Mr. and Mrs. William Hughes, Mr. and Mrs. Ben Roberts, Mr. and Mrs. Harold Devlin, Mr. and Mrs. Alvin Brown and Mr. John Majaury, Mr. Allie Yuill and boys, Mr. and Mrs. James Majaury, Mr. and Mrs. Arthur Riopelle, Mr. and Mrs. Melville Riopelle, Mr. and Mrs. Bill Leveck, Mr. and Mrs. John McHugh.
The article and photos above submitted September 1999,
the photograph below submitted January 2000,
by Jo-Anne (Majaury) Camelon
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Also read–People are Afraid to Work– Jennie Majaury- Darling Township
People are Afraid to Work– Jennie Majaury- Darling Township
Another of her goals was to travel at 100 miles per hour in a car. My father, Ben Roberts accomplished that task for her in his new Buick on the short straight (ish) stretch on hwy 511 that the old James farm and White school are on. Grandma Majuary was in the back seat leaning over dads shoulder watching the speedometer and urging him on. She wanted to see it for herself. Dad started to accelerate beyond a reasonable rate at the old Lalonde home heading north. The desired speed was reached somewhere near the James farm. Dad said that the car was near airborne as it passed Campbell Road with heavy braking continuing. through the Devlin farm portion of 511, with safer speeds reached by the time they got to the Virgin farm. 511 was a very poor tar and stone chip road in those days… surprised that they didn’t crash. That story was repeated many times as I was growing up.
Thank you so much for sharing that . Love to hear stories of Granny M.