Shivaun's Family Tree Website


Masts of HMS Warrior 1860

Harvey family

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 Part 2: Elizabeth Jane Russell Harvey (c1837 - 1895)


Emigration to Canada and education

Elizabeth Jane Russell Harvey was born c1837 in Paisley, Renfrewshire, Scotland (no baptism record has been found so far). Her parents were Edward Harvey and Elizabeth Russell. She emigrated to Canada West (as Ontario was known prior to Confederation in 1867) with her parents and half-siblings c1841 and lived in Lanark Township. The 1851-52 census recorded her as 'going to school', aged 15, which was somewhat unusual. It was only in 1871 that Ontario introduced a law that made schooling compulsory, and that was between the ages of seven and twelve. Children were obliged to attend for at least four months a year (which took into account the need for children to help with harvesting and being unable to travel any great distance when conditions were bad). It might be that in the 1850s, Elizabeth's parents valued education and were able to manage the household and farming without requiring her to give up her studies. There were some other teenagers (including a 19-year-old) 'at school' who lived near Elizabeth, but there were also many who were listed as working.


Marriage to James Craig

At age 16, Elizabeth would have been eligible to train as a teacher, provided she could read and write, do simple arithmetic and have a letter from a minister of religion stating her good, moral character. However, there is no indication she ever became a teacher or had any occupation. She married James Craig (1832 - 1910), who had emigrated to Canada from Scotland in 1854. Where and when their marriage occurred is not known but was most likely c1857. They had eleven children, though three died in infancy: Elizabeth, James, Edward, Andrew W, Ada, Andrew S, Hypatia, Blanche, Andrew S, Stella and an unnamed boy (more information about them appears in the Craig section). James worked for the rail industry his whole life and the family moved frequently around Ontario (with a brief spell in northern United States) before settling permanently in Toronto. Elizabeth died 27 February 1895, aged 58, in Toronto of heart failure, having been suffering from heart problems for many years. [1]



[1] Parish registers for Abbey, Paisley 1676-1855 (; Old Parish Records, Scottish Census records (; Canadian Census records,  Ontario Canada Marriages 1801-1928, Ontario Canada Deaths 1869-1938 and Deaths Overseas 1939-1947 (;;; 'It's Elementary: A Brief history of Ontario's public elementary teachers and their federation' by Barbara Richter from the Elementary Teachers' Federation of Ontario website (; 'The Ontario Teacher 1800-1910' by J. G. Althouse (1929, 1967); 'Canadian Compulsory School Laws and their Impact on Educational Attainment and Future Earnings' by Philip Oreopoulos (2005); Wikipedia