Where the McDonalds Came From


Beaumont, Calif.

Nov. 27th, 1956

The McDonells

And whare they came from

On his last day in school Andrew MCDonell stoped by a pond to throw a rock at the land Lords gander.  His aim was good and the land Lord followed him to the school.  When the Good School Master finished licking Andy he threw him out and threw his pants out after him.  Andys Father worked him over when he got home when night came Andy Desided it was time to leave Ireland and land Lord for ever.

In the morning he was hid in the brush by the side of the road watching a cattle byer he knew getting his breckfast.   After breckfast the Byer hooked his horse to his cart rounded up his cows and started then down the road with the cart followeing along.  Andy climed into the cart and hid.  Later on in the day he watched his dad on horse back talk to the catle beyer.  After dad had turned back the beyer hollered you can come out now Andy he is gone.

Andy made his way to Dublen and worked there for a shoemaker ontill he had passage money to America.  He aalways called the boat he came over on the chip on the way over he Fell in love with a scotch girl* Emely Wrath her famley located in Canada Guelburn Ontario. 

Andy started the McDonald Shoe Co. in New York.  Then sold out and headed for Guelburn.  Him and Emely ware Married and set up housekeeping in Bey Town now called Ottawa, across the river from Ottawa is the Town of Hull.  At the mouth of the Gatanue river in Quebec Provence.

We next find Andy and Emely Padeling up the Gatenue river in a Canue ontill they came to a creek about thirty feet wide flowing in from the south side.  Then padeling up the creek for about twelve miles whare they came to a valley about three miles wide and eight miles long.  At a falls in this valley they pulled the canue out and started clearing land for a home.

My Dad was the oldest of their famley he was Bornd in 1852 they called him Mike Tom and Bill.  Tom tuck over the old homested and rased his famley thar Bill never married died in Missoula Mont.  There ware four Girls the oldest Maried a Man by the name of Timmens there home was at Chippaway falls Wisconsen I think.  The youngest Married Jim Brinnen and lived near the old homsted.  Another girl married Howard Chamberlain a Mail carrier in Ottawa.  The other girl Maried a man by the name of ceile (Cahill) and moved to the west coast. 

My earliest Reclections I was Looking a new lamb over when its mother sneaked around behind me and bumped me.  Every time I rased my but up trying to get on my feet bang my nose tore up the ground then mother came with a stick and resqued me. 

I was borne Sept 28th, 1883 at that time the valley was all cleared of tember and a rode built from it to Ottawa about sixty five miles.  Dad owned the west half of Andys land about one hundred and twenty acres.  Andrew was halling the mail from a town called Farrelton and keeping the post office  the creek was called Stag Creek and the Post office Stagsburn.

Mothers fathers name was Patrick Osullivan.  Thay moved to Wisconsen before I was borne.  There new home was in Wausau  At the time I came west Andy Eady Osullivan was a polease man in Superier Wis.  The rest of them ware scattered over the United States Andy Eady was the onley one met. 

Mother Mother was a Irish girl her name I don’t recall.  She run ayay with Pat and they home steded on the Geatnue rivers shore above whare Andy and Emley left it.  They rased nine boys and six girls.  The youngest was a little fellow Three feet 1/3 high  He played in Mut and Jeff for many years**.

I had two brothers older then I  Andy Philep and Patick James  Andy is a steam Enginer living in Otawa and P. J. a Electrician in Farebanks Alaske.  Younger then I there was Bill and Ed  Bill is a Gov. trapper at polson in Montan  Ed is a retired solder living at Vancover B.C.

Two sisters  younger then I Stasa living in Spokane Washington Marie gone to a better world.

Stage Creek Valley was a buetifull plase in the sommer hundreds of birds every whare Fur bearing animals in the water and on the hills.  Trees of every kind wild red and choke cherries red and black rose berries Buternut trees on the hill butternuts are about the size of walnuts we used to gather sacks of them and put them upstairs to dry out.

The winters ware something else   Snow started to fall in October and we had about two feet by Christmass in January the road left the fences and went across the fields put on your snow shoes if you wanted to leave the beaten path.   Fuebery puff and blow fill up every hole with snow.

The men had worked out a fine system they tuck the horses to the lumber camps in December and came back in March  The women faught the snow all winter shoveling roads to get cattle and horses to water melting snow for water in the house and packing in wood.

We moved from StagsBurn to a rented plase in 95 stayed there a year and then movet to Poltimore  About 40 miles from Ottawa on the north side of the Gateneu river.

Dads place there was a mile long and half a mile wide with a creek running down the length of it.  One side of the creek was level farm land.  The other a long ridge covered with tember.   Hundreds of big maple trees for making maple sugar.

Left the Poltimore plase in 1906 came to Deluth Minn.  Moved from ther in July to Columbus N.D. From N.D. the next May to the Sun River Reclemation project near Great falls Mont.  Moved in December 1908 to Somers Mont.  From Sommers to St. Ignatius in March of 1909.

Worked as carpenter foreman in Sun River and first year in the Flathead Started running independent camps spring of 1910  Put in the Concrete for Nine Pipe Dam.  And small structures around Charlo.  1911 Kicking Horse Headworks and drops.

1912 structures west of Pabalo 1813 structures on Polson Ditch North west of Pabalo and Moese. 

14 concrete at the Dixion Agency and Moved to Helena to put up a buildeing for a contracter  15 Part of the year in Helena.  Part time for a Contracter small structures south of Nine Pipe.  16 put in trusel for wood pipe across Jocko River.

Started work on Dasate ditch.  17 structures on Dasaty ditch and North of St. Ignatius.  18 put in structures north west of Charlo and started a Gerage in Charlo

Now you fellows can take it from here.

T. M. McDonald

*The comment about Andy and Emily meeting on a ship as they came from Ireland and Scotland was a story passed down with a slight error.  Emily was actually born in Canada and did not come over on a ship.  The story would more correctly fit her parents, Thomas Wrath, who came from Ireland on a ship, and may have met his future wife, Mary Gelimer (who was born in Scotland) and who also came over on a ship.  So the story is probably correct, but applied to the wrong couple.

**“Mutt & Jeff” was an on-stage comedy routine involving a midget.  With Tom’s uncle, Jerry Sullivan, being a midget himself, he made a living acting in that roll on stage.  Also, the family name for his maternal grandparents seemed to be “Sullivan” rather than “O’Sullivan”. 

***Tom does not account for all of his Aunts correctly, but some of them had married and moved away before he knew them.  He had two Aunts (Catherine & Mary) who each married Cahill brothers and moved away.  See the family group record for a full account of this family.

          Tom’s spelling is not always “correct” as we spell words today.  Lest we become critical, most people in those days were not always consistent with the way they spelled words.  Additionally, Tom had very little education and was primarily self-taught.  As such, his record here is extremely valuable to all of us as is.