Henderson, David, Mrs. (née Alison Christie)
appeared in Acton Free Press (Acton, ON), 26 Nov 1914, p. 3, column 3
- Full Text
TRAGIC DEATH OF MRS. DAVID
The Wife of the Venerable States-
man of this County Called
SHE WAS UNIVERSALLY LOVED
The terribly sudden death of Mrs. David Henderson, wife of David Henderson, M.P., at the family residence, Bower Avenue, last Friday, brought keen feelings of sorrow and personal loss to many hearts in Acton and elsewhere. During the forenoon Mrs. Henderson had been engaged in some light household duties and about eleven o'clock stepped out on the front balcony to shake a small rag. It is surmised that as she approached the railing her feet slipped on the newly fallen snow and she was precipitated headlong over the ledge to the cement pavement fifteen feet below. The impact caused fracture of the skull and death was instantaneous. The accident was not witnessed by anyone, but Mrs. Blair, a neighbor, saw Mrs. Henderson lying on the ground and hurried to her. Neighbors tenderly lifted her and carried her into the house. The family physician was summoned but the spirit of life had fled. Mr. Henderson, who was sitting reading in the house, was unaware of the occurrence until the neighbors came in.
Mrs. Henderson, though in her seventy-third year, was in the enjoyment of excellent health. She and Mr. Henderson had just returned the previous week from a trip to Winnipeg after visiting the members of the family resident there. When leaving for home the natural query of Mrs. Henderson was "When will we expect you home on a visit?" "Oh," replied Mr. John A. Henderson, the eldest son, "We'll all be home for Christmas next year to celebrate the golden wedding of yourself and father."
The maiden name of Mrs. Henderson was Alison Christie. She was a daughter of the late Charles Christie, and was born on her father's farm at Kelso in Nassagaweya, seventy-three years ago. It is an interesting co-incidence that her father and mother and Mr. Henderson's father and mother left the lowlands of Scotland in the thirties of last century and settled on farms in this county within two miles of each other. Both these farms are still held by descendants of the original owners. Mr. and Mrs. Henderson were married forty nine years ago the coming Christmas. For some half a dozen years they resided in Milton, where Mr. Henderson was Deputy Registrar of Deeds. In 1871 Mr. Henderson and Mr. D. D. Christie, his brother-in-law, formed a partnership and purchased the mercantile business of the late Charles Symons, Acton, who was about to remove to Parry Sound. They removed to Acton and for forty-three years this has been their home. Six sons and one daughter were born to them, five of the sons having Acton as their birthplace. Of these the following survive: John A. and Mrs. (Dr.) McKeague, Winnipeg; Charles C. and Milton are residents of Acton, and Thomas D. is now at Beachville, Manager of the Standard White Lime Co. The death of Gordon, who was manager of the Bank of Hamilton at Aberdeen, Sask., occurred on the 20th November, 1907, exactly seven years before his mother. Mrs. Henderson's surviving brother and sisters are: D. D. Christie, Guelph; Mrs. James Allan, Toronto; Mrs. Finlay McGibbon, Sarnia, and Mrs. Christopher Dempsey, Saginaw, Mich.
Mrs. Henderson was a woman beloved everywhere. She was an elect lady of many excellencies. She was a devoted wife, a true mother, a kind and affectionate neighbor, a sterling Christian character and constant worker in those enterprises calculated for the betterment of mankind spritually and materially. The whole community pays affectionate tribute to her memory. Knox Church loses its leading lady worker, and its pastor one of his most loyal supporters. Her home was her first consideration and her family naturally leaned upon her. Her aged husband will feel his sore bereavement most keenly. To him she was a most valuable helpmeet. In fact to her wifely care and consideration for his personal comfort and health is largely due the success of his parliamentary career. For years she has accompanied him to Ottawa and remained with him throughout the sessions. And at the Capital she was beloved as elsewhere. Never before has the death of a lady in Acton called forth such wide-spread manifestations of sympathy. Letters and telegrams from Cabinet Ministers and members of both houses have reached Mr. Henderson during the week from all parts of the Dominion.
In the Red Cross and patriotic movements organized here since the outbreak of the war Mrs. Henderson was most active as she has ever been in all good work.
The funeral on Monday afternoon was a very large and representative gathering. A private service was held at the residence at two o'clock and at two-thirty the cortege proceeded to Knox Church where a beautiful memorial service was conducted by the Rev. J. C. Wilson, B.A., who for eleven years has been the pastor of deceased. He was assisted by Rev. C. D. Draper of the Methodist Church, and Rev. S. Howarth, of the Baptist Church. In tender and comforting words Rev. Mr. Wilson addressed a very fitting discourse to the large audience assembled. He dwelt upon the divine rewards promised "To him that overcometh," and concluded with a loving eulogy of the deceased. Miss Laura Akins sang very sweetly "Sleep on Beloved."
The remains were borne to the grave by Judge Elliott and Registrar McClennahan, of Milton, Warden Hynds, Elders Camerson and Kennedy and Mr. A. E. Nicklin, J.P.
It was pathetic to witness the silent tear dropped by so many as the hundreds of citizens and visitors passed the casket for a final view of the sweet face of the departed at the close of the service in the church
But the grave of those we loved, what a place for meditation. There it is that we call up in review the long history of virtue and gentleness and the thousand endearments lavished upon family and friends in the daily intercourse of intimacy. There it is we dwell upon the tenderness, the solemn, loving tenderness of the departed. Then weave the chaplet of flowers and strew the beauties of nature about the grave, console the broken spirit, if thou cans't, with those tender yet futile tributes of regret and respect.
O Faithful God! O pitying Heart,
Whose goodness hath no end;
We know this cross with all its smart,
They hand alone doth send!
Yes, Lord, we know it is thy love,
Not wrath or hatred bids us prove,
The load 'neath which we bend.
O thou, who did'st to give us life,
Full well to thee is known
The cross, and all the inner strife,
Of those who weep alone,
And 'neath their burden, well nigh faint
The aching heart's unspoken 'plaint
Finds echo in thine own.
The following relatives and friends from a distance attended the funeral: Mr. John A. Henderson and Mrs. (Dr.) McKeague, Winnipeg; Mr. Thos. D. Henderson, Beachville; Mr. and Mrs. D. D. Christie, Guelph; Mrs. F. McGibbon, Sarnia; Mrs. Jas. Allan, Toronto; Mr. and Mrs. W. P. Gamble, Guelph; Mr. Chas. McGibbon, Penetanguishene; Messrs. John, James and Peter McGibbon, and Miss McIbbon, Sarnia; Mr. and Mrs. Ed. Clement, Berlin; Mrs. John Lamb, Toronto; Mrs. Thos. Christie and Mr. Chas. R. Christie, Toronto; Mr. John Henderson, Milton; Mrs. Andrew Henderson, Nelson; Mrs. (Rev.) J. W. Rae, Toronto; Miss Alice McKeague, Toronto; Mrs. H. B. Henderson, Georgetown; Mr. S. A. Armstrong, Toronto; Messrs. J. P. Allan and Chas. Allan, Brampton; Mr. Wm. Shields, Milton; Mr. and Mrs. Geo. Agnew, Nelson; Judge McGibbon and R. Blain, M.P., Brampton; R. D. Warren, Dr. A. C. Warren, John M. Warren, J. B. McLeod and Miss Josephine Ahern, Toronto; Ex-Mayor R. E. Nelson, Ex-Mayor Jno. Kennedy, Dr. Lowry, Darius Wardell, Miss Lindsay, Mrs. (Dr.) Dryden, Mrs. W. Knowles, Guelph; Roy Brooks and Joseph Wood, Eramosa; Jno Bingham, J. A. Tracy, R. C. McCulloch, Councillors Jno. and Cleave and Thomas Chisholm, Esquesing; Mr. and Mrs. Jno. McDiarmid, Dr. Nixon, M.P.P., Mayor Grant, H. P. Lawson, Reeve Fleck, Ex-Reeve J. M. Moore, Samuel Worden, J. A. Willoughby, S. H. McGibbon, J. J. Gibbons, Everet Cole, Georgetown; James Newton, Limehouse; Sheriff Webster, David Hutcheon, Crown Attorney Dick, Reeve Little, R. L. Hemstreet, John Irivng, D. S. Robertson, Jno. McCannell, Bradford Clements, W. F. Dewar, James Alexander, W. N. Scott, Walter L. Elliott, Inspector Denyes, George Andrew, Milton; Reeve Smith, Burlington; Capt. Felan, Inspector Ferrah, W. A. Davis, Ex-Mayor Hillmer J. Doty, Oakville; Marshall Holmes, Reeve Campbell, Nassagaweya, Mrs. James Ryder, Chas. Allan, Toronto.
The floral tributes were numerous and included the following: Pillow,the family; Wreath, Knox Church Session; Crysanthemums, Ladies' Aid Society; Wreath, Women's Foreign Missionary Society; Wreath, Walker Lodge A.F. and A.M., Crysanthemums, Acton Women's Institute; Wreath, Halton Conservative Association; Spray, Executive of the Epworth League; and wreaths and sprays from the following: Mr. and Mrs. D. D. Christie, Mrs. McCallum, Mrs. Thomas Christie, Mrs. H. B. Henderson and children, Rev. and Mrs. J. C. Wilson, Mrs. C. S. Smith, Dr. and Mrs. Nixon, Mr. Walter D. Beardsmore, Mrs. H. B. McCarthy, Mr. and Mrs. Jno. Holmes, Mr. and Mrs. J. L. Warren, Mrs. Bishop, Reeve and Mrs. Fleck, Miss Margaret Kenneally, Sudbury, Mrs. Christilaw and Miss B. Shields, Blind River.
[note - a photograph of Mrs. Henderson is included in the obituary]
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- 26 Nov 1914
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