NEIL A. McGEACHY, a
successful farmer and dairyman of Harwich
township, residing on Lot 3, Concession 3, was
born in that township on the same Concession,
December 1st, 1844, a son of John and Flora (McNauten)
McGeachy, old pioneers of the county.
John McGeachy was
born in Scotland in 1800, a son of Neil
McGeachy, who died in Scotland. Flora
McNaughten was a daughter of John and Johanna
McNaughten, who came to Harwich township from
Scotland and settled on Lot 10 about 1838. Neil
McGeachy had three daughters, Margaret, who
married Peter Longwell, and is now deceased;
Catherine, who married Peter McKerrell, and
settled in Chatham township; and Mary, who
married Edward McTaggert, and settled in
Virginia, where she died leaving two sons, of
whom Edward McTaggert is now a resident of the
State of Washington, and Archibald lives on the
old homestead in Virginia.
John McGeachy and
his wife were reared and married in Scotland,
and in 1840 came to Canada via New York on a
sailing-vessel, the trip taking six weeks. They
settled in the dense forests of the County of
Kent and suffered all the hardships incident to
pioneer life, but by steadfast industry they
brought peace and plenty out of the wilderness
and became very prominent people in their
locality. John McGeachy died at his home in
1862, and his wife survived him until 1898.
Both were founders and consistent members of the
St Andrew Presbyterian Church of Chatham.
Politically Mr. McGeachy was a Reformer, but he
never aspired to municipal office.
John and Flora
McGeachy had eight children, and Mr. McGeachy
had three children by a former marriage,
namely: Mary, the widow of Robert Duff, of
Chatham; and Anna and Jennett, both deceased.
The children born to the second marriage were as
follows: John born in Scotland, is unmarried
and lives at Chatham; Jane, born in Scotland,
married the late D.W. Huff, of Dresden, Ontario,
and died leaving no family; Catherine, born in
Harwich township, is unmarried and lives in
Chatham; Duncan and Neil A. are twins; the
former married Mary Huff, of Harwich, is a
farmer of Howard township and has four children,
Arthur, Edwin, Jennie and Agnes; Daniel died in
young manhood; Flora, born in Harwich township
in 1850, married Albert Fields, resides in
Harwich township and has four children, Grace,
Victoria, Stanley and Nellie; Peter, born in the
homestead in 1854, still makes his home there,
and he married Isabella Bradford, of Canada
(they have no children).
Neil A. McGeachy,
like all of the family was educated in the
common schools of Harwich township, and learned
farming on the old homestead, where he remained
until his marriage, in 1874, to Miss Agnes E.
Everett, daughter of William and Jane Everett,
prominent pioneers of the County of Kent. Mrs.
McGeachy was born in January, 1842, at her
father's homestead. After their marriage Mr.
and Mrs. McGeachy settled on Lot 12, Harwich
township, but after a year purchased 200 acres
in Thamesville, on which he erected a large
brick house and made many improvements; in 1889,
however, he sold this property and purchased a
$13,000 farm in Harwich township, known as the
Indian Creek farm, and there he and his family
In addition tohis
other interests he has long been one of the
leading dairymen of Chatham, having thirty-five
cows, and carrying on all of the business
according to the newest and best methods, and he
owns much valuable farm and dairy machinery.
His cattle are short horn thorough breeds. He
has been very successful, and his prosperity has
been acquired through intelligent effort, hard
work and good management.
Four children have
been born to Mr. and Mrs. McGeachy, two of them
dying in childhood. William A., born in 1875,
was graduated from the high school and business
college of Chatham, and is at present manager of
the Fruit Growers' Association, holding full
direction in the Northwest. John A., born in
1879, was educated in Chatham, and is unmarried,
residing at the homestead. Religiously Mr. and
Mrs. McGeachy are members of St. Andrew's
Presbyterian Church at Chatham, of which he is
one of the elders, and in which both are very
prominent factors. Politically Mr. McGeachy is
an Independent, and served as a member of the
board of trustees for a number of years. He is
also one of the trustees of the Fruit Growers'
Association of Harwich township.
p. 309, 310