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Fallbrook Farm Heritage Site
Update 52



Photos-Courtesy of Jim Kirkwood

(Long-time member of Burns Presbyterian Church, Erin)

Peacefully, with family by her side on Monday, November 15, 2010. Ada Thompson of Erin in her 85th year Beloved wife of the late Raymond (R.B.) Kirkwood (1961). Loving mother of Bob Kirkwood (Margot), Heather McLellan, and Bonnie Peavoy (Ed) all of Erin. Cherished grandma of Raymond, Kelly and Josai. Dear sister of Anne Fowler of Brampton. Also survived by her niece Grace Farrow and nephew Gord Fowler. Ada will be sadly missed by all her family and friends. (Obituary Notice, Butcher Funeral Home)

Ada Kirkwood was the keeper of the watch. She was of the fourth generation of the Ballinafad pioneers and had been very active in the Women’s Institute and instrumental in recording and preserving the pioneer history of the Fad. She was the keeper of the original books which constitute the Tweedsmuir histories. Mrs. Kirkwood was a major contributor to the oral history project and the above picture was taken in August of 2009 during the taping of the initial interviews. In her own presentation, she spoke of the old stories with a charm and dignity which warmed our hearts. The picture clearly depicts her special light. Some selected quotes from her interview-

``My full name is Sarah Ada....Sarah with an H; my maiden name was Thompson...with a P. ``(than her wonderful laugh)

``My great grandfather Thompson (b.1813, d.1896, buried in Providence Cemetery) was a blacksmith, and he was in Ballinafad, having come from Ireland in 1820. They had been shipwrecked off of Newfoundland. In 1838 he bought a farm on the 6th line where the redbrick house is on the hill. That is where my grandfather was brought up. The children emigrated under the responsibility of their older brother. The parents stayed in Ireland ``

``My grandfather was one of the temperance men. At the same time, there were three hotels and lots of stills``

``My family was always strong on building churches, including White Church and the churches in the Fad and Erin.``

``The Women’s Institute was a social event and supported the 4H.Also a great place to learn and do crafts, cooking and gardening``

Mrs. Kirkwood had researched and meticulously documented her community history. Her stories have a solid factual base. She cited them with the skill of an accomplished storyteller. Her contribution will be incorporated in Joan Kadoke,s work. Her interview will become available on our website as the oral history is reproduced. In the meantime, you can learn more about her by linking to the Tweedsmuir Histories at the incredible site of the Wellington County Museum You can also go to the Georgetown Library and search the collection of the Esquesing Historical Society

Here we see Mrs. Kirkwood studying documents with Alan and Nancy Kirkwood, Fad historians and storytellers of their own, during the oral history interviews in august of 2009 at the Ballinafad United Church.

We, of the North Halton Celtic Historical Society and the Oral History Project, wish to express our sincere condolences to her family. Her life and her contribution as keeper of the watch will ensure that her light, laughter and warmth remain with us and will help to educate future generations. Thank you, Ada Sarah Kirkwood

Providence Cemetery at Ballinafad where her great grandparents are buried. Mrs. Kirkwood is resting in the Erin Cemetery

You can also listen to an audio interview in mp3 format here (36Mb)

You can also read about Ada in the Tweedsmuir histories at

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