Biography of Adam Bowlby

Adam Bowlby, a resident of this Province since 1815, dates his birth in Wilmot, county Annapolis, Nova Scotia, March 29, 1792. His father, Richard Bowlby, a native of New Jersey, was a U. E. loyalist, and a volunteer for a short time during the rebellion of the American colonies, and was a captain in the war of 1812-14. His grandfather was from Nottinghamshire, England, and his mother from Sheffield. Adam received a common English education; came to Upper Canada in 1815 against his father’s wishes, who, under the circumstances, would render the son no assistance. He made his home two or three years with his uncle, Thomas Bowlby, in Norfolk county; took up land on lake Erie, two miles from Otter Creek, doing settler’s duties on it; traded it for land at Windham, which he subsequently disposed of; and bought 450 acres in Townsend, where he lived for twenty-one years, adding to his land from time to time, until he had between 2,000 and:3,000 acres, and was richer than his father. He served as magistrate and district councilor several years; was orderly sergeant under his father in 1812-14, and Captain of the Waterford company during the rebellion of 1837-38.

About 1844 Mr. Bowlby gave his property in Townsend largely to his second son, the only farmer in the family, and his only daughter; removed to Waterford, same county, and bought fifty acres of land adjoining the village, disposing of it some years afterwards, giving most of it to his sons. He was for seventeen consecutive years treasurer of a masonic lodge, in the county of Norfolk.

Of late years Mr. Bowlby has lived with his children, first one and then another. The climate at Berlin agrees with him best, and it is not unlikely that he may end his days here. He is approaching his 90th year, and does not like to travel. He is slightly deaf, yet clear headed for a man of his years, and quite interesting in conversation. He was placed in independent circumstances years ago.
His wife, whom he chose in 1819, and who was Elizabeth Sovereign, from New Jersey, died in 1866, leaving six children, all well settled. Alfred, the eldest son, is a physician and

surgeon at Waterford; William has the old homestead at Townsend; David Sovereign, is a physician and surgeon in Berlin; Ward Hamilton is a barrister, and LL.B., and county attorney and clerk of the peace for Waterloo; John Wedgewood, is a barrister and LL.B., at Brantford, and Mary Ursula is the wife of Col. Walker Powell, of Ottawa, Adjutant-General of the Dominion of Canada.

MLA Source Citation:

The Canadian Biographical Dictionary and Portrait Gallery of Eminent and Self Made Men, Ontario, Volume 1. Toronto: Toronto American Biographical Pub. Co. 1880. Web. 1 February 2015. - Last updated on Aug 6th, 2012


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