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authority records
Person Communications

McEwen, Margaret

  • MS 137
  • Person
  • 1922-1981

Margaret Ivy McEwen was born July 11, 1922 to George and Daisy McEwen and raised on a small farm in Grindrod, B.C. Her parents had two more children, Donald and Duncan. When Margaret was six years old, her mother, Daisy, was pregnant with a fourth child and suddenly died. Margaret’s bother Donald McEwen wrote about the tragedy.

“Dad had a job rafting cedar poles from Enderby to Mara for the piling for the bridge. He wasn’t able to get home until late. Mom went to get the cows pasturing...... She had difficulty with them, and tripped in a gopher hole and fell. She was expecting another child, had complications and passed away.” (Oct. 21, 1928)

“In May of 1929 our Aunt Ivy came from [Hampstead, London] England to look after the family. They were married within six months.”

George and Ivy married on August 19, 1929 in Vernon, B.C. and by all accounts Ivy was a loving mother to the three children. Ivy passed away in 1948 and George passed away in 1972.

Margaret attended the school of nursing at Royal Jubilee Hospital in Victoria in 1942 and graduated in 1944. She found work at the Royal Alexandra Hospital in Edmonton, but took a six month leave to nurse her stepmother who was failing. At that time Margaret met Robert (Bob) Douglas Jackson from the Mt. Ida District, Salmon Arm, and the couple were married May 18, 1948. The Jacksons had five children: Barbara, Margaret Elizabeth (Betty), Douglas Ian, and twins Garth and Gordon. All the children were born at the Royal Inland Hospital in Kamloops. Gordon and Garth were premature and Gordon passed away at the age of one month.

While raising her family and working on the farm, Margaret continued to nurse, initially providing homecare to people who needed help. Soon she was asked to come in to work in the hospital when extra help was needed. This became a full time job that she enjoyed. Margaret Jackson died February 26, 2011. Robert (Bob) died December 18, 1990.

Herald, Dr. Dundas

  • MS 140
  • Person
  • 1870-1951

Dr. Dundas Herald, son of Rev. James Herald, was born at Dundas, Ontario in 1870 and was awarded his medical degree at Queen’s University in 1891. Dundas and his brother Wilson registered with the BC College of Physicians within the year. Both brothers practiced in Vancouver before Wilson moved to Ashcroft, BC and Dundas moved to Quesnelle Forks in the Cariboo. After 1901 the brothers established a cattle ranch at Medicine Hat, Alberta.

In 1905 Dundas married Edith Phyllis Grant and their children Jessie Edith (1905 ) and James Barclay [Buster] (1907) were born in Medicine Hat. A third child, Arthur Dundas, was born in Salmon Arm in 1909.

Edith Phyllis Grant was born October 18, 1875 to Joseph and Anne Grant (nee Schroder) at Corona, Ontario. Her family moved to Walsh, Alberta in 1900 to ranch.

In 1906 the Heralds purchased “Bonny Bray” a 160-acre farm and home from John Reinecker near Sunnybrae and moved to the Shuswap. Dundas Herald never practiced medicine in the Shuswap.

The Heralds lived in isolation. Children Buster, Arthur, and Jessie were educated by their father at home and without the guidance of a school curriculum.

The family raised Jersey cows and took their milk across the lake every two or three days. They also made butter for sale – 70 to 80 pounds a week. Power for churning the cream into butter was provided by a water wheel. The Herald family picked and shipped cherries and raspberries for a few years, but gave that up and concentrated their efforts growing hay.

Dundas Herald died in 1951 and was survived by his wife and children. Their Sunnybrae property was sold to the provincial government and became a park in 1975.

Gordon Priestman

  • MS 146
  • Person
  • 1936-2003

According to his obituary, long time Salmon Arm Observer editor Gordon (Gord) Priestman was born, August 4, 1936, and raised in Toronto and Muskoka, Ont.

After completing his education, Gordon travelled in industrial sales for several years, freelance writing as a sideline. In 1964 he moved to British Columbia and, after a brief stay in Vancouver, accepted a post as reporter/editor for the Merritt Herald. A year-and-a-half later he became editor of the Powell River News in addition to two smaller papers.

The family moved to Salmon Arm April 1, 1967 when Gordon became editor of the Salmon Arm Observer, a position he was to hold for most of the next 33 years. During that period his column, “Observations,” was a popular feature and both the paper and Gordon were recipients of a number of newspaper industry awards.

A lifelong Social Democrat, he took a leave of absence to run for the NDP Party in the 1986 provincial election. He then returned to the Observer, retiring for health reasons in December 1998.

Gordon was always interested in the arts—writing, music and painting. He loved the outdoors, including camping, canoeing and observing nature. Until middle years he was active in a number of sports. He was involved with numerous local organizations, was a member of the Salmar Community Association, was a life member of the Fall Fair Society and a director of the Shuswap Community Foundation.

Gordon died August 4, 2003. He was survived by Faye Fawcett, his wife and companion of 19 years, his three children and his beloved pets.