Arthur Green

James Arthur Green was my great-uncle, brother of Alice Annie Green, my grandmother (who married Gordon Barber). His parents were James Green and Ann Elizabeth Wilson. Arthur was born 12 January 1888 at Cowesby, Yorkshire and died in Guelph, Ontario, Canada on the 15th of November 1962.

It appears from the picture that Arthur was quite a horseman. The dog seems more interested in something or someone else.

The James Green family, prior to removing to Canada in 1906, rented from Sir Charles Strickland at ‘Welburn Lane Farm,’ Huttons Ambo (High Hutton actually), just west of Malton in the North Riding of Yorkshire. The picture above was taken at this farm.

My father and I visited here in the late 1980’s as did my eldest, Andrew, with me in the early 1990’s. The farm house was by then derelict and what buildings that remained used for hay and implement storage.

Arthur’s mother, Ann Elizabeth (Lizzie) Wilson Green, while living at Welburn Lane Farm, was next farm to her twin sister, Mary Jane Wilson Atkinson who, sadly died in 1900. The twins were born in 1856 at Cowl House, Bransdale. Mary Jane married William Atkinson of Bhonfield Ghyl, that farm situated on the road from Bransdale to Helmsley, near Carlton.

In Canada, Arthur married a Scottish lady, Elizabeth Neven Thomson who was born about 1896 in Glasgow and died in Ontario. They farmed on Whitelaw Road in Guelph Township where Arthur had a milk route as well.




School, Huttons Ambo, Yorkshire


When living at  Welburn Lane Farm, the younger Green children attended the primary school at Huttons Ambo, the name for two little conjoined hamlets at High and Low Hutton, just west of Malton, in Yorkshire’s North Riding.

The headmaster (top right) and one whom I believe was a teaching assistant (left) look quite stern and the children looked relatively subdued, even frightened or angry. Perhaps they have been severely reprimanded moments before the picture was taken for typical school child antics and ‘misbehaviour.’ Perhaps, they simply found the whole experience new and frightening.

There are three Green children present in the picture. My Grandmother, Alice Annie (Green) Barber (born 1890) is next two the two boys in the second row (right). She has a wee scowl for some reason.

Annie’s brothers are in rows above. Arthur (born in 1888) is just to the left of the middle boy (top back) and Tom (born in 1889) is immediately below and a little to the viewer’s right of the same lad. (Both have a little mark on their left collar, by which my Grandmother had indicated which students are her brothers.)




Mary Jane Wilson Atkinson

Mary Jane Wilson was the twin sister of my great-great grandmother, Ann Elizabeth (Lizzie) Wilson Green. Daughters of Newark Wilson and Hannah (nee Wood), they were born at Cowl House, west Bransdale, 21 March 1856. An older brother, George, had been born in 1846.


Mary Jane died at the age of 43 on the 7th of January at Westerdale House farm, Huttons Ambo, NRY, England and was buried in St. Margaret’s Parish Church, Huttons Ambo. Daughter Mary (nicknamed Polly) had died shortly before, in the same year, and father and husband, William Atkinson, mourned sadly: – “I’ve lost me wife and me daughter – and I dunna know what I’m gonna do.”

When my father and I visited Yorkshire’s North Riding in the late 1980’s, we visited the Blue Ball pub in Malton. We had been directed there by cousin, Phyllis West, an Atkinson descendant who had informed us of relative Billy Wood’s proprietorship there, even though he was a tea-totaler. We went to check it out. On the wall, above our hearty pub meal, as I looked up and remarked suddenly and excitedly to my Dad, was a huge portrait that we instantly recognized. It was of Mary Jane Atkinson and must have about 3 feet X 2 feet in size. I recognized it because we had the smaller 2 X 4 in. portrait above that before her death had been left to my Dad by his mother in Canada.

I offered to purchase the pub portrait but the pub owner would not sell. ‘Where did you get it?’ I asked. He said it had been found along with many other pictures in the upstairs a and attic of the pub’s old and adjoining carriage house. Wandering through the several low, small rooms of the pub and looking at scores of ancient photos on the walls we could not help but wonder how many them were portraying our very own ancestors from decades – even a century or so, gone by. In a subsequent visit to Yorkshire, I returned to see Mary Jane at the Malton pub only to learn the establishment was under new management and that the prior owner had absconded without paying rent or bills, and removing and taking with him all of the old photos. I was not happy.

William Atkinson was from the remote Bhonfield Ghyl (various spellings) farm between Bransdale and Helmsley, near Carlton – the land stretching out and west towards Bilsdale where Atkinsons have lived for centuries. William and Mary Jane later moved from the Ghyl to farm at Westerdale House in Huttons Ambo, adjacent to Welburn Lane Farm where the Greens were to later join them, the latter farming there also before emigrating to Canada in 1906.


The children of William Atkinson and Mary Jane Wilson were:

Henry Atkinson 1877–1942

William Atkinson 1879–1957

Mary (Polly) Hannah Atkinson 1881–1900

Ann Elizabeth Atkinson 1884–1971

Alice Jane Atkinson 1887–1958



George Green Family


George Green and his wife Everina Dickson Drysdale with three of their children, likely the eldest: – Eva (centre), George William (left) and James Arthur (on his mother’s knee).

George William Green was born 23 June 1883 in Cowesby, Yorkshire, England and died
11 MAR 1962 at Carlisle, Ontario, Canada. He is buried in a cemetery on highway #6, just south of Freelton, ON.
Everina was born on the 11th of April 1889 in Victoria, British Columbia. George met her in Victoria where he served as a mounted policemen in the Victoria detachment. Everina died on the 12 of May 1982 in Ontario, Canada.
Children –
Eva Elizabeth Green 1910–1978
George Wm. Frank Green 1912
James Arthur Green 1916–2004
Edna Anna Green 1921–
Wesley Dickson Green
Robert Stanley Green
Alice Margaret Green
Norma Gertrude Green –1988
Alice Margaret Green –1988


Green Family, Guelph Township


This family setting was likely taken at the Green farm on Whitelaw Road, just west of Guelph, Ontario, in Guelph Township, perhaps about 1914.

Back row: Unknown (George Green?) (holding daughter Eva?), Unknown (perhaps Esther Richardson’s husband, James Hillis), James Green (hat), Annie Alice Green (Barber), Arthur Green, Gordon Barber

Front row: Ann Elizabeth (Lizzie) Wilson Green, Esther Green Richardson (elderly lady) and to her left, Esther Richardson (half-sister of James Green). The children are unknown.



Esther Green (Richardson)

This is poor photograph, but a close-up of a larger Green family photo, of Esther Green who was born at Rudland, Kirkbymoorside Parish, North Riding of Yorkshire, on the 20th of August 1835. She died on January 1st, 1917 in Guelph, Ontario, Canada.


Esther had a very difficult life, at least at its beginnings. She was the daughter of poor coal pit miners, like many of the Greens of that time, and lived at Moor Houses, Rudland. Her parents were James Green (1797 –  1854 and Sarah Ward (1805 – 1895).

As a young teenage she had to find a way of helping the family and would have gone to the local (Kirkbymoorside?) marketplace at the appointed time(s) of the year, looking to be employed as a servant girl or maid.

She was taken as a servant by the Moon family, then residing at Cowl House, Bransdale. The family was that of George Moon, a young widower. Without benefit of marriage (and perhaps she was ‘forced’), she became pregnant by George with James Green who was born at Moor Houses, Rudland, Kirkbymoorside Parish, 25 OCT 1857.

Subsequently, Esther married local west Bransdale farmer, Ralph Richardson (1839 – 1906). James Green her son was raised by a sister of Esther, Elizabeth (Betsey) – Mrs. Anthony Clarkson Dennis.

Ralph Richardson and Esther Green were married at Salton, NRY, a few miles south of the town of Kirkbymoorside, on the 23rd of October 1860. Shortly after, she and Ralph came to Canada (via Boston), as their eldest, Sarah Jane, was born there, 15 JAN 1860. The next daughter, Mary Ann was born in Ontario and then John R. (Ralph?) who was born in Nassagaweya Township, Halton County, Ontario

The family came next to Eden Mills, Eramosa Township, Wellington Co., Ontario, where Ralph was a ‘waggon-maker’ and blacksmith. Later the family resided in nearby Rockwood, Ontario, also in Eramosa Township.

Ralph and Esther Richardson are buried in the Presbyterian Church Cemetery at Eden Mills, Ontario.

Ralph and Esther (Green) Richardson’s children were:

Sarah Jane Richardson 1860–1952

Mary Ann (Annie) Richardson 1863–

John R Richardson 1865–

Mary Ann (Annie) Richardson 1867–1936

Esther Richardson 1869–1953

Elizabeth Richardson 1872–1895

William Ralph Richardson 1874–1888



A Wee Girl on a Sad Day

Here is my father’s mother – Alice Annie Green standing by the graves of her grandparents, in England in 1896. Annie was born in 1890 at Cowesby, North Riding of Yorkshire, where her father James worked as ‘a hosteler’ (he looked after horses) on the Cowesby Estate.


I think the photo captures a visit back to Bransdale at the time of her grandmother’s funeral and burial. The photo is taken high in the ancient, quiet cemetery grounds of St. Nicholas chapel, Cuckan, Bransdale.

St. Nicholas was a chapelry of Kirkbymoorside parish in the North Riding of Yorkshire. This little church provided a place of meeting and worship, and intermittent sacrament reception, as the remote dale was situated some distance from Kirkbymoorside and Helmsley, towns to the south.

Less than a mile south in West Bransdale was Cowl House where Newark Wilson (1819-1890) and his wife Hannah (Wood)(1819-1896) farmed for many years. Formerly, it belonged to Green relatives, the Moon family. Newark was also a blacksmith and though born in Housyke, NRY and marrying Hannah in Whitby, they had started their life in the dale with his working at the Brandale Mill of Sir William Strickland.

Annie came with her family to Canada, on the SS Canada, in 1906. They settled first in Winnipeg where she worked for a number of years with the T. Easton Company before the family removed to a Whitelaw Road farm in Guelph Township, where she met and married Gordon Barber whose father owned a nearby 100 acre farm, at the corner of Whitelaw and Paisley Roads.

James Green Family

Though Newark and George had come earlier and helped to build the railway in western Canada,  James and Elizabeth Green brought the rest of their family in 1906. traveling 3rd Class on the SS Canada.

They settled first in Winnipeg before removing to Guelph Township, Wellington County, Ontario.

(back l-r) Newark, George, Arthur, Tom (front l-r) Annie Alice, Elizabeth, James