On October 1st, 1854 in Sussex, England Walter Dicks was born. He was the 3rd son born to Thomas Dicks and Mary Ann Kirby, who went on to have a total of 11 children born in both England and Canada.
At the age of 16, Walter arrived with his father in Quebec City, Quebec on the S/S Nestorian. There is not much known about his young life, his father, Thomas was a bricklayer and he worked on the Parliament Buildings in Ottawa.
Just 5 short years later, at the young age of 21, Walter Dicks married Caroline Beach of Beachburg, Ontario. It was April 29, 1876.
Less than a year later, their first daughter, Mary Jane Dicks was born. The next few years brought 7 more children, including my Great-Grandmother, Annie Dicks.
In 1881, Walter joined the Ottawa Police Department. This is a picture that I got from the Canada Archives, showing a dashing young man in his uniform.
Sgt Walter Dicks
An interesting story that was in a letter from Annie Dicks’ husband, Robert Rutledge is that in 1901 when the then Royal highnesses, the Duke and Duchess of Cornwall and York (who became King George and Queen Mary) toured in Ottawa, Walter Dicks was one of the honour Guard. The letter goes on to say that when the Royal Family came back again as the King and Queen, there were a number of photos that included the Duke and Duchess as well as Walter. Sadly, I have written to both the Ottawa Archives and the Royal Archives in England and have not been able to get copies of these photos.
Most of the information that I have on Walter has come from the article in the paper upon his death on September 17, 1918. Sadly, he died alone in his house after his wife Caroline had gone out to buy things to ship to their son, Walter who was deployed overseas.
The article talks about his long service with the Ottawa Police Department, but strangly when I tried to find out more information about him, they had no records or said they had no records about him. But I have a couple of newspaper accounts:
I have to wonder about what happened that the Police Department and a person who wrote a book about the 100 Years of the Ottawa Police Department, would have no knowledge of him.
Finally, he was a Mason and a member of the Fidelity Lodge. He was buried in Beechwood Cemetery, Ottawa with full Mason Honours. There is a huge headstone, that one day, God willing, I will be able to visit and lay flowers for him and the rest of the family that is buried there.
This is his memorial, Walter Dicks It is there that you can read the article that was written about him.