Percy Compton

Percy Compton was the older brother of my Grandmother, Gladys Compton Rutledge.

Percy was born on 17th of July, 1890 in Ripon, Yorkshire, England. He was the first born child/son of Charles Compton and Susannah Winter.

On 13 Mar 1911, Percy married Emma Atkinson in Ripon, Yorkshire, England.

Percy was a saddle & boot maker in the years before WWI. He and Emma had a son while she was still living with him in England. Sadly, Emma and Walter George left Percy in England and went to Canada with her Mother-in-Law and arriving on 24 Jun 1916 in Quebec, Canada.

Percy had joined the Service just a month before on May 16, 1916. He was in the Royal Regiment of Artillery. What is interesting is that he is listed as having 2 children but according to the paperwork, his daughter was born in December of 1916 — but if he joined in May, how is the possible to show her already born?

Was Emma pregnant when she left England and had Marjorie in Canada or is the date on his paperwork wrong?

This is the only photo I have of him, I received it from his Grandson, Robert Compton.

Percy Compton

During WWI, he lost his only brothers — Harold was killed in Action in November 1916 and then Charles Duncan was killed in Action at Vimy Ridge on April 4, 1917.

I can imagine the joy in my Great-Grandparents hearts when on 03 Jun 1919 that Percy arrived home in Montreal, Quebec and then headed home to Toronto.

Once back, the small family continued to live in Ontario, but sadly Percy and Emma divorced. It is not known what happened to her but it is believed that she moved away, remarried and possibly had more children.

When the family moved to BC, Percy came along and at some point married Constance Lena Hood. My Dad referred to them as Uncle Percy and Auntie Connie. According to records, they lived not far from my Dad and his family, at 3125 Rumble Street in Burnaby, BC. The house does not exist now but was close to Boundary Road which is the divide between Vancouver and Burnaby, BC.

Uncle Percy passed away in 1948 and when I got his death registration, the date of his birth is 1898 but his headstone says 1890 as does his military papers. I was a little surprised when I read in the paperwork that it says he died in Oakalla Prison Farm !!!! Oh my God, what was he in for?? How long had he been in there?? I was shocked and didn’t know what to do.

So, I phoned my Dad. We talked for a little bit but how do you ask your Dad if his Uncle was a prisoner. So I mentioned that I had gotten the Death Registration for Percy so that I could find where he was buried. My Dad is like yes. Umm, Dad, why did he die in Oakalla? Silence then laughing my Dad says “Nothing bad” Does the registration say anything about his work? Yes, he is listed as a shoe maker. That is it — he was a shoe maker and teacher of the prisoners — teaching them how to make shoes. Nothing bad — he went home everyday, except the day he died.

The story goes that he was at work, it was lunch time. He was sitting with his workmates and when it came time to go back to work, he was dead. He had a major heart attack and no one noticed.

Obituary

This is his headstone, which is located inbetween his Mom and later, his sister (my Grandma)

Headstone

I don’t want to end this on a sad note so I will tell a story that my Dad told me about his Uncle Percy.

Apparently, Percy was in a Marching Band. He like to practice his instrument and his marching by walking up and down the rows of his raspberry patch in his backyard. He liked to do this on Saturday mornings.

Sounds ok, right?? Except his instrument was, ready for this one — Bagpipes!!!

I can just picture it — a grown man, former soldier, teacher, etc walking in the raspberry patch early on a Saturday morning playing the bagpipes!!!!

That is my family!!!!

Anton Lennart Snabb

This is a story about my Great Uncle.

Anton was the 2nd son, 5th child of Johannes Snabb and Lena Forsman. He was born on the 8th of February 1903 in Björköby, Finland. He was the older brother of my Grandmother, Edit Amanda Snabb.

There is no one that can tell me about his life in Finland but on June 6th, 1927 he left for Australia. The following is the record of his leaving:

June 06, 1927

Passenger Records:
Last name: Snabb
First names: Anton
Age or age group: 24
Port of departure: Hanko
Place of destination: Sydney
State of destination: NSW
Country of destination: AUS
Price of ticket: GBP 40
Ship from Finland: Arcturus
Date of departure from Finland: 15.06.1927
Ship from England: Osterley
Date of departure from England: 25.06.1927
Ocean Line: Orient Line
Port of departure in England *
List and page 131/10
Remarks Vaasa!

Register of Australian Finns:
Last name: Snabb
First names: Anton Lennart
Naturalization –
Date of birth: 1903
Birth place: Raippaluoto
Birth province: Vaasan
Date of arrival to Australia: 1927
Marital status –
Wife/husband –
Address in Australia –
Occupation in Australia –
English proficiency –
Travel route / ship –
Places of residence in Australia –
Consulate’s register # 1251/17.1.1928
Consulate’s register number –
Occupation
Date of Passport 1927.5.25.
Additional passport information 1 v, Raippaluoto,
SHO identification # S/m/7/6
Date of departure from Finland 10.6.1927
Age 24
Route / price Hango – Sydney, £40
Additional ticket information Wasa
Consulate’s archive information – Information from Swedish archives

While searching on the Australia websites, I came to find a photo of his passport, which surprised me as it was not a facial photo but a full body shot —
Anton L Snabb

Once arriving in Australia, all records seem to show that he moved to New South Wales, eventually settling in Coorabella near Byron Bay. The description is “Byron Bay is a coastal town in the southeastern Australian state of New South Wales.”

He applied for and received Citizinship in about 1939. Here are couple of the documents confirming this. The entire document is just over 49 pages long. On the 2nd page, is is a description of him, his life since arriving in Australia and also lists his occupation as a fruit grower.

I wonder if he filled out the Declaration form as if you read it, it lists his father as “Ganhanse” instead of the correct spelling of Johannes. Could it have been someone that spelt it as it sounded?

Also in the pages, there was a copy of the Notice that had been put in the paper:

It was in this same year that he was married to Marjorie Flodin Armstong.

Wedding Registration

It was 2 years after that, their daughter, Marjorie was born — this was the announcement in the The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW) published on May 29, 1941, but they spelt Anton’s name as Andrew:

Birth Annoucement

I found an article on Anton from when he got in trouble for growing bananas without the proper permit. In December 1942, the following article was in the published in the Northern Star paper about his fine. It is also noted that he seemed to go by Andrew Snabb now but does also go by Anton at times. At least, despite the fine, he is said to have a great character.

Bananas

I received the following photo from another Snabb cousin in Finland, it is Anton and his family. I don’t have a date but it would have been before his death in 1948.

Family

Sadly, Anoton died on August 26, 1948. He is buried in Bryon Bay Cemetery. It took me several years, but then a cousin from my English side, lives in Australia and she was able to find his burial and took photos for me.

His obituary:
obit

His headstone:

Headstone

His wife, eventually remarried and it was in the past few years, I found a step-daughter on line who sadly informed me that Anton’s daughter had passed away at the young age of 29. She is buried in Mt Thompson Memorial Gardens.

My hope is to one day be in contact with her daughter.