The Burke Family of River Bourgeois (later, of Louisdale), continued...

The children of Fred Burke and Ellen Jane Thibeau...

Fred and Ellen Jane had thirteen children - in order of birth : Lillian, Angela, Frances, Arthur, Garvey, Cecilia, Donald, Jean, Herman, Helen Jeanne, Bernard, Theresa, and Lou.

Below are segments for each child. Click on the "Brownie" camera to be taken to a photo page about that child and their families.

To see census reports for this family, open this page. Reports for 1911, 1921, and 1931 are available for viewing.

Lillian Marie Burke...

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Lillian Marie Burke

Theresa remembers... that Lillian took care of her a great deal when she was little. Theresa also remembers taking care of Lillian's children when they were little.

Suzanne Angeline ("Angela") Burke

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Suzanne Angeline ("Angela") Burke

Frances Emmeline Burke

Frances Emmeline Burke was born October 7th, 1911, birth and/or baptism in River Bourgeois (record). Godparents were George Landry and Anne Landry. (Cam's note: originally posted here as being born in Louisdale, Nova Scotia.) Fran attended Louisdale School and later took evening business classes in Halifax while she worked as a nursemaid for a family named Courtney (photos below). She subsequently used her office skills to earn a job with (Naval) Defense Research Establishment in Dartmouth, a job which she kept throughout her working life. She was a manager in their purchasing department when she retired in 1980.

Click to see photo page.

Fran lived at 14 Victoria Road in Dartmouth before moving to a small apartment building at 10 Wentworth Street which she considered home. An avid bowler, Fran bowled in a league with friends from Naval Research. Fran also enjoys playing cards, knitting, listening to the radio and watching TV. The Lawrence Welk Show was one of her favourites. While not one to drive, Fran did travel several times to visit friends and family in Ontario, New York and Massechusetts.

Fran's younger brother Herman, who lived on Dublin Street in Halifax, was her closest relative. Herman and his family have kept company with, and have assisted, Fran in many ways over many years.

Cam created this poster of Fran's life to speak for her when she could not speak for herself - while she was living her last years at Northwood Home in Halifax.

Cam remembers... being informed that Fran died during the night of December 2, 1999 at the age of 88. She had been incapacitated by a number of strokes several years earlier, and had suffered a few more about ten days prior to her death. She had lost general consciousness and had been unable to control the part of her throat that directs food away from the lungs. She had been given morphine in case she was in any pain, but there was no evidence of pain or discomfort while she was sleeping.

Fran was cremated and a church memorial held the following week by the priest at her church - St. Peter's Catholic Church, Dartmouth.

Attending : Colleen, Mary Lou and Gerald Courtney; Mick and June McGuire; Eleanor Burke, and a son of Rosey who lived somewhere behind the house in Louisdale. Total 20-25 people attended.

Fran was interred in the Gates of Heaven Cemetery in Halifax.

Arthur Oswald Burke

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Arthur Oswald Burke

Garvey Vincent Burke

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Garvey Vincent Burke

Marie Marguerite Cecilia Burke

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Marie Marguerite Cecilia Burke

Theresa remembers... Cecilia worked for a time as the nursemaid for the children of a commodore. One of the commodore's children was named Jillian. Jillian spent one summer with the Burkes in Louisdale.

Donald Alfred Burke

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Donald Alfred Burke

Donald was born January 19, 1917.

  • Note: website entry reports birthplace as River Bourgeois.

    Donald lived his life in Louisdale.

    Theresa remembers... Their mother held Donald back from having to go to school, though Theresa thought he was quite smart and he should have been allowed to go.

    Donald was born with a crippled hand that kept him from joining the army during World War II, and limited him perhaps in what he could do in life.

    Donald died on March 6, 1946, of health problems. Theresa thought that he greatly missed their mother when she passed on.

  • Anna (Eugenie) Jean Burke

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    Anna (Eugenie) Jean Burke

    Richard Marchand remembers... when Momma was born, Grandma sent her to be baptised with Eugenie, telling her that she wanted the child called Anna Jean. But Greatgrandma took things into her own hands and told the priest that the name was to be Anna Eugenie, which unfortunately was spelled Egunie on the birth certificate, which name she bore until she had it legally changed in the seventies. Grandma was not half pleased.

    Notes on the Marchand family...

    Louis Marchand, an Officer at the Fort of Port-Royal, Nova Scotia, married Marie Godin on November 24, 1705. They were the first Acadian Marchand family.

    Clarence and Francis's parents were Benjamin Marchand and Elizabeth Sampson. Hence Francis à Bennie, or Francis Bennie.

    Joseph Herman Burke

    Photo page, Herman

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    Joseph "Herman" Burke

    Helen Jeanne Burke

    Helen was born in May, 1920. Helen died August 3, 1920 of a childhood illness involving high fever.

    John Bernard Burke

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    John Bernard (pronounced "Bernerd") Burke

    Theresa remembers... when she was young, Bernard conned her into trading a watercolour paint set in a gold box for something of substantially lesser value (she thinks it might have been some string). When she realized that she had been conned, she cried and cried until their mother made Bernard give the paintbox back to her.

    Theresa Mary Burke

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    Theresa Mary Burke

    • born May 27, 1925, in Louisdale, Nova Scotia
    • (Saint Thérèse of Lisieux, "Little Flower", was officially declared a Saint ten days earlier, perhaps suggesting the name.)
    • Theresa was smart academically, for the times, for her situation. Theresa's first job was as a replacement teacher in Louisdale, when she was fourteen years old. She was paid $14 for the month she worked. I recall a spelling game she and her father played when driving, in which he would give her names of places in Nova Scotia and beyond to spell - names like Shubenacadie, Stewiacke and Tatamagouche. In June of 1940, NBC began airing a (live, in those days) quiz show that Theresa came to like. Quiz Kids was a radio broadcast game show in which kids answered questions sent in from viewers. Theresa sent in a question and got a postcard reply from the show which she kept with her photographs. It was sent from "Chicago ILL" and had a Halifax post office date stamp of March 20, 194_ (probably received in 1941). It was addressed simply: Miss T. Burke, Louisdale, N.S. Canada, and the reply began "Dear radio friend:".
    • The game show postcard may have been saved as well for its interest to her as a stamp collector. She had a small collection of stamps from around the world, including many from the United States. One of her brothers brought her sheets of stamps from Germany after the war. She kept them hoping that one day they might be rare and valuable (and certainly not for the face she hated depicted on all of them). The stamps, though, proved too numerous to be anything more than a souvenir from post-war Berlin.
    • After completing Grade 11 and lingering around Louisdale for just a month or two after her mother died (1942), Theresa followed her sister Fran (Frances) and other siblings to the many job opportunities in war-time Halifax. She took some of her things, the $30 given to her by her father, and off she went on the bus. She stayed with her sister Fran for a few weeks. Fran was looking after some children of a family named Courtney at the time, for room and board and spending money. The Courtneys lived on Pepperell Street, not far from Halifax Common.

      While out and about in Halifax job hunting and taking in the sights, Theresa met lifelong friend Ruby Orr. She and Ruby decided to read the want ads to find situations for themselves like Fran had at the Courtneys. Theresa found the Tousaw family and began living there, looking after their children and helping out while she looked for a full-time job. Ruby also found herself a family to live with, only a few houses away.

      Theresa was a good typist and thought she could apply for office work. She gained confidence after receiving some tips from the woman administering the skills test for a job she applied for. She got this job - working in the dockyards at the Chart Depot, a civil service aligned with the Canadian Navy. As she grew into it, the job would involve at times working with coded Navy messages, and taking dictation and typing up and sending communications for the Stadecona base commander.

      While boarding (and, I believe, being modestly paid) with the Tousaws, and also being paid full-time at the Chart Depot, Theresa had lots of money to spend, and enjoyed spending it on herself and others. She bought fashionable clothes (including a fur coat) and went to dances and social events with her friends. She bought things for her siblings and their children - both for those in Halifax and those back home. She bought gifts for the Tousaw children and even bought a ping pong table for the Tousaw family.

      Theresa learned how to play ping pong while at the Chart Depot. Some of the large tables they used for maps, charts and ship logistics were used as ping pong tables during lunch periods and after hours. (I will admit that she had developed a very good slam, and played very well until her eyesight became an issue in her late 60's.)

      Cam remembers... I remember hearing from my Mom how she would go to Eaton's and other record stores and play records in the listening booths that stores had at that time. She bought a record player and close to two hundred 78 rpm records over a period of about six or seven years which she played for herself and her friends. In 1981, my Mom looked at my brand new Technics close-and-play turntable and told me about her Philco 706 "automatic radio phonograph" she'd had which, along with being a radio, could draw a record in through a slot, play it, then eject it (very much like a modern optical disk player). I couldn't imagine such a thing for that time. I cannot remember ever seeing it, but I expect that us kids probably wrecked it on her. She subsequently acquired an RCA record player with built-in speakers on the front. It was a tabletop model with a footprint of about 4 square feet. It had a lift-up lid, and I seem to remember that it was red and white in colour. With it we played the 33- and 45 rpm records she bought for us like Cinderella, Huckleberry Hound, Yogi Bear, Tom and Jerry, and The Lone Ranger. It was durable enough that, in the late 60's when we children had all grown out of these records, son Chris used it to listen to his growing collection of 45's and LPs. (Thinking back, I doubt that we even once changed the needle.)

      When she first got her Philco 706, Theresa did not yet have many records. Her husband-to-be bought her a record for it and brought it over to the Tousaw's house where Theresa lived. She was excited and invited the Tousaws to listen to the record for the first time with them. Now, you should know that Fred was a sailor, and a fan of recordings by people like Spike Jones. The record he brought over to play was a popular Ruth Wallis song called "The Admiral's Daughter". (Well, George Tousaw and Fred got a laugh from it, anyway.)

    • In the prime of her youth in the mid-40's, and in the midst of world-changing events, she long remembered her Halifax life - spent with family, friends and co-workers. In particular, she recalled attending many dances and live entertainment events, naming the Waegwoltic (Club) amongst those places. (The Waegwoltic Club is still around today, but is vastly different now from what it was when Theresa knew it.) And I remember her talking about skating on Chocolate Lake (sounds like a dream to a child), a picture she had below.

      Nova Scotia Archives, MacAskill's photograph: "Bathers, Waegwoltic Club, North West Arm, Halifax, NS"
      Skating on Chocolate Lake, (1.5 km. west of the Waegwoltic, off St. Margaret's Bay Road).

    • This booklet helps illustrate some of the lifestyle, as does this "Gateway to the World" film clip and this CBC documentary.
    • When victory in Europe was declared (VE Day), celebrations led to riots in Halifax. To learn more and to view a few pictures, follow this link.
    • Theresa would continue working at the Chart Depot after the war, although the nature of the work would change. I believe she worked at times for the Stadacona base commander, whom she had a few words with at some point about his attitude towards those around him. If I recall, she may have been on loan to do some clerical work for a fire chief who worked nearby, but of this I'm not sure.
    • Life in Halifax would have continued much the same as it had done from her arrival in 1942. Theresa spent time with her family and friends, and enjoyed the social atmosphere and attractions of the city and surrounding area.
    • The story goes... One evening, in 1948, while out with Jean Pierce at the Stadacona bowling alley, Theresa saw a cute young sailor "with a clean neck" bowling there also. He was watching them as they watched him, and when they left he followed them out and onto the bus. As she and Jean were coming up to the stop where Jean would go her way, Theresa was getting ready to be upset if the man followed Jean and not her. As it happens, he stayed on the bus, and they made their acquaintances. After Theresa got off the bus the sailor continued around on the bus route, back to the base where he lived (he had not needed to take the bus in the first place). This was the beginning of a relationship that would last the rest of their lives.

      An anecdote... Fred and Theresa were to meet one day for lunch either at a restaurant on Buckingham Street or at a restaurant which was near a Buckingham cigarettes sign - both had their own understanding as to where they were meeting. After Theresa got tired of waiting at the Buckingham Street restaurant (and had to go back to work anyway), she got on the street car which happened to go past the Buckingham sign where Fred was waiting for her. She waved and laughed as she went by. They would argue about this for 60 years. (While common, the sign could well have been this one at the northwest corner of Hollis and Salter.)

    • After marriage, and just before her first son was born, Theresa retired from her job at the Chart Depot and became a homemaker.
    • married on August 11, 1950, in Halifax, N.S., to Alfred Thomas Burton Longhurst (born January 21, 1925, in Belleville, Ontario)
    • married in the Stadacona Naval Base Chapel, Gottingen Street, Halifax, Nova Scotia
    • children : eight (with two girls that died at birth, that she never forgot, and absolutely believed died because of doctor incompetence)
    • Theresa did not return to the work force until years later, in Brampton, Ontario, when she took a job in retail at the Towers store (on Queen and McLaughlin). She went from there to work at the (Westport Supermarts) Bi-way store at 57 McMurchy Street South, which was just at the top of Corby Crescent, the street the Longhurst family lived on. Theresa worked for Bi-way Stores Ltd. until 1990, the year she turned 65.
    • Some items of interest of Theresa's can be found on this page.
    • Theresa Burke died May 13, 2010 (two weeks short of her 85th birthday), of congestive heart failure.
    • Alfred Longhurst died September 15, 2011 (at age 86 and 8 months), of complications of lymphoma.

    Gerald Louis (Lou) Burke

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    Gerald Louis ("Lou") Burke

    Theresa remembers... going swimming with Lou down at the Pont à Dan when they were young. Another time, she and Lou dropped an inverted cat from a second storey window of the Louisdale house "to see if it would land on its feet".

    Names, Births, Deaths, Details...

    Died, When
    Died, Where
    Cause of Death
    Remains Located...
    Fred 1884, February 14 1957 River Bourgeois, NS.
    . Buried, Louisdale, NS.
    Ellen Jane 1886, November 23 1942, May 10 Louisdale, NS.
    Bright's disease (kidneys). Buried, Louisdale, NS.
    Lillian 1909, October 12 1965, September 10 .
    Cancer. Buried, Louisdale, NS.
    Angela 1910, June 8 1983, February 25 Louisdale, NS.
    . (Died in Louisdale, NS.)
    Frances 1911, October 7th 1999, December 2 Halifax, NS.

    Cremated, interred 2001-09-08, Gate of Heaven Cemetery, Lower Sackville, NS.

    Arthur 1912, October 31 1968 Halifax, NS.
    Heart attack. Gate of Heaven Cemetery, Lower Sackville, NS.
    Garvey 1914, September 21 1982 .
    Lung cancer. Interred 1982-09-14, Gate of Heaven Cemetery, Lower Sackville, NS.
    Cecilia 1915, December 15 late 70's Exeter, England.
    Colon cancer. Buried, Garden of Remembrance, Topsham Road, Exeter, England.
    Donald 1917, January 19 1946, March 6 Louisdale, NS.
    Health problems. Buried, Louisdale, NS.
    Jean 1918, February 28 1994, January 20 .
    Multiple myeloma. Buried, Louisdale, NS.
    Herman 1919, May 27 or 28 1995 Halifax, NS.
    Stroke. Interred 1996-09-05, Gate of Heaven, Lower Sackville, NS.
    Helene 1920, May 1920, August 3 Louisdale, NS.
    4 mo.
    Childhood illness, high fever. .
    Bernard 1921, December 3 1983, July 29 Kingston, ON.
    Arterial sclerosis. Buried, Louisdale, NS.
    Theresa 1925, May 27 2010, May 13 Brampton, ON.
    Congestive heart failure. Cremated, ashes released just after high tide, into Halifax harbour.
    Lou 1927, August 2 2000 May 14 Toronto, ON.
    Lung cancer. Buried, Nobleton, ON.

    This file last modified 8/17/2023...

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