Description Charles McIntosh of Inshes, Scotland and Greenvale, NS

I was born on the Estate of Inches, near Inverness, Scotland in the year 1829 or 30.  My Grandfather on my mothers side was (Masterton) Robertson Sr of the Estate.  My mother was a natural daughter of his and my father was a son of one of his tenants Alexander McIntosh.  My fathers name was Robert McIntosh.  My father (immigrated) to America in the year of 1830 and landed in Pictou, Nova Scotia in September.  He lived on a farm on the head of the West Branch of the East River.  The land was poor and the frost blighted the crops before it came to maturity and father losing the use of this (feet by) some rheumatic trouble while coming (on the) whole burden of maintaining the family fell on mother.  So in my younger -- I now will impart ---I attended school irregularly studying the arithmetic --- bills of parcels.  My religious instruction – given me mainly by my mother who --- great pains to instruct me in person --- experiment at religion and the shorter catechism with the (discern) of election which doctrine sometimes gave no little trouble to decide whether I was in or out.

At the age of 16th I went to work in the Albion Mines where I learned to be a miner.  In the year 1852, I left my home for Pennsylvania.  I crossed the bay of fundy in February not having much money I took steerage passage without any preparation for either bed or food – getting very sick I laid down where I did not get up for two days the weather being very (stormy).  When I landed in Boston I found I could hardly walk my feet being froze however they got better and I went on my way.


 I got to Pottsville, PA and it being a Saturday I remained in that town over Sabbath.  On Sabbath morning, I went to hunt a church in which to worship.  Seeing a large brick building on a hill I made my way to it when I met a man with singing books under his arm.  I made (known) to him what I was (seeking) and being --- town he showed me all the churches concluding with “there is the Methodist Church and I am going there.”  Well I said I will go with you.  Arriving at the church door he said, “you go in and take a seat I am going to the singing seats.”  So I went in and by & bye an elderly gentleman went to the pulpit but observing he had a black necktie I concluded that he must be a ---.  I was struck with the simplicity of the services (all) kneeling to (pray) --- and a number of colored people being (present). (I) soon got work at a place called (Barred) --- and remained there for 6 months and earned $100.  In September, I left for the West going to Pittsburgh and down the Ohio River to Cincinnati hence to --- in Kentucky.  On my way on the river I was taken with a violent diarrhea which ended in ma—or a --- affecting my liver a trouble from which I have not recovered with this day.

In February 1853, I left (trude) water and returned East to Maryland where I remained till the next fall but being always troubled with the --- I could not settle myself any where believing that I would get better somewhere else.  So I returned again to the West and came to a place on the Ohio River called (Pomeroy) where I remained till


February 1854 and then left accompanied by two young Scotchmen and a Welshman for California.  When we landed the 16th of April 1854 that country at that time of the year being in full bloom I thought it to be the garden of paradise.  We made our way to the northern mines and soon were to work in Sierra County.  In the fall of 1855 I was working at a place called French Ravine near Forest City and in November there being a deep snow there was not much doing.  At this time I joined a temperance organization called the Templers of Hand and temperance.  It was a good order and its obligations were very binding.  Here I got acquainted with some excellent men among which was the Methodist minister.  By and bye a revival broke out in the Methodist Church (and) in that place.  So with others I visited it for curiosity (not) being set in my Presbyterian views I did not need much --- but a young man & a brother Templar rising from my side and going to the --- I commenced to dispose him.  Going home one night with two young companions which were from the western states I was in a (mood) to make very --- with --- the ---  when one of them said “We are not Methodist but we think that you are going too far in condemning these people.  Where we come from they are highly respected and have planted the Christian religion in the world where no other church --- went.”  This went to my heart like a knife and wounded me sore.  I commenced at once asking myself who I was that I put myself to judge a people that I did not know.  I commenced


 (then) to question myself if I was so wise and knew so much where was my religion that I got from all these learned Drs. And thus the spirit of God helped me to carry on the reasoning till at best I was resolved to try if there was any --- in religion if so that I needed it.  At length I went to the meeting resolved to go to the mourners (bench) and try the Methodist ways of getting religious.  Being in my place the minister announced to the congregation if there was none to come forward that night that they concluded to close the meetings.  The (motivation) being given to any one who was desirous to try religion now to come forward while they sing a verse during the singing I (made) and effort to go but I came back.  At the end of the singing the minister said “I am persuaded that there is someone here desirous to come forward and we invite him while we sing a few lines.”  At the singing I made another attempt but failed and now I said if I make another attempt and fail I go to hades.  It was now a question whether another offer would be given but as “God would have it” another offer was given and while the singing was going on I made my way up in quick time.  The people went at once to prayers when one of their ministers came forward and praying and laying hand on each of the s—said “Receive the Holy ghost” Prayer being over some asked me if I was converted?  I said no.  Some asked me where I was from and several questions as if I (had) faith in God?  But after the dismissal of the meeting and going out of the door I felt a hand on my shoulder which I found out to be that of the minister who said to me “Bro McIntosh do not be discouraged though you have not been successful tonight --- on the Lord in the morning and let me tell you that the step which you have taken tonight you will never live to regret.”

The next day being Sabbath I attended Church morning and eve and on Monday my work.  Tuesday my partner went away early in the morning and left me alone at home.  I saw that we were out of wood & I got my axe whitted it and went out to chop wood, there was a beautiful grove of oak and lofty pines and about two feet of snow with a strong crust on it.  So I mad my was to chop down an oak.  I was not thinking of anything in particular.  The axe was on my shoulder.   I was brought to a stand and God appeared to me.  I cannot explain this appearance only it was like as if all about me was like a crystal light.  He called my sins to come forward which they obeyed in a moment.  I felt when they came forward onto or about my breast or heart that they would oppress one so that they could not bare it.  He ordered them to depart which they did and it summed to me that they parted me in ever direction, but now I formed that I was now pure standing to be in the presence of God. When I recovered I put the following question to God.  I was desirous to know what He would have one do.  He showed me the sinful world and his Spirit working in the whole mass.  So I saw my work at once and He said to me work then as you have opportunity I ask of him if Jesus Christ was his son and the Saviour of the world, answer, yes.  I then get some instructions concerning Mose’s account of the creation in Genesis and some insight about the sciences when I got enraptured and I asked where I was to go when I died.  So got this I was carried away out in space.  So I ---  some fat from where I stood and throw the axe away in the snow.  So I was left alone then did I begin to be sorry that I leaped and that God left me and observed that the tall pines & oaks were (praising) God.  The above conversion scattered what is called Calvinism in me to the four winds and having now proved the Methodists to be of God I commenced to dirk at their fountain freely.  Having abundant field in that country to experience my talents and being a ready speaker I was licensed a few years after as local preacher.  As a minor I was very unsuccessful but I had Godliness & Contentment.  I worked preached and on relief --- with my brother & som other --- --- church costing us about $600.  In June 1872 I with company (engaged) with me --- sold out by this transaction we realized a respectful sum and I resolved to return home my brother James who was there did not to come home just then so I left and came home by water by the way of Panama I arrived home on July 22nd 1872.  On July 31st I was married to Christy Fraser of Sutherlands River matters concerning that matter being previously settled before leaving California.  The people hearing that I was home flocked to the school house to hear me preach but I was away to hear someone else preach.  By bro assured the people that he would tell me of it and that they would have an opportunity of hearing me soon.  Accordingly the people were notified and I spoke to them and hence I had abundant invitations to preach in the school hours and on occasion when the minister should come home that likely I should be admitted into the Church.  When the minister came he got indignant and annoyed that his people would hear a Methodist who hold erroneous doctrines and especially a man who was by no means qualified to (teach) the people having as he had been informed --- to (college).  The results of such conduct would end by his falling into the ditch and you fall in after him.”  This so turned the people against me that they would not speak to me.  So for the rest of the winter I for a while taught a class the elements of music.  In the spring of 1873 I bought the farm on which I now reside in Piedmont Valley.  I removed on to in May of the same year.

Here I made acquaintance of a gentleman named William Cumming a manufacturer of furniture and a cousin to my wife.  This gentleman spent a number of years in the states and soon he and I were perfectly at home and conversed freely of matters generally.  About this time I attended a funeral and on the way to the cemetery I remarked to my friend this effect.  I perceive that the people here move in the same --- that they did twenty years ago.  They will never make any progress forever in this way.  He replied that was his opinion and that he was telling them so all the time but that they did not heed him  but the people here were forewarned myself and my doctrines before I come and so in due time I took my stand on doctrines and (woe) to the doctrines for I wanted no better work when it had to come then to handle the doctrines.  I labored here in to the peoples meetings and in the Christian associations but we did not succeed, the association went (about) and the others meetings would be now and then discontinued no good seemingly being done I was bent on having the people becoming Methodists having a kind of (retribution) from the time I was (convinced) that I was to be somehow that means of giving this religion to my people.


I then commenced a meeting of my own in the hall and here I continued unmolested for a year and a half during which time I read and --- on the Gospel by Matthew & Mark.

On a certain sabbath eve a number came to the meeting who did not usually attend and as my subject was doctrinal I invited them to take part in the meeting and that I would not go on with my subject but no one responded so I went on and gave my text.  Matthew the 24th chapter & 12 verse: “And because --- shall abound; the love of many shall was cold.”  After carefully defining the different opinions held upon this text by the Presbyterian church and then what I held myself I proceeded to make the following observations on the text: “When you find a body warm and doctrine cold and inactive you say that it is dead.  Love that is warm and active is alive.  Love that is cold and inactive is dead.  When you leave this (meeting) you walk up to the most careless ones who are little concerned about religion or themselves and ask one of them “say Tom” do you believe that it is possible for a man to loose his religion and ---“  He will say no I do not believe anything of the find for God knows what he is about when he gives a man religion and he would not give religion to a man whom he foresaw would not make good use of it.”  You now go to the infidel and ask him do you believe that God will give a man religion and when he does not make good use of it take it from him again.  He will say “well as far as myself  I do not believe in religion at all but as Iaw is --- and absolute over all nature.  If a man is


Have religion he will have it and --- it forever.  You will now go to Satan and ask him Is it possible for a man to make shipwreck of his religion and he will say no.  He will give his angel charge concerning him and (the) will hold him up so that he will neither dash body or soul against a stone.  Now Satan is a liar and the father of lies.  When he speaks a lie she speaketh from himself for he is a liar and the father of it.  Now let us sum up.  Here is presented to us a doctrine which is claimed to be the only true one and men who (adopt) it pointed out as teachers of error and false doctrines and is to e awarded and will give it thru --- and the third one saddles in on the devil.  This exasperated them and soon after a --- meeting was held in the hall when a resolution (like) the following was presented and passed.  Where as certain parties claim exclusive right in the hall every Sabbath eve and the sentiments (enumerated) at such meetings are disagreeable to the majority of this community; therefore be it resolved that our committee be instructed to apply to the board of trustees for the use of the hall on Sabbath evenings to hold a bible class in it for the study of the bible.”

In due time a notice was served on me being one of the school trustees to meet in the school house to deliberate on the matter.  I here sum that I was beat as there was two against me.  So we met and I asked them to let me have the hall one Sabbath in the (morning) – of the hall they would not give me the (---) on (---)


And there they sat and (smoked) while I was deliberating what to do.  Finely I proposed that they give me the use of the hall every Saturday evening with out being molested and so they readily agreed to that and gave me the writing accordingly and we were dismissed.  I here thought that I would make developments and reasoned that after labouring faithfully for one year and a half at my own expenses if it was not God that --- would not let it fall to the ground.

They had a minister at this time at the shore who took an active part in depriving me of the use of the hall and now that things --- to them will they begin to throw out enticement to myself to fall in with “themselves” but I waited patiently the (dead) opinions of my years and one-half labour and did not go near any meetings in the place.  At length Mrs. Cumming said to her husband “If Mr McIntosh’s teachings is to be (repealed) what are we going to teach our children.  This wakened up the sleeping highlander --- to visit my --- one day as I often did – he said to me “Mr McIntosh why do you not attend our meetings at all.  We miss you.”  I answered I will never attend your meeting as long as you --- as you do.  “Why? What do you want?” I came in here and paid my way so far.  I own one share in the public school house --- hall your teachers refuse me any right in this hall when they want it even once a year so till you make up your mind to act Christian you will (expect) me to attend your meetings.  Well says --- friend “what do you want?” I want you to (give) me the use of the Hall one (---) evening after as --- rate will com ---


Evening though it be but one a year.  Well says my friend “you make application to the trustees for what you want and if they grant your request you will then attend our meetings and if they do not grant it I and my family will go with you.” I saw (any) light at once.  I saw whatever way the trustees would act that I had them.  I saw that they were the --- to go back on the wisdom of their former (coms) of which they had not failed to show me the wisdom of it.  So I addressed Mr. Cumming this “Did you hear what Mr Cumming has proposed to me “yes” Do you endorse this proposal upon your own free will and accord “I do.” Will you wait and you will hear from me by and bye.

I sat down and wrote a resignation to the school trustee praying that they might be pleased to restore to me the use of the Hall one Sabbath eve in the (month) on in two months that I might hold religious services in it in accordance to the rules and usages of the Methodist Church of Canada. Signed Charles McIntosh (local) (preacher) of the Methodist Church of Canada. In due time I received a (untemptable) answer to the above denying my request.   So I gave notice of services to be held in the Hall on Saturday eve and Mr Cumming & family and my own family met and had the first regular Methodist meeting.  Soon after this the Rev Mr Thurlow came to the Stellarton circuit and he prepared that we form ourselves into a society --- a Sat and (hold) a church.  The society was formed in our house and included the following members: Charles McIntosh --- preacher Mrs Christy McIntosh, William Cumming, Mrs Katie Ann Cumming.  This the nucleus of a society was formed and has continued to develop for the good of this community which was greatly needed and now as the record my be referred to for any subsequent information concerning the society I may be excused --- any further to explain its origin.

[Robert MacIntosh, born 1805*, father of Charles, emigrated from Insches, Inverness, Scotland to Pictou, Nova Scotia on the Lord Brougham sailing out from Cromarty and arriving 10 September 1831.  Anne Robertson, the mother of Charles, born 1802 died 12 April 1894. Robert and Anne were married 23 February 1820 and had five children born in Scotland: Mary, Margaret, Alexander and John Arthur and Charles.  As per Donald Whytes A Dictionary of Scottish Emigrants to Canada Before Confederation, Vol. 1.; genealogy records; church records of Inverness.]

[10 children of Robert MacIntosh and Anne Robertson:

Mary Catherine was baptised 31 May, 1821 at Insches.  Witnesses: Finlay McRae and John MacDonald.

Margaret was baptised 25 September 1823. Witnesses: John MacDonald and Alexander McIntosh.

Alexander Masterton McIntosh baptised 14 November 1825, witnesses: John and Donald MacIntosh.

Arthur John (John Arthur) was baptised 11 February 1828.

Charles was baptised 23 February, 1830 and died14 October 1910 at 81 years. Charles and his wife Christy are buried in the Piedmont Cemetery which is across the road from the entrance to his farm. 

Donald, Anna, Robert, James born 3 April 1843, and Jane Isabelle were born in Pictou County.

Anne Robertson McIntosh passed away at the home of her son Charles on Thursday, 12 April 1894 at 92 years of age. She was born in Perthshire, Scotland ib 1802 and was the daughter of Mary Shearer and Masterton Robertson, Laird of Inshes.  She is buried in Kirkmount Cemetery, McLellan's Mountain with her husband Robert who died 44 years earlier.

Robert McIntosh, born at the Estate of Inshes, Scotland in 1802 was the son of Alexander Mackintosh.  He died in 1850.]

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