Alexander McPhail

When Alexander McPhail was born on January 16, 1865, in St. Andrews West, Ontario, Canada, his father, John James McPhail (1838-1879), was 26 and his mother, Catherine Ann (née McIntosh) (1845-?), was 20.

He had three brothers and three sisters.

This page is a placeholder—I haven’t actually confirmed where Alexander went to after leaving the nest.

A 1891 Census offering suggests that an Alexander McPhail was living with his spouse Isabella McPhail in Cornwall, Ontario. The birthdate is right and his occupation (a farmer) is also likely correct. However, no marriage record has been located that can confirm this is the correct person, and as there were multiple McPhails (and Alexanders), I am reluctant to make the leap.

There are 1911 census records for an Alexander McPhail born in January 1865 in Ontario living in Comox-Atlin. This Alexander is a labourer in a saw mill. I have not found any further records that can confirm or rule out that it is the same Alexander.

There is also a record that suggests an Alexander McPhail died in Seattle, Washington on November 9, 1933. The record suggests that the parents of this Alexander were “Katherine” and John McPhail (which matches). A further search finds the same Alexander on the 1920 and 1930 census and confirms that he was born in Canada. The 1920 census record suggests that naturalization paperwork had been filed. Naturalization papers were located that suggest that the man in Seattle was “Andrew” Alexander McPhail and further, he was born in Kincardaine, Ontario. The fact that his name is “Andrew” and that he was born in Kincardaine suggest that this is not the same man.

Our Alexander likely died before 1940, as his brother Archibald has not listed him as a surviving relative in his obituary, but beyond that I have not been able to confirm any details beyond the 1881 Census at this time.

Are you related to this family? Do you have photos or stories you’d be willing to share? Please contact me using the comment form below or find me on Facebook! Want to know where this family fits in my tree? Check out the Index!


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AG Knapper

I’ve been researching my tree for over twenty years…and I’ve found some easy branches, and some gnarly ones…

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