Margaret Ann McPhail and Francois Patrick Butler

When Margaret Ann McPhail was born in 1874 in St. Andrews, Ontario, Canada, her father, John James McPhail (1838-1879), was 36, and her mother, Catherine Ann (née McIntosh) (1845-?), was 29.

Margaret married Francois Patrick Butler on July 22, 1905, in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.

Francois Patrick Butler was born in Montréal, Quebec, Canada on March 17, 1871, the son of Terrence Butler (1840-1891) (a police sergeant) and Marguerite Kelly (1840-1928).

They had four children during their marriage:

  • Terrence Francois Butler (1905-?)
  • Leonard Butler (1907-1966) married Lilian Lever (1908-?)
  • Catherine Butler (1910-1992) married James Joseph Travers (1906-1986)
  • Margaret Butler (1914-2000) married Ernest Nelson Bigney (1914-2006)

In 1906, we find the newlyweds at 144 Logan Avenue in Winnipeg, Manitoba via the 1906 Census of Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta. They appear to be boarders at the residence, along with a number of other people. The building doesn’t appear to exist anymore. The record suggests that the youngest, “Francis” in the record (Terrence Francois, named for his paternal grandfather and his father) was born in Manitoba and is nine months old (placing his birth around September of 1905).

1906 Census of Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta (image via

In 1911, the couple is still in Winnipeg at 338 Langevin Street.  Two more children have been born, Leonard in August of 1907 (aged 3 on the 1911 Canadian Census) and Catherine in October of 1910 (aged 8 mos). The description of Francois (Francis still) Sr. is a Bricklayer (and a foreman).

1911 Canadian Census (image via

In 1916, Francois is “Frank” Butler on the census of Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta, and the family is living at what appears to be 71 Ritchot Street in St. Boniface (a neighbourhood within Winnipeg—the house doesn’t appear on modern GoogleMaps). The youngest daughter Margaret is “Marguerite (as is her mother). “Frank’s” occupation is described as a bricklayer.

1916 Census of Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta (image via Marguerite appears on the next page

On February 10, 1916, at the age of (almost) 45, “Frank” enlisted in the Canadian Expeditionary Force. He was assigned to the 184th overseas battalion. At some point prior to his discharge on April 17, 1917, the family moves back to Quebec, possibly so Margaret has some family help with the children (several Montreal addresses are listed in the file). The paperwork suggests that Frank’s father has passed by this point, but his mother is still living in Montreal. Although he rose from the rank of Private to Sergeant, Frank was released from the army due to disability. He was discharged as permanently unfit. The report suggests that he had been troubled since his youth with attacks of sciatica. The paperwork suggests he was a fair man, not very tall (5’2″) with blue eyes and dark hair.

Military Record (image via

On the 1921 Census, we find the family still in Montreal at 427 Rue Aylmer. Francois is now “Francis” again and is a bricklayer. All the children are students, and Terrence is listed as working part-time as well.

1921 Canadian Census (image via

Francois died in January, 1934, at the age of 63 and was interred at Notre-Dame-des-Neiges in Montreal on January 11th.

Drouin Collection – Burial Record (image via

Margaret died in July 1948 at the age of 74 and was interred at Notre-Dame-des-Nieges on July 17th.

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!


2 Responses

  1. Leonard Butler was my grandfather. He got remarried to my grandmother, Millie Reilly, and they had 3 children; Francis Patrick Butler(my father), Kevin Butler and Susan Butler. My aunt, Susan, is also very interested in genealogy. She could probably give you much more information!

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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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