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Rev. D. A. Perrin, Normal, Illinois.
Colonel Thomas Perrin, Sr. (IV) was born in Springfield, Mass., 1791. He removed with his father's family Thomas Perrin III, to Brantford, Ont., 1796, and from thence to Mount Pleasant, Ont., 5 miles south. His was a remarkable life, of independence and perseverance. He commenced life without means, or education. His hands ministered to his own and other's wants. He told me the only education in school he received was after he was married, and then only for six months.
He was self educated, a student of nature, a close observer of events, a great reader, of history and of the Bible. He had talents which he constantly utilized to a good purpose; he was a man of foresight, of fine business tact by practice he became a good accountant and wrote an excellent hand. He had a well informed mind and seized hold of every opportunity to increase his knowledge both by reading good books and by conversation with learned men, as ministers and teachers, judges and legislators. At one time while he was a merchant among the Indians, near Mt. Pleasant he was offered the “Eagles' Nest” containing 1,000 acres of land by the tribe if he would consent to remain with them.
But he chose otherwise and removed his family (1839) to Springfield, Ont. Afterward re-named Mount Vernon, the name of the postoffice to which he was appointed postmaster-a position he held during his life-to July 5th, 1870. On the Burford Plains he purchased 600 acres of land, a milling site and privileges and a large commodious house. Here he engaged with the aid of his children and hired help in farming, millng and merchandise.
He was a successful merchant, miller and farmer. His wealth increased till he was worth $200,000. His name was a guarantee of payment. Bankers advanced means on his own paper without an endorser. Such was the confidence business men and bankers had in his integrity and ability. He was known as strictly honest. He had confidence in business men, which in several instances was taken advantage of to the loss of thousand of dollars by going security on their notes, or by selling to them on credit milling goods and merchandise. Still he went right forward with his business, and had great success, He was kind to the poor, treated all as brothers, whatever their race, color or previous condition in society.
He was benevolent, he gave largely toward the erection of the Methodist church in Mount Vernon, Ont., and also gave the land for the cemetery, where his body afterward was laid to rest alongside that of his devoted wife. He had a great reverence for ministers of the gospel, with whom he would converse for hours upon religious, educational and political subjects. He had his family pew in the village church and when able attended the services on the Sibbath. He was a provident father, looking after the welfare of his children. He was their counsellor in all the affairs of life. His judgment, was taken by the family, as the best, and was looked upon in all matters of public and private interest, as generally correct. He was a man among men, strongly built, weighing 240 pounds. In his later years he was quick of foot and observation.
He wore no glasses except when reading or writing. For many years before his death he banished all intoxicating liquor3 from his home, and councilled his sons and neighbors against its use as a beverage. He was a military man, and when the militia of Canada was organized he was chosen colonel of the militia in Brant county, Ont.-a position he continued to hold while he lived (July 15th, 1870).
He saw his chidren grow up to manhood, and womanhood, and settled in life. He was twice married: First to Mary Ellis, daughter of Henry Ellis, CHILDREN AND RELATIVES OF COLONEL THOMAS PERRIN, AND MAR Y ANN PEAT PERRIN.
Rev. D. A. Perrin, Normal, Illinois.
of Mt. Pleasant, about 1816, by whom he had born to him, Thos. Perrin, Jr., and Permelia. He married the second time Mary Ann Peat, daughter of Arnold Peat, Esq., 1823, children by the last marriage were, David, Caroline, Eliza Jane, Andrew William, Mary Ann, (Minnie), Daniel A. He died full of years and honor at Mt. Vernon, Ont., July 15th, 1870.
Rev. John Ryerson, D. D., an old friend of the family, of Brantford, Ont., preached his funeral sermon in the Methodist church before a large gathering of his family, relatives, friends and neighbors, many of whom had known him from his younger days. His body was laid beside that of my mothers in the Mount Vernon Cemetery. Thus lived and died as the preacher said, “A father, a patriot, a friend, a patron of the church, and a helper of the poor and needy.” Requiescat in peace—may he rest in peace.
D. A. PERRIN, Compiler.
How Col. Thomas Perrin Looked at 75!
At 75 and while he lived he stood straight and walked erect. His form was that of one well cared for. His usual weight was 240 pounds, his flesh was evenly distributed over his body, each limb was perfect, as from the cradle he grew in statue to his 80th year! At 75 the crown of his head was covered with iron-gray hair. One would say a beautiful head! His forehead was round and high, and corresponded with the size of his body. His eyes were hazel in color and prominent and attractive. He wore no glasses except when reading or writing. In altitude he was six feet tall, in his stocking feet and well proportioned. He dressed plainly. He wore generally a sack coat, and a frock coat on special occasions, and he wore usually a cap or felt hat.
His manners were easy, natural, pleasing, very gracious and inviting to friends and strangers. His conversations were conducted in pure English. He never murdered his mother tongue by slang phrases, or irreverent expressions. He commanded attention when he talked or told a story. He would laugh heartily when he heard a joke or told one himself. He was an adept at repar-tee, and could amuse or interest others at a banquet, or dinner given to friends and acquaintences by his relation of incidents of his life, and as we say he “brought the house down." Unlikesome others who talked a great deal and "blundered," he was not at a loss "for want of a word.” He was a strong and ready controversalisit. During the late civil war 1861-5 he was a staunch friend of the north; and when sympathizers of the southern cause would meet him in wordy combat, he would conquer them by the cogency of his arguments.
None were more pleased or exultant than he, when General Lee surrendered to General U. S. Grant at Appomattox, and the civil conflict was over. A distinguishing characteristic of him, he was soldierly. When the Canadian government instituted the local militia he was appointed colonel of the militia of Brant county. When in command and mounted he presented a distinguished appearance.
D. A. PERRIN, Author and Compiler.
Statement of Service and Qualification.
Militia Headquarters, Ottawa, 6th April, 1921.
S. MacNicol, Capt., A. D. of Personal Services.
.for Lt. Colonel. 24
Generations of the Perrin Family
Biographical Sketch. Mary Ann Perrin Shaw, Howell daughter of Col. Thomas Perrin, Sr., and Mary Ann Perrin, born Sept. 10th, 1835, at Mt. Pleasant, Ont., received her early education at the home school in Mt. Vernon, Ont., and at a school f young ladies at St. Catherines, Ont. She was a dilligent reader cf good books, and the Bible and Hymns. She early formed the habit of attending church services, and the Sunday school, she was baptized and united with the Wesleyan Methodist church under the pastorate of Rev. W. S. Griffin, D. D. Her conversion was clear, and her Christian life demonstrative to the last. She had positive faith in Christ, as a personal Saviour; in heaven as the home of the blest; in the Bible as God's revelation to man; and in divine providence, she was my spiritual advisor and councilor in early years. She taught me the Lord's prayer, the ten commandments and the Beatitudes, she was well informed in the literature of the Bible, in church history, and discipline, she was a student of the Methodist Hymal. Many of the hymns were the A. B. C. of her spiritual life, having committed them to memory, and sung them to the delight of those who heard her in the choir, and on public occasions. She had learned the happy art of singing with the spirit and the understanding.
She was a church worker, in the Sunday school, prayer service, and revivals. God called her to a wider service in the ministry. She was married to Rev. Robert Shaw, B. A., June 24th, 1863 at Mt. Vernon in her father's house, myself and wife stood up with them in the marriage service, which was performed by the brother of the groom, Rev. John Shaw, D. D. In this ministry she labored' on circuits encouraging her husband in his work of faith and labor of love. But this ministry was of short duration for her husband was suddenly called to the church triumphant in the year 1866, at Ridgeway, Ont.
For three years after the death of her husband she lived in the old home, with her father and brother, William. She was married in 1869 the second time to Mr. Nelson Howell of Jerseyville, Ont., and became a stepmother to his motherless daughters, who always evinced an affection for her. She was indeed to them a mother. In time she was much afflicted—during her last years, and finally yielded her self in a spirit of Christian resignation to what is the common iot of all, sooner or later. She was conscious to the last. And speaking of her separation from her husband, children, relatives, and friends, she spoke a kind word to all and said to them, “I am going home,” she passed to her reward Oct. 28th, 1886. Services in commemoration of her life were held at Jerseyville, and Mount Vernon, Ont. And her body was laid beside that of her first husband, in the Mt. Vernon Cemetery. So passed away from earth to heaven a sweet, cheerful, patient, resigned spirit She had a wide circle of loving friends and relatives who mourned her loss, among whom were many ministers and members of the churches. For her influence had extended not only to her own church but ito other demoninations as well. And she looked upon all who believed in Christ followed his example as true Christians and citizens of the household of faith.
D. A. PERRIN, Compiler. Nelson Howell, second husband of Mary A. Perrin, Shaw, was born in Jerseyville, Ont., 1827. Died at Brantford, Ont., Jan. 18th, 1912, in his 85th year. Funeral from his late residence, 36 William street, Brantford Ont., on Monday Jan. 22nd, 1912. Burial at Jerseyville, Ont.
Robert Shaw was born in Goderich, Ont., Canada, March, 1840. His father and mother emigrated from Ireland and settled on a farm near Goderich, Ont. The family consisted of John, Joseph, Robert and one sister. His brother John, was a Wesleyan Methodist minister, and after years of serviec in the pastorate was chosen 2 szisztant treasurer to Rev. Alexander Sutherland, D. D., treasurer of the Missionary Board of Missions. Joseph married Miss Caroline A. Perrin, daughter of Thomas Perrin Jr., of Mount Ver on, Ont. He remained on the farm.
Robert was educated at Victoria College, Cobourg, Ont. He graduated B. A., 1863. Four years before he was received on probation in the Wesleyan Methodist conference. In 1863 he was ordained elder at. Quebec, by Rev. Anson Green, D. D. president of the conference, assisted by four elders. Robert was married June 24th, 1863, to Mary Ann Perrin, daughter of Col. Thomas Perrin, Mount Vernon, Ont. His brother John, read the ceremony. Rev. D. A. Perrin and wife stood up with them at the wedding. At the conference in Quebec, 1863, he was appointed pastor of the Methodist church at Ridgeway, Ont. During his term on this charge, he was taken sick with typhoid fever and suddenly past to his reward, leaving his wife and many relatives and friends to mourn his departure, 1866.
He was a successful minister, a brilliant preacher, a loving husband and had many friends in the ministry and laity. His body was interred in the Mt. Vernon Cemetery, after the funeral service in the Methodist church.
“God buries his workmen, but carries on his work,”. -Charles Wesley.
It is a pleasure as well as a duty I owe to my departed friend and brother, to write this biography.
D. A. PERRIN.