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Fonds Level Description

Accession Number: 70-1001


Isabella Miller fonds. -- Feb. 1843-Sept. 1849. -- 9 items. -- 2 photographs.

Biography / History

Isabella Brownlie was born in approximately 1828 in Scotland. Her mother died in childbirth and her father remarried. She had a number of sisters and a brother Claud. Isabella was brought to Otonabee, Upper Canada at the age of eight, from Scotland, by William Christie and his mother as a servant. She married James Miller who was from Perthshire, Scotland on December 1, 1845. They settled on land in Otonabee Township, half a mile from the Otonabee River. They had five sons: William Wallace, born December 29, 1846; Thomas Menzies, born September 18, 1849; James, born October 23, 1852; Peter, born September 4, 1859, (died October 11, 1859); and John Claud, born October 14, 1863. They also had two daughters: Isabelle Fulton, born August 5, 1848; and Margaret Ann, born May 7, 1855. Isabella died September 8, 1869.

Custodial History

The records in this fonds were previously owned by Mrs. Agnes Holt and Margaret McKelvie before they were donated to the Trent University Archives.

Scope and Content

This fonds consists of letters from a servant girl, Isabella Brownlie in Otonabee to her brother Claud in Scotland. After 1845, the letters are from Isabella and her husband James Miller. The fonds also contains two photographs, one of Isabella's brother, Claud Brownlie, with his wife, Elizabeth [Kendrick], and the second of Claud Brownlie alone, as well as a diploma for Thomas Menzies Miller, 1891.


Title based on the creator of the fonds.

The fonds was donated by Margaret Mckelvie and Mrs. Agnes Holt prior to 1970.

Restrictions: N

Associated material with the Peterborough Historical Society, Hutchison House, Peterborough, Ontario, and Lang Pioneer Village, Lang, Ontario.

The letters are published in "Peterborough: Land of Shining Waters." Peterborough: City and County of Peterborough, 1967 and have been transcribed here. Note that spelling and punctuation used by Isabella Brownlie has been retained.

The diploma is located in the Large Materials Cabinet - Drawer 26.

For related records see: 71-1001, 88-017 and 01-1019.


Genealogy: Brownlie - Miller - Campbell Families

I. Isabella Brownlie (1828-1869); brother was Claud Brownlie, d. 1902; m. 1845 James Miller (1818 - 1879)

William Wallace (1846 - 1886) (married 1. Letitia Blezard and 2. Sarah Hazlett)

Isabelle Fulton (1848 - 1937) (married William Campbell)

Dr. Thomas Menzies (1850 - 1908 )(married Mary Anne McIntyre)

James (1852 - 1901) (married Janet Bryce)

Margaret Ann (1855- 1940) (married Harry Cruikshank)

Peter (1859   - died young)

John Claud (1863-1901)


II. Isabelle Fulton Miller (1848 - 1937) m. 1872 William Campbell (1847 - 1929)

Isabelle (Bella) (1873 - ) (m. 1894 Robert Nelson)

Margaret (Maggie/Peggie 1875 - ?) (m. 1907  Thomas Wigmore)

William Claud (1880 - ?) (m. 1916 Eva Rogers)

Lillian (1884 - ?) (m. 1912 Wallace Wood)

Agnes Campbell "Aggie" (1886 - ?)

Jean (Jeannie 1889 - ?) (m. 1912 Arthur G. Cameron)

Thomas (1892 - drowned 1909)

Dr. James Alexander