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Helen Alice "Nellie" NORSWORTHY

Helen Alice "Nellie" NORSWORTHY

Female 1884 - 1970  (86 years)

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  • Name Helen Alice "Nellie" NORSWORTHY  [1, 2
    Nickname Nellie 
    Born 4 May 1884  Ingersoll, Ontario Find all individuals with events at this location  [3, 4
    • NORSWORTHY--In Ingersoll, on the 4th inst., the wife of J. C. NORSWORTHY, of a daughter.
    Gender Female 
    • At some point in time she lived with Ella HALL, the granddaughter of Elizabeth (Norsworthy)WATTS.
    Address West Oxford Township, Ontario Find all individuals with events at this location  [6
    • Living with her maternal grandmother.
    Address 1891  Ingersoll, Ontario Find all individuals with events at this location  [6
    • Living with her maternal grandparents.
    Died 25 Jun 1970  Hamilton, Ontario Find all individuals with events at this location  [4
    Buried 27 Jun 1970  Ingersoll Rural Cemetery, Ingersoll, Ontario Find all individuals with events at this location  [4
    Ingersoll Rural Cemetery
    Ontario Canada, Ontario
    • Burial Register: Helen A. NORSWORTHY, age 87, born Ingersol, died Hamilton 25 June 1970; buried 27 June 1970, R. R. Sadlier officiated; location S.E. B 110.

      Ingersol Rural Cemetery: Section C, row AA, stone 7; NORSWORTHY, Helen Alice. In loving memory of Helen Alice NORSWORTHY, 4 May 1884 - 25 June 1970.
    • " The only daughter of the family was educated at the public school and Collegiate Institute in Ingersoll and spent two years at Havergal College, Toronto. She then took up nursing as a profession, was trained at the Western Hospital, Montreal, where she proved a bright student and earnest worker and graduated in due course. Associated with other friends she pursued her work so energetically and, especially in connection with some serious typhoid cases that her health broke down and she had to return home. The anxieties of the war period and the absence at the Front of so many members of the family circle prevented the complete recovery which had been hoped for. " [7]
    Person ID I4270  Nosworthy
    Last Modified 2 Mar 2021 

    Father James Caunter NOSWORTHY,   b. 2 Jul 1846, Widecombe-in-the-Moor, Devon Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 4 Nov 1936, Ingersoll, Ontario Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 90 years) 
    Mother Mary Jane CUTHBERT,   b. 14 Sep 1852, West Oxford Township, Ontario Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 27 Feb 1891, Ingersoll, Ontario Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 38 years) 
    Married 26 Apr 1878  West Oxford Township, Ontario Find all individuals with events at this location  [9
    • NORSWORTHY--CUTHBERT--At Croft Hyrme [?], West Oxford [township], by the Rev. John McEwen, on the 26th ult., James Counter NORSWORTHY, Esq., to Miss Mary CUTHBERT. (Website)

      James C. NORSWORTHY, 30, Banker, England, Ingersoll, s/o John & Mary, married Mary Jane CUTHBERT, 25, Canada, West Oxford, d/o Alexander and Jane. Witnesses: Thomas VALIAN, of London, Ontario and Henrietta CUTHBERT of West Oxford, 25 April 1878. (Archives) [Henrietta would have been Mary Jane's sister.] [3, 8, 9]
    Address 250, King St East, Ingersoll, Ontario Find all individuals with events at this location  [10, 11
    • The NORSWORTHY home was originally constructed as a yellow brick farmhouse, the building and surrounding 200 acres became part of the Mary Jane (Miss May) Cuthbert's dowry when she married James. (Newspaper) It was built in the Queen Ann style in the early 1850's and boasted of turrets, bays, chimneys of cut brick, multi-coloured brickwork, slate roofs and stain glass windows. This is generally an irregular shaped home with no plain surfaces. The 21 room home is three stories high. There are 6 bedrooms, a double drawing room, living room, library, dining room, kitchen, etc. The foundation is said to be 43" thick. The cellar was composed of many rooms - a preserve room with cupboards, a root cellar, wine cellar, coal cellar and furnace room. "Cool rooms" for foods, ventilated by early type air conditioning was composed of vents in the basement walls which drew in the air from outside all around the house - the first natural air conditioned home in Ingersoll. This home was the only one in town that had running tap water, in all the rooms. A cistern was built, with pipes going through the kitchen roof, and these were connected to the cistern about 5 feet above the height of the house. When the pipes were connected, taps were installed in each room for the gravity-forced water. As the cistern's level dropped, more water was pumped up from the well. Mr. and Mrs. J. Robbins are the present owners of this beautiful home, and they try to keep it in it's original state.(Ingersoll)

      As late as 1978 the history of this home continues to be told. On 4 August 1978 an article appeared in the local newspaper:


      Behind an impressive screen of shade trees, the NORSWORTHY home broods over Ingersoll. James Counter NORSWORTHY came with his parents to Canada from Devonshire, England in 1852 and eventually established himself as "Banker and Broker, Insurance and Loan Agent" on King Street. Originally Crown Land, the 200 acres was granted in 1806 to Ebenezer Whiting, one of Ingersoll's early settlers. The present owner of the home, Jessie Robins, believes that the house was built in the 1850's and it came with the dowry of NORSWORTHY's first wife, Mary Jane.

      The marriage was announced in the Ingersoll chronicle, May 2, 1978 (should be 1878), "Thursday evening last, our townsman J. C. NORSWORTHY was united in marriage with Miss May, eldest daughter of Mrs. Cuthbert of West Oxford in the presence of a number of invited guests. Mr & Mrs NORSWORTHY left on the midnight train for New York. We wish them every happiness."

      The following week there appeared a letter with the bold headline ADVICE TO THE NEWLY MARRIED MAN FROM AN EXPERIENCED BENEDICT - The long column of free advice contained, among other things. "Don't scold your wife and don't beat your children, if you have any... Bathe often, look after your health..and never go home drunk. Keep clear of your wife's relations...Yours, John. " Just who "John" was and why he felt empowered to give such advice is lost in the pages of time.

      NORSWORTHY elaborated upon the plain red brick Ontario farmhouse until he had a structure worthy of the dignity of the position that he held in town. The result is a melange of styles that nonetheless present a picaresque view to the observer. A veranda, usually thought to give a house a fashionable urban air, is graced with solid Doric columns. The left side is enclosed with stone and has beautiful stained glass windows. There are sumptuous glass windows throughout the home both exterior and interior. The right veranda sports a bandshell design, topped with a very Victorian pinacle. Above the pillared portico is a stately circular balcony which in turn is topped by a curiously curved gable. Although the pointed arches suggest Gothic, the window is curved Romanesque. The rounded design is echoed in the carved wooden fans of the flanking gavels and in the tri-windows on either side of the house. An Italianate tower is not only a decorative addition but practical as well. It housed a water tower and the giant steel tanks are still in place. The main door has a transom extending over the strengths. It is less sound structurally than a shortened transom, but a pleasing arrangement and a typical pattern in Ontario.

      The interior of the home is magnificently finished in wood and is said that Norworthy had a carpenter in residence for over a year to complete the work. Frank Leake, a noted local woodcarver, did the elaborate mantelpieces. Interior doors are all equipped with locks and each one has a keyhole cover, a delightful eccentricity of a moneylender who held mortgages on hundreds of properties in town.

      The ghost of NORSWORTHY's first wife, Mary Jane, is said to have haunted the house. Owner Jessie Robins attests to hearing and being aware of a "presence" in the home for many years. She believes that Mary Jane, who died of diphtheria in 1891 while nursing her sick children, was looking for her daughter. The mysterious Lady in Grey has not been seen on the balcony since the daughter Nellie died a few years ago. (Focus Magazine)
    Sketch of Norsworthy home
    Sketch of Norsworthy home
    250 King St. East, Ingersoll. The home originated as part of the dowry of Mary Jane Cuthbert.
    'Norleigh', home of J.C. Norsworthy
    "Norleigh", home of J.C. Norsworthy
    Photo originally belonged to Nellie Ruth Herman, nee Counter.
    Counter family visiting J.C. Norsworthy
    Counter family visiting J.C. Norsworthy
    Top L to R: Charles Walton Counter; (presumably) his wife, Jessie; J. C. Norsworthy; lower L to R: John Scott Counter; (presumably) his sister Nellie Ruth.
    Photo originally belonged to Nellie Ruth Herman, nee Counter.
    250 King St. East, Ingersol, Ontario in 2008
    250 King St. East, Ingersol, Ontario in 2008
    Family ID F1197  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Photos
    Helen Norsworthy
    Helen Norsworthy
    Graduating class of Western General Hospital
    Graduating class of Western General Hospital
    Helen Norsworthy, top right.
    Inscription on graduation photo
    Inscription on graduation photo
    Helen Norsworthy
    Helen Norsworthy
    Taken at Kincardine, Ontario in August 1940.
    Helen Norsworthy
    Helen Norsworthy
    Inscription on back of photo taken August 1940

    Norsworthy visit, 1909
    Norsworthy visit, 1909
    Newspaper clipping reporting on the return of James Norsworthy and his daughter, Nellie, to Ingersoll in April 1909.

    The bust of EDWARD CUTHBERT NORSWORTHY sits on top of the Norsworthy monument, and faces his home, Norleigh. It was commissioned after his death by his father, James C. Norsworthy.

  • Sources 
    1. [S305] Biography: NORSWORTHY, James C. Norsworthy, (15 March 1909, McIntosh, Florida; rec'd from Mike NORSWORTHY, direct descendant of William George NORSWORTHY, July 2005.).

    2. [S676] Personal communication.

    3. [S162] Website.

    4. [S797] Burial Register.

    5. [S276] NORSWORTHY Saga, Stanley Norsworthy, (Undated).

    6. [S1079] Census of Canada, 1891.

    7. [S348] Book: A Canadian Family in the Great War 1914 - 1918, J. Castell Hopkins, (Published privately, Toronto, 1921. Copy in Parish of Widecombe-in-the-Moor Family History Center Library.).

    8. [S317] Ontario Archives.

    9. [S109] Civil Marriage Registration.

    10. [S280] Book: Ingersoll: Our Heritage, Harry Whitwell, (1978).

    11. [S217] Newspaper.