Sunday, December 2, 2012
Samuel Cook 1886 - 1950
My interest in Samuel was peaked when I realized that he was the one member of my great grandmother Faith Cook Saunders’ sibship who moved to California, and visiting him was likely the reason that several of Faith’s extended family came through Vancouver in the 1930’s on their way there. I was also able to find records on him more easily than some of the others in his family due to the availability of later census years in the U.S. than in Canada, and other records such as those connected with naturalization. The key was finding his full birthdate on his baptism record on www.familysearch.org.
Samuel Cook, my great grand uncle, was born to Emma Green Cook and William Cook on September 9, 1886, Timberland, Lincolnshire, England, the birthplace of his father. He was baptised on October 8, 1886 in Timberland. He came to Canada with his mother and siblings in 1889, a year after his father emigrated. (See postings on Emma Green Cook for the story of the family’s early days in Canada). From originally living in Ontario, where his sister Mary Eliza was born, the family settled in Moosamin, Saskatchewan, where they were among the early homesteaders in the area. After his father’s death in Winnipeg, Manitoba in 1908, the we find Samuel next living in Vancouver, British Columbia, in 1911 He is residing with his mother and siblings in his mother’s boarding house, and working as a carpenter, as is his brother, Edward. He married Sarah Ann Crittall in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan on July 2, 1912 when he was twenty-five. She was born to James Crittall and Mary Anne Mockford Crittall on Februrary 21, 1894, in Surrey, England. She had come to Canada with her family in 1909. In 1913, Samuel and Sarah Ann were living in Vancouver with his sister Faith and brother-in-law, Herbert Charles Saunders, at 517 West Broadway. Doris Mabel Cook, their eldest daughter was born in British Columbia, likely Vancouver, the same year on July 19th. Samuel is working as a lather. By 1916, he is living with his wife and daughter in Winnipeg, at 727 Portage. (Other family members also lived on Portage in the late 1910s and in the 1920s, such as Faith and Herbert Saunders, and Mary Eliza Cook Foster and her husband, William). He is now working in a garage as a mechanic, an occupation it appears he had for the rest of his life. On August 7, 1922, his daughter Erva Anne Cook is born.
The family moved to the U.S. on May 28, 1923, when they crossed the border at Noyes, Minnesota. By 1930, they were living in Bryant, Clackamas County, Oregon. When Samuel completed his declaration of intention to become a naturalized American citizen, they were living in Torrance, Calfornia. He is described as 5’11” tall, weight 170 lbs., with a “medium” complexion, with brown eyes and brown hair. In 1940 and 1942, he is living in Long Beach, California at 932 East Esther Street. In 1940, he is working as a “mechanic” in the “automotive industry”, and his wife is a “saleswoman” in “retail”. Their daughter, Erva Cook, is attending Polytechnic High School, and Doris is no longer living with them. In 1942, he is working at the California Shipyards, according to his registration for the World War II draft. He died on May 5, 1950 in Los Angeles at the age of sixty-three. Sarah appears to have re-married a man by the last name of Harvey, and passed away on December 20, 1985 at the age of ninety-one.