Bible 130 Years Old

(From the Daily British Whig June 13 1924)


   D.A. Valleau of the Customs Examining warehouse, Oshawa, has a number of very fine and interesting old family heirlooms, among them possibly the most interesting is an old family Bible.

   The book is a very finely preserved copy of the King James’ version of the Scriptures, printed at Edinburgh by Mark and Charles Kerr, in the year 1795.

   The inside of the front cover bears the label of the dealer who sold the copy, namely, William Trumbull, Stationary, 156 Trongate, Glasgow.

   The book is bound in leather and though its leaves show the ripening and changing effect of the years, for its pages are yellow and sear but are splendidly preserved and as readable as any modern edition.

   The Bible was the property of Cornelius Valleau who was born in Bergen county, New Jersey, on Feb. 26th 1777. His name and that of succeeding generations of the family are written in the book. He was married to Mary Anne Rowe, who was born March 17th, 1781.

   Among their children was William, who was the grandfather of the present owner of the book.

   Mr. D.A. Valleau’s father was Andrew Zabriski Valleau born 1833 and died 1888.

   The book contains the names of various other members of the family and is certainly accounted a priceless treasure by Mr. Valleau.

To Be Read on June 15th

   This Bible will be used in religious service that is to be held at Belleville on Sunday, June 15th at the Presbyterian church of that city and will be read by Rev. M. Morden, himself a descendant of U.E.L. stock.

   The Valleau’s are descendants of those U.E.L.’s who braved the dangers of forest trail and sea that they might remain under the old flag of their fathers.

   If this and other old volumes and heirlooms could but audibly tell the story of the years of wearisome travels and toil, of the early fireside and community events, of the struggles, of the ambition, of the joys and the tears, of the successes and defeats, of the heartaches and the ecstasies of those old pioneers what a story they would unfold.

   From an old report issued in 1897 by the Ontario Bureau of Industries we make the following clipping which refers to the Valleau family.

The Valleaus

   It says, “The Valleaus – Peter Valleau and his sons, Hildebrand and Cornelius, aged 9 and 7 years, were among the first pioneer company. Peter appears to have settled somewhere south of Hay Bay, but no one now can tell just where. He and his son, Hildebrand moved to Sixth Town (Sophiasburgh) before 1800, and settled on the High Shore, a few miles east of Picton, where both lived and died.

   They lie buried in the old Conger church burying ground. Mr. A.S. Valleau, now collector of customs at Deseronto, is a descendant of Hildebrand, and there are a large number of the family in Prince Edward.

   Peter was township treasurer of Sophiasburgh in 1880.

   Cornelius Valleau, the other son drew land north of Hay Bay, a second lot to the eastern boundary, where he lived and died. He reared a large family and there are now a large number of descendants, but none of the name are now in the township.

   Judge Cornelius Valleau Price, Kingston, is a grandson. A number of the family name reside in Richmond township and also a number in Ameliasburgh, Prince Edward county and in other portions of the province. They were Methodists.

   An added charm and interest would have been brought to the great religious service to be held in the old church at Hay Bay, tomorrow had the Scripture lessons been read from this old book in the old church. From the dates given it is quite apparent that this early Valleau family were members of that old pioneer body of men and women who cut away every chip, who hewed every log and beam in their old cabins, who cleared every square foot of land, who built their fire places and their meeting houses with a prayer upon their lips and the fires of religious fervency and patriotic zeal burning unquenchably in their bosoms. We owe more than we can ever dream to these men and women of other days.

Other Old Families

   In the same report we find interesting accounts of other notable pioneer families.

   There are the Hagermans of whom Nicholas Hagerman was one of the most prominent of the early settlers.

   We have a descendant of this early pioneer family living in Oshawa and known to a lot of us as Harvey N. Hagerman of the G.M.C. staff.

   Another of those splendid old families by the name of Maybee, is represented in town by Mr. Percy Maybee, known at the time as Captain Maybee. He is mentioned in early government documents as “Captain of Associated Loyalists.” He died in June 1832 at the age of 96 years.

   Mr. Valleau will attend the U.E.L. demonstration at Belleville and will take this old Bible with him, and will not let it out of his sight. He guards it jealously because of the rich family memories that cluster about it and would not lose or part with it for almost any sum of money.

   Mr. Valleau has a hobby for old books and relics and has a very attractive display. He has an original book of entry, a record of all the Orange lodges, their members, names and secretaries, etc., organized in Canada.

   This book should be interesting to historians of this organization.

   He also has a copy of an English Prayer Book printed in the year 1612.