Sapper

George Rowebottom

Columbian Detachment Pay List for May/June 1861:

George Rowebottom, Regimental No. 5433
Received Ordinary Pay of 1 shilling, 2 1/2 pence per day for the whole period.
No Good Conduct pay, indicating that he had no GC badges.
Recorded as having been at New Westminster at time of the Muster

From Frances M. Woodward, "The Influence of the RE on the Development of British Columbia", B.C. Studies No. 24, Winter 1974/75:

Not listed among the men who arrived with first two ships in 1858.  Therefore probably came with the main body of RE aboard the Thames City, leaving Gravesend on October 10, 1858 and arriving in BC on April 12, 1859.

Table of RE remaining in BC:

"ROWEBOTTOM, George, Sapper: Lot 60,
Group 2, New Westminster District was Crown granted, November 30, 1870 (150 acres) to Mary A. Rowebottom as heir to her deceased brother.  Son George William born in Sapperton 1864, died 1935.  Widow died 1946, Victoria.
"

From Ms. L. Williams' (Thank you, Ms. Williams) who knows quite a bit about George William and his many descendants:

"It appears that with the family, he went by William.  Family history has it that George William Rowebottom's wife Anne (Burton) Rowebottom, had married "beneath herself" and got disinherited.

"Having nothing to lose she figured they may as well come to a colony.  The story that has always been passed down in our family is that George William and Anne's daughter, Alice Rowebottom, was "the first white woman born in Sapperton" in 1858, shortly after they arrived.  I was hoping that you might be able to confirm what ship they came on because we know she was born in Sapperton in 1858 but don't have a birth certificate, just a family bible.

"I have also heard tales of the passengers (Royal Engineers) having to throw virtually all of their possessions off of the boat coming around the horn, but Anne threw all her wedding things over but kept a small cast iron bread oven and baked bread for many upon her arrival in Sapperton.  George William and Anne also had a son named George, brother to Alice.  George had a son Edwin who had two sons, Howard and Lorne.  I am in touch with Lorne who is now 78.

"At 17 Alice Rowebottom married John Wright, son of an Overlander from Toronto.  John and Alice had 12 children and did their best to populate the Cariboo in BC.  They first ran the 137 milehouse and later the 127 where the cattle ranch remained in family hands for over 75 years.  My maternal grandmother was #9 of 12 of Alice and John's children.

"What we don't know, and will never know, is how John and Alice met and what became of George William Rowebottom and Anne after he left the Royal Engineers."