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(Contributed by James Ballantyne.  See NOTE at bottom.)



 In year 1783, a ship “The Hope” arrived at Pictou.  A number of ex soldiers were aboard who were granted land near Pictou.  However the land along the shore was already taken and they refused to settle inland.  Among those was David Ballentine, from Strathhaven.  He followed the shore until he came to Cape George (the French called this place Cape Lewis).  Mr Ballentine took up 2000 acres.  This grant began at what is known as Rough Brook, along the shore towards what is now Antigonish.

With very few tools he had to clear land and build a log house.  Fish and game were the only food.  Indians were a dread for some years.

As Pictou was the nearest settlement where supplies could be procured, on one of those trips he met Ellen Morrison who arrived ten years earlier with her parents, on the ship Hector.

They were married and had a family of twelve.  Several of the family settled the land near home, others moved to Pictou County.  (strong men)  As the children were growing up the parents began to look around to find a teacher.

They prevailed on Wm. MacPhee of Fort William to come out.  He arrived with his family and settled here.

Other settlers from Scotland followed including MacDonalds, MacNair, Grishams, Sinclairs, Hunters, MacEacherns, MacInnes, MacWilliams and other.

Later years Shipbuilding (schooners) was carried on.  With many of the residents following the sea, several who became masters of ships.

Fish were very plentiful in the bay and many Americans came to fish and trade.

Most of the surplus farm products was shipped to Newfoundland.  Before there was a breakwater cattle and horses were loaded on scow or swam out to vessels where they would be loaded aboard.

David Ballentine a native of Strathaven in the west of Scotland and formerly a non commissioned officer in the 82nd Highlander Regiment in which capacity he came to this province in 1783.  He got a grant of land in Pictou County N.S. across the harbour from Pictou town known as Fishers Grant (difficult to read).  The bears ate his only cow and dug up the seed potatoes he had planted and he got disgusted and walked through the woods and along the shore line and settled in Ballentine’s Cove,  where he another grant of land and each son and daughter received a farm.  He married Ellen Morrison daughter of George Morison and Jane Forbes.  Morrison’s came to NS in the ship Hector and landed in Pictou Harbour on Sept. 15, 1773.

The issue of David Ballentine and Ellen Morrison were George, John, James, William, David, Thomas, Alex, Jane married to Donald Robertson, Big Island.  Jannet married Mathew MacNair.  Nellie married Robert Patterson.  Margret married to John Small, Pine Tree and Ann not married.

David Ballentine died at Cape George on the 12th of January, 1843 aged 82 years.

Hellen wife of David Ballentine who died 15th of February, 1822 aged 5o years.  Her mother died the 15th of July and her father Geo Morrison who died the VII of Dec MDCCCXVII in the LXXX year of their age & LVI year since their marriage.

Unearthed and copied from a fallen and almost obliterated headstone in an abandoned & forest grown graveyard Cape George Nova Scotia June 1925.  Helen our Great Grandmother.  Stuart A and George F. Ballentine.

List of passengers in the Ship Hector George Morrison and family from Banff obtained a grant of land on the west side river where he settled an island there still called Morrison’s Island left one daughter married David Ballentyne cape George 82nd Regiment.

1773 1776 Hector 15th Sept. 1773 Pictou
Captain John Shears
!st mate Jaimie Orr
2nd “ John Anderson

This is a copy of my Grandfathers Marriage Licence
This may certify that this day joined in the bonds of marriage George Ballentine of Cape George and Nancy Reed of Little Harbour Agreeable to the Acts of this Province in that Acct under approval written with my hand at Pictou county of Halifax Province Nova Scotia this 24th Day of August 1819 to whom it may concern.

The issue of George Ballentine and Nancy Reed were:
David born July 14th 1820
Henereta born August 6th 1822  deceased October 9th 1831
Ellen M.  born July 21st 1824
Ann born Sept. 10th 1826
James born Nov. 4th 1828
Henereta born Sept. 29th 1831
Stewart born June 20th 1834  my Father
Joan born Jan. 19 1837
Alex  born Jan. 13 1840
They now are all deseased

Margret Ann Smith Born at Skye Glen Inverness Co. Cape Breton N.S.  1848 – Decreased Jan 5th 1940.

The issue of Stewart Ballentine and Margret Ann Smith daughter of James Parker Smith was
George Freeborn   born 10/3/76
Elan Morrison born 3/18/72 deceased 7/23/12
James Parker Smith  11/10/1880
Elizabeth Jane  12/27/1884
Annie Reed  2/14/88 deceased
John David  12/31/95   (writing difficult to Read)
Ernest Pithlado  9/9/86
John Franklin Forbes* 10/20/00

Margret Ann Smith and Stewart Ballentine of Cape George Antigonish Co. Nova Scotia Canada married at Skye Glen Cape Breton Nova Scotia Dec 1st 1875. Rev Alexander Thompson Presbertian Minister of Mabou C.B.


This is the way I’ve got our family history and hope it will be of some help to you in years to come.  The one great trouble with family history was that their was not a better record kept this I have picked up from time to time.  So I hope it will be of some benefit to you and yours in time to come.
So a good trip and a safe return

Geo. F Ballantyne

NOTE:  This information is presented as it was received from George Ballantyne.  This information has not been edited.
The birthdate of John Franklin Forbes* above is questionable, since he appears on the 1891 census and is 2 yrs. old.
Other dates have not been verified.