Wine River: An Extract1

By Betty Lynch and William J Flynn
Note: Wine River is located on Route 440 (off Highway 11) just a few kilometres southwest of St. Margaret’s, Northumberland County.
History of the Community
The community of Wine River began with the settlement of Irish immigrants approximately around the year 1830. Stories are that the Bay du Vin River which flows into Miramichi Bay was originally named Bay du Vent meaning Bay of Wind in English. Sometime over the years it was mistaken for Bay of Wine. The river crosses Highway 11 and from this point on it is called Wine River. The obvious reason is that the community just beyond was English speaking.
Wine River Land Grant
Wine River Land Grant
The families of Wine River were primarily farmers. They built their homes and cleared the land for their farms. They also worked in the woods harvesting logs for pulp and lumber. Horses were required to get the logs from the woods and some of the family farms raised them for this purpose. During later years as more roads were built they found casual employment working on road construction, clearing brush
from the sides of roads etc.
Wine River School
Wine River School
The community had it’s own school, one room as was common in those days. The school shut down sometime in the late 1930s or early 1940s. Patrick Power moved it up to his home in St. Margaret’s and sometime later Albert McGrath bought it and moved it by his home in St. Margaret’s where it stands today.

The families of the community for the most part married within the Wine River, St. Margaret’s, Redmondville area. In many cases sisters and brothers of one family married sisters and brothers of another family. St. Margaret’s was their parish church and the place of most of the baptisms, marriages and funerals. In the church cemetery you will find the headstones for many of the people listed on the families page.

There was a covered bridge over the river in years past but it is now gone, replaced by an uncovered bridge. The homes are all gone and most of the land was purchased by the government. The last two homes were Albert McGrath’s and his mother’s home. They were both moved to St. Margaret’s in 1957 and still stand today.
As some of the older people will tell you today, they worked hard on the farms and in the woods to feed their families which were quite large. This would not have been an easy task but looking out to future generations those of us who have descended from these families have a lot to be thankful for. Amongst these descendants who are scattered across Canada and parts of the U.S. you will find many professional people, Teachers, Nuns, Priests, Doctors, Nurses and most of all just plain hardworking people who have carried the work ethic of their ancestors with them.
Families of Wine River
Johnny Lynch and son John
Mike McGrath
Terrance & Annie McGrath
Terrance & Annie McGrath
Terrence McGrath and wife Melanie Goguen
Thomas McGrath
Bernard McGrath
Albert McGrath
Mary McGrath
Rita McGrath
Eva McGrath
Thomas Power and wife Jane Cook
Julia Josephine Power
Catherine Ellen Power
Bridget Power
Anna Jane Power
Clara Elizabeth Power
Maria Theresa Power
Thomas Aloysius Power
Cecelia Power
Terrence Power
John Alexius Power
Katherine Power
Thomas Power and Marcella Flanagan
Thomas Aloysius Power and wife Marcella Flanagan
Elizabeth Power
Jane Theresa Power
Catherine Power
Patrick Power
Ellen (Nellie) Power
Thomas John Power
Stephen Power
James Power
Martin Power
Vincent Power
Gertrude Ann Power
Alesis Power
Joseph Power
Thomas Power and wife Catherine Deigan
Mary Power
Jennie Power
Catherine Power
John Power
Ellen Power
Judy Power
Thomas Power
Patrick Flynn & Annie Power
Patrick Flynn and wife Annie Power
Herbert Flynn
Peter Flynn
Alexis Flynn
Thomas Flynn
Frances Flynn
Alexis Power and wife Anna Malloy
Dorothy Power
Evelyn Power
Helen Power
John Power
Terrence Power
Leo Power
Thomas Power
Edna Power
William James Flynn and wife Frances (Fanny) Lynch
James John Flynn
Bridget Flynn
Peter Flynn
Patrick James Flynn
James John Flynn and wife Cecilia Power
James Edmund Joseph Flynn
Patrick Harold Flynn
Joseph Flynn
Maria Frances Flynn
Jane Bernadetta Flynn
Ann Lillian Flynn
Mary Flynn
Thomas Warman Flynn
Johnny Lynch and sister Kate Lynch
John Reinsborough and wife Catherine Ellen Power
Geraldine Reinsborough
Lawrence Reinsborough
Jane Reinsborough
Annie Reinsborough
James John Flynn
Cecilia Power
Julia Josephine Power
Tales from the Past
My father recalled a story years ago when his father (John married to
Katie Power) was building their house at Wine River. There was a board
across the front entrance to keep the cattle out and my grandfather
would work at night after his farming chores were done (they also kept up
to 10 horses for working in the woods). One night around midnight the
neighbour up the road (a Flynn) jumped over the board and began to chat
with John. Only after his leaving did my grandfather realize that this
gentleman had been dead for two years….gotta love them Irish and their
imagination…perhaps this fellow was your grandfather….
Submitted by Kenneth Reinsborough
One night my mother saw a bright light flash across the sky. When she saw it she told us we were going to hear bad news. The next day they found out that an old man across the river Mike McGrath had passed away.
Submitted by Maria Nowlan (Flynn)
A common saying in the St. Margaret’s / Wine River communities was “the Flynns/Quinns and Daley boys.” It is reported that it was first said by a parish priest and continued as a common saying afterward.
Submitted by Bertha McGrath/Reg McDonald
Dad was very superstitious, passed on down the line to him. He always said if you heard 3 knocks you knew you would soon hear that someone in the family had passed away.
Submitted by William J. Flynn
In the spring of the year the men drove logs down the Wine River. Some of us who were too far from home to go home for lunch would try to see what the men were doing. The teacher told us not to go. Being children curiosity always got the best of us and we would sneak out. When we got caught we had to write out lines 40 times.
Submitted by Maria Nowlan (Flynn)
Material for this community’s history was gathered from genealogical material and research conducted by Betty Lynch and William J Flynn. A more detailed history is available from the authors.

[1] From “Wine River, Northumberland County, A Tribute to Wine River and the People Who Lived There so the Community and the People Would Not be Forgotten” , compiled by Elizabeth Lynch and William J Flynn.