What a twisted journey your family took from Canada. Every time I root around, I uncover another layer and another mystery.
Enos Louis Blair. Was he the same man who appears later as simply Louis? or Lewis?
He was married to Adaline Bordeau. Is she the same person as Mary A. Bordo?
Names, it seem, were not as written in concrete as they are today, probably because so many people can read and write and your generation could not. You had to rely on the bored, overworked, underpaid person who sat behind the desk taking the census.
Thus, “E.S. Blair” could very well be Enos Blair.
So, here’s the mystery. I found a “Lewis Blair” born about the right time, emigrating from St. John (Canada) to Cambridge, Ma in 1848. Nothing weird about that, except all his children were born in Canada from 1849 on.
Did he go back? And why travel from St. John when he could’ve walked across the border?
I do so love mysteries. And I’m digging for answers, really I am, but I keep coming up empty-handed. And so, as I often do, I’ll use my imagination to fill in some of the details…
Louis stood on the deck no longer feeling every swell from the ship. With more than a week of rough travel behind him, he looked out at the hunk of land and forgot the discomfort. It was, he supposed, a small price to pay for the opportunities that awaited.
He removed his cap and ran a filthy hand through unkept, disheveled hair. He’d need to find lodging in this bustling city and work, then he could worry about such niceties as a warm bath and clean clothes. The deck hands relayed orders to the men who’d climbed the rigging. All that sail needed to come down and soon. The Boston harbor was crowded with ships entering and leaving and they could no longer afford speed.
“Step away, lad, it’s time to clear the decks for a bit.”
The man motioned for Louis to join the others below in the hold.
“It is not good there, you understand?” He plugged his nose to indicate the putrid smell.
“It’s an order I follow, from the commander, and besides,” he added and clapped a huge hand on Louis’ shoulder, “your problems are only beginning.”
His wicked grin said it all.
Louis stole one more look at the crowded port city and imagined the troubles, the hardships and pain he faced. He blew out a breath. And the danger, he’d never let down his guard in a place such as this.
“Did you not understand?” The man, no longer patient, gave him a gruff shove then nearly sent him tumbling down the ladder. “I said away with you and now.”
Louis bit back the curse and turned away. A lifetime his family, the Blairs, had spent in exile. Without Scotland, they had nowhere to call home, even Canada afforded only temporary sanctuary. But he was here, by damn it, amidst all the dreamers and seekers and those that hungered for more. Enos Louis Blair had finally arrived in a place that with time, he hoped to call home.