A V I E W F R O M C H A R L O T T E T O W N , P R I N C E E D W A R D I S L A N D
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Recently I told you we had many - in all walks of life - Islanders that truly could be called Successful Islanders Abroad. There are so many that it will take we a while to cover them, but just to be devilish I want to tell you of a couple tonight.
There was for instance, William Nelson LePage, who went to Glousester Mass. when he was young - he manufactured a glue from fish oil or some special mucilage material from a fish gland or somewhere - but you got it - it ended up as LePage's Glue. He went to town and had an advertizing campaign of extraordinary dimension. It didn't end perfectly, but what the heck, when you look at Lepage's Glue today you can salute William Nelson and recognized that he's rooted on this little Island.
Then would you believe Buffalo Bill Cody ! This one is less clear, but for years there was a group of Islanders who swear that the gentleman was born on PEI - even tho' there is a "birthplace" to visit in Iowa. There was one Islander who caught the Buffalo Bill show in England, who claimed that after the show when Buffalo Bill was asking where people were from, claimed to the man who said PEI "That's where I was born, too"
The story is that Buffalo Bill was born in Albion Bay down near Sturgeon on a farm owned by Dick Creed. It is said that he left with his parents when he was 18 months old. Supporters of this theory, in addition to people in Albion, were George Leard of Souris and John Cairns from Dunstaffnage. "Tiny" Matheson wrote many articles on this subject.
I have others that interest me - men who were active in the construction business, for instance. One I want to learn more about is William Weeks who had left here about 1880. He was the son of Richard builder/architect and who influenced his son into the same field. He settled in San Francisco and became very successful. He designed so many of the largest and "most costly buildings" in the state. Some day we must get that list together and arrange a "cultural exchange" so we can really understand this "successful Islander abroad". More about this another time.
Written Wednesday, February 28, 2001 at 09:12 AM