Fonds MC305 - Edmund Hillyer Duval family

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Edmund Hillyer Duval family

General material designation

  • Textual record

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  • Variations in title: Formerly known as Edmund Hillyer Duval collection.

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  • 1848-1909 (Creation)
    Duval family (Edmund Hillyer)

Physical description

6 cm of textual records

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(Branch begins in 1805)

Biographical history

Edmund Hillyer Duval (1805-1878), the son of Peter Duval and Elizabeth Wood Duval was born at Houndsditch, London, England, on 8 February 1805. On 28 September 1828, he married Sarah Turner (d. 1840), the daughter of Mary Lamb and John Turner, at Aldgate, London. They had no fewer than 7 children: Elizabeth (1831-1833), Edmund Hillyer (1832-1907), Sarah (1834-1835), Marianne (1836-1923), Amelia (1838-1906), Sarah Kewell (1839-1840), and Eliza Lury (1840-1928). Edmund Duval and his family came to New Brunswick in the 1840s and settled in Saint John. His brother, George Duval, immigrated to the province several years later and also made his home in or near Saint John.

Between 1835 and 1845, Edmund H. Duval was headmaster of a large school in Bristol, England, sponsored by the British School Society. This organization operated a number of such schools that were intended to provide basic education for the working-class. In 1845 he was invited by a group of Saint John businessmen to establish a British Model school in the Mechanics' Institute to train teachers. From 1848 to 1859 he was principal of the Normal School, at Saint John, which soon became the standard for teachers' training throughout the province. In 1859 he became the chief inspector of schools for the city and county of St. John.

A Deacon of Germain Street Baptist Church, Saint John, in 1870 Edmund H. Duval received a certificate of licence to preach from that congregation. He fought to improve social conditions for blacks or the descendants of Black Loyalists, particularly those living at Loch Lomond, also known as Willow Grove, located near Saint John. To better assist blacks at Willow Grove, he bought a farm there and taught residents farming techniques. He was instrumental in the construction of Willow Grove Baptist Church in the 1850s, which was considered a mission of Germain Street Baptist Church. Edmund Hillyer Duval died at Willow Grove, Simonds Parish, on 17 September 1878.

Several of Edmund H. Duval's children followed in his footsteps. In 1870, Eliza Lury Duval married William Fotherby Burditt (d. 1931), the son of the Rev. Thomas Burditt, a Baptist preacher, of England and Wales. They lived in or near Saint John. Edmund Hillyer Duval, Jr., married Matilda Jane Marshall, in 1863, and they made their home in the province of Québec. Daughters, Marianne Duval and Amelia Duval, may be considered followers of the Social Gospel movement of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Marianne Duval ran a Mothers Meeting group at Willow Grove for the poor, both black and white, in the early 1860s. She married twice, first to John George Lewis Wilson (d. 1867), of London, in July 1866, and second to Charles H. Allan (d. 1878), of Saint John, in 1877. Amelia Duval was active in social welfare groups in Saint John. She ran a Sunday school at the local almshouse and worked with the King's Daughters Society, later known as the International Order of King's Daughters and Sons. She died unmarried on 13 September 1906.

Custodial history

Information about the custody of these records prior to acquisition is incomplete. These records came into the hands of Charlotte Burditt Sutherland and Alice Geraldine Burditt MacLean, both daughters of Arthur F. and Lila Burditt, the son and daughter-in-law of William F. Burditt, Sr., the husband of Eliza Lury Duval. The donor is the husband of Charlotte Burditt Sutherland, who died in October 1981.

Scope and content

This fonds consists of personal records of Edmund Hillyer Duval and his children, namely, Marianne Duval, Amelia Duval, and Eliza Lury Duval Burditt and Lury's husband, William F. Burditt. There are also a very few records pertaining to Edmund H. Duval's work as an educator and member of Germain Street Baptist Church.

Edmund Hillyer Duval's records include manuscript copies of letters to various individuals relating to teachers' training (1848-1849); his estate papers; and a certificate of license to preach issued to him from Germain Street Baptist Church. Of particular interest are the materials pertaining to the descendants of Black Loyalists living at Loch Lomond or Willow Grove, near Saint John. These include a draft letter pertaining to the expenditure of funds for "ameliorating the condition" of blacks at Loch Lomond [1868], a memorandum of agreement for the construction of a meeting house at Willow Grove (1878), a brief account of the church's history, and a manuscript copy of a paper read at the opening of Willow Grove Church by Edmund H. Duval (1878).

Lury and William F. Burditt's and Marianne Duval's records each consist of a few pieces of correspondence. Of special interest are Amelia Duval's two dairies containing "scribblings" about her activities and interests. The 1900-[before 1907] volume records information on women's groups in Saint John, particularly the King's Daughters Society that worked with working-class girls and women in the port city.

Lastly, the fonds includes genealogy material on the Duval family, such as biographical notes and newspaper clippings.

Physical condition

The conservation section removed tape from the Duval family history sheet located in MS4. It was then placed in a Mylar sleeve. The document located in MS1D is very fragile and must be handled with care.

Immediate source of acquisition

Paul Sutherland, of Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, donated this material to the Provincial Archives of New Brunswick in 1981.


Language of material

  • English

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No restrictions

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Finding aids

An inventory is available.

Associated materials

Additional information on the Duval family is located in RS184 (microfilm reel no. F11081) and in MC304 William F. Burditt family fonds.

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