Brothers and Sisters Have Surprise Reunion

This article is from the Boston Herald originally published on June 27, 1915. The copy was provided by Carol Fleetwood. The great granddaughter of Jane (Thompson) McKinley.

Four Who Were Together Last in Toronto 31 Years Ago Meet in Somerville as a Result of Unannounced Visits of the Other Three to Mrs. R. C. Graham.

Two brothers and two sisters, who had not seen each other for 31 years, enjoyed an unpremeditated reunion in Somerville last week.

Mrs. Robert C. Graham, who lives at 29 Greene street, has been entertaining Mrs. Susan Fawcett, her sister, from Toronto, Ont. One day, about two weeks ago, without any notification of coming, the Rev. James Thompson, an Episcopal rector at Welling, near Buffalo, N. Y. dropped in on his sisters. He remained a week, and before his departure William, another brother whose home is in Seattle, Wash., came in also unannounced. The brothers and sisters are wondering if some telepathic agency brought them together, for none of them had communicated with any of the others regarding the visit.

The four were born in Ulster, Ireland, and came to America when quite young. Their last meeting was in Toronto, 31 years ago. Mrs. Fawcett still lives there. Mrs. Graham has lived in Somerville many years.

The Rev. James Thompson was educated at Dublin College in Toronto and at King’s College in Halifax, and immediately after receiving his degrees began studying for holy orders. He has held his pastorate at Welling practically all the time since he was ordained.

William is the picturesque member of the family. He went West in 1871 and has been through most of the states to Alaska, Australia and various parts of South America.

After he had been in Seattle a few years he was appointed to a position in the customs service, which he held until a change of administration brought a request for his resignation. The he became connected with the police force and has held that ever since, rising from the position of patrolman to that of detective.

When the gold discoveries were made in Alaska William resigned his place on the police force and joined the rush. He remained there three years, but does not claim that he accumulated a fortune. On his return to Seattle he was restored to his place on the police force and has been doing detective work since.

An attack of rheumatism laid him off some time ago and finding he was not improving as he should he secured a 60-day leave of absence to visit his sister. To his surprise he found both sisters and a brother in Somerville when he arrived.

The Boston subways were a puzzle to the man who never visited this city before and who is accustomed to the broad streets and wide spaces of the West, but he has travelled enough to find his way about. “There is no need to get lost,” he says, “as long as ye have a tongue in your head.”

There is only one other member of the family, Mrs. Jane McKInley, who still lives in Ireland. Another brother died there early this year.

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