Folk Lore

This section is intended for stories, legends, information or misinformation about the family. If you have any information to add to this section, please send it to

Rob Atkinson and his brothers came out to homestead in Manitoba, as did Duncan Day, a second cousin.  Duncan married Jenny McClaren, the window of another local homesteader, but Jenny's maiden name was Atkinson.  We now know that Jenny had Myotonic Dystrophy type 2, a form of Muscular Dystrophy that attacks later in life.  The Myotonic Dystrophy had manifested itself about the time that Jenny had her fourth and last child Arnott, and she was having trouble caring for her new baby.  Duncan called on his sister Annabella (Belle) Day to come out from Ontario to help.  Single eligible women were hard to find in rural Manitoba at the time, and Rob Atkinson eagerly accompanied his friend Duncan to the railway station to pick up Belle when she arrived.  The story goes that as Rob was preparing to leave for the station he discovered that his one and only tie had a stain on it.  Anxious to make a good impression, he turned his tie inside out so that the stain wouldn't show.  Probably the tie was not a big factor, but Rob was able to make a good enough impression on the young Belle that they eventually got married.  So Jenny, who was born an Atkinson was now a Day, and Belle, who was born a Day became an Atkinson.  Belle and Rob went on to have 3 daughters, but Belle always had a special place in her heart for Arnott, the nephew that she had helped raise and the son she never had.  Jenny died when Arnott was still a very young man of 13, and Arnott then spent a lot of his time at Rob and Belle's farm, visiting with his special aunt and playing with their three daughters - Calista, Wanda and Mary - he thought of them much like the sisters he had never had.  Later, the ties between their offspring grew stronger when Jim Brown, the widower of Calista, married Dorothy Day, the widow of Arnott Day.

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