Kenora Great War Project


Personal Details
Date of BirthSeptember 5, 1895
Place of BirthMurdock, Minnesota
CountryUnited States of America
Marital StatusSingle
Next of KinMrs Josephine Horn(e), mother, 1511 1st Avenue South, Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA
Trade / CallingFarmer
Service Details
Regimental Number269082
Service RecordLink to Service Record
Battalion15th Reserve Battalion
ForceCanadian Expeditionary Force
BranchCanadian Infantry
Enlisted / ConscriptedConscripted
Place of EnlistmentRegina, Saskatchewan
Address at EnlistmentWauchope, Saskatchewan
Date of EnlistmentMay 23, 1918
Age at Enlistment23
Theatre of ServiceGreat Britain
Prisoner of WarNo
Survived WarYes
Death Details
Date of DeathDecember 30, 1987
Age at Death92
Buried AtLake of the Woods Cemetery, Kenora, Ontario

Hawkinson, Cornelius

Cornelius Hawkinson was born on 3 September 1895 in the Murdock, Swift County area of Minnesota, USA where his parents farmed. His father John Hakenson was born in Sweden, his surname anglicized to Hawkinson after immigration. His mother Anna Josephine Peterson was born in Minnesota to Swedish immigrants. John and Josephine married on 10 November 1891 in Swift County, likely in Murdock. Children born to the couple were Evald John (1892), Alice Lenora (1894), Cornelius, and Arnold (1898). Sadly, his father John died in 1901, with Josephine later marrying Per Alfred Horn on 22 December 1904 in Swift County. Shortly after the 1905 US census, Alfred, Josephine, and the children moved to Canada, settling in the Wauchope area in Saskatchewan to farm.

With the onset of conscription during the latter part of the war, Cornelius was drafted under the Military Service Act of 1917 and called up for service in May of 1918. Living in Wauchope, he signed his declaration on 23 May in Regina, having had his medical examination the same day. His occupation was given as farmer and his mother Josephine Horn(e) in Minneapolis as next of kin.

Assigned to the 1st Depot Battalion, Saskatchewan Regiment, Cornelius arrived in England aboard the Cassandra on 15 August 1918. Taken on strength with the 15th Reserve Battalion at Bramshott upon arrival, while in training by early October he was admitted to the No 12 General Hospital in Bramshott with influenza. Discharged from the hospital later that month, the remainder of Cornelius’ war service was in England. He arrived back in Canada at Halifax on the Aquitania on 20 June 1919 and was discharged from service on demobilization on 26 June at Regina, rank of Private. His intended residence at time of discharge was given as Wauchope.

On 21 August 1921 in Portland, North Dakota, Cornelius married Selma Louise Johnson. Born on 25 December 1900 in Steele County, North Dakota, Selma was the daughter immigrants Henry Johnson (Sweden) and Kristine Johnsdatter Slinde (Norway). Her parents had married in 1874 in Fillmore, Minnesota. With Henry first working as a carpenter in Fillmore, the family had moved to the Enger, Steele County area in North Dakota to farm by the time of the 1900 US census. Sadly, Selma died on 28 November 1922 and is interred in the Bang Church Cemetery in Finley, Steele County, North Dakota.

After Selma’s death, a couple of border crossings for Cornelius were found, one on 18 December 1923 when he was leaving Wauchope, Saskatchewan where he was living to travel to Portland, North Dakota to visit a Johnson relative. A second crossing was found for 19 March 1927 where Cornelius was returning to Wauchope, occupation given as farmer on the record. At some point he moved to Kenora, Ontario where he married Myrtle Anderson on 21 March 1942. Born on 16 January 1899 in Rat Portage (later renamed Kenora), Myrtle was the daughter of Norwegian immigrants Magnus and Elsie Anderson. Her family farmed in the nearby Jaffray area, the Anderson Branch Road named for them. After the marriage, Cornelius and Myrtle also farmed in Jaffray.

Predeceased by Myrtle on 9 September 1979 in Kenora, Cornelius died on 30 December 1987. He was also predeceased by his father, and his mother Josephine in 1918 in Minneapolis, with Josephine, her parents, and John interred in the Bethesda Lutheran Cemetery in Murdock, Minnesota. His brother Evald had died in 1977 in Seminole, Florida, and sister Alice (John) Bergstrom in 1984 in Denver, Colorado. His brother Arnold later died in 1988 in Forest Lake, Minnesota. Cornelius and Myrtle are interred in the Lake of the Woods Cemetery in Kenora.

By Judy Stockham

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