Michael McLaughlin 1859-1942 – An Inishowen Pioneer in Canada.

On September 24, 2020 by Kathleen Travers

Michael McLaughlin was born in Shandrum Buncrana to James McLaughlin and Mary Grant  in 1859. At the age of 18 he met two clergymen Bishop Sweeney and Fr. Michaud from New Brunswick Canada who were visiting Ireland and at their request he accompanied them on their return journey to Canada where he settled in the little town of Bouctouche with Fr Michaud.  Together they set about developing the town of Bouctouche.

A few years after his arrival, with Fr. Michaud and his family, he formed a company McLaughlin ltd. Michael had a huge interest in agriculture. In the early days of his career he organised butter factories throughout New Brunswick becoming a pioneer of the creamery industry. Throughout his life he attended many rallies to provide support and encouragement to farmers.

McLaughlin saw mill Bouctouche

He also established a saw mill in Bouctouche which was a large employer in the area. He also provided employment for men in his native Buncrana who emigrated to Canada.

Michael McLaughlin was a devout catholic and was an active worker in the church and community affairs. He was deeply interested in educational work and the welfare of the youth in the area. He became very well known for his charitable work in the community.

He married Sophie Michaud, a niece of Fr. Michaud and had six children. Helen, Marie Emma, Joseph Eldric, Noel Patrick Antoine, Juiliette, Francois Xavier.

The home that Michael McLaughlin built in Bouctouche in 1890 is now listed as a place of historical importance as it went on to serve as the original Stella-Maris Hospital in Bouctouche. Sophie’s sister Aline, a nurse and her husband Dr Robert Marcoux established the region’s first hospital within the former McLaughlin residence. This was considered a major event. The value of the medical care provided to the people at the original hospital facility was immeasurable.

McLaughlin Family Home

Marriage of Michael and Sophie

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