Final Chapter
April 1924 to July 1975





Marjorie's diary entries ended the day Gib died then to continue briefly from 1931 to 1932 and during her numerous trips.  Marjorie loved to travel and her life continued to be punctuated with trips.

When Marjorie and Dorothy Jane returned to Powell River in April of 1924 it must have been comforting to be with close family and friends again.  They moved in with Andrew and Edith who also had Edith's sister Sara Blain living with them.


Andrew Henderson and Dorothy Jane


Stephanie Seagram, Dorothy Jane, Marjorie & Tom Seagram - 1926 

In 1926 Marjorie and Dorothy Jane travelled East to visit with Tom and Dorothy Seagram in Kitchener and then on to Montreal where she stayed with cousin Marjorie (Sutherland) and Ernest Trott.  While there they made a quick visit to Sorel, Quebec to see where Marjorie's father Andrew was born.



Marjorie and Dorothy Jane at the Henderson's house








The end of the decade was another difficult time for the Henderson's. On January 8th, 1929 Edith died of complications from a fall while crossing a street in Vancouver.   She had been recovering from a prior illness. She was 67 years old.









On March 13th, 1929, Marjorie's brother Richard "Tobe" died of a heart attack while staying in Vancouver.  He had been treated for a heart condition for the past two years but it wasn't considered serious.  Richard was 43. Andrew Henderson was in California recuperating from his wife's death and returned home immediately. 






Fortunately better days were ahead.  In the late 1920's Marjorie became friends with Dalton Kenneth Macken.  Ken asked Marjorie to marry him and she accepted. They were married September 9th, 1931.  For a honeymoon they took a two week driving tour to Seattle, Portland, Crater Lake, Bend (to visit Tracy Fairchild and family), Yakima, Seattle, Harrison Hot Springs, Chilliwack (where Ken had brother's living) and home to Powell River.



Ken Macken (second from left) and some of the Gopher Club

Ken Macken was born in Forest, Ontario in 1893 to Joseph William and Jean Kaye (Miller) Macken and moved with his family, six brothers and three sisters, to Chilliwack, BC in about 1899.  The family then moved to Vancouver where Ken became very interested in sports while attending school.

After graduating from High School in 1910 he headed to Troy, New York to attend Rensselaer Polytechnical Institute because, he claims, McGill University didn't have a ball team.  He graduated with a degree in electrical engineering in 1914 and returned to Vancouver.

In 1915 he joined the Artillery and was sent overseas with the 60th Battalion, CFA and made the rank of captain.  

After the war he tried selling cars in Vancouver but he was, "not so good.  I was starving to death trying to make a living."  A travelling salesman told him about Powell River and he moved there in 1922.

When he got to Powell River Ken became a member of the Gopher Club, "a group of happy bachelors boarding together.  We used to live at 300 Maple, although when Bob Scanlon originated the club it was held in an old building.  The name was picked because so many of the boys were from the gopher state, Minnesota."

In 1922 Ken worked for Emil Gordon for six months, then cut wood and shingle bolts before working for Ernie Liebenschel who owned City Transfer.

In 1928 Ken went into the car business and started City Motors and later partnered with Harry Davies to start a second garage in Westview, just outside of Powell River.


For many years Andrew Henderson owned acreage near Grief Point, about 7.5 km from Powell River.  He had a small cabin built and would take friends out there for a time of relaxation.  He referred to it as "The Ranch" but it would later be known as "Miramar," Spanish for "sea view."  As a wedding present to Ken and Marjorie Andrew gave them the property and had a house built for them. 


Construction started March 25th, 1931





On March 12th, 1934 Marjorie's aunt and Edith's sister, Sara Isabella Blaln died.  She had been living in Powell River for fourteen years and was the last member of the Blain family, four brothers and four sisters, to die.  She was 71 years old.

 




In 1934, while Ken manned the home front, Marjorie was off travelling again.  This time she took her father Andrew with her and they went to the Chicago World's Fair.  Andrew had three nephews in Chicago and this was his last opportunity to see them.


Four Hendersons
Alexander Cary, Andrew, Andrew Sutherland & George Dana


1934 Chicago World's Fair
Gertrude (Reed) Henderson, Andrew & Marjorie



There was more sadness on September, 19th, 1935 when Andrew Henderson died in Vancouver at the age of 82 






In 1936 life started to settle down for Marjorie and Ken.  They were quite involved in the Powell River community.  Ken with sports, particularly lacrosse and Marjorie with church work. Dorothy Jane was sent to Vancouver to board at Crofton House School.  The Macken's worked on their house and gardens and enjoyed entertaining friends and family who would come to visit from all over North America it seems.  Marjorie continued to spend time in Vancouver visiting friends and now Dorothy Jane.  Ken preferred to stay home. 




After graduation in June of 1941 Dorothy Jane was supposed to go to McGill University, however she met John William Chatwin McMillan while vacationing in Port Alberni during the Summer and married him in November of 1941.


Dorothy Jane, Marjorie, John William Chatwin McMillan - 1941




In 1953, not to be denied taking her daughter on a 'Grand Tour,' Marjorie waited until Dorothy Jane's four children were born and then, along with an old friend of Marjorie's, Hannah Smith and her daughter Margareta, travelled to London to take part in the Coronation of Queen Elizabeth.  Following those festivities the group toured the British Isles for about a month.

 

Marjorie, Stephanie Seagram, Dorothy Seagram & Dorothy Jane
Aboard the Nieuw Amsterdam - 1953

Marjorie and Dorothy Jane made one more trip in 1956 to see Continental Europe which they had missed on their 1953 trip.  This time they went with Dorothy Seagram and her daughter Stephanie.  On their way home they stopped off in Chicago where they attended the Golden Anniversary of Andrew's nephew, George Dana Henderson and his wife Lillian (Waddell).


Lillian Henderson, Marjorie, Marion (Henderson) Halpin, Dorothy Jane - 1956




Returning home to Powell River Marjorie and Ken continued to enjoy doing things together. Two keen interests they shared were baseball (especially at World Series time) and fishing.



Marjorie took two more major trips in the 1960's.  One was with Dorothy Jane and her daughter Jane back East to attend the wedding of Stephanie (Seagram) Douglas's daughter, Diana in Toronto and then on to Ottawa and New York.  The final trip was with Dorothy Jane and her son, Ken and daughter, Marjorie to Montreal for Expo 1967.  They also went to Ottawa, Quebec City, New York and San Francisco.  Even at the age of 79 and having dealt with a serious bout of cancer there was no slowing her down.
 



By 1968 Marjorie was feeling the distance from family in Vancouver and she and Ken sold their house in Powell River and moved to West Vancouver. About 1970 Marjorie suffered a serious stroke that left her partially paralyzed and her situation didn't look very promising.  Ken Macken was determined that she would remain in her home and hired 24 hour a day home nursing.  He encouraged her with her exercises and eventually got her to the place that, with the help of a nurse, she could go for a daily drive.  Every day at 4:00 pm they would go to Dorothy Jane's house in West Vancouver for two hours. Marjorie gradually regained some of her speech and definitely never lost her sense of humour.

However on July 23, 1975 Marjorie's body finally wore out and she died in her own home at the age of 87.  A year and a half later on January 23, 1977 Ken Macken died. 



Fortunately, because of Marjorie's diaries and journals, we have a wonderful documentation of a time past and for those of us who knew her, an augmentation of our fond memories of a remarkable woman.  


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© Ken McMillan 2018
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