Thursday, December 30, 2010

Private Septimus Hicks - 136474

Septimus Hicks with small photo of his sister Hannah Octavia Hicks 
courtesy of John Hicks

According to his attestation papers dated November 9, 1915 at Toronto, Septimus Herbert Hicks of Humber Bay, was born on November 25, 1884 at Humber Bay.  He listed his father, Octavius Laing Hicks, Humber Bay as his next of kin.  He was a seaman and had no previous military experience.  He was 30 years and 11 months of age and stood 5 feet 3 inches tall.  He had grey eyes, brown hair and a fresh complexion.  He had a scar on his left abdomen from a ruptured appendix.  He was a member of the Church of England.

Septimus Hicks was a member of the 42nd Battalion, Canadian Infantry (Quebec Regiment), when he was killed on August 6, 1916.  According to the CEF burial register he "died of wounds (shrapnel wounds legs and gas gangrene) at No. 2 Canadian Stationary Hospital, Boulogne".  He is buried in the Boulogne Eastern Cemetery, Boulogne-sur-Mer, France.

He was the son of Octavius L. and Hannah Hicks, of Humber Bay, Ontario.  Octavius Hicks was a contractor, boat builder and proprietor of the Royal Oak Hotel.

The following is the biographical entry for Octavius Hicks found in Volume 2 of a History of Toronto and County of York Ontario by Charles Pelham Mulvany, published in 1885:

OCTAVIUS L. HICKS, hotel proprietor, Mimico, was born near Dundee, Scotland, in 1852, and came to America in 1871; after spending one year in the United States, he came to Canada and located for a short time in Hamilton, eventually taking up his residence in Toronto, where he carried on business as contractor and builder for about two years. In 1873 he removed to the mouth of the Humber and commenced the business he had formerly followed in England (boat building), which he still continues in conjunction with his hotel business. His house, “The Royal Oak” has excellent accommodation for excursionists, pleasure and pic-nic parties, and contains a large room suitable for balls, banquets, etc. He has a large variety of pleasure boats and yachts to order. He is the inventor and patentee of the roller sliding-seats for racing boats, similar to those used by Mr. Hanlan. Mr. Hicks has been instrumental in saving the lives of five persons on four different occasions, having rescued two persons at one time. He also formed one of the company who started the Annie Craig steamboat running daily in the season between the Humber and the city. He was married in 1874 to Hannah Taverner, by whom he has five children, all boys.

Hicks Family Tombstone - Christ Church Cemetery - Mimico
© Michael Harrison 2011

Septimus Herbert Hicks-  headstone in the Boulogne Eastern Cemetery - France
courtesy of John Hicks

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