History Column: A Guard Family Portrait of Fathers

Posted June 2, 2021 at 5:30 am by

Contributed Photo/San Juan Historical Museum. A Guard family portrait from late 1913, possibly taken at Thanksgiving or Christmas. In terms of generations, the baby William Paul Guard (known as Paul) represents the family’s fourth generation on San Juan Island. To his left is his father Leroy Paul Guard (known as Roy, third generation), in center position is Roy’s father Frank Guard (second generation), and on the right is Paul Guard (first generation), the family’s San Juan Island patriarch.

From the San Juan His­tor­i­cal Soci­ety and Museum

Father’s Day this year will be on June 20.

When think­ing about a his­tor­i­cal pho­to­graph to go with a June his­to­ry col­umn, this four-gen­er­a­tion por­trait, seen above and shared by the Guard fam­i­ly, came to mind as a great exam­ple of the pas­sage of time in a fam­i­ly and its lin­eage from one father to the next.

Paul Guard was born in Eng­land in 1839, mar­ried Eliz­a­beth Mel­huish there, and brought his young fam­i­ly to the Unit­ed States from Som­er­set, Eng­land in 1870.

They first set­tled in Kansas before com­ing west­ward to San Juan Island in 1889. That same year, he and Eliz­a­beth bought the 160-acre home­stead of William and Matil­da Hig­gins in fer­tile Beaver­ton Valley.

The Guards then sold half of the acreage to their first­born, Frank. This was the begin­ning of the Guard fam­i­ly farm­ing lega­cy here. These two adja­cent large-scale farms were known for their crops of oats, wheat, hay, and their orchards.

Frank’s son Roy was also an island farmer, like his father and grand­fa­ther. This brings us (por­trait-wise) to Roy’s son William Paul Guard, the baby in the pho­to, who became a vet­eri­nar­i­an on the mainland.

With this June col­umn, the his­to­ry columns will go on hia­tus for a while. In the mean­time, get out there and make some island his­to­ry with your fam­i­ly and friends! Please stay in touch with the His­tor­i­cal Muse­um by shar­ing some of the his­to­ry you are making.

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Categories: History
One comment:

One comment...

  1. Go Guards!

    Comment by Shaun Hubbard on June 3, 2021 at 4:07 pm

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