I have a family history for William Moorhouse who married Mary Sefton. It concurs with the comment you made about Robert Moorhouse going to Nova Scotia.
However I think Susan has provided us with clear evidence that Robert was in Knottingley at least up to 1881 and when you start investigating the Nova Scotia Moorhouse records, there are no Robert Moorhouse references at all. There were Moorhouses/Morehouses in Nova Scotia as early as 1781 when a John married there. In New Brunswick the Moorhouse name appears as early as 1821 when a Henry married there.
Were there shipping connections? Perhaps Robert was involved with trade to Nova Scotia. Another scenario is that he did live there briefly and was last heard of by the author at that address.
The above mentioned family history is housed at the Christchurch, New Zealand Museum Library and was prepared by Wm. D. Ferguson in 1933. Section IV is the Family History of Mary Louisa Moorhouse, wife of William Ferguson [the author?]. Mary Louisa was a daughter of William Sefton Moorhouse, son of William Moorhouse who married Ann Carter and grandson of William Moorhouse who married Mary Sefton.
It was not at all uncommon for family members to endeavour to upstation themselves in life by making some kind of connection to the gentry class. The fact that Mary Sefton bore the name Sefton [an upper class surname] would have been quite sufficient to have played on for these reasons. It had a massive roll on effect in New Zealand amongst the Moorhouses. When William Sefton Moorhouse became the Superintendant of Canterbury [and only answerable to the Queen herself] every other Moorhouse family in New Zealand suddenly started naming their children with a Sefton tacked in somewhere. My family is no exception with a cousin Avon Sefton Moorhouse still alive today. A William Moorhouse who was a house painter in Invercargill, NZ named one son William Sefton Moorhouse and now his entire line of descendants believe that they are descended from the Superintendant [whose male line has actually died out].
However there are some Canadian connections. Emily Moorhouse, eldest daughter of Benjamin [son of William & Mary] married a Benjamin Smith and did Missionary work in Newfoundland.They had children and died there. Their son William Joseph Smith was a man of the cloth too and was curate to the famed Bishop James Moorhouse while in London. He became Secretary to the Church Missionary Society. I have a lot more details on this family to hand.
Smith descendants are still in Newfoundland from this line.
Cheers Mark Moorhouse
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