Turberville Cory-Thomas

Turberville Cory- Thomas was the youngest son of Edward Cory-Thomas, Chilian Consul at Birmingham, England. He had a sister named Emily Cory-Thomas. He met Mary Zoella Foster while he was rector of the Episcopal Church in River Falls, Wisconsin.
After Mary Zoella died in February of 1895 he went to England with Llewellyn leaving Mary Louise with Mattie Putnam. The photo on horseback was taken in the "South African wars" and was dated 1902. He went to Alberta, Canada where he retired from the military as a rancher and also ran a newspaper called the Camrose Mail. He later started a newspaper in Vancouver, B.C. called the Vancouver Mail.
Captain Turberville Cory Thomas
The brief history (below) of Turberville Thomas was found at:        https://open.library.ubc.ca/collections/bcbooks/items/1.0356579

The photo of Captain Turberville Thomas is from that history. The date of his wedding to Zoella conflicts with other sources but that might be more to the passing of time. This text makes it likely that he was running for office before WWI.

British Columbia from the earliest times to the present

by E.O.S. Scholefield (1875-1919) and Frederic William Howay, (1867-1943) Biographical   Volume IV, 1914, pages 60-64


Turberville Thomas, a veteran of the Riel rebellion and of the Boer war, who has since proven his loyalty and public spirit in an equally effective manner by able and conscientious work in the public service, is one of the most progressive and representative citizens of Port Coquitlam, where he is discharging the important duties of chief of the city police. He was born in Edgbaston, Birmingham, England, on the 26th of October, 1866, and is a son of the late Edward Cory Thomas, Chilian consul to Great Britain and who controlled large copper interests in South Wales and Chili, South America. The paternal grandfather was recorder of the city of Swansea, Wales, for many years and the maternal branch of the family is descended directly from Oliver Cromwell. In the acquirement of an education Turberville Thomas attended King Edward's school in Birmingham, England, and was in later years a student in McGill University, Montreal, and in Durham University, England. At the age of sixteen and before completing his fundamental education he already published a small weekly paper in Wales and was very successful in its conduct for a number of years. Following the course of empire, he later came to Canada and for some time was connected with various survey parties in the northern country, later traveling throughout the United States in the interests of eastern Canadian and London papers. In 1885 he volunteered for service in the Riel rebellion but was refused enlistment on account of his youth. Later, however, he succeeded in getting on the transport with General Strange's column and went from Calgary to Edmonton on the historic forced march, eventually receiving a medal for bravery in action. Being in London, England, at the time of the outbreak of the Boer war, Mr. Thomas enlisted with the volunteers, serving as a trooper. He received his commission on the field and served under Colonel Thornycroft as camp quartermaster and intelligence officer. Later he was chosen provost marshal under General Knox in the Bloemfontein district, in the Orange River Colony, after which he was station staff officer at Burghersdorf, Cape Colony. Captain Thomas won both the king's and queen's medals and his name was mentioned in dispatches for recommendation on account of his distinguished and able service.

The photo is inscribed with " Your old daddy with love ...taken in Germany while with the Canadian Forces...T.B. Thomas... Major." The photographer's stamp is from Hannut, Belgium. After World War I he returned to Canada.

July, 28, 1915 Redcar, England

 Dear Aunt Bertha,
So glad to hear from you. Thank you so much for writing. I am well and safe thank God. Tho' I've been through a good deal. Will tell you all someday. We are all doing our utmost to fight for the rights of small nations to be left alone. The cause of the righteousness. However much we love peace, when an enemy strikes our friend, it is ours to fight for him. The war is awful. The Germans will not fight according to modern warfare rules. To fire on the Red Cross, to poison well of water, to use gas, and to shoot wounded men is not right. However, we shall fight and in time we will win. If we have to use our last man almost I allow. I hope the USA will not be brought in but at present it looks as if it will. Glad to hear of mother again and of Mattie. Have not been able of late to write to Teddie (Llewellyn) on account of the war censor. Have now written him several letters, sent him photo like the one I sent mother … of me with L. Sorry to hear of Louise. Hope she is strong again. Please give her my love. Remember me to our inquiring friends. Shall hope to see you all again some day. What a lot of stories I have to tell you. Am commanding 1000 men in coast defense now. I spent last month on a tour of England telling people what is happening on the front Accept the photo Bertha with my best wishes. I thought of you about the 19th of this month. We are sure we never forget, thank God. (Mary Zoella Foster was born July 19, 1862) Oh for the time of the old farm …. Remember me and mine before the little alter at the little church in River Falls. Many a little church ruins I have walked through in Flanders. God Bless you all my deepest love to mother and to each of you.
This was transcribed by Cliff Momberg. I added a couple of guesses. JH

Llewellyn Cory-Thomas and Turberville
"I'm in front of my tent at ...Camp Blyth looking after the defense of the east counties of England."
This photo was taken in Vancouver, B.C. shortly before his death on March 1, 1922 at the age of 55.
Turberville Thomas was buried in Mountain View Cemetery in Vancouver, British Columbia.
(Photo Credit: Erin Breen)