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Dictionary of Miramichi Biography

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MERSEREAU, CHALMERS JACK (1880-1942)

MERSEREAU, CHALMERS JACK, principal of the Chatham Grammar School, 1909-12; b. Bathurst, 13 Jul 1880, s/o George W. Mersereau and Mary Elizabeth Cowperthwaite; m. 1905, Carobella Ann Weldon, of Sackville, N.B.; d. Fredericton, 6 Nov 1942.

C. Jack Mersereau was educated at the Doaktown Superior School and the universities of Acadia (BA 1900, MA 1903) and Harvard (MA 1908). He was principal of the superior school at West Bathurst (1901-03), vice-principal of the Chatham Grammar School (1903-04), house master at Horton Academy (1904-06), principal of Horton (1907-08), doctoral candidate at Harvard (1908-09), and principal of the Chatham Grammar School (1909-12). In 1910 he was elected to a one-year term as president of the Teachers' Institute. He was treated with deference at Chatham because of his superior academic credentials and the fact that he was the son of the school inspector. He quit his position in anger in March 1912, however, after the school board modified the terms of a suspension which he had issued to a student. When the trustees threatened him with a lawsuit for breach of contract, he returned, stating that he could not afford to fight a court battle, but he handed in his resignation effective 30 April. He left the profession at this time and entered the insurance field, in which he had a lengthy career as an executive based in Saint John and Fredericton.

In World War I Mersereau served at the front as a brigade major until he received a head wound at Ypres in April 1915. In 1919 he was awarded the DSO. In 1924 he held the rank of lieutenant colonel in the militia and was the officer in charge of the 16th Infantry Brigade. He was survived in 1942 by his wife, Carobella A. Weldon, a son, and a daughter.

Sources

[b] Acadia Record [m] official records [d] Leader 13 Nov 1942 / Advocate 16 Jan 1907, 28 Apr 1909; Educ. Review, Dec 1908, Jul-Aug 1909; Leader 3 May 1912; PPMP; World 8 Oct 1910, 20 Mar 1912, 23 Mar 1912, 19 May 1915


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