The Mysterious Disappearance of Miles Haines, Sept. 1850
By W.H. Moore, Scotch Lake, N.B.
The countryside was shocked in September 1850 when it was learned that a small boy,
seven years of age, was lost from a party of children who were out picking beechnuts
near the home of James Palmer at Scotch Lake. The boy was Miles Haines, son of George
Haines of Scotch Settlement, Parish of Bright and brother of Mrs. James Palmer.
Mr. Haines had gone to help Mr. Palmer get out sills for a barn to be built on his
farm and had been accompanied by small members of his family and neighbouring children.
In the afternoon the children went to a nearby beech woods to gather nuts, and after
a time young Miles, who became cold, started for home. Later the other children returned
and as Miles was not at home concluded that he had gone to the place where the men were
at work. When the day’s work of the men was done and they returned to supper the child
was not with them and it was realized that Miles was lost. Search was carried on for
several days but with little success, the only trace of the missing boy that was found
was a footprint in moss near a log that crossed a ravine near the path through the
woods between the farms of Palmer and Haines.
Indians had been about in the same woods on the day that Miles disappeared and many people suspected that they had taken the boy. Some years later this belief was substantiated by the looks of a man who was travelling with a party of Indian companions and whose general appearance was that of a member of the Haines family than that of one who was of Indian blood.
As this branch of the Haines family was of a mechanical turn there is little doubt that the introduction of this boy into the Indian life would show later in improved methods of work and in advanced ideas for patterns of fancy work. But the disappearance of Miles Haines was then and is to this day a mystery.
The farm of Mr. George Haines, the father of Miles, was later owned by Mr. Walter Allen, succeeded by his son Samuel Allen and at present is the property of Mr. John Scribner. The farm of Mr. James Palmer later passed to the possession of one of his sons and is at present owned by Mr. John Moore having been purchased by his father, Mr. Adam Moore.
The barn for which men were getting out the frame on the day Miles Haines disappeared is still standing and is in good repair.
W.H. Moore, Scotch Lake, N.B.
March 30, 1932