Famous? Did I say Guy Bryant was not famous?

Guy Bryant was somewhat famous for something after all…

Source: http://www.bulls-head.com/en/history/

Our ginger ale started out in 1896, created by John Henry Bryant in Québec’s Eastern Townships. Mr. Bryant, who was originally a beer brewer with partner Seth Nutter at the Silver Springs Brewery on Abenakis Street in Sherbrooke, found there was too much competition for that type of beverage and so decided to come up with an original drink for his own family business. Inspired by his Irish roots and through much trial and error, he created a rich, Belfast-type ginger ale with an original flavour. His wife, inspired by her husband’s stubborness, suggested he call the drink Bull’s Head and the name stuck.

A 100 year old original recipe. Any company that’s been around for over a century can tell you; you don’t stay in business this long without a great product and outstanding customer service. After Bull’s Head’s regional success, the drink became so popular you could even find it in Québec City’s Château Frontenac between the 1st and 2nd World Wars. Facing tough competition from major soda companies since having lost the Coca-Cola franchise in the 1970’s, Gerry and John finally closed down. Mr. Lucien Lavigne, a Sherbrooke bottler, revived the company when he purchased it. When Mr. Lavigne sold his Pepsi franchise in the early 1990s, he decided to stop producing Bull’s Head ginger ale, all the while keeping the rights to the secret recipe.

Then, in 1993, Dr. Peter O’Donnell, a Townships businessman looking for a challenge that he could also make use of his two sons’ expertise learn the ropes, expressed interest in Bull’s Head. After several attempts, Dr. O’Donnell finally bought the rights to Bull’s Head from Mr. Lavigne. Dr. O’Donnell and his sons are credited with giving Bull’s Head a new lease on life, backed by the Eastern Townships community who were eager to get their hands on their ginger ale. In 2006, the Husk brothers bought Bull’s Head and it’s in November 2009 that the Pearson brothers, Carl and Dominic, with our Sherbrooke partner, Charles Martel bought the rights and recipe for the legendary ginger ale. Absent from the shelves for almost a year, they worked hard to allow everyone to taste and savor Bull’s Head ginger ale. Bull’s Head is now available for everyone to enjoy!

In 2012, Bull’s Head developed a Ginger Beer based on the suggestion of one of their loyal customers. This product is now very popular, especially when making Shandy Gaff, a blend of our ginger beer and a blond beer, which is a very popular golf after-game drink.

In 2014, Bull’s Head innovated again with two new products, a Diet Ginger Ale and a Ginger Spruce Beer. These new products will allow the company to enter new markets in Quebec.

John Henry Bryant married Ida Wearne and they had four children:

James Guy Dixon Bryant 1893–1990
Albert Edward Bryant 1894–1972
Clifford Bryant 1897–1979
Florence Bryant 1901–1993

Guy Bryant followed on his father’s footsteps and had a Coca-Cola franchise also.

This is Guy Bryant again posing for posterity early 1943 with his wife Olive Marion Gunning, Gordon Hill who earned his wings, and farther right Elizabeth and June Bryant, Guy and Olive’s daughters.

Gordon is leaving for Boundary Bay, British Columbia, being posted there with 133 Squadron.

74 years later, Gordon Hill got a gift from Clarence Simonsen…

A four-pack of Bull’s Head.

Guy and Olive had a son:

John Hugh Bryant

BRYANT, John Hugh
Passed away peacefully at the Glengarry Hospital, Victoria, B.C. November 28, 2008. John was born in Sherbrooke, Quebec, June 21, 1922. He is survived by his loving wife Joan and children: Jim (Gill), Ken, Patricia, Nancy (Guy), and grandchildren; Jack (Elizabeth), Noelle and Michael, as well as his sister Elizabeth Fleet in Montreal and her family.
Predeceased by his parents, Guy and Olive Bryant. Brought up in Sherbrooke, John joined the Royal Canadian Navy Volunteer Reserve and served in the North Atlantic during World War Two. He survived the torpedoing of the HMCS Alberni in August 1944.

After the war, John joined the family soft drink bottling business; J.H. Bryant Inc. He was an active member in both the Sherbrooke Regiment and the Yamaska Valley Power Squadron and was very much a part of the community of the Eastern Townships. John and Joan retired to Victoria and settled in View Royal in 1975 and have been an active part of the community. John continued with the Power Squadron, and participated in the Victoria Wine Maker’s Guild and the View Royal Garden Club. John loved his family and friends; he was passionate and fascinated by anything involving nature, science, and mechanics. He loved gadgets and tools and of course, a clever pun.


About Elizabeth…

Elizabeth (Bryant) Fleet


Born in Sherbrooke, Quebec, died peacefully in the arms of her family on Tuesday, June 23, 2009. Liz will be greatly missed yet fondly remembered for being ever positive and for her love of nature, art and architecture. Predeceased by her husband Garth Fleet. Survived by sons Gregory (Janine), Toronto, and Ian (Brigitte), Hull; grandchildren Vivian, Owen and Calder; Emma, Jessie and Aidan. The family wishes to thank the staff at St. Mary’s Hospital, Montreal, for their excellent care. In commemoration of Liz, family and friends may make a donation to a charity of choice.

The Bryant Family – Winter of 42

I did not know a thing about that family until a veteran Spitfire pilot shared all the pictures he took in World War II.

Some pictures are about the Bryant Family like this one taken in the winter of 42.

Guy Bryant is with his wife and the young Gordon Hill. Guy Bryant and Gordon Hill are not famous people. This is the reason why I am writing about them on Our Ancestors. Maybe one day a descendant of the Bryant family will cherish all the pictures Gordon Hill took.


Like this one with a Navy man and a beautiful young woman posing with a dog for Gordon.

The date is May 9th, 1943. We are at the Bryant home in Sherbrooke.

I kind of adopted that family thanks to Clarence Simonsen’s research on a veteran Spitfire pilot.

Gordon Hill’s story is on another blog titled Preserving the Past. That’s the reason I was pretty quiet on Our Ancestors lately.

This is about to change.

This is post 1222.

Letters from the Past

You should start reading them before you have too much to read…


This is the introduction to the story.


My Uncle Charlie (Charles David Knight) was my mother’s brother. He served in World War II from 22 Dec 1942 – 14 Oct 1945. Born 14 Aug 1915 in Westbrook, Cumberland, Maine, USA; he was the oldest of five children in the Frank and Nina Knight household. He enlisted in the Army at the age of 27 hoping his younger brother, Eugene, would not be drafted. He did boot camp at Camp McCoy in Wisconsin and was deployed overseas beginning in Northern Ireland for 10 months training as part of Operation Overload, for the Normandy invasion. On June 7, 1944 (D Day +1) the division stormed Omaha Beach. His division liberated vital port city Brest on September 18, 1944 and seized Roer River Dam on December 11, 1944. His division held key roads leading to Liege and Antwerp during Battle of the Bulge. The last days of war his division spent moving across Czechoslovakia, and met Soviet allies in Pilsen
While serving his country, he wrote over 200 letters to his parents and they were saved. I have the great opportunity to read these letters and share with my readers my uncle’s feeling, fears, hopes, and concerns of a soldier while serving his country overseas in World War II in the European Theater of the war. I will use information obtained from several sources to determine where my uncle’s battalion was likely located on the day he wrote the letter I will be sharing on the specific post in my blog. The blog is entitled “World War II in the Words of My Uncle.” He will become a Sergeant during the war.

September 1 (est.), 911 A Different Normandy Story

Very interesting. article.
In my search for my ancestors I had stumbled on a lineage that traced back one of my ancestors to Rollo.

This is the post I wrote in 2015.


People had linked Georges de Quesnel and Charlotte Malvoue to Rollo…
Guess what?
In a 1879 book, it is written Georges never fathered any children.


Since then no one has contradicted me. However it is more than possible that the Quesnels might be descendants of Vikings.

Today in History

The warlike men who sailed their longboats out of the north tormented the coastal UK and northwestern Europe, ever since their first appearance at LindisfarneMonastery in 793.

These “Norsemen” (“Normans”), attacked Paris early in 911. By July they were holding Rollothe nearby town of Chartres under siege. Normans had burned the place to the ground back in 858 and would probably have done so again, but for their defeat at the battle of Chartres on July 20.

Even in defeat, these people presented a formidable threat. The Frankish King approached them with a solution.

King Charles III, known as “Charles the Simple” after his plain, straightforward ways, proposed to give the Normans the region from the English Channel to the river Seine. It would be the Duchy of Normandy, some of the finest farmlands in northwest Europe, and it would be theirs in exchange for an oath of loyalty…

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