In 1897 news reached the papers that gold had been found in huge amounts in the Klondyke, Canada. The newly married Henry and Elizabeth, living in Portsmouth, were excited by the news and decided to leave England to prospect for gold. They sailed for Canada and purchased all their provisions, staking their claim by the river.
They had no real idea what to expect and life was very harsh with temperatures reaching as low as minus 60 degrees Fahrenheit. Living in a tent with two small children Henry and Elizabeth must have regretted their choices but they had to carry on and find gold. About 30 to 40 thousand men, women and children were camped along the river and fresh food was scarce, for humans and animals alike.
One night in March 1899 the camp was disturbed by a large bear crashing through the camp in search of meat. Elizabeth grabbed the children and Henry grabbed whatever came to hand to defend this family. Henry was killed defending his family and was buried in the nearby cemetery. Elizabeth and the children returned home almost immediately and went to live with her mother in Montgomerie Road.