This is Uncle Jimmie. James Blackwood Paterson ran the insurance part of Paterson and Company. He was the largest agent for the London based Phoenix Assurance Company. Then the most important insurance company operating in Canada. The Patersons and the Gillespie's (The Gillespie's are all buried next to the Patersons in Mount Royal cemetary - close partners indeed!) had been running the agency since 1887. They would do so until 1934, when Uncle Jimmie retired.
More here in this extract from the history of the Phoenix ( I add this for my cousins so that they can learn more about us)
He was a bachelor and felt that many of the young men off to war were like his sons. He left the running of the insurance business to his elder brothers, Robbie and Alex, who is the father of Alec, my grandfather. (The A T Paterson in the extract above is their father - It's confusing as we all had the same names!)
His brother, Somerled Lorne, had been in the British army and had died in India in the 1890's. It is clear from this early photo of Uncle Jimmie that he was a soldier manque like me. At the outbreak of war, in spite of being way over age, he found the ideal war job. He became a paymaster. Many older more experienced busnessmen took this route to get into the war. Formally, it meant that he assured the men that they were being paid properly. Informally, he was like a "Fixer" or "Godfather" to the men of unit. He had the contacts and the influence to solve problems that could not be solved formally.
He was closely connected to Lady Julia Drummond who was to run the Canadian Red Cross and the Maple Leaf Houses that offered Canadians on leave a welcome home in London. He was also a first cousin of Aunt Marguerite, Lady Allan, who was to run the main convelescent home for Canadian officers in London.
More soon on both Lady Drummond and Lady Allan - both would have been CEO's of Fortune 500 companies today!
If you were wounded, bored or broke, Uncle Jimmie was there to help. If your family came to England, he was your guide.
He became the lender of last resort for all young Canadian officers. He even gave my grandfather, Alec, 50 Pounds (a fortune) in gold in a belt to see him through. But Alec found the gold far too heavy and he exchanged this for notes.
Here he is later in the war - all the smartness of the early years is gone.
By this time, he had seen too much and lost too many.
He was to play a major role in 1918 when Alec and his brother Hartland were badly wounded. His taking charge of them was very important in their ultimate recovery. It must have been like having your father at the front with you. But that is a story for 2018!