Biography of Neil D. Mackenzie

A native of Nova Scotia, Mr. Mackenzie has been a resident of Rhode Island for many years, having come here as a young man in 1885.

Neil D. Mackenzie was born in Inverness County, Nova Scotia, Canada, July 27, 1863, a son of Neil and Margaret (Martin) Mackenzie. Both his parents were born in Scotland, from which country they came to Nova Scotia during their early youth. Here they were married and spent the balance of their lives engaged in farming. Neil D. Mackenzie came to the United States as previously mentioned, in 1885, and for a short time was located in Boston. From there he came to Diamond Hill, Cumberland Township, Rhode Island, while the Pawtucket reservoir was being built. He was employed on this construction and then worked at his trade of blacksmith, which he had learned in Nova Scotia, before coming to the United States, and which he followed successfully until about 1904. In that year he purchased the gristmill at Arnold Mills, near Valley Falls, which he operated very successfully until 1912; he then rented it until 1917 and then sold it. Mr. Mackenzie, however, remained active in his trade of blacksmith and carriage maker until 1923, when he retired. Since then he has made his home at Arnold Mills. He is a member of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, and of the local Grange, Patrons of Husbandry, having been a member of the executive board of the latter organization for several years. His religious affiliation is with the Methodist Episcopal Church of which he is a trustee and in the work of which he takes an active part. In politics he is an independent.

Mr. Mackenzie married Lillian G. Whipple, a daughter of Welcome and Julia (Thomas) Whipple, and a member of an old family, settled for many generations in the northeastern part of Rhode Island. Mrs. Mackenzie, like her husband, is active in the work of the Methodist Episcopal Church. Mr. and Mrs. Mackenzie are the parents of two daughters: Ella F.; and Alice M., who married William Codding, a sales manager, who is a resident of North Attleboro, Massachusetts.

Source: Carroll, Charles. Rhode Island: Three Centuries of Democracy, vol 3 of 4. New York: Lewis historical Pub. Co., 1932.

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