On 15 April

This is a sad day for me, as it’s the third anniversary of the death of my mother. I miss her.

15 April 1860
Burial of James Wild age 25, husband of Ellen Oxley from Barnsley who was mentioned yesterday as she was born on 14 April 1839. So poor Ellen buried her husband the day after her 21st birthday, leaving her a widow with a one year old daughter.

15 April 1860
Baptism of Sarah Ann Wilson at Worsbrough, daughter of my ggg aunt Mary Green and her husband Joseph Wilson. Her parents lived at Stanley, near Wakefield, where they worked as gardener and keeper of Stanley Hall. Sarah Ann married James Burton and lived in Alverthorpe.

15 April 1872
John Strachan, third cousin twice removed, was born in Dreghorn, son of James Strachan and Mary Lindsay and great-grandson of my gggg uncle Robert Strachan. John was born in Dreghorn, became a miner, married Jemima Barrie and lived in Bannockburn, Stirlingshire and then back in Ayrshire. He and his wife and children migrated to New Jersey in 1923, and he worked as a porter at a bank. I know all this thanks to so many records now being online.

15 April 1906
Birth of my aunt, Helen McCrae Strachan, known to me as Aunt Nell. She was born in Crookedholm, Ayrshire but moved to Cambuslang, Lanarkshire with her family when she was very young. She married John Bain Aitken in 1923 in Cambuslang, and had two children. With her husband she ran the Cafe de Luxe on Main Street, Cambuslang which I remember visiting as a child. She was the best out of the whole of my father’s family for keeping in touch with everyone and loved visiting relatives. She sent me a McCrae tartan kilt when I was in my 20s and had moved to London, and it’s still in my wardrobe. Aunt Nell retired to Majorca with her daughter and died in Kent in 1999 at the grand old age of 93.

15 April 1927
Marriage of Ellen Devine, daughter of Susan Bell McCrae and her first husband John Boyle, and therefore niece of my grandmother Helen Strachan ms McCrae. Ellen married Hugh Davidson McKinnon in Glasgow and was the informant when her mother died, but beyond that I don’t know what happened to her.

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3 responses to “On 15 April

  1. Judy; I’m sorry to hear this is such a sad day for you. If it’s any comfort, I think that your family history project is doing so much to keep your loved ones alive by ensuring they are not forgotten. Kia kaha.

    • Thank you – it is a comfort. I also realise that history tends to be the story of the powerful and wealthy, and in the past not enough was written about the majority, who had little power and very little wealth, so it’s good to get their stories out there.

      I had to look kia kaha up, then realised it’s in that wonderful song. It’s a lovely phrase.

      • Thanks Judy. Sorry; I should have translated! Kia kaha has become so much a part of the Kiwi vocabulary that I forget it’s not universal. It does seem to have filled a linguistic gap.

        I agree with you about the importance of sharing the stories of the majority. My ancestors seem to be factory and mill workers, labourers and laundresses and so there’s not much information about them personally. Instead, like you, I’m reading social history so that I can begin to understand their lives in context. I really enjoy your blog and always look forward to learning more about your family stories.

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