On 6 June

A busy day on my family tree. Includes an Aberdeenshire gg grandmother who didn’t bring up her daughter, a migration to USA, and a Yorkshire ancestor whose mother spent most of her life, sadly, in an asylum.

6 June 1771
Birth of William Hunter at Stevenston, Ayrshire, son of John Hunter and Margaret Barr and my gggg uncle as his sister Margaret Hunter was the grandmother of Jeanie Haddow, who married my great grandfather Joseph Strachan. I need to add, though, that there isn’t a great deal in the records to fully prove this connection. However, there’s a marriage for William Hunter and Margaret Sharp in Stevenston in 1797, and they can be found in the 1819 and 1822 minister’s census for Stevenston at Townhead. They’re both mentioned in the 1836 Stevenston census but it says ‘dead’ next to Margaret’s name. No baptisms for children have been found. He made it to the 1841 census, and is living at Burnside Lane on his own, age 70 and a pauper.

6 June 1839
Baptism of Barbara Hutcheon at Cruden, Aberdeenshire daughter of my gggg uncle Keith Hutcheon and Barbara King. She is with her parents at Teuchan, Cruden in 1841 and 1851, and her father was a tailor. Her mother died sometime between 1851 and 1861, and in 1861 Barbara is a housemaid at Auchinten, Cruden, working for the household of Peter Brand, a farmer of 320 acres. In 1863 she married agricultural labourer Adam Birnie from Rora, Longside, and in 1871 they are living in Main Street, Longside but without any children, and Adam Birnie has become a quarrier. In 1881 they are still in Longside but have a boarder, 3 year old James Murison. Can’t find them in 1891, but in 1901 they are at Great Northern Road, Woodside, Aberdeen, Adam still a granite quarry labourer, but James Murrison has become James M Birnie, son age 23, and is a chemist’s assistant. Barbara Birnie died in 1925 at Balmoral Place, Aberdeen, age 86, of senility and bronchitis, and the informant is James M Birnie adopted son.

6 June 1868 (born about 1843)
Marriage of Helen Watt, my gg grandmother, who was born about 1843 at Ellon, Aberdeenshire but no baptism record exists. She was the daughter of James Watt and Margaret Symon, who lived at Mill of Shivas, Tarves. Helen is with her parents in 1851, and in 1861 is a domestic servant at Logie Buchan. In 1863 she gave birth to an illegitimate daughter Helen Hay, my great grandmother, at War Mill, Auchedley, Tarves, and the father was George Hay of Tarves, a farmer’s son. In 1868 Helen Watt married John Smith, farm servant, at Ythan Bank, Tarves and their daughter Barbara was born shortly after. In 1871 they are at Newington, Edinburgh, John Smith a carter, with 3 lodgers. Helen’s daughter Helen Hay, however, remained at Tarves and was brought up by her grandparents. John Smith died sometime between 1871 and 1881, as in 1881 Helen Smith, with daughter Barbara, is at Elm Row, St Andrews, with no occupation given. In 1891 they are at Drum Terrace, Leith, Edinburgh with lodger William Thompson, a librarian, who Barbara Smith married. In 1901 Helen Smith is at Marchmont Crescent, Morningside, Edinburgh, with student lodgers, and her daughter lives in the same street. By 1911 she has moved in with her daughter and son-in-law, who did not have children. Helen Smith nee Watt died in 1929 at Longmore Hospital, Edinburgh of cancer of the larynx. It’s not known how much, if anything, she had to do with her daughter Helen, who died in 1903.

6 June 1881
Birth of Lilian Burton at Wakefield, Yorkshire, daughter of James Burton and Sarah Ann Wilson and granddaughter of my ggg aunt Mary Green. Her baptism record states her father was wire rope worker and lived at Stanley Hall Lodge: this was the home of Lilian’s grandparents, who were the gardener and housekeeper. Lilian’s parents were living in Pilkington Street, Alverthrope by 1891. She married John Slee in August 1900 at Alverthrope, and in 1901 they were living in Banscroft Lane, Mansfield, Nottinghamshire with John Slee’s sister and her family, and John was working as a brick maker. In 1911 they are at Woolley Colliery, near Barnsley. and John Slee is a coal hewer. They had 6 children. John Slee died in 1925 age 49, and Lilian married John England in 1929 in Doncaster. She died in 1971 at Don Valley.

6 June 1897
Birth of Robert Michael at Boddam, Aberdeenshire, son of my gg aunt Mary Ann Fraser and David Ewan Michael. He was born at 10 Lendrum Terrace, Stirling Gill, Boddam and his father was a granite quarrier. In 1901 he’s with his family at Wickersgill near Shap in Westmoreland, England, where his father was a granite quarry foreman. The family returned to the Cruden area, however, and in 1911 are at Little Tillynaud, Cruden and Robert, age 13, is at shool. In 1923 he migrated to USA giving his UK address as Thistle Cottage, Longhaven and his US destination as his brother Alexander Michael of Caledonian Avenue, South Quincy, Massachusetts. His arrival papers say he had a fresh complexion, brown hair and blue eyes. He married Beatrice, and in 1930 they are in the US census at Oconomowoc, Wisconsin (yes, I had to look it up too – it’s not far from Milwaukee) where he was working as a grounds superintendant at a private club. His draft papers for WW2 give his address as Niantic, New London, Connecticut and his occupation as employed by the US Navy as the Underwater Sound Laboratory at Fort Turnbull – he was probably looking after the grounds. In 1940 he and Beatrice are at Black Point Beach Clubm East Lyme, Connecticut and are looking after 15 year old Beatrice Green, 14 year old Nicola Myenier and 12 year old Lorraine Whitehouse (both described as ‘charge’): were they foster parents? Robert Michael died at Niantic in January 1972, 10 years after his wife.

6 June 1955 (born 1884)
Death of Lily Ann Walters, born Lily Ann Schofield in 1884 at Worsbrough, Yorkshire, daughter of James Schofield and Eliza Hammerton and granddaughter of my ggg aunt Ann Green. Her father was a drayman and in 1891 was living at Hammerton’s Row, Worsbrough Dale, but Lily Ann was living nearby at Upper Lowther with her grandparents. In 1901 she is still with her grandparents and is a dressmaker’s apprentice. From 1891 her mother was in the South Yorkshire Lunatic Asylum at Wadsley, and her father died in 1905. In 1906 Lily Ann married Gilbert Waters, and inn 1911 they are at Platts Common, Hoyland Nether (where Lily had relatives): Gilbert is an engine man at the coal mine and they had had 2 children. Lily Ann Walters nee Schofield died in 1955, and probate for her will gives her address at Gawber Road, Barnsley.

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