17 December

Three today: one is an Alexander from Aberdeenshire who became a blacksmith and another is a Green from my Yorkshire family but this one was born in London. Plus there’s blog follower Colin’s father who isn’t my blood relation, but his mother was a Fraser from Aberdeenshire, though not related – as far as I know – to my Frasers from Aberdeenshire.

17 December 1749
Birth of my gggggg uncle William Alexander at Bourtie, Aberdeenshire, son of William Alexander and Ann Strachan. Ian Macdonald has researched him for his book ‘The Alexanders of Bourtie’ and says that William was 14 when his father died, and took over Westerhouses farm with his mother Ann. However, his belief in progressive farming techniques caused conflict with his mother, and he gave up his claim on the family farm in favour of a younger brother. Ann Alexander nee Strachan’s testement (will) makes it clear he was bought off for £30 in 1778. He then learnt blacksmithing and took himself to Aberdeen, then settled at Rescivit in Chapel of Garioch parish, and married Isobel Galloway of Daviot. He is mentioned on the family memorial at Bourtie as “William late Black Smith in Rescivet who died 4th Nov. 1806 in the 58th year of his age”. William and Isobel had 4 children, their son James being the father of the Aberdeen radical, newspaper editor and writer William Alexander.

17 December 1876
Baptism of George Percy Green at Marylebone, London, son of George Edwin Green and Sarah Maria Sampson and grandson of my gggg uncle Samuel Green and Mary. His father was a shopman of Alfred Street, Street. George died in 1883 at age 7 and his death was registered at Chelsea.

17 December 1897
Birth of William M Harper in Aberdeen who married by aunt Jeanie Haddow Strachan and was the father of my cousin Colin who follows this blog. Interestingly, his parents were John Harper and Ellen Fraser and, of course, my mother comes from an Aberdeenshire line of Frasers, so I felt compelled to do a bit of research. However, William Harper’s great grandfather was Robert Fraser of Banchory so is not related to my Frasers, although his great grandmother was born Elspet Imlay at Cruden, which is where my Frasers lived. Given that William Harper and Jeanie Strachan met and married in Canada, it’s still an amazing coincidence.

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2 responses to “17 December

  1. Judy; Thanks so much, I have learned things regarding my father that I was totally unaware of. Wonderful information, Colin.

    • So glad you enjoyed that post. When I realised you had a Fraser ancestor from Aberdeenshire I couldn’t resist following it up, given my maternal grandfather was a Fraser from Aberdeenshire. I’ll try and do a bit more research, as I’ve done so much already in that part of Scotland I know my way around the records, and let you know more about your father’s side of your family tree. Given where they lived and what they did, there must have come across people who are on my family tree. A lovely coincidence!

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