Quite a few on the 4th. In Aberdeenshire there’s a ggggg grandmother; two brothers who had the same birthday, one who died in infancy and the other who became a police inspector in London; and a half gg aunt who married twice, went to Canada, but returned to Aberdeen. In Ayrshire, some gggg grandparents had a nameless baby boy baptised, there were two children who died in infancy, and there’s someone I can trace till his 20s then he disappears. Plus in Yorkshire there’s a brick maker who went to Lancashire, split up with his wife, and returned to Barnsley.
4 February 1751
Birth or baptism of my ggggg grandmother Helen Davidson at Rayne, daughter of Patrick Davidson and Jean Lamb. She married John Watt at Rayne in December 1775 and they had a large family of 11 children all baptised at Bourtie: their eldest was born at Mill of Collyhill, then they had children born at Lawelside, Blockhouse, Nether Mains and Mains of Thornton, which points to John Watt being a farm servant but always within the Bourtie parish.
4 February 1771
My gggg grandparents James Wilson and Agnes Smith had a son baptised at Stevenston, but he was not named and is simply listed as male Wilson in the OPR. I assume from this that he was not expected to live, and most probably died shortly after. If he didn’t, then not knowing his first name makes him impossible to research.
4 February 1828
Baptism of my ggg uncle William Oxley at Bolton upon Dearne, Yorkshire, son of Thomas Oxley and Sarah Grist. He’s in Wortley Street, Barnsley with his parents and siblings in 1841, his father an ag lab. William married Jane Galloway at Silkstone Parish Church in July 1850 and is described as a brick maker of Barnsley, son of Thomas Oxley tallow chandler. In the 1851 census William and his wife are in Park Row, Barnsley lodging with a widower who was a weaver, and Jane Oxley is also a weaver (her marriage certificate says she was the daughter of a weaver). By 1861 they had moved to Croft Street, Ashton under Lyme, Lancashire but did not have children: William is still a brick maker and Jane is a linen weaver. In 1866 William was a witness at his younger brother’s marriage, which coincidentally took place at the same church in Leeds where I was baptised. William and Jane, however, appear to have separated as Jane can be found in the 1871 census as housekeeper to a railway labourer in Little Horton, Bradford but there is no sign of William. In 1881 William Oxley turns up in Wilson Street, Barnsley as an unemployed quarryman living with his brother James and a lodger. Meanwhile, his wife Jane is with the same man she was with in 1871 as his wife, though she didn’t marry him until 1885. There is a death in Barnsley for William Oxley in 1884.
4 February 1846
Birth of James Strachan in Kilmarnock, son of miner John Francis Strachan and Jean Johnstone Loudon and grandson of my ggg uncle Thomas Strachan and Elizabeth Nisbet. James had died by the time of the 1851 census, and by then his family were living in Dalry.
4 February 1857
Birth of James Kean or Cain at Kilwinning, son of my gg aunt Agnes Strachan and coal miner William Cain and grandson of Robert Strachan and Margaret Haggerty. He is with his family at Single Row, Kilwinning in 1861 and at 42 Byrehill Row, Kilwinning in 1871, by which time he was a coal miner, and in 1881 is a boarder next door at 40 Byrehill Row with the Ferguson family. After that I can find nothing for him so I’m not sure if he died, migrated or what.
4 February 1857
Birth of William Cowie at Ellon, son of William Cowie and Elizabeth Cheyne and grandson of my half gggg aunt Barbara McWilliam and William Cowie. As he’s not with his parents in the 1861 census and cannot be traced beyond that, it looks as if he died in infancy.
4 February 1859
Birth of Forbes Milne Cowie at Ellon, son of William Cowie and Elizabeth Cheyne and grandson of my half gggg aunt Barbara McWilliam and William Cowie (and brother of William above). Forbes is with his parents and siblings at Rose Cottage, Ythan Terrace, Ellon in 1861, his father a railway labourer, and at Littlemill Cottar’s House, Ellon on 1871, his father a farm servant. Forbes joined the police force as in 1881 he’s a 22 year old constable at the Police Station, Rochester Row, Westminster (London). Later in 1881 he was married at St George Hanover Square to Elspet Bothwell, who was from Scotland. By 1891 he’s become a police inspector, has 3 children born in Westminster and Fulham, and is living at Brice Road, Barnet, Middlesex. In 1901 he is still a police inspector with 6 children and is at Cleveland Gardens, Barnes, Surrey but has moved around as he has had children born in Kilburn, Enfield and New Malden. I’ve not been able to trace him beyond that, but when his son migrated to Canada in 1923 his nearest relative was Mrs. F M Cowie of Sunnyside Road, Aberdeen so perhaps Forbes eventually returned to Scotland.
4 February 1870
Birth of John King at Irvine, son of my gg aunt Jean (Jane) Strachan and James King and grandson of Robert Strachan and Margaret Haggerty. He died the same year, in infancy.
4 February 1871
Birth of my half gg aunt Christian or Christina Fraser at Blackhill of Fortie, Ellon, Aberdeenshire, daughter of Alexander Fraser and his second wife Margaret Booth. She is with her parents and siblings at Fortie in 1871 where he father was an ag lab. Her grandfather William Fraser died in 1877 and her father took over the croft of Mosside, near Hatton. Christian is at Mosside in 1881, age 10 and at school. In January 1889 she gave birth to an illegitimate daughter at Mosside, and in December 1890 she married farm servant James Reid of Boddom. They are at Mortimer’s House, Boddom in the 1891 census and Christina’s daughter is listed as Margaret Reid, though Margaret didn’t name James Reid as her father when she married and used the surname Fraser so I doubt he was her father. James Reid died in 1891 and in 1895, at Mosside, Christina married farm servant James Andrews of Mintlaw. In 1911 Christina is at Hutcheon Street, Aberdeen with 5 children and James Andrews, a green keeper at the golf course, is a boarder at Hayfarm, Cruden. James Andrew died at Newhills, Aberdeen in 1923, and later that year widow Christina and her youngest son sailed to Canada to join her daughter Christina and son-in-law Neil Wood in Hamilton, Ontario. She returned to Scotland, however, as she died age 61 in 1932 at Woodend Hospital, Aberdeen and the informant was her married daughter Jemima Athieson.