Category Archives: Family history

Interesting ancestor – Alexander Marshall, evangelist

It’s always fascinating when you come across someone on your family tree who did something different – which in my case means not being a coal miner or a farm servant. So I was thrilled to come across evangelist Alexander Marshall when doing a recent bit of research into my Marshall from Ayrshire ancestors.
Alexander Marshall b. 1846

Alexander was a famous member of the Plymouth Brethren, which is a coincidence for me as the grammar school I went to in what was then North Yorkshire had a a headmistress who was a Plymouth Brethren. They are an evangelist Christian sect who believe that the bible should be the authority for all Christian religious practice.

My great great grandmother Sarah Marshall, who married John McAnarney or McInerney in 1842, was the daughter of Robert Marshall, a saddler of Kilmarnock, Ayrshire, and his wife Agnes Logan. Robert and Agnes had 11 children, and their eldest surviving son was Alexander born in 1794, who also was a saddler and who married Christina Wallace. They had several children, the eldest being John Wallace Marshall born in Galston. John Wallace Marshall became a tailor and clothier and settled in Stranraer in Wigtownshire, where he ran what sounds like a successful tailoring and clothing business.

John’s eldest son, born in Stranraer in 1846, was Alexander Marshall. There are a couple of online articles which give full details of his life and work. He started working as a solicitor’s clerk, then moved to Glasgow where he became a member of the Plymouth Brethren Church and a popular preacher. In 1879 he went to Canada, and became a full-time preacher, and there he married Amy Florence Tate and settled in Toronto, though there is no evidence of any children. He travelled extensively as his preaching tours were popular, and before retiring in Scotland he travelled in Canada, the United States, Central America, the West Indies, Australia, New Zealand and even Russia. He retired to the parish of Monkton & Prestwick, in Ayrshire, where he died in 1928.

More about Alexander Marshall can be found at:
http://www.truthandtidings.com/issues/2010/t20100107.php

Click to access marshall_alexander_bio.pdf

A coal miner’s will in 1896

John Strachan, a coal miner who lived in Crosshouse near Kilmarnock, was the only Strachan in Ayrshire to have written a will prior to 1900. What he detailed gives a lovely picture of the possessions of a coal miner at the turn of century, as he died in 1896. How I wish I knew if that Family Bible survived!

John would have lived in a two roomed miner’s cottage – the room and the kitchen are mentioned in the will- which seems to have been furnished with quite a few tables and chairs. He had earned enough to buy gold jewellery and a clock. He left his estate to a Trust, which was authorised to ensure his wife, if she survived him, had enough to support her, and then after her death to leave his children the following:

“(First) to give my daughter Mary the chest of drawers and looking glass in room and low chair in kitchen and one plain ring and brooch, (Second) to give to my son Robert my gold chain and the large chair and five small chairs and the small table in the kitchen, (Third) to give to my son John the eight day clock and large kitchen table and gold scarf pin belonging to me, (Fourth) to give to my daughter Elizabeth the dresser and large standard table in kitchen and the mirror in bedrooms and two stoned rings, and (Fifth) to give my son Alexander six chairs, small standard table, bed and blankets and mat in room and gold chain belonging to my wife and the Family Bible.”

John’s wife did survive him, by 5 years.

Updated McInerney details

I’ve just updated the known details of my McInerney ancestors, thanks to having recently found an entry for the marriage of Sarah Marshall and John McAnarney (as it is written) at Airdrie St Margaret’s RC Church. They were also married at the Bothwell Parish Church, so it looks as if John (from Ireland) was Catholic whereas Sarah (from Scotland) was Presbytarian. I very much suspected that this would be the case so thanks you Mary who has been researching what looks to be a related family and alerted me to the RC entries.

The first child of John and Sarah, my great grandmother Mary Ann McInerney, was baptised into the Church of England as she was born in Newcastle, England before her parents were married. Their second child Matthew was baptised into the Catholic faith at Hamilton St Mary’s, as he was born in Bellshill, Lanarkshire. John and Sarah were married three months after Matthew was born. My suspicion is that John McInerney had family in the Bellshill/Bothwell area, hence his doing the right thing according to his family’s religion while they were living close by.

It’s still a mystery what became of John and Sarah’s sons Matthew McInerney born 1842 and John McInerney born 1848. I can’t found any trace of either of them after the 1861 census, when they where in Kilmarnock.

A month later …

So I take a month off from the blog and what happens? I come down with a really horrible cold virus and spend much of the time feeling yukky. Am now fully recovered, though, and have plans for some articles to add to the blog.

Little to report apart from managing to get a bit sunburnt while lying on the lawn one day last week. Who’d have thought you’d need sun cream in Yorkshire in April! The weather’s now back to normal, though, as it’s raining.

Hope all your family history research – if you’re doing any – has gone well.

365 days of “one this day” completed

I started my “on this day” blog posts on 23 March last year, so the post for 22 March this year was the last one. I’ve very much enjoyed doing them, as it showed me where I had gaps in my research and has meant a lot of people have been able to find the blog when researching for their ancestors online.

At the moment I’m having a bit of a rest from blogging while I have a think about what to work on next. Ideas for more articles are running around in my head, and there are some surname branches I haven’t properly written up yet.

So bear with me while I take a short break: be back soon!

22 March

My ggg aunt Mary ended up as matron of a Poorhouse in Aberdeenshire. There’s also a Haddow from Ayrshire who migrated to Pittsburgh, and a Haddow descendant who didn’t marry and lived in Ardrossan, working as a servant.

22 March 1839
Baptism of my ggg aunt Mary Fraser at Mosside croft, near Hatton, Aberdeenshire, daughter of William Fraser and Christian Hutcheon. She is with her family in the 1841 census at Mosside, which was in a location named Yonderton back then. In 1851 she was a servant and scholar living with the Hutton family of Tillburn in Cruden parish: the father was a weaver and his adult daughter was a dressmaker. In 1859 Mary gave birth to an illegitimate daughter: she was registered as Isabella Fraser but was known as Isabella Shewan and on her marriage certificate names her father as Alexander Shewan, a farm servant. In 1861 Mary is at Mosside croft with her parents, siblings, her daughter and several nieces and nephews. Mary gave birth to a second illegitimate daughter in 1863 known as Mary Clark. Then in 1877, Mary married David Rennie, a crofter and neighbour, who had been widowed: he was 20 years older than Mary. In 1881 Mary is with her husband at a croft at Hardslacks with her daughter Mary Clark and a grandson of her husband’s. By 1891, however, Mary and David are living apart: Mary is using the name Fraser and is domestic servant for a farmer’s son at Corsshill, Ellon, and David is a labourer living with his daughter and her 2 children in Kirk Street, Peterhead. It would seem that David was probably unwell in 1891, and it may be that he and Mary had separated, for he died in 1893 at the Old Machar Poorhouse and on his death certificate is described as a pauper lunatic, with cause of death bronchitis and chronic Bright’s disease. By 1901, Mary has become the matron of the Poorhouse at Midmill, parish of Cruden, though at the time of the census there was only 1 inmate. Mary Rennie nee Fraser died in May 1901 at Midmill, Cruden of rheumatic fever and apoplexy (stroke).

22 March 1859
Birth of John Haddow at Kilwinning, Ayrshire, son of my gg uncle coal miner Colin Shearer Haddow and Ann Orr. He’s with his family at Kenneth’s Row, Kilwinning in 1861 – where many of my ancestors lived – and at Lylestone Row, Kilwinning in 1871. At the age of 12, John is already working at the coal mine. The family moved to Coylton in the late 1880s, and Colin there, still with his parents and siblings, in 1881 working as an iron miner. In 1887 he migrated to the USA and went to Pittsburgh. He married neighbour and widow Elizabeth Little, also a Scottish migrant, in about 1903 and in the 1910 is at Grail Street, Pittsburgh with his wife and 3 stepdaughters, working as a labourer for the City Water Department – his brother Duncan Haddow was living next door.

22 March 1862
Birth of Margaret Lewis at Saltcoats, Ayrshire, daughter of my gg aunt Wilson Haddow and Morgan Lewis. Her father was a sailor, and was at sea in 1871, as Margaret is at Chapelwell Street, Saltcoats with her mother and siblings. Her father died at Hong Kong in 1872. In 1881 Margaret is a domestic servant for the Gow family in Govan, and in 1891 is a servant for two elderly ladies in New Ardrossan, close to where her widowed mother lived. Margaret remained in New Ardrossan and in 1901 us a servant for a shipping agent and his family. In 1901 she was the informant when registering her mother’s death.

21 March

A Booth from Aberdeenshire who wasn’t a blood relation but was a sergeant in the Royal Artillery, a Haddow from Ayrshire who I haven’t had much luck tracing, a Strachan who seems to have died young, a Strachan who moved from Ayrshire to Greenock, and a Senior from Yorkshire who never stayed too far from home.

21 March 1782
Baptism of Thomas Booth at Durris, Kincardineshire, son of Joseph Booth and Elspet Christie. Thomas is not my “blood” relation, as his daughter Margaret was my step gg grandmother, the second wife of Alexander Fraser. Thomas was in the army, then married Catherine Strath at Old Machar in 1835 – she was 30 years younger than he was. They are in the 1841 census at Stuartfield, Old Deer, Thomas a 60 year old military pensioner and with 3 young children. His wife Catherine died between 1845 and 1851. In 1851 Thomas Booth is at Wauckmill, Stuartfield and is described as a 60 year old “Chelsea pensioner labourer sergeant Royal Artillery”. There are 3 of his children with him, including Margaret, the youngest at 5 years old. Thomas must have died before civil registration commenced in 1855.

21 March 1790
Birth of my ggg aunt Katherine Haddow in Stevenston, Ayrshire, daughter of Robert Haddow and Margaret Hunter. There is a marriage of Catherine Haddow and John Boyd in Stevenston in 1825, and in the 1836 minister’s census John Boyd and Catherine Haddow are at Loan, Stevenston, in a household of 8. I can’t find anything further so don’t know if this is the same Catherine Haddow.

21 March 1802
Baptism of my ggg aunt Mary Strachan at Campsie, Stirlingshire, daughter of John Strachan and Agnes Neilson. Northing further can be found for Mary so it looks as though she didn’t survive childhood.

21 March 1818
Birth of John Francis Strachan at Riccarton, Ayrshire, son of my ggg uncle Thomas Strachan and Elizabeth Nisbet. He married Jean Johnston Loudon in 1837 at Kilmarnock, and they are in Thirdpart, Kilmarnock in 1841 with 2 children, John a coal miner. They then moved to Kilmaurs where their next child was born and had moved to Darly by 1850. They are at Kirk Cross, Dalry in 1851, John an ironstone miner and with 4 children, the eldest 2 girls working as knitters and going to school in the evening. By 1854, when another child was born, the family had moved to Greenock, Renfrewshire, and in 1861 is at Hill Street, Greenock East: John is working as a machinist and there are 4 children still at home plus a boarder who is a ship’s carpenter. A tree on Ancestry has John’s death as March 1863.

21 March 1830
Baptism of my ggg uncle William Senior at Royston, Yorkshire, son of George Senior and Mary Roydhouse or Roadhouse. He was born in Carlton where his father was a joiner and carpenter, and lived with his parents until he was nearly 40, also working as a joiner and carpenter. In 1970 he married Ann Bradley in Barnsley, and in 1871 they are Old Mill Wharf, Barnsley, William a joiner and carpenter and Ann a shop keeper. In 1881 they are Clay Cliffe, Barugh, which is to the north-west of Barnsley, but are back in Barnsley in 1891 and William is a general labourer. They are at the same address in 1901 and 71 year old William is a corporation road labourer. They did not have any children, and William died in Barnsley in 1901 age 71.

20 March

Today’s all remained childless: there’s an Adams of Yorkshire who died unmarried, a Strachan of Ayrshire who died age 17 of tb, and a Cowie of Aberdeenshire who married a gamekeeper but did not have children.

20 March 1779
Baptism of my ggggg aunt Ann Adams at Brodsworth, Yorkshire, daughter of Mark Adams and Elizabeth Dixon. The only thing I can find for her is an entry in the 1851 census for Ann Adams living in Brodsworth, an unmarried retired servant age 72. Can’t locate her in the 1841 census. there is a death for an Ann Adams registered at Doncaster in 1851 which is likely to be her.

20 March 1856
Birth of Robert Strachan at Kilmaurs, son of Samuel Strachan and Janet Mitchell and grandson of my gggg uncle Samuel Strachan and Ann Miller. He is with his family in Stevenston in 1861 and 1871, their address being Chemical Row in the latter. Robert died at Chemical Row in 1873, age 17, of consumption (tuberculosis).

20 March 1874
Birth of Elizabeth Cowie at Ellon, Aberdeenshire, daughter of William Cowie and Elizabeth Cheyne and granddaughter of my half gggg aunt Barbara McWilliam and William Cowie. Her father was a farm servant but in the 1880s he took over a small farm at Balleraig, Keithhall, and Elizabeth is there in 1881, working as a domestic servant. She married George Turnbull in 1898: he was a gamekeeper born in England. In 1901 they are at Ury Cottage, Keithhall and in 1911 at Ythan Lodge, Foveran. They don’t appear to have had children. Elizabeth Turnbull nee Cowie died at Udny in 1936 age 62.

19 March

A coal miner Strachan descendant who moved to England then migrated to Canada, a Strachan who started out a coal miner but switched to fruit farming and then migrated to Canada, and a Senior descendant from Yorkshire who died in infancy.

19 March 1836
Birth of John Muir at Kilmaurs, Ayrshire, son of Elizabeth Strachan and Andrew Muir and grandson of my gggg uncle Peter Strachan and Mary Monroe. He is with his family in Kilburnie in 1851 and, at age 13, is working as a pony driver at a coal mine. His mother died in 1856. John, by then a coal miner, married at Hurlford in 1860 to Mary Holland, who was a wool spinner, and they initially lived in Hurlford where they can be found in 1861 with a baby daughter. They have more children born in Scotland, but by 1871 had moved to Seaton Deveral in Northumberland. Given the birthplaces of their children they moved back to Scotland, then in around 1885 moved to Cumberland. In 1881 they are at Arlecdon, Cumberland where John is am iron miner. The family then migrated to Canada in 1886

19 March 1927 (born about 1881)
James Strachan was born at Kilmaurs, son of James Strachan and Mary Lindsay, grandson of Andrew Strachan and Elizabeth Howat, and great grandson of my gggg uncle Robert Strachan and Jean Kelly. James started out as a coal miner, married Jeanie and had a first child born in Kilmarnock. They then moved to Fifeshire and settled in Cowdenbeath, where James went into the fruit farming industry. In 1927 the family migrated to Canada, and their arrival papers say James and his eldest son were going to work as fruit farmers and nurserymen for Messrs. E D Smith and Sons of Winona, Ontario.

19 March 1906
Birth of Esther Fletcher at Featherstone, Yorkshire, daughter of my gg aunt Annie Senior and miner John Fletcher. Esther died in infancy.

18 March

A busy day on the 18th: a Haddow from Ayrshire who was a coal miner, a Fisher from Yorkshire who was a midwife, a McWilliam from Aberdeenshire who married a farm servant, and a Marshall descendant from Ayrshire who seems to have migrated to USA twice.

18 March 1792
Baptism of my ggg uncle James Haddow a Stevenston, Ayrshire. He is with his widowed mother in the 1819 minister’s census of Stevenston, and in 1821 married Isabel Boyd in Stevenston. They had a child baptisted in 1823 but no other baptisms of their children can be found. In the 1822 Stevenston minister’s census James Haddow is listed at Townhead with wife Isabella Boyd and two children’s names, Margaret and John, have been entered afterwards. There is then a burial in Stevenston in 1825 for a child of James Haddow. Isabel Boyd died, and James married Jane Chalmers at Stevenston in 1831: she was a widow with children. There are no baptisms of their children to be found but there are two burials of children of James Haddow in 1835: one for an unnamed infant and one for a daughter named Margaret. The latter record describes James Haddow as a colier of Stevenston. The 1836 minister’s census has James Haddow at Cow Roading, Stevenston with wife Jean Chalmers and says there are 7 in the household, with what looks likes 2 children of Jean being named as Janet C and Cath C. It took me some time to find them in the 1841 census as they are listed as Holding, not Haddow, but they are at New Street, Stevenston, James is a coal miner, Jean and her daughter Catherine are muslin sewers, and there is a 5 year old with them named Jean Allan. In 1851 they are Haddow’s Land, New Street, Stevenston and James is still a coal miner. Along with James and wife Jean is Jean’s daughter Janet plus what looks like her two children, and Jean Allan who is now 15. Unfortunately for research purposes James Haddow seems to have died before 1855 as there is no death certificate to be found. His widow Jean or Jane is at Courouding, Stevenston (i.e. Cow Roading) in 1861 and died in 1868.

18 March 1798
Baptism of Lydia Fisher at Tankersley, Yorkshire, daughter of my ggggg uncle Timothy Fisher and Mary Kaye. She lived in the hamlet of Pilley all her life, and married David Dickinson in 1816. They had 11 children, not all of whom survived infancy and childhood. In 1841 Lydia and miner David are in Pilley with 5 children still at home and in 1851 have 2 children at home. They lived next door to Lydia’s younger brother Thomas and his family. Lydia’s husband died in 1852, and in 1861 she is in Pilley earning a living as a midwife. With her is a lodger and his son: their surname is Dickinson so they may have been relations of her husband. Lydia died in 1869 age 72.

18 March 1844
Birth of Elizabeth McWilliam at Peterhead, daughter of my half gggg uncle David McWilliam and Elizabeth Ewan. Her father was a sawyer and she is with her family in Princess Street, Peterhead in 1851. She is a domestic servant in Lonmay in 1861, and in 1867 married farm servant Robert Strachan in Lonmay (no connection with my Ayrshire Strachan ancestors). As usual for farm servants they initially moved from farm to farm, and their children were born in New Deer, St Fergus and Tyrie. They seem to have settled in Tyrie in about 1872, and are there in 1881 and Elizabeth died there in 1885 at age 40.

18 March 1856
Birth of John Jardine at Galston, Ayrshire, son of Francis Russell Jardine and Marion Craig Marshall, and grandson of my ggg uncle Alexander Wallace and Christina Marshall. He’s with his family in Kilmarnock in 1861 and back in Galston in 1871. By 1881 he has married Margaret and has a infant son, is living in Glaston and working as a coal miner. After the birth of another son, Margaret seems to have died. By 1891 he in Loudon and married to Annie, with his 2 sons with Margaret and an infant son with Annie and interestingly the youngest son was born in America. There is a passenger record for John Jardine sailing from New York to Glasgow in 1890 but I haven’t found a passenger list for his wife and son, or a passenger list showing him going to USA. John and is family are still in Galston in 1901 but in 1910 he is on ship sailing to Boston to join his son Frank in Indiana.