Sunday, 22 August 2010

Illness and Tragedy

I thought it would be interesting to look for any descendants of James Kennedy, in case I could trace any second or third cousins. The story I discovered was quite tragic.

James married Mary Dawson, an Englishwoman and neighbour in Raglan Street, on 18 June 1878. He described himself as “consulting engineer.” By 1881 he has gone blind and is living with Mary in one room behind a sweet shop at 36 Dumbarton Road with their children Ruth Farrel aged two and Dewar Onrust aged nine months. In the Census James describes himself as “civil engineer and architect.”

By 1891 family fortunes had improved. They are living in a seven room flat at 26 Charing Cross Mansions and James is now a confectioner. There is a new child Irene, aged four and they have one servant.

By 1901 the family is at 25 Elmbank Street, but Irene is no more. Ruth is working as a clerk to her father and Dewar has become an apprentice painter.

James died shortly after, but I did not find his details. Dewar died on 5 November 1905 of Phthsis (tuberculosis), unmarried and without having completed his apprenticeship.

Ruth never married and worked to support her mother. She was latterly in the Glasgow Corporation Electricity Department and died in her corporation house at 162 Kirkton Avenue, Knightswood on 13 July 1939.

Out of curiosity I researched William McIlwraith, who went into partnership with Thomas and James.

He was born on 9 August 1847 at 31 Cadogan Street to William McIlwraith a foreman and Margaret King, who had come from Ayrshire. His parents were thus neighbours and contemporaries of Angus Kennedy and family. It is very likely that he was offered an apprenticeship by Angus, who was always looking for staff.

The 1881 Census shows William, unmarried and an architect, living with his parents at 80 Maxwell Road East.

William is thought to have gone to Greenock, possibly with Thomas and family, but he does not appear in the 1891, nor the 1901 Census. This could be explained if he had been locked up in an asylum before 1891.

William died on 6 February 1909 at Woodilee Mental Asylum, his usual residence having been the Gartloch Asylum. He is described as “architect, unmarried” and the Asylum did not know his parents.

Postscript to the above, added 26 November 2011

I have found that the confectionery business operated as Crown Confectionery Company from 1890 to 1894 at 26 Charing Cross Mansions, which is in fact a shop. Following her father's death Ruth F Kennedy continued the business, latterly with a partner and in 1913 the following notice appeared in the Edinburgh Gazette:-

"NOTICE is hereby given that the Business of the
carried on by the undersigned Ruth F. Kennedy and
J. Howard MacKellar at 25 Elmbank Street, Glasgow,
has been transferred, as at 26th May 1913, to the
undersigned Alexander C. Meyer, who will continue
the Business on his own account under the Firm name
The said Ruth F. Kennedy and J. Howard MacKellar
will collect all sums due to, and pay all sums due by,
the said Business up to the said date of transfer, from
which date their connection with and interest in said
Business will cease.
Glasgow, 30th May 1913.
Street, Witness.
M. LINNEGAN, Clerkess, Witness, 25
Elmbank Street."

No comments:

Post a Comment