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Scotland (Counties as in 1851-1901) => Scotland => West Lothian (Linlithgowshire) => Topic started by: DudelsackHogg on Thursday 01 April 21 18:31 BST (UK)

Title: Sergeant Alex Milne Postmaster of Torphichen
Post by: DudelsackHogg on Thursday 01 April 21 18:31 BST (UK)
I am looking for information on a Sergeant Alex Milne Postmaster of Torphichen.

I have very little information to go on other than his name and profession.

He appears in a newspaper article describing the funeral of my grandmotherís  brother who died in a motorcycle accident in Falkirk in 1934.

The article mentions Sgt Alex Milne as the uncle of Andrew Gardiner.

I donít see any Milneís in the tree so it makes me question if this is indeed related to my Grannyís brother.

Andrew's parents both died in 1927 when he was 11 years old and it says:

ďOur sympathy goes out fully to Sergeant Milne - his uncle, postmaster of Torphichen, with whom he stayed,  and who is greatly affected by the calamity.Ē

Any help in figuring out the connection would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you
Title: Re: Sergeant Alex Milne Postmaster of Trophichen
Post by: MonicaL on Thursday 01 April 21 19:13 BST (UK)
What were the names of the parents of your grandmother and her brother Andrew?

Alexander Milne shows in Torphichen from around 1925-1940 at Waterloo Cottage, the Loan, Torphichen. Also showing as owner of shop promises there which likely included the post office too.

Monica
Title: Re: Sergeant Alex Milne Postmaster of Trophichen
Post by: DudelsackHogg on Thursday 01 April 21 19:26 BST (UK)
Hi Monica,

James Gardiner and Janet Simpson Wilson.

Where did you find that information so fast?
Title: Re: Sergeant Alex Milne Postmaster of Trophichen
Post by: MonicaL on Thursday 01 April 21 19:30 BST (UK)
Sorry, should have added source. Info came from the valuation rolls on Scotlands People.

I imagine you have viewed the 1934 death to confirm that the death of Andrew Gardiner matches what you now about him (such as parents' names, age etc.)?

Monica
Title: Re: Sergeant Alex Milne Postmaster of Torphichen
Post by: MonicaL on Thursday 01 April 21 19:43 BST (UK)
There are certainly marriages between an Alexander Milne and a Wilson or Gardiner bride. Do you know all the sisters' names of James Gardiner and Janet Simpson Wilson? They could have married anywhere in the country.

Monica
Title: Re: Sergeant Alex Milne Postmaster of Torphichen
Post by: DudelsackHogg on Thursday 01 April 21 20:17 BST (UK)
His death certificate confirms the parents and also the cause of death as motorcycle accident. The newspaper article has his age correct at 18.

I thought I had that information to hand but I only have Janetís brothers here. I created a separate tree for the part of the family and will need to check my computer. Putting the kids to bed now, so might take me a bit.

Not used the valuation roles before, will check them. Thanks for that tip.

Thanks for all your help.
Title: Re: Sergeant Alex Milne Postmaster of Torphichen
Post by: MonicaL on Thursday 01 April 21 20:21 BST (UK)
I think that is your next step. To cross check marriage on SP with names of sisters for both James and wife Janet.

But, for now, it is bedtime for your children  ;) This will all wait!

Monica
Title: Re: Sergeant Alex Milne Postmaster of Torphichen
Post by: MonicaL on Thursday 01 April 21 22:10 BST (UK)
I think I have figured out who Uncle Alexander Milne was. James Gardner's mother was Mary Berry wasn't she? She had Milne children before she married James' father, Andrew. This looks to be the family in 1891:

Andrew Gardnar 47 shore lab b. Dysart, Fife
Mary Gardnar 45 b. St Nicholas, Aberdeen    
Mary A Melne 23 Step Daur b. St Nicholas, Aberdeen
Alexr Melne 10 Step Son b. St Nicholas, Aberdeen*
Willm Melne 11 Step Son b. Dundee
Andrewina Gordne 5 Daur b. Markinch, Fife
James Gordne 3 Son b. Dundee

Address: 53 Ann St, Dundee

*Alexander Milne shows with the occupation of Light Porter, so maybe his age has been mistranscribed like part of transcript for the family's entry.

Just found the Milne family entry from 1881 in Dundee:

Mary Berry Or Milne 36
Mary Ann Berry Or Milne 14
Jemima Berry Or Milne 12    
Alexander Berry Or Milne 8    
William Berry Or Milne 2    

Monica
Title: Re: Sergeant Alex Milne Postmaster of Torphichen
Post by: MonicaL on Thursday 01 April 21 22:23 BST (UK)
A maybe for Alexander and military service? www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:QVB5-L7P8
Added: this is the correct for entry for him. His enlistment papers from 1892 state his mother was Mary Milne. He was working as a draper when he enlisted in Dundee. These papers have his service history up to 1914.

The 1891 census location fits well with Andrew and Mary's marriage:

Andrew GARDNER and Mary BERRY
1882
282/4 177
St Andrew (Dundee)

Have you seen this marriage reg? If so, did Andrew show as a widower? What about Mary?

Monica
Title: Re: Sergeant Alex Milne Postmaster of Torphichen
Post by: MonicaL on Thursday 01 April 21 22:27 BST (UK)
I don't think actually that Mary Berry was married to Mr Milne. Andrew's 1872 birth entry shows his surname as Berry www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:XYTW-VD4

There is also this 1868 birth entry with a James Milne and Mary Berry as parents www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:XYGK-RVS

Not sure how much work you have already done on your grandmother's paternal and maternal grandparents, so will leave it there.

Monica
Title: Re: Sergeant Alex Milne Postmaster of Torphichen
Post by: DudelsackHogg on Friday 02 April 21 08:00 BST (UK)
Wow. Thank you so much. This forum is really lucky to have people like you.

Mary Berry is indeed Andrewís mother - full name Mary Booth Berry on James and Janetís 1908 marriage certificate.

A lot of information to go through and time to top up my Scotlandís People credits.

Your contribution is amazing, thank you. Have a great Easter.
Title: Re: Sergeant Alex Milne Postmaster of Torphichen
Post by: DudelsackHogg on Friday 02 April 21 09:24 BST (UK)
This is the marriage certificate of Mary and Andrew. I find it very hard to read.

Andrew GARDNER and Mary BERRY
1882
282/4 177
St Andrew (Dundee)

It looks like the right one, I see Booth there.

Both Andrew and Mary are listed as widowers. It looks like Mary has two names listed under 'Widow of' It looks like Milne appears as a witness.

Really hard to read, perhaps one for the handwriting deciphering forum.
Title: Re: Sergeant Alex Milne Postmaster of Torphichen
Post by: DudelsackHogg on Friday 02 April 21 10:16 BST (UK)
I looked up the actual census return to see what was written for myself.

Andrew Gardnar 47 shore lab b. Dysart, Fife
Mary Gardnar 45 b. St Nicholas, Aberdeen   
Mary A Melne 23 Step Daur b. St Nicholas, Aberdeen
Alexr Melne 10 Step Son b. St Nicholas, Aberdeen*
Willm Melne 11 Step Son b. Dundee
Andrewina Gordne 5 Daur b. Markinch, Fife
James Gordne 3 Son b. Dundee

Address: 53 Ann St, Dundee

Thanks again. I feel like I'm getting somewhere now.
Title: Re: Sergeant Alex Milne Postmaster of Torphichen
Post by: Forfarian on Friday 02 April 21 10:54 BST (UK)
This is the marriage certificate of Mary and Andrew. I find it very hard to read.
Ah, yes, that Registrar in Dundee with the famously terrible handwriting. Probably the most illegible Registrar in the records. I've had a go:

1882, Twenty Sixth June, 28 Lilybank Road, Dundee Ö. Church of Scotland
Andrew Gardner, shipping porter, widower of Helen ?Brickland?, 38 or 58, 60 Trinidad Lane, Dundee, Robert Gardner, linen Ö. Jane Gardner MS Gray (dec)
Mary Berry, widow of James Mill, tinsmith journ, 67, 28 Lilybank Road, Dundee, James Berry, Ö.., (dec), Mary Berry MS Booth
John Mills MA Minister in Church of Scotland St Matthews Ch Dundee*
Charles Milne, witness; Eliza Jane ?, witness


*https://www.ecclegen.com/ confirms that John Mills was the minister of St Matthew's, Dundee, at the time.

The ages are especially hard to decipher! Given that only one of each set of parents was deceased, I don't believe 58 for him or 67 for her.
Title: Re: Sergeant Alex Milne Postmaster of Torphichen
Post by: MonicaL on Friday 02 April 21 15:06 BST (UK)
One of the reasons I asked whether Andrew Gardner showed as widowed is because of this 1881 census entry:

Andrew Gardner 38 dock lab. b. Dysart Fife
Helen Gardner 36 b. Ireland
Jane Gardner 13  b. Markinch Fife
Catherine Gardner 10 b. Markinch Fife
Isabella Gardner 7 b. Markinch Fife    
Helen Gardner 5 b. Kilpt. Dumbarton
John Gardner 6 Months

Address: 117 Blackscroft, Dundee

Wonder what happened with the children as none of them show with Andrew and Mary in 1891.

Helen's death is indexed on SP as Helen Gardner/ BRICHTANEY. Age 37 when she died in 1881 in st Mary's Dundee. Her mother's maiden name shows as McCormick.

Andrew GARDINER and Helen BRIGHTNEY married in Dundee in 1866.

Monica
Title: Re: Sergeant Alex Milne Postmaster of Torphichen
Post by: MonicaL on Friday 02 April 21 15:31 BST (UK)
I wasn't sure if Mary Berry and James Milne were actually married because of the way Alexander's 1872 birth was indexed with the surname Berry only.

There is a marriage showing in Aberdeen though in 1865 which looks like Mary Berry and James Milne's marriage www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:XTJX-KXS Easy enough for you to check and compare her parents' names against it.

The only two births I could see with James Milne as father were:

Mary Ann 1866 www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:XYR4-F9C
Jemima 1868 www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:XYGK-RVS - she died 1882 in Dundee

By 1872 when Alexander was born, he showed, as mentioned, under Berry. Can't easily see them on the 1871 census to try and see whetherhusband James Milne was still alive.

Monica
Title: Re: Sergeant Alex Milne Postmaster of Torphichen
Post by: MonicaL on Friday 02 April 21 15:42 BST (UK)
From the 1882 marriage and parents' details above, this looks like Mary's christening entry www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:XBQ4-2YL

Have you used Family Search before? You just need to register for free to use. You need to be signed in to view the links I have added. Useful tool to check birth and marriage Scottish indexes together with Scotlands People.

Also, in case you haven't used it before, www.freecen.org.uk  As the name implies, free to use! Has now really good coverage of Aberdenshire censuses. 100% coverage of censuses between 1841 to 1871.

And with the help of FreeCen, have now found the Milne family in 1871 www.freecen.org.uk/search_records/59026f33e9379091b1ed23df/jemima-milne-1871-aberdeenshire-aberdeen-1868-?locale=en

Monica
Title: Re: Sergeant Alex Milne Postmaster of Torphichen
Post by: DudelsackHogg on Friday 02 April 21 18:47 BST (UK)
Ah, yes, that Registrar in Dundee with the famously terrible handwriting. Probably the most illegible Registrar in the records.

Ha ha, I love that this registrar has found infamy. You would think that legibility would be a prerequisite for such a profession. I am amazed you were able to decipher so much, even knowing what I think the entries should say, I still struggle to read it. I am particularly impressed you decoded - tinsmith. Well done and thank you.

Monica, I had seen that 1881 census entry too and also wondered about the children. Thanks for finding the death, that was on my to do list.

The family search christening date is correct, I now have the original from SP. I do use the family search from time to time - I donít find it so user friendly but perhaps thatís more a user problem. Freecen and the Freereg are great.

This puzzle is all falling together now. Thank you for your amazing help.


Title: Re: Sergeant Alex Milne Postmaster of Torphichen
Post by: DudelsackHogg on Friday 02 April 21 18:58 BST (UK)
I wasn't sure if Mary Berry and James Milne were actually married because of the way Alexander's 1872 birth was indexed with the surname Berry only.

There is a marriage showing in Aberdeen though in 1865 which looks like Mary Berry and James Milne's marriage www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:XTJX-KXS Easy enough for you to check and compare her parents' names against it.

This is also correct. Her name is recorded as Berrie on the marriage certificate but her parents as Berry. SP has it indexed with both variations.
Title: Re: Sergeant Alex Milne Postmaster of Torphichen
Post by: MonicaL on Friday 02 April 21 19:22 BST (UK)
That is great  :) You are jumping back now to the next generation. Andrew Gardner is easy enough to find in the censuses in Fifeshire with parents Robert and Jane/Jean. Let us know if you need to help with anything else
.

Monica
Title: Re: Sergeant Alex Milne Postmaster of Torphichen
Post by: DudelsackHogg on Friday 02 April 21 20:55 BST (UK)
I found something a little puzzling.

Both William Milne 1879 and Alexander Flett Berry are listed as ďillegitimateĒ on their birth certificates.

I double checked the marriage 1865 and everything seems correct - James Milne is described as a tinsmith journeyman bachelor and Mary Berryís parents add up.

Williamís birth certificate seems to offer more information but itís written by the same registrar as before and Iím struggling to read it.
Title: Re: Sergeant Alex Milne Postmaster of Torphichen
Post by: MonicaL on Friday 02 April 21 23:03 BST (UK)
Ahh...him again  ;)

I think it reads something along the lines of:

Mary Berry widow of James Milne Tinsmith xxx who died xx years ago.

This fits with what we were seeing really. James and Mary married in 1865, had two girls and show in 1871 together. By 1872 Mary is giving birth to Alexander with no father mentioned and his birth is registered under her maiden name only. So you would think James had died sometime between the census and Mary falling pregnant with Alexander.

Monica
Title: Re: Sergeant Alex Milne Postmaster of Torphichen
Post by: Forfarian on Friday 02 April 21 23:30 BST (UK)
Just to add that William's place of birth is Fleming's Land, Foundry Lane, Dundee. (You can probably tell that I have seen a lot of that Registrar's handwriting!)
Title: Re: Sergeant Alex Milne Postmaster of Torphichen
Post by: DudelsackHogg on Saturday 03 April 21 13:10 BST (UK)
Brilliant. Thank you.

Forfarian, I am glad you have read lots of that registrars hand writing. Itís been a great help.


I looked up Helen Brichtaney

She died of Typhus on July 31st corrected to July 13th 1881.

I still have no idea what happened to the children. I also need to investigate the Blackscroft address - sounds like it was a pretty grim tenement given the number of families listed living there.  If there was a typhus outbreak, I guess Helen was not the only one to die from it.

The 1881 census

282/4 117 Blackscroft

Andrew Gardner 38
Helen Gardner 36
Jane Gardner 13
Catherine Gardner 10
Isabella Gardner 7
Helen Gardner 5
John Gardner 6 Mo

I actually studied in Dundee - the Reading Rooms were on Blackscroft , many fuzzy memories from nights out there. I had no idea my relatives were living there 120 odd years before me, I find that amazing and I feel a stronger connection to them because of it.

Thank you everyone and have a good weekend.