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Topics - IMBER

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Oxfordshire / Marriage of Margaret Cox and William Geddes of Leith, Scotland, 1784
« on: Saturday 31 March 18 19:00 BST (UK)  »
Margaret Cox married William Geddes of Leith, Scotland on 30 March 1784. William was a member of the prominent glass making Geddes family who were involved in glass manufacture in Glasgow, Leith and Alloa. William was born in Lochmaben in 1754. I am trying to establish the background to this pair getting married in Dorchester, near Oxford, in 1784 given the distance from Leith etc. It appears that they set up home in Leith where they had at least five children. Any other information about William’s life etc would be very welcome.


I am currently researching James Stevenson of Anderston, Glasgow, and Row, Helensburgh. What I do know is that he was retired early as a Royal Navy Surgeon on half pay and in the 1820s and 1830s owned several paddle steamers operating on the River Clyde. In the late 1830s he went into partnership with a Hugh Price running a large bottle works in Anderston, Glasgow.
In 1813 he married Elizabeth Robertson, daughter of James Robertson, at the Chapel of Ease, Shettleston. He had homes in Glasgow and Row and appears at the latter, aged 50, in the 1841 census. He died 23 March 1843 and his will is on ScotlandsPeople. I would be very grateful indeed for any information at all which would help me expand my information on this gentleman's life.


« on: Thursday 05 February 15 08:31 GMT (UK)  »

Another sad victim of war, a volunteer. It is hoped to identify his family. I often wonder how I would have coped in similar circumstances.

Lest we forget.


Merionethshire / Jane Roberts, born c1870, Llanfor, Merioneth
« on: Thursday 03 April 14 11:47 BST (UK)  »
I’m helping a friend trace the later life of Jane Roberts. The last record we have of her is in the 1891 census for Glanrafon, Llanfor where she is shown aged 21 as the daughter of Lewis and Jane Roberts, together with younger siblings Kate, David and Ellen. I cannot find her in the 1901 census but the name is very common and she may also have married. There is a suggestion that she may have emigrated to Australia before 1901 but I cannot find a suitable candidate on the FindMyPast passenger lists under her single name.

Any help would be appreciated.


World War One / Threat to Fenton Great War Memorial, Stoke on Trent
« on: Monday 14 October 13 11:31 BST (UK)  »
I appears that the future of this unique memorial, manufactured and erected by the Minton tile company, is very much in doubt. This is particularly unfortunate as we approach the hundredth anniversary of the start of the Great War. A petition to safeguard its future has been started. Details are given below:


On this day ninety-nine years ago there took place a violent rearguard action in the Forest of Retz near Villers Cotterets, Aisne during the Retreat from Mons.  Soldiers of the Grenadier, Coldstream and Irish Guards acting as rearguard held the line against the vastly greater numbers of the advancing German army for several hours. These were no conscripts but fully trained regulars and their disciplined rifle fire took a terrible toll of the enemy.  At this stage in the war the fighting was one of movement, not of muddy trenches and devastated landscapes and the British fought without helmets. As the morning progressed the fighting became confused and at close quarters in the thick, beautiful beech woods. Some units were surrounded and there were desperate but futile bayonet charges led by officers sword in hand.
My great uncle, 17 year old Lance Corporal Tommy Ayers of the Grenadiers was one of those surrounded and stood up to engage a German target but was shot through the head. The story was told to my family by a captured wounded colleague, Lance Corporal George Peacock.  The Guards took heavy losses but the survivors managed to filter back towards Villers Cotterets having achieved their objective of checking the advance. The Germans dug a large pit into which they flung the British dead but the site was back in French hands just a few weeks later when the bodies were exhumed. Tommy’s identity disc was returned to our family. Today it is the site of one of the most unusual and beautiful of the CWGC’s sites – Guards Grave. Therein are 94 British soldiers in a mass grave.  Each soldier is named on a headstone, two names to each headstone, but these do not mark their graves. Four officers have individual graves alongside the mass grave.  Another officer was returned to Scotland for burial.
My objective in raising this topic is to determine whether any Rootschatters have any family memories information etc regarding this event and also to raise awareness of this action. It has been explored in several publications but families may be able to add more. I can recommend a visit to this beautiful site. I shall certainly be there next year to mark the centenary and to lay a wreath on the grave.

Fife / Private William McAleer,7th Battalion, Royal Scottish Fusiliers.
« on: Sunday 04 August 13 08:58 BST (UK)  »
The following appeared in Fife Today recently.

I gather that in spite of extensive enquiries by the MOD it has not been possible to trace any family and they would welcome any input from Rootschatters.


Added -,%20WILLIAM

I have a bit of a conundrum concerning this marriage which was announced in the Hampshire Telegraph of Monday 29 June 1829:

“Married, on Monday last, at Kingston, Mr Hugh Price, of his Majesty’s sloop Favourite, to Mrs Denbey, of Gosport”.

My problem is that as far as I am aware there was only one Hugh Price serving as a Lieutenant in the Royal Navy around this period, although on half pay and involved in various business enterprises, and he had been married in Clifton, Gloucestershire in 1826. I know that he and his wife from that marriage had six children between 1829 and 1840. So who is this other Hugh Price? I have made several assumptions here. Firstly, I think that the address “Mr” indicates he was an officer in the RN. Initially I thought the location could be Kingston in Surrey, or even Jamaica, but then I discovered there was a Kingston in Portsmouth and the fact that it’s a naval base and there’s mention of Gosport clinches it I think.  Why “Mrs” Denbey. A widow perhaps?
The sloop Favourite had been launched in April that year and sailed for the Mediterranean on 5 August so this probably accounted for the timing of the wedding.
I would welcome any thoughts on all of this and, particularly, more about the happy couple.


Technical Help / Loss of internet connection
« on: Sunday 14 April 13 11:14 BST (UK)  »
I recently moved to a wireless internet connection. A vast improvement but with one exception. Very often the connection seems to drop when using email or (incredibly it has just disconnected this very second when I typed “or”). This means I have to go through the business of entering the network key yet again having sometimes lost detailed text.  The connection seems to be fine for hours until I try to send messages. What seems to happen is that I am in the middle of a typing word and then the letters stop appearing and the link disconnects. Does anyone know what the problem might be? Apart from that there are obviously occasions when, I take it, all of us lose a connection. Is there a way of reconnecting without having to enter the key every time?


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