Old Roots Genealogy

Family & Social History

Category: Family

John McAndrew (1878) – Private

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Williams Family Gathering – Faces From The Past Prompt

Williams / Marshall family party in Holyhead in 1943

This photo is from a Williams (and possibly Marshall) family gathering, taken in 1943 in Holyhead, North Wales. Second up on the left side of the table is my dad (John Williams) sitting on his aunt, Ceridwen Williams, knee.

I have no idea who anyone else in the picture is. The photo was passed to my dad from his mum, but all he could remember that she told him was that it was taken on a regular family gathering in Holyhead.

Catherine Marshall & Benny Greenwood – Wedding Wednesday

In 1953, my great grandmother, Catherine Williams, married Benny Greenwood in Kirkham, Lancashire. They held their reception at The Stanley pub in Wesham, this is them with friends outside the pub.

Benny died when I was very young and I don’t really remember him. But in the photos I’ve seen, I always think he looked like a lovely, cheery man. More importantly, my dad spoke very fondly of him, referring to him as ‘Uncle Benny’, and Benny seems to have treated my dad like a son. He taught my dad about gardening, showed him how to grow vegetables at his allotment and encouraged him in his mechanic apprenticeship.

So I’m dedicating this ‘Wedding Wednesday’ prompt to my step great grandfather, Uncle Benny.

Cycling – Sports Centre Saturday Prompt

A day early, here’s a prompt post for Sports Centre Saturday. The sport in question is cycling and the sport centre (or club) is Bolton United Harriers & Athletic Club.

My grandparents both enjoyed cycling, but whilst for my nana and her friends it was a free way of getting from A to B, my grandad and his friends took it far more seriously.

Gilbert McAndrew and a friend in 1931

Bolton United Harriers & Athletic Club

When my granddad died, I found a membership medal for Bolton United Harriers & Athletic Club, where he most likely a member in the late 1920s and/or the 1930s. There was also another medal, this one a little is a little worse for wear and I don’t know where it was for, the only writing is “C.W.B. 1929” engraved on the rear. The medals were in an envelope with some cycling photos. If anyone has any idea what the mystery medal is, drop me a line in the comment box below.

Days Out & Racing

This is one of those times when I really wish I had listened more closely to the stories my grandparents told. I do know that they cycled to the Guides House at Warton in Lancashire and to Rivington Barn near Bolton, as well as New Brighton and the Lake District.

My grandad and his friends raced bicycles,  and in April 1933 he was knocked off his bike in Ambleside, Cumbria after taking a corner too wide and meeting a car coming the other way.

Lancashire Evening Post, 15 April 1933, article on my grandad’s accident.

 

The Search For John Marshall

Whilst researching my paternal great grandparents, John Marshall and Jane Jarrett, I had thought I was doing well. I found their marriage certificate, the births and baptisms of their children and I found them on each census following their marriage, from 1891 until 1911, I found John’s World War 1 records and their deaths and burials. I have had no problems following Jane and her family from Denbighshire to Amlwch on Anglesey and on to Caernarfon (in spite of the multiple ways of spelling their surname – Garrard, Jarrard, Gerrard, Jarad, Garret… the list goes on).

It was all going so well, until I tried to trace John before his marriage and there was no trace of him anywhere.

John worked as a sailor for L&NWR, sailing out of Holyhead. The RMS Hibernia is one of the ships he would have sailed on.

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People & Places

Before I started seriously researching my family tree I knew a few of my family’s surnames and 3 places they had lived. Of course as my research progressed the list of names grew and grew along with the list of places.

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