Saturday, 3 December 2011

James Young (Captain & Adjutant)

The marriage of George Young, Farmer and Isabella/Isobel Mitchell
was registered at Glasgow on the 17th October 1813.

The couple had 3 known children, all born at Rutherglen:
James, born 18th September 1815,
David born 6th March 1818 and Margaret born 7th March 1821

James, the eldest son enlisted into the 79th (Cameron Highlanders) Regiment on the 27th May, 1831 when he was around 16 years of age giving his occupation as ‘Nailer’ (which was later to become his nickname).

His army career saw him rising through the ranks to finally become Captain and Adjutant.

He served throughout the Crimean War receiving the Crimean Medal (with three clasps),
the Turkish Crimea Medal and was appointed a Knight of the Legion of Honour
by the French Government.


His regiment served in the Indian Mutiny from 1857
During 1858 he was invalided home later being awarded the Indian Mutiny Medal
(with Clasp for Lucknow.)

It was after his return to Scotland that he married Frances Leigh Cormack
on 2nd February 1859 at Fettes Row, Edinburgh.

The couple’s Marriage Registration lists James as a widower, aged 42
and a Lieutenant in the 79th Highlanders.
Frances is listed as aged 27, spinster and daughter of William Cormack, Farmer
and Catherine Sinclair.

Nothing is known about his first marriage although research suggests that his first wife
may have been Jane Wilson, daughter of Charles Wilson,
the marriage taking place at Bombay, India on 25th January 1847.

James and Frances went on to have 4 (known) children:
George, born January, died 2nd February 1860 (age 4 days)
James, born March 1861
Isabella, born 1864
Frances Leigh, born 1865

On the 1861 Census for Stirling, the family is listed as living at 9 Forth Place, Stirling.
James Young, age 45, Head of Household, born Rutherglen, Lanarkshire,
Occupation: Returned Captain from the army, now Adjutant, Stirlingshire Rifle Volunteers
Fanny L. Young, age 31, Wife, born Cannisbay, Caithness
James Young, age 1 month, Son, born Stirling.

Sadly, Frances died on the 28th of October 1865, shortly after the birth of  daughter Frances.

Frances was buried in Section W of  Mar Cemetery in Stirling.
(It is unknown whether infant son George is also interred there,
but is listed on the stone’s inscription)

It is possible James remained in Stirling
but the family are proving difficult to locate on the 1871 Census.

On 11th December 1872, James married his third wife, Margarer Moyes Burr
at 18 Merkland Terrace, Hillhead (or Partick), Glasgow, the bride’s home.
He was now 57 years old and was listed as a widower and Captain & Adjutant
of Stirlingshire Rifle Volunteeers, living at 23 Albert Place, Stirling.
Margaret is listed as age 44, daughter of Alexander Burr, Commission Agent
and Margaret MacGibbon.

This third marriage was also destined to be short as nine months later,
on the 14th August 1873, James died at East Wemyss in the Kingdom of Fife.
On his Death Registration, his domicil was listed at Stirling,
the informant to the Registrar being a Medical Attendant.

His cause of death is listed as Disease of the Liver.

He was buried in Mar Cemetery beside his second wife Frances.

Mar Cemetery, Stirling.

Stirling—Funeral of Captain and Adjutant Young.  Yesterday, the remains of Captain Young, Adjutant of the Stirlingshire Rifle Volunteers, whose death occurred at East Wemyss, Fifeshire, on Thursday, were interred, with military honours, in Stirling Cemetery.  The cortege left the residence of the deceased officer shortly after half-past two o’clock in the following order:-- Firing party of 100 men, under command of Captain Galbraith, 1st S.R.V.; pipers; the band of the battalion; the coffin, borne by six men, and covered with the Union Jack; Captain Nimmo, 3rd S.R.V.; Captain Wilson, 9th S.R.V.; Captain Wilson, 9th S.R.V.; Captain Turnbull, 11th S.R.V.; and Captain and Adjutant Chalmers, Clackmannanshire R.V.—officiating as pall-bearers; the relatives and friends; Volunteers, of whom there were upwards of 300; the drill instructors of the battalion; the officers of the battalion; staff sergeants of the Highland Borderer’s Militia; detachments of the 21st, 72nd, and 91st Regiments, Stirling Castle.  Great numbers of spectators lined the way taken by the procession, and the cemetery was quite filled.  On arriving at the grave, a short service was engaged in by Rev. Mr. Stephen, assistant to Rev. Dr. Alexander, of whose church the deceased was a member.  After the coffin had been lowered into the grave, three volleys were fired, the band playing between the volleys the “Old Hundred”.  The volunteers were then reformed, and proceeded to the High School square, where they were dismissed.  Among those who attended to pay a last tribute of respect to the deceased were Sir C.R.G.  Maitland, M.P. for Mid-Lothian; Sheriff-Substitute Sconce; Colonel Hope, C.B., 58th Brigade Depot, Stirling; the officers of the regiment in Stirling Castle, &c.”

His widow Margaret appears to have reverted back to her maiden name and was listed
as such on the 1881 Census as follows:

Living at 1 Roseberry Terrace, Glasgow
James Burr, age 54, Head of Household, born Edinburgh, Commission Agent
Margaret Burr, age 53, Sister, born Edinburgh, Annuitant
Grace Burr, age 51, Sister, born Edinburgh

With the Burr siblings were Margaret’s step-children:
James Young, age 20, Boarder, born Stirling, House Factor’s Clerk
Isabella Young, age 17, born Stirling, Apprentice Milliner

Frances Leigh Young age 15, the youngest daughter, was found as a pupil
At Fulford Field Boarding School in Yorkshire.

Captain James Young left an estate valued at approximately two thousand pounds not including a one thousand pound trust fund which he had set up for his widow Margaret pursuant to a contract of  marriage.

The Scotsman Newspaper of 20th August 1873 carries an Obituary.

Friday, 2 December 2011

Funerary Symbolism

There are many differing explanations and interpretations about the carvings,
ornamentation and symbols on gravestones.

Symbolism - albeit perhaps not always representing the ‘text-book’ meaning
continues to be used although perhaps simply because it is aesthetically pleasing.

The following list of Funerary Symbols, interspersed with photographs
illustrate the creativity of the stonemason over the years, turning and adapting
basic design elements into ‘works of art’.

Angel (Flying or Trumpeting) – Resurrection/Re-birth

Angel (Weeping) – Grief/ mourning

Anvil - Martyrdom.
Arch - Triumph, Victory in/over Death.
Arrow - Mortality.
Banner - Victory, Triumph.
Bells - Call to Worship.
Bird – Eternal Life
Bird (Flying) – Resurrection
Bones (Crossed) – Mortality

Books (Open) – Holy Book/The Bible

Book (Closed) – Holy Book/The Bible. A Life Completed/The Story Told.
Bouquets/Flowers – Condolences, Grief and Sorrow
Broken Ring/Circle – Broken Family Circle
Butterfly – Short Life/Early Death
Cherub (or Winged Soul) – Angelic

Clock - Mortality
Coffin – Mortality
Columns or Doors – Entrance to Heaven
Column (Broken) – Life Cut Short/Loss of Head of Family
Corn – Old Age
Cross – Faith/Salvation/Resurrection
Cross with Sun Rays - Glory.
Cross with Winding Sheet - Descent from the Cross.
Crown – Glory, Victory
Cup or Chalice – The Sacraments/Holy Communion
Dove – Peace/Purity
Dove – Flying (usually upside down) with Olive Branch – Offerance of Resurrection

Drapes/Drapery – Sorrow/Mourning

Flame - Eternity
Flowers – Frailty/Fragility of Life/Beauty
Fruit – Eternal Plenty
Garland or Wreath - Victory
God/Eye of God - Omnipresence of God
God/Eye of God – (In Triangle) The Holy Trinity
Grim Reaper – Death Personified
Hands (Index Finger pointing upwards) – Pathway to Heaven

Hands (Clasped) – Unity/Affection. (Or in Prayer)

Heart - Love
Hourglass - Passage of Time, Shortness of Life
Hourglass  (Flying) – Speed of Passing Time

IHC – Greek word for Jesus (IHCOYC)
IHS – Latin – Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews (Iesus Nazarenus Rex Ludaeorum)
Ivy - Attachment, Affection, Friendship, Eternal Life
Lamb - Innocence

Laurel Wreath - Victory in Death
Lily of the Valley – Innocence/Purity/Renewal
Morning Glory – Resurrection/Beginning of Life
Moon - Resurrection
Oak (Leaves or Acorns) – Strength/Endurance/Virtue
Palm Branch – Victory/Rejoicing
Pelican - Sacrifice
Poppy – Sleep/Eternal Sleep
Scales – Justice/Weighing of Souls
Seashell – Resurrection/Eternal Life
Scythe - Divine Harvest/Death
Ship – Seafaring
Skeleton – Mortality/Death.
Skull – Mortality/Death

Skull (Winged) - Flight of the Soul
Square & Compasses – Masonic Connection

Thistle – Remembrance/Scottish Connection
Torch – Life/Truth
Torch (Inverted) –Extinction of Life
Tree – Life/Life Everlasting
Urn  (With or Without Drapes/Drapery) - Mourning

Vessel with Flame - Eternal Spirit
Willow (Or Weeping Willow) -  Grief/Sorrow/Mourning

The following ...... Sorrow

Wednesday, 30 November 2011

Tools of the Trade

The following photographs are a small selection of some 17th and 18th century gravestones
showing carvings of symbols and emblems of occupations.

These stones are all from Graveyards in Central Scotland.

The appearance of occupational tools may or may not be new information to the researcher,
but can occasionally differentiate one generation from another.

 (Unless of course, sons followed the trade of their father and forenames were repeated!)



The addition of a crown represents being a member of the Guild of .. (that Trade)


Cordiner (Leather Worker)





Miller (Mill Rind)

Sailor/Ship Owner/Ship Master/Mariner



The following photographs show many stones have carvings of more than one single trade.

Please note that these photographs are simply to illustrate ‘typical’ symbols.

Stylized variants and numerous combinations are commonplace.