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The first thing we know for certain about these young people is that James and Agnes were married on the 13 th  December 1833 in Glasgow by the Revd William Anderson. That in itself was a significant fact, for William Anderson was a formidable personality, the minister of the Relief Church and a stout Presbyterian who seems to have been at war with the Catholic Church. Now it looks very likely that Agnes McDonald had been christened as a Catholic at St. Andrew’s Roman Catholic Church on 18 th  December 1811. Her father was probably one Allan McDonald born in Glasgow on 1 st  November 1771 and her paternal grandparents another Allan and an Isobel McDonald married on the 28 th  January 1768 in Campbeltown, Argyll. The McDonalds were a fervent Catholic clan, but they had been harried and dispossessed of their lands in Argyll by the Campbells, who were strong Protestants, so by this marriage Agnes was making a very firm statement of her own. This may have been a love match, in which she turned against her parent’s wishes. James Murray is likely to have been the son of John Murray and Catherine Martin, who married in the rural parish of Crawfordjohn in South Lanark, although John came from the neighbouring parish of Crawford. In the census for 1841, James is described  as a cloth lapper and maker-up and was working then in Glasgow woollen mills. By that time the power loom was replacing the hand-loom. Perhaps James had formerly lived amongst sheep farmers, been introduced to the arts of weaving on a cottage loom, and then migrated to the city where work was more plentiful, even though gruelling. In later years most of the family worked in factories or clothing warehouses, but James and several of his children developed into tailors as time went by, making and selling garments for a thriving market. Some of them did well for themselves. The first child born to James and Agnes appears to be Andrew Crawford, christened on the 9 th  of July 1836. The names are interesting. Was Andrew the name of an ancestor? This was common practice in Scotland at this time. Was Crawford another surname previously held in the family, or a reference to a former home area? We do not know, but these could be valuable clues to bear in mind. Sadly, Andrew died before he was five. Infant mortality was high in the tenements where Glasgow mill- workers lived, usually in overcrowded and unhygienic circumstances. Their second child, John, was born on 7 July 1837 and the parents were cautious enough to have him christened two days later. In fact, he lived a long life, married and bore many children and grandchildren. He was a textile worker too, but also had a musical talent, which he developed over the years, eventually becoming the conductor of a Lancashire works brass band. His baton is a family heirloom. The third child, Margaret, was christened on 8 th  of June 1840. The fourth, Jonathan Anderson, was christened on 4 th  December 1842. The second name is of interest. Was this in honour of Rev William Anderson, who may well have christened him? He was a kindly minister, despite his outbursts against the Catholic Church hierarchy. He supported the campaigns to allow Catholics the vote and was ardent in the anti- slavery cause. Then again, the name could be a throw back to an earlier generation. There was a James Murray/Anderson marriage in Crawfordjohn in 1708. This second Christian name was passed on in our family for three more generations, so it clearly had significance in their memory bank.     The next child, James, was christened on 8 th  August 1845 but he died shortly afterwards. Agnes was born in 1848. At this stage, the parents were following the Scottish tradition of naming children after parents, because the next one was another James. It was obviously important to them to continue with these names. Born in 1852. the second James was the youngest child in the family, which had now moved from Glasgow to Manchester. The census returns give us a picture of the family each 10 years. In 1851 they were in poor circumstances, living at 86, Reyner St. Court off Market St. This was the heart of the teeming city and sounds like the tenement accommodation that new arrivals might have been forced to live in. At that time, the industrial revolution was at its height, and the cottonopolis of Manchester was at the very centre. Cotton imported via Liverpool challenged the Scottish and Yorkshire wool trade with a finer type of fibre, and experienced mechanics and senior warehouse staff were tempted south by offers of better wages. In the 1851 census James was described as a pattern card maker, and his son John as a hooker. The other children were registered as scholars. Clearly, despite the straightened circumstances the parents were determined to have their children educated rather than be engaged in child labour, as so many others were at that time. Working conditions in the spinning and weaving mills of Lancashire were hard, with little regulation, and most people lived close to their workplaces because the hours were long and arduous. By 1852, when James was christened at Manchester Cathedral, the family had moved to marginally better accommodation at 45, Boundary Rd, Chorlton-on-Medlock. Many Scottish families seemed to worship at the Cathedral at that time. Later some new Presbyterian and Unitarian churches were set up which tended to attract them. In 1859 a death was recorded in the family, John Murray, aged 54, died at their new home, 82, Bloom Street. John was described as a maker-up or tailor, and seems likely to have been James’s elder brother, who had presumably also moved down from Scotland to join them.   The next recorded event  was the  marriage of  James’s  eldest  son, John, to  Ann Wrigley at Manchester Cathedral on the 13 th  September 1860. John, aged 23, was registered as a bachelor and a packer and Ann simply as a spinster, whilst her father, Joseph was described as a spinner.  One month later, there was a second wedding, John’s younger brother, Jonathan Anderson (19), married Mary Ann Knowles (19), daughter of Godfrey Knowles, a fashion shearer. On 7 th  November, a baby boy was born at 74, Juniper St. Hulme, and he was christened James Anderson, continuing the Anderson name into another generation. This child was destined to become a famous mariner, captain of the Empress of Britain, no less. (His story will be told later.)   Two years afterwards, John and Ann had a son, who they named John after his father. The registration address was in Tib St.  When this second John was a growing lad he turned his back on the woollen mills and, like his cousin, went to sea as a merchant sailor. Perhaps he was on one of the ships bringing coals from Newcastle, because on 11 April 1894 he married one Jessie McDonald in South Shields. She does not appear to be any relation to his mother, for Jessie was born in Banff. Perhaps John had a hurried affair with a girl that he met in a bar, but whatever the circumstances the marriage had a tragic consequence. When John’s ship was next in port, he went to Jessie’s lodgings, to be told that she had died in childbirth, and a woman who had tended the newborn baby as best she could, handed her over to the distraught young man. What was he to do with her? Only one solution seemed possible, to take her home to his mother in Manchester. John caught the next train, and carried little Jessie all the way, wrapped in a shawl. On the 30 th  of October, 1895, the child was christened Jessie Wrigley at St. Paul’s Church, Tib St. Manchester. (I will digress here to tell the end of this story. Jessie was brought up by John’s sister, Anne, who cared for her afterwards, and latterly Jessie cared for Anne. I met Jessie in Gourock in the 1950’s, when she was an elderly lady living near the sea terminal for the Dunoon ferries. Jessie had gone to school in Manchester and later moved to Gourock with Anne in 1916, after her guardian had married a Scotsman called George Knox. Jessie never married, but stayed with her aunt and uncle, nursing Anne in her old age. I met her when I was escorting my own parents to Dunoon. We were touring Scotland and my aunt Louie, who had known Jessie when they were both children in Manchester and had corresponded with her ever since, urged us to pay this call.) Reverting to the story of James and Agnes. the census records that, in 1861, James was a maker-up or tailor. and living with them at 82, Bloom St. were their 20 year old daughter, Margaret and her husband William Rhind, who was a cabinet maker, and the two youngest children, Agnes (13) and James (10), described as scholars. In later years, these both married and had their own families, Agnes become the wife of William Hesketh, and moved to Victoria Park, a growing tree-lined suburb, with a quiet atmosphere and spacious housing. James married Elizabeth Anne Simpson on 20 th  April, 1878 at Gorton Parish Church, and moved with his growing family to live by the sea at Southport.  (More of this family is told in following chapters.) James and Agnes had hard working lives. They both had ancestors who had lived in rural villages. James had moved from the sheep country of Crawford to the mechanised woollen mills of Glasgow, and then they brought their young family to the  industrial capital of northern England. These could not have been easy moves to make. But no doubt they felt at the time that, however hard their lives were becoming, their  children and grandchildren would have better chances. In this they were right. John’s son Joseph and his son Leonard made names for themselves with rising companies such as Horrocks. One of Jonathan’s sons became a famous sea captain, and their youngest son James founded Murray House on Piccadilly, Manchester - the foundations for these successes were laid by two thrifty Scots forebears. The last recorded address for James and Agnes was 81, Bedford St, Hulme. James died in 1881 and Agnes, who succeeded him by a few years, died on 28 September 1883 of angina pectoris. The informant on both occasions was their youngest daughter, Agnes Hesketh, who was described as being “present at the death.”                                 ----------------------------------------------------------               PAPERS HELD RELATING TO CAPTAIN JAMES MURRAY              Service in the Merchant Navy prior to his appointment of 1st Mate                   Ship                            Rank                                       Voyage 1. S.S. Cyprian (Liverpool)     Boy                    Nov 1874 – Dec 1875  10 months 25 days 2. Craignairn   Bq    “                 O.S.                 Feb 1876  - Dec 1876   10   “         20   “    3.          “           “      “                   “                   Mar 1877 -  Jan 1878    10   “           1   4. Mountaineer  “     “             App.3 Mate        Feb  1878 -  Feb1881          3 years    5.          “           “      “                   “                   Feb 1881  - Mar 1881         1 month 6.          “     Sq. Rig  “ 1496 tons  3 Mate          May 1881 – Feb 1982    8 months 16 days 7. S.S. Explorer           1299 tons   A/S              Mar  1892 -May 1882    2 months 6 days 8.  Narcissa   Bq (Chatham) 809 t   A/S             Jun  1882 -  Oct 1882      4 months  1 day 9.  Julia          Bq (Leith)       371t  2 Mate         Nov 1882 -  Jun 1883     6 months 28 days 10.   “               “       “             “          “              Nov 1883 -  Jan 1884     5 months 29 days 11. Aneroid     Br (Swansea) 212 t  A/B            Feb 1884 -  Apr 1884      2 months  2 days 12. Casurea        (London)  1207 t  2 Mate        Apr 1884 – Apr 1885          1 year  and the following Application forms and Certificates 4 April 1881 Application by James Anderson Murray of 96, Bradford St. Hulme, Manchester for a Certificate of Competence as a Second Mate. Granted Port of Dundee 12 April 1881 2nd Mate’s Certificate Approved by the Registrar of Shipping 11 May 1885  Examination Certificate issued to J.A.M. by Joseph Watson. Superintendent,  Port of London 15 May 1885 Board of Trade Certificate of Competence award: First Mate   17 May 1885 Approval of Tests for Colour Vision, Navigation and Seamanship and previous service recognized for 1st Mate Appointment Height: 5ft 4.5in. Dark Complexion, Brown eyes, Personal marks: Wreath and Anchor tattooed on right arm 14 May 1887 Award of Ordinary Certificate to J.A.M. of 38, Cotton St. Poplar, London Statement of Service aboard the “Spirit of the Dawn” 690 tons . (Liverpool) 1 year 8 months 6 days - Foreign Trade 12 May 1887 Certificate of Competency as Master Mariner. Issued to:  James Anderson Murray by the Lords of the Privy Council of Trade
James Murray and Agnes McDonald
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