A few days ago I posted a picture of a postcard sent by my grandmother (Margaret Jane Webb, née Henderson) who was holidaying in Toronto, Canada in 1949, to her younger brother (Randle Henderson) in Amble, Northumberland. The postcard indicated that they had lost contact with their brother Archie who had emigrated to Canada and that she was planning to seek him out while on holiday. The Archie in question was their younger brother, Archibald Henderson, born 1907 at Amble in Northumberland.
The good news is that the search had a positive result. My grandparents met up with Archie in Canada. I know this now because the cousin who sent me the scan of the postcard continued to dig in her family photo box and found another gem. On the back of this photo is “Your sister and brother, Maggie & Archie, hope it reaches you before boat sails.. Sent Harriet one too.” From this we can deduce that the photo is of my grandmother and her brother taken in Toronto late 1949, before she returned home to England, and that she sent two copies: one to her brother Randle and the other to her sister Harriet. We very probably have one in our own photo box, but as that would be her own copy it may not have his name on the back.
My grandparents, Jonty and Meggie Webb (née Henderson), travelled to Canada in 1949 to visit their daughter Mary who had married Canadian Jimmy Ash and moved to Toronto.
A newly found Henderson-cousin, Jayne Handyside of Amble, has found this historical gem while rifling through her family’s old photo box. It is written by my granny and addressed to her brother Randle who was Jayne’s great grandfather. The Archie that is referred to in the postcard is younger brother to Meggie and Randle. He was born in Amble, Northumberland in1907 and emigrated to Canada.
They are clearly having a whale of a time and planning a trip to Niagara Falls, which must have been quite spectacular for them on their first trip abroad.
Since my ancestors on both sides migrated frequently around the mining communities of Northumberland I have often wondered if they bumped into each other on their travels. Today I came across documentary evidence of one such encounter and was intrigued to read a newspaper article about a quoit match involving my great granda from one side and two of my great granduncles from the other side. The Morpeth Herald of Saturday 6 April 1878 reports the results of the Quoit Handicap at Scotland Gate:
The full text of the article can be found here. Leonard Crackett is my paternal great grandfather. Andrew Oliver and Joseph Oliver are the younger brothers of my maternal great great grandmother Mary Oliver. None of my relatives actually won the competition.
I have spent the day in an office where the air conditioning seemed to be on strike. Since it was nearly 30C outside we were all starting to melt inside. This brought to mind something my granny Webb often said to us in the local dialect when we were “bairns”.
“Tekk ya jumpa off, a’m fair scumfished”.
It can be roughly translated to “Please remove your woollen outer garment, as I am feeling rather warm.” I never did manage to figure out how it would help her to cool down if I shed a layer of clothing, but I am sure there was logic in it somewhere 🙂
The About Me page tells you a little about my background. Where I grew up, studied and worked. It also starts to address the question of “Who Do I Think I Am?” since I am interested in how a long line of miners and fisherman produced someone whose working life has progressed from audit and accountancy in NE England to developing IT services for the Norwegian Health Sector.