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Introduction / Eday and Papa Westray Grays / John Gray / Peter Gray

John Symmers Taylor or Gray

Margaret Taylor who married Peter Gray already had a son, John Symmers Taylor who was born at Shorehead, Stonehaven, Dunottar on 9th March 1864. Margaret's occupation at that time is given as domestic servant.

John adopted the name Gray following the marriage of his mother to Peter Gray on 8th June 1871. At the time of the census, earlier in the year, Margaret Taylor was a servant and unmarried at West Mains of Barras, Kinneff and Catterline. She was living with a family named Nicol.

By 1881, John was an agricultural labourer at Druidsdale, Kinneff and Catterline, living with a family name Falconer.

He married under the name of John Taylor Gray on 18th December 1886 at St Philips Chapel, Catterline, a Scottish Episcopal Church. His wife was Eliza Stephen, the daughter of John Stephen, a fisherman, and Margaret Craigie. Margaret was twenty three and worked in domestic service.

John was a ploughman at Pitcarry in the Parish of Arbuthnot. His mother, Margaret Taylor, had died one year previously. While no father is given with his birth registration, the name "Longmuir" is given with the marriage registration. His father had also died by the time of John and Eliza's marriage. He had worked as a slater and journeyman.

They had at least seven children:

  • Maggie Jane Gray b. 1887
  • Violet Ann T Gray b. 1899
  • John T Gray b. 1890
  • Agnes W Gray b. 1893
  • James T Gray b. 1896
  • Mary Gray b. 1898
  • Jane Smith Taylor Gray b. 5th October 1899

At the time of the 1891 census, John and Eliza were living in a property with one windowed room at Harvieston in the parish of Kinneff and Catterline with their three eldest children.

1891 - House on Harvieston, Kinneff and Catterline
Relation Age Occupation Born
John T Gray Head 27 General Lab. Dunottar, Kincardineshire
Eliza Gray Wife 27 Kinneff & Catterline, Kincardineshire
Maggie J T Gray Dau 4 Kineff & Catterline, Kincardineshire
Violet A T Gray Dau 2 Fordoun, Kincardineshire
John T Gray Son 6 Dunottar, Kincardineshire

John was an traction engine driver and unfortunately killed in an accident on the public road between Turfton and Woodside, in the parish of Kinell, on 18th March 1899 at the age of thirty five. This occurred during his employment when he was run over by a wagon attached to a traction engine. The family were living at Upper Mains, Catterline, Kincardineshire at the time.

The youngest daughter of John and Eliza was not yet born as can be seen from the 1901 census. She was born six months after her father's death.

1901 - 1 Old Post Office, Kinneff and Catterline
Relation Age Occupation Born
Eliza Gray Head 36 Outworker (farm) Kinneff & Catterline, Kincardineshire
Maggie Jane Gray Dau 13 Scholar Kineff & Catterline, Kincardineshire
Violet Ann Gray Dau 12 Scholar Fordoun, Kincardineshire
John T Gray Son 10 Scholar Kinneff & Catterline, Kincardineshire
Agnes Gray Son 8 Scholar Kinneff & Catterline, Kincardineshire
James T Gray Son 5 Scholar Kinneff & Catterline, Kincardineshire
Mary Gray Dau 3 Kinneff & Catterline, Kincardineshire
Jane S Gray Son 1 Kinneff & Catterline, Kincardineshire

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