One branch of the family I have been researching is a good example. I'm going to use 'Govans' because that's the form in use today, but going back through the census records you can also find 'Givens' and 'Govan' . Easy to get confused.
GRACE (GOVANS) GALLOWAY
Here is my great Granny Galloway's story.
FATHER: Hugh Govans, (1839 - 1915) from Hurlford
MOTHER: Grace Mylne (1837 - 1902) from Mauchline.
Grace was born in Mauchline on 27 May 1864 and was one of five children:
- Robert b. 1861
- Grace b. 1864
- Helen b. 1866
- Hugh b. 1869
- James b. 1871
GRANDFATHER: Robert Govan b. 1816 was a coal miner working in pits around Hurlford.
GRANDMOTHER: Agnes Parker b. 1816, d. 6/5/1881 possibly lived at Barleith, just outside Hurlford but the spelling on the census makes this hard to tell.
They had five children:
- Janet b. 1834
- James b. 1838
- Hugh b. 1839
- Sarah b. 1844
- Agness b. 1847
By the age of 13, (1851) James Govans, my Grace's uncle, was also a coal miner, a common occupation in those days. No doubt he helped his father, Robert, down the pit. By 1881, James Govans, still a miner, moved to Auchinleck and was married to Mary Lang, a Kilmarnock woman. Agnes, his mother, was very ill and had moved to Auchenleck to be looked after, even though her daughter-in-law's mother, Mary Lang, was also living with the couple. Agnes died on 6th May 1881 at Templeton Place Auchinleck. It can be assumed that her husband Robert was already dead.
Hugh Govans married Grace Mylne from Mauchline and in 1861 he and his wife lived at Gilmour's Land, which is most likely in Hurlford. He was a coal miner. The young couple had a daughter they name Grace in 1859 but it seems she must have died in infancy because by 1871 there is no mention of this elder Grace and Grace (great granny) had been born. Naming another sibling after a dead sibling was common practice in those days.
By 1871, Hugh Govans was an engineman at the pit. The family lived at F C Manse. F probably stands for 'front' and I'mguessing 'C' means close.
By 1881, the family were living in Thomson's Land, Crookedholm. Hugh and Grace were in their fifties and he was employed as a pit labourer.
Eldest Brother, Robert
Robert Govans married Isabella Strachan from Kilwinning and they lived in Crookedholm where he was a coal miner. They later move by 1901 to Howie's Square, Galston Road, Hurlford where he continued to be a miner. They had seven children together:
- Elizabeth b. 1887 who becomes a wool spinner by the age of 14
- Hugh b. 1888, a coal miner by 13
- Nellie b. 1890
- Isabella b. 1891 but dead by 1901
- Henry b. 1893
- John b. 1895
- Robert b. 1900
Hugh Govans (son of Hugh) was a pit engine keeper and in 1891 he was living with his sister Ellen at 59, Portland Row, Hurlford. Ellen Govans' husband was Thomas Wallace who was a miner from Irvine. My dad remembers that Thomas made great toffee apples when he was a boy living at Portland Row.
By 1901, Hugh is still living with his sister but now in no. 12, Back Portland Row. Thomas and Ellen had five children:
- Mary (Mal) b. 1891 - Mrs McNeill who lived to be 100 years old, living in Hurlford with her two daughters, Nessie and Ella. Her son Norrie played football for Ayr Utd.. between 1946 - 55 and played centre half. He made 208 appearances for his team and scored seven goals. He went on to be a coach at Kilmarnock F.C.
- Grace b. 1892
- Maggie b. 1894
- Beenie (Robina) b. 1896 emigrated to Queensland, Australia
- Jemima b. 1900
Youngest Brother, James
James Govans, the youngest of Grace's siblings b. 1873, married Hannah Elliot and by 1901 they were living at the Old Factory House, Crookedholm. Hannah was a local woman, born in Crookedholm just like James. They had three children by 1901:
- Hugh b. 1894
- John b. 1895
- James b. 1898 - who died in Flanders on 29th July 1915.
When he was 19 and working as a pit bottomer, James lived with Grace and Samuel Galloway in Crookedholm before he was married.
Grace - Marriage
And what of Grace Govans herself? By the 1901 census she had been married since 31st December 1884 to Samuel Galloway from Camsure, County Down, Northern Ireland. He was a coal miner and they lived first in Crookedholm before moving by 1901, to the back terrace at Portland Row in Hurlford. They had seven children together:
- James b. 1885
- Grace b. 1888 who would eventually emigrate to Australia
- Alexander (Sandy) b. 1897
- Agnes b. 1899
- Ellen (Nellie) b. 1902
- Hannah b. 1903 - my gran
I do know that my dad, Robert Ballantyne loved his gran very much. She ended her days in 73, Blair Avenue, Hurlford where Hannah looked after her and she died an old lady of 86 in 1950. I don't have many photos of Grace but in the one above she would be about seventy.