Tuesday, 16 June 2009

1881 Scotland - The Rest

In addition to seeing the details on the 1881 Scotland Census about Elizabeth McElhago (see previous blog) I paid my money to 'ScotlandsPeople' and looked at the images of all the other clan members - seven McIlhaggas, eight McIlhaggarts and seven McIlhaggos. I have to say that I didn't discover anything I didn't know before. It is however worth making one or two general comments 'for the record'. First, I'm sure the Census forms, and at least the Record Books were completed by the enumerator(s) and I think this may well account for some of the spelling variations of the surname. The McIlhaggas and the McIlhaggarts, all in Greenock, were part of the same family (my own). There were four households, two of each name variant. Of the household heads, William McIlhagga (48) and William McIlhagga(28) were father and son; James McIlhaggart (25) and Mary McIlhaggart (40) were nephew and aunt (by marriage); and William McIlhagga (48) and Mary's husband John McIlhaggart (who was away at the time of the Census) were brothers!

Two of the households (a McIlhagga and a McIlhaggart) had boarders. In one case there was a Widower of 34 and his daughter aged 7. In this house a 16 year old McIlhagga's occupation was given as 'Assisting at home'. May be there was need for her to relate to the 7 year old who had lost her mother. In the McIlhaggart house there were two young working men (of 20 and 22) who had been born in Ireland. Perhaps the families had known each other in Ulster and a 'home from home' had been found. In both cases of course lodgers brought in extra income. In Mary McIlhaggart's house there were four Boyds, a mother and three sons. Helpfully the relationships to the head, Mary, are given as daughter and three grandsons. 

Although we know that all five households had originated in Ireland, all the children listed in the four Greenock families were born in Scotland. This however was not so for the McIlhaggo family who lived in the village of Mollaburn in the parish of Cadder in Central Scotland. The five children ranging in age from 19 down to 5 had all been born in Ireland. Frustratingly where in Ireland is never given. Whereas the Greenock four had probably moved in the 1850s or early 1860s, the Cadder family had not moved until 1876 or after. If employment was the main reason for moving we have to record that everyone of working age in all the families had a job (including of course mothers looking after children).

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