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Newspaper Articles - A useful source of Information about your Ancestors...


Items from local newspapers can bring to life events of long ago. During my research into the fisherfolk of Kincardineshire I came across many such articles. The discovery of your distant ancestors in this way is a thrill that you will never forget. Suddenly its no longer just a story - its part of your history. Check out the following newspaper pages. Are your relatives mentioned? Only one way to find out, start reading!

The Stonehaven Journal Tuesday 29 Feb 1848

On the 30th ult., a complaint under the Nuisance Removal Act, was brought before Sheriff Robertson, at the instance of William Corarie, Inspector of the Poor of Banchory-Devenick, against John Wood, John Knowles, Andrew Wood, and Moses Wood, all fishermen at Downies. It was shewn that notice had been given to the complainer, by five householders of the parish, that there were ash pits, or other refuse, upon their several premises, all in such a filthy and unwholesome condition as to be a nuisance and injurious to the public health; that in terms of the act, notice had been given to the parties to remove the nuisance; and that two medical practitioners had examined the premises, and certified the evidences of the nuisance; and that the respondents had refused or delayed to remove it. The parties having appeared on the day appointed, stated that the ash pits had been removed. The Sheriff, on the motion of the complainer, adjourned the case, that the inquiry might be made into the truth of the statements of the parties.

The Stonehaven Journal Tuesday 16th Nov 1848

Births -

At King's College, Aberdeen, on the 4th inst., the wife of Professor Thomson, a daughter.

At No16 Moray Place, Edinburgh, on the 29th ult., the Lady of Captain G Ramsay, RN., of a son.

Marriages - 

At East Mathers, St Cyrus, on the 9th inst. by the Rev Mr Todd, Stonehaven, Mr John Fairweather, Chapelfield, to Miss Elizabeth Brown, second daughter of Mr Fyfe, farmer there.

At Manse of Logie Pert, on the 10th inst. by the Rev Thomas Hill, Adam Smith, Brae of Pert, to Mary, third daughter of Mr Robert Lees, lately ship master, Stonehaven.

At Broomhill Cottage, Stonehaven, on the 7th inst., by the Rev George Philip, Free Church, Mr William Marshall merchant, Stonehaven, to Isabella, only daughter of George Duncan, Esq., builder, late of Aberdeen.

At Stonehaven, on the 10th inst., by the Rev Mr Watt, Mr John Clark, Land Stewart, Swanbiester, Main Land Orkney, to Ann, eldest daughter of Mr John Lawrie, Brae of Fetteresso.

Deaths - 

At 124, Union Street, Aberdeen, on the 29th ult., Josephine McCombie, aged 51.

At Huntly, on the 3rd inst., aged 76, Ebenezer Legg, merchant, having been for half a century in business there in the same shop.

At Dunoon, on the 31st ult., Erskine William Burnett, youngest son of the late John Burnett, Esq of Kemnay, aged 19.

At Bishopmill, Elgin, on the 28th ult., Janet Stronach, relict of the late John Fraser, sen., builder and quarrier there, in her 69th year - leaving behind her one daughter, 21 grandchildren, and 29 great grandchildren.

At Blenoa, Glenlivat, on the 4th inst., Gilbert Stuart, at the advanced age of 102. In his youthhe served in the Athol Highlanders.

At Montrose, on the 28th ultimo, Mr Ingram of the Star Hotel.

At Upper Thainston, on the morning of the 5th inst., Mr David Mackie, aged seventy-five years.

At Midnapore, on the 18th August last, deeply and deservedly regretted, James Rupert Nicolson aged 26, son of Thomas Balfour Nicolson, formerly of the Customs, Aberdeen.

The Stonehaven Journal Tuesday Dec 7th, 1852

Report of a storm which caused the wreck of a ship on the rocks at the back of the old pier.  Vessel: Christina of Perth belonging to Messrs.  Simpson and Peters, Arbroath.  Men who risked their lives to save crew, Captain Collison, Alexander Bremner, John Chaddock (of coast guard), Alexander Mackie, William Mackie, Charles Donald - ------ Anderson and Robert Ritchie.

The Stonehaven Journal Tuesday Jul 19th, 1853

Sudden Death - On the forenoon of Tuesday last week, a neighbour entered the residence of an old woman named Helen Howie, discovered its occupant stretched on the floor apparently lifeless. She immediately gave the alarm, and medical assistance was in a short time procured, but without avail. She had evidently been in the act of cleaning the floor of her room when death laid his chilling hand so suddenly upon her.

The Stonehaven Journal Tuesday Aug 30th 1853

Salmon Fishing Case - On the 19th Curt., an important case was decided here by Sheriff Bell, in reference to a contravention of the statutes for the preservation of the Salmon Fisheries in Scotland. The complaint was instituted by at the instance of George Gray, salmon-fisher in Aberdeen, against John Mitchell, George Adam, William Stott, and David Will, residing in Stonehaven, and charged them with taking or attempting to take, in the Bay of Stonehaven, and within one mile of low water mark, salmon, grilse, sea-trout, or other fish of the salmon kind. The respondents pleaded not guilty. On proof being led Stott was assoilzied from the complaint, and found entitled to expenses. Mitchell, Adam, and Will, were all found guilty, and liable in payment of a modified penalty of 10s with 20s of expenses, or suffer eight days' imprisonment. We may remark that this case derives its importance from the decision of the Sheriff having set aside an opinion generally entertained by our fishermen that any one had a right to fish in the bay for any kind of fish which might enter their nets provided they landed them in the harbour, and not on the beach opposite the bay. Acting under this impression, the fishermen, whom we know to be steady and industrious men, have thereby been led into the commission of a fault of which they otherwise would have not been guilty.

The Stonehaven Journal Thursday Aug 3rd 1854

John Pirie sen, pensioner residing at the Common of Cowie and John Pirie jnr. son of the said John Pirie sen.  Accused of assault to effusion of blood on John Keir, labourer, Old Town, Stonehaven Pled guilty and the said John Pirie sen.  Sentenced to pay a fine of 10s or suffer 10 days imprisonment, and the said John Pirie jun Sentenced to pay a fine of 5s or suffer 5 days imprisonment.

The Stonehaven Journal Thurs Dec 21st 1854

Criminal Justice Trial - Sheriff Robertson held a criminal jury court here on 18th inst. on William Main, a whitefisher in Downies accused of an assault to the danger of life on Andrew Wood, son of Elspet Wood or McLeod wife of Newman McLeod, whitefisher, Portlethen, aggravated by his previously been convicted of assault.  He pled not guilty.  After evidence had been had on both sides the jury unanimously found the panel guilty as libeled and recommended hum to the leniency of the court.  The sheriff after a very suitable admonition sentenced the panel to 60 days imprisonment.

The Stonehaven Journal Thurs Nov 17th 1859

Loss of Life at Sea - Intelligence has just been received of the loss of the Schooner St George of Aberdeen, which was seen to founder during the hurricane on Wednesday the 26th ultimo, with all on board.  Three of the crew belonged to Stonehaven, viz, John Lees, mate, who leaves a widow and three children, and two others, named Lees and Adam both unmarried.  The storm of that disastrous day has thus been fatal to no fewer than six of our townsmen.  [John Lees, Robert Adam, ?]

The Stonehaven Journal Thurs Apr 24th 1862

Deep Sea Fishing - We formerly noticed the intention of proceeding, in this quarter, with the prosecution of the deep-sea fishing; and we have this week to record that there is every probability of its being commenced early next week.  On Saturday last, a fine-looking smack, named the 'Sarah Brown', of London (now of this place), arrived here from Yarmouth, Mr Brebner, fishcurer, having been dispatched to bring her here.  The vessel has been equipped with trawling net and every appartenance necessary for the successful prosecution of the fishing, at the sole expense of Captain Innes of Cowie, for the purpose of interesting the fishermen on his estate in the matter, as well as improving their condition.  We hope his liberal gift will be taken advantage of, and that a crew will be found ready to undertake the management of the vessel.  For the present, Robert Brown, Stonehaven, an experienced seaman, has been appointed captain, and a few seamen acquainted with the nature of the undertaking, have been engaged, and, as above stated, they are expected to proceed to the fishing ground early next week.

The Stonehaven Journal Thurs Nov 12th 1863

Seaman Drowned - On Saturday morning last, a telegram was received here from Norway, intimating that Alexander Lees, Master of the schooner, Venture of this place, had been washed overboard on the passage from Stettin to Grangemouth, and that the vessel had put into Norway under charge of the mate.  Captain Lees was a young unmarried man, and highly respected by all who knew him.  Much sympathy is felt for his mother and other members of his family.