maandag 19 oktober 2009

Stephensons Chapter 8 - The children of George (b.1845)

George had a very large family: In addition to Kate, born to his first wife Sarah Jane Farrell, he had seven children with his second wife Margaret Ann Smart.

Offspring of Georges first marriage:
1 Catherine Alice (b. 1867)

“Kate” was sent to live with her maternal grandmother in the East end of North Shields. She ran wild, playing with all the ragamuffins on the quay
George came home from time to time. The first trip was when Kate was only 4 years old, He took her out and when she was brought back home there was blood on the lace collar of her frock. He had had her ears pierced and she was wearing diamond earrings.
On another trip home he found Kate running bare foot among all the fish guts on the quay. He promptly sent her to boarding school in Darlington (Thornbeck House, Darlington)

Meg Stephenson in 1987

Children of Georges Second Marriage:

Sarah Smart (b.1875 in Constantinople). Sarah was nineteen years old when she married George Herbert Grey in 1894. I have not been able to find out much more about her life.
John Smart (b. 1878 in Constantinople) In 1926 at the age of 48, after he returned from several years in Canada, he married Isabella Turnball. They had no children. Meg Stephenson wrote about him.

John Smart Stephenson
Georges elder son Jack had been a bad lad and always on the booze so had been sent to Canada. He came back and married later and elderly lady, one of the Turnbull sisters, who had a milliners shop in Bedford street They had no family .

Meg Stephenson in 1987

Elizabeth Smart (b.1881 in Constantinople) may have married a man called Davidson.
Ellen Smart (b. 1883 in North Shields) was 20 in 1903 when she married Alfred Tate.
Rose Ann Smart (b.1884 in North Shields) was 27 in 1911 when she married David Perry.
Florence Smart (b.1887 in North Shields d. 1909 in Northumberland). She was 21 years old when she died.
William Smart (b. 1894 in North Shields d. 1943 in North Shields). Never married and was killed in an Air Raid in WW2. he died without children. Meg Stephenson wrote about him.

William Smart Stephenson
Billy never married and was killed in an air raid in 1943. He was very involved in the business and his nephew and name sake Bill Stephenson always wanted him, Uncle Billy, to set him up in business on the fish quay. Uncle considered him too flighty, untrustworthy and a heavy drinker so never did what young Bill wanted. He was a means and horrible man, but he might have had a point there. Uncle Billy had a mistress called Sally Kirkland and when he was killed he left everything to her, except for a handsome diamond ring (a mans ring) which he left to young Bill. When it was handed over by the solicitor a piece of rock crystal had been substituted for the diamond. All the claws were crooked, it had been altered very crudely by Sally or one of her relatives themselves.
When Young Bill himself died, it was offered to his son, George, who refused it whereupon Billy’s widow Minnie sold it to a man at the door for GBP4. She said she needed the money, though the gold in the ring was worth a great deal more than that. (the fact that she had more than GBP800 in cash hidden in the house 2 years later when she paid for her air fare to Australia is beside the point.)
Irene Stewart always said that Stephenson money never brought anyone any happiness as it was made originally by illegal means.
Now that the stocks and shares left by Kate have all been sold and the ring is no longer with us maybe the bad luck will have evaporated.

Meg Stephenson in 1987

Chapter 9

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