Isle of Man Family History Society Journal Volume iii no 3 July 1981

no 3 July 1981



On July 2nd 1978 the Manx societies of Wisconsin revived the custom of The Laxey Picnic. A copy of the handbook put out on the occasion has come into our hands, and we are grateful to its compiler for this opportunity to pass on some of the historical insights that lay behind the venture.

'From 1847 to 1890, we read, 'The Laxey Picnic was the outstanding summer festival In that section of S.E. Wisconsin, where an active and Industrious Manx community was centred on Linden township, a farming district six miles northwest of Mineral Point and the same distance southeast of Dodgeville. They were an Intelligent, thrifty people. They purchased the land, built their homes, and became a Manx neighbourhood. They built a church and named It Laxey, after the place where they had lived In the Isle of Man. The name attached itself to the community and this settlement became known as Laxey'.

The Picnic must have been a combination of Sunday School Anniversary fund raising, and Sunday School outings for the Primitive Methodist Chapel, as well as a gathering of Manx folk. There was a strong Cornish element in the community and congregation too. W.J.C. Ralph wrote some 50 years ago in reminiscences In the local press 'The Laxey women were unusual providers. Baskets. tubs. wash-boilers of provisions amply supplied every stranger as well as the Laxey families - saffron cakes for the Cornish, and Manx dishes to suit every palate. There were long hours of preparation in the days before the picnic - 'Up at 5 a.m. to make ice-cream at Skillicorns', is an excerpt from one early account ...For fear someone might be left out a tour of the grounds would be made to bring in the stranger, should he be too bashful to proclaim his hunger. Games for the kiddies and speeches for the elders filled up a day, the echoes of which will not die as long as its events are rehearsed in the ears of the Laxey-Manx descendants.'

The Picnic was held in a grove near that stone-built Laxey Chapel. erected in the early 1850's on an acre site on a sloping hillside, and round it the little community made its burial-ground. As long ago an the '30s, Mr. Ralph writes 'The stone church stands where it was planted over four-score years ago. All except the stone mason-work has deteriorated, and the interior has been dismantled'. The 1978 handbook says 'A marker made of stone from the only Manx-built chapel in the United States in the only tangible reminder.'

Mr. Ralph describes the Manx community:- 'These Manxmen had their struggles in those early years. They both farmed and mined. Some had worked in wines at Cleveland, Ohio, and in Mineral Point. While the land at Laxey was being shaped into farms, they would sink digging holes in the winter. or when not too busy, on the new land. A divining rod would indicate a crevice, and a hole, about 24 feet in circumference would be sunk. Dirt and stone would be hoisted by means of a windlass. Enough lead-ore was often found to warrant the prospecting. Three of the party, Huggens, Cowley and Callow. bought land together. Previously Callow's sole possession was a steer, and the steer died. Huggens later sold out his interest to Cowley and Callow. These two men lived in a log-house near a spring. In 1861 they divided their property. A new house had been built and in the division they cast lots for it and Callow won. This new house became my wife's birthplace, and it was in this house that we were married.'

The Burial-ground at least remains. The handbook lists the Manx graves. The first name is Katherine Quirk. aged 33, who died 15th November 1858 the latest, Thomas Kelly, 79 years. in 1916, and Alfred Nicholas Kelly, 80 years, in 1946. In between are 40 others, sharing 21 surnames. Seven are recognisably Manx - Callow, Cowley, Kelly, Kewley, Neal, Quirk and Skillicorn (Transliterated strangely as Sillicom), and these are borne by 21 of the 51. The other names are Adams, Fine, Harris, Kennod, Lee, Lean, Mills, Roberts, Stevens, Shapland, Tremain and Vivian. (One cannot but ask whether Kennod might not really be Kermode ?). Among the varied poetic and biblical inscriptions is one which says, simply and proudly, 'Native Isle of Man'.

Of the 51 who lie there, 10 died in their first year, 6 between the ages of 1 and 5 years, 6 between 6 and 21. But 11 lived beyond 70, 6 beyond 80 and the oldest died in 1910 at 91 years old.

The Laxey community seems to have been a unique Manx settlement, small and close-knit. But perhaps the significant factor in its persistence was its close relationship with the Cornish community. The handbook interestingly enough lists the names of the preachers (almost entirely laymen) who served the chapel pulpit. Out of some 20 names only one, John Cowley, is Manx, a: proportion which reflects the strength of the Cornish presence in the general area. The two groups must have shared so many ethnical and cultural affinities, Celtic, Methodist, farming and mining, and the smaller Manx group were able to be themselves, and be encouraged in it.


[later printed see Laxey in the New World vol 06.1 pp6-9 et seq]


The Last of the Christian's of Milntown

WILLIAM BELL CHRISTIAN, born on the 17th August 1815, died on the 31st July 1886 , wan the third son of Deemster John Christian of Milntown. He was educated at private schools at Chester and near London, and at Trinity College, Cambridge, where he graduated B.A. in 1840. He wan ordained Deacon on 14th June of the same year and Priest on 7th July 1841. and held the Chaplaincy of St. John's and from 7th July 1845, the vicarage of Lezayre. As his family increased he obtained permission to reside In his own house at Milntown, the Vicarage being too small for his large family.

He resigned in 1861. He was the last member appointed to the self elected House of Keys. Immediately after this, in 1866, he was elected member for Ramsey in the Reformed House and continued to represent the same constituency until he became Receiver-General in May 1885. He was a most valuable member of the Legislature; although not an eloquent speaker, his utterances were always weighty and well considered. The respect in which his colleagues held him was shown by their voting him into the Chair in the Speaker's absence. As Receiver-General he was a conspicuous success, as not only did he apply himself to his work with diligence, but he brought considerable practical knowledge to bear upon it. In 1866 he was appointed a Justice of the Peace and proved an excellent magistrate. A thorough gentleman. his sterling Character, adorned by an urbane and kindly demeanour, won him universal respect and esteem.

He was the head of a family which traced its descent from Gillochrist, 1176, and for over five centuries had been the most influential in the Island. No less than fourteen members of the family held the office of Deemster. After his death the estate passed into other hands and much of it has been sold.

William Bell Christian. married no fewer than four times- (1) to Charlotte Elizabeth Brine, on the 21st July 1840 at Malew.
There were 6 children from this marriages-
a. Ewan John, bap. 27th June 1845, Kirk German, also this baptism was recorded in Lezayre on 7th September 1845..!!
b. Annie Louisa, bap. 3rd May 1841. Lezayre and was married to the Rev. Francis Houseemayne du Boulay, Rector of Heddington, Wiltshire, In 1867.
c. Julia Elizabeth, bap. 4th April 1847. Lezayre, died 1905.
d. Malcolm William, bap. 27th February 1850, died 1922, unmarried in New Zealand, the last MALE in the Milntown link.
e. Isabella Susan, bap. 10th March 1844, Kirk German, died in 1863, unmarried.
f. Bertha Mabel, bap. 13th September 1853.

(2) to Emma Mary Houssemayne. on 5th January 1864. and died 29th December 1864, leaving issue of a daughter:-
a. Eunice Ida, bap. 29th December 1864, Lezayre.

(3) to Maria Bowes Johnson, married 1867, and died 1871, leaving no Issue.

(4) Sophia Maria Schlaet married 1874, and died 1936, leaving Issue-
a. Mary Ulrike, born 22nd August 1875, bap. 22nd September 1875. Lezayre.
b. Rita Gwendoline bap. 2nd December 1878. Lezayre, and married H.E. Browne of Somerset.
c. Edward Alan bap. 23rd January 1880, Lezayre.

R. Christian.


How to determine a Relationship

Persons with a common GRAND-FATHER are First Cousins.
Persons with a common GREAT-GRAND-FATHER are Second Cousins.
Persons with a common GGT-GREAT-GRAND-FATHER are Third Cousins. etc.
To fix your degree of relationship to any other descendant of a common ancestors-
1. Fix the common ancestor. eg. great-grandfather. great-great-grandfather.
2. Count the number of generations you are from him (two from a grandfather, 3 from a great-grandfather, etc.)
3. Do the same for the other person.
4. If his number is the same an yours, subtract one from the number, and that will be the number of your cousinship, 2nd, 3rd, 4th. etc.
5. If the number is different, subtract one from the lower figure; this will give you the degree of cousinship. Subtract the lower from the higher, and this will give you the degree of removal. Thus your father's FIRST cousin is your FIRST COUSIN ONCE REMOVED. If you are 5 generations from a common ancestor, someone only 3 generations distant will have you for his SECOND COUSIN TWICE REMOVED.
6. But this is not a reciprocal relationship, but it can be defined by calling his relationship to you DESCENDING, and yours to him ASCENDING.


Memorials of God's Acre

From the very foundation of our Society in January 1979, we have had it on our consciences that one of the most important duties a Family History Society has is to maintain the records of the monumental inscriptions of its area. We cannot boast that we have done so very much towards that end as yet, although we most commendably tackled one of the Island's most difficult churchyards, Lezayre, early on, and some members are still quietly working away at it, as well as in their local parishes.

Against such a background, the incredible energy of Feltham, that English visitor who wrote his 'Tour through the Island of Mann in 1798', can be appreciated to the full, for not only did he include most useful data and statistics from the various parish registers, but he personally recorded all the decypherable Inscriptions of every parish except Braddan. As he writes "I had no opportunity of taking the inscriptions in Braddan Church Yard. The violence of the weather rendered three journeys of 16 miles out, and 16 miles back ineffectual' for I could not take the inscriptions in this Churchyard'. (He lodged at Ramsey) He goes on "I left a commission for it to be done, but this after two attempts was given up". Even so, he collected some 2,000 Inscriptions, but in the end was forced reluctantly to recognise that these added up to too bulky a collection ever to be included in his Tour.30 he left them in hopes of publishing them separately some time.
I suppose interest in Monumental Inscriptions runs in waves through human history. It was when Britain has found herself as a nation in the pride of her achievements in the stage of history in Elizabethan times, that Camden turned his hand, not Just to giving us our first real set of Maps of our Islands, but also to collecting and recording our monumental inscriptions 'Monuments' of Great Britain' Ireland, etc'. (Unfortunately the Isle of Man did not find itself included under that 'etc') The first part of the 18th century saw Montelth's 'Theatre of Mortality' published in Scotland in 1704,and John La Neve's 5 volumes of Monumenta Anglican in 1719. Feltham was I feel sure, influenced by the appearance in 1796 of Gough's 3 volumes of' Sepulchral Monuments in Great Britain'. And I feel even more sure that it was Pettigrew's 'Chronicles of the Tombs' of 1857, that spurred the man in whose possession Feltham's still-unpublished manuscript then was to concern himself with getting it into print at last.

This man was Paul Bridson, whose story can be read in the Journal of the Manx Museum, No. 76, page 76. He was not just one of the principle driving forces in the formation of the Manx Society, but has a special interest for our Society in that - to quote the Manx Sun of July 30th 1859 - 'The Sixth Annual General Meeting of the Genealogical and Historical Society of Great Britain was attended by P. Bridson, Esq, of Douglas one of the Hon. Secretaries of the Manx Society, who has accepted the appointment of Local Corresponding Associate for the Isle of Man, and will have much pleasure in receiving from time to time any communications of a genealogical or historical nature connected therewith and which may be considered of interest to the above society'. He was instrumental in getting Feltham's MS (monumental in more senses than one) printed as No. XIV of the Manx Society's publication in 1868, under the title of Memorials of God's Acre. One of his colleagues, Dr.Oliver, recorded all memorials in Braddan Churchyard up to 1800, so completing the Island tally.

Now we can add to our research sources a document which is an instrument enabling us to read out tombstones underneath nearly 2 centuries of the defacements of time and weather. Pettigrew in 1857 had been very conscious of the impermanence of our memorials of stone, and had suggested that there set up a Public Register of Inscriptions. This did not happen, but the Family Historian's concern was met by the compulsory registrations of Births, Marriages and Deaths by public authorities - a measure that became effective in Mann in December 1877.

The manuscript notes made by Goodwin over half a century ago, and one of the most useful aids for the Manx genealogist in starting to research a family can be seen to incorporate most of the relevant material from Feltham as regards Manx families. My own rough count shows that the total of 2000 inscriptions, as the introduction to Memorial a estimates them to be, are distributed among some 319 family names, of which some two-thirds are indigenous Manx surnames. Malew has the earliest monument, dating from 1578, while on the other hand Marown, Onchan and Patrick can show nothing earlier than the 1720's. The rest begin in the 17th century, Maughold in 1611, Lezayre in 1639, and the rest in the second half of the century.
The preface to the book was written by William Harrison, who there alludes some of the peculiarities of Manx churchyards in that epoch. Our ancestors were unpretentious in their attitudes to death as in their attitudes to life. Grave Markers were functional and simple no one planted yew-treee flowers on the graves. Nor was there any deliberate artistry in the memorials. Some memorials did carry inscriptions, but usually they were note graves of Manx folk, or of Manx composition. The preface alludes also to the usefulness of the Manx habit of including the wife's maiden name, though this is relatively rare taking the inscriptions as a whole. It remarkable that out of 2000 names here recorded, not 20 bear a double Christian name. Only towards the middle of the last century does the custom of more than a single Christian name become prevalent. We may ruefully ponder how much simpler the making of our pedigrees would be if it had set in earlier.

Though inscriptions are rare, such as we find enliven the 130-odd pages of memorials. We should have thought the Roman Forum a more likely place than Malew Church to read
Interred here is the body of Julius Caesar,
a virtuous youth, and esteemed for his proficiency in academic learning.
Buried 9th January, 1739, aged 23.

Motives for Manx residence were sensitive topics in the 18th century.
'1734 - Francis Blackmore, native of Ireland, buried September 25th. Aged 65. His son, Simon, directed the following lines to be engraved on his stone:-
Stop, Traveller, I pray; but then take heed,
You Judge not hard of him, when this you read,
No debts, no laws obliged him to fly
From the dear land of his nativity;
But worn with cares, he chose this place to end
His days in peace, and make his God his friend.'

Inserted In the text, presumably by Feltham, at one point is this fascinating, information-

*N.B. - Jane Corlett (F.S.) 1685 was the first person who died in the island of the smallpox. It was brought Into the Isle by William Killey from abroad, and it was called In Manks. 'Brack-Willey Killy' from thence on the Information of an old inhabitant.' Memorials of God's Acre is a volume few of us can ever hope to possess. But from time to time we may be able to collect and index occurrences of some of our Manx family names In our Journal. For example. It did not take me long to print-out two families picked at random index




Wm. Clague, buried May 9th

Aged 41



Cath. Clague. wife of Phil. Stevens




Alice Clague, wife of Pat Clague, 10th Feb.


Lonan (Old)


Joseph, a. of Joseph & amp; Mary Clague, Ballagrow, died April 5th




Alice. wife of Wm. Clague of Ballakilley,buried April 2nd.



Also three sons.



Thomas Clague of the Estate of Ballavarane
The stone erected by his affectionate mother




James Clague, of Crosby, clerk & schoolmaster of this parish 31 years, buried July 4th.




Elizabeth, dau of Wm. & Jane Clague




Jane ~c, died August let.




Thomas. Son of Henry Clague, May 2nd

6 months



Henry Clague, April 6th




Jane Reid. al Clague, bur. December.24th




Wm. Clague. weaver, 11th May




Wm. Clague. died December 7th.



With three sons, Richard, William & William.



Wm. Clague died March 3rd. He was Collector and Riding officer for the port of Derby Haven 26 years.




His son, John Clague, lost at sea.




Isabella, his daughter, died September 29th




Isabell, dau of William and Ellinor Clague, of Castletown, died 2nd April.



John Clague, clark & schoolmaster, Buried Dec. 9th




Ellinor Harrison. al Clague, died May 16th






Ed. Qualtrough, May 29th




John Qualtrough. January 2nd.




Henry Qualtrough, September 22nd




Margaret, wife of John, died May 18th




Jane, dau. of Henry Qualtrough, died September 22nd




Mary Nixon. Alias Qualtrough, wife of Mark Nixon, Buried November 8th.




Joney Qualtrough, alias Cubbon, wife of Joseph Qualtrough, August 26th.




William, son of Wm. Qualtrough and Christian Taylor his wife, 30th March




Christian Qualtrough, alias Taylor, wife of William Qualtrough, buried December 24th




Margt. Qualtrough buried August 20th al. Corkish




William Qualtrough, buried July 21st




Margaret Qualtrough. al, Crebbin, of Surby, wife of Wm. Qualtrough, of the Mill, March 11th




we. Qualtrough, Kentraugh, 24th March




William, his son. 17th May




Henry Qualtrough December 2nd,




Wm. Qualtrough,of the Mill, buried April 2nd




John. son of Wm. Qualtrough




Wm., son of Wm. Qualtrough


Suppose each of you who frequent the Museum should take down 'Memorials of God's Acre', (vol XIV of the Manx Society publications), list down your name (or any other you are interested in), and send the result to the Editor. we could gradually publish in a way, analogous to the above, all the families therein recorded in the index form.



A highly controversial building in Washington has its own 'Manx Connection'. The Old Post Office Building. thrusting its dark granite built and square clock tower in stubborn nonconformity above the general level of other Federal Triangle Buildings was built by a Manxman, John Gill. Gill, a builder from Port Erin, emigrated to America In 1854 and established the Cleveland Contracting Fire of John Gill and Sons. He built this romanesque landmark at Pennsylvania Avenue between 11th and 12th street , N.W., at a cost of $2,585,000, completing it in the fall of 1899. The building, with its 315 ft clock tower and 350 marbled-lined office rooms around a central sky-lit court. was immediately praised and condemned - one official suggesting that it be torn down immediately. Though proposed for demolition many times, fortress like it has held out against the planned grand circular plaza originally contemplated for the area. Thanks to a recent congressional approval of a multimillion dollar renovation plan, the proud old building with what we like to think of as its 'Manx Tower' probing high above Washington's conformist skyline, will remain a Washington landmark for years to come. And, if you look carefully at the blue-veined brown marble aside the door leading to room 23, right on the 12th Street entrance, you will see a four-foot high. sleek. smiling cat, no doubt a Manx Cat.

Edward Sayle index

Manx Roots and Colonial Branches

From my youngest years, I knew, that my Father's people came from the Isle of Man. The pride of race that was instilled in me then, remains today, as it does with many of the descendants of my great-grandparents, Stephen and Jane Corlett who came an pioneers to our Island country. As far as we know, Stephen was the son of William CORLETT and Ann COWLEY and was baptised In the Parish of Jurby, February 1803. His death certificate and marriage entry don't give names of his parents, so with the surname like Corlett, our task of proving forebears is made more difficult. It was at Bride, on the 26th March 1825, that Stephen married Jane LAWSON the daughter of Thomas LAWSON and Elizabeth LACE. Nine of Stephen and Jane's children were born on the Isle of Man, they were Jane, John. Mary Ann, John Stephen, two sons named William (obviously one died), James, Thomas, and a daughter named Christian Hannah but later called Eliza.

At the time of the 1841 census, Stephen was listed as an agricultural labourer and the family were living at ''Ballalhergy Farm'' in the Parish of Lezayre. Sometime after Eliza's birth in 1842, the family, like many others in the mid-nineteenth century, decided to try their luck in another country and moved to England, where Stephen worked an a farm manager for the Davenport family who owned the Capesthorne Hall Estate in Cheshire. On Christmas Day 1845 a son Benjamin was born, followed in September 1848 by my grandfather Alfred. The following year, the Corlett's applied for an assisted passage to the far-off colony of New Zealand. They sailed from Plymouth England in September 1850. arriving in New Zealand on 16th December 1850. Their eldest daughter Jane had married Thomas Stubbs and baby Arthur was born just two weeks before their ship sailed, thus three generations of the family came out on the same ship. The "Sir George Seymour" was one of the "First Four Ships" to arrive with settlers in the newly-formed Province of Canterbury and all those who sailed in these ships were henceforth known as "Canterbury Pilgrims".

Their first night ashore was spent in newly-constructed barracks, the menfolk guarding the women and children while they slept. At that time in our history Europeans were fearful of the Maori natives of New Zealand. Port Cooper, later known as Lyttleton. was then only a straggle of frame cottages along a mile or so of foreshore, and backed by steep hills. It was over these hills, on an unformed track, known an the Bridal Path, that the Corlett family, together with the other Pilgrims, climbed and saw the swampy plains on the other side. What was later to become the city of Christchurch, was then only inhabited by one. solitary house.

A pack horse carried the Corlett's tent and light luggage over the track. while Stephen and Jane struggled with their children who lost their shoes in the bogs. Misfortune struck. when the small boat which was carrying their tools and heavy luggage, around by sea, was wrecked and only a few light articles were washed ashore. Living conditions were grim, they lived, for a time, in a dig-cut, roofed with weatherboards and situated on the riverbank. The rate were very bad. William, aged fifteen, died of consumption. a year after their arrival in the colony.

Stephen was employed an a farm manager for the colonist, Watts Russell, who came out on the same ship. Common to most Manxmen, great-grandfather was a thrifty man and by 1853 had purchased fifty acres of land for which he paid a pound per acre. On it he built a cob cottage, the thick walls of which were constructed of dried clay and straw, the roof being thatched with tussock grass. The Corlett's were staunch Wesleyans and it was in their home that some of the early Sunday afternoon services were held.

By 1861. Stephen had added a further seventy acres to his farm which he called ''Capesthorne Farm''. Curlett's Road, which bordered his land in Upper Riccarton, Christchurch, is named after him. Curiously the spelling was Corlett's Road up until the 1940's, then is was changed. Great-grandfather pronounced his name Curlett but signed it with an ''o".

In 1854, another child, John Stephen died of consumption which meant that of the original eight sons, there were only three left to carry on the surname. Thomas never married, but Benjamin and Alfred who married sisters. had 26 children between them. In the 1870's Stephen had a wooden two-storeyed home built. It was reputed to have been the first of its kind in the area. the staircase having been sent out from England by the Davenport family. Great-grandmother, however, was not to enjoy her new home for long as she died of a heart attack on 23rd December 1877. Two years previous, Stephen Corlett had sold off some of his land in Riccarton, for the sum of two thousand pounds and invested the money in large blocks of land in North Canterbury. The property was called ''Greta Peaks'' and comprised an area of nearly two thousand acres. The three brothers. Thomas, Ben, and Alfred worked very hard and kept much to themselves, not taking an active part in the social life of the district. They were well-known for their bullock team, also for the fact that they introduced broom into the district, this to provide nectar for their bees.

In 1880 Stephen Corlett passed away and was laid to rest alongside his wife Jane, in the Withell's Road Cemetery, the ground for which had been donated to the church by their son-in-law Thomas Stubbs. Only eight people were buried in the small graveyard, which today lies neglected, and surrounded by new homes which have sprung up around it. The Wesleyan Church plans to sell the ground and an Act of Parliament was recently passed giving them permission to re-inter the bodies. It's sad to think that these early forebears will have to be removed from what was to have been their last resting place.

Shortly after her father's death, Eliza married a widower, Charles Withell and they had two daughters. During the mid-eighties, New Zealand suffered a severe depression, prices slumped and the Corlett Brothers were forced to put their land up for auction in August 1887. It was only a year earlier that Benjamin and Alfred had brought their brides home to "Greta Peaks". It wasn't until 1893 that the property was finally sold to a wealthy landowner, known as "Ready Money" Robinson who purchased their land for a song, something the brothers never forgot. It is said that their sheep were sold for one shilling a head and Thomas who died in 1889 is said to have died of a broken heart at the loss of their land.

Times were hard, even into the 1890's. Grandfather was earning only four shillings a day and the family were very poor, an by this time there were seven children to provide for. in 1895, when Maryian Jane was born, the district experienced a heavy snowstorm and grandfather had to trudge through the snow, leading a horse and gig in which he returned, the same way, with the midwife. The next child was delivered by grandfather himself!

In the early 1900's Alfred Corlett took his family to live in the North Island. The family caused quite a sensation when they crossed on the hinterland steamer, as people were amazed at the size of the family! Two babies had died, and grandfather and his brother Benjamin had made the little coffins to place them in. Two daughters, Pauline and Greta were born on the North Island. The family settled into a dairy farm. but once again disaster struck in the form of a bush fire which went raging through the district, burning the new cowshed to the ground and at the same time killing all the fish in the nearby river. Again the Corletts moved on, this time to a small town called Takapau, where one of their sons had a boarding house, which was called the "Manx Arms". Two years later, the First World War broke out and Alfred Junior and his brother Frank volunteered for service overseas. A Territorial camp sprung up near the town so this brought added trade to the "Manx Arms" where grandmother provided special suppers for the officers. When dances wore held in the town, Grandma would chaperone her eldest daughters. The younger children would all be bedded down when she left, but grandfather, who loved music, would get all the children out of their beds and there would be an evening of singing, while their father played the accordion.

Tragically, both sons were killed together at Gallipoli in August 1915. After the news of their deaths, the boarding house was sold and the Corletts- again took up farming but times were difficult an they had several mortgages on their property. Claude and my father Ernest who were still at home, had to find work and went out shearing and rabbiting with their father, to earn the extra money needed. while the younger girls were expected to help milk the cows, make butter and generally help in the running of the farm.

In 1932 grandfather died of a heart attack, at the age of 84 yrs. He had gone to move the cows onto fresh pastures. According to his obituary, he was never so happy as when employed on the property and performed a considerable amount of work for a man of his age. He possessed a wonderful memory, and delighted to recap his experiences of the early days. One of the stories handed down was that he had an Uncle who was on board Nelson's ship at the Battle of Trafalgar. This could well be true, as several Manxmen were known to have been on board the "Victory" during the famous battle. Grandfather was 6' 6'' tall and one of his relations can recall being afraid of him, when she wan a child. because she was certain he was a giant! He was a quietly-spoken man, not given to swearing. loved animals, especially his dog Rover and always had great pride in his large family.

Corlett branches in the colonies have flourished with an estimated 400 descendants, three of whom, including the writer. celebrate their birthdays on the 5th July. Tynwald Day. Two greet-grandsons have received the Queen's Honours for services to their country. Grandmother, who was the daughter of an early pioneer. was a remarkable woman who flew for the first time in her life, at the age of 99. and lived to see her 100th birthday. Benjamin Corlett also moved to the North Island, where after many setbacks, he too took up farming on his own account. The Corletts were hard-working people who preserved, no matter how the odds were against them, reminding one of the Manx motto ''It will stand wheresoever you throw it". Their name will carry on in the colonies and it is with pride that we shall remember our Manx roots.

Frances Stewart. als Corlett



My appeal for the missing link in the Stowell connection in our National Poet's lineage has brought this letter from New Zealand with the solution. Miss P.M. Lineham, who contributed an article in the April issue on the LaMothe family, has written as follows
27th April 1981
I have just received my copy of the January 1981 Journal today. On page 13 in the article on T.E.Brown, I note the reference to Amelia Stowell, who married T.E.Brown, was baptised at Ramsey on November 17th 1829, and was the child of Thomas Stowell and Mary Ann Cowin. So far so good. The next sentence, 'her father must have been the son of one of Ann Stowell's 15 sons', has caused me to write.
From our LaMothe family records compiled by John Corlett LaMothe, this Thomas Stowell was the son of the Rev. Joseph Stowell, who married Elizabeth LaMothe on 28th March 1796. Our family notes read thus
Dr. Dominique LaMothe married Susannah Corrin of Castletown, their third
daughter, Elizabeth, born 30th January 1771, married the Rev. Joseph Stowell,
Master of the Peel Grammar School, and left three sons and two daughters,
1. Joseph Stowell, who died a bachelor;
2. THOMAS STOWELL (late of Ramsey), Surgeons
3. Rev. John LaMothe Stowell, Vicar of German
1. Elizabeth Stowell, who married the Rev. Edward Qualtrough, Master of the Peel Grammar School, and Supernumerary'
2. Ann Stowell, married Thomas Kewley, of Castletown.
"Both the sons, Thomas and John, left large families, Dr. Thomas Stowell being Represented by his son Hugh Stowell, of Baldrine, Lonan, and the children of his eldest son Joseph Stowell, and his daughters, Mary Ann Stowell and Elizabeth Stowell (living in Ramsey, circa. 1895), and the five children of a deceased daughter, Amelia, who married the Rev. Thomas E. Brown, late of Clifton, and formally Vice-Principal of King William's College, and also a Master of Clifton College, now living in Ramsey and one of our most honoured Manxmen."
It appears to me that Ann Brown, who married Thomas Stowell, who had a son, Joseph (1772), would be the lineage.
Miss Lineham put us even further in her debt by conclusively completing the table.
Elsewhere in this issue we refer to "Memorials of God's Acre". It will be apposite to record here the references there to the family of T.E.B.s
Ballure Church-Yards
1783 Ann Stowell, alias Brown, wife of Thomas Stowell, July 27th, aged 44 Mother of 15 sons and 1 daughter.
1763 James Drumgold, 10th August, aged 36.
1796 Jane Drumgold, alias Stowell, Wife of the above, November 1st aged 76.


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