Martha Lyon at Gate Cottage


1920 Martha Reid nee McLachlan Gate wm copyYou’ll remember I recently posted about Jennifer Swantek’s, “Reid” family. Well, here’s another interesting connection and fabulous photo.

Pictured here in the 1920’s is Jennifer’s great, great grandmother Martha Reid (nee McLachlan), wife of John Reid. She’s standing at the entrance to Gate Cottage, a former Blantyre houses once situated on the right hand side (eastern side) of the Blantyre Works Village entrance. In the early 1930’s a railway oil supply vehicle ran out of control and crashed into this cottage, damaging it badly.

In 1929, Martha Reid’s daughter, Mrs Martha Lyon lived there as a widow. Her mother, Martha Reid (nee McLachlan) b1843 had died there in 1926 and is still shown as the occupier in 1925. It had address 85 Station Road. In both 1925 and 1930, according to the valuation registers of those years, the cottage was owned by William Baird & Company Ltd (coalmasters) meaning the Reid family were renting.

Martha Reid died in 1926 in Blantyre. I’m sure this was one of the trigger events which saw most of the family leave to go to America a year later.

I’m currently exploring the possibility that I may both be related to Martha very distantly and therefore to Jennifer too, via the MacFarlanes! This is a huge family if you go back to the 1800’s and very complex to look into given the number of branches. (If i recall…..In my ancestry Isabella Bowie married a William McFarlane and in 1927 they both emigrated over the Atlantic, leaving Blantyre. Before they left they sold their home to the MacLachlans, so there are a lot of coincidental surnames appearing here). I’ve bookmarked it for future.
Partly taken from “Blantyre Explained” by Paul Veverka (c) 2016

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