William Burns Pate (b1908-d1994)

This handsome chap is Wullie Pate. Photographed in the 1940’s, Wullie was then on WW2 Service duty as an RAF Policeman.

William Burns Pate was born on 14th November 1908 at 43 Auchinraith Road. The son of John Pate a joiner and Jane Carruthers. (m 1899 Hamilton). On that very day in 1908, Scientist Albert Einstein presented his quantum theory about light to the world.

As a young man during the 1930s, William lived at 72 Glasgow Road and at 7 John Street, renting those homes briefly before moving to 1 Hardie Street at the Crescents. He immersed himself in work as a grocery salesman.

On 9th June 1937, William married Blantyre woman Martha Smellie at Tea rooms in Cadzow Street, Hamilton. Their marriage banns were read out in the Congregational Church. John was 28, Martha who lived at Church Street was 25. Martha had been working at the time as a Chemist.

The couple would go on to have a family. Following WW2, Wullie set up his Grocery and Newsagents shop on Glasgow Road, later going into partnership with son in law, Geoff Krawczyk. Martha would assist in the shop. Wullie and Geoff’s partnership expanded further in 1973 with another shop on Glasgow Road, further westwards, this time branching out into records, cards and toys. Pate’s newsagents moved to Stonefield Road in the early 1980’s.

William passed away in Hamilton in 1994 at the grand age of 85. To this day, he is fondly remembered and was well respected by all.

With thanks to Wullies daughter Valerie Krawczyk for these photos.


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  1. my mother worked in both shops for many years her name was morag duffy

  2. As it is quite an unusual name I thought that Wullie Pate and George Pate might be related.

  3. 1945 PATE, George, OBE. JP. Obituary., Born 1861 Waterloo Rd. Blantyre. research by Wilma Bolton.

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