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Helen Grubb1,2

F, #6979, b. circa 1819, d. 29 August 1869
  • Birth*: Helen Grubb was born circa 1819.2
  • She was the daughter of Henry Grubb and Janet Forgan.2
  • (Bride) Marriage*: Helen Grubb married Lewis Johnston on 11 February 1838 at Dundee, Forfarshire, Scotland; January 1838, contracted 24th, Lewis Johnston seaman and Helen Grubb both of this parish, married 11 February.3,4
  • Married Name: As of 11 February 1838, her married name was Johnston.
  • (Issue of (1855)) Death: Their parent Janet Forgan died on 26 January 1855 at Market Street, St Andrews, Fife, Scotland; 1855 deaths in the burgh of St Andrews in the county of Fife registered by John Sorley regsitrar, ref 13; Forgan, Janet or Grubb, female aged 72 years, born Crail Fifeshire 45 years in St Andrews, parents Andrew Forgan wheelwright (dec) & Forgan maiden name Agnes Honeyman (dec), married to Henry Grubb shoemaker, issue 1 George 45 dec, 2 Jess 43, 3 Helen 35, 4 Henry 33, 5 Andrew 31, 6 Christian 27, Allison 24; died January Twenty Sixth 7h 50m am, died at Market Street St Andrews, cause pleurisy for 4 days as certified by Thomas Malcolm surgeon who saw deceased January 25th 1855, buried in the Burial Ground of St Andrews as certified by David Scott sexton, signed Henry Grubb + his mark husband, signed John Ba...ry, Catherine W ... witnesses, regsitered 1855 January 29th at St Andrews signed John Sorley registrar.5
  • (Issue of (1855)) Death: Their parent Henry Grubb died on 22 April 1855 at Market Street, St Andrews, Fife, Scotland; 1855 deaths in the burgh of St Andrews in the county of Fife registered by John Sorley registrar, ref 35; Grubb, Henry, shoemaker, male aged 72 years, born parish of Crail county of Fife, 45 years in St Andrews, parents William Grubb gardener (dec) and Helen Grubb maiden name Ramsay (dec), wife Janet Grubb maiden names Forgan (dec), issue 1. George dec at 40 in 1850, 2. Jess aged 43, 3. Helen 35, 4. Henry 33, 5. Andrew 31, 6. Christina 27, 7. Allison 24; died 1855 April Twenty first (scored out & 'second' inserted) 8h pm at Market Street St Andrews, cause confusion of the brain preceeded by a fall backwards down his stairs, 1 day, as certified by Thomas Malcolm surgeon who saw deceased April 22nd 1855, buried Burial Ground of St Andrews as certified by David Scott sexton, informant John Ramsay Inspector of Poor, registered 1855 April 24th at St Andrews John Sorley regsitrar.2
  • (Deceased) Death*: Helen Grubb died on 29 August 1869 at 42 St Andrews Street, Dundee, Forfarshire, Scotland, 1869 deaths in the district of St Clement in the burgh of Dundee, ref 427; Helen Johnston married to Lewis Johnston seaman MS; 1869 August Twenty-ninth found about 10h pm at 42 St Andrews Street, Dundee; female aged 57 years; parents Henry Grubb gardener (deceased) and Jessie Grubb ms Forgan (deceased); cause hanging (suicide) not certified; informant Alexander Matthews son-in-law, 150 Seagate; registered 1869 August 30th at Dundee Jas Kinnison registrar.6,7
  • Newspaper Article*: She was mentioned in a newspaper article Case of Suicide in Dundee.— On Sunday evening between ten and eleven o'clock, a married woman residing in St Andrews Street, was discovered to have committed suicide by hanging herself in her own house. Deceased when found was quite cold, and had evidently been dead for some time. The unfortunate woman had been in a desponding frame of mind for some months past, but her state was not such as to cause anxiety amongst her friends. She was between fifty and sixty years of age. on 2 September 1869.8
  • (Deceased) Death RCE: Her death registration was corrected on 25 February 1870 at St Andrews Street, Dundee, Forfarshire, Scotland, page 115, Register of Corrected Entries for the district of St Clement in the burgh of Dundee; The following Report of result of a Precognition has been received touching the Death of Ellen Grubb or Johnston, Registered under no 427, in the Register Book of Deaths for the year 1869:- Ellen Grubb or Johnston 57 years - a female; died on 29th August in her husband's house in St Andrew Street Dundee; cause suicide by hanging; registered Dundee 11th September 1869 (signed) W B Dunbar Procurator Fiscal, at Dundee 14th September 1869 James Kinnison registrar, 25th Feb 1870.9
  • (Spouse) Death: Her spouse Lewis Johnston died on 12 January 1878 at 26 Queen Street, Dundee, Forfarshire, Scotland; 1878 deaths in the district of St Andrew in the burgh of Dundee, ref 43; Louis Johnston seaman MS widower of Helen Grubb, died 1878 January Twelfth 9h 0m am 26 Queen Street, male aged 64 years, parents Ormond Johnston ploughman (dec) and Euphemia Johnston ms Pratt (dec), cause bronchitis 1 month as cert by D Stile Moon LRCP, signed William Johnston nephew 27 Overgate, registered 1878 January 12th at Dundee signed F Macdiarmid registrar.10,11,12

Census Events

Member of Household6 June 1841Helen Grubb was listed in the 1841 census at Fish Street, Dundee, Forfarshire, Scotland. Helen Grubb, 22, b England [?].13
Head of Household30 March 1851She was listed as head of household in the 1851 census at Fish Street, Dundee, Forfarshire, Scotland. Helen Johnston, h, 33, St Andrews, Fifes; also in the household was Jessie C Johnston, John McLear, Andrew Grubb and John McGregor.14
Spouse7 April 1861She was listed in the household of Lewis Johnston in the 1861 census at 47 Fish Street, Dundee, Forfarshire, Scotland. Lewis Johnston, head, 50, seaman, BS (British Subject) Sweden; Helen Johnston, wife, 41, St Andrews, Fife. Jessie C Johnston and William Johnston were also listed in the household.15,16
Last Edited: 17 Oct 2016

Parents:

Father*: Henry Grubb2 b. c 1782, d. 22 Apr 1855
Mother*: Janet Forgan b. 19 Jun 1787, d. 26 Jan 1855

Family:

Lewis Johnston b. 10 May 1810, d. 12 Jan 1878
  • (Bride) Marriage*: Helen Grubb married Lewis Johnston on 11 February 1838 at Dundee, Forfarshire, Scotland; January 1838, contracted 24th, Lewis Johnston seaman and Helen Grubb both of this parish, married 11 February.3,4

Children:

Jessie C Johnston+ b. c 1840, d. 20 Dec 1876
Helen Johnston17 b. Aug 1844, d. 23 May 1845
Henry Johnston18 b. Sep 1847, d. 14 Feb 1849
Helena Johnston19 b. 29 Dec 1848, d. 1 Jan 1849
Unnamed Johnston20 b. b 7 Jun 1852, d. 7 Jun 1852
Lewis Johnston b. 15 May 1857, d. 2 Aug 1857
  • (Witness) Note for Web: Helen Grubb and William Johnston, Christina Grubb, Henry Grubb, Janet Forgan, Lewis Johnston, Euphemia Stewart, Jessie Johnston, Agnes Barrie Johnston, Margaret Woods Johnston, Christina Johnston, Euphemia Stewart Johnston, Isabella Thomson Black Johnston, Georgina Keir Paterson Johnston, Andrew McGlashan, Henry McGlashan, Janet McGlashan and Robert McGlashan was mentioned with William Johnston. Facts and Hypothesis re William Johnston born about 1848 who says his parents are William Johnston, shipwright, and Christina Grubb:

    From various records one could assume that William is born about 1848 in either Fife – maybe Crail, maybe St Andrews – or Dundee. All these possibilities have been explored in the name of Johnson, Jonsen, Johnston(e) and variants; and Grubb without finding a birth/baptism that fits.

    On the 30th March 1851 census there is a 4-year-old child recorded as William Normand living in St Andrews with Henry Grubb and his wife Janet Forgan and who is described as ‘Grandson’ and born in Crail, Fife. No marriage between a Grubb and Normand can be found, and no William Normand was recorded as born/baptised in Scotland in the time frame. So a query exists that this might be William Johnston. But there are likely to be other grandsons who could fit this description. But no other William Johnson or Grubb that fits the profile.

    On the 7th April 1861 census William is declared as 'nephew' aged 13 with Lewis Johnston as head and Helen Grubb as wife, who are living in Fish Street Dundee. William is described as a mill worker born in St Andrews Fife. So William is nephew to whom? It should be stated as relative to the head of the house - Lewis Johnston. Or is it his wife, Helen? Christina Grubb is Helen’s younger sister. Is she William’s mother? Does Lewis Johnston have a brother named William? – Not found.

    On the 2nd April 1871 census William Johnston is found boarding at 7 Keys Close (which is at 18 Nethergate) Dundee, with Elizabeth Morrison as head of the household. William states he is born Dundee, aged 22 and working as a brewer.

    On his marriage three weeks after the census night, on 24 April 1871, William Johnston signs his name and states his parents as William Johnston, shipwright & Christina Grubb, his address as 18 Nethergate Dundee (see census above), his age as 22 and his occupation as bottler.

    On informing of Lewis Johnston's death in 1878, William states he is nephew and his address is 27 Overgate, Dundee. William also states Lewis’ parents as Ormond Johnston, a ploughman, and Euphemia Pratt – no information about this couple or any other similar Johnston family can be found.

    When his 4th daughter (of 7) is born in March 1881, she is named Christina – but this is not an uncommon name of the time.

    On the April 1881 census William states he is 34, and iron work labourer and born Dundee.

    In 1886, on birth of twin daughters, William is living at 27 Overgate, states his occupation as marine stoker and his marriage date as 24 April 1871.

    On the April 1891 census William states he is 46, born Dundee and occupied as a fireman.

    But on his death in 1899, William's wife Euphemia Stewart states his occupation as builder’s donkey engineman, his age as 51 and his parents are Lewis Johnston, seaman, and Helen Grubb. (Because they raised him?)

    On his wife’s death in 1913, his eldest daughter Jessie, says that he was a merchant seaman – but she also records her mother’s age as 49, when she was probably about 62.

    So who to believe?


    If Christina Grubb was Wiiliam’s mother – how would that look?

    Christina Grubb was born about 1828 (no birth/bapt found, but other records suggest this)
    If William is born about 1847/8, then Christina would be aged about 19/20.
    Christina marries Andrew McGlashan in January 1849 in Liverpool. Christina is probably aged 21.
    Christina and Andrew have a son, Robert McGlashan, who is born in Dundee in August 1950.
    The family are recorded in March 1851 in Fish Street Dundee. Christina’s age is stated as 22, Robert as under 1 year.
    Christina and Andrew have a daughter, Janet, in November 1852 in Dundee.
    When both Christina’s parents die within months of each other in 1855, Christina’s age is recorded on both occasions as 27.
    The next time this family is found is in Australia when a headstone in Geelong Eastern Cemetery records Christina’s death in May 1885, aged 57, along with Andrew McGlashan, aged 74, in 1891 and a son, Henry, aged 28, in February 1886. In the absence of records, it is presumed that the family emigrated about 1853.


    It could be hypothesised that Christina Grubb, sister of Helen Grubb, and William Johnson, brother of Lewis, are the parents of William Johnston born about 1848 and that he was probably born in Dundee, probably whilst Christina was staying with her sister Helen and brother-in-law Lewis.

    Further – Christina marries far away from home in Liverpool, but returns to Dundee to live and have her family – at least for a while. In 1851 Christina is living close by to her sister Helen in Fish Street Dundee. Helen has only one surviving child at this time – Jessie – three others have died in infancy, followed by another two who do not survive after 1851. It would make sense for Helen to take in her sister’s child – William Johnston – especially when Christina and her husband (who presumeably is not William's father) emigrate to Australia.

    Extensive research has produced nothing to support any of this suppostition.


    Additionally - there is a document for a William Johnston who is aged 14 and volunteering for the Navy. It is signed in Birkenhead and witnessed by the boy's uncle Edward Clancy and aunt Mrs John Bird. Neither of these people have been found to be related to our William Johnston. The boy's signature is typical of the era and there is a similarity to the older William's when he signs first his marriage register and later still his daughter's birth records - but not conclusively so.

Citations

  1. [S50] General Record Office for Scotland, online www.scotlandspeople.gov.uk, General Record Office for Scotland (Edinburgh, Scotland), Son William's death registration.
  2. [S50] General Record Office for Scotland, GROS Statutory Death 1855 St Andrews Fife 452/01 0035 image held [Oct 2011].
  3. [S36] Old Parochial Register of marriage,pre-1855 (General Record Office of Scotland) OPR marriages 282/00 0220 0328 Dundee [Apr 2011].
  4. [S1] International Genealogical Index (IGI) (Salt Lake City, Utah, USA: International Genealogical Index), LDS M112825 [Apr 2011].
  5. [S50] General Record Office for Scotland, GROS Statutory Death 1855 St Andrews ref 453/01 0013 image held [Mar 2015].
  6. [S64] General Record Office for Scotland, online www.scotlandspeople.gov.uk, General Record Office for Scotland (Edinburgh, Scotland), after 28 April 1871 as reported on son's marriage reg [Jun 2010].
  7. [S50] General Record Office for Scotland, GROS statutory deaths 282/03 0427 [Apr 2011].
  8. [S32] Newspaper Article, British Newspaper Archive, Fife Herald and Kinross, Strathearn, and Clackmannan Advertiser, General News, Thursday, September 2, 1869 [Jan 2012].
  9. [S50] General Record Office for Scotland, GROS statutory deaths 282/03 0427 RCE [Apr 2011].
  10. [S50] General Record Office for Scotland, GROS Statutory Death 1878 Dundee St Andrew ref 282/04 0043 image held [Mar 2015].
  11. [S64] General Record Office for Scotland, GROS Statutory Marriage 1871 Dundee St Clement ref 282/03 0077 image held [Feb 2008].
  12. [S56] International Genealogical Index (IGI) (Salt Lake City, Utah, USA: International Genealogical Index), Norway Census, 1875, index, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:SP9P-6M6 : accessed 26 March 2015), Luis Johnsen in household of Karl Johan Asmundsen, Senekketorp, Idd, Østfold, Norway, Statsarkivet, Oslo [Norway National Archives, Oslo]; FHL microBlm 255,560. Person Details for Luis Johnsen in household of Karl Johan As... https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:SP9P-6M6 [Mar 2015].
  13. [S9] Website Ancestry.co.uk (www.ancestry.co.uk) Source Citation: Parish: Dundee; ED: 23; Page: 2; Line: 600; Roll: ; Year: 1841. Source Information: Ancestry.com. 1841 Scotland Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2006. Original data: 1841 Scotland Census. Edinburgh, Scotland: General Register Office for Scotland. Reels 1-151. General Register Office for Scotland, Edinburgh, Scotland. [Apr 2011]
  14. [S9] Website Ancestry.co.uk (www.ancestry.co.uk) Source Citation: Parish: Dundee; ED: 34; Page: 5; Line: 52; Roll: 534; Year: 1851. Source Information: Ancestry.com. 1851 Scotland Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2006. Original data: Scotland. 1851 Scotland Census. Reels 1-217. General Register Office for Scotland, Edinburgh, Scotland. [Apr 2011]
  15. [S9] Website Ancestry.co.uk (www.ancestry.co.uk) Source Citation: Parish: Dundee; ED: 2; Page: 15; Line: 7; Roll: CSSCT1861_40; Year: 1861. Source Information: Ancestry.com. 1861 Scotland Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2006. Original data: Scotland. 1861 Scotland Census. Reels 1-150. General Register Office for Scotland, Edinburgh, Scotland. [April 2011]
  16. [S54] Website findmypast.co.uk (www.findmypast.co.uk) URL of this page: http://search.findmypast.co.uk/record?id=gbc%2f1861%2f00246771
    35 [Apr 2015].
  17. [S18] FDCA, online www.FDCA.gov.uk, FDCA (City Square, Dundee), Surname beginning with J page 63 ref 845 [Mar 2015].
  18. [S18] FDCA, Surname beginning with J page 63 ref 853 [Mar 2015].
  19. [S18] FDCA, Surname beginning with J page 62 ref 850 [Mar 2015].
  20. [S18] FDCA, Surname beginning with J page 54 ref 1020 [Mar 2015].