Wednesday, 13 April 2016

The Widow of Edward Carlin

In around 1843, Janet McComb was born at Rutherglen, Lanarkshire, Scotland. She was the daughter of James McComb and Ruth Duggan, my 4x great-grandparents.

On 17 July 1863, Janet married Edward Carlin, in Tradeston, Glasgow. They were a young couple, with Janet being 20, and Edward only 18-years-old. Janet was already expecting Edward's child, and early the following year she gave birth to a baby boy, who was named Edward after his father. 

In December 1865, Janet gave birth again, but this time far too soon. Janet and Edward named their second son, Thomas after Edward's father, but sadly he died when he was only eight days old. Tragedy stuck again only days later, when Edward Carlin, Jnr, passed away. He had been suffering from inflammation of the bowels for the past fourteen days.

Obviously grief-stricken, the couple did not have any further children for a couple of years, until April 1867, when Janet gave birth to their third son, Charles. He was a sickly baby, and was too weak to recover from a bout of enteritis. Sadly, Charles died when he was only a week old.

The couple did not have any more children, but this did not end their sorrow. Janet lost Edward to bronchitis in March 1870. He had been suffering from the illness for the last six weeks before his death.

Now without the income from Edward's job as a carter, Janet was left destitute. She remained close to her siblings, who did what they could for her. But her family were poor themselves, and were not able to help her financially, and so Janet entered Govan Poorhouse. 

Janet Carlin died a pauper in Govan Poorhouse on 7 April 1877. She died of phthisis, or tuberculosis, or perhaps she simply gave up on life. The whole Carlin family unit was wiped out in less than fourteen years.   

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