Wednesday, 11 January 2017

The Former Mrs Carroll

Bernard Carroll and Ann Dickson married somewhere in Ireland. I imagine it was sometime before 1846, as their eldest surviving child's year of birth would suggest. 

In Ireland they already had one child named William who was born around 1846. The Carroll family arrived in Rutherglen, Lanarkshire, Scotland during the potato famine years, where they had a further five children. 

Ann Jnr was born in about 1849, Patrick followed in 1851, then Francis in 1854, Bernard Jnr in 1856, and finally Thomas, who was born in 1859. Sadly only William, Ann and Bernard survived early infancy. 


(Above) Patrick and (Below) Francis Carroll's baptism at St Columbkille's church, Rutherglen.

(Above) Bernard Carroll Jnr's birth registration. Notice "Barny."
(Below) Thomas Carroll's birth registration.

I know Francis died of scarlet fever, and Thomas was frail from birth, but it was neither of these illnesses which killed their mother.

Ann Dickson Carroll died on 4 April 1860, just short of a year after the birth and death of baby Thomas. Her cause of death was stated to be "Cauliflower excrescence of the uterus," which she was said to have suffered from for 12 months. This is also known as uterine cancer.


Ann Dickson Carroll's death registration.

Ann was laid to rest in the churchyard at Rutherglen, no doubt where her infant babes were also buried. 

On 6 July 1860, just over three months after the death of Ann, her widower married again. Bernard Carroll married Jean Duffy at Rutherglen, where she lived on Main Street, and worked in a paper mill nearby. They are my 3x great-grandparents. 


Bernard Carroll and Jean (Jane) Duffy's marriage registration.

It was a rather hasty marriage, but it is to be expected. Bernard was a single father with three young children, the youngest, Bernard, being only 3-years-old when his mother died. Jean was already the mother of little Elizabeth, who was born out of wedlock two years before. At that time Elizabeth was being raised back in New Kilpatrick, Dunbartonshire by her uncle and his wife - so both parties had what some would call 'baggage.'

In that sense, it was completely necessary for Bernard and Jean to find a spouse, and they certainly didn't waste any time. The marriage took place so quickly after the death of the former Mrs Carroll, some may deem it insensitive or cruel, but I think it is completely understandable.

Bernard and Jean went on to have nine children together, of which only four survived infancy.