Thursday, 9 August 2007


Searching for the father (Joseph) of (great) 'grandpa' James Shaw in the 1841 Census, I found him on his father's (James) farm at Craighead, Abronhill, Cumbernauld. Interestingly his future wife(Agnes) was at the next door farm, Crowbank, with her parents John and Agnes Waugh. Also listed on the Census were two younger James' but the 1841 Census doesn't give relationships.

James, the father, died in 1854 and his testament mentions a grandson, son of Thomas also called James. I wondered if this could be one of the James'?

Having easy access to the 1881 Census, I had a look at the entry for Craighead and found that a James Shaw was farming there still. He was too young to be either of the '1841' James' though.

Primarily my interest is, of course, with the Joseph line. I already knew that he had moved away with Agnes Waugh to Stand and thence to Carrickstone, Cumbernauld, so I hadn't been too bothered with Craighead. However seeing as there appeared to have been some forty years of Shaws at Craighead I thought I would pursue the link a bit further.

Back to the 1851 Census. Father James and his Wife Agnes are still there and so are two James', but now we have relationships. The elder James is the son but the younger James is given as a nephew! So much for the grandson theory.

Try the 1861 Census. Seem to find the wrong James - this one lives in Main Street. Try for another and we have a 'day labourer' out at Crowbank. Craighead is nearby so back off a page and yes there it is. No James but there is a widow Agnes. Worth checking for a marriage? Success! Just in time to catch the statutory registration in 1855 and with a bonus that the birth dates are given for both parties so we know that this James was born 18 June 1812. There aren't any young children listed on the 1861 Census so it looks like the 1881 James Shaw tenant must come from another line.

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