Friday, 20 May 2011

Napier witnesses: John Macdonald (Knockaird)

John Macdonald was the witness from Knockaird in Ness, giving evidence to Lord Napier's Commission on 7 June 1883. He is 54 years of age at the time of the 1881 census, and is married to Catherine (52). The couple live at 3 Knockaird with thier children Donald (24), John (17), Malcolm (13) and Angus (21). A decade earlier, we find the family at the same location.

In 1861, John (then 31) is a cod & ling fisherman, living with his brother Murdoch (28), sisters Mary (22) and Isabella (19). Also present is his wife Catherine and the first three of their children Donald (5), Angus (2) and John (2 months). John's father Malcolm (69) is living with them as well.

The 1851 census shows John Macdonald (22) living at Knockaird with his father Malcolm (60) and siblings Ann (26), Murdo (16) and Isabella (10).

Moving forward in time, John is living at 17 Knockaird in 1891, marked as a 65-year old retired fisherman. Living with him are his sons John and Malcolm, as well as grandson Angus.

John Macdonald passed away on 17 February 1904, aged 79, having suffered a cerebral haemorrhage with hemiplegia for 2 days. His son John reported the death to the registrar at Borve; he could not write his name. John (senior)'s wife Catherine predeceased him. His parents' names were Malcolm and Isabella.

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