The Last Post Ceremony, Menin Gate, Ieper – Postscript

In my last blog, I wrote about our very emotional attendance at the Last Post Ceremony at the Menin Gate, Ieper.

Menin Gate - West

After viewing the Last Post Ceremony, many of our tour group went to explore Ieper, but Vern and I returned to our hotel to have dinner in the restaurant there. We were ‘seated’ at a small table for two. An elderly couple sat at an equally small adjoining table. We were the only ones sitting in this section of the restaurant.

I had noticed this couple at the Last Post Ceremony at the Menin Gate earlier in the evening. They had been standing in the crowd opposite me. Just as the ceremony ended the woman collapsed. A number of bystanders rushed to her aid and the couple was assisted to a seating area and taken care of by paramedics.

While we were waiting for our meal to be served I plucked up the courage to speak to the couple. I admitted I had seen them at the ceremony and enquired if the woman was feeling better.  The elderly woman couldn’t speak English well, but the gentleman did and spoke on her behalf. He thanked us for our concern and said she had recovered, but needed rest.

Hearing our accent they asked where we from and what had brought us to Ieper. We told him we had come to pay our respects to family members who had died on the battlefields of Europe many years before we were born. During the course of things, my passion for Family History was mentioned once or twice.

 

Over the next hour, we heard much about this couple. They had been born near Ieper between  World Wars I and II and had grown up in the area, but now lived in the south of France.

Their ancestors were from Ieper through several generations, and they loved to return to the city whenever an occasion presented itself.

They told us the Menin Gate and the Last Post Ceremony had been an important part of their lives growing up. Friends and family members always attended the ceremony, whenever they visited the city, in grateful thanks for the great sacrifice made by so many.

We learned that this couple were special guests at an International Dinner at the Great Cloth Hall that evening and the gentleman was to receive an award. Neither were in good health and the lady had become quite frail, but both were determined to return to Ieper for this special dinner.

Iepers - Cloth Hall

They both wanted to attend the Last Post Ceremony, as they had always done when returning to the city.  When the lady’s health deteriorated at the ceremony, the attending doctor suggested she should return to the hotel to rest and not overly stress herself by attending the gala event with her husband. Of course, the gentleman would not leave his wife’s side and so they planned to dine quietly at the hotel restaurant.

We asked if there was anything we could do to assist them in any way. They thanked us for our offer but said the wonderful city officials had taken care of everything for them.

Then the gentleman reached into his evening jacket and retrieved the official guilt edged programme of the  Cloth Hall Dinner and asked us to accept it as a special memento of our meeting and dining together that evening. What a beautiful and generous gift. Although I cannot read it, (I believe it is in Dutch), there is no doubt receiving this is one of my most treasured memories of our Western Front Tour.

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Remembrance Day – Menin Gate

One hundred years ago on the 11th hour of the 11 day of the 11th month, hostilities in Europe came to a close. Today we know the anniversary of this day as Remembrance Day.

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Throughout the world, people pause and remember all those brave soldiers who were involved in World War I, particularly those who died.

Today there will be many special Remembrance services to mark the centenary of this occasion.

However, there is a place where these soldiers are remembered not only once a year, but every day- The Menin Gate.

The Menin Gate Memorial to the Missing is one of four British and Commonwealth memorials to the missing in the battlefields around Ieper in Belgium. Here the names of more than 50,000 soldiers from Britain and the Commonwealth countries who died in the area around Ieper, but who have no known grave, are inscribed in the massive Portland Stone wall panels.

Menin Gate - Western

For more than ninety years every night at 8 pm, the Last Post Ceremony is held in the Menin Gate, by the citizens and visitors in grateful acknowledgment of the sacrifice of so many. Traditionally this ceremony consists of a parade, (with traffic halted), a call to attention, the sounding of the Last Post, the Exhortation, one-minute silence, the Lament, then the laying of wreaths, flags, banners and Standards, and the Reveille. More information about the ceremony can be found at here.

It is very special to witness this daily event and an even greater privilege to take part and lay a wreath.

When we were on our Western Front Tour, Vern and two women in our tour group were asked to lay a wreath in memory of all the Australians who had died in World War I. We all had family members who had lost their lives near Iepers. See my blogs on James Joseph Stapleton and William Sherwood

Most of the wreaths were of red paper poppies, but we had a huge green and gold floral wreath which seem to glow in the half-light of the Memorial on that Summer’s evening.

DSC02996Menin Gate

We arrived at the Menin Gate about six thirty as the crowds began to pour into the memorial arch. We wanted to get into a good position to see the ceremony and to take photographs. By the time the ceremony began at 8 pm we estimated there would have been a crowd of about three thousand people in the memorial and along the streets and roadway outside.

I had positioned myself so I could see Vern and our Aussie companions as they marched forward to place the wreath at the appropriate time. I had read much about the ceremony and what was to take place, but nothing could have prepared me for the rush of emotion when that first bugle note echoed throughout the Memorial. Tears streamed down my face and my hands trembled so much there was no hope of taking any decent photographs. Vern said later he had shivers down his spine too.

For several minutes time seem to stand still. Not a sound could be heard from the huge crowd. Just the bugle and orders shouted by the officers at the appropriate time and then the footsteps of those who marched forward to lay wreaths and finally the stomping of the soldier’s feet as they marched out in formation towards the Town Square.

Several of our tour companions also admitted that the ceremony had had a big emotional impact on them too, as we all walked back to our hotel.

Next morning we rose early and set off in the bright sunshine to visit the Menin Gate again. This time there were no crowds and we were able to visit all the side steps and galleries where the names of the missing are displayed in row after row in hundreds of panels of Portland Stone imported from Britain. The stairways and galleries were covered in hundreds of wreaths of red poppies for the fallen.

Menin Gate - Gallery Stairs

Menin Gate - Memorial Panels

Menin Gate - North side from Ramparts

Our tour guide also explained other features of this incredible memorial.

Lest we forget.

Agnes Willis Cairns and the 4X Great-Granddaughters’ Gift

This year we have three granddaughters who are in Fourth Grade at school. This is the year they are introduced to early European Settlement in Australia, the First Fleet, and the ‘convict era’. They were all given research projects along the way.

They are well aware of their grandmother’s passion, so it was not long before they contacted me for help.

I could tell them they were descended from First Fleeters, Second Fleeters, and various other convicts. In fact, they have at least fifteen ancestors, who came to Australia as convicts.

Once I could show them where they all slotted into our large ‘family tree’ they were ready to research these convict ancestors.

All are very proficient in the use of ‘Google’ and the Internet, so were quickly able to bring to light a lot of information on their convict ancestors, which was a lot of fun for us all.

As part of learning about the convict experience, the girls have been reading fiction stories written about convict children of nine to twelve years of age. Most were convicted of stealing and sentenced to transportation. The stories may be fiction, but they are based on facts and give good details, so the children can understand and relate to the lives of the convict children of the early 19th Century.

We do not have any ‘child’ convicts in our family history, but I was able to tell the girls their 4X Great Grandmother, Agnes Cairns had arrived in Tasmania in 1829 at 10 years of age. That is the same age as the granddaughters are this year. Agnes was a  free person but had traveled half-way around the world on a convict ship, to the small colonial outpost of Hobart. She accompanied her mother, Elizabeth Merry, who was a convict.

 

kilmarnock

from Google Images- 30 August 2018

 

The granddaughters were keen to put Agnes’s name into Google and convict websites. They were so disappointed, as found no records with her name on them, although they did find her mother.

As I could show all the pertinent records from the girls own birth certificates, back through the generations to their 4X Great-Grandmother Agnes Cairns, they could understand where Agnes and her mother Elizabeth fitted into the family tree. They were at a loss of how they could find out about this ancestor. I suggested they write her a letter asking the questions they wanted to know about.

This is the letter.

Dear 4X Great-Grandma Agnes,

We have been learning about children in the early 19th Century.

Our grandmother has told us you came to Tasmania when you were ten years old. The same age as we are now. She said your mother was a convict.

Can you please write and tell us where you lived in Scotland?

Did you have any brothers or sisters?

How did you come to Australia?

What was it like living in Hobart when you first arrived?

Where did you and your mother live and what did you eat?

When and where did you marry?

Where did you live with your sixteen children? You must have had a very large house.

Lots of love

From your 4X Great-Granddaughters……Mary, Jane, and Ann (not their real names)

TAS-HobartTown-VanDiemensLand-J-F-Tallis

From Google Images – 30 August 2018

 

Now that will be an interesting history project for one devoted grandmother.

My plan is to write Agnes’s story in about fifty pages, answering in some detail the questions about where and how she lived, from her birth in Kilmarnock, Scotland to her death in Victoria, Australia, aged 89 years. There are no known pictures of Agnes, but I will add appropriate illustrations where I can.

Yes, the girls do know that their 4X Great-Grandmother is dead, and they know it will be their own grandmother, who will research and write the story. But, can you imagine how exciting it will be for these girls to get a ‘personal’ reply from an ancestor? Wouldn’t we all love and treasure such a gift, no matter how old we are? Wouldn’t it be a possession we would keep and pass down to our children and then down the line, keeping our Family History alive for the generations to come?

Framing History-John McArthur, Officer in the British Marines

In 1745 an attempt was made by Charles Edward Stuart, also known as ‘Bonnie Prince Charlie’ to regain the British throne for the exiled house of Stuart of Scotland.

At this time most of the British Army was on the European Continent involved in what was termed the ‘Austrian Succession’.

Making the most of this opportunity, Bonnie Prince Charlie sailed from France for Scotland where he was supported by several highland clans. They were known as the ‘Jacobites’. Under the Stuart banner, they marched south claiming victory at Preston near Edinburgh. Now bold with success, they continued marching southwards over the border into England. They were stopped at Derby when some of the British Army was hurriedly recalled from Europe to defend the realm.

The Jacobites retreated north to Inverness where the British Army caught up with them on the moors of Culloden. Here the Jacobites were defeated with Bonnie Prince Charlie fleeing back to France.

It has been claimed that members of the McArthur family were part of the Jacobite army. Several family members were killed including five out of a family of six brothers. The sixth brother, reportedly one Alexander McArthur returned home to the highlands. Fearing retribution he and his young wife, Catherine, along with several other family members sailed for the Americas.

After a few years, Alexander and Catherine McArthur returned to England. We believe they were involved in the cloth trade in Kent, and there a son was born on 12 January 1752. He was named James, possibly for his Paternal Grandfather, and was baptized 20 January in the Independent Chapel in Canterbury.

We lose sight of the McArthur family for some years but believe they had a large family of both sons and daughters. They possibly remained in the cloth trade and moved around England as the industrial revolution brought big changes in this trade in particular. Their children are believed to have been baptized in some of the many dissenting Presbyterian Churches scattered throughout England.

In the mid-1760’s we know the McArthur family settled in Stoke Dameral a parish of the Plymouth area in Devon. Here they opened drapery business.  Another son was born in August 1767. There were no Presbyterian Chapels in Stoke Dameral and this son was baptized on 3 September in the parish church of St Andrews. He was named John.

Stoke Dameral Church, Plymouth, Devon, England2

St Andrews, Stoke Dameral, Plymouth, Devon

Two years later another son was born and was baptized in the same church on 27 August 1770. He was given the name William. Sadly he died as an infant and was buried on 24 November 1772.

John was now the youngest surviving son in the family.

John was only ten years of age when his mother Catherine died and was buried in the churchyard on 31 August 1777.

John had a good education, and keeping in mind subsequent events, it would appear he may have attended Plympton Grammar School. This now very famous school was founded from the bequest of Elize Hele, a local landowner and attorney who had been Treasurer to King James I. In his Will, he left all his estate and money for pious uses. His executors built three schools. One at Plympton and two in Exeter. Although it began as a ‘charity’ school the Plympton school had an excellent reputation for scholarship, and many wealthy Devon and Cornwall landed families sent their sons there.

Plympton is not far from Stoke Dameral, and it is highly likely that John spent his early years of education here as he later ‘toyed with the idea of studying law’, which would have necessitated a good grounding in Latin and the Classics. John’s older brother James, and Evan and Nicholas Nepean sons of Nicholas Nepean of Saltash, Cornwall, are also believed to have attended this reputable school.

John would have left school about aged 14 years. He could have joined his father as an apprentice in the cloth trade, but it is believed John would have none of that. Then his father suggested he should join the Navy or the Marines as a career serviceman. It is believed some of his brothers had already joined the Navy and Marines.

In the Navy, you needed to begin at the bottom and spend many years at sea to earn your way up the promotion ladder and to sit for an extensive examination before you could become a commissioned officer.

However, in the Marines, you could purchase officer positions for a sum of money. John’s father was able to purchase him an Ensign’s commission in the Marines in 1782. He was mustered into Fish’s Corps destined for the American Colonies. They were housed at the newly built Stonehouse Barracks. However, the War of Independence came to an end soon afterward and the newly founded Corps were not needed and disbanded. The officers were put on half-pay and the lower ranks turned out to find their own employment. Several senior officers of this Corps were also from Devon and Cornwall landed gentry and returned to their estates when the corps was disbanded.

John was at a loose end. A few weeks later an incident happened in the streets of Plymouth that set the town’s people against the Marines. A riot erupted between the Town’s Guard (Town Constable and his men), and a party of the 36th Regiment who were stationed at the Stonehouse barracks. It was quelled with the assistance of other marines, but the town’s folk were concerned.

Although not mentioned by name, oral family history suggests that one of John’s senior officers was a landowner at Holsworthy and when the Corps was disbanded he returned to his estates at Holsworthy and took young John with him. John was there several years and learned about running an estate. He is said to have been an excellent horseman and rode with the hounds frequently.

There is little doubt the family hoped John would make a good match with the daughter of landed gentry to improve his social position and financial prospects, as his older brother, James had done. One of the landed families in Holsworthy were the Kingdon family who was to play a part in John’s life. There were also a number of Linen Drapers who would have been known to John’s family, and two landed attorney’s in the parish who may also have been interested in John clerking for them.

In 1887 John McArthur was employed as a tutor in the Grammar School where Thomas Hockin, the son of the Rev John Kingdon, Vicar of Bridgerule, was being educated. John was invited to visit the Kingdon family at Bridgerule. It was there he met Elizabeth Veale.

To improve his career prospects  John applied to be reinstated as an Ensign in the Marines in a regiment on deployment. The problem was that this was difficult as Britain was at peace and officer positions in the Marines were more difficult to find placement. He was finally granted an Ensign’s position in the 68th Regiment in April 1788 and returned to Full Pay. At the time this regiment was stationed at Gibraltar and John McArthur was expected to join his regiment immediately. However, he took personal leave and remained in Devon to pay court to Elizabeth Veale.

 

 

Framing History- Elizabeth McArthur, Descendant of Devonshire Landed Gentry-3.

Here we continue the story of Elizabeth Veale, born 1766, and a descendant of Devonshire Gentry. She later married John McArthur and emigrated to Australia on the Second Fleet in 1790.

Elizabeth Veale was about 12 years of age when her mother remarried and moved away from Bridgerule.

It is believed that it was at this time, she moved into the household of the Rev John Kingdon. Although John and Jane Kingdon had several sons, they only had one daughter at this time.

The Rev John Kingdon was also from a landed family of Holsworthy. He was born in 1735, the eldest son of  Roger and Judith Kingdon. He began his education at Holsworthy and later is believed to have attended a Grammar School in Exeter, before going to Exeter College, at Oxford University. In later years, he was well known for his great scholarship.

John Kingdon was appointed Vicar of Bridgerule in 1765 but lived at nearby Holsworthy.

On 25 June 1766, the Rev John Kingdon married, Jane Hockin, of Okehampton, Devonshire.

Bridget Kingdon, their eldest child was born at Holsworthy in 1767 and was baptized there on 21 July.  The family moved into the Bridgerule vicarage, known as East Park, soon afterward. All their subsequent children were born there and baptized at St Bridget’s.

Elizabeth Veale had grown up in the village with Bridget Kingdon, and she was welcomed into the household as a suitable companion.

St_Bridget's_Church_-_geograph.org.uk_-_253382

St Bridget’s Bridgerule, Devon

John Kingdon also believed that girls should be well educated to run the family estates, while their husbands were absent, and so privately tutored his daughter, Bridget, and Elizabeth Veale. Not only to read and write well but also to study literature and sciences. She lived there several years before returning to the Hatherly home.

John Hatherly, Elizabeth Veale’s grandfather is known to have doted on his granddaughter and was preparing her for a ‘good’ marriage. Although Lodgeworthy in Bridgerule, was now in the hands of Edmund Leach, it had prospered and was intended for Elizabeth Veale’s dowry. Life was good on those Devonshire farms as Elizabeth Veale grew into womanhood.

Meanwhile down in Stoke Climsland, Edmund and Grace Leach had also prospered and they had had a daughter, Mary Isabella. She had been born in late 1780 and was baptized at All Saints Parish Church, Stoke Climsland on 14 January 1781.

However, when the American War of Independence ended in 1782, it changed life everywhere including those farming communities in Devon. Depression hit Britain quickly and severely with few markets, failing crops and increasing population by migration and immigration. Over the next five years disaster was to slowly engulf many families in that part of the country.

The result was that Edmund Leach gradually sank into bankruptcy, and had to sell all his property, including Lodgeworthy at Bridgerule, leaving Elizabeth Veale without any means for a dowry.

Elizabeth’s mother, Grace Leach, along with her youngest daughter Mary Isabella, returned to her father, John Hatherly’s home at Bridgerule, on the death of her mother, Grace Hatherly, in 1785. Her husband Edmund Leach remained at Stoke Climsland, where he died a pauper and was buried in All Saints Churchyard on 1 April 1791. His grave is unmarked.

In 1787, Elizabeth Veale was just 21 years of age when she met the dashing John McArthur. He was a tutor at the school where the young Thomas Hockin, a son of the Rev John and Jane Kingdon, was a pupil. He was invited by Thomas’s parents, to visit them at the Bridgerule vicarage. Thomas’s sister, Bridget was a close friend of Elizabeth Veale, and she too was invited to the vicarage to meet the charming young man.

Elizabeth Veale married John McArthur the following year at St Bridget’s, Bridgerule. The McArthurs left the parish soon afterward, and within a short time emigrated to the other side of the world.

Bridgerule Parish

Bridgerule, Devon. St Bridget’s on the hill with Vicarage.

In 1792,  shortly before her father’s death, Grace Leach married on 27 March, John Bond, a friend of her father, who had known Grace all her life.  Her father was ill and wanted someone, who could take care of her after he died. He died at Bridgerule and was buried in St Bridget’s Churchyard on 16 August 1792.

Elizabeth McArthur, when she heard her mother had married him, made a comment that leads us to believe that she thought him not socially acceptable, and her mother had married beneath her. Something Elizabeth’s mother thought Elizabeth had done when she married John McArthur.

Elizabeth, by this time, was in New South Wales far away, and no comfort or help to her mother.

Grace Bond’s youngest daughter Mary Isabella Leach, was only eleven years of age when her mother remarried. John Bond died on 16 July 1824 and Grace Bond died 22 June 1836 aged 89 years.

Mary Isabella Leach married Thomas Hacker on 22 January 1801 at Poundstock (Cornwall) and had a family of seven daughters. She later emigrated with some of her children and their families in 1852, to Prince Edward Island, Canada, where she died in 1858.

Framing History- Elizabeth McArthur, Descendant of Devonshire Landed Gentry-2.

Here we continue the story of Elizabeth McArthur, a descendant of Devonshire landed gentry. She later emigrated to Australia in 1790, with her husband, John McArthur, on the Second Fleet.

After their marriage in 1764, Richard and Grace Veale (nee Hatherly) settled on Lodgeworthy Farm, on the edge of the village of Bridgerule in Devonshire.

Elizabeth, their eldest daughter, named for her Paternal Grandmother, was born there on 14 August and baptized at St Bridget’s on 1 October 1766.

When Elizabeth was two years of age her mother had another daughter, who was named Grace, for her Maternal Grandmother. She was baptized at St Bridget’s on 11 May 1769. Unfortunately, she died as an infant and was buried in St Bridget’s Churchyard on 24 January 1772.

A few months later Elizabeth’s father, Richard Veale, died and was buried on 22 May 1772, in the churchyard beside his infant daughter. A (Welsh) slate headstone was erected over their graves and is still in the churchyard today.

Grace Veale was devastated with losing her youngest daughter, and her husband within a few months. However, she had her parents close by. Her father, John Hatherly helped and supported her in every way he could, and she was able to continue farming the land. All the family hopes for continued prosperity lay with Elizabeth, aged about six years of age, at the time. It was imperative that she be educated, and make a suitable marriage for the support of her mother, and aged grandparents, and to safeguard the family land and social position.

St_Bridget's_Church_-_geograph.org.uk_-_253382

St Bridget’s Bridgerule, Devon

Elizabeth remained an only child under the control of her mother and her Maternal Grandfather, John Hatherly. She was educated at the local school, which was under the tutorage of Rev John Kingdon, the Vicar of Bridgerule. He was a renowned scholar and a Fellow of Exeter College, Oxford.

Both boys and girls were educated to read, write and other useful subjects such as basic mathematics and science.

The boys were expected to carry on farming on the family property or enter the Navy, Marines or even the Anglican Church. The girls were expected to be able to overseer those properties when their husbands, fathers or brothers were absent for any reason.

The ‘union’ of families was often arranged by parents and announced to the community by the calling of Banns on three consecutive Sundays before the wedding.

The Hardwick Marriage Act of 1754 was an Act of Parliament, which arose out of concern, of abuse of Marriage Licenses. This had become a major problem, particularly in large cities. Not so much in rural areas, where a Marriage Licence was obtained, in the rare case of a bride marrying outside the parish, or the groom was from a distant parish. The groom was expected to purchase the Licence from the local Bishop along with supplying the necessary fee and bondsman.

The matter of a Marriage Licence was so rare in the parish of Bridgerule that in the period of the fifty years after the Marriage Act came into force (1754-1804), when 132 marriages were entered in the specially printed parish register, there were only twelve marriages by Licence.

The first was in 1759, the second in 1774 and the third in 1778. This was the marriage of  Grace Veale (Elizabeth Veale’s widowed mother), when she consented to marry, Edmund Leach, a widower of Stoke Climsland. This was a parish several miles away on the Cornish-Devon boarder. He also had land and was a successful farmer, especially since England was at war with the American Colonies.

Stoke Climsland,Cornwall

All Saints, Stoke Climsland, Cornwall

The laws at the time stated that when a woman married, all her property became the property of her husband. So in 1778 Grace Leach moved to Stoke Climsland. Her new husband already had a family, and John Hatherly believed it was in Elizabeth’s best interest, that she should remain at Bridgerule, under his supervision.

In my next blog, I continue the story of Elizabeth McArthur (nee Veale).

Framing History- Elizabeth McArthur, Descendant of Devonshire Landed Gentry-1.

Elizabeth Veale, who was to marry John McArthur, of later Australian Wool Industry fame, was born on 14 August 1766. She was the eldest daughter of Richard and Grace Veale (nee Hatherly) of Bridgerule. It is a small rural parish in north-west Devon with mixed farming of sheep, cattle, and cropping. At this time, there were about fifty families in the parish.

The Veale family had resided at Bridgerule, from at least the early 17th Century. One Richard Veale died there in 1636 and left a detailed Will.

St Swithun’s Church, Pyworthy, Devon

By the late 17th Century one William Veale was the owner of the family farm. He married on 10 October 1690, Elizabeth Jewell, at the parish church of St Swithin, Pyworthy, a parish adjacent to Bridgerule. Their eldest daughter, Grace was baptized there on 20 September 1691. She is believed to have died as an infant.

St_Bridget's_Church_-_geograph.org.uk_-_253382

St Bridget’s Bridgerule, Devon

The second daughter, Mary was baptized at St Bridget’s, Bridgerule on 28 February 1692. The following children were all baptized at St Bridget’s.

Grace (2),born 1696, died 1718

Martha, born 1699, died 1703

Richard, born 1702, died 1772

Martha(2), born 1706

William, 1709, died 1757

John, 1712, died 1763

Elizabeth Veale, the wife of William Veale, died and was buried on 16 April 1714 in St Bridget’s churchyard.

In the 1721 Devonshire Freehold Land List, William is listed as ‘William Veale, Gentleman.’

His sons Richard, William, and John are believed to have been assisting him on the family farm.

William Veale died and was buried on 21 December 1744.

His son, William Veale died and was buried on 20 June 1757, and son John, on 9 June 1763. Richard Veale was the sole surviving freeholder of the family farm. He is listed in the 1771 Devonshire Freehold List.

Richard Veale was born in Bridgerule, the son of William and Elizabeth Veale. He was baptized at St Bridget’s on 29 April 1702. He grew up on Lodgeworthy Farm. This farm is on the edge of Bridgerule, and the farmhouse is still there today.

He began his education under the Rev William Bayly, long-term rector of Bridgerule. We do not know whether he was also educated at a nearby Grammar School.

The Veale family were considered Upperclass having been on the land for many generations. To protect their land ownership, these families not only married within their class, but many of these marriages were arranged by parents. ‘Romance and love’ were not the driving force of unions. ‘Social position and land’ were considered a family’s most valued commodity.

Richard Veale lost his father and brothers within a few years. He was no longer a young man and needed an heir to protect the family estate.

He married on 8 August 1764, at St Bridgets, Bridgerule, by Banns, Grace Hatherly. She was the youngest daughter of John and Grace Hatherly, also a landed family of Devon and Cornwall.

Grace was born c 1747 and was baptized on 15 April 1747, at Launcells, Cornwall.

Their daughter, Elizabeth Veale was born at Bridgerule in 1766. Her story is continued in following blogs.