Jane Lindsay

My mother’s mother was Jane Lindsay, born on 2 October 1885 at Knowhead, Menmuir, near Kirriemuir in Forfarshire (Angus) where her father was farm grieve. She was the eldest daughter and second child of James Lindsay and Eliza Jane Drummond who married in Little Brechin, Angus in 1881. While Jane was a domestic servant, she had a son called Kenneth Lindsay Ormonde who was born on 21 June 1906 at Newton of Inshavan, Tannadice (probably where her parents were living at the time). His father was named as John Ormonde, an ironmonger, living at 69 Dundee Loan, Forfar. Shortly after the birth, Jane moved (probably was sent) away - though how long after and where to is not known - and Kenneth was brought up by his grandparents James and Eliza Lindsay. The 1911 census lists him as Kenneth Ormond, grandson, age 4, born Tannadice living in the household of James Lindsay at Newton of Inshewan, Tannadice.

As noted above, Jean Lindsay and Herbert George Taylor married on 8 August 1912 at St George, Hanover Square, London and they had two children: Dorothy Jean, born 15 August 1920 in Rotherham, Yorkshire and Aileen, born 29 September 1922, also in Rotherham.

Dorothy married James Walter Mallin (1913-1959) in 1940 and they had two children: Jean Lindsay (born 1942-2018) and and Stewart (born 1949). Dorothy later married James Marshall (1911-1991) and had two children: Charles (1960-1997) and Angus (born 1963). Dorothy died on 30 July 2022 in Oxford, just a week or so before her 102nd birthday.

Aileen married David Raitt (1915-2000) on 11 December 1943 at Sulhampstead Abbots, Berkshire and they had two sons: David Ian (born 1944) and Stephen Andrew (born 1950). Aileen died in North Devon on 15 March 2016, aged nearly 94.


In the 1891 census for Airlie, Angus, Jane, aged 6, and at school (scholar), is living at Braidestone Cottage with her family: father James Lindsay, head, 32, farm servant, born Tannadice, Angus; mother Eliza J., 31, born Brechin, Angus; and siblings John, 8, scholar, born Tannadice; Eliza, 5, born Fearn; James, 3, born Eassie; and Stewart, 1, born Eassie.

In the 1901 census Jeannie Lindsay, aged 16, born Menmuir, is a general servant (domestic), living at Denmill Farm House, Kirriemuir, with her uncle David Rough, 59, farmer, born Forfar, Angus and his daughter Jeannie Rough, 24, born Tannadice (Jane’s cousin and friend, who died, a spinster, in 1968 in Kirriemuir, aged 93). Also in the 1901 census for 53 Marloes Rd, Kensington is Henry M. Raeburn, 40, born Scotland, artist; wife Isabela, 39 (London) and daughter Rita, 14 (1887, London).

In the 1911 census for 51 Gower St, London Jean Lindsay, general domestic servant, single, aged 25, born Kirriemuir, is in the household of Henry Macbeth Raeburn, head, married, aged 50, artist painter, born 1851 in London Helensburg NOS resident; his wife Elizabeth Macbeth Raeburn, aged 49, married 26 years, born London; and daughter Rita Macbeth Raeburn, single, age 24, artist painter, born London.


The tree below show the ancestors of my grandmother, Jane Lindsay.

When my maternal grandparents lived at Sulhamstead, Jean became friendly with the lady’s maid (called Mademoiselle) of Lady Hood, wife of Admiral Lord Hood (after whom the battleship was named). Lady Hood, and her companion Miss Mona Power, took a liking to Jane and she accompanied them on several trips to Le Touquet, France and then to Washington and New York in 1948. She sailed over on the Queen Elizabeth, stayed for three months, and sailed back on 9 December. In her letters home she marvelled at the yellow taxis, the skyscrapers and the quantities of food that were available. I hope to transcribe some of these.

Jean Taylor, aged 63, is registered aboard the Queen Elizabeth, travelling First Class, departing Southampton on 16 September 1948 and arriving at the port of New York on 21 September 1948. Her luggage consisted of one trunk (T), one suitcase (SC) and one other (HP). Her travel document was number V. 397338 (British nationality) and a head tax had been collected from her. Her destination in New York City was 35, W. 54th Street. The same address was given for Mona Power, who travelled with her. Mona, aged 60, had the same travel document number and one trunk and four suitcase. However, Lady Ellen Hood, aged 76, also travelling on the same ship, gave as her destination c/o Post Office Square, 10, Boston, Mass. (this was the address of her Fiscal Agent, Fiduciary Trust Co.) Lady Hood had four trunks, seven suitcases and 5 HPs!

Interestingly, the list of alien passengers embarked at Southampton on 16 September under contract ticket number W. 43249 has the three passengers, however, whereas Ellen Hood and Mona Power’s names are typed, the name of Jean Taylor is written in pencil over another name that is crossed out (it appears to be L. Jahta) - whether this means that this person (occupation given as a maid, age 29 - was this Mademoiselle?) was supposed to be travelling with Lady Hood and Mona Power originally and Jean Taylor took her place is open to conjecture. In any event, the last address in the UK before travelling for all three was the Ritz Hotel, London.

Jean Lindsay, age 63, travel document V.397338, returned to the UK, apparently alone, aboard the Queen Mary - sailing from New York to Southampton on 9 December 1948. I am unable yet to find the date and details of her arrival in England. And my grandmother brought me a little miniature model of the Queen Mary which sadly I no longer have. Lady Ellen Hood and Mona Power travelled back together from New York to Southampton aboard the Queen Mary on 14 September 1949. Lady Hood travelled in fist class - her age was given as 77 and her proposed address was the Hyde Park Hotel in London. Mona Power's age was given as 61 and her travel document number this time was RP. A7136976. Her destination was not recorded.

In her early twenties Jane (always later known as Jean) moved to England, for in August 1910 she seems to have been living at Inglenook, Laleham, Staines - the home of Rita Macbeth Raeburn, the daughter of Scottish and Royal Academy painter Henry Macbeth-Raeburn (1860-1947). His father Norman Macbeth (1821-1888) was also a painter as was his brother Robert Walter Macbeth (1848-1910) and daughter Marjorie May Macbeth Raeburn (1902-1988). Jean was most likely a domestic servant, though how she found the position with the Raeburns is not known and how and when she made her way to London is also not known. Since Rita and Jean seem to have remained friends all their lives, it is worth exploring Rita and her family a little more for the light that it sheds on Jean’s own life since she herself spoke very little about it.

Rita Lyne Macbeth Raeburn was nearly the same age as Jean, having been born on 4 February 1887 in Marylebone, London (baptized in Paddington on 5 February). Her father, Henry, had been born in Helensburgh, Dunbartonshire on 24 September 1860 (died in 1947 in Great Yarmouth, aged 87) and her mother Isabella Elizabeth McOscar had been born in 1862, also in London (died in 1929 in Newbury, Berkshire, aged 67). The couple married in Hampstead, London on 24 April 1884. At home with his parents in Rothesay, Buteshire in 1861, the family moved to Edinburgh for Henry is at school there in 1871 and an art student at the Academy there in 1881. Presumably after graduation he moved to London and reversed his birth name of Henry Raeburn Macbeth to Henry Macbeth Raeburn perhaps to differentiate himself from the other painters in the family. In the 1901 census for 53 Marloes Rd, Kensington there is Henry M. Raeburn, 40, born Scotland, artist; wife Isabella, 39 (London); daughter Rita, 14 (1887, London); and Frances McOscar, widow aged 70, born Thame, Oxfordshire (this is the mother of Isabella).

In early 1911 the Raeburn family, including Jane, moved to 51 Gower Street, Bedford Square, St Giles, London. In the 1911 census for 51 Gower St, London, Jean Lindsay, general domestic servant, single, aged 25, born Kirriemuir, is in the household of Henry Macbeth Raeburn, head, married, aged 50, artist painter, born 1861 in Helensburgh, Dumbarton; his wife Elizabeth Macbeth Raeburn, aged 49, married 26 years, born London; and daughter Rita Macbeth Raeburn, single, age 24, artist painter, born London.

Whilst in London, Jean was courted by husband-to-be Herbert George Taylor - a soldier in the Grenadier Guards whom she had met whilst he was on sentry duty. On 8 August 1912 at St George, Hanover Square, London, when Jean married Herbert (resplendent in his Grenadier Guards uniform), it was Rita who organized the wedding. She hunted high and low across London for a bouquet of red roses, but in the end had to settle for white. Rita, herself, married Archibald James Campbell-Cooper, in the second quarter of 1916 in Paddington, London.

Rita’s husband Archibald had been born on 31 August 1889 in Odiham, Hampshire - his father dying before he was born - and he later added the Campbell element to his name, it being his mother’s maiden name. Brought up on a farm, he gravitated to poultry farming in Kent before having his own farm in Greenford, Middlesex. Around 1924, Archie decided to become a registered architect and surveyor. Rita’s parents, Henry and Isabella had moved from London to Newbury, Berkshire by 1925, and in that year Rita and Archie moved in with them at Wentworth House on Stroud Green. By 1930, Archibald had a thriving architectural practice and he remained living with Rita and his in-laws at Wentworth House until about 1936, before he and Rita moved to Headley, outside Newbury. Rita died there on 11 June 1960, aged 73, (interestingly her great friend Jean (Lindsay) Taylor also died in 1960 on 20 November, aged 75), while Archie died in Newbury in 1967 aged 78.

After their marriage and Herbert's return to civvy life, Jean and her husband moved to Rotherham in Yorkshire in 1912 (where their two daughters were later born); however, when Herbert was called up from the Reserve in 1914 and sent to Caterham Barracks in Surrey, it is assumed that Jean went too - though it is not clear where she lived. She may have remained living in the Raeburn household or she may have lived in married quarters in the barracks. During the 1st World War, Jean and Rita used to go to musicals and were present at the performance of Harry Lauder when he got news that his only son, John, a captain in the 8th Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders had been killed in action at Poiziers, France on 28 Dec 1916. Harry kept on singing with tears streaming down his face. He wrote the song Keep Right on to the End of the Road shortly thereafter in memory.

The two sister ships Queen Elizabeth and Queen Mary both had an interesting history. Operated by the Cunard White Star Line, the Queen Elizabeth was the largest passenger luxury liner ever built at the time and provided luxury liner (and mail) services between Southampton and New York via Cherbourg in France. The vessel first entered service as a troop carrier in 1940 and only started her intended role as an ocean liner in 1946. With the decline in transatlantic liner transportation in favour of aeroplanes, the Queen Elizabeth was sold in 1968, initially as a tourist attraction in Port Everglades, Floria, but later she was to be converted into a floating university in Hong Kong. A spectacular inferno engulfed the ship in 1972 and she was completely destroyed, the hulk being dismantled for scrap in 1974-5 - though not before the charred wreck featured in the 1974 James Bond film, The Man with the Golden Gun. The Queen Mary commenced an express service between Southampton, Cherbourg and New York in 1936 and continued until 1967 before being retired. She was converted into a troop ship for the duration of the 2nd World War. Upon her retirement from service, she sailed to Long Beach, California where she remains permanently moored as a tourist attraction, restaurant and hotel. I visited her some years back and it was really quite emotional to walk along the decks and gangways and see the preserved cabins in the knowledge that my grandmother had walked those very same decks.

After a couple of years in London,  In the 1921 census the family is living at 2 Clifton Grove, Rotherham. In the household is Herbert George Taylor, age 36 years 6 months, born Bidford, Warwickshire, occupied as a police constable employed by Rotherham County Borough Police; wife Jean, age 35 years, 4 months, born Menmuir, Forfarshire, doing home duties; daughter Dorothy Jean Taylor, age 10 months (alive), born Rotherham, Yorks; and Albert Lindsay, brother-in-law (younger Jean’s brother), single, age 19, born Inshavan, Forfarshire, working as a metal turner employed by A. T. Green & Sons, Engineers, Iron & Brass Founders in Northfield Rotherham. Also in the household are two boarders: Arthur Ladlam Widdowson, single, age 28 years, 6 months, born Rotherham, out of work, but employer given as Messrs Steel, Perch and Toyer (steel makers) in Ickles, Rotherham; and Victor Peal Widdowson, single, age 22 years, 4 months, born Rotherham, employed as a draughtsman with Messrs Guest & Chrimes Ld. (Brass Founders etc) in Rotherham.

The family left Yorkshire in 1938, following an accident which left Herbert unable to work for a time. (See HG Taylor page) Herbert took up a position as butler to Captain and Mrs Charles at Buscot in Bradfield in 1938. His wife Jean was housekeeper. The census taken right at the start of the 2nd World War in 1939 reveals that in the Charley household at Buscottage, Bradfield, Berkshire there was Herbert G. Taylor, born 22 March 1887, married, occupation butler; Edith L. Charley, born 8 Jan 1868, married; Margaret I. Vaughan, born 27 Aug 1862, widowed; Joan Taylor, born 2 Oct 1885, married, housekeeper; and a currently closed entry which is possibly Herbert and Jean's youngest daughter Aileen, 17.

In the same 1939 census, living at White Heather, Headley, Hampshire, we find Archibald J. Campbell-Cooper, born 31 August 1889, Registered Architect and Surveyor; wife Rita, born 4 February 1887, doing unpaid domestic duties; Freda M. Gotelee (Gubbins), born 15 September 1913, elementary school teacher, single; and the eldest daughter of Herbert and Jean Taylor, Dorothy J. Mallin (Taylor), born 15 August 1920, in domestic service, single. It is interesting to note that Dorothy’s name Taylor is crossed out and Mallin inserted. She did not marry Walter Mallin until 1940.  Walter appears in the 1939 census living at Upper Knightsbridge, Headley - born on 25 April 1913, single and a dispatch clerk. Also in the household is his widowed mother Amy G. Mallin, born 18 September 1889; and his brother William L. Mallin, born 18 December 1912, single, an Army RASC Driver Mechanic, No. 11 Motor Ambulance Convoy. (The birth date for William is obviously incorrect, it should be 1911).

The whole family - Herbert, wife Jean, daughters Dorothy and Aileen and their husbands, and two grandchildren (Lindsay and David) lived at 3 Brewery Cottages, Bottom Lane, Sulhamstead, Berkshire towards the end of the war. The row of houses belonged to the Berkshire Constabulary at the time and were initially used to house those attending the nearby police college.

Jean had obviously kept in touch with her friend Rita Raeburn, who had moved to Newbury in 1925 to live with her parents and architect husband, Archibald James Campbell-Cooper. Rita found Herbert and Jean the job of looking after old retired ladies in a home built by Archibald, in Donnington, near Newbury. Herbert and Jean had their own house on the site and remained there for some seven years.  Donnington Hospital Almshouses, Groombridge Place, Donnington.

Herbert and Jean then moved to Selborne, Hampshire - where Gilbert White, the famous naturalist was active in the eighteenth century - and where Herbert became Head Gardener at the estate nursery in Selborne with its tall rows of hops. In the 1950s, Herbert was Estate Manager at Padworth House, Berkshire, a Grade II listed building owned by Lady, Countess of Bandon. When he retired Herbert and Jean moved to a bungalow in the new estate of Stephens Firs, Mortimer, Berkshire very close to where daughter Aileen and her family lived.

Although not strictly relevant, though because my grandparents, mother and aunt were clearly well-known to Lady Hood, it was interesting to discover that Ellen Hood was actually an American citizen, born in Burlington, Des Moines, Iowa on 13 February 1872. Her father, Albert Edward Touzalin, was English and her mother Ellen Floyd, was American - from Maryland. She visited the UK as an 18 year old tourist in 1892 (she was at Harvard University in 1802) and having returned to Boston married George Nickerson in 1893 and had a couple of children with him. Later as a widow, she married Horace Lambert Alexander Hood, in Burlington on 19 January 1910. The couple obviously moved to England almost immediately because she became a naturalized British citizen in 1910 and in the 1911 census for Ryde House, Isle of Wight, she is living with her husband Horace Hood, 40, Captain, Royal Navy with her two children from her previous marriage, her infant son Samuel Hood, an Austrian governess/teacher, and no fewer than ten domestic servants (including a footman, a boy, a cook, a children’s maid, a nurse, a kitchen maid, a scullery maid and two housemaids!) Ellen Hood, widow of George Nickerson of Boston, USA and of Rear-Admiral the Hon. Sir H. L. A. Hood, K.C.B., D.S.O., M.V.O. died on 1 October 1850 at the Annex to the Guildford Hotel, Sandwich, Kent. Her last known address in the United States was the Wardman Park Hotel in New York and she had been travelling in Europe since September 1949. The executors of her estate, worth £6221 12s. 9d. were her two sons Viscount [Samuel] Hood and the Honourable Alexander Lambert Hood.