Posts Tagged ‘Old Photos’

Mary Robert Lawton

March 15, 2016

Sugar’s cousin Emily has a collection of research about the Lawton and Garrard connection. She loaned me a BOX of stuff. (Should I tell you that she gave me this box a year ago Christmas? Probably not. You might think I’m a slacker, but I’m merely a proCRAFTinator.)

So here we have 4 pages of newspaper articles. The first three are from the same article that wouldn’t fit onto one sheet, which reports her wedding on Thursday, July 14, 1887. The newspaper is The Morning News: Friday, July 15, 1887.

The fourth is her death notice, also from The Morning News: Saturday, October 11, 1902.


Christ Church the Scene of an Interesting Social Event.

Miss Mary Robert Lawton, daughter of Dr. W. S. Lawton, and Col. William Garrard were married at Christ church at 7 o’clock last evening, by Rev. Dr. Strong. The church was brilliantly lighted and decorated with a profusion of flowers and floral ornaments. Some time before the hour for the ceremony the guests began to arrive, and within a few minutes the church was nearly filled with the friends of Miss Lawton and Col. Garrard. The bridal party assembled in the rear of the church, and as the organist began the wedding march — from Tannheuser — the ushers led the way to the altar. Messrs. Thomas Screven and Josehp (sic) Cumming in front, followed by Messrs. A. Minis, Jr., and A. Boyd. Behind them were Misses Emmie Lawton and Maud Thomas, and they were followed at regular intervals of about ten feet by Messrs. Grimes and W. W. Williamson, Misses V. Minis and Gulie Lawton, Messrs. W. Cumming and S. A. Wood, Misses Bessie Martin and LeHardy, Messrs. George W. Owen and R. L. Mercer, Misses L. N. Hill and Ruth Stewart, Messrs. T. P. Ravenel and Edward Lawton. Misses Nannie Stewart and Elise Heyward, Messrs. A.M. Martin, Jr., and H. H. Thomas, Misses Viva Taylor and Clelia Elliott, and Messrs. W. N. Pratt and John S. Schley. Col. Garrard and Miss Lawton came last. As the bridesmaids reached the steps of the choir floor they separated, standing on either side, and the groomsmen continued on and formed a semi-circle around the outer edge of the choir floor. After the bride and groom had reached the altar the bridesmaids followed, and formed another semi-circle between the bridal pair and the groomsmen..Dr. Strong then proceeded with the ceremony, and Dr. Lawton gave away the bride. The ceremony being concluded, Col. and Mrs. Garrard led the way down the aisle, and the bridesmaids and groomsmen followed, the bridesmaids walking with their respective groomsmen instead of together as they entered.

“Midsummer’s Night Dream” was played as the party moved from the church and entered the carriages. The programme was beautifully arranged and successfully carried out. The bride’s dress was of white silk, trimmed with pearls and lace. On her head she wore a wreath of orange blossoms and in her hand she carried a magnificent bouquet of white rosebuds. The bridesmaids were all in white, their dresses being of mull and their sashes of watered silk.

At the residence of the bride’s parents, Dr. and Mrs. W. S. Lawton, on Lafayette square, the reception was held. The parlors were filled with friends and a delightful evening was spent. Many elegant toilets were noticeable. The wedding presents were numerous and exquisite, and many of them very costly. The most beautiful of them all, perhaps, was the punch bowl, waiter and ladle, presented by the Savannah Volunteer Guards. The set is of sterling silver, from original designs of the most elegant and artistic character. The bowl, holding two gallons, stands upon a convoluted base, the graceful outline continuing to its edge, a graceful curve, meeting a frieze four inches wide, the surface of which was worked up by hand into a procession of infant Bacchuses celebrating a vineyard feast. The beautifully turned edge of oxidized silver meets the lining of gold.The waiter has a satin-finished surface and an oxidized silver edge two inches wide, and in the centre is the coat-of-arms of the Guards. The ladle is the crowning piece of artistic work. From the bowl springs a vine, and upon the handle sits Bacchus himself, holding this, his goblet. The gift was made here in Savannah by Theus & Co.

The bride and groom withdrew from the reception at 8:30 o’clock to prepare for their wedding tour. They will be entertained this morning by Col. Garrard’s mother, at a wedding breakfast at her home in Columbus, Ga. Their wedding tour will include Chicago, Denver and other Western cities, and may extend to California. They expect to be absent about four months.



The End Came at an Early Hour This Morning.

Mrs. William Garrard died at 3 o’clock this morning at the Savannah Hospital from the result of an operation, after a lingering illness of eight weeks. The end had been expected for some time, and yesterday all hopes for her recovery were lost, when, in the morning, she began to sink rapidly.

Mrs. Garrard was a daughter of the late Dr. W. S. Lawton, her maiden name being Mary Lawton. Fifteen years ago, in Christ Church, then 22 years of age, she was married to Col. William Garrard. She was a devoted member of Christ Church. She manifested deep interest in patriotic societies, being a daughter of the American Revolution and a Colonial Dame.

Mrs. Garrard was a woman whose lovable disposition made her near and dear to all who knew her. Of sound sense and judgment, and possessing great energy, she won friends by her true heartedness and genial disposition wherever she moved. She was generally loved by all who knew her, and her death is a sad shock to the entire community.

Mrs. Garrard leaves a husband and four children. She also has living a brother, Capt. Ed. Lawton, U. S. A., who is at present detailed to military duty at one of the military schools in Pennsylvania, and two sisters, Mrs. Thomas Screven and Mrs. Carrington Reed of Nashville.


Mary Lawton – 20 years old. Most probably taken about 1885. Photo courtesy of Sugar’s Gold Mine in the Closet


The Gold Mine in the Closet: the Charleston Tornadoes of 1938

October 21, 2015

Sugar has a gold mine in the closet. He started pulling out nuggets a year ago to share with me. He knew that I’d share them with you out in the big world. 

His parents lived in Charleston during the 1930s. The subject of this particular nugget is 1938 when they lived in a place called The Confederate Home. There’s a good bit about the Home out there on the Internet. Apparently it began as one thing and became another, as in a home for widows and children of Confederate soldiers, and became apartments in later years. 

At any rate, Sugar’s Mom and Dad lived there, and had retired for the night when they heard a noise that they described like a freight  train that tore the roof off the building. 

Sugar’s father was a shutterbug with the Kodak Brownie, and they went about the next day to see the sights. 


This was most probably made from the porch of the Confederate Home. There’s St. Michael’s, and to the right is City Hall and a memorial obelisk. Much help was given in identifying these photos by a FaceBook group Charleston History Before 1945.


City Hall 1938


The Confederate Home 1938


Confederate Home 1938


Gate in yard after the tornado, 1938


“Our house after storm 1938”


The inscription says “Chalmers” which is a street in Charleston.


Broad Street after storm 1938


The Timrod Hotel, 1938


Washington Park after the storm, 1938


68 Broad Street, Charleston, S.C., after the storm in 1938


From the Sunday morning paper after the storm, 1938.

From the newspaper, Sunday morning, October 2, 1938:

Cleanup Crews Take Out Wrecked Trees in City Hall Park

Rehabilitation work went forward yesterday throughout Charleston, and workmen here are shown moving the last damaged elm tree from Washington Square. This park back of the city hall was wrecked by the tornadoes which struck scattered sections of the city Thursday. The statue of William Pitt, one arm shot off during the Revolutionary war, escaped unharmed. Trees which were not blown down were weakened and had to be removed. In the background is the three-story residence of Daniel Ravenel, Jr., recently renovated, which was damaged slightly. The house to the left, in the yard, lost its roof. (Staff photo by Peck.)


An unidentified photo.


This is Sugar’s father. He thinks this might have been taken at the Confederate Home.

And to close out this series, here’s a photo of Sugar’s father on the porch of the Confederate Home, before the storm. You can see the spire of St. Michael’s, the City Hall, and the obelisk in the background, very faintly. 

He never knew where this photo was taken, just somewhere in Charleston. When he put the photo in with all the other Charleston photos, suddenly he KNEW.


Richard Humphreys Bateson, circa 1938


The Gold Mine in the Closet: A Basinger Boy

February 23, 2015

But which one?

Garnett, Will, Walter, or Tom?



The Gold Mine in the Closet: The House on Duffy Street

February 16, 2015

Sugar and his family lived in a house on Duffy Street until he was about 5 years old.

It was a nice little house in a blue-collar neighborhood.

There are a few random photos that piece together their times at the Duffy Street house.


The back of the house showing the little porch where the boys had lunch.

The back of the house showing the little porch where the boys had lunch.


(Added 1/9/15)



We think that the woman is Garnett “Garnie” Basinger, a first cousin of Sugar’s mother.

scan0018 (4)


This is Sugar’s aunt Betsy.


(Added 1/9/2015)

Having lunch on the back porch.


scan0025 (3)

Easter at the house on Duffy Street.

Easter at the house on Duffy Street.



Are there more photos of Duffy Street?

I hope so.


A Letter to Colin McDonald, July 13, 1967

February 3, 2015

2014-11-20 11.55.14

July 13, 1967

Colin McDonald

Flat 5, “Chevron”

122 Maine Parade


Western Australia

Dear Mr. McDonald:

In reviewing some papers, I ran across a copy

of my letter to you of July 25, 1965, which led me to

wonder if you had ever received the letter. In case

it went astray, another copy is enclosed. It would be

most interesting to hear from you.

I hope this find you in good health.

Very truly yours,

Cousin Douglas

There’s something I love about all this letter-writing back and forth, and maybe you love the same thing. Years went by without reply, yet they kept holding out a little candle in the darkness, that someone, someday, was going to answer them.


A Letter from Colin McDonald, September 12, 1968

February 3, 2015

Can you see that I’ve stopped with the chatty commentary in my haste to get this stuff posted? Because I’m got more old photos and letters waiting in the wings.

The transcription follows, but sadly, this letter is faded in spots so the transcription is likewise spotty. Perhaps you can figure out what some of the missing words are, and you’ll give me a clue.

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2014-11-20 11.54.12


Colin McDonald.

The Bank of Adelaide,

11, Leadenhall Street,

London, E.C.3.

September 12, 1968.

Dear Remote Cousin,

Owing to trouble with

first one eye and then the other (now on the

mend at last) I have never thanked you

for your letter about family history.

After a long period during which he

would not let me read or write at times

my eye doctor in Perth suddenly gave me

the all-clear to travel.

For personal reasons I wanted to come

straight to London and so was not able to

accept your very kind invitation to stay

with you in your home on Long Island.

(?) I am in London I hope to follow

up some of my lines of inquiry into family

history and I shall be glad to let you what

I may be able to find out.

Please do not expect any dramatic results

because I have just turned 69, my eye still

gives me a bit of trouble at times, and I

have a limited amount to spend on research.

Through the good offices of a friend I have

been given a reader’s ticket to the British

Museum and I hope to do some research there

into my period in China.

I must apologize for writing this letter

by hand; my typewriter has not yet been

unpacked! Don’t hesitate to type or dictate

if you wish to reply.

For a long time I have been hoping to

send you notes on the material I have in

hand and will try to do this if only in tentative

form as my eye improves.

Since all my families came out to Australia

in sailing ships I have not given up hope of

(?) some (?) in which the

dates and (?)

In the meantime I am enclosing a photo

maybe some of your Bateson relations would

(?) please accept for your (?)

(?) as a token of my (?)

Charles Edward

Bateson about 1872

Yours sincerely,

Colin McDonald




A Letter from Colin McDonald: December 1, 1970

February 1, 2015

A letter from the package of Diamonds in Sugar’s Mailbox…

The transcription follows.

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2014-11-20 11.49.42


G.P.O. BOX B54,
23 2416


c/o Ms. D. Moore,
3 Lindsey Flats,
Jameson Avenue East
Salisbury, Rhodesia.
December 1, 1970.
Dear Cousin Douglas,
Owing to the trouble
with my eyes I have not yet sent you
the promised details about the Batesons
in Australia.
I am now on my way back to
Australia by air by way of South Africa
after visiting England.
At the moment I am staying with
Bateson cousins in Rhodesia and will
be flying down to Johannesburg in a couple
of days’ time to stay with cousins there.
From Johannesburg I fly back to
Australia by way of Mauritius arriving
at Perth on Friday December 11.
On my arrival in Salisbury I
received a letter from cousin Walter
in Ontario asking for details about
the Batesons in Africa and Australia.
After my visit to Johannesburg I
shall be able to tell you both more about
the Batesons in both places.
It may take a little time to collate
all the facts but I shall let you have
them as soon as I can.
When I get home I shall also let
you have a note on the Batesons past
and present in Australia.
In the meantime as I have told
Walter I am being kept pretty busy – at 41 years
of age! – seeing the varied sights of Africa!
The most magnificent sight of all
of course has been the truly wonderful
Victoria Falls.
With best wishes to you and
your family for Christmas and the
New Year.
Yours sincerely,
Colin McDonald
Colin McDonald.
Please address letters to me at the
Weld Club where I now live
when I am in Perth.


A Letter to Colin McDonald: July 25, 1965

February 1, 2015

Another letter from the package of letters and items that Sugar received from his cousin.

The transcription follows. Make a cup of tea and sit down.

The transcription errors are mine, and mine alone. I usually post a transcription after review and correction, but on this one, I keep finding errors on my part. Note to self: Do not transcribe while talking to Sugar on the phone.

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2014-11-20 11.44.12

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2014-11-20 11.47.30


July 25, 1965

Mr. Colin McDonald

122 Marine Parade


Western Australia

Dear. Mr. McDonald:

Mrs. E. Farrar Bateson has shown my mother, Lucinda

Bateson More, your letters of May 12 and June 1. My mother, in

turn, has asked me, as the unofficial ( and I fear inefficient)

family genealogist, to write you, which I do with pleasure.

My grandfather, Charles Edward Bateson, apparently was

not a communicative man and was regrettably uninformative about

his family. Accordingly, I have much less information on the

Bateson family than on the families of my other grandparents.

I will give you below what I know, and hope, in turn, that you

will favor me with some additional information:

Richard H. Bateson:

While having no information, except that he was still

alive in the late 1880’s and that his wife was then dead, I do

have pictures. I also have a picture of a pretty but wistful

young woman which appears to have been taken about a hundred years

ago and may well be his wife, Susannah Wagstaffe. (I note you

spell this Wagstaff. Have you an authoritative source?) Would

you be able to identify the picture? I should be happy to send

you copies of these or any of the other pictures noted below

which would interest you. Getting copies made takes some time,

and, not wishing to delay this letter any longer, I am not sending

any now, but as stated, would be delighted to do so. As to

Richard’s children:

  1. Richard Henry:

I would very much like to have a chart of his descendants

(including yourself) showing dates of birth and death, dates of


marriage, names and dates of birth and death of their spouses,

and any other items of particular interest. Unfortunately, until

hearing from you, we have no facts at all about your grandfather.

  1. Clara Beatrice:

She died about 1925, never having married. I am told

she was very game and was travelling about on then primitive air-

planes and what-not right up to the end. She visited this country

but was resident in England. I have a picture taken about 1878.


  1. Charles Edward:

According to an advertisement received from “Burke’s

Landed Gentry” in 1937, he was from the West Riding of Yorkshire

and came to this country in 1871. I do not know the ship.

He was the first to come over. As you will see below, a brother and

a sister came later. He settled in New Orleans, La., and there

married (June 21, 1877) my grandmother, Mary McLaughlin Stamps

(born March 22, 1861, died on her birthday in 1950). They moved

to St. Louis, Mo. after the birth of their first child. From

there, they moved in the late 1880’s to New Rochelle, N.Y., where

my mother was born in 1889. In the mid 1890’s, they moved to

New York City and remained there. He died June 13, 1918 and is

buried in Tarrytown, N.Y. next to his wife, three of their children

and one grandchild. As to their children and descendants, please

refer to the enclosed page of a chart I prepared some years ago,

and which I have updated as legibly as I can. The remainder of

the chart related to the family of Mary McLaughlin Stamps and

presumably would be of scant interest to you. It is this kind of

chart which I would like to prepare for the Bateson family, given

sufficient information. I have pictures of Charles Edward Bateson,

mostly in later life. He was quite successful, with reverses, in

the textile business.

  1. Florence Amelia:

She married Francis Humphreys and had three children:

Dorothy (I think the oldest), Francis and Brian. I have no informa-

tion on Francis (“Frank”) or Brian, except that Francis was the

older. I have a picture of Brian as an English Army officer in

  1. Dorothy (“Dolly”) married John Talbot, an English Army

officer (who I think became a general), and had two pretty daughters,


Althea and Vivian. Shortly after World War I, the Talbots moved

to Vancouver, B. C. with the young girls. Vancouver was then

wilderness, and they lived there seemingly as pioneers. My

mother believes they later returned to England. I have pictures

of Florence in 1878 and with her infant granddaughters, and

various portraits and snapshots of Dolly and her family in England

and Vancouver, as well as pictures of the handsome Talbot family

place “Rack Leage” (sp?) in Gloucestershire.

  1. Walter:

My mother thinks he died young. She is not aware that

he married, as indicated in your May 12 letter. Further informa-

tion would be appreciated. He was a great favorite of my gran-

mother, his sister-in-law. I have a picture of him taken in

Leipzig, apparently about 1878.

  1. Susan Ada:

According to my mother, she was an invalid and never

married. She was still alive about 1920, living in England, but

there the trail ceases.

  1. Horace:

Your date of birth is incorrect, as I have it in Horace’s

own handwriting as August 23, 1857. He came to this country

perhaps ten years after Charles Edward Bateson, or about 1880, and

settled in St. Louis, Mo., where he married Sophie H. of that city

(born May 15, 1858). They had issue, but we know little of them.

Relations between the two families were, I am told, quite cool.

I have pictures of Horace at 18 and of him and his wife on his

fiftieth birthday.

8. “Polly” (Correct name and birthday unknown)

She was the youngest of Richard H. Bateson’s children

and was still living about 1918. She married Arthur Widdows

(Widows?), who was dead by about 1918, and had two sons, Manley

and “Jeff”. When last heard of, Manley, the elder, was a lawyer

in Oklahoma City. It seems that Arthur Widdows was at one point

an English Army major. In the late 1890’s they came to this

country and settled in Isle of Pines, Fla. I have a picture of

Polly in about 1878, and picture of her husband and two sons

when the latter were perhaps six to eight years old.


It was over six years ago that I started collecting

family information and trying to put it together, but then a

change in jobs put me off the project, unfortunately before much

was done about the Bateson side. There are, however, sources of

information, aside from you. First, there are, of course, the

Bateson papers mentioned in your June 1 letter. I had not


previously heard of these and would be must interested to know

more of them. It would be particularly interesting to have a

copy of the pedigree you mention. If you could give me the

address of the Society of Genealogist, I might try to get a copy

and make one available to you. The second source is Mrs. John H.

Bateson (Madeline), wife of Col. John (“Jack”) Holgate Bateson,

CMG, DSO, who died in 1956, and was, I believe, a cousin of our

grandfathers. After World War II, William Bateson Gaillard (who

an be located on the enclosed chart) became very interested in

the family and obtained much information from Jack. Sadly, most

of William’s records were prepared when he was in the last stages

of tuberculosis contracted in German prison camp, from which he

died, and his family has been reluctant to release the records

for fear of contamination. His brother, however, has indicated

he has available some of the information, and I am writing him

in this regard. I shall also write Jack’s widow, whose address

is 40 Yew Tree Road, Southborough, Tunbridge Wells, Kent. Any-

thing I learn will be passed on to you.

Since I hope we shall be corresponding further, a word

about myself. You will find me and my wife and children listed

at the very bottom of the enclosed chart. I graduated from

Harvard College in 1947, after a brief tour of duty as an Ensign

in the Pacific, and from Columbia University Law School in 1950.

I am now General Counsel of one of the larger chemical companies

in this country, Hooker Chemical Corporation, the address shown

above being that of the company’s headquarters. My home address,

and the one I suggest using, is 11 Edgehill Road, Glen Cover,

Long Island, N. Y. In recent years my picture-taking has produced

slides, and so I have no prints lying about. I am, however,

enclosing a snapshot taken by my sister’s husband on Thanksgiving

Day in 1963 at my house, howing (in back, left to right) my

sister, Mary Virginia Anstruther; my wife, Pamela; her brother,

Peter Marr; and (in front, left to right) my daughters, Robin and

Alison; and myself. The tartans draped over Robin and my wife

are bolts I had recently obtained in London. You may recognize

them as MacLachlan.


Should you pass through New York again, it would be a

great pleasure to put you up. It is a pity no one was available

when you visited in 1961.

I am sending copies of this letter to my mother and

Mrs. Bateson, to whom you wrote. Like you, I prefer to type

letters, in my case so that they will be legible.

Finally, by way of miscellaneous information, enclosed

is a copy of a 1952 newspaper article regarding the death of

Cmdr. C. H. Lightoller, said to be a cousin of our grandfather,

who was the last surviving officer of the Titanic. I know

nothing more of the relationship.


Cousin Douglas




A Letter to Walter John Bateson, September 8, 1970

January 30, 2015

Sugar received an envelope of letters and photos in his mailbox a few months back. I scanned them and saved them to my computer and to DropBox. I’ve already posted two of the letters, and now I find that the following letter should have been inserted in between the two just published.


Not perfect, I see, but it’ll have to do.

The gentleman that wrote the following letter is the very same person that mailed it to Sugar, 44 years later, along with all the other letters and photos. I’m not publishing his name here.

The transcription follows the images.

2014-11-10 14.19.15

2014-11-10 14.20.16

2014-11-10 14.21.19


11 Edgehill Road

Glen Cove, N.Y.  11542


September 8, 1970

Mr. Walter John Bateson

16 King Street, North,

Alliston, Ontario


Dear Mr. Bateson:

                My aunt-in-law, Mrs. E. Farrar Bateson, has asked me to

reply to your letter of June 23 regarding the Bateson family,

inasmuch as she is a Bateson only by marriage, whereas my mother

(a sister of the late Mr. E. Farrar Bateson) is a Bateson by

birth. Also, I have been interested in the genealogy of the

various branches of my family and seem to be a chief repository

of available information, memorabilia and photographs.

                It is I, not Mrs. Bateson, who has been dilatory in re-

gard to your letter, which she gave me in July. Be assured that

it has been extreme pressure of business and other matters, not

lack of interest, that has delayed me so long in responding.

                As I am writing with but limited time, I think I can

most easily give you all the information I have in the follow-

ing manner:

  1. Enclosed is a copy of a letter dated July 25,

1965 which I wrote to Mr. Colin McDonald, a

Bateson relative in Western Australia, to-

gether with all enclosures to that letter

except the photograph (now sadly out of date)

mentioned at the bottom of page 4. The page

of a chart prepared by me (referred to under

item 3 on page 2) has not been updated to re-

flect changes since mid-1965.


Also enclosed are copies of Mr. McDonald’s let-

ters of May 12 and June 1, 1965 to which my letter

refers, and which I am sure Mr. McDonald would

have no objection to your seeing.


Mr. McDonald has not proved to be a very active

correspondent. It was three years before I heard

from him about my 1965 letter. At that writing,

he was in London, and a copy of his letter, dated

September 12, 1968, is enclosed. I have been

hardly more active than he, and thus have not yet

answered that letter. I shall do so, however,

and shall inquire as to the notes mentioned in

his letter and as to the results of his researches

in England. On the assumption you will have no

objection, I intend also to send him copies of

your letter under reply and of the very useful

materials enclosed therewith.


On the first page of my 1965 letter to Mr. McDonald,

I offered to send him copies of any of the photo-

graphs mentioned in the letter which might inter-

est him particularly. The same offer is extended

to you.


  1. On page 4 of my letter to Mr. McDonald, I stated

that I would try to get some information which

one William Bateson Gaillard (deceased) obtained

from Col. John Holgate Bateson. I did in fact get

in touch with William Bateson Gaillard’s brother,

who produced three sheets of notes headed “Richard

Bateson – Susannah Wagstaff”, “Henry Bateson” and

“Sundry Batesons before 1600”, as well as a two-

page genealogical chart of the descendants of

Henry Bateson, of Cragg Hall, who died in 1671. I

am further enclosing a copy of each of these four



I have not followed up on the subject of the Bateson papers

mentioned by Mr. McDonald in his June 1, 1965 letter; nor did

I ever get around to writing Col. Bateson’s widow, as I told

Mr. McDonald I would. Insofar as I am aware, she is still alive.

I hope you will be more vigorous in following through on these

leads than, thus far, I have been.

                With the enclosures to this letter, you have about all

I know of Bateson genealogy. While lack of time again has pre-

vented my correlating the details of the information in these

enclosures with the carefully prepared and comprehensive enclo-

sures to your letter, it is evident that your information will

add considerably to mine (and that mine to some extent will cor-

rect yours). I am certainly most pleased to have your contri-

butions to my small knowledge of the family.

                Some details about myself are given at the bottom of

page 4 of my 1965 letter to Mr. McDonald. Nothing has changed,

except that the address of Hooker Chemical Corporation’s head-

quarters is now 1515 Summer Street, Stamford, Connecticut 06905.

                I would be delighted to hear from you again and to be of

whatever further assistance I can.

                I am sending Mrs. E. F. Bateson a copy of this letter.

                                Very truly yours,



cc: Mrs. E. F. Bateson

26 East Gate Rd., Lloyd Harbor

Huntington, N. Y. 11743

Mr. Colin McDonald


Diamonds in the Mailbox: A Letter From Walter John Bateson, 18 September, 1970

January 26, 2015

A few months back, Sugar received a packet of family letters and information from a cousin in Connecticut. And even though I haven’t finished with the Gold Mine in the Closet, it’s time for a Diamond from the Mailbox.

(Don’t strain your eyes. The transcription follows the images.)

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2014-11-10 14.15.08

2014-11-10 14.16.10


16 King Street, North,

Alliston, Ontario


18 September, 1970

Dear Cousin Douglas:

I was delighted to receive your letter with the enclosed charts

and correspondence. Due to my enthusiasm with the project of gathering

information on the Bateson family, and contacting relatives; I was

anxious to hear from you. I was not concerned because I was assured by

Mrs. Rosina Bateson that I would be hearing from you in the near future.

No apology required, and I thank you sincerely.

In my second letter to Mrs. Bateson, I enclosed sheets with

information similar to the attached sheets, on your immediate family.

I requested that if she felt so inclined would she attempt to fill in

the necessary information relating to your grandparents (Charles E.),

her husband and herself. I was sure that she would be in a better

position to give dates, places, etc. As I have not heard further from

her, perhaps you can assist in obtaining the information that I requested

from her. I would also appreciate if you would take the time to correct

my mistakes in the attached sheets of your family, add in the missing

information, and return one copy please.

I wrote to Farrar Jr. and Philip Briscoe Bateson. They acknowledged

my letters and will be forwarding similar information on their immediate

families. I, in turn, will complete and compile the information and will

send copies to you and other interested members of the family.

I am also enclosing my latest information on great aunt Florence

Amelia and her family. Florence’s daughter, Dorothy Talbot, age 95,

passed away on the 16th July 1970, in Victoria. She was cremated. I

have been corresponding with our cousin, Althea (Mrs. Hugh Aylmer) who is

Dorothy’s daughter.

I have some more requests to make from you:

(1) Would you please forward to me, Cousin Richard Humphrey’s

address – if available.

(2) Can you obtain more information for me on great uncle Horace’s

family. Did he have sons and daughters? Where are they living?

What are their names? From the chart you sent, there are two

names that are not legible to me. The first, Great uncle

Horace’s wife Sophia H. LAMEROUX. Is that correct? Second,

Great uncle Richard Henry’s son, FREDRICK __________? I

could not make out his second name.

(3) Our great aunt Polly (Mary Jane) who married Arthur Widdows

and had two sons; I believe the father and one of the sons

were lawyers. If this is so, through you Law connections,

perhaps you could attempt to trace their family without too

much difficulty. Hope that you will be able to pursue this



I have a lead on information relating to two of our great-great

uncles who went to the USA from England before the Civil War. Like

yourself, the gentleman is very busy and is unable to devote too much

time to this project; but he informed me that I should be hearing from

him soon.

My daughter, Lynda, went to England for a visit. She left home

on the 3rd Sept and is spending the first couple of weeks in Coventry,

doing volunteer work at Coventry Cathedral. It is an inner city program

and involves youth from all over the world. From there she will visit

friends and relatives, then find work for awhile. She may stay a year.

I hope to have Lynda do some research for me. I would like to confirm

some of the information that we possess. I want to know the birthplace

of our great aunts and uncles; Richard’s family. I saw great aunt Ada

when I was in England in 1940. Aunt Ethel was looking after her at the

time. I am certain that Ada dies in 1940-41 but I am not sure where she

was buried. My father was in England around 1930 and had a picture taken

with great aunt Clara. My sister may have the snap. I may make a trip

to the UK within the year. When in England in 1940, my Aunt Ethel gave

me Farrar Sr.’s and Geoffrey Widdows addresses. Being young and not

interested in genealogy, I did not attempt to write. Now, I regret not

having contacted members of your family because most of the generation

before us have passed on, and so much valuable information that could

have been recorded is lost.

On the 8th July, my wife, we call her Ella (Catherine Isobel) and

I drove to Winstead, Connecticut, to attend the funeral of Mr. Judson

LeGeyt. He was a former member of the General Assembly, State of Conn.,

representative for Barkhamstead County. Time was so short on this

occasion or I would have at least telephoned Mrs. Farrar Bateson Sr. We

were not too far away from your firm’s address in Stamford, as mentioned

in your letter.

My son Walter and daughter Shirley were in England last winter. I

was just getting started in genealogy so could not give them any direction

as to where to look for information on the family. Walter worked and

travelled around England, Scotland, Ireland, Gibralter and Europe. He

came home the end of April and went to work with the Dept. of Lands and

Forests at White River, Ontario. It is over 600 miles from Alliston.

I was up there for a few days on August 1st holiday. He came home a

couple of weeks ago and is getting ready to take off for the West Coast

of Canada, down through the USA to South America, then hopes to fly to

Australia. Last Saturday he went to the Maritimes to visit my Mother

in Dartmouth and his sister Shirley in Escumanic, Quebec. He plans to

return next year and resume his studies. Shirley taught school, and for

two years taught the Eskimos at Pond Inlet, Baffin Island, North West

Territory. She completed a world tour, and arrived home by way of

Vancouver, 8th May. She married the Rev. Ross Routliffe on the 27th

June in Ottawa. I was planning on visiting the newlyweds on our Thanks-

giving weekend, the 12th Oct., but Ella is deeply involved with meetings

at that time, and therefore will have to postpone it until later. The

children have travelled on their own resources without any assistance

from me (the kids).


Colin MacDonald must have been a very sick man between the years

1965-68. In his letter to you he mentioned having eye trouble. I hope

that you are successful in reaching him now.

I would like to know the whereabouts of Liston’s family in South

Africa. As a boy I corresponded with one of the sons, but we do not

possess an address. There were 5 boys and 2 girls, the opposite to my

family. There was Sarrah (Jarrah) Sybil, Seth, Serb, Sewell, Sidney.

I am not sure of all the names. I will have to write to the Registry

Office in Johannesburg, S.A., to try to locate them. Do you have any

suggestions of a quick and sure method of locating these cousins?

In his letters to you, Colin did not amplify on his family. He

did not enlighten you too much. No dates, places, etc. I certainly

wish that he had done so. Colin wrote to my brother Richard, Sardis,

B.C., in 1965. This past May or June Richard wrote to me and said

that Colin wrote to him but that he in turn did not write to Colin

because he misplaced the letter, and when he did find it, was too

embarrassed to write after such a long delay. I wrote to him in June

in care of his Australian address – no response. It appears that the

Batesons are notorious procrastinators when it comes to corresponding

with one another. I am trying to avoid the pitfall, hope that you

will do the same. Poor Colin did not fare too well in 1965. Are there

other relations left in Australia?

At a later date I will accept your kind offer to provide copies

of family pictures. I will make the same offer to you. At present I

do not possess many pictures but with the help of my sister, Dora, will

try to obtain more. She is working on our Mother’s family tree, at the

same time I asked her to do a write up on our Father, so that I can have

it recorded.

One more request before signing off. The sheet of Sundry Batesons

before 1600. If you have time and can make out the writing, would you

mind forwarding a typewritten copy. It will help to make sure that we

have recorded it properly.

Once again I thank you for your assistance; and hope that you will

find the time to correspond at regular intervals. I also hope that one

day we will be able to meet. I expect to have lots of questions to ask,

and you in turn feel free to ask the same from me.

How is your Mother? Is she living near you? I am looking forward

to hearing from you son with the information on you immediate family,

and my questions. In the meantime, my regards to you and your family.


Cousin Walter

The two great uncles that he refers to are Robert Remington Bateson and Christopher Remington Bateson. If you have been reading this blog for longer than 15 minutes, you’ll probably know that Christopher Remington Bateson’s family is buried in Laurel Grove Cemetery, and Sugar had the plot marker made and installed only a few months ago. Robert Remington Bateson is buried in New York in Green-wood Cemetery.


Why is so important that I need to write about Walter John Bateson right now?

Because Sugar and I met his son and daughter-in-law just a few days ago. I’m going to break my self-imposed blog rule now and post our faces, not just side shots or tops of heads or shoes…

But who is whom?

But who is whom?