Janet Johnston


 BORN 13 March 1806
 DIED 1876 in London, England.
 FATHER William Johnston (1779-1839)
 MOTHER Elizabeth Thomson (c1781-1853)
 MARRIED Rev Neil McKechnie on 15 February 1825 at Greenock, Scotland.
 CHILDREN   Neil Johnston McKechnie (1826-1888)
 Catherine Elizabeth McKechnie (1828-)
 Mary McKechnie (1832-)
 Margaret Duthie McKechnie (1836-)
 Janet McKechnie (1838-)
 Jessie McKechnie (c1838-)
 William McKechnie (1840-)
 Elizabeth Catherine McKechnie (1841-)
 Daniel (aka Donald) McKechnie (1844-)
 Jane Miller McKechnie (1847-)


JOHNSTON Janet, daughter of William Johnston, to Reverend Neil McKechnie of Aberdeen, on 15th February 1825 at Greenock. (Greenock Advertiser 15.2.1825). Neil was a Congregational minister of Printfield, Aberdeen.

Sukie Hunter says:

The reason why Neil McKechnie put his son down as Danail has emerged — Janet and her children moved to London in the 1860s and in the 1871 census she (64, Annuitant, born N.B., Greenock) is listed at 18 Bright Terrace (I think), Albert Road, Camberwell with her children Jessie (33, no occupation, born N.B. [‘North Britain’], Woodside, Aberdeen) and Donald (26, Architect, born N.B., Aberdeen). Daniel was the common ‘translation’ for the Gaelic name Domnaill among people who didn’t think Donald was a proper English name, and no doubt they would have translated Neil too if they could have thought of a suitable name to translate it into. The Lowland Scots had a fixed belief that God only spoke English.

Meanwhile, Neil McKechnie Jr had married one Elizabeth Reid Walker of Old Machar, probably in Aberdeen, in April 1850, but heaven knows what happened to them thereafter as I can’t find them at all. Margaret Duthie McKechnie apparently married William Wright, who was from Saxmundham in Suffolk, in Aberdeen on 26 December 1860 and they moved first to Cheltenham, where William was a brass finisher, and then to Suffolk, where in 1871 William was an engineer and manager of the gas works in Lewes and thereafter was a master miller in one of the nearby villages. This suggests that he wasn’t a brass finisher by trade, he just managed brass finishers in some capacity.

Janet Johnston or McKechnie appears to have died in London in the third quarter of 1876, aged 70. I think her daughter Jessie married a Scottish doctor called Alexander Grant in Lewes RD (i.e. near her sister’s house) in 1873 and lived in Mile End, London, where she had a daughter Jessie and a son Harold.

Heaven knows what had happened to Jane. I can’t find any evidence for her after 1861, although she doesn’t appear to have died.

South African story

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