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dfaulder

Motherwell: Bros: John Ernest/David/James Quail & Unc James Gemmel

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dfaulder
>><<

The 1911 census is expected to be available online via the Irish National Archive site in Dublin sometime in December or January. (It's going to be free - thanks again Canada)!

The 1901 census is held at PRONI at Balmoral - I hope to be there next week - I'll give it a look for you.

To get you started David Motherwell married Catherine Carlisle at Berry Street Presbyterian church on 7/1/1885.

There is a Motherwell connection with Knock in 1908 which is the same area as Cherryvalley (Posh) but I think it's more likely to be a relocation away from the city centre in the 1920's and 30's.

I'll see what else I can find..

David

Thanks for this - particularly Catherine's maiden name and DoM

Out of interest where does such detail come from in NI - are marriages in public registers and are they on line or have you had to visit individual churches.

It sounds as if release of 1911 census data is subject to the same constraints as in GB. So I wonder how the BFCH website got partial details?

Thanks for the offer to check out details if you get the chance.

I think there may also be a William or two in there- William Carlisle Motherwell married Belle Palmer at Knock PC in 10/8/8. Presbyterian custom included the mothers maiden name as a middle name- don't know which one of the two on the covenant site he is but 1910 street directory shows the one of them as an accountant - I'll need to firm up on this.

>><<

The temptation is to consider William as a fourth brother. I don't think (from a quick look at medal index cards) he served in WW1 - which would explain why he is not on the May St memorial (of those who served). Need to check Birth details etc. Are the birth dates at least nine months apart etc.?!

Alternatively, it may be a different family!. In my family tree I have instances of someone marrying his brother's wife's sister - I suspect more than one instance!

Many thanks for all your help.

David

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dfaulder
>><<

anyway...here's Motherwell Jas. G. 34 Shaftesbury Avenue Private Dorset Regt. Died of Cholera in Baghdad who may well be related

jamesmotherwell81217.jpg

Mark

Well, this is interesting and potentially confusing. Jas = James, but the service record of the James Motherwell which I have already identified contains a letter from David Motherwell snr of David Allen & Sons referring to the three Brothers.

post-22880-1226701252.jpg

This letter implies that James was medically discharged.

Just wondering, whether the reference to being a brother of David, is actually a reference to being brother of David Motherwell senior (father of my original three brothers) and this James is an Uncle of the James I already know. Yes, check on CWGC says this James (Dorset Regiment) was : Son of William Gemmell Motherwell and Mary Motherwell, of Belfast; husband of Marie Motherwell, of 20, Locket Rd., Wealdstone, Harrow, Middx.

So I think you have indirectly found me the Grandfather of the three (/ four ?) brothers!

Which paper is this from BTW - one of the Belfast ones or a London paper?

Many thanks - you seem to be helping me to identify a military family of some WW1 extent!

David

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dfaulder
Presbyterian custom included the mothers maiden name as a middle name

Does this custom permit me to guess anything about orders of birth?

I have (I think in order)

David ? Motherwell 3rd R Ir Rif b unknown

John Ernest Motherwell 9th HLI / R Ir Rif b 1887 (Obituary names him as second son)

James ? Motherwell 4th R Ir Rif b Apr 1897 ("my younger" per father's letter)

then possibly:

William Carlisle Motherwell

given Carlisle was the maiden name of the mother of the first three, can I predict where he fits in the birth order (assuming he is part of the same family)?

Options:

David, John, William, James

William, John, David, James

Thanks

David

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markinbelfast

uni.jpg

heres the 133 -135 confusion cleared up....both are knocked into one.

red doot is 133...blocked up door made into window is 135.

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dfaulder

Mark,

Many Thanks. Am I right (after various edits!) in thinking that high numbers are at the east (Ormeau Road end), with Odd numbers on the South (Botanic Gardens) side? Looking at Google Sat photos, my guess is that this is the range of buildings between Sandhurst Road and Dudley Street

David

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markinbelfast

High numbers are towards the ormeau road...low numbers toward botanic ave.

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DMannus

David

What I didn't say (but meant to) was the University area was (and still is) a bit of a posh area . At the time the Queens College (in 1908 Queen's University Belfast and my Alma Matter) was at the heart of it . This family was an important middle class family.

As for the middle name I should have included 'eldest' - maybe he didn't serve or was RN?

Who knows - PRONI visit coming up I think.

David

Sorry

Just to add- being a Presby we have strong links to Scotland to this day - many many Ulster Men joined Scottish regiments and the tradition continues to this day )

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SPotter

Unless I've missed it the details of James Motherwell haven't been given. He was, according to SDGW:

202542 Pte James Motherwell 1/4 Dorsetshire Regiment (Territorial Battn).

Born: Not Given but assumed to be the same as enlisted

Enlisted: Chelsea, Middlesex

Resident: Wealdstone, Middlesex

'Died' Mesopotamia 18th November 1917.

Regards

Steve

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dfaulder
Unless I've missed it the details of James Motherwell haven't been given. He was, according to SDGW:

202542 Pte James Motherwell 1/4 Dorsetshire Regiment (Territorial Battn).

Born: Not Given but assumed to be the same as enlisted

Enlisted: Chelsea, Middlesex

Resident: Wealdstone, Middlesex

'Died' Mesopotamia 18th November 1917.

Regards

Steve

Steve

Thanks for this; his "obituary photograph and paragraph" did not give his battalion, it tells us he died of Cholera. Likewise I was not sure where he enlisted (puts paid to a theory that he enlisted in Belfast) - and I am not sure where he was born - I suspect Belfast where the rest of the family were based. However I wonder why he chose the Dorsets (or the Army placed him there)? Does SDGW give a date of enlistment?

The Company he worked for, by the way, David Allen & Co was one of those printing recruiting posters.

Does SDGW give any additional information on Capt John Ernest Motherwell 3rd R Ir Rif (att 9th North Lancs) (James' nephew)?

Thanks

David

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markinbelfast

3rd Batt Royal Irish Rifles

2 L/T (A/Capt)

AT T 1st Bn

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DMannus

OK folks

dug out the 1901 Census records for this

David Motherwell, Presbyterian, 38 years, Printing Manager, Born at Glasgow.

Kate, aged 38 years, born at Bangor Co. Down.

William C, aged 15 years, Accountant's assistant, born at Belfast.

John E(?), aged 13 years, scholar, born at Belfast.

Annie E, aged 11 years, scholar, born at Belfast.

Kathleen, aged 10 years, scholar, born at Belfast.

David, aged 7 years, scholar, born at Belfast.

Mary, aged 6 years, scholar, born at Bangor.

Francis L, aged 4 years, scholar, born at Belfast.

Emma Starritt, aged 20 years, Servant, born Co Fermanagh.

Annie Evelyn Motherwell went on to marry LT James Copper McNaught at May St PC on 30/09/1918 himself a WW1 veteran serving with the HLI and RI Regt. His father was a chemist in Belfast. A 'Jn (?) Motherwell' acted as a witness.

His MIC

post-24943-1227221678.jpg

So I think James is either elsewhere on the night of the census or not a son of David. There is a good hit for David in Glasgow in on the 1881 census with a brother James but not certain it's him.

Hope this helps.

David

James C McNaught is remembered with this brother Andrew (RIR) on the May St Roll of Honour - 22 Fitzroy Avenue Belfast.

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dfaulder
>><<

dug out the 1901 Census records for this

>><<

Annie Evelyn Motherwell went on to marry LT James Copper McNaught at May St PC on 30/09/1918 himself a WW1 veteran serving with the HLI and RI Regt. His father was a chemist in Belfast. A 'Jn (?) Motherwell' acted as a witness.

>><<

So I think James is either elsewhere on the night of the census or not a son of David. There is a good hit for David in Glasgow in on the 1881 census with a brother James but not certain it's him.

>><<

David

Very many thanks for this.

1) I presume you found them at 135 University Street/7 Somerset Terrace?

2) The daughters add some extra information, but I cannot match them to Ulster Declaration Names. The Covenant and Declaration database at PRONI gives (for "Motherwell"):

Surname Forename(s) Address Division District Place of Signing Agent

Motherwell, Belle 21 Deramore Street Belfast: East Ormeau Ballynafeigh Orange Hall Wright : Mrs

Motherwell, Clara E Foxfield Co Cavan Cavan: West Ballyheelan Ballymachugh Maxwell, H E : Colonel : The Honourable

Motherwell, David * 135 University Street Belfast: South Saint Anne's City Hall Not Recorded

Motherwell, David Junior * University Street Belfast: South Saint Anne's City Hall Witherow, T H : B A

Motherwell, J E * 135 University Street Belfast: South Saint Anne's City Hall Not Recorded

Motherwell, James * 135 University Street Belfast Belfast: South Saint Anne's Old Town Hall Murphy, C

Motherwell, Margaret Fahan Donegal: North Fahan Fahan Londonderry Magee, J Gilbert : J P

Motherwell, May * 168 University Street Belfast: South Saint Anne's City Hall Not Recorded

Motherwell, R * 7 Somerset Terrace Belfast: South Cromac All Saints School Green, Ellen Cowhan

Motherwell, Sissie * 135 University Street Belfast: South Saint Anne's City Hall Not Recorded

Motherwell, William 21 Deramore Street Belfast: South Saint Anne's City Hall Witherow, T H : B A

Motherwell, William 34 Shaftesbury Avenue Belfast: South Saint Anne's City Hall Not Recorded

(I have *'ed the ones I think of interest)

Note: 7 Somerset Terrace is on University Street (no 135), and the 168 above is a miss-transcription.

Note however that the Somerset Terrace entry is listed in Cromac not St Anne's. (my knowledge of Belfast geography limits me here)

The Covenanters (Men) are known - although William C Motherwell is not positively identified, And Francis is not listed (perhaps he had died?).

The Declarators (Women) are as yet unknown. May, R, and Sissie - usual diminuative of Cecilia - are possibly children of David and Catherine, but do not seem to match the Census! (Looking at the actual signatures May is May, not Mary)

3) It looks as if earlier suspicions about William Carlisle being the elder brother are correct. Being 28 at the outbreak of WW1, I am surprised that he did not appear to serve. We are pretty confident (from Army Medal Index Cards) that he was not Army, but I guess I need to check out the Navy.

4) I am confident that James is a son of David. The letter from his father in James Motherwell's Service file (post 27) refers to James's brothers "Perhaps you will remember I had two sons in the 3rd Royal Irish Rifles. One of the Capt. J Ernest Motherwell was killed in October 1916. The other at present Acting Capt. David Motherwell, Divisional Bombing Officer [what would this involve?], Headquarters at present in Derry." He then goes on to talk about getting a SWB for his son James who was medically discharged due to heart problems. His (James's) attestation names 135 University St and his Parents. It is possible that he was a twin with Francis L Motherwell (James was born about April 1897 per his attestation); perhaps he had a long standing heart problem and was in hospital on Census night?

5) You found that Annie Evelyn Motherwell married, and previously you have reported on William Carlisle Motherwell's marriage. Can I conclude that the other children did not marry (as far as your researches revealed)?

Again very very many thanks

David

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DMannus

David

Try and answer these best I can.

1. Yes sorry entry for 135.

2. Re the daughters names I think May is 'Mary' (I may have misread the original record from PRONI - quite hard to make out - I'll recheck it in the next week or so). Don't know about 'Sissie' - wife? It was fairly common for women to be known as another name from their given name at that time. Molly, Ella, Nelly etc. Looking at the signature of R Motherwell I think it's a 'K' - Kate or Kathleen.

Somerset Terrace itself is a row of large terraced houses in what became University Street. Queens College only became a university in 1908 from memory (not that I was there). When Somerset Terrace was built Belfast was growing rapidly with shipbuilding and linen. The university area was a wealthy suburb with typical Victorian terraces and enclosed streets and gardens.

The Cromac ward reference is for the place of signing. - type in' David M Carson' for example.

3. 1910 Belfast/Ulster street directory list William Motherwell as an accountant at 21 Deramore Street, Belfast. Also we know WC Motherwell married Bella who is also recorded at that address.

Re his war service he may have served and not left home for one reason or another. If this is the case he will not have a medal index card. Or maybe his occupation is significant and he was 'reserved' - need an expert for that one. Or other services? I know it was fairly common for the the eldest son was discouraged from joining up purely to keep the family line going.

4. Bomb was the WW1 term for grenade - I know from speaking to the great Teddy at The Ulster Tower, Theipval, that the first wave of infantry in attack preferred to advance with bombs, the theory being that a rifle was more of a hindrance. So DBO must have been an important job.

As for James his service papers give an age of 19 years and 2 months on 19/6/1916 - so his dob would be April 1897? - twin of Francis may be a good bet. However, the PRONI record was very faint particulary what I read as a 'L' after Francis - It could be a 'J' - Again I'll firm up on this. His death notice would help, whenever that was? (Mark!!).

Kathleen married a Walter Berwick Templeton on 28/4/1915.

I had a good look through May St's records but had to call a halt as I'd other things to get on with. I'll have another look in the next few weeks..The tradition of marrying in the brides church makes finding the boys more difficult.

regards

David

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dfaulder

David

Again many thanks (must remember to let you know if I visit the National Archives when I visit the South of England).

Declaration

Mary:May - looks plausible as does R actually being K

William Carlisle Motherwell

I can't find an on-line Naval Record for him at TNA (not that these are records with which I have any familiarity), so I agree that he probably did not serve. We might think that an accountant would not be a reserved occupation (I have not come across the bit about sparing the eldest), however he worked I suspect like many of the family at David Allen & Co. Googling the company, it becomes clear that they were one of the major printers of recruitment posters (and presumably other government papers?); add to that that "accountant" may cover a multitude of managerial occupations, so perhaps it was deemed reserved. Others may comment on what might make an occupation "reserved". (I also need to look through the old threads on similar topics. Edit: but concept will not apply in Ireland because conscription did not apply!)

John Ernest Motherwell, Divisional Bombing Officer

I suspected grenades (but of the rifle grenade variety?). What still surprises me is that this would be a Divisional matter, brigade perhaps - was his father a little confused? (I don't think so, the rest of the letter seems coherent and familiar with military matters - at least to me!)

James and Francis L Motherwell

Interesting thought that James may have been Francis James. (edit: or is there a loss in transcription? James could be misread as Francis spelt with an old fashioned reversed capital F). The on-line IGI does not give any useful Baptism information because if they were twins they would probably have been baptised together. In my ignorance I must admit I do not know how important infant baptism would be in the Presbytarian Church (apologies).

I look forward to any further family details.

I have today been looking at the possible 1881 Glasgow census match:

1881 Scotland Census

about Wm Motherwell

Name: Wm Motherwell {matches name on James Snr's CWGC record}

Age: 47

Estimated Birth Year: abt 1834

Relationship: Head

Spouse's name : Mary {matches name on James Snr's CWGC record}

Gender: Male

Where born: Stirlingshire, Milton of Campsie

Registration district: St Rollox

Civil Parish: Glasgow Barony

County: Lanarkshire

Address: 12 Ward St.

Occupation: Pointer Lithographic {Printer: family business?}

Household Members:

Name Age

Dav Motherwell 18 {b Glasgow per 1901 census: good match for David Snr, but occ=Wine Merchant's Clerk might not be}

Jas Motherwell 3 {could be 1877 is actual yr of birth, Mar 1881 still 3, but in 41st year at d}

John Motherwell 14

Mary Motherwell 43

Sophia Motherwell 6

Wm Motherwell 47

Wm Motherwell 9 {b Ireland!}

I think we have a match; there certainly seem to be no other alternatives (not a very good sole decision making criteria I know, but parents names, dates and ocupations are indicative)

Once again many thanks (to you and Mark), this is proving a useful study.

David

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dfaulder
>><<

anyway...heres Motherwell Jas. G. 34 Shaftesbury Avenue Private Dorset Regt. Died of Cholera in Baghdad who may well be related

Mark,

This one is now itching!

I am happy as to who he is (Brother of David Senior and uncle to the Brothers, William Carlisle (civilian), Capt John Ernest, A/Capt David, & A/CQMS James Motherwell).

It's the address (34 Shaftesbury Avenue) that gets me! I believe you picked this up from the Roll of Honour (it's certainly there on the Internet version!) and I had presumed that it referred to Shaftesbury Avenue in Harrow, Middlesex (1901 Census and pre-war employment was in Harrow as was his widow per CWGC). Then when I was writing up my notes with regard to the Covenant I recalled the last two entries:

Surname Forename(s) Address

......Division District Place of Signing .....Agent

Motherwell, William 21 Deramore Street,

......Belfast: South Saint Anne's City Hall Witherow, T H : B A

Motherwell, William 34 Shaftesbury Avenue,

......Belfast: South Saint Anne's City Hall Not Recorded

So I did an address search on these two addresses:

Surname Forename(s) Address

Motherwell, Belle 21 Deramore Street

Motherwell, William 21 Deramore Street

(Well that must be William Carlisle Motherwell and his wife Belle Palmer)

Surname Forename(s) Address

MacRea, Sophie 34 Shaftesbury Avenue

Motherwell, William 34 Shaftesbury Avenue

So, who is this? The only male Motherwell on the Covenant not related to the others, and I don't think I can tie him into any Medal Index or Service Record - yet in a location barely 200 metres from the family home and an address quoted in respect of the Uncle.

Am I correct in thinking that the address quoted at the top of this post was a Belfast address - possibly as his last address before he left for England (he married in England in 1903)?

The telephone directories on Ancestry don't get me very far - just introduces more people to the mix (and some people are notably absent)!

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dfaulder

Thanks, this is a better quality copy of the photograph in the press cutting. I wonder if there may be a press photo of all three brothers (or might that type of human interest story not have been of interest to the press in those days)?

I have been digging back into the 1881 Glasgow census previously mentioned and it appears that this family used the North Channel as a mere ditch (which may explain the Scottish regiments)! I can't find any of them in the 1871 or 1891 Scottish census indices. Having found the Belfast Street Directories on-line, I am pretty certain that in 1871 and 1891 they were in Ireland. (1851 and 1861, the parents/grand-parents were in Glasgow.)

The 1877 directory shows a Wm Motherwell, printer at 101 McClure St; I think this may be William Gemmell Motherwell (Grandfather to the three brothers, and a lithographic printer) and his wife Mary Peacock. There are no Motherwells in the 1880 directory.

William Motherwell had the following children:

David McKean M b 1862, Glasgow (father of the four brothers)

John M b 1867, Glasgow

William M b 1872, Ireland (is he the one who signed the Covenent from 34 Shaftesbury Av?)

Sophia M b 1875, Glasgow (is she the Sophie McRae who signed the Declaration and living at 34 Shaftesbury Av?)

James Gemmell M b ~1877, Ireland (who dies whilst serving in Baghdad)

David Mannus has found David McKean's family at 135 University Street, Belfast in the 1901 Census. Following the war there are a number of Motherwells in Telephone Directories (Davids and a Mrs M).

This occillation between Belfast and Glasgow would probably explain why John Ernest Motherwell joined the HLI (I would guess in Glasgow - I don't trust the Ancestry SDGW!). James (jnr) we know enlisted at Belfast; David (jnr) being an officer (and surviving) means I have to wait for a Kew visit to establish his place of enlistment.

Why a printer should move so often, I do not understand.

David

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dfaulder

Thinking a bit more about this I suspect that the 1901 Belfast Census will show William Gemmell Motherwell and his family at 34 (possibly 38) Shaftesbury Avenue (except for David McKean Motherwell who had already established his own home at 135 University Street).

They may also have been there in 1891.

David

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DMannus

David

Evening

At PRONI today and picked up some more bits of the jigsaw for you.

Nothing for 1901 in Deramore Street.

1901 for 38 Shaftesbury Avenue, Belfast.

William Motherwell aged 67, Printer and Lithographer, born Scotland.

Mary Motherwell aged 64, born Scotland.

William Motherwell aged 29, Clerk-printing trade, born Belfast.

from the Belfast Street directories

1926 David Motherwell still at 135 University Street, now a Director.

1929 No longer there.

However a David Motherwell is listed at 'Campsie', Lisburn Road, Belfast.

In 1937 a David is listed at 9 Cherryvalley Gardens, Belfast. (Knock)

William listed as an accountant at 21 Deramore Street,Belfast.

1945 Miss MW Motherwell, 68 Maryville Park, Belfast.

Ran out of time again!!

Regards

David

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dfaulder
David

Evening

At PRONI today and picked up some more bits of the jigsaw for you.

>><<

Regards

David

David

Thanks for this; glad I checked this topic after the outage - the email reporting had not told me about your post.

The later directory entries are going to take some sorting out. (The Campsie address is probably relevant as Campsie Stirlingshire is where the family originally came from - unless Campsie is co-incidentally a sub-district of Belfast!)

I have also been through the 1911 Census (thanks to the Dublin NA):

  • the University Street family (including the three brothers who joined up) is shown but at no. 137. It also indicates seven children - so the Francis previously noted must be a miss-transcription!
  • 34 Shaftesbury Avenue is as I suspected William and his married sister Sophie MacRae, but no sign of her husband (married about 1896 - but she is not listed as a widow, although she is listed as having had 4 children none of whom survived). This looks like the senior generation's family home (1891 Census will confirm possibly) and that Pte Jas Motherwell (James senior) lived there before leaving for London.
  • 21 Delamore Street is William and (Isa)Bella plus two young children (another David to complicate things and Margaret).
I think we have:

William Gemmell Motherwell and Mary (née Peacock)

├── Son: David (snr) Motherwell and Catherine (née Carlisle)

│ ├── Son: William Motherwell and Belle (née Palmer)

│ │ ├── Son: David Motherwell

│ │ └── Dau: Margaret Motherwell

│ ├── Son: John Ernest Motherwell (Capt KIA)

│ ├── Dau: Annie Evelyn (m James Copper McNaught)

│ ├── Dau: Kathleen (m Walter Berwick Templeton)

│ ├── Son: David (jnr) Motherwell (T/Capt)

│ ├── Dau: Mary Motherwell

│ └── Son: James (jnr) Motherwell (CQMS)

├── Son: William Motherwell

├── Dau: Sophie (m Unknown MacRae) (4 children all deceased)

└── Son: James (snr) Motherwell (Pte Died) and Marie Rose (née Hamilton)

Thanks again

David

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dfaulder
Steve

Thanks for this; his "obituary photograph and paragraph" did not give his battalion, it tells us he died of Cholera. Likewise I was not sure where he enlisted (puts paid to a theory that he enlisted in Belfast) - and I am not sure where he was born - I suspect Belfast where the rest of the family were based. However I wonder why he chose the Dorsets (or the Army placed him there)? Does SDGW give a date of enlistment?

The Company he worked for, by the way, David Allen & Co was one of those printing recruiting posters.

>><<

Thanks

David

Update re James' choice of regiment; a discussion about Ancestry's miss-transcription of James' SDGW entry has highlighted a possibility that he enlisted pre-war into the 18th Bn London Regiment (The London Irish) and was posted from them to the Dorsets. (Thanks to Matthew (westkent78)).

Posting from another thread (to here where it probably more properly lives).

>><<

Unfortunately I don't have a source but a brief check of all the #1875 London MICs indicates that he couldn't have enlisted in the following battalions (1, 2, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 13, 16, 19, 21, 22, 23, 25) which still leaves (3, 9, 10, 11, 12, 14, 15, 17, 18, 20, 24, 28).

The key may be working out which battalion signed on recruits at Chelsea, as such a relatively low number is probably a pre-war enlistment (1913-14). I know 18th (London Irish) were headquartered at Duke of York's Headquarters, Chelsea so that may be the answer.

>><<

Matthew,

Thanks, given that he was Scots-Irish (Born in Ireland - not yet sure exactly where, of parents born in Scotland), and I have been puzzled by his "choice" of the Dorsetshires, your last sentence looks as if it is a good place to start. (His nephews were associated with the Royal Irish Rifles - he appears in this thread at posting 21).

Given that his service file does not appear to have survived, I presumably have to hope that there will be battalion or regimental based documentation. Any suggestions; Kew, London Irish Rifles Museum? And any document title or name for which I should be searching?

Thanks

David

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Desmond7

I don't know if anyone has made link yet but ...

David Allen and Sons ... isn't same firm still going? They did/do look after the great big advertising posters.

Des

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westkent78

David,

You could try the Regimental Museum to see if they have a nominal roll:

London Irish Rifles Museum

Connaught House,

Flodden Road, Camberwell,

London,

SE5 9LL.

I'd imagine that there may be a few experts on the regiment lurking around who might have some input if you make a separate post.

Another tack may be to see who had regimental numbers around his in the Dorsetshire regiment and see if they transferred similarly from a London Bn- if a couple of them were fatalities and their former regiment is listed on "Soldiers Died" then you may have your answer. If you identify his London Bn then looking for men around #1875 will give you a better idea of his likely enlistment date.

Best regards,

Matthew

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dfaulder
I don't know if anyone has made link yet but ...

David Allen and Sons ... isn't same firm still going? They did/do look after the great big advertising posters.

Des

Yes, now as part of Mills Allen. David Allen and Sons were originally printers of posters (theatrical and more general advertising - including recruitment posters). The Bill-posting element became more important, and as far as I can make out they got out of printing after WW1 party because their most modern works (Harrow, where James Gemmell Motherwell worked) was commandeered by the government for use by the Stationery Office (and not returned!).

I have recently acquired a copy of David Allens, the history or a Family Firm (1857-1957), by WED Allen and AN Other, which casts some more light on the Motherwell's involvement - David McKean Motherwell (James Gemmell's brother and father to the other (all R I Rifles) Motherwell's under study), was briefly company secretary.

WED Allen however has David McKean Motherwell's father as an R Motherwell; I have the father as William Gemmel Motherwell (backed by the Scottish 1881 census), and a Robert Motherwell as an Uncle (Scottish 1851 Census). I know little of Robert (the only one I can trace to the period was the Motherwell in Dublin in 1911 [Hotel at 56 Sackville Street, Upper - North City], but as an "Oil Merchant"). He might have been in NI in 1891/1901 (curse those cenuses for not being online!) - the Oil Merchant Motherwell was in Glasgow in 1881. The Oil Merchant cannot be the one referred to by WED Allen (unless someone can suggest a link between Oil Merchants and Billposters!).

The book notes that James Gemmell, apart from working for David Allens, was also the face on the posters for a cigarette brand called B.D.V. (Never heard of them or seen the poster - anyone?) Curiously it has a long description of his widow and the fact that she held many Allen artefacts, but does not mention how he died (despite a chapter on WW1, with a supplementary note on numbers who served, got killed, were honoured etc.)

[For the benefit of search engines, the book also contains reminiscences of David Allen employees from both World Wars. WW1 reminiscences (page or so each) are provided by:

David Taylor of Wallasey Cheshire - associated with Tank Corps

Charles J McElhone of Glasgow - Mine Sweepers (Southern Belle)

H S Kenny, of Glasgow - no unit named but at Ploegsteert Wood, Winter 1916

J Allen Rogers of Belfast - Tanks at Cambrai and in 1918]

David

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