Keep Fit


keep fit


I do try to keep fit, I used to attend an exercise class once or twice a week. So the picture is more about what I used to do; these days I work in the garden in the summer and John and I go for walks in the winter.






A couple of years ago, I went on a course to learn about Dreamweaver, a programme which converts text and pictures into computer code to make a website. I have the basics, and this site probably reflects the most I can do with it at present.

This site has a particular style which would not suit fancy navigation buttons, even though (I think) I can do these. I can see various ways of improving the site, but I'm restricted by my knowledge of how this thing works!!

As life progresses, I re-do this website, it is definitely a rainy day occupation.





In the, pre-computer, age, I would have said that reading books were my main leisure activity, I don't have so much time for books now, but two series of books stand out from the crowd as special.

Earth's Children series, by Jean Auel, which blends fiction with fact and gives a flavour of life in the Ice Age when two kinds of human beings, Neanderthal and Cro-Magnon, shared the earth.

The Morland Dynasty, by Cynthia Harrod Eagles, which follows the fortunes of a wealthy Yorkshire family from the Wars of the Roses to the present day.






My main hobby, however, is genealogy, which I started in February 2003, when the computer age made things a little easier. Mind you, it isn't all done on the computer!! I have made two trips to London, one to Kew (the National Archives) and one trip to Sussex, in order to check my facts and gather new evidence. To set down all the ancestors here, would be very tedious both for me and for you, so I will give you a link to a short recap of our ancestors.


link to family tree




John's family mostly come from Aberdeenshire in Scotland. Our daughter Laura constructed the basic tree, and I have added to it since, as new information became available. We have made contact with fellow genealogists researching John's family, and have exchanged information freely. Below are John's main lines.


Stuart The earliest known Stuart was Lewis Lodvick who was born around 1720. He was caught cattle raiding in New Deer, when he was released he settled there. We believe he originated from Ross & Cromarty.
We have got back to a William Fowlie born in 1739, who was married to a Margaret Fowlie born in 1742 but we do not know how these two were related. I am at present involved in a study of the Fowlie name in Scotland.
Wilson Not an easy name to research, however these Wilsons definitely came from a small area of Aberdeenshire called Auchencrieve and were crofters.
We have got back to Walter Davie b 1733 in Banffshire, which adjoins Aberdeenshire, this family were also crofters.





My family come from various counties in England. In the late 19th century, some of these families moved to London, where they met and married. Through the internet genealogy sites, I have found some cousins of varying degree, and it has been a great experience to exchange gossip about other branches of the family. Below are my main lines


French The most disastrous of all the surnames I have researched, and the most important to me, being my maiden name. Although the French family were born and lived in Essex in the 19th century censuses, it seems they may have come from Kent. They were cattle auctioneers, later butchers.
Shelley I have had some wonderful help with this line, and I can therefore go back to Richard Shelley, born in 1611 in Bulmer in Essex. The family were blacksmiths in Sudbury in Suffolk.
Riseley I have traced them back to John Riseley who was married in 1716 in Little Paxton in Hunts. The family were agricultural labourers who descend from gentry, this is not unusual.
Corney The family descends from land-owners in Sussex, and from the Holman family who were ship owners in Topsham. However my branch of the Corney family were not wealthy at all in the 19th century. The earliest Corney was Thomas Corney born in 1665.



ann marshall



This lady is Ann Marshall, wife of William Stuart. Ann was born in 1827, and as a young girl, sewed a sampler which had the initials of all her cousins. Her husband William was a gamekeeper at Brucklay Castle in Aberdeenshire, and later farmed at Newton Crossgight which was a farm of 88 acres. William and Ann were John's great-great grandparents.




the ship



This is the ship "Walter Mathews" which was a smack of 86 tons built in the Isle of Wight in 1821. Charles Corney captained this ship between 1828 and 1837, and sailed between London, Rotterdam and Cork. Between 1837 and 1839 Charles captained a ship, the "Governor" which was a schooner of 124 tons which was registered in Cork. Charles died between 1841 and 1851, probably abroad, family rumour suggests he had a heart attack. His death left his family in poverty, and his mother was designated a pauper in 1851. This is all very mysterious, as Charles part-owned the "Governor", I need to find the fate of this ship, which may lead me to Charles' cause of death and maybe where he is buried. Charles was born in 1803, he was my great-great grandfather, and he was married to Eliza Jane Holman from the Topsham Holman family.


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