Margaret Cumming is my Great, Great grandmother's sister.
Cumming was born on the 03 of May 1814 at Kippford, Scotland and
died aged 58, on the 13th of June 1872 from Cancer of the stomach at St Cuthbert
Cottage, Colvend, her husband was the informant.
She married Captain and ship-owner Alexander Rae on the 21st
of July 1840 at Colvend. Alexander was born at Kirkcudbrightshire on the 5th
of Feb 1815 and his parents are Captain Samuel and Jane Halliday.
On the 1851 and 1871 census Margaret Cumming and Alexander Rae were living
at St Cuthbert Cottage, Colvend. Some time after his wife's death Alexander
got married again and she was a Scottish lady called Mary who was 10 years
younger than him.
On the 1881 census Alexander was living with his new wife
at 19 Berkeley Street, Toxteth, Liverpool, and his nephew Alexander Rae who
was a master mariner was at his home too.
On the 1891 census he is still living with his wife at 19 Berkeley Street
and his grandson John Maxwell who was aged 17 and a student was at his home.
Alexander died not so long after the census was done
at his home in Liverpool on the 6th of December 1891 aged 76. He is interred
owned a number of ships and his company was called A. & J. Rae and also
A. Rae & others.
He owned quite a few ships-three being the first "Bengairn"
"The Annie Fletcher" and "St. Cuthbert"
and on his death his sons inherited them.
Liverpool-based shipping firm of Alexander Rae (later J&J Rae)
The Annie Fletcher was an iron barque built in March 1868 by the Lune Shipbuilding
Company at Lancaster. Originally named Gressingham, by 1885 her name had been
changed and she was registered in Liverpool and was owned by A. Rae &
others (1887) and by J. & J. Rae & Co. from 1891-4.
Margaret and Alexander had 8 children.
(1) Samuel Rae was born in 1841 at Colvend and died at Calcutta
aged 19 on the 20th of May 1860.
Captain John (b.1842) and James (b.1847)
were the founder's of the shipping company J & J RAE & Co, 14 Water
Street Liverpool. They later moved to Chapel Street, Liverpool.
The Bengairn was the 2nd Rae ship to bear than name.
They had two 4 masted barques named 'Ben Lee' and
'Bengairn.' Both were sunk during the Great War. They also
owned, 'Annie Fletcher,' 'Mayfield,' 'Antilles,'
'Ardvar,' 'Ardendee, 'Craignair'
and 'St Cuthbert.' 'St Cuthbert was only a short
way from her destination, on the 20 October 1897 when she was caught in a
severe gale and sank when her load shifted. The Bengairn was Rae's last ship.
J & J RAE were in demand by other ship-owners who sought their advice
on matters concerning their own ships, especially matters involving insurance,
charters and possible costs in ports.
(2) Captain and ship-owner John Rae was born in 1842 at Colvend
and died aged 81 at Colvend on the 27th of July 1924 from cardiac failure
and valvular disease of heart, his death certificate also says his usual residence
is Craignair, Blundell sands, Liverpool. Craignair is a lovely big house and
is now a nursing home. On the 1881 and 1901 census he was living with his
family at 14 Violet Street, Toxteth, Liverpool. He married Mary Elizabeth
Wilson on the 22nd of May 1869 at Liverpool and they had four children. (1)
Margaret Rae was born on the 25th of Feb 1870 at Colvend. (2) Christina Rae
born 23rd Sep 1872 at Colvend. (3) Jane Rae born 30th of March 1874 at Colvend
and (4) John Rae born 1887 at Liverpool. Jean Cameron is a family member and
she told me that Christina Rae went to her wedding and she lived at Craignair,
Blundell sands and died about 1954.
In 1915 Captain J. Murray Lindsay, was aged 15 and was an apprentice on the
Bengairn, and he wrote a book called "By the wind" and it's about
his adventures on the ship. The following short bits are from his well documented
Captain Lindsay says- At ten thirty that morning my uncle was to take me to
meet Captain John Rae, senior partner in the firm of J. & J. Rae &
Co-Chapel Street, Liverpool. The owners of my future ship, the Bengairn-and
to sign my indentures. Captain John Rae had been retired from active command
for a number of years, yet he still looked every inch the shipmaster. He politely
waved us to chairs, and chatted easily with Uncle John for a few minutes,
summing me up, I felt, meanwhile. Then he turned towards me, clasping his
hands together on the table. "Well, young man -it's over forty years
since I first chose to go to sea, and although the life has been hard at times
I've never regretted that choice.
Under Captain Rae you'll sail on a happy ship, provided you do your duty smartly-and
above all learn the meaning of instant obedience. On the conclusion of the
last words his eyelids narrowed and his jaw set. I murmured, "Yes, sir,"
and wished we could get on with things. Formalities however were soon over.
A linen-backed, official-looking document marked "Ordinary Apprentices
Indenture, was handed to me to read-a document which I found myself described
as bound for the period of four years to the firm of J. & J. Rae &
When the Bengairn was sunk by the Germans, J Murray Lindsay said the following;
"I was given a short audience and a pound note-my fare home-by Captain
John Rae. He told me during this interview that arrangements would be finalized
between his firm and my family regarding both my career and finance. He had
no more ships; indeed, he had been heavily hit by the loss of his last two
Bens at a time when freights were so high. With a final word of commendation
over my conduct and ability during the voyage, a full report of which he had
received from the little Captain, we shook hands, and I went out, shutting
the door behind me. Then, with my train-fare in my pocket, I walked down the
stairs-leaving the old Captain among his half models of ships that were all
at the bottom of the sea.
Margaret Cumming and Alexander Rae's other children are.
(3) Jane Rae was born in 1845 at Colvend and died aged 83
on the 19th of Jan 1929 at Withington, Manchester, she is interned in Colvend.
She married School Master James Maxwell at Colvend on the 7th of July 1868
and they went to live in Manchester. James died aged 57 at Lochside, Colvend
on the 3rd of August 1894 of Nephritis which he had for 1 month and 14 days
and cerebral apoplexy; he is buried with his wife and son John in Colvend
Their 4 children are (1) Alexander Rae Maxwell was born in Manchester in 1872
and on the 1901 census he was working as a bank clerk in Manchester.
(2) John Maxwell was born in Manchester in 1874, on the 1891 census he was
at his grandfather's house ship-owner Alexander Rae at Liverpool and was aged
17 and a student. John died aged 27 on the 27th April 1901 at Patna, Bengal,
(3) Margaret W Maxwell was born in Manchester 1877 and (4) James W Maxwell
was born in Manchester in 1879.
On the 1901 census Jane was living at Lord Street, Manchester and it says
she is living on her own means.
(4) Alexander Rae was born in Colvend in 1849 and died aged
5 on the 18th of September 1854. He is buried at Colvend.
(5) Mary Cumming Rae died aged 4 months on the 25th of May
1852 and is buried at Colvend.
(6) Margaret Rae was born on the 16th of May 1855 at St Cuthbert
Cottage, Colvend. She married Percy L Gardner on the 11th of Jan 1877 at St
Michael's-Hamlet Church Toxteth, Liverpool.
The other children of Margaret Cumming and Alexander Rae are.
(7) Captain and ship-owner Henry Rae, who is a twin to James,
was born at St Cuthbert Cottage on the 1st of April 1847, Colvend. In 1884
he was captain of the St. Cuthbert. On the 1891 census aged 44 he was living
with his family at Anchordale cottage-Sandy Hills and states he is retired.
On the official Dalbeattie history website the Town Council Public Meeting
was held on the 20th August 1912 and Henry was on the committee in taking
steps to raise a memorial to his 2nd cousin Lieutenant William McMaster Murdoch,
who was lost on the Titanic.
Henry died aged 69 at his lovely home called Raeville, Sandy hills, Colvend
on the 8th March 1917 of chronic bright disease. A 1894 map only shows Anchordale
and a later map printed in 1909 shows Raeville right next to Anchordale. I
think Henry might have paid to get Raeville built, hence the name. He married
Elizabeth Wilson at Colvend on the 20th of June 1881 and she died at Raeville
aged 77 on the 24th April 1928 of senility cardiac valvular disease (aortic)
They are buried in Colvend. They had 4 children.
(1) Janet Halliday Rae was born at Colvend in 1886 and died aged 27 of TB
on the 10th July 1914 at Raeville also.
(2) Ex Lieut. Royal Navy Reserve John Rae was born in Colvend 21/06/1884 and
died suddenly at Moreton, Cheshire, aged 42 on the 14th October 1926. He is
Interred at Rake Lane, Wallasey.
(3) Margaret Cumming Rae, was born at Colvend in 1888, she never married and
died aged 51 of heart failure at Castle Douglas Hospital, on the 19th Jan
1940, her brother Alex was the informant. Her death certificate says her usual
residence was Raeville.
(4) Alexander Rae their elder son, was born at Colvend in 1882, he never married
and died aged 69 on the 24th July 1952 at an infirmary from coronary thrombosis,
his certificate also says his usual residents is Raeville. Jean Cameron who
was raised in Kippford told me that Alexander would come to visit her mother
and they would talk about the old days. Alex was very wealthy and was a director
of Barclay Curle & Co Ltd, shipyard-Glasgow, he was also an engineer.
He owned 5 houses: Raeville-his parent's home, which is now called St Ninians
and is a beautiful holiday home, Anchordale, Oaklea and Janelea, all situated
in Sandy Hills and Whitehill Cottage is in Portling.
(Henry and James Rae) are twins and were baptised at Colvend Church on the
5th of May 1847.
(8) Margaret Cumming and Alexander Rae other child.
Captain and ship-owner of J & J RAE - James Rae was born
at St Cuthbert Cottage, Colvend on the 1st of April 1847 and died aged 58
in 1906 at Liverpool. He was known as Bengairn Jamie. Aged 23 he had his certificate
of competency as master, No. 85,834, dated 1st June 1870, and also held four
shares in the first Bengairn. The Bengairn was the 2nd Rae ship to bear that
married Jane Mckinnell Thomson at 18 Station Road Dalbeattie
on the 30th of Jan 1872. Jane died aged 66 at Toxteth, Liverpool in 1913.
On the 1881 census they were living at no 2 Craignair Street, Dalbeattie.
On the 1901 census they were living at Toxteth, Liverpool.
They had 8 children.
(1) Margaret Rae was born in 1872 at Dalbeattie and died in England in 1962.
She married Archibald Faill on the 6th of July 1903, at the Presbyterian St
Margaret's Church, Princes Road, Toxteth Park, Liverpool.
(2) Ship's Officer Alexander Rae was born in 1875 at sea on the Ship Antilles
O/N 02073, and he died in Kingston, Jamaica in 1897.
Robert Rae was born at Dalbeattie in 1877 and died in 1913. In 1907 he married
Alexa Bell at St. Matthew with St. James Church, in the parish of Mossley
Hill, Liverpool. They had a daughter and son.
(4) Captain Samuel
Rae was born at no 2 Craignair Street, Dalbeattie on the 4th of Feb 1883 and
died at Liverpool in 1931. He married Edith Milburn in Liverpool in 1909 and
they had three children all born in Liverpool. Master Mariner Norman Rae 1910-1969.
Iris Rae 1914-1983 and
Marjorie Rae 1921-1985.
(5) Thomas Joseph
Rae was born at Dalbeattie in 1885 and died aged 30 in the district of West
Derby, Liverpool in 1915. He married his third cousin Janet Murdoch in 1911
at Toxteth Park, Register Office, Liverpool, Janet died in 1947 in Scotland.
(6) John Rae was
born at Dalbeattie in 1887 and died in 1970. He married Bertha M Hough in
Liverpool in 1914 and they had one son, Kenneth Rae who was born in Liverpool
in 1915 and he died in 1977.
Jane Rae was born in Liverpool in 1892 and died there too in 1954. She married
Franklin Percival Lanchberry in 1914 in Liverpool and they had two sons and
a daughter, all born in Liverpool.