In this last installment about the Tainsh family, we’ll examine what we know about the family beyond the library years of 1805-1806.
First, some background on the family.
I was also able to confirm that James Tainsh was born on 24 Aug 1755 in Crieff to James Tainsh and Janet Dougal.
His wife Betty Taylor was born 17 Jun 1753 in “Fowlis Wester” to David Taylor and Jannet Stoddart. Fowlis Wester is just to the northwest of Crieff – see the map below.
The following children were born to James Tainsh and Betty Taylor:
|Betty*||12 Jan 1777|
|William*||2 Sep 1778|
|John*||3 Sep 1780|
|James||2 Nov 1783|
|David||16 Jul 1786|
|William||16 Nov 1788|
|John||17 Dec 1790|
|Janet||21 Apr 1793|
|Betty – my 4x-great-grandmother||12 Jul 1795|
|Anne||17 Jun 1798|
*presumed to have died as young children
As for Betty/Elizabeth, my 4x-great-grandmother, the next mention in the record for her is her marriage to Duncan Campbell on 13 Jan 1822. Duncan, as you recall, had been in front of the Kirk Session (the church council) a couple of years earlier under a cloud of suspicion surrounding a pregnant woman.
In 1820, he wrote a letter to the elders suggesting that if the baby were to be born within a 3-day window in May, he would accept responsibility for the child (see previous post). A couple of pages later, the following statement appears:
Crieff, Aug. 6th 1820
The Session of Crieff, having met and being constituted, [ illegible ], and minister and Elders, compeared [the accused] Henrietta Earl, who being seriously exhorted and interrogated declares that Anthony Campbell is the father of a child with with she is pregnant.
Since there is virtually no other business before the Session during this time period, I presume that this is the same woman who had named Duncan earlier that year.
I find this to be actually a very sad episode. Poor Henrietta is pregnant and unable to make a paternity charge stick. Duncan appears to have admitted to a past liaison but is quite confident he is not the father of the child. Henrietta is under pressure (“interrogated”!) and changes her story, now it’s Anthony Campbell, not Duncan Campbell. I can’t find a record anywhere of an Anthony Campbell. It sounds sort of made-up, and frankly, a pretty stark example of the way that this society disproportionately punished women for out-of-wedlock births. I wonder whatever became of poor Henrietta and her child.
Duncan and Elizabeth marry and add three children to their family over the next five years. Family legend is that the fourth child, Ann (my 3x-great-grandmother) was born in 1828 in Glasgow. Indeed, there is no record of Ann being born in Crieff but sadly, no record that I could find of her being born in Glasgow either, or anywhere in Scotland for that matter! The immigration record for this family shows them arriving in New York City in June, 1831. So we have this 4-year gap where the family is unaccounted for. Another child, James, is also born during this period.
After emigrating, they stay for quite some time in New York – possibly near Syracuse – where the two youngest children are born. We next see the family in Wisconsin in 1842/43 when land is purchased under Duncan’s name.
What of the Tainsh family that stayed behind? I looked and looked but came up empty on all but one sister – Janet, just two years older than Elizabeth. I found her in several census records and I even found her death record in 1876, and it specifically identifies her parents James Tainsh and Betty Taylor (it is this record that identifies her father James as being a mason). She stayed in Crieff her entire life and was involved in the cotton-weaving business with her husband and step-children (not sure that she is their mother).
As for the other siblings, I intend to retrace my search just to be sure, but it’s very possible that they left the country too. I did find a William Tainsh who fought (and died) in the Civil War. He was born in 1828 in Scotland – too young to be the William who borrowed books, but maybe about the right age to be his son. He mustered out of Elmira, New York – quite a ways from Syracuse, but still – does this point to connections with an extended family?
Tainsh is an unusual name (good for searching) but easily and frequently misspelled (bad). Campbell, on the other hand, is rarely misspelled (good) but a very common surname (bad). That makes searching for this family a little bit tricky.
This concludes my findings on the Tainsh family of Crieff – but there is still hope for finding out more about this extended family as more records come online in the future.
I’ll be updating my road13.com/genealogy site within the next couple of days so you can see all the documents if you’re interested.