Peter and Jessie Hughan had nine children, eight of whom survived into adulthood. Only two of their children were daughters- Agnes, their eldest child, died aged only 31 years after marrying and having five sons, and Marianne, known as 'Annie' never married and lived her life in Sorbie.
Of their seven sons, one died in infancy, two emigrated to America, two died in Sorbie without marrying and two married and had children.
Their lives are briefly covered as follows:
1. AGNES JANE HUGHAN: Born July 8, 1831; baptised September 11, 1831, at East Stonehouse, Devon. Married draper James McKeand in 1852. Had five sons:
*James Arthur McKeand born Scotland, c.1853.
*Peter Alfred McKeand b c. 1856 died 1859.
*William Henry Hughan McKeand born and died 1857
*Andrew Ernest McKeand born 1859, Newcastle On Tyne.
*Alexander Wallace Hughan McKeand born and died 1862.
Agnes died January 4, 1862, in Newcastle Upon Tyne, aged 31 years.She may have died from causes related to childbirth, as her fifth son, Alexander Wallace Hughan McKeand, was born and also died in 1862.
2. WILLIAM HENRY HUGHAN: Born February 13, 1833, at Stonehouse, Devon, and baptised on April 14, 1833. William was of a wandering nature, and throughout his life lived in Minnigaff, Newcastle Upon Tyne, Australia, Manitoba in Canada and then his last years back home in his native Scotland.
In the 1851 census William was an 18 year old apprentice draper in Newcastle Upon Tyne in England. Five years later in 1856 he married Elizabeth Ewart in the Sunderland district of Durham. They were married on August 26, 1856, at Monkwearmouth. In early 1859, at Newcastle Upon Tyne, their first child, a daughter named Florence, was born.
The couple travelled to Australia, where their second child, a son named William Henry Hughan, was born in 1861. They must not have found the country to their liking, because by 1864 they were back in Scotland for the birth of their second daughter.
Jessie Margaret Hughan was born at Newton Stewart on November 2, 1864, at 3:45 a.m. Her parents were recorded as William Henry Hughan, Post Master, and Lizzie Hughan M.S. Ewart.
In 1871, the family of William Hughan were living at Morning Side, Eccles Old Road, Pendleton, Salford, England.
William Henry Hughan/head/38/manufacturer employing 4 men/ born Plymouth, Devonshire
Elizabeth Ewart Hughan/wife/35/ born Sunderland, Durham.
Florence Hughan/daughter/ 12/ scholar/ born Newcastle Upon Tyne
William Henry Hughan/6/son/ scholar/ born Melbourne Australia
Jessie Margaret Hughan/daughter/6/ scholar/ born Scotland
Plus one servant.
I can find no other children recorded to the couple. The family appears in the 1881 Canadian Census, having emigrated on the 'S.S. Peruvian' in 1880. The ship arrived in Quebec on August 21, 1880, with William Henry, Lizzie and two of their children, William and Jessie, on board. I cannot find eldest daughter Florence-she would have been 21 years old, and so could easily have married. I can't, however, locate a marriage or death for her in either the English or Scottish records....she is a mystery!
1881: Winnipeg, Selkirk, Manitoba.
William H. Hughan/ 48/ married/born in England of Scottish ethnicity/Presbyterian/ Librarian
Elizabeth Hughan/46/ born England of Scottish ethnicity/ Presbyterian
William H. Hughan/20/ born in Australia of Scottish ethnicity/ Presbyterian/ farmer
Jessie M. Hughan/16/ born Scotland of Scottish ethnicity/ Presbyterian.
I can't for the life of me find the family in 1891 census returns of Scotland, England, Canada or the U.S.
William Henry Hughan Senior was a very scientific man, and took out several patents on different ideas that he had constructed. One particular interest was an early form of recycling waste, and he was involved with the Corporation of Salford in the 1870s in a business arrangement by which he collected the "night soil and ashes" from the district in order to treat and re-use it as a form of fertilizer.
Following is a description from "Sewage Treatment, Purification, and Utilization: A Practical Manual" by J.W. Slater:
"W.H. Hughan. 1870. uses sewage natural phosphates, treated with dilute acids, diluted with urine and mixed with night soil, along with the cement indicated in his former patent, No 2883." And also
" W.H. Hughan. 1874. Treats the sewage with an "antiseptic" made of Portland cement,sulphates of soda, magnesia and potash mixed in oil, preferably mineral oil, and then precipitates with a mixture of Portland cement,fluorspar and oil.The effluent is filtered, and the precipitate with the residue from the filtration is mixed with hot superphosphate. The "antiseptic" may also be made from seaweed, clay and soda waste treated with sulphuric acid."
The Glasgow Herald of 17 February 1872 reported:
"The Huano Manure Company Limited have issued their prospectus, inviting subscriptions for 120,000 pounds in 12,000 shares as a first issue of a proposed capital of 400,000 pounds in 40,000 shares.
The company is formed to purchase from Mr W.H. Hughan, patent manure manufacturer, of Salford, Manchester, the contract which he has with the Corporation of Salford in Lancashire for taking the night soil and ashes, collected in the Salford district under their improved sanitary system, to provide additional works, to purchase and extend the manure works already erected by him, on land granted by the Corporation for that purpose, and to carry on the business; and also to acquire his English patents for treating night soil, sewage and other matters by cementation, by means of and in conjunction with superphosphate manufacture, for the production of manure known as "Huano Manure".
As early as September 1868, William was applying for a patent for his sewage treatment:
"2283: William Henry Hughan of Newton Stewart, North Britain. Post Master and Guano and Seed Merchant, for an invention for:-"Improvements in the treatment of night soil, sewage and other like refuse matters for the purpose of deodorising and converting the same into manure." The object of this invention is accomplished by the process of cementation, and what I claim to have discovered is the application of "Portland" or other suitable cement in the setting process to deodorise (where necessary) and solidify night soil, sewage, filth, in general refuse, blood, offal, urinary and beast products of farm steadings, sludge and other refuse of manufactories, fish and the like. The primary object of this discovery is to utilize night soil and the contents of sewers and other like refuse matter found in large cities and towns(which substances are known to be rich in ammonia, phosphoric acid, magnesia, potash, soda, and which at present poison the air and water, and to transform them into a valuable and portable substance or manure for agricultural purposes." - From the "Descriptive Index Of Patents Applied For And Patents Granted for the Quarter Ending 31st March 1868."
I would love to know what became of this endeavour. Whilst in Australia in 1860,William applied for two patents concerning Portland cement: W H Hughan made two patent applications, of which one was granted, for a cement using clay and quartz tailings. The other, for 'Hughan's Portland Cement', was refused in 1861, probably because it used magnesian clay and was similar to a patent previously applied for by a man named Edwards.
William Henry Hughan was later to obtain a British patent for the use of Portland, Roman and other cements in deodorizing works. References: Great Britain, patent no 2893 to W H Hughan, 19 September 1868. Also related patents, no 67, 8 January 1879; no 3060, 30 November 1871; no 2700, 20 August 1873; no 1959, 5 June 1874.
In January 1882, William Hughan applied for a patent in Canada:
" Patent: 14545. year 01/01/1882.
Title: Improvements in the manufacture of hydraulic cements.
Name: William H. Hughan, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.
Granted: 4 May, 1882."
Source: Library & Archives, Canada.
Whilst William Hughan was a scientific man, his wife Lizzie was of a more artistic nature. She published a small book of poetry in 1866 entitled "Estelle, And Other Poems" by Elizabeth Ewart Hughan.
Although I can't locate William and his family in the census returns of 1891, he was definitely back in Scotland by September of 1894 as he was the informant on the death certificate of his youngest brother, Andrew Mckeand Hughan.
The family was still in Canada in 1889, as daughter Jessie Margaret was married there:
"PORRIT-HUGHAN: At Manitoba College, on the 29th of January, by the Reverend Dr. Bryce, Joseph Eyre Porrit, of Armley Hill, Trehern, Manitoba, son of Mr. William Henry Porrit, The Dell, Hertfordshire, England, to Jessie Margaret, daughter of Mr. William Henry Hughan, Westwood, Winnepeg, Manitoba."
There was also mention in a report from the Historical and Scientific Society of Manitoba that William Henry Hughan was their librarian, and was elected Life Member when he retired from the position. It further noted that in 1888 he was paid a salary of $392 for acting as librarian for the public library.
1901: Culderry Row, Sorbie.
William H. Hughan/head/68/ agent for soap and ___??/ born England
Elizabeth E Hughan/wife/ 65/ born England.
William Henry Hughan Senior died at Garliestown, Sorbie on June 6, 1904, between 7 and 8 a.m. His sister Annie Hughan registered the event the following day, and stated that her brother was a 71 year old Commission Agent, married to Elizabeth Ewart. There was no cause of death given on the original certificate, but an addition was made on 16 June, 1904:
" Register of Corrected Entries for the parish of Sorbie in the County of Wigtown.
The following report of result of Precognition has been received touching the death of William Henry Hughan, registered under No. 13 in the Register Book of Deaths for the year 1904:-
Name, age and Sex: William Henry Hughan, 71 years, male.
When and where died: About 7:30 a.m on the 6th June 1904 within his dwelling house in the Crescent, Garliestown, Sorbie parish, Wigstownshire.
Cause of Death: Suffocation from drowning momentary. Gilbert Aitken Welsh, M.D. Garliestown."
Drowning inside your own house??? The old fellow must have been in the bath, but what is the meaning of the 'momentary' notation? How can you 'momentarily' suffocate if the end result is death? Very strange!
Elizabeth "Lizzie" Ewart Hughan lived on for more than twenty years after her husband's death. She died at the age of 91, on January 7, 1927, at Garliestown. Her cause of death was 'senility, senile dementia 1 1/2 months; cardiac asthenia.(Definition: Asthenia: Weakness. Lack of energy and strength. Loss of strength) Her death was registered by a nurse, Mary McKenzie, who stated that Lizzie's parents were John Ewart, Estate Agent, and Elizabeth Pickergill.
3. ALEXANDER WALLACE HUGHAN: was born at Stonehouse, Devonshire, on February 18, 1835, the third child and second son of Peter Hughan, draper, and Jessie Forsyth. He was baptised at Stonehouse on April 12, 1835.
When still a small boy, Alexander moved back to his parents' native Scotland, where his father took up farming. In the 1841 census the Hughans were farming at Meiklecarse Farm at Minngafff, Kirkcudbrightshire. By 1851 they had moved to Cults Farm in the parish of Sorbie, Wigtownshire.
On October 24, 1859, the "Caledonian Mercury & Daily Express" reported:
"Mr. Alexander W. Hughan has been appointed Principal Coast Officer at Port William, Wigtown."
The 1861 census found 26 year old Alexander back in England, living as a 'boarder and lodger' at 15 Virginia Street, Liverpool, and working as a Custom House Officer, 15th Class.
At some stage Alexander Hughan emigrated to America. His brother Samuel did likewise, sailing on the ship 'Cuba' and arriving in New York in 1866. I can't find Alexander on a shipping list, nor can I locate him in any of the 1870 or 1871 census returns.
He does, however, appear in the 1880 U.S Census return:
Forty five year old Alexander Hughan was living at Oakland, California, and earning his living as a cigar dealer.He was single,born England, and incorrectly stated that his parents were both born in England. Sharing his residence was another cigar dealer, Thomas Todd,43, of Scotland.
Alexander Wallace Hughan died in Oakland, California, on April 14, 1888, aged 53 years.
At last... after years of pondering the mystery of who was the mother of Thomas Hughan's two natural daughters, Jane and Margaret, the a...
Above: Entry from the Kirkmabreck Parish Register that shows that Peter Hughan was baptised on October 30, 1804, the elder of two sons bor...
This couple were married on April 21, 1792, at Kirkinner,Wigtownshire. Kirkinner is located across the bay from Kirkmabreck, about 16 miles ...