Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Charles D. Crichton/Creighton (1846-1910)

The Crichton/Creighton branches of my family tree include centuries of military service in England and in Halifax, Nova Scotia. I was surprised to learn that my 2nd great-grandfather Charles Douglas Crichton (1846-1910) was only 14 years old when he enlisted in the Royal Artillery (1859) in Portsmouth, England!

My Haligonian cousin has been researching the Crichton/Creighton branches for many decades and here is what I have learned about Charles Douglas Crichton (1846-1910) from my cousin. 

The Creighton/Crichton family tree

Charles is Born in Portsmouth, England

My 2nd great-grandfather Charles Douglas Crichton's (1846-1910) story begins in England and ends in Halifax, Nova Scotia.
England & Wales, Birth Index, 1837-2005
MyHeritage.com [online database]. Lehi, UT, USA: MyHeritage (USA) Inc.
Charles was born in Portsmouth Hampshire (aka Portsea Island), England in December of 1846. He was the son of Robert Crichton (1805-1849) and Jane Storey Dewar (1814-1871) (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Portsmouth)
"Portsmouth is a port city and naval base on England’s south coast, mostly spread across Portsea Island. It’s known for its maritime heritage and Portsmouth Historic Dockyard." (Source: Wikipedia)
Source: Google map: Portsmouth, England
Robert Crichton Marries Jane Storey Dewer

Charles' parents (my 3rd great-grandparents) Robert Crichton (born 1805, Bothwell Castle, Scotland; died 1849 South Sea Castle, Southampton, England) and Jane Story Dewer (b. 1814, England; died 1871) were married on the 15th of August, 1831 at St. Luke's church in the parish of Charlton, County of Kent, England.
Sources: Marriages: St. Luke's Church; parish of Charlton; County of Kent, England.

Robert Crichton Dies of Cholera

Charles' Scottish father (my 3rd great-grandfather) Robert Crichton died of cholera in 1849 at South Sea Castle while he was a Warder. His son Charles was only 3 years-old. 

Of note, Robert Crichton's Attestation papers say he was in the Royal Artillery from 1823 – 1846. He was medically discharged because of Chronic Rheumatism.

England & Wales, Death Index, 1837-2005
MyHeritage.com [online database]. Lehi, UT, USA: MyHeritage (USA) Inc.
The Portsmouth History Centre assisted my cousin who was trying to locate our 3rd great-grandfather
Robert Crichton’s (1805-1849) final resting place. They wrote:
"I have found the burial place of Robert Crichton, unfortunately it was in Mile End Cemetery, which no longer exists.  This was a private cemetery with an imposing colonnade, which, because it had been in private ownership, became neglected by the 1950s.  Many of the remains were moved to Kingston cemetery, the largest in Portsmouth, and the ground was laid out as a rest garden. The area was  developed in the 1970s, and was incorporated into the Continental Ferry Port in 1978.  He is listed as being buried on August 31st 1849, the date of death looks like 30th rather than 13th and his age given as 44 years." Source: The Portsmouth History Centre: Ref : PHC14/581

Jane (Dewer) Crichton remarries

Our 3rd great-grandmother, Jane (Dewar) Crichton remarried in 1851 (two years following the death of her husband Robert Crichton) to William Craig. William Craig was also in the Royal Artillery. Perhaps young Charles was a handful and that's why his mother and step-father decided to send him to Artillery School at the young age of fourteen years?

 Charles Enlists in the Royal Artillery
 at Fourteen Years-Old 

Attestation Papers: Source: The National Archives London, England
Description on enlistment:
On Page 1 of his Attestation Papers (above), Charles Douglas is unable to write

Age apparently: 14 years
Height 4 feet 6 1/4 inches

Description on discharge:
On Page 2 of his Attestation Papers (below), we see that not only has Charles Douglas married (January 11, 1877 at St. Mary's Basilica, Halifax, Nova Scotia ), but he has also grown one full foot in the twenty-two years since he first enlisted in 1859: 
Age: 36 years 6 months
Height: 5 feet 6 3/4 inches

Attestation Papers: Source: The National Archives London, England

1861 Census 

In the 1861 census below (age 15), he was listed as a Trumpeter for the Royal Artillery.
Source: Public Record Office, London, England; RG 9/405

Standing Orders, Dress Regulations, and Trumpet and Bugle Sounds,
for the Royal Regiment of Artillery

1864 Google Books

Marriage 1877

On Page 2 of his Attestation Papers (above), we learned that Charles Douglas Crichton married Catherine Power
on January 11, 1877 at St. Mary's Basilica, Halifax, Nova Scotia. From this union, the following children were born (Source: Year: 1891; Census Place: Ward 5a, Halifax City, Nova Scotia; Roll: T-6314; Family No: 237 ):
  1. Frederick David - born 24 May 1879, Nova Scotia
  2. Albert Ernest - born 1882, Malta
  3. Charles Robert - born 1884, England; died 1911
  4. Mary - born April 1888, Nova Scotia; died 5 Jul, 1923(married  Ernest Leo Schroeder)
The St. Mary's Rectory on the right (below) is where Catherine Power lived with her children (Frederick David, Albert Ernest, Charles Robert and Mary) in the 1891 census.

St. Mary's Basilica. Our 2nd great-grandparents Charles Douglas Crichton and Catherine Power were married 11 Jan 1877

In the McAlpine's Nova Scotia Directory for 1896, Halifax, Halifax County, there is a listing for a Charles D. and a Frederick living at 18 Cunard, Halifax, Nova Scotia and Charles is working at the Sugar Refinery in Halifax (the ten storey concrete and brick building was completely destroyed in the Halifax Explosion 1917)

Source: Library and Archives Canada: McAlpine's Nova Scotia Directory for 1896, Halifax, Halifax County; Page 277

Catherine (Power) Crichton Dies and Charles Remarries

Charles' wife Catherine (Power) Crichton died on the 30th of May, 1899 at forty-three years-of-age (Source: Nova Scotia Historical Vital Statistics; 1899 Page: 221 - Number: 1)and Charles Douglas Crichton remarried widow Emma Johnston (1880-1945) in Halifax, Nova Scotia on the 13th of October, 1902. (Source: Nova Scotia Historical Vital Statistics; Registration Year: 1902 - Book: 1820 - Page: 29 - Number: 430)

Catherine (Power) Crichton is buried at Mount Olivet Cemetery, but not with her husband Charles Douglas Crichton. Catherine is buried in the Power family lot (her brothers lot.)

From the union of Charles Douglas Crichton and Emma Johnston, the following children were born:
  1. Robert Ernest Crichton (31 Jul 1903-8 Jan 1947) 
  2. Edward Douglas Creighton (16 Oct 1904 - ??) 
The descendants of Robert Ernest Crichton have added information to our GENI Family tree including this interesting photograph of Robert Ernest Creighton.

Undated photograph that includes Robert Ernest Crichton (not identified)
Source: Robert William Creighton, Halifax, Nova Scotia

Charles D. Crichton Dies 

Charles Crichton died on the 4th of August 1910 at sixty-three years of age after being ill for one month with cardiac issues.
Death Certificate: Charles Douglas Crichton; 4 Aug 1910; Halifax, Nova Scotia

He was living at 130 Maitland St. Halifax at time of death. Occupation at time of death listed as laborer at sugar refinery. He is buried at Mount Olivet Cemetery (common burial ground)

Is It "Crichton" or "Creighton"?

"The family name of Charles Douglas Crichton changed to Creighton after 1911.Charles Douglas registered and signed his marriage record as CRICHTON. Charles Robert married Effie Alberta Tomlin, d/o Samuel Tomlin and Emily Nickerson, in Halifax, Nova Scotia. He also registered and signed his marriage record as CRICHTON. Charles Robert baptized his 2 boys, Frederick Douglas and William Frances at St. George's Church in Halifax, Nova Scotia and registered them as CRICHTON. When Charles Robert died in a Dockyard accident 28 December 1911, Effie registered his death as Charles Robert CREIGHTON and registered their two boys at school after the death as CREIGHTON. Hence the family name changed from Crichton to Creighton."

1 comment:

  1. I like the way you brought this "timeline" alive with photos, documents, and commentary. And it's really helpful to follow along with your thinking and the process for researching these ancestors. Thanks for sharing!