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Tracing my mother-in-law's Scottish ancestral roots, I was able to uncover a story of a family from humble origins, working as weavers in lowland Scotland. The youngest son, who was her grandfather, rather than follow his father and siblings into the weaving trade in the late 1830s, instead became a gardener.

Langholm Cemetery

Following his "trail" across 3 decades of census records, I was able to follow his career, rising from being a "male servant" working for the Chamberlain Steward of the Duke of Buccleuch in 1841, via work as a journeyman gardener at Taymouth Castle in Perthshire in 1851 to become the Head Gardener to the Earl of Kintore at Keith Hall from 1861 onwards, and his eventual retirement and death in 1908.

Newspaper reports showed us his success at various Horticultural events and shows across Scotland and England, winning prizes for his produce - apples, potatoes, flowers to name a few.

He married in London in 1865, a lady with the same first name as my mother-in-law, the daughter of a "Gentleman", called Daniel. They had several children, and their youngest son was the father of my mother-in-law.

Still curious about the unusual name, I investigated further and, finding the birthplace of Daniel, in Kent, I discovered that several girls baptised in the locality, shared the same name.

Recently I also found a child born at Keith Hall in the 1880s was given the same name!

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