Woman Killed at the Keepers House at the Mausoleum.

The Mausoleum Caretakers House where the accident occurred.


A sad tale occurred on Saturday the 16th of September 1911. Mrs Thomas Kerr, wife of the keeper of the Mausoleum at Hamilton Palace, died at one o’clock Saturday morning from injuries sustained by explosion of gas in her house late the previous night.

Her husband had gone out to post letter, leaving in the house his wife and two children, aged respectively two years and six months. After making some calls, he returned home between ten and eleven, and entering the   house a painful scone confronted him. His wife was lying the stair leading from the kitchen the coal cellar. Her clothes were practically burned off, and her body was scorched in a terrible manner.

He lifted her into the kitchen, and ran for assistance, Mrs Kerr was still conscious, and was able say that when she was going down to the cellar fetch coals something went up in a blaze at the gas jet on the stair. The elder of her two children, a bright little girl, was with her, but Mrs Kerr had the presence of mind to push the child down the stair when the explosion occurred. In this way the girl escaped the flames which enveloped her mother.

The younger child was asleep in a perambulator in the kitchen, and was uninjured. Mr and Mrs Kerr are a young couple, who only entered upon duty at Hamilton Palace three weeks ago, having previously lived at Caledonia Road, Glasgow.


10 thoughts on “Woman Killed at the Keepers House at the Mausoleum.”

  1. Hello Garry, My great aunt married thomas kerr after his wife died in the fire, her name was Frances Helen and she worked at the mauseleum and also sang in it. Thomas was the caretaker. They lived in the cottage in the grounds. I am trying to find out about their lives and children and also where Frances went to live after leaving the cottage in the 60,s. Can you help me in any way?


  2. Hi my name is Debbie maiden name Kerr my grandad was Thomas her and his dad lived and worked at the mausaleum his dad lost his first wife in a gas explostion and he re married and they had my grandad we are also trying to find information about the family France’s can you please get in touch if you see this I remember my grandad talking about nell x

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Debbie. Great to get a response.
      Nell was my great Aunt. She initially went to hamilton as a nanny to look after the children when their mom died in the fire. Then married their dad. Thomas. They went on to have a son and a daughter. I really want to know more about Nell as she is a mystery as far as family records go.perhaps we could exchange numbers so we can talk??

      Liked by 1 person

    2. Hi Debbie.
      Great to get a response. My Great Aunt Nell married Thomas after being a nanny to the 2 children. They then had a son and a daughter. Nell sang in the mauseleum as well as being the tour guide and she finally left the cottage in the 1960’s I believe. I am struggling to find info on her tho so would love to chat with you if possible??
      Could we ??


    3. Hi Debbie.
      My great aunt – Frances Helen Bangham (everyone called her Nell) was married to Thomas Kerr. She initially was employed by him as a nanny to the children following the death of Violet his wife in the cottage explosion in 1911. They married in 1912/1914. dont know exact date or year but Thomas their son was born in 1915 and their daughter Henrietta was born in 1925. Thomas past away on the 8th July 1947. Thomas and Violet lived in Caledonia Road, Glasgow before moving into the cottage. Harry Kerr (think is son of thomas (1915) and was a guide at the mauseleum, retired in the 70’s and lived at no. 2. Mote Hill. a cottage beside the golf course. Thomas himself was re-housed from cottage to mauseleum cottage at the foot of the hill at the furlongs next to the golf course in the 1960’s. Nell also left the cottage and I think she may have gone to live with Henrietta in the south of England. At least thats what the current tour guide of the mauseleum told me. Nell use to sing in the mauseleum and actually recorded quite a few records, again what the tour guide told me. I knew she sang in there but didnt realise recordings were made. My grandmother (Harriet) Nell,s sister also sang in there. She spent a lot of time with Nell and she worked in the grocer shop in hamilton. Nell was from Shropshire, England. There is a photo on the community site of historic hamilton of Nell coming down steps and at the bottom is the father of Harry Paton Evans. Harry posts a lot on here. Have a look. Thats about all I know so far Debbie. If you have any more info please share it with me. Cheers. Frances.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Hi GARRY MY aunt and uncle were keepers of the mauseleum i thought from the late fifties till the sixties their names were Andrew and Mary Davie they had three sons bobby john and william i lived with them for a year in nineteen sixty and went to beckford st school i think they were the last keepers as they moved to the caretakers cottage up at the gate at bothwell rd where they lived for about a year and then took the job of caretakers of kyle court in cambuslang

        Liked by 1 person

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