Keepers House.

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 scene 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.

Keepers House1

On the morning of 30th of October 2016 I took a drive over to the keeper’s house to take some pictures for Historic Hamilton. As I walked through the woods and across the overgrown and once well-kept grounds I approached the house. Possibly my mind was playing tricks on me, but I swear that I could hear voices coming from inside the old caretaker’s cottage. The voices were not very clear, but more of a whisper! But nonetheless, as you can imagine after hearing this it dawned on me that I had not told anyone where I had intended to be!

Do you ever get that feeling that someone is following you when you are walking alone? Well, I couldn’t get out of the woods quick enough and I had this very same feeling all the way back past the Mausoleum caretakers house, back through the overgrown hedges and through the trees back to my car. This is the first and last time that I will visit an old house on a dark morning on my own.

The mausoleum caretakers house has a lot of History connected to it and is now sitting in a very bad state. This week I am going to ask for your help to try and save this Historic Building from disappearing forever.


First published on Historic Hamilton on the 20th of April 2016 and republished for Halloween.

Historic Hamilton


The following story was reported in the Hamilton Advertiser on the 20 April 1895.

“Cadzow” writes to the Glasgow Herald; Please give me space for the following statement of facts. In a secluded corner on the confines of Fairhill and Earnock estates, within two miles distance of Hamilton Cross, there lies a small burying-place of some old Meikle Earnock families.

It has long since been disused, but a sweeter and more peaceful resting place it were hard to find, or apparently one more unlikely to be disturbed. What was my horror then, sir, on taking a quiet walk along the road that passes this God’s acre to find a human skull lying on the side walk, and grinning in all its ghastliness at passers-by! I reverently lifted the “thing” intending to replace it in the hallowed ground, when I observed that the door and window of the mausoleum which stands…

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The Burial ground on Millgate Road

This story was first published on Historic Hamilton on the 17th of January 2016 and has been republished for Halloween.

Historic Hamilton

Tumulus The Tumulus in Millgate road could have possibly looked like the one in this picture.

“A tumulus (plural tumuli) is a mound of earth and stones raised over a grave or graves. Tumuli also are known as barrows, burial mounds, Hügelgräber, or kurgans, and may be found throughout much of the world. A cairn, which is a mound of stones built for various purposes, might also originally have been a tumulus.”

For the people who live in Millgate Road, take a minute or two to stop at the piece of open land in between 94 & 96 and spare a thought!! This is the site of an old burial ground and an even older Tumulus.

The first visual record of the Tumulus is found on the 1843 map of Hamilton and it was situated on the lands of Meikle Earnock.  The burial mound was located between two buildings…

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Do you know the Marchant family from Hamilton?

We have a request from Raoul Marchant in Australia.

“Hi, I am looking to find my family members.

My father was born and raised in Hamilton, born 26 October 1939. He then immigrated to Australia, where I live with my son. (His grandson).

My father’s name is Raoul Marchant (The same name as me) He is well & still living here in Australia. My father had brothers & sisters and most I believe probably still live in Hamilton.

My father left Scotland when he was 15 years old around 1954 and he lost contact with his family in Hamilton.

Is it possible to put up a post asking to connect with my family if they are interested?”

Can you help Raoul track down his Uncles & Aunties? The family name Marchant is not a widely used one in Hamilton. If you know a family with this surname or if you think that you can help, then please let us know.



2003. I’m sitting here growling in this cursed wheelchair,
A little old lady with snow in her hair, 
But who’s this auld woman, I’m dammed if it’s me,
For inside my head I’m still thirty three.

I’m a young wife and mother, for the stars I can reach,
I run with my children, barefoot on the beach
I cook and I bake and I sew and I clean .
My body’s still young and firm and lean.

The years gallop on, too fast! please slow down,
At the thought of being old, I’m starting to frown,
Can I push back the clock? Time is running away!
There’s no holding it back, I get older each day.

I ´m dependant on others to push me about,
It feels so unreal; I just want to scream out.
I can run if I want to, my head tells me so,
When I try to stand up my legs just won’t go.

Down here i’m invisible. How is she today?
Talk to me! Not to her, I´m desperate to say.
Can´t you see me? Dont ignore me, I want to shout out,
Leave me my dignity, thatś what life’s all about.

Look at me now and at yourself too,
Whatś happened to me, could happen to you
The years they have vanished just like the stars in the night
When the dawn turns the sky from darkness to light.

2005. My Wheelchair has gone; I’ve got new metal hips,
All praise for the surgeon springs forth from my lips,
The snow in my hair has been banished from sight
Now it is brown with a dash of highlight.

I´ve bought a new car, a wee Mini Cooper
Itś a pity I´m no a stunning good looker,
I’m five foot two now and no’ three foot three,
People don’t walk past, they now talk to me.

So if you chance to walk down the street,
And a wee man or woman you happen to meet,
Who’s trapped in a wheelchair with legs that won’t go,
Remember to give them a smiling hallo.

Wilma Bolton. © 2005

Abbottsford Road 1988

James Poulton.

James Poulton sent us a picture from 1988 which was taken at Abbotsford Road in Whitehill.

In the picture, we have left to right Jaqueline Stevens, Stuart Poulton, Margaret Poulton. Donna Stevens, Edward Ducy. & James Poulton and the dog’s name was Toby.

Do you have a 1980’s picture that you would like to share? 
Send them to us and we will share with everyone who follows Historic Hamilton from all around the world.

Goodby St.Anne’s.

Goodby St.Anne’s.

St. Anne's Farewell.

On the 29th of June 2007 and as the last of the pupils left the old St. Anne’s primary a few decided to leave their mark and do the obvious thing which was to write ‘Mentions’ on the wall.

This was 10 years ago and Wilma Bolton who managed to gain access to the old school took a wander around it and started to take some pictures. She came to one classroom in particular and when she saw this noticeboard she knew that one day this would hold memories for thekids who wrote their names.

Here are some of the names on the board:

Mrs A Logan
Amy B
Ryan C.
Matthew A.
Keiran M.
Wee Decky.

We would like to know if you were one of the kids who wrote a ‘Menchie’ on the Noticeboard. If you are one of the Kids, then please let us know and tell us what you are doing with yourself these days.

Those were the days, “my friend”

Those were the days, “my friend”

The poem below was written for Historic Hamilton by Hugh Hainey.

Kin ye mind twiddlin’ that wee wheel tae git radio Luxemburg oan yir “trannies”
Ye hid tae be awfy quiet so is no tae annoy yir maws, da’s, granda’s ur grannies,,
A bet ye’s awe hid tae stie well clear ur go up the stairs right ootie thir way
A hid a wee earpiece n’ a stied up tae the last record, “At the end of the day”

Then came that pirate ship”Radio Caroline” a kin remember “rockin n’ reelin”
But ye still couldnae play that in the “big room”, cause yir da’ wid hit the ceelin’
Then that BBC brought oot a new station, kin ye mind it? that new radio wan,,
Wan day a tuned it intae the radiogramme, n’ that’s when the shit hit the fan,,
“Turn that shite aff” wur no hivin’ that shite oan there, we want the auld, no the new,,
Just name me wan song wae lyrics,, a said, Doo Wa Diddy Diddy Dum Diddy Doo,,,(ouch)
But ye see back then thir wis a place in “Hamilton” that hid great music n’ dancin’,,
Fur two bob, ye could dance tae the bands, n’ if ye lumbered, git a bit o’ romancin,,,
The Trocaddero” Townhead St, “Big Dave Muir” always ran that place tae perfection,,,
Fae the “lollipop night” tae the “Ballroom” n’ that wee “Chris Mc Lure” n’ his section,,
Noo awe they years hiv turned intae decades, n’ fur me it’s comin’ tae seven,,
I’ll tell ye, I’ll no forget the “Troc”n’ people thit a met there, jist this side of heaven,,,
( ye know they say whit goes roon comes roon, n’ tae be careful whit yir daein’
haud oan, ma gransons playin he’s music, “turn that shite aff” well, am jist sayin’)