Roy Howat Collection

Many thanks to Roy for sharing these photographs on his family. With his permission some genealogical research has been included to add to their story.


A1. James Galston (1891-1918) & Elizabeth Hastings Houston (1895-1969)

Children: Andrew (b.1913), Elizabeth (b.1914), George (b.1918)

James Galston was born on the 2nd June 1891 at 35 Young Street, Glasgow the son of Andrew Galston, journeyman clogmaker and Mary Hudson. He was orphaned before his teenage years. The 1911 Census records show him boarding with Thomas Houston and his family at Pathhead, New Cumnock where he worked in the local colliery.

On the 18th October 1912 James married Ellen Hastings Houston, niece of Thomas Houston. Ellen was born on 1st March 1895 at Pathhead the daughter of George Houston, coal miner and Elizabeth Maider. After her school years Ellen found work as a domestic servant, including for a time at Burnside Farm, Cumnock. At the time of her marriage she worked as a domestic servant at Southampton House, Pathhead.

Together James and Ellen had three children – Andrew (b. 1913) was born at Afton Cottages while Elizabeth (b.1914) was born at Pathhead. By this time Andrew Galston was serving as a Private in the 1/5 Royal Scots Fusiliers.

James and Elizabeth with baby Elizabeth and Andrew (Photo Courtesy of Roy Howat)

In July 1917 a second son George was born at Burnbrae Cottage. Tragically young George died just before his 1st birthday and two months later Private James Galston died of his wounds while fighting in France.

James Galston (Photo Courtesy of Roy Howat)

Soldiers Trail| James Galston

In February 1922 widow Ellen married Hugh Middleton, labourer in a munitions store and together with Ellen’s children they lived at Burnbrae Cottage and started a family of their own.


A1. 1 Andrew Galston (1913-2008) & Marion Service Stobo (1914-1983)

Andrew Galston. (Photo courtesy of Roy Howat

Andrew Galston later settled in Glasgow where while working as a Bank Clerk he married Marion Service Stobo. Andrew served as a Captain in the army during World War II. In later life he gained a reputation for contributing to the Cumnock Chronicle sharing his memories and knowledge of New Cumnock under the name “Auld Yin”.


B1. Thomas McNeish (1884-1957) & Elizabeth Farrow (1882-1968)

Children: Elizabeth (1905), Nellie (1906), Isabella (1908), Janet (1911), Maggie & John, twins (1913), Thomas (1914)

Thomas McNeish was born on 10th October 1884 at High Boig Cottages, Connel Park the fourth son of John McNeish, coal miner and Elizabeth Clark. Like his father and brothers, Thomas worked in the local coal mines.

In 1903, Thomas enlisted in the Cameron Highlanders, Regimental number 6660.

Thomas McNeish, senior (Photo courtesy of Roy Howat)

On 30th December 1904, 21 year-old Thomas McNeish married 22 year-old Elizabeth Beattie Farrow at Carsknowe Sanquhar, where Elizabeth worked as a domestic servant. She was born on 19th July 1882 at Loaning Foot, in the parish of Morton, Dumfriesshire daughter of Mary Maxwell Farrow.

Together they had a large family including twins Maggie & John who sadly died a few days after they were born, and youngest child Thomas born on 28th March 1914 at Connel Park.

Thomas senior passed away in 1957, at Castlemains Avenue, New Cumnock. His widow Elizabeth later returned to her native Dumfriesshire, setlling at Closeburmand passed away in 1968, at Grove Hospital, near Irongray.

GRANDPARENTS |McNeish & Galston

C1. Thomas McNeish (1914- 2004 ) & Elizabeth Maider Galston (1914-1996)

Children: Helen (1938)

On the 20th August 1937, 22 year-old Elizabeth Galston, Burnbrae Cottage married 23 year-old Thomas McNeish, coal miner who lived at High Linn, in the upper reaches of Mansfield Burn.

Their first born was daughter Helen Hastings McNeish.

Ruins of High Linn (Photo Robert Guthrie)

Thomas served in the Army Reserve and is shown here on the far right with fellow soldiers.

Thomas McNeish, junior on the far right (Photo Courtesy Roy Howat)

PARENTS |Howat & McNeish

D1. William Wilson Howat & Helen Hastings McNeish

In 1959 Helen McNeish married Sanquhar born William Howat. William served in the Royal Scots.


Partial Family Tree