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Mathieson family at Rinigall
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Mathieson family at Rinigall

James Mathieson Snr, His wife Elizabeth, their daughter Eva and her aunt Betsy (Labeled)

this photo includes my genealogy person numbers..the "P" numbers.

My great aunt and another Johnston cousin were married to Mathiesons.

Ths photo is taken at mid Rinigall on Hoy

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Picture added on 15 December 2010 at 18:24
Are ye sure this is Rinigall? I am having difficulty wae the lie o' the land?? Or has time played tricks wae me memory?
Added by David Watters on 16 December 2010
Most certainly no the Rinigall across from Lyness, no high ground there, could be the north end of Hoy, but never heard of a croft called Mid Rinigall there.
Added by Jimmy Hamilton on 16 December 2010
This picture is more like Rackwick definately not the Mid Rinigall I know off - unless there was a Mid Rinigall in Rackwick too but I've never heard of one?
Added by Mabel Besant on 16 December 2010
Looks like Rackwick tae me??
Added by David Watters on 16 December 2010
I dont ken much if anything aboot these folk,But I see this picture is from the book Hoy the dark enchanted Isle by John Bremner, Was he no a Rackwick man. Also Mid Rinnigal that was occupied by the Robertson brothers Geordie and Sandy for many years was bought by their father Ali Robertson many years ago. Not sure who he bought it off but it was a Mathieson family that was in it at the time
Added by Allan Besant on 17 December 2010
thanks for the comments, like to correct it if I can .does anyone have a picture of Rinigall or Rackwick to compare..I looked with no luck

Added by Richard Johnston on 17 December 2010
some new information..

it appears that Elizabeth's family (Ritch) came from Rackwick ..so perhaps it was taken there as mentioned..


Added by Richard Johnston on 17 December 2010
may have found the correct comparison picture #24148..the angle and where on the slope the picture is taken from are different..but the hills look very similar.

I'm fairly convinced it Rackwick as mentioned...


Steven..can you re-name the photo to "Mathieson family at Rackwick" to reflect this information?
Added by Richard Johnston on 17 December 2010
Hi this is Rackwick taken from around the croft Shores looking up to groups and beyound
Added by Ewart Omand on 18 December 2010
I think James Mathieson must have got married to Elizabeth and moved to Rackwick, or maybe he was in Rackwick helping his father in law with the harvest. Jack Rendall would probably know.
1881 census Rinnigal. Robert Matheson 55. Anne his wife 55, James, son, 16. Christina daughter 13.

1891 census. Robert Matheson 65. Anne 66. James 26. Christina 23. Maggie 3.
Added by Fred Johnston on 18 December 2010
I have been speaking to Jack Rendall of Rackwick, the last native of Rackwick actually living there.

There is a Rennigill in Rackwick, but it is a hill at the South side and there are no houses on it. The Mathesons actually lived in the Rinnigal in Crockness. James Mathieson married Elizabeth Ritch of Outerhouse in Rackwick and they had a daughter Eva, who Jack thinks was born about 1910( she died in the 1960s).Elizabeth Ritch died young and Eva was brought up by her aunt Betsy and her brother Hugh. Jack thinks that James Mathieson went to Canada whils't Eva remained in Rackwick for the rest of her days.

The above photograph is definately taken in Rackwick and I suspect it was after James Mathieson had left for Canada

I think that the people in the photograph, left to right are. James Ritch, his wife Betsy ( nee. Sutherland), little Eve Mathieson and her aunt Betsy Ritch.
Added by Fred Johnston on 20 December 2010
Brought up on the island. Definitely Rackwick.
Added by Pauline Duncan on 21 December 2010
James Mathieson married Elizabeth Ritch in 1902.
Elizabeth died in 1914. Eva was born in 1913. Unless I'm mistaken that does not look like a one year old child to me. Does anyone have any idea who she could be. I'm wondering if the lady on the right shown as Elizabeths sister in law Betsy could be Betsy Sinclair who married Elizabeths brother James Ritch in 1909?
Added by Robin Smith on 22 December 2010
I think it was this peedie Eva Mathison who found a shuttle cock on the beach in Rackwick and no kenan whit hid wiz she sent it tae William Groundwater the Headmaster o the Stromness School.
Mr Groundwater wrote nature notes in the Orkney Herald at the time,he must hiv hin a fine fun about that shuttle cock!!.
Added by John Budge on 23 December 2010
I had James Ritche's wifes surname wrong in my previous post. Obviously her surname was Sinclair and not Sutherland. As I said before, I think that the four persons in the photograph are James Ritch, Betsy( his wife), little Eva Mathieson and her aunt Betsy Ritch. The photo must have been taken after 1914, as Eva looks to be at least 4 years old.
I understand that Eva had three older siblings, John, James and Bella who became Mrs McCulloch.
John Bremner in his book on Hoy, states that the little girl is Eva, with her aunt Betsy and he thinks that the other two are James and Betsy Ritch. John was born and brought up in Rackwick,so he would know.
Added by Fred Johnston on 24 December 2010
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