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Robert Matches, born c 1900
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Robert Matches, born c 1900

This is my grandfather, Robert Matches, born 1882 so I imagine the photo was taken about 1900. He left Kirkwall in 1906 for Portland, Oregon where he "made his fortune" - I suppose he must have done - and returned to marry Maggie Flett in 1937. They bought the Ayre Hotel in 1938 and he died there in 1953. (Just to avoid confusion, he wasn't married to my grandmother!)
Picture added on 14 January 2013 at 19:52

One of my grandfathers was a Spence... maybe a relation? His name was Andrew Spence (Born 1831) and he was married to Anne Matches. My great grandmother was Frances Mary Bedford Corrigall (Born Spence) who died in Orkney in 1962 aged 102. My grandmother was Maggie Corrigall from Northbigging. She had at least 2 sisters who's names were Annie and Doreen.

Added by Derek Hunter on 22 March 2013
I would love to know how Robert Matches met my grandmother, Margaret Shearer Stewart, born in Keith in 1892 and living in Aberdeen in 1920 (she died there after giving birth to my mother). He was living in Portland, Oregon at the time and just visiting Scotland - we know what he did during his visit! - and I wonder if he knew Margaret's family in Portland before meeting her. They were Elizabeth Simpson Stewart (who adopted my mother) and George McHardy Stewart, Margaret's sister and brother.
Added by Nancy Gemmell on 13 September 2013
Hi Derek, I'm so sorry I never replied to your comment, I have just seen it. There was an Anne Matches in the 1941 census in Deerness, a place called Millhill. Apparently those Matches, although they were also in Deerness, are not related to "my" Matches, who lived at Horries and Pictil. Or perhaps it just goes so far back that no-one knows.
Added by Nancy Gemmell on 11 August 2014
oops, that should be the 1841 census, of course! (I WISH we could already see the 1941 one...)
Added by Nancy Gemmell on 20 August 2014
My grandmother Christina Laird, born Stromness 1889, had a younger brother called John Robert (known as Bertie) born Stromness 1892. Their father was Andrew Laird (1852 - 1898) who was factor at the Bu of Burray until about 1884. I know from my research that Bertie married Maggie Lizzie Flett and they had a little girl called Iris Marion Laird. I also know that Bertie sailed over to USA on his own and settled in Detroit. He applied to American citizenship in 1913 and stated that he was married to Margaret who 'still lives in Scotland'. Did he divorce Maggie? I do know that he later married Edna Yeckley and they had two girls. Later Edna shows up in California as 'head of household' and divorced. I believe my great uncle Bertie was a bit of a scoundrel. I was happy to see that Maggie married Robert Matches late in life. I do hope they were happy together.
Added by Tina Litchfield on 20 March 2021
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Workings in Broad StreetFoubister's Shop 30 Albert St. KirkwallBryttania before the band’s first gigKGS signageKGS Maths stairsOld Highland Park bottleMargaret Rendall and friendsKirkwall RegattaThe basin post dredging, summer 1985Hatston Slip