Charlotte Penney
and Herbert Penney

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Charlotte Penney
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1. Mr. and Mrs. John Harper Penney were from South Shields.
2. Alderman Robert Affleck was from 'Bloomfield' Gateshead.
3. Herbert Gilles Penney was the second son of John Harper Penney.
4. Lottie Affleck was the only daughter of Robert Affleck.
5. They were married on Saturday 11/12/1909 at St. Georges Church in Gateshead.
6. Mr. Harry G. Wicks was a cousin of Herbert Gilles Penney. His mother, Mrs. Wicks was the Mayoress of Gateshead. She must be aunt to Herbert Gilles Penney and née Penney, and therefore sister to John Harper Penney and Edward Penney.
7. Gifts were received from, 'Mr. R Penney and Mr. C. Penney and Miss Flo' . I suggest that Mr. R. and Mr. C. are two more younger sons of John Harper Penney and Miss Flo is Florrie Penney.
8. Similarly, Misses R. and J. and Master Stanley Penney. I suggest that R. and J. refer to Rita and Jean and Stanley is another son.
9. Similarly, Mrs. E. Penney and Miss Penney. I suggest this is Caroline Valencia Penney, wife of Edward, and Valencia Ann Harper Penney, my grandmother.
Some notes on the Afflecks, 1800 Present.

All the following notes were written by William Strickland Affleck

The following is based, in the main on a collection of letters written by my grandmother and my uncles to my father after he had gone to Canada in 1906. It is supplemented with the results of various researches, including birth, marriage and death certificates and information from other family members. The material in the letters is, obviously subjective and tells us as much about the writers as it does about the subjects. The collection of letters is also a clearly incomplete source. Letters were not written during visits and there is no certainty that all that were written, were kept. That subjects are not, apparently, covered does not mean that they were not discussed. The collection is also one-sided. Evidently my father was a regular, even prolific correspondent but only a handful of his letters survive.

Up to 1881

The Afflecks originated in Scotland but the family was in the Tyneside region for some generations before my father was born.

My great-great grandfather was a William Affleck probably born before 1800 and died after 1857 and before 1870. He is described as a miner on my great-grandfather's marriage certificate.

My great grandfather was also a William Affleck, probably born in 1815 (based on age at death and his age in the 1881 Census -which gives his place of birth as Urpeth County Durham). He married Charlotte Clarke in 1853, in St. Andrews Parish Church. Newcastle-upon Tyne. The marriage certificate shows him as an engineer. William and Charlotte had twins, Dorothy Sarah and William James in 1855. On their birth certificates their father is described as an engineman at a colliery. In1858 there was a son, Robert, who would be my grandfather. On his birth certificates his father is described as an engineman.

At the time of the 1881 Census, William (66), Charlotte (63), Dorothy (25) and Robert (22) were living at 10, Osborne Terrace, Gateshead. (William James was not present). William is described now as a Land Agent, Robert as a Professor of Music. William would, later that year be Mayor of Gateshead. Charlotte died Jan 11th, 1883, aged 66. Robert is still shown as Mayor of Gateshead on her death certificate. William subsequently (1884) remarried to Sara Harley, who was some 30 years his junior and, reputedly, had been his cook This was a registry office marriage in Belford, Northumberland and no one from the family was present. William died on Feb 7th 1890, aged 75. We understand there were children but have no information about them.

0ne of the mysteries of the family is how William progressed from being an engineman in 1858, when he would already be in his mid 4Os, to land agent and Mayor of Gateshead in 1881.

My grandfather Robert was born in Gateshead, County Durham in 1858 (June 2nd). Apart from the 1881 Census record we know nothing about his activities until August 2nd 1881 when he married Georgiana Scotson Morriss in St. Edmunds Church, Gateshead.

Georgiana was born in Gateshead in 1853 (May 18th). Her parents were Johnson Morriss of Gateshead and Sarah Wilson Scotson who was born in 1818 at Carlton, just north-west of Stockton-on-Tees. They were married in Middlesborough, then in County Durham, now in Cleveland, in 1843. We have records of Scotsons back to 1725 in the Kirklevington area. just south of Stockton-on-Tees. Georgiana had a sister. Wilhelmina, who, as Aunt Lily figures throughout. There is a story, impossible to validate, that both Georgiana and Wilhelmina were attracted to Robert. Georgiana won, in the sense that she became Mrs. Affleck, but Wilhelmina seems to have come along as well and spent much of her life living with them.

From 1881 to 1910

Robert was 23, Georgiana 28 when they were married. Robert Affleck was later a Justice of the Peace and Alderman of the city of Gateshead. He was a house agent and property owner. The family business was that of landlord and property developer. He was Chairman of the Board of Guardians in Gateshead. The Board of Guardians administered charities and were in charge of poor relief, workhouses, etc. The family was involved with the Unitarian church in Gateshead and Robert played the organ. The Afflecks ultimately had quite a large house, Bloomfield, which then stood in its own grounds and they appear to have lived in some style with indoor and outdoor servants, etc. There was a pipe organ in the house. After the second World War the house was used as council offices, and extended and modified. It was finally demolished in1957.

Robert and Georgiana had six children between 1882 and 1893. The family came to a crisis point in 1910, and it is useful to follow the children's progress up to that date.

Their second child was a daughter, Charlotte Sarah, always known as "Lottie", who was born April 18th. 1884. She married Herbert Gillies Penney on December 4th. 1909, when she was 25, in Gateshead. They were given a house in Osbourne Terrace as a wedding present, a circumstance which seems to have almost caused a delay in the marriage because the sitting tenant initially refused to move out.

From 1910 to 1920

Grandfather Robert was suddenly taken ill while on holiday in 1910. He died on August 3rd. in Dunoon, following an emergency operation for a burst appendix. He was 52. This was an extremely traumatic event for the family.

Lottie was 26 (and some seven months pregnant) at the time of her father's death. A daughter, Helen, was born October 31st 1910. Lottie and Herbert (and Helen) seem to have lived in Bloomfield with the mother for a period before the house was sold in 1912. Herbert was in insurance and they subsequently lived in or near Glasgow. During the war they seem still to have been in the Tyne~side area as there are notes of Lottie helping with the collection and distribution of mufflers, socks, etc for the soldiers. Herbert had been in the TA (Territorial Army) and rejoined as a Lt. Instructor. By Christmas 1914 "he has achieved a Captaincy in the Tyneside Irish. Mounted too. . ."

Herbert Penney may well have been a better business man than any of the Afflecks but his attempts to 'interfere' in the management of the estate after Robert Affleck's death were much resented by Lottie's brothers. They had three other children. Robert Affleck Penney (1913) 'The new Baby is a fine fat good looking boy. He was christened last Sunday (letter written 4th May 1913), receiving the name of Robert Affleck. Willie was one of the god-fathers and Herbert's eldest brother (The Banker in Buenos Airies) the other, Herbert standing proxy. Ruth Wallace is God-Mother', Dorothy (1917?) and Reginald (1921?) but there is really only passing reference to these in any of the correspondence, for example in May 1915: 'infant Robert has had a bad bout, but appears to be out of danger now'. but in June 1915 'poor wee Bobbie seems to be nearing the end of his short life. We feel it so much here that it is terrible to think what Herbert and Lottie must be going through. Helen is still with us, and is happy, and cheerful company. Mother has perked up wonderfully with having her'.

From 1910 to 1930

Apart from her (and Herbert's) involvement in visiting the ailing Georgiana (which seems to have involved travelling down from Glasgow) and their involvement in the dispersals following Georgiana's death we know nothing about the Penney family's activities during this period. After the death Robbie resigned as trustee of the Estate which was henceforward in the control of Herbert Penney and Tom Lambert (the family solicitor) although 'they are trustees only, we have still the legal position of beneficiaries, Tom is absolutely straight (if overworked and in consequence a bit casual. Herbert apparently a real business man. There seems to be no doubt that the two of them will, if it be possible, pull the estate round in twenty years, and I [Robbie] have no taste for being a mere passenger'.

From 1930 to the Present

Very little known to us. There are suggestions of Herbert having fallen on hard times in the insurance business and we know that the family moved south at some stage. Helen married Cyril Planterose (1937?); we believe both she and her husband are now dead and know nothing of any family. Robert Affleck Penney was (Crockford's - a great aid!) ordained in 1954 and was vicar of St Saviour's, Croydon at the time of his parent's deaths, within six months of each other, in 1966/7. Dorothy married to become Mrs Desoutter; we understand Molly keeps contact with her. Reginald? Thanks (again) to Crockford's we know of you...

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