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 Sir Samuel WAY - his ancestors and descendants

Catherine Gillon ('Kitty') GORDON

Female 1854 - 1914  (60 years)


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  • Name Catherine Gillon ('Kitty') GORDON 
    Nickname Kitty  
    Born 8 Apr 1854  Larbert, Stirling, Scotland, UK Find all individuals with events at this location  [1
    • Names :
      * Kitty had different names at different times of her life - at her birth, adoption, two marriages and the titles of her husbands.
      * Catherine Gillon GORDON was recorded at her birth (ref : see birth below).
      * It is interesting that her middle name was given as Gillon (that spelling) at the time of her birth. It can't be a coincidence that this is so close to the surname of the man that her aunt Catherine married, Donald GOLLAN (that spelling) about 15 years previously. Is it possible that, at the time of her birth, her parents had in mind that she would eventually be 'adopted' by the Gollans?. The Gollans, who never had any children of their own, had visited Kitty's parents (holidayed from South Australia back to Scotland)less than a year before she was conceived - so maybe an understanding was developing at that stage.
      * Because she was 'adopted' by the Gollans, she was often known by the surname GOLLAN
      * After she married Dr Billy Blue in 1872, she became Mrs BLUE
      * Because Billy Blue was the Major of Strathalbyn for 6 years, she might have been called Lady Mayoress, but there are no indications of this.
      * After she married Samuel Way in 1898, she became Mrs WAY
      * After Samuel was knighted in 1899, she became Lady Way.
      * Sometimes spelled Katharine (on the records of both her weddings) and Katherine (on her death record).
      * Nicknamed 'Kitty'.
    Gender Female 
    Education Education : Miss Senner's School [Question : What is this school, and which years did Kitty attend?]  
    Migration 5 Oct 1854 
    Migration: As an infant, with her parents and two brothers, Kitty migrated from Scotland on the 'Eldorado' whioh arrived in Holdfast Bay??, South Australia on 5th Oct 1854. 
    Achievements & main events Achievements : In her public life, Lady Way's main concerns were with the welfare of women and girls. The many institutions she actively supported included :- Queen's Home, Lady Victoria Girl's Club, Home for Incurables, YMCA, Methodist Central Mission, Adelaide Children's Hospital, State Children's Council, Mothers' Union, District Trained Nursing Society, Lady Victoria Buxton Girls? Club, Girls' Friendly Society, Ministering Children's League, Young Women's Christian Association, Travellers' Aid Society, The Queen Adelaide Club (president since its inception), Victoria League, Alliance Francaise, Central Methodist Mission, actively involved in Christ Church (not Church of Christ) and Golf and tennis clubs. 
    Achievements & main events Death :
    * Kitty died on 4th May 1914 at 60 years in North Adelaide (ref : Australian Death Index - page 478,vol 383)
    * She died at home at 'Montefiore', North Adelaide.
    * The cause of death was a 'sudden illness'.
    * She was buried at West Terrace, Adelaide.
    * Her funeral was a major public event in Adelaide.
    * Buried in the West Terrace Cemetery, Adelaide.
     
    Achievements & main events Lineage :
    * Parents : Alexander GORDON and Jessie, nee MATHESON
    * Adoptive parents : Donald GOLLAN and Catherine, nee MATHESON (Jessie's sister)
    * Paternal grandparents : John GORDON and Lizy, nee GORDON
    * Maternal grandparents : Alexander MATHESON and Margaret, nee FRASER
    * Full siblings : John, Alexander, Kitty, Donald, Hugh and Margo.
    * Step-siblings (through Anne CAMPBELL) : James and David.
    * Spouse 1 : William Archibald Sinclair 'Billy' BLUE in 1872 (she was 18 years and he was 26)
    * Spouse 2 : Samuel James WAY in 1898 (she was 45 and he was 62 years old)
    * Children (with Billy) : Sinclair, Archibald, William and Shylie.
    * Step-children (through Samuel) : James, Frank, Alfred and Edward.
     
    Achievements & main events Memorials :
    * There is a stained glass window in the Strathalbyn Christ Church in her memory. (ref : Gremmell??? p94)
    * Her portrait, in full evening dress, is in the Strathalbyn library. (ref : Gremmell?? p94)
    * In the late 1930s and early 1940s, well over two decades after her death, The Adelaide Advertiser was running 'Lady Kitty's Social Page'. This might have no connection with Kitty, but interestingly Kitty's children and grandchildren are mentioned as being involved in various social occasions.
     
    Achievements & main events Orbituaries :
    * Obituary - Northern Territory Times and Gazette on 21st May 1914
    * Obituary - The Advertiser on 15th May and 23rd May 1914
    * Obituary - The Register on 15th May 1914
    * Obituary - The Mail on 18th May 1914
    * Biography - Australian Dictionary of Biography (Sir Samuel WAY)
    * Article - 'Some memories of Strathalbyn' by Lady Way in the Mail, 11th April 1914, page 8e
     
    Achievements & main events Related biographies : Billy BLUE, Samuel WAY, Alexander (snr) GORDON, Alexander (jnr) GORDON and Donald GORDON 
    Achievements & main events Summary : Kitty was born in Stirling in 1854 and migrated from Scotland as an infant. She grew up near Strathalbyn in South Australia and was adopted by her aunty. She became prominent in civic life through her two marriages - firstly to Dr Billy BLUE who became the mayor of Strathalbyn, and later she married Sir Samuel WAY who was the Chief Justice and Lieutenant-Governor. She had four children with Billy but none with Samuel. Kitty died in 1914, aged 60 years.  
    Children of the marriage Kitty and Samuel were 44 and 62 at the time of their wedding. At that time Kitty's children were 16, 19, 21 & 22 years old so may have been part of the household at Montefiore for at least a few years - especially in the case of 16 year of Shylie whose own wedding was 8 years later.
    Kitty and Samuel did not have any children. Some on-line genealogies recorded that they had a son, Donald Gollan WAY, but there are no other indications that this is the case - so it is disregarded unless there is anything new to support this. 
    Notes for biography Biography :
    * At some stage she was 'adopted' by aunty Catherine (Jessie's sister) and Donald Gollan.
    * She married the mayor of Strathalbyn Dr Billy Blue and then Sir Samuel Way.
    * Kitty and Samuel had known each other for many years. In a speech Samuel gave in 1903 (ref : Register xxxx) he mentions that he had fallen in love with Kitty ?when she was still a child?. (ref Emerson, p29). Fifteen years before their marriage Kitty was Samuel?s guest at Montefiore in 1883 on 3 occasions ? a total of 24 days in October and November. (ref : Emerson, p29). Their wedding was 10 years after Susannah?s death in 1888 and 17 months after Billy?s death in 1896.
    * In the late 1930s and early 1940s, well over two decades after her death, The Adelaide Advertiser was running 'Lady Kitty's Social Page'. This might have no connection with Kitty, but interestingly Kitty's children and grandchildren are mentioned as being involved in various social occasions.
     
    Notes for biography Sources:-
    * Article - 'Some memories of Strathalbyn' by Lady Way in the Mail, 11th April 1914, page 8e
    * Obituary - Northern Territory Times and Gazette on 21st May 1914
    * Obituary - The Advertiser on 15th May and 23rd May 1914
    * Obituary - The Register on 15th May 1914
    * Obituary - The Mail on 18th May 1914
    * Biography - Australian Dictionary of Biography (Sir Samuel WAY)
    * Photo - Montiforie
     
    Related website KITTY'S SIBLINGS, PARENTS & GRANDPARENTS are detailed in the Gordon website - www.alexanderandjessiegordon.net 
    Occupation Occupation :
    * Music teacher at Hahndorf College
    * In the short time after the death of Billy and before she married Samuel, during 1897, Kitty Blue ran a small school in the new Hahndorf Institute, where she taught her own daughter Shylie, as well as the Byard and Von Doussa girls. In addition, she taught music to pupils from Hahndorf College. (ref : Butler p486)
     
    Residence Residences :
    * Larbert, Stirling as an infant.
    * The family embarked on their migration journey when Kitty was just 10 weeks old.
    * 'Belvidere', section 2774 hundred Bremer
    * See Billy's biography for where Kitty lived from when she was 18 years old, during their 24 years of marriage, until he died when she was 42 years old.
    * In the 17 months from after Billy died, before she married Samuel, she was at xxx
    * In the 16 years she was married to Samuel, they lived at 'Montefiore'- with some possible periods at Government House
     
    Died 4 May 1914  'Montefiore', North Adelaide, SA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Buried West Terrace Cemetery, Adelaide, SA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Person ID I3  Samuel WAY
    Last Modified 26 Apr 2018 

    Father Alexander GORDON,   c. 19 Feb 1822 
    Relationship Birth 
    Mother Jessie MATHESON,   b. 17 Apr 1823 
    Relationship Birth 
    Married 18 Feb 1850 
    Family ID F8  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Father Donald GOLLAN,   b. 11 Jan 1815, Inverness, Scotland, UK Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 25 Feb 1888, Point Sturt SA Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 73 years) 
    Relationship Foster 
    Mother Catherine MATHESON,   b. 17 Apr 1812, Inverness, Scotland, UK Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 13 Jun 1896, Strathalbyn, SA Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 84 years) 
    Relationship Foster 
    Married 11 Jan 1839  Kirkhill, Scotland, UK Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Children of the marriage Donald and Catherine did not have any children themselves. We know this because in Donald's orbituary there is a full list of mourners but no reference to any children, only nephews (ref : Southern Argus, 1st March 1888, p3) and there is no mention of children on her gravestone - or anywhere else.
    However they 'adopted' Catherine's niece, Catherine 'Kitty' Gordon, who was the daughter of Catherine's sister Jessie. Kitty was later to become prominent in Adelaide society - see Kitty's own profile.
     
    Family ID F201  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family 1 William Archibald Sinclair ('Billy') BLUE,   b. 10 Jan 1846, Poplar, London, UK Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 18 Sep 1896, Hahndorf, SA, Australia Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 50 years) 
    Married 24 Oct 1872  Residence of Donald Gollan in Point Sturt, SA Find all individuals with events at this location  [2
    Children of the marriage * They had three sons and then a daughter.
    * It is interesting that they gave the three boys the names of Billy's own three given names, but in the opposite order.
    * The daughter, Shylie, was the only one to have offspring - Kitty's and Billy's only grandchildren. 
    Wedding Wedding : Kitty and Billy were married on 24th October 1872 at the residence of Donald Gollan in Point Sturt by Rev. F. Slaney Pooie, B.A (ref : Australian Marriage Index - Strathalbyn, page 158 vol 93 and Southern Argus, Port Elliot, on 1 November 1872 p 2 Family Notices)
    At the time of the wedding, Kitty was 18 years old and Billy was 26 years old.
     
    Children 
     1. Sinclair BLUE,   b. 31 May 1875, Strathalbyn, SA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 5 Oct 1914, Capetown, South Africa Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 39 years)
     2. Archibald Gollan BLUE,   b. 15 Mar 1877, Strathalbyn, SA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 4 Mar 1847
     3. William Belworthy BLUE,   b. 7 Aug 1879, Strathalbyn, SA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 13 Oct 1915, Alexandria, Egypt Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 36 years)
    +4. Shylie Katharine BLUE,   b. 16 May 1882, Strathalbyn, SA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 3 Apr 1959, Thorngate Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 76 years)
    Last Modified 9 Jan 2017 
    Family ID F7  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family 2 Samuel James WAY,   b. 11 Apr 1836, Portsmouth, Hampshire, England, UK Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 8 Jan 1916, North Adelaide Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 79 years) 
    Married 11 Apr 1898  Residence of Mrs Beach, Prospect, SA Find all individuals with events at this location  [3
    Children of the marriage Kitty and Samuel were 44 and 62 at the time of their wedding. At that time Kitty's children were 16, 19, 21 & 22 years old so may have been part of the household at Montefiore for at least a few years - especially in the case of 16 year of Shylie whose own wedding was 8 years later.
    Kitty and Samuel did not have any children. Some on-line genealogies recorded that they had a son, Donald Gollan WAY, but there are no other indications that this is the case - so it is disregarded unless there is anything new to support this. 
    Wedding * Their wedding was almost 10 years after Susannah's death and 19 months after Billy's death.
    * There are no details of how Kitty and Samuel met or how long they had known each other.
    * In a speech Samuel gave in 1903 (ref : Register xxxx) he mentions that he had fallen in love with Kitty ?when she was still a child?. (ref Emerson, p29)
    * 15 years before their wedding Kitty was Samuel?s guest at Montefiore in 1883 on 3 occasions ? a total of 24 days in October and November. (ref : Emerson, p29)
     
    Wedding Kitty and Samuel were married on 11th April 1898 in the residence of Mrs Beach, Prospect (ref : Australian Marriage Index - page 139, vol 195)
    Kitty was 44 years old and Samuel was 62 years old.
     
    Last Modified 7 Sep 2016 
    Family ID F2  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Documents
    WW - Catherine Gillon Gordon - born 8th April 1854 in Larbert
    WW - Catherine Gillon Gordon - born 8th April 1854 in Larbert
    Parents: Alexander Gordon, labourer & Jessie Mathieson
    Residence: Larbert

    Stories
    2.23 - Kitty & the Gollans
    2.23 - Kitty & the Gollans
    Why and when did Catherine 'Kitty' Gordon come in to the care of Catherine & Donald Gollan? - v2
    2.20 - Tales of Two Women
    2.20 - Tales of Two Women
    Sir Samuel Way was a prominent figure in the colony of South Australia as it became part of the new Commonwealth of Australia. The two women were with him at different stages of his career and they had very different experiences with him. Firstly, his secret relationship with Susannah Gooding and their five children, while his career was rapidly growing. And then the public adoration of his relationship with Kitty Gordon at the peak of his career at the very centre of Adelaide high society.
    (Biography by Don Gordon - updated June 2019)

  • Sources 
    1. [S18] OPR - Old Parish Records, OPR 485/00 0020 0319 Larbert.

    2. [S1] Australian Marriage Index.

    3. [S1] Australian Marriage Index, page 139, vol 195.