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Tours The Gilchrist Family Tour
Chapter 1: Summary
Chapter 2: Colin Gilchrist
Chapter 3: Jessie Gilchrist
Chapter 4: The Derrick Line
Chapter 5: Olive Wilson Gilchrist
Chapter 2: Colin Gilchrist
Colin was born in the parish of Bowmore, Islay, in 1831. In 1850, at the age of 19 he joined the Scots Fusilier Guards in Glasgow, and became Private number 4062.
As Colin had a military career and military records were well preserved, a lot is known about Colin. He was 5 foot 9 inches tall, had a 'fresh' complexion, hazel eyes, brown hair and no marks or scars. His 20 years of service can be traced from Glasgow to London, to the Crimea, to Windsor, back to London and then finally to Bath where he died from TB at 43 years of age. As a guard he guarded over some noteworthy places: his marriage certificate gives his London home address as the 'Tower' Barracks, which was remembered by his granddaughter (Olive) as the time that he worked at the Tower of London.
Colin Gilchrist, 1870's
Colin's wife: Mary Ann Gilchrist (nee Diment), 1890's
Possibly the most significant part of Colin's career were the years that he spent during the Crimean War. Colin would spend from February 1854 to July 1856 involved in the 'Eastern Campaign'. During this period he was 'wounded in the right leg at the Alma and received a contusion in the left foot in the trenches before Sebastapol.' He would later be awarded a Crimean medal with 2 clasps: Alma and Sebastapol, denoting that he had fought in these battles. Hospital records show that he spent at least 2 weeks at Scutari, the depot probably best known for its connections to Florence Nightingale. Olive Gilchrist's records also mention that Colin had seen Florence there.
Colin met and married a glove and lace maker who came from Chard, called Mary Ann Diment. They had met at a dinner dance, where they had both battled to understand each others accents. Their marriage certificate states that Mary's father (Henry Diment) was a licensed victualler, however it has also been thought that Henry was a flax farmer. Colin's and Mary's 4 children illustrate how Colin moved from one military base to another: Sarah (Windsor), Flora and Jessie (London), and Louisa (Bath). But Colin was ill, and died at 43 from TB. Mary took up work as a cook and stayed in the Bath area. Both Colin and Mary are buried in St James cemetery, Haycombe, Bath.