G. T. (Gideon Tibbetts) Ridlon.

History of the ancient Ryedales, and their descendants in Normandy, Great Britain, Ireland, and America, from 860 to 1884 online

. (page 16 of 103)
Online LibraryG. T. (Gideon Tibbetts) RidlonHistory of the ancient Ryedales, and their descendants in Normandy, Great Britain, Ireland, and America, from 860 to 1884 → online text (page 16 of 103)
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James Riddell 2 (1), eldest son of Thomas 1 (1), was born in Lawrence,
Mass., July 4, 1857; unmarried in 1874.

Walter Riddell 2 (1), second son of Thomas 1 (1), was born in Lawrence,
Mass., Sept. 12, 1859; unmarried.

David Riddell 2 (1), third son of Thomas 1 (1), was born in Lawrence,
Mass., Sept. 21, 1861.



Frank Riddell 1 (1), descended from the Riddells of Riddell (parents
unknown), was born at Hawick, Scotland, in 1724 A. D.; married Annie
Neal in 1846, and had issue, of whom hereafter. He was a gardener by
occupation, and lived to old age. In an old Bible found in the home of
John Fairgreaves (whose wife was a Riddell of this family), in Bridgton,
Me., United States, I found the records of this branch. This old book was
published in Edinburgh, Scotland, in 1734 A. D. Several members of this
family hold the tradition that they are descended from the old branches of
the baronial family in Roxburghshire.


John Riddell 2 (1), eldest son of Frank 1 (1), was born at Hawick in 1758 ;
married in 1780 to P^ggy Parris, and had issue twelve children, of whom
hereafter. He was gardener and sexton.

Walter Riddell' 2 (1), second son of Frank 1 (1), was born at Hawick
in 1760 A. D. ; married Janet Hamilton, and had issue, of whom hereafter.
He removed to Carlisle, England.


Ann Riddell 3 (1), eldest daughter of John 2 (1), was born at Hawick,
in 1784, and died when young, a single woman.

Isabella Riddell 3 (1), second daughter of John 2 (1), was born at
Hawick in 1786, and died young unmarried.

Janet Riddell 3 (1), third daughter of John 2 (1), was born at Hawick
in 1788, and was married to Michael Dryden.

Francis Riddell 3 (2), eldest son of John' 2 (1), was born at Hawick,
Nov. 22, 1792 ; married Euphena Scott, and died in Northumberland, Eng.
He drove a mail-coach about nineteen years. Issue not known.

Isabella Riddell 3 ( 2 ), fourth daughter of John 2 (1), was born at
Hawick, Aug. 4, 1795 ; died young.

James Riddell 3 (1), second son of John 2 (1), was born at Hawick,
Sept. 1, 1797 ; married Janet Ray in 1820, and had issue. He was a coach-
man for many years.

Adam Riddell 3 (1), third son of John 2 (1), was born at Hawick, Nov.
29, 1798; married in 1821 to Martha Leatherhead, and resides in Edin-
burgh. Had issue ; no names.

John Riddell 8 (2), fourth son of John 2 (1), was born at Hawick, April
7, 1801, and was killed in a threshing-mill, at the age of nineteen.

Jean Riddell 3 (1), fifth daughter of John 2 (1), was born at Hawick,
Sept. 22, 1804 ; was the wife of John Watson, of Selkirk.

Katharine Riddell 3 (1), sixth daughter of John 2 ( 1 ), was born at
Hawick, Sept. 22, 1806; was married to John Fairgreaves, a weaver;
emigrated to Bridgton, Me., United States, and had issue (besides others)
a son, who resided in Bridgton.

John Riddell 8 (3), fifth and youngest son of John 2 (1), was born at
Hawick, Nov. 20, 1809; married Barbara Hall, an English lady, and had
issue. He was a coachman.

Mary Riddell 3 (1), seventh and youngest daughter of John 2 (1), was
born in Hawick, Feb. 9, 1810 ; died young.

James Riddell 3 (1), eldest son of Walter 2 (1), was born at Hawick,
April 4, 1784; married and had issue three daughters, of whom hereafter.


Frank Riddell 3 (3), second son of Walter 2 (1), was born at Hawick,
June 10, 1786, and was a clerk in a store at Leith. He died when in his
prime, unmarried.

Willie Riddoll 3 (1), second son at Walter 2 (1), was born at Hawick,
Oct. 14, 17*9, and settled at Carlisle, Eng.

Isabella Riddoll 3 (3), eldest daughter of Walter 2 (1), was born at
Hawick (or Carlisle, Eng.), Aug. 2, 1791.

Margaret Riddell 3 (1), second daughter of Walter 2 (1), was born at
Carlisle, Eng., Sept. 6, 1793.

Walter Riddell 3 (2), a son of Walter 2 (l),was born at Hawick, and
died young. He was a student for the ministry, and a very fine young
man ; he was greatly lamented.


Nellie Riddell 4 (1), eldest daughter of James 3 (l),Vas born at Hawick,
and died when young, and unmarried.

Betsey Riddell 4 (1), second daughter of James 3 (1), was born at
Hawick, and died young, unmarried.

Jennie Riddell 4 (1), third daughter of James 3 (1), was born at Hawick,
Scotland, and became the wife of John Hislop.


Walter Riddell 1 (2) (parents' names unknown) married Miss Isa-
belle Heiton, and was a mason and builder in Galashiels. He had issue
three children, of whom hereafter. He was a brother (presumably, as
per tradition) of the ancestor of the family styled in this book "Ridddls
of Hawick.'' Mrs. Riddell belonged to the ancient family of the Heitons
of Damick Lewer ; see tale respecting the Heitons in Wilson's " Tales of
the Border."


John Riddell" (1), eldest son of Water 1 (1), was born in Galashiels,
Scotland, 1796, and became a soldier in the Seventy-first Scottish Regi-
ment. He fought and was wounded at Waterloo; became a pensioner in
1834, and died in his seventy-second year. He married Helen, daughter of
James Leitsh, cooper, and had issue one son, of whom hereafter.

Thomas Riddell 2 (1), second son of Walter 1 (1), was born in Selkirk,
Scotland, say 1798-9, and died young, unmarried.

Mary Riddell 2 (1), only daughter of Walter 1 (1), was born at Selkirk,
Scotland, and married Thomas Hogg, a hosier and manufacturer in Selkirk ;

both lon£ dead.


Walter Riddell 3 (2), only son of John 2 (1), was born in Selkirk (?),
Scotland, Oct. 24, 1832; married Agnes Tait (she was born in 1832), and
has had issue nine children, of whom hereafter. Mr. Riddell writes from
Galashiels, and I think he resides there.



John Riddell 4 (2), eldest son of Walter 3 (2), was born 1854; dead.

Janet Riddell 4 (1), eldest daughter of Walter 3 (2), born July 10, 1856.

Helen Riddell 4 (1), second daughter of Walter 3 (2), born July 26, 1858.

Frank Riddell 4 (1), second son of Walter 3 (2), was born Feb. 5, 1862.

Elipheillia Riddell 4 (1), third daughter of Walter 3 (2), born Oct. 6,
1865; dead.

Mary Riddell 4 (1), third daughter of Walter 3 (2), born May 5, 1864;

Isabelle Riddell 4 (1), fifth daughter of Walter 3 (2), born April 12,

Agnes Riddell 4 (1), sixth daughter of Walter 3 (2), born Sept. 3,1870.

Elizabeth Riddell 4 (1), seventh daughter of Walter 3 (2), born April
17, 1873.


Robert Riddell 2 (1) is said to have been a native of Tiviotdale.* He
married a lady named Agnes Scott, a native of the same locality, and a
woman of remarkable strength of mind and excellence of character. Mr.
Riddell was a professional shepherd, and followed this branch of husbandry
during life. A writer describes him as "a man of strong though un-
educated mind." He made his home for many years in a remote district
called Langshawburn ; and while living in this " most friendly and hospi-
table district," his humble home was frequently visited by Walter Scott,
Pulteney Malcolm, and James Hogg, the Ettrick shepherd. He was sub-
sequently a resident of a place called Capplefoot, and there carried on a
farm owned by Thomas Beattie ; while resident here, and being remote
from the school, he employed a teacher in his house to instruct his chil-
dren. Mr. Riddell returned to his employment in the Forest of Ettrick
under Mr. Scott, of Doleraine, to whom he had been a shepherd in his
younger days ; with this family and that of Mr. Borthwick, all his years
were passed, save one, since he was large enough to wear the " plaid."
Mr. Riddell died when in the prime of life, leaving a widow and seven
children, six sons and one daughter, of whom hereafter.


William Riddell' 2 (1), eldest son of Robert 1 (1), was born in Tiviot-
dale, Roxburghshire, in the year 1789 ; married to Elizabeth Mill, Jan. 6,
1831, and followed farming and sheep-herding in his native district. He

* I am not acquainted with the history of the ancestors of this branch of the Kid-
dells ; have failed, after an extensive correspondence and liberal advertising, to
trace any connection between them and the old tree planted so early in Roxburgh-
shire. At one time there were reasons for believing that they were descended from
the Glen-Riddell family of the same shire, but after a careful examination of the
pedigree, no cadet was found who could have been the progenitor of this family.
Tradition says these Riddells are an offshoot of the ancient stock at Riddell, and I
am inclined to believe the statement ; but in the absence of proof I must leave their
antecedents to some one who may find access to sources of information from which
I am far removed. — Author.


died Nov. 29, 1867, having had issue seven children, of whom hereafter.
His wife predeceased him June 14, 1853, at the age of 53 years. The
family lived at Ramcleuchburn, Scotland.

Borthwick Riddell" (1), second son of Robert 1 (1), was born in
Tiviotdale, Roxburghshire ; married, and followed farming as a vocation.
He was a distinguished performer on the bagpipe, and for many years was
known as "Riddell, the piper." He was a large, dark man, and the
best player on the small pipes on the Scottish border. See a lecture in
which mention is made of his playing at the wedding of the son of the
Duke of Buceleuch; also see Wilson's " Songs of Scotland." He played on
many important occasions, and always won the applause of the company.
Mr. Riddell played at Minto House when Earl Russell married a daughter
of the Earl of Minto, — the parents of Lord Amberley, — and for this
service was rewarded with one of the cheapest and best farms on the estate.
No children.

Henry-Scott Riddell - ' (1), third son of Robert 1 (1), was born at Sorbie,
near Langholm, Sept. 23, 1798 ; married to Eliza, daughter of Mr.
Clark, a merchant of Biggar, and by her had issue three sous, of whom
hereafter. He spent his younger days as a shepherd with his father and
elder brothers. His advantages for education in early life were very lim-
ited ; sometimes his father employed a teacher in his house, and during a
few weeks in winter sent his children to the district-school. When his
father removed a distance from the schools, he was sometimes boarded for
study — at Davington, Roberton and Newmill ; at each of which, he says,
"I only remained a short time, making, I suppose, such progress as do
other boys who love the foot-ball better than the spelling-book." He early
manifested a preference for literature, and read all the books he could
borrow in his neighborhood ; and when on the mountains with his Hocks,
he constantly carried a book to these lonely solitudes, and with these si-
lent companions and his dog, surrounded by the wild scenes of nature, he
passed his time most pleasantly. While thus employed he commenced
the composition of poetry and, as he has said, loved to write out the
thoughts that came into his mind. The following lines best show the hab-
its of the shepherd-lad at that time : —

" My early years were passed far on
The hills of Ettrick wild and lone ;
Through summer sheen and winter cold,
Tending the flocks that o'er them strolled.
In bold, enthusiastic glee
I sung rude strains of minstrelsy ;
Which mingling with, died o'er the dale,
Unheeded as the plovers' wail.
Oft where the waving rushes shed
A shelter frail about my head.
Weening, though not through thoughts of fame,
To fix on these more lasting claim,
I'd there secure-in rustic scroll,
The wayward fancies of my soul.
Even where yon lofty rocks, arise,
Hoar as the clouds on wintry skies,
Wrapp'd in the plaid and dernel beneath
The colder cone of drifted wreath,
I noted them afar from ken,
Till ink would freeze within the pen ;
So deep the spell that bound the heart
Into the bard's undying art —




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So rapt the charm that still beguiled
The minstrel of the mountain wild."

He used to carry his scraps of poetry in his hat, and after a time, un-
like most young authors, he got a publisher unsought for. A wind swept
his hat away and scattered his poetic productions far over hill and dale,
like a flock of wild fowl. He recovered a few of these, but others fell
into strange hands aud created no little excitement in the neighborhood,
procuring for him a popularity that never died out. So strong were the
pressings of the muse, that he could not sleep, and frequently arose to
note down the thoughts that seemed to come unsought, while all others
were sound asleep. He prepared himself for college, and after the death
of his father, having accumulated considerable means from his employ-
ment as shepherd and his portion of the parental patrimony, he went to
Edinburgh and entered the university there. He proved a good scholar,
but did not apply himself to his studies with that diligence that was ex-
ercised by some, in consequence of spending much of his time in compo-
sition. After some time spent in study at St. Andrew's, he returned to
the university at Edinburgh and completed his course. After becoming
a probationer he was called to the pastoral charge of a church in the dis-
trict, and for a time laid aside the pursuit of romantic literature. In con-
sequence of there being no house provided for the preacher, he was under
the necessity of traveling nine miles to the place of his professional ser-
vices, and frequently, in bad weather, preached in a very uncomfortable
condition, with the wet pouring from his sleeves upon the Bible before
him, and upon the carpet at his feet. But the Duke of Buccleuch built
a dwelling-house for him, which he occupied through the remainder of
his life. About this time Mr. Riddell fell into a melancholy state, which
terminated in insanity, and he was, of course, unable to attend to pastoral
duties for a series of years. Another minister had succeeded him, and on
his recovery he did not interfere with the new ecclesiastical arrangement;
his procedure was generously approved by the Duke of Buccleuch, who
conferred upon him the cottage at Tiviothead, a grant of land, and a small

Mr. Riddell had formed the acquaintance of a lady of refinement and
position, Miss Eliza Clark, when a poor shepherd-lad, and the affection
bestowed by him was reciprocated ; but he was too independent to ask
or receive her hand in marriage, until he had acquired an education, and
during all his college years she remained true to her first love, refusing
wealth and high standing in life, and braving the risk of embracing com-
parative poverty. But when he had obtained a settlement at Tiviothead,
he made his own by marriage her who had in heart been his during the
long time he was in study. She was everything that would be looked for
in the wife and mother; and during the time of his indisposition she
proved a most constant and devoted companion. Mr. Riddell spent his re-
maining days in comfort at his pretty cottage-home, devoting his time to
reading, lecturing, and literature. He was highly esteemed by all, and his
home was visited by the most distinguished men of his day. My space
will not admit of a more extended notice of this good man, and I must re-
fer the reader to his complete poetical works, in which a full autobiogra-
phy, beautifully written, may be found. He died at his home at Tiviothead
Cottage, in 1870, leaving a widow and two sons to lament his death. His
widow died on the 29th of May, 1875, and now that they are dead, "the


hill-harps" notes of love" have gently died away, and she to whom the
poet "waked his harp" in the "honnie greenwood bowers o' the birks and
willows green."' lias followed him to "the names of our ain folk," and their
mortal remains are laid in the qui<

" Church-yard that lonely is lying
Amid the deep greenwood by Tiviot's wild strand."

Through the influence of Dr. Bydon, a monument to his memory, in
the form of a large cairn, was erected in a place overlooking the poet's
home at Tiviothead, where he lived so long, and where the most of his
poems were composed. I subjoin some lines composed by him on the
death of his mother, as a sample of his style.

" The Lament.

'• In the sadness and pomp of funeral array.
To the grave of my father they bore her away.
And laid her in death's silent chambers to rest,
With the cold clay and church-yard turf over her breast,
And bade me to weep not for her who had gone
Away to a land where no sorrows were known;
To weep not for her who through regions sublime
Had traveled away from the troubles of time.
To live in the bliss of the highest abode.
With the angels of light and the Son of her God.

" Yet how may it be? Can the bosom forget
The form, though so cold, and the eye, though now set?
Can the thoughts that away with the spirit will hie,
And accompany it on to the bowers of the sky.
There, lured and delighted, for ever remain.
Xor return to the earth and its sadness again?
Alas! there are shadows of darkness around,
With which while below we are deeply inbouuil ;
There is sorrow in all that we listen and see,
And pain in the heart till the spirit be free,
And our thoughts woe-o'erclouded, still rest on the grave
Where slumber the forms that we longed so to save.

" She guarded my steps when existence was young,
Her lips o'er my cradle the lullaby sung.
Her kindness was o'er me — her arms still caressed,
And my head found a home on a mother's own breast ;
And when every eyelid in slumber was closed,
When the shade of creation o'er nature reposed,
How oft would her bosom deep tenderness prove,
And yearn in its hope o'er the child of her love,
And breathe for my welfare to Heaven a prayer,
When I knew not of danger, nor dreamt of her care!
How then shall the power of remembrance decay
From the form that is cold in its chamber of clay?
How, how shall the heart, in its sadness of mood,
Forget o'er the loss of a mother to brood?
And when shall the radiance be shed from the sky,
That finds not a tear-drop for her in mine eye ?
Is the house where her accents of love wont to flow,
Not a scene for the shadows of sadness and woe?
Is the charm that was shed by her presence around
Not fall'n from our life, never more to be found ?
Do we feel not the gloom, and still live to deplore
The loved who is fled, and no years can restore ?

" Oh ! there was a time when our bosoms were gay
As the skylark that welcomes the breezes of May ;


" When the heart heaved no sigh, and the eye shed no drop,
But was mingled with joy or enlivened by hope.
But the clouds of misfortune rose darkly the while,
And lorded their gloom o'er the light of our smile;
And the tempest burst forth all too fierce to be braved
By the feeble of form, that we fain would have saved.
It came — it hath passed, and away with it borue
The friend of our life who can never return.

" When the song of the bird, and the beauties of spring,
Delight to the land of our fathers shall bring —
When the dew-drops of morn, that no footsteps may press,
Lie lonely and long in the forest's recess —
When the mist of the mountain is melted away
By the breath of the sky and the light of the day.
And the blooms of the primrose, the flower of the thorn,
The land of the living return to adorn ; —
All hearts shall be gay, and in pleasure combine,
But sorrow and sadness depart not from mine,
Since the dwelling is dark, and the chamber is cold,
Of her whom the living no more shall behold.

" When our friends, who have long been away o'er the main.
And have heard not the tale of our trial and pain.
Shall return, and shall hope in our dwelling to find
The friend who was here when they left us behind —
Oh ! how, 'mid the sorrow that lies round the heart,
Shall these lips to them e'er have the power to impart
The tidings, that she whom they ask for has fled
From the home of the living, to dwell with the dead ?

" Yet, yet 'mid this cold world of death and of ill.
A comfort remains in all suffering still,
For sympathy lives o'er the forms that decay,
And our hope with the dying can pass not away ;
And when all the waste of our suffering proves vain,
Our spirits can gather a pleasure from pain —
A self-treasured feeling — the ofl'spring of grief,
Which yields something more to the soul than relief.
The grass that grows green o'er the turf of the tomb
Relieves the dark thought from the depths of its gloom,
And the floweret that opens its white bosom there
Can a tale of the spirit departure declare ;
And a feeling of joy like the power of a dream,
Arising to life o'er the bosom would seem,
When we think on the charms which the grave-turf has clad,
And how nature thus stoops to hold faith with the dead.

" Oh still, when the sun in the west sinksaway,
And the winds from the woodlands their breathings convey —
When the song of the blackbird, aloft on the bough,
Is bidding to day's soft departure adieu,
And the whispers of nature, with voice of the stream.
Awake, and the star comes abroad with its beam, —
I will seek the lone scene, where the relics are laid
Of her whose bright memory remains undecayed ;
Nor mortals shall mark there the tears that shall flow
To pleasure the heart, as they soften its woe,
Or know of the peace that can visit the breast
From the thoughts of the beauty of those that are blest."

Robert Riddell 2 (2), fourth son of Robert 1 (1), was born in Tiviot-

dale, Roxburghshire, in 1800 ; married Margaret Johnston in 1819, and

rented a farm in Cumberland for some years. He emigrated to America

in 1832 ; his family consisted of ten children, of whom hereafter. He



died in Rockton, Canada, Nov. 16, 1867; his widow in 1874, aged 77
years ; she was born in Canoby.

Alexander-Hay Kid dell- (1), fifth son of Robert 1 (1), was born in
Tiviotdale, Roxburghshire; married, and had issue five children, three sons
and two daughters, of whom hereafter. He carried on farming in Cum-
berland, near Carlisle.

Walter Riddell" (1), sixth and youngest son of Robert 1 (1), was bom
in Tiviotdale, Roxburghshire, and died in the year 1834, unmarried.

Mary Riddell' (1), a daughter of Robert 1 (1), was born in Tiviotdale,

Roxburghshire; married to Jones, and had a family of ten, four

sons and six daughters.


Margaret-Mill Riddell 3 (1), eldest daughter of William 2 (1), was
born at Blackburn, Lauderdale, July 6, 1831 ; she was married.

Robert-Borthwick Riddell 3 (3), eldest son of William- (1), was born
at Ramcleuchburn, in the parish of Hawick, Feb. 21, 1833, and died
March 29, 1862 ; unmarried.

William-Mill Riddell 3 (2), second son of William' 2 (1), was born at
Ramcleuchburn, parish of Hawick, July 23, 1835, and is now (1878)
carrying on a farm of 1,600 acres at Ramcleuchburn, Tiviothead, Hawick ;
is a shepherd and unmarried.

James-Scott Riddell 3 (1), third son of William- (1), was born at
Ramcleuchburn, parish of Hawick, Sept. 27, 1837 ; was married at St.
Boswell, Bowden, Scotland, Feb. 26, 1862, to Isabella Telper, and is now
living on a farm at Grassgarth, near Carlisle, Cumberland, Eng. He has
issue seven children, of whom hereafter.

Jessie Riddell 3 (1), second daughter of William' 2 (1), was born at
Ramcleuchburn, parish of Hawick, Sept. 2, 1839; was married at the
same place Jan. 16, 1868, to William Easton, and has three children.

Agues-Scott Riddell 3 (1), third daughter of William' 2 (1), was born
at Ramcleuchburn, May 24, 1842 ; was married Dec. 5, 1861, to Thomas
Irving, of Langholm ; he died there April 6, 1870, aged 34 years, leaving
issue, and his widow married secondly, Jan. 9, 1873, to James Lunn, watch-
maker, of Langholm, now resident at Edinburgh, Scotland.

Elizabeth Riddell 3 (1), youngest daughter of William 2 (1), was born
at Ramcleuchburn, Dec. 30, 1844; died there Sept. 2, 1852.

Walter-Scott Riddell 3 (2), eldest son of Henry' 2 (1), was born at
Tiviothead, parish of Hawick, in 1835 ; married a daughter of the Rev.
Dr. Arnot, of the High Church, Edinburgh, and held an office in the Hong
Kong and Shanghai Bank, in China. He died in London in 1876, leaving
a widow and six children, of whom hereafter.

Online LibraryG. T. (Gideon Tibbetts) RidlonHistory of the ancient Ryedales, and their descendants in Normandy, Great Britain, Ireland, and America, from 860 to 1884 → online text (page 16 of 103)