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NAME: Gordon Holmes Stitt

NAME: Isabel
Born: 1866*
Born:
Died: May 1949* Died:
Father: William STITT Father:
Mother: Margaret HOLMES Mother:
Married:

*SOURCE: Frank H.H. King, The History of the Hongkong and Shanghia Banking Corporation. Volume III, p. 300.

PAGE IN PROGRESS: Updated August 16, 2006

Gordon H. STITT worked for the HSBC in the Far East and is another person connected to Sir Thomas JACKSON through links of family and geography. In the notes beneath - which are rather disjointed at present - I have included all the bits that have led me to make the connection with the JACKSON family. It also helped that Sir Thomas JACKSON's mother repeatedly suggested that her son hire Gordon STITT and also mentioned his grandfather, Gordon HOLMES who was the sub-inspector of police for Crossmaglen.

Also, Elie RYDER of Bangor, Co. Down was a great help as she remembered "Uncle Gordie" and also recalled that he was cared for by an aunt after his mother died. He was known to be generous to the SPEIR (AKA SPEER) family of Cullyhanna - this would be his youngest sister's family. When he died, four gold cups were were part of what was sent to Cullyhanna from his estate.

PARENTS & SIBLINGS OF Gordon Holmes STITT  
This is as far as I can get right now. The records of the first three children are from Creggan Church records, the dates for Gordon & Anna from other sources, and the last children are from Vital Statistics. This break in the records needs more attention before I can be certain that I have it all correctly recorded.

1   William Stitt   
..  +Margaret Holmes d: Mar 1877 in Derryfalone, Barronstown, Louth b: 1832
.. 2   Elizabeth Susan Stitt d: 14 Dec 1863 in Derryfalone, Barronstown, Louth b: 25 Aug 1859 in Derryfalone, Barronstown, Louth
.. 2 France Mary Stitt b. 1860, Dec 28
.. 2   John Holmes Stitt  b: 16 May 1862 in Derryfalone, Barronstown, Louth
.. 2   Gordon Holmes Stitt d: 1949 in England b: 1866
......  +Isabel Unnamed   
.. 2   Anna G. Stitt d: Aft. 1943  
.. 2   Mary Stitt  b: 26 Apr 1868 in Derryfalone, Barronstown, Louth
.. 2   William Alexander Stitt  b: 03 Sep 1869 in Derryfalone, Barronstown, Louth
.. 2   John Robert Stitt  b: 23 Sep 1870 in Derryfalone, Barronstown, Louth
.. 2   Margaret Leta Stitt d: 20 May 1969 in Cullyhanna House b: 05 Aug 1872 in Derryfalone, Barronstown, Louth
......  +William Speers   
...... 3   Ida Speers   
...... 3   Maud Speers   
...... 3   Maisy Speers   
..........  +Geoff Studdert   
.. 2   Jane Stitt  b: 01 Nov 1873 in Derryfalone, Barronstown, Louth


This photo is included in the first Album of photos at Gilford Castle. It has been generously shared with me by Christine WRIGHT of Gilford Castle. The inscription on the back of the photo reads: Mrs. Stitt of Derryalone (although the latter word borders on illegibility).

There is a townland named "Derryfalone", and given the loosey-goosey approach to spelling (a trait that I share to my personal regret), I shall presume that “Derryfalone” and “Derryalone” are one and the same. Other clues to go on? There is also a physical resemblance to Susan DONALDSON (see: CORR family photos as well as: DONALDSON family photos), but also to Mary DICKIE (see: DICKIE family photos) and so on. The intermarriages in the region - along with what appears to be a dominant gene - bequeathed a long face and strong chin to many extended family members (also check out many of the JACKSON group). This being the case, using mere resemblance as a clue is pretty far fetched.
Initially I thoought that this photo was of the mother of Gordon STITT, but now I am leaning towards her being a DONALDSON who married a STITT and hence an aunt- possibly the one who raised the children when Gordon's mother died leaving at least ten children ranging in age from five years old to eighteen.

The residents of Derryfalone in the Griffiths of 1848-1864 include the following (I have highlighted John T. DICKIE because of his place in our family tree)

Last Name First Name Townland Parish County

Deery

Alice

Derryfalone

Barronstown

Louth

Deery

Patrick

Derryfalone

Barronstown

Louth

Devine

John

Derryfalone

Barronstown

Louth

Devine

Owen

Derryfalone

Barronstown

Louth

Dickie

John T.

Derryfalone

Barronstown

Louth

Flynn

Patrick

Derryfalone

Barronstown

Louth

Hamill

Owen

Derryfalone

Barronstown

Louth

Lane

Hamilton

Derryfalone

Barronstown

Louth

Mc Kenna

Patrick

Derryfalone

Barronstown

Louth

Murphy

Peter

Derryfalone

Barronstown

Louth

In Creggan Cemetary, there is an inscription: Here lieth the body of John Stitt of Freeduff who departed this life the 15th day of September aged 88(?) 82(?) years; also the body of his wife Letitia (?) Stitt who departed this life the 18 (?) day of April 1776 aged ... years. SOURCE: p26, Guide to Creggan Church & Graveyard by Kevin McMahon & Jem Murphy.

Presumably, this is the John STITT who shows up in the 1766 Creggan Census.

Freeduff & STITT

Census of Creggan

Tithe Applotment Books

Griffiths Valuation

Census of Ireland

First NI Revaluation

Second Revaluation

1766

1828

1864

1901

1935

1957

1966

Freeghduff

Freeduff

Freeduff

Freeduff

Freeduff

Freeduff

Freeduff

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Households/Land

Households

Households

Households

Households

Households

Alexander Clark

John Bradley

James Bradley

David Bradley

John Bradley

F. Ginnane

Travers Ferguson

Samuel Donaldson

John Bradley

Richard Campbell

James Bradley

Samuel Goodfellow

Frederick Goodfellow

S. Henry

Robert Hughston

Hugh Clarke

James Connell

Patrick Carragher

John Hoey

S. Henry

John Hoey

Widow Moffit

William Clarke

John Hoey

Thomas Clements

Patrick Leonard

John Hoey

Margaret Leonard

Jos Peery

Patt Connell

William McClean

John Fee

William McBride

Margaret Leonard

Gerard McGeeney

John Stitt

John Donaldson

Denis Murthagh

Samuel Goodfellow

Gerald McGeeney

Gerard McGeeney

Mary Murtagh

William Stitt

Joseph Donaldson

David Nelson

John Hawey

John Murtagh

Mary Murtagh

John Quinn

 

Ann Hughy Widow

Michael O'Hare

Edward Kearney

Emily Nelson

Freda Nelson

Francis Rooney

 

Rev WS McLeane

Eliza Perry

Thomas Lynch

William Stitt

John Quinn

Patrick Rowland

 

Luke Murtagh

William Perry

James McGeeney

John Treanor

Francis Rooney

Francis Sheridan

 

John Nelson

John Stitt

Samuel Nelson

 

Patrick Rowland

 

 

Felix O'Hanlon

William Stitt

Michael Rooney

Land

Patrick Rowland

Land

 

Hugh Peery

Michael Trainor

Bridget Trainor

John James Bradley

 

Michael Largey (Pat)

 

James Stitt

 

 

Peter O'Hanlon

Land

Terence McMahon

 

John Stitt

Land

 

Michael Rooney

Terence McMahon

Patrick McShane

 

 

Peter O'Hanlon

 

William Speers

Patrick McShane

Peter O'Hanlon

 

 

Samuel Speers

 

 

Peter O'Hanlon

John E. Quinn

 

 

 

 

 

Leata M. Speers

Leata M. Speers

 

 

 

 

 

James F. Wright

 

In the table above, I have bolded the STITT names as well as those of MCBRIDE and WRIGHT. According to family lore, James Francis WRIGHT (also of HSBC in the Far East) and later of Gilford Castle, Co. Down bought land from a Dr. STITT who was a cousin of Eilie McBRIDE’s father (Dr. William McBRIDE of Crossmaglen) and they inherited the two farms. Following along that track, there is a STITT-McBRIDE marriage of interest: Also one of the STITT daughters married a SPEERS - so it is all quite tightly connected.

Husband

Wife

Husband’s parent

Wife’s Parent

Date

Details

McBRIDE, John

STITT, Mary

McBRIDE, Waddle

STITT, John

1860, Jul 5

Creggan, Armagh

One more HSBC connection to Freeduff is that Margaret Louise JACKSON, the widow of HSBC manager David JACKSON (d. 1903, Yokohama) lived at Freeduff after her second marriage and died there in 1945. After years of high living with a second husband, she had run through her financial resources (so the story goes) and had to be supported by her brother, James Francis WRIGHT.

One last fish to net - which is likely to be a cousin - is the birth of a male child - last name of STITT in Crossmaglen:

Father

Mother

Child

Date

Details

STITT, John

McCLEAN, Anna

STITT, Unnamed Male

1868, Oct 11

Crossmaglen, Armagh

Gordon H. STITT and his career with HSBC (here we are firmer factual ground) .

SOURCES: Archival records as well as Frank H.H. King, The History of the Hongkong and Shanghia Banking Corporation

STITT first went East in 1889 and I am guessing that he likely started in Hong Kong since he was a junior there a year later when he signed a thank-you letter to Sir Thomas Jackson (along with other appreciative juniors) . He served in Hong Kong for three years and was then assigned to Hiogo but apparently from 1898 to 1908 he actually served at Penang and Singapore.

In July of 1896, he received a staff evaluation from G.T. HOW at Kobe which described him as follows: A good worker and very steady. His conduct in and out of office is all I can desire – takes a great interest in his work and is a great favourite. In July of 1897, when he was in Penang, he continued to receive similar reviews for his work there from 1897-1900. Then, there is a gap in the record and he is reviewed again in Penang in 1905 with similar praise. In 1908, his staff performance review (again stellar) indicates that he has been serving as the Accountant at Penang. From there, he went to Japan where he served as Sub-Manager at Yokohama (then the main branch in Japan). After this, he served for seven years during WWI as Manager in Kobe (from 1913-1919). In 1920, he was appointed Acting Manager in Shanghai during the leave of the current Manager (STEPHEN). When STEPHEN became Chief Manager, STITT "was appointed Manager Shanghai until his resignation in 1926 with 36 1/2 years Eastern service. He then received a gratuity of ₤12,000 and a pension of ₤700 per annum until he died in May 1949, aged 83.”

The two lions which were installed in front of the new HSBC building in Shanghai were named after STITT and STEPHEN:

The lion named STITT - likely named by the local Chinese in appreciation for STITT's success with the HSBC in Shanghai.

According to James CALDWELL who worked in Shanghai in 1926, Gordon STITT was

... a very jovial character who had been put there, you might say, as a public relations officer. He was very popular and many stories have been told about him, and one in particular when he was Agent in Kobe before he went to Shanghai in the First War. Being typically Irish, there was an auction to get money for some of the war relief funds, and he took off his Irish tweed trousers and had them sold at the auction. I think they went for £200, and he walked back to the Bank along the street in Kobe just in his underpants.

I was there with him at a point-to-point meeting ... he was a very keen rider and the ponies there were these Mongolian ponies which were very strong and sturdy but short, and this lady came up to him dressed in his tweeds and said, I think you should be ashamed of yourself with a stomach like yours, Mr Stitt, going to ride a little pony like that. He said, oh, the pony will carry me all right, don't worry about that. But if you think I'm doing anything about this stomach of mine, you have got another think coming. I've had so much fun getting it.

 

 

 

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